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View Diary: American Hate (226 comments)

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  •  It depends (none)
    If he's locked up with a bunch of murder- and rape-convicted Black inmates, it could become interesting, particularly if they know who he is and why he's there.

    Americans placed the stamp of approval on the least justifiable military action since Hitler invaded Poland. Paul C. Roberts

    by Clueless Joe on Wed Mar 02, 2005 at 06:22:31 AM PST

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    •  Also . . . (4.00)
      Also, something I've noticed on this site and others is the white fantasy of the tough black guy.  Before I explain: Clueless: I'm not accusing you of anything!  I'm just trying to open a conversation.

      On several occasions, I've noticed that a lot of us (most of whom, I have to assume, are probably white, me included) imagine this tough black guy as a way to carry out vicariously the violence that we repress in ourselves.  Facing this imaginary guy is the blustering white pundit or racist, the Limbaughs, the Coulters, the Lileks, of this world, people whose violence and sense of real danger is limited to the times when they kick their dogs or play sniper video games.  On the other side, we imagine this guy as a real bruiser, and someone, say, with poor impulse control, as someone who doesn't take any shit, but whose violence is justified because he has taken so much shit from, well, the class that we belong to.  

      If that's indeed what's going on, that's a pretty sketchy way of thinking.

      (and 'Clueless,' I'm not accusing you of doing what I just described.  You haven't written nearly enough for me to make any kind of reading of this sort accurately . . . .so, please, no fight!)

      we gonna smash their brains in / cause they ain´t got nofink in ´em -- Linton Kwesi Johnson

      by Karl the Idiot on Wed Mar 02, 2005 at 06:43:10 AM PST

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      •  You Took That Wrong (none)
        He merely meant that as WHITE supremacists, if they were put up with violent (murderers/rapists) non-whites (blacks), that the supremacists might not last too long in prison.
        •  no, didn't get it wrong (none)
          That's exactly what I meant.

          Clueless's posting -- at least what little I've seen of it -- suggests the standard characteristics of the liberal tough black guy fantasy (or, perhaps, merely provides an opportunity for me to discuss something that's at DailyKos that's been troubling me).  The fantasy is this: you mix:

          a) white person that we don't like, normally a racist, normally someone whose capacity for non-rhetorical violence is limited;

          b) tough black guy with poor impulse control

          And the person (who is probably white) engaging in this fantasy sits back and enjoys the vicarious carrying out of violence in which 'b' carries out on 'a' what the fantasizer would like to happen.

          we gonna smash their brains in / cause they ain´t got nofink in ´em -- Linton Kwesi Johnson

          by Karl the Idiot on Wed Mar 02, 2005 at 07:00:46 AM PST

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          •  I think you are onto something (none)
            I think it comes down to the fact that we have natural urges to inflict violence on our "enemies" and society no longer offers many opportunities for sanctioned, justified, or excused violence.

            I think there is a parallel here between the right's tacit acceptance of torture of terrorists or violent attacks on liberals and the quasi-approval here of prison violence.

            Certainly nobody at dKos would openly advocate for the torture or rape of white supremecists in American prisons, right?  But if it just happens to happen...well, those are the breaks.  Sort of like Lydie England's late night hijinks.

            I think that this type of thinking lies behind the desire to view liberals as being in league with terrorists/insurgents/"the enemy".  It's not so much that wingnuts actually believe that liberals are committing treason, but they viscerally want to hurt their opponents.  Since they - mostly - realize that they can't go out into the streets and club liberals, they fantasize about the conditions that would permit the use of legal violence against liberals.

            Now, I won't dispute that a homicidal white supremecist is clearly a hell of a lot worse than a non-violent, political advocate.  But if your fantasy of prison rape is predicated upon the racism of the prisoner rather than the offense - that is, you don't fantasize about the rape of non-racist criminals - then they thinkng really isn't all that different.

          •  You're imagining things (none)
            Never heard of "a cellmate named bubba"???

            It's a pretty common fiction based on reports of widespread prison rape and violence.

            As for "fantasizing about other big tough people fulfilling violent fantasies we arent capable..."

            You have an incorrect mental image of the average democrat.

            The Democratic party needs to adopt its own moral and values principles (clawed)

            by cdreid on Wed Mar 02, 2005 at 09:03:23 AM PST

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            •  asdf (none)
              we need to do all in our power to be sure your BUBBA does not intimidate others who are incarcerated. The fact that it's a separate issue is no less compelling. While a reasonable person might grant that conditions within the prison systems in the US are certainly not on a par with the world's worst, that's no excuse to not recognize our duty to provide humane conditions.

              Admitted: Prisoners' rights are not perceived as a popular issue, but, just the same, it's an issue we must carry. To refer to BUBBA in this way frames the issue or prisoners' rights, and the frame should feel grossly uncomfortable. The fact that it may not should be taken to demonstrate our own callousness and hypocrisy.

              vote early - vote often

              by wystler on Wed Mar 02, 2005 at 10:06:46 AM PST

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              •  That wasnt my point (none)
                the point was that discussing "big black gay cellmate" in this context is the equivalent of saying "bubba".. who id think people imagine as a big white redneck. That it's not racism but rather a hope for some kind of justice.

                And hey im with ya on prison reform. I dont think we should have them except for crimes like murder and career criminals. We need to investigate alternative, and more effective and fair, punishments.

                The Democratic party needs to adopt its own moral and values principles (clawed)

                by cdreid on Wed Mar 02, 2005 at 03:58:57 PM PST

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                •  I'm Not from the South (none)
                  The first Bubba I was exposed to was Smith ...

                  That being said, I don't think I referenced race. Funny how you made that jump. Doesn't make me think you're bad, but it's an interesting point of cognitive realization.

                  vote early - vote often

                  by wystler on Wed Mar 02, 2005 at 09:34:00 PM PST

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                  •  Context (none)
                    a) white person that we don't like, normally a racist, normally someone whose capacity for non-rhetorical violence is limited;

                    b) tough black guy with poor impulse control

                    You cant have a discussion if you ignore the entire context of everything that has come before.

                    The Democratic party needs to adopt its own moral and values principles (clawed)

                    by cdreid on Wed Mar 02, 2005 at 09:59:02 PM PST

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            •  I don't follow your point (none)
              Yes, of course I've heard of the proverbial 'bubba' cellmate.  I'm saying that that discourse is part and parcel of a larger discourse I've seen crop up on DailyKos from time to time, one that I myself have engaged in.  For instance, I'm suggested to people who dismiss the importance of racism in American society that they go to the corners of Atlantic and Pacific (a pretty black street corner) and make their statement there.  Part of me wants them to do that because I want to imagine them beat down by some 'tough black dude.' That's a vicarious enjoyment of violence, and it's being done through the frankly racist imagining of a big black bestial man with poor impulse control.  It's a sketchy way to think, whether we're imagining it in the context of a street corner or in a prison.

              As for the 'average Democrat,' I'm not talking about these people.  I'm talking about this fantasy, which, again, I've seen on Dailykos more than once, at least once from my own fingers.

              Wrystler gets it right, too.

              we gonna smash their brains in / cause they ain´t got nofink in ´em -- Linton Kwesi Johnson

              by Karl the Idiot on Wed Mar 02, 2005 at 10:36:57 AM PST

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              •  I'd suggest Karl (none)
                that you're transferring racism you find in yourself onto others.

                Yes.. everyone has some hidden veins of ISMs in their blood, so thats not anattack. But i think you see most of us as having a fault that is particularly yours. We all have to fight the urge to stereotype and let such thoughts enter our soulds.

                The Democratic party needs to adopt its own moral and values principles (clawed)

                by cdreid on Wed Mar 02, 2005 at 03:56:22 PM PST

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                •  BTW (none)
                  Just so you know i find such flaws within myself as well. Racism, sexism, "group"ism.. we are programmed by evolution to fall for isms.. and it is a lifelong battle to keep oneself from falling for them.

                  One which many democrats lost since the DLCers made it "cool" to dis core democratic principles.. like civil rights, support for the working poor etc.

                  The Democratic party needs to adopt its own moral and values principles (clawed)

                  by cdreid on Wed Mar 02, 2005 at 04:05:46 PM PST

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                •  hmm (none)
                  I did do the 'j'accuse' at myself in the above graph (note Atlantic/Pacific bit).  But if this fault were "particularly" mine, it wouldn't be an -ism, since an -ism, I would think, needs some kind of larger set of people who believe/benefit from it in order to qualify as anything other than, say, 'being a crank.'  Nevertheless, I have seen this fantasy on kos.  It's not mine alone.  And I think it's sketchy.  That's all.

                  I also think the 'programmed by evolution' thing is, well, sort of a cop out.  I think white men, in particular, white men of a certain class, are "programmed" by historical processes, by their own power, as much as they are by the almost ahistorical processes of evolution.

                  we gonna smash their brains in / cause they ain´t got nofink in ´em -- Linton Kwesi Johnson

                  by Karl the Idiot on Thu Mar 03, 2005 at 05:05:02 AM PST

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                  •  Isms (none)
                    arent restricted by race, class, nationality etc.

                    Evolution programmed us to be social. To associate with groups and champion those groups.

                    And i most definitely didnt think you are "particularly succeptable". All of us who try to be good people have to root out the diseased spots in our psyches. Your hypersensitivity to it probably says you're a better person than I.

                    I just think you got it flat out wrong in this case.

                    The Democratic party needs to adopt its own moral and values principles (clawed)

                    by cdreid on Thu Mar 03, 2005 at 10:07:20 AM PST

                    [ Parent ]

      •  Well, of course (none)
        Frankly, I don't think Blacks are more prone to that behaviour, and if statistically they would seem to be, I'd bet the ratio would be as high if you had put Whites in slums for decades. So, I was playing with the biased and bordering-racism cliche of the big violent Black raper/murdered locked in high-security (or not so high), which is quite a stupid and sometimes nefarious cliche. Not a joke of the highest taste, for sure. But given the scandalously high proportion of Black inmates (thanks to centuries of fucked-up policies and unequal treatment in the courts), there's a sizable chance our local white supremacist murderer could end up with a bunch of Black fellows. And as this case has proven, Whites can beat any ghetto gang mob with meanness and ignominy; so clearly, whites can be actually as violent as anyone else.
        As for the fantasising of seeing such scum being beaten down and tortured, the real (and totally silly expressed) point of my post was just to reply to the "He surely deserves a worse fate than life in prison", by showing that this guy could still possibly meet a worse fate than being sentenced to lethal injection - death sentence isn't the only possible punishment.
        Whatever happens, though, I just hope this criminal nutcase is judged and taken care of so that he won't hurt anyone anymore.

        Americans placed the stamp of approval on the least justifiable military action since Hitler invaded Poland. Paul C. Roberts

        by Clueless Joe on Wed Mar 02, 2005 at 08:25:13 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

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