Category Archives: Intolerance

Headline of the day II: A question of semantics


From the Independent, a sad story this afternoon in the Big Apple:

Queens shooting: Imam dead as two men killed following afternoon prayers at New York mosque

Police said they were investigating the incident as a possible hate crime

Our semantic question is this: Would police call it  hate crime if a Muslim shot a priest and a parishioner? Or would they call it terrorism?

We suspect the latter, don’t you?

So what’s the difference?

And how much blame must fall on the shoulders of Donald Trump?

Edmund Duffy: “Keep the dirty furriners out”


While most people believe that the resurgence of the Ku Klux Klan in the early 1920’s was primarily driven by fear and hatred of African Americans, the reality was that the KKK was largely driven by anti-immigration sentiment, most notably fear of Catholics and Jews from Europe’s poorest nations.

No one captured that sentiment better than Edmund Duffy, three-time Pulitizer Prize-winning editorial cartoonist of the Baltimore Sun.

Johns Hopkins University has just discovered and posted online an archive of his cartoon sketches, and one summarizes sentiment that Donald Trump has managed to mobilize on his run for the White House, a run recently endorsed by the Imperial Wizard of the KKK and the chairman of the American Nazi Party.

Needless to say, today’s Klan has dredged up its anti-immigrant stance in hopes of capitalizing on the atmosphere Trump has created.

And that brings us to the cartoon:

“Keep the dirty furriners out” — Edmund Duffy (1920s/30s): Liberal for his time, Duffy often tackled topics ranging from environmentalism to race. An advocate for civil rights and equality, he was fond of taking on and mocking the Ku Klux Klan and their supporters in his work, viciously condemning lynching and other KKK activities. This piece pokes fun at American xenophobia, particularly within the KKK, and government reaction to both anti-immigrant sentiment and the flourishing of the KKK.

“Keep the dirty furriners out” — Edmund Duffy (1920s/30s): Liberal for his time, Duffy often tackled topics ranging from environmentalism to race. An advocate for civil rights and equality, he was fond of taking on and mocking the Ku Klux Klan and their supporters in his work, viciously condemning lynching and other KKK activities. This piece pokes fun at American xenophobia, particularly within the KKK, and government reaction to both anti-immigrant sentiment and the flourishing of the KKK.

Media Muslim depictions foster intolerance


Back during our first year of posting here at esnl, we took an in-depth look at the demonization of Muslims in America’s films and television shows, the subject of the insightful documentary Reel Bad Arabs.

Back when esnl was a kid in the days just after World War II, screens large and small were dominated by villains who either spoke with German accents [“Vas ist das, dumbkopf?!“], pseudo-Japanese accents [You know very rittle, Amelican!”] or in Hollywood’s version of how Native Americans spoke [“How,” being the greeting, often followed by “Me big chief.”]

But these days, thanks to the massive blowback from the armed petro politics of Bush I-Clinton-Bush II-Obama/Clinton era, screens large and small are dominated by villains who pray toward Mecca and say things like “Time for you to die, infidel!

If you suspect that all those negative portrayals of Muslims might be having an adverse impact, you’d be correct.

From Texas A&M University:

What if most or all you know about Muslims is from what you see in the media — terrorists depicted in movies and TV shows, news reports on suicide bombings and mass shootings. What would your perception of Muslims be? Would you have stereotypical beliefs and negative emotions about them, and would you support policies that are harmful to them? Very likely, according to research co-authored by a Texas A&M University professor.

In “Reliance on Direct and Mediated Contact and Public Policies Supporting Outgroup Harm” [$6 read-only for 48 hours, $38 to read and print out], published in the Journal of Communication, Srividya Ramasubramanian, associate dean of liberal arts and professor of communication at Texas A&M, and her co-authors, used multiple studies, surveying non-Muslims on how much they relied on direct contact with Muslims versus media-based contact. Then they measured participants’ negative emotions toward Muslims, perceptions of Muslims as aggressive, support for civil restrictions against Muslims, and support for military action against Muslim countries.

“We observed that almost on a daily basis, media depictions of Muslims are extremely negative,” Ramasubramanian says. “Almost without exception, they are portrayed in stereotypical ways as violent, criminal and extreme. Islamophobia is on the rise and even some American political leaders have expressed hateful sentiments towards Muslims.”

The researchers found a correlation between people who rely on media depictions of Muslims and having negative attitudes, versus those with direct interactions who were less likely to view Muslims negatively.

“Our findings show that individuals who rely on the media for information on Muslims have greater negative emotions toward Muslims and increased perceptions of Muslims as aggressive, which in turn leads to support for civil restrictions against Muslims and military actions against Muslim countries,” says Ramasubramanian, who studies media psychology and cultural diversity, especially the effects of media stereotypes on users’ attitudes, emotions, and policy support towards marginalized groups.

There’s more, after the jump. . . Continue reading

Quote of the day: GOP institutionalized racism


From Corey Robin, author and professor of political science at Brooklyn College and the CUNY Graduate Center, writing at his blog:

In this election, we have the opportunity to repudiate not only Donald Trump but Trumpism, and not only Trumpism but the entire apparatus that gave us this man and this moment. That apparatus is the Republican Party and the modern conservative movement. The movement and the party that gave us the Southern Strategy, that made white supremacy the major dividing line between the two parties, that race-baited its way to the free market as the dominant ideology of our time, that made hysterical, revanchist militarism the common sense of bipartisanship, that helped turn the Democratic Party into the shell that it is today (with plenty of assistance of course from people like Bill Clinton), that gave us Donald Trump.

When we pretend that Donald Trump is an utter novelty on the American political scene, when Democratic presidents and Democratic presidential aspirants invoke the reverie of Ronald Reagan against the reality of Donald Trump, when liberal journalists say the contest this year is not between the Republicans and the Democrats but between a normal party and an abnormal formation (with the implication being that if only we could go back to the contests of 2008, 2000, 1992, 1980, 1972, all would be well), we not only commit an offense against history and memory; we not only betray a woeful ignorance of how we came to this pass (and thereby, as the cliche would have it, ensure that we will come to it again); we help shore up, we extend the half-life, of a party and a movement that should be thoroughly smashed and repudiated. (That, incidentally, is what all the great realignments do: they shatter the old regime, they destroy the ideological assumptions and repudiate the interests that have governed for decades, they send the dominant party and its leading emblems into exile.) We make plain our intention to give that party and that movement, even if they should lose in November, a second chance to make their malice and mischief all over again.

Observations on immigrant support for Trump


From Diego Martinez Lloreda, opinion editor of El Pais, a Colombian national daily newspaper published in Cali, who believes Donald Trump will gain the White House.

In an essay entitled “An Idiot in Power,” he comments on the paradoxical support of many naturalized immigrants for the man who would seemingly be their bitterest foe.

Translated by Watching America:

Many of us in Latin America don’t understand why Trump has so many Latino supporters when he has promised to build a wall separating Texas and Mexico and deport every undocumented Latino he can catch.

The reason is simple: There’s no one more xenophobic than an immigrant who has gotten his or her legal status. It takes a lot to become naturalized in the U.S. and the last thing immigrants seeking citizenship want is an avalanche of new immigrants to compete with.

So Trump not only has the support of the old America, whose credo is the famous Monroe Doctrine: “America for Americans,” but he can also count on the support of thousands of immigrants.

And what’s more, he has the perfect rival. While the Republican business magnate is a symbol of hard-earned success, the kind of person admired most in the nation of Uncle Sam, Clinton belongs to the privileged class who for years has wandered comfortably through the halls of Washington, exactly what the average American detests most.

In summary, the Americans won’t be choosing the candidate most prepared to govern them this November, but simply the one who looks most like them and their idea of what an American is.

It sounds stupid, but that’s how it goes in all elections.

The sexist, xenophobic voices of the Trumpsters


In case you missed it, a remarkable video from the New York Times captures the essence of the Trump phenomenon.

It’s frightening, and we’ll leave it to you, gentle readers, to draw the appropriate historical parallels.

From the New York Times:

Unfiltered Voices From Donald Trump’s Crowds

Program notes:

New York Times reporters have covered Donald J. Trump’s rallies for more than a year. His supporters at these events often express their views in angry and provocative ways. Here are some examples.

Produced by: ERICA BERENSTEIN, NICK CORASANITI AND ASHLEY PARKER

Read the story here.

Graphic representation: Case of severe mail ego


What should’ve been Hillary Clinton’s victory lap at the Democratic National Convention has been clouded by the Wikileaks release of a massive cache of Democratic National Committee emails, confirmed that the party was actively working against Bernie Sanders.

Also included in the cache were emails disparaging a black committee staffer’s name, homophobic slurs, and much more.

Needless to say, it’s all fodder for editorial cartoonists [as in today’s earlier post].

We begin with an offering from the Minneapolis Star Tribune:

Steve Sack: Hillary’s pillory

BLOG H Sacks

A similar take from the Atlanta Journal-Constitution:

Mike Luckovich: Confetti?

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The FBI suspects Russian hackers were involved, as in this offering from the Arizona Republic:

Steven Benson: Hillary’s Red State bombshell

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But Edward Snowden remains agnostic, tweeting that “If Russia hacked the #DNC, they should be condemned for it. But during the #Sony hack, the FBI presented evidence.”

The Philadelphia Daily News editorial cartoonist portrayed the first casualty of the attack in the forced resignation of the Democratic National Committee chair:

Signe Wilkinson: A fall from great heights

BLOG H. Debbie

From the San Diego Union-Tribune, evidence in the emails depicted the former chair as actively working against Clinton’s rival, with a decisive result:

Steve Breen: Delivering an ass-kicking

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But Donna Brazile, her replacement as DNC chair, has been just as adamant in her opposition to Sanders, as revealed in an email Snowden Tweeted, with the message “Did the #DNC seriously just swap the Chair fired for anti-Sanders bias with a different anti-Sanders official?”:

BLOG Bernies