Wednesday, June 17, 2009


Leonard Pitts wrote an excellent article entitled, No expiration date on hate that I urge you to read in its entirety. He writes of the coarsening of our culture; the people who need a group to hate for one or more of assorted reasons.

After listening to many radio talk shows, it doesn't take much time to figure out that all too many media personalities have made the inculcation and reinforcement of hate into an American pastime. They, and so many others, both allow the dark sides of their psyches to rule them, and also tap into the dark sides of all too many people who are gullible enough to seek scapegoats for their own emotional and/or economic deprivations.

Although he doesn't specifically mention LGBT people, Pitts' article is certainly applicable here as well, as can, for example, be seen here.

Here is a part of Pitts' article:

...what a shock it is to wake up 40 years later in a world where the intercultural dialogue we thought we’d mastered has become a shrill circus overrun by haters and opportunists, a world where on any given day one might be assaulted by the casual anti-Semitism and homophobia that afflict so much of the African-American community, or the racist patter of a washed-up TV star who has mistaken freedom of speech for freedom from thought, or the gassy posturing of political and media figures who happily, disingenuously trivialize the rawest wounds of the American experience for ratings and political position.

We act as if it were all a game, as if it means nothing when people of position and visibility spew garbage, validating and galvanizing the unhinged and the disaffected who need little encouragement to believe all their problems are caused by Them. We act as if we do not toy with fire when people of authority claim white Christians are a victimized minority or Hispanics a threatening and faceless Other. We act as if we were not heirs and witnesses to a blood-soaked history that tells us exactly where this hate some of us so fecklessly stoke will logically, inevitably lead.

[For the full article, see here]
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genevieve said...

Blaming others for the ills of society coarses the veins of world history. Too many people forget where they come from. The media is no help either. They criticize, marginalize, or ignore those who speak of teir oppression.

Jerry Maneker said...

Hi genevieve: They ignore "those who speak of their oppression" largely because not enough people speak out aggressively of their and others' oppression.

I dare any media personality, for example, to disparage Jews or African Americans. He/she would immediately be fired!

That's because the pressure applied would be so great, and cost that venue untold amounts of money and credibility. Unfortunately, when it comes to LGBT people, they are considered relatively "safe" targets to persecute and disparage, even making them the target of "jokes."

It is only when LGBT rights and human rights organizations, along with aggressive grassroots responses and activism are applied that such disparaging will disappear; LGBT people will acquire full and equal civil rights. Best wishes, Jerry.