June 26, 2011

Crankage-Creep Part 3: Black Whackodoodles, Advanced Tokenism, Minority Authenticity, and Blackaphilia

Find Crankage-Creep Part 1 here

Crankage-Creep Part 2 is here

So um, who actually bought into this representational nonsense?

Two items: One from We Are Respectable Negroes:

Herman Cain, Grand High Vizier of the black garbage pail kids black conservatives and political coprophagist is upset that John Stewart mocked him. Apparently, when he gets called out for flubbing the Constitution, rank bigotry against Muslim Americans, or silly talk about a 3 page maximum limit on all Congressional bills, it is an act of racism. The critical self-reflection rule would seem not to apply, as Cain, in an act of self-delusion that is enabled by his white populist fan base, quite literally has the complexion for the protection.

And one from The Propagandist

Even after the President dismissed Hamas as a peace partner, said a unilateral Palestinian statehood push is a dog that won’t hunt and promised to veto any such resolution at the UN security council, right-wing activists called him “the worst President of the United States that Israel has ever had.” This is a piping-hot crock of bunk. The sole purpose here is to scare grandma. And if a picture tells a thousand words, what better way to illustrate Republican Israephilia than for the Tea Party's biggest rock star to wear a Star of David around her neck on Yom Yerushalayim. What’s next? Piper’s bat mitzvah?

Today's topic is political solicitation and pandering. It's not just the Republicans trying to rack up all those upper-middle-aged Jewish votes from Florida, or letting people like Herman Cain absorb and deflect the anti-Black race rage of their constituencies for them, all while labeling everyone else with the world's most infamous shut-up, "racists!!!"

It's also leftydoodle Cynthia McKinney's traveling A.N.S.W.E.R. Circus of Crazy, which I was remiss to have missed at the local Universalist-Unitarian church last week, because I was on a deadline. I really wish I could have shown up. Ah, I've no doubt there will be plenty more amusements in coming months.

The New Progressive Alliance (NPA), the latest lefty factionalists who showcase such steering committee members as Cornel West and Cindy Sheehan, is on some pander tour around the Black parts of Washington DC. Which is to say an awful lot of DC, minus the Capitol and toney areas. They are there to inform, um, certain people, that Obama is a Republican!

Just like MLK! oh wait...

Curious Negro Re-education campaign it is, which suggests people not to vote for Obama, yet offers no alternative of their own. Read a fantastic takeapart of this obvious get-the-country's-most-coveted-voting-bloc-to-forfeit-their-numbers-from-Obama campaign at Angry Black Lady's.

Not to be outdone in the downward slide into offline sockpuppetry, there is an emergent, please-pander-to-me type, who raises the concepts of "shill" and "sellout" to the level of a sacrament; who seems to think tokenism is good, desirable, and a symbol of status (even as they are used as status symbols themselves.)

After a tumultuous two weeks for the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation, which included the resignation of the organization’s President, Jarrett Barrios, and seven members of the Board of Directors, Troup Coronado, a former AT&T executive at the center of the controversy resigned from the Board of Directors yesterday of his own accord, according to a statement from GLAAD.

Coronado wanted “to do what was in the best interest of GLAAD,” the press release stated.

Little else was available about the Board member’s departure, but the Board did release parts of Barrios’ letter of resignation from this past weekend.

“Of utmost concern and foremost in all of our minds must be the well-being of GLAAD,” Barrios wrote to the Board. “The staff continues to work hard and does not deserve to work under a cloud, nor do they merit the distraction that it has become from our organization’s fine brand.”

According to Michelangelo Signorile’s blog, Coronado remains on the Boards of several LGBT organizations including the Equality California Institute. While GLAAD stood at the center of the scandal, the spotlight is beging to shift to other organizations tied to Coronado through his work as a Board member or supporter, or his work at a liaison to LGBT organizations from AT&T.

Speaking of Equality California Institute, this scandalette peaked just in time for our transition from celebrations of mere pride to celebration of legal equality.

Nice going, fellas.

This advanced form tokenism conflates being a target market with having political clout. That's not a new observation in the queer community; the critique of the corporate-sponsored commerciality of pride parades, for instance, have been around strong for at least 15 years. I fit your narrow standard of beauty and have lots of money, it says; market your political platform to me and I might reward you with a vote. Regular people call this being a tool. I'm dating myself, here, but we used to call it After the Ball syndrome. Today, that critique goes by that mean epithet, Gay, Inc..

It gets worse in Homotopia. Oh Crap has mentioned before this BDS-creep into the political lgbt world. Ostensibly standing against "pinkwashing" on the part of Israel, this movement seems a pinkwashing, pandering effort itself, to put a gay face on anti-Israel/anti-Zionism.

Hey now don't get me wrong. It's a free country, so far be it from me to stop anyone's boycott of high-end foodie olive oils and fine bath salts I can't afford, anyway.

BDS campaigns seem pretty easy; a lot easier than the boycott of the originary Apartheid state in the 80s and that was even prior to Usenet and Compuserve! Just tack scare words like apartheid and human rights to your social media. That should help in getting the lecture circuit's hottest walking commodities to lend credibility to your cause, and say it's a Freedom Ride, or something. The more Black people recruited for that effort, the better for your perceived, symbolic moral/civil rights standing.

Anyone who thinks I've jumped off the deep end of cynicism should try it, it works (major caveat: if you can find someone to play that role for you.)

Or, you could just slather those three magical letters "MLK" all over everything. Since we're monolithic, single-issue voters mesmerized by those mystical, thought-stopping initials, I'm sure that will work, too, just like it's working so well for the Republican Party, the party of Lincoln that also campaigns on the Confederate flag...oh wait, you mean that might not work??


The United States of Social Hysteria

Pandering efforts towards ethnic, religious, and racial minorities are about as old as they are completely transparent. Yet, they work...for someone. Somewhere.

With Cain and Palin becoming the public faces of both Christian Zionism as well as the victimized-conservative narrative the states' righters have apparently been chomping at the bit to finally try out for themselves;

with white nationalist professional gay-baiters like the American Family Association's Bryan Fischer callously attempting to bless Muslim-baiting Cain as the "real", "authentically-black man in the race"

and Cain, just as antigay, turning right around to say he'd welcome gays and lesbians into his fantasy/fictional presidential cabinet, based on some confused ideas about "Shariah law";

with crankodoodles like C. McKinney and those A.N.S.W.E.R. creeps who never seem to have met an antigay Muslim-supremacist dictator they didn't like (this is currently passing for some form of "progress");

with LGBTs who litmus test on how much you hate Israel, as if that has jack crud to do with anything;

with their absurd Homocon counterparts like Michael Lucas parroting skinhead arguments against Islam and Muslim immigrants to "defend Israel";

and with some of mainstream rightwing's second-string unhinged crazies on board looking like tea party tokens Allen West and Alveda King, the Innisses of CORE, ("A Black Pastor") Rev. Jesse Lee Peterson, Palin Mama Black Bear Endorsees Star Parker and Angela McGlowan,

...I don't know who that "someone" is going to be, in the coming election season.

Indeed, it seems the Obama Age is the era in which a noted presence of Black People™ stands not only as symbolic racial redemption, but also are becoming the go-to face for the crazy. Like Chauncey often relates, this gives me the frowny-face.

Meanwhile here on terra firma, Sarah Palin is often derided for her moneybags attitude in racking up those speakers's fees, but she's by no means alone.

Does anyone really believe the Republican party or the hate-Obama left truly want Black constituencies, or a Jewish one? or a Muslim one? No, they want hashmarks at the polling place, a lot like the theater owner wants rear-ends in seats: temporarily, then quickly shuffled out to make room for the next batch of dupes. Neither are poised to get it, in my view.


ETA: Link corrected.