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Chernynkaya On January - 31 - 2010


Rush Limbaugh:

“[I]n Obama’s America, the white kids now get beat up with the black kids cheering.”

Glenn Beck:

So here you have Barack Obama going in and spending the money on embryonic stem cell research. … Eugenics. In case you don’t know what Eugenics led us to: the Final Solution. A master race! A perfect person. … The stuff that we are facing is absolutely frightening.”

Ann Coulter:

“My only regret with Timothy McVeigh is he did not go to the New York Times Building.”

Michael Savage:

What will it take to wake you up to the fact that you are being erased from the future of America? And why are you being erased? If you’re a person of European descent, why do they want your child to be a minority in America? And when your little girl is a minority in America, what will happen to her? Tell me what will happen to her?”

Michelle Bachman:

“I believe that there’s a very strong chance that we will see that young people will be put into mandatory service. There are provisions for what I would call re-education camps for young people, where young people have to go and get trained in a philosophy that the government puts forward and then they have to go and work in some of these politically correct forums.”

Pat Robertson (re: 9/11):

“I really believe that the pagans, and the abortionists, and the feminists, and the gays and the lesbians who are actively trying to make that an alternative lifestyle, the ACLU, People For the American Way — all of them who have tried to secularize America — I point the finger in their face and say: “You helped this happen.”

Whenever the situation in this country appears very grim to me, I try to keep perspective by telling myself that things have been worse and that we have overcome similar –or worse—obstacles. I look to history to see if indeed we’ve been there/ done that, and it is almost always true. Because I have been feeling that hate in America has reached a zenith (or would that be a nadir?) I wanted to reassure myself. And while I am reassured that this is nothing new, I am still alarmed at the magnification of hate—and by the wider reach it has now as never before.

In April of 2009, the Department of Homeland Security issued an internal report warning that current conditions resemble those in the early 1990s — a time marked by an upsurge of right-wing extremism that culminated in the Oklahoma City bombing. Republicans were outraged. But with the murder of Dr. George Tiller by an anti-abortion fanatic, closely followed by a shooting by a white supremacist at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, the analysis looks spot on. There is, however, one important thing that the D.H.S. report didn’t say: Today right-wing extremism is being systematically fed by the conservative media and the Right-wing political establishment.

Since Barack Obama has been elected president, a current of anti-government hostility has taken hold across the United States, creating a climate of fervor and activism with manifestations ranging from incivility in public forums to acts of intimidation and violence.

This hostility is based on the belief that President Obama is a threat to the United States. Some accuse Obama of being a socialist and others that he will bring about Nazism or fascism. These groups believe that this administration will trample on civil liberties due to some sinister agenda, and they see his economic and social policies as manifestations of this agenda. In particular anti-government activists used the issue of health care reform as a rallying point, accusing Obama of “socialized medicine” to “death panels.” Some even compared the Obama administration’s intentions to Nazi eugenics programs.

Barack Obama’s historic victory, celebrated in America and across much of the world as a symbol of racial progress and cultural unity, has also sparked an increase in racist and white supremacist activity, mainly on the Internet, according to leaders of hate groups and the organizations that track them.

Since our President took office, the rate of threats against the president has increased 400 per cent from the 3,000 a year or so under President George W. Bush, according to Ronald Kessler, author of In the President’s Secret Service. That’s about thirty death threats a day.

Neo-Nazi, skinhead and segregationist groups have reported gains in numbers of visitors to their Web sites and in membership. Obama’s success has aroused a community of racists, experts said, incensed by the election of this country’s first black president.

“The truth is, we’re finding an explosion in these kinds of hateful sentiments on the Net, and it’s a growing problem. There are probably thousands of Web sites that do this now. I couldn’t even tell you how many are out there because it’s growing so fast.” — Deborah Lauter, civil rights director for the Anti-Defamation League, which monitors hate group activity.

According to the Southern Poverty Law Center the number of hate groups operating in the United States has grown by 54 percent since 2000 — an increase fueled last year by immigration fears, a failing economy and the successful campaign of Barack Obama. They  identified 926 hate groups active in 2008, up more than 4 percent from the 888 groups in 2007 and far above the 602 groups documented in 2000. A list and interactive, state-by-state map of these groups can be viewed here.

“I get nonstop e-mails and private messages from new people who are mad as hell about the possibility of Obama being elected. White people, for a long time, have thought of our government as being for us, and Obama is the best possible evidence that we’ve lost that. This is scaring a lot of people who maybe never considered themselves racists, and it’s bringing them over to our side.” – Don Black, Stormfront.org

Our side does better when the public is being pressured, when gas prices are high, when housing is bad, when a black man [is] president. People start looking for solutions and changes, and we offer radical changes to what’s going on.” — Ron Doggett, who runs a white power group called EURO in Richmond.

There is a very fine line, it seems to me, between out and out hate groups like the militias and white supremacists, and the political far right. While Fox News and the R.N.C. haven’t directly incited violence, Bill O’Reilly has broadcast that “some” called Dr. Tiller “Tiller the Baby Killer,” that he had “blood on his hands,” and that he was a “guy operating a death mill.” They have gone out of their way to provide a platform for conspiracy theories and apocalyptic rhetoric. And at this point, whatever dividing line there was between mainstream conservatism and the black-helicopter crowd seems to have been virtually erased.

In Fox news, we have network mainstreaming of right-wing extremism where millions of Americans get their news. The same can be found in the mainstream print news media. The Washington Times recently ran an opinion piece stating that President Obama “not only identifies with Muslims, but actually may still be one himself,” and that in any case he has “aligned himself” with the radical Muslim Brotherhood.

And of course, there’s Rush. He has been spewing hatred for decades, but nowadays he is much more powerful:  According to a Gallup survey, 10 percent of Republicans now consider him the “main person who speaks for the Republican Party today.” So when Limbaugh peddles conspiracy theories — suggesting that fears over swine flu were being hyped “to get people to respond to government orders” — that’s a case of the conservative media establishment joining hands with the lunatic fringe.

And while we might think Limbaugh represents the fringe, how far on the fringe is The RNC? The R.N.C. says that “the Democratic Party is dedicated to restructuring American society along socialist ideals.” What is the fringe when supposedly respectable news organizations and political figures are making extremism mainstream? The problem when we think in terms of freaks and aberrations is that there are so many of them—a small percentage of 300,000,000 people is still a lot of people. Yes, the worst terrorist attack in our history was perpetrated by a foreign conspiracy. But the second worst, the Oklahoma City bombing, was perpetrated by an all-American lunatic. Politicians and media organizations incite such people at their, and our, peril.

Many of these ravers are motivated by prejudice, but also by an intense strain of anti-government paranoia and belief in conspiracies. These irrational fears motivate a range of people from “grass-roots” tea party movements to extreme anti-government, resurgent militia movements. Some extreme movements may focus around a single, narrow issue, such as abortion; other have ideologies of racial superiority, fanatic religious beliefs or radical political views. Ultimately, this anger, if it continues to grow in scope, may result in an increase in anti-government extremists and the potential for a rise of violent acts.

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GrbeY5GZzgo&feature=related

Some dangers to America originate beyond our shores.  But within the United States’ own borders, multitudes of homegrown haters and extremists exist whose beliefs are equally radical and who can be equally dangerous as any Al Qaida terrorist.  Hate crimes can affect entire communities; acts of terrorism can affect an entire nation.

I have been looking into the rise of these groups on the internet, because I believe that while hate has been with us since the first Homo Sapiens appeared, it has become more easily spread due to the double-edged wonder of the internet. I am in the process of writing about this in five parts:

1. HISTORY OF HATE GROUPS IN USA

2. HATE SPEECH AND THE FIRST AMENDMENT

3. PSYCHOLOGY OF HATE GROUPS AND HOW THEY RECRUIT

4. RISE OF HATE ON THE INTERNET/ CORRELATION BETWEEN INTERNET HATE AND HATE CRIMES

5. WHAT WE CAN DO

I believe that the social fabric is extremely delicate and fragile. Forces bent on destruction, even if they are a tiny portion of the population, can cause real damage—not only physical damage, but psychic damage. With a black president, an extreme economic crisis and the fear generated by the continuing threat of international terrorism, America seems exceptionally vulnerable to these virulently destructive forces.

“He who passively accepts evil is as much involved in it as he who helps to perpetrate it,” –Dr. Martin Luther King.

Written by Chernynkaya

I am an artist and have lived in Los Angeles all of my life, except for a brief hippie period when I lived in SF. I am currently (semi-unwillingly) retired, but have had several careers.

88 Responses so far.

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  1. javaz says:

    Isn’t February ‘Black History’ month?
    I just watched the most excellent show on PBS about black people that fought in so many wars, and then the lynchings down south, and they showed actual photos and black and white footage, and it all seems so unreal.

    I didn’t grow up down south, but from the program and others along the same theme, it finally occurred to me today.

    People back then, and I suppose people even now, did not think black people were human, just as Hitler and the Nazis didn’t believe Jews were human.

    Or people, Europeans that came over didn’t think Native American Indians were human.

    I’m trying still to understand hate.

    I suppose even in biblical times and even before, that there were certain individuals that looked at others but did not regard them as human.

    Does that make sense?

    I do not understand at all how people can think that way.

    Hate groups go back a long way -- Romans pitting Christians against lions in coliseums.

    I hope this isn’t OT, but what does it take, what kind of person, or human, can look at another human, and think they are lesser beings?

    It’s an excuse, they somehow rationalize their thinking into believing that those they hate are lesser beings and not really human.
    That’s why they can put them in a lions’ den, gas them in chambers, or hang them from trees.

    It’s all too much for me, in trying to understand.

    I am so looking forward to your last article, Cher, to find out how we can put an end to the hate.

    Once you’re done with this, would you work on getting the media to report the actual news without bias?
    That’s one that is driving me nuts.
    Well, I’m already crazy, but explain that away by using my age as the excuse and then crazy becomes eccentric! 😆

    • nellie says:

      Javaz, I still believe that dehumanization of a group of people is largely economically driven. If the American Indian had been seen as fully human, how could expansionists justify their genocide and theft?

      If African Americans were fully human, how could slave owners justify their brutality and theft of labor?

      And in Germany, how could they justify their theft of property, inhumanity, and blaming all their economic woes on one group?

      It’s always about the money.

      • javaz says:

        Oh, I agree with you on this -- “it’s always about the money”, but I also disagree.

        Was money involved when the Romans placed the Christians in with the lions?

        Is the Taliban or al queda, and I know that I’m not going to phrase this question correctly, but am going to ask it anyway.

        Are extreme Muslims about the money?

        No, they are not.
        Just as the Romans were with the Christians, and a lot of times throughout history, and even our religious right, it all boils down to religion.

        When Roeder murdered Dr. Tiller, there was no money involved with that, but religion.

        Could a person conclude then, that religion spawns hate?

  2. Questinia says:

    Hi Cher, I was wondering about the Limbaugh statement. It is so over the top I wondered whether it was credible. A cursory check I made of seeming reliable sources indicated it was doubtful he said that. Do you have a source that is undeniably accurate and trustworthy? I know that excludes much of the internet!

    Whoops, saw Pepe ask the same thing.

    • Chernynkaya says:

      Hiya Q- I got the quote from many web sources, including Associated Content: http://www.associatedcontent.com/

      According to Wikipedia, “Associated Content (AC) is an online publisher and distributor of original content. Associated Content enables anyone to publish their content on any topic, pays them for their work, and distributes that content through its website and content partners.

      Associated Content was started in January 2005 by Luke Beatty. It is based in Denver, Colorado, with business development offices in New York City.

      In 2008, there was some controversy over the presence of Tim Armstrong, former head of advertising for Google in North America, when he was on AC’s board. According to Elinor Mills, some marketing professionals have suggested the tactics used by AC in attempting to gain revenue, such as ensuring keyword placement in articles, are gaming the system and that Armstrong’s presence is a gray area. However, others contend that these are legitimate tactics used by many content providers.[1]

      In April 2009, Associated Content hired a new CEO, Patrick Keane, formerly of CBS Interactive and Google[2] and closed a $6 million Series C round of funding from Softbank Capital and Canaan Partners.[3]. Their funding now totals $21.5 million dollars. Three weeks after the funding announcement, Associated Content reorganized and laid off 5 employees.[4]”

      I decided to stick with the quote, but I really do appreciate you and Pepe calling my attention to it’s validity. :-)

      BTW--“Undeniably?” Heck no. But on second thought, I still might replace the quote.

  3. LABC63 says:

    Wow! Great opening salvo and I look forward to reading more, Cher! Thank you!!

  4. Pashma says:

    Powerful Cher! Looking forward to reading the rest, especially what we can do about it.

    Don’t forget to Digg/Buzz!

    • Chernynkaya says:

      Thanks, Pashma! I am busy finishing up part 2 but I needed a break. What’s the deal with Digg/Buzz anyway? (I am a well known Ludite. :oops:)

      • Pashma says:

        I log in to my yahoo account and submit posts (articles) from PPOV as often as I can. Just to get more exposure and views for PPOV. The more people Buzz or Digg the article it moves up. Hope you don’t mind. Just want to share all the good stuff here.

  5. msbadger says:

    Good piece, Chernynkaya. And where did you get that pic? That is so cool… the reptile brain for sure! Did you paint it? Anyway, much admiration and thanks.

    • Chernynkaya says:

      Hi, msbadger! Thanks--I loved that image too. I got it by googling “reptilian brain” and I think it was on the first page of images!

  6. PepeLepew says:

    I have read that Rush Limbaugh “James Earl Ray” quote is false. I think Postman66 quoted some article about that once.

    That being said, there is plenty of grist in Limbaugh racist mill the past few years.

    • Chernynkaya says:

      I’ll check on that Pepe-- i saw it numerous times, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t false. As you say, there’s no need to use false quotes when dealing with the drugster.

      edited: “doesn’t mean it ISN’T false.”

  7. Khirad says:

    Must read, if you haven’t posted or read it yet here:

    Public silence greets poor’s powerlessness
    By LEONARD PITTS
    http://www.miamiherald.com/living/columnists/leonard-pitts/story/1454250.html

    If he’d said it of Jews, he would still be apologizing.

    If he’d said it of blacks, he’d be on BET, begging absolution.

    If he’d said it of women, the National Organization for Women would have his carcass turning slowly on a spit over an open flame.

    But he said it of the poor, so he got away with it.

    • nellie says:

      I heard about this. I made the assumption that, since he’s in S. Carolina and comparing people to stray animals, he’s most likely talking about people of color — probably African Americans. More code words from the right wing. Like the word “arrogant” — which we heard all week in reference to the president’s SOTU address.

      Not much new under the sun.

      • Khirad says:

        You caught the code words too? 😉

        • Khirad says:

          I mentioned elsewhere that Joe and Mika actually moderated a primary debate and they pressed him on it (I have trouble saying anything good about them, but in fairness, they did). He repeated that it was a metaphor (as if that made it better) and made a half-hearted statement that maybe he would have said it more artfully (?) if he could do it over again -- after prodding. Considering the audience (South Carolinian GOP core), I get why he didn’t back off or disavow the statement completely.

          Now, he puts kids school lunches into the crazy government intervention black-helicopter political framework mentioned in this article, but there’s a synergy there with old code words with clear racial overtones. Thing is, I get what his ‘uneducated’ mother was saying to an extent. I’ve opined that it’s ironic the way those most poor seem to have more babies (that’s a bias of mine I perhaps need to work on). My answer though is simple sex education and available contraception -- not comparing people to dogs.

          Speaking of those from big families, Colbert, how did you make it out of that state in time to not go insane?

        • nellie says:

          ;-). I hope these people don’t actually think they’re being clever…

        • Chernynkaya says:

          Yeah, arrogant= uppity

    • Chernynkaya says:

      Khirad, I think I first heard of that on Olbermann. It is simply jaw-dropping. In this day and age, the fact that a politician feels it’s safe to say such a thing is depressing. And infuriating.

  8. AdLib says:

    Fantastic article Cher! Looking forward to your entire series.

    When Obama was elected, I know I was not alone in constant concern whenever he was in a public place. As time’s gone by, I’ve become a bit more at ease but I do have an ongoing concern for his safety.

    At the same time, I have the same caution that a public attack on a big scale by white/right wing extremist terrorists is as likely as by foreign terrorists.

    The unashamed way that the RW media feeds into the hatred…there seems to be no limit to how low and treasonous they can go.

    Just to be clear, treason is not protected by the 1st Amendment and if their going overboard convinces someone to launch a big attack, they should beheld responsible.

  9. Questinia says:

    Has anybody else wondered how much Rush Limbaugh is a dead ringer for John Wayne Gacy?

    If Limbaugh wasn’t spewing hatred on the radio, he’d probably be eviscerating little boys and burying them in his crawl space. Instead, only his mind is a crawl space.

  10. PatsyT says:

    Excellent work Cher
    This info needs to out there- in the brightest light of day.
    What are we becoming

    The United HATES of America ?

  11. kesmarn says:

    Cher, I’m so glad you’re taking this one on! I look forward to reading the whole series. Thought you might be interested in a bit of info on the up-coming CPAC Convention in February. Glenn Beck (who else?) is going to be the featured speaker. And to add to the creepiness there’s going to be a prominent presence of the newly-resurgent John Birch Society. The SPLC has the following comments on that:

    “The John Birch Society, whose conspiracy theories eventually became so fantastic that it faded into irrelevance, has edged back toward the mainstream

    • KQuark says:

      The worse part is this time we don’t have our Edward R. Morrows in the media to save us from the hate and lies of these people. Hell I could see Huffy finding a reason to join these despicable people the way they are headed. They at least enable these hate mongers.

      Very sad indeed.

    • Chernynkaya says:

      kes, I read that too-- just disgusting. And about the New World Order:

      “There is a worldwide conspiracy being orchestrated by an extremely powerful and influential group of genetically-related individuals (at least at the highest echelons) which include many of the world’s wealthiest people, top political leaders, and corporate elite, as well as members of the so-called Black Nobility of Europe (dominated by the British Crown) whose goal is to create a One World (fascist) Government, stripped of nationalistic and regional boundaries, that is obedient to their agenda. Their intention is to effect complete and total control over every human being on the planet and to dramatically reduce the world’s population by 5.5 Billion people. While the name New World Order is a term frequently used today when referring to this group, it’s more useful to identify the principal organizations, institutions, and individuals who make up this vast interlocking spiderweb of elite conspirators.

      The Illuminati is the oldest term commonly used to refer to the 13 bloodline families (and their offshoots) that make up a major portion of this controlling elite. Most members of the Illuminati are also members in the highest ranks of numerous secretive and occult societies which in many cases extend straight back into the ancient world. The upper levels of the tightly compartmentalized (need-to-know-basis) Illuminati structural pyramid include planning committees and organizations that the public has little or no knowledge of. The upper levels of the Illuminati pyramid include secretive committees with names such as: the Council of 3, the Council of 5, the Council of 7, the Council of 9, the Council of 13, the Council of 33, the Grand Druid Council, the Committee of 300 (also called the “Olympians”) and the Committee of 500 among others. ”

      And they think GHW Bush was involved, but why would he use that phrase? Didn’t he know about that conspiracy theory-- It’s not new?


      • Khirad says:

        Yup, sounds real menacing. Now let’s get all Nationsl Treasure and occult in deciphering it! It couldn’t have been that simple!

        You know what gets me? When NWO found its way to pro wrestling… so fitting, really.

        • Chernynkaya says:

          Pro wrestling?! Now, you’ve found something I don’t follow, along with NASCAR. Is NWO a bad guys?

          • Khirad says:

            Whoa -- don’t make me sound like I follow it! It was merely ubiquitous -- like on shirts. Sort of like Tap Out is now. From Wikipedia:

            The stable’s gimmick was a group of unsanctioned wrestlers aiming to “take over” and control WCW in the manner of a street gang; the group’s three initial members had each gained fame in the rival World Wrestling Federation, although this connection was only implied. It is currently the largest stable in pro wrestling history.

            And yes, it turns out ‘stable’ is pro wrestling jargon, like heel. These guys weren’t heels, but the bad good guys -- forgive me for not looking that term up. Somehow ‘antihero’ seems too high brow.

            I do think it’s interesting how some conspiracy can become this diffused, though.

            I also went to the wiki page for a band’s song entitled NWO. It was a protest against Bush I, as I had read the lyrics in the first place. But, the commenters on YouTube came up with it being prophetic for 9/11 and pointing out Bush Sr. gave the speech on 9/11/91. Boy have I got some stuff to tell them about Lincoln and Kennedy… *sigh*

            • Chernynkaya says:

              HAHAH! Lincoln and Kennedy-- I forgot about that one! And I’m sorry if you thought I was insulting you about wrestling, but seriously, Khirad, you are such a renaissance man, I wouldn’t put it past you. 😉

      • kesmarn says:

        This is so bizarre, Cher! Buzz words like “New World Order” and “effective U.N.” coming out of the mouth of Bush, Sr.? Both Bushes were members of Skull and Bones at Yale? And, yet, somehow it’s the DEMS who get morphed into the enemy in the minds of the right wing fringers? Am I missing something here?

  12. Questinia says:

    Really nice article, Cher.

    There may be more hate groups but how many people per hate group?

    Boutique hate groups will begin to scare me when they begin to coalesce into a department store of despisers.

    Actually, any hate group is scary. History has shown us it takes just one hater…

    • Chernynkaya says:

      Questinia, they are getting more members all the time! Although I find it hard to believe the people who run those hate sites, they claim membership is growing by leaps and bounds since Obama ran for President. And they are more sophisticated and no longer appeal directly to racists, but target kids doing school research on the internet. A classic example is a kid researching Dr. Martin Luther King. She might wind up on an innocuous web site that has some historical info on King. Then it will say something like, “King was a Communist.” and provide a link that takes her to the hate site. How would the student know? And they cast such a wide net, (no pun intended) that they pick up plenty of misfits.

  13. Hopeington says:

    The masked man in the utube video is Sgt Dyer, I had left a link about him yesterday from veterans today. Here’s another one from crooks and liars.
    http://crooksandliars.com/david-neiwert/tea-party-leader-arrested-rape
    The hate is building at such a rapid rate. Where are the brakes for this situation? I’m beginning to think no matter how much better Obama made things, it just wouldn’t be enough to dent the hatred and they would actually prefer to go down as a country rather than see Obama succeed.

    • escribacat says:

      Saw a bumper sticker today that said:

      Dear God, Please Save Us
      from ‘Obama’

      I thought it was interesting that they put “Obama” in quotes.

      • whatsthatsound says:

        Wow, that’s hardcore! Where are you e-cat? It’s stunning that some jerk would confidently go around town in a car with that on it.

        • escribacat says:

          I’m in Colorado. There’s also a flap going on here because the Nazi Aryan Yadda Yadda group has signed up for the “adopt a highway” program, which means the name of their group is up on a sign along the freeway. The skinheads were all out cleaning out the ditches over the weekend. Had a police escort too.

    • SanityNow says:

      unfortunately, it looks like you may be right about the haters. I would add that the haters already believe the country has been lost and so see nothing much to lose by acting out that hate. I certainly don’t think any amount of success Obama creates will do anything to assuage them. In fact, it may prove to be fuel for more hatred.

  14. SanityNow says:

    I’ll just echo what others here are saying and say thank you, Cher. Incredible research and writing. It is extremely disturbing and most definitely spot on. Racists never think of themselves as racist and couch their hate in something else, whether consciously or unconsciously. It must be very uncomfortable in that skin.


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