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31 December, 2018
Trump Administration Urges Supreme Court to Protect Cross-Shaped War Memorial
The Trump administration filed an amicus (or “friend of the court”) brief Wednesday urging the Supreme Court to protect a 93-year-old war memorial in Bladensburg, Maryland, that is shaped like a Latin cross.
The court will soon decide whether the cross-shaped World War I memorial violates the First Amendment’s ban on religious favoritism. The justices agreed to take the case on Nov. 3.
The Trump administration’s brief emphasizes the need for the high court to clarify its jurisprudence concerning religious displays in the public square. Since 2005 the justices applied two different tests for assessing the constitutionality of sectarian symbols in public settings.
The administration then offers a solution to that problem: It urges the justices to resolve public display cases with reference to the practices of the Founding Fathers. The brief favorably cites the high court’s approach to a 2014 case called Town of Greece v. Galloway. In that case, a five-justice majority said the town board of Greece, New York, did not violate the Constitution by opening monthly public meetings with a prayer.
The American Legion erected the memorial, known locally as “Peace Cross,” to honor the World War I dead of Prince George’s County in 1925. A state commission has administered the site since 1961.
Furious transgender woman not very ladylike
"She" was big, rough-looking and had a man's voice so the clerk might have thought he got it right
An argument broke out at the GameStop in Albuquerque, New Mexico, when the woman had just bought an item at the counter.
She demanded her money back after being called 'sir' by the male shop attendant, then raged at a fellow shopper who called her 'sir' again and asked her to stop swearing as there were children present.
After screaming and booting over a stand of toys as she stormed out, the woman then walked back towards to counter to continue the tirade. She complained of being repeatedly misgendered by the store clerk and demanded to have the company's corporate number in order to make a complaint.
A video was posted on Facebook of the woman's furious exchange as she aggressively pointed at the clerk as he repeatedly apologized. The clip began with the woman already at boiling point, saying: 'I don't want credit, you're going to give me my f***ing money back.'
At one point she even offered to fight the shop employee outside to 'show him a sir'.
During the angry confrontation, a female customer stepped in and tried to defuse the situation by offering to call the police, but also called the woman 'sir', which further enraged him/her.
She said: 'Excuse me sir there is a young man in here you need to watch your mouth. 'I can call the police if you would like me to, you need to settle down.'
The angry woman replied: 'Excuse me it is ma'am, it is ma'am. You need to settle down and mind your own business.'
When the clerk tried to intervene and calm the pair down, the woman thought he called her 'sir' again and screamed: Motherf*****, take it outside if you want to call me sir again. I will show you a f***ing sir.'
The blonde woman, who was wearing a grey hoody and blue jeans, then marched out.
30 December, 2018
Revealed: Facebook's secret censorship rule-book
Facebook's secret rules governing which posts are censored across the globe have been revealed.
A committee of young company lawyers and engineers have drawn up thousands of rules outlining what words and phrases constitute hate speech and should be removed from the social media platform across the globe.
They have also drawn up a list of banned organisations laying down which political groups can use their platform in every country on earth, a New York Times investigation has revealed.
An army of 7,500 lowly-paid moderators, many of whom work for contractors who also run call centers, enforce the rules for 2 billion global users with reference to a baffling array of thousands of PowerPoint slides issued from Silicon Valley.
They are under pressure to review each post in under ten seconds and judge a thousand posts a day.
Employees often use outdated and inaccurate PowerPoint slides and Google translate to decide if user's posts should be allowed on the social network, a Facebook employee revealed.
Dozens of Facebook employees gather to come up with the rules for what the site's two billion users posting in hundreds of different languages should be allowed to say.
But workers use a combination of PowerPoint slides and Google translate to work out what is allowed and what is not in the 1,400-page rulebook.
The guidelines are sent out to more than 7,500 moderators around the world but some of the slides include outdated or inaccurate information, the newspaper reports.
Facebook employees, mostly young engineers and lawyers, meet every Tuesday morning to set the guidelines, and try to tackle complex issues in more than 100 different languages and apply them to simple yes-or-no rules, often in a mater of seconds.
The company also outsources much of the individual post moderation to companies that use largely unskilled workers - many hired from call centers.
Posts about Kashmir were flagged up if they called for an independent state, as a slide indicated Indian law bans such statements. But the accuracy of this law has been debated by legal experts.
The slide instructs moderators to 'look out for' the phrase 'Free Kashmir', despite the slogan, common among activists, being completely legal.
One slides inaccurately described Bosnian war criminal Ratko Mladic as still being a fugitive, though he was arrested in 2011.
Another slide incorrectly described an Indian law and advised moderators that almost any criticism of religion should be flagged as illegal.
Moderators were once told to remove fund-raising appeals for Indonesian volcano victims because a co-sponsor of the drive was on Facebook's list of banned groups.
A paperwork error in Myanmar allowed a prominent extremist group accused of inciting genocide to stay on the social media platform for months.
Moderators will sometimes remove political parties, like Golden Dawn in Greece, but also mainstream religious movements in Asia and the Middle East, an employee revealed.
One moderator told the Times there is a rule to approve any post if it's in a language that no one available can read and understand.
The rulebook is made up of dozens of unorganized PowerPoint presentations and Excel spreadsheets with titles like 'Western Balkans Hate Orgs and Figures' and 'Credible Violence: Implementation standards'.
One of the document sets out several different rules just to determine when a word like 'jihad' or 'martyr' indicates pro-terrorism speech.
Moderators have to review a post and decide if it falls into one of three tiers of severity, with lists that state the six 'designated dehumanizing comparisons', such as comparing Jewish people to rats.
Sara Su, a senior engineer on the News Feed at Facebook told the New York Times: 'It's not our place to correct people's speech, but we do want to enforce our community standards on our platform.
'When you're in our community, we want to make sure that we're balancing freedom of expression and safety.'
Principal at remote Australian country high school is slammed after posing with students dressed up in blackface and as Adolf Hitler for 'history day'
Country Australia has mostly local concerns so is less sensitive to what offends urbanites
A public school has been forced to apologise after students were photographed wearing racist and inappropriate costumes during a muck-up day.
Rowena Public School in remote north-west NSW came under fire after students were seen dressed as Adolf Hitler and sporting blackface, New Matilda reported.
'The school unreservedly apologises for two photos that were published yesterday on our Facebook page. They have been removed,' the school said in a Facebook post.
Rowena Public had just 25 students and two teachers, one of whom is the principal.
Students were told to dress up as historical figures in a muck-up day earlier this month.
One student dressed up as Hitler and wore Nazi emblems.
She was pictured next to another student who painted their face black and wrapped medals around their neck to represent American athlete Jesse Owens.
A smiling school principal Paul Cecil posed with students in the photos.
They were then uploaded to the school's Facebook page.
Neighbouring towns like Walgett, Collarenebri and Moree have large Aboriginal populations and took the photos as a direct insult.
Following the community uproar, Rowena Public School posted an apology then tore down the Facebook page. 'These photos were unacceptable,' the school said.
'Rowena Public School is a caring and supportive learning environment. We reject racism in all its forms.'
24 December, 2018
'I'm disgusted': Asian woman left horrified after worker at upmarket Manhattan hair salon chain describes her as 'c****y e**s' on a client ticket
The comment was apparently intended to be private
A New York woman of Asian descent was shocked when a hair salon used an offensive racial slur to describe her on a client docket.
On Monday Briana Tae, 26, attended a Drybar outlet in Manhattan as she was preparing for her nursing school's pinning ceremony.
However she was stunned when she saw what was written about her on a slip called 'The Tab' which is used between employees at the salon.
Under a heading labelled 'Description of client', an employee had written 'c****y e**s' in reference to Tae.
Tae, who attends New York University's nursing school, was disappointed to see the inappropriate comment and walked over to ask the receptionist about it.
'She could not understand why it was an issue and why it was highly inappropriate to write such a description.
'She tried to make me feel somewhat better by saying she had c****y e**s too,' Tae wrote.
On Thursday the company posted a statement on Instagram apologizing for the incident and saying it does not tolerate racism.
In the post, the company confirmed that it terminated the employee involved in the incident.
A lot of fuss over a single common word
The F-word is homophobic?
A restaurant that has been serving residents of Columbia, South Carolina for more than 40-years was forced to fire a member of staff on-the-spot last week, after a note detailing a homophobic slur was slipped into a customer's bag.
The incident happened at Yesterdays Restaurant and Tavern on December 16, according to patron Cyntrell Jones Legette, who detailed the shocking occurrence on Facebook.
In the post, she alleges that one of the kitchen staff placed an offensive note in one of her friend's bags.
She said the piece of paper had the word 'F**' written on it and was purposely placed in the bag of a homosexual male.
When telling management of the hateful message, Legette claims 'the manager tried to excuse this disgusting behavior by calling it a joke.' But Legette says there's 'nothing funny about being disrespected'.
In response to the post, the restaurant took to their own Facebook page to publicly apologize for the actions of the worker - who, they insist, was fired 'on the spot'.
'We at Yesterdays Restaurant & Tavern deeply regret the incident,' the post read. 'It was hurtful and offensive breach of the commitment Yesterdays has made to our community for over forty years to provide an environment that is inclusive and respectful to each and every guest who comes through the door, regardless of color, creed, or sexual orientation.'
23 December, 2018
Facebook Blocks Netanyahu’s Son, Citing His ‘Hate Speech’
After all the Muslim terrorist attacks on Israel, Israelis are surely entitled to be critical of Muslims
In a Facebook post a few days ago, one of the Israeli prime minister’s sons said he hoped the deaths of two Israeli soldiers killed by a Palestinian gunman in the West Bank would be “avenged” and said, “There will never be peace with the monsters in human form known since 1964 as ‘Palestinians.’” In other posts, Yair Netanyahu, the older son of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, said he would prefer an Israel without any Muslims and mused that no attacks occurred “in Iceland and Japan where coincidentally there are no Muslims.”
Facebook removed the posts after a flood of complaints, saying they “included hate speech” and clearly violated the community standards. On Sunday, after Yair Netanyahu reposted a screenshot of one of the offending posts online and called on people to share it, the social networking giant suspended his account for 24 hours.
So he took to Twitter. There he reposted a diatribe he had written against Facebook, describing it as “thought police” and protesting that it hosted “endless pages that call for the destruction of Israel and the murder of Jews.”
The Netanyahu family’s spokesman declined to comment publicly on Yair Netanyahu’s status or his spat with Facebook.
Facebook said in a statement that it had removed his three posts as it would “for anyone posting similar content about any protected characteristic.” Reposting the screenshot, the company said, “is the same as writing the hate speech all over again. Facebook does not allow hate speech on the platform and will continue to enforce its policy.”
'Wakanda bulls**t is this?' Forever 21 draws outrage by using a white model with blue eyes and blond hair to showcase Black Panther sweater
Fashion retailer Forever 21 is facing backlash for selecting a white model with blue eyes and very blond hair to showcase a sweater tied to the Black Panther film.
The Los Angeles-based retailer raised eyebrows on Tuesday afternoon by tweeting an image of the white model showing off the Christmas sweater, which reads 'Wakanda Forever'.
The sweater is in reference to the 2018 Marvel film, which depicted the fictional African utopia of Wakanda and starred Chadwick Boseman as T'Challa, the Black Panther.
Following instant backlash, Forever 21's tweet was deleted, images of the white model were removed from the online store, and the company apologized in a statement to DailyMail.com.
21 December, 2018
Disney accused of cultural appropriation for patent on song from ‘The Lion King’
A petition calling for Disney to release its trademark on the words “Hakuna Matata” has attracted more than 35,000 signatures from people calling it cultural appropriation of the Swahili language.
The phrase, which translates to “No problem” or “no worries,” was made popular by the 1994 film The Lion King and has since re-emerged due to the upcoming live-action remake of the immensely popular children’s musical.
Although Disney applied for the trademark in 1994 and was approved in 2003, an activist from Zimbabwe is arguing that a culture’s language can’t and should not be patented.
Shelton Mpala launched the Change.org petition calling for Disney to release the trademark it has on Hakuna Matata likening it to “colonialism” and “robbery”.
“The appropriation of something you have no right over. Imagine, if we were to go that route, then we owe the British royalties for everyone who speaks English, or France for when we speak French,” the petition reads. “Join us and say NO to DISNEY or any corporations/individuals looking to trademark languages, terms or phrases they didn’t invent.”
At the time of writing, the petition has garnered more than 42,000 signatures and continues to grow.
Since its debut in 1994, The Lion King has become an incredibly popular venture for Disney, which includes a hit Broadway play, toys and clothing, games and several film sequels and spin-offs.
Electronic Arts boss sacked over ‘bigger d***’ remark
An unfortunate metaphor, apparently
The head of one of the world’s largest video game makers has been fired after telling a female colleague on a conference call that an internal company discussion shouldn’t be a matter of seeing “who has a bigger d***”, a High Court heard.
Jean Philippe Grenet, 56, a senior director at Electronic Arts Ireland, was fired six months after taking the $256,000-a-year (€160,000) job, the Irish Daily Mail reported.
Lawyers for Grenet told the High Court that the “clumsy” remark was intended to mean that he didn’t want to get into a petty dispute with a co-worker and he was not trying to make a sexual comment.
Grenet told the High Court that Ms S, an American woman with whom he had weekly video calls, had applied for his job and wanted to “undermine my authority”.
Grenet, who is the company’s “most senior man in Ireland”, has turned to the High Court in a bid to get his dismissal reversed. He has already secured a temporary injunction to stop the company dismissing him or hiring someone else to fill his role, while the case is ongoing.
20 December, 2018
Princeton Students Cut ‘Misogynistic’ Little Mermaid Song
The Tigertones, a Princeton University a cappella group, perform “Kiss the Girl,” a song from The Little Mermaid, reported Campus Reform.
But not everyone’s a fan. Princeton student Noa Wollstein wrote an op-ed in the student paper calling the song “misogynistic.” Noa says that “even when gently crooned by an animated crab, the song…is more misogynistic and dismissive of consent than cute.”
She notes that a sea-witch had cursed Ariel, taking her voice away and making the mermaid unable to give verbal consent. But if you’ve seen the scene from The Little Mermaid, you’ll remember that Ariel’s expressions make her feelings pretty obvious.
Leaning in for a kiss, looking dejected when Eric backs out, giving a big ol’ goofy smile, and grabbing his hand, that doesn’t exactly look like sexual assault, folks.
But what does Noa want? Well, when the Princeton Tigertones sing “Kiss the Girl,” they pick a male and female audience member to act out the parts of Ariel and Eric. This means that they’re persuaded to kiss at the end of the song.
The student columnist says she’s seen many female students not happy with the practice and she asked the Tigertones to stop singing the song. The a cappella group complied, but here’s the thing: who’s responsible here? Peer pressure’s really annoying, don’t get me wrong, but if students at an Ivy League institution can’t even cope with that, I’m a bit worried about our next generation of leaders.
Confederate Statue Torn Down And Now UNC Out Millions
Protesters at the University of North Carolina tore down a Confederate statue in August.
Present at the protest was UNC graduate student Maya Little, who previously smeared a mixture of what she claimed was paint and her own blood onto the statue and just got charged again this month with assault of an officer and inciting a riot, reported Campus Reform. It’s a cliche at this point, but this sure does drive home the whole “jobs not mobs” slogan. Except…for the poor employees tasked with cleaning up the mess made by these adult children.
From June 2017 to June 2018, before it was torn down, UNC spent over $390,000 protecting the Silent Sam statue from protesters. That money could have covered tuition for about 11 out-of-state or 43 in-state students. It was during this same period that 17 anonymous UNC professors wrote the school, threatening to rip down the Confederate statue themselves. They said:
“We do not fear arrest, indeed we welcome the opportunity to demonstrate the commitment that the Carolina faculty has to the wellbeing of its students and the principles that make this university great.”
You know, principles like cultural Marxism. Now here’s the thing: UNC Chancellor Carol Folt would love to scrub her hands of this matter completely, even if by the kind of savage mob justice we just witnessed. But a 2015 North Carolina law forbids her from removing Silent Sam from campus. So to comply with the law, the school proposed creating a new building for the monument on the outer part of campus.
The cost of this building? Five…million…dollars. That’s in-state tuition for more than 500 students. You know, something tells me that some of these Silent Sam protesters are the same individuals complaining about tuition costs. I’m also betting that the irony escapes them completely.
19 December, 2018
Jordan B. Peterson's free speech fight: Author plans to ditch Patreon as censorship battle rages
'Sargon of Akkad' banning speeds up plans for new platform
“12 Rules for Life” author Jordan B. Peterson is fed up with the questionable practices of tech giants when it comes to honoring the idea of free speech.
The recent decision by crowdfunding platform Patreon to remove popular YouTuber Carl Benjamin, aka Sargon of Akkad, may have been a free-speech tipping point for the clinical psychologist. Mr. Peterson and fellow pundit Dave Rubin of YouTube “The Rubin Report” announced plans to build a “better alternative” for intellectuals and content creators.
“We’ve been engaged in lengthy series of email exchanges with all of the people in our network, and no one is happy at all with what’s been happening,” Mr. Peterson said a joint video released Sunday. “We’ve been determining what our options are. We looked at Subscribe Star, but it looks like PayPal decided to cut funding out from them.”
At issue is Patreon’s decision to kill the account of Mr. Benjamin in early December after its staff was made aware of a guest appearance on a small YouTube channel 10 months ago.
The social commentator took an epithet favored by his racist critics, used their definition for the sake of argument, and said they were acting like white versions of the word.
“I didn’t think that Patreon would go and say that their terms of service simply don’t matter, that they would just judge me on my brand, which has always been politically incorrect, and then now instead of some point instead of the last four years, decide to get rid of me,” Mr. Benjamin said Dec. 14.
“There were so many different people affected by this over a vast swath of the political spectrum. It’s not just people who supported me who were bothered. It’s people who are generally interested in taking part in the political dialogue.”
Mr. Benjamin has said that Patreon, besides failing to put his words into proper context, is violating its own terms of service since his appearance was never posted on the platform.
“I think we should just make it very clear for everybody how significant what happened to Carl Benjamin, Sargon of Akkad, is,” Mr. Rubin said Sunday. “It doesn’t matter what you think of him or whether you agree or any of that stuff. The banning of him for doing something that was not on the Patreon platform, that wasn’t even done on his channel because of a word he said where he was using the word against the ‘alt-right’ or the neo-Nazis or whatever you want to call them, is a massive move of that line of what’s acceptable.”
Mr. Rubin also noted that Patreon’s decision is at odds with comments its CEO, Jack Conte, made while on his show. The platform is supposed to only hold people accountable for “Manifest Observable Behavior,” on the platform.
“I’ve been working on a system to allow authors and other people who engage publicly on intellectual issues to interact more effectively with their readers and viewers and listeners,” Mr. Peterson said. “It occurred to me this week that with a bit of modification that that can serve exactly the function that we’re hoping it could serve. What we’re going to try and do as fast as we possibly can is to set this system up on a subscriber model that’s analogous to Patreon. It will have a bunch of additional features, which I don’t want to talk about right now, and I don’t want to overpromise because the system is new.”
Christmas Ad Pulled Because of Dumbest Racism Claim Ever
The Dorchester Historical Society was forced to pull a controversial Christmas ad because too many precious snowflakes were offended.
The ad that reads “Dreaming of a White Dorchester” was used as a promotional piece for a holiday party.
It was one of several advertisements that changed the words of famous and traditional Christmas songs to include “Dorchester.”
Another one of the ads read, “May your Dorchesters be merry and bright.”
After a few snowflakes claimed the ad was racist, the historical society apologized and pulled the ad.
18 December, 2018
USA Today’s Coverage of Young Athlete’s Old Tweets Is Vigilantism, Not Journalism
On Sunday, 21-year-old University of Oklahoma quarterback Kyler Murray won the Heisman Trophy. He gave a gracious, emotional speech that celebrated his faith in God, respect for his fellow athletes, love of family, lifelong work ethic, and team spirit.
“I’ve worked my whole life to fulfill my goals, but at the same time, I know there’s a higher power looking down on me. He enables me to do all things. For that I’m grateful—for the many blessings that God has blessed me with,” Murray humbly told reporters.
But one reporter wasn’t interested in covering the actual news of the Heisman winner’s triumph. He was interested in sabotaging it.
Within hours of the press conference, USA Today sports writer Scott Gleeson penned an article attacking Murray for posting “tweets using an anti-gay slur.” Murray and family awoke Monday morning to a barrage of character smears slamming his “homophobic” posts from six years ago—when Murray was 14 or 15 years old and jokingly called his friends “queer.”
Google is now clogged with wall-to-wall coverage of his teenage antics from CNN to the “Today” show to every sports outlet and his hometown Oklahoma newspaper.
Gleeson’s hit piece reeks of deceptive vigilantism, not journalism. After noting that Murray had a “Saturday to remember,” Gleeson wrote that “the Oklahoma quarterback’s memorable night also helped resurface social media’s memory of several homophobic tweets more than six years old.”
Who “resurfaced social media’s memory”? Why, it was Gleeson himself! By creating an illusion that Murray’s schoolboy tweets were the subject of any scrutiny and outrage other than Gleeson’s own, USA Today gave us a shining example of the manufacturing of fake news. Ain’t misleading passive voice grand?
London Underground bans dating app ad featuring topless man, 58, for ' sexual objectification'
AN advert featuring a topless model in his fifties has been banned from the London Underground over claims it sexually objectified him. The advert, for an over-50s dating app, showed 58-year-old Paul Orchard wearing just braces, holding a phone with the tagline: “Pull a cracker this Christmas.” However Transport for London’s advertising agent, Exterion Media, has demanded that it be changed to feature a clothed model with a “less suggestive” tagline.
It claimed the advert for Lumen, the first dating app exclusively for the over-fifties, was “not compliant” with Committee of Advertising Practice guidelines and said it “could be seen as objectifying the man and his physique”.
The Committee of Advertising Practice declined to comment on the advert. From June next year it will ban adverts which reinforce gender stereotypes, like men struggling with household tasks or women as bad drivers. The Lumen advert will now appear as a toned down version on the Tube, with the man fully clothed in a red suit and the tag line "Santa, Baby".
It comes amid a wider clamp down on body shaming adverts by tube bosses following furore over Protein World's "Are you beach body ready?" campaign.
The founders of the Lumen app defended the advert, describing TfL's decision as “absurd”.
Despite the decision to pull the ads from the tube, the billboards with the original image and tagline will appear across the country from next week.
Lumen's co-founder, Charly Lester, said: “This campaign is only meant to be a bit of fun. I didn’t think it would get banned, I thought it was funny. I don’t think it is rude — it is cheeky.
"Our app is all about anti-ageism, body confidence and being yourself, so to have this banned is a bit depressing. It’s ridiculous and absurd.”
17 December, 2018
Company Looks To Gut Tucker Carlson over ‘Poorer and Dirtier’ Immigration Comment
Fiery conservative commentator Tucker Carlson has never had a problem speaking his mind. For better or for worse, the Fox News host’s public opinions are unfiltered and raw, which contributes to his sizable following.
Given Carlson’s unabashed approach to sociopolitical discourse, he has made his fair share of leftist rivals. Sometimes, as is the case with CNN, those leftists have no discernible comeback other than to mock him.
Other leftists, however, have taken to aiming for Carlson’s wallet when he says something that might hurt their feelings.
Carlson is facing the wrath of leftists over a comment he made on his show while decrying rampant and unchecked immigration into America.
“We have a moral obligation to admit the world’s poor, they tell us, even if it makes our own country poorer and dirtier and more divided,” Carlson said.
That comment sparked immediate outrage across social media, with many people complaining to the various advertisers on “Tucker Carlson Tonight.”
I saw you advertise on Tucker Carlson's show. One of the biggest advertisers of the year, in fact!
Insurance company Pacific Life, for its part, caved in to the outrage spreading across social media and pulled its ads from Carlson’s show. The company announced the decision on Twitter.
“As a company, we strongly disagree with Mr. Carlson’s statements. Our customer base and our workforce reflect the diversity of our great nation, something we take great pride in. We will not be advertising on Mr. Carlson’s show in the coming weeks as we reevaluate our relationship with his program.”
Fox News responded to Pacific Life’s decision with a statement to The Hill.
“It is a shame that left wing advocacy groups, under the guise of being supposed ‘media watchdogs’ weaponize social media against companies in an effort to stifle free speech,” a company representative said. “We continue to stand by and work with our advertisers through these unfortunate and unnecessary distractions.”
As of this publication, Carlson has not responded to the controversy surrounding his remarks.
Apple CEO To Ban ‘Sinful’ Conservative Speech. Leaves ‘F*** White People’ and ‘Suck My D*** H**’ on iTunes
Apple CEO Tim Cook defended censorship by claiming it would be a “sin” not to remove content on Apple’s platform, but Apple allows songs like “F*** White People” to stay on iTunes.
Speaking at Anti-Defamation League’s “Never is Now Summit” on Monday, Cook made a bizarre attack on free speech.
“We only have one message for those who seek to push hate, division, and violence,” Cook said. “You have no place on our platform. You have no home here.”
Of course, content that allegedly pushes “division” only applies to conservative content. Cook would be hard-pressed to remove far-left content because conservatives are the ones pushing “division” in the eyes of the left.
In reality, without “division,” the left would simply dominate everyone without opposition, which is clearly big tech’s goal.
If Apple was serious about broadly censoring “hate, division, and violence” without an ideological motive, they wouldn’t allow songs like “F*** White People” and “Suck My D*** H**” to stay on iTunes.
Apple’s platform also has countless mainstream rap songs threatening violence against President Donald Trump.
16 December, 2018
Teachers rip down statue of Gandhi unveiled by Ghana's president - saying the independence leader was 'racist' as a young man in South Africa
The iconoclasts are right this time. Gandhi had a very low opinion of Africans after living in Africa for some time
A statue of Mahatma Gandhi on a university campus in Ghana has been pulled down by lecturers arguing that India's most renowned independence leader was racist.
After campaigning for the statue's removal for two years, teachers at the University of Ghana in the country's capital Accra took matters into their own hands on Wednesday.
The statue was unveiled in June 2016 by India's former President Pranab Mukherjee, who also gave a speech encouraging students to 'emulate and concretise' Gandhi's ideals.
However shortly afterward lecturers started a petition to get rid of the statue, which had been located in the university's recreational quadrangle.
According to the BBC, the petition said that Gandi was 'racist' and called for African heroes to be honoured instead.
The professors said that the fact that the only historical figure memorialised on the university campus was not African was 'a slap in the face that undermines our struggles for autonomy, recognition and respect', The Guardian reported.
They also reportedly cited several of Gandhi's writings which refer to black South Africans as 'kaffirs' (a highly offensive racist slur), accuse the South African government of trying to 'drag down' Indians to the level of 'half-heathen natives' and describe Indians as 'infinitely superior' to black people.
Gandhi (1869 – 30 January 1948) is the most famous leader of India, where he is referred to as Bapu (papa). He led the country to independence from British rule, which it achieved in August 1947. He is remembered for his tactics of peaceful civil disobedience, which have inspired civil rights movements throughout the world.
From age 23, Gandhi spent two decades living and working as a human rights lawyer in South Africa, where he developed his political and ethical views.
While there he also faced persecution because of his race and served four prison terms totalling seven months for resisting racially-biased laws.
Luxury brand Prada in racism controversy over $750 toy monkey
Another week, another luxury brand in hot water over an alleged racism controversy.
This time it's luxury fashion brand Prada, which says it will stop selling a $US550 ($766) monkey figurine after it was likened to racist caricatures historically used to dehumanise black people.
The monkeys were part of Prada's new "Pradamalia" line of small items such as key rings and toys featuring cartoon creatures. The black and brown versions have oversized red lips, a traditional hallmark of "blackface".
Suffice to say, the reaction to the range was swift, and negative. Quasi online fashion police Diet Prada, which partly takes its name from the brand, questioned why such controversies keep happening at luxury brands.
"Many are comparing 'Otto', a resulting mutation of one of Prada's oldest mascots, the monkey, to Little Sambo, a children's book character from 1899, who exemplified the pickaninny style of blackface caricature," wrote Diet Prada's Lindsey Schuyler and Tony Liu.
The company issued a statement apologising for the figures and saying they would be removed from sale.
"They are imaginary creatures not intended to have any reference to the real world and certainly not blackface," the company said. "Prada Group never had the intention of offending anyone and we abhor all forms of racism and racist imagery. In this interest, we will withdraw all of the characters in question from display and circulation."
14 December, 2018
"Hate speech" is just an attempt to limit free speech
Free speech must encompass so-called ‘hate speech’ or it is not free speech at all – it is restricted, proscribed, regulated speech. Likewise, academic freedom that rules out ‘incendiary language’ and ‘the disparagement of any person or persons based on religion, nationality, race, gender, sexual orientation or identity’ is not academic freedom. It is permission to utter only banal and already-accepted platitudes.
Increasingly, the concept of ‘hate speech’ is being used to draw limits around what can and cannot be said. We need to be clear that hate speech is an invented, subjective and arbitrary concept. There are no objective measures of ‘hatefulness’. What counts as ‘hate speech’ is defined by the offended – or, more often, those quick to perceive offence on behalf of others – and enshrined by those in authority. The starting point for all this is that some people are more vulnerable than others and in need of special protections; their identity or beliefs need to be placed beyond criticism.
Over recent years, a pattern of censoring views deemed beyond the pale has become established. Initial offence-taking is swiftly followed by public declarations of outrage. The selective highlighting of ‘inflammatory’ words and phrases is accompanied by a social-media trial and calls for the guilty party to be removed from public life. The success of this formula has meant it has spread from campus into mainstream society, and from the political left to all shades of opinion.
For too long, campus and academic activists have been at the forefront of calling for views they disagree with to be censored rather than challenged. It is tempting to sit back and enjoy the times when this comes back to bite them. But a proper defence of free speech requires challenging the very notion of hate speech and insisting that all views are heard, no matter how contemptible.
An Aussie bargain shop chain pulls ‘disgusting’ figurines from shelves after social media storm
Not sure what is wrong about this. The figurines actually look better than most real-life Aborigines today -- who are very prone to obesity etc
An Australian bargain shop chain has been forced to apologise and pull a bizarre product from its shelves following a social media backlash.
A picture of the figurines depicting scantily clad indigenous Australians carrying boomerangs and didgeridoos was uploaded onto Twitter over the weekend.
It was uploaded by Luke Pearson, founder and CEO of IndigenousX — an indigenous owned and run independent online media platform.
“The perfect gift for white ppl who ‘love Aboriginal culture’ but would rather not interact with us in real life,” he wrote alongside an image of the “Australian Aboriginal” figurines.
The China-made trinkets — which were being sold for just $3 each — were spotted at a Hot Bargain shop in the Lake Haven Shopping Centre on NSW’s Central Coast.
It’s understood similar figurines are being sold at other Aussie bargain shops and Mr Pearson claimed they were as “common as golliwogs in Australia” on Twitter.
Outraged commenters piled in on criticism of the figurines and the shop’s decision to stock them. “Holy sh*t that’s racist, vile and offensive,” wrote one commenter. “I can’t believe people still sell these,” wrote another.
“That’s even more offensive than all those cheap, Indonesian knock-offs being sold as ‘authentic’ indigenous art in the gift shops,” added a third.
The bargain chain has now said it will immediately remove the product from its shelves following the outcry.
13 December, 2018
This Teacher Was Fired for ‘Misgendering’ a Student. Who Could Be Next?
Last week, a Virginia school board voted unanimously to fire a teacher after he refused to comply with administrators’ orders to use a female student’s preferred masculine pronouns. The student “transitioned” over the summer and began identifying as a man.
This latest casualty in the culture wars raises the obvious question: Who could be next?
Peter Vlaming went to great lengths to accommodate the student without violating his Christian faith. He used the student’s new name to avoid upsetting the student, but refrained from using pronouns altogether in the student’s presence to avoid speaking against his belief that God created human beings male and female.
“I’m happy to avoid female pronouns not to offend because I’m not here to provoke,” Vlaming told the press, “but I can’t refer to a female as a male, and a male as a female in good conscience and faith.”
However, this was not enough to satisfy the student’s family or the board.
“I can’t think of a worse way to treat a child than what was happening,” said the principal, who had ordered the teacher to use the student’s preferred pronouns against his beliefs.
This incident does not bode well for future conflicts over transgender policies. As more of these conflicts arise in schools, hospitals, shelters, and businesses, America must allow its citizens to think about and debate these issues freely.
No one should fear losing their job because they believe that men and women are biological realities that are not interchangeable.
Unfortunately, government coercion as a weapon of the culture wars is now spreading across the professions.
First, there were cases in the wedding industry where the government tried to force people to violate their belief that marriage is between a man and a woman—florists, bakers, photographers, wedding venues, and so forth.
Then those lawsuits spread to even more industries—videography, web design, calligraphy studios, and public service.
Now, the government is beginning to penalize people who hold that there are two biological sexes. For example, a Catholic hospital was sued for refusing to remove a biological female’s healthy uterus to pursue gender transition. Meanwhile, two parents lost custody of their teenage daughter for refusing to allow their child to take testosterone and identify as a boy.
This could be just the beginning. House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi recently announced that the Equality Act will be a top Democratic priority in 2019. The bill would impose controversial transgender policies on the nation by elevating “gender identity” to protected status in federal anti-discrimination law.
This would have drastic implications for average Americans. It would open up sex-specific facilities like bathrooms, locker rooms, and shelters to members of the opposite biological sex. It would allow biological males to compete on women’s sports teams. It would force health care providers and insurance companies to provide and pay for radical transgender therapies.
In brief, stories like Vlaming’s would become the new normal.
This kind of sweeping, coercive policy is not the answer to current debates about gender identity. Americans must remain free to discuss these policies in a respectful manner—which is why the firing of Vlaming is so disturbing. Instead of allowing the parties involved to find a workable compromise, the school board not only picked sides, it silenced one side.
This is an extremely disturbing precedent.
Sadly, while Vlaming was willing to work to make the student a cherished member of the community, the school board was not willing to work to make the teacher a cherished member as well.
Instead of pursuing a solution that would respect everyone—teacher and student alike—the school board refused to respect Vlaming’s beliefs and terminated him.
Speaking and acting according to one’s conscience should not be a fireable offense. When authorities try to force people to act against their beliefs, it is a blatant abuse of power—one that can easily backfire when political power changes hands. That is why everyone should be concerned about these emerging challenges to freedom of conscience.
Head of communications for Grindr resigns after the company's president says he believes marriage is between man and woman
An executive for Grindr - the largest queer dating app in the world - has resigned just weeks after the company's president said marriage is between a man and woman.
Landon Rafe Zumwalt, the head of communications for Grindr, made the announcement in an open letter shared on Medium.
'As an out and proud gay man madly in love with a man I don't deserve, I refused to compromise my own values or professional integrity to defend a statement that goes against everything I am and everything I believe,' Zumwalt wrote.
'While that resulted in my time at Grindr being cut short, I have absolutely no regrets. And neither should you.'
Zumwalt was referring to a Facebook post shared last month by the company's president, Scott Chen.
In the post, Chen said: 'There are people who believe that marriage is a holy matrimony between a man and a woman. I agree but that's none of our business.
'There are also people who believe that the purpose of marriage is to create children that carry their DNA. That's also none of our business,' Chen added.
Chen also wrote in the now-deleted post that 'there are people that are simply different from you, who desperately want to get married. They have their own reasons'.
According to an article by INTO, Chen had shared the post on his personal Facebook page to call out Cher Wang, the president and CEO of HTC, whose non-profits backed anti-LGBTQ groups in the US that organized to influence Taiwan's referendum on same-sex marriage.
Chen wrote that marriage is a 'personal thing' and encouraged the rich to the poor or those who are suffering from war'.
'Why spend all that money to stop people who love each other from getting married? Aren't there more important stuff in life?' he asked in the post.
12 December, 2018
Dean Martin's Daughter Defends 'Baby, it's Cold Outside'
Radio stations from Cleveland, Ohio to Madison, Wisconsin have stopped playing "Baby, it's Cold Outside" amid a national movement against the song's lyrics. The Christmas song, famously sung by Dean Martin and written for the film Neptune’s Daughter, is no longer the popular tune it once was
The lyrics that give critics particular pause are the lines:
"So really I'd better scurry (beautiful please don't hurry).
But maybe just a half a drink more (put some records on while I pour).
The neighbors might think (baby, it's bad out there).
Say what's in this drink? (no cabs to be had out there)."
Cleveland's Star 102 radio station started the trend of taking the song off their Christmas playlist after receiving caller complaints. "Now, I do realize that when the song was written in 1944, it was a different time, but now while reading it, it seems very manipulative and wrong," radio host Glenn Anderson wrote in a blog post.
Dean Martin's daughter Deana Martin is shocked by how people are suddenly treating her dad's classic song. She said critics have got it all wrong.
“There's nothing bad about that song," Martin said adamantly on "Fox & Friends" Monday. "And it just breaks my heart and I know my dad would be going insane right now…He would say, what's the matter with you? You know, get over it. It's just a fun song.
Martin continued to explain that the song's original intent is not nearly so sinister as its critics are suggesting. "It's a sweet, flirty, fun, holiday song," she said, adding that the current controversy is "madness."
Martin said she has no plans to change the lyrics. “I don't want to. I don't want to change the lyrics. Where she says, you know, ‘hey, what's in this drink?’ I don't think she's talking about some pill being put in that drink. You know, like, ‘is this punch? You know, what's in this drink? Is it vodka?’ You know, I mean it was, it was nice. It's just breaking my heart that people would turn that around.”
Whining New Zeland woman didn't like being called a Kiwi
A New Zealand woman who accused her former boss of racial discrimination says it's ruined her life.
Julie Savage, a former supervisor at the Vili's Cakes kitchen in Adelaide, said she was 'disrespected' when her co-workers repeatedly called her a 'Kiwi' instead of using her name.
But her complaint, which was heard before the South Australian Employment Tribunal, was dismissed as a 'perceived lack of respect'.
Julie Savage, a former supervisor at the Vili's Cakes kitchen in Adelaide , said she was 'disrespected' when her co-workers repeatedly called her a 'Kiwi' instead of using her name
Julie Savage, a former supervisor at the Vili's Cakes kitchen in Adelaide , said she was 'disrespected' when her co-workers repeatedly called her a 'Kiwi' instead of using her name
Ms Savage, who was referred to as 'Kiwi' by bakery owner Vili Milisits, said the colloquial term was used in a derogatory way, NZ Herald reported.
'I had a Kiwi flag on my desk, I am proud. But that wasn't my name, that's the issue. No-one called me that but him. He used it like it was my name, like ''go and do the dishes, Kiwi'', or ''wipe the table, Kiwi''.'
Ms Savage said her boss used the name to order her to do jobs, rather than use the word as a term of endearment.
'He used that like it was my name,' she said, claiming it caused her to suffer from depression and low self-esteem.
Ms Savage and her husband and son moved from Auckland to Adelaide in 2006. She was hired the next year.
She was eventually promoted a supervisor role after working as a short order cook for a few years.
While she would take some New Zealand jokes on the chin, Ms Savage said the persistent use of 'Kiwi' wore her down.
A year-and-a-half after laying her official complaint in 2016, Ms Savage lost her racial discrimination case.
On Sunday December 2, the claim was dismissed by Tribunal Judge Leonie Farrell, who said: 'Calling a New Zealander a Kiwi is not of itself offensive. Kiwi is not an insult.'
The bakery's owner admitted he had called Ms Savage the moniker, but argued that it was a fond nickname and never intended to be demeaning, Adelaide Now reported.
Judge Farrell ultimately agreed, throwing out any accusations of discrimination.
'It was pretty satisfying when I saw what the commissioner said – I'm happy with that,' Mr Milistits said.
He thanked the tribunal for finding in his favour, but said the 18-month-long trial was 'slow'.
Ms Savage who is a 'a proud Kiwi' said she's lost her self-esteem and suffers from depression.
She said she was disappointed with the tribunal's decision but wouldn't be able to afford an appeal.
The case wasn't about money but rather about receiving an apology, Ms Savage said.
'I feel this case is a moral victory for me against Vili Milisits and that hopefully he will no longer call people that he employs by another name other than their given name.'
11 December, 2018
Truce achieved in Berkeley free speech fight
A truce of sorts was reached last week in the latest battle over free speech at UC Berkeley. Rare is the lawsuit settlement in which each side can credibly claim a level of vindication. This is one.
Young America’s Foundation, the conservative nonprofit that bankrolled the lawsuit against the university, hailed the settlement as a “landmark victory for free expression.” Its statement triumphantly declared that UC Berkeley could “no longer wantonly treat conservative students as second-class members of its community while ignoring the guaranteed protections of the First Amendment.”
Conversely, a spokesman for the university said the settlement essentially validates its existing policies on security fees and time-and-place restrictions that apply to all campus speakers, regardless of ideology. Spokesman Dan Mogulof also emphasized that a federal court had upheld the constitutionality of those policies seven months ago.
Here is the welcome bottom line: Conservatives are guaranteed a platform at the university of the 1960s Free Speech Movement. The demonstrators who have tried to silence high-profile appearances by right-wing provocateurs such as Milo Yiannopoulos, Ben Shapiro and Ann Coulter will not be able to stop future appearances by threatening havoc.
And, just as important: The conservatives who have tried to claim censorship and martyrdom when they encounter the conditions imposed on all other groups have lost their talking point. The Young America’s Foundation agreed to this deal and will be paid $70,000 of its attorney fees.
Australia: How it could be ILLEGAL to say 'he' or 'she': Failing to use transgender terms could land Australians in court under proposed laws
Using the pronouns 'he' and 'she' could land Australians before the courts under Tasmania's controversial transgender rights reforms, legal experts have warned.
Landmark reforms - put forward by the Labor opposition, the Greens and slammed by Scott Morrison as 'ridiculous' - could include a provision that would make it illegal for people to refuse to name others by their preferred pronoun.
The proposed laws would allow parents in Tasmania to decide whether their child's gender is recorded on birth certificates - and enable people aged 16 or older to legally change their gender.
The bill passed Tasmania's lower house last month and must now pass the state's 15-member upper house - nine of whom are independents - to become law.
Dr Greg Walsh from the University of Notre Dame Australia said the reforms were largely 'admirable', but condemned dictating how people use pronouns as 'completely unacceptable'.
'The Tasmanian parliament's proposed changes to its anti-discrimination legislation could make it illegal for a person to not accept a transgender person's gender identity,' Dr Walsh told The Australian.
'Although it is admirable that parliamentarians want to ensure those who are transgender are respected, the attempt to use state power to force individuals to use language that contradicts their deeply held beliefs is completely unacceptable.'
Conservative activist group Advance Australia described the proposed changes as a 'slippery slope', 'compelled speech', and asked: 'What's next?'
'If a trans person said to me, ''I would prefer it if you called me or address me by X'', out of respect, you would do it. But the government has no place telling you that you must say that,' the organisation's national director, Gerard Benedet, told the paper.
The changes were last month passed by the casting vote of Tasmania's Liberal Speaker Sue Hickey, who voted against her party and with Labor and the Greens.
Liberal Attorney-General Elise Archer believes the amendments are deeply flawed.
'This amended bill contains legally untested, unconsulted and highly problematic changes that we could not support,' she said in a statement last month.
Transforming Tasmania, a transgender and gender-diverse rights group, has lauded the proposed changes, as have Labor and the Greens.
'These changes will make people, who we should all care about, feel happier, safer and more included,' state Greens leader Cassy O'Connor told parliament.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison previously criticised the debate over the removal of gender markers from passports and birth certificates.
'A Liberal national government will never remove gender from birth certificates, licenses and passports - who are Labor kidding? Get real,' Morrison wrote on Twitter.
'This is the problem with Labor, obsessed with nonsense like removing gender from birth certificates rather than lower electricity prices, reducing tax for hard-working families and small businesses.'
Campaigners condemned Morrison's remarks as an 'outdated' and a 'totally inappropriate' attack against the LGBT+ community.
'Yet again, we see a destructive statement from someone in a position of prominence and influence,' Sally Goldner, a spokeswoman for Transgender Victoria, told the Thomson Reuters Foundation.
'To attempt to link the words transgender and nonsense is vilification and totally inappropriate.'
In September, the prime minister drew widespread criticism after commenting on social media that schools do not need 'gender whisperers' in response to a report that teachers are being trained to identify transgender children.
10 December, 2018
Calif. University 'Whiteness' Panel Claims 'Veggie Tales' Is Racist
Last week, a two-hour "Whiteness Forum" held by students at Cal State San Marcos added the children's Christian program "Veggie Tales" to the list of forbidden "racist" media. I fondly recollect waltzing with potatoes up and down the produce aisle in my childhood years, and can report with certainty that evidence for this claim is just as hard to find as a Cebu.
According to The College Fix, a female student at the "Whiteness Forum" argued that "Veggie Tales" is racist because the villains are vegetables of color. "When kids see the good white character triumph over the bad person of color character they are taught that white is right and minorities are the source of evil," the project stated.
As The College Fix's Drew Van Voorhis explained, the female student argued that "the accents of the evil characters tend to sound ethnic, such as Latino, while the good characters sound white."
For those unfamiliar with the children's program, "Veggie Tales" is a kid's cartoon show featuring vegetables and often portraying biblical allegories. The main characters are Bob the Tomato — certainly a "vegetable of color," namely the color red — and Larry the Cucumber. Contrary to protestations of racism, the show even has a blatantly anti-racist song.
Eric Metaxas, a bestselling author and former "Veggie Tales" writer and narrator, offered a playful yet profound comment to PJ Media's request for comment.
"All vegetables are part of one race, even though they are of many colors," Metaxas said. "They are all descended from the same parents — the Adam and Eve of vegetables, who foolishly ate a forbidden fruit (irony?) and screwed everything up for all vegetables descended from them. At least I’m pretty sure that’s the story."
Christianity teaches that all people — regardless of race — were created in God's image, have sinned, and are in need of the saving grace of Jesus Christ. "Veggie Tales" has presented the same message, over and over again, and if there was a latent racist message, Metaxas would know about it.
The villains do often have silly accents, often for purposes of humor.
Perhaps the most memorable of these silly accents has nothing to do with race. In "Josh and the Big Wall," the allegory about Joshua's capture of the city of Jericho, the villains are a pair of particularly stuck-up peas ... with French accents. Is this racist? Against white Europeans?
An “In God We Trust” sign is causing a serious uproar in one town
It’s found on American currency. It can be seen in one Missouri town’s government chambers. And all it’s done is cause heated debate.
A sign bearing the words “In God We Trust” in the Wentzville city government chambers has led to an intense divide. As explained by the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, the fight over the sign became worse when neighboring Maryland Heights resident Sally Hunt was escorted by two police officers out of a city council meeting at the direction of Mayor Nick Guccione. Hunt is opposed to the sign and had come to the meeting to speak against its display. When she ran out of time, Guccione made her leave.
According to KMOV, Guccione said he had to stand by his decision to remove Hunt from the meeting the way he did.
“Maybe in hindsight, I should have given a warning to sit down, but you know what, I make a decision, and I have to stand by it,” he said.
While the sign has overwhelming support in the town, several residents expressed displeasure either with the sign or with the way Hunt was removed from the meeting.
The divided opinions on the sign became clear as the public comments section of the meeting began.
9 December, 2018
'It wouldn't say white if I was Caucasian': Asian woman claims hipster café gave her a 'racist' receipt after she ordered raisin toast
It is normal for cafe staff to identify customers in some way on the order docket. It can be by a table number and it can be by asking a name. In this case the staff member has apparently forgotten to ask a name so used a description
An Asian woman has claimed a cafe gave her a supposedly racist receipt which described her ethnicity.
Katherine Chen had ordered her raisin toast to take away from a café in Sydney's trendy Surry Hills but was surprised when she saw her receipt.
While some cafes use the customer's name to identify whose order it is, this café chose to write the woman's ethnicity as her identifier instead.
The word 'Asian' was written in capital letters above her raisin toast order.
‘Bringing home the bacon’ offensive to vegans
Has vegan activism gone too far?
Common phrases like “bring home the bacon” and “put all your eggs in one basket” have been deemed offensive to vegans and vegetarians, who want them replaced with animal-friendly alternatives like “bring home the bagels” and “put all your berries in one bowl”.
Instead of “kill two birds with one stone” we should say “feed two birds with one scone”. “Take the bull by the horns” should become “take the flower by the thorns”. No longer should we “beat a dead horse” but instead “feed a fed horse”. And rather than “let the cat out of the bag”, we should simply “spill the beans”.
According to one academic, as increased awareness of vegan issues filters through society, meat-based metaphors may end up being ditched from the language altogether.
“If veganism forces us to confront the realities of food’s origins, then this increased awareness will undoubtedly be reflected in our language and our literature,” Swansea University researcher Shareena Hamzah wrote in The Conversation.
According to Dr Hamzah, meat is “more than just a form of sustenance, it is the very king of all foods”.
“Historically, the resources required to obtain meat meant it was mainly the preserve of the upper classes, while the peasantry subsisted on a mostly vegetarian diet,” she writes.
“As a result, the consumption of meat was associated with dominant power structures in society, its absence from the plate indicating disadvantaged groups, such as women and the poor. To control the supply of meat was to control the people.”
Dr Hamzah, whose research interests include contemporary literature, women’s writing, gender and sexuality studies, equates meat to the “patriarchal mindset of the early 20th century” when “a man’s right to eat the best meat is unquestioned”.
“Meat is power, meat is for men,” she writes.
“(In Jeanette Winterson’s novel The Passion), the main female character, Villanelle, sells herself to Russian soldiers in order to have some of their scarce and valuable supply of meat. The female body is just another type of meat for these men and carnivorous desire leads to carnal pleasure.”
Today, she argues, meat is “repeatedly the subject of much socially and politically charged discussion, including about how the demand for meat is contributing to climate change and environmental degradation”.
“Studies have indicated the negative effects of meat-eating on the human body,” she writes. “When concerns about animal welfare are added to the broth, the growth of vegetarianism and veganism threatens to dethrone meat from its position at the top of the food hierarchy.”
Animal rights groups PETA has been campaigning for “animal-friendly idioms” for years. On its website, it provides helpful alternatives for teachers to “common phrases that perpetuate violence toward animals”.
“While these phrases may seem harmless, they carry meaning and can send mixed signals to students about the relationship between humans and animals and can normalise abuse,” the organisation says.
“The words that we use have the power to influence those around us. Teaching students to use animal-friendly language can cultivate positive relationships between all beings and help end the epidemic of youth violence toward animals.”
5 December, 2018
‘I was fired for saying Brexit is good’
Brexit is Britain leaving the EU
Andres Georgi had been earning a living as a bicycle courier for Deliveroo in Berlin. But earlier this month, he made the mistake of making smalltalk with a British customer, Redfern Jon Barrett, a writer, activist and Remainer. Georgi said that Brexit was a good thing.
After the exchange, Barrett sent a tweet complaining to Deliveroo and branding Georgi a Nazi. The accusation cost him his job. ‘The Deliveroo delivery guy just went on an aggressive nationalist rant when he saw the EU flag in our hallway. We are gay immigrants who live in Berlin. Deliveroo: please don’t send Nazis to our door!’, read the tweet.
I caught up with Georgi after his story was reported on in Ruhrbarone, a German-language blog.
For him, the tweet came as a shock. ‘I was having a great weekend doing lots of deliveries. Then I got this email from the coordinator asking whether the tweet’s accusations were true’, he tells me.
Georgi is 41 years old and had been working for Deliveroo for 13 months. When we meet, there is nothing visibly Nazi about him: no questionable tattoos, no big black boots, no insignias that might arouse suspicion.
From what Georgi remembers, the conversation with Barrett lasted only a few minutes. Barrett came to the door, and spoke in English. Georgi saw two flags in the hallway: a rainbow flag and an EU flag. ‘Are you from England?’, he asked Barrett. ‘I like the rainbow flag, but not the EU flag. I think Brexit is good’, he said.
Barrett asked him why, and he replied that Germany had too much influence in the EU. In other words, ‘nothing nationalistic at all’, Georgi says. ‘I was in a good mood as I was about to meet my girlfriend and I was definitely not being unfriendly’, he insists.
When I contacted Deliveroo, it told me that it had terminated Georgi’s contract not because of this specific incident, but because of ‘other unprofessional behaviour’. But Georgi showed me an email conversation with his Deliveroo coordinator which suggests otherwise.
The exchange focuses almost entirely on the conversation about Brexit. One email says that he had behaved irresponsibly by speaking about touchy political issues with customers. ‘It was especially inappropriate to tell an obviously pro-EU Brit living in Germany that Brexit was a good thing’, it reads.
Although another case was also mentioned – a female customer had complained about an unwarranted remark – it was clearly the tweet that triggered the sacking. (An accusation, however spurious, that a company employs Nazis is no small matter in Germany.)
Black college lacrosse player, 21, is arrested for racist N-word and swastika graffiti targeting HIMSELF and other minority students in two incidents that terrorized the campus
This happens all the time and college authorities always swallow it
A black college lacrosse player has been arrested in connection with two incidents of racist graffiti found in a dorm on the Goucher College campus in Maryland.
Fynn Ajani Arthur, a 21-year-old from Brunswick, Maine, was charged with two counts of malicious destruction of property on Thursday night in Baltimore County.
His arrest came after graffiti aimed at black and Latino students was found on the second floor of a campus dorm, one floor above where similar graffiti had been found on November 14, Goucher College administrators said in a statement.
Both incidents that shook the Towson campus involved backward swastikas and targeted specific individuals, according to the statement.
Thursday's graffiti depicted swastikas, the letters 'KKK' and appeared to include the last names of four black students, including Arthur. The previous graffiti reportedly said all 'n*****s' on campus would be killed.
Arthur was released his own recognizance after a bail review hearing on Friday, according to jail records. He has been banned from campus pending a student conduct review.
Goucher Public Safety officials worked with Baltimore County Police and the Federal Bureau of Investigation Baltimore Field Office to investigate both of graffiti incidents.
They determined that Arthur was responsible for the messages based on evidence found Thursday, police say.
Goucher vice president and dean Bryan Coker condemned the racist incidents during a Friday press conference, according to the Baltimore Sun. 'These acts of hate have consumed our community and we feel strongly that the suspect should be prosecuted with the strongest charges, which reflect the seriousness of these crimes,' Coker said.
4 December, 2018
A "racist" Christmas tree
Apparently, all the products displayed are popular with blacks in Minneapolis. Not sure why that is offensive
Two Minneapolis police officers placed on leave after racist Christmas tree display. As a "prank," an officer decorated a tree in the north Minneapolis precinct with ornaments many called racist.
Longtime civil rights activist Ron Edwards called the Fourth Precinct tree decorations — a Newport cigarette pack, a can of Steel Reserve malt liquor, police tape, a bag of Takis and a cup from Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen — a “wink wink” to racist stereotypes.
“It’s a modern-day version of a dog whistle, tainted with racism, specifically against the African-American community,” Edwards said.
The photo, which first hit social media this week, created a hectic Friday at City Hall, with Frey condemning the decorations as “racist” and “despicable.” The mayor vowed that those responsible “will be fired before the day is over.”
Jeremiah Ellison, who is now a City Council member, was among the leaders of the 2015 precinct protests. On Friday, Ellison was at a loss for words to describe his reaction to the photo of the tree.
“Man, every way I could put it would understate it,” said Ellison. “It’s disappointing, but also I think deeply disturbing to wake up to something like that. Not just for myself, but for my neighbors.”
Arizona Lawmaker Says Black People 'Don't Blend In'
It seems to me that what he said was frank and truthful but I guess that is no longer allowed
An Arizona lawmaker known for his past racist remarks continues to remind everyone he is still a racist.
Republican State House Rep. David Stringer was captured on audio calling non-native English speaking students a “burden,” saying black people “don’t blend in” and lamenting a supposed “white flight” in more diverse areas of the country.
The audio, obtained by the Phoenix New Times, was of Stringer speaking with Arizona State University students following a lecture. After telling a student that “diversity in our country is relatively new,” ASU sophomore Stephen Chmura challenged Stringer, saying there was early immigration from places like Ireland and Italy.
“They were all European,” Stringer responded in the audio. “So after their second or third generation, everybody looks the same. Everybody talks the same. That’s not the case with African-Americans and other racial groups because they don’t melt in. They don’t blend in. They always look different.”
3 December, 2018
'Apu arrives': Argentine TV news show uses image of the Asian shopkeeper from The Simpsons in a report about the Indian Prime Minister flying in for the G20 summit in Argentina
Argenties are half and half Spanish and Italian and this sounds verry much like an Italian sense of humor -- as with Silvio Berlusconi. Narendra Modi is however a very dignified and constructive man who does not at all deserve this
An Argentine TV channel used an image of Asian shopkeeper Apu from The Simpsons as the Indian prime minister Narendra Modi flew in for the G20 summit.
Cronica – known for its tasteless quips – wrote the headline ‘Apu arrives’ combined with an image of the character and music from India-based movie Slumdog Millionaire.
The Simpsons shopkeeper, voiced by a white actor who puts on a heavy Indian accent, has been accused of promoting outdated racial stereotypes.
Indian-American comic Hari Kondabolu, who made a documentary about Apu last year, said of Cronica’s coverage: ‘This couldn’t be true, right?’
Cronica also flashed words from the Slumdog song across an image of Mr Modi.
The channel has already offended Turkey and Rwanda at the summit with jokes about their leaders.
Sarah Michelle Gellar Reminds People ‘Not to Overeat’ on Thanksgiving: Apologizes To Those She Offended
Actress Sarah Michelle Gellar apologized to her fans Tuesday for posting a public reminder to herself “not to overeat” on Thanksgiving, saying that she’s “terribly sorry” if she fat-shamed anyone.
“I’m just going to pin these up all over my house as a reminder not to overeat on Thursday #thanksgivingprep,” Sarah Michelle Gellar initially wrote in an Instagram caption, along with old photos of herself.
The post’s caption offended many of her followers, some of whom accused the actress of promoting fat-shaming and unhealthy eating disorders. One user said that Gellar’s caption was “very dangerous” and included “insensitive wording.”
The 41-year-old immediately buckled to the social media campaign against her, saying, “It’s come to my attention that some people think I was ‘fat shaming’ with this post. That could not be further from my intentions.”
“I love Thanksgiving and unfortunately my eyes are often bigger than my stomach, and I tend to eat so much I make myself sick. This was a joking reminder to myself not to do that,” she continued. “I’m terribly sorry that people were offended by my attempt at humor. Any one that knows me, knows I would never intentionally ‘shame’ any one on any basis. I am a champion of all people.”
2 December, 2018
White Leftists Dumb Down Language for Minorities
A recently released study conducted by two researchers from Yale and Princeton Universities found that white Democrat politicians dumb down their speech when addressing minorities — specifically blacks. On the other hand, the study found no language change when white Republicans spoke to minorities. Study authors Cydney Dupree and Susan Fiske were surprised by the results, noting, "It was really surprising to see that for nearly three decades, Democratic presidential candidates have been engaging in this predicted behavior."
The researchers further studied the speech of white liberals and conservatives when addressing minority individuals. Again, the researchers found that white liberals engage in a "competence downshift" in their language, whereas white conservatives did not. Dupree noted the uncomfortable irony, stating, "It was kind of an unpleasant surprise to see this subtle but persistent effect. Even if it's ultimately well-intentioned, it could be seen as patronizing." It most certainly could.
Brandon Morse of RedState observed, "We often hear from social justice adherents that we carry an implicit bias toward people of other races, and then immediately point to anyone other than themselves. Now we see why. On average, the white left is guilty of believing minority individuals are of lower intelligence than they are and dumb down their speech in order to feel like they're being kinder to them by doing so."
CNN Fires Contributor Marc Lamont Hill Following His Outrageous Comments About Israel
CNN fired contributor Marc Lamont Hill after public outrage followed upon incendiary comments he made about the country of Israel.
Both CNN and Hill were deluged with criticism after comments Hill made that many saw as advocating for the destruction of Israel in favor of Palestinian land claims.
“We have an opportunity to not just offer solidarity in words but to commit to political action,” Hill said in the speech, “grass-roots action, local action and international action that will give us what justice requires and that is a free Palestine from the river to the sea.”
Much of the criticism came from his use of the phrase “from the river to the sea,” which is used by extremist groups to advocate for the erasure completely of the Israeli state and replacement with a Palestinian nation.
Hill denied that his use of the phrase was in support of the destruction of Israel, and said that he was merely favoring more freedom for Palestinians.
This is Tongue-Tied 3
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Is the American national anthem politically incorrect? From the 4th verse:
Praise the Power that hath made and preserved us a nation.
Then conquer we must, when our cause it is just,
And this be our motto: "In God is our trust."
The truth can be offensive to some but it must be said
The war on "cultural appropriation" is straightforward racism
"HATE SPEECH" is free speech: The U.S. Supreme Court stated the general rule regarding protected speech in Texas v. Johnson (109 S.Ct. at 2544), when it held: "The government may not prohibit the verbal or nonverbal expression of an idea merely because society finds the idea offensive or disagreeable." Federal courts have consistently followed this. Said Virginia federal district judge Claude Hilton: "The First Amendment does not recognize exceptions for bigotry, racism, and religious intolerance or ideas or matters some may deem trivial, vulgar or profane."
Even some advocacy of violence is protected by the 1st Amendment. In Brandenburg v. Ohio (1969), the U.S. Supreme Court held unanimously that speech advocating violent illegal actions to bring about social change is protected by the First Amendment "except where such advocacy is directed to inciting or producing imminent lawless action and is likely to incite or produce such action."
The double standard: Atheists can put up signs and billboards saying that Christianity is wrong and that is hunky dory. But if a Christian says that homosexuality is wrong, that is attacked as "hate speech"
One for the militant atheists to consider: "...it does me no injury for my neighbor to say there are twenty gods, or no god. It neither picks my pocket nor breaks my leg" -- Thomas Jefferson
"I think no subject should be off-limits, and I regard the laws in many Continental countries criminalizing Holocaust denial as philosophically repugnant and practically useless – in that they confirm to Jew-haters that the Jews control everything (otherwise why aren’t we allowed to talk about it?)" -- Mark Steyn
A prophetic comment on Norwegian hate speech laws: As Justice Brandeis once noted, repressive censorship “breeds hate” and “that hate menaces stable government,” rather than promoting safety; “the path of safety lies in the opportunity to discuss freely supposed grievances and proposed remedies.”
Voltaire's most famous saying was actually a summary of Voltaire's thinking by one of his biographers rather than something Voltaire said himself. Nonetheless it is a wholly admirable sentiment: "I disagree with what you say but I will defend to the death your right to say it". I am of a similar mind.
The traditional advice about derogatory speech: "Sticks and stones will break your bones but names will never hurt you". Apparently people today are not as emotionally robust as their ancestors were.
The KKK were members of the DEMOCRATIC party. Google "Klanbake" if you doubt it
A phobia is an irrational fear, so the terms "Islamophobic" and "homophobic" embody a claim that the people so described are mentally ill. There is no evidence for either claim. Both terms are simply abuse masquerading as diagnoses and suggest that the person using them is engaged in propaganda rather than in any form of rational or objective discourse.
Leftists often pretend that any mention of race is "racist" -- unless they mention it, of course. But leaving such irrational propaganda aside, which statements really are racist? Can statements of fact about race be "racist"? Such statements are simply either true or false. The most sweeping possible definition of racism is that a racist statement is a statement that includes a negative value judgment of some race. Absent that, a statement is not racist, for all that Leftists might howl that it is. Facts cannot be racist so nor is the simple statement of them racist. Here is a statement that cannot therefore be racist by itself, though it could be false: "Blacks are on average much less intelligent than whites". If it is false and someone utters it, he could simply be mistaken or misinformed.
Categorization is a basic human survival skill so racism as the Left define it (i.e. any awareness of race) is in fact neither right nor wrong. It is simply human
Whatever your definition of racism, however, a statement that simply mentions race is not thereby racist -- though one would think otherwise from American Presidential election campaigns. Is a statement that mentions dogs, "doggist" or a statement that mentions cats, "cattist"?
If any mention of racial differences is racist then all Leftists are racist too -- as "affirmative action" is an explicit reference to racial differences
Was Abraham Lincoln a racist? "You and we are different races. We have between us a broader difference than exists between almost any other two races. Whether it is right or wrong I need not discuss, but this physical difference is a great disadvantage to us both, as I think your race suffer very greatly, many of them by living among us, while ours suffer from your presence. In a word, we suffer on each side. If this be admitted, it affords a reason at least why we should be separated. It is better for both, therefore, to be separated." -- Spoken at the White House to a group of black community leaders, August 14th, 1862
Gimlet-eyed Leftist haters sometimes pounce on the word "white" as racist. Will the time come when we have to refer to the White House as the "Full spectrum of light" House?
The spirit of liberty is "the spirit which is not too sure that it is right." and "Liberty lies in the hearts of men and women; when it dies there, no constitution, no law, no court can even do much to help it. While it lies there it needs no constitution, no law, no court to save it." -- Judge Learned Hand
Mostly, a gaffe is just truth slipping out
Two lines below of a famous hymn that would be incomprehensible to Leftists today ("honor"? "right"? "freedom?" Freedom to agree with them is the only freedom they believe in)
First to fight for right and freedom,
And to keep our honor clean
It is of course the hymn of the USMC -- still today the relentless warriors that they always were.
It seems a pity that the wisdom of the ancient Greek philosopher Epictetus is now little known. Remember, wrote the Stoic thinker, "that foul words or blows in themselves are no outrage, but your judgment that they are so. So when any one makes you angry, know that it is your own thought that has angered you. Wherefore make it your endeavour not to let your impressions carry you away."
"Since therefore the knowledge and survey of vice is in this world so necessary to the constituting of human virtue, and the scanning of error to the confirmation of truth, how can we more safely, and with less danger, scout into the regions of sin and falsity than by reading all manner of tractates, and hearing all manner of reason?" -- English poet John Milton (1608-1674) in Areopagitica
Hate speech is verbal communication that induces anger due to the listener's inability to offer an intelligent response
Leftists can try to get you fired from your job over something that you said and that's not an attack on free speech. But if you just criticize something that they say, then that IS an attack on free speech
"Negro" is a forbidden word -- unless a Democrat uses it
"It is impossible to speak in such a way that you cannot be misunderstood." -- Karl Popper
Why are Leftists always talking about hate? Because it fills their own hearts
Leftists don't have principles. How can they when "there is no such thing as right and wrong"? All they have is postures, pretend-principles that can be changed as easily as one changes one's shirt
When you have an argument with a Leftist, you are not really discussing the facts. You are threatening his self esteem. Which is why the normal Leftist response to challenge is mere abuse.
The naive scholar who searches for a consistent Leftist program will not find it. What there is consists only in the negation of the present.
The intellectual Roman Emperor Marcus Aurelius (AD 121-180) could have been speaking of much that goes on today when he said: "The object in life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane."
I despair of the ADL. Jews have enough problems already and yet in the ADL one has a prominent Jewish organization that does its best to make itself offensive to Christians. Their Leftism is more important to them than the welfare of Jewry -- which is the exact opposite of what they ostensibly stand for! Jewish cleverness seems to vanish when politics are involved. Fortunately, Christians are true to their saviour and have loving hearts. Jewish dissatisfaction with the myopia of the ADL is outlined here. Note that Foxy was too grand to reply to it.
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