My New And column, on Ted Cruz’s claim that Christians never commit terrorism. And therefore Muslims, because of their innately terroristic personalities, deserve to be kept out, or profiled or locked up. In short, the massive surveillance-and-detention system Republicans have championed since 9/11 should be used on Others, never anyone Like Themselves.
•My previous column discussed how much the paranoia over Islam resembles the fear of Japanese that led to the internment. And wouldn’t you know, Trump refuses to say whether he’d have authorized it. Now, while that could theoretically be humility—”maybe I’d have given into the irrational fear too”—not saying anything like “Well if I did I’d have been wrong, just like FDR” would seem a logical thing to put in there. But instead he babbles about how war requires “tough choices.”
Well, yes. Like not giving in to fear and paranoia and bigotry (rather than saying we’ll kill their families). Which Trump does, and he continues to pull the Republicans more racist-ward (“to the right” seems inadequate). Which may be shrewd politics—the more racist he is, the more the spotlight stays on him.
Just to clarify things, no Japanese-Americans were ever convicted of espionage. There’s no evidence the internment hindered whatever spy networks the Japanese government might have had in place (despite wartime movies such as Little Tokyo, USA and G-Men vs. the Black Dragon in which it was the trump card that sent their network of fifth columnists crashing down). It was, however, overwhelmingly based on racism (all Japanese are loyal to the Emperor, there’s no way to tell a good Japanese American from a disloyal one) and paranoia (the very fact no acts of sabotage were occurring just proves they’re waiting to do something really bad!).
•That doesn’t stop Eric Erickson from saying with pride that his family marked the Pearl Harbor anniversary by not eating Asian food (at the link, the author points out that would include Chinese, Korean, Thai …).
•Erik Loomis points out that Hawaii, our casus belliin WW II, wasn’t exactly American territory— we overthrew the Hawaiian government and occupied it.
•Echidne looks at Trump’s call to ban all Muslims. Roy Edroso looks at the right freaking out over San Bernadino which is Totally Different from that not-a-terrorist at Planned Parenthood. Echidne looks at how the media balance the killer being a housewife with her terrorism.
•The Mayor of St. Petersburg bars Trump from the city until they can determine if he’s a threat.
•In addition to hating Muslims, it looks like no abortions for rape victims is going to be the new norm.
•Echidne looks at sexism on the right.
•Dubious claims about why college is so expensive.
•As we face the high probability of Hilary Clinton becoming one of the candidates, there’s a growing school of “we’d be better off in the long run with Republicans” articles because that would teach everyone how bad Republican governance is and pave the way for the triumph of the lest. Like Scott Lemieux, I cry balderdash. And Democrats are just as likely to run to the right, as they’ve tried doing in the past (another school of finger-wagging you’ve-blown-it-now posts).
•An initiative to add grocery stores in food deserts hasn’t worked.
•Trayvon Martin’s killer, George Zimmerman, now dabbles in revenge porn. Reason looks at the limits on anti-revenge porn laws. And former revenge-porn kingpin Craig Brittain discovers how Totally Totally Unfair it is to be haunted by your past online.
•Republicans wring their hands a lot about how nobody takes us seriously when we talk tough. But it’s also a problem if nobody believes us when we say we’ll do nothing.