This house is our culture. It represents so much about what we must revere if we are to have a culture. It is a work of art, in its own right. It is a work by the hands of Americans. Americans of different cultures from all over the world but also of one culture as Americans.
The whole melting pot thing, a basic American cultural foundation, means “multicultural”. Tolerance and empathy are the remaining legs of the American Cultural Foundation Triad.
Multicultural, tolerant, empathetic
Being an American means being multicultural on the outside and on the inside. Our ancestors all came from elsewhere. Some came voluntarily, some came in servitude, and some came as slaves. Even Native Americans made the long walk from Asia.
The Civil War was largely about the imposition of this Cultural Foundation Triad on States which had decided they were not going to be part of that culture. So Americans killed Americans by the hundreds of thousands because it was the right thing to do. We then turned our culture outward but we allowed it to be corrupted by base capitalism. That corruption has steadily eaten away at our moral foundation.
Today, we find ourselves with a President and supporters that have turned American culture on its head. Multicultural has been replaced by a fawning admiration of European culture so severe that they insist that American culture is simply European culture. Period. America may be a country of peoples from all over the globe but to President Trump and his followers it is simply “Euro-West”. Sadly, the European culture they choose to emulate is the very European culture Americans were forced to confront and destroy twice before. Actually, “choose” is the wrong word. They were “forced” to emulate those worst impulses of Europe because Europe has adopted so much of the American Cultural Foundation Triad as to be indistinguishable.
We are a society cannibalizing ourselves for a few shekels. There is little difference between wearing a black jumpsuit while taking a pickax to priceless Iraqi antiquities OR wearing a Brooks Brothers suit while taking a bulldozer to American antiquities OR opening up American public lands to exploitation by President Trump and the Other US Oligarchs.
These are our sacred sites, folks. They are as important to the meaning of America as those antiquities were to the meaning of Iraq. They are being destroyed for the same reason. Power. Whether that power comes from wealth OR religion both are thirsts for power. And that thirst must be quenched even if it means sacrificing much of that which defines us.
Of course, they aren’t the people making the sacrifice. You are.
Hat tip to Rustin Gudim for the heads up
The photos of the interior will blow you away.
Shannon M. Houston‘s review of The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks makes me want to see a movie that I would otherwise avoid. I’m not an Oprah Winfrey fan. I find her lacking in genuineness. She always seems to be in promotion mode and that irks me. Of course, that is why she is successful. She never misses an opportunity to push the Oprah brand. I always see that when I look at her and it makes the suspension of belief necessary to watch an actor impossible. And, don’t get me started on her need to one up tragedy.
Ms. Houston’s review is predictable. It complains that this movie tells a Black story from a White perspective. Oddly, her final thought is that you should see the movie because it puts facts into the public mind that need to be there. I’m wondering whether she is saying that the perspective didn’t matter OR the perspective was correct OR the message was just that important OR she was implicitly admitting her entire hypothesis was bullshit.
The only way to find out is to see the movie. So, I will. The bonus is that I’ll learn something about a person that everyone should thank on a daily basis.
In HBO’s made-for-TV movie, starring Rose Byrne and Oprah Winfrey, the extraordinary story of Henrietta Lacks doesn’t get the treatment it deserves.
There is just as much scientific evidence against GMOs as there is against vaccines.
Bill O’Reilly succeeds in making Sarah Palin a sympathetic character. The day after she made a complete ass of herself by posing in front of one of the most accomplished women in history while mugging with a pedophilic, draft-dodging coward and the bastard spawn of a Vegas lounge act and the cabaret MC from a crack dealers benefit concert.
Congratulations, Bill O’Reilly. Keith Olbermann was right. You are The Worst Person In The World.
I can’t shake the feeling that China sees Donald Trump as their best shot at reshaping the world into explicitly Chinese and American spheres of influence.
By helping Trump with North Korea, I think Chinese President Xi JinPing is trying to edge out Vladimir Putin and Russia from the Global Leader Gang which only has two members. After years of subtle attempts to move Russia out of the Global Leader Gang, the Obama Administration became more blatant.
The Trans-Pacific Partnership had many purposes. One of those was to anoint China as the new Global Leader Gang partner and finalize Russia’s relegation to a second tier nation. A relegation that began when President Obama (rightly) poo-pooed the idea that Russia was of any major consequence to the United States when Mitt Romney reflexively (and wrongly) brought it up during the election.
The animosity between Putin and Obama was well earned. Street thug versus cosmopolitan internationalist. Spy versus professor. Gravy versus consommé.
President Obama realized that Russia was a fiction resting on the historical reality of the USSR. Russia isn’t the USSR. Russia is Italy with a good backstory. And President Obama treated them accordingly.
Putin knew his only chance was to get all traces of Obama out of the US government. If that didn’t happen, the fiction would end. And with that, all of the opportunities that have made Putin the richest man in the world would also end. Not acceptable. Not in the least. Hillary Clinton represented a continuation of Obama. Putin knew he needed a champion. Luckily, Donald Trump was tailor-made for this. His financial entanglements with Russia make him malleable. His ego and lack of intellectual curiosity make him easily fooled.
In comes Trump riding a wave of rabid xenophobia, religious bigotry, misogyny and racism right into the White House. Pushed from behind by Putin’s cyberwar against the United States. Once in he meets with the man he has insulted for years and is told:
“Remember, North Korea is the real issue NO MATTER WHAT ANYONE SAYS”
Trump’s narcissism doesn’t allow him to acknowledge the wisdom in those words. Until North Korea starts exploding nuclear bombs and heaving ballistic missiles in the direction of SEATAC. His Asian doppelgänger, Kim Jong-Un, is aping his behavior and they posture at each other like red-assed baboons in a roadside Safari exhibit. Instead of shit, words are flung but we still get soiled. As do the people of North Korea. There is only one reality about where we are right now.
We all will suffer
China wants out of the North Korea business. They want the prestige that Obama was going to give them. What better way then to help their biggest customer take care of “the real issue”?
Welcome to the Global Leader Gang, China. Thanks for the assist.
“I am a black woman, but I find more in common with characters in Seinfeld than I do with the ones in House of Payne. My world is neither all black nor all white, but a mix — whether it be race, gender, socio-economics, weight or age.”
– Kendra James writing in Racialicious.
I’m not a black woman but I absolutely get what Ms. James is saying. There is no mainstream depiction of Black people like me because we don’t fit the unending minstrel show preconception of American entertainment. And, I don’t mean minstrel to denote a focus on blackness but, minstrel in that buffoonery is the basis for too much of our entertainment.
Post-racial was the buzzword for the 20 minutes following President Obama’s election but I’m not talking about post-racial. My group is trans-racial…intra-economic…meta-gendered…vari-weighted…multi-aged.
We don’t recognize the social boundaries and step over them constantly. We are hard to pigeonhole and it’s that pigeonholing which is the basis for the minstrel show. Until the mainstream figures it out, I suspect we will continue to be left out. I can live with that. Gladly.
More than 20 years ago, Hill made workplace harassment a public issue. Now, she has more to say.
Vice President Mike Pence would do well to study how narcissistic sociopaths deal with subordinates outperforming them.
Beware of President Donald J. Trump, Mr. Vice President.
He won’t take kindly to such a public showing up by a subordinate. No matter how aggressively you apply your moistened lamprey-like lips to the President’s ample orange backside.