The Real Reason Trump Is Ending DACA

With Trump’s announcement that he will end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), people have been trying to figure out “WHY?” Why now? Why ever?! Why would he go back on his word like this? How could a human being do something like this? Etcetera… There are a lot of theories out there:

  • Some people think he’s planning on using DACA as a bargaining chip to try to get congress to fund the border wall. By ending DACA with an executive order, he forces Congress to act to keep DACA alive. The only way to protect the dreamers against the awfulness of this administration is to pass legislation, and it’s been suggested that any legislation they produce could be compelled to include funding for the border wall. Of course, he is asking for this border wall funding at a time that Houston needs an estimated $190 BILLION in flood relief money, while yet another hurricane–Irma, a Category 5–bears down on Florida.

  • Some think he ended DACA because he has so many racists on his staff: Jeff Sessions for his Attorney General, and Stephen Miller for his… whatever the hell Stephen Miller does as “Policy Advisor.” I don’t know… Just standing around and whispering racist shit in his ear, I assume? (By the way, sending Sessions out there to announce you were ruining the lives of 800,000 kids who have done nothing wrong was the political equivalent of the pediatrician leaving the room when it’s time to give a kid a shot, and sending in the nurse… Only WAY more chicken shit)

  • Some think it’s because Trump genuinely hates all the people who aren’t white, straight, and male (or rich enough to help him get more power).

  • Some think it’s because he’s trying to make us forget the LAST unbelievable awful thing he just did buy “topping it.” And in order for people to forget, he has to keep outdoing his previous awfulness. For example, I honestly couldn’t even remember (without looking it up) what Trump did right before Hurricane Harvey that made Bob Corker say that the president “has not yet been able to demonstrate the stability, nor some of the competence that he needs to demonstrate in order to be successful.” Turns out it was him doubling down on “both sides were a little wrong and a little right” about Charlottesville. It’s almost enough to make you forget that a fascist white supremacist murdered a woman with his car…

  • Some think it’s because he is just looking for yet another distraction so that people take their focus off of the Russia investigation.

  • Some think he knows that he’s going to be impeached and removed from office so he’s trying to do as much damage as possible before he goes. This is the diabolical genius of today’s government-hating GOP: “If they succeed, government gets smaller and ineffective… If they fail, they can still make government even more ineffective by inspiring people to lose hope in its ability to do anything worthwhile.”
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Can we all just get T-Shirts that say this on them?

  • Some think he can feel his support slipping away, and this was just an attempt to pander to his grotesquely racist base. And believe me, if you are still supporting him, you are RACIST AS ALL HELL (even former Reagan/Bush advisors admit it). Even though your ears instantly close when we say this, we have to keep on saying it: YOU CANNOT STILL BE SUPPORTING DONALD TRUMP AND ACT LIKE YOU AREN’T SUPPORTING WHITE SUPREMACY.

  • Some think he’s just angry at how much people still love Obama, and he’s just trying to tear down as many of the good things that black man did as possible…

There may well be SOME truth to all of these things… But it’s not the WHOLE truth. The real reason Donald Trump is trying to get rid of DACA is as follows: IT IS BECAUSE HE IS A FESTERING BAG OF SHIT. Period. Every unscripted opportunity he has had to change my mind on this has only resulted in him proving he is the absolute worst. He is a rotten, broken excuse for a human being… A hollow shell of a man whose narcissism leaves no room for anything as unprofitable as “compassion.” Morality and conscience fled from the putrid smell a long time ago. He is a bloated orange pile of selfishness, white supremacy, and self-loathing that feeds on misplaced praise. That’s it. There’s no need to look for a deeper meaning for the things he is doing… No reasoning… No strategy… It’s just this: The President is a bag of shit.

And I am aware this is not a “Christian” way to speak about someone. I get that… I guess I’m not feeling very “Christian” right now. And I get it! “Dehumanizing” people is what THEY do… We can’t “stoop to their level.” “When they go low, we go high,” right? Well… I just can’t right now. If we are so afraid of “dehumanizing” people that we refrain from calling an actual monster a “MONSTER,” then what is that word for? There are actual monsters in the world… And we have elected one of them as the President of our country.

I am done playing nice. I am done worrying about how “Christian” it looks when I call him what he is. I realize we are supposed to “Love our enemies,” but Trump does not need love… He needs to be removed from a position where he can hurt even more people. I seriously believe he is beyond help. Giving him “love,” would be like giving shoes to a man with no legs. His brokenness is even beyond the reach of his own family. His own children are nothing more to him than medals he pins on his empty chest. If a maniac is walking around wildly swinging a sword and hurting the people in his path, “Loving” that person does not look like praying for him and letting him continue. It also doesn’t look like picking up your own sword and cutting him down. But Loving him CAN look like a community of people wrestling him to the ground… taking the sword away from him so he stops inflicting harm… and then keeping him away from weapons until he comes to his senses. If he ever does…

This is my truth right now. Thank you for reading it. A special thanks to Lori, who is my newest Patron. THANK YOU! It means so much. If everyone who values this blog became a $2/month Patron, writing could be something like my JOB… And that would be amazing. So if you’d like to support my writing, you TOO can BECOME A PATRON. Or, you can LEAVE A TIP ON PayPal, which sometimes happens. Otherwise, follow me on Ye Olde Facebook, and also on Twitter. And most of all, keep on resisting and opposing this present darkness.

 

Posted in 1) Jesus, 2) Politics, 3) Bathroom Humor | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments

The Reason We Still Have The KKK Founder’s Statue In the TN State Capitol

A commission of representatives from Tennessee just voted 7 – 5 to NOT have a discussion about taking down the bust of former KKK Grand Wizard, slave trader, and Confederate General Nathan Bedford Forrest. Their vote wasn’t about taking it down or leaving it up… It wasn’t a vote to destroy the bust or have it melted down… It was simply a vote to petition the Historical Society for a WAIVER so they could begin a lengthy process of discussing relocating the bust. That’s it. That’s all this vote was. And SEVEN PEOPLE out of a twelve person commission just voted AGAINST that motion. I think you deserve to know who these people are…

Before I introduce you to them, I’d like to tell you a bit about what’s been happening. Two weeks ago, my wife and I spent half a day at the Capitol Building here in Nashville, Tennessee, and we joined with more than 100 other citizens in demanding that the bust of General Nathan Bedford Forrest be taken down from the halls of the State Capitol. We sang songs, we chanted phrases of protest, we listened to stories, and we sat on the floor outside of where our lawmakers and our Governor were meeting until someone agreed to make a statement about taking down the bust. During our protest, my wife photographed the bust being covered up with a black sheet (even though a white sheet probably would have been more appropriate). Here is the picture she took:

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Justin Jones, being his normal kick ass self.

Just in case you don’t know much about Nathan Bedford Forrest, here are some highlights: He made his fortune as a slave trader and planter. He rose to fame as a Confederate general, and came to be known as the “Wizard of the Saddle” and “Devil Forrest.” During the Civil War, he presided over the massacre of hundreds of surrendered negro soldiers at Fort Pillow. Here is the account of the massacre by Achilles Clark, a Confederate soldier with the 20th Tennessee Cavalry:

“The slaughter was awful. Words cannot describe the scene. The poor, deluded, negroes would run up to our men, fall upon their knees, and with uplifted hands scream for mercy, but they were ordered to their feet and then shot down. I, with several others, tried to stop the butchery, and at one time had partially succeeded, but General Forrest ordered them shot down like dogs and the carnage continued. Finally our men became sick of blood and the firing ceased.”

After the South surrendered, he was one of the earliest members of the Ku Klux Klan, which was formed by Confederate veterans in Pulaski, TN in 1866. He was sworn in in 1866 and given the title “Grand Wizard,” which is said to come from his “Wizard of the Saddle” nickname. He now has a State Park named after him, a statue in that State Park, obelisks at his birthplace in Camden, and a bust in the State Capitol. In his book Lies Across America: What American Historic Sites Get Wrong, James W. Loewen writes that Forrest “has THIRTY-TWO state historical markers, far more than any other person in any other state in America. Tennessee supplied three United States presidents — Andrew Jackson, James K. Polk, and Andrew Johnson — but Forrest gets more markers than ALL THREE PUT TOGETHER.” Let that sink in for a moment…

Anyway, my wife and I left the protest at the Capitol feeling hopeful, as Gov. Haslam issued a statement that he believed the bust of Nathan Bedford Forrest DOES NOT deserve a place of honor in the State Capitol. Later, Gov. Haslam pushed the Capitol Commission to act, saying, “I do not believe Nathan Bedford Forrest should be one of the individuals we honor at the Capitol. The General Assembly has established a process for addressing these matters and I strongly encourage the Capitol Commission and the Historical Commission to act.” You might be wondering to yourself, “What’s this ‘Capitol Commission’ about?” and “Historical Commission? Wha?” Well, I had those same questions… Before I spent most of my day on the phone interviewing people close to this story.

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I’ll let you guess who this dip shit would have voted for in our last election…

A couple years ago, while feeling pressure to take down monuments honoring the confederacy, the TN General Assembly passed the “Heritage Act,” which put in place a procedure for changing or taking down monuments. It basically adds many hoops to jump through if anyone wants to remove a monument (you know, “Heritage, Not Hate”). The first step is a vote by the Capitol Commission (CC). The CC does not meet regularly, but after Gov. Haslam’s comment (as well as Sen. Lamar Alexander’s comment  that “There is a place for General Forrest’s bust, but not in a place of honor at the state capitol”), CC Chair Larry Martin called the meeting. After a vote, the next step in the process is to allow the Historical Commission to discuss AT LENGTH whether or not the monument should get removed… This discussion process usually would take eight months to a year. But that lengthy discussion will NOT take place, because — AGAIN — the CC voted 7 – 5 NOT to request a waiver from the Historical Commission.

So here are the people on the Capitol Commission, their positions, and how they voted. I’m also including their telephone numbers, just in case you want to call them and tell them what you think of their vote.

First, the five people who voted FOR the simple act of allowing the Historical Commission to weigh the pros and cons of relocating the bust of Nathan Bedford Forrest…

  • Larry Martin, Commissioner — Finance & Administration, Chair of the Capitol Commission, and the person who called the meeting and introduced the motion to petition the Historical Society for a waiver for relocation of the bust of Nathan Bedford Forrest. HE VOTED FOR. His number is (615) 741-2401.
  • Bob Oglesby, Commissioner — General Services. HE VOTED FOR. His number is (615) 741-2081
  • Bob Martineau, Commissioner — Environment & Conservation. HE VOTED FOR. His number is (615) 532-0106.
  • Dr. Reavis Mitchell, Chair — Tennessee Historical Commission, Professor at Fisk University, and living legend. HE VOTED FOR. His number is (615) 329-8669.
  • Howard Gentry, Davidson County Criminal Court Clerk and former General Assembly At-Large and former Vice Mayor of Nashville. HE VOTED FOR. His number is (615) 862- 5601.

Even after Gov. Haslam and Sen. Alexander urged the Capitol Commission to let the Historical Commission start a discussion about relocating the bust, THESE NEXT SEVEN PEOPLE VOTED AGAINST ALLOWING THE HISTORICAL COMMISSION TO HAVE THAT CONVERSATION:

  • Tre Hargett, Tennessee Secretary of State. HE VOTED AGAINST. His office number is (615) 741-2819. Feel free to give him a call.
  • David Lillard, Tennessee State Treasurer. He said he was in favor of having the bust of NBF being put on a “rotation” in the Capitol halls, rather than relocating it completely… Though it should be noted no motion was made at the meeting. HE VOTED AGAINST. His number is (615) 741-2956. Please let him know what you think.
  • Justin Wilson, Comptroller of the Treasury. I spoke with Mr. Wilson on the phone, and he said that HE VOTED AGAINST the motion because he believed that “since the General Assembly put it there, it’s the General Assembly’s place to take care of it.” His number is (615) 253-3912. He was the only person on this list brave enough to answer his own phone.
  • Jack Johnson, (R) Legislative member of the Senate. HE VOTED AGAINST. Call him at (615) 741-2495.
  • Curtis Johnson, (R) Legislative member of the House. HE VOTED AGAINST. His number is (615) 741-4341. Hold him accountable.
  • Tammy White, President & CEO of Leadership Knoxville, and the only female representative on the Capitol Commission. SHE VOTED AGAINST. Maybe you should call her at her office in Knoxville at (865) 253-9137 and let her know what you think of her “leadership.”
  • King Rogers, Attorney at Glankler Brown Attorneys in Memphis. HE VOTED AGAINST. His number is (901) 576-1721. Please call him… Also try saying his name out loud without putting air quotes around the word “King.” It’s nearly impossible.

Listen–This is government at its worst. This is called “PUNTING.” It’s when political leadership, rather than doing the job they were asked to do, decides to let someone else worry about it. In this case, the members of the Capitol Commission punted to a General Assembly that often is full of people representing districts that have no interest in taking down statues dedicated to former Grand Wizards of the KKK. And they won’t even be able to entertain the idea of taking down the bust until at least January of 2018… Long after today’s political capital is spent on some other national embarrassment.

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Here is the face of ANOTHER NBF statue that stands in Nashville… Caption from a really funny friend: “That feeling when the president thinks you’re beautiful.”

Before I finish (and you share this post, and then pick up your phone and start calling people), I want to leave you with some thoughts from Howard Gentry, who (along with Dr. Mitchell) is one of only two People of Color on the Committee. I spoke with him on the phone. Which, first of all… You know how you know you voted the right way? You don’t mind answering questions from the press about your vote.  He said “the Capitol Commission deflected their responsibility today.” He said, “I consider the State Capitol the sort of place where people of all types can enter the building expecting non-bias and fairness to be reflected.” He went on to say, “No one suggested that it be destroyed… Just removed. We’re at a time right now where these statues are affecting people’s right to safety and happiness. I’m just disappointed that we didn’t look at it through the eyes of the people who are most affected by these statues.” Gentry, now 65, remembered growing up in this area, and visiting the State Capitol as a boy at a time when that building still had separate bathrooms for “Colored People.” He said that “to walk into the Capitol right now and see the bust of someone who supported slavery and the degradation of people of color, it brings back those memories.”

Right now — In 2017 — in our State Capitol, we have a bust honoring a man who got rich off of slavery… Who massacred surrendered black soldiers to send a message to other black soldiers thinking about fighting for their freedom… Who helped found the KKK — one of the worst terrorist organizations this country has ever seen. And in our state, we have representatives who know this, and don’t care enough about that fact to start the process of taking it down. Please — PLEASE continue to put pressure on the representatives here in Tennessee, so that no more kids will walk into our Capitol and feel separate… Like the values of fairness and equality that SHOULD be represented in that building don’t apply to them. TAKE IT DOWN.

I’d like to say a special thank you to Ann McGuaren, Lola Potter, Pat Bailey, and Katie Hicks… Kind people who not only answered my questions, but pointed me in the right direction to find out how people voted and helped me understand how the process worked so I could explain it to you. They called me back when a lot of people didn’t.

A lot of work goes into writing this blog. If you value my voice and you want to help support it, you can BECOME A PATRON. It’s easy and fun… For the price of a cup of coffee each month, you can help me buy my wife a cup of coffee each month. Otherwise, if you want to LEAVE A TIP ON PAYPAL, you can do that too. You can also follow me on Facebook as well as on Twitter. Which is also fun, because sometimes I am funny. Or, just share this post with the people in your lives. And maybe flood the phone lines of these people who chickened out. They need to know that was gross. Either way, I love you.

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Nope, John Piper… You Don’t Get To Use The Name “Nashville” In Your Bigoted, Anti-Gay Statement.

Not my town, John. Not OUR town. Find another name for your homophobic manifesto. Nashville is NOT on board with your hate-filled, exclusionist version of God. You don’t get to name it “The Nashville Statement” (an anti-gay treatise which you can read HERE). Name it after Bethlehem Baptist Church, where you weekly spread your hatred from your tainted pulpit… Name it after “The Council on Biblical Manhood and Womanhood” (CBMW) that you co-founded to ensure the continuation of a male-centered worldview and a “complementarianist” understanding of gender roles… Name it after your warped Calvinism that turns God into a monster… But you DON’T get to name it after this good Southern town–this oasis in the middle of the Bible Belt–this Nashville… A town that is doing its best to be a welcoming and affirming place for ALL people, regardless of who they love or how they express their gender and sexuality.

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The only reason Nashville worked so well as a place for you little anti-gay gathering is, ironically, because of how welcoming it is. 

You have chosen one of the most divided times in our nation’s history–a moment where our country is dealing with one of the worst national disasters it has ever seen–to release a highly divisive and inflammatory statement. In a time where the majority of people–both in this country AND on your list of initial signatories–calling themselves “evangelicals” (a word so wholly compromised and diminished that it is almost impossible to use it in a non-pejorative sense) have put their support behind a philandering, thrice-married, pussy-grabbing, white supremacist, you thought that RIGHT NOW was a good time to make a statement about the “sin” of being queer. In a time where people DESPERATELY needs the help of our religious leaders to articulate with moral clarity the clear evil and depravity of white supremacy, SO MANY “leaders” within the Church decided to make a grand statement saying that folks who are LGBTQ+ don’t get to be “christians.” I seriously cannot believe it…

So here is what I have to say to the “leaders” who signed this monstrosity: You arrogant, hypocritical assholes. You have completely missed the point of Jesus. Every time the Bible tells a story where Jesus was presented with an issue where the choice was between Law and Love, he sides with love. EVERY TIME. When he’s asked about “how to inherit eternal life,” he tells a story about two religious leaders who follow the letter of the law, and then points to a Samaritan–one who gets all the theology wrong, but who goes out of his way to show compassion to someone who is hurting, and touch someone their culture called “unclean”–as an example of how to love our neighbors. And yet here you are, still focussing your misguided attention on the letter of the law.

Well, here’s the truth: We have millions of people in this country right now who are lying on the road to Jericho, wounded and in need of help… They are our LGBTQ+ brothers and sisters. And they are told BY YOU that they are worthless… Or at least worth less. They are suffering the emotional abuse of being told by their families that they are broken and unloved and destined for lives of loneliness and isolation, and with this hate-filled statement, you are giving theological covering and justification for the Priests and the Levites to walk to the other side of the road… And that’s the reason my eyes are filled with tears right now. It is just so utterly Anti-Jesus. This bullshit “statement” will do very real harm to kids and adults whoYou are providing a theological backing for policies that will LITERALLY KILL KIDS. You talk about being “pro-life.” Kids who are LGBTQ+ and are in non-accepting religious families are EIGHT TIMES more likely to attempt suicide… That is NOT “pro-life.” You talk about judging something by its fruit. The fruit of a statement like this is that lesbian, gay, and transgender kids are WAY more likely to kill themselves. That is some of the shittiest fruit I have ever heard of…

So with your signing of this document, you are adding your names to a list of stubborn, conservative irrelevance… A relic of a time where a privileged few stood firm in their legalism, while the Spirit of God led the consciousness of the world in a more loving direction. And just like the church leaders who defended slavery, who argued against interracial marriage, who fought tooth and nail against women’s rights, you are adding yourselves to a list of names that–generations from now–will be looked back on in horror by future followers of Jesus, trying to understand how so many could have been so misguided. And if you want to add your names to a list that is certain to be yet another shameful black eye on the face of this thing called The Church, that’s your decision… But you don’t get to add the name “Nashville” to that list. That’s not your decision to make. 

I’ll leave you with the words of Nashville’s mayor, Megan Barry…

TAKE IT DOWN!

It would mean a lot to me if you shared this. If you love someone who is LGBTQ+, if you love the town of Nashville, if you love the Jesus who hangs out with the ones everyone else has called unclean… it’s important that we stand with the ones who are under attack by this garbage “Statement.” Be vocal. Use your voice, and let them know that this “Statement” is about power and privilege, and not about Jesus. And if you belong to a church that supports this, go ahead and #EmptyThePews.

Also, if you value this blog and you want to be a Patron, you can RIGHT HERE. If you’d like to leave a tip, you can ON PAYPAL. If you’d like to follow me on Facebook or on Twitter, there some good stuff happening there as well. Love you all…

Posted in 1) Jesus, 2) Politics, 5) Not Quite Sure | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | 19 Comments

Joel Osteen, and Our Need For A Scapegoat

I don’t particularly like Joel Osteen. I find him hugely annoying to watch, with his closed-eyed, big-toothed televangelist’s smile… But what I find way more troublesome than his face is his theology. He is a peddler of an overly-simplistic, watered-down, fortune cookie gospel that sells people on the idea that if they do the “right” stuff for God, God will “bless” them with material gain. His theology is a bumper sticker mashup of a charismatic faith and “the power of positive thinking.” He is a divisive figure, and an easy one to focus our outrage on in a time like this. Some people really love his hopeful, feel-good message… I mean, he’s sold millions and millions of books. But he is not Jesusy and pro-Trump enough for the “religious right,” while progressives and people who care about social justice are grossed out by a multi-millionaire televangelist (with good reason, by the way. His church leased a sports stadium in Houston for $11.8 million, bought that stadium from the city for $7.5 million, and then spent about $100 million on renovations to the building… Not to mention his $10.5 million mansion that he bought with sales of his books, which are just written versions of his sermons). Any pastor with a house LIKE THIS is going to get his fair share of criticism.

So it’s easy to see why nearly all of Twitter absolutely crushed Joel Osteen when they found out that Lakewood Church (Joel’s church in Houston, and one of the largest congregations in the nation) closed its doors rather than taking in local people who need after being displaced by one of the biggest floods this nation has ever seen. He didn’t offer to open up Lakewood Church (which holds 16,800 people) to victims, but he did offer his prayers…

So social media had a field day. Twitter especially. They dragged him… hard.

And then he only made it worse by blocking a whole lot of people who were critical of his decision…

So I just want to say a few things about this whole deal. I am a high empathy sort of guy. When I see pictures of the devastation in East Texas, I feel it deep inside me. Many of us do. When we see pictures of old folks in water up to their chests and kids sleeping on counters surrounded by water, we want someone to blame. Believe me, I know the alluring and satisfying draw of outrage. I am a connoisseur of Christian hypocrisy. After reading about this, I was ready to tear into Joel Osteen with everything I had… Exposing the “fakeness” of his brand of “christianity.” And I think parts of it ARE fake. I don’t know if Joel Osteen actually believes the stuff he says… Or if he is aware of the grift. There are conflicting stories as to how affected Lakewood Church is by the flooding. I’ve seen interviews with him, and he seems like a really nice guy. I don’t know… But as I looked closer at this desire IN ME to tear Joel Osteen apart, I realized that much of what I was feeling was a desire for a scapegoat. His faults are OUR faults. His sins are MY sins. And rather than dealing with the reality of that, I want to send him away.

The real feeling we are experiencing is POWERLESSNESS. And it is terrifying. And depressing. So many of us are experiencing the disorienting emptiness of the offer of “thoughts and prayers” in the face of such destruction. We want to believe that something… SOMEONE is in control of all this. People are desperate for someone to be in control… For this to be part of a plan. So it comes as a relief to some when we have people like Joel Osteen tweeting garbage like this from his $10 million mansion…

… all while folks are waiting on their roofs for help. While folks are losing their homes and all of their possessions and trying to “power-of-positive-thinking” their way out of that reality. But the nagging thought bouncing around in your head is this: Isn’t the same God who’s “got this” and answers our prayers for help the same God who was in control of the hurricane’s path? Because this is the REAL awfulness of the god who is in control of everything: At its foundation, Joel Osteen’s god is the same horrible god of Pat Robertson… The god where every earthquake is a punishment, and every flood is an act of judgment. The god who rewards the pious, and destroys the wicked. The god who leaves us to figure out a REASON for cancer. And for child abuse. And for disasters like Harvey…

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Here we see Joel saying, “Cool your jets, Twitter. We’ll open up the friggin church.”

And falling short of those answers, we look for something… SOMEONE to sacrifice. And as good as it might feel to sacrifice Joel Osteen, it is not going to scratch the theological itch on my mind. Or yours. Not for long, at least. I don’t know how big of a house is too big. I don’t know how much money is too much money for a church building. I don’t know how much helping the community is enough helping. After the 24 hours or so of public shaming for Joel Osteen, it seems they are going to open their doors to flood victims… So I suppose that’s a good thing. Here’s a pic of their air mattresses:

Outrage isn’t going to solve this. We can use anger as a catalyst for change, but anger is an awful fuel. I believe we are designed to be fueled by compassion. And hope. And love. And when the extent of our actions is limited to praying to a god who is behind both the problem and the solution, the cancer and the treatment, the disaster and the rescue… It ends in hopelessness and despair and cognitive dissonance. We are not built for a continued state of outrage… We are built for hope. And we are not meant to pray for help… We are meant to help. 

With that, HERE IS A LIST OF TANGIBLE WAYS TO HELP–Money, shelter, food, blood, ways to help kids, ways to help animals–It is a fantastic list of things we can DO that will make us feel way more powerful than the feeling of casting our sins on a scapegoat, and sending him off to die.

Again, please CHECK OUT THIS LIST of ways to help. If you value this blog, and you’d like to help support it, you can do that HERE and HERE. If you’d like to stay in touch with me on Facebook and Twitter, you can do that as well. Stay hopeful, and when everything feels dark, BE THE LIGHT.

Posted in 1) Jesus, 2) Politics | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 11 Comments

If It Quacks Like A Nazi…

Here’s the thing, folks… Since Charlottesville, Tump has doubled down on his shameful support of white supremacy. He waited two full days before denouncing the “bigotry and violence ON MANY SIDES.” Then, after everybody in the country got pissed off (other than white supremacists, that is) over his moral equivalency of neo-nazi, white supremacist violence/intimidation with a group of people willing to use force to DEFEND people from that violence/intimidation, someone wrote a statement for him to read where he more vehemently and specifically focused his criticism on the actual nazis. A day later, during a bizarre press conference where he announced an Executive Order about getting rid of regulations that he considers a barrier to infrastructure work, he officially went off the rails. You have almost certainly seen highlights of this LOW POINT in a presidency full of low points, but sometimes you might suspect that things have been edited to make him look bad. Just in case you haven’t seen the whole thing, here it is:

Without a script to read, he immediately went back to his “there’s a lot of blame to go around” line of reasoning. He defended the people doing Hitler salutes as “some very fine people.” He pointed out that they had a permit, when the counter protesters didn’t. And then he defended confederate monuments, using a slippery slope fallacy and comparing Robert E. Lee — the traitorous, murderous general fighting for the “right” to enslave people with black skin — with President George Washington. But OF COURSE he would say that there were “very fine people” marching with the KKK and chanting “Jews will not replace us”HIS OWN FATHER was arrested at a KKK rally for fighting with police. He then tweeted this series of tweets in defense of keeping up monuments to confederate traitors who were willing to kill to keep their slaves…

This whole mess was such a shit show — Such a international embarrassment — that it literally brought Israel and Iran together in agreement…

But in the midst of all these shameful statements, all this equivocation, all this white supremacy, and all this outrage as a response to the POTUS’s blatant racism and lies, there are 2 THINGS which might have gotten overlooked that I don’t want you to miss:

The first is Joe Arpaio. The day after Heather Heyer was murdered by a white supremacist driving his car into a crowd of protesters, Trump decided to tell Fox”News” that he was “seriously considering” issuing a presidential pardon to Joe Arpaio. You might remember him as the Arizona sheriff who called himself “America’s Toughest Sheriff.” He would put criminals in pink outfits and keep them in blazing hot tent cites that he referred to as concentration camps. He was also buds with Donald Trump, because they both were involved in perpetuating the “Birther” conspiracy theory. After the Department of Justice decided Sheriff Arpaio oversaw the worst pattern of racial profiling in U.S. history, they ordered him to stop “detaining people” (that’s immigrant-speak for “imprisoning people”) when there was no suspicion that they had committed a crime. They found that Arpaio continued to unlawfully and UNCONSTITUTIONALLY arrest the Latino people in his county — people who had done nothing wrong — just for “not having their papers,” and they found him guilty of Criminal Contempt for willfully violating a court order. He is scheduled to be sentenced in October of this year.

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The brown is slimming… Which is nice.

So — just to recap — One day after a white supremacist rally that left a counter protester dead, the president of the United States suggests he will pardon a man (who joined him in the false, racist claim that President Obama faked his birth certificate and wasn’t a “real” American) for the crime racially profiling and illegally detaining Latino men and women. Our “Law & Order” president plans on forgiving a man who unconstitutionally singled out Mexican immigrants for harsh treatment. But this should come as no surprise… This is what white nationalists do: They focus on “the other.” They want people to be scared of immigrants, scared of people who look different, scared of people who speak a different language, and scared of people who have a different name for God.

And this is why Trump — after explaining that he waited so long to denounce the murderous nazi terrorist attack in Charlottesville because “It takes a little while to get the facts” — condemned another murderous terrorist attack in Barcelona only a few short hours after it occurred… Because the murderous terrorist in Barcelona doesn’t look like “us.” He doesn’t speak “our” language. He doesn’t worship “our” God. He is OTHER, and OTHER is to be feared. And blamed. And demonized. Everything we have to worry about comes from OUTSIDE… despite the fact that domestic terrorist — mostly white men — are the single greatest terrorist threat in this country. Still he wants us to believe “The threat is from outside our borders! The Muslims are coming!! BUILD A WALL!!!” We just had an American citizen murdered by a radicalized, home-grown nazi terrorist, and it took him two days to respond… And yet, mere hours after an attack in Spain, he makes a tweet like this:

Which brings us to the SECOND thing I didn’t want you to miss: The President of the Unisted States just called for the slaughter of Muslims. Without context, this tweet might seem unremarkable…

But what our nitwit president is referring to here is a DEBUNKED myth… A story that never happened about a war crime committed by a U.S. General. He believes that General Pershing slaughtered 49 Muslim prisoners by killing them with bullets dipped in pig’s blood, then burying them with pigs. Trump has spoken about this myth many times, including while campaigning. Well, “spoken about this myth” is imprecise language… HE LIED. He told this lie many times. When he told the lie here, it solved the problem for 25 years…

When he told the lie ANOTHER TIME, that time he said it “solved the problem of Radical Islamic Terrorism” for 42 years (25 years, 35 years, 42 years… What’s the difference, right?). It is a virulent, brutal, and explicitly Anti-Muslim LIE (again, proven false by SNOPES AND POLITIFACT) which the president keeps telling. There is a terrorist attack in Spain which ISIS takes credit for (perpetrated in the exact same way that the nazi terrorist in Charlottesville carried out his attack), and within hours, our Racist Old Man of a president tweets out a LIE which calls for brutally slaughtering Muslims with bullets dipped in pig’s blood to send a message to Muslim who are “thinking of causing trouble.” But this is not the first time Donald Trump has suggested committing war crimes… Here he is suggesting that we kill not only the terrorists, but also kill THEIR FAMILIES:

Yeah. There’s SO much crazy going on right now, I didn’t want you to miss these two very disturbing pieces of information. While defending himself against accusations of racism and white supremacy, and while indefensibly making moral equivalencies between nazis and the people standing up to nazis, the president of the United States of America spoke of his plans to pardon a man who was found guilty of willfully disobeying a court order to stop racially profiling Mexican immigrants, and he urged his followers to “research” a lie he continues to tell which suggests that mass murdering Muslims with bullets dipped in pig’s blood will solve our problem with terrorism. In short he said, “I’m not a racist, but #NotAllNazis and #HeritageNotHate… Also, I’m going to pardon a man convicted of unconstitutional racism, and here’s why we should slaughter Muslims.”

Donald John Trump is your crazy uncle who believes every racist email forward he’s ever received… Only this time, your crazy great uncle has the nuclear codes. After this week’s fiasco, I don’t know if there will be any more press conferences where he answers direct questions himself. The mask is off. He is saying things publicly that republican leadership is only supposed to say while they’re on hunting trips. This week’s press conference was the white supremacist version of Tom Cruise asking Nicholson’s Col. Nathan R. Jessup over and over, “Did you order the Code Red?” in A Few Good Men… And Trump’s response was an indignant and furious “YOU’RE GODDAMN RIGHT, I DID!!!” And everyone stands around looking stunned that he actually said it…

And at some point, they are going to try to blame all this on his age. And dementia. DON’T LET THEM. They are all supporting this… And they don’t ALL have dementia. His “Evangelical Council” has stayed supportive (even as commercial and manufacturing leaders abandon him). Sure, Bob Corker made critical remarks about the president this week, saying he “lacks competence and stability,” and that he “has not demonstrated he understands the character of this nation.” But even this statement is not critical of the things he has said… It’s more of a “You can’t come right out and say this stuff just because some “snotty little bastard” lawyer keeps asking you if you ordered the code red.” This is who Donald Trump has been his whole life. This is who he was during the campaign. A 70-year-old man does not change and all of a sudden become “presidential.”

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Quack, quack, you nazi pumpkin…

Even with Steve Bannon gone, this is who he’s ALWAYS been. All along, he has been a rich, racist narcissist who has always been a fanboy of dictators and authoritarian leaders… A lonely megalomaniac who kept a copy of Hitler’s speeches next to his bed… A raging misogynist and philanderer who moves from one damaged woman to the next… A tragic lump of white privilege whose KKK daddy gave him enough cash to pimp out his fake last name for a little bit more money.  He is a dangerously broken man… And this dangerously broken man has been put into a position of great influence by a counterfeit “church” who is way more interested in POWER than it has ever been interested in following Jesus. We must be better than this.

Thank you so much for reading. A special thank you goes out to Jaemin, who is my newest Patron. If you value this blog, if you look forward to it, if it gives you hope, and you’d like to help support it, you can ALSO BECOME A PATRON. Or, if you’d prefer a one time tip for a job well done, you can LEAVE A TIP ON PAYPAL. It you do that, you can designate that money to go toward boosting a post, so that even more people will see it. If you like this, and you’d like for other people to see it, share it… Either ON FACEBOOK, or ON TWITTER. Either way, take care of yourselves. And like Van Jones says, “When it gets harder to love, LOVE HARDER.”

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How To Tell If You Go To A White Supremacist Church

It’s easy… If your pastor, priest, or leadership is silent about the events taking place in Charlottesville, VA, you attend a white supremacist church. Simple. If your church does not spend a significant amount of time this weekend denouncing, condemning, and speaking out against the actions of the white supremacists gathering in Charlottesville, VA in the strongest possible terms, your church is racist as hell. If your leadership is silent about this, they support it. Silence is support… It’s just that simple. Silence on this issue equals support of the terrorists yelling “Blood And Soil!” (a phrase that gets its racist roots from Nazi ideology–from the German phrase “Blut und Boden”–which holds that ethnicity comes from “descent blood” and territory).

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From @mikeyfrecks on Twitter: “Imagine sucking so fucking bad that being a white guy is hard for you?”

If the people you go to church with people who are able to watch confederate flag-carrying white men chant literal Nazi slogans while carrying torches on a college campus, and still try to tell you that that flag is about “Heritage, Not Hate,” you go to church with some seriously racist people.

If you go to an “All Lives Matter” church instead of a “Black Lives Matter” church, you go to a white supremacist church.

If, after seeing the KKK gather to protest the removal of a statue of Robert E. Lee, while chanting “White Power” and “White Lives Matter,” the people in your congregation are talking more about “free speech” than about the clear immorality of the actions of these people, you attend a white supremacist church.

If they talk about “both sides being wrong…” If they talk about how the Anti Fascists were throwing things too… If they use the term “reverse racism” in a way that is not ironic… If they blame Black Lives Matter in any way for the violence that broke out… If they try to “whitesplain” the nonviolence of Martin Luther King, Jr. to People Of Color who are being actively oppressed… You are surrounding yourself with white supremacists.

On this point, while watching the video feeds of what is happening in Charlottesville this morning, there were two distinct points of opposition to the white supremacists gathered there. One was a group of clergy and peaceful protestors. Another was a group of anti-fascists. The clergy was dressed in vestments and collars. The anti-fascists were dressed in battle gear and ready to fight. The group of clergy sang songs like “This little light of mine,” and chanted things like “LOVE HAS ALREADY WON.” The anti-fascists were chanting “Nazi scum, your time has come,” “Get the fuck out of our city,” and “Punch a nazi in the mouth.”

It is clear to anyone who knows anything about Jesus that “Love has already won” is way closer to Jesus than “Punch a nazi in the mouth.” But if the people in your life (and in your church) are focusing on criticizing the actions and words of a small group of anti-fascists INSTEAD of focusing on criticizing that actual nazis gathering in our streets, you need to know you the people in your life are part of the problem. You are hanging out with white supremacists. And also, if you are more offended by anti-fascists’ use of the word “fuck” (or my use of the word “shitty” in the tweet below) than you are offended at the cuss-word-free slogans of hatred and racism that are shouted by angry white men, you have missed the whole point of the Bible.

To quote Tony Campolo: “I have three things I’d like to say today. First, while you were sleeping last night, 30,000 kids died of starvation or diseases related to malnutrition. Second, most of you don’t give a shit. What’s worse is that you’re more upset with the fact that I said shit than the fact that 30,000 kids died last night.”

If–when you point out to the people at your place of worship that many of the slogans and chants which were shouted by the KKK, neo-nazis, and white supremacists were ALSO shouted at Trump rallies–you are accused of being “too political,” you attend a white supremacist church. Literal nazis yell MANY of the same chants that were yelled in Trump Rallies, and white people all over this country (who call themselves “christians”) still insist that Trump’s election had nothing to do with racism…

There will be a lot of churches who stay silent on the rise of white supremacy that is happening in our country, and they will say it’s because they “don’t want to get political.” This is the exact same excuse churches used in the 1930’s as white supremacy rose in Germany. And please don’t be confused… It is not that people are getting more racist–It is that people are getting more comfortable SHOWING their racism.

There are a lot of awful things about the white supremacist rally in Virginia this weekend… People are getting physically hurt, but the damage is not limited to physical injuries. We don’t have to be anywhere near the streets of Charlottesville to have these images do damage to our hope for humanity… to our hearts… to our souls. But look on the bright side: At least now you can look at how your church reacts to these disturbing events and you’ll be able to know whether or not you’ve been surrounding yourself with white supremacists. And whether or not you need to find a new place to go to church…

Thank you SO MUCH to my newest Patron, PEGGY! It means so much to me that people believe in this blog enough to support it. If you value my writing and my mission, and if you want to help support it, you can BECOME A PATRON. Or, you can LEAVE A TIP ON PAYPAL or designate a post to boost there as well. Otherwise, stay in touch on Facebook and on Twitter. And share this post with the people in your lives! In times of darkness, it is important to focus on places of light. Don’t lose hope… Because here’s the truth: “LOVE HAS ALREADY WON!”

 

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Dear Christians: Now Would Be A Good Time To Come To Your Senses

“North Korea best not make any more threats to the United States. They will be met with fire and fury like the world has never seen. He has been very threatening, beyond a normal state… They will be met with fire, fury and frankly power the likes of which this world has never seen before.” ~ Donald Trump

These are the words of one unstable megalomaniac to another. Trump’s words were not chosen at random… He meant them to be specifically referring to our country’s use of nuclear weapons. His words closely mirrored President Harry Truman’s words while addressing the country about the use of nuclear weapons against Japan, when he said Japan “may expect a rain of ruin from the air, the like of which has never been seen on this earth. Just three hours after Trump made his threat, Kim Jong Un (the unstable man-child in charge of North Korea) made a statement through state media that they were “seriously reviewing” plans for a military strike against Guam–Not only the site of strategic U.S. military bases, but also U.S. soil.

Trump is a man who was put in power by people calling themselves “christians.” A man who met with a foreign policy advisor and asked three times — THREE TIMES!! — why he couldn’t use nuclear bombs. “If we have them, why can’t we use them?” he asked… Three times in a one hour briefing. This is a man who has surrounded himself with apocalyptic “christians,” like “pastor” Robert Jeffress, who–after Trump’s “fire and fury” comments–commended the president’s resoluteness, and said“In the case of North Korea, God has given Trump authority to take out Kim Jong Un.” A man who was already talking in 1999 about a pre-emptive strike against North Korea (after, he said, he’d “negotiate like crazy”). And this is a man who–in just over 200 days, has brought us to the brink of war with an unstable nuclear power, who also happens to be an ally of China.

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This is not–I repeat–NOT how to love our enemies.

So NOW is the time when the Christians who supported Donald Trump need to wake up. I know that there are some out there who are never going to change their support for this evil and dangerously broken man. It makes sense why a certain brand of “christian” would support Donald Trump. For many Trump-supporting “christians,” the god they worship is the god of “fire and fury.” The god who’s going to use this evil king to bring about judgment and wrath. These people are not in the business of SAVING the world–They are in the business of ESCAPING the world… A world (they have been told for the last 14 centuries, or so) will be consumed by fire very soon. Some are beyond the scope of reason… But not all of you are like this.

Many of you have been questioning your support more and more every day. With every day, there is another national embarrassment, and another reason for regret. Maybe some of you DON’T regret your decision. Maybe you STILL argue that he was the “lesser of two evils” between him and Hillary… Maybe her eMails were a big enough issue that you thought he was the better option… Maybe you got caught up in all the “Drain The Swamp” talk… FINE! But Hillary is no longer an issue. Now the issue is that we have a demented narcissist in the Oval Office, and he has the nuclear codes. If you stay silent right now, it is very possible that A LOT of people are going to die. If you call yourself “Pro-Life,” it’s time to act like it. The atomic bomb dropped on Hiroshima killed over 140,000 people. The bomb dropped on Nagasaki three days later killed more than 70,000 people. Over the years, the radiation killed many, many more. And the bombs dropped on Japan are dwarfed in destructive power by the bombs we currently have. A strike against North Korea–even a non-nuclear strike–would devastate the Asian peninsula just from the fallout of the reactors that are currently there. We must also remember that when the atomic bombs of WWII were dropped, we were the only nation on the planet who had them. THAT IS NO LONGER THE CASE.

COME TO YOUR SENSES, CHURCH–NOW IS THE TIME TO WAKE UP, AND NOW IS THE TIME TO SPEAK UP. Call your senator. Call your representative. Flood the phone lines. We have a voice. We have political power. And that’s the reason WE–the citizens of United States of America–need to be the ones to pressure our government AWAY from war and destruction and fallout, and TOWARD diplomacy and sanity and peace. The people of North Korea don’t have a voice. They are oppressed and lied to and kept from anything that might inform them of the truth. Speaking out against the leadership in North Korea is a capital offense. The slightest misstep can land you in forced labor camps. Dissent will literally get you killed. But that is NOT the case in our nation… A nation–for all its problems–that I still love and appreciate, and a nation that I don’t want to see start a nuclear war. If you are a person who calls yourself a Christian–a follower of a man named Jesus, who commanded us to LOVE our enemies instead of killing them–NOW is the time to speak up in opposition to this woefully unqualified, demented, disastrous, broken man. You put him in power… We are going to need your help to get him out.

If you’re like me, you are tired of feeling like hopefulness doesn’t make sense. I re-read THIS POST today, and it made me feel a bit better. Stay hopeful, stay engaged, and active. And if you value this blog, and you want to help support it, you can BECOME A PATRON. Or you can LEAVE A TIP if you want to boost a post. Otherwise, it means a lot just to share the ones you like. Share this one with a Christian you know who think is suspecting that Jesus and Trump don’t mix… Also, you can keep up with me on Facebook and on Twitter. We are not alone!

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Just In Case You Thought Trump Couldn’t Possibly Get Re-Elected…

This weekend, someone threw a bomb though the window of a mosque in a suburb of Minneapolis. It was an act of TERRORISM… One that the president of the United States of America didn’t feel the need to comment on. Though that’s pretty standard for the worst president this country has ever seen. In February of this year, when one of his deranged supporters killed six Muslim people in a Canadian mosque, he couldn’t seem to find the time to tweet… But when he hears about a Muslim man in Paris who slightly injured one person, he is scrambling for his phone within a couple hours.

When brown, Muslim men kill people in London, he calls for putting the Muslim ban back in place. When a white, Christian man carries out a deadly attack in London, the president has nothing to say… And he certainly doesn’t call for a travel ban for countries with high concentrations of white Christians. He doesn’t even make an ATTEMPT to cover up his bigoted hypocrisy. He revels in it. But what would you expect from the sort of person who–on the same day 49 people were murdered in a night club in Orlando–tweeted congratulations to himself, because the shooter was Muslim…

Turns out the shooter had no involvement with ISIS or radical extremists, but instead seems to have been dealing with self-hatred over his own closeted sexuality.

The bombing of the mosque in Minnesota proves once again that citizens of the United States of America are way more likely to be the victim of an act of terrorism committed AGAINST Muslims than they are to be the victim of an act of terrorism committed BY Muslims. The story of the bomb blast was picked up by Yahoo News. You can view the story RIGHT HERE. But the story of the bombing is not really where THE STORY is. There are always going to be awful, deranged, murderous individuals in the world–People who do horrific, cowardly things like throwing a bomb through the window of the Dar Al-Farooq Islamic Center in Bloomington, Minnesota. The story I’m interested in is the REACTION to the bombing.

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This is not the first time in our country’s history that terrorists have bombed the house of worship belonging to people with dark skin.

 

So a place of worship was bombed in an American city, and from our president? Silence… But not everyone was silent. Beneath the Yahoo News article discussing the bombing, hundreds of hate-filled bigots took to their keyboards and wrote some of the most disgusting shit you have ever seen. Sometimes, these sorts of overtly racist and xenophobic comments sections have a way of disappearing, so I took screen shots of them. On Yahoo, the comments with the most “Thumbs Up’s” are the comments at the top. I only took pictures of the top 30 comments. Now, before reading these, I want you to try something… I want you to consider what it must be like being a Muslim in America… Think about loving this country, with its freedoms and opportunities… Think about the silence of the people in positions of power when Muslim people–here, and around the world–are attacked… And then think about reading shit like this after a mosque here is bombed:

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Those were the top ten. Then…

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And finally, though there were hundreds more, 21-30…

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If you’re wondering why I would submit you to an Internet Comments Section, here’s why: Because it matters who governs. 

I am NOT trying to discourage you and make you lose faith and hope in humanity… That is what the garbage who wrote these comments wants. There are millions of people in this country who have been so filled up with a steady diet of lies and fear, that hatred is the only option available to them. These comments are a dose of reality. It would be easy to think that anyone who has the sense that they were born with can tell that Trump is literally one of the worst humans on the planet… But I want to remind you that the man who tweeted that self-congragulatory narcissistic obscenity after the Orlando Massacre went on to win the presidency. And I’d also like to remind you that both the House and the Senate are filled with a majority of republican cowards, bereft of integrity, who refuse to stand up to Trump’s intentional attacks on our government, our democracy, and our sense of decency. It would not surprise me at all if Trump won another term as president. And the first step to ensuring that doesn’t happen starts with the Mid-Term Elections.

Our liberal optimism–Our belief that people are “better than that”–has lulled us to sleep before… And we ended up with an actual orange dumpster fire–a Trumpster Fire– as the leader of the free world. And I understand that there are Alt-Right outrage machines who get ahold of stories, and then spam the comments sections with white supremacist, xenophobic hatred… But listen–One of two things is true: Either people really are this shitty, or there is a very organized network of people working very hard to sell the story that people really are this shitty. And that it’s not worth it. And that we should give up, and quit trying, and lose hope. Either way, we are in very big trouble…

And when I say we, I don’t just mean the “We” who understands that love actually IS better than hate, and we want to build a world that is Better… I mean ALL of us. Not just the Muslims who are being harassed. Not just the Press who are threatened and attacked.   Not just the scientists and the educators and the progressives… ALL OF US. That includes the ones who have been deceived into thinking that an walking pile of selfishness like Trump cares one bit about their problems and well-being. Genocide doesn’t just happen… It happens in stages. Eight stages, to be exact. And right now, in this country, we are firmly in Stage 3, and knocking on the door of Stage 4 (Read THIS, for more info on the Stages of Genocide).

We’re in trouble when we elect awful people to lead us. We’re in trouble when an act of integrity in Congress seems like a refreshing surprise. We’re in trouble when men who brag about sexual assault and ridicule disabled reporters still get elected into office. We’re in trouble when the majority of people calling themselves “christians” can’t see the clear evidence that one of the most ANTI-JESUS men to ever coif a smarmy hairdo, an amoral, broken mess of a human being, has weaseled himself into a position of great power–WITH THEIR HELP! And we’re in trouble for the next election when people cheer on acts of barbarism and hatred like the one that took place at that Minnesota mosque.

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While you’re praying, please pray for our country to come to its senses.

The bomb was meant to intimidate… To terrorize… To make Muslims feel unsafe and unwelcome. But the comments that are posted above are more of the same. They are verbal bombs… Designed to intimidate and terrorize make Muslims feel unsafe and unwelcome. And if you call yourself an American… If you call yourself a Christian… If you call yourself a decent human being… You have GOT to stand against it.

Thank you so much to my newest Patron, Michelle! I am so encouraged to have a group of people who values my writing [and this blog] enough that they help support me. If you want to feel the good feeling that comes when you support something you care about, you can BECOME A PATRON. Or, if you want, you can LEAVE A TIP or BOOST A PARTICULAR POST on PayPal. Otherwise, just share this post with the people in your lives. On Facebook… On Twitter… Wherever. Either way, I love you. Stay hopeful. Resist!

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The Reason You’re Afraid Of Black People

So listen… I shared an article about a black woman who tweeted that she felt unsafe being in a Cracker Barrel while surrounded by white people. Well… her actual tweet was the following:

White people were less than enthused… Some dude who gets off on torturing people who don’t think like him sent her tweet to a “right-wing outrage machine” called “Twitchy.” And within a short period of time, Ijeoma Oluo’s Twitter feed and her Facebook inbox were both filled with death threats, rape threats, and some of the grossest, most disgustingly racist crap you have ever seen. She wrote about her experience HERE (as well as Facebook’s complicity in her continued abuse). If you haven’t read it yet, you probably should. It’s really good.

When I shared the article, I was informed by many of my Facebook friends that the woman who wrote it was just as racist as the people responding to her. Yes… You’ve got that right–People who wrote things like “Why are you in America? Go back to your third world rat hole ..ya racist witch” and “Too bad your mother polluted her bloodline, making you only half human” shouldn’t have written those mean things… But Ijeoma Oluo was ALSO guilty because she shouldn’t have tweeted her “racist” tweet about not feeling particularly safe in an all-white space… In a place called Cracker Barrel…A place that was found guilty of discriminatory practices against People Of Color… While driving through a small town in a red state. They’re BOTH guilty.

Now… Nothing I write here is going to explain this as well as Ijeoma Oluo’s own words, so here is a video she posted responding to the tidal wave of hatred and White Fragility she has received. Here’s that…

Just in case you don’t watch the video (PLEASE DO WATCH THE VIDEO), here is a quote from it where she responds to the criticism where people say that if she had made this quote about black people instead of white people, it WOULD be racist. She agrees… Here is why:

It would be racist because you don’t live in a country that systemically oppresses white people. You don’t live in a country where people with white-sounding names are four times LESS likely to be call for an interview. You don’t live in a country where the average white household has ONE FOURTEENTH the net worth of average black household. You don’t live in a country where white people can’t call the cops for help without being shot in front of their children. You don’t live in a country where white children are four times more likely to be suspended from school than black children. You don’t live in a country where doctors think that white patients don’t feel pain the same way that black patients do. You don’t live in a country with a history of slavery of white people (and I swear to God, if anyone brings up the Irish, I will lose my shit, because its completely different). You don’t live in a country where flags of those who fought to keep you enslaved still fly from state capitals and off the back of trucks. You don’t live in a country where white people have to beg and plead for their lives to MATTER, so that when their twelve year old child is killed for holding a toy gun, they don’t hear cops saying ‘That was no child.’

You live in a country where the OPPOSITE is true…

But if you feel like it’s the same thing… You think that you saying–as someone who has had the power of whiteness your entire life–If you’re saying it’s the same for YOU to be uncomfortable around ME as it is for ME to be uncomfortable around YOU, you know NOTHING. And you don’t WANT to know.”

There is so much more, and it’s all really good. One more amazing quote…

“I do not owe white America the benefit of the doubt. And if you don’t like that truth–that People Of Color have every reason to be scared around white people–CHANGE THAT TRUTH. Don’t silence the truth.” ~ Ijeoma Oluo

Because that’s really what all this white outrage [to it being “okay” for People Of Color being able to voice their unsafe feelings around white people] is all about: Silencing the truth. It’s hidden under the guise of “reverse racism.” It’s the same reason white people get so upset when the hear a Person Of Color “get” to say the N-word. “They get to do it… Why can’t I? I’m being oppressed!!” And it’s the same beating, fragile heart of white nonsense like “The War On Christmas.”  It’s the reason so many people identified with the post I wrote called “When You’re Accustomed To Privilege, Equality Feels Like Oppression.” And it’s the same sort of fragility that leads to thousands of white people claiming a beautiful ad like this one is “racist.”

So, I’m not going to solve all of the confusion and misunderstanding around the pure BS that is “reverse racism,” and how it’s impossible for white people in this country to experience racism (though Ijeoma’s video above will go a long way to understanding that). I DID–as I listened to her talk about all the reasons People Of Color have to be afraid of white people–start thinking about WHY it is that white people are so afraid of black people. White people have the power in this country. That is the reality. There is a very long history in this country of powerful forces at work attempting to make white people a scared as possible of black folks (if you haven’t watched “13th” on Netflix yet, you definitely need to). And most white folks would probably tell you that demonization of blackness is a thing of the past. Well, it’s not…

Just last week, an Indiana police officer was shot and killed while responding to a car accident. A car had overturned, and as Lt. Aaron Allan hurried to help out, he was shot by a man inside the car. He was rushed to the hospital, and died there from his injuries. The man who shot him was arrested and taken in ALIVE (so that should give you more than a little hint as to the color of the shooter’s skin). Within hours of this story breaking, the shooter’s name (Jason Brown) had been released. Shortly after that, multiple news outlets (using the bare minimum of investigative skills) found pictures of Brown. Among the pictures they found was this one from Jason Brown’s Instagram account:

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This photo did NOT fit their definition of “Thug.”

The next day, when the nation’s most successful cable “news” organization (Fox”News”) did their story about the shooting (long after the shooter’s name had been released and this picture was making the rounds on social media), they did not have ONE PICTURE of the man who had taken the officer’s life. Imagine, for a moment, if there had been a picture like this of a black man who had just killed a police officer acting heroically. Just IMAGINE if the shooter had had a “Muslim-sounding” name and a picture like this. The picture of a brown-skinned man holding guns would have been the lead story. But a dangerous white man does not fit their narrative. Instead, they just referred to him in the story as “Brown.” You are being fed stories that make you scared of black skin. There are billion dollar corporations who are trying very hard to push a narrative of “Fear Black People.” The huge money and influence of the NRA said NOTHING when Philando Castile was murdered for simply telling a police officer that he was legally carrying a gun in his car. And then the cop who killed him was found Not Guilty.

These are the reasons why People Of Color saying they are scared around white people is not “racism.” It’s the TRUTH. And as Ijeoma Oluo said, “It’s the truth [we] deserve.

For so long, I have had TWO people who have given sacrificially to help support this blog. You know who you are. I can’t thank you enough. If you value this blog, you don’t have to give big. I’ve lost a few bigger Patrons, but I’m gaining some small ones, and that is amazing. For most of us, it’s really hard to give $10, $15, or $50 a month. But I promise that a couple bucks a month is SO appreciated. It encourages me more than I can say, and it also helps me feed my family… Which is cool. If you want to BE A PATRON, please do. If you want to LEAVE A TIP of BOOST A POST, awesome. If you want to follow me on Facebook or Twitter, right on. Otherwise, just share this with your friends. Love you all.

Posted in 2) Politics | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Trump Awards Medal of Valor To Female Officer… Then Kisses Her.

It’s been a busy couple of days, as far as the news is concerned… I wanted to make sure you didn’t miss this. This post is going to be shorter than most.

Capitol Police Special Agent Crystal Griner was one of the first people to respond to the shooting that took place a little over a month ago during the Congressional baseball practice. During her brave response, Officer Griner saved the life of Representative Steve Scalise, among others. You remember the event… The one where a black woman saved the life of a man who spoke at “EURO” Convention (a white supremacist group formed by former KKK grand dragon David Duke. EURO stands for “European-American Unity and Rights Organization”) and still managed to get elected to congress. You remember… The one where a lesbian woman saved the life of a man who has worked tirelessly during his political career to take rights AWAY from people who are LGBT, while trying to invalidate her marriage to her wife. Yeah, THAT event. The one where a racist homophobe got his life saved by a black lesbian.

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This is the stuff of nightmares, y’all.

Anyway, Crystal Griner was awarded the Congressional Medal of Valor by a disgusting orange man who bragged that his famousness and power allowed him to be able to grab women by the pussy if he wants to (then still went on to be elected president). A brave and strong member of the LGBT community was awarded the Medal of Valor by a man who–one day earlier–declared on Twitter that transgender soldiers would no longer be welcome to serve in the Armed Forces. And then this happened…

Watch her pull away. You could cut the uncomfortableness of this situation with a knife. People have said she looks scared… I don’t think so. I think she knows that, even while still on crutches from being shot in the ankle by a terrorist, she could take our sexual-assaulter-in-chief in a fight. I don’t think she’s scared. I think she’s wondering how she got in a position where one of the grossest people on the planet thinks he gets to put his hands on her… And then–inexplicably–goes in for a kiss. Maybe it was just a reflex thing? Like some sort of muscle memory from all the necklaces he has put on women over the years being followed by an assumed kiss. One thing is for sure. I am grossed out AF… And I guess me sharing this with you here is like me smelling milk that has gone bad, and offering it to someone else to smell. Our president is sour milk, offered to someone nearby. 

So I didn’t want you to miss this bit of unbelievable grossness in the news blitzkrieg that has been the past couple days… You’re welcome. Or I’m sorry. Either one.

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Posted in 2) Politics, 3) Bathroom Humor | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 14 Comments