Friday, October 19, 2012

This Is Journalism?

So there's a site I had never heard of until today, Western Center for Journalism, that broke a story about Amy Biviano, Democratic candidate for the 4th District State Representative position, posing for Playboy back when she was a student at Yale. The fact that photos of a partially nude Amy were published sure is an attention getter for some but I think it's more remarkable that she was a student at Yale. Besides, who among us doesn't have a youthful indiscretion they'd like to take back. 

The Western Center for Journalism is very interested in tracking hits and counting unique visitors. That's why word choice is so important. When you use "caught stripping for Playboy" instead of "posed nude for Playboy", it sounds much more lascivious and scandalous. You can't wait to go see, can you?

Anyway, I go to the Western Journalism site to see what they're about and quickly learn they are informing and equipping Americans who love freedom. I don't know who hates freedom so I imagine the size of the population they are not addressing is quite small. It turns out there is a small group of people who hate freedom. He's called Barack Obama. After reading several articles on the site, I believe their minds are quite small, too. Check out this example of the drivel they publish entitled President Obama Detailed.

Obama is an insolent, militant, incompetent, narcissistic, execrable, America-hating slug. He is a union slave who has never worked a day in his life; yet he blames the failures of those who chose their own path on the successes of those who earned their way through hard work and commitment to family, community, and country.

That's just the first paragraph. A union slave who has never worked a day in his life? Here is the lead-in to a poll asking which movement you think is best for America.

(clicken to embiggen)

Youthful lawlessness or truly abiding by the Constitution? You decide. The site also ponders whether it's a "black thing" for Obama.

Obama, that is, is black by choice, and like any convert, he is animated by zealotry to establish himself as a “True Believer.” If he labors under any self-delusions, they are no less the products of his choice than his “blackness” itself, for it is from Obama’s painful self-awareness that his guilt over his unfamiliarity with “the black experience” in America is begotten: the conspicuous absence in his blood line of American slaves; a black father who abandoned him when he was but a small child; the white grandparents who raised him; his upbringing, not in the “ghettos” or “hoods” of America’s “inner cities,” but the plush islands of Hawaii; the private educational institutions that he attended all throughout his life, from elementary school to law school; and the preponderance of friendships with mostly white kids growing up are among the circumstances that conspire to incessantly provoke Obama to prove his “authenticity” to black America.

He's black by choice? How does that happen? If only he had an American slave bloodline, and went to public schools, and grew up in the 'hood, and didn't have white friends when he was growing up, because that's what defines black people in America, right?

But the bizarreness doesn't stop there. They can also show how Hawaiian state officials helped cover up Obama's forged birth certificate.

I don't see a need to increase the number of page reads on that site.


Stephen said...

I wonder how the site would spin a certain state representative brandishing a firearm in his pickup truck, threatening another driver (in front of witnesses) in what the Spokane Police department called a road rage incident. Then again... I think that I already know the answer to that one.

Anonymous said...

The second paragraph you quote from Western Journalism is not so different than many reviews of Obama's book "Dreams From My Father," a book in which Obama himself details his struggles with racial (and other) identity issues.

In 2010, Melissa Harris-Perry wrote in the (leftist) Nation:

When Hillary Clinton held a significant lead among black voters, media outlets regularly questioned if Obama was "black enough" to earn African-American electoral support. When the Rev. Jeremiah Wright dominated the news cycle, the question shifted to whether Obama was "too black" to garner white votes. By the final months of the campaign, Obama's opponents charged that he was a noncitizen, a Muslim and a terrorist. In less than two years a single body had been subjected to definitions ranging from insufficiently black, to far too black, to somehow foreign and frightening.

At least conservatives talk about the significance of Obama's childhood years in Indonesia. But, conservative see the significance of Obama's Indonesian experience as somehow welding his black identity with a Muslim identity.

Indonesia more likely marked a divergence of between Obama's sense of black and Muslim identities. In Indonesia, Obama at least passively rejected Islam, perhaps because he felt it had rejected him. Muslim kids taunted Obama in Indonesia, and they taunted him because of his color. Obama did not have an easy integration into Indonesian society.

Obama has always de-emphasized his Asian, Muslim step-father who helped raise him, and instead emphasizes the biological father that he never knew. Obama also began to emphasize Obama Sr.'s tribal history, and ignored the role of Islam in that history. In a sense, Obama twice rejected Islam, in Indonesia, and in Kenya.

Obama chose to become a member of a black Christian church that emphasized the role of Christianity in black American struggles for freedom. He chose a Christian African American wife, chose to work in black neighborhoods, and chose a house in a mixed neighborhood. He chose only the African-American box on the census. He himself describes these choices as affirming a Christian African American identity for himself, and, particularly in his choice of emphasis, a rejection of past identities. As an adult, he is a black man with white and Asian relatives, and emphatically not a Muslim.

Obama's choices and autobiography provide an opening for the bizarre claims by conservatives like Dinesh D'Souza that he is some kind of sleeper Muslim or revolutionary. The obsession with Obama's biological father starts with Obama himself.

The liberal attack of the conservative interpretation is even more reductive. Liberals no longer talk about Indonesia, or Kenya, or the role of Obama's white grandparents, or the simple fact that white Anne Dunham had a son who "looked like Trayvon" --not to mention provided Obama with both his link to Obama Sr. and John Punch.

Liberals also refuse to discuss Obama's killing of noncombatants with drones. They won't discuss that Obama chose to have a 16 year old male US citizen killed. They won't discuss that Obama has claimed the power of indefinite detention. They won't discuss that Obama has refused to prosecute torture..

And, most of all, liberals won't talk about what Obama's victims have in common: they are Muslim. Liberals discussed these issues when the President was white. Liberals loudly suggested that George Bush's brand of Christianity made him more likely to wage wars in Muslim countries and deny the rights of Muslims.

Does Obama's personal history of ambivalence toward Islam pre-dispose the President to see Muslims as having less-than-full human rights? Is it payback time for those Indonesian taunts?

Does Obama's own brand of African American Christianity predispose him to discriminate against Muslims?

Is Obama a traitor or a victim?

Or, something else entirely.