I've recently devoted what might seem to many to be an inordinate amount of time blogging about Joe Walsh's idiot comments and tirades against Muslims and their Islamic faith.
Joe's is the politics of fear - fear-mongering, prejudice, and ignorance. Which, in his former district (IL-08) was plenty good enough for him to get elected, unseating an unpopular three-term incumbent who pissed off the teamsters, ran and hid from her constituents, and ran a tepid campaign, based, basically, upon having not very much to show for her terms in office.
But Joe's comments, and his steadfast refusal to back away from them, have opened up LARGE segments of the voting population to consider politicians, and a political party, who at least speak kinder, gentler, non-offesive words.
Joe picked on Muslims because of the fear that still radiates from the 9-11 attacks, planned by Osama Biin Laden, over a lenghly perioed of years; planned in Pakistan, Afghanistan, Germany. Planned by a very small group of radicalized (not in a good sense) fundamentalists (again, not in a good sense) who happened to have been born into the Islamic faith.
Biin Laden WARNED the American people of his intentions to retaliate for the U.S. presence in Saudi Arabia, for the U.S. support of the cowardly nation of Israel, and for the U.S. war crimes wreaked upon the Iraqi children and innocent civilians, with no-fly zones, with embargoes. The 9-11 attacks were a direct consequence of U.S. government policy and U.S. military actions. Nothing happens in a vacuum. There are consequences. It was a horrifying awakening for the American people, most of whom didn't quite get the message: There WILL be consequences to your inhuman, criminal actions; for your exploitations of Islamic peoples (and the Christians and Jews among them, living in overwhelmingly majority Muslilm nations).
But Joe Walsh also made other remarks, which are clearly racist, and indicate his mindset (his core beliefs, which are not based in any facts or realities; but, rather in the "conventional wisdom" which in reality is conventional ignoranced, of the community into which he was born - well-off, white, Christian, patriarchal, corporate welfare cheerleaders. He told Hispanics of how the U.S. government is attempting to make them dependent upon it (the government), just like the government did to the African-American community.
This, of course, is palpable, and utter nonsense, BUT, it feeds into some cherished, strongly held beliefs of white folks who really are very much afraid of non-white folks (starting with the indigenous peoples, whom George Washington HATED - afrter all, they were red, after all, they fought to keep the lands they had hunted, fished, trapped, and lived on - lands that WHITE FOLKS could better expolit), BLACK people (them uppity slaves, who were too dumb to learn to read or write, which is entirely why laws were passed making it ILLEGAL to teach them how to read or write; OF COURSE we needed to have laws prohibiting people who were too dumb to learn to read or write in the first place, lest they learn to read and write, and then have the means to create their own written histories, to share across great distances, and down through the ages. YELLOW people, brought in to work the railroads, demonized, abused, murdered, marginalized, white people were terrified that yellow men would seduce white women (who really have learned over the years, that their white lovers are quite a bit more interested in getting their rocks off and QUCKLY than in making love slowly and languidly, actually CARING about a woman bold enough to make love with one of them). BROWN people, from whom we stole TEX-ASS, CALIFRONICATION, and several states in between, primarily because Mexico (of which Texas was a part) was going to outlaw slavery, the Mexicans ALWA"YS having been far more humane than the 'Muricans, who, for the most part have been cruel, murdering, maurading, exploiters, who believe that because of their technological advancements in the field of murder, death, and destruction, they are favored by and of the god unto whom they worship (the almighty BIG BUCKS $$$$$$), that white makes right, just as might makes right.
So, what an opportunity the Democratic party has. Think of it, just last year, for the first time, the number of caucasian children born in the U.S. was LESS than the number of non-caucasians. Of such trends will (we - yes, sadly, I'm one of them, say it loud, I'm white and profoundly unimpressed with my whiteness - it's just an accident of birth, indicative of those ancestors of mine with the mutation that led them to seek ever cooler climates to save their pale faces from burning in the African deserts, forcintg them always to migrate North, where food was much less abundant, where many more resources were required to make shelter, and because of the relative scarceness of resources, did those migrators learn to band together and to pillage and plunder (they might also have learned how to band together, do outreach, and try to solve the mutual problems of food and shelter, fresh air, and fresh water being in much greater relative abundance, back in the day, and all that, but, something about pillaging and plundering has always agreed with "my people" - we call it THE WARRIOR ETHOS. Hell, just speak the truth, rape, murder, pillaging, and plundering, drinking, and being crude and rude is what GUYS DO!! Check out most fraternities (not the music fraternities).
Soon enough, the United States of America will be a white-minority majority nation - more whites than any other race, but more non-whites than whites. WHAT IF ... the folks of the other races were to get together and say, HEY, why don't we form our own political party? Then, we can take the power, we can redistribute the loot! Sounds like a plan, one that I will recommend to all my friends of color.
But, to the democratic party (hell, the Republican party too, if they are smart enough to pull it off, although, considering the only reason they get the votes they get is by appealing to people's baser and prejudicial natures) this IS the moment, to actually form a RAINBOW COALITION (yep, it done been tried before, now be the time to try again), and, good heavens, DO NOT FORGET single, working women, especially the ones with children and their issues.
Surely there must be enough common ground between peoples of the great faith traditions - Islam for Arabs, middle-Eastern people, Hindus from India, Roman Catholics from Mexico, Central, and South America, Black protestants, typically Baptist and Methodist, Koreans and Chinese (Methodists, Presbyterians, Pentecostals), gay people (especially United Church of Christ and Unitarian Universalists), even Lutherans (ELCA is relatively "lilberal') to form coalitions around the country, to meet REGULARLY with politicians (away from the churches, the church and state seperation thing is still important to keep - DESPITE what the fundamentalists are preaching from the pulpit to rev up their base) - surely their must be enough common ground to elect to office women and men of integrity and charactger who will SERVE THEIR VOTING CONSTITUENTS rather than the international and national corporations who pay a very small tribute in order to gain access to, and to WRITE LEGISLATION FOR these officials which, we the people, are foced to elect.
What I am really suggesting here is an entirely new political alighnment, among and between peoples of faith, who are compelled by their ethical and religious teachings to
(a) feed the hungry
(b) shelter the homeless
(c) clothe those in thread bare clothing
(d) visit the prisoner
(e) visit the sick
(f) take care of the widows and orphans
YES, ALL of those "liberal things."
Because, at the heart, doing those things is what the great religions are about.
We forget this, by selectively picking random passages from their holy texts and using them to condemn "the infidels," to prove our point as to their inherent inhumanty.
This is wrong.
There is but one God
Creator of the heavens and the earth
Creator of All the Worlds
Creator of us, in his image, perfectly formed; we are beloved by and of God.
are were intended to be GOOD!
Let us join one another to do good in the world.
To have our brothers back.
To assure that our sisters are cared for and revered.
To be stewards of the earth.
To tend to earth's animals.
To make earth, and the lives of earth's creatures BETTER.
Grant this, Dear Lord, if it be Thy will.