Sunday, May 30, 2010
In defense of bigots
This may come as a shock to collectivists, but narrow-minded, prejudiced, rude, stupid bigots have the same rights as everyone else.
The recent television discussion between Rand Paul (son of Ron Paul) and Rachel Maddow (collectivist propagandist) has gotten a lot of attention, and has prompted a flood of comments from people who don't know how to think. Personally, I think Rand deserves some criticism for his comments ... for being too civil and too "moderate" with the state-violence-worshiping hostess. To the question of whether a restaurant owner has the right to have a "No blacks allowed" policy, the principled answer would have been, unapologetically and unconditionally:
"Yes, a restaurant owner has the absolute right to serve and not serve whomever he damn well pleases, for any reason or no reason at all. An owner can say 'No blacks allowed,' or 'No whites allowed,' or 'Only atheist albino midgets allowed.' It's his damn property, and no one--not you, not me, and not any collective or any 'government'--has the right to initiate violence to FORCE him to do whatever WE think would be the polite, fair, noble thing."
It's bizarre how statists--those who advocate that the violence of
"government" be used to fix every "unfairness" they see (or imagine)--are the ones who most often claim to be "tolerant." To "tolerate" something doesn't mean to approve of something, or to support it--it only means to let it exist. Therefore, the bigot who chooses not to deal with his money, or on his property, with a particular racial or religious group, but who doesn't go onto their property to harass or attack them, is being 100% tolerant of them. On the other hand, Rachel Maddow, and millions of other well-indoctrinated collectivist Americans, who seek to have "government" forcibly impose their version of "fairness" on the bigot, are being completely intolerant. Ironically, they feel good about it, and consider themselves compassionate and morally superior for wanting to introduce violence into the situation, via "legal" coercion.
I wonder what Comrade Maddow would think if the Department of Fairness determined that she was spending too much of her money at white-owned businesses, and commanded her to change her evil ways. Would she suddenly recognize the principle involved here? How about if the Fairness Fascists told Black Entertainment Television (BET), or the NAACP, that they were required to hire more whites, and were commanded to stop trying to target their services towards one particular racial group?
The principle is not complicated: You get to decide who you will associate with and trade with, and I get to decide who I will associate and trade with. And yes, some people--quite a few, in fact--will make choices that you or I would find stupid, or even offensive. You have the right to not patronize businesses you don't approve of. You have the right to publicly criticize their practices. You have the right to encourage other people to boycott such businesses. But you do not have the right to choose what is to be done with someone else's property. The notion that the collective has some right to forcibly impose its beliefs on every individual is infinitely more destructive than letting people be stupid with their own property.
Exactly what threat is posed to society by some racist dude who won't let people of another race onto his property? Damn near none. (And how many customers do you think the guy would get anyway?) His choices of who to associate with, and who to trade with, are his--and his alone--to make. That is true of everyone, of all races and religions.
In contrast, an enormous threat is posed to society by people thinking that they have the right, via "government" mercenaries, to force people into associations and trades those people don't want to make. You can call it "affirmative action," or "anti-discrimination laws," or some other euphemisms that make you feel better about it, but what you are advocating is adding violence into a situation to try to achieve whatever you deem to be "fair." And if you think that using the state to force people to deal with each other is going to lead to peace, love and harmony, you're a bonehead. Do you really think the KKK guy with the "government" gun pointed at his head is suddenly going to start loving black people? Of course not. Getting "government" mercenaries involved will only exacerbate the problem.
And don't think the tyrants don't know this. What those in "government" have done in the name of improving "race relations" was designed to forever divide the races, and to keep both sides forever begging "government" for its blessings and preferential treatment. The result is perpetual strife among the citizenry, and increased power for politicians.
Keep in mind, slavery lasted as long as it did only because it was sanctioned by "government." How long do you think slavery would have lasted if there was not a national network of "law enforcement" using violence against those who attempted to free slaves? And the Jim Crow "laws" were edicts from the tyrants, forcing business-owners to discriminate. Remember the Rosa Parks incident? It was the result of a "law" mandating racial segregation on busses.
Now, do you really think that the establishment Democrat party which pushed for those segregation and other racist "legislation" suddenly grew a conscience when the "civil rights movement" expanded? No, they just found a new way to control and subjugate people, black and white. The racist, divisive, oppressive "Jim Crow" type policies were replaced by racist, divisive, oppressive "civil rights" legislation. (Heck, they didn't even always change the faces. Try doing an internet search for Robert Byrd--U.S. Senator and former KKK big-wig--and the term "race mongrels," and see if you still believe that the Democrat party establishment has the best interests of black folk at heart.)
(As an aside, I find it very impressive that way back in 1865, Frederick Douglass, a former slave, could already see that "government" efforts to "help" the freed slaves was a really bad idea, and that the best thing the politicians could do was nothing. Regarding the politicians' "attempt to prop up the Negro," Douglass implored them to simply "Let him alone," and "Let him fall if he cannot stand alone!")
In short, if you want to be tolerant, open-minded, compassionate, and peacefully coexist with people of all colors, creeds, etc., then you need to recognize that "government" is always the enemy, even when it pretends to offer "help." It will always try to pit you against some other group, and will always try to use differences (or make differences) in order to increase its own power. It will always add threats and coercion to the situation--that's all it ever does, and all it can do (that's all "law" is)--and that is not the way to achieve harmony, justice, or fairness.
"Government" is the enemy of blacks, the enemy of whites, the enemy of humanity. But as long as the people keep falling for the tyrant tricks--as long as we keep crying to the control freaks in "government" to forcibly impose our preferences and beliefs on everyone else--then human society will be nothing but a cage full of squabbling brats, all whining for the jailer to whip the other prisoners harder (which is pretty much what every election is).
The other choice--and I realize this is pretty darn radical--is to accept the fact that .... I OWN ME, and YOU OWN YOU.
'Caucasian Only' Ad in Massachusetts Newspaper draws fire
This ban is an example of the intolerance discussed in the article immediately above.
The Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination is investigating a racially charged advertisement that was in a local newspaper. The ad announcing land for sale appeared in the New Bedford Standard-Times recently and was placed by Harmon Law Office in Newton, MyFoxBoston reports.
The advertisement stated that the land "...shall not be sold, leased or rented to any person other than of the Caucasian race or to any entity of which any person other than of said race shall be a member, stockholder, officer or director."
“Such restrictive covenants have long been deemed unlawful and unenforceable under Massachusetts statute, and conveyance of any such deed is expressly prohibited under Massachusetts anti-discrimination law,” said MCAD Chairman and Commissioner Malcolm Medley. “Advertising such a sale may also be unlawful under the statute. Our obligation is to investigate this matter to determine whether a violation of law has occurred.”
Harmon Law issued a statement to FOX25: "This notice involves a restriction that a previous owner placed on the property. We do not condone the language and do not believe that it would be enforceable. It is industry practice to include in the notice of sale the exact legal description as set forth in the mortgage. We have removed the language for future legal notices."
The MCAD investigation comes just days after Fox Undercover did its own investigation of housing discrimination in Massachusetts.
Figures from the US Department of Housing and Urban Development show that since 2007, there have been 324 complaints filed in Massachusetts alleging housing discrimination based on race and national origin.
Sir David Attenborough laments health and safety rules that stops children roaming countryside
Sir David Attenborough has lamented the health and safety culture that is preventing children from 'roaming the countryside' discovering nature. The veteran natural history broadcaster said he learned many of his skills "fossicking" or searching around the countryside for birds eggs, insects and flowers.
But today children are prevented from spending time alone in the countryside because of traffic and fears of abduction. As a consequence the country risks losing the next generation of naturalists.
"Kids of ten or twelve are not encouraged to get on their bikes and go fossicking around the countryside where their mothers do not know where they are," he said. "That was not the case for me. I was able to get on my bike and sit in the fields of Leicestershire watching animals. I learned a lot about natural history."
Sir David has spoken out before about laws that stop children collecting fossils or flowers. He said the rules should be relaxed so children are able to take common species. The 84-year-old also called for more opportunities for children for exploring nature at home and school.
"It is my belief that there is barely a child born into this world who is not initially interested in nature and other creatures," he said. "Now it much more difficult for children. Agreed you cannot have everybody collecting birds eggs but children should be able to collect fossils and flora here and there. Those are the ways naturalist are born. I am sorry for legal reasons and perfectly proper reasons so many of our children are no longer allowed to do that."
Speaking at the 10th Anniversary of the Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust Centre in London, Sir David said people in modern Britain are "out of touch" with the nature that can be seen in their own environment.
"There is a huge amount to be learned and we are getting less and less in touch," he said. "We are in a paradoxical situation in that whereas over half the world's population is becoming urbanised and knowing less and less, oddly through the television they more and more about exotic places like the Galapagos or theEcuadorian rainforests or the plains of East Africa that they ever have knew known. I dare say they know more about East African lions and game than they do about foxes."
The presenter praised recent programmes on British wildlife like the BBC's Springwatch but said more needed to be done to educate people about nature in their own surroundings.
He urged people to go "on safari" in their backyard by using the techniques learned in nature programmes to watch wildlife. He also said they could dig ponds and plant bee-friendly plants to encourage wildlife into gardens. "You can transfer the principles of what you see in a decent natural history programme into the studying the nature you see around you," he said.
A brotherly disagreement over faith
Christopher Hitchens, the celebrated author and polemicist, never got on with his younger brother, Peter. Some siblings, spawned from the same genetic pool but vastly different in character, temperament and outlook, just don't.
Famous for his book God is Not Great: How Religion Poisons Everything, Christopher has become a champion of atheism and secular liberalism. He came to Australia this month to promote his memoir Hitch-22, an enticing prospect for readers who know something of his extraordinary life, wit and command of language. But at the same time that Hitch-22 hits the shelves, so does The Rage Against God: How Atheism Led Me to Faith, Peter Hitchens's personal response to his older brother's attack on God and all things religious.
The younger Hitchens, also a noted journalist and author, was once an atheist (and radical socialist), but returned to faith in his 30s and has remained a believer ever since. This course of events has no doubt added to existing tensions between the two, although the truth is they would have lived very separate lives anyway.
Christopher decided upon the folly of religion at a very early age. It's not hard to see why his early experience of Christianity was a turn-off. Sent to boarding school at age eight, he entered a brutal ''Tom Brown's school days'' world where a sadistic and spartan regimen came to be, in the mind of the young Hitchens, closely associated with the religious trappings of the institution.
Peter's own youthful rejection of the faith was followed by years embracing a secular creed and international socialism. He writes that he passed through the same atheist revelation his brother and many self-confident members of his generation experienced as they rejected a sagging postwar establishment, where the sheen had somehow been rubbed off everyone from the policeman to the vicar, the local MP to the school headmaster. Engrossed in modernity and technology, his generation came to see God as a nuisance and religion as an embarrassment.
But the accidental concord with his brother's sensibilities was not to last. In The Rage Against God he directly counteract the arguments of the New Atheists by drawing attention to what he sees as logical flaws, inconsistencies and blind spots.
Are conflicts fought in the name of religion always about religion? The younger brother sees such an idea as "a crude factual misunderstanding". Is it ultimately possible to know what is right and wrong without acknowledging the existence of a deity? He insists that, to be effectively absolute, a moral code must be beyond human power to alter.
And he rejects his brother's strident claim that teaching religious concepts to children is a form of child abuse. Believers and non-believers should be free to raise their children as they wish, but it would be ridiculous to pretend, says Peter, that it is a neutral act to tell a child "the heavens are empty, that the universe is founded on chaos rather than love, and that the child's grandparents on dying have ceased altogether to exist''.
So what brought the prodigal back into the fold? His personal 'rage against God' came to an end when he hit marriage and fatherhood - "a cliche of discovery that is too obvious and universal, and also too profound, private and unique to discuss with strangers", he writes.
His experiences living and reporting from Russia and eastern Europe profoundly shaped his view of the world. Having lived in Moscow at the close of the Soviet era, and having witnessed other atheistic regimes in full flight, he refuses to accept his brother's evasion of what he sees as an organic link between atheism and the most notorious modernist experiments of the 20th century.
It is this experience that appears to shape his concerns for society. He believes Christianity is under attack today because it remains the most coherent and potent obstacle to frightening and ruthless idealism: "The concepts of sin, of conscience, of eternal life, and of divine justice under an unalterable law are the ultimate defence against the utopian's belief that ends justify means and that morality is relative. These concepts are safeguards against the worship of human power."
In Hitch-22, Christopher describes Peter, with uncharacteristic gentleness, as "to outward appearances almost tragically right-wing". There will be some who would be tempted to dismiss Peter's arguments because of this. But his literary quarrel with his brother brings into the light some important counter-arguments to the New Atheist claims. And through his experiences in the Soviet Union he does provide profound observations and warnings about a culture that has banished God from every area of public life.
He longs for an argument from atheists that "recognises the possible attractions to the intelligent mind of the religious explanation rather than denouncing all religious belief as stupid". Of course many non-believers are not in that camp. No doubt he is thinking of his brother, whose disdain for all religion remains intractable.
But as Peter makes clear, it is not really arguments that will win the day or change the heart of a person so sure of a godless universe and the singularly negative impact of religion. "'Those who choose to argue in prose, even if it is very good prose, are unlikely to be receptive to a case which is most effectively couched in poetry," he writes. Ultimately shrill and often ugly arguments for and against the existence of God mask something deeper and more personal.
Peter describes a 2008 public debate with Christopher in Grand Rapids, Michigan, on the existence of God in which, despite the hopes of the gathered throng, both men refrained from a public mauling of each other. Somehow it didn't feel right. He says it was as if the longest quarrel of his life was over. "On this my brother and I agree: that independence of mind are immensely precious, and that we should try to tell the truth in clear English even if we are disliked for doing so."
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 or Email me (John Ray) here. For readers in China or for times when blogger.com is playing up, there is a mirror of this site here.