Joe Feagin, professor of sociology at Texas A&M, who grew up in a predominantly white Houston neighborhood during the civil rights movement, said in a seminar Thursday that racism in the United States has changed from being an extroverted problem to an introverted one."There are two types of white Americans: racists and recovering racists," Feagin said.
October 31, 2004
Time to get all white Americans into 12-step programs
Nutty Uncle Walt
Former CBSNEWS anchorman Walter Cronkite believes Bush adviser Karl Rove is possibly behind the new Bin Laden tape.This may simply be Cronkite's way of asserting that the tape benefits Bush politically (in that it raises fears of additional attacks) -- despite the fact that the intent of the tape is to intimidate Americans into voting for someone else. If so, he chose an astonishingly irresponsible way to make the point.
Cronkite made the startling comments late Friday during an interview on CNN.
Somewhat smiling, Cronkite said he is "inclined to think that Karl Rove, the political manager at the White House, who is a very clever man, he probably set up bin Laden to this thing."
I still don't discount the possibility that "the most trusted man in America" has gone completely around the bend and actually believes that what he said is literally true.
Then again, he may just be a sock puppet for Michael Moore.
October 29, 2004
Time to get all white Americans into 12-step programs
Joe Feagin, professor of sociology at Texas A&M, who grew up in a predominantly white Houston neighborhood during the civil rights movement, said in a seminar Thursday that racism in the United States has changed from being an extroverted problem to an introverted one.If you're white, don't bother denying that you're racist (and don't use the old racist dodge that other ethnicities can be prejudiced as well) -- Prof. Feagin will just smile benignly at you and say you're only proving his point.
"There are two types of white Americans: racists and recovering racists," Feagin said.
October 9, 2004
Blogger flees country
It's not that I don't trust you, my faithful readers, but prudence dictates that I disable the comments feature while I'm gone. :-)
If you simply must lob a rhetorical ballistic missile my way, you can still do so at the comments e-mail address (see the "Comments welcome!" link in the right column).
Ya'll behave, y'hear?
October 8, 2004
When the government makes your health care decisions
Darren and Debbie Wyatt sat in a wooden pew at the Royal Courts of Justice, gripping each other's hands, barely able to look at the judge as he ruled that, despite their most fervent wishes, their 11-month-old daughter should be allowed to die.
Making the ruling, Mr Justice Hedley said: "As a society we fight shy of pondering on death, yet inherent in each of us is a deep desire, both for oneself and for those we love, for a 'good' death. It would be absurd to try to describe that concept more fully beyond saying that everyone in this case knows what it means not under anaesthetic, not in the course of painful and futile treatment, but peacefully in the arms of those who love her most."
While the specifics of this baby's case are difficult and are worthy of vigorous debate, I am alarmed at one of the stories behind the story. In a nationalized healthcare system, the government bean-counters who control the healthcare funding will tend to frown upon "wasteful" expenditures -- making it easy to take the short logical step of coming up with reasons to withhold treatment (such as the "quality of life" argument made by the judge later in the article). Thus we have the situation where doctors -- with the full backing of the courts -- can elect to take the life of your child against your wishes. Because you are not paying for the treatment, you have little say in the decision to give or withhold treatment.
This is the kind of world the Clintons tried to bring us ten years ago, and this is no doubt what Hillary would like to bring us as president if -- God forbid -- the American people should elect her in the future.
October 7, 2004
The "end of Christendom" in Canada?
For the churches representing the majority of Canadian Christians, legalization of same-sex marriage will be a sign of the end of Christendom, the 1,700-year-old notion that has defined government in the Western world as devoted to the enforcement of Christian values, says one of Canada's leading theologians.
There is fear that if, as widely expected, the [Canadian Supreme] court rules in favour of same-sex marriage and Parliament passes enabling legislation, churches will face persecution and discrimination in Canadian society for holding fast to the belief that God ordained marriage only for heterosexual couples.
From Roman Catholics and evangelical Protestants to Mormons, Muslims and Seventh Day Adventists among others, religious groups are also apprehensive that they may be stripped of their charitable status and other state benefits, penalized by public institutions, branded as hate-mongers and forced into accepting the legitimacy of same-sex unions.
It is the same fear that political scientists and theologians identify as driving the powerful conservative religious right in the United States -- a conviction that liberal, secular society is bent on erasing religion from public life.
Are their fears exaggerated? What about similar fears that American evangelical Christianity may face the same in the future, perhaps in our lifetime?
Asymmetric pre-election political violence and vandalism
Stan Kurtz has collected a mountain of anecdotal evidence that it's becoming downright dangerous in some parts of the USA to openly declare one's support for Bush. Not too many incidents of attacks on people so far, but it is getting difficult to keep track of the number of reports of political signs being burned, defaced with swastikas, or simply stolen. Add to that cars being keyed for the offense of having a Bush/Cheney bumper sticker. Also alarming are the growing number of invasions of (or shots fired at) local GOP party offices across the country -- sometimes after the workers have gone home, sometimes when the workers are still present.
Robert Musil, who alerted Kurtz to this trend, had this to say on his blog:
[T]here may be a genuine political climate of fear in some parts of the United States - including my corner of Los Angeles:It seems like the activists of the left are becoming goon squads, turning our political process into something that other countries might argue truly merits international observers.
Many Republicans are afraid to put Bush-Cheney bumper stickers on their cars or signs on their lawns because they are afraid of physical retaliation from angry liberals.
It is not just that one sees few Bush-Cheney bumper stickers and lawn signs - even in areas in which one knows his support is high. I do not have such a bumper sticker or lawn sign. In fact, most Bush supporters I have asked, even those who are fairly passionate on the topic, just don't think the risk of a key-scratch or broken home or car window, or much worse, is worth whatever benefit one receives from a partisan bumper sticker or lawn sign. There are just too many personal stories of cars and homes defaced and damaged.
The sentiment is not symmetrical: One sees plenty of Kerry-Edwards bumber stickers and lawn signs - even in highly Republican neighborhoods. Indeed,one sees plenty of such stickers and signs that express left-wing sentiments much more intense and partisan than mere support of the Democratic presidential ticket. Not infrequently these stickers and signs mention some form of violence or even death with respect to Republican officials.
MORE: Best of the Web recounts these incidents:
- Near Milwaukee, "more than 50 demonstrators supporting Democrat presidential candidate John Kerry stormed a Republican campaign office in West Allis at mid-day [Tuesday], trespassing, creating a disturbance through the use of a bullhorn in the office and then refusing to leave when asked," according to a Wisconsin GOP press release. State party chairman Rick Graber also pointed "to an incident in Madison last week in which Bush-Cheney yard signs were stolen from the yards of three homes. The vandals then used chemicals to burn swastikas into the lawns of the homes."
- In Huntington, W.Va., "someone fired a shot at the Republican Headquarters office" on Sept. 2, as local party members were watching President Bush's nomination speech, reports WSAZ-TV. "The bullet left a hole in the front window," but no one was hurt.
- In Knoxville, Tenn., "an unknown suspect fired multiple shots into the Bearden office of the Bush/Cheney re-election campaign Tuesday morning." No one was in the office. "One shot shattered the glass in the front door and the other cracked the glass in another of the front doors."
- In Orlando, Fla., "a group of protestors stormed and then ransacked a Bush-Cheney headquarters building" on Tuesday. WKMG reports that most of the intruders "were from the AFL-CIO and were taking part in one of 20 other coordinated protests around the country."
- In Tampa, Fla., "labor activists stormed President Bush's campaign headquarters" Tuesday. No one was injured or arrested.
Yet another way to tell 'em apart
A conservative bases his politics on his morals.A liberal bases his morals on his politics.
October 5, 2004
How Kerry won the debate
John Kerry won the debate because he sounded better; and he sounded better in large measure because he got away with saying whatever any voter wanted to hear.Read the whole essay for Prager's description of how Sen. Kerry came down on both sides of every significant issue during the debate.
That is one reason President Bush looked so annoyed at times. It is very hard for the principled to listen to the unprincipled."