Culture Warriors category archive
Thom’s guest discusses the cultural similarities between American white supremacists and Muslim extremists.
Elizabeth Catte discusses the history and legacy of eugenics in the United States with Sam and his crew.
This is a longer video than I usually post, but it is well worth a listen. As the discussion points out, we have a way of
covering up forgetting covering up the uncomfortable parts of our history.
You can see the dynamic today in the attempts by right-wingers to ban critical race theory.
The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette’s Tony Norman marvels at (yet more) Republicans who believe in a fairy-tale American past.
George Santayana’s famous saying has never seemed more apt: Those who do not remember the past (or, in this case, those who would pretend the past never happened) are condemned to repeat it.
At Psychology Today Blogs, Paul Thagard argues forcefully that there is such a thing as the common good and that it extends to actions to protect public health. Here’s a bit of his piece:
. . . the rights to freedom and privacy are never absolute. If you drive at double the speed limit down a crowded street, the police may stop you, demand to see your driver’s license, and give you a dangerous driving charge that can land you in jail. Violations of your freedom and privacy are justified because of the high probability that your behavior will cause great harm to others. The avoidance of harms and the provision of benefits justifies many other limitations on personal freedom and privacy, including laws against murder, income tax, vaccinations for schoolchildren, antipollution laws, and gun control.
He made an unexpected match on Bumble.
“I did storm the capitol,” he said, according to court documents. “I made it all the way to Statuary Hall.”
His potential date wrote back: “We are not a match.” Then, the Bumble user contacted the police.
Then the police contacted him . . . .
At Above the Law, Elizabeth Dye takes a look at My Pillow’s lawsuit against the Dominion voting systems manufacturer and suggest that its legal reasoning may be slightly wanting.
At Above the Law, Tyler Broker argues that, even as the popularity of religion has been broadly declining across the United States, attempts to favor religion and discriminate against nonbelievers (his term) have escalated. Here’s a snippet:
Federal courts have banned nonbelievers from speaking to their own legislatures, banned nonbelievers from holding private jobs such as wedding celebrants for nonbeliever couples. Another federal panel (that included the liberal-minded Diane Wood and now-Justice Amy Barrett Coney) held last fall that states can favor religious gatherings over nonreligious expressive gatherings, including political gatherings. Never mind that political speech has been universally recognized as being at the heart of the First Amendment guarantee. Never mind there are many cases in which the Supreme Court has held, again, and again, and again, that religious expression must be treated equally with nonreligious expression. Because it is painfully obvious the law has nothing to do with such decisions.
Favoring religion in the law and disfavoring nonbelievers can only be explained by bigotry. Only a bigot would claim religious citizens and religious expression is worth more to this country than nonreligious citizens and nonreligious expression. Only a bigot would claim this country is “only suitable and sustainable for a religious people.”
Nika Kabiri explores what persons fall for and hold on to conspiracy theories. She identifies three factors:
- First, conspiratorial thinking may have psychological roots that need to be addressed first. Recent research from Emory University suggests people prone to conspiratorial ideation have low social self-esteem and exhibit signs of narcissism, among other traits. . . .
- Second, underneath all conspiracy theories are coherent ideologies, a master world-view in which conspiracies are normative (rather than unusual). This worldview is so compelling that a believer can espouse two inconsistent conspiracy theories at the same time, as long as each aligns with this underlying ideology. . . .
- Third, all people resist new evidence that challenges their beliefs to varying degrees. Confirmation bias leads all of us to do online research using keyword searches that are bound to serve up what we want to see. . .
Follow the link for a more detailed discussion of each, as well as her thoughts on how to combat conspiratorial thinking.
Werner Herzog’s Bear mulls over Republicans’ “culture war” strategy, first wielded with effectiveness by Richard Nixon, and the implications of said strategy. Here’s a bit; the entire article is well-worth the three or four minutes it will take for you to read it (emphasis added).
….it also emerged this week that the Republicans are planning a political strategy based on the culture war, as opposed to policy. Some have mocked this, but I see it merely as the continuation of the one reliable strategy Republicans have had for the past fifty years. Some are puzzled that they are calling themselves a “working class party” while failing to do anything to materially improve people’s lives. They forget that the Nixon strategy depends on resentment, on saying Republicans are protecting good people against the elites. They don’t mean the economic elite, whom they wish to shower with tax breaks, but the “cultural elite.” Anti-university, anti-trans, anti-environmentalism, and anti-anti-racism all fit into this.
At the Des Moines Register, an immigrant from Viet Nam who came here at the age of nine muses on her American experience. Here’s a bit:
I have felt my chest tighten in anger that had nowhere to go because people I love were told to go back to their country. I learned at a young age that my parents’ accents, and my own, were something to try to hide — instead of recognizing the accents for what they are: signs that we can speak in a language other than English. I’ve had to defend how “American” I was because of my ties to the Vietnamese culture. I’ve been taught to justify my humanity by how “good” I am, how much I pay in taxes, and how I contribute to society — instead of living by the familiar creed that all “are created equal … endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”