What hath Trayvon Wrought?

I was not planning on writing about the Martin-Zimmerman saga again.  For one thing, I just wasn’t that into it.  I had the normal amount of public interest in the story, and since it was a local one, it’s always interesting to watch your local area mischaracterized by the national press.  But it wasn’t an obsession for me and I thought my previous post would be my last take on the subject.

Al Sharpton

Al Sharpton (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

But post verdict, the issue refused to die.  My twitter feed, my Facebook news feed, my web forums, and my television news are all filled with the results of the post verdict world, and it is not pretty.  The MSM is insisting that this is racial issue, with Trayvon now elevated into the exalted ranks of civil rights martyrs such as Emmitt Till and James Chaney.  The New York Times, which basically functions as the editor to every newspaper and TV newsroom in the country, has declared it a racial issue.  So by the preponderance of noise, if not reason or evidence; it’s a racial issue.

And what made George Zimmerman the 21st Century Bull Connor and George Wallace combined?

He mentored black children in the neighborhood;

He tried to raise awareness of police ignoring the beating of a black man;

He took a black girl to the prom;

He had a black business partner;

He was a registered Democrat and Obama supporter;

and was part black himself.

So George Zimmerman, who told family members he supported Obama for President because he wanted to end the Presidency as a club for white men, found himself declared a white man, and a racist one to boot, even being slandered by innuendo by the very President he supported.  Of course, someone could have an item or two off of that check list and still be a racist, but all of them, with no actual proof otherwise?

Considering that there are actual racial crimes that occur on a regular basis, what made the press champion this phony racial issue?

I think it’s all due to Al Sharpton, the most powerful media influence in America.  The fact that he is so powerful is fairly amazing.  He hosts a low rated show on a low rated network, but was able to galvanize a nation into following his racial witch hunt all the way to Sanford, Florida.  And why did Sharpton pick that case, when there is an abundance of real racial cases to choose from?

That requires knowing a little something of Sharpton’s history, and as someone who has been a Sharpton follower since the Tawana Brawley debacle, Sharpton has created quite a reputation as a fraud and huckster, and an anti Semitic one as well.

So I think, and let me emphasize that this is just speculation, that Sharpton’s interest was piqued when he heard the name Zimmerman.  I think Sharpton intended to create Crown Heights all over again. Of course, even though Zimmerman turned out not to be Jewish, he apparently could still stand in for white, and he was presented as such, leading the New York Times to include the term “White Hispanic” in its style book;  apparently with a picture of George Zimmerman by the phrase.

So Sharpton, along with MSM, set up a fake racial issue, and have promulgated it fairly successfully for the past year, with really no effective counter narrative.  They’ve managed to increase racial division in this country and seem to intend on continuing it as long as possible. For liberal whites, it serves as a vehicle to drive their agenda, which is increased gun control and elimination of legal protections for self defense.  And what do Black people get out of this?  Anger, hurt, and distrust of their fellow Americans.

Not a great bargain in my opinion.

And the biggest outrage of them all?  The Justice Department is setting up an email address to receive tips to assist in the George Zimmerman investigation.  Now, given that the criminal trial is already over, what “tips” could the Justice Department be seeking?  Why, to charge Zimmerman with Federal Civil Rights violations. And to do that,  they need evidence that Zimmerman is racist.  So if Zimmerman used the N-word in Middle School, he could find himself indicted for felony charges.

So the entire weight of the Federal government is going after one guy to see if he told a racist joke at any point in his life.  If he did, it better be one about gringos.

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Andrea Mitchell, Leaning Leftward

Since MSNBC started its Lean Forward campaign, I’ve gotten a kick out of the network’s show hosts video shots where they earnestly expound the latest liberal tropes.  It’s a bit surprising because I had thought MSNBC wanted to keep pretending it was an actual news network instead of merely a televised version of Media Matters or Think Progress.  Of course I for one am glad the mask is finally off. Be free MSNBC!  Be who you are!  It really bugs me for liberal TV news channels to pretend to be objective while at the same time presenting “The News” from a liberal slant.  At least MSNBC is out of the closet.   If you’ve not seen them (and I realize that I’m among only a couple of hundred regular views of the network) they can be a real hoot.  Like this one from Lawrence O’Donnell:

That never struck me as plausible that the GI Bill was derided as some sort of welfare program.  Sure enough, Politifact rated it as mostly false.  No surprise there.  But this is MSNBC.  It’s more about a mood than mere factual accuracy.

Most of the hosts have done a series of Lean Forward ads.  Some try to push unconscious buttons like Rachel Maddow’s evocation of Socialist realism with her Hoover Dam ads:

My son came into my office one day while I was watching this promo and asked, “Who’s that fella?”

But that Hoover dam ad vaguely reminds me of something…

And of course, there is the always incoherent Al Sharpton.

He’s trying to tell a parable of how everything is really Bush’s fault.  A line that never gets old with the left.  But the execution makes him sound as incoherent as Grandpa Simpson.

The credit for these mish mash of promos can go to Spike Lee, who produced these Lean Forward spots for MSNBC, although the quality makes me suspicious that Mookie showed up to direct instead.

But the real disappointment is how MSNBC takes and warps their few real journalists into just one more Ed Schultz.  And really, did we need more than one?

Andrea Mitchell has been a real journalist.  While working at NBC she has been the Chief Congressional correspondent, Chief White House correspondent, and Chief Foreign Affairs correspondent. With such a resume, it would make sense that she would back away from doing a Lean Forward promo about how the Republicans stole the GI Bill with a Blueberry pie on top of the Hoover dam.

And in fact her first Lean Forward promo touted her foreign policy credentials:

But MSNBC must have kept leaning on her, until she agreed to do this:

Obviously she is referring to Voter ID laws; a thorn in the side of Democrats who feel voting is so fundamental even illegal aliens and the dead should have it.  Unlike Al Sharpton, she can’t bring herself to actually name the villains in this piece, Republicans trying to maintain the integrity of the process.  Still, it’s as far as she has officially gone to begin the slide over to pure opinion journalism.

Must MSNBC contaminate every host?  Careful Andrea, or after decades of professionalism, you’ll find yourself dragged down to the level of Al Sharpton arguing about Republicans eating your blueberry pie.  Once you go down that road, you can’t come back to being a legitimate journalist again.

Just ask Chris Matthews.

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There’s a Lynch Mob Down South…

…and by down south, I mean Sanford Florida, which is south of me, about 10 minutes away.  So the Trayvon Martin issue was a local news item several weeks before it became an international one.  But the character of the tragedy has changed over time:

SANFORD, Fla. (WOFL FOX 35) – Investigators with the Sanford Police Department are still trying to figure out exactly what happened during an altercation which resulted in a fatal shooting in the Twin Lakes area.   The shooting happened just after 7 p.m. Sunday evening on Twin Trees Lane.  A man who witnessed part of the altercation contacted authorities.

“The guy on the bottom, who had a red sweater on, was yelling to me, ‘Help! Help!’ and I told him to stop, and I was calling 911,” said the witness, who asked to be identified only by his first name, John.

John said he locked his patio door ran upstairs and heard at least one gun shot.

“And then, when I got upstairs and looked down, the guy who was on the top beating up the other guy, was the one laying in the grass, and I believe he was dead at that point.”

So in this eyewitness version, the attacker was the one who ended up dead, and Zimmerman was the one crying for help.  That leads me to think there is ample reason for the police to at least take seriously a possible self defense angle and it makes sense that the police would investigate this thoroughly before either making an arrest or closing the case. But as far as the mass media is concerned, there has only ever been one issue in this case: race.  Of course, this incident occurred almost a month ago.  And apparently it’s not nearly as good a story as the one that the media decided to run with. The news coverage this week has had quite a different flavor.  Over the top is more like it.

The big tent of this particular circus is MSNBC, (Leaning Leftward!).  Today hosting on the Martin Bashir Show, Karen Finney, frequent MSNBC guest, went into what seemed to be a prepared monologue in which she blamed both Rush Limbaugh and Newt Gingrich for the climate that lead to Trayvon’s death. Morning Joe’s Mika Brzezinski went out of her way to blame the shooting on Rush Limbaugh.  Also on Thursday she stated that that if Zimmerman was bloodied and disheveled, he probably did it to himself.  Great police work there Mika!

The entire coverage of this incident has resembled much more peasants lighting their torches and sharpening their pitchforks than actual coverage.  Of course, there are motives.  Hysteria is a good sell, but the racial issue warps our attention away from facts to make this issue only about race.  For some on the MSNBC payroll, like Al Sharpton, racial rabble rousing is his career.  Even though he is responsible for more dead bodies than George Zimmerman, Sharpton can be expected to ride this to even more influence.

The basic facts of the case don’t seem to make this a racial issue, but everyone wants it to be.  However the basic facts no longer matter. Usually, the US has a fairly adequate, if by no means perfect, justice system.  However when it comes to race, everything goes out the window.  Race makes us lose our damn minds.  That’s why Casey Anthony can get a fair trial and get acquitted (even though we all know she did it), but the police who beat Rodney King were given a second trial in violation of constitutional protections against double jeopardy to make sure the second trial gave the “right” verdict.

This isn’t an attempt to excuse Zimmerman.  The minute he decided to follow Martin after the 911 dispatcher told him not to, he was in the wrong.  The problem with police wannabes like Zimmerman is that they do tend to attract police attention one way or the other.  Even if Martin later turned around and attacked Zimmerman for some unknown reason, the whole thing could have been avoided if Zimmerman had just sat in his car.  He didn’t and now a teenage boy is dead.

It would be easy to get on the bandwagon and demand Zimmerman’s head on a pike.  That is what all the cool kids are doing.  However I’m perfectly content to see what the investigation uncovers.  I’ve no desire to join the other villagers in burning down the windmill until we have more facts, instead of inaccurate ranting from MSNBC hosts.  Ultimately though, it may not matter what facts are uncovered.  We’ve moved beyond mere facts now.

Meanwhile, as Sanford has its own bonfire of the vanities, I expect Tim Wolfe will write the nonfiction version of this story. Another thing I’m sure of is that Zimmerman will be indicted for something; anything.

The mob demands it.

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Some Like It Hate

“If you get hit, we will punch back twice as hard,”              

-An anonymous right wing extremist

I hadn’t really planned to write about this issue, even after ekg wrote her blog, Are they trying to someone killed…which featured a twitter message from Sarah Palin using the word “reload” as well as a map featuring Congressional districts as” targets.”    If this is what has liberals shaking in their boots, they’re pussies.

But… I didn’t see it as an issue worth pursuing, since what else could I say about the real acts of incivility, not to mention threats, which had been made by people opposed to the recently passed healthcare bill?  I do not condone that behavior, they don’t represent the majority and your side does it too, let’s move on.

But the left doesn’t really seem to accept that both sides are equal in this regard.  Not surprisingly they view themselves as much more the victim against crazed “Tea Bagger” hordes, spittle and N words flying, than as perpetrators of such threats and violence themselves.  And they are quick to make wild eyed accusations before all the facts come out.

Remember Bill Sparkman?  The Kentucky census worker found hanged with “fed” scrawled on his body?  As memory serves, ekg tried to pen his murder on right wing commentators in general and Michelle Bachmann and Glenn Beck in particular.  Of course, what really happened was that Sparkman committed suicide.  No apology from the left of course, on to the next hate message.

 And then there was James Von Brunn, the white supremacist who shot up the holocaust museum in Washington DC?   Von Brunn was a white supremacist, but he was a lot of other things as well.  He was a registered Democrat, a 9/11 truther, and hated neo-cons.  He would have fit in perfectly well at a Kos convention.  But he took his hatred of neo-cons to the next level.  He had intended to attack the offices of The Weekly Standard, the neo conservative political magazine.

So the left gets it wrong; a lot.  Mainly because they can’t wait for the facts, they already know them.  Those “facts” are bouncing around in their heads just waiting for a headline, so instant accusations need not wait for verification.

The Seattle Times originally reported that a rock was thrown threw the window of the offices of Democratic Representative Driehaus.   The problem?  His office is located on the 30th floor.  There are some Tea Party giants afoot!

Then there was the misreported Congressman Carnahan coffin incident, which was first reported as practically a scene from the Godfather, with a coffin left on Carnahan’s front lawn as a warning.  Practically a horse’s head.  The actual Tea Partiers who actually had the coffin tell a different story.

Contrary to reports that a coffin was placed on Rep. Russ Carnahan’s (D-Mo.) lawn on Mar. 21 while the House voted on the health care bill, the casket was never put on his property and was not used to signify a threat against him, according to the tea party activists who used it.

The coffin, in fact, was used as a prop at a prayer vigil on Mar. 21 to symbolize the “loss of freedom and the loss of lives due to government medical rationing,” said the activists. Further, the coffin, made of wood and stained a medium brown, was always in the possession of Bill Hennessy, a member of the St. Louis Tea Party Patriots, and is in his possession now in his garage.

On Thursday, Hennessy told CNSNews.com in an e-mail: “How I found out about this story is last night [Wednesday] a local reporter called me and asked me if I knew anything about it. He said that Carnahan’s office called and told him that someone left a coffin on his lawn last night — and I didn’t.”

Hennessy also explained that the prayer vigil started in front of Carnahan’s district office in St. Louis and then was continued in front of his home. “The coffin was never placed on anyone’s lawn,” said Hennessy, and “the coffin was not left behind.”

Politco reported on the issue on Mar. 24 with a headline, “Coffin Placed On Carnahan’s Lawn,” and a lead paragraph that read: “A coffin was placed on a Missouri Democrat’s lawn, another in a string of incidents against lawmakers after their vote Sunday on a health care overhaul.”

 The biggest story of course is the “N Word” Controversy. Congressman Lewis was alleged to have been called the N word at the Tea Party protest in Washington DC the day before the Health Reform bill was voted on.  I say alleged, because even though it was widely reported in the MSM as fact, the only witness to hearing the word is Rep. Cleaver, of spittle fame.  Congressman Lewis, canny as ever, never confirmed that he heard that particular epitaph, instead related that he heard “kill the bill.”  The fact that the encounter was taped with multiple video cameras by Rep. Jackson doesn’t really lend creditability to the charges.  If the target of the word didn’t hear it, and multiple video cameras didn’t catch it (and if they had we would have seen it a hundred times by now), I will maintain my call of shenanigans on this.  I’m perfectly willing to change my mind of course, as soon as either some video or multiple witnesses come forward.

I’ll be waiting.

There is big money on it too.  Blogger Andrew Breitbart had offered $10,000 (now raised to $100,000) donated to the United Negro College Fund for evidence that the N word was used towards Lewis even once.  A sure loser if he was opening the bet up all the way back to the civil rights era, but for this most recent incident?  No one has tried to collect it yet.

Shame too.  A phony racial incident is a terrible thing to waste.

Give credit to Al Sharpton for trying to say he had seen a tape for it, before having to backtrack  (starts around the 4 minute mark)!

“If they bring a knife to the fight, we bring a gun”

     -An anonymous right wing extremist

These purposefully misreported incidents, amusing as they are, shouldn’t detract from really incidents of course.

Every reasonable person of good will regardless of political persuasion, should be quick and clear in condemning any death threats, intimidation, or acts of violence and vandalism. Right?

Apparently no.

And that’s what inspired me to write this.

Ekg, in responding to me in a comment on her blog, saw no comparison between the violence and hate that the left perpetrated.  Why?  Because the violence and hate of the left was justified!

let’s not forget the outright hate and anger caused by 8 years of GOP policy and let’s face it, a black man being President..

Mike will never admit that these things are a problem for some people though.. so he will never see the reality that is being played out all around him. Which in a way is sad, because it’s historic and to be a part of history but burying your head so you don’t witness it.. is a waste..the fact is there was anger and distrust under Bush.. and it was well deserved

Although the perennial call to racism as excuse was interesting, that was still more of the same from some one who can’t view dissent against the policy positions of this administration in any other terms than racism, the Frank Rich meme, I found myself most fascinated with the her view that that the hatred and anger towards the Bush administration was a perfectly legitimate response to Republican control of government.  Of course people threatened to assassinate Bush!  They had no choice!

I despair sometimes, that if we can’t even agree on civility without one side feeling their incivility was justified while the other side’s incivility is based on racism, sexism, homophobia, or whatever the current hot buttons of the left are, then how can we ever talk?

If your hate is justified, then you can excuse anything your side does.  So far, only the left seems to have that position, but how long will that last?      

It’s scary enough that one side has already figured out how to justify their threats and violence.  Imagine what happens when the other side does as well.

 

“Things got a little out of hand.  It’s just this war and that lying son of a bitch, Johnson.

            - Jenny’s dirt foot hippie boyfriend from “Forrest Gump”

 

 *Update*  ekg streniously objected to my characterization of her comments on her blog as being indifferent at best and supportive at worst of political violence committed by the left  on the Muche weboard.  It’s only fair of me to note that she totally disagreed with how I viewed her words, and as she emphatically stated that she does not in any way support political violence by the left, I will take her at her word and withdraw that characterization of her remarks.

 

 

 

 

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