Black militia calls out white nationalists at Confederate monument


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About 1,000 heavily armed militia, all of whom were Black, marched through Georgia’s Stone Mountain Park on Saturday, challenging white nationalist groups in the area to either come out and fight or join them in demonstrating against the government.

Stone Mountain State Park officials said the Black militia group was peaceful, orderly and escorted by police as they called for the removal of the country’s largest Confederate monument near Atlanta.

Videos posted to social media show the group, the “Not F**king Around Coalition” (NFAC), meeting at the massive nine-story quartz sculpting that depicts former Confederate president Jefferson Davis and Southern generals Robert E. Lee and Stonewall Jackson.

“We want change that’s really going to permanently help us, we don’t want [any] little change, we want some real change,” one of the organizers said, noting that many Black civil rights groups have been marching for change since the 1960s and have largely been ignored.

In some ways, this is an interesting [and unintended] side effect of an economy, an educational system, that pretty much reserves all the crap jobs for the non-white civilian population. Our military is often a better alternative. I’ve had beaucoup friends who got their GED plus a chunk of college-level education in Uncle Sugar’s armed forces. Learning how to handle serious weapons along the way is another useful skill – living in a violent, racist society.

Germany has no nostalgic memorials to Nazis


Commemorative stone for the 1938 special camp for Jews

Visitors often place a stone on this monument in memory of someone – or everyone – who died here.

As an American Jew from the South who has lived in Berlin for decades – Susan Neiman, author of this article – I’ve been asked whether Americans, in contemplating a plantation home, Confederate statue, or some other monument to our nation’s slave past, should emulate the way Germans treat Nazi memorials. To which I respond: There aren’t any. Germany has no monuments that celebrate the Nazi armed forces, however many grandfathers fought or fell for them. Instead, it has a dizzying number and variety of monuments to the victims of its murderous racism.

There are no Nazi sites in Germany in the sense that there are plantation sites in the United States. The only equivalent sites that now exist in Germany are concentration camps. On the site of Buchenwald, where as many as a quarter of a million inmates were held, a museum dispels any notion that the citizens of the nearby cultural capital Weimar were unaware of what was happening in their midst during World War II. The idea that tourists would visit such a place seeking smiling women in dirndls—much as some visit American plantations looking for ladies in hoop skirts—is obscene. Not even members of Germany’s right-wing Alternative for Germany party would suggest glorifying that part of the past.

A tradition found throughout the lands subjugated by Nazi Germany, placing a stone on a monument, for all the reasons you might imagine. My closest friend was grievously wounded twice in the battle to liberate Buchenwald at the end of WW2. He survived for many years afterward.

I’ve never been to Buchenwald. I left a stone at Auschwitz.

Ford’s leading the way to modern instrument panels

I want to give Ford credit for its instrument cluster design for the new F-150, which is boldly non-skeuomorphic.

On the off-chance you’re not a pedantic little numbnuts like myself, you may want a quick definition of skeuomorphic. Usually, this word just refers to digital interfaces that look like real-world things, often needlessly.

Now, some skeuomorphism really isn’t bad, as it helps us understand how to use things via analogies we understand in the real world, but it can also become a crutch that actually restricts the potential of what new technologies can offer.

Some car instrument panels are excellent examples of this. Screen-based displays instead of conventional mechanical instruments could have meant that entirely new and better methods for displaying information could have been developed, yet nearly every carmaker has so far insisted on just re-creating the look and behavior of physical gauges…

Bravo. Guaranteed plenty of folks will whine about being dragged into modern tech. Buy a used car! Keep buying older. Claim to be a collector. Get a second job!

House passes DC statehood bill — 232 to 180


DC Mayor Muriel Bowser wears a DC Vote mask
Alex Wong/Getty

House Democrats approved a bill to admit Washington, DC, as a state on Friday, marking the first time either chamber of Congress has advanced a DC statehood measure.

The bill, introduced by DC’s nonvoting House member, Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton, would shrink the federal capital to a small area encompassing the White House, Capitol building, Supreme Court, and other federal buildings along the National Mall. The rest of the city would become the 51st state, named the Washington, Douglass Commonwealth after abolitionist Frederick Douglass.

RTFA. Victory isn’t in the cards, yet. Trump and his fellow pimps-in-suits in the Senate will guarantee that. For now.

It can happen here, again and again…

As militarized police in riot gear and armored vehicles barreled into peaceful protesters in cities across America, and its president emerged from a bunker to have citizens tear-gassed on his way to a church he’d never attended, holding a Bible he’d never read, many people recalled a famous saying often misattributed to Sinclair Lewis’s 1935 novel It Can’t Happen Here: “When fascism comes to America, it will be wrapped in the flag and carrying a cross.” Because Lewis’s novel is the best remembered of the many warnings against American fascism in the interwar years, he has latterly been credited with the admonition, but they are not Lewis’s words.

The adage probably originated instead with James Waterman Wise, son of the eminent American rabbi Stephen Wise and one of the many voices at the time urging Americans to recognize fascism as a serious domestic threat. “The America of power and wealth,” Wise cautioned, is “an America which needs fascism.” American fascism might emerge from “patriotic orders, such as the American Legion and the Daughters of the American Revolution… and it may come to us wrapped in the American flag or a Hearst newspaper.” In another talk that year, he put it slightly differently: American fascism would likely come “wrapped up in the American flag and heralded as a plea for liberty and preservation of the constitution.”

An American fascism would, by definition, deploy American symbols and American slogans. “Do not look for them to raise aloft the swastika,” Wise warned, “or to employ any of the popular forms of Fascism” from Europe. Fascism’s ultra-nationalism means that it works by normalizing itself, drawing on familiar national customs to insist it is merely conducting political business as usual. As José Antonio Primo de Rivera, the leader of Spain’s proto-fascist Falange party, proclaimed in 1934, all fascisms ought to be local and indigenous:

Trump’s GOP is just the latest try.

RTFA. A longish read – as anything trying to explain a critical aspect of American history should be – it’s filled with examples that will aid in understanding.

Detroit Wall, 1941

August 1941. “Negro children standing in front of half-mile concrete wall, Detroit, Michigan. This wall was built in August 1941 to separate the Negro section from a white housing development going up on the other side.”

The wall still stands, mostly because it would be a pain to take it down, but now it’s just a backyard wall. Some sections have been repurposed as murals, like the one…showing Rosa Parks catching the bus.

Times change even if some people don’t have the courage to change.

First Black World Champion F1 Racing, Lewis Hamilton – #BlackLivesMatter

Went down to Hyde Park today for the peaceful protest and I was so proud to see in person so many people of all races and backgrounds supporting this movement. I was proud to be out there acknowledging and supporting the Black Lives Matter movement, and my black heritage. I was so happy to see people of all ages, sporting Black Lives Matter signs and saying it just as passionately as I was. I was also happy to see so many white supporters out there today in the name of equality for all. It was really moving. I’m feeling extremely positive that change will come, but we cannot stop now. Keep pushing. #blacklivesmatter

Keep the shiny side up, the rubber side down! Keep winning, everywhere.

Our politicians say TikTok could be a “national security threat”. Best possible recommendation!

If the creeps and cretins in Congress fear TikTok, it must be doing something right…


Stop them! They’re looking at me…

TikTok, the viral short video app where millions of teens post comedy skits set to snappy music hooks, is facing a growing backlash in the United States.

US lawmakers on both sides of the aisle warn that the app could pose a national security risk, and are calling on regulators and intelligence agencies to investigate TikTok’s ties to China…

And they’re scared shitless of parody!

The app was downloaded 177 million times last quarter…the second most downloaded app worldwide…It also made $40 million in revenue on the iOS App store last quarter, and has amassed about 100 million users in the United States…

TikTok said in a statement that it stores all US user data in the United States and backs it up in Singapore.

“Our data centers are located entirely outside of China, and none of our data is subject to Chinese law,” the company said in a statement Friday. “Further, we have a dedicated technical team focused on adhering to robust cybersecurity policies, and data privacy and security practices.”

Our Congressional dorks would be laughable if they didn’t have the power they do. Incompetents, brains wrapped in 19th Century DNA, cowardice governed by corruption does not engender respect.

It took a Black Secret Service agent to explain Juneteenth to Trump

Trump told WSJ that neither he nor any of his staff seemed to know the meaning of the holiday before furor over Tulsa rally

Donald Trump has told an interviewer that he was informed about the Juneteenth holiday that commemorates the ending of slavery in the US by one of his own Secret Service agents, who is black.

Trump recently caused anger and raised fears of major social unrest by scheduling his first public campaign rally since the coronavirus pandemic broke out for 19 June, which is the date when Juneteenth is celebrated and how the day got its nickname.

Sometimes folks actually have sufficient intellectual honesty, curiosity about history, to find out stuff on their own. Not necessarily a requirement for residents of the White House.