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» Hatrack River Forum » Active Forums » Books, Films, Food and Culture » Occupy Wall Street and the sad state of American protesting (Page 6)

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Author Topic: Occupy Wall Street and the sad state of American protesting
Tarrsk
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They live in the refrigerators, obviously. You think that scene in "Indiana Jones and the Something of the Crystal Skull Thing" was made up out of nothing?
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Mucus
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quote:
Originally posted by The Rabbit:
According to HUD statics, 0.75% of Americans are homeless. Combining this with the FOX News stat, there are nearly twice as many people without homes than without refrigerators. I wonder where all those homeless people are storing the fridges.

Well, it looks like Fox is citing a DOE survey which only surveys homes.

Table HC3.5 Appliances in U.S. Homes, By Household Income, 2009

The number looks a bit different at 99.4% (opposed to 99.6% in the graphic) below the poverty line, if I'm reading it right, but close enough to be what they're probably classifying as poor.

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kmbboots
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So are they only counting the poor that have a place to live?
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Mucus
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I think so.

While it makes sense for the DOE survey (in terms of how I think it was meant to be used), it is somewhat misleading when used in the Fox News "argument."

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The Rabbit
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quote:
Originally posted by kmbboots:
So are they only counting the poor that have a place to live?

kmboots, The stat is from DOE and its a percentage of all households with a refrigerator, not poor people.
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kmbboots
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Just wanted to be sure which level of exhausted outrage to muster.
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The Rabbit
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Its also worth noting that most poorer people rent, and, in most areas, building codes require places rented as domiciles to have refrigerators and stoves.

So

1. Poor people are very unlikely to own a refrigerator or any other major appliance.

and

2. The fact that nearly all poor households have refrigerators in their residence is a result of exactly the kind of government regulation the right wing opposes.

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Darth_Mauve
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I've also heard Fox and other Right leaning/right wing commentators say that the protestors were all, "Trust Fund Babies"--Children of Rich parents who didn't need to work, so took to protesting out of boredom/guilt/because they can.

Of course the way to limit Trust Fund Babies is through....

A strong inheritance tax.

So shouldn't the Right be all for a strong Inheritance tax so that these protesting trust-fund babies would have to get a job like the rest of us and not have time to protest economic injustice?

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Geraine
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quote:
Originally posted by Darth_Mauve:
I've also heard Fox and other Right leaning/right wing commentators say that the protestors were all, "Trust Fund Babies"--Children of Rich parents who didn't need to work, so took to protesting out of boredom/guilt/because they can.

Of course the way to limit Trust Fund Babies is through....

A strong inheritance tax.

So shouldn't the Right be all for a strong Inheritance tax so that these protesting trust-fund babies would have to get a job like the rest of us and not have time to protest economic injustice?

I've really only heard Limbaugh say that they are trust fund babies.

Has anyone else mentioned that this is starting to look a lot like Shay's Rebellion? (Without the killing and violence of course)

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capaxinfiniti
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quote:
Originally posted by Darth_Mauve:
I've also heard Fox and other Right leaning/right wing commentators say that the protestors were all, "Trust Fund Babies"--Children of Rich parents who didn't need to work, so took to protesting out of boredom/guilt/because they can.

Of course the way to limit Trust Fund Babies is through....

A strong inheritance tax.

So shouldn't the Right be all for a strong Inheritance tax so that these protesting trust-fund babies would have to get a job like the rest of us and not have time to protest economic injustice?

The 'trust fund baby' argument is used to highlight the large OWS contingent comprised of affluent consumers who profit(ed) from and enjoy(ed) the fruits of the system they now oppose, a group Charles Krauthammer calls in his most recent column the "Starbucks-sipping, Levi’s-clad, iPhone-clutching protesters denounce[ing] corporate America even as they weep for Steve Jobs, corporate titan, billionaire eight times over." This argument against isn't against the existence of trust fund babies but against their actions. It's the same reason the right is critical (and dismissive) of Warren Buffet's comments - if they (meaning the rich who support redistributive policies) have so much money, why not write a fat check to the IRS and voluntarily redistribute your income? The same goes for inheritance money. The right believes you're more than welcome to donate it but its's not within the government's power to tax the hell out of it.

These rich liberals posses more effective means of exacting the change they desire than partying in downtown Manhattan. The real issue is in identifying what percentage of 'trust fund babies' are among the protesters. Each side of the political spectrum is going to propose a wildly different number.

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Mucus
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I don't know if breaking it down into two "sides" is fair.

Actually, I've read a number of articles from non-white progressives, and they pretty much echo the same concern that the Occupy Wall Street crowd is disproportionately privileged white people.

That doesn't mean that they don't sympathize with the overall goals of the movement though.

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The Rabbit
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quote:
These rich liberals posses more effective means of exacting the change they desire than partying in downtown Manhattan.
This is a stereotype that the right would love you to believe but which simply isn't true. Sure, its likely true for some of the protestors but not for most of them. I know quite a few people involved and none of them qualify as "trust fun babies". They are at best middle class and many of them are lower middle class.
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DarkKnight
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quote:
So shouldn't the Right be all for a strong Inheritance tax so that these protesting trust-fund babies would have to get a job like the rest of us and not have time to protest economic injustice?
Nope. They have a right to protest anything they want. Just like the protestors can even say things like:
Leftist racism at occupy wall street
More
Although I do believe they should be held accountable for defecating on a cop car, blocking traffic, trespassing, and so on.
Occupy wall street begins to chafe its neighbors
As for Warren Buffet
Warren Buffett refuses to pay taxes he wants others to pay

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The Rabbit
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Since when does being "Starbucks-sipping, Levi’s-clad, iPhone-clutching" make you upper class? I live in a developing country where a lot of my students who don't have refrigeration or running water in their homes, wear Levi's and have i-phones. You may think that's financially irresponsible, but an smart phone costs a lot less here than a refrigerator and orders of magnitude less than decent house.
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The Rabbit
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DK, It seems like you are not aware that some of of the OWS protestors are the very same people who came out to Tea Party protests. It isn't as simple as left vs. right.
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DarkKnight
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quote:
but an smart phone costs a lot less here than a refrigerator and orders of magnitude less than decent house.
That is true pretty much everywhere. Although if you can afford a $100 iPhone plus probably at the cheapest $40 a month you can afford a refrigerator.
quote:
It seems like you are not aware that some of of the OWS protestors are the very same people who came out to Tea Party protests. It isn't as simple as left vs. right.
So these people in the videos are Tea Party people?
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The Rabbit
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quote:
So these people in the videos are Tea Party people?
Possibly. More likely they aren't really aligned with either. There are certain groups of wackos (like the LaRouche movement) that show up at anything resembling a protest.

Its rather hypocritical to complain that people paid too much attention to these fringe groups during the Tea Party protests and then turn around encourage the same thing for the OWS.

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DarkKnight
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quote:
Its rather hypocritical to complain that people paid too much attention to these fringe groups during the Tea Party protests and then turn around encourage the same thing for the OWS.
Can you provide videos of the same thing, or similar occupations from a Tea Party event?
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Rakeesh
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quote:
Can you provide videos of the same thing, or similar occupations from a Tea Party event?
Strange. So now video footage of Tea Party protests will be relevant, somehow? Seems to me that before, it was only ever the preamble to, "But Bush protestors..."
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TomDavidson
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quote:
Starbucks-sipping, Levi’s-clad, iPhone-clutching protesters denounce[ing] corporate America even as they weep for Steve Jobs, corporate titan, billionaire eight times over...
It's interesting that Krauthammer doesn't see a distinction between the members of corporate America that Occupy is actually protesting and, say, Steve Jobs. You'd think he'd do more research.
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Samprimary
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further,

quote:
The 'trust fund baby' argument is used to highlight the large OWS contingent comprised of affluent consumers who profit(ed) from and enjoy(ed) the fruits of the system they now oppose
Because I'm sure Limbaugh, Krauthammer or you have exceedingly quickly organized social demographic data on the occupy crowd.
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kmbboots
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quote:
Originally posted by TomDavidson:
quote:
Starbucks-sipping, Levi’s-clad, iPhone-clutching protesters denounce[ing] corporate America even as they weep for Steve Jobs, corporate titan, billionaire eight times over...
It's interesting that Krauthammer doesn't see a distinction between the members of corporate America that Occupy is actually protesting and, say, Steve Jobs. You'd think he'd do more research.
You think that Krauthammer does research? How would that be helpful when trying to frame this protest as both class warfare against the wealthy and snobby elitism? You think that facts are gonna help with that?
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Dan_Frank
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quote:
Originally posted by Rakeesh:
quote:
Can you provide videos of the same thing, or similar occupations from a Tea Party event?
Strange. So now video footage of Tea Party protests will be relevant, somehow? Seems to me that before, it was only ever the preamble to, "But Bush protestors..."
Just to be clear, since I have spoken here on this subject a lot, I have been pretty consistent in acknowledging that both OWS and Tea Parties have attracted a significant subset of wackjob "career protester" types. I don't think, in either case, that it's fair to judge to overall protests based on these people.

For example, the young short-haired white male harassing the Jewish man in one of DarkKnight's videos has a pretty active presence on OWS youtube videos. He goes by "Lotion Man," which sounds totally above board, and is pretty clearly more than a little insane. He doesn't represent OWS as a group, in my opinion. Focusing on one or two complete loons is an easy way to discredit any protest, because protests by their nature draw a certain crowd anyway so you're guaranteed to find a few crackpots.

The flavor of nutjobbery will vary, of course, and each of our biases will inform just how crazy we are willing to admit someone is. It's true that no Tea Party protester ever crapped on a cop car, but this is not surprising. After all, loony righties tend to focus their misguided rage at other groups (the gays, or the lazy), while loony lefties typically prefer to take their crazy out on cops and other authority figures.

I think a much more useful discussion involves looking at the overall goals of the respective groups, or trying to get a pulse for the members in general.

There are some NRO videos floating around that show seemingly more sane and coherent OWS protesters, which still doesn't really bode that well for the wisdom of the group as a whole. I expect most left-leaning folks would still see these as unfair representation, but they are at least less focused on one or two obvious nutcases. The people in the videos are able to form coherent sentences, even if what they're saying doesn't amount to much. That seems like a marginally more valuable discussion point.

I think the best discussion point would be looking at actual policy suggestions put forth by the people at OWS, but the movement thus far seems to disjointed to do that. All the demands I've seen have been patently ridiculous, but they've also been disavowed by OWS "leadership" so mocking them seems a bit unfair.

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Geraine
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Oh but Dan, have you forgotten? One racist comment or sign at the Tea Party rallies meant that the Tea Party was inherently racist.

Since there are possibly wacko Tea Party people at the OWS rallies, I cannot help but believe that OWS is indeed inherently racist as well.

Snarkiness aside, I do agree that you cannot judge the entire OWS event by some of the crazies. It is important to look at the policies they are proposing. Unfortunately due to the way they are running their protest (no leadership) it is going to be very difficult for them come up with an actual list of policies and resolutions that they want implemented.

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Rakeesh
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quote:

Oh but Dan, have you forgotten? One racist comment or sign at the Tea Party rallies meant that the Tea Party was inherently racist.

Support for things like Alabama's immigrant law don't mean nothin', either!
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The Rabbit
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quote:
Oh but Dan, have you forgotten? One racist comment or sign at the Tea Party rallies meant that the Tea Party was inherently racist.
Geraine, Are you seriously arguing that one racist comment or sign at a Tea Party rally was the only evidence for racism with in the Tea Party?

Several survey's, found that Tea Party supporters were more than twice as likely to hold racist views such as "the problems of blacks are exagerated", "the government helps blacks at the expense of whites", "blacks are more likely to be poor because they are lazy" and so forth. They were also nearly twice as likely as the average American to believe that Obama was born in Africa and a closet Muslim -- ideas which are implicitly racist. Furthermore, Tea Party leaders made a lot of very racial charged statements, like "we should shoot hispanics".

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Blayne Bradley
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quote:
Originally posted by Geraine:
Oh but Dan, have you forgotten? One racist comment or sign at the Tea Party rallies meant that the Tea Party was inherently racist.

Since there are possibly wacko Tea Party people at the OWS rallies, I cannot help but believe that OWS is indeed inherently racist as well.

Snarkiness aside, I do agree that you cannot judge the entire OWS event by some of the crazies. It is important to look at the policies they are proposing. Unfortunately due to the way they are running their protest (no leadership) it is going to be very difficult for them come up with an actual list of policies and resolutions that they want implemented.

They have, stop coddling the rich, make them pay their fair share; and regulate wall street and get the economy providing jobs again.

That's just the tip of the mother effin' iceberg, has your head been stuck under the sand or something?

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Dan_Frank
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quote:
Originally posted by The Rabbit:
quote:
Oh but Dan, have you forgotten? One racist comment or sign at the Tea Party rallies meant that the Tea Party was inherently racist.
Geraine, Are you seriously arguing that one racist comment or sign at a Tea Party rally was the only evidence for racism with in the Tea Party?

Several survey's, found that Tea Party supporters were more than twice as likely to hold racist views such as "the problems of blacks are exagerated", "the government helps blacks at the expense of whites", "blacks are more likely to be poor because they are lazy" and so forth. They were also nearly twice as likely as the average American to believe that Obama was born in Africa and a closet Muslim -- ideas which are implicitly racist. Furthermore, Tea Party leaders made a lot of very racial charged statements, like "we should shoot hispanics".

Nitpick: you are not direct quoting, you are paraphrasing. I believe that you believe you are accurately representing their views, however, especially with regards to your first three quoted examples, in each case if you rephrase the wording so that it is more accurate to the polls themselves, it changes the meaning to be focused almost entirely on one issue: systemic racism. In other words, the polls that I've seen tended to be various ways of asking if Tea Partiers felt that systemic racism is a problem in the US. And yes, a majority of them don't seem to think it is.

You can argue that they're wrong, and that's fine, but I think it totally devalues the very label of "Racist" to say that someone who disagrees with this premise is inherently a racist.

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Destineer
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quote:

You can argue that they're wrong, and that's fine, but I think it totally devalues the very label of "Racist" to say that someone who disagrees with this premise [that systemic racism is a problem in the US] is inherently a racist.

Is that because it's never racist to disagree about whether there's systemic racism? Or is it because it's supposed to be a question that reasonable people can obviously disagree about in the present day?

As a salient example: I don't think it would've been possible for someone who read the news to deny that systemic racism was a problem in the US in the 50s, unless they were racist.

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Orincoro
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Really? Ignorance is not a defense? I mean, the media wasn't always on the side of reform, and even today, many people don't really understand how institutionalIzed racism affects them.
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Orincoro
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quote:
Originally posted by Geraine:
Oh but Dan, have you forgotten? One racist comment or sign at the Tea Party rallies meant that the Tea Party was inherently racist.

Oh, and no. I never heard any reports of racist signs at Tea Party events- I still think the Tea Party is partly motivated by racism.

Did you really think this was the justification people had for calling it racist? There are better reasons to think so than a few idiots with signs.

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Samprimary
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quote:
Originally posted by Geraine:
Oh but Dan, have you forgotten? One racist comment or sign at the Tea Party rallies meant that the Tea Party was inherently racist.

You (and dan_frank too) have both been through this on the board before. I pointed out that the tea party has a real problem with racism. It's not entirely surprising, they also have problems with homophobia and islamophobia! I was right then, I got to laugh about it through the Mark Williams debacle, and I'm still right now. I will always have been right! And no, the tea party's problem with racism is not based on whatever percentage of signs at protests 'prove' the tea party is 'inherently racist.' But I have these problems to credit for completely sabotaged races in my state, which all but gave democrats seats they still should not have ever had.
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Dan_Frank
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quote:
Originally posted by Destineer:
quote:

You can argue that they're wrong, and that's fine, but I think it totally devalues the very label of "Racist" to say that someone who disagrees with this premise [that systemic racism is a problem in the US] is inherently a racist.

... Or is it because it's supposed to be a question that reasonable people can obviously disagree about in the present day? ...
Yes.
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Destineer
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I don't know about that. I think it takes some serious blinders to deny that the history of US theft (of both labor and wealth) from black Americans has been a major cause of their contemporary disadvantaged status. Whether or not injustice is actually being actively perpetuated now, the situation remains unjust because the past injustices still have obvious effects.

An apt comparison would be a poverty-stricken European Jew whose poverty is partly the result of the Nazis impounding his entire family fortune.

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Dan_Frank
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You're not sure. That's fair. So, let's consider it again, in the barest terms possible. Do you think that someone is racist if they don't agree with the following statement: Current systemic racism is the main cause of poverty among minorities (or specify it to African-Americans, if you prefer)

Just remember, it's okay if you think they are totally wrong or ignorant. You probably think that about a lot of people who you wouldn't call racist.

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Destineer
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OK, I can see your point.

This got me interested in the exact wording of the polls we're talking about. The first one to show up on my Google search was this one from UDub:
http://depts.washington.edu/uwiser/mssrp_table.pdf

I would not characterize the answers that were more common among Tea Party members as indicating racism (except in the pretty trivial sense that racists, along with some non-racists, will generally agree with them). They're kind of borderline. They indicate a sort of racial tone-deafness that I would be unsurprised to find among whites of my father's generation (though not my dad himself!), but that I would be appalled to find among my students.

Example:

quote:
Irish, Italians, Jewish, and many other minorities overcame prejudice and worked their way
up. Blacks should do the same without special favors. (Agree)

My first reaction to this question is, what do you mean by special favors? Affirmative action springs to mind. It's not racist to be against affirmative action. But in other contexts I can imagine this statement expressing the sentiment that blacks shouldn't expect not to have to struggle against prejudice to make it in the world (in other words, that it's not unjust that they have to struggle against it).

If I heard someone my dad's age say these sentences out loud, I can think of some contexts in which I'd be a little put off, but definitely not conclude "that guy is racist." If someone my age made this statement in conversation, no matter the context, my first reaction would be, "What is this guy's problem?"

Since the Tea Party demographic skews pretty old (as I understand it), that might be the best explanation for the numbers.

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TomDavidson
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quote:
If I heard someone my dad's age say these sentences out loud, I can think of some contexts in which I'd be a little put off, but definitely not conclude "that guy is racist."
Me, I just conclude that a lot of people my dad's age, despite being very wonderful people in most other ways, are racist.
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Orincoro
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quote:
Originally posted by Dan_Frank:
You're not sure. That's fair. So, let's consider it again, in the barest terms possible. Do you think that someone is racist if they don't agree with the following statement: Current systemic racism is the main cause of poverty among minorities (or specify it to African-Americans, if you prefer)

Just remember, it's okay if you think they are totally wrong or ignorant. You probably think that about a lot of people who you wouldn't call racist.

Did you mean to say hit "current" so strongly- or did you mean to include current and historical institutionalized racism?


Anyway, your terms are not clear enough. A person *might be* racist if they believe this. They might "just" be ignorant of history and of the present situation, but that seems unlikely. Also, it seems unlikely that a person who is so deeply ignorant of the history of American society might also hold enlightened racial views. Part of overcoming racism is understanding that many standing cultural conflicts stem from racial inequality in the past. A difficult leap to make if you don't understand that past.

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Dan_Frank
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I think I was precisely clear enough. I think that what you're saying is that the information I gave is insufficient to reliably conclude that the example person in question is racist. They very well could be! It might even make it more likely! I'm not saying they aren't. I'm just saying that the one does not by necessity follow the other.

PS: Cool, glad I made myself clear, Destineer. I think I agree with your assessment.

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Rakeesh
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My angle on the 'systematic racism is a problem today' question is that, shooting from the hip, is that someone could believe that and not be a racist. I begin to wonder about it, though, the more they are acquainted with current events and race relations and *still* think it's not a current problem.

That kind of thing is possible to think, honestly and without malignancy, in ignorance. It takes one or the other or both, though, the more current a person actually is.

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Orincoro
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quote:
Originally posted by Dan_Frank:
I think I was precisely clear enough. I think that what you're saying is that the information I gave is insufficient to reliably conclude that the example person in question is racist. They very well could be! It might even make it more likely! I'm not saying they aren't. I'm just saying that the one does not by necessity follow the other.

The information is not sufficient to positively identify a racist. But I would call it sufficient to reliably indicate racist attitudes. I would feel reasonably sure that a person had racist attitudes if he or she denied systemic racism as an extant problem. That would exclude someone with no education or analytical experience, such as a young child.

One need not subscribe to any specific racist agenda to have racist attitudes. They are propagated by the "common sense" of the ignorant. They are a symptom of ignorance, not necessarily of radical ideology. If youre only talking about the racism of highly indoctrinated extremists- this is a separate case, where reasoning against the concepts of systemic racism are more developed, and based more on willful obstinance and scapegoating than simple ignorance of fact.

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Mucus
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quote:
Originally posted by Rakeesh:
My angle on the 'systematic racism is a problem today' question is that, shooting from the hip, is that someone could believe that and not be a racist. I begin to wonder about it, though, the more they are acquainted with current events and race relations and *still* think it's not a current problem.

It's interesting.

We're talking about a number of phrases that are codified "no-go" zones for signalling racism. On one hand, I think that relying too heavily on this kind of thing to identify racists can be flawed because many "progressives" can easily become savvy with this kind of language without changing attitudes. On the other hand, with the growing influence of social networking, the ease of access to broadband and mass media*, how many people in America can really be ignorant of this kind of signalling as opposed to rejecting it for whatever reasons, good or bad?

* And one could even note that by pointing at stuff like that posted at Sociological Images that the media, while very good at communicating the kinds of things and phrases one shouldn't say to "appear" racist, is still full of racist concepts and images.

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Mucus
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Hmmm, small numbers of protesters showing up in various cities around the world. 3000 maybe in Toronto, 500 in Hong Kong, pretty small stuff.

The most lively ones appear to be the ones in Rome
quote:
In the worst unrest Rome has seen in decades, rioters tore up cobble stones or threw petrol bombs as the police used baton charges to control the crowd, which numbered several thousand. Protesters chanted “Killers. Killers” as thunderflashes exploded in the square, buildings were set alight and a police van burnt.

Much of the anger was directed against Silvio Berlusconi, prime minister, and the 316 members of parliament who saved his government from defeat on Friday.

http://www.ft.com/intl/cms/s/0/c0f54f7c-f735-11e0-9941-00144feab49a.html#axzz1atMPsJRA

Estimates of the size of that one vary widely, anywhere from tens of thousands to a hundred thousand.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6SnKjgKGNZM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0kCrVY1VyxQ

Fascinating stuff. I wonder if this kind of stuff will catch on, particularly in China which is the other big country with income inequality on the order of the US. Nothing really so far though, except for some isolated protests in Henan.

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talsmitde
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I didn't see anything above in the thread about the arrests of about 27 people at the Citibank in midtown.

Here's a video of an Occupier being pushed from the sidewalk into the bank to be arrested.

Here's an article describing the incident from the perspective of the protestors.

And here's Citibank's statement on the incident. [Edited to remove editorial comment.]

[ October 16, 2011, 04:44 AM: Message edited by: talsmitde ]

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fugu13
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Honestly, the protester description doesn't make them look good. It sounds like they stayed inside after being asked to leave, and only tried to leave after the police arrived and decided they would arrest the protesters for trespassing.

It is less clear what was up with the women outside, but bank property likely extends outside the doors. If she was among those asked to leave, moving her inside was to make it easier to process her arrest.

They don't seem to be throwing the NYPD under the bus; of course the bank doesn't make decisions about people being arrested, and I can't blame the police for asking a bank branch be closed so they could deal with a large group of trespassers who had not left on request.

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Lyrhawn
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It doesn't really sound like they were good or bad. They went in, it was a simple act of civil disobedience, they were accordingly arrested, as they should have been, and off they went to jail. One person resisted arrest, which is not so cool, but other than that, meh.

As for the woman outside, I'm not sure what's up with that, as there's really no context to it. Her attitude was one of confusion and annoyance, as if she was an innocent bystander, and it's odd that they picked her out and not anyone else standing around.

I don't see them throwing the NYPD under the bus either.

On the whole, it looks like they put together some impressive numbers for the march on Times Square.

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fugu13
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If it was civil disobedience, then the protesters reporting it are doing a good job of hiding that. There's no civil disobedience in closing a bank account, and they specifically did not cop to staying in the bank after being asked to leave (though the way they glossed the situation strongly suggests they did). If it was about civil disobedience, they should be stating that they refused requests to leave. Not saying they were "about to leave".
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T:man
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I went down to Occupy Chicago saw at least a couple thousand people. Lots of angry people, lots of homeless.
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Lyrhawn
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quote:
Originally posted by fugu13:
If it was civil disobedience, then the protesters reporting it are doing a good job of hiding that. There's no civil disobedience in closing a bank account, and they specifically did not cop to staying in the bank after being asked to leave (though the way they glossed the situation strongly suggests they did). If it was about civil disobedience, they should be stating that they refused requests to leave. Not saying they were "about to leave".

That isn't what I read. Stories elsewhere say that the protesters swarmed into the bank during the march, only one person actually closed an account. They were asked to leave, they refused, they were peacefully, with one exception, arrested.
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Samprimary
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quote:
Originally posted by fugu13:
If it was about civil disobedience, they should be stating that they refused requests to leave. Not saying they were "about to leave".

Yeah, this puts it in that sort of 'goading' strategy which was present at the dancing protest in DC — and which I loathe. You goad the police and try to get them to be forced to take action against you by being a stubborn jerk, so as to film it and call them fascists or whatever.
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