Saturday, January 31, 2015

The rebirth of "progressive" Poitical Correctness

As a non-PC liberal Democrat, I miss the defunct Bay Guardian because, as the primary source of "progressive" political opinion in the city, it gave me a lot of material about delusional politics and opinion in San Francisco. Now I have to mostly rely on the SF Weekly for that, which is not as good a source, since it doesn't regularly do issues like the Guardian did (Beyond Chron is also a steady source of prog foolishness, like this on free speech).

But when the Weekly does an issue, it's so good/bad that it makes up for the lack of quantity with sheer, qualitative stupidity. I'm referring to its utterly clueless blog post Thursday (We Talked to the People Defacing Those Islamophobic Muni Ads).

Recall that a few years ago the Weekly showed that it was incapable of reading a simple sentence when the first anti-jihad ad appeared on Muni buses: "In any war between the civilized man and the savage, support the civilized man. Support Israel, defeat Jihad." The hed on the Weekly's blog post: "Muni Runs Pro-Israel Ad on Buses, Calling Palestinians "Savages."

This was dumb on several levels: the two sentences of course didn't mention Palestinians, and whoever wrote the hed apparently didn't understand that Israel has many jihadist enemies other than Palestinians. The author of the post was baffled that Muni allowed the ad on city buses, while conceding that there might have been some kind of legal technicality involved:

In fact, the day San Francisco started rolling with this ad, is the same day a judge ruled in New York City that its Metropolitan Transit Agency couldn't legally refuse to run it on buses in the Big Apple.

Under what arcane city ordinance did the New York judge rule against that city? Dang, it turned out to be the First Amendment to our Constitution!

SF Weekly naturally approves of the PC vandals who are now defacing the latest ads on Muni buses:

You may have seen them on buses around town, the odious Muni ads that equate Muslims with Nazis and claim that the U.S. government supports anti-Semitism with foreign aid. The ghastly Pamela Geller, she of the American Freedom Defense Initiative, has sponsored several of these provocative ad buys, and Muni claims they have no power to tell a paying customer "no" based on the content of her speech.

This post is by a different writer, but it's based on the same ignorance and parochialism. Is Muni's "claim" about the First Amendment---not mentioned by the writer---true or not?

The latest ad actually doesn't "equate Muslims and Nazis." Instead it pictures an international Muslim leader with Adolf Hitler that I blogged about last month. This particular leader and Islam itself have a long history of anti-semitism before---it's in the Koran---during and after World War 2.

From the Weekly:

So a group of street artists has taken to waging a campaign of joyful, upbeat defacement, replacing Geller’s stark admonitions against loving thy neighbor with images of Muslim superheroes (like Marvel Comics' Kamala Khan) and people of different cultures getting along.

Oh yes, the vandals are joyfully going about stifling free speech because Geller is supposed to love people who have made it clear over the years they want to kill her and other Jews!

And more:

“We’re not pro-censorship. We’re not talking about the government outlawing certain types of speech. Should she be prosecuted for putting this out there? No, none of us are saying that. But just because it’s some kind of civil right to do something means it’s not harmful? Free speech can still have a cost.”

The only cost: Geller is saying something that these thugs don't like. But it's nice to know that they aren't calling for Geller's arrest for saying things they don't agree with. They aren't censoring anyone, you understand, because they just want, well, to prevent Geller from saying things that they don't like. 

Look at the vandals' self-congratulatory Facebook page and you find the same stupidity the Weekly demonstrated two years ago. Criticism of Muslim anti-semitism and violent jihad is equated with racism, as if Islam is a race, not a religion:

And the morons invoke the Palestinians again, though, like the first ad two years ago, this one doesn't mention Palestinians:

Speaking of Palestinians and anti-semitism, they recently celebrated after two of their freedom fighters attacked Jewish worshipers at a synagogue in Jerusalem, just like they celebrated after the 9/11 attacks on the US by homicidal/suicidal anti-semites, who just happened to be adherents of the Religion of Peace.

Last week Jonathan Chait published an excellent piece (How the language police are perverting liberalism) on this kind of "progressive" censorship that is all too common lately:

After political correctness burst onto the academic scene in the late ’80s and early ’90s, it went into a long remission. Now it has returned. Some of its expressions have a familiar tint, like the protesting of even mildly controversial speakers on college campuses. You may remember when 6,000 people at the University of California–Berkeley signed a petition last year to stop a commencement address by Bill Maher, who has criticized Islam (along with nearly all the other major world religions). Or when protesters at Smith College demanded the cancellation of a commencement address by Christine Lagarde, managing director of the International Monetary Fund, blaming the organization for “imperialist and patriarchal systems that oppress and abuse women worldwide.” Also last year, Rutgers protesters scared away Condoleezza Rice; others at Brandeis blocked Ayaan Hirsi Ali, a women’s-rights champion who is also a staunch critic of Islam; and those at Haverford successfully protested ­former Berkeley chancellor Robert Birgeneau, who was disqualified by an episode in which the school’s police used force against Occupy protesters...

Stanford recently canceled a performance of Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson after protests by Native American students. UCLA students staged a sit-in to protest microaggressions such as when a professor corrected a student’s decision to spell the word indigenous with an uppercase I — one example of many “perceived grammatical choices that in actuality reflect ideologies.” A theater group at Mount Holyoke College recently announced it would no longer put on The Vagina Monologues in part because the material excludes women without vaginas. These sorts of episodes now hardly even qualify as exceptional...

[Later: Suppressing free speech is also epidemic on campuses in Great Britain. See also this in the Daily Beast.]

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At 4:27 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

In a city with as large a LGBT population as San Francisco has, you would think gay progressives would be in the forefront of confronting Islamic hatred, especially towards Gays and Jews, but they remain silent (at best). Why do they identify with a belief system that would literally want to kill them? Are they not aware that the ONLY country in the Middle East that allows gays to live in freedom and seek asylum is Israel. I am not Jewish, but l thank this blog for turning me on to the writings of Christopher Hitchens and his warnings about Islam and the hatred and violence it promotes. Where are the Islamic leaders coming out for the safety and freedom of gays or Jews? If you really want to see where the trouble is going to come, I suggest an eye opening trip to Belgium and the Netherlands, two of the most tolerant countries in the world that now have streets filled with women covered in Islamic sheets from head to toe.

At 4:47 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

You don't need to miss the Bay Guardian -- you will get all the "progressive" nonsense you need at

At 11:04 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Seems to me the Charlie Hebdo massacre is a lot like pedestrian deaths. If the cartoonists would take ordinary precautions - like not offending pious Muslims - they'd be alive, just like pedestrians who'd still be alive if they'd wear bright colors and stay on the sidewalks and crosswalks.

At 12:19 PM, Blogger Rob Anderson said...

A stupid comparison, Anon. Deep in your chickenshit little brain you know that, which is why you're anonymous.

At 2:23 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks Rob for your post.


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