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Tag Archives: African American

The New Conservative “Race War” & The Birth of A Nation

Buzzfeed’s McKay Coppins wrote about the conservative obsession with incidents of black on white violence and their efforts to paint the narrative of a race war being propagated by black people on white people. Conservative talkers such as Bill O’Reilly and Rush Limbaugh along with conservative media outlets like The Drudge Report, The Daily Caller, and others have been looking for any incidents of violence perpetrated by black people upon white people and amplifying them during the Barack Obama presidency with the implication that the election of President Obama has served as some signal to Black America that now is the time for some sort of crude revenge. Coppins goes into detail even getting a sort of admission from Tucker Carlson of The Daily Caller who delights in his attempts to leverage fear to get back at “liberals” who are concerned about racism. None of this is new however. In the 90’s Rep. Ron Paul ran a newsletter preying upon the fears of roving bands of black youth attacking white people even going so far to teach readers how to buy and dispose of a gun in case they have to kill a black youth. This fear that the advancement of rights and achievement of Black Americans will directly imperil white lives and purity is evident as far back as D.W. Griffith’s “The Birth of a Nation”. While Griffith makes his point nakedly how different is Limbaugh’s declaration “In Obama’s America, the white kids now get beat up with the black kids cheering”

cross-posted @ theybc

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Vote Suppression in America


Viviette Applewhite and Voter ID

Here is why I have little patience for conspiracy theories without the weight of some proof behind them. People are working everyday to institute policies and ideas that disproportionately harm our community without any secrecy whatsoever. The efforts to discourage people who are likely to vote Democratic in elections from being able to vote at all. None of this is secret. They claim to be trying to protect against voter fraud but this doesn’t pass the laugh test among anyone with political savvy who is speaking earnestly. There has been a national push to restrict voting with voter id laws that count hunting licenses as valid but student id’s as invalid in addition to aggressively pushing college students off the rolls, taking away the right to vote from convicts, telling people they could be arrested if they show up from the polls, telling people the wrong date for elections, etc. none of these things are in any way secret. They’ve been bold in their actions to the point that awards have been given to people who can keep the most voters away from the booth. This has all been reported, editorialized, and absorbed by the public with no shock or outrage whatsoever. This sad fact speaks to the cynicism that has gripped the body politic that none of this was given a cursory attempt to be shielded from view. So no I don’t buy into conspiracies because today bold efforts to stop people from exercising their right to vote is taken nakedly without shame and no push back. While we’re out charging towards windmills our feet are being cut from us by an adversary who is too happy to shout while they do it.

cross-posted @ theybc

 

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Bayard Rustin, Barack Obama, and Homophobia in the Black Community

Bayard Rustin, Barack Obama, and Homophobia in the Black Community

After President Obama’s announcement yesterday I’ve been thinking about the LGBT community, the black community and how they intersect in doing so I’m reminded of Bayard Rustin. As someone who started the Freedom Rides, was an early practitioner and Martin Luther King Jr.‘s teacher of non-violent resistance Bayard Rustin holds an enormous place in the history of black folk here in the United States. Rustin like many black folks was also gay. This didn’t stop him from helping to found the Southern Christian Leadership Conference although it did lead to him being forced from it’s leadership in 1960. Repeatedly Rustin was ostracized for his sexuality among those of his race even while joining them in fighting for the equal rights and respect as a man that they’d deny him. It seems the advocates of inequality have chosen to replicate this choice on a national level among religious African Americans and LGBT people. In far too many cases religion has won out over ethics and have led us to choose to impose our beliefs on fellow citizens in violation of the rights that should be shared equally among every person. This is one of the reasons that I don’t subscribe to the belief that black people in America are in some way more noble, enlightened or fair than the rest of Americans we are people with biases and motives just the same as the rest. While our place in society and history are unique our hearts and minds operate according to the same principles that have reigned since time immemorial. Yesterday President Obama became the first American President to support same-sex marriage. While I highly doubt this will cost him any votes among African Americans as it has been suggested I’m hopeful it will push forward the conversation about Black LGBT folk and homophobia in our community.

cross-posted @ TheYBC

 

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Joe Walsh, Barack Obama, and Affirmative Action

Joe Walsh, Barack Obama, and Affirmative Action

Here is the argument against “affirmative action” in perfect form. Opponents of affirmative action argue that the accomplishments of African Americans are questioned if there is the possibility of affirmative action is present. Even in cases that see institutions simply acknowledge race as a factor among many, without quotas or a point system, people cry foul as if they just can’t trust a black achievement unless they’re double-sure that no one ever looked upon them more favorably. Here we see this dynamic even when an African-American succeeds on a national platform where the application process is determined by the votes of millions of Americans. Even in this most transparent of hiring processes the achievement is tainted merely by the presence of melanin in the skin of the victor. In Rep. Walsh’s mind the possibility that President Obama earned his title in the same manner that 43 presidents before him did is untrue. President Obama got a “leg up” from the American electorate as a whole because he was a black person. What would a black person have to do in Rep. Joe Walsh‘s world in order to be “legitimate” success? If Barack Obama winning a national election where he was scrutinized by the media and voters and won the approval of (much) more than half isn’t an earned success then what possibly could be?

x-posted @ theybc

 

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Random Questions

Things that ramble through my mind.

Why is it when someone wants to make a moral point they use the Black American experience as a rhetorical tool? They don’t give two squirts about black people during their day-to-day. They may even actively dislike black people but when they want to claim moral supremacy they use our experience as the maximum rhetorical device? Gays are the new Black People, Christians are the new black people, Stoners are the new black people, Women are the new black people, Conservatives are the new black people. No black people are the new black people and the old ones too! Let us live and stop using our legacy as a moral prop and don’t think I don’t notice that in all the comparison making people seemingly automatically exclude actual black people in their construction of these groups. There are black gay people too.

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Posted by on December 1, 2010 in Daily Distractions

 

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