“As I walked out the door toward the gate that would lead to my freedom, I knew if I didn’t leave my bitterness and hatred behind, I’d still be in prison,” – Nelson Mandela, proof that the final form of love is forgiveness.
It is rare that one soul can impact all of ours – and make us more patient, more powerful and more human. Mandela was such a soul. And he will never leave us.
Tuesday, January 15, 2013
A Dark Vein of Intolerance
Former Secretary of State and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, General Colin Powell, angered a number of folks on the far right when he appeared on Meet the Press and gave his opinion on the state of the current Republican Party; and like good little knee-jerkers, a number of conservative blogs called him a "backstabbing lout," among other things, as well as calling for his head.
The old saying, "the truth hurts," applies perfectly well in this instance, thus the howls and caterwauling in crescendos of pain coming from those quarters. So what is their response? Attack General Powell! Call him names, and then say he was never a real Republican anyway.
Unable to see what is in front of their noses--actually refusing to see--they stomp their feet, squawking NO! NO! NO! and will continue to do so until, like Rumpelstiltskin, they'll fall through the floor into oblivion.
General Powell did the GOP a large favor when he stated this:
"There is also a dark vein of intolerance in some parts of the party….They look down on minorities…When I see a former governor say that the president is shucking and jiving. That is a racial era slave term. When I see another former governor – says that the president was lazy. It may not mean anything to most Americans. But to those of us who are African Americans, the second word is shiftless and then there is a third word that goes along with it."
Powell, the first African American to be the nation's top diplomat, went on to explain that his intolerance comment was directed at those in the GOP who "still sort of look down on minorities." He also said the Republican Party has to define what it stands for.
"If it's just going to represent the far right wing of the political spectrum, I think the party is in difficulty," said Powell, who said he voted for a GOP presidential candidate seven times in a row before voting for President Obama twice. "I'm a moderate, but I'm still a Republican."
Not in what passes as the GOP these days. Unless General Powell is willing to attack President Obama--maybe even suggest assassination as a way to solve this country's problems--as I actually read on a far right blog--he will never be listened to nor will his observations allow many on the right to do some sorely needed self-reflection.
Personally, this blog hostess has been attacked by extremist conservatives who have visited this blog and left comments. The default slandering has always been either racial or sexual--but mostly racial.
The latest example was left in my comment moderation last week, with this cartoon specifically linked to my blog name.
I understand that people who do this are disturbed, and I emphasize that this is NOT the behavior of the several conservative commenters here who can argue their points without resorting to swinish behavior.
The people who do engage in this sort of harassment either have no self-control, or they get off leaving rot like this on liberal blogs. What brutish miserable lives they must live. My point? Why is the default always to leave racial slurs for these extremist conservatives?
Colin Powell has asked the question; it's up to conservatives who care about where the GOP is headed to answer it.
WaPo: Davidson, a retired software developer in South Carolina, has been predicting for four years that hardcore anti-Obama agitation would dissipate, but it keeps going, driven, he believes, by anti-black sentiment. “I’ve seen more openly racist remarks since the election,” he says. “Before November, they were careful to control the racist language because they were trying to persuade people to vote against him. Now they sort of don’t care.”