Liberals blogs predictably are filled with rants about how the Tea Party is indeed racist. But that’s not entirely true. The Karl Denninger branch of the Tea Party isn’t racist, and he co-founded the original Tea Party. Go to his site and see if you find any racism. I don’t think you can because it’s not there. He founded the Tea Party in anger against the bailout of big banks by the government and is scathing against those who jacked it.
I’ve lived in rural Utah for several months now and while people here tend to be quite conservative, I’ve yet to hear any racism. There’s no doubt that it exists, but it certainly exists in Los Angeles too, where I lived for years. Lots of folks here in Utah agree with Denninger that we’re being screwed by big banks and the government.
What really honks off people here is the arrogant, elitist attitude by urban, liberal elites who clearly believe they know what is best for everyone, especially for all those unwashed rubes in rural areas who need to STFU, get rid of all their scary guns, and let their betters determine their behavior for them. (Liberals of course won’t say STFU because that would be coarse and tacky, and a very unliberal think to say, but clearly that’s their intent. We Know What Is Best For You.)
This is the attitude James O’Keefe was aiming at when he targeted NPR. Ron Schiller with his clueless, condescending remarks fell right into O’Keefe’s trap. Now the NPR board has forced their CEO out. She previously botched the firing of Juan Williams and the O’Keefe video was apparently too much for the board to tolerate.
Yes, I’m quite aware that O’Keefe can be a snake, but this video hit the target hard. Yet most liberals are still clueless about just how devastating his video is.
Why? Because he spoke truth?
“Several months in rural Utah”… is not nearly enough time to learn about Mormons, without a doubt the most racist of white gun toting middle “America”.
All of which says nothing about Tea Party members who may or may not be racist. Or about liberals I knew in L.A. who really didn’t like Mexicans. Not does it say anything about your own barely disguised Antisemitism which you allude to here and certainly on your blog, I might add.
1) From the Merriam-Webster dictionaryâ€¦
Main Entry: SemÂ·ite
Pronunciation: â€˜se-â€mIt, esp British â€˜sE-â€mIt
Etymology: French sÃ©mite, from Semitic Shem, from Late Latin, from Greek SEm, from Hebrew ShEm
1 a : a member of any of a number of peoples of ancient southwestern Asia, including the Akkadians, Phoenicians, Hebrews, and Arabs
b : a descendant of these peoples
In that if the Torah, Bible or Koran are of any value at all, it is as a documentation of a group of people’s perhaps ten thousand year history of refusing to get along with each other… yes, I am ‘anti-semite’. They all look alike to me.
2) “Criticism of Israel isn’t anti-semitic”. Colin Powell
3) The ‘tea baggers’ are nothing more than Hitler’s Brown Shirts.
You’re either with us, or against us. Whose side are you on?
All I’m saying is that many of them aren’t racist or Brown Shirts and if we want real change in this country we should try to get them on our side. But most liberals / progressives seemingly have done everything they can to alienate possible allies while the right has courted them – with predictable results.
I’ve been here in Utah substantially longer than “a few months,” and as far as I can see, Mormons are no more racist than any other group I’ve run into. Like Protestants, Catholics, Buddhists, Muslims, Jews, and Hindus – like Whites, Blacks, Browns, Yellows, and Reds – like Democrats and Republicans – some are racist and some aren’t.
Yes, I was ripped off by a bigwig in one of the local wards (churches). Yet I also meet Mormons who have two or three children of their own, then adopt five more. They have church farms and food banks that I benefit from, even though I’ve never set foot inside one of their churches. And when there’s a disaster somewhere, they don’t just kick back and write a check. They fill up a 747 with supplies and are among the first on the ground. In Haiti, the even partnered with a Muslim group to get supplies to the needy while most organizations were still scrambling to respond.
Like any other group, there’s plenty to criticize. And like any other group, there’s plenty of good if you look.
That must explain why the good people of Utah are just as honked off by Republicans “who clearly believe they know what is best for everyone”.
Yes, but Republicans aren’t so condescending about it – see Juan Williams comments about being fired from NPR. It was the condescending stuff that pissed him off the most. Liberals really don’t get it here.
You can’t organize a group if you are condescending to them.
Indeed they are. Here in Utah, an overwhelmingly GOP state, it is not unusual to hear state-level GOP bashing the national GOP including our two GOP Senators. Despite the state’s GOP preferences, our (one and only) representative is a Dem – a Blue Dog who clashes often with the Powers That Be.
Utah recognizes that the real battle is between federal power and the rest of us. They have perhaps a unique perspective on this since some 2/3 of the state’s land is controlled by federal agencies, which often have a very different view on how that land should be used than Utahns themselves.
I don’t necessarily agree with some of those plans Utahns have for their wilderness, but I can’t favor self-determination for myself without favoring it for people who disagree with me. Anything else is just giving people the freedom to be like me – something national politicians on both sides of the aisle do far too often.
This took a turn that I’m not sure either (any) one of us wanted to take, and I want to get away from it as this is one of my most favorite places. But to conclude, though, I would like a marginal at best defense… please bear in mind that upwards of ten million of my ancestors on Turtle Island (“North America”) alone, and upwards of thirty-five million throughout the western hemisphere were put to the sword in the name of the jew/christian/muslim (mormon) dog. Racism is something I grew up with daily and anytime a white person speaks of it I just see either a double-standard or pure ignorance. It bites and I tend to bite back.
It Comes From the Heart
Please stay! We may not always agree but I value what you say.
My post was deliberately provocative. I was trying to make the point that urban liberals tend to ignore the heartland (and sometimes are condescending if usually unknowingly) and that for real change to happen here, well, it ain’t gonna happen without the heartland. This is what Joe Bageant writes about too, and I agree.
“Then came the slaughter of the Red Man” – Steppenwolf. Yeah, the Ute and Piute here seem to be barely hanging on. Ditto for the Tohono O’odham on the Arizona / Mexico border and way too many others.
My ancestors slaughtered, and were slaughtered, in King Philip’s War – ironic since my forebear’s brother was the man who negotiated peace with Philip’s father Massasoit, who counted him a blood brother. The two fathers died, their two sons butchered each others’ people. The war itself was preventable, but both sides wanted to fight – and both sides committed atrocities.
As Americans, we can’t live without oppressing. No matter the color of our skin, if we use electricity, eat food grown by anyone other than a local farmer, wear clothes we did not spin ourselves from locally-produced fiber, or drive a 4-wheeled vehicle, we are riding on someone’s back. The whole structure of our comfortable misery is based on oppression. But some forms of oppression are more direct than others.
I have never been forced to lie face down on the pavement in my own driveway, as a friend of mine who is half-black was made to do. I have not been starved or had my lands taken away or been sent to a camp – my parents’ best friends grew up in Manzanar, an experience about which they never speak.
I have (once) been denied service because of the color of my skin – and on her honeymoon my mother was refused service in a diner in South Carolina – a shock to my otherwise-Yankee family and a sordid recollection that gets whispered around the poker table when the elders get drunk. But those are minor transgressions.
I have seen with my own eyes children who were maimed because they spoke the wrong language, a young woman who was burned to death because she was of the wrong ethnicity, a friend who spent weeks in prison without charges because his name gave him no rights under the prevailing law. I am told that my work help save lives, but I don’t know how many. Ultimately, the effort failed and tens of thousands were killed. My contribution seems terribly dim when viewed in such a shadow.
Along the way I have seen that there is no greater injustice than judging a person by anything but his or her heart. I am acutely aware of the injustices my forebears perpetrated. If my dying for their sins would change anything, I would do it, but that would be the easy way out. The challenge put before me – and before each of us – is not to die for our parents’ sins, but to live in such a way as to try to put back what was taken. However poorly, I accept that challenge. I hope I am not alone.