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Socially Unacceptable


Remember a couple weeks back when Barack, Michelle and their media entourage flew to New York City one Saturday night for dinner and a show?  Imagine what would have happened if the following week David Letterman did a “Top Ten” list of the worst moments of their trip and said this:

Number 2 – Finding out that the restaurant didn’t serve fried chicken and watermelon

Not only would Letterman be retired right now, but so would the writers and producers of his show and the head of CBS would be offering profuse apologies to the Obamas. There would be protests, advertising boycotts, and denunciations of Letterman from the leaders of both parties. You can be sure Keith Olbermann would be ranting “How dare you sir!” and he wouldn’t be blaming the Obama’s for political opportunism. People would be outraged, and rightly so.

Not that long ago racism was socially acceptable and racial discrimination was legal.  Academics prepared scholarly treatises asserting the superiority of the white race.  Many (white) people believed that it was the “white man’s burden” to exercise control over the “lesser” races for their own benefit.

Senator Robert Byrd of West Virgina is a former member of the Ku Klux Klan. That was in 1942.  He is now third in line of succession to the Presidency. Former senator and Supreme Court justice Hugo Black is another prominent figure who once belonged to the Klan.

At it’s peak in the 1920’s the Klan had millions of members from all levels of society:

Indiana’s Klansmen represented a wide cross section of society: they were not disproportionately urban or rural, nor were they significantly more or less likely than other members of society to be from the working class, middle class, or professional ranks.

Once upon a time the Klan had major political influence in the South and Midwest. Nowadays the Klan is a fringe group that is viewed with disgust by the vast majority of the nation.

Back in the Jim Crow era thousands of black men were lynched in this country, primarily in the South. These horrible events were not secret, they were treated as social events. Not only were the perpetrators well known but people posed for pictures under the hanging bodies.


That was then, this is now and things have changed dramatically for the better.  Racism isn’t gone, but it has been driven underground.  Just ask George “Macaca” Allen or Michael Richards what using a racial epithet can do to your career.

It wasn’t just changes in the law that made racism taboo.  We as a society formed a consensus that racism was unacceptable.  Open displays of racism are shunned and racists are treated as pariahs.  As we saw last year even false accusations of racism can have a powerful effect.

But it’s still permissible to call a woman governor “slutty,” at least as long as you pretend you were just joking.  That’s not right.

It’s not enough to refuse to participate in the sexism and misogyny, we need to speak up and make them socially unacceptable.  No longer can we stand silent while others laugh.  Men and women both need to condemn it.  Every time.  The same thing applies to homobigotry.  We need to persuade people that it isn’t “just a joke” anymore.

Progressives and late-night comedians have criticized and made fun of black conservatives like Alan Keyes, J. C. Watts, Clarence Thomas and Michael Steele without using racial epithets or stereotypes.  I’m pretty sure we can criticize and make fun of women politicians without using misogyny or sexism.

This is not a panacea that will cure all of society’s ills.  I can’t “connect the dots” and prove that making sexism, misogyny and homobigotry socially unacceptable will do anything to reduce sexual assault or gender violence.  But it damn sure couldn’t hurt.




I have a final thought for our trollish lurkers – it doesn’t matter what anyone else does.  We are supposed to be better than the other side.  We should set our own standards, not follow theirs.  It also doesn’t matter what happened in the past.  Hugo Black went on to vote with the majority in Shelley v. Kramer and Brown v. Board of Education and he wrote the majority opinions in Korematsu v. U.S. and Alexander v. Holmes County Board of Education.

I learned the error of my ways.  What’s your excuse?

260 Responses

  1. Never thought I’d see the day when The Confluence would be calling members of PumaPAC “trollish lurkers” Enough with the sh*t going on over here and enough of your bashing of Puma’s and Murphy!

  2. STOP censoring PumaPAC members!

  3. myiq: Quick question, OT. Is the “basher” from last night going to become a member of community? Or was it just the special circumstances. I’ve read his diatribes before and they turn my stomach.

    • He was voted off the island

      • Thank you.

      • Good. He was on Queerty, claiming sumultaneously to want to be Obama’s bottom and defending the horrendous DOMA brief from the DOJ.

        On the other hand, if we rephrase that–yeah, you could say he’s Obama’s ass.

        • I personally think we should abandon democracy, ethics, and all principles together if it will help British people heighten their sexual fantasies. I’m nice like that.

          • Oh, in case someone takes that as a slur on the British, I meant “people who either live elsewhere or live here but can return to their country whenever they want like our friend and can therefore afford to not give a damn about anything that matters, unlike us poor shmucks who are stuck regardless of how bad things get.”

      • thanks.i was getting a sick headache.

  4. Racism and misogyny are crimes of projection. The racist white man sees things in the black man that he fears in himself, but denies, such as violence–or conversely, things that he desires and won’t admit, such as the supposedly greater sexual prowess of black men.

    It’s the same with misogyny. From the writers of Genesis down to Letterman and his defenders, men who can’t deal with their own feelings blame them on teh wimmins. If they have fantasies about the Hot Librarian, it’s because she’s playing the whore in Israel–er, I mean, she’s dressing like a slutty airline attendant, deliberately leading them on to gain power over them. There’s a direct line of descent in this country from Cotton Mather to Brigham Young to the blogger boyz.

  5. Nice first full thread to read on TC today! And I like this:

    “We should set our own standards, not follow theirs. ”

    I often feel that society is evolving when more politically dominant members of a nation champion those that are still disenfranchised (and truly believe in their support) and when people can be respectful of those having a world-view or history different from their own.

    Men respecting women
    Heterosexuals respecting GLBT
    whites respecting racial minorities
    Youth respecting elderly

    It is natural for groups to inherently support their own but I think that cross-over acceptance & respect between all groups is an important ethical trajectory for humans.

    I know, I know…it probably sounds hopelessly idealistic and Sesame Street on my part. 😉

    • I don’t think much of Sarah Palin as a feminist, but the Alaska Governor has emerged as an interesting figure. Her actions have tended to promt some conservatives to defend women’s rights, and some liberals to deny them. On MSNBC, Huffington Post’s Katharine Zaleski and the Washington Times‘ Amanda Carpenter are perfect examples.

  6. Mea culpa–I forgot about Spammy and typed out r@cism and r@cist.

  7. Ok – using my iPhone – out shopping – someone is targeting me – which I find amusing.

  8. Dakinikat – thanks for having my back. Back to helping the Mrs

  9. Great post, but in the Korematsu case Black and others ruled against Korematsu and said Japanese incarceration was not unconstitutional.

  10. Good post. Women are certainly at the bottom of the heap when it comes to expected respect.

    The beauty is people like Letterman will probably see a short-term ratings gain as the bots navigate to him to see what other crappy things he might say. However, they have short attention spans and will move on to some other hater, while those of us who watched him for years will be long gone.

    People compare the Letterman situation to Hugh Grant and what he did to Leno’s ratings. I honestly don’t see how they can make that comparison. Hugh Grant was self-depricating and Leno wasn’t in the wrong.

    Letterman, on the other hand, is clearly in the wrong. I am amazed at all of the articles that state that he “apologized”. It just shows how truly closely knit the village is.

    • It’s the new blameframe apology — “you misunderstood me” Usually the celebs don’t apologize, they just check into rehab for an overnight.

    • Leno was way worse to Hillary than Letterman and it didn’t hurt his ratings any, the frat boy demo are the main ones watching late night TV.

      • “A journey of 1000 miles begins with one step.”

        • LOL! Much like the wonkette thing, I’m not saying don’t try, just realistically the odds are strongly not in our favor, so don’t be disappointed if it doesn’t work out.

      • He led the pack in joking about Hillary’s cleavage and anyone remember the images he used.

        • Letterman was absolutely horrible to Hillary, but Leno was even worse. We always have great choices, bad or worse. LOL

          • Well, there’s always Craig Ferguson. So far I find him pretty likable…

  11. OT

    Texas town says goodbye to ‘hello’
    KINGSVILLE, Texas (AP) — In this friendly little ranching town, “hello” is wearing out its welcome. And Leonso Canales Jr. is happy as heck.

    At his urging, the Kleberg County commissioners on Monday unanimously designated “heaven-o” as the county’s official greeting. The reason: “hello” contains the word “hell.”

    “When you go to school and church, they tell you ‘hell’ is negative and ‘heaven’ is positive,'” said the 56-year-old Canales, who owns the Kingsville Flea Market. “I think it’s time that we set a new precedent, to tell our kids that we are positive adults.”

    The new salutation, according to the county resolution, is a “symbol of peace, friendship and welcome” in this “age of anxiety.”
    Not everyone is a convert to Kleberg County’s heavenly ways. Madolyn Musick, who runs a bookstore, insisted, and linguists would agree, that “hello” has nothing to do with “hell.” Besides, she added, “What’s wrong with, ‘Howdy, y’all?'”

    Canales, a Catholic but not a regular churchgoer, has been as serious as heck about “hello” since 1988, when he told his brother he might start greeting people with “God-o.” His brother suggested “heaven-o” instead.

    • All right then.
      I guess we can eliminate shell too. Maybe shades is too close to Hades.
      And we should get rid of all the calculators too so that impressionable young minds aren’t exposed to 57738 57734.

      • Next they’ll be voting to change the value of pi to 3 to make longhand calculation easier.

        • Hee hee. I assume you’re saying that because you know they did. Aren’t those folks just so special. And of course the Bible says that pi = 3, so it must be true.

          • Well, the scribe ran out of ink. He meant to write 3.14159…, but he ran out of ink after the 3, and by the time he got more ink, he forgot it wasn’t just 3… :mrgreen:

            As a highly imperfect and somewhat heretical Christian, I cherish the Scriptures, but they are neither factually nor morally infallible.

            Inveterate Classic Trekkie that I am, that reminds me of the time our gallant crew flushed the “Redjac” entity out of the ship’s computer by using an override command to tell the computer to compute pi to the last decimal place, which rendered the computer useless to Redjac.

            Live long and prosper! 🙂

      • WIN.

      • And we should get rid of all the calculators too so that impressionable young minds aren’t exposed to 57738 57734.

        Whoa…we gotta get rid of the #6 (eeek — 666 ya’know)

      • semantics self-editing for me is hell 😉

    • The area I live in really has some “special” and kind of spooky people, but this goes above and beyond.

    • What happens if a stranger wanders in and says hell?

    • Well isn’t that special (as church lady would say).

    • “…he told his brother he might start greeting people with ‘God-o.’…”

      I will not be surprised if some town (w/ kool-aid flowing through the water system) begins using the divine “Obam-o” as a greeting.

      At which point, we are *all* going to hell –

  12. Perhaps this is just a coincidence but over at the Virtual Stalker Club Forum I found this:


    Oh, I might have picked up a few email addresses today:

    Comment by justlen on 06/11/09 at 10:46 PM

    The impostor was using an anonymous IP service to prevent tracing.

    • Freak them out by telling them you’re watching their D&D tournament RIGHT NOW.

    • Oh my, justlen is still around. I remember him/her from TM.

    • They don’t prevent tracing, they just make it a bit more work.

    • How can this person find someone’s e-mail on blogs, in which information is private and e-mails aren’t published?

      Is he bluffing or is this possible for a troll to accomplish?


  13. I like the post, MYIQ.

    The phrase I always heard though was–Rude, Crude and Socially Unacceptable.

    Don’t you think these bots have a major insecurity problem?

  14. What kills me is Keith Olberman’s take on all of this. I left him when he had his rant on Hillary. It’s unfortunate that so many men are allowed to get away with this constant disrespect of women. We all remember Chris Matthew’s take on Hillary and how she obtained her senate seat. In addition to this I see women being put up on television to continue this disrespect. I saw the video with Contessa Brewer. Her job was to show us women that we get a little too offended over nothing. The MSM has carefully put women out there to protect these men. Donna Brazille said this morning that “Palin enjoyed this!” She tried to make it sound like it was a terrible thing but then she actually said that Palin enjoyed this little fight with Letterman. I thought Brazille was reaching and disgusting. No mother enjoys having their children treated like slime. One more thing is where is the President on all of this? He allowed this to go on during the election. Remember the music playing in Iowa. This is just a continuation of the little frat boy mentality that he has working for him. I wouldn’t be surprised if the joke writers for Letterman double for speech writers for Obama!

    • I think a lot of Obots have a really hard time with the concept of normal human interaction. They don’t seem to get that Willow isn’t some prop they stick into a drawer and don’t have to worry about.

      • No, you see that bitch had the gall to go out in public showing skin and speaking up, just as if she had the right to her own opinion or something. Clearly she deserves whatever she gets. And her kid is just acceptable collateral damage.

        • OMG! Slutty women like Palin need to stop cavorting around in conservative office-wear, showing naked face, neck, and calves…and in broad daylight, no less!

          Damn it, we need a return to the Victorian era. Women have the right (and obligation) to hide our evil-man-tempting flesh from the world. Even Obama said that we should be free to be cloistered.

          Equality in silence & physical obscurity, I say!

    • “Donna Brazille said this morning that “Palin enjoyed this!””

      Yes sure! We all saw how she smiled while talking, now didn’t we? So …

      Just one more example of how Palin and Hillary (and women) can never win. If she had shown her anger instead, they would have come after her for that.

      No matter what she says or how she reacts, she (as was Hillary) is in a loose-loose situation.

      • They’re now casting Palin as the calculating, cold hearted b—– who is happy when her daughter’s attacked so she can use it to her advantage. That’s the point of the Alan Comes bs, “She didn’t say anything about Leno!” yeah, she didn’t know about Leno, dumbass. Do you have a daughter? Would it make you happy if this was being said about her in front of the country? They’re like Ann coulter saying the Jersey Girls were happy their husbands died so they can go on TV. They can’t comprehend the humanity of others.

        • They’re now casting Palin as the calculating, cold hearted b—– who is happy when her daughter’s attacked so she can use it to her advantage….

          In other words Palin won this round, so now she must pay. This so reminds me of the Bubba /slick Willy thing they constantly put on Bill. He’s Bubba , a stupid red neck and when it became too obvious he was way smarter than them , he was then ” slick willy” . Same shit, and often the same people.

          • Yeah, but can you imagine? “Palin didn’t say anything when Leno made his joke, so she must have no problem with rape jokes about her daughter!”

            I mean, have they ever even met anyone who wasn’t insane?

      • “Donna Brazille said this morning that “Palin enjoyed this!””

        Creepy. Is Donna saying Palin got off on this?
        And hello, Lettermen started this!! again, this tact from the hacks means the governor won this round

    • why is donna brazille still saying anything and why is anyone listening??

    • I’m just going to say this once to get it off my chest: Donna Brazille is a despicable person and totally grosses me out. Not my most mature comment, but accurate.

  15. oh, and isn’t byrd fourth in line? I thought speaker of the house is third?

    • The line of succession starts with the VP (cuz the POTUS is already POTUS)

      Then Speaker, Senate Pres. Pro-tem, SoS and SoT

      • Not to make fun of Byrd or anything, but he’s a bit frail. i think if the succession came to him, the shock of it would immediately mean it would go to Hillary.

        Actually I like Byrd in some of the things he’s said and done. But I don’t think I’ll ever forgive him for what he did to Gore in 2000. He withheld his endorsement until the last minute. And that cost Gore WV IMO.

      • oh, lordie lordie .. Giethner is in there too? I wish that ol’ Haige was right we he thought SOS was farther up … remember that ?

        • I was watching it live when Haig said that and he stressed the word “here” which I understood to mean he was in charge of things at the White House but not acting POTUS

          “I’m in charge here

          Plus the question involved the location and status of Poppy Bush.

          Haig was an army General and I seriously doubt he didn’t know the chain of command.

  16. Hillary is 4th

  17. MyIQ,

    couldn’t you find any pictures really shocking so we all can understand what really happened to Sarah Palin? Black hanging from trees doesn’t quite drive it home.

    Btw the “what-if-X-had-said” is a nice technique. It always helps drop a bomb of your own. Since Lettermangate started, I can’t count how many times I’ve heard that, and it always ends with something equally appalling.
    I really like turning on The Confluence and watching 2 Blacks hanging from a tree because Of what Letterman did.

    If you were going for the shock you’ve greatly succeeded here. If you have the feeling people still don’t get it what’s next?

    FWIW, I believe what Letterman said was absolutely crude and unnaceptable. It doesn’t matter which kid he was talking about because they must be off-limits.

    • How about the picture of Sarah being hung in effigy? Or the video of her getting tackled by a linebacker?

      Maybe you would be happy with some pictures of women who had been raped, beaten and/or murdered?

      • Are you taking the position that racism is worse than sexism?

        • Those are real people hanging and there were many more. It’s a really horrible part of the history of the country.

          I don’t see how it’s remotely comparable to what was done to Sarah Palin. How much more do you want to escalte the imagery to drive your point home.

          YOu didn’t find holocaust pictures? Those 2 are horrible and they would add to the shock value.

          • The purpose of the lynching photo was to show the people posing below the bodies.

            It wasn’t put there for shock value. If I wanted to shock people there were more graphic photos I could have used.

          • If I wanted to shock people there were more graphic photos I could have used.

            What? Black being dismembered with chain saw or being dragged behind cars.

          • Do you have any idea how many women have been murdered in this country because they are women?

          • Being dismembered with chain saws? I know you didn’t intend this, but you are describing something that has been done to women too. Do you understand that there are serial killers in this country who target women–just for being women? Do you know that hundreds of women have disappeared on highways in this country, their bodied dumped, dismembered, or buried? And it is still happening!! We’re not talking about historical incidents.

          • Women have been dragged behind cars too. Femicide numbers are staggering and it’s not unusual for the murders to be committed for “pleasure.”

            Palin made an excellent point about degrading “jokes” about women and the negative impact this “humor” has on all women’s lives.

            I agree that I find the photo beyond disturbing but I also understood the point was to show the banality of evil.

          • I recognize this photo because it was part of a series that was in a traveling photo show that made it’s way around the country. It receive great critical acclaim and large audiences, because of the vivid and powerful imagery of both the hangings and the communal support for them. It was very moving and informative. You sound like Matt Lauer saying, “Do you really think there is a connection between what Letterman said and abuse of women?”

            Yea–I do.

          • Myiq, I found the picture jarring, but got it – thousands of women are killed every year – just for being women, for doing everything they can think of to keep their man happy, or just for being – Today r@cism is totally unacceptable – (even r@cism that isn’t) but sexism seems to be fine and women are still being killed everyday for just being women.
            Thanks Myiq for this post

    • mablue, isn’t the level of domestic abuse, murder, rape and then stalking crimes, slashers, and all of that enough to convince you that misogyny has its costs also?

      women may not be hung from trees but they are murdered mostly by the men in their lives … doesn’t this say something too?

      • This is exactly what I wanted to avoid.

        I never evr said misogyny didn’t have its costs. I abhor ANY type of violence towards women, I’m a spouse and father of a girl.

        Going from the idiocy of Lettterman towards Sarah Palin to lynchings is a vry very long stretch.

        Many of us don’t like looking at those picture and I don’t see how the Letterman incident, as appalling as it was, compels every black to logs on The Confluence to watch blacks hanging from trees.

        I think this goes too far.

        • I connected the dots from the social acceptance of racism to lynching

          Is there no connection between the social acceptance of sexism and misogyny to sexual and physical abuse of women?

          • Sexism and misogyny are not accepted in all corners of the society. We are making improvement but we’re not where we should be because there are still those who don’t get it.

            Reviving wounds of lynchings and throwing in some appalling lines of your own under the “what-if-Letterman-had-said” is not going to change that, not after Plin v Letterman has been in the discussions for days.

            I really hope there would be so many post between now and tomorrow that blacks hanging from trees is not the first thing I see when I go to TC webpage.

          • You obviously don’t get it.

            You keep minimizing what Letterman said, and you have been doing it for days.

            What he said WAS appalling.

            Would you be as upset by some historical photos from the Holocaust in a post about antisemitism?

          • You obviously don’t get it.

            How so? Just because I think the whole Letterman v Palin, as appalling as it is, should compel us to revive the wounds of lynchings?

            You keep minimizing what Letterman said, and you have been doing it for days.

            When did I do that? I discussed this issue yesterday and today and I challenge you to show me where I minimized what Letterman said.

            What he said WAS appalling.

            Something I said in EXACTLY those terms many times over.

            Would you be as upset by some historical photos from the Holocaust in a post about antisemitism?

            No because the Holocaust was an integral part of antisemitism.

        • There is an epidemic of violence against women and girls in this country and the fact that anyone can stand up and say anything about any woman and get a big laugh underscores that. I don’t think it’s that big a stretch but I definitely think your wishes should be respected and the pictures should be removed (not that anyone asked me, but my .02).

          • Actually that underscores my point.

            When that picture was taken people were comfortable posing below two murdered men. Now the photo itself is considered offensive to look at.

          • (I mean I don’t think it’s a big stretch to connect freely expressed contempt and hate to violence, not like I think Palin is in any danger of being lynched, I hope that’s clear)

          • I get your point, but lots of people looking at that are feeling like they’ve been punched in the gut. I get that point, too

          • It isn’t just about Sarah.

          • What about using images of other women who have been through the same thing. Like with the Hillary grope image. A woman talked about badly and killing a human being are two different things.

          • I know that it isn’t just about Sarah. I get the point. Violent imagery, though, can be visceral and triggering.

          • “a woman talked about badly and killing a human being are two different things”

            Um, yeah, amazingly we all understand that. Let’s be absolutely crystal clear here. Nobody is freaking saying that having somebody say something mean to you is like being lynched. Nobody is coming within 100 trillion miles of saying that. That is not the analogy, that is 100 trillion miles from the analogy.

            The analogy is, human beings are being brutally murdered while the crowd whoops and hollers. The social acceptability of that kind of brutal dehumanization reenforces the violence. In a society where that kind of hate was unacceptable, there would likely be fewer such acts of violence. Likewise, we live in a society where scores of women and girls are killed, raped, and beaten. We also live in a society where it’s socially acceptable to vent a lot of hate on women, where it’s not that big a deal to joke about raping them and so on. Maybe if it were less acceptable to do so, there would be less violence.

        • i see your point. he took one of the worst expressions of racism …

          • I chose that picture because of the faces of the people posing below the bodies.

            They look excited and cheerful.

          • No because the Holocaust was an integral part of antisemitism.

            Just as lynching was an integral part of American racism.

          • OK You win.

            If I gave a reply to your comment people would be reading some ranking I didn’t make and didn’t intend to make.

            It’s a lose-lose for me.

          • well, i don’t agree with a hierarchy of bigoted hyperbole, hate is hate, but I understand what it means to be taken aback by extreme circumstances: like jews towards pictures of the holocaust, like blacks toward pictures of lynching, etc.

            I think frequently when we juxtapose issues it seems to bring on discussions of equivalency or equivocating, and I believe that ‘s a dangerous game which separates persecuted peoples

          • A woman talked about badly and killing a human being are two different things.

            Noooo – one leads to another – don’t you think those guys did a lot of joke telling and angry talk before they got revved up enough to go out and actually take their vengence out on those two men?
            One thing does lead to another – it’s not a stretch. And as the picture was jarring for me – a white woman – I’m sure it was much worse for an African American.

        • myiq couldn’t use images of women hanging from trees because some might find it entertaining and miss the point. I recall a photo layout back in the, IIRC, 1980s of nude women hanging from trees that appeared in a “mens” magazine. Unfortunately, it’s only black men hanging from trees that is universally understood as horrific.

        • As a woman, seeing the gleeful anti-Palin violent imagery went way too far for me. But I needed to see it to understand what I was up against. To me, the only difference between hate crimes against women and hate crimes against other minorities is the level of societal censure. We pretty much never recognize crimes against women as hate crimes. We’re getting better about recognizing violence against other minorities as hate crimes.

          Hearing what Letterman said is hearing normalizing social discourse that says its okay to treat women as meat. That normalizing social discourse leads directly to rape, domestic violence, and misogynistic murders. This is directly analogous to the ways that normalized racism leads to appalling racial violence. The fact that this connection has to be explained at length just underlines the level of removal. People don’t want to think of violence against women as hate crime. They don’t want to think of it as as serious and pervasive as it is. They want to say “What we went through is serious, what you’re going through- sorry, that’s just how things are.”

          • Hearing what Letterman said is hearing normalizing social discourse that says its okay to treat women as meat.

            Indeed…that’s why push back is so important

      • Women are raped, murdered, beaten, tortured, and dumped by the side of the road like garbage in this country–many times a day every day!

        • I hope none of you thinks I’m dismissing that. Moreover, I have nothing, absolutely nothing against Sarah Palin.

          Women are raped, murdered, beaten, tortured, and dumped by the side of the road like garbage in this country–many times a day every day!

          You certainly don’t think I’m OK with that. I don’t know what all the analogies here are trying to justify.

          I’m actually at lost for words.

          • Of course I don’t think you’re OK with it. But I think you’re not making the connection between the consequences of racism and the consequences of misogyny.

    • I recall a few recent “honor” killings by men in the United States, not some Arab country! A wife was beheaded in New York I think and two children were killed in Texas. Their crimes, well, I guess being female and living in a culture that suppresses women. The brutal killings of pregnant women across this nation should be a wake up call for all of us. Women are brutalized on a daily basis and “boys will be boys” is acceptable behavior. Women, girls, whatever you want to call us all deserve to be treated with respect. If we don’t call people out when they making crude, vulgar jokes about women and children how are we ever to change anything?

      • The murder of the wife who was beheaded in New York wasn’t an honor killing. It was a pissed off husband who just didn’t understand that his wife had the nerve to leave him. I think the police failed to protect this woman. She shouldn’t have been allowed to go back to her house alone. There needs to be a harsher punishment for domestic violence and the name needs to be changed. Betty Jean’s daughter is also a case where a woman was let down by the authorities. The judge should have given her daughter’s ex-husband more than three months in jail for hitting a woman in the head with a hammer. The judge was a woman so it can’t be argued that women would make better decisions. It is the laws that need to be made changed.

        • There are too many cases like this that make me think that it is much more than domestic abuse. It’s a way of living that we just don’t understand, where a woman is “owned” and is nothing more than property.
          It may have not been an “honor” killing in the definition of one but the husband just wasn’t going to let her go quietly into the good night. I just feel we must stand up to these verbal assaults by the likes of Letterman or they surely will turn into physical assaults by others.

        • And I’m gonna have to say that the root of the problem comes back to the whole chattel thing. We are live in a culture that still believes that women and daughters are their husbands and fathers property. Yes. The laws must be changed but the reason that we are having a hard time changing the laws is because the chattel concept is so deeply ingrained in our culture.

      • Also, MyIq’s post connects them by putting both into a historical context, and how responses to rac*sm have changed, but misogyny–and public responses to it–have a long way to go too.

        The images are provocative and disturbing–that was the point of the photo exhibition. It is supposed to make you think, shudder and react viscerally, because this violence in any form is brutal. Look at what happened to Betty Jean’s daughter not so long ago. Of course no one wants to see a picture of it, but we need to LOOK at these things and realize they are happening, here, today–still.

    • Up until the 70s crimes against women were considered property crimes … including rape!!! I can’t imagine where your disconnect is coming from!

      • Jesus! Anyone who doesn’t see that the treatment of women over centuries has been horrendous beyond belief is blind. I’m getting tired of these efforts to minimize the importance of misogyny just because of a dislike of Sarah Palin. It’s not about Sarah Palin. It’s about the hatred of women!

        • But it is also about Sarah Palin. I think she’s being sent some very strong messages about her and her family’s welfare by political powers that be. The incidents of being hung in effigy, tackled by a football player, the object of cruel and malicious “comedy” appear disconnected, but are all part of the lynching. We should condemn the lynch mob, but also be concerned about those in background fanning the flames of hatred.

          Another disturbing aspect of this is Bernhardt (sp?) encouraged “black guys” to rape the governor. Letterman suggests Alex Rodriguez go after her daughter. Apparently these two white “comics” have their own entrenched prejudices against men with darker skin and encourage the dark guys to do the “dirty work”. Hey, they’re only joking!

          Lynch mob dynamics are alive and well in this country and the picture selected is completely appropriate for the evil we’ve witnessed here.

          • Okay, I am not going to excuse Letterman. He should be fired for his remarks. But I don’t think he was suggesting that Alex Rodriguez should go after Palin’s daughter. Come on! Letterman is another sexist man who made his jokes because he thought he was being funny(which he wasn’t). He was not telling Alex Rodriguez to rape Palin’s daughter.
            Letterman is just like any of the other idiotic sexists that think sexists and misogynistic jokes are funny. It has been like this for a long time. Sexism is a cancer. This is not new. There is no secret mob after Sarah Palin and her family’s welfare. It is the idiotic sexists showing off how powerful they are and trying to put Palin back in her place. She is a woman. According to them women are not supposed to be powerful, strong or have their own opinions.

            It is like the Hillary grope image. The groper wasn’t signalling that he wanted to rape Hillary. It was about control and that is the same with Palin. It is about control. Call her Sl** so that everyone can overlook her accomplishments and reduce her intelligence to nothing. She can’t be taken seriously, if she is reduced to a know nothing sl**

      • In the ’70s, a married woman still couldn’t even get credit in her own name!

    • mablue,

      You’re saying race trumps gender because you didn’t protest anything when Dr. Bostonboomer posted this picture of an Iranian women buried in sand before her stoning in her excellent post on Obama’s Cairo speech.


      The photo is real and was appropriate.

      • We can’t all feel the same way about pictures and other imageries, I think this discussion proves it.

        Do you know how many times I’ve had to change the picture in the “Breakfast Read”?

        • The photo of the Iranian woman buried in sand who is about to be stoned isn’t as horrible as the lynchings?

          How so?

        • She’s alive for one and she is crying. I find this horrifying.

          I didn’t know you changed Breakfast Read photos because people complained. But point taken.

  18. “Going from the idiocy of Lettterman towards Sarah Palin to lynchings is a vry very long stretch.”

    myiq2xu: Can you read that a few times and contemplate that perhaps there is a point here you should consider?

    I doubt it and expect instead I will be banned or my comment will be edited. I also suspect mablue2’s days at the Confluence are in the single digits.

    • Oh, fuck off! Another hit and run critique. Just what we need.

      • I have to say, I’m getting very very tired of people who minimize the extent of violence against women in this country and around the world. If you honestly believe there is no connection between language and action, you are sadly mistaken. Jokes about rape and violence against women, along with the general contempt for women and the focus on their bodies in the media certainly does lead directly to the way women are treated in our culture.

        I think you, Brian, should be forced to spend one day looking at the dead bodies of women in crime scene photos. You’re a clueless twit!

        And now I think I should take a break and breathe deeply for awhile.

        • boomer, that was fab.

          can you kick letterman’s ass next, please?

        • I think many people get the connection between language and action, they’re just not that bothered about the action. It’s not happening to human beings.

        • And brilliantly said as always, bb.

          • I understand your point about the image and the triggering effects and that is what MABlue is reacting to. But the fact is the analogy is apt.

            Just look at the Middle East where women are stoned to death, beaten to death, murdered by their own family members for what we see as trivial reasons. And then we have Obama telling us we shouldn’t interfere with their cultural beliefs. No one can tell me there’s no connection between the requirement for women to wear head coverings and get permission to go outside and the devaluing of women’s lives in a culture.

          • Oh I agree 100% with the analogy and everything you’ve said here. I’m not disagreeing with any of your points, I just think the points will still be just as valid without the photo. But I also totally understand that’s up to you guys.

          • I agree with you, Seriously. I probably wouldn’t have chosen that particular image. But I respect myiq’s decision. He wanted to shock.

        • Amen Sister! I have completely f*cking had it with these callous fools who simply can not empathize with violence against women. Is it because there is some small reptilian part of them that gets off on it? Is it because deep down they like the power structure that terrorizing women produces? I dunno. All I know is I’ve had it with these small-minded, heartless little sh!ts.

    • I have considered it. I considered it for several days.

      I believe my analogy is appropriate.

      When you say you expect to be banned you are admitting that you are a troll.

      You are way off base about mablue2 as well.

      • Brian, yours is a pathetic entry into the “I’ve been banned from TC” contest. Now how will you go back and explain this to all your friends? Epic fail, as they say.

      • I think we get it, myiq.

        Your POINT is that there was a time when lynchings against Blacks and beatings against gays , etc, were considered no big deal.

        The shrugging of shoulders with the Letterman thing…..just a joke…..shows that in terms of misogyny, America is in the same place as they used to be, with lynchings and beatings.

        We get that. It went right over mablue’s head.

        No big deal, myiq.

    • mablue was saying race trumped gender because he didn’t protest anything when Dr. Bostonboomer posted this picture of an Iranian women buried in sand before her stoning in her excellent post on Obama’s Cairo speech.


      The photo is real and was appropriate.

      Murphy wrote an excellent post months ago comparing the number of deaths in the US each year by domestic violence of women compared to the number of lynching. The number ran into the hundred thousands if I recall correctly. This is not to say gender trumps race but that sexism is ignored in our society.

      • But what if someone was triggered by that photo? Shouldn’t we then remove it? I’m not arguing anything trumps anything, i’m with your quote “nothing trumps anything,” but if a violent image causes someone emotional trauma IMO it’s not worth it.

        • Did I mess up your quote? Was it “everything trumps everything”? I’m sooo sorry, my memory is like Swiss cheese.

      • Foer Heaven’s sake donna!

        You’ve said it twice within 3 min. Where did I say “mablue was saying race trumped gender”? Because I didn’t feel about that one picture the way you felt?

      • How is using a photo of two men being hanged help fight sexism? All it does is focus one on the horror of what was done to the men. We want a discussion of sexism and the mistreatment of women, fine – how many women are raped everyday, how the sexist words translate to the murder of women, how to fight violence against women, why women participate in the horrendous violent acts against other women etc.

        • His point is that people are laughing and joking under the photo, ie socially accepted dehumanization, hatred and contempt underscores the rampant violence inflicted on the targets of the hatred, contempt and dehumanization.

          • That is a point that is missed because all one focuses on are the hangings.

          • Not everyone

          • Msybe, Downticket, but there certainly was a point to using the photo, it’s not like it was randomly thrown up there or used for shock value or some nefarious purpose.

          • He also clearly puts the two issues in a historical context as a comparison in terms of civil rights and tolerance.

    • mablue,

      You’re saying race trumps gender because you didn’t protest anything when Dr. Bostonboomer posted this picture of an Iranian women buried in sand before her stoning in her excellent post on Obama’s Cairo speech.


      The photo is real and was appropriate.

      Murphy wrote an excellent post months ago comparing the number of deaths of women in the US by domestic violence compared to the number of lynchings in the same year. This is not to say gender trumps race but that sexism is ignored compared to racism.

      • Do you intend tho said that over and over?

        • Oh for goodness sake, she obviously accidentally multiple posted, it happens all the time.

        • I’m sorry if the photo was triggering.

          The word racism is picked up by the spam filter.

          • Don’t keep repeating your comments. Give us a couple minutes and we’ll fish the first one out of the spam filter.

            If you keep repeating identical/similar comments the WordPress spam algorithm identifies you as a spammer.

    • you know, brian, we love mablue2 here and if you pick on him you pick on ALL of us …

    • Can you contemplate that there are a lot of regular posters here who get the connection and support myiq’s post. You haven’t earned the right to scold myiq at The Confluence–stay out of it. MABlue can take care of himself, and we do not run screaming from vigorous disagreements here. It’s called democracy. Look it up.

  19. But it’s still permissible to call a woman governor “slutty,” at least as long as you pretend you were just joking. That’s not right.

    It’s not enough to refuse to participate in the sexism and misogyny, we need to speak up and make them socially unacceptable. No longer can we stand silent while others laugh. Men and women both need to condemn it. Every time. The same thing applies to homobigotry. We need to persuade people that it isn’t “just a joke” anymore.

    Progressives and late-night comedians have criticized and made fun of black conservatives like Alan Keyes, J. C. Watts, Clarence Thomas and Michael Steele without using racial epithets or stereotypes. I’m pretty sure we can criticize and make fun of women politicians without using misogyny or sexism.

    Amazing post! Thank you. And I concur with myiq2xu and bostonboomer’s opinions above.

    • Turn on the TV any time of the day or night and you will find graphic police photos of dead women who bled out on a floor or in an alley. They are as violent as any image can be. I’ve yet to hear any complaints about this.

      • We’ve stopped watching TV shows with too much violence. Even shows that are well written and interesting in other ways — CSI went over the top about 5 years ago and we stopped watching. It’s crazy how explicit they are on TV.

        • katiebird, I have to get back to reading. Some nights that’s all there is in both reality and fictional shows. Good thing you stopped, it has become appalling.

      • Exactly. Murders of women are the stuff of entertainment in our culture–on TV and in popular novels.

        • Hell, rape has become a kind of literary short-hand. Need to raise the stakes in your shitty novel? Threaten rape! Need your female character to have depth? Don’t worry about writing her well, just throw a little sexual abuse into her back story!

          I’m not saying it’s never used well, or denying that it should be included at all (it certainly is a part of women’s lives). But I hate how formulaic it is, and how contrived it is.

  20. Why not use an image of a dead woman from one of those TV shows or a movie? That is the consequence of minimizing hatred of women–especially women who are powerful and accomplished.

    • If they’re not dead women, BB, they are the kind that are almost as lethal. For a good dose of women hating women start with any show about becoming a model and, gag reflex allowing, work your way up to any of the Real Housewives series.

      I’ve never in my life slowed down to look at the gore of a car accident, but the woman on woman hate (and hate is the only word) needs to be exposed for what it is.

      • What is with those Real Housewives shows? I only see the commercials and am horrified.

        • bluelyon, they make each women into the very definition of a bimbo/bitch. Money grubbing golddiggers, vain, stupid, crazy etc. They hit on every stereotype of women ever used.

          I grew up in the 60’s and early 70’s, my generation and the generations before never came close to these freak shows.

      • I think if anyone wants to fight the mistreatment and violence against women, that is the right place to start. The women on women hate is really baaaad. I am surprised at the things women do to other women.

        • Women who hate other women are the products of our women-hating culture. The problem is the cultural perceptions and the way to begin change that is to focus on changing what language is permissible in polite society. Myiq is right about that, and it is that kind of change in language that has helped make racism unacceptable to express publicly. That needs to happen with misogyny too. But we are still at the point where it is acceptable to joke about women being hurt and degraded.

          • I don’t think another woman standing by and watching a man rape another woman is caused by any language. A mother who decides to leave her children with a man she knows abuses them will certainly not be changed by any language. This is deep. Making people not express it publically will not stop them from treating women badly. In the muslim culture examples that have been given here, you can’t call a woman publically a sl** and there are plenty of stuff you can’t call a woman but that doesn’t mean you can’t treat her like crap. The belief that women are not as important as men, disrepect and hatred is deep and goes beyond language. It has been going on for centuries.
            It will take more than changing language to fight it. Educating people on how to treat, respect and learn that women are as valuable as men is would be nice. Teaching some women to stop viewing every woman they meet as a competitor and to support each other is a good start. The woman on woman hate is where I would start.

  21. myiq2xu – Man, could I use you over at BlueLyon. I’ve got a commenter who is as dense as the day is long. To say he just doesn’t get it is a gross understatement.

  22. myiq2xu’s picture choice is shocking, but I believe that is the point. People are not appropriately appalled at the violence against women; people are not appropriately appalled at the casual acceptance of jokes about violence against women.

    People should be shocked and appalled at both things. The people in that picture were neither shocked nor appalled and should have been.

    That is the connection. and I certainly get the pain it may cause for MaBlue, but we need people to be equally shocked and appalled at sexism and misogyny.

    It is an effective visual message.

    • I agree. If ever a picture could demonstrate the ‘banality of evil, this one does. And that’s the whole point.

  23. […] Socially Unacceptable Posted on June 14, 2009 by myiq2xu […]

  24. I cropped the picture to remove the faces of the victims.

  25. Someone should check to see if brian is still breathing. Trolls are usually too dainty for the swift and fierce Confluence pile-on.

  26. I wrote this upthread, but will post here too, because people have moved on. That photo was part of a very prestigious photo exhibition that received excellent reviews BECAUSE of its powerful, visceral effect. The graphic illustration of the public participation as a social event was very disturbing and unique. IMO that is completely relevant to the point myiq is making. The stonings in the Arab world are attended by soccer stadiums full of people cheering.

  27. Downticket, on June 14th, 2009 at 7:56 pm Said:

    Didn’t see a reply button.

    There are a lot of adjectives I could use to describe Letterman right now but ‘idiotic’ isn’t one of them. He could have chosen any one of a number of white athletes and didn’t. Part of the dynamics of confusion, distrust and fear is to pit white women against dark skinned men and that dynamic has been going on a long time in this country as the picture illustrates. My guess is 90% of the lynch mob depicted were registered Democrats so, no, the party that claims to be inclusive is not above doing that historically. How else can you explain their attempts to smear Hillary Clinton as a ‘racist’? Even her most venomous critics on the right would not accuse her of that.

    “Secret mob” is probably not the term I would use. I am suggesting there are people in the background, above the fray, who gave a directive to neutralize both Clinton and Palin because of their populist appeal.

    • There is no difference between the democrats and republicans. Republicans did call her a racist and worse than that for a decade. I don’t believe in the only democrats are evil sexists bull that seems to be going on right now. Letterman is a comedian who used sexist words to degrade Palin. It was because she is a woman. It had nothing to do with her populist appeal.

      • You both are right. Letterman’s outrageous comments were made because Palin and daughters are female and our culture condones misogyny.

        Also true, IMHO, is that there does exist some power in this country that is “above the fray” that dictated the neutralization of Clinton, and then McCain/Palin.

  28. “he was a hit and run”

    I didn’t run anywhere, unless, being banned from responding is considered running. I would be more than willing to engage in a debate with you in an intelligent manner if you would allow me to so. When attempted to do so myiq2xu has edited my commnets. Sincerely, I think some of the issues raised here should be debated—but you won’t allow that.

    • Do you need a Waahmbulance?

    • “Resolved: a culture that celebrates gross, unasbashed, unrepentant misogyny doesn’t result in our unbelievably high rates of physical and sexual abuse of women and girls; it’s just a frrakin’ awesome side effect of it! Wahoo!”

      Yeah, let’s ‘debate.’ *rolls eyes*

    • “I would be more than willing to engage in a debate with you in an intelligent manner”

      Willing is not the same as Able.

  29. The violence against women is so pervasive, many don’t see it as an issue. It’s called ” life” in this society. They only see it when a woman has the shocking gall to fight back…and then the pile on starts . imo

    The ex wife/ girlfriend killings are honor killings…we just call it something else.

    • Exactly. It’s deserved. The first things that come out are the rape threats and the other threats. You’re not a human being, and I don’t like you, so I don’t have to treat you as if you were.

  30. Alan Comes is now defending Letterman by saying that Leno told a very similar joke about Palin. So apparently if all the guys get together and agree that jokes about grown men raping undeage girls are okay, it is so.

    • Women who are defending Letterman disgust me. I deleted a Facebook friend, because she became a Letterman fan this week. I guess it is cool—kind of like the Sarah Palin is a c*unt T-shirt worn by women. When women degrade other women, I want to scream.

    • Unfortunately, Alan Colmes is not a washed up yahoo, he’s just a yahoo. But we may get there yet…

  31. I think you all resolved this just fine.

    I just want to say that myiq could not have posted a picture of woman being lynched, because we have become numb to such images. We see pictures of violence against women so frequently, it hardly registers anymore. Not only that, but photos of violence against women are often viewed as erotica.

    • Totally agree, violent images of women would provide sexual gratification for a lot of our trolls, plus send them running in here to tell us how much they’re enjoying them.

      • Actually, it wasn’t the lynching part that I found disturbing. Photos of murder victims are commonplace on the internet.

        I found the faces of the people posing in the picture shocking and offensive.

        Unfortunately some people find certain images more offensive than others. I think the image was important enough to the point I was making to override concerns about its offensiveness.

        • I totally understand your point, the only issue I have is that some people are so affected by violent imagery they suffer almost PTSD based on their own or someone else’s experiences with trauma, violence, and abuse. I don’t think there’s an innate problem with using that image to illustrate your point, I just feel like when it comes to violent imagery, if somebody is bothered, they’re really bothered.

    • They’re also used in advertisements… I remember seeing a display online a few months ago of various misogynistic ads, one in particular, for a men’s cologne I believe, had a man lying on top of a woman on a boat desk, and several men standing around ogling. Really looked like the prelude to a gang rape.

      • Remember that Rolling Stones ad with the I’m black and blue and the women in bondage on the chair? That was absolutely appalling. To think people drove by that day in and day out?

    • I mentioned earlier the photo layout in a “mens” magazine in the 1980s, IIRC, of nude women hanging from trees. In our society, violence against women is viewed as entertainment, often sexual entertainment, and many people would have missed the point if an image of a murdered woman had been used.

      Honestly, it’s amazing to me that there are people who don’t “get” this. Come on folks, where’s the multimillion dollar industry for photos and film of black men being lynched?

  32. I always appreciate myiq2xu’s posts, because they are edgy. In this day and age, edgy is good!

  33. Haven’t read the comments yet, but:

    myiq2xu thank you for this!
    I for one much appreciate it!

    Let me add, that I find it puzzling – and annoying – that white people (as we saw during the election and to this day) think, that they should be the ones to decide, what can be perceived as racist?!

    And I find it equally annoying, that some men seem to believe, that they should be the judges of what is not to be perceived as sexist (“just a joke”)!

  34. I dunno, when I saw the video of Letterman’s joke, what immediately flashed into my mind was the video of someone (can’t remember who) rushing and doing a baseball tackle/ rape scene on Sarah Palin.

    What Letterman did was move the visuals in my mind a step further-now it was a 14 year old girl getting it from some big man at the edge of the stadium.

    All the kid was doing was accompanying her mother to a match, but she has been pushed into a collective, nightmarish sexual fantasy.

    Just because of some elderly, fratboy comedian who was either looking to boost his ratings or was told to smear Palin. And people cheer him on-or try to minimise.

    They seem to think it’s socially acceptable.

    • And what would happen if Palin were actually tackled and raped in front of a crowd in broad daylight?

      I’m willing to bet a fair number would whoop and holler and cheer the guy on.

  35. This election cycle showed just how bad this country has become toward women.
    It started years ago but was so outrageous this time that people started paying attention.
    Parents will have to look at the music their kids listen to calling women b—hs and hos and advocating violence toward them.
    We all have to look at how movies and tv portray women and make sure we let them know what we find unacceptable by refusing to buy products and watch shows that belittle women.
    It has gone on for too long and become acceptable and this must stop NOW.
    As miq2xu stated above ” a journey begins with one small step” If we all start stepping now the journey will begin here and we can make a difference,
    Start with Letterman than go on to other sickos that think trashing women is funny and ok to do. This includes female comics who trash their own sex to make a dollar.
    This will take both men and women with integrity and conscience and good common sense.



    • What really got me was what silent kate 5.25pm upthread mentioned-

      Donna Brazille said this morning that “Palin enjoyed this!”

      Donna was saying that Palin enjoyed the rebuttal-but take that one further subconcious step-and what she is implying is that Palin and her daughters would enjoy being raped.

      • That is what I thought as well, but didn’t know how to put it . Well said. And I don’t know if it was subconscious on Donna’s part. The hacks have decided to sexualiize Palin’s every move….constantly put her in fish net stockings so to speak.

      • That’s exactly what I said to my sister at the time. I told her it’s like telling a rape victim to stop fighting and enjoy it! She makes me so ill.

  36. I also would like to make note of something I have noticed on this post. It seems that some have tried to put myiq2xu on the defensive for the use of a graphic picture that they deemed inappropriate to the circumstance. My view is one in which the poster, like any victim of sexual harassment, has had an attempt made to put the poster on the defense, to knock them off their game, to make them feel like they are the one at fault. You know you deserved being raped because you wore that slutty sweater. I think that was all a distraction. The truth is until we stand up for women and women stand for each other, unlike the MSNBC robotic women that parrot what the men tell them to say, we will continue to be abused by a society that values male domination. If we have to shock people to get their attention then so be it. I want to see the likes of Letterman gone. So many want this to be over. I say it has just begun. We need to watch and respond when we see something that lessens the value of women. If people don’t listen go ahead and shock them until they hear what we are saying!

    • Photos of lynchings give terrible, deep, and horrific vibes to MABlue, which is why he objected.

      However, there are lines which women don’t like to see crossed either. (And it doesn’t matter which political party they may happen to belong to ).

      • As a human being, both the lynching photo and the stoning photo posted on TC gave me terrible, deep and horrific vibes. They are sickening and painful images. However, I understood the point each poster was making.

        It seemed to me, and I could have misinterpreted him, that MABlue was just not getting the connection between every day acceptance of hateful attitudes and that this “banality of evil” creates fertile ground for racial or gender violence.

  37. BTW, great post!

  38. >>>Not that long ago racism was socially acceptable and racial discrimination was legal.

    I recently found a family album of a automobile trip in 1930 from the east coast to the west coast – and was shocked to see a Navajo postcard with a swastika! I googled and learned that in early 1900s it was a symbol of good-luck in America and Arizona’s Department of Transportation even included the swastika on highway signs.
    Of course, this was all prior to Hitler adopting the swastika as symbol of the Nazis.
    Times change. Meanings for words and symbols change.
    Yes – we’ve come a long way, baby – but it’s STILL “socially acceptable” to dehumanize and demonize women on national TV!

    Letterman’s sorry ass should GO!

    CBS contact info —

    • Swaztika’s have been a Buddhist symbol of auspicious outcomes for literally centuries. I have lots of Buddhist Art (especially Tibetan) around my house. I have had to make certain none of it contains that symbol because I know what a terrible vibe it would bring to people who were unaware of it (which would basically be most people that don’t know alto about Tibetan Buddhism). Funny how symbols can be so powerful both ways.

    • It has also been used as a sign for the sun.

      And in the Jewish museum in Jerusalem’s David’s Tower there are remnants from an ancient building with the swastica carved into it. It felt really strange to see it there!

      The Nazies sure did spoil an otherwise beautiful sign … for ever.

  39. Now we don’t have to WONDER about a racist comment about the President and his family and the public reaction to it. Let’s see what the reaction to this latest is?

    “A prominent S.C. Republican Party activist is in hot water after describing an escaped gorilla at a South Carolina zoo as an “ancestor” of First Lady Michelle Obama. The exchange occurred after Trey Walker, an advisor to S.C. Attorney General Henry McMaster, posted an innocuous Facebook update about this morning’s escape of a Western Lowlands Gorilla from Columbia’s Riverbanks Zoo. Walker’s harmless update, however was followed by a highly-questionable comment from longtime SCGOP activist and former State Senate candidate, Rusty DePass. “I’m sure it’s just one of Michelle’s ancestors — probably harmless,” DePass wrote.


    • Rusty DePass. “I’m sure it’s just one of Michelle’s ancestors — probably harmless,” DePass wrote.


      • Yes it is – it’s very disgusting.

        Unfortunately DePass doesn’t seem to have a job he can retire or be fired from.

        • Apparently, DePass is claiming that he was referring to MO’s belief in evolution. Kinda reminds me of Letterman’s excuse. (sigh)

  40. When people that “call” themselves liberals find it just dandy that a foul mouthed old bastard like Letterman references sex jokes about teenage girls it is beyond reprehensible and highlights this country’s loathsome opinion of the female gender. (Does it really matter if he was talking about a 14 year old or an 18 year old?)

    But what makes me sure that this attitude and this kind of crap will never end is all the women that find his behavior acceptable. “It was in poor taste”, seems to be about as far as many will go in chastising the dirty old man.

    After reading the following at the Daily Beast by the disgusting Tina Brown, and the comments, I feel more hopeless than ever.http://www.thedailybeast.com/blogs-and-stories/2009-06-14/what-hillary-can-teach-sarah-palin/?cid=bs:archive4

    Women only care about the rights of women who are members of “their” tribe. Republican women like Sarah Palin and her daughters need to just shut up. Or, just lay back and enjoy it. Same thing.

  41. Your wording suggests that ALL academics were busy generating false science to bolster racism. That is far from the truth. There were scientists who abhored racism and who worked to overturn the garbage polluting their field. An example is G. Stanley Hall, who was responsible for mentoring the first African American Ph.D. students in psychology, who later did the studies that were presented to the court in support of the effects of disparities in segregated education, resultin the Brown v Board of Education decision. The courts were able to overturn this and other harmful Jim Crow laws because lawyers were able to fight bad science with good science, and that came from academics who were not doing racist work. Similar academics who contested the racial theories of the Nazi’s were among the first put in concentration camps where some died for their work. Others fled Germany and became the core of a developing American Academia. So, the lack of qualification in your statement (found sentences below where you talked about others) is mistaken.

    • Get off my lawn!

      • The one sentence out of my entire post that you are challenging had eleven words in it. It was not central or essential to my primary thesis. Furthermore, I was not suggesting what you claim I was suggesting.

        You spent well over 100 words disproving something I didn’t even say.

        Better trolls please!

        • 174.

        • You said “Academics” not “Some academics” not even “Many academics”. Why would someone care when their profession is accused of doing racist science? Only because it violates the most important values of the field.

          You were Sloppy. Are you incapable of apologizing or even admitting a mistake?

          • I was not doing a treatise on racism in science, but I could. It’s very well documented.

            Do some research on eugenics in the United States and get back to me.

          • Um. If we’re gonna start arguing about quantifiers it should also be pointed out that he didn’t say “all academics.”

          • Try doing some research on the concept of the White Man’s Burden, mentioned by myiq and then come back.

          • (jumping in)

            Penny, I think that comment is unacceptable and if it was up to me I’d delete it.

            If you want to comment here in a respectable way — we welcome you.

            But, comments like this don’t add anything to the discussion and if I see another one, I’ll delete it.

            You are of course welcome to start your own blog if you think you could do better.

  42. there is a terrific blog called : what about our daughters

    Written by a feminist sister who is fighting for black women and women generally against all comers, black or white. She writes great, and you will hear news and analysis there you cannot find in the MSM .

  43. A racist email sent from Sherri Goforth, legislative aid for Sen. Diane Black (R-Gallatin). The email depicts the Presidents of the United States with President Barack Obama as a pair of eyes in a black background. Sherri Goforth confirms she sent this email and also said she had received a letter of reprimand from her superiors but said she will stay on the job. Goforth said she felt very bad about accidentally sending it to the wrong list. “I went on the wrong email and I inadvertently hit the wrong button,” Goforth told NIT. “I’m very sick about it, and it’s one of those things I can’t change or take back.”

    • Do you have a link?

      I think Ms. Goforth should be unemployed by now – her excuse doesn’t cut it. She shouldn’t have been sending stuff like that to anyone.

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