Monday: Hili dialogue

May 8, 2023 • 6:45 am

Top of the week to you! It’s Monday, May 8, 2023, and National Coconut Cream Pie Day (remember, if you see “Creme” in the name, stay away). When made well, it’s a great pie:


It’s also Great Lakes Awareness Day, Iris Day, National Give Someone a Cupcake Day, National Have a Coke Day, No Socks Day, Victory in Europe Day, and its related observances, including Time of Remembrance and Reconciliation for Those Who Lost Their Lives during the Second World War, and, finally White Lotus Day (Theosophy) and World Red Cross and Red Crescent Day.

Finally, it’s Teacher’s Day and the beginning of Teacher Appreciation Week, celebrated with this Google Doodle (click to see where it goes):

Readers are welcome to mark notable events, births, or deaths on this by consulting the May 8 Wikipedia page.

Da Nooz:

*Another week, another mass shooting in America—this time in Dallas Texas. At least eight were killed, not including the murderer, who was killed by a cop on the scene, and eight are injured.

A gunman opened fire at a crowded mall outside Dallas on Saturday, killing at least eight people and injuring at least seven before a police officer killed him, the authorities said, turning a busy afternoon of shopping into a chaotic and tragic scene.

At a news conference Saturday night, Brian E. Harvey, the chief of police in Allen, Texas, did not identify a gunman but said the person acted alone. A federal law enforcement official on Sunday identified the gunman as Mauricio Garcia, 38.

Chief Harvey said a police officer, who was on an unrelated assignment at the mall at the time of the shooting, heard gunfire, rushed toward it and killed the gunman.

A spokesman for Medical City Healthcare, which was treating several victims at three trauma facilities, said the ages of the injured ranged from 5 to 61.

The gunfire erupted around 3:30 p.m. at the Allen Premium Outlets as throngs of shoppers filled the outdoor mall, which is about 25 miles north of Dallas and has more than 120 stores. Videos circulating on social media show people dashing for shelter or running through a parking lot as loud popping noises can be heard in the background.

Seven people, including the gunman, were pronounced dead at the mall. Officials could account for at least nine people who were transported to hospitals, but more victims may have been taken in private vehicles, the Allen fire chief, Jonathan Boyd, said. Two of those died later. Three were in critical condition and four in stable condition.

Here’s the toll for just the last week, twelve dead.

Last weekend, a gunman killed five people in Cleveland, Texas, near Houston, after he was asked by neighbors to stop shooting in his yard. He was captured after a multiday manhunt.

On Monday, a registered sex offender fatally shot six people, including his wife and three of her children, near Tulsa, Okla., before turning the gun on himself.

On Wednesday, a gunman opened fire at a medical office building in Atlanta, killing one and injuring four others. That, too, led to a manhunt before the suspect was caught.

The gun? Apparently an AR-15 style semiautomatic weapon. These having no good use in defending yourself, they should simply ban them.

*The motive? Perhaps, says the WaPo, white supremacy:

The gunman who opened fire on an outlet mall in a Dallas suburb Saturday, killing at least eight people, was a man in his early 30s who may have had white supremacist or neo-Nazi beliefs, people familiar with the investigation said Sunday.

Mauricio Garcia, a local resident, had multiple weapons on him and in his nearby car, said people familiar with the investigation who spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss the ongoing probe.

They said a patch the gunman was wearing on his chest at the time of the shooting suggested the potential white supremacist leanings. Authorities have not released a motive.

Of course not. Even if he was a white supremacist, unless he targeted non-white people, or left some manifesto, we may never know. In the meantime, here’s the weaselly statement of grief by the governor of “Wild West” Texas, Greg Abbott, who was a leader in loosening the state’s gun restrictions:

Abbott told Fox that his priority in response to mass killings is to address mental health crises, rather than tighten gun regulations. (Research shows that stricter gun laws could lessen the severity of mass killings and may decrease overall gun violence.)

“We’ve got to find a way in this country where we can once again reunite Americans as Americans and come together in one big family and in that regard, find ways to reduce violence in our country,” Abbott told the TV network.

How about starting with banning assault-style weapons? What a dork!

And the NYT reports that there’s no impetus in the Texas legislature to regulate guns:

 After months of pleading for more gun control measures, a Democrat who represents Uvalde, Texas, where 19 children died in a mass shooting, was told by the Republican leader of the State Senate to stop bringing up gun legislation or be barred from speaking at all.

In the State House, Republican members talked and joked among themselves as another Democrat, Representative Jarvis Johnson of Houston, rose to discuss gun control. “This is not a joke — this is real,” he shouted from the lectern at his colleagues on Friday. “Children every day are dying.”

It was only hours later that gunfire again ripped apart the daily life of people in Texas.

*While the horse won the Kentucky Derby, it was marred (as thoroughbred races so often are) by the death of several horses around Derby time.

After seven deaths raised questions about the future of horse racing, Mage earned a surprising Kentucky Derby victory on Saturday, capping a nerve-rattling day that included two more fatalities ahead of the 149th edition of the world’s most famous race.

Mage, a 15-1 shot, had only one win in his career, giving little indication that he could triumph against 17 rivals in a race that is not kind to the inexperienced.

Still, he made a gutsy stretch run, overtaking Two Phil’s to his inside and winning by a length. Mage, who didn’t race as a 2-year-old, ran 1 1/4 miles in 2:01.57.

. . .Earlier in the day, Chloe’s Dream, a 3-year-old gelding, and Freezing Point, a 3-year-old colt, were euthanized after being injured in their races, becoming the sixth and seventh horses to have died at the track in recent days.

“It’s a very difficult subject to touch upon,” said Ramiro Restrepo, part of Mage’s ownership and a blood stock agent. “I’m sure there’s going to be some investigations done as to the reason behind that, and hopefully that provides a few more answers.”

The string of horse deaths was on the mind of some Derby-goers.

“It’s concerning, and I hope they’re quickly trying the best they can to correct whatever’s going on,” said Michael Freeze, who along with his friend dressed up as jockeys. “They need to do whatever is best for the horses, and the sport in general.”

. . . The deaths included Derby contender Wild On Ice. Two of the horses were trained by Saffie Joseph Jr. He was indefinitely suspended by the track, although investigators have yet to determine a cause for the deaths of his horses.

I wonder how many deaths of these magnificent creatures are enough to stop thoroughbred racing. Apparently there is no limit.  Once when I lectured at the University of Kentucky, the department treated me to a visit to the local track to watch the races. I was entranced—until a horse fell down. Immediately a truck drove onto the track, and several guys put a cloth barrier around the fallen steed while they EUTHANIZED IT.  (This is the preferred way of dealing with foot and leg injuries, as these fragile horses won’t stay still enough to allow them to heal.) That was the end of my wanting to see any more races, and I haven’t since.

*If you’re a royal-watcher, the WSJ has a long article about how Prince Harry was relegated to the cheap seats at the coronation, and how the rupture between him and the Royals continue.  I see Harry and Meghan as sort-of grifters, dissing the royals while making millions on it. But then again I’m not keen on the Royals, either.

Prince Harry sat several rows back in Westminster Abbey on Saturday watching as his older brother, Prince William, knelt and pledged loyalty before his father, King Charles III.

The moment, halfway through the king’s coronation, was a striking image of a family disunited and a reminder of the differing paths the two royal brothers have taken in the last three years.

. . . On Saturday, Prince Harry was in London for a whistle-stop tour without his wife, Meghan Markle, Duchess of Sussex. Both had been invited to the service, but Ms. Markle opted to stay in California with her children. During the ceremony at Westminster Abbey, Prince Harry walked down the aisle greeting people and sat in the third row alongside a cast of minor royals, to watch as Charles whispered, “Thank you, William,” as the heir swore fealty to the monarch.

. . .That he attended at all was seen by some royal watchers as a sign of a detente of sorts. After Queen Elizabeth II’s death last September, King Charles addressed the nation and named the Sussexes to “express my love for Harry and Meghan as they continue to build their lives overseas.”

But that new life overseas has been predicated on what Britons would call “spilling tea” on the monarchy. Prince Harry’s autobiography “Spare,” published in January, described King Charles as aloof—a father who didn’t hug his son when telling him of his mother’s death—and painted a picture of the monarchy as an ossified institution out of touch with modern Britain. He and his wife produced a Netflix series highlighting the direct links between the slave trade and the monarchy, a reputational blow for an institution that is trying to present itself as representative of a diverse Britain.

. . . The airing of the family feud has dented Prince William, Prince Harry and the king’s standing in the public’s imagination, polls show. But in the U.K. it hasn’t landed a fatal blow on the Windsor franchise. “The more Harry attacks the monarchy, the more people like them because they have behaved with dignity,” says Angela Levin, a royal author of “Camilla: From Outcast to Queen Consort.” Britain’s monarchy still has solid backing among the public and support for an elected head of state remains a constant low.

And look at the dosh that Harry and Meghan are raking in (this is in addition to Harry’s book, of course, which must have made a pretty penny):

It is unclear where the prince takes the royal row next. At Netflix, where the couple signed a production deal worth a reported $100 million, several shows and movies are in development, including a documentary on the Invictus Games that Prince Harry has supported in the past,

“Spilled tea,” as the tabloid press calls it.

*Given what the Nazis did to the Netherlands (home of Anne Frank, of course), and how they treated Dutch Jews, I was appalled to read about this behavior. I don’t think it should be illegal, as I’m a hard-line free speech advocate, but really, some Dutch people did this?

Some 154 soccer fans were arrested by police in The Netherlands late Saturday evening after singing an antisemitic soccer song, including lyrics referencing the burning of Jews and the Nazi party’s military branch, the SS.

The fans were reportedly riding the subway en route to the Johan Cruijff Arena in Amsterdam ahead of a game when they began singing the antisemitic anthem.

“My father was in the commandos, my mother was in the SS, together they burned Jews because Jews burn the best,” the fans sang.

In a statement, Dutch police said that “supporters were asked several times to stop singing” but refused to do so.

Authorities arrested the men on “group insult” charges and fined them each $570.

The detained men were fans of the AZ Alkmaar soccer club, which was facing off against Amsterdam’s Ajax, a team which has been historically associated with Jews.

“The Central Jewish Committee is satisfied with the decision to intervene and tackle antisemitism one step at a time,” said the head of the local Jewish advocacy group, Chanan Hertzberger, in a statement to Dutch media.

The match between Ajax and AZ Alkmaar ended in a goalless, 0-0 draw.

Notably, just a few days before that match, there was antisemitic chanting at a previous game between Ajax and Feyenoord. At that game, which took place on April 5th, a supporter of Feyenoord yelled “Hamas, Hamas, all the Jews to the gas,” outside of the stadium.

Other Feyenoord fans cheered and repeated the chant.

Naomi Mestrom, the director of Dutch-Jewish NGO CIDI, told RTL News that the incident made her feel “despondent.”

Mestrom said that antisemitic chant was “downright Jew-hatred,” emphasizing that her organization would help authorities identify the man who started the chanting.

“Hamas, Hamas, all the Jews to the gas”? What the holy hell is going on over there?

Meanwhile in Dobrzyn, Hili makes a joke to Paulina, who took the picture:

Paulina: You look like a wild cat in a jungle.
Hili: Yes, in a jungle where forsythias grow.
(Photo: Paulina)
In Polish:
Paulina: Wyglądasz jak dziki kot w dżungli.
Hili: Tak, w takiej, w której rosną forsycje.
Lagniappe: A photo of Hili’s house right now:


From Stash Krod: the invention of the real Viking helmet as depicted forty years ago by Gary Larson in The Far Side

From Barry:

A grammatical discussion from Merilee:

From Masih, Iranian women continue to defy the hijab ban:

From Malcolm, “Gatekeeper Cat”:

From Barry, who notes that “The biggest mystery in the universe is cat behavior”:

Greg tells me that this is normal mating behavior in this species (red-eared sliders), and the male is the slapper while the female is the slappee:


From the Auschwitz Memorial, a mother and one-year old child gassed upon arrival:

Tweets from Dr. Cobb. First, a cat and chicks (sound up):

Lots of puns and jokes in this Big Mystery thread:

Matthew loves Mars! See the rover at the left?

34 thoughts on “Monday: Hili dialogue

  1. Has anyone asked the Texas legislature where are all the good guys with guns that are supposed to stop the bad guys with guns?

    1. The mall has a policy of no weapons on the premise. It’s a “gun-free zone.”

      Don’t tell the good guys with guns not to bring their guns then complain that there weren’t any good guys with guns around.

      1. Presumably the police and security guards were allowed guns, since those are the people we trust to protect us from random citizens with firearms. Unfortunately they’re working in a country where weapons of mass death are allowed to proliferate like weeds. “Solutions” like blaming mental health (while cutting funding for improving it), blaming immigrants, or encouraging everyone to go around armed do nothing to solve the problem, and so the shootings will go on and on, and the US will continue to look like a society in decay.

        1. Police – arguably, if you’re going to let them have weapons at all, which seems to be the street army that America wants. But security guards? Un-trained, people hired without scrutiny to pose in uniforms and with no authority different to the man or woman on the Clapham omnibus? That’ll end in tears and deaths.

      2. Malls are not the only place where mass shootings occur. I guess mass shooters just pick the places where good guys don’t have their guns.

          1. Given recent federal court decisions and the pro-gun legislation enacted by state legislatures and signed into law by governors, the USA seems well on its way to universal permitless concealed and open carry (meaning no training, no test to obtain a license, and no showing of need required) in jurisdictions with “Stand Your Ground” laws (meaning no duty to retreat or to avoid deadly conflict).

            The ineluctable result if these trends continue to their logical conclusion will be to turn US public spaces into free-fire zones.

  2. On this day:
    1373 – Julian of Norwich, a Christian mystic and anchoress, experiences the deathbed visions described in her Revelations of Divine Love.

    1429 – Joan of Arc lifts the Siege of Orléans, turning the tide of the Hundred Years’ War.

    1794 – Branded a traitor during the Reign of Terror, French chemist Antoine Lavoisier, who was also a tax collector with the Ferme générale, is tried, convicted and guillotined in one day in Paris.

    1886 – Pharmacist John Pemberton first sells a carbonated beverage named “Coca-Cola” as a patent medicine.

    1919 – Edward George Honey proposes the idea of a moment of silence to commemorate the Armistice of 11 November 1918 which ended World War I.

    1927 – Attempting to make the first non-stop transatlantic flight from Paris to New York, French war heroes Charles Nungesser and François Coli disappear after taking off aboard The White Bird biplane.

    1945 – Hundreds of Algerian civilians are killed by French Army soldiers in the Sétif massacre.

    1950 – The Tollund Man was discovered in a peat bog near Silkeborg, Denmark.

    1970 – The Beatles release their 12th and final studio album Let It Be.

    1978 – The first ascent of Mount Everest without supplemental oxygen, by Reinhold Messner and Peter Habeler.

    1980 – The World Health Organization confirms the eradication of smallpox.

    1984 – The Thames Barrier is officially opened, preventing the floodplain of most of Greater London from being flooded except under extreme circumstances.

    1737 – Edward Gibbon, English historian and politician (d. 1794).

    1842 – Emil Christian Hansen, Danish physiologist and mycologist (d. 1909).

    1846 – Oscar Hammerstein I, American businessman and composer (d. 1919).

    1858 – J. Meade Falkner, English author and poet (d. 1932).

    1899 – Friedrich Hayek, Austrian economist and philosopher, Nobel Prize laureate (d. 1992).

    1911 – Robert Johnson, American singer-songwriter and guitarist (d. 1938).

    1913 – Sid James, South African-English actor and singer (d. 1976).

    1926 – David Attenborough, English environmentalist and television host.

    1940 – Ricky Nelson, American singer-songwriter, guitarist, and actor (d. 1985).

    1943 – Pat Barker, English author.

    1958 – Roddy Doyle, Irish novelist, playwright, and screenwriter.

    1983 – Vicky McClure, English actress.

    Dead! And never called me mother!:
    1828 – Mauro Giuliani, Italian guitarist, cellist, and composer (b. 1781).

    1880 – Gustave Flaubert, French novelist (b. 1821).

    1903 – Paul Gauguin, French painter and sculptor (b. 1848).

    1947 – Harry Gordon Selfridge, American-English businessman, founded Selfridges (b. 1858).

    1988 – Robert A. Heinlein, American science fiction writer and screenwriter (b. 1907).

    1996 – Beryl Burton, English cyclist (b. 1937).

    1999 – Dirk Bogarde, English actor and screenwriter (b. 1921).

    2012 – Maurice Sendak, American author and illustrator (b. 1928).

    2018 – Anne V. Coates, British film editor (Lawrence of Arabia, The Elephant Man, Erin Brockovich), Oscar winner (1963) (b. 1925).

    2022 – Dennis Waterman, English actor and singer (b. 1948).

  3. Diversity in song meets Tolerance and Inclusivity in the law and a $570(USD?) fine per violation – maybe a misdemeanor record?

    So I guess THAT kind of diversity illegal.

    Meanwhile, the whole world knows – indeed, what the hell kind of vile songs are those?!

    ^^^free speech including my right to hear it.

  4. Greg tells me that this is normal mating behavior in this species (red-eared sliders), and the male is the slapper while the female is the slappee…

    Maybe some male red-eared sliders dig a dominatrix. Never been my thing, but let’s not kink-shame. I say whatever consenting reptiles are into is their own business.

    1. I have 3 red-eared sliders, 1 male and 2 females. He likes to slap, but what he likes even more is to bite one of the females (it’s only just the one) on the back of her neck. He’ll just grab the skin flap there and she’ll drag him around until he finally lets go. Really weird behavior and I don’t like it not one bit. When I see him going after her, I get out my trusty stick and push him away, but of course I’m not monitoring the pond all day.

      Maybe Greg knows why he does that…

    2. Not noted is that the male slider normally does the “titillation” (to use the technical term) while swimming backwards…with just its hind feet

      …in heels!

  5. … here’s the weaselly statement of grief by the governor of “Wild West” Texas, Greg Abbott, who was a leader in loosening the state’s gun restrictions:

    Abbott told Fox that his priority in response to mass killings is to address mental health crises, rather than tighten gun regulations.

    Texas is the state where the case arose in which the ultraconservative federal Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals struck down the federal law that keeps firearms out of the hands of persons subject to domestic abuse injunctions as unconstitutional under the Second Amendment.

    The US Justice Department has asked SCOTUS to review this decision, but if the ruling stands up in the high court, you can say adios to any type of “red flag” laws or other efforts to keep firearms out of the hands of people exhibiting symptoms of mental illness or violence-prone behavior.

  6. Greg Abbott consistently cuts funding for mental health services, or redirects it to silly antics like his border stunts.

    1. Yep, he’s a fraud, but that’s a prerequisite in today’s Republican “party”. (I don’t consider the GOP a political party anymore…it’s just a cult of personality with fascistic leanings.)

  7. re. the anti-semitic chants of Dutch football fans, this is not a new phenomenon.
    Fans of Amsterdam football team Ajax have a long-standing affiliation with Jewishness, and nickname themselves The Jews, wave Israeli flags, etc. This dates back to the 1930s when the Ajax stadium was adjacent to a predominantly Jewish neighbourhood.
    Fans of rival teams have been taunting them with anti-semitic slurs since at least the 1970s. In recent years that behaviour has been clamped down on quite hard and fast, and I think it is generally in decline. But as we saw this weekend, it still happens, sadly.

    1. It’s just normal for football (soccer). It was (mostly) anti-black thuggery in my youth, with a persistent core of anti-Semitism in some London clubs. These days, from the chanting I hear on match days (don’t live near the station-football ground path if you want a quiet Saturday!) it’s shifted a little towards the other anti-Semitism – anti-Middle Easterners and Muslims (despite most British Muslims being of a Raj origin not a Middle East origin).
      Plus, of course, there’s the enduring stain of Catholic and Protestant warfare continuing between Rangers and Celtic (with minor contributions from Hearts).
      Some talk about it from the football authorities, but minimal action. Nobody has been banned from ever being involved in the sport again for such behaviour.

  8. *The motive? Perhaps, says the WaPo, white supremacy:

    Mauricio Garcia, …..

    Ah, yes. All those white supremacists named Mauricio Garcia.

    I sincerely wonder if a leftist news outlet could ever say something so egregiously stupid that even leftists would stop reading it. So far the answer appears to be “no.”

    But maybe, just maybe, we should stop importing millions of people from the most violent countries in the world. For world population review:

    The ten most violent cities in the world are:

    Tijuana, Mexico
    Acapulco, Mexico
    Caracas, Venezuela
    Ciudad Victoria, Mexico
    Ciudad Juárez, Mexico
    Irapuato, Mexico
    Ciudad Guayana, Venezuela
    Natal, Brazil
    Fortaleza, Brazil
    Ciudad Bolívar, Venezuela

    The top ten cities are all located in Latin America and are either in Mexico, Venezuela, or Brazil.

    1. So if we stopped letting in people from Latin America, mass shootings would no longer be a problem in the US? Sounds like a desperate attempt to avoid facing the fact that a majority of mass shooters have been white. Or that the least violent countries in the world are those with sensible gun control. Even the Swiss have restricted the acquisition of semi-automatic firearms with high-capacity magazines.

      1. I’ll just point out that on the U.S. census Hispanic people are considered white if they indicate only “Hispanic/Latino” and no other race. So it’s possible that a majority of mass shooters could be Hispanic and would still be coded as white in crime databases. I realize that in American news reports and common speech, people who look like Mr. Garcia are often described as Hispanic and not white but many reports omit the race of criminals entirely. The theory that young male Latin-American immigrants are disproportionately dangerous is not disproved and surely is worth a look.

        I also believe that a majority of mass shooters are in fact black, as are their victims. If you restrict your statement to mass shootings of strangers using semi-automatic rifles, then yes, most shooters are not black. But these shootings account for what, 2% of shooting deaths?

        I don’t doubt that if you could get all owners of guns of this type to surrender them and not acquire any more, you would have fewer of these shootings.

    2. I’m unsure what WaPo article you’re referring to, since you neither link to nor cite it, but the one I saw yesterday reported, apparently accurately, that law enforcement investigators were looking into a possible far-rightwing, neo-Nazi, anti-Semitic, white-supremacist motivation for for shooting, based on the shooter’s lengthy online history of posting in favor of these ideologies. (The shooter was also wearing a “RWDS” chest patch at the time of the shooting, standing for “right wing death squad.”) Let’s let the facts as they are further developed in this regard speak for themselves.

      Far-rightwing, neo-Nazi violent extremism is far from unheard of in Latin America. And, unfortunately, having a Hispanic name provides no inoculation against poisonous white-supremacist ideology. Consider, for example, Enrique Tarrio and Nick Fuentes.

      Are we Americans supposed to ignore the numerous mass shootings at schools, shopping malls, and places of worship done in the name of these ideologies just because you can name 10 violent cities in Mexico and points south?

      1. This shooter did not just have a “Hispanic-sounding” name. On the network news tonight, they did not show images of his face, but did show an image of someone’s torso with SS runes and a big swastika tattoo. They could not confirm it was him.
        Images of his face can be found here-
        (warning, the last image is graphic!)
        He also had what appears to be a “Tango Blast Dallas” tattoo on his hand. It is hard to be sure, as members of that gang often just have the logo of their city affiliation tattooed somewhere visible.

        If we are actually experiencing a surge of hateful ideology and actions by people who are obviously not White, we probably need to find more appropriate terminology than “White Supremacy”. If this is something new, it would be better eliminated by first understanding what the ideology really is, and where it comes from.

        1. This is precisely why I stated in my comment above that we should “let the facts as they are further developed in this regard speak for themselves.”

          If it turns out that the shooter, in his online posting history, asserted his belief in white supremacy, I think we should take him at his word in this regard, whether or not you believe that his Hispanic heritage disentitles him from making that claim.

      2. I’m unsure what WaPo article you’re referring to, since you neither link to nor cite it….

        – I copied directly from Jerry’s post.

        …white-supremacist motivation for for shooting, based on the shooter’s lengthy online history of posting in favor of these ideologies.

        – At least Dave Chappelle’s black klansman skit was intended as a joke. Now we have a Mexican white-supremacist. Could it possibly be that some news outlet will trip over themselves in order to label anything and everything as white-supremacist or racist just because it fits their agenda?

        Are we Americans supposed to ignore the numerous mass shootings at schools, shopping malls, and places of worship done in the name of these ideologies just because you can name 10 violent cities in Mexico and points south?

        – No. We just might want to consider that maybe letting in millions of people from the most violent countries might result in an increase in violence here. Unless you’re a proponent of the magic dirt theory….

      3. Ken, the article you link is the same one that Jerry cited in his original post. It reports only the insignia and regalia found on the gunman’s body, which you mention, but makes no mention of any on-line activity that has come to light at this early stage.

          1. There is a neo-Nazi flavour to Canada’s urban indigenous street gangs, too, and a nationally respected Grand Chief was actually convicted of hate speech (overturned on appeal) for saying while drunk at a convention that Hitler hadn’t gone far enough with the Jews. (He was more concretely explicit.)

            Native Canadians embracing white supremacy as such is a bit rich. But then Hitler wasn’t a settler, and Jews in Canada are, so perhaps in the Grand Chief’s eyes he was an ally.

            Our white-guilt-centred concept of racism may not always square with other people’s systems of “othering,” which is one reason I don’t think the term has any useful meaning and have stopped giving uptake to it. This Texas case rattles the paradigm. As society becomes more diverse (not just more black people in a two-race nation), it will become harder to argue that every violent crime where the races differ is a white hate crime, even if you fall back on internalized white supremacy.

  9. “Given what the Nazis did to the Netherlands (home of Anne Frank, of course), and how they treated Dutch Jews, I was appalled to read about this behavior. I don’t think it should be illegal, as I’m a hard-line free speech advocate, but really, some Dutch people did this?”

    Two points. First, those people, or perhaps even their parents, were born after the war. One shouldn’t expect the grandchildren of the victims to be more alert to the dangers of a war in the last century any more than one would expect present-day young Germans to be neo-Nazis. Second, not all Dutch were innocent victims. There is a very good film called Zwartboek (“Black Book”, though I’m not sure if that is the title in English, assuming even that exists in English; it is primarily in Dutch with Dutch actors, but Germans play Germans and speak German, some English is spoken when it would have been historically, and so on) by Paul Verhoeven (yes, THAT Paul Verhoeven) on the topic.

  10. Another week, another mass shooting in America

    I thought the rate was running at about 1.2 mass shootings per day. The article that mentioned it did provide numbers, but I didn’t grave them into my memory as they were likely to be out of date already.

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