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September 16, 2005 1:46 PM   Subscribe

A racist moron gets punched in the head for wearing a racist shirt to his high school. The undershirt the white student wore had a confederate flag on the front with the words "Keep it flying." On the back, a cartoon depicted a group of hooded Klansmen standing outside a church, waving to two others who had just pulled away in a car reading "Just married." Two black men in nooses were being dragged behind. Yet, somehow, he declares he's not racist: "I'm not racist or anything," he said. "It's just, some people I hate, some people I don't get along with. And black people just happen to be the ones because they think they're better than everyone else." [via SLOG; Previous Fleming Island Clothing Issues]
posted by Rev. Syung Myung Me (152 comments total)

 
Huh. Go figure.
posted by Snyder at 1:49 PM on September 16, 2005


I suppose I should be against this sort of thing.
posted by 2sheets at 1:49 PM on September 16, 2005


I posed about this on my blog (warning: picture of a pierced person in that link) yesterday and I'll mention what I mentioned there (c/o Blink): Black people don't think they're better than everyone else, in fact, they think they're worse than everyone else.
posted by glider at 1:52 PM on September 16, 2005


To be honest, I don't care if he's "racist" or not -- he deserved it for just being stupid.

As to the page title: We Must Repeat!
posted by eriko at 1:53 PM on September 16, 2005


I just love it when racist morons say they aren't racist, they just don't like black people or whoever they don't like.

The kid deserved to get smacked in the head even though its just going to fuel his non-racist dislike of black people.

Good thing he's going into the Marines, I hope he gets a very big, very mean and very black drill sergeant who does a little research on this recruit and learns about his colorful past. And then treats him accordingly.
posted by fenriq at 1:53 PM on September 16, 2005


People with offensive shirts should be beaten up. Violence pretty much solves the issue, I think. Totally.
posted by dhoyt at 1:54 PM on September 16, 2005


(warning: statements like "At least Hitler was a fundamentally brilliant man that cared about Germany, even if he eventually went to the dark side and things went terribly, terribly wrong" in that link as well)
posted by QuietDesperation at 1:56 PM on September 16, 2005


"I'm a redneck," he said. "But no, I'm not racist."

What?
posted by handshake at 1:59 PM on September 16, 2005


Violence never solves anything, except conflict.
posted by SweetJesus at 1:59 PM on September 16, 2005


Asshole in serious need of a beating gets punched in the head. This actually made the news somewhere? Wow.
posted by psmealey at 1:59 PM on September 16, 2005


eriko writes "To be honest, I don't care if he's 'racist' or not -- he deserved it for just being stupid.

"As to the page title: We Must Repeat!"


He deserved it for being racist and stupid. He should have gotten hit twice.
posted by OmieWise at 2:00 PM on September 16, 2005


If I remember high school correctly, kids with attitudes like this tend not to keep it hidden...chances are, this shirt was not mistakenly worn. It was calculated (evidenced by the fact that no teachers saw it).
posted by NationalKato at 2:00 PM on September 16, 2005


I wonder if you could get kicked out of the marines for having done this... just like blair hornstine got kicked out of Harvard for being an idiot in the past.
posted by delmoi at 2:00 PM on September 16, 2005


I posed about this on my blog (warning: statement, "At least Hitler was a fundamentally brilliant man that cared about Germany, even if he eventually went to the dark side and things went terribly, terribly wrong" also in that link.
posted by QuietDesperation at 2:01 PM on September 16, 2005


Handshake, being a redneck does not make you a racist, although it's quite common.
posted by NationalKato at 2:01 PM on September 16, 2005


I had a guy at work yesterday who's of the same mindset. He had a customer on the phone who was impoverished and needed medication and there had been a delay in getting it to her. He said she was crying so hard he could hear the shaking in her voice. He said he didn't give a damn and she probably deserved her situation. It was all I could do to keep from getting up and walking over and inserting my physical opinion. The guy's a complete and total spoiled momma's boy bitch. I hope he gets taken out in a bar fight some night. Like put into a coma taken out.
I know this sounds harsh, but this guy's right in the same league with the klansman in this story.
posted by mk1gti at 2:02 PM on September 16, 2005


Meanwhile a Greenville Technical College official was fired for refering to Katrina refugees as "yard apes".
posted by delmoi at 2:03 PM on September 16, 2005


and some of his best friends are black people.
posted by caddis at 2:04 PM on September 16, 2005


Couple of comments: it is likely that the Marines would pass on this guy, particularly since this made the news and now they are certain to find out about it. I have had a few friends in he Marine Corps over the years, and this sort of thing is definitely not cool. All Marines are brothers (and sisters, too, I guess) and crosses any superficial identifers like skin color.
posted by psmealey at 2:04 PM on September 16, 2005


Yeah, let's see how much he hates black people in the Marines when they're the only ones able to save his scrawny white ass.
posted by NationalKato at 2:06 PM on September 16, 2005


The other comment... redneck <> racist. There are racists in all walks of life, but in my experience, being a redneck doesn't make you more or less likely to be one. Common misconception, I think.
posted by psmealey at 2:06 PM on September 16, 2005


Given the way the news has gone lately, I was actually relieved that there was no insitutional outrage kicker, such as "Boy punches racist, Racist named valedictorian."
posted by VulcanMike at 2:06 PM on September 16, 2005


I'm not a racist, but I play one on the internet.
posted by blue_beetle at 2:08 PM on September 16, 2005


This was on Fark, where I engage in the most idiotic, offensive and ignorant debate that I have ever been part of in my entire life.

I am weary to get into it again, but I do know that the majority of MeFites are far more rational and intelligent than the average Farker, so hopefully points such as "That black kid was perpetrating a hate crime!" and "Black people sold themselves into slavery! Whitey isn't culpable!!" will not come up here.
posted by nonmerci at 2:10 PM on September 16, 2005


Whew! Imagine how much more offensive the T-shirt would have been if he HAD been a racist.
posted by PlusDistance at 2:11 PM on September 16, 2005


The student said his parents were shocked at his decision, Mom dismayed and Dad disappointed.

"I just can't believe you'd wear a shirt like that to school," he said was their reaction. "My mom was kind of upset about it. My dad was like, whatever, it's your life."


MetaFilter: Like, Whatever, It's Your Life.
posted by fandango_matt at 2:11 PM on September 16, 2005


Apologies for the repost -- I hit "post" got nothing, rechecked 5 minutes later, saw nothing, and rewrote. Alas...
posted by QuietDesperation at 2:16 PM on September 16, 2005


Mk1: I quit a job at a pizza parlor because of the frequent cracks about the "niggers" who ordered food. I put the word in quotes because some coworkers did take pains to explain that by nigger, they didn't mean black people. They meant cheap, dirty, petty and nasty people, who could be of any color. But were almost always black. See, it's not racist.
I got sick of being the only white guy there who had black friends, and I had no desire to get my ass kicked by some dude who overheard the rest of the chuckleheads talking about "niggers" without the nuanced explanation.
posted by klangklangston at 2:16 PM on September 16, 2005


klangklangston, I've heard that 'explanation' before as well. It's as if the racists have PR handlers now...
posted by NationalKato at 2:18 PM on September 16, 2005


Good thing he's going into the Marines, I hope he gets a very big, very mean and very black drill sergeant who does a little research on this recruit and learns about his colorful past. And then treats him accordingly.

Amen! Let's reinforce his beliefs during an impressionable time in his life. That way, he'll be a racist forever! Woo-hoo!

Or, we could hope that he actually spends some time around black people and learns that they're no better or worse than white, red, yellow, or blue people.
posted by Bort at 2:21 PM on September 16, 2005


I guess Osama has won again ?

I mean how easy is to divide american people and throw them against each other ?

Just start telling them some skin color is bad and they are baited into irrationality and hate, swallowing hook line and sinker.Sometimes they don't even see it when it's front of their eyes.

What a parody of a civilization.
posted by elpapacito at 2:21 PM on September 16, 2005


"I just can't believe you'd wear a shirt like that to school," he said was their reaction."My mom was kind of upset about it. My dad was like, whatever, it's your life."

So, outside of school the parents have no problem with the shirt? Gee, i wonder where the kid learned to be a racist and accept ignorance.
posted by Merik at 2:21 PM on September 16, 2005


Its not racism if its spun correctly just like its not bad news if Karl Rove can get his tentacles on it first.

fandango_matt, yeah, that line stood out for me too. His parents don't appear to be racist, just really uninvolved in their kid's life.
posted by fenriq at 2:23 PM on September 16, 2005


I don't think wearing shirts like that should be illegal, but I don't think it's wise either nor do I have any sympathy for him.

And handshake, it is possible to be a redneck and not a racist. They're two different things. "Redneck" is a socioeconomic label meaning "a poor white person from the southeastern U.S., probably of rural or small town background", which by itself says little about the person's beliefs, political views, or even tastes in music. It is possible to be an atheist communist non-racist redneck who does not like country music, own 20 dogs, live in a trailer or shack, or drive a pickup truck.

Everything you think you know about rednecks is likely connotation, not denotation, kinda like what the French or German people in the Youth Hostels told me the noun "American" conjures up. ("Americans are stupid, arrogant, cheap, think everybody else ought to learn American English, try to fuck every woman they see, can't handle their booze, go all the way to Florence to eat at McDonalds, talk too loud, dress funny, act like Europe is a colony of the U.S., think the local laws and mores don't apply to them," etc.etc. etc.)
posted by davy at 2:27 PM on September 16, 2005


"... but I do know that the majority of MeFites are far more rational and intelligent than the average Farker,..."

Oh really?

"...he deserved it for just being stupid."

"He should have gotten hit twice."

"The kid deserved to get smacked in the head"

" Asshole in serious need of a beating gets punched in the head. "


Much more rational and intelligent than the average Farker indeed. This is like Bizzaro Fark, I mean what are MeFites bluenecks?
posted by MikeMc at 2:32 PM on September 16, 2005


Metafilter: Whatever, it's your life
posted by furtive at 2:34 PM on September 16, 2005


apparently, this kid is not a Randy Newman fan.
posted by pmbuko at 2:34 PM on September 16, 2005


Well I don't think it should be illegal either. Having said that, I don't think charges should be brought against someone for smacking him upside the head. I am glad, however, that asswipes like this guy have a need to identify themselves as such - it makes things easier.
posted by j.p. Hung at 2:34 PM on September 16, 2005


Wow. What a stupid c*nt. Right down to the "I'm not a racist, but..." lame bullsh*t.
posted by clevershark at 2:35 PM on September 16, 2005


MikeMc: You really think a kid wearing a shirt depicting two African-Americans being killed isn't going to get the shit beaten out of him? And if he does, you really don't understand why an African-American high school student would react that way?

Come on.
posted by nonmerci at 2:36 PM on September 16, 2005


Dejavu or Fark a few days ago? No matter- I'll repeat what I said there:

1) Asshat racist wearing t-shirt- deserves to have been suspended/expelled, or what ever the school's punishment is, for wearing a (stupid/racist) t-shirt that violated SCHOOL RULES.

2) Student that hit him- jail time/fine for breaking a state LAW.

Hitting someone to supress their freedom of (ass-hatted + racist) speech is moronic. It only fuels their fire, and, it's just plain neanderthal knee-jerk behavior.

Yes, the little racist has ignorant parents. Yes, his shirt is racist. Yes, he will get some racial re-conditioning in the Marines, if he is let in. Should he have been hit? If you say "yes," please exit the plane through the emergency door @ 40,000 feet.

To those that would say "well, if you think his free speech is being violated, why don't you wear that shirt and go walk around place X?" Because, fuckjaw, I am not a racist, and, my point is that a law was broken. If his shirt said something about how Scientology is a cult, I'd wear the same one, walk into a public space/publicly funded space, and have my Glock 9 on my hip just waiting for someone to do something to supress my freedom of speech.
posted by mrblondemang at 2:38 PM on September 16, 2005


The tolerant pacifists are ready to swing fists at the mention of an offensive t-shirt.

Hey, bro, No Blood for 100% Cotton!
posted by dhoyt at 2:38 PM on September 16, 2005


Are we not men?
posted by zerolives at 2:38 PM on September 16, 2005


Much more rational and intelligent than the average Farker indeed. This is like Bizzaro Fark, I mean what are MeFites bluenecks?

Rationality, intelligence, and the belief that some people deserve a punch in the head are not necessarily mutually exclusive.
posted by ToasT at 2:39 PM on September 16, 2005


Meh. Someone has to sweep floors and clean out septic tanks. Who cares if they still think the Earth is flat.

No, I take back my ‘Meh’ on that. The “Black people sold themselves into slavery! Whitey isn't culpable!!” (et. al) sort of thing is monkey smart enough to cause trouble. (Monkey in the 'human primate' sense, not the skin color sense - incidentally I'm hairy enough to be a Silverback, so...)

Indeed, African tribes did engage in this.
...Of course, it was facilitated by colonialism and the gigantic machine in place perpetuated slavery to such a degree that it required one of the bloodiest wars in US history to stop it.
Magnifying that minor tidbit of information is similar to blaming the Jews who cooperated (albeit with figurative guns to their heads) with the Nazis excuses the holocaust.

But it may be just smart enough for those who still believe the events in pro-wrasslin’ are not staged to buy into.

My question is why wasn’t he laughed at en masse?
I mean these people (the KKK, Nazis, et. al. - race supremacists in general) are the biggest losers in history. Literally. They’ve lost in every contest. Why would anyone back them?
I’m all for a righteous beating, but really, it’s like wearing a pro-beastiality T-shirt non-jokingly.
Why take it seriously enough to inflict violence?
I think the ridicule we once reserved for the village idiot should be heaped on individuals like this.

We don’t laugh at people with disabilities or mental problems of course, but people like this CHOOSE to believe this tripe, they deserve such contempt.

Taking them seriously enough to pound on them only lends their idiocy credence.*

*again - this is what I think and would like to do. Were I on the scene I might have lost it and would have disemboweled him and festooned his innards like christmas lights under the gutters of his parents’ house. But then I’m the sensitive type and easily startled.
posted by Smedleyman at 2:39 PM on September 16, 2005


What mrblondemang said.
posted by dhoyt at 2:39 PM on September 16, 2005


"He said he put the shirt on in the morning because he planned to wear it to a party that night with others who, like him, had enlisted in the Marines."

Good. He can now be trained, armed and shipped to Iraq to take care of some prisoners there. Guess it will be allright, since he's not a racist, just someone who happens to dislike black people, so brown people will be ok. Oh... now I remember... it has already happened (NSFW - actually, NSFAnywhere, very few sites manage to host pictures as disgusting as these).
posted by nkyad at 2:39 PM on September 16, 2005


Why is this making the news now? The kid in question is now in a community college and the incident occurred when he was a senior.

"just really uninvolved in their kid's life"

The kid was a senior, most probably late in the school year. A parent would have to very anal to be checking his underwear on a daily basis.
posted by mischief at 2:40 PM on September 16, 2005


I'm with MikeMc. You can't just beat up all the idiots 'cause they are making new idiots all the time. Good as it might feel to do so, you'll just punch yourself out.
posted by a_day_late at 2:43 PM on September 16, 2005


"The tolerant pacifists are ready to swing fists at the mention of an offensive t-shirt."

I think they were trying to suggest something about the duality of man, sir.
The duality of man. The Jungian thing, sir.

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0093058/quotes
posted by Smedleyman at 2:46 PM on September 16, 2005


Personally, I encourage all my racist friends to wear such T-shirts. Heart on your sleeve, let it all hang out, that's what I say.

I'd just stand a little way away from them when we walk into bars...
posted by cleardawn at 2:52 PM on September 16, 2005


mrblondemang, just so you know, carrying a loaded weapon into a public high school is also against the law.

You want jail time for a kid who got offended and took a swing at another student? Do you want every student who gets into a fight to get sent to jail? Have you any idea how crowded our jails would become and how empty our schools would be?

mischief, underwear? This was a shirt worn under another shirt.
posted by fenriq at 2:59 PM on September 16, 2005


Metafilter: The tolerant pacifists are ready to swing fists
posted by Rothko at 3:04 PM on September 16, 2005


A t-shirt isn't underwear?
posted by mischief at 3:09 PM on September 16, 2005


Black people don't think they're better than everyone else, in fact, they think they're worse than everyone else.

No kidding, What a moron this guy is. The slopes and the crackers are the ones who think they're better than everyone else.
posted by solid-one-love at 3:10 PM on September 16, 2005


Are these things better kept in the closet? This is the way he feels, should he really suppress it? If so, then maybe you feel the same way about people who are gay. Face it folks there are racists in this world - a lot more than you can ever imagine (don't walk away from me Mr. West Side liberal, your are guilty in more ways than you care to admit). The only thing that shirt should engender is a discussion. the kid is guilty of stereotyping people and literally wearing it on his sleeve. If you force him not to wear it are you really helping him grow? What he need to do is discuss his feelings in a mixed group along with the people he is surrounded by on a daily basis (his racism didn't fall out of a tree) and listen and understand why others might not be too happy about it. The only way to win here is to have the kid choose not to wear the shirt.
posted by any major dude at 3:11 PM on September 16, 2005


At least he wasn't wearing a wifebeater.
posted by Rothko at 3:13 PM on September 16, 2005


It really does say something powerful about the collectively felt moral status of racism though, that even people who wear shirts promoting lynching and/or Hitler feel the need to distance themselves from the label. It's like democracy, even totalitarian thugs like Saddam and Mugabe pay it lip-service or claim to be doing it, while they act on the opposite instincts. I think the battle has already been won, and its just a matter of time, once there is a moral consensus, even if it hasn't resolved surface contradictions yet.
posted by dgaicun at 3:15 PM on September 16, 2005


You know what? This thread makes me realize how much I just hate EVERYONE.

As much as I hate affiliating myself with any political party (I think they both suck copious amounts of monkey nuts), I'm probably "liberal leaning" -- but I freaking hate the word "liberal" because I have to associate myself with people posting in this thread saying that the folks saying "he deserved to get hit" are mindless neanderthals.

Guess what? This is the REAL WORLD. Talking doesn't solve everything. Fights happen. Fights SHOULD happen as long as they don't get totally out of hand.

There's a stereotype that girls are vindictive and hold grudges for a lifetime, but guys just throw down, beat the shit out of each other and then get over it and drop the issue. It's a stereotype, and one that is not always correct. however, there's one takeway from that:

Sometimes, people need to just FIGHT and get it over with.

Multiple people beating one person? No. Weapons involved? NO. But especially in a school situation where it will eventually get broken up, the net sum of bad versus good can actually be positive when two kids fight. Since it will get broken up eventually, it's very rare someone gets hurt beyond some scratches and a black eye. All that in exchange for the fact that if this kid wants to continue to be racist, he'd better think twice about who he is going to wear that shirt in front of.

I'm sorry. I'm generally a pacifist, and I agree that fighting is not the best way to solve problems. However, if you think that someone wearing a shirt with two black people being dragged behind a car is NOT grounds for getting your ass kicked -- you sadden me. Do you really think having a nice cuddly heart to heart with this racist moron is going to help? Is he going to suddenly see the error of his ways and like black people? No.

So the only way to quiet his racism is to do so by force. To make him SCARED to be that outwardly racist.

I don't think you can be mad at a black kid who sees two black people being dragged behind the car of a klansmen for getting so pissed off he punched someone.

It's not like he did what the stereotypes would SAY he'd do -- get a bunch of his friends and either shoot/kill him or jump him as a gang and beat him into the hospital...

It's sad that it's 2005 and we're even having this discussion. Oh well.
posted by twiggy at 3:18 PM on September 16, 2005


"Lee said the white student didn't want to press charges against the 17-year-old who hit him. "

I give him credit for that. Makes me hope he actually realized he kinda' had it coming.
posted by Carbolic at 3:18 PM on September 16, 2005


A t-shirt isn't underwear?

Not if you put it on correctly it isn't.

I get your point but, when he took off his covering up shirt, the t-shirt became his outer layer and thus, by definition, not underwear.
posted by fenriq at 3:20 PM on September 16, 2005


it is possible to be a redneck and not a racist

No, not really. It's part of what defines a redneck. Just my2c, from Kentucky.

A t-shirt isn't underwear?

Depends.
posted by mrgrimm at 3:22 PM on September 16, 2005


klangklangston
I just can't understand how or why people think like that. I grew up in a pretty rough environment and I'm sure I had many opportunities to pursue the dark side of life but instead I chose to give everyone the benefit of the doubt. I just cannot believe how savage people in this country have become.
Thankfully the remainder of my co workers are not like this. They actually give a damn.
posted by mk1gti at 3:23 PM on September 16, 2005


Depends

Well, if you want to drag diapers into this...
posted by mischief at 3:24 PM on September 16, 2005


it is possible to be a redneck and not a racist

Of course it is. Just like it's possible to be a poor black who doesn't distrust Whitey at every turn. People break stereotypes all the time, believe it or not.
posted by dhoyt at 3:24 PM on September 16, 2005


MikeMc: You really think a kid wearing a shirt depicting two African-Americans being killed isn't going to get the shit beaten out of him? And if he does, you really don't understand why an African-American high school student would react that way?

Come on.


I fully understand why the kid got his ass beat but I guess I expected a little different reaction from MeFites than "Kick his fuckin' redneck ass!!! Hyuk ,Hyuk." MetaFilter: The other side of the Fark coin.
posted by MikeMc at 3:25 PM on September 16, 2005


'worn under' I would say denotes that this particular shirt was being worn as underwear
posted by imaswinger at 3:31 PM on September 16, 2005


Words I have actually heard spoken: "What was that old redneck's name? You know, that one married that black woman." Said by one old redneck to another near Tylertown, MS circa 2004.

It's one of those words that means different things depending upon the speaker and the situation. Used by white southerners when speaking of and to each other in much the same way the n-word is sometimes used in the black community
posted by Carbolic at 3:32 PM on September 16, 2005


Home school the entire population of school kids! save tax money! Will it provide good education? no. Do we have it now? No. Punish parents by making them spend time with their brats. This will help to further break up the already failing marriages...faith-based welfare will take care of them. When these boys turn 15, require them to serve two years in the Boy Scouts, gay or straight. Then they can be First Mate(s) on Swift Boats with the anti-Kerry yachtsmen.
posted by Postroad at 3:33 PM on September 16, 2005


He said he put the shirt on in the morning because he planned to wear it to a party that night with others who, like him, had enlisted in the Marines.

Oh, great, someone is going to give this dick-head a gun and put him in a position of some authority? <sigh>, and people wonder why things like the Abu Ghraib scandal keep happening?
posted by darkness at 3:34 PM on September 16, 2005


Whew! Imagine how much more offensive the T-shirt would have been if he HAD been a racist.

Awesome.
posted by undule at 3:36 PM on September 16, 2005


carrying a loaded weapon into a public high school is also against the law.

Well there is your problem! More guns in school will make those little bastards polite.


I agree with Mr. blonde.

I'd WANT to hit the guy. I may even tell him "I think your an asshole and I want to hit you". But I wouldn't. But people have the right to be assholes.

The thing is - for the most part assholes are real predictable. And a smart man, a just man, would wait until the asshole inevitably tried to hit you first.
posted by tkchrist at 3:40 PM on September 16, 2005


And a smart man, a just man, would wait until the asshole inevitably tried to hit you first.

I think the fact that the "man" in question was a hot-blooded 17-year-old has something to do with it.
posted by nonmerci at 3:43 PM on September 16, 2005


Wait, so if you're offended by someone's speech or clothing, you have the right to attack them?

Stupid shirt or not, he did not deserve to get smacked.
posted by b_thinky at 3:47 PM on September 16, 2005


Mk1: It helps to grow up poor and ignorant. Hence the frequent cross-over in stereotype between "redneck" and "racist cracker."
posted by klangklangston at 3:51 PM on September 16, 2005


B_Thinky: Don't make me hit you.
posted by klangklangston at 3:51 PM on September 16, 2005


I don't think the kid had the right to smack the racist asshole but I can certainly understand his desire. Discipline the smacker for fighting and then discipline the asshole racist dutchbag for wearing clothing intended to incite angry reactions from other people (there are rules in schools about what can and cannot be worn on school property, I would guess this t-shirt violated those rules but maybe not, in which case they should really revisit those rules).

nonmerci makes a good point. These are not fully developed rational adults, these are teenagers, stupid, reactive teenagers. Were you a rational creature when you were 17? I know I wasn't.
posted by fenriq at 3:55 PM on September 16, 2005


> it is possible to be a redneck and not a racist.

OK, the next question is, can a black person be a redneck? I'm not kidding when I say I've never heard a black person refer to his or herself as a redneck. Why do you think that might be?
posted by chowder at 3:57 PM on September 16, 2005


So, we ARE allowed to hit these racist asswipes, or we AREN'T allowed?
posted by Balisong at 3:58 PM on September 16, 2005


Some of you people are way too fucking cuddly. I probably wouldn't have hit him, but then again I'm white, and I don't have to go through every day of my life dealing with morons like this who think shirts depicting black people being dragged behind a Klansman's car aren't racist.

Hopefully the shot to the head will help him realize that he can't go around being both willfully ignorant, and passively confrontational with out something happening.
posted by SweetJesus at 3:59 PM on September 16, 2005


I have nothing to add to the debate; just props to Rothko for the "wifebeater" line.
posted by yhbc at 3:59 PM on September 16, 2005


What SweetJesus said.
posted by nonmerci at 4:04 PM on September 16, 2005


"Stupid shirt or not, he did not deserve to get smacked."

'Deserve's' got nothing to do with it.

"So, we ARE allowed to hit these racist asswipes, or we AREN'T allowed?"

'Allowed' too, has nothing to do with it.


"The only way to win here is to have the kid choose not to wear the shirt.
posted by any major dude at 3:11 PM PST on September 16"

I agree with your "American History X"-ish take on the issue any major dude.
posted by Smedleyman at 4:07 PM on September 16, 2005


Indeed. To go a step further. Perhaps being fucked in the ass by those he considers 'his own' would go a long way towards enlightenment.

Hate is hate. It doesn't really care what color you are. Hate is power perverted. Without recognizing the self in the other. Without responsibility.
Ultimately it devolves into violent bloody chaos.

....considering that's my metier, I can only be so much against it.

Marine boot should straighten him out. Racists tend to be fairly weak individuals looking to latch on to something. He'll redefine himself as a Marine and look down on anyone who isn't.
If he makes it.
But the corps can always use another bullet sponge.
posted by Smedleyman at 4:14 PM on September 16, 2005


I never have either, but every definition of "Redneck" I've heard defines the term as a subset of "white". Like, you don't really hear too many white folks refer to themselves as "nigg(er/a)" (aside from Dee Dee Ramone in End of the Century...).

But yeah -- Redneck =/= Racist, necessarily, or at least how I'd see it.
posted by Rev. Syung Myung Me at 4:15 PM on September 16, 2005


People with offensive shirts should be beaten up. Violence pretty much solves the issue, I think. Totally.

what, no insults to Jesse Jackson this time? why?
also, try not to be too harsh condemning this klukker fuck, dhoyt
posted by matteo at 4:18 PM on September 16, 2005


So was this t-shirt a homemade thing or is there actually a company that makes t-shirts like these and has a market for it?
posted by funambulist at 4:18 PM on September 16, 2005


I mean how easy is to divide american people and throw them against each other?

You get that question from the story of this one idiot? It's almost like you took this one guy and made this huge generalization about a large group of people...

it is possible to be a redneck and not a racist

At least around my parts a redneck would have racist views, while as someone who does not would simply be 'country'.

The problem is I'm sure most people (especially those not familiar with the south, like metafilter generally) see a guy on a tractor in overalls and consider him a redneck, and some country people consider themselves redneck even if they're not racist, so ymmv.
posted by justgary at 4:20 PM on September 16, 2005


There is a cottage industry for each and every fetish or ideology. One only needs to buy a Prussian Blue CD to figure this out.
posted by SweetJesus at 4:22 PM on September 16, 2005


It is kind of a grey area isn't it?
posted by chowder at 4:26 PM on September 16, 2005


Hmm is it my impression or are the people whose outrage is directed entirely at the punch in the head all of a particular political persuasion?

And if the t-shirt is only "stupid", then what sort of t-shirt would be unequivocally sick and offensive? what, if it doesn't have Hitler on it it's just a silly cheeky prank sort of thing?

Lastly, oh, congratulations to the proud parents of the future Marine. They did such a good job. Family values at their best.
posted by funambulist at 4:29 PM on September 16, 2005




/fark
posted by ZenMasterThis at 4:30 PM on September 16, 2005


MetaFilter: Sometimes, people need to just FIGHT and get it over with.

(thanks Twiggy!)

In the physical world, I think this is untrue. Fighting, in my experience, deepens division and mutual hatred. Violence tends to escalate, and solves nothing. You insult me, I tell you to go fuck yourself, you hit me, I stab you, you shoot me, my brother shoots you. Great.

In the virtual world - where ideas are isolated from people - fighting (well, arguing) can lead to consensus, in other words, to solving problems. But only if most of the participants play by certain rules, most obviously honesty, and an actual desire to achieve consensus.

MeFi occasionally does that, which is nice.
posted by cleardawn at 4:36 PM on September 16, 2005


Did he wear the shirt to start a fight? Yes.
Was the person who hit him wrong? Yes.
Should a highschooler be taken to court for hitting someone? Probably not.
Do I think the person who got hit "deserved it"? No.
Do I feel bad that he got hit? Not at all.

He wore a shirt to highschool that was almost certain to instigate a fight, and then a fight started. Meh.
posted by 23skidoo at 4:37 PM on September 16, 2005


When Buzz Aldren punched out that moon-hoax proponent people on fark cheered, so it's not like fark is a hive of pacifists or something.

Some times you've just got to punch people.
posted by delmoi at 4:49 PM on September 16, 2005


A "redneck" is a poor, southern white person. The term comes from the idea of the poor white working in the feild all day, pushing a plow perhaps, with his head bent down. Thus, his neck gets sunburned and he has a red neck.

It originated as a term to describe that socio-economic class of white person. Just because this is the definition, does not mean that the subject of the term is racist.

If'n y'all wanna be your elitist, Yankee selves, jus' go ahead. But you're wrong.

And you are racist because you live in a racist society.

And the redneck is not necessarily any more racist than you, and perhaps less so.

So there!
posted by swlabr at 4:52 PM on September 16, 2005


dhoyt, I'm with you. Sarcasm and all.
posted by squirrel at 8:51 PM on September 16, 2005


>>Because, fuckjaw, I am not a racist..
>>and have my Glock 9 on my hip just waiting for someone to do something to supress my freedom of speech.

The difference between slashdot and metafilter is getting smaller.
posted by login at 9:11 PM on September 16, 2005


dhoyt: you're a douchebag.
posted by puke & cry at 9:11 PM on September 16, 2005 [1 favorite]


When I worked as a computer salesman, a guy walked into our store one day wearing what, from a distance, looked like a college sweatshirt. When he got up to the counter, I noticed that where the school name would be was the word "KLANSMAN," with a Klan Crest beneath it, and beneath that the phrase "AKIA," which stands for "A Klansman I Am." I also noticed that he had, well, a kind of dumb face. He looked a little brain-damaged or even mildly retarded maybe. I was busy with another customer, so a Dominican co-worker dealt with him. After he was done and the customer had left, I nudged my co-worker and said "You see that asshole's shirt?" "Huh?" "It was a fucking Klan shirt, dude." "Really, I didn't even notice." My co-worker tended to overfocus I guess. Another time when I worked as a bookstore clerk, some skinhead in full regalia, up to and including swastika elbow tattoo came to the info desk looking for something. The only persona available to help was a black co-worker. The questions passed without incident. When I mentioned the tattoo to her, I got the same response. I suppose considering the source counts for something.

But these examples were of pathetic befuddled losers. The shirt this kid wore was much closer to a threat. I don't know whether slugging the moron was right or wrong, but I can't really say I blame the black guy, since a part of me felt the same urge at those two guys.

I have to also agree that there is a difference between a redneck and a racist. Many racists are rednecks, but by no means are all rednecks racist. I know this from experience. Both the incidents I describe took place in the tolerant multicultural northeast. But racial tension is often a different beast there.

And black people just happen to be the ones because they think they're better than everyone else.

This is revealing, at least to me. Most devout haters (as opposed to casual racists) are really self-haters deep down. Just a theory
posted by jonmc at 9:16 PM on September 16, 2005


side note: having to keep my temper (and remain courteous & cheerful) around shit like that, and stuff like watching customers slug their kids, insult strangers and employees and the like is one of the main reasons I had to get out of retail.
posted by jonmc at 9:19 PM on September 16, 2005


A "redneck" is a poor, southern white person. The term comes from the idea of the poor white working in the feild all day, pushing a plow perhaps, with his head bent down. Thus, his neck gets sunburned and he has a red neck.

It originated as a term to describe that socio-economic class of white person. Just because this is the definition, does not mean that the subject of the term is racist.

If'n y'all wanna be your elitist, Yankee selves, jus' go ahead. But you're wrong.


Wow. You lurch from being so erudite in your description of the plight of poor southern whites to falling back on a nasty regional pejorative yourself with the "Elitist Yankee" routine, all in the same breath. Are you certain your airframe can handle those kind of acrobatics?
posted by Scoo at 9:29 PM on September 16, 2005


Come on, Scoo! This isn't the 19th century. Is "Elitist Yankee" really THAT offensive of a term? Personally I find it kind of amusing.
posted by nonmerci at 9:42 PM on September 16, 2005


Racism aside, that kid was an idiot.
posted by TwelveTwo at 9:55 PM on September 16, 2005


Agreed, TwelveTwo, what he did was the equivalent of walking into a Hell's Angels clubhouse wearing a "Harley's Suck!" t-shirt. The merits of violence can be debated, but I won't countenance stupidity.
posted by jonmc at 9:58 PM on September 16, 2005


Personally, I'd like to slug people wearing Che Guevara hate shirts, but that would involve picking fights with one out of every ten people in an average college town. Truthfully I would never hit anyone unless it was clearly in self-defense, but I think the Che people are just as disgusting. Maybe more so, because their extremism is not socially taboo, so much more protected (I wonder how many people would say said T-shirt wearer(s) "had it coming"). Though they do have their own versions of the "I'm not a racist but . . ." defense, indicating some similarly deep-seated capitalist moral victories. Something about "the spirit" of Che's defense of the have-nots: "I'm not a murderous revolutionary, but . . ."
posted by dgaicun at 10:00 PM on September 16, 2005


but I think the Che people are just as disgusting. Maybe more so, because their extremism is not socially taboo, so much more protected (I wonder how many people would say said T-shirt wearer(s) "had it coming").

Wear a Che shirt in Dade County. I'm sure you'll get some nasty looks at the very least.
posted by jonmc at 10:02 PM on September 16, 2005



posted by squirrel at 10:12 PM on September 16, 2005


I'll detail my stance a bit more just incase people misunderstand. I have nothing against free speech, nor do I support the reaction. But he was a fool by not thinking of possible consequences, or a fool by expecting people to respond with polite indifference. However if his goal was to be punched, then he is quite able.
posted by TwelveTwo at 10:20 PM on September 16, 2005


Metafark: you're a douchebag
posted by Stauf at 10:26 PM on September 16, 2005


nonmerci, Speaking as a Massachusetts transplant to Georgia, I can assure you that there is plenty of genuine rancor directed at me in certain circles, simply for hailing from the Bay State. Bush's tarring of Kerry with the Massachusetts brush was very well received down here. As for this not being the 19th century, there's plenty of longing for that too amongst some Georgians I've met. Perhaps it's amusing to you, but Yankee is a very real insult amongst enough of my neighbors to take it seriously.
posted by Scoo at 10:28 PM on September 16, 2005


Oh man! Oh man! Scoo your comment inspired me! Somebody tell me an outrageous lie about Massachusetts, I'll look surprised then state, "You're yankee my chain!" Come on, somebody! It'll be a riot.
posted by TwelveTwo at 10:30 PM on September 16, 2005


I just want to point out: a redneck is not necessarily a southerner. We use the term 'redneck,' out here in Colorado to refer to locals, and we sure as hell ain't is the south.

Also, since we're in the redneck != racist mood:

Liberal != pacifist. A very common misconception.
posted by teece at 10:48 PM on September 16, 2005


I got this great Che Guevara shirt that upon closer inspection is actually a picture of Cory Feldman. I thought it was hilarious when I bought it but no one ever looks closely enough to get the joke.
posted by any major dude at 10:58 PM on September 16, 2005


I like how wearers of those ubiquitous Che Guevara shirts often have NO IDEA who Che Guevara is. I actually got in a conversation with someone who was wearing one and was like "Yeah, Che Guevara is awesome blah blah blah" and they were like "Oh? I don't know who he is, I just thought the shirt was cool."

Those people deserve to be punched in the face! JK JK.
posted by nonmerci at 11:00 PM on September 16, 2005


I like how wearers of the ubiquitous nonmerci shirts often have NO IDEA who nonmerci is. I actually "got" in a "conversation" with someone who was wearing one and was like "Yeah, nonmerci is awesome blah blah blah" and they were like "Oh? I don't know who he ius, I just thought acting disaffectedly disinterested and hipper-than-that-shit was cool."

These people deserve to be faced in the punch! NK NK.
posted by joe lisboa at 11:46 PM on September 16, 2005


Looks like this problem solved itself.
posted by wehriam at 12:24 AM on September 17, 2005


Jos lisboa: Any point to your nonsense? Or is that a "joke"? Har har.
posted by nonmerci at 12:32 AM on September 17, 2005


No-one should be physically attacked for wearing or saying anything. That's fascist. Let the law take care of it.

Citizens need a constitution to protect their rights - and a legal system to ensure they respect the rights of others. This tee-shirt would have broken several laws (racist, incitement etc.) in any civilised society.
posted by bobbyelliott at 2:45 AM on September 17, 2005


A "redneck" is a poor, southern white person.

Not according to people I know (both sides of my family). To me a redneck is a blue collar (working class) person from a rural area. I think you might be confusing that with "white trash". Both those words have fairly specific meanings and are in no way synonymous. I see my fair share of rednecks at family gatherings, and to a person (save one I can think of off hand), none of them are racists.

Also, bobbyelliott, I am about as liberal or progressive as they come, but what you say goes a bit far, unless you were joking. I can't really tell anymore.

I don't know what it's like to be a post-adolescent these days, but even growing up in lily-white Connecticut in the 1980s, I didn't go looking from trouble, but sometimes it found me. Sometimes I deserved it, sometimes not. The occasional scrap was almost a rite of passage. Are kids really that different nowadays that a schoolyard tussle gets headlines in the local paper, not to mention all the hand-wringing in this thread?

It's enough to make a neanderthal like me feel old.
posted by psmealey at 4:28 AM on September 17, 2005


"No-one should be physically attacked for wearing or saying anything. That's fascist. Let the law take care of it."

Ideally, yes. In fact, ideally, I think pacifism in general is preferable.

But in the real world, some people say and do some things for which they deserve to have their asses kicked. This is certainly one of them. I would have knocked his front teeth out with a rebar. The t-shirt was an engraved invitation.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 4:30 AM on September 17, 2005


Just to clarify for all of the folks who are shocked, SHOCKED, that people would write something like "he deserved it." There's a difference between a lack of sympathy for the asshole, or even a well-developed sense of sympathy for the guy who hit him, and actually hitting someone for wearing a shirt.

It also isn't a freespeech issue, much as it might be tempting to see it that way. If he had walked up to someone and said "You suck, and your mother sucks and I gave your 12 year old sister syphillis" and then he got beat down, no one would be talking about this as if the fate of American democracy hinged on the ability of the adolescent he insulted keeping cool. I'm not much of a fighter, so I doubt I would have hit him, but I still think he deserved it. Twice.
posted by OmieWise at 5:52 AM on September 17, 2005


don't forget that an image of black people being dragged behind a car could quite easily be taken as a threat, especially to those familiar with the murder of james byrd, which i imagine many black people are.

also, not to derail, but did anyone else click thru those abu ghraib photos in nykad's link?

even after having seen them many times, they still really set the blood to boil. i can't imagine what that shit they're withholding is like.

finally, everyone should keep in mind that freedom of speech is somewhat more limited in application in the high school setting -- there are restrictions on clothing at most high schools. look, the kid knew what he was doing, protestations to the contrary. the shirt was an open provocation, and he got what people who openly provoke get -- the violence they were seeking. he was shouting "nigger" in a crowded theater high school.
posted by Hat Maui at 6:00 AM on September 17, 2005


"Fighting words" - speech that can be reasonably expected to incite violence - lead to fights. In ordinary society, the person uttering those fighting words is held to be at least partially culpable for any violence that results. This is not ordinary speech, like a swastika tattoo, or "I ♥ the KKK", or the front of the shirt with a pro-Confederate flag message. The image in question is basically a grave threat delivered as an insulting joke. If the guy had said, "Hey student X, your mother's a whore, and I hope someone rapes her and kills her; that would be hilarious," it would not be surprising if student X took a swing at him. A lot of people could see that as somewhat justified - what else is a guy supposed to do, just let that slide?

The image in question is like that, in at least three ways:
  1. An insult to the listener's dignity - in the former, impugning the mother's moral character, and in the latter, the listener's right to a dignified death.
  2. A threat to one's self, family, or friends - this should be fairly obvious in both examples.
  3. Making a joke out of someone else's pain, which also feeds back into the first point of insulting someone else's dignity.
The T-shirt wearer is also a clueless moron; I don't know if the student who hit him understood that at the time — there was apparently a little dialogue beforehand, so it's quite possible that he did — and if he did, that makes me think the blow was more of a grossmütterlich cuff to the head. That doesn't make much difference in the eyes of the law (where throwing a crumpled piece of paper at the guy would count as assault), but it speaks to severity and intent, and that could make a difference in people's hearts.

In short, the guy had it coming to him, student X was not within his legal rights to hit him, but I'm not crying much over it; it would be a more serious miscarriage of justice to send student X to jail, rather than to just give him a week's detention.

On preview: Ethereal, OmieWise, and Maui know what I'm saying. Let me just add that what we know of the parents' reactions in that article comes filtered through this adolescent's perspective. He seems pretty callow and blasé in general; I would take his testimony with a grain of salt.
posted by skoosh at 8:01 AM on September 17, 2005


"This tee-shirt would have broken several laws (racist, incitement etc.) in any civilised society."
Wait, hitting people is "fascist," but using the coercive force of the state to regulate thought is a "civilised society"?
posted by klangklangston at 8:19 AM on September 17, 2005


I love all these good people here saying someone deserved to be hit because they exposed an objectionable view. I bet those good people sometimes say they support freedom of expression, too.

There is never any excuse for physical violence except when necessary for self-defence or the protection of others being subjected to violence. Never. Not on any occasion. Being an objectionable prick with objectionable views is not a justification for assault. The person who punched this particular objectionable prick should be charged with assault and given a prison term.
posted by Decani at 10:02 AM on September 17, 2005


There is never any excuse for physical violence except when necessary for self-defence or the protection of others being subjected to violence. Never. Not on any occasion. Being an objectionable prick with objectionable views is not a justification for assault. The person who punched this particular objectionable prick should be charged with assault and given a prison term

Now I kinda wanna hit you...

Meet me outside.
posted by SweetJesus at 10:27 AM on September 17, 2005


With all due respect Decani, it doesn't seem much like you "love" it nor would you consider these people to be "good". The line maybe bit a bit fuzzy to you, but I do think there is a difference between merely expressing an objectionable view and being directly provocative. Based on this kid's remarks after the fact, I'm inclined to believe he was looking for a fight, and he got what he came for.

Of course it's always better to walk away than it is to fight, at least in this overly legalistic society we live it, that's at least the smart play. I have had friends charged with aggravated assault merely for defending themselves.

That said, words can be powerful things. Falesly yelling "fire" in a crowded theater, inciting to riot, these are at least a couple forms of expression that are not protected by law. I don't think that hate speech should be outlawed, but those that engage in it should at least expect to be challenged for doing it.
posted by psmealey at 10:31 AM on September 17, 2005


OK, the next question is, can a black person be a redneck? I'm not kidding when I say I've never heard a black person refer to his or herself as a redneck. Why do you think that might be?
posted by chowder at 3:57 PM PST on September 16 [!]

Dave Chappelle showed it was possible for someone to be black and in the KKK (Clayton Bigsby), so a black redneck might be possible.

As for the kid, if you walk into traffic and act surprised when you get run over, doesn't that make you an idiot? Personally I would have mocked him until he took a swing at me or took the shirt off. If he has free speech, so do I.
posted by Talanvor at 10:40 AM on September 17, 2005


I think you should defend to the death their right to march, and then go down and meet them with baseball bats. - Woody Allen
posted by wsg at 10:53 AM on September 17, 2005


The t-shirt advocated genocide.

It's legal not to like black people. It's legal to hate them. It's legal to wish that they were all dead. However, it's not legal to incite violence against others. We can all sit here and say that the black kid shouldn't have punched him but, honestly, how many of us have been in a situation where someone basically said, I want to kill you, everyone like you, and I'm happy to watch others do the same? I can't predict how I would react in that situation. How is the recipient of the message supposed to know that the wearer of the t-shirt "isn't a racist" or doesn't really mean to carry out the threat?

I'm all about Darwin. If someone holds backwards views *and* wants to wear it on their sleeve, I don't feel bad about them being removed from the gene pool.

Ultimately, I think that if you advocated killing others based on their race, you make yourself fair game to be killed on the basis of yours.
posted by MjrMjr at 11:31 AM on September 17, 2005


Decani:
What part of "I want to kill you" deserves to be protected under the banner of free speech?
posted by MjrMjr at 11:32 AM on September 17, 2005


Note also: Orange Park / Clay County was a relatively empty place before Jacksonville schools integrated, precipitating white flight. This redneck community's raison d'être was to be hospitable to racists.
(like much of exurban / red-county America, on one level or another)
posted by Zurishaddai at 12:37 PM on September 17, 2005


I am going to jump in here and be completely sexist.

When you say "But in the real world, some people say and do some things for which they deserve to have their asses kicked." don't you mean "some males" deserve to be punched out by "other males"? If the person wearing the shirt was female would you advocate punching her out?

I am well aware there are tough chicks out there but I have never felt the need to punch anybody out, nor have I ever been punched.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 12:52 PM on September 17, 2005


Secret Life of Gravy: Some women are larger and stronger than some men. How would it be for a big, strong black woman to punch a weedy little white guy for wearing a Ku Klux Klan shirt, breaking his face in multiple place, then stamping on his arms and legs and ribs a few times?

Emotionally, I admit my sympathies would all be with the black woman.

But the question here is about violence, not really about sexism.

If I was able to overcome my emotional sympathies with intellectual restraint, I'd like to think I'd say, No, hang on, lady, don't hit the guy. Let's ask him exactly why he's wearing that shirt, instead, and let him know exactly what kind of an an asshole he looks in it.
posted by cleardawn at 1:47 PM on September 17, 2005


Saying that someone deserves to be hit in the head is not the same as calling for someone else to hit him in the head. Just like I might say a mass murderer deserves to die, but I don't advocate the state (or anyone else) doing such a thing, because it's wrong to do it. The result is not wrong, but performing the action is wrong.
posted by spira at 2:33 PM on September 17, 2005


Meh. If we could repress racism for a generation, it might well more or less disappear. The world would be one helluva lot better for that. Punching the lights out of blatantly racist pricks until they understand that they should just STFU and live their miserable little lives as inoffensively as possible just might be the most expedient way to achieve this. Certainly can't work any worse than tolerating the bastards.
posted by five fresh fish at 3:08 PM on September 17, 2005


I agree that violence only promotes more violence, but I don't understand why so many people here think the black kid should be jailed for punching the white kid, especially when the article says both students involved were disciplined "quickly and appropriately."

That t-shirt advocated killing. As mjrmjr said, What part of "I want to kill you" deserves to be protected under the banner of free speech?
posted by maggiemaggie at 3:51 PM on September 17, 2005


Not only does it advocate killing, it's a massive insult on multiple levels. That t-shirt says fuck you, fuck your culture, fuck your parents, fuck your grandparents, fuck your ancestors - you've got no right to exist, and if I was in charge, you wouldn't.

What the hell is wrong with some of you people? Freedom of speech isn't the ability to say whatever the fuck you want. Freedom is speech means the government can't arrest you and toss you in a cell for something you say. It doesn't mean you can go around verbally or symbolically poking people with a stick, and yelling "Freedom of speech" when someone pokes back.

Fuckin' utopianists...
posted by SweetJesus at 4:11 PM on September 17, 2005


Jos lisboa: Any point to your nonsense? Or is that a "joke"? Har har.

Awww, I hurt your feelings so bad you couldn't spell my name right! Stereotypes are ugly regardless of your (own) impeccable political views, "nonmerci," that's all I was getting at with "my" "joke" -- relax. No, really. It'll make the revolution that make easier to swallow.
posted by joe lisboa at 10:21 PM on September 17, 2005


make = much
me = wasted
nonmerci = good sport
posted by joe lisboa at 10:32 PM on September 17, 2005


Secret Life of Gravy: Some women are larger and stronger than some men. How would it be for a big, strong black woman to punch a weedy little white guy for wearing a Ku Klux Klan shirt, breaking his face in multiple place, then stamping on his arms and legs and ribs a few times?

Emotionally, I admit my sympathies would all be with the black woman.


posted by cleardawn at 4:47 PM EST on September 17 [!]

OK Cleardawn, I'll play your game. If it were a big, strong black man who punched out a weedy little white woman for wearing a Klu Klux Klan shirt and then stomped on her arms and legs and ribs a few times would your sympathies still be with the Puncher?

My point isn't that that no woman on earth ever got violent, but that men have more of a tendency to solve problems by talking about punching. Or actually punching. Or going to war.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 9:49 AM on September 18, 2005


And this is just a little too nuanced for me:

Just like I might say a mass murderer deserves to die, but I don't advocate the state (or anyone else) doing such a thing, because it's wrong to do it. The result is not wrong, but performing the action is wrong.
posted by spira at 5:33 PM EST on September 17

So calling for a state execution is OK but when the state carries out the duty legislated and approved by the people that is not OK?

That's like being part of a violent lynch mob screaming for blood but acting surprised when someone actually dies.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 9:56 AM on September 18, 2005


SLoG, you can't distinguish between someone thinking someone "deserves to die" and "calling for state execution"?

this is just a little too nuanced for me

Geez, I guess so. I think Pol Pot "deserves" death by flaying, not old age, but would I want to live in a country where death by flaying is acceptable? Of course not.

See the difference?
posted by sonofsamiam at 10:12 AM on September 18, 2005


SLoG, you can't distinguish between someone thinking someone "deserves to die" and "calling for state execution"?
posted by sonofsamiam at 1:12 PM EST on September 18 [!]


Actually I can see the difference. You, apparently can't see the difference between "thinking" and "saying." Spira's quote was: "Just like I might say a mass murderer deserves to die, but I don't advocate the state (or anyone else) doing such a thing."

In this country to say something is to give credence to it. There are polls taken and politicians act on the result. There are petitions passed around that end up becoming laws. What you say can sometimes form opinions. If enough people say "mass murderers should be executed" then the law will reflect that. Remember District Attorneys as well as legislators are elected. Don't you think they have an interest in what people are saying?
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 11:14 AM on September 18, 2005


I hear Americans state "An armed society is a polite society."

I think I'm hearing the self-same Americans state that punching the light out of a racists isn't good.

Yet it seems to me that a society in which racists were punched-out, would be a polite society.

Guns good. Fists bad. ?
posted by five fresh fish at 11:22 AM on September 18, 2005


SLOG: I will say that Mr. Murderer deserves death. This in no way implies that I support any particular action of my government involving his death. The distinction is so blatant that you had to posit a complicated chain of causality to get from "what people say" to "what the state does."

"So-and-so deserves death" != "So-and-so should be put to death by the state."

I'm not responsible for others' intentional misreading of my words, even if they are elected DAs.
posted by sonofsamiam at 11:23 AM on September 18, 2005


What I seem to be hearing from 'muricans these days is 'A society based on it's own self-interest, mocking the poor and disenfranchised, abusing anyone who is non-white while touting the benefits of a free-market while ignoring the mass government subsidation of big business is something to be proud of.'

Divided we stand, United we fall.

Divide so-called 'liberals' from so-called 'conservatives', label them to make them seem different, then set them against one another over and over and over again until they have wiped one another out. Of course, since 'liberals' have reputations as pacifists it's an easy bet as to who's going to win this one.

Welcome to the brain-washed goodness of 'murica at the turn of the century.

Bigots are correct. Those with a conscience are wrong.
posted by mk1gti at 8:21 PM on September 18, 2005


My point isn't that that no woman on earth ever got violent, but that men have more of a tendency to solve problems by talking about punching. Or actually punching. Or going to war.

SLoG, nobody could dispute that. It's a truism. However, the exceptions are notable, including, for example, Mohandas K. Gandhi (a peaceful man) and Margaret Thatcher (a woman who delighted in violence and killing, most obviously when she ordered the militarily pointless sinking of the Argentine cruiser General Belgrano).

What you seem to be implying is that women who are violent should be excused, while men who are violent should be punished in some way. This is quite a prominent view among some ladies of my acquaintance. I find it unpleasant.

My own view is that both men and women should learn nonviolent methods of expressing disapproval. And both should be punished equally for equal acts, just as both should be rewarded equally for equal acts.

Hopefully, you and I agree on that.
posted by cleardawn at 8:42 AM on September 19, 2005


The shirt sounds like an expression of hate speech to me.

Especially the dragging of lynched blacks.

Agreed?

So, the question becomes:
Should hate speech have consequences or would that be an infringement of free speech?
posted by nofundy at 11:03 AM on September 19, 2005


NF,

The consequence should be suspension, delivered by the school, not a punch delivered by another student. Two suspensions should now be delivered, one for each student and one for each broken rule.

Solomon has spoken.
posted by dgaicun at 1:28 AM on September 21, 2005


SLOG: I will say that Mr. Murderer deserves death. This in no way implies that I support any particular action of my government involving his death. The distinction is so blatant that you had to posit a complicated chain of causality to get from "what people say" to "what the state does."
posted by sonofsamiam at 2:23 PM EST on September 18

I'm calling you on an empty statement. You say someone deserves to die but the state shouldn't kill him. So who should? His family? A sniper? Oh wait-- maybe you mean he "deserves to die" but nobody should kill him. Maybe this is your little way of praying for death by natural causes.
What it boils down to is somebody "deserves" something but you don't want anybody to give it him. Pretty meaningless.


What you seem to be implying is that women who are violent should be excused, while men who are violent should be punished in some way. This is quite a prominent view among some ladies of my acquaintance. I find it unpleasant.

posted by cleardawn at 11:42 AM EST on September 19

I'm sorry this is such a prominent view among your acquaintances, but it isn't my view at all nor did I ever imply it.

In short, there is too many calls for theoretical violence in this thread. I can only trust and hope that in the real world very few of you would actually follow up on what you wrote.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 8:31 AM on September 21, 2005


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