Glass-Half-Full Open Thread: Fewer, If Fiercer, Racists?

Like me, the Washington Post always looks for a little optimism to start its readers’ day. From this morning:

Racial prejudice has not increased among white Americans since the explosive 2016 election, argues political scientist Daniel J. Hopkins. It has actually decreased by some measures, he found, possibly as a reaction to Trump’s unexpected ascension to the White House.

Hopkins told The Washington Post that the results initially surprised him. Upon reflection, however, “it’s quite conceivable that Trump has simultaneously galvanized a small number of highly prejudiced white Americans while also pushing millions more to affirm that they are not as prejudiced,” he argued.

In other words, Hopkins believes the study provides evidence that the racially incendiary rhetoric and policies issuing from Trump’s White House have pushed the majority of Americans in the opposite direction.

The specialist in race and political behavior acknowledged that his findings speak only to professed bias and not to concrete behavior, such as whether Americans are moving into heterogeneous neighborhoods.

The study, currently under review but posted on the Social Science Research Network on Thursday, starts from an unambiguous premise: “As a political leader, Donald Trump has used racist rhetoric to build political support.”

Hopkins and an undergraduate student, Samantha Washington, set out to determine what effect that rhetoric was having on white Americans, 57 percent of whom voted for Trump in 2016, according to exit polling. Among white men, that figure was 62 percent.

Most think the president is motivating his racist supporters to declare their bigoted views. A Quinnipiac University poll last summer found that 55 percent of voters believed that Trump was emboldening people who hold racist beliefs to state them outright.

There are two ways that effect might play out, the study observes. One is normalization, whereby members of the public would feel more comfortable expressing racist beliefs that they always harbored but once felt were outside the mainstream. The other is so-called opinion leadership, whereby the public would be moved to adopt racist positions advanced by political elites.

Instead, the authors found evidence of an altogether different effect — people actually moving away from the positions embraced by those in power…

Across the roughly 12-year period covered by the data, anti-black prejudice declined based on these metrics, with an especially marked drop between November 2016 and November 2018. The effect was only slightly more pronounced among Democrats than among Republicans. Education was not a decisive factor.

“The decline was apparently not driven by Trump’s candidacy — or by white Americans’ reactions to his campaign rhetoric in 2015 and 2016 — but instead by their reactions to his presidency itself,” the paper claims…

Whether the shift discovered by researchers has actually “shaped social behaviors” — rather than being empty value statements or even cover for discriminatory conduct — “is another critical question for future work,” the study suggests. But it casts into doubt whether hate crimes that rose 17 percent in 2017 reflect deepening hatred across the board.

Instead, the political scientist points to the increasing isolation of an extremist minority whose prejudices have intensified in the face of a broader shift away from the sort of opinions aired in Trump’s White House and on his Twitter feed…

More detail at the link. I’m not completely convinced, either — it’s a lot easier to lie to a pollster about the purity of one’s beliefs than to change hundreds of years of prejudice. But, on the other hand, there’s also the fact that acting out good values, however spurious one’s motives, does tend to gradually shift one’s core values towards those actions.

It also makes sense that the committed racists, seeing or sensing a shift among their neighbors, would respond with an extinction burst of exaggeratedly horrible, explicitly racist behavior. Donald Trump, rancid old sack of pasty overprivileged man-meat, is pretty much a bigot extinction burst made flesh.






101 replies
  1. 1
    Ruckus says:

    Trump is a massive pus filled boil on the ass of America.
    He is a racist, he is a narcissist, it’s possible that he’s in dementia, he’s not all that smart – especially not as smart as he thinks he is.
    A massive pus filled boil on the ass of America.

  2. 2
    'As You Know' Bob says:

    if true, that’s the best news I’ve heard in a while

  3. 3
    leeleeFL says:

    One hopes this is true…..it would please me to no end to know racism, in spite of the seeming everyday occurrences that shock the conscience, might be on the wane. I will follow this information, as I could use some good news to enjoy.

  4. 4
    Brachiator says:

    Racial prejudice has not increased among white Americans since the explosive 2016 election, argues political scientist Daniel J. Hopkins

    White man finds less racism. STFU.

    One is normalization, whereby members of the public would feel more comfortable expressing racist beliefs that they always harbored but once felt were outside the mainstream

    There are fools who always like to focus on expressed beliefs and feelings as opposed to the actual lives of oppressed people.

    It would be like a researcher writing that anti-woman beliefs have declined, but abortion has been made illegal in 30 states and 20 states have no abortion clinics at all. Meanwhile, the Supreme Court has approved religious freedom laws that let businesses refuse to employ women if it offends their deeply held beliefs.

    We have a racist president pushing for racist or discriminatory laws almost every freaking day. Bigots can afford to relax because they know that Dear Leader has their backs.

  5. 5
    Martin says:

    That strikes me right. Similar dynamic with the gun owners – fewer owners but they’re more intense – the average gun owner has 12 guns.

  6. 6
    Ruckus says:

    @leeleeFL:
    I believe it is on the wane. But it’s been a part of human history for an extremely long time and a part of American history since before we gained independence. That’s a lot of bad history to over come. That it’s past due to be gone and given humans, it never will be gone, just made small and less important. What we are seeing now I believe is the start of an extinction burst. Notice it’s fairly wide spread on the whole planet. And it will, I’m sure never be 100% complete. Hell we can’t even get rid of measles due to stupidity. We got rid of smallpox, we got better educated and now we can’t get rid of measles?

  7. 7
    debbie says:

    @Brachiator:

    Agreed. I wonder if this Hopkins guy has met Naomi Wolf?

  8. 8
  9. 9
    p.a. says:

    Hey it works! Tks Alain, or the intertubes gods, or whoever…

  10. 10
    Martin says:

    @Brachiator:

    It would be like a researcher writing that anti-woman beliefs have declined, but abortion has been made illegal in 30 states and 20 states have no abortion clinics at all. Meanwhile, the Supreme Court has approved religious freedom laws that let businesses refuse to employ women if it offends their deeply held beliefs.

    Public support for RvW is at an all time high. 65%-72% support in pretty much every poll out there. We’re witnessing a limited number of legislators, seeing a window of opportunity that may never exist again, going all out to achieve a goal whether the public wants it or not. Again, lots of intensity among a minority population.

    We assume that public policy follows public support, but we’re in a period of time when it’s just the opposite.

  11. 11
    cain says:

    @Ruckus:
    I don’t know, I can’t really tell. I suppose we should ask black commentators if that is true. None of you white people can really say, and neither us brown folks.

  12. 12
    Cacti says:

    The third reich was brought about by a well organized, violent minority, who cowed the majority into submission. The peak performance of the NSDAP in a free election was 33.09% of the vote. Small, but organized and committed will beat large and divided. That was the final lesson of the failed Weimar Republic.

  13. 13
    ThresherK says:

    @Martin: Average, median, or mean?

    (I know, given my college grades, I really shouldn’t be making statistics jokes.)

  14. 14
    leeleeFL says:

    @Ruckus: I like that phrase “extinction burst”. If only we could see the scourge of racism lessened to the point of extinction. It has damaged humankind for far too long.
    Misogyny, on the other hand, will only die out slowly. The weakness of the men who fear and so, hate, women runs deep and wide. It’s all Eve’s fault.

  15. 15

    I am just back from my town’s Memorial Day Parade. I was in the parade, we marched to the cemetery with our flags, I am one of the directors of the Friends of the Library, paid respects to the people (all men BTW) who had died in action in all of the wars starting from the French-Indian Wars to Vietnam. Pretty moving. Last week I helped out with the plant and bake sale. I am trying to be a good citizen by being involved in my community.

  16. 16
    leeleeFL says:

    @Ruckus: and the measles thing just pisses me off to rhe point of distraction. Conspiracy theories, climate change and pure BS may end us before we get to fix the problems.

  17. 17
    Ruckus says:

    @cain:
    True.
    I don’t expect that we will know till long after I’m gone, because while this may be an extinction burst, that can last for a very long time, burst being the word that we normally see as a quick event. But this is humanity, an extinction burst in our timeline might be a thousand years.

  18. 18
    Duane says:

    @Martin: There weren’t too many rebels left after the Civil War. Now look at them.The fewer there are, the harder they fall.

  19. 19
    leeleeFL says:

    @schrodingers_cat: that is the very meaning of good citizenship. Community is the first thing to care about. The ripples from that affect all the other human constructs.

  20. 20
    Ruckus says:

    @leeleeFL:
    It’s mostly the men with the misogyny problems, although we aren’t alone in it, so why are you blaming a woman? That actually sounds like men looking for an excuse. Which is what I expect you meant.

  21. 21
    cmorenc says:

    (Yeah, I know the study focuses on people’s attitudes since Trump was elected, not the election)

    Nevertheless, a troubling thing that has to be accounted for is: Trump’s racism was on display quite a bit during the campaign – if so, a much more substantial portion of folks beyond just core racists voted for him anyway. That’s as I do, but the survey is as I say – which at the very least indicates lots of folks supposedly turned off by racism nevertheless thought a Trump victory would bring something worthwhile worth ignoring the obvious racism. .

  22. 22
    Ruckus says:

    @leeleeFL:
    Remember that half of all the humans are dumber than the median.That’s a lot of dumb.

  23. 23
    leeleeFL says:

    @Duane: That’s because Lincoln’s ‘better angels” let the Lost Cause BS fester and grow. Should not have happened. Traitors don’t get a second bite at the apple. He meant well, didn’t do well.

  24. 24
    leeleeFL says:

    @Ruckus: Eve caused Adam to sin and lose paradise. I don’t blame her myself, but it is the first time a woman was blamed for what went wrong. That’s what I meant. It started really early.

  25. 25
    TenguPhule says:

    @Ruckus:

    so why are you blaming a woman?

    Calibrate your snark detector.

  26. 26
    leeleeFL says:

    @Ruckus: Good point. The nuclear level stupid is terrifying! I often feel a despair for my Grands and one GreatGrand. My parents lived to 89 and 90. I wm not sure I want to match or surpass them. The World is often an ugly place.

  27. 27
    leeleeFL says:

    @TenguPhule: Tanks!

  28. 28
    Barbara says:

    @schrodingers_cat: Hear, hear! Those are good things to do!

  29. 29
    Karen says:

    i’ve come to believe that people are nor pre-racist – until something happens (black president, black integration, black boss, etc.) they go off the deep end and the N word flows freely. It’s like sleeper cells.

  30. 30
    Jay says:

    A point in support of the hypothesis, BBQ Beckies havn’t had any “good days” since Needy Amin was “elected”,….

  31. 31
    bluefoot says:

    @Brachiator: yep. Plus I think that even if racism hasn’t increased then your average person is a lot more comfortable showing their “casual” racism. There are an awful lot of people in my every day life saying things out loud/doing things now that they wouldn’t have three years ago.

  32. 32
    Belafon says:

    My mom is one of those people who realized because of Trump she was being racist. Whereas before, I would argue with her and she would end with “well, that’s just how I grew up,” she recently confided that she realizes that she needs to change.

  33. 33

    There will be 26 Muslim MPs in the new Loksabha. # Muslim BJP MPs = 0.

  34. 34

    @Jay: I answered your question about the INA this morning.

  35. 35
    Brachiator says:

    @Martin:

    Public support for RvW is at an all time high. 65%-72% support in pretty much every poll out there. We’re witnessing a limited number of legislators, seeing a window of opportunity that may never exist again, going all out to achieve a goal whether the public wants it or not. Again, lots of intensity among a minority population.

    How many red states are there with GOP majorities and GOP governors? How many conservative judges are being seeded in the federal courts?

    The public isn’t stopping the assault on women’s rights.

    The same is sadly true with respect to race and civil rights.

    We assume that public policy follows public support, but we’re in a period of time when it’s just the opposite.

    I don’t assume this at all. Nor has it been consistently the case in the history of this country.

    A quick look back:

    A sign of the times, in 1963, a Gallup poll found that 78% of white people would leave their neighborhood if many black families moved in. When it comes to MLK’s march on Washington, 60% had an unfavorable view of the march, stating that they felt it would cause violence and would not accomplish anything.

    https://ropercenter.cornell.edu/blog/public-opinion-civil-rights-reflections-civil-rights-act-1964-blog

  36. 36

    @Brachiator: There is a saying in Marathi that the teeth you eat with are different than the teeth you should the world.

  37. 37
    gVOR08 says:

    There was a fair amount of racism in reaction to having a black guy as president. Now we have a white guy. Memory fades quickly.

  38. 38
    Peale says:

    Unfortunately, I think their “extinction burst” involves starting a race war, at least in our country. We can hope that we don’t have to go along with it and they’ll have trouble finding the actual soldiers to fight it. But who knows.

  39. 39
    rikyrah says:

    Keith Boykin (@keithboykin) Tweeted:
    Wall Street Journal: Of the top 2020 presidential candidates, @KamalaHarris has the largest percentage of Black, Hispanic or API staff members and @JulianCastro has the largest percentage of women staff members. https://t.co/9vGRebiTg7 https://t.co/YckfWiTHov https://twitter.com/keithboykin/status/1131903440827944960?s=17

  40. 40
    rikyrah says:

    As a Black woman, I call absolute bullshyt on this entire study.
    Don’t piss on my leg and tell me it’s rain. You want to believe it, but, it’s not phucking true.😠😠

  41. 41
    Dan B says:

    @schrodingers_cat: The number of Muslims in the Lok Saba seems to be declining especially compared to the total population – 200 million by 2020?

  42. 42
    rikyrah says:

    The Washington Post (@washingtonpost) Tweeted:
    Trump administration to pull out of rural Job Corps program, laying off 1,100 federal workers https://t.co/8Xs3XlgBVO https://twitter.com/washingtonpost/status/1132083412603482114?s=17

  43. 43
    Jay says:

    @Peale:

    In a twitter bag on Greenwad, Dave Neiwart did a thread on one of the Nazi groups history and evolution of nyms.

    They have been trying to get their RoWAHa on for over 40 years, to no avail. “Lone Wolves”, small gangs, no Army.

  44. 44

    @Dan B: Its up from the last Loksabha by 4 IIRC. Also Congress was reluctant to give Muslim tickets (using the Indian election jargon) to contest the election. BJP had 6 Muslim contestants but they all lost.

  45. 45
    Aleta says:

    In case this hasn’t been mentioned

    The field trip to Boston’s Museum of Fine Arts was supposed to be a reward for good grades and excellent behavior.

    Instead, chaperones say students from the Helen Y. Davis Leadership Academy Charter Public School in Dorchester, Mass., left in tears last week after they were subjected to racial profiling from museum employees and offensive comments from visitors.

    On Friday, the museum again apologized to the students and the middle school, where the majority of students are black or Latino. The museum said in a statement Friday that, following an investigation, it had banned visitors accused of making racist comments and is retraining staff and security.

    26 seventh graders

  46. 46
    Steve in the ATL says:

    We are at Lake Oconee for the weekend. Our club here has a golf tournament every year in which the members are assigned to the red team or the blue team and the two teams compete against each other. Until this year, it was called the “civil war”. Thanks to some progressive and motivated members, this year it was changed to simply the “war”.

    A small but meaningful victory for people on the right side of history. Hopefully similar small acts are taking place across the country to move us closer to sanity.

  47. 47
    Dan B says:

    @rikyrah: It’s a single study with a very squishy conclusion. I think there is some truth but simply because people’s racism is not fixed but depends upon their tribe / community.

    It would be mice if racism was waning but just a few media worthy storues coild change it in a few hours. An attack by a few black men, fabricated or real, could drive the country nuts.

  48. 48
    raven says:

    @Steve in the ATL: I used to fish out of Swords and Redlands. The fucking runoff from those courses ruined the lake.

  49. 49
    Steve in the ATL says:

    @raven: yeah, but the courses are really nice! And slightly less racist now!

  50. 50
    cmorenc says:

    @leeleeFL:

    @Duane: That’s because Lincoln’s ‘better angels” let the Lost Cause BS fester and grow. Should not have happened. Traitors don’t get a second bite at the apple. He meant well, didn’t do well.

    Lincoln didn’t live long enough to see how things would have played out with his approach, under his leadership – he died on April 15, 1864, only six days after Lee’s surrender at Appomatox, and while other confederate armies (particularly Gen Joe Johnston) were still in the field resisting (Johnston didn’t surrender until April 26th, 1865). His vice-president and successor, Andrew Johnson was particularly ill-suited to constructively implement Lincoln’s approach or to coopertively manage Radical Republicans in Congress.

    What-if Lincoln had better sentry protection at Ford’s Theater and lived out his second term – it’s an interesting but unknowable question the extent to which things would have been different and better.

  51. 51

    @rikyrah: A lot of people believe that they are not racist and are unaware of their own biases.

  52. 52
    Ruckus says:

    @Peale:
    As things get more desperate for any large group their actions to retain their position will grow more dangerous. What they require is a leader willing to go farther than they are alone. It’s possible that they see Trump as that leader. But of course he’s not a leader, he’s a bully. People will follow a bully, but they are not being led. It’s more like they are tagging along for the scraps.
    @rikyrah:
    It may be the very early start, but no, it ain’t over. As I said above, I don’t expect to see it lessoned much in a very long time. Too many racists have too much invested in their hate for it to magically disappear. And the racists elected their model racist as president.

  53. 53
    Cacti says:

    @Belafon:

    A Trump supporter capable of self-awareness and reflection? Your mother is a unicorn.

  54. 54
    Dan B says:

    @schrodingers_cat: It’s a blip but any hope is good. I don’t know how you get to be a muslim BJP. Are they muslim separatists or something else? My understanding of BJP ideology (is there ideas?) Is limited. Is Congress the only major party that could provide a place for mislims to advance?

  55. 55
    Ruckus says:

    @schrodingers_cat:
    I believe that where racism is concerned a lot of people like their biases.

  56. 56
    MagdaInBlack says:

    @Aleta:
    Interesting that when I reached the end of the article, the next suggested article was the one about racism declining.

  57. 57
  58. 58

    I’m more than a bit skeptical of relying on stated attitudes rather than observed actions. I’m with @rikyrah

    But there’s a lot of truth to the extinction burst bigotry. The fundamentalist have been pretty open in talking about how they have to take the opportunity now to hurt the people they hate, in particular trans people, lest we be normalized like gays. (There’s a lot of lamenting about the realization they lost the battle about same-sex marriage and are unlikely to be able to repeal it any time soon.)

    Speaking of trying to jam through anti-trans measures, Pence and his minions have been busy this week: The Trump Administration Just Released Its Third Rollback Of Transgender Protections This Week

    – A draft rule released Friday would undo nondiscrimination protections in health care for those who have had abortions as well as transgender people. Aside from the specific rollbacks, it’s an attempt to define “sex” as that which was assigned at birth only — thereby trying to legally define trans people out of exists. The Trump administration also invoked “biological sex” in the trans military ban.

    – One rule, finalized Tuesday, would let health care workers recuse themselves from treating transgender patients on religious grounds. One reason the Obama administration created the rule is that health professionals literally let a trans women bleed to the death in the street rather than treat her. (Tyra Hunter #SayHerName)

    – A draft rule issued Wednesday would let homeless shelters turn away transgender people. This will kill people. A trans woman froze to death because shelters wouldn’t take her. (Jennifer Gale #SayHerName) LGBT teens have a homelessness rate that’s double that of straight teens.

    So yeah, while attitudes may be changing, the problem is that attitudes aren’t followed up with action to fight back against the minority-rule efforts to strip people of their rights.

    (Yes, I’m pissy this week…)

  59. 59
    Dan B says:

    @Aleta: The Boston museum story reminds me of a couple young black guys who were hired by an insulation and air sealing company – woman owned. They showed up at a home and were not allowed in by the terrified homeowner. They were heartbroken. They were starting families and saw their dreams melt away. These guys worked on our house and they were so at ease. Couldn’t make up for the fear that they would be blindsided at any moment.

  60. 60
    Duane says:

    @cmorenc: I knew someone would make that point much, much better than I could.
    Yeah hard to do much when you’re dead.

  61. 61
    Cacti says:

    The first Federal Court injunction against Trump’s border wall plans has been issued.

  62. 62

    @Dan B: There are regional parties, communists and Muslim parties too.

  63. 63
    debbie says:

    @Aleta:

    Boston has always had an ugly racist underbelly. And in a goddamn art museum! One student interviewed said he wasn’t interested in art museums any more.

  64. 64

    Another silver lining, youngest MP is a 25 year old woman from Odisha.

  65. 65
    Dan B says:

    @Sister Golden Bear: I wish I felt confident that the battle over same sex marriage was over. There’s a frenzy of anti-trans and anti-abortion measures at the moment. Seems that Pence is behind those at HHS and may be at the state level as well. There are cases where “religious rights” will allow hospitals to deny visitation by spouses and businesses to turn away same sex couples, and more. At the moment the assaults against immigrants and trans people are approaching a fever pitch. Being next in line doesn’t give me much comfort. I haven’t had any trans friends killed but I had a couple housemates, one from Mexico, who spent years trying to be together and finally moved to the Netherlands. Miss em.

  66. 66
    Mike in NC says:

    @Cacti: May Fat Bastard enjoy a holiday weekend of more setbacks like this. He’s eventually going to stroke out. Hopefully somebody (Miller?) will encourage him to say something appalling about our war dead.

  67. 67
    Dan B says:

    @schrodingers_cat: Our first day on our visit to Cochi(n), was slowed by several hundred colorfully dressed drmonstrating fo Women’s rights. I thought, “Communist Kerala, very nice!”

  68. 68
    Barbara says:

    @Sister Golden Bear: If it helps, these rules are going to be challenged, and there are reasons to think the challenge will succeed. I find it utterly repugnant that a health care worker would refuse to treat a person — as opposed to refusing to perform a procedure (which I still think is questionable). “I am going to let you die because I don’t like you.” I do feel constrained to point out that the ambulance incident was more than 20 years ago. But yeah, just totally odious.

  69. 69
    Cacti says:

    @Mike in NC:

    I’ve said it before, Memorial Day must be fairly awkward for Republicans now that the right wing considers Germany the good guys of WWII.

  70. 70
    NotMax says:

    @Mike in NC

    “Not enough people know that the D in D-Day stands for Donald!”

    :)

  71. 71
    Raoul says:

    I think this could be somewhat parallel to the long range Pew data that says that the US has moved in 25 years from 63% of Americans thinking immigrants are ‘a burden by taking jobs, housing and health care’ down to 28% in 2019. The ‘immigrants strengthen’ number has of course tracked almost the reverse line.

    And here’s why: In that same 25 years, Dems (and D leaners) have moved from 32% agreeing that immigrants strengthen our country, to 83%. Repubs and leaners have moved only from 30% to 38%. I don’t know if Pew has broken out how partisan ID may also compound this effect – in essence the remaining rump Repubs hold the segmented number down, but the national number rises as voters switch lean and switch immigrant view (not necessarily in that order).

    And while there’s been a slight deflection down since Trump was elected, his ranting has not moved the dial appreciably.

  72. 72
    Steve in the ATL says:

    @Sister Golden Bear: shit is fucked up and bullshit.

  73. 73
    Alternative Fax, a hip hop artist from Idaho says:

    @Steve in the ATL: Sounds like fun (except for the golf!). Some of us are stuck in the 6 minute hell with tight turns. :pout:

  74. 74
    Dan B says:

    @rikyrah: Rural poor dumped by Trump. See, he’s for equality. Misery for all. Suffering makes you stronger!

    I hpe the IC and Congress make Trump / Pence / McConnell “stronger”.

  75. 75
    Steve in the ATL says:

    @Alternative Fax, a hip hop artist from Idaho: your union contract lets them work you on a holiday weekend?

  76. 76

    @Dan B: I’m not sanguine about same-sex marriage either. They were aware that the majority of America support it. But the difference now is that they’re emboldened to openly push for minority rule.

    @Barbara: It was 20 years ago and was particularly horribly. But denial of care to trans people is still all to common today. Google “trans broken arm syndrome” for examples — and yes the name comes from a trans woman who was refused treatment for a broken arm because the doctors claimed it trans-related. Yes, really.

  77. 77
  78. 78
    Alternative Fax, a hip hop artist from Idaho says:

    @Steve in the ATL: HA!
    Conceding to your superior jab there, counselor.

  79. 79
    rikyrah says:

    @Sister Golden Bear:
    These new “rules” are gonna kill more people.
    I didn’t know about the number of transgender troops in the military, but, they don’t seem to care with how they are now being treated.

    They are coming for the LGBT community.
    They are coming for your adoptive children.
    And, yes, they are coming for gay marriage.

    How can you not see this?

    I don’t mean you, SGB…you have been alert from the beginning.

  80. 80
    rikyrah says:

    @Aleta:
    7th graders.
    Each of them with a parent, when they heard this, wanted to take an AR-15 to the place.
    The hardest part about loving a Black child is that you know the moment will come when your child will be shown hatred, not for their actions, but because of their EXISTENCE.
    Knowing that you will fail in the primary duty of an Elder – protection.

  81. 81
    Martin says:

    @Brachiator:

    How many red states are there with GOP majorities and GOP governors? How many conservative judges are being seeded in the federal courts?

    The public isn’t stopping the assault on women’s rights.

    The same is sadly true with respect to race and civil rights.

    Keep in mind that California expanding abortion rights has a larger population than the 8 states that this week restricted abortion combined. And Maine expanded rights, as did Nevada.

    So, the public is pushing back, but it’s not uniformly distributed. And lets not lose sight of the fact that Alabama does stupid shit at an alarming rate, and none of it becomes national policy. I’m sympathetic to the folks in Alabama who are stuck with this shit, but I can’t fix that from here – only people that live in Alabama can. California has done the thing that Dems need to do at the federal level – take the issue out of the court and legislate it.

    The legislature finds and declares that every individual possesses a fundamental right of privacy with respect to personal reproductive decisions … Every individual has the fundamental right to choose or refuse birth control … Every woman has the fundamental right to choose to bear a child or to choose and to obtain an abortion … The state shall not deny or interfere with a woman’s fundamental right to choose to bear a child or to choose and obtain an abortion.

    ⅛ of the country have that as a constitutional right, and we’ve sent 2x as many Democrats to DC to push that right, including many of the committee leaders in the House, and one of the leading candidates for President.

  82. 82
    Martin says:

    @Sister Golden Bear:

    Let us realize the arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice.

    There’s always setbacks. Sometimes it’s fast, though. Prop 8 passed in CA in 2008 banning gay marriage, and 3 years later we legislated that schools had to explicitly teach about the contributions of LGBT individuals in history, and 2 years later mandated that schools had to allow student choice in use of bathroom. So yeah, we’ll have setbacks at the federal level but that’s because Pence is a piece of shit and Trump doesn’t care about anyone but himself, and the rest of the GOP don’t care about anyone but Trump, but that’ll pass soon, and Democrats will look at states like California and lurch federal legislation forward. Eventually it’ll stick. It sucks, I know, but I guarantee we’ll get there.

  83. 83
    Jay says:

    There’s a Nazi march scheduled for Medicine Hat on Saturday.

    The guy who owns all 6 McDonalds franchises, ( an immigrant of course) along with all the A&W franchises, ( not immigrants), are offering free milkshakes,…….

  84. 84
    CapnMubbers says:

    @NotMax: Thanks for posting that. So often stories trail off into “wonder whatever happened to that hiker…”

  85. 85
    Brachiator says:

    @NotMax:

    A dollop of good news. Maui hiker missing for more than two weeks found alive in forest

    Wow. A great bit of pleasant news. I hope that the hiker has a full recovery. And I hope she is not deluged with media attention, wanting to get her story.

  86. 86
    Groucho48 says:

    On the optimistic side, racism might be down because racist old white folks are dying out and being replaced by not-as-likely-to-be-racist younger folks.

    On the pessimistic side, maybe they deny being racist because they think the only racism left is against white folks.

  87. 87
    LosGatosCA says:

    It’s my inexpert opinion that the pace toward a post-racial society has positively accelerated. It took about 350 years of slavery before the country took a definitive stand to end it. It’s only been 160 years since that time and the voter suppression has gone from overt and physical to covert and bureaucratic. Likewise, the number of random police and citizen shootings of black people seems to have declined from the days of public and private lynchings.

    In this non-peer reviewed comment I’m going to extrapolate that our society, beacon and hope of the world, last hope of free people everywhere, will allow non-white people to vote without harassment, move freely in all spaces without profiling and detention, obtain housing and mortgages without racial discrimination, and be fairly considered for employment on the same basis as every mediocre, semi-educated mullet owning white cracker driving a pickup, in no more than 10 more generations.

    One of the biggest barriers to progress though is the lack of gratitude on the part of non-white people for the sacrifices of white people to enable this progress over the past 5-6 centuries.

  88. 88
    Jay says:

    “One of the biggest barriers to progress though is the lack of gratitude on the part of non-white people for the sacrifices of white people to enable this progress over the past 5-6 centuries.”

    Really, nym I’ve never seen before?

  89. 89
    Groucho48 says:

    @Jay:

    It’s clearly snark.

  90. 90
    Ruckus says:

    @Jay:
    Groucho’s got it right @LosGatosCA: Has been around for a while, take it for the snark it was intended to be……

  91. 91
    leeleeFL says:

    @Duane: @cmorenc: of course I know he died right at the end of the war, I meant his philosophy of reuniting the Country was badly thought out. His ideas were far too gentle and gentlemanly towards the Confederacy. That lead to too much looking for the “better angels” and not enough realizing that traitors don’t get to write the future, unless they win.

  92. 92
    joel hanes says:

    @leeleeFL:

    Eve … is the first time a woman was blamed for what went wrong.

    No. There is another.

    Lilith.

  93. 93
    leeleeFL says:

    @joel hanes: Oops, I forgot her. Tanks!

  94. 94
    BlueDWarrior says:

    @leeleeFL: the problem was that the will to rewrite American culture to recognize the humanity of Afro-Americans still didn’t exist popularly.

    Your average white Northerner might have convinced to take black people out of chains, but it still took decades to convince them that letting them live in thier neighborhoods wouldn’t lead to a plague of locusts or whatnot.

    Some of the most vicious fights over active school desegregation were in Union states after all…

  95. 95
    Jay says:

    @Groucho48:
    @Ruckus:

    Too true to be cool,

    Snark tags needed, mon.

    Yunnnow, could be Brooks,

  96. 96
    Miss Bianca says:

    @rikyrah: Alas, I fear you are all too right. : (

  97. 97
    Miss Bianca says:

    @Sister Golden Bear: I would say that I JUST DON’T GET IT about transphobia, and then I remember how I had to unfriend someone on FB who was making these bizarre anti-trans rants, and I realize that this is a prejudice that goes just bone-deep for some people for some reason. Why would men be freaked out about it? I don’t know. But at least some women I know – who call themselves feminists – are losing their shit because of, I dunno, essentialism or something? “Real womanhood is innate, so what are these MEN doing in the sisterhood”?

    I despise essentialism. I reject it. I am glad that there is someone like you who is such an eloquent advocate for trans persons. And I am angry at people like this, whose politics I otherwise agree with, because just as with “anti-porn” feminists, I feel I have to say: “Look at your allies in this cause – look at their low quality. You’re getting into bed with narrow-minded, bigoted fundamentalists – shouldn’t that make you question yourself?”

  98. 98
    Betty says:

    @schrodingers_cat: I guess they will let you stay then. Good!

  99. 99
    Uncle Cosmo says:

    @debbie:

    Boston has always had an ugly racist underbelly.

    No foolin’. ::rolleyes:: Go look up the vicious reactions to “forced school busings” back in the day. Led by the two most virulently racist subgroups in the USA: Irish- & Italian-Americans, last-off-the-boaters who reacted to the prejudice their forefathers endured by fighting their way up the ladder to Whitebread Heaven & then pulling it up & out of reach of any latercomers. (As my Jewish friend put it to this italoamericano: Remember the days before we were white?) Feckin’ barstids. Stronzini.

  100. 100
    Uncle Cosmo says:

    @Miss Bianca:

    I would say that I JUST DON’T GET IT about transphobia, and then I remember how I had to unfriend someone on FB who was making these bizarre anti-trans rants, and I realize that this is a prejudice that goes just bone-deep for some people for some reason. Why would men be freaked out about it? I don’t know.

    IMO the “dirty little secret” about human sexuality is that it exists on a spectrum – no one is 100% heteroerotic (or for that matter homoerotic) – & what terrifies the homophobic & anti-trans is that fraction (however small) within themselves that hears (however faintly) a different drummer. Instead of accepting it they make furious attempts to repress it, often by erecting superreligious barricades & hiding behind them – whereupon the terror mounts when they realize that the (siren) calls are coming from inside the stockade. – & when they crack, they crack wide-frickin’-open.

    (BTW & FWIW I can conceive something of this same dynamic in a “good Catholic” young man with pedophilic tendencies who might in good faith enter the priesthood on the grounds that only God’s grace might enable him to resist what he fully knows are horrible acts – & then discovers that divine grace is not enough now that he’s placed himself in a “perfect” situation to be tempted & to act upon it. I do not assert that this happens often, but I can see how it might upon occasion [ETA: & I would feel terribly sorry for someone in that situation, as opposed to predators who cynically take ordination as a means to pursue their vile “tastes”, who deserve no sympathy.)

  101. 101

    @Miss Bianca:

    Why would men be freaked out about it? I don’t know.

    Part of it is the “hidden desires” factor that Uncle Cosmo mentioned. A bit part of it is that it’s kind of the ultimate rejection of masculinity and manhood — I should note that anti-trans hysteria is almost always about trans women. So misogyny is a big factor.

    But at least some women I know – who call themselves feminists – are losing their shit because of, I dunno, essentialism or something? “Real womanhood is innate, so what are these MEN doing in the sisterhood”?

    As far as the TERFs, feminism all-too-often has had it’s own streak of misogyny. “Whipping Girl: A Transsexual Woman on Sexism and the Scapegoating of Femininity” gives a great run down on this. One of the particularly galling aspects was/is how butch lesbians were/are valorized for their masculinity, and trans men often remained active in the lesbian community post-transition at the very same time trans women were/are excluded.

    Plus the TERFs do have a heavy dose of essentialism, coming out of Second Wave feminism of the 1970s. A number of TERFs actually are ironically pretty butch themselves, and I think Uncle Cosmo’s “hidden desires” is also a subconscious factor as well (i.e. they’re terrified that they might be trans themselves).

    There also was a bit of boundary policing, similar to the ways that too many women in the lesbian community can be really suspicious of/shitting to bisexual women.

    A final factor, less so today, was that as the climate got friendlier for trans folks, a number of people who had identified as butch lesbians ended up realizing they were actually trans men, and transitioning. Leading to the idea of “butch flight” which reduced the pool of butch lesbians for those seeking them. So trans women ended up being the whipping girls upon whom frustration over this dynamic was displaced.

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