I went from a couple of weeks of no comments to having too many good ones to choose from!
This week, I wrote about how NPR botched its coverage of the one-year anniversary of Charlottesville, and Derek Womble, who lives in Charlottesville shared his experience in this comment:
Beautifully expressed and written. I live in Charlottesville. And the local media coverage of race issues, and particularly white nationalism, is beyond disturbing. For a town that prides itself on its progressivism, the local news sites can sometimes read like a manifesto of white nationalistic philosophy. For the past year, the local newssites commentary sections, where townspeople are welcomed to comment, is loaded with comments blaming Black members of the city council for the violence of August 12. Even going so far as to place the blame of Heather Heyer’s death on the shoulders of a Black city council by claiming that an attempt to remove Confederate statues gave white supremacists the incentive to go forward with violent behavior. For a town, which houses The University of Virginia, and carries with it such a strong reputation of intellectual progress and academia, it’s been amazing coming across comments on a local news website that demonstrates a complete lack of common sense, closeted racism, and blatant white nationalistic thought. I’ve had years to get used to how the news gets reported here, and avoid even consuming news from these local sites. But your piece pointing out NPR’s blind spot to a man and a movement that mocked the death of someone, allows me to see how the media, who, at times, carries more power than even they realize, have been, and are still being complicit in much of this foolishness. Even my once beloved NPR.
First off, I’m sorry this happened in your community, Derek. It was so scary just seeing the pictures and videos. Having that happen where you live must have been horrifying. I think we underestimate how far the ripples of events like this go. The point of going to a pretty quiet university town was to let everyone watching know that nowhere was safe. It was terrorism.
I’m not surprised by your account of how the community found a way to lay the blame at the feet of Black people. My sister went to law school at Washington & Lee, and some kids from my high school went to college there. They had some stories about race relations there that were pretty unpleasant. They love their creepy Confederate monuments, man…
The march was a business casual Klan rally, but I knew some media would downplay it, because of the tiki torches and polo shirts. I was honestly taken aback by how a neo-Nazi murdering a woman and attempting to murder many other people using ISIS tactics has been essentially shrugged off in some supposedly liberal circles, though. Trying to pin it on Black local politicians instead is really beyond the pale. White supremacy is a helluva drug…
I’m really glad things didn’t get violent this year. Hope you and your family are doing well!
Here’s a snippet from jwa1313’s comment on the article:
I have been unable to stomach public broadcasting (PBS/NPR) for several years, because of the anodyne “liberalism”, constantly on display, which proudly/arrogantly refuses to take a principled stand ON ANYTHING, generally because the broadcasters (and their owners) never will face consequences — for anything.
This is the part that scares me the most about all this. They can’t even bring themselves to say “Nazis are bad” and mean it. They’re going to both sides people into mass graves if they’re not careful.
Harley-Davidson is being maligned for leaving. BMW has made a deal to move some manufacturing from US to China. This is a very costly move, but given the instability here, the costs are justified. Germans are figuring that more beemers gonna be bought in China than in US anyway. Those jobs NEVER coming back. I wish my fellow citizens would open their eyes to what an outlier we have become and how dependant we are on being a part of the global economy
Instability causes uncertainty, and that’s bad for business. More of this is going to happen. Authoritarian buffoons like Trump always do incredible damage to their country’s economies if given the time. I wonder what’s going to happen to the U.S. dollar. Will it lose value enough to be alarming? Will other countries move away from it as their primary reserve currency? There’s a heist happening, and the bandits don’t care about these consequences. They’re skimming as much as they can off the top as fast as they can. I wish more Americans would open their eyes too — the world will untether themselves from this mess if they have to.
Sherry Kappel discussed something of the American psyche, how the myth of rugged individualism applies to the whole nation:
Somehow, too many of us think we’re still relatively autonomous, as if we’re still pre-mass transportation, pre-mass communication, pre-international business, pre-global. Trump and company would have us return to the 1800s to keep his clueless isolationist followers happy, but a responsible leader would help Americans to understand that it simply isn’t possible anymore — the train has left the station, never to return.
There is something Brexit-y about this whole thing, isn’t there? I think many Brexiteers thought the EU would plead with them to stay. They didn’t. Something for America to think about.
That’s it for this week. As some of you know, I started a Patreon. I posted my first essay on Sunday, and you can check it out here: