Feasting from the palm of your frantic hand

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“Would that I could persuade legislators in Uganda to drop their draft legislation, because I think it is totally unjust.”

“The U.S. House of Representatives on Wednesday unanimously passed a resolution declaring that Congress is firmly opposed to the United Nations taking control of the Internet — something the global governing body has not proposed to do.”

“Pundits tell the people that the deficit is the worst thing ever. Same pundits think massive deficit reduction plan, aka fiscal cliff, is also worst thing ever.”

“We are … living in a Golden Age of imagined religious persecution, in which the seasonal gestures of department stores are a grievous injury to the faithful, and the inability to make public policy consistent with religiously-based political views is deemed martyrdom.”

“The prevailing social prejudice against the non-religious reinforces, and is reinforced by, the political support for religious, especially Christian, privilege.”

“So why is John McCain haranguing someone for saying what he said days later?”

The U.S. doesn’t necessarily ‘progress’ on social issues inevitably with time like we like to map out in our high school history classes.”

“People say that nothing ever gets done. In Oklahoma, the same thing gets done, over and over again.”

“I’m still the exact same person and I’m still a Republican and, most importantly, I’m still a person of faith trying to live life as a servant of God and the public.”

“If you are on a very limited budget, you have to put a lot more thought into what you’re going to eat, where you’re going to find food, especially if you’re on a program like SNAP: what places are actually going to accept my SNAP dollars?”

“Such an action would reform entitlements and save money, but that the Republicans would never go for it. … Gosh, it’s almost as if the GOP doesn’t really care about saving money and really only wants to cut people off of health insurance.”

Unemployment aid is one of the best and most effective forms of government investments boosting the overall economy because those who receive the benefits don’t stick it in a mutual fund; they put the money right back into the economy, buying goods and services.”

“Leave it to a congressman from the ex-Confederacy, where the white rape of black women has a long and sordid history, to hold up the Violence Against Women Act in order to protect white men from prosecution by tribal courts if they rape a Native American woman.”

“The genre of westerns, for example leave out Chinese Americans and other API about 99 percent of the time, their stories so marginalized that it takes conscious effort on the part of the average American to remember that they were in fact here, and here in great numbers.”

We tell the world that our system is the best in the world, and it’s not.”

  • Carstonio

    (TW: rape)

    The vast majority of rapes of Native American women are committed by white men? Did I just get transported to 1870? That type of rape was so common in that century that Iron Maiden referenced it.

    Really dumb question – how are these men even getting access to tribal lands? I had the impression that residents rarely work or shop away from the reservations, and that they try to limit access with their admittedly meager resources. Now I have the extremely ugly image of the rapists regularly driving onto the reservations and assaulting any women who happen to be outside.

    Cantor very likely doesn’t favor rape of any woman, and I suspect his problem is whites and men being held accountable by people who aren’t white and male, a violation of his idea of a social hierarchy. But his reasoning doesn’t matter, because the effect is that the Native American women have no protection from the law.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Ann-Unemori/100001112760232 Ann Unemori
  • LL

    I’m not an expert, but tribal lands are not just reservations. Many tribes have rather large business enterprises (casinos, hotels, golf courses, etc.) that welcome the general public. The properties are still on tribal land and thus under the jurisdiction of tribal courts (I assume), but access to those properties is not restricted to native people. These businesses employ many non-native people, but I’m guessing many employees are members of the tribe as well. And many tribal members are probably also customers.

  • Lori

    Now I have the extremely ugly image of the rapists regularly driving
    onto the reservations and assaulting any women who happen to be outside.

    This really isn’t what we’re dealing with. Reservations are not closed. People can and do come and go. Some of them are geographically isolated enough to limit the amount of off-reservation travel that residents do, but others are not. And as LL pointed out, many tribes own businesses that both cater to and employ non-Native people.

    ETA: My nephew’s SO is Native and worked for several years at the casino on her tribe’s lands. A very high percentage of the tribe worked at the casino in some capacity, but the majority of the employees were not Native. A casino is a big operation and many tribes don’t have large numbers living on tribal lands so non-Native people from the surrounding area make up the bulk of the workers.

  • Lori

    About Cory Booker and the SNAP challenge—the commenter on the linked article is correct that Booker is doing the challenge for a week, not for the whole month. That’s short enough to draw some valid criticism about it being a sort of poverty tourism, but I think Booker’s tweets and interviews about it demonstrate that even a fairly short time dealing with the restraints imposed by dependence on SNAP can have value.

    One comment that really jumped out at me was from Christine Romans at CNN who said,

    “It’s not meant to be your only calorie intake source. ‘Supplemental’ is the key. The government designs it so this is on top
    of what little money you might have, food pantries, soup kitchens.  

    Spoken like someone who truly has no clue and who frankly needs a good whack with the clue bat.

    It’s true that SNAP was designed as a supplemental program. That doesn’t invalidate Booker’s challenge, it points out that the program as it currently exists is poorly designed. Or more precisely is part of a social safety net that is vastly inadequate. We have 6 million people in this country for whom SNAP is their only income. Many of the rest of the folks getting SNAP have cash income that is inadequate or barely adequate for dealing with the expenses that can’t be paid for with SNAP. Little things like rent and transportation and clothes. SNAP isn’t supplemental for them either. SNAP is their entire food budget. If they can’t get it with SNAP they don’t eat it. If they run out of SNAP funds before the end of the benefit month they don’t eat at all.

    To the extent that Booker makes people aware of that, and of the amount of work that goes into living on SNAP I say good on him.

  • Persia

    Back when I first became aware of this issue I remember reading about what was essentially ‘rape tourism,’ where men were doing just that. I’m not sure how often it happened or how ‘proven’ it was, but it was around.

    (This is in addition to the other info already provided.)

  • stardreamer42

    One of the few Westerns to at least take a shot at displaying the anti-Chinese prejudice of the period is Shanghai Noon… which is unsurprising, since it’s a Jackie Chan movie.

     Sadly, it then also includes a Native American female character who saves the hero’s butt on at least 3 occasions but is never given a name — she’s just a plot point in a bra.

  • http://www.metagalacticllamas.com/ Triplanetary

    Did I just get transported to 1870?

    Possibly. Or possibly one of the other centuries where white violence against Native Americans is a significant problem. For example, the 21st Century.

  • Carstonio

    That’s my point – I didn’t know that it remained a significant problem. The West was “won” through the slaughter and subjugation of Native Americans, with rape being a means for the latter. The average white person’s contact with Native Americans is probably far less these days, and the Old West genre with all its whitewashing of history seems to be dying. So I imagined fewer opportunities for the former to think of the latter as people to be abused and exploited.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Ann-Unemori/100001112760232 Ann Unemori

    Sounds like a spin off of those horrible “sex tours” Japanese businessman took in Southeast Asian.

  • Darkrose

    The actual law is intenteded to apply to non-Native American men who are married or domestic partners with Native American women and who live on the reservations. 

    This post has a provocative title,, but please don’t let that keep you from clicking the link. (Trigger warning, though!) It describes the situation in historical context.

  • http://www.oliviareviews.com/ PepperjackCandy

    Okay, I’m officially confused.  The quote in the blog post says, It gives tribal courts limited jurisdiction to oversee domestic violence
    offenses committed against Native American women by non-Native American
    men on tribal land.

    Doesn’t domestic violence by definition mean that the perpetrator of the violence has access to the victim because he lives there with her?

    It doesn’t look to me (and I’m reading an article on tribal law that discusses VAWA right now) that the law would protect workers in a resort hotel from being raped by non-Native American patrons at all, it would just make protection orders issued by the state enforceable by tribal authorities.

    I am in no way saying that VAWA would be a waste of time.  However, it sure looks to me like we would still need new laws to root out non-domestic violence and non-acquaintance sexual assault against Native American women.

  • http://www.metagalacticllamas.com/ Triplanetary

    Sadly, it then also includes a Native American female character who saves the hero’s butt on at least 3 occasions but is never given a name — she’s just a plot point in a bra.

    Yeah, plus I thought it was really weird how she was played by an Italian man.

  • Carstonio

    4vawa.org calls for giving tribes jurisdiction over non-Native perpetrators in domestic and dating violence cases. It’s reasonable for victims to suspect that non-Native courts wouldn’t do right by them. But I’m still sorting out what this reveals about the marriages between Native women and white men. Women are raped by partners all over the world. Are the rapists of Native women more likely to be white partners than white strangers or Native men? If so, this strongly suggests to me that many white men marry Native women not as equals but as sexual slaves.

    In the film Stagecoach, a man on the vehicle prepares to kill a female passenger when a Native attack is imminent, to spare her from being raped by the attackers. The reality was the other way around. Gee, that sounds familiar. Let me think…Oh, just like the fear of black men raping white women when the reality was female slaves being regularly raped by male slaveowners.

  • EllieMurasaki

    tw: suicide, rape

    In the film Stagecoach, a man on the vehicle prepares to kill a female passenger when a Native attack is imminent, to spare her from being raped by the attackers.

    Yeah. Assuming for a moment that that’s a plausible fear? No. Give her the damn gun. (Or knife or whatever it was.) If she would rather die than be raped, she is perfectly capable of suiciding. If she would rather be raped than die, he has not taken the choice away from her, and also she has a weapon with which to increase the chances that she will not in fact be raped.

  • Carstonio

    If I were to plan a roundtable discussion on the film, you would be the first panelist I would choose.  John Ford made amends somewhat with The Searchers and its criticisms of anti-Native racism.

  • EllieMurasaki

    *blush*

  • Persia

     Not just Japanese businessmen but yeah.

  • http://profiles.google.com/marc.k.mielke Marc Mielke

    Kinda humourous, but no, she just has a really masculine-sounding name. (I don’t identify ‘Merrill” as particularly Italian. Maybe Elven, but only as a first name…)

  • http://profiles.google.com/marc.k.mielke Marc Mielke

    Yeah, not just Japanese: the white Jewish father of a good friend of mine ditched his non-English speaking Korean wife with my friend and his psychopathic kid brother when they were 16 and 13 respectively to go on permanent holiday in Thailand. 

    His idea of father-son bonding was having them come over a few years later and provide 13-year old hookers all around. To his credit, my friend did not indulge. 

  • EllieMurasaki

    That’s not to your friend’s credit, that just shows your friend meets minimum standards of human decency and his father does not. I’m not sure how that scenario could play out to your friend’s credit, since finding the kids safe loving homes where the pimps couldn’t reclaim them and the adoptive parents had enough money that the kids returning to sex slavery didn’t start looking like an option, that was almost certainly outside his capabilities.

  • Fusina

     ”In the film Stagecoach, a man on the vehicle prepares to kill a female
    passenger when a Native attack is imminent, to spare her from being
    raped by the attackers. The reality was the other way around. Gee, that
    sounds familiar. Let me think…Oh, just like the fear of black men
    raping white women when the reality was female slaves being regularly
    raped by male slaveowners.”

    Aaahhh…Paybacks are hell?

    Or possibly, people fear the most the evil they do to others.

  • Kirala

     It could be worth credit to manage minimum human decency if one were very young, trained in a warped worldview, and encouraged to perpetrate it by a trusted, close authority figure. I don’t know how much any of those conditions apply in this case, but I wouldn’t want to judge that they DON’T apply when I know nothing about the situation.

    I have several students to whom I am giving enormous credit for not selling drugs or beating up small children. Alas, their friends and family are such that this is a step up.

  • Kirala

    Oh, just like the fear of black men raping white women when the reality
    was female slaves being regularly raped by male slaveowners.

    I have long suspected that all theories of human behavior are ultimately based on the assumption that all people are fundamentally like the theorizer – whether it be self the theorizer is, the self hoped for, or the self feared. And people who can’t accept all aspects of themselves start projecting on the Other.

  • EllieMurasaki

    Fair point.

  • http://dpolicar.livejournal.com/ Dave

    I have long suspected that all theories of human behavior are ultimately based on the assumption that all people are fundamentally like the theorizer

    Do you base that theory on the assumption that all people are fundamentally like you?

  • EllieMurasaki

    I don’t think that follows. For example, I do not believe I am capable of rape–I don’t fear the possibility because I don’t think it’s a possibility, I know I haven’t done it (that would among other things require me to have at some point been naked-with-intent with somebody), and it certainly isn’t something I hope for. But any theory of human behavior I formulate has to account for the existence of rapists.

  • Tricksterson

    To be fair rape happened on both sides.  It was war and unfortunately rape, among other atrocities, tends to be an inescapable part of war.  But yes, she should have been given a gun.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    This reminds me of the time someone I knew threw a strop because I didn’t ~congratulate~ them for doing what any normal person does, which is not steal a car when the key’s been left in the ignition and nobody’s around.

    It’s like Nice Guys expecting feminism cookies for not touching a woman without consent.

  • Kirala

     I think we should be clear about the difference between “minimum acceptable” and “praiseworthy” – but I think we should also take circumstances into account at some times. If a random person tells me that they didn’t get roaring drunk and verbally abuse their child, I’ll be appalled that they think that’s praiseworthy. If my recovering-alcoholic cousin tells me that, I know enough of his circumstances to know that might actually be praiseworthy. Improvement as well as objective accomplishment deserves praise.

  • Kirala

     Probably. I haven’t squinted too far into the infinity mirror there.

  • Kirala

    Logical objection. Doesn’t affect my suspicion, for some reason, but there’s a reason why I call it a “suspicion” and not a “well-grounded theory”.

  • P J Evans

     The problem is that currently the tribal courts have no legal authority in cases where a non-native rapes a native. Those are supposed to be handled by the Feds. That’s what VAWA was supposed to change.

  • http://profiles.google.com/marc.k.mielke Marc Mielke

    Kind of like that. He was sort of aware his father was a douche, but y’know — it’s your dad, right? Anyway, he turned out far better than I ever have, so good on him. 

  • Consumer Unit 5012

     Or possibly, people fear the most the evil they do to others.

    Or, “It’s ALWAYS Projection.”

  • AnonymousSam

    They probably get their information from the same place that asshole who visited us awhile back did — he kept claiming that there’s a systematic attempt to destroy the purity of Native American blood and culture by giving them lots of unwanted white children.

  • AnonymousSam

    Ugh, the article on Michigan. From what I hear, the governor has apparently replaced the Democrats in the House with Republicans to push through the Right-to-Work law — and of course, police violence against protestors was the first response to the public outcry, outcry which is well justified when this measure had been on the ballot only last month and was rejected by popular vote.

    They really are succeeding in outlawing democracy in that state.

  • DorothyD

    Oh, they were just getting started.

  • Tricksterson

    It was my understanding that the Spaghetti Monster was down with a woman’s right to choose.

  • DorothyD

    Oh, I hope he is, because I couldn’t worship His Noodliness otherwise. But then again: 

    For who has known the mind of the FSM, 
        or who has been his counselor.

    R’amen. 


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