Unethical Quote Of The Week: Harry Belafonte

“In a few weeks from now, if there is a platform on which I will be privileged to stand and speak, my opening remarks will probably be something like “Welcome to the Fourth Reich.”

—Legendary singer and long-time civil rights activist Harry Belafonte, now 90, speaking at a “Democracy Now!” event with an audience of 2000.

Harry Belafonte radiated sunniness and spirituality when he sang in his unique, whispery voice, but his political activism was always angry, radical, and with the passing years, increasingly bitter and paranoid. It was predictable that, health allowing, “The Banana Boat Song” artist would be in his element in the 2016 Post-Election Freak-Out and Ethics Train Wreck, and, sadly, he did not disappoint.

In his remarks, Harry mentioned with affection Paul Robeson, the late actor and singer who left the U.S. for the worker’s paradise of  Stalinist Russia, and America-hater Noam Chomsky. He might have mentioned Fidel Castro, for whom Harry frequently expressed his admiration in the past. Back in 2012, Belafonte told another one of his pals, Al Sharpton, that since the evil, racist Republicans wouldn’t do Barack Obama’s bidding, “The only thing left for Barack Obama to do is to work like a third-world dictator and put all these guys in jail!”

But Donald Trump is a Nazi.

Belafonte’s words brought cheers from the corrupted assembled; it is telling that the current hysteria over the “alt-right” has not been matched in publicity or intensity by scrutiny of groups like Democracy Now!, which are leftist mirror images of the alt-right in every way.To be clear, Harry’s Nazi smear is pure fear-mongering—irresponsible, unfair, divisive, dishonest, vicious and despicable.

Day-o, day-o!
Harry’s an ass, and he should go home..

 But, dammit, he gave one of my all time favorite Christmas song performances…

.

 

39 Comments

Filed under Character, Ethics Alarms Award Nominee, Ethics Train Wrecks, Government & Politics, History, Popular Culture

39 responses to “Unethical Quote Of The Week: Harry Belafonte

  1. Other Bill

    Democracy Now. Hah. Should be Marxism Now. What a joke.

  2. Steve-O-in-NJ

    In the days of the civil rights movement he did a lot of good, and he has also done a lot of good as a humanitarian. Unfortunately, in the early 1980s he hit intellectual menopause, same as most of the left, and drifted off into a place from whence he can’t be taken seriously.

  3. Uh oh… he must’ve missed the talking points memo…

    My liberal friends on Facebook are only repeating the “fake news” chant like loyal Left-bots, so I assume someone put out “hey guys calling them Nazis didn’t work so let’s just call everything not reported by our guys as fake news and vicariously insult their intelligence now”.

    I guess Belafonte hasn’t caught up yet.

  4. Rick M

    I actually find Occupy Democrat a bit more nutso than Democracy Now. I love it when my ultra liberal and ultra conservative friends post on FB the latest quick hits from their dueling sites.

  5. Slick Willy

    Notice who is always talking about jailing, firing, shaming, etc. their political enemies. Hint: It ain’t the right.

    But give some of my former conservative friends time: many have decided that they are tired of being called these nasty names, and might as well act like it. After all, the left DOES these things without penalty.

  6. What the hell: I’m banning Dennis Shea immediately for the post below. I may permanently apply a standard that if a first comment begins by insulting by my integrity, the blog, or others on this blog, that’s the ball game. Dennis is free, like others have been, to offer an apology for shooting out accusations without knowing what he’s talking about or who he’s talking to, my e-mail is on the site. Otherwise, bye. More after this turd Dennis left on my doorstep…

    Man! I thought this was about ethics I guess it’s just another echo chamber. Here’s the deal: Some of us actually think of Trump in a less than favorable manner. He is either a silver spoon idiot who plays the system for his (and his alone) benefit or a neo fascist authoritarian with a dangerous potential. Regardless, those of us who offer opinions on this subject are not all unethical. In this day and age you have to watch both Democracy Now! and Fox to get a balanced perspective.

    If a large number of commenters agree with me, it’s either because 1) I’m right or 2) those who disagree lack the verbal and analysis skills to express themselves. Or, like Dennis, they do comment and make fools of themselves.

    You see, ass, not being confident about Trump’s virtues based on his miserable conduct during the campaign does not justify endlessly demonizing him, insulting him, attaching labels to him and otherwise making it harder for him to do his job, before he’s even tried to do it. Not giving the newly elected President a chance, not giving him a fair opportunity to do a good job for the nation, not according him teh respect every citizen owes an elected leader, and intentionally causing fear and distrust by labeling him a Nazi—go ahead, Ace, tell me what Trump has ever done that’s fascist in any way—are all unethical: irresponsible, unfair, and bad citizenship.

    If you think the point of the post was to suggest that “offering opinions” about Trump was unethical, you either didn’t read it or are a dolt. Belafonte abuses his status and position, and he offered nothing but fear and hate–there’s no “opinion” there.

    And don’t tell me, jerk, what news sources to watch. I’m ten times more critical and objective than you, on my worst day. Your comment was simply snotty, non-susbtantive, and useless, not nearly good enough to make up for your insulting a blog you don’t know or understand. Search for what I’ve written about Trump, and then hide your deflatable head in a sack–someplace else.

    • Anonymous Coward

      “hide your deflatable head in a sack–someplace else.”

    • Pennagain

      This is what happens to an ordinary kid who grew up with the same pals and got easy C’s without thinking much about it, moved unexpectedly out of the old familiar neighborhood to a rival school in an area he’s heard so many horrible, scary things about. It’s a steep learning curve . . . and he’s just slipped back to “Start.”

    • Spartan

      Yes, this guy went too far, but you are too far in the “give Trump a chance” camp.

      I’ve mostly remained silent — here and on Facebook — on the results of this election, because I don’t see what good comes from fighting about it. The election is over and Trump is our President. End of story.

      HOWEVER, while I don’t think it is helpful to keep pointing out Trump’s extreme deficits in character and behavior, I really don’t understand those who are adopting a “wait and see” and “let’s wave the American flag together approach.” As I mentioned to a friend recently, if the American people had voted a monkey into office, would we all be yelling, “Hey, give the monkey a chance! The monkey may be the best President ever! So what if he threw his feces at us during the primaries! Now that he is our President, we need to give him a chance to NOT throw his feces!”

      As a citizen, what is my response to this? Whining about the fact that a monkey is our President isn’t going to help, because the monkey is, in fact, our President. On the other hand, am I supposed to sit around like an idiot hoping that President Monkey doesn’t throw his feces at my head? Should I just invest in a great rain coat and umbrella and wait out the shit storm?

      • It seems pretty clear to me that Jack has no problem with legitimate criticism. But so far, the Left seems hell bent on false comparisons, such as Belafonte’s “4th Reich” gibberish, hysteria, such as Zoebrain’s insistence that every single person Trump nods his head at is the next person planning on rounding up the transsexuals and tossing them into reeducation camps, and outright battiness of undermining the system at every turn. Of all election reaction, I’ve seen maybe 5% of commentary actually be some sort of reasoned, measured, attempt to critique a political stance of Trump’s.

        So far it’s been nothing but hysteria and outright wild propaganda. This is a problem. But Jack in no way has condemned anyone for making actual, reasonable, non-emotional criticism of Trump.

        The real problem here isn’t some belief that Jack doesn’t want you to criticize a monkey slinging crap…the real problem is that Jack has observed those doing the criticism are really just crap-slinging monkeys themselves.

      • 1. And a celebrity telling his fans and 2000 people that a Nazi regime is coming soon is juuust a teeny bit outside the range of responsible public rhetoric? Or did you just pick this post at random?

        2. “Whining about the fact that a monkey is our President isn’t going to help, because the monkey is, in fact, our President.” You do know, right, that if you had written the exact same words about the previous President, you would have been fired from your job and maybe had your house firebombed.

        3. “On the other hand, am I supposed to sit around like an idiot hoping that President Monkey doesn’t throw his feces at my head?”

        OK, let’s play out that analogy! Monkey=President Elect; Zoo=USA.

        Which is an ethical option?

        1. Kill the monkey

        2. Scream to all children and adults in the zoo, “Watch out for that monkey! He’s dangerous! He hates you! He’s going to GET you! He’s a RABID monkey! He’s a HITLER monkey! RUN! TREMBLE! HIDE! Make sure children have nightmares about the evil monkey.

        3. Abuse the monkey. Throw stuff at him. Make faces at him. Make sure he can’t be a responsible monkey.

        4. Go to a different “zoo.”

        5. Demonstrate against the monkey before he does anything, chanting “He’s not MY monkey!”

        6. Insist that he was fraudulently brought to the zoo, that zookeepers have an obligation to refuse to feed him, and mount a campaign to have another monkey replace him before the exhibit is open.

        Well?

        4. “I really don’t understand those who are adopting a “wait and see””

        Really? You don’t understand the ethical principle that people should be judged on what they do, rather than what everyone has decided they are?

        Not being willing to wait and see before condemning some one who hasn’t dome anything yet is called bigotry and prejudice.

        • Spartan

          “Really? You don’t understand the ethical principle that people should be judged on what they do, rather than what everyone has decided they are?”

          In my example, the monkey is a proven feces thrower, so I am judging the monkey on what he does. I don’t understand the attitude of assuming that a crap thrower will stop throwing crap just because we’ve given him a new title.

          What’s your point about No. 2? Are you asking if I would make a monkey comparison in discussing an African-American President. Of course not. Would you prefer I use the example of a shark that eats its young, or a spider that kills her mate? I can rewrite my hypothetical using a more PC animal if you prefer that could equally apply to all. Dozens leap to mind.

          And yes, I did choose this post at random. And as I stated throughout my comment, I don’t understand the people who are whining (or ranting) about the fact that he is our President.

          • 1. I’m saying that there is a double standard rampant, and people are cheering treatment of this President Elect that they would have never, never accepted with Obama or Hillary. Because it’s true.

            2. No, the “monkey” hasn’t thrown anything yet, and I know this will come as a shock, but human beings adapt to their surroundings and expectations, and monkeys don’t. You can’t judge Presidents this way, as many, many prior examples have proven. And shouldn’t.

            • Spartan

              1. You are wrong. A large segment of this county hated Obama before he even stepped foot into the oval office.
              2. One of us is insane. And, for the record, I’m not saying with certainty it’s you. I watched every debate, listened to just about every speech, and read everything that Trump put out during this election cycle. (My money’s on you though — I grew up on a farm, I think I know shit when I see it.)

              • 1. I am not wrong. I have published the polling from 2009. Obama had a huge positive rating beginning his term. Far beyond his vote percentage: 69% And 31% didn’t hate Obama. Sniff! Sniff! What’s that I smell?

                2. “I watched every debate, listened to just about every speech, and read everything that Trump put out during this election cycle.” And? My record of condemning and opposing Trump during the election cycle is beyond dispute or reproach. Wanna check? It’s all there.

                3. How is it insane to say that someone who gets a new job shouldn’t be judged on that job before he starts it?

                3. You still didn’t pick among my 6 monkey house options. Or, if you have a 7th, I haven’t heard it.

                Sniff?

                • Did Spartan bail? Because she really was arguing on fumes.

                • Spartan

                  I know you don’t think you’re wrong. You rarely do. Liberals might be ranting and raving right now, but there is not the visceral level of hatred toward Trump as compared to what certain groups felt toward Obama. I.e., 50% of the country might hate Trump right now, but 50% does not want to see him dead. I haven’t seen a new birther movement demanding to see Trump’s long form birth certificate or questioning his religious identity.

                  I didn’t bail. I had to work — and still do.

                  I disagree with you strongly on this topic. I’m not sure what else there is to say. I’ll continue to think that you are wrong, and you’ll continue to think that you are right.

                  • Well, you could begin with dealing with facts. 50% of the country never “wanted to see Obama dead,’ not that it would be an excuse for how the Left is acting now if it did, but it didn’t. How about that? I don’t “think I’m right”—you are denying reality, which is not typical of you. Why?

                    • Spartan

                      Where did I say 50% wanted to see Obama dead? I said that 50% doesn’t want to see Trump dead. What I AM saying is that more people wish Obama dead than wish Trump dead.

                      And, if you disagree, please point me to mass hysteria questioning Trump’s identity or Constitutional qualifications to be President. The only thing that comes close is the silly Stein “let’s recount votes even though it won’t make a difference” movement in certain states.

                      I’m not a member of the wringing-of-the-liberal-hands brigade right now, but I am incredibly saddened by Trump’s Cabinet picks right now, although not surprised. The only one so far that seems half-way decent has the nickname “Mad Dog” — this doesn’t fill me with inspiration toward the new administration.

                      In any event, I have invested in my rain coat, so I will be prepared when the feces starts flying. And, worst case scenario and the Fourth Reich really is here, well I am of German ancestry with two blonde children. I’ll just need a bigger basement in which my more diverse friends can hide.

                    • I apologize for the confusion…but I’m trying to stick to apples and apples, and I though you were. Trump is due the same pass, good will and fairness Obama had in 2008. Once someone is President, critics can be unfair, but there is at least some basis for being unfair. They can be hysterical, but at least they have some basis for hysteria. Attacking a selected President for how you assume he will do a job he has never done is per se unfair. It doesn’t matter who it is.

                      And how did this get to be about ‘wanting the President dead’? That a straw corpse if I ever heard one.

                    • Spartan

                      And now the conversation has come full circle.

                • Spartan

                  The problem is that you said America was a zoo. That’s inaccurate — we are a nation of laws, customs, and traditions — not a zoo. We are the leader of the free world. Whatever we do affects the planet — and our leader is a monkey.

                  None of your options work — but I’m all for educating the American people that electing monkeys into office is a bad idea. I wish I knew what to do — but I know it’s not to pretend that he isn’t going to throw his feces at us.

                  • Ducking the question! The President-Elect is no more of a monkey than America is a zoo…you defined the terms of the analogy. If an actual money was in the Oval Office, then you would be correct and your response reasonable.

                    Talk about “otherizing”!!

        • joed68

          The above two responses are among the funniest things my wife and I have seen in a good while.

    • Glenn Logan

      Analysis: Attitude adjusted.

  7. joed68

    He should have stuck to picking bananas.

    • Wayne

      No I think he should move to Cuba: His endorsement of “revolutionary hip hop” endeared him to Fidel Castro. However, the health care there isn’t so great and when you’re ninety, that’s something to think about.

  8. Spartan

    Well, there’s some evidence at least. The question is whether or not this can be contributed to Trump’s campaign. http://www.nytimes.com/2016/11/16/learning/what-can-we-as-a-nation-do-about-the-rise-in-hate-crimes.html?_r=0

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