Thursday, July 28, 2011

We are racists

Norway this past week suffered a brutal terrorist attack. Whatever your opinions on the man (and I eventually believe his co-conspirators) and his political and religious beliefs, he murdered a lot of people in a country without a lot of people. The event was a shock to their way of life and they reacted with swift vengeance and an increase in security.

No wait - that's what we would do. Kind of. In fact, Norway has reacted with reasonable calmness and resolve - investigating the crimes without any actions that increase security at the cost of personal liberties and freedoms. How un-American of them!

With every terrorist attack since 9/11 the United States of America has increased security and decreased personal liberties for our citizens. Remember when you didn't have to take your shoes or belt off to get on an airplane? remember the days when Miranda had to be read to you every time, with no exceptions? Remember when we used to put all accused criminals on trial?

So what's the difference? Why have we been terrorized when Norway hasn't fallen prey to it, despite a home-grown terrorist attack? Glenn Greenwald at Salon has a good article on it but I don't think he hits hard enough on a key issue. He talks about how Norway has resisted pressure to increase security and until this moment of home-grown terrorism has done so successfully - and appears will continue to do so. He talks about the differences between our country and Norway, and how we have become terrorized while they have not.

It's in an update to his article that I notice something. He talks about how we didn't increase security in the aftermath of the Oklahoma City bombing. Well, he accurately points out that in fact we did, but it was nothing on the scale of what we go through today. But there's something else underlying all of this. A man blows up an abortion clinic and sets off a bomb in the Olympic park in Atlanta. A man guns down a doctor in his church. A man places a bomb on the streets of Seattle. None of these terrorist threats warranted an increase in security anywhere in the U.S. But a man attempts to set his feet on fire, and another his undies. A man shoots up an army base, while another attempts to drive a car bomb across the Canadian border. Each of these terrorist threats were responded to with changes and increases in our security.

The difference? Group A weren't Muslims. Group B was. Greenwald didn't want to go to the logical conclusion and went to great pains in his article to talk about differences and make it out to be a difference between our country and Norway. I'm going to go a touch further.

For a melting pot we seem to be really unable to accept differences. We suck at it. Conservatives hate gays and Islamic people and even sometimes Jews. Liberals hate those who are close-minded. I could site you a thousand examples but the point for today is a simple one - these security increases and loss of liberties are the result of perceived Islamic terrorism.

Bill ORLY has nearly popped a vein in his skull over the idea that the Norwegian killer could be called a Christian terrorist. Well, I call bullshit. If you can constantly refer to people using the name of Allah to commit unspeakable acts as Islamic terrorism then this nut job in Norway is certainly a Christian terrorist. And therein lies the heart of the matter - we are racist against Muslims. It's a definitional problem, the same as a white man will lock the doors of his car when he drives through a black neighborhood. You don't want to acknowledge that this is racism, but it most certainly is.

And I don’t see how we're going to get past this without a complete overhaul. Or perhaps by defeating the thing that scares us most - our own fear. I'm not saying it's easy - FDR really nailed it on the head with that one. But until we reach that point the terrorists beat us. Because we are afraid of the people they supposedly represent (even though they don't). It's the same reason that blacks have a suspicion of whites even if they don't dress in sheets. It's the same reason that Native Americans distrust our government and have their own cops - because they were railroaded so often. It's the same reason that Jews, Irish, Italians, and just about every immigrant group has been blamed for the bad crap that happens all throughout the history of the United States.

We are a nation founded on escaping persecution, and while our founding fathers found a way out of that morass for the most part we easily sink back into it. It becomes an us against them mentality, and lately it even permeates the differences between political parties. And even if they all have the same skin color it all boils down to that basic fear - the problems are caused by the NOT US.

Racism. And unless we get past that we're in serious trouble - because we're losing the moral fight.

Cheap shots:

I'll be honest, I never thought there was a fan-fiction category for anything like this.

Painfully thickwitted. I like that phrase.

And again, The Onion nails it.

No Rand, you've misinterpreted the book. The Hobbits weren't the heroes - a small band of them, outcasts from the rest, were the heroes. You and McCain are just assholes.

Speaking of books, I think I just found two more to add to the summer reading lists of my children.

Interesting trailer.

And the jobs bill is where exactly?

Someone castrated the Speaker of Orange!

And because I love you, Robert Randolph and the Family Band

Monday, July 25, 2011

NEVER, you fucking idiot

My mom worries that I've lost my mojo because I didn't rant for nearly a month. Not to worry. Buckle up.

Question for Glenn Beck: Under what circumstances is it acceptable/understandable to shoot a bunch of children? If they are "Hitler Youth" does that make it acceptable? If the camp that they are attending is some sort of "political brainwashing" does that make it acceptable? Under what circumstances is this okay?

Stop thinking about it and answer reflexively. NEVER YOU FUCKING IDIOT!!!

The answer is NEVER. Not ever. Not under any circumstances. Period. No exceptions. Ever. The fact that you've already come up with excusing what the shooter in Norway has done makes you a monster. Evil. Demonic.

I don't give a fuck if they're all going to grow up and become terrorists. I don't give a fuck if they're being indoctrinated in Hitler Youth, Islamic Youth, Christian Youth, 4-H, or even your own 912 project. I'm not saying that these kids were such a thing. I'm not saying they weren't. I'm saying it makes no fucking difference whatsoever under any circumstances.

I don’t give a fuck if they're being taught to burn books in Bible camp in Alabama. I don't give a fuck if they're being taught to say "Allah Akbar" every night before they go to bed in Wisconsin. I don't give a fuck if they have to kiss their 4 mothers to sleep every night in Utah. I don't give a fuck if they're being raised to take over the family moonshine business in West Virginia. I don't give a fuck if they witnessed their gay uncle and his "friend" get married this past weekend in New York. I don't give a fuck if they're being raised on the monies earned in the drug trade in Arizona. I don't give a fuck if they're being raised to become suicide bombers in Florida. I don't give a fuck if they've been raised to fuck goats in Chicago. (All examples based upon real incidents, by the way.)

I don't even give a fuck if they're the children of racist right-wing radio hosts that spew hate with every breath.

I don't give a fuck about any of this because it is NEVER acceptable to kill children or hurt them, under any circumstances. If you think otherwise then you are brain-damaged and should be removed from the gene pool. Yes, I will say it to your fucking face if I ever see it.

You and the people like you who have been back-tracking and stumbling over the most basic of syllables ever since it was discovered that a right-wing "Christian" militant with an anti-Islamic bias killed all those people in Norway this past weekend should all be ashamed of yourselves. The fact that you're not is proof enough that whatever afterlife I find myself sentenced to heaven wouldn't include you fucks.

The man who did all of this is NOT a "serious political thinker" of any kind. He is a murdering pedophile, and to elevate him with anything else makes you his equal. It is NOT about blaming multiculturalism. It is not about blaming Islamic culture for making this murderer  afraid. It is not about misinterpreting a Pamela Geller column - which it seems to me he read correctly. It is not about blaming pro-abortion groups, or euthanasia groups, or Al Gore. All of you who are saying things like this today should be lined up and tased repeatedly. (For the record, I am not advocating violence. These same people keep telling me that tasers are safe).

As for the cocaine-snorting snot-rag pedophile-sympathizer of hate radio I have only one thing to say. Go to hell, you self-aggrandizing hate-filled mistake. God didn't make you; the opposition did.

Cheap shots:

Apparently Comicon in San Diego was the awesome.

Has Donald Trump been right about anything in the past two decades?

Kids, we all know that living in her district must be tough, but hang in there. It gets better. (yeah, doing that joke after my rant? I never claimed to be a nice guy).

And here is a perfect example why some voter ID laws are the moral equivalent of unwelcome sodomy.

I want Obama to come out against extending the debt ceiling - just to see if these assholes will suddenly say they're for it. Groucho was satire you morons. Here is proof:

They've colorized Niagara Falls!

Climate change deniers can swim in this.

Power corrupts, and is apparently an unspeakable fetish as well.

By the way, just who will be hiring Guido to come break Lady Liberty's kneecaps if we default? It's not who you think.

8 at 27.

By the way, did any of you notice that the FAA shut down a couple of days ago? That's 4,000 people laid off already and another 87,000 construction jobs about to disappear.

Are you sure he isn't the Godfather of… Chicken?

Who does the Speaker of Orange represent again?

And because I love you, Eluveitie

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Calling it for what it is

Yeah, I've been gone for a while. What can I say? There was a sale at Border's Books.

I am going to spout off about Rep. Allen West of Florida. Someone please tase this fucker in the junk. He may be the only member of congress to have actually murdered someone (while stationed in Iraq) but let's just talk about his conduct as a member of congress. He yesterday in a letter referred to another member of his state's representation as a vile human being and "not a Lady", and said he will not offer her any measure of respect. Then when he was called out for it he called his attackers racist.

Representative West is black. Let's be upfront about this - the man has experienced racism. I have no doubt of this as every black man in this country has experienced it. And not being one myself it is hard to equivocate his experiences to any of my own, and a black man in general is going to be a better judge of this than I am.

Now to specifics - I am not talking about black men, but a singular black man. A black man kicked out of the army for mistreating a detainee while in Iraq. A black man who hung out with illegal motorcycle gangs. A black man who called the President's children a menace to America. A black man who referred to ME as part of what undermines this nation.  A black man who to date has yet to give his opposition the proper respect of calling them by their actual name instead of a nickname made up by Rush Limbaugh.

Now I could have said all of those things without using the word "black" and still have made my point. The man is a jerk. But being a jerk is color-blind. You don't have to be white, black, mauve, green or orange (although the only orange-Americans I can think of off the top of my head all are). I am not being racist for calling you an asshole when you behave like an asshole, just as I believe that your attack on your fellow representative wasn't sexist - I think you would have attacked anyone who had followed you in this manner.

Oh, except for the "you're not a Lady" part. As if you knew what a Lady actually is - it's not like you are one, after all. Or are you hiding something?

Cheap shots:

You would think that Santorum, of all people, would know better than to try to fuck with Dan Savage.

This is going to mess up properly reading The Chronicles of Narnia.

High-sticking! 5 minute penalty!

To the people that don't believe in global warming - Red means Hot.

And because I love you, The Polecats