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White Supremacists Do the Funniest Things

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Little Adolf Campbell is only three, but this birthday may be one he'll remember. That's because his parents decided to contact their local paper and sparked an online furor after their local ShopRite supermarket refused to fulfill their order for a birthday cake with the boy's full name – Adolf Hitler Campbell – inscribed on it.

ShopRite says that their policy prohibits inappropriate messages on cakes, and that this one was pretty clearly inappropriate. Adolf's parents refused the store's compromise offer to make them a cake with space on it to write their own message, and are bewailing a world in which their little boy cannot even have his own name on his birthday cake.

The Campbells, of Holland Township, New Jersey, were eventually able to get the cake they wanted at a nearby WalMart.

Enmeshed in this tempest in a teacup are some delicate civil rights questions. The deluge of comments which greeted the story's appearance included the inevitable ones wondering why on earth anyone would saddle their offspring with the name of history's most notorious genocidal maniac, but also others echoing the Campbells' dismay that the supermarket would penalize an innocent child because of his 'inappropriate' name. Both opinions have weight, but they run up against some strong and valid objections.

Adolf's father, Heath Campbell, is a paragon of disingenuousness. He cannot understand why people are so upset over the incident and thinks they should learn to be more tolerant. He says that he is proud of his German heritage and dubbed his son thus because he thought that it would be great for him to have a name that no one else would have. Apparently he has never heard of such distinguished and almost entirely uncontroversial Germans as Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, Friedrich Schopenhauer, Otto von Bismarck, Bertolt Brecht and Franz Beckenbauer, any of whose names would seem to serve the purpose just as well. The fact that Adolf's two sisters are named JoyceLynn Aryan Nation and Honszlynn Hinler Jeannie also gives the lie to Mr Campbell's protestations of innocence.

There's an old semi-joke that giving a child an excessively odd or unusual name is a form of abuse. Lawmakers in some countries seem to agree: for instance, until 1993 in France parents had to choose from a government-approved list, and there have been recent moves in New Zealand to prevent the giving of egregiously bizarre or offensive names. In the United States, however, the Campbells' right to name their children whatever they wish is protected under the due process clause of the 14th Amendment and a weighty body of statute and case law, most pertinently the Supreme Court decision in Griswold v. Connecticut.

The right of a child not to be abominably named is much vaguer . The United States is not a signatory to the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (although President-elect Obama has promised to address this) and even if it were, many of its provisions are already encoded in various federal and state laws. Court decisions have tended to the paternalistic, deferring to parental authority for the most part unless – and sadly, sometimes even if – there is serious physical or mental harm to the child. There has been much judicial to-ing and fro-ing over whether children even enjoy 'full personhood' at all, with the correspondent protections that the Bill of Rights would give them. So, since Adolf's parents seem genuinely confident that he will not inevitably encounter psychological hell at the hands of his peers once he starts school, it will take a lot more than his birth certificate to constitute mistreatment in the eyes of the law.

About Dr Dreadful

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ Roger Nowosielski

    That’s funny, Cindy. He’d never stoop so low.

  • Cindy D

    Les,

    Thanks for that article. It was informative. Then I got to the Lenin quote. That scared me.

    I still can’t figure out what the “law of value” actually means. Wikipedia isn’t even a help.

    Recently the biggest customer of a distributor of our product asked for a price decrease on behalf of Agfa. It is unprecedented. Never has a corporate giant asked us for a lower price (than was initially negotiated). Agfa can’t afford to pay.

  • http://www.fontcraft.com/rod/ Dave Nalle

    Cindy, I wouldn’t be surprised if Agfa has fallen on hard times. Of all the companies I did business with when I was in traditional publishing they’ve been the least successful at adapting to contemporary technology. Out of curiosity, what do you do that you have Agfa as a major supplier?

    And yes, I’m all for protest. Protest of all kinds is good. It’s fun and educational too. Just don’t expect me to stand around holding a sign. I’ll find other ways to express my dissatisfaction.

    BTW, why would you care if I had your last name? Is it magical? Is it Rumpelstiltskin?

    Dave

  • Les Slater

    Cindy,

    “I still can’t figure out what the ‘law of value’ actually means.”

    Substituting ‘the operation of the market’ will get you sufficiently close in the context it was used in that second to the last sentence.

    Les

  • Cindy D

    Dave,

    We sell a chemical to print newspapers and make silk-screens, the old fashioned way, cheaply. Therefore, most of our business comes from outside the country where cheap is the salient variable. The computer to plate industry has been putting us under in the U.S. Our business is now increasing from the South and the East. Poor countries.

    Good Dave. You support protest. I won’t worry about my name. Even a pacifist can be paranoid.

  • Mark Eden

    As Lenin helped us learn… There is no hopeless situation for the bourgeoisie so long as state power is not wrested from it by the proletariat, led by a revolutionary movement that will not, at the decisive moment, fear the awesome responsibility of assuming power and shrink from taking it. And holding it.

    The history of Lenin’s revolution is the refutation of his theory. We will not successfully transcend the Capitalist State (and the crises inherent in capitalist production) by supporting a ‘revolutionary party’ to ‘take and hold’ its powers.

  • Mark Eden

    (Thanks Chris. That looks better, but note that that whole 1st paragraph is a quote.)

  • Cindy D

    Mark,

    I forgot to tell you. I don’t have any photos of NY. My camera failed (should have read the instructions maybe :-).

    If the organizer ever gets around to sending me the photos she took I’ll post them.

  • Mark Eden

    Cindy, I keep stopping by to read your article. How goes the process?

  • Cindy D

    The most interesting person I talked to was a fellow who came over to admonish us for supporting such a “small” problem. (Why didn’t we go and support something important.)

    The few demonstrators were fun. Two had no idea what this demonstration was about. They had met the Anarchists in a bar and got drunk with them. They were in favor of any kind of revolution, so they showed up.

  • Cindy D

    Mark,

    I’m done. BC didn’t contact me yet. I didn’t put my posting name in the notes. Just used my pen name.

    Maybe they don’t like me. lol

    I’ll send it to you if you like.

    e-mail me from my site.

  • Mark Eden

    Empty bellies will change the nature of demonstrations. So long as Wendy’s can serve up a double cheeseburger for a buck is there really a need for a revolution?

    Cindy, re your piece: I think you should wait for the guys to have time to get it edited/posted. I would think that they’ll get back to you shortly.

  • Cindy D

    I haven’t sent it in. They never initially contacted me.

  • Cindy D

    I filled out the form. I assume it’s too soon. I only did that Thurs? I think.

  • Cindy D

    I have been troubled by police brutality at peaceful demonstrations.

    Just threw that out there, it’s on my mind a lot.

    BTW, I’m going to a 3 hour forum discussion on the Greek revolt. In Philly Jan 8. I’ll let you know what happens.

  • Mark Eden

    I’ll just have to be patient. Sure hope it wasn’t a ‘timely’ piece.

  • Clavos

    Empty bellies will change the nature of demonstrations. So long as Wendy’s can serve up a double cheeseburger for a buck is there really a need for a revolution?

    Quoted for Truth*

    *May Wendy’s and their ilk long prosper…

  • Cindy D

    No, not timely. An look back.

  • Mark Eden

    Until dissenters focus on activities akin to ‘making salt’ they are not likely to generate serious retaliation. (But you can figure that participants in demonstrations of solidarity have their pictures on file.)

  • Les Slater

    Mark,

    “The history of Lenin’s revolution is the refutation of his theory.”

    That’s the opinion of anarchists, assorted other petit bourgeois leftist radicals and most of the reactionary right. The fact however is that the Stalinist counterrevolution was not Leninist, communist or Marxist. The theoretical ‘contributions’ of Bukharin, socialism in one country, market socialism, etc. embraced by Stalin are what lead the Soviet Union in the direction that it went.

    Lenin never thought that a socialist revolution would be successful without the workers in more advanced capitalist countries like Germany taking power and coming to their aid. That is why the Third International was formed. This international was abandoned in spirit and then formally by Stalin.

    Les

  • Cindy D

    There have been mass arrests. felony charges–for dancing (It apparently “incited” the crowd). Amy Goodman was arrested. IVAW were trampled by horses. An practically unconscious vet was denied medical help. People held down and having tear gas sprayed multiple times in the face. With no resistance.

    Completely peaceful demonstrations (dancing and sitting in a park–not really even demonstrating), huge ones. Even where many people at the park were there for a different reason. A guy sleeping on a bench–gets arrested.

    Terrorist = $1000 worth of property damage.

    Enough graffiti = terrorism.

  • Cindy D

    I don’t care about a photo in a file–unlinked with my name.

    I’m only worried about a background check. If I didn’t want to teach I wouldn’t care at all.

  • Cindy D

    Les,

    I’m posting this because this is my understanding. ???

    I can’t support that.

    Lenin was a leader of the Bolsheviks.

    Marx and Lenin’s views contrasted

    Lenin stood for state capitalism and argued that socialist democracy is in no way inconsistent with the rule and dictatorship of one person. Was Lenin a Marxist?

    snip

    In power the Bolsheviks proliferated the wages system making it an accepted feature of Russian life. Wage differentials, too, were frequently greater than those obtaining in western society. Surplus value, from which the capitalist class derives its income in the form of profit, rent and interest became the basis of the bloated lifestyles of the bureaucracy. A contrasting feature of state-capitalism and “private” capitalism is that, in the latter, the beneficiaries of the exploitation of labour derive their wealth and privilege from the direct ownership of capital whereas, in the former, wealth and privilege were the benefits of political power.

  • Cindy D

    (wonders what Les is telling the Republic workers)

  • Mark Eden

    Les, you make my point. My read on all ‘revolutions’ that have claimed to be Marxist/Leninist is that they fail to transcend the market. There’s always some reason to fall back into capitalism. Why should the one that you propose be different? ‘Party’ is not the negation of capitalist state structure from which a ‘third term’ will develop. (And as a proud member of the petit bourgeoisie it is only proper that I hold this view.)

    Cindy, I was thinking more about head cracking and numerous injuries when I wrote ‘serious retaliation’.

  • Cindy D

    Yeah, Mark, but it is the act of terrorizing people that prevents dissent. That is my concern. The move toward repressing even peaceful protest = less people to protest.

  • Cindy D

    I’ll just buy a gas mask.

  • Mark Eden

    Don’t forget the hard hat.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ Roger Nowosielski

    Cindy,

    I took the liberty to e-mail you another excerpt. I think you’ll enjoy it.

    Roger

  • http://www.fontcraft.com/rod/ Dave Nalle

    Cindy:

    Our esteemed boss, Eric Olsen, is waiting on your email address and user name so he can set up your account. Can you contact him using the link in the upper right corner of this page?

    I’m eager to see your article.

    Dave

  • Cindy D

    Dave I did, I think Thursday. Okay I’ll try again.

    Ti ringrazio.

  • Cindy D

    o i c…

  • Cindy D

    Les,

    In case you come by. There are some things I was wondering about. So, I am putting this thread to active.

  • Cindy D

    Les,

    duplicate of my last post. Good night.

  • http://www.fontcraft.com/rod/ Dave Nalle

    I’m only worried about a background check. If I didn’t want to teach I wouldn’t care at all.

    Hell, if you want to teach in Austin you should put your photo in a protest on the front page of your resume. They’ll hire you in a second.

    Dave

  • Cindy D

    LOL Dave!

  • http://biggesttent.blogspot.com/ Silas Kain

    They have teachers in Austin?

  • Irene Wagner

    In the story of the little birthday boy Adolph, an ironic new chapter is being written.

  • Legna Moned

    Wow – now that’s what I call a story. Your comment on one of my articles (a point very well taken by the way), in combination with your own name — “Dr. Dreadful” — peaked my curiosity about you – and ironically led me to your December article about poor little Adolf Hitler Campbell. Boy, the world is so sad and weird sometimes. On the plus side, you are an excellent writer and you certainly made me think a lot about the rights of the named and the namers out there. Thanks for getting my mental juices flowing again today. I look forward to reading more of your articles. Nice job.

  • http://drdreadful.blogspot.com Dr Dreadful

    Thanks for your kind words, Legna!

  • Karl Gharst

    Let White Supremacy be What White Supremacy Is
    The old tactics – telling lies and calling names has really worked in the past for the “sons of Hell” in their quest for the destruction of God’s Holy Seed upon the Earth. Well, we know what works for us, too! It is the truth that sustains the righteous in our World.
    So, let us put our racial theories to practice, shall we?
    White Supremacy: Name the race of people that have accomplished more – or even as much as the white peoples of the Earth. What race of people would you be better off living with if good white people decided that you were no longer welcome in our God-given land! (Pick well, because the separation of the races is a fact that is happening right now and those who only spite us and curse us are not going to be among us much longer!) What other race of people would you feel more comfortable piloting the next airplane on you fly on? Whose medicine do you reach for when you are sick? Whose Laws and whose Justice do you seek and you find yourself innocent and in a courtroom? Whose kindness do you look for when you are in trouble and who would you rather have defend you when you are being treated poorly?
    Now for those who have been honest so far – we have many problems that maybe you white supremists can help us with?
    Perhaps you’ve noticed it is this same God-given kindness we are known for that has been exploited in the last few generations or so with the inundation of all the other peoples of the world into the homelands, ancient or otherwise, that were once exclusively for White Christendom. These are our hate-crazed, mentally ill, Baal-worshipping, Talmudic Rabbis who we first (mistakenly) let live among us a few hundred years ago that have socially engineered this “death by genetic flood” we are facing today! Their belief comes right from the foot of the Tower of Babel, itself, “… The people seek to make themselves one, now, of all they seek to do what then shall be kept from them …?”
    We also know that the nonwhite peoples of the Earth have only come to live with us because of their great faith in “white supremacy,” despite the rabbis worst intentions. We know no one ever asked to be born, so we don’t hold anything against you because you exist – we only ask that you allow us a place on the Earth to exist – a place where white people can call home? If you can see this far thru the smoke and dust the Rabbis have kicked up – we (the ones who the Rabbis are calling “white supremists”) will see to it that you have a place called home and a right to defend yourself. If you have faith in Jesus Christ and can agree to obey His good laws – you will never have a greater friend on this planet than your White Christian friend! Because…
    For those who say the Earth is not big enough for white people to live here, too – I say let this kindness once afforded to you be withdrawn! I say let those curses you’ve called upon us now come raining down upon your head! I say let your homes be broken in and your strong men bound and your daughters ravished. Let the plagues of Egypt be upon you and your bodies boil over with the sores of Job! You who leer and at our daughters and you who misuse our sons and lay your hands grievously upon His priests, “let these death angels you have summoned for us now come among you and gather their harvest!”
    You know, the Rabbis lied to their own people, too! They knew they weren’t these people called Israel – (but then “rolling up balls of mud into godless, mindless, soulless ‘mud-people’ to do the Rabbis’ bidding is what the Talmud is all about so it shouldn’t surprise anyone when we find them doing it! See; golem)
    The Rabbis plan on taking off with all their wealth to somewhere like Barbados in the last days – leaving the better but poorer Jews behind to take the brunt of the punishment for their great crimes – just like they did in Germany and just like they did in Haiti 212 years ago.
    I will tell you “that they will be making Rabbis into ‘Rib-eyes’ in Barbados on His day!” Karl Gharst

  • http://blogcritics.org/writers/dr-dreadful/ Dr Dreadful

    Um… thanks for sharing, Karl.

    I think.