bigotry

The Detail (Devil Not Included)

A coffee cup at Terra Vista. Detail of photo by B. D. Hilling, 2013.

Be careful with this one. Via Science of Us:

This might seem like too thin a point to harp on, but it’s actually important given people’s tendencies to over-extrapolate from limited study findings: “People who are more racist are more likely to make unprincipled arguments about free speech” is a very different claim than “People who make principled arguments about free speech are more likely to be racist.” This study supports the former but doesn’t say a word about the latter, and there really are some people who are committed to certain free-speech principles regardless of the content of the speech involved. All the more reason to have these conversations in as nuanced and principled a manner as possible.

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Singal, Jesse. “Are People Who Defend Free Speech More Racist Than Those Who Do Not?” Science of Us. 8 May 2017.

Mississippi

Is hatred really a Christian value?Mississippi

Gov. Phil Bryant signed a bill yesterday that supporters say will assure unfettered practice of religion without government interference but that opponents worry could lead to state-sanctioned discrimination against gays and lesbians.

The bill, called the Mississippi Religious Freedom Restoration Act, will become law July 1. It also will add “In God We Trust” to the state seal.

(Associated Press)

The whole point of this law is to empower Christian supremacism.

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Seventy-Five Pounds of Dope

“You’d need at least four or five immigrants, and mango-sized calves would do just fine.”

Ryan Kearney

One of the challenges facing the armchair pundit, or even average voter in this age of industrial-grade politics is that one can effectively legitimize scandalous behavior through saturation marketing. Whether it’s waxing romantic about the wetbacks on his father’s farm, or finding women—invariably past their own fertile years—willing to say that Todd Akin and Richard Mourdock were right, or sending Rep. Marsha Blackburn out to put a feminine face on the proposition that women don’t actually want equal pay for equal work, Republicans just can’t seem to keep from choking on their own toes.

To catch every one of King’s offensive statements, one would need an army of trackers. To keep an accurate record of the insanity coming from the GOP’s vociferous hardline right wing would require career decisions.

Still, though, in the end, well, come on.

Lost in all the jokes about cantaloupes, though, was the real absurdity in King’s quote: that anyone could conceivably carry 75 pounds of pot. Seventy-five pounds of marijuanaTrue, the weight itself is not necessarily prohibitive, though it would take a very fit, hydrated person to carry that much through the desert. But dried marijuana, no matter how “dank” its buds are, is not a heavy product by volume. Which is to say, it takes a lot of pot to get to 75 pounds. How much, exactly? This picture, from a 2011 post in Kansas City alt-weekly The Pitch about a highway bust, shows exactly that weight in marijuana. No backpack is large enough to fit this much bud. You’d need at least four or five immigrants, and mango-sized calves would do just fine.

I mean, you know. Any excuse to post a picture of seventy-five pounds of sweet and kind.

Many thanks to Ryan Kearney of The New Republic for putting that lovely two and two together.

And, yes, I would laugh if that was trafficked over from Kansas.

An Obvious Question

The most obvious question of the day: Is cartoonist Chip Bok racist, or just stupid?

Chip Bok, "Al Sharpton America"The overtly conservative cartoonist is notorious for his stinging critiques of Democratic and liberal political fantasies spun of his own delusion, and his latest low blow against Reverend Al Sharpton is no different.

Perhaps the poignancy of the frame comes from its timing. Not so long ago, liberals chuckled—or else fumed with appropriate disgust—at a phenomenon in public discussions about women’s health civil rights issues widely reviled as, “Hush, girl. The men are talking.”

Just think about that for a moment.

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