Showing posts with label South Carolina. Show all posts
Showing posts with label South Carolina. Show all posts

Thursday, June 25, 2015

The truth will set us free

I’ll be honest with you. It chaps my a** to read the smug comments of some of you Northerners, so certain of your rectitude. But it also breaks my heart to read the smug comments of some of you Southerners, so certain that this is only a matter of fighting back the forces of political correctness, because no American could possibly take genuine offense at a symbol second only to a burning cross in standing for white supremacy and racial terror.

I am glad to see the Confederate flag go. Yes, there are about a billion more important things on the racial front than the fate of this flag. The disappearance of the Confederate flag from public places will not educate one more black child in a failing school, or help a single black child growing up without a father in the home, or do a damn thing for black families trapped in their homes after dark because of gun violence. That’s all true. You can re-name a city thoroughfare after Dr. King, but that won’t keep it from being, as it is in too many places, one of the worst streets in town. Same deal with the flag.

But taking it down is still the right thing to do. There is no getting around the fact that the armies that went to battle under that flag fought for a nation and a political and social order built on enslaving Africans. And there is no getting around the fact that the same flag was resurrected in the 1950s by Klansmen and other white supremacists, and wielded as a symbol of resistance to equality for black Americans.

The Confederate flag is largely invisible to me, in a way that it is not invisible to black Americans. I can, and do, ignore it as an example of badly dated nostalgia, but Dylann Roof made it very, very clear that for some white people, the flag remains a potent expression of racial hatred. He forced many of us whites who aren’t particularly fond of the Confederate flag, but who don’t think about it much, to pay attention to that symbol, and to see it through the eyes of black Americans.

And so did the amazing grace of the people of Mother Emanuel AME church.
My friend Rod Dreher speaks for me here, as does New York Times columnist Ross Douthat.

Many of the folks who are now jerking their knees so hard in defense of their "heritage" and the flag they say represents it, are jerking them so hard they're hitting themselves square in the chin. They are liable to knock themselves plumb out.

Lots of these folks fancy themselves to be fine Christian people and, no doubt, not just a few of them are finer Christians than I. But you cannot be a good Christian without acknowledging you're a damnable sinner in need of the cross . . . and in need of sincere repentance and a firm purpose of amendment. You can't get there without being acquainted not only with the sins of your own volition but also those in which you've been implicated.

We Southerners cannot escape the plain fact that the flag with which we were raised is the banner of the South's -- and America's -- original sin. Hatred and subjugation of blacks is the original cause for which that flag flew, and it again represented that same cause when it was resurrected in the 1950s and '60s.

The Rebel flag was and is the banner of rebellion -- rebellion against the United States, rebellion against the "self-evident" truth that "all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness." It matters not a whit whether we're speaking of the battle flag of the Army of Northern Virginia, the Stars and Bars, the Stainless Banner or the Blood Stained Banner. They, and the cause they represent, are the standards of rebellion, rebellion against our fellow man and against the Creator Himself.

In bowing down before this idol, this golden calf of moonlight and magnolias, of grits and mustard greens, "heritage" loving Southerners also bow down before the Father of All Lies, the devil who hated both slave and slave master as much as he loved the death and suffering inflicted by the overseer's whip . . . and the foot soldiers' rifle fire and artillerymen's cannon balls.

SATAN WAS the lord of Montgomery, and he was the lord of Richmond. Finally, for eight days, he was the lord of Danville, Va. He cheered on the Grim Reaper at First Manassas, known by Yankees as the First Battle of Bull Run. He sharpened death's scythe at Antietam. He delighted in Pickett's charge up Cemetery Ridge at Gettysburg but later rued the outcome of the Civil War's pivotal battle.

The devil's spirits lifted when his standard again ascended flag staffs across the South after Brown v. Board of Education. He egged on every lynching, cheered for the white rioters at Ole Miss and bought the bullets for the rifles that fired on Medgar Evers and Martin Luther King Jr.

God's greatest creation, and Heaven's first fallen angel, looked on with demonic pride when the forefathers of Dylann Roof blew up four little African-American girls in a Birmingham church. And the treacherous banner, the gold standard of rebellion, flew over it all.

We Southerners can have our moonlight and magnolias, our fried chicken and cornbread. We can love our bourbon and mint juleps, best enjoyed in the shade of a live oak tree. We can have all the good things that were left to us as part of our Southern heritage. We, however, are not permitted to ignore that God-damnable evil that is equally our heritage.

In doubling down on their defense of the indefensible -- in doing so a week after a racist Southern punk who loved the Confederate flag walked into Mother Emanuel AME Church in Charleston, sat through a Bible study and then gunned down nine black Christians who had opened their arms and hearts to him -- too many of my fellow Southerners insist upon proving the old adage "There are none so blind as those who will not see." They will not see the obscenity of the symbolism they defend, and they will not see the obscenity of doing so before the bodies of nine African-American saints, nine black Christian martyrs, have even been committed to the good earth of South Carolina.

PART OF my heritage as a native Louisianian is that the moment folks decided Gov. Earl Long had gone off his rocker came with an angry 1959 speech to a legislature hell bent on segregation and nullification, as recounted by A.J. Liebling in The Earl of Louisiana. His rant was directed at the arch segregationist, Sen. Willie Rainach:

"After all this is over, he'll probably go up there to Summerfield, get up on his front porch, take off his shoes, wash his feet, look at the moon and get close to God." This was gross comedy, a piece of miming that recalled Jimmy Savo impersonating the Mississippi River. Then the old man, changing pace, shouted in Rainach's direction, "And when you do, you got to recognize that n*****s is human beings!"

It was at this point that the legislators must have decided he'd gone off his crumpet. Old Earl, a Southern politician, was taking the Fourteenth Amendment's position that "No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States . . . nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws."
AS MUCH as I hang my head in shame that part of my heritage looked upon being foursquare for the Fourteenth Amendment as a prepaid ticket to the funny farm, I also delight in the spectacle of a boozing, pill-popping politician -- who at the time was cavorting with a New Orleans stripper -- going waaaaay out on a limb to do the Lord's work, while "decent white Christians" were denying the humanity of those children of the Father whose skin happened to be of a darker hue.

No doubt, the Willie Rainachs of the Gret Stet of Louisiana were just trying to defend their heritage. That "heritage" denied Adam and Eve's original sin just as much as it celebrated the South's.

None of us has the right to deny our brothers' and sisters' history in order to celebrate a sanitized version of our own. Segregating the black children of God from the white children of God in a separate but unequal Southern heritage, where the latter get to whitewash the suffering of the former in the name of pride is a deal only Lucifer could love.

Truth will have none of it. Neither will history.

Friday, June 19, 2015

Crackpot calls the kettle black

What would Americans' ulcers do without Bobby Jindal?
Bobby Jindal:
Cable news troll

The Louisiana governor, who less than two weeks after the Charlie Hebdo massacre went to London to bleat about Muslim "no-go zones" there and across Europe, has just called President Obama "shameful" for mentioning that America has a gun-massacre problem a day after nine African-Americans were gunned down at a Bible study in Charleston, S.C.

Of course, Jindal did this on the Fox News Channel.

“I think it was completely shameful, within 24 hours of this awful tragedy, nine people killed in a Bible study in a church,” Jindal said. “Within 24 hours, we’ve got the president trying to score cheap political points. Let him have this debate next week. His job as commander in chief to help the country begin the healing process.”
Obama said Thursday the shooting shows the need for a national reckoning on gun violence. “At some point, we as a country will have to reckon with the fact that this type of mass violence does not happen in other advanced countries,” he said. “It doesn’t happen in other places with this kind of frequency. And it is in our power to do something about it.”

SO HERE we have a failed governor of a poor Southern state "trying to score cheap political points" by lambasting Barack Obama for "trying to score cheap political points" in the wake of an act of domestic terrorism . . . just like he did overseas back in January.

Compared to Jindal, Obama is an amateur when it comes to "shameful."

Actually, the guy isn't a putative presidential candidate (whose hobby is bouncing the rubble of Louisiana as its worst governor ever) so much as he is the political version of an Internet troll. It's enough to make one wish America had a moderator who could ban GungaSpin2016 from the national comments section.

Thursday, June 18, 2015

This time . . . Charleston

Another day, another act of domestic terrorism committed by a man with a hate-filled heart and a bullet-filled gun.

I don't know what is more remarkable and terrifying, that so many Americans harbor murderous hate in their hearts or that these sick souls find it so easy to acquire arsenals, both large and small. And a small arsenal was all it took to all but erase from this mortal coil African-American congregants gathered for prayer and Bible study at Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston, S.C.

Nine dead. 

Among the first to be gunned down was the pastor, state Sen. Clementa Pinckney, "the moral conscience of the General Assembly” in the words of one Senate colleague.

Who would do this? According to police, just another violent and troubled young person -- one possessing the ballistic means to kill in person those he had already slain in his heart of darkness.

It appears that 21-year-old Dylann Storm Roof was a white supremacist. A Facebook photo showed him wearing a jacked adorned with patches of the flags of Rhodesia and apartheid South Africa. His car's front plate depicted the flags of the Confederate States of America.

AND THERE'S this account from NBC News:
"At the conclusion of the Bible study, from what I understand, they just start hearing loud noises ringing out," cousin Sylvia Johnson told NBC affiliate WIS-TV, "and he had already wounded — the suspect already wounded a couple of individuals."

She said one of those people was Pinckney, a 41-year-old married father of two and Democratic member of the state Senate.

The female survivor told Johnson that the gunman reloaded five different times and that her son was trying to "talk him out of doing the act of killing people."

But he wouldn't listen, she said.

"You rape our women and you're taking over our country. And you have to go," the shooter told the group, according to the survivor's account to Johnson.

TODAY of all days, the Confederate battle flag still flies at the state capitol in Columbia. At full staff. What could people possibly be thinking?

Don't answer that.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

In his heart, he knows we're alike

"It's not that I am a good debater. It's that I articulate the deepest- felt values of the American people."

-- Newt Gingrich

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My greatest fear is that Newt Gingrich, winner of the South Carolina GOP presidential primary -- Newt Gingrich, House ethics transgressor . . . Newt Gingrich, campaign race-baiter . . . Newt Gingrich, adulterer and pitch man for an "open marriage" . . . Newt Gingrich, shameless panderer . . . Newt Gingrich, promoter of Palestinians as an "invented people" and of "regime change" in Iran . . . Newt Gingrich, transformer of a mistress into a trophy wife . . . Newt Gingrich, big spender on Tiffany's bling . . . Newt Gingrich, enemy of the rule of law . . . Newt Gingrich, utterly sanctimonious -- my greatest fear is that Newt Gingrich, serious contender for the presidency of the United States, is absolutely right in assessing his success.

What keeps me awake at night is that Newt Gingrich absolutely might be "articulating the deepest-felt values of the American people," circa 2012.

What scares me spitless is that Newt Gingrich could be exactly what this country wants and deserves . . . and might yet get.

Sleep well, America. Someone has to.

Saturday, November 06, 2010

Wonderful WOKE Radio

When you look at radio today, it is impossible not to dwell on what's been lost in recent decades -- provided you're old enough to remember what we once had.
One thing we had was humanity . . . humanity that, more often than not, rang out through the speaker of your radio along with the music, news, weather and jingles. Humanity flowed from a relationship between broadcaster and listener.

That relationship flowed from personal involvement.

Personal involvement flowed from a deep sense of caring.

And that deep sense of caring flowed from love.
I get the feeling that Wonderful WOKE Radio in Charleston, S.C., was all about love.

BACK IN 1979, on Top-40 radio stations around the world, Earth, Wind & Fire described where we find ourselves now this way:
Something happened along the way
What used to be happy was sad
Something happened along the way
And yesterday was all we had

And, oh, after the love has gone
How could you lead me on
And not let me stay around?
Oh, oh, oh, after the love has gone
What used to be right is wrong
Can love that's lost be found?
INDEED. In a bottom-line world of corporate rule and "cost saving" -- a world where young people no longer know radio and, frankly, don't care -- "can love that's been lost be found?"

WOKE's Harry Weaver is long dead now. So are legions like him. And our questions for the future hang just as heavily as our longing for all the love we've lost.

Wednesday, August 04, 2010

A cup of mushroom tea

You know what Bob Inglis is?

A socialist.
A Republican socialist.

The veteran South Carolina congressman is a conservative-hating, Bilderburger-coddling, quisling traitor who's trying to kiss that crook Bill Clinton's ass while he runs interference for the communist "organizer" Barack Hussein Obama -- the Kenyan witch doctor now occupying (in the Nazi sense of the word) the White House.

Inglis is a hoity-toity little snot who thinks he's better than the people he's selling out up there in Washington, D.C., and now he's bitter because patriots saw through his "conservative" act and handed him his pinko-commie ass in the Republican runoff.

AND NOW the little traitor is showing his true colors, what with all his sour-grapes trash talking about God-fearing tea-party patriots to that godless commie rag Mother Jones:
During his primary campaign, Inglis repeatedly encountered enraged conservatives whom he couldn't—or wouldn't—satisfy. Shortly before the runoff primary election, Inglis met with about a dozen tea party activists at the modest ranch-style home of one of them. Here's what took place:
I sat down, and they said on the back of your Social Security card, there's a number. That number indicates the bank that bought you when you were born based on a projection of your life's earnings, and you are collateral. We are all collateral for the banks. I have this look like, "What the heck are you talking about?" I'm trying to hide that look and look clueless. I figured clueless was better than argumentative. So they said, "You don't know this?! You are a member of Congress, and you don't know this?!" And I said, "Please forgive me. I'm just ignorant of these things." And then of course, it turned into something about the Federal Reserve and the Bilderbergers and all that stuff. And now you have the feeling of anti-Semitism here coming in, mixing in. Wow.
Later, Inglis mentioned this meeting to another House member: "He said, 'You mean you sat there for more than 10 minutes?' I said, 'Well, I had to. We were between primary and runoff.' I had a two-week runoff. Oh my goodness. How do you..." Inglis trails off, shaking his head.


Why not give these voters what they wanted? Inglis says he wasn't willing to lie:
I refused to use the word because I have this view that the Ninth Commandment must mean something. I remember one year Bill Clinton—the guy I was out to get [when serving on the House judiciary committee in the 1990s]—at the National Prayer Breakfast said something that was one of the most profound things I've ever heard from anybody at a gathering like that. He said, "The most violated commandment in Washington, DC"—everybody leaned in; do tell, Mr. President—"is, 'Thou shall not bear false witness against thy neighbor.'" I thought, "He's right. That is the most violated commandment in Washington." For me to go around saying that Barack Obama is a socialist is a violation of the Ninth Commandment. He is a liberal fellow. I'm conservative. We disagree...But I don't need to call him a socialist, and I hurt the country by doing so. The country has to come together to find a solution to these challenges or else we go over the cliff.
Inglis found that ideological extremism is not only the realm of the tea party; it also has infected the official circles of his Republican Party. In early 2009, he attended a meeting of the GOP's Greenville County executive committee. At the time, Republicans were feeling discouraged. Obama was in the White House; the Democrats had enlarged their majorities in the House and Senate. The GOP seemed to be in tatters. But Inglis had what he considered good news. He put up a slide he had first seen at a GOP retreat. It was based on exit polling conducted during the November 2008 election. The slide, according to Inglis, showed that when American voters were asked to place themselves on an ideological spectrum—1 being liberal, 10 being conservative—the average ended up at about 5.6. The voters placed House Republicans at about 6.5 and House Democrats at about 4.3. Inglis told his fellow Republicans, "This is great news," explaining it meant that the GOP was still closer to the American public than the Democrats. The key, he said, was for the party to keep to the right, without driving off the road.

Inglis was met, he says with "stony" faces: "There's a short story by Shirley Jackson, 'The Lottery.'" The tale describes a town where the residents stone a neighbor who is chosen randomly. "That's what the crowd looked like. I got home that night and said to my wife, 'You can't believe how they looked back at me.' It was really frightening." The next speaker, he recalls, said, "'On Bob's ideological spectrum up there, I'm a 10,' and the crowd went wild. That was what I was dealing with."
OOOOOOH. Tea-party patriots are scawy, scawy people. Ooooooh, the mean tea-pawty peoples aw gowing to huwt powah, powah Biwul Ingwiss!

The RINO sounds like Barney . . .
Barney Frank! HAAAAAA!

And I'll bet some Jew put him up to saying tea-party people are anti-Semitic.

OH . . . get this! He says the Republicans will regret following the common-sense, freedom-loving patriots instead of the commie-libs and Bilderburgers!
Inglis is a casualty of the tea party-ization of the Republican Party. Given the decisive vote against him in June, it's clear he was wiped out by a political wave that he could do little to thwart. "Emotionally, I should be all right with this," he says. And when he thinks about what lies ahead for his party and GOP House leaders, he can't help but chuckle. With Boehner and others chasing after the tea party, he says, "that's going to be the dog that catches the car." He quickly adds: "And the Democrats, if they go into the minority, are going to have an enjoyable couple of years watching that dog deal with the car it's caught."
AND WE'RE GONNA enjoy watching you burn in hell with your communiss friends, you America-hating pansy!

You don't get it, do you Inglis? Or is that English? You sure don't sound like a real conservative American.

You just don't get that sometimes you have to destroy the village to save it.
Destroy it all! Destroy it so that the green shoots of freedom will emerge from the rubble of the socialist state, fertilized by the corpses of all the pinkos and the parasites.

Burn, baby, burn!

Wednesday, September 09, 2009

For lack of a heavy cane. . . .

Tonight may have been South Carolina's "finest" political hour since Strom Thurmond's segregationist presidential bid in 1948 -- if not Rep. Preston Brooks' 1856 game of whack-a-mole in the U.S. Senate chamber . . . using the head of Sen. Charles Sumner, R-Mass., as the "mole."

During President Obama's speech on health-care reform before a joint session of Congress, Rep. Joe Wilson, R-Seditionland, provided one of South Carolina's top political moments -- but not the top political moment -- since the state came up short on slavery and segregation during past periods of American ferment. Tonight's bid for glory fell just short, mainly due to Wilson's lacking a heavy, gold-headed cane . . . and that he was too far away from Obama to throw a shoe at him.

STILL, according to this story on MSNBC, the congressman gave it the ol' college try. Think Ole Miss, 1962:

Without naming Bush, Obama blamed his administration for bequeathing him “a trillion-dollar deficit when I walked in the door of the White House ... because too many initiatives over the last decade were not paid for — from the Iraq war to tax breaks for the wealthy.”

“I will not make that same mistake with health care,” he said.

The remarks contributed to a sense of palpable tension in the room. When Obama promised that his plan would not cover illegal immigrants, Rep. Joe Wilson, R-S.C., shouted “You lie!” — the most obvious of several instances when the president was greeted with audible disagreement.

The Associated Press reported that Obama’s wife, Michelle, shook her head in disappointment.
OBVIOUSLY, they do things differently in South Carolina, and Wilson forgot that Americans don't do "Question Time" like they do in Britain. Just like our national legislators don't duke it out on the floor like they do in Taiwan and South Korea.

Unlike Britain, the chief executive here is not a prime minister but, instead, a president -- a head of state as well as government. American legislators would no more -- well, at least until today -- scream "You lie!" at a president than Brits would flip off the queen.

It would be like giving the finger to the nation itself.

Then again, they've developed quite the knack for that in the Palmetto State over the last century and a half. Wilson's fellow Republicans likewise seem eager to learn all the wrong lessons from history.

Sunday, April 20, 2008

The (almost) work of a madman!

Here we have yet another Associated Press dispatch from some average American place full of average Americans recounting yet another American atrocity or near atrocity.

Fortunately, this one -- in South Carolina -- was of the "near" variety.

It's easy for folks to say "The work of a madman!" -- as in
Walker Percy's dystopian novel, "Love in the Ruins" and then change the subject. One has to wonder, though, how many atrocities -- and near atrocities -- have to occur before we stop, scratch our collective head and ask, "What the hell is going on here? What gives?"

And now,
the latest AP filing from yet another American anteroom of Hell. What gives?

A high school senior collected enough supplies to carry out a bomb attack on his school and detailed the plot in a hate-filled diary that included maps of the building and admiring notations about the Columbine killers, authorities said Sunday.

Ryan Schallenberger, 18, was arrested Saturday after his parents called police when 10 pounds of ammonium nitrate was delivered to their home in Chesterfield and they discovered the journal, said the town's police chief, Randall Lear.

The teen planned to make several bombs and had all the supplies needed to kill dozens at Chesterfield High School, depending on where the devices were placed and whether they included shrapnel, Lear said. Ammonium nitrate was used in the Oklahoma City bombing in 1995 that killed 168 people.

"The only thing left was delivering the bombs," the police chief said.

Schallenberger kept a journal for more than a year that detailed his plans for a suicide attack and included maps of the school, police said. The writings did not include a specific time for the attack or the intended targets.

‘He also left an audio tape to be played after he died explaining why he wanted to bomb his school. Lear wouldn't detail what was on the tape except to say Schallenberger was an angry young man.

"He seemed to hate the world. He hated people different from him — the rich boys with good-looking girlfriends," Lear said.