Tag Archives: RACISM

52 Years Today

Fifty-two years ago today John Lewis, Martin Luther King, and a number of other civil rights leaders and marchers set out to march across the Edmund Pettus Bridge into Selma, AL. On arrival they were violently set upon by city police, state troopers, police dogs, water cannons, tear gas, and nightsticks. Unfortunately there were those, then and now, who argue that the wrong side, Lewis’, won.

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The Time for Protest

Many of you know I’m a huge fan of Playing for Change. The effort to bring the world’s people together through the universal language of music. I cut my liberal teeth on the protest music of the 1950s and 60s and PforP just today released a new video containing a y. If ever the need for continued protest was appropriate, this is it.

Enjoy, pat your feet, clap your hands, and then somehow join the resistance movement. We have a long way to go!

Note About Black History Month

Black History Month, as we know it, began in 1976 and has been recognized by every American president since. The event is an outgrowth of Negro History Week which began in 1926.

I don’t know if Trump has acknowledged the month yet but I find it interesting that this may be the first such event taking place during the term of a president with known racial biases.

Don’t forget that Trump is the guy who paid mention to Holocaust Week without using the word Jew. He’s also the guy that KKK leader David Duke, and many other white supremacists think is doing great.

Sorry Amber!

On Wednesday after the presidential election I ran into a former US Government student at the dentist office. We didn’t discuss politics but she did recall my telling her after the 1992 Clinton victory that regardless of how much you disagreed with the president-elect, the people had spoken and the office demanded your respect and support.

When I said that I meant it. But never did I imagine anyone like Donald Trump being elected to the White House. Trump’s choice challenges so much of what I’ve held true about American democracy, American politics, the two-party system, and the basic intellect of the American people.

I’m no rookie when it comes to losing elections. My good friend and fellow Democrat, John Baal, and I many times commiserated with a six-pack over getting our political butts kicked. Being a liberal Democrat is a lonely life in Southern Ohio.

Continue reading Sorry Amber!

The Dilemmas of Mike & Larry

I still haven’t figured out what to think about Trump supporters. Michael Steele is black, a former chairman of the Republican National Committee, and one time lieutenant governor of Maryland. He has announced that he will not be voting for Trump because of the candidate’s appeal to racists. He told a magazine that Trump, “captured that racist underbelly, that frustration, that angry underbelly of American life…” and gave it voice.”

Even though many Trump supporters deny that he has made any racist and misogynist statements the reality is, oh yes he has and he has done so long and strong enough to earn the endorsement and support of most of the white supremacist in America. He’s damned near the poster child for the KKK and American neo Nazis.

Continue reading The Dilemmas of Mike & Larry

America Isn’t Post Anything

Look, the simple truth is that most of us have some racist tendencies but we make every effort to whittle them down and try to get better.  There are too many, however, who are openly racists and seem to take some overt pride in it. Then there are those, lots of those, who say and believe things that really are racists but they don’t see themselves as being racists.

I remember being in an pizza parlor in Cincinnati once and a black family came in and sat at a nearby table. My mother, who I never thought of as being racist, said, “Huh, you wouldn’t think those people would like this kind of food.” I don’t think mom thought she was saying anything bad but in my mind she might as well of said, “Shit, I thought all they liked was fried chicken and watermelon.”

Yesterday the nation and world witnessed Kathy Miller, a Trump campaign leader from Ohio, claim that racism in America didn’t exist before president Obama came along. She went on to insist this nation had no racist past, no civil rights movement, no racial riots in Detroit in 1967, or no one named Rodney King was beaten by an out of control pack of Los Angeles cops in 1991.

Continue reading America Isn’t Post Anything

I Want My Taco Truck!

So, this Hispanic Trump surrogate comes on TV and warns America that if we don’t stop Mexican immigration we’ll have a taco truck on every corner. My first reaction was that I’m just a few hundred yards from the corner of SR 138 and WMRd and I can’t wait for our neighborhood taco truck.
 
This kind of nativist nonsense has occurred every time a large immigrant group has arrived at our shores. There’s always dire warnings about how America is going to be destroyed or weakened by their arrival and we good Americans need to “cut them off at the pass.”
 
While none of those warnings would have been welcomed it is true that none of them were ever realized. Each group, some quicker than others, found their place in America and added to the richness of our gene pool.
 
This current warning, however, is different. Never have we been threatened with something that would be welcomed. Again, Janet and I can’t wait for our taco truck. And maybe we could get some Syrian refugees running a falafel wagon out this way. We’re getting tired of all these fresh Amish grown organic vegetables and homemade noodles. 

Celebrate & Protect Our Freedoms!

colin kaepernickI was going to stay out of the debate involving the San Francisco quarterback’s refusal to stand during the playing of the National Anthem. But then too many Americans opened up with the overly worn crap about “love it or leave it” and not being able to resist, into the fray comes running the Constitutionally ignorant Donald J. Trump.

As much as to anyone, I’m aiming this at my fellow veterans of the US military. Think back to that moment when you raised your hand and said these words:

“I, _____, do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; and that I will obey the orders of the President of the United States and the orders of the officers appointed over me, according to regulations and the Uniform Code of Military Justice. So help me God.”

At the time you first said these words you may have been too young to fully comprehend what you were avowing to do. But give it some hard thought. You took an oath to uphold the law of the land, the Constitution. To be fair, your promise legally ended on the date of your discharge. But for me, it never did end, all these years later I still feel as honor bound to support and defend the Constitution as I did as a seventeen year old.

Continue reading Celebrate & Protect Our Freedoms!

The Party of Lincoln is Dead!

We seem to be living in a words don’t have meaning, words don’t have consequences, truth doesn’t count, facts don’t count, science doesn’t matter, post rational world.

Yesterday’s news provides the example. Hillary made a major speech about the racism and bigotry of the Trump campaign and Trump responded by calling Hillary a bigot. My question is, doesn’t there have to be some evidence of truth when you call someone a seriously inflammatory name, especially when you’re running for the presidency?

Here’s the facts behind Hillary’s claim that Trump is a racist.

  • Let’s begin with the knowledge that both Trump and his father, Fred, were charged with violating the civil rights of blacks by denying the opportunities to rent Trump properties. Trump has lied about these charges and falsely claimed they paid any penalties.
  • He spent five years demeaning our first black president by insisting he wasn’t an American, that he had no birth certificate, that he was likely Islāmic, and that his educational credentials were questionable.
  • The day he came down the escalator to announce his candidacy he began by attacking Mexicans as being rapists. Admittedly he acknowledged a few might be okay, but he seem positive.
  • He spent the entire primary season saying things that were offensive to Latinos, blacks, Asians, immigrants, military heroes, LGBT, and women.
  • The consequences of his words were such that he increasingly attracted the attention and support of various far-right anti-government groups as well as the majority of white supremacists hate groups.
  • For some time he did nothing to disassociate himself from these groups. Remember how long it took him to take David Duke’s pork chop away? He even said he didn’t know anything about white supremacy.
  • And now, to ice the cake, Trump has chosen as his campaign’s chief executive officer Stephen Bannon, the leader of one of the most verbal and powerful extreme right-wing entities in America, Breitbart News. This is a man who hates minorities, has a record of domestic violence, is extremely anti-government, wants to destroy the traditional Republican Party, is super nationalistic, and who is an almost textbook perfect example of a fascist.

Continue reading The Party of Lincoln is Dead!

Hate Groups USA

On one of the talk shows I saw two of the most racist statements I’ve ever heard. Both were attributed to Trump’s new racist-in-charge, Stephen Bannon. Without success I’ve spent more than a couple of minutes looking for these and other such statements from Bannon.

I decided to try the Southern Law Poverty Center since they keep an ear to the ground regarding those who hate. I still didn’t find what I’m looking for but I did click on their “Hate Map” and checked out Ohio and then other areas of the nation. A quick summary is, the most haters are associated with the KKK or other white nationalist groups such as a Nazi or fascist party. There are also  a number of dots on the map that represent black separatist groups such as the Nation of Islam.

Continue reading Hate Groups USA

Revised – Bullshit of the Day Report

Dave Shoemaker, who writes the Shoeuntied blog, has his “Asshat of the Day” award. His readers send him photos of asshats they see who have screwed the pooch for anyone else finding a parking place. Since he gets hundreds of photos it must be touching a nerve.

I’ve decide to take a lesson from Shoe and create a Bullshit of the Day Report page in which I will post bullshit statements I come across each day. I’ve created a link to the page in the menu bar at the top of each page.

Simply click on the Bullshit Button to read the very first post. To submit your own example email me at greenfieldohio@gmail.com.

I decided to alter the format of posting BS reports. Post will now appear in regular order in the middle of the HOME page as well as in the ASIDE section along the right hand margin of every CGS page. This makes it both more user-friendly and simpler for me to administer.

 

Playing the Card

Seems if everyone has a card to play today. Let a woman complain and it’s said she’s playing the female card, African-Americans play the race card, etc. The problem is that too many times those complaining have legitimate gripes but are accused of “playing” the card as a way of undermining or demeaning the complaint.

But on occasion the card really does get played and the player needs called out for it. Take the case of Connie Brown, Democratic member of the US House of Representatives from Florida. Brown, along with her chief of staff Elias Simmons, were recently indicted on 22 counts of fraud, conspiracy to commit fraud, making false statements, wire fraud, and more.

Continue reading Playing the Card

Thugs!

Mike Huckabee, Donald Trump, Sarah Palin, and a boat load of conservative white people have once again gotten their sphincters twisted into a knot. And once again the issue is their refusal to acknowledge that not all Americans are treated fairly and justly.

Nothing seems to stir their wrath more than seeing blacks and Latinos pouring into the streets of America and demanding what the Declaration of Independence and the US Constitution promise and guaranteed them; the right to pursue life, liberty, happiness along with the right to freedom of speech, freedom of assembly, and freedom to redress government if it fails in its duties.

Well, fail in its duties is exactly what’s behind the Black Lives Matter protest. While minorities in America have been discriminated against for centuries we are supposed to be at a period where we’ve stopped that nonsense. For most of my life I’ve witnessed a civil rights movement that promised to move us beyond the sins of our history.

Continue reading Thugs!

Thoughts on Racism

A friend posted a link to a blog about identifying racism. After reading it I have a few comments to share from my personal racismexperiences. First of all I am human therefore I have biases. Sometimes I let the cover define the book, therefore I can be prejudicial. Today I walked into the local Walmart store and my inner voice said, “Damn these people are ugly,” forgetting what I look like in a mirror. Therefore I can be bigoted. All of these are human characteristics and I’m pretty sure we all have them to a greater or lesser degree. I don’t know how we acquire them, just that we have them.

The blog’s author says that claiming to have best friends who are black is a potential sign of being racist. I’ve never made that claim but I do know of examples where such is true. Best I can say is that some of my favorite people are black but I can’t honestly say we are “best” friends. We just seem to like and enjoy each other when our paths cross.

Another thing the blog says is racist is claiming to be color blind. That beneath the skin we are all the same. Well, I don’t know if it’s racist or not but I don’t feel that way. I know enough about people to recognize that we are different. Black people have had a collectively different life experience than what I’ve had. There is such a thing as black culture and some times I don’t understand it nor feel totally comfortable in its presence. But the older I get the more I do understand and the more joy I receive from it. You can’t seek out great barbecue or delve into the history of blues music without coming nose to nose with cultural history that differs from your own. The key is to recognize it as being different, important, and not inferior.

You hear lots of people claim that we begin our lives on a level playing field and if we work hard enough we can overcome and be successful. That simply is not true for blacks or whites. The playing field in America has never been level and still isn’t. The reality is that our chances of success are directly reliant on chance, luck of the draw. The odds for or against our personal futures are directly connected to what family you were born into. If your parents were solidly middle-class or higher, you’ve got a much better chance of being successful than those who are born poor. Whites have a better change than blacks.

I don’t know how many times I’ve heard whites defend themselves against being racist with arguments such as, “Don’t blame me, I never owned slaves.” That may be the case but it doesn’t protect one from being racist. In my case my great, great, great-grandfather did own slaves and it took a civil war to remove slave ownership from my family. While being the descendant of slave owners doesn’t cast guilt on me I am accountable to seeing it never happens again. Black culture and attitudes are in great part a consequence of over four hundred years of oppression. I can’t reverse that history but I can work to understand it and better our collective futures.

I’ll finish up with one I heard just this morning, one the blog calls “exhaustion and despair.” “I’m so tired of this and I’m just going to turn my TV off.” I don’t know if this is racist or not but it certainly isn’t contributing to any solution. We as a nation absolutely have to talk about the issues that divide and threaten us. Problems almost never solve themselves. The dialogue has to be both internal and external. We must sit down and have an honest and quiet conversation with our inner being just as we must have honest and open public conversations.

There are no innocents, black or white, because we are all human and display human traits. Our issues are the consequences of history that we didn’t make but have to live with. It is absolutely imperative for us all to understand that history and collectively try to reconcile it in such ways that allow us to be different, to have our differences recognized as being of value, while developing a sense that the doors of opportunity are truly open for all that wish to walk through.