Saturday Ethics Warm-Up, 8/1/2020: I See Bad People And Penis-Talkers

1. This may not be the most trustworthy advocate for the President’s favorite Wuhan virus medicine…President  Trump’s supporters among the punditry and conservative bloggers briefly celebrated the endorsement of  hydroxychloroquine, despite recent studies questioning its effectiveness and safety, by Dr. Stella Immanuel. Support for her was redoubled after her posts were taken down by both Facebook and Twitter as “misinformation.” That’s censorship, of course, and arguably partisan.  Immanuel has an opinion. However, her response to the censoring of her posts does not enhance her credibility. She tweeted,

2.  I see…he shouldn’t be honored because he was white, right? I have reached the point where I have to conclude that Rep. Ocasio-Cortez just isn’t very bright, and those who support her passionate—but stupid!—pronouncements have a similar basic competence problem. Take this example: AOC complained in a video,

Even when we select figures to tell the stories of colonized places, it is the colonizers and settlers whose stories are told — and virtually no one else. Check out Hawaii’s statue. It’s not Queen Lili’uokalani of Hawaii, the only Queen Regnant of Hawaii, who is immortalized and whose story is told. It is Father Damien. This isn’t to litigate each and every individual statue, but to point out the patterns that have emerged among the totality of them in who we are taught to deify in our nation’s Capitol: virtually all men, all white, and mostly both. This is what patriarchy and white supremacist culture looks like! It’s not radical or crazy to understand the influence white supremacist culture has historically had in our overall culture & how it impacts the present day.

I’ll have to do a full post on the entire “white supremacy” canard, which is basically linguistic game-playing. Culture, everywhere, is primarily determined by the majority.  In a majority white population, white people, their habits, preferences, interests and values, have the strongest effect on the culture. Because there are more of the majority than other groups, they also will tend to have the greatest visibility and participation in that area’s history. Framing this rather obvious and universal situation as something sinister is silly as an argument, and evidence of impaired critical thinking skills if one is persuaded by it.

Choosing, of all people, Father Damien as her proof of perverted white supremacy culture is a bizarre example of choosing the worst possible evidence for an already dubious proposition.  Father Damien, born Jozef De Veuster, was a Roman Catholic priest from Belgium who led a ministry in the Kingdom of Hawaii from 1873 until his death in 1889 at the leper colony on the island of Molokai.  He both treated and comforted the infected, knowing he would eventually contract the disease himself.

I was taught about the heroism of Father Damien when I was a child. He was not a hero of the white “colonists,” he was and is  considered a hero by the indigenous people of Hawaii and across the globe, for good reason. He earned their respect and gratitude.  Father Damien would have been revered in Hawaii regardless of where he came from, and no matter what his race or creed was.  For heaven’s sake, the man dedicated his life to helping  the most desperate and isolated residents of the island, exposing himself to a debilitating disease, and he’s the historical figure AOC chooses to show that “white supremacy” controls who is honored in the Capitol?

Her choice of targets makes her look like an idiot…which, I’m afraid, she is, as well as a racist.

3. Isn’t this cultural appropriation? Or something? I was watching John Ford’s last Western, “Cheyenne Autumn”, which Ford filmed, as usual, in Monument Valley in Arizona. He had a longstanding relationship with the Navajo tribe there, and they portrayed most of the Cheyenne characters.

Question 1: Today, in sympathy with the wacko logic that has led white voice actors to quit the job of speaking for mixed-race animated characters, would the Navajo be ethically obligated to insist that only members of the Cheyenne tribes could portray Cheyenne characters?

Question 2: The historical leaders of the Cheyenne, Little Wolf and Dull Knife, were played by Ricardo Montalban and Gilbert Roland, both established Hollywood actors. Should Ford have been required to tap the deep reserves of Cheyenne actors to play the roles?

During all the scenes among the Cheyenne, the Navajo actors spoke their own language, not Cheyenne. Ford didn’t care; he presumed one Native American dialect would sound like any other to English-speaking audiences. Because of this feature, however, the movie, which was a flop in the U.S., was and is very popular with Navaho audiences, who find those scenes hilarious. You see, the Navajo actors were joking and talking about whatever they chose. During the scene where a treaty is signed, for example, the chief’s apparently heartfelt  speech is devoted to mocking the size of the American colonel’s penis.

Question 3: Does that set off anyone’s ethics alarms?

4. Stay classy, Lincoln Project! (That’s a screenshot, not the video, below.)

Imagine : Kellyanne Conway’s husband is spearheading attacks on her boss like this video, which you can view at  “Lincoln Project Gets Personal In New Ad, Mocking ‘Impotus Americanus’ Trump’s Weight and ‘Ruddy Orange’ Color.”  It is a massive ad hominem attack on the President, his weight, his skin tone, his intelligence and character. It goes without saying that a similar attack on President Obama, or any previous President, would be universally condemned. Here is how George Conway’s cohort, co-founder Rick Wilson, justifies the ugliness:

“When you see the ads talking about Trump’s personal weaknesses, physical, mental, what have you, those are targeting one voter: Donald Trump. Now, we don’t troll Trump just for fun or to amuse ourselves — God knows, that would be a great job all day, ok? Trolling him would be a fabulous job, but we don’t do it just to troll him. We do it, because every second Trump is distracted by a Lincoln Project ad, that is playing with his psychological weaknesses, that is playing with his mental frailties, that is playing with his weird ego problems — every moment he’s focused on us, he’s not campaigning against Joe Biden.”

Writes Ann Althouse, who gets credit for finding this, “So, they are choosing to bully him, and they don’t mind collateral damage to the many Americans who are fat, who have light pigmentation, and who worry about the vigor of their masculinity.”

Yes, but I have to wonder, how many Americans want to associate themselves with people as vile and hateful as those in the Lincoln Project? If the cognitive dissonance scale has any validity at all (and it does), how can directing such viciousness at the President persuade anyone who isn’t already Trump Deranged  to follow such awful individuals?

These are bad people, joining so many others, like Nadler, Pelosi, The Squad, Charles M. Blow, the whole gang at the Times and MSNBC, Senator Warren, James Comey, Black Lives Matter, Don Lemon, Chris Cuomo, the mayors of Chicago, New York, Portland, D.C., and Seattle, —I could go on for pages. Literally. They aren’t bad people because of what they believe; they are bad people because of what they say and do, and their near complete lack of decency, fairness, and responsibility as they do it.

11 thoughts on “Saturday Ethics Warm-Up, 8/1/2020: I See Bad People And Penis-Talkers

  1. 2. AOC is (as are the rest of the Squad) simply a sock puppet for the Justice Democrats. That’s critical racist theory Authentic Frontier Gibberish she’s spouting. She has no idea what she’s re-typing or reading from the scripts provided her by her handlers.

  2. 3. Navajo guys are inveterate jokesters and pranksters. They’re just permanent teenager wiseacres. I doubt they could resist and I can’t imagine there was any malice involved.

    Our bus driver on our tour of the Monument Valley park had been tossed out of the Phoenix Indian School as a kid for being incorrigible. He did a quiet, non-stop, verbal ramble whenever the bus was in motion. He was self-deprecating as well, at one point observing a jewelry table set up at a stop, “That’s how we make a living: sell a little jewelry, work a job a little bit, get some free food and stuff, and get a welfare check!”

    I’ve never seen “Navaho” in my forty years in Arizona, just “Navajo.” Which is pronounced Navaho. I supposed the truly politically correct term is “The Dine.” “The People.” But Navajo seems to carry the day out here in Injun country.

    By the way, Monument Valley is worthy of the term awesome. Beats the Grand Canyon all to hell.

  3. 2. Rep. Ocasio-Cortez writes with astoundingly bad sentence structure, but that’s a completely different issue. Read this partial statement: “This isn’t to litigate each and every individual statue, but to point out the patterns that have emerged…”

    See what she did there? She used a terrible example to support her argument (I’m a relative idiot and even I’ve heard about Father Damien), then quickly added “this isn’t to litigate…” as a way to say, “I don’t care about evidence that proves I’m wrong, because even if I am, I’m still right.”

    I will say Rep. Ocasio-Cortez is an idiot. This isn’t to litigate each and every individual video she has made, but to point out the patterns that have emerged…

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