August 20, 2010

Say Goodbye to the Buttonpusher

Another case of First Amendment interpretation, closely following the controversy about the Ground Zero mosque: So the (for me, as a European) unspeakable "Dr. Laura" Schlessinger has lost her job because she used the word "nigger" in one of her broadcasts and now she's whining that that the "bullying and scary" tactics of the left are a direct threat to the First Amendment rights of anyone who dares to speak out in defense of traditional American values. What is the First Amendment about? It protects Americans from government censorship, it does NOT protect them from reactions by their peers/co-citizens, not from disapproval, pressure, criticism, indignation or from the forces of the market. Nobody tells this hypocritical old slattern that she can not spew her hate- and deliberately hurtful drivel. It's just that if "Dr. Laura's" sponsors don't like what she says or have something better to broadcast, they have every right to get rid of her. Here we have those two wonderful things in action America has given to the world and which stand for freedom and liberty. They are called "free market" and "public discourse".

And of course she was right about the caller, who expressed concern over her white husband's friends being racist, that if she's that "hypersensitive about color" and doesn't "have a sense of humor" she oughn't have married "out of (her) race". That said, this came, if the media reports are correct, after she said the word "nigger" 11 times in a string of expletives. OF COURSE that usage was intended to be -- and was -- provocative, even though she was "only quoting". However, I wonder, too, why somebody in such a predicament would go to that heartless bitch, of all people, for advice, and I wouldn't be amazed if she was framed.

It's not what she said, but how she said it, and it will never fail to amaze me how such a deliberately provovative and violative, vulgar and ungiving bitch, one that was exposed several times as a hypocrite to boot, was able to become a paragon of conservative values. It must have been because she knows how to push the right buttons of conservatives (and "conservatives"), as she knows, no doubt, how to push the buttons of her hapless audience.

I always thought humility was part and parcel of conservative values. I may be wrong. But whatever, now she's forced to learn a painful lesson in it. Good.


fpb said...

That is what happens when you identify conservatism with vulgarity. And it's all over the world, from Berlusconi to Rush Limbaugh.

bruce-church said...

The fact that conservatives in the media can gain such prominence is because of the two party-system in America. If America was like Europe, Rush Limbaugh and Dr. Laura Schlessinger would belong to small parties garnering between 10 or 30 percent of the vote, not to the Republic Party with 40pc to 55pc of the vote, depending on the election cycle. As it is, the pretend to speak for all true Republicans, but not RINOs--Republicans in name only. Note: Self-declared Republicans are only 26pc of the population, but a Republican candidate can usually get at least 45pc of the vote.

The 2-party system means most Americans can't find any party that caters to their point of view. So, for instance, there's no party that is for both state-paid universal healthcare and is against a liberalized abortion policy. One has to split the difference and vote Republican one election, and Democrat the next on many polarized issues.

The American two-party system is the natural result of the fact that there can only be two senators per state in the federal bicaramel legislature. The two party system devolves from the US Senate. Other countries have a 2% or 5% threshold for parties, but the US has a de facto 40% to 50% threshold for US senators and the US president, and this affects everything top down:

fpb said...

Bruce: unfortunately, the same trashy system actually prevails in Europe. Countries with a large number of parliamentary parties are few, and in some cases (e.g. Sweden) the difference is apparent, not real: every major Swedish party stands for the same policy. Britain has two and a half parties, Germany two big and two small ones (counting the CDU and CSU as one, which in terms of national government they are). Spain and France have a left and right which approximate the American condition. And a determined attempt to force the creation of a two-party system in Italy has just now mercifully collapsed, but not before giving power to one of the most undesirable candidates imaginable. The truth is that politicians (and pundits in their service) love two-party systems and always push in that direction, because it makes it easy to "govern" a country. That it wholly neutralizes the reality of popular will, as you rightly say, is a secondary benefit; politicians are not very keen on the people having a will.

beakerkin said...

The N word is a career ender. Even claims of racial bias no matter how dubious can destroy a career. If a person were caught using the N word at work they would be fired.

The word Faggot should get similar treatment but does not. I have pointed out this hypocrisy to people who would crucify you for using the N word at work and say faggot like it is nothing.

That word is the atomic bomb in America.

I do not use that word ever. It is not part of the way I view people.

The_Editrix said...

Beak, that comes across to me as totally over the top. "Dr. Laura" is a callous bitch who has hurt, insulted and abused people over decades and deserves what she's getting now, but that said, the aversion to the word nigger is totally hysterical and the way people in America are dealing with it generally is the antithesis of freedom or liberty. It's thought police in action. Americans are trying to cope with their past in a perverted way here.

The_Editrix said...

"The word Faggot should get similar treatment but does not. I have pointed out this hypocrisy to people who would crucify you for using the N word at work and say faggot like it is nothing."

I forgot this in my reply to you. Tell me you are joking please! OF COURSE Americans don't react as strongly to the word "faggot" as to the word "nigger". First, because homosexuals were never enslaved in America, so that guilt thingy doesn't work here. Second, presumably out of a sense of fairness. It's unfair to use qualities of a person he can't change as an invective. "Nigger" is one of them, but "cripple" or "retard" (other than in a purely clinical context) come to mind as well. "Faggot" is different. Everybody can just stop acting like one.

You are so mesmerized by this word that you can't even write it. It owns you. It's like those many Germans who can't speak out the words "Jew" or "Jewish". If one is involved in pro-Israel politics or has a "Jewish sounding" name or whatever, one is sometimes asked: "Are you... are you..." and they can't bring themselves to actually SAY it.

For heaven's sake, "nigger" is just one of many invectives. Get a grip! Your own ancestors had nothing to do with slavery. The American people, including the blacks, have paid and are paying a high price for this neurotic guilt (I am not saying that the enslavement of blacks in the old South is something to shrug off and go then back to normal as if it had never happened, I am saying that the way people like you are dealing with it is unhealthy) and if it doesn't stop they will go on paying an even higher price for it. Do you think obfuscating the word "nigger" in writing and criminalizing its usage will help even one single black? All it does is harming your society, bringing strife and social discord to the people. And that is exactly what the whoremasters behind all this intend. You are falling for a "commie" trick, Beak! They own you!

bruce-church said...

Hi Editrix, In America mothers have told children not to use the word "hate," and the "never say 'never'" saying is axiomatic. So the N-word has just been put in this class, and there's nothing neurotic about, I find.

Americans have just chosen not be tolerant of second-hand smoke at work, of saying the N-word at work, of viewing porn at work, etc. This is just another don't.

The feeling is that if the N-word keeps on being used in any context whatsoever, Blacks as a class in America will never get ahead in life, so it's best not to use that word.

The_Editrix said...

Bruce, I am not saying that people ought to use the word "nigger" freely and I hope I have made myself clear what I think about people who are trying to hurt others for no other reason than the fact that they enjoy hurting them. Women like Schlessinger and Coulter are specifically unsavoury because they transgress two boundaries at once. First, it is considered bad manners and wrong to be gratuitously hurtful and rude, second if it is done by women, and women don't have the excuse of a high testosterone level. Highly aggressive women are despicable. To me, it is pretty perverted if a woman assumes such a role. However, it seems to attract a lot of attention and it's well paid, so that's why they are doing it. I SAID that "Dr. Laura" got what she deserved. Now back to the word nigger. Do you seriously think that blacks get more respect because the word is ostracized and only appears in disguise as "the n-word"? That the usage of this word kept them from getting ahead in life? Serious question, no rhetoric here. It is a vile invective, no doubt, but why aren't "kike", "chink", "wetback" or "honky" quite in the same league? Fine, the word ought not to be said. People ought not to fling insults at each other, but then, it happens. And THAT is supposed to be, as Beak put it, a "career ender"? Sorry, I don't get it.

bruce-church said...

Hi Editrix,

You raise some excellent questions. In Britain and Europe generally, people don't look down on Blacks as being dumb or violent or somehow inferior, but in America too many people do think exactly that--and worse, Blacks believe it themselves. So the N-word reinforces this centuries-old stereotype.

Blacks in America have four strikes against them: different skin color, speech (Ebonics), weird and often mispelled names, and culture (e.g.,

Ironically, Blacks in America are 23% white on average (DNA), so they aren't pure African. Americans are much more comfortable around pure Africans since Africans don't chide Americans about past slavery and discrimination.

You ask why aren't other racial slurs in the same league. In America, people think that all racial terms are baseless, except when it comes to most Blacks. (By contrast, in Germany, slurs against Jews might be taken seriously.) An American of German extraction might joke about Poles, but then turn around and marry one. This is NOT the case with Blacks though. A family would feel devastated if a son or sibling married a Black. It would take years of getting used to, if ever, unless the Black was one of the 10% who was white for all intents and purposes besides skin color.

If you ask an average American if he'd rather be rich and, say, Italian or Mexican, that would be okay. However, if you ask him whether he'd be a rich and Black, no amount of money would be enough for that. By the way, Americans wouldn't mind being Chinese or Japanese and rich, but the culture is strange so it would take some serious getting used to.

For more on how white culture in America is seriously different than Black culture, see:


The_Editrix said...

Bruce, I still don't buy it. Europeans are less racist than Americans because we don't have large black majorities in our countries. I had a couple of long, hard looks at the American crime statistics and one just can't deny or overlook the results.

The website "Le Racisme Antiblanc" provides a lot of material and from what I've seen I'd say it is not a white supremacy site.

And it weren't the whites who taught blacks to speak in a horrible slang and to give their children ridiculous names. They do that because they like it. There are many blacks who do NOT do that and who are doing well in life. Your current president is a notable example.

The comparison with German antisemitism is misleading, although it may look sensemaking at first sight. Why? Because antisemitism is a phenomenon entirely different from racism. Racism is based on actual experiences with people of another race, however distorted and exaggerated. Antisemitism exists without Jews. You'll find people (for example German youths) who have never seen a Jew in their life but are antisemitic. Antisemitism is a rebellion against God and the Ten Commandments.

And isn't it obvious why somebody white would rather marry another white from a reviled ethnicity (such as, for example, Poles) than somebody black? For heaven's sake! Looks are a reality and no clever talk about "we are all one race or we couldn't interbreed" can do anything about that. Anybody with some healthy instincts left wants his children to look like himself, in spite of all politically correct drivel. And that apples to ALL races, only it whites do it it's "racist".

I know "Stuff White People Like". It's hilarious. It could be named as well: "Stuff Stupid Upper Middleclass Americans Like", because it's about class, not about race. It's just that the majority of upper middleclass people in America is white.

bruce-church said...

Hi Editrix, I understand exactly all your arguments and could have made them myself. I've been robbed at gun point by a Black before, so I've thought about this problem from many angles over the years.

I'm not one for spending a lot on social engineering. That's why I like the idea of clamping down on racial slurs since it will probably save many millions in schooling, welfare programs, crime enforcement, prisons, etc.

My point about the N-word and antisemitism was just to say that certain pejoratives are taken seriously, whereas others are not--not that the two phenomenon are comparable in all salient points.

My point about inter-racial marriage being unthinkable for many was to show that the N-word must be treated differently than other racial slurs that are mere fighting words not connoting any racial theory or racial inferiority. So slurs about Jews and Blacks are in a separate class since they have racial theory behind them.

I understand that "birds of a feather flock together," but the aversion to Blacks and White marrying in the US goes way beyond natural instincts and natural aversions.

Yes, stats clearly show that Blacks as a whole may be more backwards and violent, and come up last on every conceivable measure, but society can't allow many Blacks (or white trash, for that matter) to think that they can't escape from their predicament because of their race or genes. It must be presented as mere choice or happenstance, or partly both. Use of the N-word (or the term white trash) suggests whole classes are predestined by genes to failure and a hard life.

Society has many problem subcultures and addictions that people like, or choose, to mire themselves in, and don't want to be rescued from anytime soon, but society can't just write these people off as non-productive citizens. It must keep the door open and be there to help when they finally decide to exit that lifestyle or culture. Calling them pejoratives just gives them an excuse to continue where they are at, or regress further, and not to ever seek help, and they'll need help or they'll inevitably relapse and never escape.