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Is there really such a thing as equality?

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Lately at Blogcritics there has been a lot of talk about racism and some very venomous comments made that have forced this thread to be closed. That’s the first thread I’ve seen closed here. In my experience Blogcritics is normally a very open forum that has some pretty intense discussions on politics and religion with some of their best content, in my opinion — the reviews — being mostly ignored by most of the commenting crowd. It’s kind of sad that a site with such good content makes its biggest impact with passionate interaction in those two easy hot button topics. I’ve voiced my opinion before to The Powers That Be that I think they’d be best with just the reviews and leave the politics and religions threads for other places on the web, but then here I am writing about a non-review topic, so I guess I’m being hypocritical on this point.

Still, I am fascinated a bit by the concept of equality and what it really means in 2004. So fascinated that I sat to write this entry.

Some people use damning words and labels like air. Me, personally, I think cries of discrimination and racism should only be used in clearly obvious situations. In my opinion there is not equality in any race, which includes white people, and by trying to give special rights to one group, another group somewhere else is being shortchanged. Equality is a very tricky thing and unless all men and women are truly treated equally, there is no such thing as equality. The problem of course being that a dominant number of white people are in positions of power (government, employers in managerial capacity, CEOs, etc) that they can force their own personal prejudices on others and disrupt the balance. It’s a tough situation that common sense should dictate for people, but doesn’t.

It seems that in 2004 common sense is in shorter supply than an endangered species. Let’s take for a brief moment the recent Janet Jackson / Justin Timberlake debacle. I don’t think Janet or Justin will be involved in any “wardrobe malfunctions” in the near future. Common sense should have told both of them that doing what they did in the chosen venue (SuperBowl) was going to go badly for them. Those who buy that it was some kind of accident probably also believe that Lee Harvey Oswald acted alone in the JFK assassination.

When it comes to business I am an equal opportunity employer through and through. I could care less what color the person’s skin is or how young (legal age of course) or old the person is, etc. The only thing that matters to me is whether the person is the best qualified for the job. If every business owner, manager, foreman, human resource coordinator behaved the same way the world would be a better place. Unfortunately there are indeed people who hire based upon other factors which are totally unrelated to the job at hand. But is the solution to offer special jobs that are only for special groups of people? Is that really the best solution? Is it the best solution to allow special right and privileges to a group of people to counteract the people who are covertly discriminating?

Somewhat regularly my wife and I “donate” (now there’s a word to put in double quotes) to the local Indian casino, which can operate with games in our state that me as Joe Taxpaying Citizen can’t legally operate with if I were so inclined to open up a competing casino on the corner. Sure, I have the legal right to open a casino of my own, but I can’t legally offer patrons the same games that are available in an Indian casino fifteen minutes away. Where is the equality in that?

Admittedly I have limited patience for the topic of a given minority (just pick any minority and see if this applies) being factually oppressed when there are special treatments that as a business owner I can’t compete against fairly in the marketplace. I should be able to open up a casino, stock it with the same types of games that are available in Indian casinos, but the state says no. But it is not the people’s fault that things are this way, it’s invariably the government’s fault, so I’m placing the blame where it belongs here. I think some people blame Indians for this, but I don’t. I blame the government for cutting the deal. And since the government is elected by the people, that puts the blame squarely back on me, doesn’t it?

I must admit I don’t have a good solution for this situation and it’s frustrating. If the government does not pass laws to make special laws for special interest groups and minorities then these prejudices and discrimination can continue without consequence. However, there is a line that once crossed the special interest groups now have an advantage that doesn’t allow for fair competition in business.

I am sorry that in the past white people took the Indian land. I’m sorry that the white man hired, traded, maintained and abused slaves. White men have many historical stains on humanity. I am also sorry that today we’ve got the government spending money that isn’t there and making laws which do not promote equality. It leaves me wondering if these laws do more harm than good.

Back to the Indian casinos.

Over the years I’ve watched firsthand the tribal council get richer and richer and meanwhile much of the rest of the tribe living in broken down mobile homes with cars on blocks strewn about their yards. This isn’t me stereotyping, this is what I’ve witnessed with my own eyes. The casino gets bigger and bigger, generating millions and millions, but drive a half mile and the rest of the tribe only seems to get poorer.

Apparently capitalism is alive and well on tribal grounds also. The government structure that they have contains similar weaknesses, it would seem.

On the way to the casino, we roll across roads with potholes that aren’t on tribal land and pass schools with libraries which need books and teachers who need pay increases. I think to myself, can’t they legalize gambling so that Joe Regular Businessman or Businesswoman can open up and compete fairly with the Indian casinos? But then I realize that there are people who don’t want slot machines in every corner grocery store. I can understand the corrupting the youth with gambling concern, but I wonder if the missed tax revenue is hurting the rest of the needs of the State? So many problems, so few solutions, and yet the wheel turns around and around to one word: equality.

Is there really such a thing as equality?

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About TDavid

  • Car, shower, and in front of friends if I know them well enough. When I was living in Scotland, my friends wanted me to front THEIR band… but they did hippie music and I just couldn’t have that. 😉

  • Really, Ms. Tek? So where do you sing then? In the car, the shower? (don’t mean to be asking personal questions).

    There’s this interesting midi karaoke site that I came across a week or two called gosing for anybody that’s interested.

  • NOooo

    They tried to get me to Karoke when I was in Taiwan, but I RAN.

  • I just noticed that this entry is my 21st post here and has a casino angle, and 21 is blackjack! Weird coincidence.

    Cool that you have a good singing voice, Ms. Tek. Do you do Karaoke? I’ve heard some really bad and really good singers doing Karaoke.

  • Mac: “One more mindless troll at Blogcritics.”

    Heh. Heh. Heh.

    Diva, you’d be the luckiest girl alive if I were “just another mindless troll.”

    Anyway, all I can say is “Thank you.”

    I’ve gone all these years drifting without purpose, looking for meaning in a meaningless world, and then you come along.

    I’ve found my destiny.

    I’m dedicating my life to driving you over that shaky little tiny razor-sharp edge of your sanity. One can hear your fingernails scaping the border of the abyss with every comment you post on Blogcritics.

    You’re barely hanging on; I can see a critical meltdown on its way, and I’m here to help.

    BUT IF, for some unforseen reason, you don’t post 20 or 30 cut/paste/insert obvious inane comment ENTRYS someday, thereby taking you off the “leaderboard” (your deluded measure of self-worth)—and you’re driven to end your miserable life online because of the shame of NOT BEING the most prolific typist in cyberspace, then I will have been robbed of my dream.

    So keep posting, dear. If you go nuts, I wanna be the reason.

    Thanks in advance,

  • oh… and I have a good voice. I was classically trained in voice for 8 years and took piano for 4.

  • I was joking TDavid. I am not in a band. I would love to be in a band but here in Chicago, I have never found anyone into the kind of sound that I like. Also, I guess I am getting to old for it now.

    There is another thing about Europe that I like better. When a woman gets over 30, people there still think she is sexy and great and desirable. Here in the US, it’s like if you are over 25 and female, your best days are already gone.

    You don’t even BEGIN to be sexy until over the age of 25. Need a little bit of “experience” to flavor the dish, in my opinion.

  • You are in a band, Ms Tek? I was in a band once upon a time. What instrument do you play? Just curious.

  • BB

    The fight is over here. Voters are welcome (must be age 18 or over and own a valid IP address).

  • CW

    Sorry. Wrong thread. I was looking for the fight?

  • CW

    Hey, want some pizza?

  • EWwww… When I was in high school… we had this story about this girl who did something on a dare with a frozen hot dog. It got stuck and she had to go to the hospital. I think that was just a rumor, however.

  • The trouble with rubber bands is that they sometimes get caught on my braces. Then I start looking like that monster from Predator. Beads sound like they might be the answer. Then again, way back in high school, my friend’s brother, Steve, got a dried pea stuck up his nose for three days.

  • I dunno… do you use colored rubber bands or beads?

  • I braid my nosehair. Is that cool?

  • Your thoughts, such as they are, are deep, Shark? Word play. Entries that don’t say a thing. Blurry pictures that anyone else would be embarassed to post. Talking about a deluded person. Look in your mirror.

    And, as for you joining up with a bigot, I was waiting for that after your attack on gays. One more mindless troll at Blogcritics.

    Blogging is supposed to be ancillary to the news. The idea is to analyze issues there is already material about in most cases. I write more personal essays than most bloggers and do it very well. Apparently, you are not bright to recognize one when you see it. In fact, the first time I noticed you, you were attacking an entry I had posted that was at least 75 percent my own thoughts and writing. In the entry above, I said people should learn to blog before taking their show on the road. If you had ten cents worth of sense, you would take that advice and pull that piece of crap you think is a weblog down. What you are trying to pass off as blogging now doesn’t remotely qualify.

  • I think you all suck, and I am the only cool person on this site.

    But that is just because I have tattoos and am in a “band”. So there.

  • BB

    There was a time a comment like that would have upset me. But as the saying goes when one considers the source of the slur (and if I may paraphrase) where is thy sting?

    Alright Mouthy Diva. Let’s put it to a vote. As ludicrous as it may sound, if the general consensus is that I fall into that category then I will voluntarily leave Blogcritics. If however Madame Diva is the BIGOT that we all know she is then I challenge her to leave BC (for good). I make this challenge because I personally cannot tolerate her ignorant abuse any longer.

    So who is the REAL Bigot around here? Fellow Blogcritics please speak up!

  • oh man. I’ve been holding back…

    Browngirl, you sound like a sock puppet…

    No names there.

    Furthermore, your thoughts are awfully vague…

    Diva, YOU ARE THE QUEEN OF VAGUE. Seriously, you ever read this crap you type?

    You TYPE MORE AND SAY LESS than anybody I’ve ever read!

    As a matter of fact, having read and analyzed your prodigious output, I don’t think I’ve encounted one ORIGINAL idea to come off your keyboard. (see your ‘deep’ bulleted analysis of gambling above for a great example)

    Your technique is to quote a few news stories and then RESTATE THE friggin’ OBVIOUS using extreme verbosity, a thesaurus, and this pseudo-scholarly vernacular—backed up, of course, by lots of ‘links’ to more news stories and pseudo-scholarly articles you had nothing to do with.

    Intelligence by association: that’s your game and I’m hip to it. It’s not subtle, at least for this reader.

    I think you have a massive self-esteem problem and a just enough brains to know you’re not REALLY that smart.

    You’re damn sure not inventive or original.

    Oh, yeah… and you’re pretty friggin’ condescending too:

    Here are a couple of entries based on research about social class and economic opportunity you should find interesting. This one is about a study of EITC data. The myth of the American Dream is explored here.I await any substantive remarks you might have after reading the material.

    There. I feel better. : )

    BTW: I don’t know who this browngirl is, but ya know what, Diva?
    (And this is a very profound thing that you apparently DON’T UNDERSTAND):

    It’s only words on a screen.


  • Browngirl, on the offhand chance that you are real, let me clarify what I said above. The procedure is, or at least should be:

    1) Found a blog,

    2) Get some experience blogging,

    3) Join group blogs, such as Blogcritics, if one wants to.

    And, don’t worry. The Diva only ‘terrorizes’ stupid people and bigots. The blathering fool who is all over this thread qualifies under both classifications.

  • Talking to oneself can be that, I suppose.

  • BB

    My sentiments exactly browngirl. May I call you BG? Please accept my apologies for my outburst above but the Diva has a nasty habit of terrorizing people around here and it is best not to encourage her rants. It is a pleasure to meet you and please accept my welcome to Blogcritics. I look forward to future conversations with you which I’m certain will be rewarding.

  • Jeez! Have I wondered into Dunce City or something? Asking someone to make substantive comments is not calling him or her names. It is saying: Don’t waste my reading time blathering.

    As for being patted on the head by a bigot for being a ‘good dumb darkie,’ I’ll pass. Other people can have that ‘honor.’

    Browngirl, you are supposed to have a blog before joining or starting threads at Blogcritics.

  • browngirl

    I would love to start another thread if you’d like.


    I really appreciate the links you provided, although I don’t understand the need for name-calling. Thanks.

    The second link was the most interesting to me. I would love to know the definition of the middle class. I grew up in a middle class family, and as an adult with a family of my own, now I see what a myth it really is. I wonder what the debt to income ratio of the average middle class family is, because it seems that consumer debt increases proportionate to the amount of money made.

    I am a stay-at-home, self-employed mother of three, hence between my work and the various school activities I attend, I don’t have the time to surf the net and/or research substantiation of my everyday experience. I would appreciate any more links you think would be of interest.

  • Eric Olsen

    As requested, my thoughts on gambling and lotteries here.

  • Joe

    Hallelujiah! Praise Cheeses!

  • BB,

    If I have made you crack a smile once or twice then I consider that I did my job well and thank you for letting me know. =)

  • Shark

    DIVA: Browngirl, you sound like a sock puppet — a character someone has created to echo or supplement his remarks. Furthermore, your thoughts are awfully vague, platitudes in fact, just like those of someone else on this thread.


    Diva, I really think you need a healthy dose of self-awareness.

    Everything you touch seems to turn into some personal hard-on that resorts to name-calling. You seem relatively smart at times, but that’s often outweighed by your apparent pathological need for a personal sparring partner, coupled with a need to label your ‘opponent’.

    I say this with no ulterior motive (I haven’t been on BlogC long enough to develop any) other than to be helpful.


    PS: My mantra: educate, enlighten, or entertain.

  • BB

    It was obvious who the “him” was that you were referring to above, hence my response. MD, isn’t it just like to shit on people when they are trying to break down racial barriers. Shame on you and you have my sincerest sympathies. For all I care you can carry on perpetuating your self-serving myths that keep you employed (on your own blog), but like most people here at BC I’m just not interested in your vitriolic perverse bullshit.

  • BB

    Found somebody else to pick on now have we? Or perhaps your career as a professional shrill is feeling a little threatened?

    “Substantive” – ooh such a big word. I’m really impressed – really!!!

    “Sock puppet” – gosh darn it, now that is just so witty (tee hee)

    “Vague, platitudes”. Exactly, so your point is??? (yawn)

    Or perhaps plain old common sense just isn’t one of your strong points?

    Why can’t you learn to talk without that eternal chip on your shoulder or is being a professional smartass just some silly charicature your dreamt up for our collective detriment?

  • Browngirl, you sound like a sock puppet — a character someone has created to echo or supplement his remarks. Furthermore, your thoughts are awfully vague, platitudes in fact, just like those of someone else on this thread. Here are a couple of entries based on research about social class and economic opportunity you should find interesting. This one is about a study of EITC data. The myth of the American Dream is explored here. I await any substantive remarks you might have after reading the material.

  • BB

    browngirl – “The myth of the middle class”

    You are a very intelligent woman and I couldn’t agree with you more. Perhaps we should start another thread sometime? I would love to talk with you more.

    Ms. Tek you say the damndest things and I must confess you have me on the floor splitting my guts with your wonderful sense of humour.

    I could kiss the both of you so please accept my virtual smooooooch!

  • TDavid,

    Um… when certain names come up, I will talk about “cheese” because basically, I am kinda sick of that certain name and his “gang”. No big deal. I just don’t want to see EVERY post turn into a big race thing here now.

    Perhaps that is one of the blessings of being mixed- for the most part I think concept of race is so inexplicably stupid because I am all and neither at the same time. I see myself as “Tek, female, wild hair, tattoos, likes trouble, likes learning” and that is it. I don’t think of myself as a “race”. I really don’t get it personally. To me, it’s a stupid, archaic, idea… =) The sooner people get over it, the better they will be.

    In reality, there isn’t any race, but only culture. Anyone who has seen a Pakistani with a hard core “wegie (Glasgow) accent, enjoying his chips will know exactly what I am getting at.

    One needs to not be so concerned with preserving the color of skin as so much as preserving culture. Only people of very limited intellect cannot make this fundamental jump in concept.

    It is not the color of one’s skin that makes a diffrence really, but one’s culture. Culture is a learned behavior. Cultures are differnet from each other, however none of them are superiour to each other.

    I should blog this tomorrow- My little idea about this… right now, I am too tired to make any sense and I am supposed to be working on something in German.


  • TDavid, the people who think they are going to win are really vested in gambling even to the point of addiction. I don’t mean people who throw away a little money at casinos for entertainment, if they can afford it. Gambling of various sorts tends to attract the poor disproportionately, though. So, society has to protect them from themselves.

    I agree that Eric should write an entry on gambling.

  • And what is all this talk about cheese? Are we in Wisconsin mode or something? What did I miss here? LOL 🙂

  • Eric didn’t state his reasons, Mac Diva. You said: Gambling is a stupid practice for the reasons Eric cited above

    1) Eric did say:

    I am not the right person to comment on indian casinos: I abhor gambling of any kind, but especially state-sponsored gambling, in which government preys upon the gullible and stupid.


    Did I miss a post?

    His abhorence for gambling seemed more specifically aimed against lotteries (which aren’t run by Indian casinos). Can’t argue personal preferences, but I’d be curious to hear him elaborate in more depth on his abhorrences for gambling in general.

    2) Gambling is “stupid” for those who think they are actually going to win, but for those who go — like my wife and I do — as a source of entertainment it is fun for us (admittedly it’s more fun when we win than lose, but fun nevertheless). We always use discretionary funds and we expect to lose, so it’s no different to us than blowing money on a nice dinner and show.

    Some people like to purchase season tickets to sporting events, go dancing, clubbing, attend the theater or hit the bars. We would rather go sit and listen to a live band and play some (relatively) mindless game of chance. To each his own 🙂

    I am curious, though, about what bothers you so much personally about gambling, Eric, that is if you are comfortable sharing that, of course? Did you know a problem gambler or something?

  • browngirl

    BB, I am a mother of three, and my husband and I live in a predominately black neighborhood, and because our contact with whites is really limited to work and television, I have noticed some real disparite concepts about the state of white wealth in this country.

    I feel the reason why so many people get the impression that whites are born with silver spoons in their mouths is that the media tries to push this “American Dream” of shopping incessantly, living in a home where you don’t want for anything, and also being able to buy your children what ever they want. The majority of what we see on television is not the reality for most families. As we know, many Americans, white and people of color, are one paycheck away from poverty.

    The myth of the middle class, which if you look at the tv, sometimes seems inextricably linked with whites only, keeps consumers shopping and the economy afloat (hah! a whole ‘nother discussion).

    I fear I’ll be redundant if I continue so I’ll stop here.

  • Eric Olsen

    I appreciate how hard most people try most of the time. There will be genuine differences of opinions on how to address what are agreed upon problems. All you can do is continue.

  • BB

    Well said “browngirl”. I have a saying that I tell all of my kids and wife who are not “white”. When I see doggy-doo I walk around it.

    As a white man who is the father of a mixed race family I too have seen racism and believe me when I say it hurts and there has been many a time I wanted to smash somebody’s face in because nobody treats my family as second class. There are ignorant people in this world and they are unfortunately everywhere. On the other hand I have been personally treated with bigotry having lived in a country that was predominantly of color. I have read the book “Black Like Me” and trust me when I say I have felt the sting of racism. BUT I don’t wear it on my sleeve nor do I allow my family to use it as a crutch to get ahead in society. They have all gotten jobs on their own merit in a predominantly white society and I am extremely proud of them.

    Regarding MD’s comments, being a “white” person I wish to unequivocally denounce the myth that most white people are born with a silver spoon in our collective mouths. My Irish ancestors were treated like dirt in America (just watch the movie “Gangs of New York”) after the English stole their lands, and they never had affirmative action to help them. All colors and races have been at the brunt end of racism one time or another and that is a historical fact. I personally do not have much “assets” nor am I one of those fat cats who smoke stogies around the board room and drive a mercedes. The vast majority of white people in this world are just average folk like yours truly. Just because there is a disproportionate number of white wealthy people in America does NOT mean that most white people have it better than people of color. Ninety percent of the wealth in this world is owned by 10% of the population. Just ask the Sultan of Brunei and he will tell you.

    I personally have spent most of my life being an advocate for those that have little, and acquiring assets was never a priority so please don’t preach and try to make me feel guilty over a few gluttons in this world. Most people understand that asset ownership is a cultural phenomena and not everybody aspires to it. Your thinking is old school and you have admitted affirmative action has not worked of which no doubt you are part and parcel with. All that it has accomplished is to create an industry that is as self-serving as any casino.

    I understand there is a problem but it’s time to look at this fresh and without the colored spectacles. Put aside your “white” (God I am sick to death of that word) people fixation and start looking at this sensibly. Let’s make laws that enure equality for everybody and then leave well enough alone.

    I know everybody is as sick to death of this topic as I am, so please forgive me but I felt it had to be said. Ok I’ll get of my soap box now so please, let’s start loving each other and stop building fences, and when you see doggy-doo just walk around it and say cheese 🙂

  • browngirl

    I happened upon your site in search for the Janet Jackson “booby trap” stunt, and instead wow, look what I found! This is great. I honestly feel, as a person of color, that we have a chip on our shoulders. Of course, there are historical reasons for the “chip”.You can change the law to include people of color, but that doesn’t change the hearts and minds of white people who abhorred anyone other than whites.

    The only way for “racism” to be destroyed is for there to be open, honest discussion, without fear or oversensitivity. Assigning the racist label to anyone who points out faults or inadequacies of one race basically shuts down any kind of dialogue at all.

    I find that many who “protest too much”, are really showing signs of an inferiority complex. There is no reason why people of color should constantly argue that they are equal, unless we are trying to convince ourselves of something that we don’t really believe.

    More open minded and enlightened whites need to educate and communicate with other whites and lead by example. Too often,as an outsider, it seems that whites are all too ready to turn a deaf ear or a blind eye when questionable comments are made. We all need to take responsibility for our roles in the furtherance of racism in this country.

    Then we can get rid of the ridiculous notion of race and deal with what really matters, cultural heritage and ethnicity.

  • Shark

    Coupla things to clear up here:

    1) David Hockney built the pyramids.

    2) Wal-Mart ‘invented’ slavery.

    3) Cheese is just milk with a long shelf-life.

    Yer welcome.

  • As long as the harms of discrimination still determine the outcomes of most nonwhite people’s lives, efforts to improve those lives are justified. My objections to Indian casinos are:

    1) Gambling is a stupid practice for the reasons Eric cited above,

    2) Casinos will not solve lack of assets problems, and

    3) The profits go disproportionately to the ‘leadership’ instead of the desperately poor within tribes.

    When affirmative action programs are successful I heartily applaud them. I can’t think of people more entitled to get some equity from America than Indians and African-Americans. All that work for all those years and nothing to show for it. Affirmative action is barely a drop in the bucket.

    What about the white men who whine about the tiny segment of government contracts or tribal autonomous zones that favor minorities and women? In a society where the overwhelming majority of all assets are held by white people, I believe there is something wrong with the whiners. I wonder why they are not whining about the 90-something percent of assets in the country that are in the hands of white people instead? Is it because that is ‘how things are supposed to be?’ And, if they are so capable, why can’t they compete in the regular market economy instead of coveting the small segment of business minorities and women lay claim to? I think it is all of a piece with the long history of white men believing that they are supposed to get their way all the time.

  • duane

    That’s spooky about the Discovery Channel. The prime number 37 appears over and over again. The average weight of the Cheops stones is 37 hundred pounds, the average number of people who walk to its peak is 37 every 28.9 days, the average number of people who complain about no ice in the drinks over at the Great Pyramid gift shoppe and sandwich shoppe is 37 per day, my parents have 37 pictures of the pyramids in their photo album. I am becoming more and more convinced that aliens had something to do with this. Kinda makes you say “Hmmm.”

  • Eric Olsen

    omelette du fromage

  • BB

    Is this the cheese channel?

  • Eric Olsen

    The Discovery Channel has solved the mystery of the pyramids … 37 times.

  • BB

    TD any reasonable person will tell you that preference based on race for any reason, business or otherwise, is wrong. Like you said two wrongs don’t make a right. By giving more to one you have to take from another and all that accomplishes is resentment which leads to even more bigotry. The best (and only) answer is too make laws that ensure opportunities are accessible to everybody on an equal basis and let well enough alone. But we know that’s not the way government works. It seems to prefer convoluting matters and to create divisiveness in the rank and file.

  • duane

    “There are things that can’t be explained about those pyramids.” That’s because they’re really really old, and the Egyptians weren’t very diligent about documentation, unlike, say, the Romans. No doubt, once the pyramids on Mars are fully explored, we will know a lot more.

  • BB – I wasn’t suggesting that white people “invented” slavery, I was pointing out, albeit too vaguely I suppose, that this is a drum that is often banged. It seems like after reading your commentary that we pretty much agree on things here.

    I am curious though on the business-oriented issues that I addressed and would be curious how folks feel about that.

    And I was just mostly kidding around on the aliens comment, but I have truly seen something about that on one of those Sunday afternoon TV shows. There are things that can’t be explained about those pyramids.

  • My guess is that Indian casinos will turn out to be relatively short term gain. By that, I mean that if we look at what happened to the average worker, say 25 years from now, we will not see that the era of casinos made any difference in asset poverty. Well, maybe for the handful of opportunistic ‘leaders’ who tend to grab control of any money that enters tribal hands. But, not for most of those involved. Furthermore, the popularity of those casinos will likely be over. They will look like Atlantic City’s did before its relative renaissance.

    Many if not most, tribal governments are pits of corruption. I think that happens because Native Americans have such high rates of illiteracy, physical and emotional problems. (Yes, though many people do not realize it, worse than African-Americans.) A sneaky, savvy person can take over a tribal leadership position and funnel money and property to his family and friends without even half the population having a clue what is going on. So, it is not the tribe per se that is responsible for the outrages one sees on reservations, but individuals taking advantage of the tribe.

    As for someone I shall annoint Gouda Cheese, I understand he went the trying to break into tribal leadership route and was soundly rejected. So, that is part of the reason for his marginality and poverty. He is obsessed with wanting to be leader of something, though. For the life of me, I have never understood why. I don’t see that he has any skills of that sort at all. Another mystery is what happened to Gouda doing the 40 or so years he spent being white. He was already the way he is now when he turned up in Indian country.

  • duane

    “All civilizations, cultures, colors and creeds since the dawn of mankind are guilty of hideous crimes….” Except the Norwegian Vikings, of course.

  • JR

    I think ant colonies employ slaves (insects of other species), although at that level of cognition there’s some question of whether there’s any “will” to enslave.

    In any case, I suspect slavery is like rape, it never had to be invented because it was always practiced in some form. Humans just needed to become self-aware and empathic enough to realize that somebody was being victimized. After a few million years, we finally decided it sucked enough to outlaw it.

  • BB

    TD I’m not certain if your question is rhetorical because I thought that would be obvious 🙂 I believe Eric has answered it fairly well. It would also apply to other ancient civilizations such as the Aztec & Mayans of the Americas, etc. The point is we fixate on recent history as if white people are the only monsters on this earth. History (and recent events at BC) has shown that evil has no color preference and that is the way it should be (color blindness that is – not the evil part). All civilizations, cultures, colors and creeds since the dawn of mankind are guilty of hideous crimes and none us has the moral right to be smug. All of our ancestors have done things that are shameful and its time we stopped the finger pointing and looked at our own geneology. When we start looking inward then we can look at our fellow man with a little more tolerance and understanding. End of speech.

  • duane

    ‘Chariots of the Gods’ by Erich von Daniken. Another fine example of pseudoscientific pollution.

    In yon olden times, any civ that had the power to acquire a slave class did just that.

  • Where did I hear that it was aliens that built those pyramids? Was on one of those tv shows … Unsolved Mysteries, Ripley’s Believe it or Not … or maybe it was a Whitley Strieber novel.

  • Eric Olsen

    I don’t know who “invented” it, but the Egyptians were big on it like 6,000 years ago. The pyramids were built on the backs of slaves.

  • BB – feel free to enlighten: who ‘invented’ slavery?

  • BB

    “I’m sorry that the white man hired, traded, maintained and abused slaves.”

    Lest we forget – white folk did NOT invent slavery. Just read your history or the Bible (oops did I just say the B word).

    Now everbody smile and say “cheeeeeze”

  • Tek, you are the best! Me, I’m somewhat lactose intolerant. It is a problem common to my people (which are, um, “Americans”). So I don’t eat much cheese.

    Or no, wait, maybe those are unrelated.

  • Dawn

    I am with you Ms. Tek, cheese just binds me up.

  • Okay, anytime someone mentions Yeagely, I am going to start to talk about cheese.

    So, today, I did not eat anything with cheese in it. Still, later on this evening, I may have cheese on a sandwich. I just don’t know yet.

  • Eric Olsen

    can’t argue with access to education for everyone, mike

  • shame i missed that thread before it closed, but iwent to look at the article anyways to see just what the fuss was about.
    “Everyone knows about the high number of crimes committed by “blacks” against whites. With the advent of “Civil Rights,” the number of “black” rapes of whites soard. It’s “black” men who desire white women, or just non-“black” women.”
    strange, no mention of the high number of crimes by “whites” against blacks. Maybe this Yeagley guy thinks he knows which side started it (even tho i’ve no doubt such an issue would evade the best historians, most likely hidden deep, deep within the mists of time). Worse still, he implies that Janet did the stunt because she wanted to show off that everyone loves her.
    I also noticed this little gem further up that page:
    “…they performed their typical sex-oriented African undulations…”
    I mean, has this guy ever actually listened to any white-produced rock music? the majority is about love, sex, love and sex, love and sex and drugs, and how good these things are. And yet he implies that African music is somehow dirtier. I’d count that as racism. You know why?
    Racism = the judging of a person/people based upon their race or skin colour. You don’t get around the fact that you’re a racist just by being sneaky and doing the judging “indirectly” by drawing inferences to use as “proof” that you are “simply stating facts” as opposed to expressing a (racist) opinion.
    you can be a knowledgable racist, but that doesn’t stop you being a racist.

  • mike

    Equalities breed inequalities so, in the end, it is a question of which inequalities you are willing to live with.

    For example, it is a good idea, I think, to give people genuine access to free, universal education, without any consideration at all to a person’s ability to pay (putting aside for a moment how society would pay for this).

    The only criterion for advancement would be how well each individual took advantage of these opportunities.

    There would then be an explosion of an “inequality of resentment,” because people who chose not to take full advantage of these opportunities would bitterly resent those who did, human nature being what it is.

    That would create a whole new set of social problems (just as ending segregation created new “problems” as more blacks took advantage of integration, fueling fierce white resentment).

    But I think it would be worth it, since it would allow society to take full advantage of people’s abilities and initiative.

  • Eric Olsen

    The best we can do is try to assure equality of opportunity, not result.

    I am not the righ person to comment on indian casinos: I abhor gambling of any kind, but especially state-sponsored gambling, in which government preys upon the gullible and stupid.