News, thoughts and comments on civil rights and related issues.
Saturday, June 07, 2003
I have heard nothing from Bear about the erroneous count for Silver Rights in the Showcase. The missing votes are still missing. Therefore, I am going to suggest voting again if you voted prior to Thursday morning. You can cast your vote here.
Brian Linse has informed me that I partly misremembered his comments about Silflay Hraka. The 'tech site' reference is an error.
However, Brian did support and still supports the use of the word "nigger" by SH. He rationalizes it on the grounds that it is somehow a literary usage. I disagree. I believe the person just wanted an excuse to cover his arse for using the slur.
I have changed the title of that entry and added the new information.
He continues to carp. However, I wll probably not be saying more about him. It is obvious intelligent conversation goes right over his over-sized and underoccupied head. For example, Del thinks my reference to the doctrine of the elect means I called him a religious fundamentalist.
Read him. Link to him. Add him to your blogroll.posted by J. | 4:43 AM
In his own words
I write about the neo-Confederate movement and individuals and other groups who promote white supremacy quite often. However, sometimes I think it is best to let people who are white supremacists speak for themselves. The comments below were gleaned from the blog of a fellow who is the taste of the week among the bigotry set. The entry he wrote to engender beaucoup backslapping from them is cited above. Without further ado,
Clubbeaux's disingenous remarks are met with equally telling comments by his admirers. The overall effect is a manifesto for white supremacy, though the usual disclaimer of 'I'm not a racist' appears quite often.posted by J. | 4:25 AM
Friday, June 06, 2003
The N-word rides again
*Not gone, not forgotten
Hold on to your seats, folks. Remember Brian Emanuels, the schoolteacher who called children 'niggers' in at least two classes on the same day at a high school in Seattle? He supposedly resigned to avoid being disciplined. Only, he didn't. *Victor of Balusubramania's Mania, who is one of my best sources, sent me the heads-up this morning.
The rest of the story leads me to conclude:
1) Staff at the school are colluding with Emanuels to keep him there, despite the wishes of the children, their parents and the community.
2) Said individuals are contemptuous of nonwhites or they would not so readily disregard the desires of those constituencies.
3) The principal of the school, who is African-American, does not actually run the school. His white underlings do.
Brian Emanuels needs to leave that school and the education system in general. He does not have the temperament to be a teacher and his bigotry makes the situation even worse. Cleveland High School must be aired out. The stench of Emanuels will not dissipate as long as he is present there. His enablers might want to move on to a place where they can have their own whites-only party, too.
I gather that Emanuels is being watched by people who care about the students and want to take away the carte blanc he has been issued to emotionally abuse children of color. I urge parents, the NAACP and other interested parties to keep the pressure on, using legal means to hold the Seattle School District responsible, if necessary.
*Just a place for bigotry?
I have not forgotten my first visit to Silflay Hraka. I remember it because a big print entry promoting the site proudly patted SH on the back for calling Cynthia McKinney a "nigger." Brian Linse told me that Silflay Hraka didn't mean anything by the banner, which was up for at least a month. He is entitled to his opinion. Subsequent entries on the site, including this one today, make me wonder.
There is more in a long-winded, linked entry by said Clubbeaux, a fellow who reminds me of Brian Emanuels, including the capacity for self-deception. Fellow travelers have piled onto his comments thread to congratulate him for his 'honesty.' Hold your nose and give the entry and the comments a read.
Silflay denies there was a banner, but not the use of the word "nigger." I am sure the headline, used as a promo for the site, was made to stand out somehow. Perhaps that was through large print, color or graphics instead of a banner.
*Trish fisks "nigger"
Trish Wilson wrote her entry about Brian Emanuels after the roundup of posts I did here. I am not sure it ever received a link to Silver Rights. That's a shame because I am a big fan of her entry.
If you never read anything else about the man, T.W.'s treatment of the topic will put you in good stead. It completely belies the idea that a white person cannot understand why racism is wrong. So, read the whole thing. You might want to drop Clubbeax a line when you're done.
Note: *Victor is too unassuming to promote his blog. I am not too unassuming to step in and take over the task. He is a tireless interrogator of many of the topics that impact our lives, from gun control, to minorities in society to Blogospherics. If you have not yet added Balusubramania 's Mania to your blogroll, you should.posted by J. | 5:16 PM
The New Weblog Showcase: An update
I don't know what is going on with Silver Rights' entry in The Truth Laid Bear's New Weblog Showcase. The original link to "Some logs and a bottle of wine" broke some time Wednesday. I asked Bear to repair the link Wednesday night. On Thursday, the entry's count changed from nine votes to one. It seems logical to me to add the prior links to any new ones that occur. Having no explanation of why the voting has regressed, I can only recommend continued use of the current link.
I have heard from Del Simmons, the blogger somewhat assertively appraised in Part I of the Showcase reviews. He has written a comeback to that entry. After reading it, my conclusion is Del fails to grasp that democratic societies seek to foster the common good, not a ranking of citizens as worthy or unworthy based on income or skin color. His continuous plaint that the poor are undeserving of tax refunds because they pay low taxes is evidence of that failure of imagination. The poor pay low taxes because they make very little money. The taxes they do pay impact them more severely than the taxes paid by middle and upper-class people. Depriving them of tax refunds has a similar impact because they need the money more than other citizens do. A society in which the poor have at least the basics needed to live helps us all by lessening the suffering of the current and future population. (Assuming one does not like stepping over the bodies of starving people, that is.) Furthermore, some of those poor children have the potential to become our future leaders. Depriving them of clothing, food or shelter, as Del desperately desires, is depriving ourselves of their talents in the long run.
A way of explaining Del's warped perspective is via the doctrine of the elect. One belief of a branch of traditional Christian theology was that people deserved whatever fate they were born into. The poor deserved to be poor because God had ordained it. The rich had been 'elected' both for prosperity in their natural lives and Heaven once they died. Because God ordained it. I doubt Del has ever heard of the doctrine of the elect, but his contempt for the poor and worship of the wealthy is a striking reflection of the idea.
Another analytical error Del makes stems from the fact he does not distinguish between what is generally considered a middle-class income and super-wealth, i.e., incomes within the top ten percent of American society. Those individuals are more likely to have inherited their wealth instead of deriving it from professional status. It is they who will benefit most from the Bush administration's tax policies.
Del's entries are amusing in a way. I haven't read so many Horatio Algerish claims since I was a child. It is brow-raising to observe an adult think in such a simplistic way, though one hopes he doesn't get to put his thoughts into action. I am also entertained by Del's arrogant and clueless assumptions about moi. He could not be more off base. However, the fellow has been generous in a way. He has deemed my blogging inferior to his and offered me a guest account on his misnamed effort, Free Speech. Apparently, I am to abandon my own blogging and join a weblog that will earn me, a peon, a place in the blogosphere. Yes. He really suggests that. Poor J. If only I could fare as well as Del does in Bloggersville. Entertain yourselves by going to his blog and reading Del's new entry.
Strangers in town aren't shy at all. So, why aren't some of my friends from my days as a commenter and contributor letting me know they have entered their new blogs in the contest? Much of the early 2003 gang from Atrios', Daily Kos' and Matt Y.'s sites have graduated into blogging themselves. Among them are Billmon, Gary Soto and David Ehrenstein. (Does anyone know whether Rea or The Farmer has succumbed yet?) I learned David had an entry in the contest by stumbling across a mention of it on a blog I had never visited before. The entry is an intriguing inquiry into the McCarthy era based on the experiences of gay composer Aaron Copland. Do read "Fait Divers: An Unmarried Pixie," at David E's Fablog.
I haven't absorbed all I've read from the showcase yet, so I will return later with more reviews.
In the meantime, I urge you to vist my blog family's pads, Atrios' Eschaton, Roger Ailes,' Prometheus 6 and Mac-a-ro-nies, which has an entry in the New weblog Showcase. All the family's on the blogroll to your right.posted by J. | 5:56 AM
Thursday, June 05, 2003
Part I: The New Weblog Showcase
I've read some of the other entries in The Truth Laid Bear's New Weblog Showcase, a contest to introduce new blogs to readers. Following are summaries and my opinion of each entry. There will be a Part II, featuring other blogs entered in the contest.
We already know Frank from the "Two white guys just sitting around talking" entry here. In fact, he has become one of the Silver Rights 'set.' His entry in the New Weblogs Showcase, "Weapons of mass retraction," meets his usual high standards. It is succinct, but gets right to the core of the issue.
Blair may go down. However, in my opinion, Americans are much more gullible than the British. Will the electorate ever realize the claim of WMD in Iraq was the Big Lie technique at its worst?
Read the rest of Frank's entry to learn what he makes of Bush's role in the deception and how he reached this conclusion: "Lies, lies and more lies. And our "liberal" media laps it up and pants for more."
*World War Bush
I think there is a myth abroad in the blogosphere that original design is good design when it comes to blog templates. That belief is wrong most of the time. The page template for this blog, which is large red type on a black background, with no identifying information until the bottom, is likely scaring readers away. It is hard on the eyes and much too loud.
Another aspect of World War Bush that needs fixing is the matter of namelessness. A blogger needs a handle. It does not have to be his real name. Even if I knew Atrios' real name, I would probably still call him Atrios. Initials are fine, though "J." is taken. There should be something to call the blogger by. Complete anonymity is a no-no.
The blogger's message is an apt one.
I've reached pretty much the same conclusion. I've even found a way to make use of those ludicrous color-coded terrorism threat level alerts. They work reasonably well as a way to make up your mind about what colors to wear on a given day. However, there is a definite shortage of orange in my wardrobe.
Do finish reading this blogger's entry. But, you might want to don sunglasses first.
Another red, white and blue site with a picture of dead presidents in the masthead. Funny, I thought Patrick Ruffini used up all those crayons. The content is a close match to the design, unimaginative and lacking in insight.
The name of the entry in the contest is "Bob Herbert forges forward with his class warfare." The blogger, Del (for Delusional perhaps) Simmons, has quite a bee in his or her bonnet over the talented an insightful editorial writer for the New York Times, Bob Herbert.
As readers of Silver Rights know, the tax cut does nothing to help low-income Americans. In fact, by depriving such families of the child tax credit, it deals them a severe blow. They would have used the money to buy neccessities such as clothing for school. The upper-income parents who were favored instead of them will probably spend it on Nintendos. Other policies of the Bush administration are equally inequitable. Herbert's premise, that the Bushites have no empathy for the low-income and cater to the wealthy is accurate.
Del is incapable of seeing, not to mention, grasping that reality.
You may have noticed race is the subtext of Del's remarks. He is very uncomfortable with Herbert voicing his opinion, and the fact he has an excellent soapbox to voice it from. I don't believe Del would be equally uncomfortable if Herbert were a middle-class white man voicing his opinion. (If Herbert were black and a woman, we would not be discussing this blog because Del would have succumbed to a heart attack after reading her by now.) His entry is replete with other evidence of racism, including the blunder he makes in the first paragraph above. Since black and Latino (and Indian) children are more likely to be poor, a tax policy that favors high income Americans obviously will have a negative impact on their parents' being able to provide even basic needs. To dismiss this fact based reality as 'race-baiting' by Herbert is to ignore both American history, which explains why minority Americans are more likely to be poor, and contemporary resources such the U.S. Census. And, what is it with conservatives and claims that African-Americans are the ones with a race problem anyway? The historical record definitely suggests otherwise.
Del does not stop there. Herbert's intelligence is dismissed with the claim he is merely emotional. Here's hoping Del could be as 'emotional' as Bob Herbert.
Del's bigotry is not limited to race. There is a palpable contempt for anyone who is not at least middle-class in his entry.
In other words, the people who actually do the nuts and bolts work of society, instead of cashing their dividend and trust fund checks, are undeserving.
I know what you are thinking: This person sounds as ignorant as he does bigoted. You are probably right. A clever person would know wealth is generally inherited and has nothing to do with how hard a person does or doesn't work. That income is often a proxy for race, so that burdening the poor inevitably burdens the black and brown. That the Republican Party has long relied on strategies that are divisive in regard to race and class. That need should have more to do with social and economic policy than want. However, Del's racism and classism are so apparent, I found myself focusing on them instead of the inanity of his remarks.
Bigots with trite opinions are a dime a dozen in the blogosphere. Del's blog, which has nothing to do with free speech, a concept I doubt he understands, adds nothing of worth to our community.
I really should not have read this rubbish the night before doing my weekly morning stint at the food bank.
If you choose to read this entry, which I have chosen not to link to because a link would mean I am voting for it, you can do so by going to the main site and looking for it on June 2.
Side note: Not only is Del's blog entry repulsive, he is not very observant. I just received a smug email from him. He believes Silver Rights received only one vote in the contest.posted by J. | 9:30 AM
Wednesday, June 04, 2003
Note: For the first and I hope only time, I'm posting a reprint. My entry in The Truth Laid Bear's New Weblog Showcase. I've learned from another blogger that the mercurial Blog*Spot has 'disappeared' the link to it, making it impossible for readers to vote for Silver Rights in the contest. Disappeared links are, unfortunately, the norm on Blogger Basic. I look forward to upgrading this blog to Blogger Pro in hope of rehabilitating the sorry state of my archives. If you want to help, there is a PayPal button to the right. To vote for Silver Rights, just link to this entry. So, again, presenting:
Some logs and a bottle of wine
Jeff Hauser had an entry at the Hauser report May 19, that I have been meaning to discuss, along with a companion piece from Alas A Blog by Barry, from May 6. Both are about something that seems like a good topic for a slow long weekend. Dishonesty. I could say crime, but the actions we are talking about though considered misdemeanors if prosecuted, are hardly what most people envision when they hear that word. No blood. No weapons. Rarely even a shove or slap.
We will look at Jeff's entry first.
It may be more clear to me. I wonder if Jeff would have responded the same way if the woman had been black or Hispanic or perhaps male and black or Hispanic or maybe any race, but poor looking. Poor looking? I know the phrase is stereotypical. But, most people have a picture in their minds about what a poor person looks like. Unkempt hair. Bad teeth. Jeans from Kmart or Target instead of Levi's or the Gap. Probably with a couple young kids along because low-income plus offspring equals poverty in the U.S. of A. So, the person looked like that instead of being the well-coifed, business suit from Ann Taylor wearing and probably SUV driving person she was. Would Jeff have said, 'That's not your wine,' to the person of the 'wrong' color or class?
This is not an attack on Jeff Hauser, who I don't know and who could be a stand-up guy. He is just standing in for white, middle-American Everyperson in the scenario. My guess is that Every man or woman would not only be more likely to speak up if the shoplifter were our stereotypical poor person instead of someone like him or her. I also believe the observer would be more likely to alert an employee or store security.
As Jeff notes, gender might have had something to do with the outcome, but I believe race and class would have outranked them.
Barry had a confession to make.
He goes on to say he does not believe it is immoral to shoplift. The entry generated 143 comments. Some people suggested he should have found work somehow or applied for charity. A few, typical of the folks who are increasingly taking over his comments section, egged on the theft is beneficial, property is a crime, perspective.
This is not an attack on Barry. In the same way Jeff represents white, middle-class Everyperson as witness Barry represents Everyperson as actor. Bad actor? You decide.
Examples of events like those that happened to Jeff and Barry can mean many things at once. The aspect I want to focus on is my belief they are evidence of race and class privilege.
Jeff did not intervene in the theft of the wine. Other people did not intervene in Barry's thefts of the logs, though I am sure some saw him steal them. I believe that in both situations, the observers deferred to the race and class of the perpetrators. If Barry had been nonwhite or recognizably poor, instead of a middle-class man temporarily unemployed, he would be telling us about jail in Boston and the sleaziness of bondsmen.
The two examples strike me as paradigmatic of how white privilege and class privilege work. People engage in the same act, 'liberating' an item from a store. One group gets a warm house or free wine for dinner. The other gets at least a night in jail and a trip through the criminal justice system. People on the Right love to point out the high incidence of incarceration for young African-Americans and Hispanics. While not doubting that people repeatedly accused of criminal acts over a period of time are probably committing them, I wonder how many of those incarcerated for minor infractions are being penalized for their race and class more than the acts they were convicted of. Would they have even been accused if they had not been the 'wrong' color and/or class?
As far as I can recall, whenever I've seen someone steal something in a store, it was a white person, with one exception -- a homeless black man in Seattle. He walked out of the Bon Marche wearing a brand new suit and barefoot. Security failed to notice. Most recently, I watched a fellow, white and middle-class in appearance, put a can of soup in the pocket of his jacket at Fred Meyer's, our largest retailer. I thought his action ridiculous because he had a cart full of groceries he would be paying for and did not look poor. In addition, he was accompanied by a wife or girlfriend. Call me a prude, but I still think of stealing as the kind of thing you would not want other people to know you do.
Furthermore, I believe the response in the blogosphere to a black or Hispanic blogger making the same admission Barry did would be quite different. A few champions would say, 'So what? He has moved beyond that.' Some liberals would mount a half-hearted defense while most remained silent. Many on the Right would attack the person either on their blogs or through email. His admission of wrongdoing, no matter how small, would be seen as proof 'there's something wrong with those people.' Meryl Yourish would declare him immoral, while associating with some of the most bigoted bloggers in Bloggersville.
When I began reading blogs, in late December of 2002 and early January of this year, I noticed Oliver Willis, despite bending over backward to do so, was unable to please many of the white bloggers and blog readers he believes he needs to have a successful blog, especially the conservatives. He was lambasted by a 'scientific' racist for daring to mention the lack of diversity at a bloggers conference. His blog was subjected to service attacks. If I remember correctly, someone circulated emails with spoofed headers in which Oliver appeared to say mean things about liberal bloggers. Later, his conservative readers went out of their way to find fault with him for complaining about being stopped and questioned by the police while walking down the street. However, I doubt that only people on the Right are involved. His success has likely engendered some jealousy and resentment among white bloggers who believe they deserve it more. Even though most of us in the blogosphere will never meet each other or even speak on the phone, the same unthought loyalties apply.
Again, this entry is about more than petty theft -- some logs and a bottle of wine. It is about how most people unthinkingly favor some of their fellow citizens and disfavor others.
On another channel
*What is a civet cat and what does it have to do with SARS?
*Is fining senders of spam under state law feasible?
*Why can't you take pictures if you celebrate a memorable event at Starbucks?
Update: Wednesday afternoon's real entry is below. Please give it a read, too.posted by J. | 10:11 PM
No sympathy for the devil:
When I first learned about Felton last year, I read a story by a biracial reporter, Farah Stockman, who probed the situation deeply in The Boston Globe. She says his mother believes he is brain damaged in some way. That seems more feasible than the reasons he offers for his behavior. That conduct stretches from an armed assault as a 10-year-old, to several near murders, to the plot to bomb buildings frequented by Jews and nonwhites referred to above.
Leo Felton has been incarcerated for all but a few months of his adult life. During his first decade of life behind bars, he became a member of several racist organizations and a devoted white supremacist. He hid the fact his father is a Canadian of African descent.
We have discussed nonwhite racists here before, usually in reference to the 'scientific' racism weblog Gene Expression, which is the stomping grounds of people of color who hate other people of color, though it is the brain child of longterm white white supremacist Steve Sailer.
The piece in the New York Times sheds more light on how a person of African, Asian or Indian descent might become attracted to white supremacy, and, actually believe the ideology has a place for him.
In other words, a nonwhite person can 'become white' by adopting racism as his ideology and devoting himself to serving white supremacy. The thinking resembles the French belief that 'unevolved' Asian and African French colonial subjects could 'evolve' by adopting French culture.
The pernicious notion has also sprang up in a branch of the multiracial movement associated with Ward Connerly. Some of its leaders encourage parents to tell mixed race children, usually of African-American descent, that they are white. I believe this sets the stage for the development of more Leo Feltons.
And, yes, there are people like him in the blogosphere. A Gene Expression member, Jason Malloy, is a dead ringer for Felton, including the pretense of being white and belief blacks are an inferior race, despite his own African ancestry. The other nonwhite members of the group also share the warped perspective Felton attributes to having read Yockey -- they will become white by being white supremacists. An aging Chicano participant, who should know better, is an equally lost soul. He clings desperately to the claim he is white, though no one looking at his picture would think so.
What would I tell a mixed-race child about his identity? That he is a mixture of the so-called races and that one 'race,' is no better than another. Any other statement would be racist.
I don't believe Leo Felton is the bizarre person he is because he is racially mixed. The brain damage his mother implies in Stockman's article, mental illness or choice strike me as better explanations. Whatever his problem, I am comfortable with the idea of Felton spending the rest of his life in the place he knows best -- prison. Though he will be eligible for release at 41 under his current sentence, he has a record of assaulting other prisoners that is likely to lengthen his sojourn there. A person as violent as Felton belongs behind bars, whether he is black, white or in-between.posted by J. | 10:51 AM
Tuesday, June 03, 2003
On and off the Web
Off the Web
It is going back where it belongs -- Sundays. I'm looking forward to the new season, curious to see how the writers handle Bobby separate from the firm. I believe they can pull it off because they have done excellent work with non-firm characters, such as Helen, the prosecutor, in the past. There is also the romance between Jamie and Eugene to develop. The upcoming season may rejuvenate The Practice.
*All that jazz
One of my favorite summer events, the Mount Hood Festival of Jazz is also returning. It was canceled last year due to financial problems. The festival will take place at the city park in Gresham instead of its traditional venue, Mt. Hood Community College. It will also be shorter than usual. Quite a few people travel to the Pacific Northwest partly to attend one of the best jazz events in the country. If you will be in Vancouver, Seattle or Portland near Aug. 2-3, do drop in.
I'm going to start answering some guys' emails and returning their calls, again. I can be very remiss when it comes to dating. I must get over the 'been there, done that' attitude.
On the Web
*Where we're going
I've been thinking about the blog ecosystem and Silver Rights. My intentions in regard to this blog are to keep it relatively small and separate from any other Web endeavors I try. Civil rights is a delicate subject, so I believe maintaining a blog focusing on the topic is a challenge in itself. Once I upgrade to Blogger Pro, I hope to turn SR into more of a compendium of information about civil rights resources, as well as a blog.
My links are mainly motivated by who is saying something of note about a subject I'm writing about. Sometimes, I start writing and then search out links. Other times, a link at another blog inspires the entry. I have no particular policy in regard to linking other than rarely, if ever, linking to blogs that are hostile to civil rights. I seldom link back to SR because of the hopeless state of its archives. A quick glance at ecosystem data says my most popular link to Silver Rights has been, Alas a Blog, Barry's place. I suspect Prometheus 6, Smart Genes, Balasubramania's Mania and Mac-a-ro-nies, when its archives are working, are next in line.
However, my linking history is very varied. If you are a blogger writing about a civil rights related topic, feel free to email me. There is a high probability I will link to it.
One of the motivations people have for blogging is anger. That may partly explain the dearth of visitors to an estimated 90 percent of the blogs that exist. On the other hand, some 'angry blogs' are quite popular as readers show up to gawk at the outrageous behavior, much as they do at traffic accidents. One angry and exploitive blogger has landed in court and the New York Times.posted by J. | 5:17 PM
Strange bedfellows: Gays and the GOP
Conservative blogger Jan Hauglund of Secular Blasphemy draws our attention to an issue that refuses to behave like the love that dare not speak its name -- lowkey and afraid. Increasingly, the GOP is being forced to confront the reality of conservatives who are also homosexuals. Haugland observes,
The impetus for the discussion is an article in the New York Times. It describes what appear to be inroads into the bosom of the Republican Party made by Right Wing homosexuals.
The article also describes the backlash those perceived inroads have resulted in.
A case about to be decided by the Supreme Court, Lawrence vs. Texas , case No. 02-102, may become a bellweather for the conflict. The far Right is poised to take to the warpath if SCOTUS knocks down a Texas statute banning sodomy.
It seems to be that tension between being gay and being conservative is inevitable. Homosexuality has only been removed from classification as a psychiatric disorder since 1973. Most Americans still hold strong reservations against homosexuality and believe marriage should be between a man and a woman, national polls reveal. Anyone who is gay must know he or she is a member of a frowned upon minority, usually estimated at about 1.5 to three percent of the population. Yet, white gays are also an invisible minority. Unlike people of color, the elderly or the handicapped, they can 'pass' as 'normal' white Americans. Therein lies the rub. Even as they pass, they are hindered by the discriminations against homosexuals built in to the system they so much want to be a part of.
Consider George W. Bush's record in regard to homosexuals.
In return for very little recognition, conservative gays are expected to share a tent with other members of the far Right who hate them. And, surprisingly to me, many, such as the Log Cabin Republicans, are willing to.
Among those on the Right who give gays no quarter are the neo-Confederates, who are key to a winning Southern strategy that relies on black versus white, rural versus urban and aging versus young demographics. Blogger Dave Neiwert of Orcinus observed the commonalities between the GOP's relationship with nonwhites and its relationship with homosexuals in an entry last month.
A month later, an effort to reverse that sea change, or at least the perception of a sea change, is being waged by bedrock conservatives.
As a neo-Confederate watcher, I've also noticed the far Right tends to have as little use for gays as it does for nonwhites. Among its forays against perceived enemies this year has been a movement to force the National Parks Service to either withdraw or edit a video about President Abraham Lincoln that suggests he would have supported the gay rights movement. Conversations in neo-Confederate forums are as anti-gay as they are racist and sexist.
I think the Republicans will distance themselves from gay conservatives this electoral cycle. A bird in hand. . . Christian fundamentalists and neo-Confederates are that bird. I also think Right Wing gays will continue to support the GOP no matter how much it insults them because their allegiance to the Right trumps the shabby treatment they are accorded by it in their minds. As Jan Haugland said, "Who else should conservatives vote for anyway?"
Heartthrob actor was gay all along
In a revelation that is bound to have disappointed many women in their sixties and older, actor Richard Chamberlain has announced he is a homosexual. Chamberlain, nearing 70, was a romantic leading man for most of his career, starring in television dramas and movies that appealed to women. He has been in his current relationship with a man for 26 years.
My mother, who died several years ago, would have been among the disappointed older ladies. She was quite the Chamberlain fan.posted by J. | 12:28 AM
Monday, June 02, 2003
Vote for Silver Rights!
Silver Rights has been entered in the New Weblog Showcase at The Truth Laid Bear this week. The showcase is an effort to get blog readers to read new blogs. A reader can support a favorite blog by:
1) Linking to the blog entry each contestant was asked to submit,
2) Linking to or blogrolling the blog itself.
I urge Silver Rights readers who already have this blog blogrolled to link to my submitted entry, "Some logs and a bottle of wine," here.
If you don't have Silver Rights on your blogroll, you are invited to add it and vote for the submitted entry.
To summarize, the way to show your support for Silver Rights overall in regard to the contest is to vote for the specific entry. Linking to the blog's URL or blogrolling it does not count for the contest.
Your support will be appreciated.
I also encourage my readers to read some of the other entries in the New Weblog Showcase. You can do so by clicking on the link at the top of this entry.posted by J. | 10:06 AM
Bigotry watch: Emanuels, Pickering and Moon
*Seattle teacher insulted students in second class
*Seattle teacher insulted students in second class
It has been revealed Brian Emanuels, the first-year teacher who quit rather than accept a reprimand for calling a student a 'nigger' twice, had other conflicts with students at Cleveland High School. One occurred in another class the same day. In addition, students have now thoroughly described their encounters with Emanuels.
Contrary to having used the slur once, as Emanuels said he had, he seems to have used it as many as a dozen times that day, including hours later in the second incident.
Meanwhile, support for Emanuels from conservatives continues unabated. Stefan Sharkansky, the Gene Expression participant who has strongly defended Emanuels, continues to idolize him and blame problems caused by Emanuels on the NAACP.
Another ally, the Seattle Safe Schools Coalition, tempers its language, but still treats the remark the student made as if it were directed toward another person, and supports Emanuels.
I'v also learned Emanuels is trying to capitalize on his reputation as a hero among Right Wingers. He has agreed to speak about his efforts to 'teach values' to children of color on talk radio. The program I intended to monitor was rescheduled, but I will continue to follow the strange career of Brian Emanuels.
*Pickering's man in Bloggersville stands pat
Chris Lawrence of Signifying Nothing still refuses to hear any evil about the Klansman without the robes known as Judge Charles Pickering. Keeping true to his roots as a privileged white Mississipian, he has apparently refused to read either the earlier revelations about Pickering in Salon and other publications, blog entries by bloggers Atrios, Josh Marshall and Mac Diva, or the famous article in the WaPo last week. All these sources make it painfully clear to anyone without a bias in favor of the status quo in Mississippi that Pickering is unfit to be a judge period and even more unfit to be elevated to a higher judgeship. Lawrence also sees no evil when it comes to a fellow member of the club.
Though the blinders Lawrence has probably been wearing since childhood may prevent him from realizing it, the problems with Pickering are beyond philosophical.
Not that all Southern white men would agree with him. My friend and mentor, writer Richard Ford, a white Mississipian like Lawrence and Pickering, probably has an earful to share about Pickering when I get a chance to ask him about the Lying Judge. My former longterm significant other, a white Virginian, would probably fall out of his chair laughing after reading Lawrence's entries. A blogger from Texas considers Pickering "a lying racist scumbag."
I believe Pickering has overplayed his pathetic hand and almost everyone realizes it.
*Moonies question response to anti-gay remarks
A Washington Times columnist is bewildered by the reaction of some Washingtonians to a commencement speaker expressing a bias against homosexuals.
The cardinal was invited to speak about Christian-Islamic relations.
The Rev. Sun Myung Moon, the founder of the Unification Church, which owns the Times, has expressed opposition to homosexuality, reportedly telling gay male Moonies to castrate themselves.posted by J. | 6:18 AM
Sunday, June 01, 2003
Eric Rudolph nabbed in N.C.
Suspected terrorist Eric Robert Rudolph has been arrested in North Carolina, near the mountains he disappeared into five years ago.
The Rudolph case is intriguing in several ways. His mother, a Christian Identity partisan, reared her children in isolated communes. They were rigorously home schooled in far Right ideology, including white supremacy and opposition to abortion. At least two have engaged in bizarre acts as adults. A brother's response to Rudolph's indictment was to cut off his hand with a saw to show faith and solidarity.
Some of us had wondered if the FBI was really trying to capture Eric Rudolph, especially after the fall-out it encountered in the case of Randy Weaver, also a white supremacist and anti-government advocate. In fact, it appears from the circumstances that Rudolph may have wanted to be taken into custody, or at least was not trying very hard to remain on the lam.
The fervor with which the FBI has pursued Muslims who have sent money abroad or traveled to the Middle East post-September 11 renews that question. Are home-grown alleged terrorists less important than Muslims who sent money to their home countries?
A third aspect of the case that makes me curious is whether Rudolph will be prosecuted and sentenced to the full extent of the law. One of the two victims killed in the various attacks he is alleged to have carried out was an African-American woman in Atlanta. There is little history of a white person receiving the death penalty when his victims are black.
Law enforcement is presenting Rudolph as pleasant and cooperative. But, what we need to remember about him, assuming the allegations are true, is summed up by a victim of one of the attacks.
Blogger Mike Silverman of Red Letter Day asserts that he is not among the conservatives who regret Rudolph's capture or who will try to make excuses for him.
The blogger at Twinkle, twinkle, blah, blah, blah, Cowboy Sally, agrees with Silverman about Rudolph's capture. She also has doubts about whether law enforcement was searching all that hard, suggesting he might have been found "in a dumpster behind a store." I second that. Local police should have been keeping an eye on hiding places near stores for years since they knew Rudolph needed supplies. Sally goes on to express a lack of solidarity with the fellow.
Manish at Damn Foreigner is curious about how the media will treat the capture of a Christian white guy with good manners who happens to terrorize people.
Of course, Attorney General John Ashcroft has already taken credit for the capture, though the FBI had nothing to do with it. But then, Ashcroft takes credit for just about everything. When the sun comes up tomorrow. . .
The resumption of the strange saga of Eric Rudolph has just begun. We will be watching as it continues to unfold.
A haven for extremists
Eric Rudolph is not the only white supremacist to find Asheville, N.C., an amenable habitat. Kirk Lyons, a leader in the League of the South and the Sons of Confederate Veterans, moved his operations to the town about a decade ago. The article about Rudolph explains why.
Lyons, long associated with the Aryan Nations and Holocaust denial, has also been linked to espionage.posted by J. | 1:30 AM