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even racist homophobic misogynists need representation

I’M NOT SAYING HE IS, Y’KNOW. But it’s true that even bigots need representation—a voice for their ‘con­cerns.’ Ha­tred has been part and parcel of the Amer­ican re­li­gious and po­lit­ical scenes for hun­dreds of years, cut­ting a swath through our cul­ture as it scythes its way back­wards to­ward some time in our evo­lu­tionary past when xeno­phobia was a req­ui­site for tribal sur­vival!

And the vi­o­lence that fol­lows di­rectly or in­di­rectly in its wake is in­evitable. So as the latest avatar of vile­ness we have Donald Trump and his ap­par­ently lim­it­less and in­creas­ingly (bold? daring? provoca­tive?) ac­cess to ex­po­sure on the DLM (damn li­brull media) of­fering more of the same. 1

 

To take a stand against Trump’s racist and cam­paign would be like taking a stand against the GOP’s most ded­i­cated constituency—the Tea Party—and that ain’t gonna happen!

 

And his ac­cep­tance by the DLM means that I have to wade through end­less pe­ti­tions in my email inbox every bloody day asking me to cen­sure Trump or his sup­porters or those media or­ga­ni­za­tions who give him that ex­po­sure! (As if I didn’t have enough keeping up with the pe­ti­tions trying to stop the righties from killing all our bats, but­ter­flies, bees, and wolves!)

For ex­ample, let’s look at the pe­ti­tion that I re­cently re­ceived from CREDO Ac­tion. Nor­mally, I read the CREDO pe­ti­tions and I agree with them and sign them. I then tweet them out so that both of my Twitter fol­lowers (yeah, the joke’s old and I have more than two fol­lowers but un­less its thou­sands it feels like two) have a chance to see them and read them and hope­fully sign them and retweet them.

Then I post them on my “JUST DO THE RIGHT THING! – Bleeding Hearts Lib­eral Pe­ti­tion” page on Face­book. (An­other sit­u­a­tion where I brag of two fol­lowers but there’s a few more than that.)

 

Trump_cartoon_Cole

Car­toon by John Cole, who has been The Scranton Times-Tribune’s ed­i­to­rial car­toonist since April 2005. He draws five to seven full-color car­toons weekly. Scranton, Penn­syl­vania, is the sister city to Wilkes-Barre, my home­town. For one year, I was the bar­tender at the lounge in the Sher­aton in Scranton. My mem­o­ries in­clude playing Pong with the in­ventor of Pong, having my car broken into by Se­cret Ser­vice agents as a prac­tical joke, stop­ping a planned murder by a brother whose sister was ‘taken ad­van­tage of’ by a guest, and of­fered a weekly stipend to pro­vide a pimp with the names of solo male guests.

No place for racism in the Republican Party

But for some reason, this new pe­ti­tion seems dif­ferent, so I am making the con­tents of the CREDO email the basis for this posting. The text below that is in­dented and ital­i­cized is from the pe­ti­tion; my com­ments follow in non-indented, plain print.

“As Donald Trump’s racism be­comes more ex­treme, it is not enough for leaders of the Re­pub­lican Party to de­nounce his rhetoric. Tell Re­pub­lican Party leaders: Show that there’s no place for racism in the Re­pub­lican Party. Take back your pledges to sup­port Donald Trump’s can­di­dacy if he wins the Re­pub­lican Party’s nom­i­na­tion.”

Why in Grom­mett’s Wholly Name would Rep*blican Party leaders listen to a reg­is­tered De­mo­crat like me? Hell, they don’t even listen to their own Rep*blican con­stituency on a whole host of issues—especially if it riles up the Tea Partiers or the NRA decision-makers! So how’s this pe­ti­tion gonna change any­thing?

“When Trump pro­posed a ban on all Mus­lims en­tering the United States last week, his ri­vals and other Re­pub­lican leaders were quick to de­nounce this plan. But what they all failed to do was re­nounce his can­di­dacy.… Every Re­pub­lican pres­i­den­tial con­tender re­mained true to the pledge they made this summer … to sup­port who­ever ends up being the nom­inee.”

But that’s ex­actly what Dems do. Well, yeah, the Dems didn’t make a siegheil pledge be­fore they knew what the hell they were promising. But hey! they’re right-of-right-of-center Rep*blicans and that type of lock-step be­havior comes with the agenda.

 

Trump Horsey 1500

Mein Gott, but zere are zo many gut Trump car­toons out zere! I was gonna go with this great state­ment by peren­nial fave David Horsey (former Seat­tleite, now with The Los An­geles Times) as this post’s header image until I found the ex­tra­or­di­nary car­i­ca­ture that sits atop this page.

Who the heck needs clarity?

And yes there are still a lot of sane, rea­son­able Rep*blicans left, but they don’t seem to be get­ting much face time with their party, at their con­ven­tions, on the tele­vi­sion, etc. So how’s this pe­ti­tion gonna change any­thing?

“It’s cow­ardly po­lit­ical games­man­ship for Re­pub­li­cans to dis­avow Trump’s rhetoric but be willing to en­dorse him as the Re­pub­lican nom­inee. It’s time to make clear where the party re­ally stands.”

Duh! In my po­lit­ical dic­tio­nary, cow­ardly is a syn­onym of po­lit­ical. And who the heck needs clarity con­cerning where the GOP “re­ally stands”?

That has been re­ally clear for decades: on the side of the wealthy and the multi-national cor­po­ra­tions and their need to in­crease their share of the Amer­ican eco­nomic pie.

The best they have to offer is an eco­nomic plan which re­wards the rich and trickles down to the rest of us—and that didn’t work!

Trump_cartoon_Sheneman

Car­toon by Drew Shen­eman whose work has ap­peared in The Star-Ledger of Newark, New Jersey, since 1998, and is na­tion­ally syn­di­cated by Tri­bune Media Ser­vices. I found this one on The Elkhart Truth page. It poses Trump as a dem­a­gogue and his fol­lowers as intellectually/politically un­der­de­vel­oped followers—par for the course for dem­a­gogues world­wide.

How’s this petition gonna change anything?

Who doesn’t know that the Rep*blicans stand for the top 10-20%? (And I may be a bit gen­erous with that high figure.) Well, okay: ex­cept for the 60,000,000 normal Joes and Janes who vote for them? So how’s this pe­ti­tion gonna change any­thing?

“Tell Re­pub­lican party leaders: Take a mean­ingful stand against Donald Trump’s racist and xeno­phobic cam­paign by with­drawing your pledge to sup­port his can­di­dacy if he wins the Re­pub­lican party’s nom­i­na­tion.”

To take a stand against Trump’s “racist and xeno­phobic cam­paign” would be like taking a stand against the GOP’s most ded­i­cated constituency—the Tea Partier movement—and, buddy, that ain’t gonna happen. So how’s this pe­ti­tion gonna change any­thing?

“Trump is not an iso­lated phe­nom­enon and his rhetoric, while ex­treme, is nei­ther new or un­prece­dented.”

Duh. I think that’s my point! So how’s this pe­ti­tion gonna change any­thing?

“The leaders of the Re­pub­lican party have a choice. They can pander to their party’s racist base and le­git­imize the pol­i­tics of hate by failing to de­nounce Trump’s can­di­dacy, or they can show their party is ac­tu­ally better than that and make clear that they will not en­dorse Trump if he’s the nom­inee.”

Duh again! If they don’t pander to that racist base, they won’t ever win an­other state or fed­eral elec­tion again!!! So how’s this pe­ti­tion gonna change any­thing?

The simple fact is that xeno­phobia in all its ugliest forms is usu­ally (but not al­ways) part and parcel of the rightwing extremist’s make-up. That gen­er­ally in­cludes the Big 3 of Big­otry: racism, misog­y­nism, and ho­mo­pho­bism. 2

But it also in­cludes such lesser isms as anti-illegal-alienism (or anti-Mexicanism, a sub-genre of racism), anti-Jewism (Jew­ishism?) and anti-Papism/Catholicism, and the cur­rent fav­erave, anti-Muslimism/Islamism The latter is making a run for the top and dis­placing one of the Big 3! 3

 

Trump_Jesus

I in­tended to keep the im­ages on this post lim­ited to car­toons and car­i­ca­tures, but who could re­sist real life when it’s fun­nier than a car­toon or a car­i­ca­ture? This photo was set up as a jaypeg poster with a quote from the old cur­mud­geon him­self, George Carlin: “Never un­der­es­ti­mate the power of stupid people in large groups.”

What would Jesus or Buddha do?

I know that there are old-fashioned con­ser­v­a­tives out there who are no more dom­i­nated by these lizard-brain pas­sions than I am! And every human being shy of Jesus and Buddha has to deal with the sys­temic xeno­phobia of their cul­ture.

What I would like to see is a pe­ti­tion that asks, “Real Con­ser­v­a­tives: Why not take back the Re­pub­lican Party from the rightwing ex­trem­ists who have ei­ther ma­nip­u­lated and con­trolled it for the past thirty years!”

That would be in­ter­esting, but I ain’t holding my breath.

Until then, re­member that even racist ho­mo­phobic misog­y­nists need rep­re­sen­ta­tion! 4

 

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FEATURED IMAGE: I found this amazing if dis­turbing in­ter­pre­ta­tion of Donald Trump ac­com­pa­nying an ar­ticle ti­tled “Donald Trump: A dif­ferent shade of green” by Eric Draitser on The Gre­anville Post web­site. But for some strange reason, TGP does not credit the artist!

 


FOOTNOTES:

1   Rec­om­mended reading in­cludes “The Three Most Common Uses of Irony” by Matthew Inman. (Don’t worry: it’s in a sorta comic book format. Even you can read it!)

2   I’m using the suffix ism for every­thing for the sake of styl­istic con­sis­tency.

3   Speaking of the ha­tred of Catholics and Jews, look no far­ther than the foun­da­tions of modern Amer­ican big­otry: the Ku Klux Klan and the John Birch So­ciety. Keep in mind that they were al­most ex­clu­sively white, Protes­tant males and you can better un­der­stand the anti-any-religion-that-ain’t-Protestant sen­ti­ments that mo­ti­vate the cur­rent rightwing ex­treme. Oh, and they tend to hate ag­nos­tics, athe­ists, and we neal­ists as well.

4   Speaking ho­mo­pho­bi­cally, what is this ob­ses­sion that (straight) Rep*blican males have with Caitlyn Jenner? Do they re­alize they talk about it waaaaaay too much? Do Rep*blican fe­males share it and I just haven’t paid at­ten­tion? Or is it just a guy thing with these guys? And is it more or less weird that they are clue­less that they are doing it—even when you point it out to them? To quote my friend, John Peipon: “Just sayin’ …”

 

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