Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Occupy Lowes!

It's been about a week since news broke that Lowe's pulled its ads from the TLC show "All American Muslim", a reality show that follows a group of Muslim families in Dearborn, MI. They pulled their ads from the show because the Florida Family Association urged it, and other advertisers, to not support the show According to FFA,  the show hides the "clear and present danger" that Islam poses to America and its traditional values. In a nutshell, because "All American Muslim" DOESN'T show Islam as a way of life that is focused on extreme jihadist ideology and the erosion of American culture one suicide bomb at a time, FFA thinks it must be shut down.

The best part about this whole circus is that the center ring, the actual show, is actually boring. Do you know why it's boring? Because American Muslims are BORING! So are Christian Americans! So are Jewish Americans! So are Atheist Americans! American family life is boring, marvelously boring, and this show exemplifies that point! Different people don't have agendas. They're too busy cleaning the poop off their newborns' butts and maintaining parallel arguments with their angst-filled teenage offspring and their in-law elders. There is no shame in being boring. The American public should see first-hand the mundaneness of "American Muslim" life. This is how understanding and acceptance spreads and how we cut off the hate off of which the FFA is getting so high.

Isn't it great that we live in a country where companies cowtow to hate groups? What's next? Will Home Depot pull its ads from syndicated reruns of "The Cosby Show", because N.O.F.E.A.R. contests that the idea of an upper middle class black family is in conflict with their image of African Americans being listless, project-dwelling drug dealers who can barely read, let alone speak in full sentences? What the f***, America? It's the 21st f***ing century, and we're STILL letting the bigots win! They are just as much terrorists as the ones they claim AAM is hiding! I was going to call for an occupying of Lowe's, but it looks like some industrious individuals have started that already. I would, however, encourage anyone so inclined to return any items they can to their local Lowe's. I returned what I can, and when they asked for a reason, I just said, "Because your PR are cowards". I can't believe that anyone that big would bow to a f***ing hate group that veils itself in scripture. If you think this is overreacting, Google Florida Family Association. See all the homophobic, anti-Islamic, anti-EVERYTHING they spew. I would just link it, but I refuse to have a link to that filth on my blog. Lowe's just lost a LONG TIME customer, but that doesn't mean Home Depot a customer. F*** them both. My new friendly brick & mortar shop is Mayer. :-)  It's much easier to go local: www.local.com.

Monday, December 19, 2011

The Kim Is Dead. Long Live the Kim.

Unless you've been living under a rock, or if you don't know what iTunes is, you have already heard that Kim Jong Il is dead. According to North Korean state news, he died of "overwork"...riiiight...You know and I know that b**** had cancer and/or a stroke.

Anyway, I'm not here to talk about how messed up the North Korean government has been to its citizens during Kim Jong Il's reign. We all know how he's let millions die of starvation, and those unfortunate enough not to die was brainwashed into thinking that every flaw of his own regime is the fault of outside governments. You know you've got juice when you can have a rolling blackout in your own country, and you have the public so well trained, that they automatically blame the "bloody Americans". What concerns me is the flurry of subsequent "happy" status updates that popped out when the news broke. The same thing happened when Osama bin Laden died. I'll admit that I was caught up in the deluge back then, and I'm not so proud of it. bin Laden was responsible for some quite horrid stuff, but rejoicing in his death awakened a dark part of every one's self conscience to seek blood for blood, which would always lead to more blood-letting.

Yes, Kim Jong Il is dead, but with the risk of looking like a pessimist, I highly doubt that the plight of the North Korean people will change much. His son will probably be in charge. The government is now a well oiled machine in which they can easily set in a cog to pose as the face of the regime, but true regime change will probably not happen. I hope I'm wrong. I hope that Kim Jong Un will make some major changes in the way the government runs and how it treats its people. Until then, perhaps we should reserve our applause for when something really changes in the Korean peninsula. How/when is that going to happen? I don't know, but I know it didn't happen when the "dear leader" passed.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

What I'd Say to Newt Gingrich

Everyone has heard Newt Gingrich say this:

He then expounded, and suggested that custodial unions be disbanded/fired, and the students of the public schools do janitorial labour on their own school in order to learn the work ethic that they don't see at home.

Of course, response is as you'd expect it: There were some initial angry responses from the left noting that the notion of inner city kids only knowing crime as a way of life was veiled racism, and applaud and agreement with his statement from the right , dishing up the notion that poor people are poor because it's their own fault, and some veiled racist statements for garnish. After all, this IS America. What's a political statement without a smattering of racism?

As the dust settled, though, we got some better, well-versed essays, like Travon Free's An Open Letter to Newt Gingrich from a Black Kid Who Grew Up in a Poor Neighbourhood. I liked it, and agree with most of what he said, as I was a poor black kid, too, and identified with much of what he said. There were some less educated essays that sounded smart, like Gene Marks' If I Were a Poor Black Kid in Forbes. Mr. Marks' ideas would be great, but he assumes a lot of public schools. They are NOT all bastions of technology and world access as he infers. The money that would have funded a lot of the avenues he says poor black kids should use has been cut due to lack of public funding. Education initiatives are always one of the main items on the chopping block when Congress wants to cut funds. However, they have the audacity to complain when our children are falling behind in education compared to the rest of the world! Also, Marks assumes that children have adult brains, and would figure out on their own that their home environment is not an ideal one, and that they would just automatically know that there are ways to progress. His was just a callous statement all together that served more to troll for internet acrimony than resolve any issues.

A friend asked me if Forbes asked me to write about being a poor black kid, would it sound something like Travon Free's open letter. I think it would, but more attuned to what actually happened to me.

I wouldn't put bring up race, because that is precisely what he'd want you to do, so that he could then say you're a race-baiter, and that's all lefties do, because racism doesn't exist in this country any more...unless, of course a black Republican candidate gets caught sexually harassing women or f***ing someone behind his wife's back for 13 years. Then, all of a sudden, it's blatant racism. But I digress...

This is what I would say to Mr. Gingrich and Mr. Marks, for that matter:
Dear Mr. Gingrich and Mr. Marks,
Your "solutions" to rid this country of poverty are flawed in a major way. Your quick dismissal of the poor youth as either being surrounded by shiftless criminals as role models or surrounded by opportunities that they choose not to utilise show how little you know of the country in which you live. I grew up in two poor areas of the country. Though worlds apart, a key similarity glared through. It was not the role models with no work habits that held children back. On the contrary, the parents and adults that I saw worked tirelessly, to the point that I barely saw them. They worked two and three jobs, sometimes starting from 4:00am, and not getting home until well after 9:00pm. They would work on all days, including weekends. There was a criminal element, yes, but most children were shielded from that by our caring parents/guardians.
What held children back was the lack of protection from threats closer to home. Many of us suffered physical, mental, and other abuse, if not at home, than from people we were told we could and should trust, and no one did anything about it. Our cries for help fell on deaf ears. Therefore, we thought it was normal to be treated as such, no matter how horrifying it was. It wasn't until we got a little bit older that some of us realised there was something very wrong with was was happening, and were determined to change it. We didn't have to clean toilets to learn that we did not want to be in the situation we were in.
Neither of you have lived in poverty. You have not seen the fact that there is a place to buy liquor and junk food on nearly every corner, but no place to buy fresh food and books within walking distance. Gene, all the money that went to fund computer labs and arts programmes in suburban went to fund metal detectors and barred windows in inner city schools. our neighbourhoods had to reallocate funds, because the social and recreational programmes that have been proven to keep crime rates down in cities keep getting slashed by Congress so that they can either give themselves raises or subsidise their lobbyists' interests. If you were a poor black kid, you would have had to take three to four buses to get to the nearest place where you would have access to all the things you mentioned in your essay. Even then, once the people who ran the place saw you, the campus police would have assumed the worst of you and booted you off the campus. This is all, of course if you were able to successfully traverse the various gang territories without being harassed or hurt.
Newt, I am not sure how much work you could have done yourself, as you were a military brat for quite some time, and you went straight from high school to college, not being able to join the military for "health reasons". I started working at age 16, right after we were evicted from our home. My grades, though high Bs and low As, were not as high as they could have been my last year of high school and part of college, because I was homeless. On top of that, I had to work two jobs in between my 16+ credit hours per semester. I wonder how you would fare in my situation?
People like you two are quick to come up with solutions to problems of which you know nothing. Those of us who do and work on projects to try to remedy the problems get shut down by people like you because you don't understand how solution X will help with problem Y. You resent the poor, as if they chose to be this way so that they could get government aid. No one chooses this for themselves. The government aid is its own prison of despair. The poor in this country are on a hamster wheel of two or three jobs, no affordable education, and no time for education, due to the two to three jobs. They are trying to keep a roof over their heads, all while trying to make sure their children are safe. The poor in this country used to have houses, but because deregulated banks entrapped them in loans that they did not realise they could not eventually pay, and because the banks all conveniently lost all appeals paperwork, they were dumped on the street. The poor are the janitors you wish so much to fire and replace with their children. You know nothing of poverty, and you therefore make uneducated, callous statements. Leave the solutions to the poverty/education problem to those of us who survived and conquered our situations. We know much better than you ever would. You got your sound bites and got your viral responses. I hope that what little support you get were worth the obdurate statements you used to get them.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Ode to a Dove Made of Rainbows

The full quote, as many have asked me for it:
"When a woman has an orgasm, it's like a dove made of rainbows came into the room. It's awesome. Even other women are like, 'Aw, she's having a nice time; that's cool.' When a guy has an orgasm, it's like the devil himself tore off his own face and snakes are pouring out of his red skull. Like, no matter how smooth your love making technique as a man is, eventually, you're going to be Jerry Lewis getting electrocuted." -Matt Braunger

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Confederate Flags in Civil Conversations

So I was listening to this: "Black Scholar of the Civil War Asks: Who's With Me", which is a very interesting article, and brings up a good point: black folks are unsettlingly absent in the cadre of scholars and Civil War buffs, but this was the turning point for African Americans’ status as human beings in this country. I should note, however, that Mr. Coates is dead wrong regarding a lack of monuments to black soldiers. Beside the African American Civil War Museum in DC, There are war memorials in nearly all the battleground states.

Anyway, that article made me think of this article posted by someone on FriendFace: Black Student Defends His Confederate Flag. Summarily, a black college student hung a Confederate flag in his dorm window, and defended his right to hang it. I don’t argue with that, but it’s the Confederate f***ing flag. He also said that he never experienced racism, to which I say, “bulls***”. A young black man in the South NEVER experienced racism? WHITE people in the South experience racism! EVERYONE in this country, no matter where they are geographically or financially, has experienced racism. Anyway, back to the flag and the post. I commented on the post as such:

#1: Every state's "causes of secession", when strung together mention slavery about 80 times. Every one posts slavery as a major factor in their reason to secede. Therefore, every state [that] willingly joined the Confederacy and flew that flag, or any derivative of it, was an established racist state.
#2: Taking out the factor of slavery, these states willingly separated themselves from the United States. Therefore, the Confederate flag is actually an anti-American national symbol. This means that those under the Confederacy were technically guilty of treason. The flag is a symbol of anti-United States sentiment. It is one of the most un-patriotic symbols in this country.
#3: People like this schmuck are the reason why it is not only important to be pro-choice, but also believe in the possibility of time travel.

…OK, #3 was a visceral response to the absurdity of the interview, but I think I’m pretty on point with the first two points. Someone from the South posited this:

The confederate flag is not about slavery. People in the South know this…I'm from the only state that can [secede] from the union. I'll defend opinions that oppose mine be it on politics, race relations, religion, etc. My high school sweetheart was black, my ex hubby was Hispanic. I live in the best state in the United States. My personal perspective (which is shared by many) views the flag as a symbol of southern pride. Other states, other entities, other bodies of knowledge have their take on it but it’s our flag, we are Texas...love it or leave it.

Original poster said this:

…I feel like that is one of the issues people have with Texas and other southern states... They talk a good game about being real Americans, but are often slow to embrace the differences in others who also make up America. It's possible to have southern pride without exaggerated ego, or attempting to rewrite history to favour the southern perspective. That last statement is in response to Texas school revamping historical text and studies to reflect the south better and to highlight the religious origins of the country. Plus, the [secession] is already shows arguably less patriotism if you are unwilling to embrace the diversity of the country.

And Texas said this:

I hear you…but I disagree with you. The minority opinion must always be protected and heard. In this case the minority opinion being the belief or view of the confederate flag as being a bad symbol. Slavery isn't unique to the south, just as slavery isn't the sole reason of the civil war. It's a popular northern perspective… diversity doesn't mean to forego half the country's beliefs and opinions in support of the other half…I embrace the culture of New York...the southern pride should also be respected. But if one hasn't spent any length of time to learn to appreciate a state then the opinion is uneducated. It's just like knowing a person versus hearing about them.

To which I chimed in:

Southern pride can be respected and adored without the use of such an intentionally divisive symbol. Every state in the South has a rich history that helped shape the country, and there is no denying the robust culture no matter how much we in the North make jokes about all below the Mason-Dixon line. Chances are some of us would not exist were it not for the southern states. However, emulating a flag held by people who literally attempted to defect from the USA makes no sense. It is true that the Civil War was not solely about slavery. However, it was a lot about economy, and the primary labour force of the south's economy was tied directly to slavery. The Jim Crow laws that popped up after Reconstruction did not make a good case for the South's reputation either. Upholding a flag that represented all that deliberate divisiveness undermines the contributions that the Southern states made. I applaud you for speaking out on the other side of this argument, but I still disagree wholeheartedly with you regarding upholding the Confederate flag as a symbol of the South and souther pride. You have so many more symbols that don't have so much of this secessionist, un-American blood on them...just don't uphold Paula Deen. That lady's gonna kill us all.

Then Tex:

A flag is not racist; a person is. Yes, I can hear the arguments even as I text: “I wonder if the American Indians hate the American flag?” I would if I were them. But oh wait; I am part Indian. I realize the American Indian isn't the most populous minority but the flag issue same symbolism and I would defend their right to hate it and would still salute it.

There were a few more comments made, but in the end we all hugged and agreed to disagree, which is the beauty of our country. Contrary to what politicians are doing nowadays, arguments do not need vitriol and insult-trolling to make one’s point valid. I will never agree with Tex, and she will probably never agree with me. I highly doubt that I would find her an unpleasant person, though, and I had no desire assassinate her character to try to make my own point look more valid.

…That said, I have little to no respect for bigotry (which was NOT displayed here, by the way), and I have no qualms belittling their talking points of hate.
Also, Seriously: Paula Deen needs to go away.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Survivor: DC. The Road to the Next Not-Romney

The latest in Keeping up with the Konservatives: Dun, dun, dun. Another one bites the dust…

Riding the Cain Train didn’t appeal to the GOP since they found out the “train” was actually Cain’s penis, and now he’s out. An aside: “Ginger White”? Really? Could you not find a woman named Pretty McWhiteGirl? You realise they think we’re going to take all their women already, right?

Anyway, the new Not-Romney…er…”frontrunner”…in America’s Next Top Republican is Newt Gingrich. They replaced Herman Cain, who was suspected of sexual harassment and an extramarital affair, with Newt Gingrich, who definitely f***ed someone behind his wife’s back, divorced her while she was undergoing cancer treatment to marry the woman he was f***ing, then subsequently f***ed someone behind HER back and divorced HER to marry the new person he was f***ing.

THESE are the actions of the party who claims family values, who is so adamant about moral integrity. So it’s NOT ok for Herman Cain to have cheated on his wife, but it IS ok for Newt Gingrich to have cheated on multiple wives? In what world does any of this make sense? Moreover, the party of “family values”, who are so quick to restrict the rights of two men/two women who love each other because, no matter what excuses they claim to give for their bigotry, they think this is evil and icky, are holding up these men who have done more to desecrate the so-called sanctity of marriage than Zach Wahls’ parents ever could?

As entertaining as it is to watch the Real Presidential Candidates of Washington, DC, the absurdity of it all, and the public’s somnambular consumption of it as if it were completely normal, is disturbing. What happened to our independent thought? I hope that we start waking up. Vote or die, motherf***ers.

By the way, will you f***ers just admit that you're going to choose Romney and stop stringing along all those other poor candidates?...Except maybe Bachmann and Santorum. F*** those guys.

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