Prejudice In The Open

Many people bemoan the fact that since Trump came along, we have seen all forms of prejudice in the open. There is the belief that prejudice in all forms is increasing- racism, sexism, gender identity, religious prejudice, wealth inequality, etc.

I admit that this appears to be true. However, appearances are deceiving. I am seeing something very different.

I said while Trump was running for office that no matter what laws are enacted, you cannot make a person prejudiced who was not prejudiced to begin with. Yes, bigots feel more emboldened now. That doesn’t mean that they were not there to begin with. They’ve been with us all along, hiding in fear and shame for good reason.

Some like to think that bigots are motivated by a loss of wealth or privilege. There is no truth to that. We see bigots travelling to the border, armed with guns, driving RV’s, etc. These people are able to take time off from work or are unemployed yet have the means to travel and still own weapons which are not inexpensive, buy gas, rent hotel rooms, etc. This indicates that they have wealth and privilege which most do not have.

Seriously, if you had accumulated paid time off from work from a stressful job, would you spend that time in the desert, walking around with a gun, seeking to abuse poor people on foot, trying to find safety and a more secure existence?

Lack of prejudice is a sign of emotional and spiritual evolution. Being able to accept others when they are different from yourself is a sign of maturity. Qualities of emotional and spiritual advancement which these bigots neither possess nor care to develop.

These are people mindlessly claiming that immigrants are crowding this country and taking jobs away. Even as they cross large stretches of empty land while taking time off from their jobs. Or claiming immigrants get government support, while these people are claiming welfare and travelling to the border.

Many of these people claim to be Christians, while ignoring what their own alleged religion teaches. They claim that Islam teaches violence, which it does not. They claim that immigrants bring crime, which they do not. The current, very white, director of the FBI is Christopher Wray. He said that the majority of cases of domestic terrorism investigated by the FBI are caused by some form of white supremacy. Yes, he used the word “terrorism”. Oddly, this man was appointed by Trump.

No, I am not giving kudos to Trump. In response, Trump announced he is considering naming the anti-Nazi movement Antifa as a terrorist organization. Yet Antifa is not a group or organization, it is a movement opposed to fascism. I will be writing something separate about that for those that oppose Antifa, among other things.

There is a definite benefit to prejudice being in the open. Like the old saying goes, “Better the devil you know than the devil you don’t know.” In other words, it is easier to fight against evil which is clearly displayed. You know who your enemy is, you know who your allies are.

Some believe that the Democratic Party are our allies. While there are some minority members of the DNC who are allies, as a party the DNC is not to be trusted. Bill Clinton enacted the crime bill which decimated the minority community. Obama bailed out Wall Street and ignored homeowners, many if not the majority of whom were minorities. Over the past 20 years we have seen the rise of for-profit prisons with no opposition from the DNC. Police have no oversight even with the mass numbers of black men arrested and killed by police. We are only now seeing changes to erase marijuana possession charges and restore voting rights for inmates. That has only happened because of grassroots mobilization. The legalization of marijuana is moving forward because of outliers who have advanced the agenda, while the DNC still opposes or is at least neutral on the issue, thanks to pharmaceutical, alcohol and corporate prison campaign donations and lobbying.

The people who want prejudice to be out of sight don’t understand the issue well. This is wanting to stop talking about it because they find it stressful. Put yourself in the position of those who have been subjected to passive-aggressive prejudice their whole lives. Not just minorities but women as well. People who have been denied promotions, employment, housing, credit, safety, justice. Those who have lived in absolute terror to see lights in the rearview mirror or afraid to call police even though they have done nothing wrong. Can you imagine such an existence for your entire life?

Obviously the ultimate goal is to eliminate prejudice. Unfortunately, it’s not going away easily. However, the stage that we are in now are the dying throes of what has been a way of life and mind for too many people for far too long. The bigots are backed into their corners and trying to perpetuate that as a right. Meanwhile their communities and even families who have tolerated that prejudice are abandoning them. It is they who can now be denied jobs, promotions, etc. The younger generations will not accept that prejudice, knowing just what damage it does.

Dems Condemn Trump’s Comment.. And?

The Democrats this week proposed a bill officially condemning Trump’s racist statements about four racially minority Congresswomen. Now, I absolutely agree that his statement should be condemned. However, then what?

This condemnation really accomplishes nothing. It changes no policy. It places no restrictions on Trump or anyone else. It is a non-binding statement of protest with no consequence attached.

This is all theater. Especially when these are some of the same Progressive women that Pelosi has had conflicts with based on policy and their Progressive views.

In March, the Democrats disciplined Omar for her statement that US elected officials who support Israel and oppose BDS actions are working for a foreign government. Her statement is true. They called her statement anti-semitic, yet Israel itself is a country, not a religion. The Israeli government represents the nation, not a religion. Semites are the people that inhabit or come from a specific region, so that includes Palestinians, whom Israel is openly conducting genocide against. BDS is a form of freedom of speech, in other words, a US citizen right included in our Constitution. Centrist Democrats have not said or done anything to oppose the numerous states that have enacted laws that allow suspension or firing of state employees who take part in the BDS protests. They’re too busy collecting AIPAC money.

Pelosi has had an ongoing battle with AOC on many fronts, becoming unprofessional and demeaning toward her.

Centrist Democrats, including Pelosi and Schumer, have not opposed Trump on policy. They caved on DACA, approved his tax cut for the rich, unanimously approved dozens of Conservative judges to lifetime federal bench positions, handed Trump powers of mass surveillance, AUMF powers, unrestricted trade negotiation authorization, caved on border wall funding, oppose universal healthcare and recently caved on funding for detaining immigrants with no protections included for those immigrants.

Fuck Pelosi and Schumer and all centrist Democrats and those who sheepdog for them. If you think that some toothless statement of finger-wagging during a time when CONgress should have been doing some literal work is “Resistance”, then fuck you too! This accomplishes nothing. It changes nothing. It does not undo any harmful policy, it does not introduce any policy beneficial to the American people (or anyone else) for the future. Get your head out of your ass and stop cheering for this trailer park, Jerry Springer type shit show. Start paying attention. You want better for this country? It fucking starts with YOU.

BLM Versus Identity Politics

I have received several responses across platforms now using Black Lives Matter (BLM) as a negative response to my article about identity politics, here: https://medium.com/@russellmeyers_35963/happy-2019-not-2020-d5f354b2cd8d

Seriously? When you use BLM as an argument to support the status quo, you are literally using identity politics to support identity politics.

Here’s what’s worse. Multiple people have used the exact same argument, almost or entirely word for word. Hmm. Does that mean I have gained enough attention that people are using copy and paste arguments against me? That means I’m hitting a nerve. It also means that CTR is back in full swing. No question about that since David Brock is back in public view. Paid trolls.

We can expect a lot more of this for the next two years. Trolls and DNC sycophants trying to shove empty, useless platitudes down our throats in an attempt at division and invalidation of the Progressive agenda. Taking anything and everything they can out of context. Not one word about policy. “You didn’t focus on just one cohort of society or use the magic words to gain our approval!!” Yet even if you use the “magic words” you will be met with contempt if you are not bowing down and falling in line like a good slave to the system.

I have been an activist for equality my whole life. One can look down my list of articles, posts, social media activity and anything else. What you will see is a consistent stance addressing the inequities in our social and economic system. Across all genders, races, religions, sexual orientations and anything else you can name. Do I really have to focus on one movement? No, I do not. There are times when that may be appropriate but it tends to be rare.

Income inequality is not a racial issue, much as some would love to claim it is. Do rich people of minorities act differently than rich white people? Typically, if they do it is more marketing than reality. Would they support increased taxation of the rich if it helps the poor of their race? That tells you everything there. Yes, there are exceptions but there are exceptions of all races.

The rich are rich, they are in their own little world which does not include or concern itself with you. Warmongers are warmongers and do not care about any lives but their own. There are racists of all colors and you can stop pretending being a minority makes you immune from being racist.

Right now and through the history of this country, white men have been the richest and most powerful. It is not their race that is the issue. They often use it as a tool in many ways but color is not the concern. Take a look at corporations with minority executives. On average, do they treat their employees better, pay more, offer better benefits? No. Look at other countries where people of color are the majority and hold the highest positions of power. Does their color lead them to treat citizens with more justice? No, it does not. Does bigotry exist in such countries? Do I have to answer that?

Actionable policies. Yes, I support BLM, among many other movements for equality. However, I am not going to kiss anyone’s ass. Which is what politicians and so-called activists do when they spew empty rhetoric. When you truly support equality it means actionable policies which lead to that equality.

Here are just a few of those actionable policies I strongly support:

Civilian oversight of police and court sentencing.

Grand jury indictment power for police oversight committees with mandatory public hearing of evidence.

Police body cams that cannot be turned off. Video available to the press on formal request without delay of any kind for any reason except victim privacy. In which case steps should be taken to preserve anonymity of the victims if requested.

Increasing wages.

Higher taxes on the rich and corporations.

Treating addiction as an illness rather than a crime. Elimination of minor non-violent drug possession charges. Erasing records for these crimes.

Enforcement of the Voting Rights Act. Ending gerrymandering. Universal voting registration for all citizens.

Universal healthcare.

Universal adult education.

Permanent changes. Notice anything in common with the above policies? Every single one of them entails a permanent change to our social and economic system. None are short term band-aids for gaping wounds. None are empty platitudes that lead nowhere. Are they all-encompassing for all our social problems? Absolutely not.

Am I finished writing for the rest of my life by stating them? You have to ask? I’ve delved into many of these issues in depth, sometimes repeatedly. Right now I have partial articles I have not finished and mental notes for future writing. Often so many ideas that I forget some if I do not write them down. I wake up in the middle of my sleep with fully formed ideas.

I’m not stopping any time soon.

If you want to stick to one issue exclusively, I suggest you start writing your own articles. Don’t try and subvert my writing for your purpose. Stop trying to attack me or other actual Progressives fighting for real change. Start thinking about where you want to go and how you expect to get there. Because that is my entire focus. I am fine with constructive criticism and opposing views if they are rational and well defined. If they suggest actual ideas. I love debate. I block trolls without exception and without shame.

If you are not part of the solution, you are the problem.

Social Evolution Is Happening, Like It Or Not

Let me start this by admitting that I had a rather religious upbringing. I dived into it really young and by the age of 3 had the desire to become a Christian minister. I maintained that goal until my late teens. Even if I considered other careers, I intended to be a minister as well. I did not see the ministry as being exclusive.

Religion was my own security blanket, I could say. Yet it did not provide answers that I sought, so I left Christianity behind. I did still study philosophy and other religions extensively for years.

I will also admit that my religion held me back in some ways. Not nearly as many as some people because I could never accept the concept of not asking questions, as Christianity mandates.

In addition, I grew up in Texas and come from a family of veterans running in an unbroken line for centuries. So I had no shortage of Conservative views in my repertoire. Never a right-winger, though.

So, when I speak of personal evolution and the challenges involved, I do not come from a perspective of someone has never personally experienced those challenges in a direct manner. I have known the ethical and social dissonance, fear of rejection, and general doubt that comes from radical change to your entire world view.

People have strange views of evolution. Even Christians have to realize that we have evolved as a society over centuries and millennia. We find it unacceptable to nail people to crosses, burn them at stakes, feed them to lions, stretch them on racks, seal them in dungeons. Yes, some still believe in these things, always thinking it is they who will be in charge, not the victims. Once again, I am talking about our evolution as a society, not the random few who have never evolved past single syllable words.

Evolution can be curious. Physically, we evolve over centuries and millennia. We can adapt to different environments in shorter periods, either as individuals or communities but that is not evolution. It is not a permanent change to our biology. We can move to colder or warmer climates, drier or more humid, higher or lower elevation. We can develop a taste for different foods. Our digestion does not always keep up, as we can see from rising instances of food allergies, much of which comes from exposure to foods not in our genetic history. No, I am not getting into the GMO or glyphosate debate here. Take it somewhere else. I am sticking to the subject.

What I am focusing on is social/behavioral/ethical/cultural evolution. People seem to have some belief that social evolution is an organic process that just magically happens. Or that it occurs on a sudden mass scale. None of this could be further from the truth.

Social evolution begins with one person or a small group. That person or people have the bravery to talk to others, often sparking an initial awareness of some form of injustice, inequality or needed improvement to society. That can be behavior, economic process, unhealthy condition, repetitive legal injustice, prejudicial condition and on and on.

From the small group, that issue expands to gain the awareness of some part of the academic community. From there it continues to greater social awareness, gaining a foothold in the media. Today that is most often alternative media owing to the fact that some powerful lobby associated with mainstream media profits from the inequalities in our system. Once it gains footing in the media, it progresses to greater social awareness.

It is from this point that we often see failures or stasis of social evolution. Ideally, at this point it should progress to legislation and social change. However, this is also the point where the powerful forces who profit from existing conditions become involved on a large scale. They have the resources to fight against change, developing propaganda to convince one group that they will be disadvantaged by any change in the status quo. Most often, that is not true at all and even those convinced to oppose change already suffer from the existing condition but they have lived with the condition too long to understand their own struggle which can be alleviated. They fear change and are not willing to hear an opposing view.

The good part is that once awareness has spread, change is always inevitable. It may take years, even generations but change will always happen. Questions do not abate. Knowledge is not forgotten, nor is it static. It spreads, it gains power. For some it may be insidious but that knowledge will continue to gain strength. It causes doubt, examination, debate.

So, social evolution is inevitable. Once begun, it will happen. Society moves forward, not backward. Once ideas and systems have been rejected, we may see some level of retraction and return of old systems but they will not last. In fact, at that point they gain more adamant opposition from those seeking to move forward. Think of racism and gender bias as examples. It is far too late in our social evolution to try and contain awareness, to continue old prejudices on an effective large scale without violence. As of now, so many of us oppose those prejudices that attempts to reinstate them meet with large scale opposition.

Right now, as many cry out in angst, we should all be aware that bigotry is dying. What we are witnessing is the death throes of an already dead contingency. Those trying to perpetuate it prove themselves more mindless and heartless than we had even given them credit for. They show themselves incapable of evolution.

In evolution, only the strong survive. Only the greater numbers survive. Those that attack the society itself are winnowed out, isolated, exiled, possibly popularly denied the chance to reproduce. Even when they do reproduce, their own children are likely to evolve beyond them.

Evolution is here right now. The death throes have only gained the attention of the predators, the scavengers coming to feed on the carcasses. When the predators come, the greater society will do nothing to save those already exiled. They are rejects, weak links that serve no benefit in their continuation. They weaken and infect the herd with illness.

This is what evolution looks like. It is not a glamorous process but necessary. It comes with struggle but will happen nonetheless.

Let’s just hope we did not wait too late to evolve.

“You cannot kill an idea.”- V For Vendetta

Hate And Fear As Addictions

I’ve written about this before but re-doing it once again because it is an important concept. I am approaching this in a rather clinical manner, seeing my history of nursing.

I find this especially important at this time. Right now, the midterms are over. Yet by and large people are more likely to be acting out emotionally, not thinking rationally. And that’s the goal of the parties and media machines. React, don’t think. Feel, don’t question. Get angry, even when you don’t know why.

When you focus your mind on emotional outrage, offense or fear you are not trying to find solutions to problems. You are seeking to satisfy your emotional state. The biggest problem with this is how people keep going from one outrage to another to another. When was the last time you personally were notin one of these states?

The biggest reason you are always in some heightened emotional state is because of the media. Fear, anger and offense sell. It’s profitable. So they make it continuous. Day after day, each media source trying to come out with the next outrageous headline to put you in one of these states. What stories are you most likely to share, forward to your friends and family, blast on loudspeakers, etc?

Now here is the biggest problem. Anger, hate, fear and offense are addictions. I mean that in the literal sense of the word. Most Americans, if they look at themselves honestly and objectively, can see the pattern of addiction in their own behavior.

Anger, hate and fear cause the same chemical responses in the brain as drug use. Especially resembling methamphetamine use, they cause a chemical response of increased adrenaline production coupled with heightened endorphin production, especially norepinephrine, serotonin and dopamine.

What is worse is that addictions keep getting worse as time goes on. Drug addicts develop what is known as tolerance. That is to say, the same dose becomes less effective over time, so they seek more and more, higher and higher doses of the same substance. Or they seek new substances that will give them the same euphoria, then continue on with the pattern, often mixing substances until they are taking a cocktail of chemicals which slowly damage and poison their bodies.

One of the most damaging long term effects of chronic stress and anxiety is increased stress hormone production, which leads to high blood pressure, digestive disorders and weight gain. So keeping yourself in a state of chronic stress willingly truly is damaging and even potentially lethal, shortening your life span while decreasing your quality of life.

I know some people will claim that comparing these emotions to addiction is ludicrous. However, look at how much pleasure people derive from watching horror movies. Violent sports like football. War movies. Cop shows. All of these portray events which in real life are atrocities, tragedies. However, when we are dealing with the news, atrocities are being played out in real life, not dramatized.

So, what are some of the behavioral signs of addiction?

First, the addict cannot control the behavior. They consciously or subconsciously seek the object of addiction on a frequent basis. This continues even after they have identified the addiction. Remember, alcoholics and ex-smokers often refer to themselves as “recovering”, indicating they have not beaten the addiction even years after giving it up. Instead, they keep the addiction under control.

If addiction is not controlled (such as an addict in denial), the addiction gets worse. They develop tolerance. They seek out more and more of the object of their addiction. In this case, they will actively seek out things which cause the stressful state they desire. Check the comment sections on Progressive pages or RT and you will find many whose sole purpose on that page is to express anger and seek conflict. Many who dislike Trump subscribe to his Twitter feed. Others seek out story after story attacking Trump, Russia or whomever else offends them by mere mention of the name.

That tolerance may have begun as having some reaction to stories that came up in the media but over time they began to seek those stories more and more frequently. Eventually, they could not go even a few hours without genuinely needing that stress. They actively seek out things that provide that stress multiple times a day. That can include news by TV, internet or discussion, sports, movies, TV shows, computer games and other influences.

That stress spills over into their everyday lives, causing more problems. Like an addict, they will seek out those who share the addiction in the form of similar viewpoints, rejecting opposing anyone with opposing views. Express a dissenting view and they commonly become abusive. That includes to their family and friends.

The only way to deal with this problem is to deal with it on a personal level. The first step is admitting a problem exists. Be honest with yourself, look in your mental mirror and see if the description fits. Then take action accordingly.

We all need to be engaging in interventions with family and those in our social circles.

Addicts always make excuses and divert responsibility. There are no excuses. The social and political environment is not an excuse. The food you eat is not an excuse. Chemtrails are not an excuse. The responsibility is on the addict and should not be allowed to be cast elsewhere. Don’t be an enabler.

Some readers may want clinical documentation of this comparison. Is that really needed? Behavioral evidence should really be sufficient. If you really want the clinical documentation, there is a lot of it available online but separately addressing amphetamine use and anger. I’m just giving a cross reference. I’ve read the clinical information which merely confirmed my theory.

Side note: The example I originally used in this theory remains valid. That example was racism. If a person is racist against (for example) black people, it does not remain against only black people. A racist continues expanding their bigotry and hate to include Hispanics, Muslims, Jews, Atheists, etc until it becomes hatred of anyone that is different. However, that is far from the only example, as noted above. So, this is not directed at one political or social leaning. It applies universally.

Yes, White Shooters ARE Terrorists

Over the past few years we have heard rhetoric about Islamic terrorists and Mexican/South American criminals. We have political actions, police actions and intelligence actions being taken against anyone from Islamic or South American countries to “protect us” from them.

Yet, when we hear of mass shootings, school shootings, even the majority of bomb threats, the guilty party is almost invariably a white male. Much of the time they are members of white supremacy groups as well.

The same white supremacy groups have been revealed over and over to make open threats against minorities and Jewish people. Threats of violence and fantasies of genocide.

So the question arises over and over, why do we not declare these white shooters terrorists? Why do we not consider white supremacy groups to be terrorist organizations?

The answer goes further than most really consider. The first and best answer is that if this happened, the government and police would be obligated to take action against these people and groups. The media would have to actively and openly admit that the greatest terror threat in this country comes from people who are commonly in their own ranks.

It has been well documented and well known that American politics have had numerous white supremacists in elected office. This is not distant past history. It includes Senator Robert Byrd, who served in the Senate for 51 years until his death in 2010. In recent elections we have had alleged and admitted white supremacists run for office and even get elected. It is unquestionable and in some cases proven that we have lawyers, judges, prosecutors, wardens and forensic examiners who are white supremacists.

It is also well documented that many police officers are white supremacists, some having been photographed in full KKK robes or sporting tattoos to include Nazi symbolism.

While not all NRA members are white supremacists, nearly all white supremacists have ties to the NRA. My own guess is that at least some executives of the NRA and major weapons manufacturers are white supremacists.

So, if we admitted that white shooters are terrorists, that would eventually lead to the necessity of making direct correlations between the individuals and their organizations. From there, actions would have to be taken. Those actions would have to begin with examination of the investigators. From the FBI to the police to forensic specialists to lawyers and judges.

That would still not be enough. When enough members of an organization or corporation were found to have ties to white supremacy, they would have to be investigated further, censured and members placed on terror watch lists. In some cases, this could result in the full dissolution of some groups.

Make no mistake, white supremacists are fascists in the most real sense of the word. They seek to oppress certain groups based on skin color, sexual orientation and religion. They use threats and violence to instill fear and have been known to murder people. Less obviously, they use legal actions, deny housing and employment to those they deem “unacceptable”.

Notice that our media and some elected officials have ignored the threat of these organizations while promoting fear of the only major group opposing them, Antifa? The name Antifa means anti-fascism. In promoting fear of Antifa, they use vague and misleading claims. To date, no major violent acts have been attributed to Antifa in this country. If there have been acts of violence or property destruction, that is typically not Antifa but Black Bloc Anarchists, who are not the same. A few months ago, some members of CONgress proposed a bill making membership in Antifa illegal. However, Antifa is not actually an organization, it is a political and social ideology. They specifically oppose fascists. So, what is the goal of such legislation? To discourage acceptance and support for Antifa. To prevent Antifa from openly forming an organization.

If Antifa actually did organize so that anyone opposed to fascism could join, what would that mean for groups like the KKK and Nazis? White supremacist tactics seek to divide and attack individuals. Imagine if they faced a group with public funding and the power of lobbying behind them. Such a group could well bridge any gaps between numerous minority organizations while possibly organizing mass physical opposition against the violent fascists groups in this country. Yet the more of us that get involved, demanding police protection, legislation and prosecution, the less likely any physical opposition becomes. Honestly, such an organization is needed badly. If not Antifa, then some other group should take on that role. Bring together all races, genders, sexual orientations, religions formally to oppose groups like the Proud Boys, who continue organizing and growing with no formal opposition and no laws to limit them. Yet how much do you hear of that from MSM?

This issue is going to keep evolving. More and more people are speaking out, asking why this is being labeled as anything but terrorism.

Yet certain things in this battle are absolute:

1- We cannot march in step with or bow down to gun-toting, jack-booted, white robed, Brown Shirted fascists who want to talk about “freedumb” and “Constitutionality” while attempting to oppress others by force.

2- We cannot fight fascism with fascism. Censorship, whether government or corporate, has backfired on us and will continue to do so. The corporate fascists own and run the media.

3- We cannot claim to oppose fascism or be afraid of violent fascists and then be more afraid of the opposition to them when the police refuse to stand up. Someone must step in.

4- We cannot oppose fascists and then vote fascists into office.

Passivity is not an option. Choose your side. There is no middle ground. You either oppose fascism or you are a fascist. What do we today call Germans who did not oppose the Nazi party in 1930’s Germany? We call them Nazis. History will remember us in the same way.