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Lincoln Is Too White

15 Mar

Round 2I have two criticisms about Lincoln, Steven Spielberg’s costume drama about the passing of the 13th Amendment in 1865. I sat through a very uncrowded theater in Busan wondering if I was the only customer not sleeping.

It’s mighty white.

Where was Frederick Douglass? William Lloyd Garrison? Harriet Tubman? Harriet Beecher Stowe? Wendell Phillips? Elizabeth Cady Stanton? I liked Thaddeus Stevens, bad wig at all, and the movie did have some zip for a narrative without music or car crashes. Still, can I get a radical? Do we need to see so many servants? We know white men had sex with African slave women, but is that a sign of bondage or progress? It’s not enough to shove white men in our faces, when many of these men and women were better than us today, and their reactionary foes lacking in any quality.

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Infidel Links, White Smoke Edition

15 Mar

Proxy SpatPope Francis’ Junta Past: Argentine Journalist on New Pontiff’s Ties to Abduction of Jesuit Priests (Democracy Now!)

HORACIO VERBITSKY [Argentine investigative journalist]: The main thing to understand about Francis I is that he’s a conservative populist, in the same style that John Paul II was. He’s a man of strong conservative positions in doctrine questions, but with a touch for popular taste. He preaches in rail stations, in the streets. He goes to the quarters, the poor quarters of the city to pray. He doesn’t wait the people going into the church; he goes for them. But his message is absolutely conservative. He was opposed to abortion, to the egalitarian matrimony law. He launched a crusade against the evil when Congress was passing this law, and in the very same style that John Paul II. This is what I consider the main feature on the new pope.

JUAN GONZÁLEZ: Well, now, Horacio Verbitsky, that would be true of many of the cardinals elevated during the period of John Paul and now also of Benedict XVI, this basic conservatism. But in the case of Bergoglio, there’s also the issue, as you have documented and many—and several other journalists in Argentina, of his particular role or accusations about his involvement in the dirty wars in Argentina. Could you talk about that and some of the things that—because you’ve been a leading investigative reporter uncovering the relations between the church and the government in terms of the dirty wars?

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