Saturday, May 09, 2009

Vichy France lives on

The Vichy regime were Nazi collaborators in WWII

Our friend Fern Oppenheim points us to the video of Israel haters scouring a French supermarket to remove Israeli products from the shelf. There isn't a manager in sight. All the shoppers go about their business like it is 1942 Vichy France. The video was apparently shot in the northeastern suburbs of Paris that gained attention as the scene of the mysterious French "youth" riots of 2005.

UPDATE: Reader Martin Adamson picks up on the video's self-identified provenance:

This video is even more grotesque than you think. It was shot in a suburb of Paris called Aulnay-sous-Bois. The next-door town to Aulnay is called Drancy, about one mile away. Drancy was used by the Nazis between 1942-1944 as a deportation holding camp for the Jews of Paris prior to the deportation to the extermination camps in eastern Europe. Sixty-five thoursand Jews passed through Drancy, of whom 63,000 were killed. In other words, the Israeli boycotters have chosen, of all the supermarkets in France, the one closest to France's most important Holocaust memorial site. Look on Google Maps to see how close they are.

SOURCE (See the original for links and video)

Hawaii lawmakers back the creation of 'Islam Day'

Hawaii's state Senate overwhelmingly approved a bill Wednesday to celebrate "Islam Day" _ over the objections of a few lawmakers who said they didn't want to honor a religion connected to Sept. 11, 2001. The Senate's two Republicans argued that a minority of Islamic extremists have killed many innocents in terrorist attacks.

"I recall radical Islamists around the world cheering the horrors of 9/11. That is the day all civilized people of all religions should remember," said Republican Sen. Fred Hemmings to the applause of more than 100 people gathered in the Senate to oppose a separate issue _ same-sex civil unions.

The resolution to proclaim Sept. 24, 2009, as Islam Day passed the Senate on a 22-3 vote. It had previously passed the House. The bill seeks to recognize "the rich religious, scientific, cultural and artistic contributions" that Islam and the Islamic world have made. It does not call for any spending or organized celebration of Islam Day.

"We are a state of tolerance. We understand that people have different beliefs," said Sen. Will Espero, a Democrat. "We may not all agree on every single item and issue out there, but to say and highlight the negativity of the Islamic people is an insult to the majority" of believers "who are good law-abiding citizens of the world."

But Republican Sen. Sam Slom argued that the United States has become too sympathetic toward Islamic extremists. "I don't think there's any country in the history of the world that has been more tolerant than the United States of America, and because of that tolerance, we've looked the other way a lot of times, and many thousands of our citizens have been killed by terrorists," said Slom, a Republican.

The lone Democrat voting against the bill opposed it on church-state separation fears


1964 Act Should Guard Individual, Not Groups

by Mary Grabar

When I teach Barry Goldwater’s 1964 Republican Convention speech to my college students, the few students who know who Barry Goldwater was usually claim that he was a reactionary racist. They’ve learned their lessons well from an educational system that presents any opposition to the 1964 Civil Rights Act as ipso facto racism.

Goldwater opposed the Act on constitutional grounds, specifically titles II and VII, which allowed federal regulation of public accommodations and employment. Now the Supreme Court is hearing the case of Ricci v. De Stefano regarding denial of promotion to New Haven firefighters who scored the highest on a test for advancement.

The problem was that of the top 15 scorers, 14 were white and one was Hispanic. No African-American firefighters qualified for promotion, so the city, after disruption of meetings by protestors, claimed that the 1964 act compelled them to disregard the exam results. So they decided to forgo promotions. Plaintiffs don’t question the act, but the use of “intentional discrimination” in adhering to the statute, according to lawyer Peter S. Ferrara.

I do not question this strategy, but do think that much harm has been meted out by the 1964 Act. How illogical is this? The ACLU and LatinoJustice filed an amicus brief against the high-scoring Hispanic firefighter (and the 14 others), claiming that no one’s rights were violated.

The act has had a chilling effect on employment practices, with employers “voluntarily” going to great lengths to avoid the perception of discrimination by tailoring jobs and offering higher salaries for just such “protected classes.”

Goldwater’s principled resistance to public pressures, like Martin Luther King, Jr.’s March on Washington, helped cost him the election. It’s not that Goldwater did not work on behalf of equality and integration. He was a member of the NAACP, and as city councilman in Phoenix, he led the struggle to end segregation in the city’s public schools. As a U.S. senator, he hired a black woman as his first staff assistant—long before affirmative action laws.

Other actions by conservatives, like the Young Americans for Freedom’s threat to leave the Florida hotel where they were holding their first national convention in 1963 if the owners did not allow Jay Parker, a black board member to stay, demonstrate convictions without need of grandstanding.

Such history can be found, not in textbooks or mainstream media, but in Professor Donald T. Critchlow’s “The Conservative Ascendancy,” where he also recounts how 40,000 civil rights demonstrators denounced Goldwater at the 1964 convention as “Hitler”-- after moderate Republicans like William Scranton started a smear campaign based on Goldwater’s opposition to the 1964 Civil Rights Act.

Continuing the campaign, then-CBS reporter Daniel Schorr spread the lie that Goldwater, in an effort to appeal to right-wing elements in the U.S., was planning to meet with right wing (Nazi) representatives on a trip to Germany. Goldwater was partly of Jewish heritage and did not have the trip planned until after the convention. But such smears continue. D.L. Hughley, former host of a CNN program, remarked that the 2008 GOP convention looked “like Nazi Germany.”

The New Haven case has proven Goldwater’s prescience, though. Such rigging towards racial outcomes violates principles of fairness and undermines confidence in the abilities of certain groups. Yet, such efforts continue apace with moves to eliminate other tests like the ACT and SAT for college admissions because Asians and whites perform better as groups. We do not live our lives as groups, but as individuals.

We should follow the lead of Barry Goldwater and walk the walk, and forget the talk of the anti-constitutional advocacy groups who would sacrifice the dignity of the individual Hispanic in order to advance their own cause as saviors of groups of victims.


More disrespect for a Christian heritage

Queen’s Trinity Cross honour deemed unlawful by Britain's Privy Council, sitting as a court of appeal: Unlawful in terms of the Trinidad & Tobago constitution, not in terms of Britain's constitution, as Britain has no written constitution, just a set of customs. Unmentioned below is why the medal is called the "Trinity" cross. "Trinidad" is Spanish for Trinity. Will they change the name of their island now too?

Old medal above, replacement below

An honour established by the Queen has been declared unlawful after Muslims and Hindus complained that its Christian name and cross insignia were offensive. The Trinity Cross of the Order of Trinity was established by the Queen 40 years ago to recognise distinguished service and gallantry in the former colony of Trinidad and Tobago. It has been received by 62 people including the cricketers Garfield Sobers and Brian Lara, the novelist V. S. Naipaul and many of the islands’ leading politicians and diplomats.

The Privy Council in London has ruled that the decoration is unconstitutional because it discriminates against non-Christians. Five British law lords said that the creation of the honour breached the right to equality and the right to freedom of conscience and belief. The implications of the ruling on British decorations are being studied by lawyers at the Cabinet Office, which oversees the honours system. A spokesman said: “We have noted the judgment and are monitoring the situation.”

A parliamentary review of British honours has already recommended streamlining the system with new titles that have no reference to Christian saints or symbols.

The Trinity Cross was established in 1969 and took precedence over all other decorations except the Victoria Cross and George Cross. The title and choice of insignia followed six years of consultation and research of national awards in other countries. Questions were raised, though, about the overtly Christian nature of the words “Trinity” and “Cross” and the use of a cross insignia, which led to some of those nominated refusing to accept the decoration. Lord Hope of Craighead, in his Privy Council judgment, said that the Trinity Cross was “perceived by Hindus and Muslims living in Trinidad and Tobago as an overtly Christian symbol both in name and in substance”. He said that it breached the islands’ Constitution of 1976.

The law lords refused to make the order retrospective, meaning that the recipients will not be stripped of their honours.

The legal case had been brought by groups representing Trinidad and Tobago’s Muslim and Hindu communities, which account for about 30 per cent of the Caribbean islands’ population of 1.3 million. The High Court of Trinidad and Tobago ruled in 2004 that the decoration discriminated against non-Christians but said that it did not have the power to invalidate the royal order. The Court of Appeal upheld the ruling. The island’s Cabinet has already agreed that the name of its highest national award should be renamed the Order of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago and that the Order of the Trinity would become the Distinguished Society of Trinidad and Tobago. They also said that the decoration would be redesigned, with the cross replaced by a medal.

The islands, which attained independence in 1962, are among the most prosperous countries in the Caribbean. The Queen is expected to visit in November when they host the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting.

A review of the British honours system by the Commons Public Administration Select Committee in 2004 recommended reducing the number of decorations from twelve to four, with the new proposed titles having no reference to the Cross or Christian saints. Paul Flynn, a Labour member of the committee, said: “The titles are now meaningless, they are the remnant of another age and I don’t think they have any particular Christian significance.” The committee did not consider the issue of religious discrimination, with most of the controversy relating to the use of the word Empire in honours titles and the confusing and archaic nature of the system.

Benjamin Zephaniah, the black poet, publicly rejected his honour in 2003, saying that the title of the Order of the British Empire gave an impression of white supremacy. Last year Christine Grahame, an SNP member of the Scottish Parliament, described the George Medal, one of the highest civilian awards for bravery, as “clearly very Anglocentric” and unsuitable for Scots. She suggested replacing it with a nationalist award such as a “St Andrews Medal”.

Hugh Peskett, editor-in-chief of Burke’s Peerage and Gentry, said that changing the names of titles to remove their Christian references would destroy hundreds of years of history. “Part of the significance of an honour is its antiquity and I can see no reason why they should be changed,” he said.



Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of other countries. The only real difference, however, is how much power they have. In America, their power is limited by democracy. To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges. They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did: None. So look to the colleges to see what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way. It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, GUN WATCH, SOCIALIZED MEDICINE, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, DISSECTING LEFTISM, IMMIGRATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL and EYE ON BRITAIN. My Home Pages are here or here or here. Email me (John Ray) here. For readers in China or for times when is playing up, there is a mirror of this site here.


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