Friday, December 18, 2015

The Writing On The Wall

George Carlin said it best: "Think how stupid the average person is and then realize half of them are dumber then that."


Apparently a hell of a lot of the people on the dumb end of that scale are in Augusta County, Virginia.

Some Augusta County parents raised concerns on Tuesday after calling a student assignment anti-American. Some called it an Islamic indoctrination, but the school superintendent says the assignments are cultural lessons, not a religious statement. 
"When I saw the language, the Arabic language, immediately, I had a bad feeling come over me," concerned parent Kimberly Herndon told WVIR. 
The assignment involved ninth-grade students at Riverheads High School to copy the Shahada. "She told us the paper meant faith, so we didn't think anything of it," ninth-grader Laurel Truxell said. Students found out they translated a message that said, "There is no other God but Allah and Muhammad is his messenger." 
The assignment also involved students dressing up, wearing the Hijab, according to WVIR.

Parent Kimberly Herndon shared her feelings about the assignment on Facebook, which was shared more than 770 times. Her post sparked a community meeting Tuesday night. "These children were deceived when they were told it was calligraphy. This is not calligraphy. This is a language."

And then they CLOSED SCHOOL.  Because of CALLIGRAPHY.  Not because of the actual assignment, but because of angry anti-Muslim assholes coming to possibly do harm to the teachers and students and school officials.

Augusta County schools closed their doors Thursday and canceled all sports and activities for the day. 
All the county’s schools are closed Friday, December 18, too. Meanwhile, all school sports and activities scheduled for the weekend are also canceled. 
It all stems from a world geography class assignment at Riverheads High School that some parents called Islamic indoctrination. 
The directions read, "This should give you an idea of the artistic complexity of calligraphy.” The assignment incorporated Arabic calligraphy, but also included an Islamic proclamation of faith. 
That prompted a community meeting and a lot of anger. That anger apparently coming not just from central Virginia and the Shenandoah Valley, but from outside areas too. 
The school system says it's received so many phone calls and e-mails following that controversial assignment that they felt they had to close the schools as a precautionary measure.

The fear and hatred from "Christians" in this country just makes me physically ill.

The Crossroads Of Power

NY Magazine's Rebecca Traister wastes little time explaining exactly what's at stake in 2016, whether the country merely observes what she calls the "death throes" of "white male power" in the country, or if instead America is immolated by the flames.

This is our country in an excruciating period of change. This is the story of the slow expansion of possibility for figures who have long existed on the margins, and it is also the story of the dangerous rage those figures provoke. Listen closely, and you'll hear the acknowledgment coming directly from the Republican candidates. Here was Marco Rubio in Tuesday's debate: "What's at stake in this election is not simply what party's going to be in charge but our very identity as a people and as a nation." This is not a dog whistle. This is a statement of fact.

There are those on the right and the left who love to downplay identity politics as a distraction: Do we even believe in race or gender as anything but social constructs? How do identity politics apply to Carly Fiorina or Ben Carson? Isn’t worrying about gender and race with regard to presidential politics just narcissism anyway?

But it’s not narcissism. This election is a referendum on the existence and civic participation of Americans who are not white men — as voters, as citizens, as workers, as members of the military, as presidents.

And while the resistance may be symptomatic of death throes, a rage at the dying of the white male light, it nonetheless presents a very real threat — there is the possibility that the old and angry may triumph over the new and different. Those who are furious are not without power to effect change that lasts generations: Imagine Ted Cruz or Donald Trump or Marco Rubio in office with a Republican Congress and Supreme Court seats to fill. Voting: restricted. Immigration: halted. Abortion: banned. Equal pay: unprotected. Same-sex marriage: overturned.

Imagine, on the other hand, a Clinton presidency — or even a Sanders one, though even a white male Jewish socialist may invite less ire than a woman. Clinton, like Obama before her, isn’t carrying just her own baggage, but will stand in as the symbolic target for those whose fury at increased female autonomy has been building. In a nation where women who were not permitted to cast votes still live and breathe, her campaign, as Ms. Clinton has herself declared in other contexts, is living history. If she wins, she — and we — will be forced to do battle with this rising, chilling, ever more open threat from those who feel enraged that their country is no longer their own. I fear that there’s a lot more terror ahead of us.

 Should Hillary win, there will be rage, inchoate rage with the potential to scorch this country and damage America for decades.

But that was always coming.  It metastasized during the Obama years, and will erupt in blood during the Clinton ones.  Should the GOP win however, the retaliation will be swift and deadly.


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