Two Jaw-Dropping Moments …

More than once I have said that it feels as if we are moving backward to a time of extreme bigotry and racism, to a time of segregated schools, a time of ‘whites only’ bathrooms and drinking fountains.  Two stories in yesterday’s news confirmed my worst fears.

A PEW research study was released yesterday that caused my jaw to drop.  The survey found that 34% of Americans … more than a third … think it is okay to wear blackface as a part of a costume all, or at least sometimes.  I am stunned at the ignorance, the utter crudity of these people!  Unthinking louts!  Morons!  The demographics are interesting … take a look …Pew-blackface-surveyNotice especially the differences between Republicans and Democrats — and the republicans wonder why the GOP has become known as the party of racists?  The survey was conducted January 22nd to February 5th, mostly before the revelation of Virginia Governor Northam in blackface in his med school yearbook.

The age breakdown is also interesting, for it seems that people ages 18-29 are least likely to say it’s okay.  But to me, the educational breakdown is perhaps the most relevant.  It seems that common sense, compassion, cultural awareness increase with higher levels of education.  Take a look …Pew-blackface-survey-2.pngI wonder, if this survey had been taken three years ago, when we had an African-American president, a man of conscience and compassion, and before the ‘man’ in the Oval Office gave off racist vibes, would the results have been the same?  For the record, it isn’t really a matter of opinion, but a matter of what’s right and what’s wrong.  Wearing blackface is a form of mockery, a form of denigration, and it is NEVER acceptable.  Period.  Not for a costume party, not for a small gathering of close friends, and not for a med school yearbook picture.  NEVER.Only one race

The second jaw dropper came with this headline …

West Virginia lawmaker compares LGBTQ community to the KKK

Say WHAT???  Ai ching … chihuahua!!!

In recent months, cities and municipalities in West Virginia have begun passing ordinances protecting the LGBT community from discrimination.  Enter West Virginia state Delegate Eric Porterfield, not surprisingly a republican, who argued in favour of a state-level bill that would make such local ordinances against state law.  The very notion that he is against equal rights for LGBT people is bad enough, but his rhetoric …

Eric-Porterfield“The LGBTQ is a modern-day version of the Ku Klux Klan, without wearing hoods with their antics of hate. The LGBT is the most socialist group in this country. They do not protect gays. There are many gays they persecute if they do not line up with their social ideology. I am terrified of these people. They represent a socialist activist agenda. They are opponents of freedom.”

‘Opponents of freedom’.  You, Mr. Porterfield, are a grade-A jackass!  Mr. Porterfield is blind, having lost the sight in both eyes as a result of an altercation in 2006.  Now, I just wonder how he would like it if somebody referred to blind people as being just like the KKK?

This is not his first time being a bully, as you might expect.  In 2016, he saw a Facebook post by his wife’s gynecologist arguing in support of a woman’s right to choose, right to abortion.  He told her in a Facebook message that, if she didn’t change to an anti-abortion position, he’d organize an economic boycott of her practice.

The situation escalated to the point of him filming a Facebook video calling for the boycott, and the doctor obtaining a protective service order from Magistrate Sandra Dorsey against Porterfield in court. Mercer County sheriff’s deputies then confiscated guns owned by Porterfield and his wife, Jessica.  (Wouldn’t you just know they owned guns?)

And then in 2018, a bill was up before the West Virginia Legislature to ban forced conversion therapy on minors.  The bill failed, but Porterfield was livid that the bill was even introduced, calling the bill bigoted and discriminatory.

This man is a prime example of what is wrong not only in our government, but in our society today.  If you don’t fit into the mold … the white, Christian, straight, and preferably male mold … then you are second-class and deserve whatever those ‘exemplary’ white citizens decide you deserve. lgbt flag

One cannot blame Donald Trump exclusively for creating the attitudes of hate and bigotry we are seeing in ever-increasing numbers today, but we can blame him for condoning the behaviours of hate groups, and thus making these vermin believe that it is ‘okay’ to be racist, to be homophobic, xenophobic and misogynistic.  Donald Trump said he would get rid of ‘political correctness’.  Being politically correct is nothing more nor less than being polite, being kind, treating others fairly.  And yet, those are things that we are losing in this nation.  We are losing them because the ‘man’ at the helm of this ship says that white and Christian and straight are superior to all else.  He is wrong.  He is dead wrong.

37 thoughts on “Two Jaw-Dropping Moments …

  1. Using makeup (black, brown, or white) to change appearance to portray another person in and of itself is not racist (in my opinion). It’s a costume. It’s acting. I know the historical reasons why it is considered wrong and I’m not going to go out for Halloween as Denzel Washington any time soon, obviously. But the results of the survey aren’t so unbelievable to me. Also when Dave Chappelle does it, it is hilarious.

    Liked by 1 person

      • I would agree that historically it has been used as a slap in the face. I don’t think you could say that every actor in history that donned blackface was using it this way. I don’t believe all the people who have the bad sense to dress this way for Halloween are racist. I’m not advocating for anything here. I’m just saying that I wasn’t that shocked at the survey results.

        Liked by 1 person

        • It may not have been the intent of every person who has used blackface, and some surely did so in all innocence. However, just a bit of thought and one should realize that it is offensive whether it is intended to be or not.

          Liked by 1 person

  2. Hello Jill. I remember a phrase that use to be used often, “All things in moderation, balance is the key”. We need capitalism but in moderation, its worse aspects kept in check. We need socialism also in moderation to take care of the people of our country, which is what the government is supposed to do. We have socialism in our country already and always have, we have government funded financially shared projects we all use every day. Roads, Law enforcement agencies, military, fire protection, public education, social security, and medicare to name a few. There are a lot more. Societies function better with these social programs funded for the betterment of the communities as a whole and in countries where these are implemented there is a much higher satisfaction and quality of life ratings. Side note, I laugh when people are asked what government programs are a waste and should be cut. It is always the programs others use, none that they might use themselves. Interestingly the lists rarely match.

    As to tRump. What most people forget is tRump is the product of his upbringing and a mental handicap. I do not know if he ate lead paint as a child, got banged a few times on his head, or if he was born that way, but there is no disputing his low reasoning ability which is well documented. Every school he attended his wealthy father paid large sums of money to, and then Donald got passing marks. Former teachers also have come forward to say how bad a student he was and even how violent he could become if challenged or told he was wrong about something. Add to this upbringing his father’s constant need to have his son seen as the best and brightest, in an environment where no one was allowed to correct Donald or his behavior. By all accounts Donald adored his father and wanted to be just like him. tRump senior was an ego driven racist who held weird views of wealthy white privilege and was all about appearances. Donald tRump is the product of that environment, upbringing, and affluence and has it ingrained in him from birth that is the correct proper way life is. He and his are the only ones who matter, everyone else is inferior, don’t really matter, and are to be used. He is truly a racist and has gotten more bold about it as he aged. He sees non-white people as inferior and to be used and discarded, to him they are not fully human and have no rights. They simply are not human like him and his family are. He really embodies the old time racist attitudes and away from cameras has endorsed some really horrible racist ideas. In his mind it is OK to seperate the parents and children at the border because to him they are more like animals and do not have the same feelings about these things he and his kind do. He really has a huge disconnect in his mind about non-white non-wealthy people. To him they are not really people, they are things to be used. Once you understand his world view it is easy to see why he couldn’t condem the white supermist Nazi’s and why he commits the economic crimes he does. in his mind his crimes are his right to do, the laws are for you “little people” as leona Helmsley is claimed to have called the non-wealthy.

    Be well. Hugs

    Liked by 1 person

    • Dear Jill . Mary and friends,

      I loved the articles’s definition of liberalism, “If by a ‘liberal’ they mean someone who looks ahead and not behind, someone who welcomes new ideas without rigid reaction, someone who cares about the welfare of the people – their health, their housing, their schools, their jobs, their civil rights and their civil liberties – …then I’m proud to say that I’m a liberal.”

      Hugs, Gronda

      Liked by 2 people

  3. The LGBTQ “represent a socialist activist agenda.” Either I missed it, or no one has taken this language to task. American politicians have long been making socialism a target word, right up there with communism. They might as well be flip sides of the same coin, the way those words are tossed around. Hate socialism. Fear communism. Both are enemies of capitalists, and capitalism is the only real economic choice. Meanwhile, capitalism is what keeps the poor poor, and the rich rich. Capitalism is the structure that creates and sustains the ever-widening equity gap. When are people going to realize that capitalism is the enemy to be feared, and socialism, or even communism, in their intended states, are the hope of the poor. (No true communist state has ever existed yet, they are merely capitalism of the elite, pretending to be for the poor.)
    But back to socialist activists, what better way for the right to attack their perceived enemies but by calling them socialist. The fear and hatred are already there. It does not matter that sexual orientation has nothing to do with econpmy or politics–call it socialist and people will turn against it. That language needs to be stopped.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Growing up in the 60s, in the shadow of the Cold War, we were taught that Communism was the root of all evil, and that Capitalism was the only way to democracy, to free thought. As I matured, I came to see that there were some serious flaws with that line of thought, and I started reading, researching, studying and pondering. Several decades ago, I concluded that on paper, both socialism and communism are ideal systems. On paper. The reality, of course, is that we are a society of human beings, and humans are greedy creatures. Thus, in practice, both communism and socialism fall short of meeting the goals of equality for all. That said … when a society such as we have in most western nations puts profit ahead of people, it’s sure to fail at some point. You are right, that the concept of socialism has been demonized in the West and while most people have no concept of what socialism is, they react violently when the word is even mentioned. It is a threat that is effectively used by the wealthy 1% to strike fear in the hearts of the people and keep them in line, keep them giving their heart and soul to the greedy corporations who have more wealth than they know what to do with, yet are not willing to share with those less ‘fortunate’. I thought that people had gotten smarter, and wouldn’t fall for that ‘trickle down’ economic theory that Reagan promoted 30 years ago … but I was wrong, for under Trump, they have fallen for the same line of b.s. Now, if someone mentions helping someone in need, that person must be a socialist. If I saw an old lady fall on the sidewalk and helped her up, I would no doubt be labeled a socialist. The language DOES need to be stopped, but it is too convenient for those in power, so it won’t be. Sigh.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Let’s say, for the sake of argument, given the top 1%, that another 29%, high middle class and above, want to maintain the status quo, because they firmly believe they can rise into the ranks of the 1%. That leaves 70% who know they have little or no chance oe ever becoming rich. Then another 30% who don’t care if they can ever get rich, but they believe they are free because their leaders tell them so. That still leaves 40% of North Americans and Europeans who can see what is happening, and that is a quite large number. Those are the people who can change the language. Half of them are too wussy to try. Twenty % of that population is big enough to succeed. Hell, 1% is enough to succeed, We are ahead of the game. The question is how to start.

        Liked by 3 people

  4. For a long time this country lived an illusion, issues were shoved under the rug…today technology has sunk that illusion and reality has set in.. Donald Trump is on a ego trip, nothing more.. and his followers and supporters are simply fueling that ego so to benefit themselves… one needs to concentrate one’s efforts on the supporters, not so much the leadership, for the leadership is only as strong as the “foundation” that put them in a place of power… 🙂

    “When we begin to build walls of prejudice, hatred, pride, and self-indulgence around ourselves, we are more surely imprisoned than any prisoner behind concrete walls and iron bars.” Mother Angelica

    Liked by 3 people

    • You have hit the nail on the head, Dutch. The leader can only survive as long as he has supporters, without whom he will tumble off his wall like Humpty-Dumpty. The question becomes, then, how does one convince those people that they are wrong? How does one break through the barrier of ignorance? If we ever figure that one out, perhaps we can actually build a world where people can ‘live and let live’. You do always seem to have just the right quote for every occasion!

      Liked by 3 people

          • Well, give them some time (some may take longer than others 🙂 ), and after a time, then move on and instead of wasting anymore of your time with those who are closed minded and will not listen, use that time to work with those that will… 🙂

            In the meantime, let your fingers do the walking while your heart does the talking… 🙂

            Liked by 1 person

  5. Excellent post, Jill. It is profoundly upsetting to see how many people continue to harbour racist and other discriminatory beliefs/attitudes after all the great strides made over the past few decades. So many are too stubborn to see that the externals that differentiate humans are trivial compared to the overwhelming number of characteristics that make humanity a species capable of such wonder. Physically and psychologically we are far more alike than not. This is why your post is needed, Jill. Thanks.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Thanks John! Good to see you … I’ve missed you! Yes, I do feel that we are moving in the wrong direction in this country. I believe that if it were in his power, Trump would roll back much of the Civil Rights Act and not hear a word of dissent from his followers. I don’t understand any of it. It is so disheartening to find that friends I have known for 20-30 years, people I believed thought as I did, are showing their true bigoted colours. I’ve said before that I think most animals are actually superior to humans, for they don’t judge one another based on the colour of their fur. Such judgments are superficial and keep us from discovering so much of value. I wonder sometimes how many great inventions have been passed by because nobody took seriously the ideas of a gay person/black man/woman/Muslim. I hope you and Anne are both doing well! Hugs, my friend!

      Liked by 2 people

      • The truly sad thing is that humans have not evolved emotionally or psychologically in any significant way since the dawn of Homo sapiens. All the technological miracles achieved mean nothing. Socially, humanity is stunted. Scary. Hope you are well too, Jill.

        Liked by 4 people

        • That is the thing that disturbs me! We should be learning the lessons of history, and yet, we don’t. Instead, we keep making essentially the same mistakes over and over and over. The Chinese say that history is cyclic, and I’ve come to believe it. I think that we may be near to our own self-destruction for failing to take good care of our home, planet Earth. Perhaps it is for the best. Sigh.

          Liked by 2 people

  6. I’ve decided that I’ve seen so much c**p (not a fish) from all the haters that it was my turn.Eric Porterfield you are a fat b*stard (not a bird) and you’ve got more chins than a Chinese phone book. Get off your arse and get some exercise. It’ll be good for you and might work off some of that aggression.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Heh heh … you don’t often go on a tear, but when you do, you do it well! I thought the same, though … I suspect he uses his blindness as an excuse for many things. It won’t surprise you to find that he is a graduate of a bible college and has founded his own church called “Blind Faith Ministries”. After I finished this post, I read that he said he would drown his children if he found out they were gay. He claimed it was a joke, but to me it takes a sick mind to even joke about such a thing! He is being asked to resign from his office, but I don’t expect he will go quietly or voluntarily.

      Liked by 2 people

  7. Jill, this is not the most uplifting post, but is needed. Hugh, point is good – social media has allowed a greater audience for bigoted thinking, with like minds finding each other. Trump has made it more acceptable for bigots to walk around with a horrible sign shouting horrible things with impunity.

    As for the two specific themes. The WVa lawmaker should be asked a few questions. Here is one – do you realize the KKK mission is to deny the rights of other groups while LGBTQ community mission is to say our rights matter? This is not just a subtle difference, it is one between hate (KKK) and freedom (LGBTQ)? My follow up would be if you cannot understand the difference, then maybe you should resign your position as a lawmaker because your judgment is unsound?

    As for blackface, we live in a day where everything is capturable by iPhone. And, it lives on. What we tell our kids (and should tell ourselves) is be mindful of what you say and do and avoid putting questionable things on social media. With that said, we have all done stupid things in our past, either individually or in a group. Standing up to groupthink is hard. We need politicians to come clean about past misjudgment as they have a tendency of coming out. Also, we don’t want to keep very good people from running who did a couple of dumb things in their past. I would feel much better about s politician who said – I drank too much in college, I could have been a better person and boyfriend (girlfriend) and so on.

    The key is did you change and learn from those experiences, how frequent and severe were the actions and how old were you? And, how have you changed? Life events change you – a good partner, children, a mentor or volunteer work. I am better person for all of the above. I was never a bad person, but could have been better.


    Liked by 4 people

    • Unfortunately, very few of my posts these days are uplifting. As you say, we need to hear it all … the good, the bad and the ugly.

      While I fully agree with your line of questioning for Mr. Porterfield, I think his mind is set in stone and he would have some pat answer based on false perceptions that wouldn’t encourage a dialog. He doesn’t seem the type to be open to opinions that don’t mesh with his own. Interestingly, after I finished this post, I read that he was asked in an interview what he would do if one of his children were gay, and he responded that if he couldn’t change them, he would drown them. He claims it was a joke, but to me … it’s sick to even joke about such a thing.

      You’re so right … the internet and social media has put our lives under a magnifying glass, and we have all done things we are ashamed of … only thing is, some aren’t ashamed. But to the point, no, we will never find a candidate for political office who doesn’t have a bit of dirt in the closet, and the key is to take responsibility and prove he/she is a better man/woman because of having learned from his/her mistakes. Trouble is, I’m seeing too many who make excuses and don’t seem to have learned at all.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Jill, I think your follow-up which includes what he would do to his gay kids says everything that we need to know about this man. I am sad for LGBTQ people whose parents do not support them. But, to have him say he would drown them is something that cannot be unsaid. Keith

        Liked by 2 people

  8. I said it long ago: this man has turned over rocks we wanted to remain in place. What is crawling out is borderline disgusting. But we should not think the attitudes are new: only the sense that it is OK to express those attitudes.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Borderline, Hugh? That is way over any line I can conceive of! Or are you just getting inured to the constant beating by people who believe they are still the majority? Sorry, I just think we need stronger language, clear language. Borderline just doesn’t cut it.

      Liked by 4 people

    • You are absolutely right … the attitudes were there all along, but tamped down because people realized it wasn’t the right thing. Along came Trump who said, “Hey, it’s okay to hate and even to act on that hatred”. And we can only wonder what will come next, for there are still vermin under the rocks that haven’t yet reared their ugly heads. Sigh.

      Liked by 2 people

  9. As if Trump wasn’t bad enough, there are plenty behind him who are even worse. That is the really sobering thought. It reminds me of the time I worked in Libya, during the Gadafi years- it was popularly said that the reason the West had never actually taken him out was because the people behind him were the real nutjobs.

    Liked by 3 people

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s