One of the screwier trends to emerge from Europe lately has been efforts to ban burqas and “burquinis” (and this is the United States of America–we know something about screwy); one column I saw somewhere in a US paper I forget where about Nice’s recent banning of the burquini was headlined something like “Leave It to the French To Outlaw Modesty.”

Der Spiegel attempts to understand the movement in Europe, and particularly in Germany, to “ban the burqa.” It concludes that the movement has little to do with religion and everything to do with domestic politics and attempts to co-opt the European far right. Here’s an excerpt, but I urge you to follow the link and read it in its entirety.

In the final analysis, the debate is really about fear — the fear German conservatives have of the right-wing populist party Alternative for Germany. And our fear of Islam. The burqa — or more precisely, full body veils worn by Muslim women — has become the symbol of everything that we reject in Islam. And when an enlightened society becomes engulfed in a debate over a symbolic problem, then this fear must be pretty big indeed.

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20 August 2016 · Comments Off on That’s about the Size of It · Categories: Culture Warriors, Too Stupid for Words

Two pairs of ladies' trouser, the larger one labeled "Size 0.5" and the slightly smaller one labeled "Size XL."
Here’s more proof that the fashion industry hates women.

The larger pair of pants shows “Size 0,5.” The slightly smaller pair shows “Size XL.”

Words fail me.

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20 August 2016 · Comments Off on Facebook Frolics · Categories: Culture Warriors, Politics of Hate

By the sea, by the sea, by the beautiful sea . . . .

Aside:

This trifling tribalism (as my first wife would have said) plucks my last nerve.

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10 August 2016 · Comments Off on “A Nation of Immigrants” · Categories: "That Conversation about Race", Culture Warriors

Image:  White man in 1780 complaining about the

Via Job’s Anger.

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10 August 2016 · Comments Off on Facebook Frolics · Categories: Culture Warriors, Geek Stuff

Foto ID frolics.

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06 August 2016 · Comments Off on Staring into a Stereotype · Categories: Culture Warriors, Politics of Hate

At the Raleigh News and Observer, Mary Roodkowsky explores the origins of Hillary Hatred. A snippet:

But why is Hillary Hatred so intense, so committed, so sure of itself?

It’s because Hillary isn’t feminine or womanly, at least not in traditional ways. She doesn’t emote much publicly, she’s not spontaneous, she’s not touchy-feely. In short, she’s not vulnerable. And this is terrifying.

Women are emotional. Mothers are nurturers. Being a real woman means being spontaneous and responsive. Hillary doesn’t fit these stereotypes, and so she’s not a proper woman. This outrages many Americans, of both sexes.

(snip)

This dislike and fear of serious, reserved women is particularly American.

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05 August 2016 · Comments Off on Dis Coarse Discourse · Categories: Culture Warriors, Political Theatre

Why do persons think Hillary Clinton isn’t trustworthy? Perhaps this compilation of claptrap will give you a clue or three.

Amazing.

Via Karoli at C&L, who notes (follow the link for the full article):

Make no mistake. Much of the negativity swirling around Hillary Clinton today is deeply rooted in long-standing sexist press themes rather than reality. . . .

When you hear questions framed like the ones in the video above, or you hear media allowing the frame that she is a “horribly flawed candidate,” allow yourself the space to consider that it is their perception only. It’s something they’ve invested in for 40 years now, and they’re unlikely to let it go anytime soon.

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04 August 2016 · Comments Off on Dis Coarse Discourse · Categories: Culture Warriors, Political Theatre

Rob Korobkin, self proclaimed young person, is dismayed at the dismal destructiveness of the dispersal of the discourse. A snipppet:

When we want to know what’s going on in the world, we log into Facebook and Twitter to see the articles our friends have shared. I don’t even have network TV in my house, just my computer and a Roku box for streaming Netflix and Hulu.

These days, if you want folks to hear your voice, you have to be just as incendiary as the trolls.

You have to be share-worthy. . . .

Trump’s obnoxious, sure, but that’s an asset, not a liability.

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27 July 2016 · Comments Off on Donald Trump, Women’s Fibber · Categories: Culture Warriors, Politics of Hate

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26 July 2016 · Comments Off on King of the “Subgroups” · Categories: "That Conversation about Race", Culture Warriors

In The Des Moines Register, Reka Basu challenges Congressman Steve King’s statement that no “subgroup” has contributed anything to civilization matching the contributions of European Christians. With some help, she compiled a list of contributions from others:

So I’ve called on Facebook friends to help enlighten you. I asked people to submit their favorite examples of non-Western people’s contributions to civilization.

Here is some of what they shared:

Algebra. The number zero. Peanut butter. Accounting. Cotton. Gunpowder. Fireworks. Meritocracy. Language. Law. Government. Philosophy. Building construction. Wine. Food. Religion. Philosophy. Corn. Agriculture. Silk. Plumbing. Tools. Jazz. Blues. Beer. Pasta. Paper. Arabic numerals. Books. Writing. Gandhi. Buddha. Astronomy. Chess. Herbal medicine. Bread. Soap. Surgery. Ayurveda. Math. Wireless (Bose). Silicon Valley (largely Indians). Sanskrit. Banking. Money. Insurance. Lacrosse. Music. Hospitals. Optics. Voting. Woodblock type. Stirrups. Art. Philosophy. Farming. Human rights. Blood transfusions (African-American Dr. Charles Drew). Blood banks. Aqueducts. The compass. Porcelain. Massage. Tea. Rock ‘n’ Roll. Chocolate. Coffee. Architecture. Philosophy. Athletics. Tai Chi. Carnatic music. Bharat Natyam dance. Papyrus. The modern state. The public library. Gynecology. Universities. Acupuncture. Sewer systems. Engineering. Democracy. Original thought. Clocks. Maps. Yoga. The Sabbath.

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25 July 2016 · Comments Off on Fear and Loathing (and Delusion) in Cleveland · Categories: "That Conversation about Race", Culture Warriors, Politics of Hate

Leonard Pitts, Jr., can only shake his head and sigh at the Republican Hate-Fest in their fact-free Never Never Land:

Did Florida Gov. Rick Scott really say he could remember “when terrorism was something that happened in foreign countries” — as if four little girls were never blown to pieces in a Birmingham church, and an NAACP lawyer and his wife were never killed by a bomb in Scott’s own state?*

Did Silicon Valley entrepreneur Peter Thiel really say, “It’s time to end the era of stupid wars,” as if it were Democrats who dragged Republicans into Iraq with promises of flowers strewn beneath American tanks?

Did Ben Carson really link Hillary Clinton to Satan? Did the crowd really chant, repeatedly and vociferously, for her to be jailed? Did at least two Republicans actually call for her execution?

Follow the link for more.

__________________

*Remember, in white-wing world, these are not examples of “terrorism.” These are examples of “putting them in their place.”

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23 July 2016 · Comments Off on American Taliban: A Wolf in the Lamb’s Clothing · Categories: Culture Warriors, Political Theatre, Politics of Hate

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23 July 2016 · Comments Off on Coddled Yeggs · Categories: Culture Warriors, Politics of Hate, Republican Hypocrisy

Catherine Rampell notes that, despite their small-government protestations, what Republicans truly want is a nanny state, one that mops their tears, protects them from the real world, and coos over their booboos, all the while keeping them swaddled in their bigotry and prejudice. A snippet:

What kind of nanny state do these alleged fans of limited government desire? The kind that fulfills their wildest fantasies, yes, but more importantly that cocoons their constituents from offense, discomfort and perhaps even financial distress.

(snip)

They . . . want policymakers to bar transgender Americans from using the public bathroom of their choice, lest those in neighboring bathroom stalls feel vaguely threatened.

They want government to protect religious freedom, yet they also want government to expel holders of select religious beliefs — a policy that couldn’t possibly pass constitutional muster even if you could figure out a way to implement it.

They also want their small, spartan government to round up and deport 11 million undocumented immigrants, quickly and on the cheap, but “in a very humane way, a very nice way.”

Follow the link for more on the liturgy of white-wing whining.

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21 July 2016 · Comments Off on American Taliban · Categories: Culture Warriors

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20 July 2016 · Comments Off on Samantha Bee Waxes Pencesive · Categories: Culture Warriors, Political Theatre

Via C&L.

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