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15 October 2008 @ 11:39 am
Speak Out Against Hate and Xenophobia  

Open Letter to McCain-Palin to end their dangerous and divisive tactics that are encouraging hate and violence--please join me in signing on to this.

I added to mine:

Some have said that if Obama were white, we wouldn't question bringing up the Ayers connection. It's not so much bringing it up in and of itself, it's the conjunction of "terrorist" (rather than 60's radical) with "Hussein" and then investigating foreign money as if terrorists may be funding the Obama campaign. It's clearly igniting the xenophobia of some of your followers who are now sporting "Obama bin Lyin'" signs and making other references to Osama bin Laden.

Combine this with the overt racism of those sporting stuffed monkeys at your rallies with Obama hats and you have a potential for some unbalanced person or persons to decide that the "terrorist" needs to be killed for the good of the country.

Yes I've said a lot of things about Bush over the last 8 years--but I've never heard anyone on the left suggest that he might be actively working for our enemies as some kind of terrorist mole.

and I sent the following to Morning Joe on MSNBC:

I've been watching Joe and Mika go back and forth over the McCain campaign's tactics and the hate speech it's sparking. I'd like to answer Joe's assertion that if this were a white guy we wouldn't be questioning this and also his repeated mention that Ayers is white, which I think doesn't matter.

It's the conjunction of three things that is sparking the xenophobia and racism of some McCain supporters in a rather frightening manner. McCain's campaign has linked three things: the association with a "terrorist" (rather than using the older term 60's radical), the use of the middle name Hussein, and the search for foreign (perhaps terrorist) money in Obama's campaign. Put them together and you have the xenophobes concluding and saying out loud that Obama is some kind of terrorist mole out to destroy our country. And what do we do with terrorists? Kill them.

No one would leap to these conclusions about a white guy who had two parents born in the United States.

So I see people at these rallies holding up "Obama bin Lyin'" signs, sporting Curious George monkeys with Obama hats, saying out right that Obama is a terrorist, and even the woman who McCain tried to correct saying that Obama is a Muslim (like that would be a bad thing anyway). I see signs "Vote right--vote white" and "No Osama or Hussein, Vote McCain." And on and on it goes.

I and my friends have said a lot of things about Bush in the last eight years, but never have we said that he's secretly working with terrorists to destroy America. None of this would be said about a white candidate in your wildest imagination.

Nor do I approve of any of the sexist comments thrown Palin or Clinton's way.

Just for the record, I'm of Irish, Scottish and German descent myself. I grew up watching racism tear my family apart when my aunt married an African-American.
(Anonymous) on October 15th, 2008 08:39 pm (UTC)
Thank you, Tapati
I will go and sign on right away.

Thanks for sharing your smart analyses of the problem. We Americans certainly are getting a vivid reminder that racism is alive and well, and must be acknowledged and dealt with. Remember when people would claim they were "color-blind"? That clearly doesn't cut it anymore, not that it ever did.

I think you took exactly the correct approach in your letters. It's good to take a close look at where this racist garbage (and I'm talking about actions, not labeling people) comes from. Racism is a sickness, and we've all been exposed to it since birth. Those of us who are not blatantly symptomatic, let's stop the spread of these outbreaks.

Meanwhile, Obama is going to continue to need very good physical protection, now and after the election, whatever the results.