Because when a capitalist necromancer who works for the Goddess of Death tells you, “You dun goofed talking about the dead,” what is the sane and reasonable response? Is it:
A) Admit you dun goofed.
B) Find something else to talk about and try to avoid discussing said “goof.”
C) Double down in utilizing the dead as your pawn to achieve your political ends after having been told “you dun got it wrong.”
Well, apparently if you’re Rhyd, you choose C and double down about using the dead as your pawn to try and convince people that they’re evil and only by following you can you possibly gain salvation. Because it is Rhyd who shall be our salvation from this evil world of capitalism, with his various ministers of defense and ministers of propiganda. So let us look at Comrade Rhyd’s latest attempt to master the necromantic arts and have the dead fight for him: Blood Cries Out From The Soil
(this is for the dead)
Oh I doubt it…
Fighter jets are flying overhead; their screeching rage punctuating the rumbling roar of heavy-tread machines behind me. Particles of dust and exhaust cling to sweat-drenched skin in the searing sun. Everything feels dry, desiccated, as if all the shadowed life of this place has been swept over by a sudden desert.
And…let me guess, Rhyd’s pretending to be a soldier now. Lost in the vast sandy wastes of Afghanistan or Iraq or Syria, fighting and dying in the name of Capitalism and Imperialism to defend the greater good of his countrymen.
I forgot who I was talking didn’t I?
My attention’s drawn to something unexpected–four red strokes against white, crimson vivid as blood, pasted against a steel pole. It’s a glyph, a sigil, with a power steeped in terror. I need to leave this place to find a friend, but my attention is held. Something hardens in me as I stare, a sorrow awakening in veins constricted by anger.
Oh boy, what dun did it now…
I cannot believe what I am seeing. I look around myself to see if others note it. Women wearing head-scarfs are gathered nearby, speaking to each other quietly next to buildings which soon, too, will become rubble to be hauled away. It’s unlikely they’ve seen this mark.
Ohhhh, mysterious symbol steeped in terror, made up of for strokes…wonder what it is. I’m going to guess it’s a cross. Let’s see, red on white background, I’m going to go with redcross symbol. Except that only takes two strokes.
Also, nice attempt to paint it that you’re in the middle east Rhyd, but I know you’re not. You’re A) Pagan and B) Gay, and that is a double strike death sentence over there. The only question is they stone you for witchcraft or toss you off a building for being gay. Of course, they could go the ISIS route and throw you, then stone you…
I scrape it off the pole. No one seems to note my actions, neither the uniformed man who watches the gathering of Arabs a hundred feet from this pole, nor all the others passing by. It peels off easily, and I slip it into a pocket to show others, just as another aerial machine-of-death makes a second pass over where I stand.
Sooo, this is a symbol of hate you feel compelled to remove…but you’re keeping it to show to others. You know, this reminds me of some other times I’ve heard people claim to find “hateful messages” left for people of their community, but instead of leaving the original intact to prove its validity, we’re left only with some scraps in the hand and claim of harassment…
I’m standing on a street corner in Seattle, not the Middle-East.
Pretty sure it’s racist to use the term “Indian Country” these days. But hey, we call Europe that because it basically meant “Indian Country” to the Greeks, so give it a few thousand years and we’ll see what happens. Still, maybe you should have called it “Native American Country” or “First Nation’s Country” even though lately archeology seems to be showing that the Native Americans weren’t even the first people here in America and may have actually wiped out the original peoples here. But hey, the research is still in its first decades or so, so we’ll see.
Also, figured Rhyd wouldn’t risk his life by going to the actual Middle East where they would murder his Gay, Pagan ass. Nope, he’s just gonna sit safely in western civilization and whine about how cruel and unfair it is. Despite the fact he gets to be both Pagan and Gay here…
There’s a naval celebration going on–those jets are The Blue Angels a military performance troupe. I’m not in the middle of a declared war-zone, but I am in the middle of an occupation. And the sticker? It was three K’s, placed on a light pole in the middle of a traditionally black neighborhood undergoing massive gentrification. The bulldozers behind me are tearing down old homes and shops to make room for high-priced condominiums.
Well then they’re not “death machines” then are they? They’re show cars, basically. Way to misrepresent things for your own ends there, Rhyd.
Also, three Ks. As in KKK. As in something that at best can be made with Six Strokes, not Four. Something generally made with nine, now that I think about it. And you’re telling me that someone, in Seattle, put up a sticker with KKK written on it in a black neighborhood. Seattle, one of the most liberal cities in the USA.
But go ahead Rhyd, tell us more about how “reclaiming” things is bad.
This was not far from the house I’m staying at. My host has been a First Nations man who was adopted out as a child to a white family who actively worked to keep him disconnected from his indigenous past. Neither of us have ancestral connections to Seattle, though he’s got closer claims to actually being on this land than I.
Also, he’s gay, like I am. Seattle’s a remarkably “tolerant” place for sexual minorities who play the middle-class games. It’s one of the reasons why I’ve stayed here so long, why I returned here after being gone for a year. I was elsewhere, searching for home, but this place called me back.
I’m part Cherokee. So I guess that makes me part First Nation then. So does this mean I can tell Rhyd to get his white ass off my land?
Also, Rhyd middle classed confirmed. Doing pretty well for himself considering he’s supposed to be an anti-capitalist working against systems of oppression. So I guess he’s got no problem playing the game because it gets him something he likes (a bunch of tolerant, middle class friends who look down their noses at everyone else). So…once again we have a middle class white person trying to tell people how to live their lives.
But by being here, I’m helping to displace the people who lived in this neighborhood before. In fact, this was one of the few places where blacks could live in Seattle due to redlining and other practices. I’ve met folks who still remember when it was called “coon town.” They’re younger than you’d think.
I live in Appalachia. I’m pretty sure we still have places called Coon town around here. I guess not everyone is lucky enough to live in such a nice, tolerant location where Coon towns are memories rather than realities. But then, I don’t see Rhyd fighting against terms like “Chinatown” or “Little Italy” so…I guess those people just aren’t worthy of racial consideration then?
Oh that’s right, it’s Black Lives Matter, not All Lives Matter….
Still, I have to ask. If Rhyd really is displacing black people from their homes, why the Hel does he stay there. If he knows his presence is enforcing what he believes to be a racist and unjust action…why doesn’t he go somewhere that he can live without contributing to this unjust and racist action? I’m just gonna have to chalk this up as another example of Rhyd not even bothering to practice what he preaches.
White, mostly liberal folks, flooded this area after the recent housing-price collapse, buying up foreclosed homes. Many of those evicted were black. Many, from the stories I’d heard, had taken out equity loans on houses that their grandparents were born in and found the sudden inflation of rates meant they couldn’t pay it back. Real estate agents harassed the residents who hadn’t lost their homes; My neighbor and friend complained of still getting unsolicited offers from white realtors several times a week. The poor, mostly minorities were pushed out, and bourgeois entered.
TFW “white liberals” are more responsible for the displacement and subjugation than “racist conservatives.”
Like no joke, all Rhyd and co can talk about is how the “Alt-Right” is racist and wants to subjugate and disenfranchise minorities, and yet here we have a perfect example of “Liberals” including Rhyd himself…subjugating and disenfranchising minorities by buying up the homes they lost (and apparently tearing them down to build newer, modern homes. At least by their own standards and beliefs. This is comedic gold as far as I’m concerned.
Blacks were hauled over in slave ships to help white people make money in America. Immigrants were brought in to build the railroads and then vehemently oppressed when they were finished. And all these groups helped displace the indigenous First Nations before them.
You been listening to Black Hitler haven’t you Rhyd. Look, I’m not going to deny slavery happened, I am not going to deny that slavery was about helping make money. However, slavery ended over one hundred and fifty years ago. Hell, the civil rights movement was like sixty years ago. Equal rights have been had by all, and while equal rights doesn’t mean equal chances of success, at least the chance can be had.
Fucking Hel, we have had a black president for almost eight years now. Heck, early on in the Republican presidential race it looked like we were going to have another one (which I would have liked, I’ll be honest). If the most powerful man in the entire world is Black, I’m pretty sure the case can be made that the issues faced are not insurmountable. But go ahead, I’m sure you’ve got more racist screeds to go.
Did I just say displaced? I’m sorry. I meant slaughtered.
Actually, if my memory is correct, most Native Americans died to communicable diseases. Sooo, not sure you can call them slaughtered in that case. And yes, a lot of them died via wars, but a goodly portion of those wars they had a hand in starting. War is always a chance that you’ll end up the one destroyed.
You know Rhyd, it’s like you’re claiming minority peoples have no agency of their own and they can only be victims of white people…That white people have all the power. Minorities can’t do anything. Hmmmm…..
You used to be able to get money for “Indian” scalps. The U.S. government once encouraged people to shoot buffalo to help starve the First Nation resistance to westward expansion. Freed-slaves who joined the army were heavily involved in the Indian Wars and called Buffalo soldiers. And even today, “Indian Country” is U.S. Military slang for enemy territory.
Yeah, you used to get money for Indian scalps. You could also get “money” for settler scalps. There was a scalp trade. Both sides funded it. Both sides used it. An Indian warrior was esteemed by how many scalps he took. Hel, the entire idea of Scalps was an Indian Tradition, and when Indian Scalps were taken it was repaying what the Indians had done to their victims!
See, this is what happens when you forget history in favor of political ideologies. You tend to erase that the bad behavior you’re criticizing actually originated from the other side, the one you’re championing. Scalping was always an Indian thing. Europeans just used to take the whole head.
At which point you could be sure that the victim was actually dead. A fair bit of scalping happened while the person was still alive. Not to mention the whole “scraping skin and muscle off with sea shells” while the victim was alive.
There’s a reason Indians were called Savages, and it didn’t have much to do with racism to start with.
But because of all that violence, the smallpox blankets and massacres and starvation, this open, tolerant, liberal city I live in has space for me. I’m “free” to practice my Pagan religion now, and the same military which killed natives now officially recognizes both my religion and my sexuality. This is all supposed to be “progress,” except I just saw a KKK sticker in a traditionally black, gentrifying neighborhood, and we’re all on stolen, conquered, and occupied land.
Fun Fact, the small pox blankets were actually a failure. It was one of the first attempts at germ warfare, but the people doing it were so ignorant when it came to diseases that their attempts never worked. Yes, a lot of Indians died of small pox, but that was from natural and even accidental communication…not deliberate warfare.
But let’s see, according to Rhyd our military has changed from an organization which supposedly existed for the wholesale slaughter of native Americans, but now it not only has Native Americans as part of its forces, it allows gay people and Pagans recognition within its ranks. It has become an inclusive space where people are not judged by their race, creed, or gender/sexual orientation….but this isn’t “progress” enough for Rhyd.
Because he saw a KKK sticker.
I hate to say this, but if the world has managed to shift so drastically that instead of mass murder the only evidence you can find of racism is a sticker…I’m tempted to call it mission accomplished. I mean, you can openly live as a person that would be imprisoned or killed just hundreds of years ago in this country, and who would still be killed in a lot of other countries. But no….this place is evil. Because it accepts you. Better to be good, like those other places (which don’t.)
We Inhabit The Past
What we know and believe that the past and our histories greatly determine how we encounter the present. Without knowledge of slavery, for instance, I might be inclined to see the poverty of minorities in America as some sort of problem inherent within their cultures or, worst of all, intrinsic to their very nature. And if I am ignorant of that past, I might encounter all the anger, rage, and despair of minority communities as unwarranted, unjustified, and dangerous.
Well, given your supreme ignorance of all things historical Rhyd, I can see why you apparently are willing to make judgements based on Race and assume things you consider bad are based on inherent cultural flaws rather than the products of past event which created the present situations people find themselves living in.
What Rhyd is doing here is basically saying “If I didn’t know the events of the past, I would assume this group of people are a bunch of whining shitlords who are asking for dangerous changes which are unjustified.”
Which, when you think about the grasp of history he has shown, along with modern politics, might be why he pretty much does this to European people’s in general and groups like the alt-Right in particular. Ignorant of their history, he sees only anger which he deems unwarranted, unjustified, and dangerous. But when he looks at say the black community, social justice community, and BLM, because of his “grasp of history” he sees their actions as warranted and justified. Despite the fact that they are the exact same actions, if not worse, than anything presently done by the Alt-Right.
What Rhyd “knows and believes” of the past is that White people are inherently evil and imperial, and thus all their actions are evil and imperialistic. He does not, however, appear to know about any of the imperialism against “whites” that might have driven them to do the things they have done, nor the vast fluidity that is white ethnicity, their individual actions, and so forth. Because he “knows” this about white people and “Believes” this about white people…all white people are privileged, living off the fattest sacrifices of minorities, and have never suffered at all.
Unfortunately for him, I know history better.
Most everyone, though, knows about slavery and has at least a vague understanding of the slaughter of First Nations people on this continent, so the matter is less what is actually known than what is actually believed about those things.
As I’ve mentioned before, belief affects human actions, not just human perceptions. Our accepted histories are not mere narrative. They rise to the category of belief precisely because they determine the way we encounter the present.
And some of us believe in objectively proven, historical facts, and some of us believe in racist, classist diatribes which care less for facts in history and more about narratives in history.
For instant, I know that the events in American Colonization were sparked off by the 700 year long enslavement of the Spanish by the Muslims. Where as Rhyd believes it occurred because “white people just wanna kill shit and steal stuff.” No wait, I remember, white people did it because they got taken over by ancient chronomancers who used time and clocks to enslave all of humanity for capitalist production and the destruction of “natural time.
One of the most difficult problems in our histories is the notion of “progress;” the Enlightenment notion that we have moved beyond the past into a better present. This Progress Narrative is a way of divorcing and disconnecting our present from all the atrocities of the past while justifying our actions now. Once, Americans held slaves and treated minorities as less-than-human, but now, we are equal. Once, Americans slaughtered indigenous peoples on this land, but now we’ve passed to a more progressive, enlightened state.
Wow, progressive liberal arguing against progress.
I haven’t seen it all, but I’m getting close.
But just in case it’s not clear, what Rhyd is saying is that because we were a bunch of racist shitlords in our youth, we can never rise above that and be decent people. We will always be racists, we will always be sexists, and we shouldn’t even try to rise above that because the idea of “progress” and becoming a better people and nation is complete bullshit. Because in the past we were not perfect as peoples. And in fact the entire idea of “progress” as a people to become better people is just an excuse to be racists and sexists in our past.
It’s a narrative of the past, certainly, but it defines what we think of ourselves now. Post-Colonial, Marxist, and Anarchist scholars have variously noted how Western civilization creates a conception of itself which poses all other present and former societies as primitive, existing in a less (politically, economically, and socially) evolved state. That is, it “others” all societies besides itself, positions itself as the most-evolved form of society humanity has yet attained, and then sees all societies (including itself) through this filter.
And now he’s arguing against a “progressive mindset” that seeks to improve society. If I didn’t know any better, I’d almost suspect that the next bit is going to be about how we should in fact regress as a society or something. Because those societies which judge based on race, sex, gender, and so forth, are judged “primitive” and thus do not have the sin of prejudice that our modern “progressive society” does towards such things…
A particularly pernicious effect of this, though, is that parts of our own society that do not fit this narrative become ignored, made invisible by the story we tell about ourselves. We see moments of crime against sexual, religious, and racial minorities as aberrations to the liberal, tolerant society in which we live, as if all the past is behind us and all the blood of scalped and starved natives, of tortured slaves, of murdered immigrants do not, even now, fertilize the ground upon which we plant our organic gardens. And when we look at our past, we disconnect those events from the present in which we live. The displacement of peoples, slavery, First Nations genocide–those happened then, but we live in now.
So the sins of the outlines are in fact the truths of all of society.
Believe it or not, this is the man who called me a islamophobe because I dared criticize the “outliers” of Islamic society who practice violence against the infidel and its past history of massive violence and enslavement of the infidel. So the man who told me I shouldn’t judge an entire people because of its outliers and its history of violence…is now telling us we should judge all of society for its outliers and its violent history.
But history is full of processes, not just events and presences, which continue to haunt and continue to not just shape but inhabit our modern interactions with each other.
The post-colonial historian, Dipesh Chakrabarty, writing about European mode of disenchantment and secularism, noted:
what allows historians to historicize the medieval or the ancient is the very fact that these worlds are never completely lost. We inhabit their fragments even as we classify ourselves as modern or secular (Provincializing Europe, p112).
And we’re about to have more double think here aren’t we. “Because bad things happened, this group’s actions should be excused or understood and supported, but he fact that bad things happened to this other group is no reason we should excuse their actions or understand and support them.”
This has a terrifying consequence. Our notion of being different and removed from the atrocities of the past is utterly false, even more so when those atrocities are unacknowledged and unrepaired. White Americans do not currently own African slaves, but the conditions of slavery continue to affect the descendants of those slaves and the wealth derived from slavery continues to benefit the descendants of those owners and American society. The land taken from indigenous peoples through violence is where we all now live. We’re not just the inheritors of atrocity–we are also the beneficiaries and the continuation of them.
Quit your job, sell everything you own, donate that money to a native american tribe…and then kill yourself.
I mean, Rhyd is saying here that because “black people suffered in the past, no black person can fully rise above it, and all white people are the perpetrators of war-crimes.” Which means, according to his logic, Rhyd’s very existence in this nation is nothing short of a war crime he perpetuates with his every breath, his every deed. According to his reasoning, every moment he lives is paid for with the “blood of minorities.” Now, it doesn’t matter that Rhyd probably has never raised his hand against a native american, or that he’s certainly worked for black people in the past (hell, he’s a government employee, he works for Obama, his boss is a black man), none of these things matter. By his logic, he can’t even be friends with the Native American guy from before because Rhyd’s very existence is a crime against that Indian dude.
Now, it doesn’t matter the wars, plagues, religious persecution, or invasions which drove Europeans in leaky boats across barely charted seas to live in lands that would kill them at every turn with hostile locals who would scalp them given half a chance. It doesn’t matter what wars or plagues or famines drove them to bring over Africans to help with the work. Nothing bad that ever happened to White People which might have motivated their wars, their enslavements, and their exterminations (often which were Progressive Ideals) has any part of the matter. What forced them to act isn’t important. That the very same things he complains about them doing to others were being done to them isn’t important. What matters is right now, at this moment…they’re not the one suffering, so it’s a okay to demand they be made to suffer and be held accountable for every evil thing.
At which point I realized that Rhyd sounds like Hitler.
Seriously, let’s change it around. Let’s switch “white people” with “Jews” and “minorities” with “Germans.” What do we get? “Because the Germans suffer at the hands of the Jews for Jewish profit, even though the Jews were exploited and punished the past into the position to do these things, we must now treat the Jews as the evil oppressors of the German people.”
We can look at our present through this lens and start to understand much of our current political, racial, and economic crises and how we, willingly or more often inadvertently, continue the atrocities of the past into the present. The United States of America was birthed in colonization with the oppression of peoples. Is it any wonder that our government supports other governments doing similar things? It took a very long time for the U.S. Government to stop supporting Apartheid in South Africa precisely because “European settlers on non-European land” looked awfully familiar. We can see the same thing in the Middle-East, as well. Regardless of what one thinks of that conflict, it should give us pause that the U.S. Government has given more military aid to the Israeli government since the second World War than to any other country in the world.
I’m just going to take a bit to bask in the fact that a) Rhyd apparently doesn’t know as much about South African politics as he thinks he does and b) he just complained about the USA supporting a nation (the only nation mind you) that permits full rights for women, gays, and religious minorities in the Middle East.
Because remember kids, helping a nearly exterminated people to exist isn’t the right thing to do. It’s the oppressive thing against everyone who wants those people dead.
We’ll carry on in Part 2