Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Civil Rights and Liberties Require Constance Vigilance...

by: Les Carpenter
Rational Nation USA
Purveyor of Truth

Putting partisan politics aside, something America seems inept at of late, the following article by Sally Kohn is something we should all be able to sincerely agree on.

Of course the immediate problem will be the interpretation of civil rights, civil liberties, and how they stack up with the politics and stated agendas of progressives and conservatives. In short what they mean (without emotionalism) and how to best insure they are recognized and protected.

People are not robots or automatons. Most are intelligent, thinking, and caring people. But as much as some might like everyone to think alike humans are not wired that way, and if I may say so it is a it is a damn good thing!

Having stated the obvious, the next obvious observation is... how do Americans, a diverse people with many intelligent yet divergent ideas sort it out, make well thought out decisions, and continue to be the nation are fore-bearers fought to create, died for, and handed on to us. IN A Single and simple word, COMPRISE.

I won't be holding out much hope this will be achieved. I'll be keeping my bets in which party is the most responsible for this inability to put America ahead of political agenda. I'm sure honest people will be able to figure it out though.

Now on to the article below.

The civil rights movement is not some dusty antique—it’s alive and well today, and we need it as much as ever.

When we hear the phrase “civil rights movement,” our minds automatically click into history mode and visualize those grainy and often searing black-and-white images from Birmingham and Selma. But that same energy and spirit—and urgency—are alive and well today, and as necessary as ever.

On Friday, July 11, 2014, a group of a hundred or so young and racially diverse leaders from across the United States sat in the Civil Rights Room of the Nashville Public Library and watched scenes from the legendary documentary film Eyes on the Prize. They focused on the portions that had local interest: Student leaders in Nashville in 1960 had been staging sit-ins to protest segregated lunch counters while tensions in the city steadily rose. On the morning of April 19, 1960, the home of a prominent black lawyer was bombed.

That afternoon, in response, the students led a silent march through the streets of Nashville to the steps of City Hall. Mayor Ben West met them there, and repeated his usual explanation of how the city was powerless to change segregation. Diane Nash, a student who was the elected leader of the Nashville movement, simply asked, “Mayor, do you recommend that the lunch counters be desegregated?”
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West replied yes. A few weeks later, Nashville became the first major Southern city in which blacks and whites could sit together and eat lunch.

But what struck the young people as they sat watching the film this past Friday, many the same age as Nash and her compatriots had been, was how the students who marched silently through the streets of Nashville were yelled at, spat on, and even beaten, simply for standing up for their equal humanity and rights.

The next morning, as this group of young leaders marched silently down the streets of Nashville in the shadow of the civil rights marchers before them, a group of white women drove by and from the back of a truck hollered the N-word at the group. It was a searing reminder of how much things can change and yet stay the same. And it’s a microcosm of why we still need to fight actively for justice...

Continue reading BELOW THE FOLD.

Via: Memeorandum


  1. However he has been since then, I have a high opinion of Juan Williams for writing "Eyes on the Prize"

  2. I didn't agree with a lot of what Keith Olbermann said, Les. But I did agree with him 100% that civil liberties are not something that should go away during a time of war (the assertion by some folks that "war changes" everything") and that, if anything, they are probably more important then than during peace time. I mean, yeah, Olbie was mostly focusing on Bush when he was hammering on it and my focus has been much more on Lincoln, FDR, Wilson, and Nixon but the principle is identical and so kudos to him.

  3. I cannot say I agreed with Olbermann on much, but when you're right you're right. He is spot on with his view on this one.

  4. What I do find interesting as well as peculiar is few people really give civil rights and civil liberties a thought until at some point they believe they've lost one or more of theirs.

    Intriguing, particularly in light of the creeping fascism that has beset America.

  5. Who are these folks who say "war changes everything"? Is the person who wrote this referring to both those on the Right who claimed it did when bush was president and took us to war - as well as those on the Left who say this during a time we are at war (the same war bush started)? If so I agree, although I would say that I believe more on the Right said it. In regard to those on the Left who say it, they say they trust Obama more than bush. While I agree with this assessment of who is/was more trustworthy, I still say this is a bad excuse (in disagreement with those on the Left who say it is). Whatever the partisan affiliation of the administration that presides over a violating our rights, it is bad and should be objected to.

    That said, Civil Rights (as was referenced to in the article excerpt) is a different topic than our 4th amendment rights (which are the rights the commenter I refer to was talking about). Civil Rights, imposed by law on private businesses are the rights the article is discussing. And, as I recall, Randal Paul (a Libertarian leaning Republican) spoke against the enforcement of these rights (on Rachel Maddow's program). My question for the Libertarian minded people who post and comment here is: are you in agreement with Randal Paul?

    I consider myself to be an honest person, and I believe that it is the Democratic Party that more frequently "puts America ahead of [it's] political agenda"... although their record could absolutely be better, it is still the better one.

  6. Speaking for myselfI will not be baited into giving a response on Rand Paul other than he is one of the saner of those you love to hate. Rand Paul has positions I support and some I questIon.

    As I am not familiar with the particular discussion between Senator Paul and rachael maddow I must decline comment. Unless of course you provide a link to the segment or transcript.

    Fair enough?

    1. Looks fair... No one here worships Rand Paul. No hero worship; no shrines to him...

  7. I proffered a genuine question. There was no "baiting" intended.

    In any case, what follows is an excerpt from the interview I referred to. Excerpted from here, the interview transcript follows some editorializing I do not agree with:

    MADDOW: But maybe voting against the Civil Rights Act which wasn't just about governmental discrimination but public accommodations, the idea that people who provided services that were open to the public had to do so in a nondiscriminatory fashion.

    Let me ask you a specific so we don't get into the esoteric hypotheticals here.

    PAUL: Well, there's 10 -- there's 10 different -- there's 10 different titles, you know, to the Civil Rights Act, and nine out of 10 deal with public institutions. And I'm absolutely in favor of one deals with private institutions, and had I been around, I would have tried to modify that.

    I call this racism. The editorializer does not. But remember that Randal employed an aide that went by the alias of The Southern Avenger who wrote that "Americans aren't wrong to deplore the millions of Hispanics coming here" and that "a non-white majority America would simply cease to be America". Also, it has been reported that he "had previously written in support of the assassination of Abraham Lincoln, and formerly had served as a chairman of the League of the South, which advocates Southern secession".

    To me, it seems to be the case with both Pauls that they have a habit of employing "aides" that have problems with bigotry. Remember the flap over Ron Paul's racist and homophobic newsletters?

    You can bar anyone you wish from private property that is closed to the public. Once you open your business to the public it must be open to ALL the public. We The People say this is a compromise business owners must make in order to be granted a business license. Do you agree or do you disagree? It is a simple question and there is no baiting going on.

    As for shrines, the conversation that took place prior to me setting my "shine" included a comment from 8/18/2010 by me in which I said (in reply to Rusty), "If you wish to believe that I have a 'man crush' on Keith Olbermann, so be it. I don't care what you think. I said I admire him... it doesn't go any further than that". The language used on my "shrine" is intended as a joke (it says KO is the "subject of an intense, albeit strictly platonic, man-crush" in addition to other ridiculous assertions about me "worshipping" him, etc). I attempted to be as over-the-top as possible with my language. This was in response to (what I viewed as) over-the-top criticisms of KO by the proprietor of the blog previously linked to. If you don't get the joke I seriously do not give a crap.

    Also, as per the Wikipedia page titled "Shrine, "by extension the term shrine has come to mean any place dedicated completely to a particular person or subject". Jokes aside, that is how I used the word. I only admire this person and absolutely do not worship him. And the page will stay put and as is. If some cannot get the joke (or lie about it being a joke) that is not something I will concern myself with.

  8. Dervish Sanders did: "Remember the flap over Ron Paul's racist and homophobic newsletters?"

    Wasn't the aide in this case writing using Paul's name, and Ron Paul approved of it,... which really means that the writings in a way came from Ron Paul?

    As for the shrine, it is relevant to hero worship of plutocats. Olbermann, after all, when he was on the air, was a very rich man who used his position to try to influence public policy and elections. There are no examples of hero worship of plutocrats that you will find from me, Will, Les/RN, or Rusty... no matter how many times you might say so.

  9. Paul believes, as many conservatives believe, that the government should ban bias in all of its institutions but cannot intervene in the policies of private businesses. Those businesses, as Paul argues, take a risk by maintaining, in this example, racist policies. Patrons can decide whether or not to give them their money, or whether or not to make a fuss about their policies. That, not government regulation and intervention, is how bias should be eliminated in the private sector.

    Taken from your linked article.

    In a completely sane and rational populace the above would be exactly how it would be. It would work perfectly and there would be no need for this discussion. In fact it would be foreign to a comletely sane and rational person.

    The argument is private businesses transacting business with private citizens is of a free association and therefore government has no business regulating who players, either the business or the individuals, choose to associate or not associate with. Again, in a completely rational and sane population it would be no issue at all.

    Contemplate on that DS, more later as I have an errand to run.

  10. Continued from above:

    In principal and from a philosophical perspective I agree with Rand Paul. If all individuals were rational and truly thought and acted in their long range rational self interest there would be no issue. A completely rational business owner wants to attract and maintain business from all potential customers. Right?

    Of course we know this is not how everyone in business everywhere in the USA thinks this way and there remains a segment of the population, albeit a shrinking one, that still harbors overt racial bias and would prefer the option of making business decisions and transactions based on color. Morally and ethically this is abhorrent.

    In theory individuals subject to such race bias could indeed take their business elsewhere and the bias proprietor would lose business and become less profitable. Thus the market theoretically would, over time, rectify the societal injustice of bias based on color.

    History has shown this theory is just that a theory and if left alone to function as Rand (and I would prefer) race bias would continue for who knows how long. Most people make their decisions on where to-do business based on quality, service, price, location, and ease of doing business. So, if a individual receives the best of all this in his experience he/she will very likely not be deterred from doing business because the proprietor of the business may be a race bias individual.

    Here is where the argument that government can do good and have a just effect on those they govern, all of them, comes in.

  11. Continued from above:

    The argument that government, when acting to enact laws that are based on the principal of equality, passes acts that level the playing field so none are denied the opportunity to do business with whomever they choose justice is served. While government cannot legislate morality it can l can pass laws that make it a crime for anyone to discriminate based on race or other personal characteristic criteria, just as the Civil Rights Act did.

    So, in answer to your question Passage of the CRA was on balance the right thing to do. This is not to say I might not have tweaked it a bit.

    Gotta run, dinner time, Maybe more to come, not sure…

  12. Continued from above:

    Considering America, having grown more diverse, tolerant, and accepting of interracial relationships, the declining birth rate of Caucasian people, and immigration, America is gradually becoming browner. So people being what they are (regardless of race), it seems only rational to say it was a good thing the Civil Rights Act was passed. Theoretically at some point (sooner rather than later now) the Caucasian population could very well be the one discriminated against because of their whiteness.

    Just sayin…

    It passed, with whatever flaws it may have, because it was the ethical and moral thing to do. And, IMNHO, it was the long term rational thing to do and ultimately in everyones best rational self interest.

  13. Ron Paul claims ignorance, but the newsletters had his name on them and I think therefore he was responsible for their content. If you read the article I linked to you will see it went on for quite some time (his newsletter containing content of that nature). One would think that in those many years he would have read one issue of the newsletter that bore his name. Or that someone close to him would have brought it to his attention. That neither happened is suspicious to me. Suggests he knew and approved.

    Libertarians are wrong in regards to "free association". Being open to the public means ALL the public. Can't say, all the public, except ni##ers. Randal said he would have (while not liking it) supported these people who wanted to say yes to everyone except ni##ers. The government stepping in and saying that, if you're open to the public then you MUST accept everyone is appropriate IMO. Randal, and like-minded Libertarians are wrong on this. And I pointed to the Southern Avenger and newsletter issues to make a point that this kind of racism seems to be acceptable to the Libertarian Pauls. Suggests to me a link between bigotry and Libertarianism... despite Libertarian protests to the contrary.

    BTW, there being "no examples of hero worship of plutocrats that you will find from" the individuals named is an issue I will continue to disagree with you on. I will drop the matter here, however, as this type of discussion would not be to the liking of the blog proprietor, I'm guessing.

    BTW, KO is a rich man that tried to influence public policy to HAVE HIS TAXES RAISED. As well as the taxes of corporations. If you're shilling for a corporation you'd advocate the opposite.

  14. Old news, old discussion. But thanks for the input.

    BTW, I read the material. I made my statement and really have nothing more to add at this juncture.

  15. AND got a lot of stimulus buckaroos for their "green" (as we all gather by now, windmills aren't all that green) products.

  16. Dervish Sanders: You can't have it both ways. Either the rich and powerful using their position and their bully pulpit to influence public policy is a good thing, or it is bad. You can't deem some of it good (allowed) and some of it bad (to be banned) based on which political party package the policy being pushed happens to be a "plank" of. There's such a thing as consistency.

    As for KO specifically, he received part of the massive taxpayer handout to GE in the form of a bonus from them. In other words, he personally benefited from this corrupt corporate welfare, the worst sort of corporatism. Which is no surprise, as he is a wealthy corporate Democrat.

    Unless you have a correction with more recent news about him giving this money back.

    I'd be curious what Olbermann's views were on other corrupt crony capitalist policies such as TARP and the auto industry bailout.

    After all, the Constitution itself is entirely neutral on the content of speech. And I suspect that RN has a much more Constitutional, rational point of view on this. He is real good at seeing a partisan bias as a good thing (as opposed to letting it drive him)

  17. You're suggesting all news commentary be banned? And I'm not suggesting having it "both ways", I'm suggesting reasonable limits. Your statement is a straw man. Believe what you want about KO. BTW, I challenged you once before to show that bailout money went to KO. You did not reply because KO received no bailout money. GE Capital, the company's massive financing arm received bailout money. The entertainment division of GE got bupkis. KO's share of that bupkis was less than bupkis. And your bogus attacks on KO are driven by YOUR partisan bias.

  18. This is already way off on a tangent, and could turn into a crap fast. I disagree, and would provide counter arguments to each of your points... and links... and then again and again and again. Consider your last word a victory, if it makes you feel better. But after several such exchanges, this discussion became a ping pong game.

  19. Once again you are declining to show any proof of bailout money going to KO. You do so because no proof exists. But this is an improvement over your usual response... which would have you claiming that you already did show the proof. Or, that you were refusing to be a "Google for the lazy" and that I should look it up myself. At least I have you admitting here that there isn't any proof. Not an outright admission, but an admission by omission. Still an admission, however.

  20. Wrong. I have admitted no such thing, because if I had admitted that, I would be lying. There is plenty of proof. However, I respect RN's many times stated wishes concerning dead horses, crap fests, and shitbowls. My refusal to continue this is not a concession on any of your points. It is courtesy to the blog host. Something the creator of "Lying Lester" is in sore need of education concerning.

    1. And I doubt very seriously that this "different piles of money" argument would ever be utilized if the recipient of the cash was a conservative; Rush, Levin, Hannity, etc..

  21. Your courtesy is appreciated dmarks.

    Being the eternal optimist I still think the creator of the "Lying Lester" blog, one infamous Dervish Sanders aka Whirling Dervish, will eventually come around.

  22. A sign of him coming around will be his removal of "Lying Lester", Barlowe and the other deception/fake rooms in his House of Canards.

  23. The admission by omission continues. Unless you use some partisan opinion piece there is no "proof". Not that such an article would be real proof, as you yourself have argued. That is why you can't give "proof". To do so would expose you as a hypocrite. And the "courtesy" argument is a canard.

    BTW, no blogs that may or may not belong to me will be removed. Although it looks like modification as a courtesy did occur. If you take a look you'll see another person(a) is running it. Also, it looks like Barlowe isn't blogging any longer... but still you want to get rid of his blog. His prank obviously upset you quite a bit.

    1. I did visit there. The "Lying Lester" blog,which is a faker attack blog against Les of "Rational Nation" has been changed. It still has fangirl photos of Les, still, but not as many. And it has gotten more confusing. A joke which was never funny to begin with only gets worse if one has to keep adding paragraphs.

      click here

      What's that smoke on the horizon, I see, Les? I think it is coming from the "Lying Lester" blog. The conflagration happened with WD's pants-on-fire ignited the strawmen he had constructed.

    2. How can a blog be both a fan (or "fangirl") site AND an "attack blog"? Reason dictates that it would be one or the other. And, if this is a spoof (not "faker") "attack blog", it looks like it might be authored by someone who dislikes Libertarianism. RN and Libertarianism aren't one in the same.

  24. Barlowe (whoever the dude was) was actually quite civil and his comments (many of which pertaining to the social issues I disagreed with quite vociferously) didn't bother me at all.

    1. You are right, Will. In "Barlowe", WD showed he was capable of better. But after his cover was blown, he got careless and after that he was uncivil as "Barlowe" too.

    2. I treat people as they treat me. If they are uncivil (tell vile lies, for example), then I do not believe they are deserving of any civility from me.

  25. It is foolish to confuse my refusal to beat what is now an off topic dead horse with an "admission" of anything.

    As for your statement about the sock puppets that are both still you, it shows your derangement more than anything about my dismay at it.


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