No, Steve Bannon should not speak at your journalism conference. Here's why.

White Supremacist grifter Steve Bannon, formerly of Donald Trump's Presidential administration, has made quite the new career for himself as a lucrative speaker on the journalism and big thinker circuit. Read the rest

Gentleman who thinks Confederates were the good guys in the Civil War gets epically self-owned

In this clip from Rest in Power: The Trayvon Martin Story, Florida gun store owner and George Zimmerman pal Andy Hallinan explains that the Civil War was not about slavery. He is then asked what it was about. [via Lachlan]

Hallinan: The majority of people believe that it is a symbol of heritage, that it is a symbol of our history, that people think is associated with the South, and the South was fighting for slavery — that’s a common misconception about what actually took place. When you study the history, that was one thing that the war was about. People don’t go to war for one issue.”

Interviewer: Name three other things the war was about.

Hallinan: Uh, I mean, I’m not a historian. I mean, you’re putting me on the spot for something I — you know.

[a few seconds of silence]

Interviewer: So we got one thing the war was about -- slavery. What are two other things that the war was about.

Hallinan: Um, um, the Confederate... the, uh, um... in general, the war was about tyranny.

Interviewer: What is tyranny?

Hallinan: Tyranny is any time a government overreaches, and they control a life too much.”

Interviewer: Like slavery?

Hallinan: [silence, followed open mouthed silence]

Read the rest

Angry at Kenyan train in Thomas the Tank Engine, the NRA posts picture of trains in Klan hoods

After decades of Thomas the Tank Engine having female and international characters (typically represented by an actual train design from their home countries) conservatives have finally noticed and gotten angry about it. This is because the latest one is from Kenya.

In response, the NRA posted pictures of the show's trains in Klan hoods.

Dana Loesch: "Nia, will be from Kenya to add ethnic diversity to the show. And -- which that by the way, that’s Where it gets really strange to me because I’ve looked at Thomas and Friends, at their pictures, and I see gray and blue. Am I to understand this entire time that Thomas and his trains were white? Because they all have gray faces."

Forget, for a moment, that Thomas has been coding non-UK nationality into characters since at least the 1980s. What's funny about Loesch's rant here is the Kenyan train is, in fact, the same color as all the others:

Loesch hasn't actually seen what she's mad about. She's imagining a black train and getting frightened and angry.

Read the rest

Britain's Channel 4 highlights Twitter abuse in ad campaign

Channel 4 in the UK:

We stand up for diversity and inclusion. Unfortunately, not everyone agrees. One of the dark sides of this is online abuse. To highlight this disturbing trend, we’ve partnered with some advertisers to show examples of real abuse against real people in their ads. It may shock you.

Here are the ads. If the embed doesn't show, click the link above.

T.S. Eliot, as dissatisfied by life's pettiness as he was satisfied by his own conservative fatalism, ended his poem The Hollow Men with the famous lines "This is the way the world ends/Not with a bang but a whimper." He later regretted it. People who survived bombings told him they heard nothing at all. Read the rest

Trump's government denying passports to some Americans born near U.S.-Mexico border: WaPo

They served in the Army, Border Patrol and as police. They have legitimate U.S. birth certificates. But Trump's government is denying their passport applications and telling them they aren't U.S. citizens. Read the rest

High schooler yanks MAGA hat off classmates head, slaps teacher, earns suspension

Kids today. They understand a racist, homophobic, misogynistic, anti-Semitic, symbol when they see one.

Via CBS News:

A Union Mine High School student is facing battery charges after an altercation in her classroom over a Donald Trump "Make America Great Again" campaign hat, reports CBS Sacramento. In cellphone video, a teacher is seen trying to subdue fired-up 17-year-old senior Jo-Ann Butler after she became enraged at a classmate for wearing the MAGA hat.

She grabbed the hat off his head.

"That's a racist and hateful symbol," Butler said.

She is now facing two counts of battery, one on her classmate and one on her teacher, who deputies say she slapped as he escorted her from the room.

Butler says she made the scene to express her political feelings.

"Maybe just wake people up in some type of way, because it's not cool, the environment our classroom is in," Butler said.

Her father says he doesn't approve of the way she behaved in class. "Wasn't handled the way I'd like it," Chris Butler said.

Now he's faced with the legal impact of his daughter's alleged criminal act.

All centered around the political divide across the country.

"I don't agree with grabbing someone's hat and verbally talking to them in that way," Chris Butler said. "But as far as the issue being brought up, maybe this is something that needs to be brought up."

The El Dorado Union High School District's clothing policy allows students to wear political symbols.

Read the rest

Trump's Orphans: 528 children still separated, 'severe attachment injuries' observed in migrant kids

Jacob Soboroff of NBC News has been covering the story of migrant kids separated from their families by Trump's violent policy at the Mexico border. Soboroff is in Florida today, where he stopped by a “temporary” HHS shelter for unaccompanied minors who entered the United States illegally. Read the rest

KKK nut who shot at black man protesting racist Charlottesville rally gets 4 years in prison (yay)

“We went there to protect a monument,” he said. Read the rest

N-word returns to British television

The abandoned Karl Lagerfeld Realdoll prototype known as Rodrigo Alves used the N-word on a British reality TV show and the broadcaster didn't even take him off the air. Here's the BBC on the alarming but very highly-rated return of a classic.

Ofcom said it has received 1,048 complaints about the incident, which was shown on the second day of the reality TV show.

Rodrigo used the word when describing what kind of partner he preferred.

Ofcom is currently deciding whether action will be taken against Channel 5 for its handling of the incident.

"We will assess these against the broadcasting code before deciding whether to take it forward for investigation," it said in a statement.

Alves, known for both the number and the incompetence of his plastic surgeons, has attained a level of celebrity in the UK media that damns both him and them in ways suddenly more obvious. Celebrity Big Brother was reportedly so desperate to keep him on the show that he boasted of the special demands he was making before, finally, making clear to them who is in charge. Read the rest

Chinese spies force US-based Uighurs into "voluntary" surveillance by threatening their families in China

The Chinese state crackdown on the predominantly Muslim Uighur minority -- involving the imprisonment and torture of upwards of a million people in brainwashing camps -- isn't limited to China itself. Read the rest

Drunk NYPD cop shouted racial slurs at family after breaking into their home thinking it was his AirBnB

Read the rest

Nazi fan wins Republican primary in Missouri

Steve West, an anti-semitic conspiracy theorist who said Hitler did nothing wrong, defeated three other GOP candidates in the party's primary election for Missouri's 15th district. He now faces Democratic incumbent Jon Carpenter in November.

He won with 49.5 percent of the vote; the second-place finisher had 24.4 percent.

“Looking back in history, unfortunately, Hitler was right about what was taking place in Germany. And who was behind it,” West said on KCXL radio in January 2017, The Kansas City Star reported Thursday.

He has spoken of “Jewish cabals” that are “harvesting baby parts” from Planned Parenthood, abuse children and control the Republican Party. West also has a YouTube channel on which he has made homophobic, anti-Semitic, Islamophobic and racist statements, according to The Star.

I've officially lost track of the number of open white supremacists running (and winning) GOP primaries. It's happening well down-ballot in the grass roots, but it's obvious what's coming: a generation of older, blander white-collar nazis. They're more convincing and well-heeled to conservative voters than the online weirdos currently grifting the far right, whose only real talent is owning the libs. Read the rest

DC Metro provided private subway car for white supremacists at Sunday's rally

Nauseating. The DC Metro was warned not to and--in an apparent lie--promised workers it wouldn't privately accomodate white supremacists at taxpayer expense. Then it did.

WASHINGTON -- Metro closed down a gate at the Vienna station to the general public on Sunday for the "Unite the Right 2" rally participants to have police-escorted access onto a train car, drawing anger from Metro's union, saying they were lied to.

A few weeks ago, Metro Board Chair Jack Evans said the agency was considering having special trains or cars to separate white nationalists from the public. After union workers and Metro riders began to react to the controversial idea, Metro said in a statement that they would not offer separate trains for the rally.

I hope that the service and its leadership is held responsible. Read the rest

Toxic gaming culture explained by the people who study it

Polygon has an amazing piece on why gaming culture and young white male gamers are so toxic. They interviewed a number of folks doing actual academic research and professional journalism on the topic, and the answers are sadly exactly what you expect. Scared racist white guys have had a lot of time to fester in their little bubble, and are very resistant to any change that means they aren't always Übermenschen.

Excerpt via Polygon, but read the whole thing:

Why are gaming’s toxic men so enraged?

Women and people of color are beginning to appear in games as powerful characters with their own agency. Slowly, women and minorities are starting to hold senior positions in game development and game criticism. Why is representation — within and outside the art — so offensive to gaming’s toxic men?

Soraya Chemaly:

There’s a lot of sociological research about hierarchy and status in the gaming space, and the misogyny and aggression that comes out of that.

We know that the dynamics of women’s visibility online, particularly in what are perceived as competitive situations, can often result in lower-status men feeling threatened, and then dogpiling on women who have more prominence, status and visibility.

We see that in gaming, and we see it in the same way on Twitter where they have a two-tiered verification system that makes women extremely visible in prominent ways.

Jen Golbeck (Golbeck is an associate professor at the University of Maryland. Her books on internet and entertainment culture include Introduction to Social Media Investigation: A Hands-on Approach.):

The mythos of heroic, powerful men who are in charge — who are respected, successful and dominant — is a narrative that is really changing.

Read the rest

Girl, 6, sexually abused at 'Southwest Key' detention site for families separated under Trump

A 6-year old girl separated from her mom under Trump's "zero tolerance" policy was sexually abused inside a Southwest Key shelter in Arizona, reports The Nation. Read the rest

New Orleans cops beat man up for being a "fake American"

Two New Orleans police officers were charged with battery this week after beating up a man they decided was a "fake American," reports CBS News. The officers were white and the victim hispanic; they told him they "didn't like his camouflage clothing."

Spencer Sutton and John Galman were booked on one count each of simple battery in connection with the beating of Jorge Alberto "George" Gomez early Tuesday, reports CBS affiliate WWL-TV.

Gomez said the two off-duty officers, who are white, began harassing him inside Mid-City Yacht Club, saying they didn't like his camouflage clothing and asking him whether he had served in the military, reports the New Orleans Advocate. Gomez said he told the men he was born in the U.S. but was raised in Honduras before he returned to live in New Orleans and served in the National Guard, but the men wouldn't accept his answer.

WWL-TV confirmed that Gomez, who is Hispanic, served with the Louisiana National Guard.

The cops tried to claim Gomez was the aggressor, but surveillance video made liars of them. Read the rest

New Jersey radio hosts suspended over racist remarks

Two New Jersey radio hosts were suspended by their station today after directing racist remarks at the state's attorney general, Gurbir Grewa.

Dennis Malloy and Judi Franco of WKXW-FM called Grewa "turban man" for the length of a segment about the nation's first Sikh to hold the position, because Malloy "couldn't remember" his name.

"I'm just going to say the guy with the turban,” Malloy said. "Listen, and if that offends you then don't wear the turban and maybe I'll remember your name."

The station, NJ 101.5-FM, announced the decision to reprimand hosts Dennis Malloy and Judi Franco on its website around midnight. By then the hosts were at the center of a firestorm on social media and the governor had called for the station to take action against the veteran radio personalities.

"We are aware of the offensive comments made by Dennis and Judi during today’s broadcast," the station said. "We have taken immediate action and have taken them off the air until further notice. We are investigating the matter and will have further comment shortly."

They will be "off the air until further notice," adds USA Today.

"Say it with us: Ger-beer Gray-wall," wrote the ACLU. "... Racism isn't cute. It's just racist." Read the rest

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