Monday, October 19, 2009

Religion Dispatches - The Eliminationists: How Hate Talk Radicalized the American Right

Interesting and relevant article. When hate becomes a political agenda, democracy is in trouble.
The Eliminationists: How Hate Talk Radicalized the American Right
By Frederick Clarkson
October 19, 2009

President Obama averages 30 death threats per day, preachers pray publicly for his death, and right wing pundits speak openly of military coups. Dave Neiwert, author of The Eliminationists, gives some insight into the relationship between extreme rhetoric and acts of violence.

From the cover of Dave Neiwert's book.

The Eliminationists: How Hate Talk Radicalized the American Right
By David Neiwert
PoliPoint Press, 2009

On Thursday, September 17, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi was moving through a typical press briefing when she was asked about the escalation of violent rhetoric in public discourse. The California Democrat suddenly became uncharacteristically emotional, requesting that people tone it down and recalling the 1978 assassination of San Francisco Mayor George Moscone and openly gay Supervisor Harvey Milk as an outgrowth of the hate-filled discourse of its time. Warning that people might have to “take responsibility for any incitement that [the person’s words] may cause,” Pelosi could scarcely have come up with a better example to illustrate a major theme of David Neiwert’s latest book, The Eliminationists: How Hate Talk Radicalized the American Right.

There has been much discussion of the culture of incivility lately, epitomized by the recent indecorous outbursts of Rep. Joe “You Lie” Wilson (R-SC) during President Obama’s speech to a joint session of congress, tennis star Serena Williams to a linesman at the U.S. Open, and rapper Kayne West at the Video Music Awards. But the rhetoric and the underlying attitudes that Neiwert is getting at are far more serious—and harder to come to grips with—than mere boorish behavior by public figures.

Go read the whole article and interview.

1 comment:

Paul said...

It seems to me that all the negative vibes this blowhard (Rush Hudson Limbaugh A.KA. Jeff Christie) has been spewing over these many years has come back to blow back on his face (A classic “Blow Back”). He always tries to give off the airs that he can have anything he wants but as we all witness those with more money and more influence tossed him aside like sack of potatoes and the ultimate insult was that it was done in public (money don’t buy you everything butterball).

Now of course he blames everyone else (Michael J. Fox, Perez Hilton, Al Sharpton, Jesse Jackson, Obama, Oprah Winfrey, Sonia Sotomayor, Hillary Clinton, Olympia Snowe, ESPN, NFL, the media, basically people of color, the handicapped, women and gays) when of course all you have to do is listen to his show and plainly hear his daily prejudices filled sermons. So NFL, I salute you decision, job well done. And to the whaling cry baby perched on his self made pedestal, quit your whining it was your own fault. He is reaping what he has sowed, KARMA, "palin and simple" like his followers. Don’t we all feel better?