Tag Archives | Racism

Lynyrd Skynyrd: Confederate Flag is Racist (But We’ll Still Use it)

Picture: G.8.S. (CC)

When even the last surviving member of Southern rock band Lynyrd Skynyrd is calling the confederate flag racist, it may be that it’s long past time to redesign your state flag. I’m looking at you, Mississippi.

During an interview on CNN, surviving original member Gary Rossington said:

“Through the years, people like the KKK and skinheads kinda kidnapped the Dixie or Southern flag from its tradition and the heritage of the soldiers, that’s what it was about,” Rossington said. “We didn’t want that to go to our fans or show the image like we agreed with any of the race stuff or any of the bad things.”

Following a near-immediate fan backlash, Rossington backpedaled from his stance, stating that the band would still be flying the rebel flag at its shows.

Does the confederate flag have any place in popular music? More than a few bands have incorporated disturbing iconography into their image for both shock value and as a symbol of their rebellious personae, Motorhead’s Lemmy Kilmister’s obsession with Nazi symbolism being just one example.… Read the rest

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The Return of Scientific Racism

Picture: Library of Congress (PD)

Zach Musgrave writes at sleptlate.org:

“Scientific racism” is a slur in the academy, roughly analogous to calling something “psuedoscientific” in the mainstream scientific community. Largely because there are observed differences in the results of IQ tests of different races, it is politically correct in many academic circles to refer to general intelligence under the euphemism “whatever it is that IQ tests measure.”

And, in fact, it’s solid science that performance on such tests is strongly influenced by individuals’ own perceptions of their ability. Blacks taking a test that is presented as a “laboratory exercise” outperform those taking the same test presented as an exam. In Predictably Irrational, Dan Ariely relates an even more intriguing experimental result. Researchers seeking to understand the effect that stereotypes have on math test performance decided to see if they could study the interaction between two conflicting stereotypes: that Asians are good at math; and that women are bad at it.

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The Innocence of White People

Picture: Gustave Doré (PD)

Michael Muhammed Knight writes at Vice:

So I’ve just received an email from a reader, asking whether I might have something to say about The Innocence of Muslims. “Is tolerance for satire really a concept that is not compatible with Islam?” he asks. “Is there something about all this indignation that ‘we,’ the West, don’t understand?”

When asked to explain Muslim rage, I have an answer, but I already know the response to my answer. A defender of “Western civilization” will tell me, “Yeah, but we aren’t violent. They’re the ones who kill people over religion.” If numbers matter, however, the mythology of “America” kills many, many more people today than any myth of “Islam.” To sustain a pseudo-secular military cult, we have produced a nation of cheerleaders for blood and murder. We speak of the cult’s heroic work as “sacrifice” and say that it’s all for a divine cause of “freedom.”

That’s what we send out there, at them.

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Islamophobia vs. Racism

Picture: KSheer (CC)

According to the FBI’s database of Hate Crime Statistics, in 2010 (the latest year for which numbers are available) there were 160 hate crime incidents involving anti-Islamic bias in the United States.  Such incidents have seen a marked rise following the September 11th terrorist attacks of 2001 and have recently made headlines with various incidents around the country, ranging from arson attacks on mosques to pig parts being thrown at the site of a proposed Islamic center.

Such trends are rightfully worrying in an increasingly multicultural society which supposedly prides itself on freedom, equality, and justice for all.  There is however, another closely related issue, which is in its own way nearly as disturbing.  It is the hyper-politically correct reaction to such so-called “Islamophobia,” specifically, how it is consistently and fallaciously labeled as “racism.”  Setting aside broader discussion of the overall subject of Islamophobia in all its complexity (including its root causes and any possible merit or lack thereof), let’s examine this charge of racism. … Read the rest

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Romney Campaign Using Ku Klux Klan’s ‘Keep America American’ Slogan

Update: Snopes points out that Romney has in fact been using the phrase “Keep America America.” A harmless variation? Meaningless historical coincidence? Decide for yourself…

Not that the GOP is subliminally race baiting or anything, but Mitt Romney is urging the public to vote out Obama and thus (borrowing a classic KKK catchphrase) “keep America American.” Via the Huffington Post:

On Tuesday, political commenters reported that one of Romney’s go-to campaign catch-phrases, “Keep America American,” was a central theme of Ku Klux Klan publications in the 1920s, and served as a rallying cry for the white supremacist group’s campaign of violence and intimidation against black Americans, as well as Catholics, gay people and Jews.

The progressive Americablog first posted examples of the overlap. Americablog includes a video of Romney speaking, in which he certainly sounds like he’s using the slogan. Romney is also quoted in an L.A. Times piece repeating the phrase.

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The DisinfoCast with Matt Staggs: Former White Power Activist George Burdi

Photo: George Burdi (C)

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George Burdi was deeply involved with the white power movement for many years, leading rallies and appearing on television shows like Sally Jesse Raphael and Geraldo Rivera, running the white power music label Resistance Records, heading up the Canadian branch of the racist World Church of the Creator and performing with his own band RaHoWa. An assault conviction and subsequent stint in jail started Burdi on a journey of introspection that led to his denouncing his former beliefs, but change did not happen over night, and when it did, it came with a cost. Once considered a leading light in the white power movement, Burdi is now considered a traitor to the cause. Burdi, however, has his own cause now: helping those still involved in the white power movement find their way out. www.LifeAfterHate.org

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A Tear for Africa: Abduction and Reduction

Photo: Nasa (PD)

From Maximilian Forte of Zero Anthropology, A photo and text essay examining the intersection of western hegemony and humanitarianism.

Helpless, pleading, wanting, needing, small, weak, staring at you, black–this is the anti-bogeyman invented by Western humanitarianism, what passes as morality in the ideology of empire (yet again). Past the time of a London Missionary Society, we now have the Responsibility to Protect (R2P), the moral dogma of a white, western elite that projects its abusive notion of “protection” everywhere it is not wanted. Hence we have the “smug self-congratulation” marking Obama’s “Atrocity Prevention Board” and empowering the U.S. to undertake global police work. Part of a long history of casting wars as “humanitarian,” the “moral compass” of Western imperialism has an appropriately nautical sound in this commercial that declares the U.S. Navy to be “a force for global good” (nautical or extraterrestrial perhaps: the images are inspired by the opening of Star Wars, and the narration echoes Darth Vader).

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‘Sikh Temple Shooter’ has White Supremacist Ties

Via Southern Poverty Law Center

The man who allegedly murdered six people at a Sikh temple in suburban Milwaukee yesterday, identified in media reports as Wade Michael Page, was a frustrated neo-Nazi who had been the leader of a racist white-power band.

In 2010, Page, then the leader of the band End Apathy, gave an interview to the white supremacist website Label 56. He said that when he started the band in 2005, its name reflected his wish to “figure out how to end people’s apathetic ways” and start “moving forward.” “I was willing to point out some of my faults on how I was holding myself back,” Page said. Later, he added, “The inspiration was based on frustration that we have the potential to accomplish so much more as individuals and a society in whole.” He did not discuss violence in the interview.

Page told the website that he had been a part of the white power music scene since 2000, when he left his native Colorado on a motorcycle.

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‘Trayvon Martin’ Gun Range Targets Sold Out in Two Days

Trayvon TargetLooks like now even the cached page has been removed from Google. Reports David Edwards on the RAW Story:

A person selling gun range targets modeled after slain Florida teen Trayvon Martin says that their “main motivation was to make money off the controversy.”

WKMG’s Mike DeForest reported on Friday that the unidentified seller told him that the targets “sold out in 2 days.”

“The response is overwhelming,” the seller said. While the item appears to have been removed from GunBroker.com, a cached version of the page was still available at the time of publication.

Photos of the item, which was titled “10 Pack Trayvon Martin Targets,” showed crosshairs over a hoodie similar to the one Trayvon Martin was wearing when he was shot by neighborhood watchman George Zimmerman in February. The figure has a bag of Skittle in his pocket and is holding what appears to be a can of iced tea, similar to what Martin had purchased before being gunned down.

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