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There are some people down South and elsewhere who deserve public recognition, not just silent tribute.

"What does who want, Alexandra?" Miss Maudie asked.

"I mean this town. They’re perfectly willing to let [Atticus Finch] do what they’re too afraid to do themselves—it might lose ‘em a nickel. They’re perfectly willing to let him wreck his health doing what they’re afraid to do, they’re—"

"Be quiet, they’ll hear you," said Miss Maudie. "Have you ever thought of it this way, Alexandra? Whether Maycomb knows it or not, we’re paying the highest tribute we can pay a man. We trust him to do right. It’s that simple."

"Who?" Aunt Alexandra never knew she was echoing her twelve-year-old nephew.

"The handful of people in this town who say that fair play is not marked White Only; the handful of people who say a fair trial is for everybody, not just us; the handful of people with enough humility to think, when they look at a Negro, there but for the Lord’s kindness am l." Miss Maudie’s old crispness was returning: "The handful of people in this town with background, that’s who they are."

Harper Lee, To Kill a Mockingbird

Scout continues

Had I been attentive, I would have had another scrap to add to Jem’s definition of background, but I found myself shaking and couldn’t stop.

Jem's definition:

"Background doesn’t mean Old Family," said Jem. "I think it’s how long your family’s been readin‘ and writin’. Scout, I’ve studied this real hard and that’s the only reason I can think of. Somewhere along when the Finches were in Egypt one of ‘em must have learned a hieroglyphic or two and he taught his boy." Jem laughed. "Imagine Aunty being proud her great-grandaddy could read an’ write—ladies pick funny things to be proud of."


Liberals in Liberal country have it easy, and find it easy to heap scorn on Illiberal country, whether that is the American South and the rest of the currently Republican states; Israel/Palestine and the rest of the Middle East haters, notably Iran; or a multitude of other countries. This turns out to be hard on Liberals (and especially children) in those territories, such as Kossack kissthespy in Alabama, who may well feel that we are bashing all Southerners/Christians/Israelis/etc. without regard for their labors, their lack of recognition, their very existence. Or worse, Cuba, where the embargo punishes the people for their rulers. And so on.

Fear is fear, no matter how you come by it, no matter whether reasonable or not. A War on Fear would be at least as stupid as the War on Drugs, just making the problem worse. The general cure for fear is trust, and the general immunization against fear is love, as in loving one's neighbor as oneself. To Jews in Roman times, Jesus offered pork-eating Samaritans as neighbors. To Liberals today, he would have to offer Religious Right gay-bashers, and to the Religious Right, gays. At least those, on either side, who would stop to help any victim of a mugging, and pay his emergency room and hospital bills if necessary. (Gospel of Luke 10:25-37)

So how about building up some trust, and letting the people of background who hold to the truth in difficult circumstances feel the love. Let me begin with an apology for ever giving the impression of despising all of any group. That was never my intention, but on looking back through my Diary, I can see how those already over-sensitized by constant bashing of their communities could take what I wrote the wrong way.

On the other hand, I have no apologies to make to the professional apologists for the South, Israel/Palestine (both sides), etc., who don't care a damn about the realities, but just want to bash the bashers so that they can go on unchecked, bashing the poor, the powerless, the innocent, and other objects of their fear and hatred. And making money at it.

The South

I have been in the South, and talked with people who were on the front lines of Civil Rights there from the 1930s to the 1960s. There have been anti-slavery Southerners throughout the history of slavery, and anti-Klan, anti-Jim-Crow, anti-racist White Southerners ever since. (There were never a great many Black apologists for slavery and the rest, but there have always been a few, including Black owners of slaves.) You tend not to hear about Southern abolitionists and Civil Rights workers, because there was a great effort at making them keep their mouths shut in public, and a great effort to erase them from history.

Most of us get our information on such people from fiction, such as To Kill a Mockingbird and Fannie Flagg's Fried Green Tomatoes (at the Whistle Stop Cafe). In both cases, the movies leave out most of the background about how bad it was both for the immediate victims (Blacks and gays in these two novels) and for their White or straight supporters, and how corrosive racism and bigotry are to the lives of those who believe in them. Huckleberry Finn, also, although it is hard to get people to see Huck's moral evolution in the middle of the adventure.

It would be worthwhile to have a memorial to such Whites and straights, like the section of the Yad Vashem Holocaust Memorial about the Righteous Among the Nations, that is, Gentiles who saved Jews from the Nazis, or at least tried hard. Oskar Schindler, for example, or those who sheltered Anne Frank's family. I don't know of any such memorial for the South. If you do, or if you know about records of such people, please add links in the comments. I do know vaguely that there were Southerners active in the Underground Railroad, and that in both Mississippi and Alabama there were Northern upland counties that resisted the Confederacy.

"Conductors" on the railroad came from various backgrounds and included free-born blacks, white abolitionists, former slaves (either escaped or manumitted), and Native Americans. Churches also often played a role, especially the Religious Society of Friends (Quakers), Congregationalists, Wesleyans, and Reformed Presbyterians as well as certain sects of mainstream denominations such as branches of the Methodist church and American Baptists.

The racists and bigots have lost their stranglehold on the discussion. You can read Southern historians now who take the anti-slavery side, and see them on C-SPAN. Anti-racists outnumber Klansmen at Ku Klux Klan rallies, even in Mississippi. The demographic trend, extrapolated, says that various forms of racism and bigotry will be minority opinions in every US state by about 2025. The US Senate is approaching the tipping point, which is unfortunately 60 relatively Liberal votes, not just a 51-vote majority. We should get there within the next decade. We should also expect the shrieking to get even louder and the bloviation to become even more meaningless as that day approaches.

Applause, then, for those who have labored long in the vineyard, whose recompense has never been the thought of immediate victory, but who have endured more than 40 years in the wilderness and are coming in sight of the Promised Land. (Biblical mixed metaphors are the best.)

When Israel was in Egypt land,
(Let my people go)
Opressed so hard they could not stand:
(Let my people go)
Go down, Moses,
Way down in Egypt land.
Tell old Pharaoh
To let my people go.

Well, that was then. Now we can ask for people to be fully recognized as people. (But not corporations. They are still chattels, and should not have the rights of humans to go with their special privileges and exemptions.) If you're White, make a point of letting African-Americans know you do recognize them as people. It still surprises and gratifies many of them.

Israel/Palestine (I/P)

The Palestinian Question is considered to be much thornier ethically than the Old South, India, Burma, and other places where Christian, Hindu, Muslim, and Buddhist non-violence were in the lead. (Yes, Muslim non-violence, as taught by Gandhi, who was brought up to regard the Qur'an as equally a source of wisdom with the Bhagavad Gita and other Hindu scriptures.) Israel/Palestine is believed to be even thornier than South Africa and Northern Ireland, where the opposition ANC and IRA were quite violent before their opponents agreed to negotiate.

But I don't think it's really that thorny at all.

I think that not very long after the racist bigots lose their filibuster-based hold on US politics, US policy to Israel and Palestine will become pro-peace rather than knee-jerk pro-Israel, as happened briefly over Israel's support of Apartheid South Africa. Congress passed a bill that included cutting off aid to countries selling arms to South Africa, as Israel was doing. Even AIPAC told Israel to back off. Israel thought that meant bupkes (beans), because Reagen vetoed the bill. Imagine Yitzhak Rabin's shock when Congress overrode Reagan's veto, and Rabin had to apologize to AIPAC.

I also think that when we get into real negotiations, the hardliners on both sides will gradually be sidelined from the discussion, like the breakaway "Real" IRA in Northern Ireland. Just remember that the negotiations took many years, and there were many false steps in implementing the resulting agreements. No overnight flowers and kisses, which exist nowhere outside of NeoCon wish fulfillment dreams.

So another Huzzah! and L'Khayim to those "anti-Semites" (as defined by the Israeli Foreign Ministry) and "anti-Muslim neocolonialist Crusaders" (as defined by Hamas or Al Qaeda) such as Jimmy Carter and Judge Richard Goldstone. Hooray for those who are able to see the errors on all sides, who are not anti-Israel and Pro-Palestinian, or anti-Palestinian and Pro-Israel. Just Equal Opportunity anti-idiot/racist/bigot/kleptocrat/terrorist. And the anti-Christian Right anti-Armageddonists, too, like Rev. Robin R. Meyers in Tulsa, Oklahoma, author of Why the Christian Right Is Wrong: A Minister's Manifesto for Taking Back Your Faith, Your Flag, Your Future.


There are Kossacks who have taken issue with a previous I/P post of mine, possibly because I blasted Israel for its sins, and not Hamas for its. They accuse me of many sins, without making the slightest effort to check.

Let me be clear. Both sides are captives of fear spread by professional fearmongers using both propaganda and violence. Neither Israel nor the Palestinians see a way to begin genuine negotiations. There is no Nelson Mandela, Gandhi, Martin Luther King in sight. Not even a Gerry Adams. Not for lack of trying, but because those who would are effectively shouted down, or worse.

You should be honest about why
the tip jar in your last diary was donutted so heavily.  It had nothing to do with pro-Israel or anti-Israel sentiment.  It had to do with the fact that you violated site rules and were donutted by pro-Israel and pro-Palestine Kossacks, along with non-I/P regulars:

   Tip Jar (2+ / 17-)
   Recommended by:
   keikekaze, Vinlander
   Hidden by:
   arielle, kalmoth, capelza, darthstar, psychodrew, zemblan, statsone, edtastic, Its the Supreme Court Stupid, marabout40, Rustbelt Dem, BFSkinner, volleyboy1, Mets102, ariseatex, skeptiq, Skritchard

   Busting the Dog Whistle code.
   by Mokurai on Mon Aug 16, 2010 at 03:05:47 PM EDT

I belong to no organized party, I'm a Democrat - Will Rogers

by Mets102 on Tue Aug 17, 2010 at 07:54:56 PM PDT

I have no idea what site rules Mets102 has in mind, because I looked hard and didn't find any such.

But we will work this out in future discussions. I'm looking up the Diaries and (where permitted) comments of those who attacked me, or rec'ed the attackers, to see whether we have common ground, and to engage them in the future. I don't bring all of this up to bash pro-Israel Kossacks, although I can see how they might see it otherwise. There has been a lot of ill-will, abuse, and even threats of violence between the discussants, here and elsewhere. Here are some instances of attacks, evidently in reaction to previous attacks, which I don't take personally.

  • Mokurai the moran is the one who wrote and published this trash.

    "Palin tried marijuana years ago. She said it distorted her perceptions & impaired her thinking. She hopes the effects will eventually one day wear off." - Leno

    by marabout40

  • Fucking asshole. (5+ / 0-)

    Recommended by:
       RedPencil, marabout40, BFSkinner, volleyboy1, Mets102

    Stirring shit up isn't a positive personality trait.  I highly recommend you reconsider.

    Once in a while you get shown the light, in the strangest of places if you look at it right.

    by darthstar

  • Asshole. (5+ / 0-)

    Recommended by:
       darthstar, MBNYC, marabout40, volleyboy1, Mets102

    If you're interested in helping, learning or wish to donate please, please go to Young Dementia dot org.

    by BFSkinner

  • Enough with you! (10+ / 0-)

    Recommended by:
       arielle, kalmoth, MBNYC, psychodrew, RedPencil, edtastic, Its the Supreme Court Stupid, Jersey Jon, volleyboy1, canadian gal

    This was an attack on the Jewish People

    Donutted accordingly.

    I belong to no organized party, I'm a Democrat - Will Rogers

    by Mets102

  • Awesomeness. (10+ / 0-)

    Recommended by:
       arielle, kalmoth, psychodrew, ubertar, RedPencil, edtastic, Its the Supreme Court Stupid, volleyboy1, Mets102, canadian gal

    God also had great stuff to say about gays, menstruating women and shellfish.


    Seriously now, you suck, and I hope this will be your only 'contribution' to this site.

    by MBNYC

  • You know... I am curious (6+ / 0-)

    Recommended by:
       arielle, MBNYC, ubertar, Jersey Jon, Mets102, angry marmot

    What prompts someone to write such a craptastic little P.O.S... I mean does one wake up in the AM and say.. "man, I think I will act like bigoted trash today"?

    OH BTW which sock is this Dogen Zenji? Ghostly Shaman?

    Do you really need attention that badly that you have to get banned over and over?

    Seriously... what motivates this assholish behavior day after day.... The great thing is that you fail EACH. AND. EVERY. TIME. and you will always.

    Kossacks are not bigoted a-holes like you are.

    "No Groin.... No Krav Maga" - The Simpsons

    by volleyboy1

  • Oh wait making fun of the way people

    spell G-d.. Can this be the a-hole from the Oliver Stone diaries? Hmmmmmmm........

    The diarist though, like all pussy anti-Semites has run tail between his/her legs. Notice, this is just a hit and run Piece of Crap. Typical.

    "No Groin.... No Krav Maga" - The Simpsons

    by volleyboy1

  • Hm. (10+ / 0-)

    Recommended by:
       capelza, Red Sox, zemblan, heathlander, Its the Supreme Court Stupid, volleyboy1, Mets102, ariseatex, canadian gal, angry marmot

    What purpose does this diary serve other than to alienate Jewish members of this blog?

    Someone asked, what kind of person wakes up in the morning thinking, "I'm going to write this diary, and it'll be a revelation."

    Do you think that Jews are unaware of what their religious texts say? Do you think that you're imparting some important knowledge on the rest of us?

    This is no different from when Islamophobes pick out verses from the Qur'an and point to that as evidence that Islam=Nazism and Muslims=brownshirts.

    I do hope, for the sake of everyone's sanity, you're banned as soon as possible.

    Sufficiently advanced cluelessness is indistinguishable from malice. -- Clark's Law

    by unspeakable

  • Only Nazis drive on freeways

    The interstate highway system was largely based on the Autobahn, put into place by the Third Reich to make road transportation easier.

    Using the logic your title uses, it would stand that you would never drive on the interstate because to do so would be promoting Nazism.

    Make a case for disagreeing with policies of the Israeli government all you want; don't jump to conclusions for the sole purpose of stirring controversy.

    by ariseatex

  • If you play (5+ / 0-)

    Recommended by:
       RedPencil, Its the Supreme Court Stupid, volleyboy1, Mets102, canadian gal

    Pamela Geller's last album in reverse, it sounds just like this diary. Trippy...

    by Red Sox

  • Hey look the Netueri Karta are here (6+ / 0-)

    Recommended by:
       arielle, zemblan, RedPencil, Its the Supreme Court Stupid, thebluecrayon, Mets102

    Fresh off their visit to with Mahmoud "Holocaust..., what Holocaust?" Ahmadinejhad here they are at Kos.. Like at the top of the poll 8 votes that Zionist Jews are Anti-Semites....

    "No Groin.... No Krav Maga" - The Simpsons

    by volleyboy1

  • Maybe the diarist just voted multiple times... (1+ / 0-)

    Recommended by:

    If and/or logged out and/or cleared their history and/or used different browsers I think that would be possible

    I belong to no organized party, I'm a Democrat - Will Rogers

    by Mets102

  • What is wrong with Kos (7+ / 0-)

    Recommended by:
       arielle, zemblan, RedPencil, thebluecrayon, volleyboy1, Mets102, canadian gal

    that it takes the combination of Doomsday Christians, the Jihadist Muslims, and one of the Nazi options to beat out Zionist Jews as being considered the most antisemitic group of people on the planet?

    "'There are no atheists in foxholes' isn't an argument against atheism, it's an argument against foxholes." James Morrow

    by kirrix

  • That a lot of trolls who will hopefully (4+ / 0-)

    Recommended by:
       RedPencil, thebluecrayon, volleyboy1, kirrix

    not be with us for much longer are the ones voting.

    I belong to no organized party, I'm a Democrat - Will Rogers

    by Mets102

  • You're absolutely wrong about why your previous diary was donutted to death. It wasn't because it was anti-Israel, it was for the clear implication that Jews had bought out the US government. zemblan
  • A liar, you are. MBNYC
  • It's a way for this idiotic diary to get MORE so. eraserhead

Nice sigs, guys (mostly). And I forgot to thank Mets102 for the Apple-Lokshen Kugel recipe (Oy, s'iz gut!) that I'm planning to try tomorrow, even though it was posted in "anti-troll" rage.

I believe that you will find, on reading my work, that most of us are in violent agreement. I am not a troll or a sock puppet, as you would have known if you had bothered to look. Dogen Zenji, too, whose tradition I share. You others, your prejudices are showing.

I have supporters on this Diary Entry, too. As long as I am praising those who have held up under fire for so long, I can't complain at how few rec'ed me.

This was so interesting! Thank you and may the

Mojo flow.

"Unthinking respect for authority is the greatest enemy of truth". Albert Einstein

by Sydserious

"Who's Next?" (apologies to Tom Lehrer)

Actually, despite the snark and hyperbole, this diary raises some important issues. I just couldn't help the obvious reference to one of the greatest satirists who ever poisoned a pigeon in the park.

"Egypt's gonna get one too,
Just to drop on you-know-who"

Always make new mistakes - Esther Dyson

by RandomActsOfReason

Despite the snark and hyperbole? But those were the best parts! Well, whatever. Anyway, great comment otherwise. And excellent sigs, both of you.

So, note to self: Pro-Israelis can't take snark. Don't do that any more. Roger that.


No, really, I begin to see what people are worried about. I had no idea it could get this bad on dKos.

Believe me
this is nothing. You weren't here for the Shergald wars.

I've just heard of them in passing...
but never seen anything about them.  I also saw reports of an AmbroseBurnside sighting while perusing the hiddens yesterday (although he was also before my time).

I belong to no organized party, I'm a Democrat - Will Rogers

by Mets102

Oh, Shergald

was one of the original IP-posters here. Very obnoxious, frankly; and when he finally got banned, he both decided that, a) his mission was more important than minor concerns like site rules, creating a flurry of sockpuppets, and b), it was a good idea to start recruiting other 'pro-Palestinian', anti-Israel posters to the blog, some of whom were just out and out anti-Semites. I seem to recall there was also one incident of Holocaust denial, but I'm not sure. It wasn't good for the site or, I think, Palestinian advocacy here.

Things finally came to a head when the resulting flamewars spread across the site, and one of the recruitees posted an interview with a member of the Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigade. Admin stepped in at that point and did some bannings; you can read about it here. All of this happened in 2007, mind you.

Things didn't quiet down entirely after that - heathlander, the Brit, posted a diary where he demanded reinstatement of the banned members and an apology from management for the perceived injustice - but at some later point, admin stepped in again, first removing ratings abilities for some posters and latter banning a whole bunch more. Contrary to what you may have heard, they were quite even-handed in that.

Some of the bannees then found a new home, Political Fleshfeast, also known as PFF, where the mayhem continued. PFF quickly degenerated into a constant meta-fest obsessed with Daily Kos, specifically what was called the troll patrol, users who took the whole community moderation business maybe a little too seriously. Yours truly was one of these and had several diaries there to his credit.

Fun times. Anyway, PFF one day went dark, and all its archives were gone. The mayhem carried on on a few other sites, which never really got traction, and then blended into the primary wars of 2007 and 2008.

In short, what you see today is really very tame compared to some of the things that have come before.

by MBNYC on Wed Aug 18, 2010 at 04:13:43 PM PDT

OK, then. Keep up the good work, and knock off the knee-jerk prejudgments, and we'll all hunt the real trolls. Wanting to do the right thing isn't enough. You have to get over yourself before you can usefully criticize others. Like Scout's friends. Like George Orwell, who wrote at great length about how hard it was to get over his own inherited prejudices.

As any Christian, or Muslim, or Buddhist, or Jew, or Hindu can tell you who spends more time trying to do right than telling others what to do.

Originally posted to Mokurai on Fri Aug 20, 2010 at 04:48 PM PDT.

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