Category Archives: african-american

Understanding Trump

If you are a logical person or a reasonable person Mr Trump may be hard to understand. His decisions, the way he treats people, his lies, his tweets may all seem the rantings of a loon.

After 3 years of campaigning and watching him on the stage I have come to some understanding of why he makes the kinds of decisions he makes. While on the surface they make no sense, if you can put yourself in his mind (and there is plenty of room) you may be able to make sense of him.

I was trained as an anthropologist, which is important. What an anthropologist tries to do is understand people who think in ways that are quite different from what we might consider “normal” in our society.

For example, the Yanomami (or Yanamamo) have a ritual they perform when someone dies. They cremate the body and mix the ashes of the deceased into a “stew”. The family then passes around the stew and everyone takes a drink. On the surface this is pretty disgusting and makes no sense.

However, to the Yanomami this action shows the highest regard for the dead. The dead become part of the living.The dead person becomes one with those who are still alive. It is the ultimate spiritual and physical connection. Odd behavior to us, but completely “normal” under their belief system.

So, when we look at Trump’s decisions we should not assume he holds the same values, beliefs, life experiences, etc. as a normal American. We should instead, an an anthropologist, try to understand his motives and beliefs by his actions. We should assume nothing, but rather look for a pattern of behavior to better understand the motives of that behavior.

For example, Trump is obsessed with destroying the ACA, also called Obamacare. Now, this program provides health insurance to millions of Americans. When the GOP tried to destroy it the outrage was so great that they could not do so. People like it. It guarantees health insurance for the working poor and supports the private insurance industry. Yet, Mr Trump insists he wants it ended, with no plan to help the 20-40,000,000 Americans who would lose insurance if he succeeds.

A logical person might ask: Why? Why try to destroy a popular program that is working? Now, if a better alternative was offered there might be a reasonable discussion. But there is no alternative offered, just the end of Obamacare.

Combine this with his other illogical actions concerning the border wall. His call for an investigation of Smollett, the black guy in Chicago, his history of discrimination against African-Americans in housing, etc. and a clear picture emerges.

He is a racist. Anything Obama did, no matter how helpful to the citizens, he is intent on undoing. While he criticizes black Americans and calls for all kinds of “investigations”, he never criticizes white supremacists or calls for investigations of police who kill blacks.

If you look at Mr Trump’s decisions and take the view that he is a racist, they all make perfect sense. His attacks on the people of Puerto Rico , Mexicans, ripping brown children from their parents, saying he wants more folks from Norway, etc. The overall , inevitable controlling factor, from the point of view of an anthropologist, is that this man makes policy decisions based on skin color.

Another area where Mr Trump’s decisions seem incomprehensible is his relationships with various foreign leaders. While he “loves” Kim Jung Un and respects Putin, he criticizes the leaders of democracies.

Why would an American president humiliate himself before Putin. Why kowtow to the dictator of Saudi Arabia? Why talk about his love relationship with Kim Jung Un? All three of these men are vile dictators who murder their political opponents. They kill newsmen. They destroy all critics. All three have raided the wealth of their own people and live like kings while so many in their countries have nothing.

What is the underlying attraction these men have as far as Trump is concerned? What is it about his value system that makes them attractive to him?

The conclusion I have reached is not that they “have anything on him”, like “compromat”. Rather, he admires brutality and physical strength. He sees the way these men “control” their populations with terror and he admires that. He sees that as a positive value. Leaders who are feared and bowed down to. Above questioning.

Why has he gone through so many cabinet members and advisers? He needs “yes men” around him. People who will tell him he is the greatest thing on Earth. Sycophants. Anyone who would disagree with him is put in his place or fired. No opinions other than that the the supreme leader can be allowed.

So, any decisions he makes must be unquestioned. He values complete loyalty to him and a disregard for any legal or normative structures. He losses the battle for the wall, so he simply says he will violate the law and build it anyway. If his political opponents disagree they should be destroyed. The free press must be destroyed, as well. There can be no exchange of ideas, only capitulation. In his world view that is the way a “great leader” acts.

Now, I am not justifying Mr Trump’s actions. Only trying to make sense of them. He does have guiding principles, even though he is probably not even cognizant of them himself.

He believes in strong man rule and the inherent superiority of light skinned people. If you keep in mind those 2 principles all of his actions, tweets, speeches, violations of the law and norms make sense.

It also helps one understand that so many Americans share that world view. After all, Mr Trump has plenty of support. You will never understand Mr Trump unless you understand that fact as well. He is not alone in his core beliefs. Admiration for authoritarian rule and racism. A lethal combination.

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Filed under ACA, african-american, blacks, Immigration, liberals, logic, obama, Obamacare, Politics, POTUS, president, racism, Society, Trump, United States

The Virgin Mary Test

There is a new test for holding office in the US. It is the Virgin Mary Test.

For those unfamiliar with good old Christianity, let me explain exactly who the Virgin Mary was.

She was the mother of Jesus. She gave birth to Jesus even though she had never had sexual intercourse, even with her husband. Never. Ever. She was as pure as the driven snow.

The perfect woman. Mother. Virgin. Unspoiled. Untouched. Like a 3 day old donut at a vegan buffet.

She never had to apologize or be contrite. Why not? Because she never did anything wrong. The ultimate Politically Correct human being. Let us adore her. Amen.

The governor of Virginia is under attack. 35 years ago he was in a photo. A racist photo. The photo showed him in blackface or a KKK robe. Maybe as part of some Halloween party. Who knows. It was in his college yearbook. He was an obvious racist. No doubt. Right there for all to see.

And he has admitted it. It was him. 35 years ago. He did wrong. Since then, as governor of Virginia he has lead the charge against racism. Spoke out loudly against the racists at Charlottesville when our POTUS was silent. Advocated for a woman’s right to control her own reproduction. Fought for a voting rights bill that made sure his black citizens would have an equal right to vote in Virginia. Ran for office with an African-American as his lieutenant governor. And won.

But now the entire Democratic establishment has spoken. I was watching MSNBC as “pundits”, black, white, women, men., are all calling for his resignation. They are horrified! Outraged! One even said this photo of him in blackface has reopened the “old wounds of racism”.

And here I am. Thinking that racism had never ended. Someone should have told me.

Not only the pundits, but the list of Democrats who want to be president weighed in.

Kamala Harris called for his resignation because…” Leaders are called to a higher standard….”

Julian Castro…his behavior was unconscionable…he must resign….

Booker, Warren, Gillibrand…all called for his resignation.

The governor of Virginia, if he is going to run as a Democrat, must be The Virgin Mary. Pure. Holy. Untainted. Ever.

Of course, the REAL racists, many in the GOP, are gleeful. They have the yearbooks, the photos, the emails, the friends, the discussions, the drunken parties of ALL the Democratic candidates for president.

The holier than thou , jump on the bandwagon crew. Did Harris ever have an affair with a married man, as some have suggested? Did Warren ever claim Native American heritage? Did Booker ever work to oppose liberal reforms in New Jersey? Did Gillibrand ever have an A rating from the NRA before she “saw the light”?

Did any white candidate ever laugh at a “negro “joke? Did any male candidate ever make a disparaging or sexist comment about a girl? Did any minority candidate ever make a “honky” joke? Did any female candidate ever make a disparaging remark about a man?

I hope not. Because the Democratic Party has now laid down the minimum requirements for office. Virginity. Purity. Of thought, word and deed for your entire life. There can be no deviation. No mistakes. No sins. Confession will not be enough. A life of good works will not be enough.

The opposition researchers of the GOP are smugly waiting in the wings. They can be patient. They will wait until the last man or woman is standing. Then they will unleash the gods of human perfection on the Democratic nominee.

The Virgin Mary never ran for office. Why not? Because in her youth she once told a joke about a Roman soldier. Ended her career.

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Trump Dictionary…J is for…K is for

Jared. Top adviser . Fantastic . Doing a great job. He solved the Middle East problem with his peace plan. They said it couldn’t be done. He did it. Peace in the Middle East. More details later. Owns a great building in NY. Made over $80,000,000 last year part-time while working for me. How does he do it? Gets to sleep with Ivanka. Fantastic guy. Lucky guy.

Jerusalem. Wonderful city. In Israel. I made Jerusalem the capital of Israel. Before me people said, where is the capital? Who knew? I said. Jerusalem. . No one else could do it. I did it. All the Jews love me for it. Built an embassy in Jerusalem. Came in on time and under budget. They said it couldn’t be done. No one could build an embassy. I did it.

Jews. Sometimes referred to as the Chosen People. That’s what people say. Many live in Israel. Great nation of Israel. Love the people. Love the Jews. Good with money. I always say, let a Jew handle your money, not a Negro. Shrewd race of people. Very shrewd.

Justice. Department of Justice. Sometimes called the DOJ. In the cabinet. Sessions not doing a good job. Should fire Mueller. I could if I wanted to. Justice Department has so many Democrats. Out to get me. Disband the FBI. Awful what they are doing. Investigate Hillary and Russia collusion.

Justin Kennedy. Great guy. His father is on the supremist court. His father just resigned so I can appoint another justice. Fantastic. Met Justin many, many years ago at Deutsche Bank where he loaned me over $1,000,000,000. US banks wouldn’t do it. Would not lend me any money. Justin did it. Now, they fined Deutsche Bank for money laundering. HOAX. Made up story. I love Justin. Love his father. Two great guys. (see reference below)

KKK. Patriotic group. Want to make America great again. Many fine people in the KKK. Want to stop inter breeding with other kinds of people. Given a bad rap. Fine citizens. States rights.

Kanada. Northern border. They are ripping us off in trade. Have been for 300 years. Terrible trade deal. Obama signed it. AWFUL. Kanada will have to pay. No health care in Kanada. Awful place.  May build a second wall along the Kanada border. Make Mexico pay for it.

Kim Jong Un.  Fox interview.

When Baier pointed out Kim’s regime imprisons, tortures and kills his own people, Trump replied, “Yeah, but so have other people done some really bad things. I could go through a lot of nations where a lot of bad things were done.”

And Friday, the president told Fox & Friends, “He’s the head of a country — and I mean he’s the strong head. He speaks and his people sit up in attention. I want my people to do the same.”

Konstantin Kilimnik. Great guy. Manafort’s handler. Very smart cookie. Good friend. Some say he is a Russian spy. Not true. Fake news. No Russia ties . Never heard of him. Also never heard of Manafort. (see reference below).

Korea, North. Tweet: “There is no longer a Nuclear Threat from North Korea.”

Kremlin. Fantastic building. In Russia. Putin lives there. Better than the White House. No interference in our elections . Asked Putin, he said he never interfered. Fake news. Kremlin has a lot of bricks. Very tall. Like a wall. Can’t get inside.

https://newrepublic.com/minutes/149496/trumps-relationship-justice-kennedy-sounds-shady-new-report

Mueller Finally Unmasked the Trump Campaign’s Secret Russian Operative

Add any suggestions below.

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I Could Keep You Safe

Not guilty.

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Advice To My Black Son

Since today is Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day I thought it would be appropriate to give some advice to my black son. Advice on how to live a long life in a hostile nation.

Problem is I don’t have a black son. Both my son and daughter are white. As is my wife. And we have a long history of ancestors who were also white. Quite a coincidence. Being white, there was never the necessity of having this little talk with him or her. But I digress.

To my black son or grandson. First, I will make some assumptions about you, most of which are not true.

You live in poverty (actually 73% of African Americans do not live in poverty, but the percentage IS higher for children and young adults)  http://kff.org/other/state-indicator/poverty-rate-by-raceethnicity/

Your parents do not own their own home (55% do not, but 45% do).    http://www.infoplease.com/ipa/A0883976.html

You will be  arrested for a violent crime this year . (about 1/2 of 1% of black youths will be arrested for a violent offense, so 99.5% of black youths will NOT be arrested for a violent crime)    http://www.ojjdp.gov/ojstatbb/crime/JAR_Display.asp?ID=qa05261

You are most likely a high school “drop out” . (The drop out rate for African American males is approximately 7%, so 93% are NOT drop outs)    http://nces.ed.gov/fastfacts/display.asp?id=16

Enough of statistics. And stereotypes. I want you to live a long and happy life. Keep in mind the following.

First of all you  have rights. The right to free speech. To drive. To assembly. To individuality. To be young. And to be stupid at times. To walk down the street. To carry a gun in some states. To use a cell phone.

My Rules for my black son. Listen carefully:

1. Take that last paragraph about your rights and forget it. Assume , instead, that you have no rights. Accept reality. Act like you have no rights. You will live longer.

2.If the police stop you in your car or walking be respectful. Don’t argue. Be polite. “Yes, officer. No,officer”. If you see the cops driving around in your neighborhood wave and smile.

3.Sew your pockets shut. So you cannot possibly reach inside them. Don’t carry a cell phone. Or comb. Or knife. Or anything.

4.Don’t be out after dark. If you are a friend’s house, call home and tell ma and pa that you are sleeping over. Do the same for your friends when they are visiting you at night. Don’t be out after dark.

5.Don’t go to places where you know drug dealers hang out. If drug dealers show up where you are hanging out, go home. Now.

6.If you are arrested for some reason say nothing. Nothing. If you are put in a cell do not talk to your cellmate. Be polite and ask for a lawyer. Say nothing.

7.Don’t wear bling. Don’t wear a hoodie. Don’t wear your cap backwards. Don’t argue with anyone about anything. Swallow your pride. Often. Regularly.

8.Act like you are a Jew in Nazi Germany. Pretend you are a foreigner with no rights.

Should you have to follow these rules? No. But in reality these rules will give you  a much better chance of making it to adulthood than the Bill of Rights. Or the Voting Rights Act. Or any other legal protections. Sorry, my black son, but that is reality.

As MLK, Jr hoped, someday you WILL be judged by the content of your character and not by the color of your skin. But January 18, 2016 in America is not yet that day.

 

 

 

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The New Old GOP

Just for fun I decided to check out the NY Times archives to see what was happening on the day I was born . The archives, called the “Times Machine” is supposed to have every newspaper ever published by the Times. Since I have a digital subscription to the NYT , I get it for free. Not sure if it is available to all.

I found the paper from my date of birth in 1950 and perused the stories. The USA had just recognized the Bao Dai government of Viet Nam while the Soviet Union was recognizing Ho Chi Minh. I guess we know how that played out.

J. Edgar Hoover, that good old cross dressing head of the FBI was asking Congress more more money for more agents to fight the 54,000 “card carrying” communists and millions of “fellow travelers”. He was received with open arms. We know how that played out.

Labor disputes in the coal industry. A strike on hold in the telephone industry.  (Remember when you simply had a black phone and didn’t need a law or economics degree to figure out the contracts?). The courts ruled that the NY City transit authority would  have to give back pay to workers, upon which the transit authority said they would have to raise fares.

Stuck deep in the paper, on page 18, above the half page Ballantine beer ad and next to the new Magnavox 16″ TV offer (a whopping $299.50 , a heck of a lot of money in those days when the average family income was $3,300) was an article titled:

RETREAT ON RIGHTS CHARGED TO GOP, Democratic Congress Leaders Assail 1950 Statement of Party Principles.

To summarize, the article told how the Dems had forced a civil rights agenda into their platform over the opposition of the Dixiecrats. (In a few years it would be the Southern Dems who would walk out of the Democratic party and form their own Dixiecrat Party and then subsequently join the GOP years later). This article related how the GOP, along with the southern Dems, were blocking a vote on  the Fair Employment Practices Commission (FEPC). This commission had been created by Executive Order 8802 by FDR and and supported by Truman.It simply stated that there can be no  discrimination in hiring in the defense industry or government based on race, color, creed or national origin. This order was expanded by Truman to include the military by Executive Order 9981.

In combination with the southern Dems the GOP in the Senate was allowing a filibuster so the law could never come up for a vote. They refused to support the north Dems in invoking cloture and shutting down the southern filibuster. Some suggested the GOP represented “liberty against socialism” although a number of northern GOPers supported civil rights  and were not happy about the position of the leadership. After all, the GOP platform SUPPORTED civil rights.

What stuck me the most, however , about this article on the day I was born were the words of Minnesota Senator Hubert H. Humphrey. He stated that the Republican position was a retreat from their own party platform which supported civil  rights.

The article further states:

“The Senator declared that the Republican statement used “the kind of language that the Dixiecrats would have accepted for the 1948 Democratic plank”

“This may be the FIRST STEP in the LEGAL LOVE-MAKING between Senate Republicans and southern Democrats on the civil rights issue”, he added. “They have engaged in illicit love, as indicated in voting, for  about a year-and-a quarter”. (Capitals mine)

So, the attempt to make fair labor practices the  permanent law of the land failed in 1950 due to the combined efforts of Dixiecrats and the GOP leadership.

Perhaps the “new” GOP of is not so “new” after all. Was this the “first step” in moving the GOP and southern Dems closer together? The basis for the “Southern Strategy” of Nixon? The beginning of the conscious attempt by the GOP to attract racists to the party rather than join in the fight against racism? Was Humphrey correct in his analysis?

To review. Two Democratic presidents use executive orders to expand rights for certain categories of Americans. The GOP fights them every step of the way and refuses to even consider legislation granting rights. Some GOPers claim it is a battle between “Liberty versus socialism”.

Sound familiar?

 

 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Executive_Order_8802

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Executive_Order_9981

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fair_Employment_Practice_Committee

http://timesmachine.nytimes.com/timesmachine/1950/02/08/issue.html

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The NRA: Al-Qaeda’s Best Friend

(Somewhere in the deepest caves in Afghanistan a meeting of the Al-Qaeda leadership is taking place.)

Mustafa Waynoofa La Pierre: Allah Be Praised. Where are the corn chips? Ah. Good. Welcome to the first meeting of the Al-Qaeda chapter of the National Rifle Association.  Although our funds are running low we feel the $35 membership is well worth the cost.  Not only do we get insurance if any of our guns are stolen, but we also get a free subscription to “American Hunter”. I think it is a guide to hunting Americans. Questions?

Mohammed bin O’Reilly: Why are we joining this American organization? Allah Be Praised. Is it not an organization of loyal Americans?

MustafaWaynoofa La Pierre : I know it seems strange. Allah and AK-47s Be Praised. But our accountants have done a cost-benefit analysis and we decided this was the best bang for the buck, so to speak.

Abdullah Zimmerman:  Explain that. Our goal is to kill Americans. Not protect them. We lured them to Iraq and Afghanistan to kill them. And it worked. Allah and George Bush Be Praised.

John Wilkes Boothafa: And we spent so much time planning 9/11. Look how many we killed. Allah and Cheney Be Praised. Now you are saying we should join the Americans! Never.

Mustafa Waynoofa La Pierre: Hear me out. Joining the NRA is the easiest, cheapest way to kill Americans. And isn’t that out goal? Allah and Fox News Be Praised.  In Iraq and Afghanistan we have killed fewer than 7,000 Americans! And it has taken us 13 years ! Fewer than 3,000 in the attacks on 9/11. We thought that was good. HAH!

Many shouting in the room: Praise Allah. Kill the infidels! Allah Be Praised.

Mustafa Waynoofa La Pierre: Wait ! Wait ! During that same period in the US Americans with guns killed over 420,000 Americans. That is more than all Americans  killed in all the wars since WW2. Allah and the NRA Be Praised. In fact, more Americans have been killed by guns since 9/11 than ALL Americans killed in WW2 by the Germans and Japanese combined. Allah and La Pierre Be Praised !

Abdullah James Earl Rayoofa: This is embarrassing. You mean we spent all this time and money and energy and sacrifice trying to kill Americans and we have this result?

Mustafa Waynoofa La Pierre: We have been fools. Allah and Smith and Wesson Be Praised. Instead of wasting our time and energy on plots to destroy Americans we could have simply joined and supported the NRA. They do a much better job a killing Americans than we could ever dream of.  They make sure every hateful, mentally ill American can get a gun. Not to mention children . There is a special place in paradise for Wayne La Pierre. He will certainly have many virgins…unless he shoots them first.

Muhammed bin Huckabee: So. What should we do? Allah and Cop Killer Bullets Be Praised.

Mustafa Waynoofa La Pierre: Easy. Just fill in the form. Include your VISA card number and join. You will get a free magazine, insurance for your guns and the knowledge that you are helping stop  any sane laws to control guns in America. Think of all those American children that you are helping murder! And as a bonus, the NRA is the only organization that hates the American president more than we do! They will make sure American keep killing Americans.  When it comes to killing Americans, nobody does it better. They have a saying in the ungodly, Satan-worshiping USA. If you can’t beat em, join em. And when it comes to helping people  kill Americans, nobody beats the NRA.

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NYC Police DON’T Kill a Black Guy

In one of the weirdest stories on the interweb this week we see the NYC police in action.

There is a fight on the uptown 6 subway and the conductor calls for help. Four cops, not in uniform , immediately respond. They subdue both of the apparently homeless black guys who are fighting. Since the cops are not carrying weapons they have to use their BARE hands. But they get the job done.

No choke holds. No tazers. No guns drawn and fired. Using only their wits and training they stop the fight and hold the men down until more help arrives.

While one of the combatants yells and screams the police CALMLY settle him down. The police keep their cool. Defusing the violent situation. One cop can be heard calming reassuring  a combatant as he holds the man in check and tries to calm him down. No punching. No choking. No threats. No slurs.

Police work, par excellence.

These NYC cops should be commended for their bravery and their ability to stop a violent situation with only their bare hands and wits. In fact, NYPD commissioner Bratton does just that. He says they have done a “great honor ” to  their police department and to their country. Shining examples of what police work can be! So, who are these men?

Samuel Kvarzell….Marcus Asburg…Eric Jansberger…Eric Nalsund……what ?….what ? …oops…

Slight correction.

These off duty cops were not NYPD.  Ummmm. They were actual tourists. Cops from Sweden. Cops that have evidently been trained to do high quality police work without drawing their weapons.

And the homeless black guys are still alive.

http://mashable.com/2015/04/24/swedish-cops-new-york-subway-fight/

http://nypost.com/2015/04/24/bratton-salutes-swedish-cops-for-subway-heroics/

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