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White House Just Demanded A Black Trump Critic Be Fired. John Legend’s Response Is Perfect

Laura Conway

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White House Just Demanded A Black Trump Critic Be Fired. John Legend’s Response Is Perfect

 

Yesterday, White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said on live television that ESPN should fire African American Sports Center host Jamele Hill for tweeting “Trump is the most ignorant, offensive president of my lifetime. His rise is a direct result of white supremacy.”

The renowned musical icon, the aptly named John Legend, as he often does, saw the despicable display and responded with the perfect tweet (below).

The White House’s un-American attack on free speech from the highest office in the land — and against a woman of color — has again sounded the alarm bells over a president whose despotic tendencies are rivaled by his rampant misogyny and racism.

We should all be concerned by the president’s incessant attacks on critics and the truth. Thanks to Legend for succinctly and perfectly expressing the glaring problems in the Trump White House.

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Weinstein Makes Trump’s Debauchery Look Like ‘Child’s Play’ (VIDEO/TWEET)

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Weinstein Makes Trump’s Debauchery Look Like ‘Child’s Play’ (VIDEO/TWEET)

 

Ever since the news broke that megaproducer Harvey Weinstein had sexually assaulted dozens of women and paid them thousands of dollars to keep quiet, we’ve seen a remarkable display of distortion and contortion on the right. Many of the same people who continued to back Donald Trump after the “Access Hollywood” tapes came to light have tried to claim the moral high ground on this matter. They’ve tried to use Weinstein’s status as a longstanding Democratic megadonor to tie him around Democrats’ necks.

But one conservative talk show host may have done something even more outrageous than that. He claimed–with a straight face–that Trump’s alleged misdeeds aren’t nearly as bad as those of Weinstein.

Weinstein has fallen from Hollywood legend to Hollywood pariah in record time. That fall continued over the weekend, when the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences expelled him. He also faces criminal investigations on both sides of the Atlantic. Inevitably, that’s triggered questions about why Trump hasn’t been held to account yet. Apparently that didn’t sit well with the folks on “Fox & Friends,” because they felt the need to find a counterpoint.

They got one in the person of libertarian Republican talk show host Larry Elder. Think Progress got a clip.

After reading a series of tweets suggesting it was time to call Trump on the carpet now that Weinstein was facing justice, hosts Steve Doocy and Ainsley Earhardt asked Elder for his thoughts. Elder hit the ceiling.

“Oh, for crying out loud! Harvey Weinstein has had now, I think, over 30 accusations of sexual assault, including five accusations of rape! Whatever Donald Trump has done is child’s play compared to this.”

I had to listen to this twice in order to believe what I was hearing. Is Elder willing to tell the 15 women who have accused Trump of sexual assault that what happened to them was merely “child’s play”? Is he willing to say that to the faces of the three women who spoke up this weekend to Buzzfeed?

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Believe it or not, the rest of Elder’s soliloquy went downhill from there. See for yourself.

Elder riffed about how Weinstein’s debauchery was an open secret in Hollywood for years, and blasted “Hollywood A-listers” and “social justice warriors” for not speaking up sooner.

What Elder didn’t tell you is that once this finally came to light, Weinstein fell fast and fell hard. Within four days, his own company had fired him. By Saturday, the British and American film academies had given him the boot. On Monday afternoon, the Producers Guild of America began the process of removing Weinstein. This is far, far, far more than has ever been done since women started coming forward with allegations against Trump.

Let’s be clear. It is nothing short of disgraceful that the lid wasn’t blown on the dung pile surrounding Weinstein sooner. But at the end of the day, what is done once matters like this comes to light is as important, if not more important.

Earlier, Elder harrumphed that Trump had “not admitted to being a sexual assaulter at all.” One has to wonder if Elder was listening to the same tape that the rest of the nation heard. Trump was clearly speaking about things he’d actually done to women. And even if you dismiss that, you can’t credibly dismiss a recently uncovered tape in which Trump told Howard Stern that he groped Melania in public.

But then again, Elder is in no position to say anything to anyone about this issue. A quick perusal of Elder’s social media feeds reveals that on October 8, 2016–hours after the tapes were released–Elder shared a link to a story from the notoriously right-wing “news” site Western Journalism suggesting that Dan Senor, a senior adviser to House Speaker Paul Ryan, had leaked the tape in an act of “sabotage.” No, this isn’t snark.

Screenshot courtesy Elder's Facebook

Screenshot courtesy Elder’s Facebook

Unless I’m very wrong, just hours after we learned that Trump had been caught on tape reveling in degrading women, Elder was seemingly endorsing a call for the messenger to be effectively shot. And yet, during this same time, Elder was bleating and screeting about how hypocritical the Democrats were about Bill Clinton and the Kennedys.

Let’s see if we’re understanding this correctly. Last year, Elder showed he was more worried about who leaked the “Access Hollywood” tapes than the fact they revealed Trump was a debauched jerk–while at the same time calling out Democrats for coddling people with a h. And now, he’s not only claiming that Weinstein is far worse, but is wagging his finger at Hollywood for covering him up. Process that for a moment.

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Last week, Sebastian Gorka claimed that Weinstein happened as a result of Democrats destroying the right’s culture of respect for women. If what we saw from Elder is an example of that “respect,” I’ll pass.

(featured image courtesy Gage Skidmore, available via a Creative Commons BY-SA license)

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NJ Teacher Tells Class To ‘Speak American’

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NJ Teacher Tells Class To ‘Speak American’

 

Last week, a high school class in Cliffside Park, New Jersey played host to one of the most staggeringly racist incidents in recent memory. When a teacher overheard some of her students speaking Spanish, she snapped that they ought to “speak American.”

On Thursday, The Daily Voice learned about a disturbing video from Cliffside Park High School. A teacher overheard students whispering in Spanish. But she couldn’t leave well enough alone by merely telling them to stop. She had to play the race card. Watch here.

The teacher was heard snapping at the students:

“Men and women are fighting. They are not fighting for your right to speak Spanish, they are fighting for your right to speak American.”

Understandably, that didn’t play well with the students, at least one of whom walked out.

On Friday, the principal called an assembly to discuss the issue. Apparently that didn’t diffuse the matter, because on Monday, some 50 students walked out of class during fourth period. They walked out waving flags from Puerto Rico, the Dominican Republic, and Brazil, among others. Cliffside Park High is one of the most diverse schools in New Jersey; some 67 percent of the student body identifies as minority, and they speak more than 40 languages. At last report, almost 64 percent of the students spoke a language other than English at home, with Spanish accounting for over 44 percent.

According to WABC-TV in New York, the student who was the object of the teacher’s ire was Yenifer Pinales, who said that the teacher blew a gasket after overhearing her speak Spanish. According to the fluently bilingual Pinales, the teacher yelled at her that she was “fed up with you speaking Spanish.”

When Pinales told the teacher that she was disgusted at those comments, the teacher kicked her out of class. However, this seems to be a classic case of “two wrongs don’t make a right.” While Pinales shouldn’t have been whispering, this teacher’s response was beyond unprofessional.

A number of residents stopped in the street to watch the walkout. One of them was Rene Lavergeneau, the former foreign languages and English as a Second Language coordinator for the public schools in nearby Hackensack. She told The (Bergen County) Record that it was “deplorable” for a teacher to say such a thing to a student “who’s here because this is a land of opportunity.” Lavergeneau said that the teacher should have understood that “speaking Spanish is an asset.”

Students of many ethnic backgrounds took part in the walkout. Among them was Turkish-American Eren Dayakli, who was particularly insulted by the teacher’s claim that soldiers were fighting for the right to speak American. Dayakli said that both of his uncles served in the military, but “they weren’t even born here.”

The walkout took place despite threats that anyone who did so would be suspended. Considering the circumstances, there’s no defensible reason for suspensions here. After all, the students were not provoking anything. They were responding to provocation–possibly intentional, but a provocation nonetheless.

The Cliffside Park Board of Education called a meeting for Monday night in closed session to discuss a personnel matter–presumably related to the teacher. At the very least, this teacher is in serious need of sensitivity training. As the son of a teacher, and as someone who counts a number of teachers as friends and has dated teachers in the past, this woman is in serious need of sensitivity training. And unless she can explain why she couldn’t have simply told Pinales to stop whispering rather than rant about the need to “speak American,” she owes that class an apology.

(featured image courtesy Jim.henderson, part of public domain)

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Richard Spencer Isn’t Just Racist–His Sexism Says Women Shouldn’t Vote (TWEETS)

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Richard Spencer Isn’t Just Racist–His Sexism Says Women Shouldn’t Vote (TWEETS)

 

It’s been amply established that Richard Spencer is one of the worst people in the world. His life’s dream is to establish a white-only country that would be a “safe space” for the white race. To that end, he has also called for “peaceful ethnic cleansing“–without explaining how it is possible for ethnic cleansing to be at all peaceful.

What you may not know is that his views on women’s rights are just as backwards as his views on race. Newsweek’s Michael Hayden discovered this in an interview with Spencer shortly after his second Tiki torch rally in Charlottesville.

Spencer and Hayden were discussing the Naturalization Acts of 1790 and 1795, a pair of breathtaking documents that effectively limited naturalization to free whites of good moral character who had lived in this country for five years. Hayden reminded Spencer that we lived in a very different world now, and then asked him if he wanted to go back to the days before women could vote. When pressed, Spencer said that he didn’t think it was “necessarily a good thing” to let women vote.

This shouldn’t come as much of a surprise. Remember, Spencer is essentially a Nazi, and his views seem to echo the Nazi line on the role of women. Hitler felt that women should primarily be wives and mothers, and were locked out of most positions of responsibility.

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It also represents a natural evolution on Spencer’s view that a woman has no business in the White House? Why? He doesn’t think women should be entrusted with foreign policy.

Megan Squire, a professor of computing sciences at Elon University, sees something else. To Squire’s mind, Spencer’s wariness about letting women vote is an outgrowth of his racism. She believes the alt-right is “upset that the world is changing around them”–and one of the most visible signs of that change is the influx of women in the workplace. This certainly makes sense. After all, it gets on these knuckledraggers’ last nerve that they are indeed being replaced.

Christina Speer of Fordham University sees something even more ominous. She believes that if the alt-right wants to take the vote away from women, then there’s no longer any doubt–“they want to roll back the entire 20th century on us.”

Spencer’s only public response so far has been a couple of retweets. One was from reporter Ken Klippenstein, which summed up the alt-right’s view on women having the vote in just a few words.

Spencer then retweeted a reply from Evan McLaren, the executive director of Spencer’s racist think tank, the National Policy Institute.

So even if women were allowed to have the vote, they should only vote the way their husbands tell them to vote. Lovely.

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For some time, I’ve wondered what it would be like to be a white nationalist’s girlfriend or wife. Well, now we have our answer.

(featured image courtesy Vas Panagiotopoulos, available under a Creative Commons-BY license)

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