Friday, April 20, 2007

Hating Muslims

The right wing continues to contort the mass murder at Virginia Tech, committed by a South Korean-born resident who had lived in the United States for almost two-thirds of his life, into a casus belli against the Muslim world.

Since 2001, Ann Coulter has regularly referred to Arabs as "ragheads" in her speeches. Then, as news broke of the Virginia Tech shootings, right-wing columnist and Fox Noise pundit Debbie Schlussel wildly speculated that the West Virginia murders might have been committed by a "Paki" (a racist slur used to describe Pakistanis) and possibly was part of a coordinated attack by Muslim terrorists.

After the West Virginia killer had been identified as a South Korean, Schlussel bizarrely tried to tie him to a picture on a website put up by a Indonesian Muslim woman. Schlussel suggested that Cho Seung-Hu was a closet Muslim and asked how he could have displayed such excellent marksmanship if he had not received professional training. (Ms. Schlussel, meet Oliver Stone.)

Now we have this mind-numbing stretch of an argument made by GOP media shill Charles Krauthammer, on Fox's "Special Report with Brit Hume":

"What you can say, just -- not as a psychiatrist, but as somebody who's lived through the a past seven or eight years, is that if you look at that picture, it draws its inspiration from the manifestos, the iconic photographs of the Islamic suicide bombers over the last half decade in Palestine, in Iraq and elsewhere. That's what they end up leaving behind, either on al Jazeera or Palestinian TV. And he, it seems, as if his inspiration for leaving the message behind in that way, might have been this kind of suicide attack, which, of course, his was. And he did leave the return address return 'Ismail Ax.' 'Ismail Ax.' I suspect it has some more to do with Islamic terror and the inspiration than it does with the opening line of Moby Dick."

Yes, and if you play "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band" backwards, it says "turn me on, dead man."

As my friend Mary Shomon suggested, if the right wing ever admits that global warming is happening, they will blame it on "rag heads."


Michael Phillips has authored the following:

White Metropolis: Race, Ethnicity and Religion in Dallas, Texas, 1841-2001 (Austin:  University of Texas Press, 2006)

(with Patrick L. Cox) The House Will Come to Order: How the Texas Speaker Became a Power in State and National Politics. (Austin: University of Texas Press, 2010)

“Why Is Big Tex Still a White Cowboy? Race, Gender, and the ‘Other Texans’” in Walter Buenger and Arnoldo de León, eds., Beyond Texas Through Time: Breaking Away From Past Interpretations (College Station: Texas A&M Press, 2011)

“The Current is Stronger’: Images of Racial Oppression and Resistance in North Texas Black Art During the 1920s and 1930s ”  in Bruce A. Glasrud and Cary D. Wintz, eds., The Harlem Renaissance in the West: The New Negroes’ Western Experience (New York: Routledge, Taylor and Francis Group, 2011)

“Dallas, 1989-2011,” in Richardson Dilworth, ed. Cities in American Political History (Washington, D.C.: CQ Press, 2011)

(With John Anthony Moretta, Keith J. Volonto, Austin Allen, Doug Cantrell and Norwood Andrews), Keith J. Volonto and Michael Phillips. eds., The American Challenge: A New History of the United States, Volume I.   (Wheaton, Il.: Abigail Press, 2012).

(With John Anthony Moretta and Keith J. Volanto), Keith J. Volonto and Michael Phillips, eds., The American Challenge: A New History of the United States, Volume II. (Wheaton, Il.: Abigail Press, 2012).

(With John Anthony Moretta and Carl J. Luna), Imperial Presidents: The Rise of Executive Power from Roosevelt to Obama  (Wheaton, Il.: Abigail Press, 2013). 

“Texan by Color: The Racialization of the Lone Star State,” in David Cullen and Kyle Wilkison, eds., The Radical Origins of the Texas Right (College Station: University of Texas Press, 2013).

He is currently collaborating, with longtime journalist Betsy Friauf, on a history of African American culture, politics and black intellectuals in the Lone Star State called God Carved in Night: Black Intellectuals in Texas and the World They Made.

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