Sunday, July 30, 2006

Conservative Leaders Insult and Blame Katrina Victims

Conservative Leaders Insult and Blame Katrina Victims

Some conservatives are stooping so low as to put all the blame on the blacks who couldn't escape New Orleans during Hurricane Katrina because they were poor. Hearing them take stabs at the character of desperate human beings who were confused and living in their own feces at the Superdome while Washington D.C. virtually abandoned them is disgusting to me.
The Reverend Jesse Lee Peterson, president of BOND -- the Brotherhood Organization of a New Destiny -- says many blacks in New Orleans were too dependent on government to flee from the storm.

He says that when officials then put evacuees into the Superdome, "within a three-day period they turned the dome into a ghetto." He says that showed "a lack of moral character."
Bill Cosby-izing Hurricane Katrina victims is about as low as you can go.

Listen to more of this crap:
Rev. Grant Storm, who is the Caucasian minister and president of Conservative Christians for Reform, echoed Peterson's view. "The mentality of 'government's going to bail me out. Where's the government?'" is "in the black culture," Storm said. "The mentality is instilled within their churches and in their homes -- of 'the government owes you, the government is your solution, and the government will come and help you.'

"When the government doesn't come and help them, frankly all they do is yap and complain," said Storm, instead of "saying 'Hey, I better go get a job, I better go on my own, I better go find an apartment, I better go take care of myself and my family.

Those who fail to realize what it's like for the millions of Americans who are living in poverty today who work for wages that will never afford them upward mobility [and will likely not even get them through the month without a shortage for things their families require] are completely out of touch if they believe that any government program today is to blame for "keeping them down." If they believe that the government owed no responsibility to these citizen-victims of Hurricane Katrina, and if they believe that expectations were not bitterly crushed and the chaos and loss of lives, homes, and jobs was the fault of the victims, I'd say that they are too elitist and too stubbornly ideological to possess hearts and minds worthy of American political leadership.

It is not poor blacks or any other New Orleans citizens who had caused the hurricane or the disastrous response of the federal government. We have to look at the breakdown of the emergency response system and at an economic system that rewards the richest while failing to provide social spending to empower and educate low-wage or unemployed workers.

What's next? Will these dolts blame weatherman Al Roker for Hurricane Katrina? It would make as much sense. Its all Al's fault for turning the Gulf Coast into a ghetto!

Tar Heel Tavern Edition 75

Tar Heel Tavern Edition 75

Erin did a great job on the Tar Heel Tavern this week. Number 75 is HERE.

Billy Jones will host next week's edition.

Turkey Proposes Peace Force With Conditions

Turkey Proposes Peace Force With Conditions

As I reported here on Friday, there is breaking news that Turkey is proposing a peace force in Southern Lebanon.

Let's not assume too much from this headline. There are stil reservations and conditions on Turkey's part.From
Turkey is hesitant about the planned UN-led military force, and Ankara will not participate in an international force if the clashes with Hezbollah continue.

Before engaging their forces, Turkey would also require that Hezbollah agree to the implementation of the UN’s decision to disarm them. [Do we really think this will happen anytime soon?]

In response to Zaman’s questions, diplomatic sources revealed, “We will not rush soldiers to embattled areas.”[..]

There are other voices from the peace conference held recently in Rome, and the following is an example of just how hard this is going to be. The goal of the U.S. to disarm Hezbollah without acknowledging them or Syria in international discussions; obtain a UN agreement; and create an international peacekeeping force while completely avoiding the requiring of Israel to cease-fire is looking pie-in-the-sky- especially since the most recent development where every country in the world except the U.S. is publicly expressing repulsion upon seeing Israel randomly killing innocent women and children:
[..]In response to the question “What would Turkey’s attitude be if the mission of implementing the UN peace force includes disarming Hezbollah,” Ankara replied, “It depends on the parties’ (including Hezbollah) positive approach.”

Foreign Affairs officials on the other side responded: “The UN decision regarding the international force will be taken first. States are free to join. The direction, time and the mission of the force are crucial. A force, which will have an active role when weapons are laid down and the ceasefire starts, should keep the peace in the region.”

My question still stands: What concession will Turkey get from the U.S. for their participation - and will it inflame passions amongst the Kurds [specifically PKK] in northern Iraq? As always, oil is the material for which the forces of greed and the lure of power will walk over the human rights of any proud population who stands in the way.
With the opening of the Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyan pipeline on July 14, and the pumping of Iraqi crude to begin in a few days, Turkey's hopes of becoming a key player in the global oil industry is closer.
Listen to the fear and frustration from a Kurdish doctor who is beginning to lose faith in the U.S. support of a system that fairly addresses human rights in their dealings with Turkey [because of the conflict in Lebanon]:
"....the Israeli Terror holocaust is not sparing anybody in Lebanon in their killing and destructive attacks. The Islam-inclined Turkish government was very careful not to raise its voice against those crimes. That spells danger to me for Turkey may well be tempted to follow the Israeli example and attack Kurdish populations in the south to force the PKK into surrendering and disarming."

On Meet the Press today, a Lebanese representative said that he wished world leaders would use their brainpower instead of their firepower. There's the soundbite that says it all. In international relations and support for healthy Western-firendly democracies in other nations, Bush is losing Lebanon because he cannpt reconcile his seemingly blind support for Israel, regardless of their wanton bombings in Southern Lebanon. His administration is now risking international relations with Turkey. How could this have happened? To say that Iraq is not related would be a deadly error of judgement when looking at the overall picture of where the failed Bush foreign policy has taken us. If U.S. citizens have lost the democratic power to demand a change in the course, I'm afraid there may be no outcome other than a new and deadly world war with the United States as a tepid international influence because of a president who never took the advice of the best and brightest minds.

Related Articles:

For Turkey, challenges - and opportunities? - in the current Middle East crisis []

The Return of Turkey's Kurdish Problem [LA Times op-ed by Henri J. Barkey]