A far-left progressive representative relates the “emotional toll” of having black female politicians’ “violent” rhetoric (if we’re using Trump’s rhetoric on January as the standard) in Trump’s defense:
“The defense council put a lot of videos out in their defense, playing clip after clip of Black women talking about fighting for a cause or an issue or a policy. It was not lost on me as so many of them were people of color, and women, Black women. Black women like myself who are sick and tired of being sick and tired for our children. Your children,” Plaskett said.
Earlier in the day on Friday, Trump’s defense attorneys spent a great deal of their closing arguments accusing Democrats of hypocrisy over their support of last summer’s protests for racial justice. In doing so, his team played video footage from the summer protests, zeroing in on the relatively rare instances of violence and looting that occurred during the demonstrations.
TL:dr – Orange Man Bad, for the children.
So either using the term “fight” is aggressive rhetoric, or it’s “incitement”. End of story.
Keep your triggers off my – our, Western Civilization’s – logic, laws and reasoning.
After a hearing last Friday and conversations with the city attorney, the employment of part-time Library Specialist Cameron Dequintez Williams was terminated on Wednesday.
He was charged with burning books from the library written by conservative authors.
Library officials said, “The city of Chattanooga Human Resources Department completed its investigation of an allegation that books were removed from the Chattanooga Public Library’s Main Branch on Dec.https://w.chattanoogan.com/photo.aspx?a=8&t=11, 2020.
“The investigation determined that part-time Library Specialist Cameron Williams violated city and Library policies by improperly removing items from the Library’s collections.”
As one wag remarked:
Now, it remains to be seen if the real reason was that the library board wants to do all of that themselves.
Modern American “progressivism”, like all its many forebears in the past 200 years, has been all about rallying people against boogeymen. From “monarchists” in the French Revolution, to “Wreckers” in Stalin’s USSR to the Wobbly’s “Bosses”, up through “the patriarchy” and “the man” and “counterrevolutionaries” in Red China and San Francisco in the sixties and seventies, and if you have a hard time distinguishing between ’em, join the club.
Today, the boogeymen…er, boogiepeople on the left are pretty much all the things that people who are included are told to be “anti”. “Anti-Racism” “Anti-Misogyny” (not just sexism, anymore – it’s the more active, more malevolent noun these days), “Anti-Fascism”, “Anti-Transphobia”, and on and on – all of which sounds like good things to be “anti”…
…and, unsurprisingly, when you dig into the “Root Causes” of all those nouns, all things trace back to “Western Civilization” in all its particulars: the Judeo-Christian value on the individual and their worth, value, rights and responsibilities and potential of each and every person, as a person with a mind, a point of view, and at the end of the day an indivisible soul of personal, societal, political, intellectual and metaphysical worth.
Those aspects of humanity are anathema to progressivism in all its flavors. The focus is on the group – the Marxists “classes”, the Nazi’s irreducible focus on race, the modern academic Left’s obsession with a byzantine network of intersectional identity groups. The individual is nothing but a vote (for now), an appetite, a widget to be moved through the production line of life (like Obamacare’s awful caricature of Progressive humanity, “Julia”). Progressivism is “Materialist”. Souls, individual intellects and thoughts and reams, all are ephemeral; humans are widgets that consume and produce, and whose worth and value (to those in power) is expressed via their membership in the collective.
Those widgets have a term. “Bodies”. Not people. Not brains. Not souls.
She’s “a gun owner herself” – which might be seen in several ways. Is “P”M moderating? Are they realizing that the culture war has slipped far enough away from them, especially over this past year, that they have to start speaking to people who need to be convinced?
And she’s apparently incredibly famous, since she apparently just goes by “Rashmi”. I’ve turned “Protect” Minnesota’s website, Facebook feed and other social media upside down, and not been able to find any reference to a last name, which is Seneviratne, by the way.
But even during the reign of the serial fabulist the Reverend Nord Bence, “Protect” MN wasn’t nearly extreme enough in its hatred of guns and (law-abiding) gun owners, enough for some people.
“P”M spawned a breakway group, “Survivors Lead” – basically a woman, Rachel Joseph, with a long history of progressive activism and a story; an aunt who was murdered, according to Ms. Joseph’s story, by a gun.
Quick aside: I don’t minimize anyone’s trauma over having a loved one murdered. But in the many times I’ve heard Ms. Joseph’s story, she’s never once mentioned a perpetrator, someone actually holding and using the gun that killed her aunt; that persons evil motivation, the legal fallout from the murder, whether that person was sentenced or not. It’d be wrong to crack wise – “what, did the gun animate itself?” – but omitting a perpetrator, his/her motives and the like from the conversation is incredibly intellectually dishonest.
Anyway – “Rashmi” and her apparent moderation are not going over well with “Survivors Lead”:
The extreme heckling the not-as-extreme about getting less extreme. That qualifies as “dog bites man”, at the very most.
Rather less so? There followed some more, er, ethnically pointed traffic on one social media feed (from which I’ve long been blocked) or another.
After which “P”M – operating through its usual social media persona, the omniscient third person that used to be Martens and Nord Bence – responded:
On the one hand, watching the agents of Big Left eating each other is one of my favorite spectator sports.
And if the biggest semi-organic anti-gun group in MInnesota (shaddap about Moms Want Action already) is pivoting from pushing Linda Slocum’s gun grab bill to highlighting the inequity of gun control (“Race, class and geography all play into who gets to have a gun and who doesn’t” – which is something every Second Amendment activist has known for 50 years) and speaking in the first “person” to the prudence of victims of violence to arm up, then in culture war terms that’s the sound of the first tank crossing the pontoon bridge at Remagen.
But…”white bodied privilege?”
What the flaming hootie hoo?
I thought for a moment – is this a shot back at the Rachel Dolezals and Elizabeth Warrens of the world, with their flip-flopping identities, by “actual” “people of color”, reinforcing the idea that while you might “identify” with one degree melanin or another, your apparent appearance still wins out in the great privilege lottery (which will, I suspect, get pilloried hard by the Trans crowd, for whom perceived identity is everything? I’ll let the fight that one out).
But no. It’s much less hilarious than that.
It’s “inclusion language” – slang or argot that one class of people use to track who is in, and who is “out” – to be sure. That’s part of it, and people are noticing:
Referring to people as bodies is a reminder, writer Elizabeth Barnes says in an interview, that “racism isn’t just about the ideas that you have in your head.” Barnes is the author of “The Minority Body: A Theory of Disability, The Girl Behind the Wall.” In intellectual discussions, theories about social oppression sound almost disembodied; “we talk about prejudice,” Barnes says, “like it’s just a matter of ideas.” The point is to emphasize the physical violence done to black people through slavery, lynching, and police brutality. In the case of women, the term “bodies” highlights “what happens to women’s bodies in health care contexts, in sexual contexts, in reproductive contexts.”
But behond that?
It’s a nod to the materialism of the left – that the mind, the thoughts, the indivisible soul of the indivisual human being is not merely irrelevant, but inconvenient to the obsession with identity.
Your melanin defines you.
In some ways its a cheap ad hominem – “of course you’d think that, you are (add a reference to your target’s melanin, or lack thereof)”. But pointing logical fallacies out to the foot soldiers of Big Left is a little like arguing salinity with sharks; it’s just part of the water they swim in.
So – gun groups eating each other? Good.
The debate contributing to the ongoing hijacking of the language? Bad.
The whole thing participating, in its own little way, in the further erosion of one of the ideals that’s made Western Civilization the most successful, and humane , civilization in human history?
Kind of a good news, bad news situation here. But maybe not in the way you think.
A teachers union president in Washington State refers to reopening schools as a “white supremacist” initiative.
The good – or “good” – news: this is an example of the type of rhetorical, social and policy overreach one can expect when “progressives” – in this case invariably white, middle-class, and visibly “progressive” – find themselves in power. This statement – literally, “wanting your kids back in schools, and wanting some sense of stability and normalcy for their mental health, at a time when teenage suicide is exploding all over the country, is racist” is the very definition of “2+2=5” – mental health is mental illness, concern for kids is a pathology, truth is lies. (And the ability to say it without having ones own peers pelt one with rocks and garbage is Urban Progressive Privilege).
ut another way, evil – no scare quotes. Inverting moral truth and moral falsehood is as textbook a definition of venial evil as exists.
That’s the “good” news.
The bad news? About half the country, as this is written, doesn’t know any better, or just doesn’t want to think about it that hard.
…”Peak ‘Urban Progressive Privilege” – 100+ overschooled/badly educated, middle-on-up class, likely 20/30-something junior members of “the elite” media who have experienced so little struggle and dissonance in their lives that they consider publishing a Ben Shapiro column a mortal threat, and feel entitled enough to whine about it in public.
Is it “peak”?
If I say so, there will be another, worse example tomorrow.
This next two years, at the minimum, are going to be for Urban Progressive Privilege what 1977 was to white polyester suits and mens necklaces.
To: The above-mentioned Swath From: Mitch Berg, irascible, deplorable peasant Re: Your Offensive
I couldn’t help but notice this from (where else) NPR the other day:
Oh, I can help.
For starters, you can beg for forgiveness for having appropriated a bit of culture – the term “Resistance” – you never earned.
For starters, you were a bunch of entitled, white, upper-middle-class plush-bottom yoonoos whose “resistance” involved posting irate Instagram selfies while running between your morning frappuccino and your Pilates class, appropriating a term that people who fought against real Nazis, who risked their lives and those of their families and friends during a war in which millions like them vanished without a trace. My contempt for y our self-aggrandizing drama should be apparent on this count alone – but if you’d like, I can be clearer.
Beyond that? Calling yourself a “resistance” is a little like Colin Kaepernick pleading “oppression” between meeting with his financial planner and running to a CNN interview. You people are part of the class that controlled much of the most powerful parts of society – the media, the bureaucracy, the educational-industrial complex…NPR, for that matter.
Democracy can’t survive if we can’t trust our institutions.
We’ll come back to that.
In Tom Wolfe’s 1987 satire Bonfire of the Vanities, a young black man is run over by a car driven y a millionaire bond trader. A Bronx DA and couple of New York cops investigate.
In one part of the story, a huckster minister, clearly modeled after Jesse Jackson or Al Sharpton or some such, explains his role in the community to the investigators.
In his metaphor, community anger is “steam”, building inexorably as the heat rises, ready to blow the boiler sky high if something isn’t done. That “something”, naturally, is the good reverend plying his services, as a “steam valve”.
For a price.
The book was head, shoulders and ankles better than the movie – a box office bomb that nearly ended Tom Hanks as an A-lister, thirty years back – but this scene more or less gets the point across:
But remember – they’re the ones that cover the newsto the highest of standards.
We’ll come back to that.
Answering Their Master
Republicans since Richard Nixon have known that the media was biased to the left. Over this past twenty years, it’s been almost beyond parody. Over the past five years, literally, parody has been more accurate than journalism.
But there’s a level of parody beyond which even The Onion or The Babylon Bee would feel awkward going. Our “elite” media has no such limits:
And there was nary a peep from the establishment media. “Law enforcement” under the Obama administration did nothing at all. The agent of the scandal, Lois Lerner, retired with her full government pension and the tacit thanks of the Obama regime.
More recently, there’ve been two episodes that show how very, very unequal we are in this country, depending on your politics.
And how did the justice system in Ramsey County work? Like a fraternity hazing. Without the hazing. The defendants – including the son of Hillary Clinton’s VP nominee, weren’t so much prosectuted as féted. Had John Choi done otherwise, he’d have never done lunch at the Lex again.
This, of course, after a series of citywide riots for whichi justice was slow, dilatory and diverted by stories of “white supremacists with umbrellas” doing improbable feats of mischief.
And, behind it all, a long trail of elaborate rationalizations for the rioting: after centuries of (checks notes) systemic racism, sexism, homophobia, transphobia, economic and environmental racism and mansplaining, a riot was a positive public health good, to deal with all that built up “steam”.
But only the correct rioting.
Because if Pro-Life Action tried to block a freeway, Jacob Frey would have water cannon and attack dogs out there before the protesters got over the fence. And everyone involved knows it.
As re protesting, there are Two Americas.
But only one America gets to release its “steam” in polite company.
I’ve mentioned this to others in the past week.
Some have said “mind the ‘whataboutism'”.
This isn’t whataboutism.
This is pointing out that when sides perceive, correctly, that the deck is stacked against them, they will find coloring outside the lines more and more acceptable.
Which is the exact rationalization the left uses for BLM’s shenanigans; inequality begets rage!
The piece is an object lesson on how American education has failed society in completely abrogating the teaching of critical thinking. How can we tell?
The gaping irony of this bit, for starters, responding to people who “reduce” Orwell to “tyranny bad, liberty good”:
But Orwell’s book is much more sophisticated. Orwell was interested not just in communicating the badness of totalitarian regimes but also dissecting how they succeed through the manipulation of language.
And in comparing the fascists Orwell fought in the Spanish Civil War (on the side of the doomed communists) with Trump supporters, the writer and USAToday participate in the reduction of the language to a tool of political coercion.
I would love it if the pandemic caused developers to incorporate more parking into their apartments. The sky is the limit- we don’t have to use more land just to build out parking. I think of the benefits this could have on lower and middle class neighborhoods in regards to snow plowing, if people actually had space to put their cars. Of course, elite ruuing class liberals look at an article like this and laugh at the poor. They say, “I got my parking garage, and I got you a bike lane, what’s your problem?” Oh, on opportune days, they ride their bicycles and opine about the freedom bicycles give, ignoring the car they have tucked away at home. I would wager that most in this article even supported policies that took away parking and allowed development without adequate parking for tenets. Will they relate their support/votes with problems affecting them?
Being “able” to go without a car, in this age of fluid jobs and multiple careers and services that families need increasingly centralizing rather than moving closer to people, is perhaps the ultimate sign of disonnected “privilege”.
Dennis Prager has a great line – “Relationships can survive a lot, but no relationship can survive contempt”
When parties can’t see one another as human, forget about reaching common ground on differing ideas and ideals, can there be any point to trying to live together? I wouldn’t work for couples – why would it work for a nation?
It dawned on the world too late that when the Nazis actively portrayed the Jews as not very human…
…they meant it.
If there’s one thing more useful than one eliminationist Nazi cartoon, its’ two. Here goes:
That wasn’t even in German.
That wasthe Washington Post.
On Christmas Eve.
This is up there with “bitter, gun-clinging Jeebus freaks” and “Deplorables” and the rest of the litany of conceits Blue America holds on Red America.
But most importantly? It’s about contempt.
I’ve been pointing out examples of Blue America’s contempt for the rest of us in this space since the beginning, really. And if the Trump era has done anything, it’s helped parts of the right come out of their shells (yes, some, like our friend Pete Strunk, haven’t been in their shells fir a very long time, but its fair to say Pete’s always been an outlier)
c”A Minnesota court recently agreed to an uncommon approach to resolve criminal charges filed after the statue of Christopher Columbus was toppled at the Minnesota Capitol on June 10, 2020.
Ramsey County Chief Judge Leonardo Castro accepted the restorative justice approach proposed by the Ramsey County Attorney’s Office. Under the arrangement, a suspended prosecution would end in no conviction for defendant Mike Forcia.”
So in other words, if you’re fashionably “progressive” in Ramsey County, you can commit a crime, and be “punished” by telling school kids why the crime you committed was a good thing.
I can’t have been the only one to think of this episode:
Our stereotype of the banana republic dictator is that he/she does their oppressing from above – with the military, the secret police, the “legal system” and so on.
And that’s all true – the KGB, the Gestapo, the Pasdaran, were or are all pretty effective at making life miserable, nasty, brutish and short for those who didn’t toe the authorities’ lines (and, often enough, for those who did, just to be safe).
But Americans are blessed to live in a place where, for the most part, we haven’t had to learn about how authoritarians subjugate us from “below” – by weaponizing the “underclass” against the middle.
History is chock full of examples, of whom most Americans are blissfully uneducated.
The Soviets weaponized envy against the closest thing that existed to a “middle class” in much of the USSR, the “kulaks” – which, like “counterrevolutionary”, was a fungible, malleable term that ould be expanded to include pretty much anyone those in power disdained. Sort of like “racist”, “misogynist” and “fascist” today.
The Nazi Sturmabteilung – popularly “the Brownshirts” – were a popular way for people with no particular talent or skill to fit into something, by being a thug and smacking down the opposition (and the Communists’ Rote Fahne, which lives on as “Anti”-Fa today, were the same thing for the communists).
The “Red Guards” in China certainly weaponized class envy, along with a parallel groups in Cambodia.
Former Panamanian strongman Manuel Noriega enlisted his “Dignity Battalions” – a “paramilitary” mass of down-and-outers and slum-dwellers who beat down opposition without a whole lot of ceremony.
Iran’s Basiji – basically a theo-political militia reporting to the Revolutionary Guards – serve much the same purpose in Iran; they are “Karen” with firearms. ]
And Venezuela’s “Bolivarian Militia of Venezuela” – basically a half-million-strong mob of thugs that bypasses the military chain of command to report to Maduro? Same exact model – a mass of characters with no particular stake in life other than upholding the regime/s that gave, or give, them any status at all.
All of them were threats looming out there, awaiting anyone who spoke up, who demonstrated, who were seen to be thinking about being a threat to the various regimes. A nervous knot in the stomach that everyone needed to keep in mind, and keep happy.
The lesson is obvious – a population that’s nervous about getting pummeled in the street, and publicly castigated out of public life by a drooling mob of (usually armed, always legally-supported) people, can’t do mundane (to Americans) things like organize, speak, oppose the regime. It ratchets the consequence curve outside the range of more and more people’s abilities to accept.
In a new policy directive entitled “Declination Policy Directive,” Gascon has directed his subordinates not to enforce Penal Code Section 602 (trespass), Penal Code Section 415 (Disturbing the Peace), or Driving without a Valid License (Cal. Vehicle Code Section 12500).
Social justice warriors believe these are all statutes the white aristocracy uses to subjugate members of minority communities, institutionalizing racism. Resisting Arrest will also no longer be prosecuted.
Gascon will end the practice of charging minors as adults for murder and other serious crimes. He will extend victims services to the families of anyone shot by police. He will eliminate gang enhancements in criminal complaints, a practice Republicans initiated in the 1990s. He will have no cash bail, and the death penalty will no longer “be on the table.”
So – if you’re a “normal” in LA County, you have to worry about your city/county regime arbitrarily shutting down your livelihood. You have to worry about “Anti”-Fa and the cancel mob coming after your personal and professional reputation. And even without all that, you have to be concerned about the ongoing decay in your community that these sorts of policies inevitably bring.
LA County is doing de jure, by the way, what Minneapolis is doing de facto today. Watch for the student senate that runs Minneapolis to keep up with the Joneses before too terribly long.
Sarah Hoyt makes an interesting observation: the “mostly peaceful” rioters and looters are suffering from Wealthy Heir disease.
You know what she means. She means the kid who got his trust fund money for his 18th birthday, bought a Camero, got drunk and wrapped it around a tree. She means the kid whose parents paid his tuition, room and board so he could drink and whore his way through a degree. She means the kid whose Daddy ran for Vice-President and can pull strings to have the charges dropped.
Not all of them, of course. The “mostly peaceful” demonstrators handing clothes out of the smashed window at Sak’s Fifth Avenue didn’t look like trust fund kids. The ones chasing a white kid down the street to beat him to death didn’t look like college students. But the young lawyers arrested for burning a police car were hardly the downtrodden oppressed masses yearning to be free. They’re supposedly the cream-of-the-crop. They’re oppressors-in-training. By historical standards, they’re unimaginably wealthy already – only jealousy and greed motivates them to demand more.
I mean, growing up in rural North Dakota back when only Al Gore had access to the Internet, even I knew what “uncle Tom” meant when applied to a black man – so naturally I figured someone in his position, Harvard grad and all, would as well. Clearly, so did many others.
And although I’m an Anglo from the northern Plains, I’ve known what a Coyote – a slang term for a human trafficker who brings people across the border, either as illegal immigrants, sex slaves or mules – was for quite a while now.
But apparently a Harvard education does one no better in this context:
Y’know what’s “sickening”? Having a bunch of people whose opinion is considered above the rest of the world by dint of being a “blue check”, who are given to lecturing the deporables about their cultural illiteracy, who are themselves so culturally illiterate:
Just remember that when Blue America starts talking about getting rid of the electoral college.