Category Archives: Race

The gripes of wrath – Tom Joad in bizarro world

Towards the end of Grapes of Wrath, Tom Joad (Henry Fonda) tells his mother

“…I’ll be all around in the dark. I’ll be ever’-where – wherever you can look. Wherever there’s a fight so hungry people can eat, I’ll be there. Wherever there’s a cop beatin’ up a guy, I’ll be there. I’ll be in the way guys yell when they’re mad – I’ll be in the way kids laugh when they’re hungry an’ they know supper’s ready. An’ when the people are eatin’ the stuff they raise, and livin’ in the houses they build – I’ll be there, too.”

Contrast and compare: Stacey Campfield, state legislator, un-extraordinaire, speaks of his bill that would bar entry to children of illegal immigrants to our state colleges:

I don’t think they should be here in the first place..We kick kids out of school all the time for bad behavior and criminal activity. I happen to think illegal immigration should be on that list

I’m thinking he’s probably not talking about Canadian kids here. Folks, these kids are here. We’re not going to take all 12 million folks out of their homes (AND JOBS). Being born a citizen of another country is not ‘bad behavior’, and it’s certainly not criminal. Comparing the birth passage to criminal activity is inane.

Anytime I read about a mild-to-totally goofy bill in our state legislature, I’m pretty sure whose picture is going to pop up associated with said bill. Congratulations, the ghost of Tom Joad certainly doesn’t haunt your heart or brain, Mr. Campfield.

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Filed under golden rule stuff, politics, Race, tales of stupidity

Wired up..(for the King)

If you’re not watching ‘The Wire‘ or not renting or buying ‘The Wire’ (if you don’t HBO), you are missing the great Charles Dickens novel of the 20th and 21st centuries (without all the boring parts). You are missing the avenging angel aka Omar, who just might be the most interesting character in television history.

Years and years from now, when historians reflect on the decay that this nation has either fallen prey to or magically overcome, they will be watching ‘The Wire’ to understand how we failed our children, our cities, our political ideals and our national soul. And, oh yeah, they’ll also be watching because it’s damn good television.

Martin Luther King once told us that America has ‘given the Negro people a bad check.a check that had come back marked with ‘insufficient funds’. Years later when we have papered over many sins, and have actually healed others, we still are searching for the mountain-top.

I laud the people who still care enough to show us the truth, and a man, although imperfect, who spoke the truth with fierce and undeterred love.

The good neighbor looks beyond the external accidents and discerns those inner qualities that make all men human and, therefore, brothers.

Martin Luther King Jr., ‘Strength to Love,’ 1963

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Filed under Race, TeeVee

Can’t we agree on freakin’ anything?, or, oh, oh, oh, O’Reilly

The other day a few* of us noticed (and wrote) that Bill O’Reilly said something really stupid (see post below  for my take).  O’Reilly seemed surprised that black folks could run a restaurant as well as white folks.  None of the bloggers around here (including myself) want O’Reilly to lose his job.  I don’t want him to be arrested, and I certainly don’t want his speech curtailed.  If he or anyone wants to brandish a Confederate flag on his or t-shirt, they get to wear the questionable garb with impunity.

All we are saying, is give stupid a chance…that is to say, when something is said by a media figure, who has a nightly show on a prominent cable network, says something so stupid, or clearly indicative of a life white-washed, can’t we all agree that this was a stupid thing to say?

Why in God’s name, does this have to turn into a diatribe about how liberals want to curtail the free-speech rights of God-fearing Americans or about the plight of the poor poor white man.**

O’Reilly is defending himself in his usual arrogant way….’they’re after me, they’re after me.  Poor poor Bill…

The other day, Sharon Cobb wrote about the schism between voices on the left and on the right..her points were well-taken.   This O’Reilly story is a perfect example.  Instead of everyone either ignoring the story or pointing out the man’s ignorance, we start flailing each other about who is the better, more-free, American.  Sheeeesh.

*few thousand

** read the comments on Kat’s post

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Filed under Huh?, Race

I went to Cafe Marche’ the other day, and boy those white people sure know how to cook..

Bill ‘no spin’ O’Reilly on his gustatory experience at Sylvia’s (a famous restaurant in Harlem):

“I was up in Harlem a few weeks ago. We went to Sylvia’s, a very famous restaurant in Harlem. I had a great time, people were tremendously respectful. And I couldn’t get over the fact that there was no difference between Sylvia’s restaurant and any other restaurant in New York City. I mean it was exactly the same, even though it’s run by blacks*, primarily about a black patronship, it was the same. And that’s really what this society is all about now, here in the USA. There’s no dfference, there’s no diffference!”

O’Reilly also said: “There wasn’t one person in Sylvia’s who was screaming, ‘M-Fer, I want more iced tea.’ “

Bill O’ does live in a zone all right, but it’s apparently in a whites only zone. ‘Those folks’ can actually act civilized, Mr. O’Reilly. O’Reilly’s purported point is that there’s more to black America than Snoop, OGs, and Ludacris. Many of who actually LIVE in ‘normal’ America already know this, Bill.

He doesn’t deserve the ‘Imus’ treatment for this, but he does deserve to be exposed for what he really is: an insulated man living in the rarefied air of the Republican News Channel and apparently a neighborhood where blacks are confined to the maid’s quarters.

*my emphasis

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Filed under Race

12 million ways this won’t work…time to come up with something that will work..

I have to admit that there is more than a little satisfaction in seeing many Republican types who had heretofore somewhat supported the President finally realizing what many of us grasped a few years ago – Bush’s arrogance and cronyism and stubbornness are not becoming to the office. His torturous immigration bill flopped amidst the crowing of right-wing radio and right-wing punditry along with a lot of people from all across the spectrum who believed the bill was fatally flawed.

But, here’s the part that’s hard for me to say: At least Bush TRIED to deal realistically with something that the nay-sayers don’t appear to want to confront with much more than bumper-stickers and natavism: There are 12 million folks here who aren’t going to be deported or expunged from our country. They didn’t enter the country legally, but they are here, washing our cars, mowing our lawns, working the line in the factory, building our houses, and harvesting our crops.

You can talk walls, technology, laser, better enforcement ad infinitum regarding the border (not many folks are against better enforcement of our borders), but meanwhile back at the casa, we’ve got these folks who really aren’t going away, even amidst all the rightist talk about shamnesty amnesty.

So…here are are..a woefully overwrought immigration bill has gone down in flames. Are we gonna continue to flap the gums about the ‘illegals’ or are we going to face reality? As a movie once said..reality bites.

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Filed under golden rule stuff, Race

Hey Representative Campfield…

BOO!

bpanther.jpg

I’m still snickering at the ‘Rep’s excuse for not voting for the ‘Rosa Parks’ law*. When asked why, ‘Stacey X’ responded that he was against pardoning members of groups that advocate violence, such as “the Black Panthers.”

Shouldn’t people representing the state be required to say learn a little freaking history of the state. Can the Rep come up with ONE Black Panther arrest in the state of Tennessee? Puh-leeeeze.

Mr. ‘0 for 50’ comes up short again.

*The Rosa Parks law basically expunges so-called crimes from the book that were committed while protesting against segregation. Rosa Park’s arrest for not moving to the back of the bus was ‘removed’ when Alabama passed a similiar law.

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Filed under golden rule stuff, Huh?, Race, tales of stupidity

That Rush Limbaugh sho’ is funny, or, Chapter 10 on why conservative spokespersons can’t be racists

Don Imus got the heave-ho from the radio show because his support, while wide, was shallow. Rush Limbaugh’s support is not wide, but it is deep. Apparently Rush can pretty much say anything he wants to and the ditto-heads and sycophants, while perhaps disagreeing specifically, barely raise a voice in protest.

The 4-times divorced spokesman for morality has a fine record of utterances that would fit well on the old Amos and Andy show…I suspect if he thought he could do the dialect, he’d be channeling Amos, Andy and perhaps Lightning. It’s not much of a leap from laughing and shaking while making fun of Michael J. Fox and his Parkinson’s disease…

Amos: Why don’t people pay attention to po’ black folks?

Limbaugh: ‘They’re only 12 percent of the population. Who cares?*

Amos: What do you think about dis’ NAACP?

Limbaugh: The NAACP should have riot rehearsal. They should get a liquor store and practise robberies.

Amos: If I called yo’ show and sounded black what would you say to me?

Limbaugh: Take that bone out of your nose and call me back.

Amos: How ’bout dat Jesse Jackson?

Limbaugh: Have you ever noticed how all composite pictures of wanted criminals resemble Jesse Jackson?

I have to stop now..this stuff is killin’ me. Rush is SUCH a card…And he knows his football..he claimed that the media are down on Rex Grossman because he’s white, and pro-Donovan McNabb because he’s black**.

The media is down on Grossman because he blows chunks as a pro-QB. All McNabb ever did was lead his Philadelphia Eagles to four straight freakin’ NFC championships.

Oh yeah..I almost forgot…that ‘Obama the Magic Negro’ song..toooo much. If you’d just do the show in black-face, you might have something…

*All Limbaugh quotes were actually said by Rush Limbaugh.

**Other than Sean Saulsbury the media seems to have been rather taken with our own Vince Young.

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Filed under irony may be the shackle of youth but I love it, Race, tales of stupidity