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This is why we can't have nice things March 4, 2011 10:07 PM   Subscribe

I was afraid from the start that this post would get out of hand. Unfortunately it seems I was right. If we have to rage, let's do it here instead. And while we're at it, maybe we can discuss whether & how a different framing could have prevented or minimized the train wreck we see before us.
posted by scalefree to Etiquette/Policy at 10:07 PM (115 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite

From the start?

300+ comments and 24 hours later....
posted by clearly at 10:15 PM on March 4, 2011 [2 favorites]


I think it went surprisingly well. The debate about why the protestors where there in the first place has some degree of mis-calibration but it's respectful enough. There were some howlers by that one dude at the beginning, but he was pretty handily smacked down.

As for the framing, yeah, maybe it needed a bit more serious journalism to it, but I doubt that would stave off any outrage. It's a totally outrageous event and no amount of dispassionate or extra background information will change that.

I don't think it needs a side discussion like this.
posted by Burhanistan at 10:19 PM on March 4, 2011 [2 favorites]


There's plenty to rage about there, and justifiably so.

From my point of view, nearly everyone was on the same page, except for one racist troll who apparently time-travelled here from the late 19th Century, and a few people whose belief that "two wrongs" (or rather, one wrong and one perceived wrong) make a "right" is strong enough justify racist hysteria, terrifying innocent children and displaying extreme and sick xenophobic behavior, even against American citizens. It's a train wreck only in so much as unenlightened barbarians tend to create a lot of rhetorical work for the rest of us.

The post was effective for me. I'm a news and information junkie and had not come across this news, which is a positive for me compared to frequent MeFi rehashings of pieces from Salon and the New York Times, or Lady Gaga press releases. I'm happy I was informed about it.
posted by Dee Xtrovert at 10:25 PM on March 4, 2011 [23 favorites]


Recreational outrage post leads to enthusiastic outrage in comments. That's one thing that we can certainly rely on.

I don't think framing would have helped much, if at all. The only surprise is that so many people (so many Americans!) seem surprised by what's happening in America.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 10:28 PM on March 4, 2011 [3 favorites]


I see a significant number of comments with several of them being massively favorited, all directed at an as-yet undeleted trolling. It looked worthy of a redirection to me. If it's not, mods are welcome to close it up.
posted by scalefree at 10:30 PM on March 4, 2011


directed at an as-yet undeleted trolling

Yeah, those two comments were unadulterated horseshit, but mathowie was also up in that thread participating like a regular user so he saw them too. I suppose after such a massive response it would've been strange to excise it. Besides, it was illustrative for someone with the same idiot asshole mentality as those people in the video to show up and expose just how truly ignorant and misguided they are.
posted by Burhanistan at 10:35 PM on March 4, 2011 [3 favorites]


The only surprise is that so many people (so many Americans!) seem surprised by what's happening in America.
Today the eyes of all people are truly upon us—and our governments, in every branch, at every level, national, state and local, must be as a city upon a hill — constructed and inhabited by men aware of their great trust and their great responsibilities. For we are setting out upon a voyage in 1961 no less hazardous than that undertaken by the Arbella in 1630. We are committing ourselves to tasks of statecraft no less awesome than that of governing the Massachusetts Bay Colony, beset as it was then by terror without and disorder within. History will not judge our endeavors—and a government cannot be selected—merely on the basis of color or creed or even party affiliation. Neither will competence and loyalty and stature, while essential to the utmost, suffice in times such as these. For of those to whom much is given, much is required...
Sometimes we forget to take off the rose tinted glasses for a more introspective glance.
posted by clearly at 10:40 PM on March 4, 2011 [1 favorite]


I see a significant number of comments with several of them being massively favorited, all directed at an as-yet undeleted trolling.

"As-yet undeleted" is a great euphemism for "a comment I disagree with so strongly I believe it should be banned". Do you have evidence that it was trolling? To me it seemed entirely consistent with his previous participation on Metafilter. There are some people who just suck without being trolls.
posted by Justinian at 10:48 PM on March 4, 2011 [7 favorites]


I suppose after such a massive response it would've been strange to excise it.

It would have been strange to excise it at all.

Besides, it was illustrative for someone with the same idiot asshole mentality as those people in the video to show up and expose just how truly ignorant and misguided they are.

Exactly! This is why you don't delete shit just because it is stupid!
posted by Justinian at 10:50 PM on March 4, 2011 [4 favorites]


Meh.
posted by JohnnyGunn at 11:00 PM on March 4, 2011


The only surprise is that so many people (so many Americans!) seem surprised by what's happening in America.

Or maybe it's a big freaking country and most people don't live in cities where that crap occurs?
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 11:06 PM on March 4, 2011 [5 favorites]


We sometime lump "troll" together with all sorts of other things, like "jerk" and "idiot" and "butthead."

Sometimes, people say and believe really, really dumb shit.
posted by ORthey at 11:32 PM on March 4, 2011 [6 favorites]


The only surprise is that so many people (so many Americans!) seem surprised by what's happening in America.

I'm not surprised, I'm fucking pissed off.
posted by Jim Slade at 11:40 PM on March 4, 2011 [3 favorites]


Not commenting in the thread because I can't bring myself to watch the video. Yesterday, I had a chat with my mother-in-law. She was telling me about how the Ghanaian mother of one of the children in my niece's elementary school had come back from the US because of her experience of extreme racism there. The child in question is a bully (stomping on another kid's head, for example) and my mother-in-law was theorizing that the child's mom was acting in irrational defence because of her experience's in the US.

I suggested to her that it was possible that her experience of the US was marred by a pre-existing defensiveness, rather than the other way around. Stories like the one this thread is about make it harder to persuade people who have never been to the US that I'm right about this being possible.

Both my countries seem to be breaking my heart these days. I guess that's one good thing about being far from home.
posted by bardophile at 11:53 PM on March 4, 2011


Wow. I read that post when it came up and flagged it as outrage-filter, but thought thought the discussion seemed fine. Gnossie's original comment looked like satire to me, so I didn't even bother to flag it. Kind of amazed that Gnossie actually stuck around to try to defend that sentiment.
posted by auto-correct at 11:53 PM on March 4, 2011


I don't know if there's really much to discuss that hasn't been said in the thread. It could have been framed better by mentioning the speaker with a history of anti-semitism that motivated the protestors to arrive in the first place. That doesn't justify the way the protestors acted or the ignorant things the politicians said, but it also makes it clear that they weren't targeting the fundraiser for charity solely because it was a Muslim event. And all of this falls under free speech.

But all of those things were pretty much discussed in thread.

So, I get the feeling all that really needs to be said, re: how the thread was made, is to try to tell both sides of the story next time, even if one side is totally acting repugnant.
posted by mccarty.tim at 11:58 PM on March 4, 2011


For what it's worth, while I can absolutely believe that the speaker in question drew the protest there, I haven't seen any evidence that that's the case. I'd like to believe it wasn't just targeting the Muslim community, so if someone can demonstrate the pre-protest rationale, I'd appreciate it.
posted by Errant at 12:47 AM on March 5, 2011


Or maybe it's a big freaking country and most people don't live in cities where that crap occurs?

Yeah, I'm sure that's it.

The above was intended as sarcasm. The truth is that I think that's just plain silly.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 12:58 AM on March 5, 2011 [1 favorite]


Which is to say: I live thousands of miles from America, as do a significant percentage of Metafilter users. If we know what's going on in American cities, it's a pretty thin excuse to suggest that rural Americans should be given a pass for not knowing what's going on in their own metropolitan areas.

Or perhaps the idea that that might be fine is just a sprout from the root of the very problem at hand: ignorance.

Further, I'd suggest it's equally risible to claim that the breakdown of civil society in America is a phenomenon limited to urban areas, but that's perhaps an argument for another day.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 1:06 AM on March 5, 2011 [2 favorites]


For me, a great distaste grew for Churhill...and anyone who calls it "Mohammedanism". What is that all about? Oh yeah...fucking brits and their mispronunciation of everything not born in their isles.
posted by hal_c_on at 1:14 AM on March 5, 2011


> Or maybe it's a big freaking country and most people don't live in cities where that crap occurs?

> I'd suggest it's equally risible to claim that the breakdown of civil society in America is a phenomenon limited to urban areas

That's not how I interpreted Brandon Blatcher's comment. Most MeFites live in the US, and most MeFites live in cities. However, though most American MeFites live in cities, they don't live in the same city. So if something happens in one city in the US, most other Americans don't know about it until it gets reported in the national media.

Does this make sense?
posted by nangar at 1:54 AM on March 5, 2011 [1 favorite]


Sure. But I reject the implicit proposition that a dizzying array of independent examples do not point to an overarching trend, and the suggestion that anyone paying attention to anything inches beyond their nose would be unaware to at least some extent of the Way Things Are Going, and therefore be surprised by the latest breakdown of civil society, no matter where it might occur.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 2:02 AM on March 5, 2011 [5 favorites]


"The breakdown of civil society? The breakdown of civil society is a designed and re-occurring environmental reaction that keeps the system running. We have laws to prevent breakdown preciously so we can find a way to break them again, that’s Niccolò Machiavelli and he won a dam wax seal in politics from a Medici. The breakdown of civil society is what keeps us anxious and ready to fight for scrapes in the streets."

-Danny Daltonate
posted by clavdivs at 3:18 AM on March 5, 2011


Trend implies growth. AFAIK, America has always had a lot of racism, classism, xenophobia, and hate. Maybe the target of such is more focussed on Muslims, but it's not like it's a new thing. Especially in Orange county, which is xenophobic and arch-conservative even with UC Irvine.
posted by BrotherCaine at 3:25 AM on March 5, 2011


Reference the trolling, or alleged trolling, I don't necessarily agree with the chap's position, but I did also think to myself whilst watching the video "Even though I find this display of bile and hatred an equal mix of saddening and sickening, I do wonder if the video is missing out something that might make it less dramatic". For example, had members of the Muslim community in question recently participated in a "DIE AMERICA DIE" parade or something?

Cliffs: The guy was pointing out that before we rage, we must check facts.
posted by dougrayrankin at 3:31 AM on March 5, 2011 [1 favorite]


Sure. But I reject the implicit proposition that a dizzying array of independent examples do not point to an overarching trend, and the suggestion that anyone paying attention to anything inches beyond their nose would be unaware to at least some extent of the Way Things Are Going, and therefore be surprised by the latest breakdown of civil society, no matter where it might occur.

I'll translate what stavros is obliquely saying, on behalf of the rest of the world:

WHAT
THE
FUCK
AMERICA?
posted by UbuRoivas at 4:14 AM on March 5, 2011 [4 favorites]


The thing I like about this metatalk post is that it is completely context free. The mods could change the link to point to any thread on metafilter at random and it would fit. That is all.
posted by blue_beetle at 4:25 AM on March 5, 2011 [4 favorites]


Parts of the thread are now as air pockets in swiss cheese. For the better.
posted by buzzman at 4:54 AM on March 5, 2011


Has anyone ever considered the fact that just maybe we don't want nice things?
posted by Sailormom at 5:10 AM on March 5, 2011 [2 favorites]


stavrosthewonderchicken, I apologize profusely for not knowing as much as you and thinking better of my fellow Americans.

Orange County has been known to be a bit crazy and conservative in their neck of the woods for years, so you'll have to pardon me (or not) if I don't follow their antics religiously.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 5:13 AM on March 5, 2011 [6 favorites]


You don't watch The OC?
posted by UbuRoivas at 5:18 AM on March 5, 2011


Cliffs: The guy was pointing out that before we rage, we must check facts.

I suspect that the troll didn't really have fact-checking in mind, having offered no facts to check.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 5:19 AM on March 5, 2011 [1 favorite]


directed at an as-yet undeleted trolling

It's one of the most-flagged comments that hasn't been deleted, true. By the time we saw it lots of people had responded to it and it was inextricable. And yeah mathowie was participating. We had some debate about whether to leave that post in the first place [it was flagged a lot but some of it was for an early formatting problem which got fixed and it never really hit the "you must delete this" number of flags after that]. I dislike those sorts of outragefilter posts personally, but they seem to have some sort of toehold here and a lot of people do seem to like them.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 5:20 AM on March 5, 2011


as to the gentlemans translation to stavs wtf america, we here in the america are trying hard (not) to work on this, stand by for polity difficulties. TIA
posted by clavdivs at 5:29 AM on March 5, 2011


Recreational outrage post leads to enthusiastic outrage in comments.

Not to mention the now almost ubiquitous Meta-outrage, complaining about the outrage.
posted by PeterMcDermott at 5:30 AM on March 5, 2011 [5 favorites]


scalefree: "I was afraid from the start that this post would get out of hand. Unfortunately it seems I was right. If we have to rage, let's do it here instead. And while we're at it, maybe we can discuss whether & how a different framing could have prevented or minimized the train wreck we see before us."

So, I considered creating a post about it for about 30 seconds on Thursday and decided against it. I don't think it's possible to frame that incident in any way that will make it less controversial, frustrating or upsetting. Some things simply aren't going to be improved by fleshing them out with context, or any other change in framing. A video of people being viciously racist is one of 'em. As Dee said above, there's plenty to rage about. Trying to somehow water down what happened would be wrong.

Thought the thread went fantastically well, all things considered.
posted by zarq at 5:58 AM on March 5, 2011 [1 favorite]


You don't watch The OC?

Opitmus Chyme left months ago.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 6:08 AM on March 5, 2011


The guy was pointing out that before we rage, we must check facts.

Oh, bullshit. He wasn't talking about checking the facts of this situation--he said "what Muslims might be doing to warrant this hostility. [emphasis mine]" As in all of them. That guy obviously hates Muslims, and his comment was a barely veiled way of saying that they deserve whatever happens to them. Check his followup comment if you're in any doubt.
posted by Horace Rumpole at 6:19 AM on March 5, 2011 [2 favorites]


Thanks for the link. Didn't see that post somehow...
posted by dougrayrankin at 6:28 AM on March 5, 2011


The guy was pointing out that before we rage, we must check facts.

And yet he presented no counter facts. He brought nothing new to the table. If you're going to make the cast that something this particular group did invited this particular odious behavior, it behooves you too actually make your case. And some people have pointed out that one of the speakers has made antisemitic comments in the past, and has been linked -- although without any strong evidence -- to 9/11. But nobody has demonstrated that the protesters were there because of this, nor that they were there to protest it, specifically. And this guy suggested that the video had been selectively edited, presumably to edit out the moments when the assembled made entirely reasonable cases that one speaker was perhaps a poor choice for this. And perhaps it has. But there is no evidence of this, and you don't get to make an argument based on what you guess might be out there if only we had the whole video.

What the video actually showed was an anti-Muslim rally. Telling people to go home? Threatening them with physical violence? Asking them about domestic abuse? It is Islamophobic rhetoric, and I don't care who was speaking, it was reprehensible, just as it would be if Muslims showed up at a Jewish gathering where, say, Paul Wolfowitz and told the Jews who were coming that they should be gassed.

Was it trolling? I think so. American conservatives regularly go into web forums and newspaper comments section and drop little turds that look exactly like this, and use exactly this structure -- vague insinuations that of course benighted American liberals are taking this stance, because they can't be bothered to learn the truth about the world. And that's it. No support for the comment. No additional data points. Just a fuck you liberals. Fuck you MetaFilter. There's more to this story than you idiots can be bothered to find out. And then goodbye for most of the rest of the thread, while we're left arguing with a phantom about a comment that had no information in it. Whether it's intended as trolling or not, it functions exactly like trolling.
posted by Astro Zombie at 6:37 AM on March 5, 2011 [28 favorites]


Thanks for that context Astro Zombie.
posted by cashman at 6:43 AM on March 5, 2011


I'll translate what stavros is obliquely saying, on behalf of the rest of the world:

WHAT
THE
FUCK
AMERICA?


It's not just America.

Contemplate the fact that these laws got overwhelming public support when first introduced.

Now consider the fact that fully half of humanity has a sub-100 IQ.
posted by flabdablet at 6:54 AM on March 5, 2011 [2 favorites]


Well, let's be cautious about conflating stupidity with meanness. Some of the meanest people I know are quite intelligent.
posted by Astro Zombie at 6:56 AM on March 5, 2011 [11 favorites]


Those comments (especially the big Churchill quote) are really worthless contributions.

That said, in what world are natavist and racist tendencies in Orange county news? The west coast has had those as foundational impulses since the beginning of the european settlement -- look at the laws and policies that were enacted to control and exclude the Chinese, blacks, and immigrants of all stripes.

So there's a context, both regional and national, for this kind of nasty racism. I'm not saying it isn't worth any outrage -- it needs to be called out by its real name -- but it isn't new, it isn't a surprise, and it has a function and context in American political life.
posted by Forktine at 7:05 AM on March 5, 2011


Some of the meanest people I know are quite intelligent.

And some of the stupidest people I know are the kindest.
posted by JeffK at 7:41 AM on March 5, 2011 [4 favorites]


Some of the meanest people I know are quite intelligent

I have trouble believing that the average IQ of the general run of protestors on that video (as opposed to the self-serving opportunist arseholes leading them) is as high as 100.
posted by flabdablet at 7:44 AM on March 5, 2011


Well, since we're already on MetaTalk...

If we know what's going on in American cities, it's a pretty thin excuse to suggest that rural Americans should be given a pass for not knowing what's going on in their own metropolitan areas.

But I reject the implicit proposition that a dizzying array of independent examples do not point to an overarching trend, and the suggestion that anyone paying attention to anything inches beyond their nose would be unaware to at least some extent of the Way Things Are Going, and therefore be surprised by the latest breakdown of civil society, no matter where it might occur.


OK. Taking these comments together, what you're saying is that since we were surprised by this news item, Brandon Blatcher and I are guilty of something, there's no "excuse", and we shouldn't "get a pass". Care to state what thought crime it is I've committed that you keep obliquely referring to?
posted by Xezlec at 8:05 AM on March 5, 2011 [2 favorites]


I have trouble believing that the average IQ of the general run of protestors on that video (as opposed to the self-serving opportunist arseholes leading them) is as high as 100.

I have no trouble at all believing that. You know, the Unabomber turned out to be a great mathematical genius who had left academia for no apparent reason.
posted by Xezlec at 8:08 AM on March 5, 2011


I would also be unsurprised to find that some of the idiots in that rally are capable of quite genuine kindness, at least in contexts where all their stupid-buttons are not being pushed by ignorance and prejudice.
posted by flabdablet at 8:09 AM on March 5, 2011 [3 favorites]


Likening the Unabomber to that rabble does a disservice to the Unabomber.
posted by flabdablet at 8:12 AM on March 5, 2011


Oh, he was against technology, wasn't he. Guess I should have picked an example with fewer sympathetic traits...
posted by Xezlec at 8:19 AM on March 5, 2011


Neo-luddite or not, Kaczynski's actions were derived from a considered and more-or-less coherent position. I see no sign of the OC goon squad having any such thing; near as I can tell it's all primary-school taunts and unexamined bigotry.

The Unabomber is a sociopath; the OC dickheads are a pack. Those are kind of opposite.
posted by flabdablet at 8:27 AM on March 5, 2011


I have relatives who could have been people in that crowd, and I don't think they're especially stupid. They're not theoretical physicists, but they're not among the dumber people I've ever met. They're also not especially sheltered. One of them, in fact, lived in Europe for years and probably picked up some of her anti-Muslim bigotry there.

It's comforting, in some ways, to think that bigots are stupid or ignorant, but I don't think it's necessarily true.
posted by craichead at 9:03 AM on March 5, 2011 [2 favorites]


AFAIK, America The world has always had a lot of racism, classism, xenophobia, and hate.

There, fixed that for you.

I'm sorry, that was glib. I won't deny that the US has both a history and a present with these issues. But this is hardly a problem in America alone. This is something that groups of human beings do with varying degrees of organization, institutionalization, and publicity. We are our very Christmas-special Doctor-approved best when we overcome these things, but it takes work and time and is far from our default state.
posted by maryr at 9:32 AM on March 5, 2011 [4 favorites]


For example, had members of the Muslim community in question recently participated in a "DIE AMERICA DIE" parade or something?

"The America the"? What's offensive about that?
posted by mendel at 9:35 AM on March 5, 2011 [3 favorites]


fourcheesemac seems to have found reason in that thread to go on walkabouts, and that's kind of a bummer. I thought at the time that gnossie's first comment was obviously posted to get a rise, and the subsequent Churchill quote was just jaw-droppingly ham-handed. He does not seem to be commenting in good faith, there. I don't know how I would have handled it as a moderator, but but seems like that post could have stood a deletion and do-over with some additional context. It was left sort of just hanging there like rotten fruit.
posted by Devils Rancher at 9:38 AM on March 5, 2011 [1 favorite]


stavrosthewonderchicken: "sprout "

stavrosthewonderchicken: "Which is to say: I live thousands of miles from America, as do a significant percentage of Metafilter users. If we know what's going on in American cities, it's a pretty thin excuse to suggest that rural Americans should be given a pass for not knowing what's going on in their own metropolitan areas.

Or perhaps the idea that that might be fine is just a sprout from the root of the very problem at hand: ignorance.

Further, I'd suggest it's equally risible to claim that the breakdown of civil society in America is a phenomenon limited to urban areas, but that's perhaps an argument for another day.
"

I think it is risible for you to be surprised at our surprise and then jump to the conclusion that we don't know whats going on under our own noses. Of course we're surprised. We like to think the best of people, even during a Muslim fundraiser where a lot of bad things can (and did) happen. We like to believe that we've risen above such jack-assery and backward Possumcock USA/Eagle Tears/Nascar thinking. We know we live in a place that can be ugly at times. We get it. Maybe not a lot of people in the flyover states get it but for the most part we do. And we still get surprised that hatred like this gets free rein, even in Orange Country. So fuck yeah, I'm surprised.
posted by KevinSkomsvold at 9:42 AM on March 5, 2011 [2 favorites]


"a lot of people do seem to like them"

I don't think "like" is really what's going on there. I suspect perhaps "hate" would be much closer to the truth. People hate them so much they can not resist wading into the filth.

I think better of folks here. And I don't believe anyone actually likes this sort of turd of a thread.
posted by y6y6y6 at 9:42 AM on March 5, 2011


one racist troll who apparently time-travelled here from the late 19th Century

Wait wait wait. Has anyone considered the possibility that gnossie may actually be Winston Churchill?
posted by EarBucket at 9:58 AM on March 5, 2011 [2 favorites]


And I don't believe anyone actually likes this sort of turd of a thread.

Well, I think it's trickier than that. I don't think many people sit around thinking, "man, you know what would improve my day? A thread about something awful!", so in some literal sense of "like", sure. Nobody "likes" following news coverage of a tragedy or disaster, either.

But in terms of what people want out of this site, in terms of preferences, there are certainly a lot of folks on metafilter who prefer to have threads about bad news or outrageous happenings be part of the mix. "Like" as "preference" seems pretty straightforward in that sense—there's a contingent of posts-about-bad-things-should-be-here folks, no question, and part of trying to balance what stays and what goes here is being conscious of that and taking into account all the different preferences folks have for their experiences here.

I didn't much like this post either, but as jessamyn touched on it was more of an on-the-fence situation (with some everybody-having-a-busy-night complications making our reaction time as a team a lot slower than ideal) that kept it around than any belief that this in particular was a great way to post about something.
posted by cortex (staff) at 10:26 AM on March 5, 2011 [1 favorite]


Wait wait wait. Has anyone considered the possibility that gnossie may actually be Winston Churchill?

In a way, yes:

In 1902, three years after it was printed, Churchill asked that this passage be deleted from further printings of the book from which it came, and acknowledged that it referred solely to his experiences in Sudan which, to be fair, was a relatively miserable place long before Islam appeared. In other words, Churchill recognized the fundamental stupidity of this passage 109 years sooner than gnossie!
posted by knapah at 10:36 AM on March 5, 2011 [5 favorites]


What is that all about? Oh yeah...fucking brits and their mispronunciation of everything not born in their isles.
posted by hal_c_on at 9:14 AM on March 5


Yuh! Those fucking Brits and their fucking disrespect for foreigners! Fuckers!
posted by Decani at 10:45 AM on March 5, 2011 [2 favorites]


Before checking the link, I thought this MeTa would be about the Catholic priest sex scandal post, but no. Just proves that there's plenty of rage to go around.
posted by sonika at 10:53 AM on March 5, 2011


Neo-luddite or not, Kaczynski's actions were derived from a considered and more-or-less coherent position. I see no sign of the OC goon squad having any such thing; near as I can tell it's all primary-school taunts and unexamined bigotry.

Reading a few other sources, the goon squad seems to believe that, despite its claims, this relief organization is actually a front for a terror funding network, and that all the people attending it are aware of that and trying to use it as cover. I'm not agreeing with this position, but I don't see it as any less coherent than Kaczinski's manifesto. The only difference I see is that Luddism may or may not be a better-supported position than Islamophobia.
posted by Xezlec at 11:10 AM on March 5, 2011


"Those fucking Brits and their fucking disrespect for foreigners!"

There, fixed that.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 12:05 PM on March 5, 2011


You know, taking a step back, it's pretty stupid that I'm seriously concerned about who is "better": Ted Kaczinski or an angry anti-Muslim mob. What a silly argument I've started.
posted by Xezlec at 1:12 PM on March 5, 2011


I guess you could say that, as Jessamyn put it, I "enjoy" such threads. The enjoyment comes from hearing about stuff without the distorting lens of TV news, and with user commentary head and shoulders above anywhere else I've found online. I find the term "recreational outrage" needlessly pejorative; many of these posts are useful (especially for politics/religion/sociology geeks like myself) and offer a range of (generally) considered opinions and diverse viewpoints, without most of the bullying nonsense found in just about every other forum where people communicate.
posted by jtron at 1:48 PM on March 5, 2011 [3 favorites]


I won't deny that the US has both a history and a present with these issues. But this is hardly a problem in America alone.

Nothing to discuss here then, is there? Everybody go back to what you were doing. All is well.
posted by stinkycheese at 2:04 PM on March 5, 2011 [1 favorite]


Why should we mourn or think our lot is hard?
small>

posted by clavdivs at 2:24 PM on March 5, 2011


Not all Muslims are terrorists. Everyone in Orange County is a racist. Can we get some consistency here? There are 3 million people in Orange County. If it were a city, it would be the 3rd largest in the country. Less then .005% of them went to this rally, and some of them were probably from LA, San Bernardino, and San Diego County. What, your special little city doesn't have an organized group of asshats living in it?
posted by Brocktoon at 4:41 PM on March 5, 2011 [1 favorite]


Just my opinion, but Orange County is easily one of the most racist places I've ever lived. I felt it was rather overt.
posted by y6y6y6 at 5:24 PM on March 5, 2011


Nothing to discuss here then, is there? Everybody go back to what you were doing. All is well.
posted by stinkycheese

Christ, your hatred for all thing American is boring.
posted by nola at 5:31 PM on March 5, 2011


Christ, your hatred for all thing American is boring.

How exactly is what stinkycheese said expressing "hatred for all things American?"
posted by peacheater at 5:54 PM on March 5, 2011 [2 favorites]


I flagged gnossie's comments as offensive, not because I think it would make sense to remove them, but because it might be useful in the future to have an easy reference - you know, that this user ID got flagged for being offensive a lot in the past, so extending the benefit of the doubt in future might be a more informed choice.

These guys would certainly have made for a very different narrative arc in Arrested Development, certainly.
posted by DNye at 6:10 PM on March 5, 2011


I think it is risible for you to be surprised at our surprise and then jump to the conclusion that we don't know whats going on under our own noses.

Not jumping to any conclusions at all. A lot of people in that thread expressed shock and surprise. I noted it. Brandon (by my lights, weakly) defended that as a response. I suggested that it was a pretty lame excuse. That's all.

stavrosthewonderchicken, I apologize profusely for not knowing as much as you and thinking better of my fellow Americans.

Apology accepted. Of course, you're being sarcastic, and in the process, missing my point entirely -- a point that was made in direct response to what you said earlier, which had nothing to do with 'thinking better' about anyone.

*shrug* I'm not exercised about this, honestly, just amused at the spectacular contortions folks seem to be willing to go through to believe that Everything's Just Fine.

Hell, maybe things are just fine. Maybe the recent irruption of stupidity and anger and racism and pigheadedness and divisiveness in America is just par for the course, and since Americans in general have historically shown that they're willing to accept that as a status quo, this latest OUTRAGE just a droplet in the sea of shit.

I dunno. I was just talking in this thread about what people were saying, not trying to be a pundit.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 6:51 PM on March 5, 2011


Maybe not a lot of people in the flyover states get it but for the most part we do. And we still get surprised that hatred like this gets free rein, even in Orange Country. So fuck yeah, I'm surprised.

Weird you would mention flyover states when this sort of problem has been coastal from the start.
posted by Sailormom at 6:53 PM on March 5, 2011 [3 favorites]


*shrug* I'm not exercised about this, honestly, just amused at the spectacular contortions folks seem to be willing to go through to believe that Everything's Just Fine.

I'm not under the impression that everything is just fine. Just don't think assholes in a single county known for being rabidly conservative represent the majority of Americans, which seems to be your point of view.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 6:58 PM on March 5, 2011 [2 favorites]


I think I get a little irked by the sanctimony directed at Americans because this isn't really a specifically-American problem. In fact, if anything, I think it's worse in Western Europe. I also think that the American far-right is self-consciously taking some cues from the European right. This is not an issue on which the US is some weird fringe outlier.

And I guess I am shocked, by this as well as by a lot of other wacko stuff that right-wingers do, because it feels very removed from my life. I go about my daily business not interacting with anyone who says anything about Obama being born in Kenya or Muslims wanting to institute Sharia law or whatever nutjob thing Fox News is going off about today. I know in the abstract that significant numbers of Americans believe these things, but I very rarely encounter them. And when I do, it's shocking. There's a difference between knowing in the abstract that irrational, hate-filled people are out there and actually witnessing their irrational hatefulness. Maybe if I could actually bring myself to watch Glenn Beck, I'd be less shocked.
posted by craichead at 7:45 PM on March 5, 2011 [4 favorites]


Just don't think assholes in a single county known for being rabidly conservative represent the majority of Americans, which seems to be your point of view.

Nah. But enough to be a significant worry.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 8:41 PM on March 5, 2011


And I guess I am shocked, by this as well as by a lot of other wacko stuff that right-wingers do, because it feels very removed from my life. I go about my daily business not interacting with anyone who says anything about Obama being born in Kenya or Muslims wanting to institute Sharia law or whatever nutjob thing Fox News is going off about today. I know in the abstract that significant numbers of Americans believe these things, but I very rarely encounter them. And when I do, it's shocking. There's a difference between knowing in the abstract that irrational, hate-filled people are out there and actually witnessing their irrational hatefulness. Maybe if I could actually bring myself to watch Glenn Beck, I'd be less shocked.

FWIW, this is a pretty good description of my experience of the US, as an openly self-identifying, very-definitely-brown Muslim. That said, I haven't spent any significant amount of time in the US for several years now, so I don't know whether I would have a different experience today. Also, I know many Muslims whose experience of living in the US does not feel anything like as comfortable as mine.

But hey, it still shocks me every time I witness....irrational hatefulness in Pakistan, too, so I guess I'm just naive.
posted by bardophile at 9:06 PM on March 5, 2011


I dunno. I was just talking in this thread about what people were saying, not trying to be a pundit.

I lol because I care. That is the most Fox News-like statement I have heard in...well, when did I last see Fox News?
posted by maryr at 11:15 PM on March 5, 2011


In fact, if anything, I think it's worse in Western Europe. I also think that the American far-right is self-consciously taking some cues from the European right. This is not an issue on which the US is some weird fringe outlier.

Except that they're completely different situations.

Western Europe is struggling with porous borders, meaning that the countries there are each absorbing literally millions of illegal aliens & economic migrants from Turkey & Islamic North Africa especially, with a profound "otherness" to traditional European society, creating all kinds of issues around non-integration, youth gangs, underemployment & crime, and when they do have jobs, these are thought of as "stolen" from disenfranchised Europeans.

America, on the other hand, still has it's knickers in a knot over what a tiny handful of nutters did 10 years ago.

The only way the situations would be even remotely analogous would be if this ugly incident were directed not at Muslims, but at Mexicans.
posted by UbuRoivas at 11:29 PM on March 5, 2011 [2 favorites]


its
posted by UbuRoivas at 11:30 PM on March 5, 2011


I lol because I care. That is the most Fox News-like statement I have heard in...well, when did I last see Fox News?

Sure, because as literally everyone knows, I am in almost every way a human analogue of Fox News. Ten years and better than a million words in, and nothing could be clearer. But we are all in your debt for rendering the dotted line that much more obvious with your Crayon of Clarity.

You keep loling and caring, special one. The perspicacity of your lol-powered insights are a credit to us all!
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 12:18 AM on March 6, 2011


Nah. But enough to be a significant worry.

Ha! On that we are in total agreement.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 12:44 AM on March 6, 2011 [1 favorite]




America, on the other hand, still has it's knickers in a knot over what a tiny handful of nutters did 10 years ago.


Right, yeah, the murder of 3000 people and destruction at our military headquarters shown on national television with a further attack at the heart of our government barely thwarted, followed by biological weapons attacks from an unknown source.

But yeah, Europe has immigrants.
posted by furiousxgeorge at 12:45 AM on March 6, 2011 [1 favorite]


But nobody has demonstrated that the protesters were there because of this, nor that they were there to protest it, specifically.

I honestly do not want to get sucked back into this, because watching the video a second time put a bad taste in my mouth. But I wanted to respectfully mention that I honestly find it hard to believe that anyone, fucko ultra-conservative Americans even, in any shape or form, would yell mean things to kids in public like they did in this video unless they were ignited by a specific political cause, or galvanized by a common enemy. Especially when Tea Partiers get together, a special combination of hell and entitlement seems to break loose. I don't feel that those children were targets, I feel they were innocent bystanders to some very, very, hateful and disrespectful people suffering from overpowering delusions of grandeur.

In other words, I get how people in Orange County are kind of ridiculous, but I also can't believe that Muslims are treated like this publicly on a daily basis, in varying degrees or what have you. That would seriously be shocking to me. I have a handful of Muslims friends down there and haven't heard them talk about this kind of abuse. Who knows, maybe I'm wrong, and if somebody with personal experience wants to chime in, that's great.

That notwithstanding, quite frankly, the most obvious conclusion for me to make was to attribute the protest to some at least "apparently" radical element which was glossed over by the post; some prima facie dispute which could have provoked this type of organized reaction in the first place and therefore led up to the creation of this scenario. Which in fact turned out to exist, in the form of one of the speakers, if not both. One of them being, as I stated before, a known and commonly protested entity in Orange County.

Now I will be the first to admit that based on the facts at hand, most of this is speculation. But it is not dishonest speculation, and It is most certainly not, as has been widely suggested, a justification.

I was simply trying to express the principle of charity, by suggesting that there must be some context for these protests worth investigating, if not only to get a better grasp on what the fuck happened down there. If you worry about American conservative trolls coming into this forum, framing the debate and then leaving without offering context, facts or further investigation, then politics aside, I'll be damned if I'm going to be roundly shut down for offering up the same type of concerned attention to a very narrowly-framed SLYT. What can I say, I'm hypercritical at times.

None of the videos fully support - nor do they conclusively refute - the claim that the protest was initially organized as a reaction to the imam. You can hear the protestors at one point yelling "Take your sharia law with you! Constitution!" which seems relevant to me, because Malik Ali's Sabiqun movement seeks to establish Islamic rule in the US. I thought there might be a connection there and read into it. I'm not, of course, trying to "block out" the 100 other things that were said in that clip that were flat-out racist.
posted by phaedon at 1:04 AM on March 6, 2011


Context: Controversial postings on "Atlas Shrugs" have included a number of false claims,[45][46] including that Supreme Court Justice Elena Kagan (who is Jewish) supports Nazi ideology (accompanied by a fake picture of her in a Nazi uniform),[47] a video suggesting that Muslims have sex with goats, a doctored photo showing President Obama urinating on an American flag[12] and false claims that Obama's mother was involved in pornography and that Obama "was involved with a crack whore in his youth".[48][49] Geller has also posted accusations against President Obama of anti-Semitism and doing the bidding of "Islamic overlords," while her site posted a posting by another writer who, inter alia, suggested without any evidence that the President is the "love child" of Malcolm X (Geller herself says she does not believe that Obama is Malcolm X's love child, and never did).[12][50] During an RT Television News interview, reporter Lauren Lister repeatedly questioned Geller's claim that she is not anti-Muslim, at one point calling attention to Geller's having posted a drawing of Muhammad on her blog with the face of a pig superimposed over his own. Geller responded by saying "I don't know where it is in America that you can't make jokes or make fun."[51]
Geller has written "that Islam is the most antisemitic, genocidal ideology in the world." [52

posted by furiousxgeorge at 1:10 AM on March 6, 2011


Ha! On that we are in total agreement.

[I should probably come clean at this point and admit I haven't even watched the video linked in the original thread. Because, you know, why?]
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 1:53 AM on March 6, 2011


But yeah, Europe has immigrants.

Exactly. Which means that the neo-Nazi & far-right movements in Europe are a response by some sectors of society to day-in & day-out interactions, suspicions & resentments, which is a completely different ballgame to the actions of a handful of lunatics a decade ago, which have absolutely nothing whatsoever to do with the lives or beliefs of regular adherents of the Religion of Peace, eg collecting charity in Orange County.

That's the crucial difference. The Europeans are reacting to a daily reality; Americans are responding to a phantom menace.
posted by UbuRoivas at 2:22 AM on March 6, 2011


[I should probably come clean at this point and admit I haven't even watched the video linked in the original thread. Because, you know, why?]

Because the iPad 2 will CHANGE YOUR WORLD.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 5:48 AM on March 6, 2011


That's the crucial difference. The Europeans are reacting to a daily reality; Americans are responding to a phantom menace.

Not wishing to interrupt from actually Europe, but meh. Haters actually are going to hate. If it wasn't immigrants, it would be indigenous indigents. During quiet periods, it still is.
posted by DNye at 6:09 AM on March 6, 2011 [1 favorite]


The Europeans are reacting to a daily reality; Americans are responding to a phantom menace.

Dude, they tried to build a mosque in New York city, located in country that guarantees religious freedom!!! You can't see how fucking dangerous they are!!!
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 6:45 AM on March 6, 2011


That's the crucial difference. The Europeans are reacting to a daily reality; Americans are responding to a phantom menace.

I think that this is both far too kind to the European far right, and too dismissive of the American version. (Though comparing their respective badness is weird, like discussing whether it is better to saw off your nuts with a butter knife or a rusty hacksaw blade.)

Immigration numbers in the US are back up to normal levels after having dipped during the midcentury childhoods of the baby boom generation. Even in small towns and out of the way places, you see people wearing the kinds of "typical" Muslim clothing that got Juan Williams excited (and then fired) recently.

So both continents' far rights an make an appeal to a scary change in the essential "culture" of the place. But both are totally fictitious, too. A few people -- even a few million -- wearing different clothes or speaking Spanish or whatever isn't actually an existential threat, and if they weren't there the claimed threat would be gays or Jews or communists or any of a dozen pretend foes.

The far right relies on boogie men as a basis for its worldview, just like the ecological left relies on apocalyptic imagery, or the libertarians use imagery from Ayn Rand.
posted by Forktine at 7:22 AM on March 6, 2011 [3 favorites]



That's the crucial difference. The Europeans are reacting to a daily reality; Americans are responding to a phantom menace.


Yes, a phantom menace that murdered 3000 people on live television.

I'm not saying the response is logical, but it's fully understandable that a country traumatized by fucking mass murder in front of their eyes is gonna go a bit wonky.

You will not, however, find national anti-Mexican laws to attack their culture like you have anti-Muslim laws in Switzerland.
posted by furiousxgeorge at 10:17 AM on March 6, 2011


[I should probably come clean at this point and admit I haven't even watched the video linked in the original thread. Because, you know, why?]

You're pretty special yourself. Why make informed comments when fear-mongering assumptions will do? You're breaking the Fox News analogy to pieces there. (Actually, you're sounding a lot more like Olbermann in general, it's just that the "Oh, I'm not saying it, I'm just talking about what people are saying" is such a Fox standby that I couldn't believe I was reading it.)
posted by maryr at 10:19 AM on March 6, 2011

The only way the situations would be even remotely analogous would be if this ugly incident were directed not at Muslims, but at Mexicans.
I don't think I buy that. There aren't any reliable statistics for what percentage of the American population is Muslim, but it's probably between 1 and 2%. Contrast that to 4% or so of the Danish population and 5% of the population of Switzerland and the UK. On the other hand, about 10% of the population of the US is Mexican-American; 15% is Latino of any national origin. Obviously, Muslims stand out more in Denmark, because Denmark is otherwise culturally homogeneous. But I don't think the numbers alone explain why Switzerland is banning minarets and why members of the majority culture in Denmark feel they have to protect themselves from censorship by insulting a minority religion's most sacred symbols.

(I actually think that you could argue that part of what's going on in Orange County is that demographic shifts mean that it's no longer politically safe to target Latinos. In a county in which a third of the population is Latino, that's going to have serious implications on election day. Twenty years ago, things like English-only ordinances seemed like a good way to rally the xenophobic troops, but now that increasingly seems like political suicide, especially in suburban California. New scapegoats are required.)

It's also just a weird argument. Bigotry is disgusting and wrong, whether it's directed at people who are mostly abstract to you or whether it's directed at the people next door.
posted by craichead at 10:24 AM on March 6, 2011 [2 favorites]


[I should probably come clean at this point and admit I haven't even watched the video linked in the original thread. Because, you know, why?]

LOL
posted by clavdivs at 10:24 AM on March 6, 2011


I dunno. I was just talking in this thread about what people were saying, not trying to be a pundit.

You're one of my fave MeFites, stav, as I think you know, but you're being a tad disingenuous here. It's my impression, based on nigh on a decade of reading MetaFilter, that you sound off about the stupidity and anger and racism and pigheadedness and divisiveness in America at the drop of a hat. Not that I think you're wrong, but it gets a little boring, you know? I don't think there's much danger that without your reminders we'd all sink back onto a happy mattress of God Bless America and drift off into a haze of patriotic bliss. It just seems to me that you're scratching an itch rather than trying to accomplish anything. Which, yeah, we're all just typing words on a screen for the greater glory of Matt, but you tend to be a livelier read on less predictable subjects.
posted by languagehat at 10:52 AM on March 6, 2011


And yes, the same is true of me when I mount my descriptivist hobbyhorse (just to preempt the tu quoque).
posted by languagehat at 10:53 AM on March 6, 2011


Ubu, your points on the rise of the European Far Right are completely off-base. Much (all?) of the anti-immigrant bias and attempts at legislature are directed at Muslim immigrants. Take a look at any of the European rags and you'll see lots of hand-wringing about increasing numbers of Muslims taking over perfectly nice, white countries firmly implanted in the liberal, Christian tradition (this is one of the major arguments against allowing Turkish accession into the EU). There is a reason why David Cameron recently joined Angela Merkel in saying that "multiculturalism" has failed, and Germany looks like the most frightening out of the Western EU members with regard to religious intolerance and discrimination against the Muslim minority. So maybe the situations in America and the EU didn't pop up because of the exact same reasons, but the response is targeted at the same group for more or less the same reasons. It's incredibly disingenuous to claim otherwise.
posted by nonmerci at 11:05 AM on March 6, 2011


It's my impression, based on nigh on a decade of reading MetaFilter, that you sound off about the stupidity and anger and racism and pigheadedness and divisiveness in America at the drop of a hat.

I used to. These days, very rarely indeed. Sure feels nice to stretch those muscles, though!
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 12:41 PM on March 6, 2011


It's also just a weird argument. Bigotry is disgusting and wrong, whether it's directed at people who are mostly abstract to you or whether it's directed at the people next door.

Absolutely, only I'm not trying to justify the right wing in Europe, only to explain it.

Also, the 4-5% in Denmark, Switzerland or the UK would surely only be measured according to people who actually fill in their census forms - pretty safe to assume that illegals would ignore the census altogether (in NYC for example, there were heaps of ads in Spanish urging people to fill in the census, that it wouldn't be used to track people down over their immigration status, that it's valuable for planning & providing services etc).

But if European xenophobia seems to be mostly targeted at muslims, I'd suggest that this could be attributable to a couple of factors:

First, as a matter of chance, a huge number of the illegals and immigrants just happen to be Muslim (eg from Pakistan in England, or Turkey, Morocco, Algeria or Tunisia elsewhere), making them a convenient bogeyman.

Second, economic migrants from Eastern Europe are also resented for taking jobs, working for cheap wages & lowering working conditions. Only, they're harder for the far right to criticise, because culturally & ethnically, they're too close to the bone. If Russia has neo-Nazi skinhead gangs, how can right wingers elsewhere pretend that the Russians are the enemy?

I suppose the third factor is that these cultural changes have come rapidly in Europe, at a time when national identity has come under a second threat - from the EU & the effective dissolution of borders & loss of national control over a wide range of economic & agricultural policies, which often hit hardest at the least educated & least politically enfranchised rungs of society.

This again leads back to 'national identity' & 'cultural homogeneity' as evocative & highly charged political pressure points, and helps create the xenophobically-based bogeyman as a symbol of everything that is anti-[whichever country].

This should not be the case in a country like the US, which has prided itself on the whole 'melting pot' thing for so long, and where a longer history of experience with immigrants from all over the world should actively work to combat that kind of xenophobia.
posted by UbuRoivas at 2:17 PM on March 6, 2011


> I used to. These days, very rarely indeed. Sure feels nice to stretch those muscles, though!

Heh. Fair enough, compadre!
posted by languagehat at 5:25 PM on March 6, 2011


This should not be the case in a country like the US, which has prided itself on the whole 'melting pot' thing for so long, and where a longer history of experience with immigrants from all over the world should actively work to combat that kind of xenophobia.

The US has historically accepted immigrants which came in waves, sometimes many groups at once. The pattern is always the same. The new group is vilified for some time, placed at the bottom rung of the ladder economically and socially and is subject to violent racist attacks. Of course, American Indians have always been on the bottom rung. The Mexicans are joined by Muslims now.

Yes, slavery in the US ended in the 1800s. The US had laws preventing interracial marriage on the books very recently. A not insignificant percentage of US citizens believe Obama is Muslim.

There is nothing special about the US which prevents authoritarian types from castigating the bottom rung of the ladder, such as eugenics programs (involuntary sterilization) targeting American Indians which eventually closely resembled actual Nazi eugenics programs, as recently as the 1970s. This is partway down the road to genocide.

Do you remember what we were like in the months following 9/11? There's nothing special about us which prevents us from being evil. The goal is to prevent it before it gets out of control, where doing something means far greater risk.
posted by krinklyfig at 6:14 PM on March 6, 2011


stinkycheese: "Nothing to discuss here then, is there? Everybody go back to what you were doing. All is well"

I don't think his point is "nothing to discuss" it's more like this is not an American problem it's a human being problem. What you appear to be doing is to be reducing it to a point where you can say "American's are such assholes" instead of "People are such assholes" because then you don't have to be included.

KevinSkomsvold: "Maybe not a lot of people in the flyover states get it but for the most part we do."

A) Fuck you, you elitist prick. B) This incident was on the west COAST.
posted by Bonzai at 8:19 PM on March 6, 2011 [1 favorite]


This MeTa was basically like taking one outrage worm and bisecting it so you have two equal outrage worms wriggling around.
posted by Burhanistan at 8:26 PM on March 6, 2011 [5 favorites]


That sounds so much cooler than anything going on here.
posted by maryr at 10:07 PM on March 6, 2011


He who controls the outrage worm controls the outrage spice. And he who controls the outrage spice controls the metaverse.
posted by UbuRoivas at 12:04 AM on March 7, 2011 [2 favorites]


Hm, that would be Muat'Hwi.
posted by UbuRoivas at 12:08 AM on March 7, 2011 [1 favorite]


Bonzai: What many people in this thread appear to be doing is to be reducing it to a point where you can say "People are such assholes" instead of "Americans are such assholes" because then [people from the USA] don't have to really think about it or do anything about it.
posted by stinkycheese at 12:36 AM on March 7, 2011


stinkycheese, it is an unfortunate fact that institutionalized discrimination against muslims is not limited to the United States.
posted by Mister_A at 6:06 AM on March 7, 2011


stinkycheese: Yes, people are assholes. If you think it's a problem limited to Americans then you are kidding yourself.

Find me one nation where there are no jerks making life hard for others and I'll award you 10 internet points.
posted by Bonzai at 8:06 AM on March 7, 2011


Find me one nation where there are no jerks making life hard for others and I'll award you 10 internet points.

The People's Longboat of Brandonistan, at least for the next hour or so.

Also, sirnce today is Monday so we get double points, right?
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 8:28 AM on March 7, 2011


stinkycheese: Yes, people are assholes. If you think it's a problem limited to Americans then you are kidding yourself.

I don't think it's a problem limited to any one nation, and I didn't suggest it was. The subject of this post however is however limited to one nation.
posted by stinkycheese at 8:51 AM on March 7, 2011


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