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Displaying 25891-25900 of 25953 results.
ID: 154067
Uid: 4699
Author: 4
Category: 0
Title: The Revolutionary Drummer Boy Turned Haitian King
Source: The Daily Beast
Body: <p style="line-height: 29.5px; margin: 0px 0px 15px; font-size: 17px; color: rgb(2, 20, 31); font-family: Georgia, Cambria, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, Times, serif;">Once upon a time, even the wild story of a 12-year-old American Revolutionary drummer boy becoming King of Haiti couldn’t interest Americans because he – along with his fellow soldiers – was black.&nbsp;</p><p style="line-height: 29.5px; margin: 0px 0px 15px; font-size: 17px; color: rgb(2, 20, 31); font-family: Georgia, Cambria, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, Times, serif;">As with America in Vietnam, the British Army dominated militarily during the Revolution—until it lost. And like Vietnam, a local fight for independence from colonial rule became a global war.&nbsp;</p><p style="line-height: 29.5px; margin: 0px 0px 15px; font-size: 17px; color: rgb(2, 20, 31); font-family: Georgia, Cambria, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, Times, serif;">In 1778, the British surprised American troops in Savannah and captured the city. Georgia was important enough strategically that French forces joined with their American allies to try liberating Savannah. On September 23, 1779, Admiral Charles-Hector Theodat d’Estaing, fresh from failing to dislodge the British from Newport, Rhode Island, demanded Savannah surrender. Four thousand French troops from the West Indies on 37 ships backed up his demand. Foolishly but nobly, he gave the British 24 hours to consider. The British fortified the ramparts and deployed reinforcements...</p><p style="line-height: 29.5px; margin: 0px 0px 15px; font-size: 17px; color: rgb(2, 20, 31); font-family: Georgia, Cambria, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, Times, serif;"><a href="https://www.thedailybeast.com/the-revolutionary-drummer-boy-turned-haitian-king?ref=author">Read whole article on The Daily Beast.</a></p><div><br></div>
ID: 154068
Uid: 31615
Author: 19
Category: 0
Title: Kids Versus Guns
Source:
Body: <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">Once again thousands of Americans poured into the streets to express a clear political position. This time it was high school students horrified at the mass murders of other students and at the unwillingness of politicians to do anything about it.</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt"><a href="https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2018/feb/19/donald-trump-background-checks-florida-shooting-gun-control">Students lay down</a> in front of the White House last Monday. Survivors of the attack at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Florida <a href="https://www.theatlantic.com/photo/2018/02/florida-gun-control-protests-photos/553883/">rallied at the state Capitol</a> and urged legislators to change gun laws. <a href="http://abcnews.go.com/US/wireStory/students-us-stage-walkouts-protest-gun-violence-53256387">Thousands of students</a> across the country walked out of school last Wednesday to protest gun violence.</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">A <a href="http://time.com/5165794/student-protests-walkouts-florida-school-shooting/">nationwide school walkout</a> is planned for March 14, lasting 17 minutes for the 17 Florida victims. Then come a march in Washington, called March For Our Lives, on March 24, and a National High School Walkout on April 20, the 19th anniversary of the Columbine shooting.</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">We never know what incident will provoke a mass social movement. Wikipedia conveniently lists <a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_school_shootings_in_the_United_States">all school shootings</a> with 3 or more deaths over the past two centuries. There were 3 in the 19<sup>th</sup> century, one in the first half of the 20<sup>th</sup> century, 6 more before 1990. Then there were 9 in the 1990s, 5 in the 2000s, and 11 since 2010, more than one a year. Before Columbine in 1999, only one incident involved more than 7 deaths; since then, six with 10 or more deaths. In the past year, three school shootings have left 26 dead. If we widen our gaze to all shootings at schools, then there was <a href="https://www.npr.org/2018/01/24/580433745/a-look-at-all-11-school-shootings-that-took-place-in-the-first-23-days-of-2018">one every other day</a> in January, mostly without deaths.</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">After Columbine and Sandy Hook there were protests about how easy it is for those who plan mass murders to get powerful weapons, but they didn’t last long enough to force politicians to listen. Will this time be different?</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">Days after the Florida massacre, Republican state legislators there voted <a href="http://time.com/5167687/florida-shooting-lawmakers-assault-weapon-ban/">not to consider</a> a bill to ban large-capacity magazines and assault weapons. Instead, as school shootings increase, the Republican response has been “More guns!” Republican state lawmakers recently decided to bring <a href="http://www.ncsl.org/research/education/guns-on-campus-overview.aspx">guns onto college campuses</a> in Arkansas, Georgia, Texas, Ohio, Tennessee, Kansas, Wisconsin and other states. <a href="https://www.laprogressive.com/student-change-agents/?utm_source=LA+Progressive+Newsletter&amp;utm_campaign=241dbc8024-LAP_News_4_15_April_17_PC4_15_2017&amp;utm_medium=email&amp;utm_term=0_9f184a8aad-241dbc8024-269090273&amp;mc_cid=241dbc8024&amp;mc_eid=ace62b1e3f">Two Republican candidates</a> for Congress, <a href="http://tylertannahill.com/giveaway.php">Tyler Tannehill</a> in Kansas and <a href="http://ux.news-leader.com/story/news/politics/2018/02/16/republican-senate-candidate-says-ar-15-raffle-went-ahead-lot-due-diligence/346681002/">Austin Petersen</a> in Missouri, are giving away an AR-15 as part of their campaigns. Donald Trump’s call to arm teachers and spend millions training them fits neatly into the Republican policy of arming everybody.</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">It’s useful to stand back and think about whether this idea has even been proposed for other similar situations. Dylann Roof <a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Charleston_church_shooting">murdered 9 people</a> at the Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston, SC, on June 17, 2015, with a Glock .45-caliber handgun. On November 5, 2017, Devin Patrick Kelley <a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sutherland_Springs_church_shooting">killed 26 people</a> at the First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs, Texas, with an AR-15 pattern Ruger AR-556 semi-automatic rifle. These mass killings are the most horrific of a growing wave of church shootings.</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">Dallas Drake and his team of researchers at the Center for Homicide Research in Minneapolis counted 136 church shootings between 1980 and 2005, <a href="https://psmag.com/news/church-shootings-are-becoming-much-more-common">about 5 per year</a>, but 147 from 2006 to 2016, <a href="https://edition.cnn.com/2017/11/06/us/church-shootings-truth/index.html">over 13 per year</a>. Should we arm priests and rabbis and ministers?</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">Right now, the political engagement of young Americans for gun control is very high. Can the kids accomplish politically what generations of adults have not be able to do – prevent further school massacres?</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">The political protest of youngsters can move national politics in particular circumstances. In May 1963, <a href="https://www.biography.com/news/black-history-birmingham-childrens-crusade-1963-video">schoolchildren marched</a> in Brimingham, Alabama, to protest segregation and discrimination. That Children’s Crusade had political effect mainly because of the violent response of Commissioner of Public Safety Bull Connor and his policemen, and the bombing a few months later of the 16th St. Baptist Church, killing four little girls. Politicians learned that attacking children with fire hoses and batons is stupid. Now they politely listen and then ignore the youngsters’ message.</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">The Australian response to a massacre in 1996 is sometimes brought up as a model for the US. The government not only banned further sales of semiautomatic weapons, but <a href="https://www.theguardian.com/world/2016/mar/15/it-took-one-massacre-how-australia-made-gun-control-happen-after-port-arthur">confiscated 650,000 guns</a>. Since then there have been no mass killings. But an Australian gun owner and supporter of restrictions <a href="https://www.nytimes.com/2018/02/23/opinion/australias-gun-laws-america.html">argues persuasively</a> that Australians, with their very different history, don’t like guns and offered no opposition to this revocation of their right to own weapons of mass killing. Too many Americans love guns for this to work here. Our culture accepts, even glorifies gun violence.</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">But it is not necessary to transform our culture to deal with guns in America. Most of the kids may not be able to vote yet, but persistent political action could shift the small number of votes needed to defeat the small number of state and federal legislators who stand in the way of majority votes for banning assault rifles and large capacity magazines, for tightening rules about who can own guns.</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">We’ll see if students can keep up the pressure all the way to the elections in November. That would require behavior uncommon among teenagers – long-term political engagement. It may save their lives.</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">Steve Hochstadt</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">Berlin, Germany</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">Published in the Jacksonville Journal-Courier, February 27, 2018</span></p>
ID: 154069
Uid: 292
Author: 11
Category: 0
Title: Farewell to the U.S. History Textbook?
Source:
Body: <p style="text-align: center;"><img src=" /sites/default/files/154069-books.jpg "></p><p><i> Sociologist James W. Loewen is the author of <a href="http://www.amazon.com/Lies-My-Teacher-Told-Everything/dp/0743296281"> Lies My Teacher Told Me</a>.</i></p><p>Pearson <a href="https://www.insidehighered.com/quicktakes/2018/02/26/pearson-projects-profit-after-6-year-slump">has announced</a> its intention to sell its K-12 division. Let us hope it can find no buyer and simply closes it down. </p><p>Pearson, incorporating Prentice-Hall, has long been a dominant publisher of K-12 U.S. history textbooks. In the second edition of <a href="https://www.amazon.com/Lies-My-Teacher-Told-Everything/dp/0743296281/ref=sr_1_1"><i>Lies My Teacher Told Me:&nbsp; Everything Your American History Textbook Got Wrong</i></a>, I show how two sets of Pearson "authors," Allan Winkler, et al., and Daniel Boorstin and Brooks Mather Kelley, plagiarized each other. Actually, Pearson hired a clerk to write both of their high school U.S. History textbooks. However, instead of hiring two clerks, one for each book, as is standard practice, Pearson hired just one and used his/her work twice. As a result, for page after page the two books are almost identical. (Probably they went through separate copy-editing.)</p><p>Perhaps one reason for this economy move was Pearson's <a href="https://www.insidehighered.com/quicktakes/2018/02/26/pearson-projects-profit-after-6-year-slump">financial problems</a>. Maybe Pearson was under pressure to cut costs, even though the list price for U.S. history textbooks has soared to more than $100/copy. </p><p>Certainly both Winkler and Kelley deplored Pearson's frugality. Initially they both implied that they wrote their respective books. (Well, Kelley actually said "Boorstin did it.") Then, after I told them that "their book" was identical to another Prentice-Hall book for page after page, each said, and I quote, "Oh no! That's terrible!" </p><p>But the problem wasn't just Pearson's false economy. The real issue is: Pearson has no integrity. It lists as authors famous historians who didn't write "their" textbooks, never knew who did, and didn't even bother to read them. So if Pearson sells its K-12 division, good riddance! </p><p>But again, the problem isn't just Pearson. The buyer would likely be no better. <a href="https://historynewsnetwork.org/blog/153655">Other textbook publishers</a> also release books by <a href="https://historynewsnetwork.org/blog/153654">"authors" who didn't write them</a> or <a href="https://historynewsnetwork.org/blog/153644">even bother to read them.</a> </p><p>Now imagine that Pearson does not find a buyer and simply closes the division. That would be an advance! The next step would be for other publishers to abandon the huge textbook entirely, whether in print or on line. Its time has long passed. In olden times (such as 1991), students in Tchula, Mississippi, had few resources for learning history other than their textbook. Now, almost every school in America has the web, so it has hundreds of thousands of books, photographs, the census, etc., available for students and teachers to use. </p><p>Despite the invention of the web, the books have actually grown. The twelve textbooks I examined for the first edition of Lies My Teacher Told Me, all published between 1975 and 1991, averaged 888 pages. The books I studied for the second edition, all published between 2000 and 2007, contained 1,152 pages. There is no excuse for this bloating. Textbooks should be shrinking. Teachers, districts, and entire states shouldn't choose any of these behemoths. They kill the excitement of history. By trying to cover everything, they don't uncover anything. Students suffering through courses based on these books never discover an answer. Even to questions such as when and how people first got to the Americas, where no consensus exists, textbooks don't invite thought; instead they choose one answer and present it for students to "learn." </p><p>We don't need these ponderous boring tomes any more. The web has made them superfluous. The textbook industry has been disrupted. It just doesn't know it yet, owing to the inertia built into its customer base — educational institutions. A skeletal 200-page paperback will do, indeed will do better, forcing teachers and students to go beyond the textbook instead of simply memorizing twigs. </p><p>A historian or a team might show the way by writing a good 200-page paperback U.S. history. A bad one used to exist, put out by the federal government and aimed at immigrants studying for the test required for becoming a naturalized citizen. It seems to have disappeared, leaving a vacuum. This is my million-dollar idea for you, the reader — free! Let me know when yours comes out! </p> <p></p><p> Copyright James W. Loewen </p><p> </p>
ID: 154070
Uid: 4699
Author: 4
Category: 0
Title: Even the Wild West Embraced Gun Control
Source: The Daily Beast
Body: <p style="line-height: 29.5px; margin: 0px 0px 15px; font-size: 17px; color: rgb(2, 20, 31); font-family: Georgia, Cambria, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, Times, serif;">Although we all know that cowboys strutted around shooting off their Colt .45s “Peacemakers” all day, the Wild West wasn't so wild that it – and the Stormy South -- couldn't include gun control.&nbsp;</p><p style="line-height: 29.5px; margin: 0px 0px 15px; font-size: 17px; color: rgb(2, 20, 31); font-family: Georgia, Cambria, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, Times, serif;">History is annoying. It muddies our legends with facts. Indeed, many local laws in the nineteenth-century prohibited carrying concealed weapons. A Dodge City billboard warned: “The Carrying of Firearms Strictly Prohibited.” Also, that “gun that won the west,”<a class="LinkWrapper LinkWrapper--external" href="https://www.popularmechanics.com/military/weapons/a23685/colt-single-action/" style="color: inherit; transition: color 0.15s ease;">&nbsp;the Peacemaker – was about a tenth as popular</a>&nbsp;as the Harrington &amp; Richardson. And the legendary Gun Fight at the OK Corral was triggered partially by the Tombstone, Arizona, law compelling individuals to check-in their guns when they arrived in town.</p><p style="line-height: 29.5px; margin: 0px 0px 15px; font-size: 17px; color: rgb(2, 20, 31); font-family: Georgia, Cambria, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, Times, serif;">History is also delightfully messy. Past nuance undermines partisan certainties. As UCLA Law Professor Adam Winkler writes in<a class="LinkWrapper LinkWrapper--external" href="https://www.amazon.com/Gunfight-Battle-Over-Right-America/dp/0393345831/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&amp;qid=1519514697&amp;sr=8-1&amp;keywords=gunfight" style="color: inherit; transition: color 0.15s ease;">&nbsp;Gunfight</a>,&nbsp;“You are certain to see more gunfights in a two-hour movie about the Wild West than you would have seen in a year of the dusty streets of Deadwood, South Dakota” – or most Wild West hot spots. And the South, Winkler adds, “was the region where some of the earliest, most burdensome, gun control laws in American history were first enacted.” At the same time, Southerners and Westerners were often gunslingers. And, as the Harvard Professor Steven Pinker writes in<a class="LinkWrapper LinkWrapper--external" href="https://www.amazon.com/Better-Angels-Our-Nature-Violence/dp/0143122010" style="color: inherit; transition: color 0.15s ease;">&nbsp;The Better Angels of Our Nature</a>, the South and West were and remain America’s most honor-obsessed, and thereby most violent, regions...</p><p style="line-height: 29.5px; margin: 0px 0px 15px; font-size: 17px; color: rgb(2, 20, 31); font-family: Georgia, Cambria, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, Times, serif;"><a href="https://www.thedailybeast.com/even-the-wild-west-embraced-gun-control?ref=author">Read whole article on The Daily Beast.</a></p>
ID: 154071
Uid: 78568
Author: 36
Category: 0
Title: Understanding the Persecution of the Rohingya Minority in Myanmar: An interview with international criminal law attorney Regina Paulose
Source:
Body: Click <a href="https://historynewsnetwork.org/article/168310">here</a> for the interview.
ID: 154072
Uid: 4699
Author: 4
Category: 0
Title: The Black Director Who Should Have Won an Oscar
Source: The Daily Beast
Body: <p style="line-height: 29.5px; margin: 0px 0px 15px; font-size: 17px; color: rgb(2, 20, 31); font-family: Georgia, Cambria, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, Times, serif;">The grandson of slaves, Oscar Micheaux made 44 movies, becoming the “Cecil B. De Mille of Race Movies,” and the “Czar of Black Hollywood,” inspired by that obnoxiously racist film from 1915:&nbsp;Birth of a Nation.</p><p style="line-height: 29.5px; margin: 0px 0px 15px; font-size: 17px; color: rgb(2, 20, 31); font-family: Georgia, Cambria, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, Times, serif;">As optimists, Americans usually treat inspiration as positive, but fear and fury motivate too. This Oscar who deserved an Oscar but never got one, turned watching&nbsp;Birth of a Nation&nbsp;into the birth of his movie career. And he refused to be shackled by the limitations all blacks endured during what we should call the Awful African-American Purgatory. Living from 1884 to 1951, he was sandwiched into that black state of suspended political animation—post-Civil-War pre-Civil-Rights—when black freedom wasn’t completely denied but not yet achieved. &nbsp;While defying racism, Oscar Micheaux was so upbeat, so patriotic, and so successful, the historian Dan Moos calls him a<a class="LinkWrapper LinkWrapper--external" href="https://books.google.co.il/books?id=Eg4ozQZoEbUC&amp;pg=PA53&amp;redir_esc=y#v=onepage&amp;q&amp;f=f" style="color: inherit; transition: color 0.15s ease;">&nbsp;Black Turnerian</a>. That label embodies the optimism, pragmatism, and nationalism the late-nineteenth-century historian Frederick Jackson Turner found in the American frontier.</p><p style="line-height: 29.5px; margin: 0px 0px 15px; font-size: 17px; color: rgb(2, 20, 31); font-family: Georgia, Cambria, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, Times, serif;">Micheaux’s birthplace, Murphysboro, Illinois, in 1884, and upbringing on a Kansas farm with ten siblings, set him up to be a middle American. But his adopted hometown of Gregory, South Dakota, which celebrates his<a class="LinkWrapper LinkWrapper--external" href="https://www.travelsouthdakota.com/newsroom/press-releases/south-dakotas-great-faces/oscar-micheaux" style="color: inherit; transition: color 0.15s ease;">&nbsp;legacy with an annual festival</a>, reflects the frontier pioneer he chose to be. When he was 21 he was already homesteading 160 acres in South Dakota. Tough and ambitious, he found acceptance out West—neighbors complimented him as one of them, by calling him more South Dakotan than black...</p><p style="line-height: 29.5px; margin: 0px 0px 15px; font-size: 17px; color: rgb(2, 20, 31); font-family: Georgia, Cambria, &quot;Times New Roman&quot;, Times, serif;"><a href="https://www.thedailybeast.com/the-black-director-who-should-have-won-an-oscar?ref=author">Read whole article on The Daily Beast</a></p>
ID: 154073
Uid: 31615
Author: 19
Category: 0
Title: Off With Their Heads! The Danger Extremists Pose.
Source:
Body: <p><i>Steve Hochstadt is a writer and a professor of history at Illinois College.&nbsp; This post first appeared in the Jacksonville Journal-Courier.</i></p><p> </p><p> </p><center> <iframe width="560" height="315" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/RVs_LXtBvgQ" frameborder="0" allow="autoplay; encrypted-media" allowfullscreen=""></iframe> </center><center><br></center><center><span style="font-size: smaller;">"The Silent Classroom" Trailer</span></center><p></p><p> </p><p> An historical film is attracting audiences in Berlin. “<a href="https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/the-silent-classroom-show-of-defiance-that-brought-down-wrath-of-the-stasi-rcnlbhlb5">The Silent Classroom</a>” offers a fictionalized version of a remarkable protest in East Germany and the more remarkable government reaction. In 1956, thousands of Hungarians fought to free their country from Soviet domination and one-party dictatorship. A class of seniors preparing for final exams heard of the revolt from the American radio station in West Berlin, which the East German government had forbidden its citizens to listen to. Hungarians asked people in other countries to stay silent to protest Communist oppression. One student, <a href="https://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dietrich_Garstka">Dietrich Garstka</a>, told his comrades, “We’ll do that too!” In class, everyone was silent for five minutes.</p> <p>The government went crazy. The <a href="http://time.com/3878232/the-hungarian-revolution-of-1956-photos-from-the-streets-of-budapest/">Hungarian revolt of 1956</a> had installed a democratic socialist government before Soviet tanks crushed the uprising three weeks later. The Soviets and the other Communist governments in eastern Europe defined the revolt as counter-revolution and asserted that Western spies were behind it. The Western news media who reported the Hungarians’ program for freedom and human rights were spreading false propaganda. Students who silently honored the uprising were counter-revolutionaries, too.</p> <p>Specialists interrogated the students. The Minister of Education insulted and threatened the students: unless they named the ringleaders, the whole class would not be allowed to take the exams which qualified them for university. The class displayed extraordinary solidarity and refused to give in to government pressure. They were all thrown out of school.</p> <p>Garstka soon crossed the border into West Germany, which was still relatively easy in 1956, and was followed by 15 of the other 19 students in his class. They took their exams there and pursued their careers, cut off from family and friends.</p> <p>The system that transformed their silence into subversion was a perfectly self-contained organism. All media were monitored and controlled. Information about internal problems, weaknesses, and injustices was propaganda, fake news designed to weaken the system, and thus counter-revolution. Anyone who taught uncomfortable facts about history or politics was labeled an accomplice of Western enemies, a hater of the system, and punished with the weight of the state. Science was not allowed to contradict political ideology.</p> <p>East German communism had very different intentions and assumptions than the Nazi government which it replaced. But both systems shared this enclosed structure of self-protection, where deviation was treason, where facts were subordinated to rigid ideology, where questioning was punished by exclusion. Both saw only black and white, and jailed people who realized there was gray.</p> <p>Those structures are the opposite of democracy. But the forces of arrogant ideology, of undoubting righteousness, of hatred for difference can exploit the tolerance of democratic systems to disrupt them from within. The extraordinary democracy of the <a href="https://dailyhistory.org/Why_did_the_the_Weimar_Republic_Collapse%3F">German Weimar Republic</a> in the 1920s allowed the Nazis to grow strong enough to overthrow it. Or I should say that too many people in Germany, <a href="http://www.markedbyteachers.com/gcse/history/assess-the-role-played-by-conservative-elites-in-propelling-hitler-to-power-in-jan-1933.html">people with power and influence</a>, through weakness, self-interest, and political expediency, let the Nazis come to power by not opposing them strongly enough.</p> <p>Now in America we saw armed men, who disdain our elected government, take over a public installation at the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge, threaten government officials and then <a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bundy_standoff#Prosecutions_of_some_standoff_participants">escape without punishment</a>. We heard a presidential candidate encourage his supporters to <a href="https://newrepublic.com/minutes/128896/beat-protester-trumps-rally-hell-cover-legal-fees">beat protesters</a> and disbelieve any news he doesn’t like. We see virtually all leading Republican politicians accept Trump’s vilification of the press, self-enrichment in office, and smearing of the judiciary.</p> <p>Americans who report on these events are attacked with verbal violence. I have been called seditious, a traitor. Activists for civil rights have been called communists and anarchists, whose political activities are thus illegitimate. The whole progressive movement, whose candidate, Bernie Sanders, almost won the Democratic nomination for President, is identified as <a href="https://www.amazon.com/Why-Left-Hates-America-Greatness/dp/1400080401">hating America</a>. Thousands screamed that the losing candidate in the last election should be put in jail. They say that journalists who report uncomfortable information about politicians they like are spreading lies. Many people have urged this newspaper to stop publishing my articles, because they don’t like the facts I write about.</p> <p>Listen to the radio, scroll around the internet, or go to rallies for the President, and you’ll find many people with these attitudes. Instead of lurking on the fringes of the American political system, these people are <a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Steve_Bannon">brought into the White House</a> and <a href="http://www.businessinsider.de/infowars-granted-white-house-press-credentials-2017-5?r=US&amp;IR=T">given press credentials</a> as if they were real journalists. The President has called journalists “<a href="https://www.nytimes.com/2017/08/23/business/media/trump-rally-media-attack.html">sick people</a>” who hate our country and the other party “un-American” and “<a href="https://www.cnbc.com/2018/02/05/trump-calls-democrats-un-american-and-treasonous.html">treasonous</a>”. Telling the truth and defending democracy means being bombarded with insults and threats from the small far right minority, who only see black and white.</p> <p>What if they had full power in our government? What would they do with me, the traitor? Or our journalists, professors, scientists? Or you?</p> <p>We must prevent that, to avoid repeating the naive complacency of other peoples who have allowed their freedoms to be taken away. Asserting your right to think and act freely can be dangerous, as the East German students realized. But they demonstrated solidarity, courage, and determination in the face of naked shameless power.</p> <p>We have to do that, too.</p>
ID: 154074
Uid: 78608
Author: 43
Category: 0
Title: Our Gaslighting Geezer
Source:
Body: <p></p><p> </p><center> <iframe width="560" height="315" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/0ToLfQU2xmg" frameborder="0" allow="autoplay; encrypted-media" allowfullscreen=""></iframe> </center><p></p><p> </p><p><i>David P. Barash is professor of psychology emeritus at the University of Washington. His next book, "Through a Glass Brightly: Using Science to See Our Species as It Really Is," will be published this summer by Oxford University Press. With his wife, Judith Eve Lipton, he is currently writing a book about nuclear deterrence.</i></p><p>I gaslight, you gaslight, he/she/it gaslights. What can this mean? Isn't gaslight some sort of compound noun rather than a verb? But it turns out that gaslight is indeed a verb, one with an interesting history and, moreover, a troublesome relevance to the present. </p><p>In 1938, British playwright Patrick Hamilton's work, "Gas Light," was produced in London, and ran for six months. Then it was adapted into a 1940 movie, titled "Gaslight," directed by Thorold Dickinson and starring Anton Walbrook and Diana Wynyard. Four years later, it debuted as an MGM film, featuring Charles Boyer and Ingrid Bergman, with a budget that was an order-of-magnitude larger, and comparably less fidelity to the original play. (As part of the contract, MGM insisted on destroying all pre-existing copies of the 1940 film ... at which, fortunately, the mega-studio was unsuccessful.) </p><p>But what is "gaslighting," and what does it have to do with the year 2018?</p><p>In the story, a wealthy, psychologically "delicate" woman (Bella Mallen) has married a suave, debonair, controlling and decidedly creepy continental European (Paul Mallen) and purchased a multistory London apartment where, decades before, a rich old lady had been murdered and the place ransacked; she was known to have had some extremely valuable rubies. No one had been willing to live in the apartment until its current occupants. Soon it is apparent that Bella is having a hard time: she repeatedly misplaces items, is blamed - by her husband - for taking things when she claims innocence, seems to imagine events that aren't real, and increasingly comes to doubt her own sanity. </p><p>It also becomes clear that she isn't crazy after all, but is being craftily manipulated by the nefarious Paul Mallen, who wants to have her "committed" because she accidentally encountered evidence that, unknown to her, could be used against him. The story is set in 1880 London, and in those Victorian times, a husband could have his wife committed simply on his say-so (#MeToo didn't exist.)&nbsp; </p><p>Paul regularly prowls about the attic, searching, we discover, for those rubies which he – the murderer – hadn't been able to find when he committed the crime. As he searches, he turns on the attic gas lights (explaining the movie's title at last), which causes the lights in the rest of the house to dim and flicker; after all, this is 1880, before electricity. Poor belabored Bella notices this, but others – including her well-meaning maid-servant – attribute it to yet another flight of her over-stressed mind. </p><p>Eventually, all is set to rights, thanks to the intervention of a retired Scotland Yard detective, who – among other things – confirms the reality of Bella's perception and the guilt of homicidal, perfidious Paul. The film's major contribution to popular culture, as well as to the psychological literature, has been to introduce the verb "gaslight," meaning to induce someone to question their sanity and grasp of reality by malevolently manipulating his or her perceptions.</p><p>In the film, especially the 1940 original, which, despite its over-acting and comparatively poor production values, is far superior to the 1944 remake, Paul Mallen is frightening in his malignance, narcissism, lack of empathy, and overall creepiness. But he isn't one half as scary, or creepy, as the current occupant of the White House.</p><p>Readers of HNN are doubtless sufficiently well informed that they don't need a recitation of the continuing slurry of deceptions, misrepresentations, and outright lies that have emanated from and continue to disfigure the Chief Executive and his administration. Moreover, when caught in these lies, Donald Trump has unfailingly blamed the truth-tellers and doubled-down on his own mendacity, with a self-righteous insistence that makes Paul Mallen look like the mythically Honest Abe Lincoln, or George "I cannot tell a lie" Washington. </p><p>I doubt that Trump, unlike the fictional Mr. Mallen, is consciously gaslighting the country, in the sense of deliberately trying to drive us insane; as many have commented, he may actually believe his prevarications, in at least some cases. But the effect of his behavior is more important than his intention. Many veteran journalists and seasoned political observers have noted the extent to which Trump's obvious lies, his self-serving, dishonest claims of "fake news," as well as the unending barrage of positions taken only to be disavowed immediately afterward have been not only confusing but downright disorienting, so much so in fact that the victims are at risk of becoming as unstable as the perpetrator. </p><p>In his March 5 column, the<i> New York Times's</i> Charles Blow put it with characteristically accurate acerbity: "People used to dealing with a sane, logical person who generally doesn’t lie and generally makes sense are left scratching their heads, wondering whether to believe what they have heard, whether to make plans and policies around it. Believing anything Trump says is a recipe for a headache and heartache. The old rules no longer apply. We see the world as through a window — as it is, even if we are a bit removed from the whole of it. But Trump sees it as if in a house of mirrors — everything reflecting some distorted version of him. His reality always seems to return to a kind of delusional narcissism."</p><p>At the end of "Gaslight," Paul Mallen gets his comeuppance, and I am not alone in hoping that Donald Trump gets his, too. Be warned, however: when this happens in the movie, the cinematic sinner goes more than a bit crazy himself – decompensating, as psychiatrists would put it. But unlike Mr. Trump, the malignant Mr. Mallen didn't have nuclear weapons at his disposal. </p>
ID: 154075
Uid: 31615
Author: 19
Category: 0
Title: Promise and Flaw in Organized Religion
Source:
Body: <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">Last year was the 500<sup>th</sup> anniversary of <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Martin_Luther">Martin Luther’s 1517</a> proclamation of objections to Catholic Church practices. At age 33, Luther, chair of theology at the University of Wittenberg, wrote a scholarly treatise titled “Disputation of Martin Luther on the Power and Efficacy of Indulgences”, later called his <a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ninety-five_Theses">95 Theses</a>. He sent it to Archbishop Albrecht of Mainz and Magdeburg.</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">Luther’s criticisms were well founded. Representatives of the Pope traveled around selling indulgences, the right to confess all sins on the death bed, thereby giving the buyer complete absolution. Some Christians were not confessing their sins in church, because they could buy this right to confess everything at the end. In Wittenberg, indulgences were advertised as paying for the new St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome, but the funds were used by Archbishop Albrecht to pay debts from purchasing his archbishopric from the Pope. Luther wrote, “Any Christian who is truly repentant has a right to full remission of all penalty and guilt without any letter of indulgence.”</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">Luther swiftly broadened his attack on the Catholic Church and the Pope as its head. In his pamphlet “To the Christian Nobles of the German Nation” in 1520, he argued that the Church does not need worldly possessions and that a congregation should select its own priest. He later wrote that a Christian achieves salvation by faith alone, without needing a hierarchical church structure, and that the Pope does not have the exclusive right to interpret scripture.</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">Luther was forced to defend himself before Papal representatives, who demanded that he recant, and at the <a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Diet_of_Worms">Diet of Worms</a>, an assembly of many German states in the Holy Roman Empire. When the Pope issued a papal bull threatening to excommunicate him, Luther publicly burned it. He was <a href="https://www.history.com/this-day-in-history/martin-luther-excommunicated">excommunicated</a> and forced to hide from arrest.</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">Unlike others who had challenged the Catholic Church and the power of the Pope, Luther masterfully used the new technology of printing to spread his ideas. Courageous and determined, he successfully appealed to common Christians. Communities across northern Europe and, more important, their local rulers adopted his religious reforms, transforming Europe by splitting the Protestant North from the Catholic South.</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">Luther’s followers in Wittenberg created a community chest administered jointly by town, church, and congregation to feed the hungry, allow poor students to study, and offer credit to poor artisans. Luther believed that everybody should be educated to read the Bible in their native tongue, so primary schools were expanded, including for girls.</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">At first, Luther appeared to be <a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/On_the_Jews_and_Their_Lies">sympathetic to Jews</a>. He wrote in 1519, “What Jew would consent to enter our ranks when he sees the cruelty and enmity we wreak on them—that in our behavior towards them we less resemble Christians than beasts?”That behavior was publicly exhibited at Luther’s own City Church St. Mary’s of Wittenberg. High on one outside wall was a “<a href="http://www.christianitytoday.com/ct/2016/october-web-only/anti-semitic-sculpture-on-luthers-church-creates-controvers.html">Judensau</a>”, a relief depicting Jews suckling at a pig, with words degrading rabbis and Jewish ideas about God. It had decorated the Church for two hundred years.</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">Luther was a great reformer of Christian religious practice and social thinking. But the religious community he wished to create was welcoming only for those who followed his lead. Luther condemned in the strongest terms anyone who refused to give up their religion for his. He named the Pope the Antichrist. He pronounced the harshest sentence on Jews who remained true to their beliefs. In “<a href="http://www.jewishvirtuallibrary.org/martin-luther-quot-the-jews-and-their-lies-quot">On the Jews and Their Lies</a>” in 1543, Luther advised his followers to burn their synagogues, confiscate their valuables, take away their holy books, forbid them from owning houses, and prevent their rabbis from preaching. That year, Luther wrote a pamphlet defending the Wittenberg Judensau as correctly depicting the source of Jewish holy books in <a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Judensau">the pig’s anus</a>. Good Christians must prevent Jews from living as Jews.</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">Many organized religions represent communities of exclusivity, where insiders are promised glorious rewards and outsiders suffer unending torment. For centuries after Luther, Protestants and Catholics warred against each other. Christians only stopped killing Jews a half century ago. Muslim Shia and Muslim Sunni <a href="https://www.cfr.org/interactives/sunni-shia-divide#!/">kill each other</a> in the Middle East. Despite powerful moral exhortations about non-violence, <a href="http://www.bbc.com/news/magazine-22356306">Buddhists attack Muslims</a> in south Asia. After suffering near extinction in Europe because of their religion, <a href="https://www.haaretz.com/1.5011075">Jews destroyed Palestinian communities</a> in the 1940s.</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">A highway billboard near our home in Wisconsin says I will go to hell, because I don’t share a particular form of Christian belief. Orthodox Jews have enough power over Israeli politics to enforce religious rules which exclude me and my children.</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">Religions are the strongest propagators of peaceful messages, but religious communities have killed millions of people who follow other beliefs. The contradictions in Luther’s teachings eventually forced the world’s Lutheran churches to <a href="http://www.ccjr.us/dialogika-resources/documents-and-statements/protestant-churches/na/lutheran/678-elca1974">disavow his writings</a> about Jews, but only after the Nazis had put into genocidal practice his written instructions.</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">Even such disavowals often come with caveats. The official statement of the Missouri Synod of the Lutheran Church about Jews deplores discrimination, but is mainly concerned that Luther’s words could provoke anti-Lutheranism, and ends with the hope that Jews will finally <a href="https://lutheranreformation.org/history/luther-and-the-jews/">see the light and convert</a>.</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size:12.0pt">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal" style="mso-pagination:widow-orphan"><span style="font-size: 12.0pt">Luther was a great and flawed man. Like all human creations, religions can raise us up or bring us pain.</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal" style="mso-pagination:widow-orphan"><span style="font-size: 12.0pt">&nbsp;</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal" style="mso-pagination:widow-orphan"><span style="font-size: 12.0pt">Steve Hochstadt</span></p> <p class="MsoNormal" style="mso-pagination:widow-orphan"><span style="font-size: 12.0pt">Berlin, Germany</span></p> <span style="font-size:12.0pt;font-family:&quot;Times New Roman&quot;,serif;mso-fareast-font-family: &quot;Times New Roman&quot;;mso-fareast-theme-font:minor-fareast;mso-ansi-language:EN-US; mso-fareast-language:EN-US;mso-bidi-language:AR-SA">Published in the Jacksonville Journal-Courier, March 13, 2018</span>
ID: 154076
Uid: 78565
Author: 38
Category: 0
Title: Why This Was the Generation Cursed with a Donald Trump
Source:
Body: <p></p><p style="text-align: center;"><img src=" /sites/default/files/154076-trump.png "></p><p> <em>Rick Shenkman is the publisher of the History News Network and the author of <a href="http://stoneagebrain.com" target="_hplink">Political Animals:&nbsp; How Our Stone-Age Brain Gets in the Way of Smart Politics </a>(Basic Books, January 2016). You can <a href="https://twitter.com/rickshenkman" target="_hplink">follow</a> him on Twitter. He blogs at <a href="http://historynewsnetwork.org/blog/author/38" target="_hplink">stoneagebrain.</a></em> </p><p></p><p> Here's a question we need to be thinking about.</p><p>Why did a Donald Trump arise now?</p><p>The answer at first glance is that he is sui generis. &nbsp;But this answer doesn't get us very far. &nbsp;While Trump is a force of nature and has been his whole life apparently from my reading of his biography, we have had plenty of other people in American history who were his equal if not his superior. &nbsp;Remember P.T. Barnum? &nbsp;He too created a brand around his name and survived bankruptcy and became popular.</p><p>No, there's something about our era that has given us this dreadful chaos-leader-in-chief. &nbsp;The question is what. &nbsp;</p><p>But before we get to that there's a paradox to be dealt with. &nbsp;It holds the key to our conundrum. &nbsp;Here's the paradox. &nbsp;Donald Trump, a man who appeals to the lowest common denominator and literally is most popular with those who know the least, has come to power in an age when we've never been better educated.&nbsp;</p><p><a href="https://www.amazon.com/Political-Animals-Stone-Age-Brain-Politics/dp/0465033008/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8 "><img src="/sites/default/files/160130-PA-shenkman-sm.png" "="" style="float:left;margin:15px;"></a> In 1940 a majority of Americans hadn't gone past the eighth grade. &nbsp;Today a majority have attended college. &nbsp;And yet now is when we got a Donald Trump?</p><p>Now that's a paradox.</p><p>But it's not inexplicable and is easily unravelled. &nbsp;Back in 1940 and through most of American history before that political parties ran the show. &nbsp;Powerful party bosses decided who could run for office and who got elected. &nbsp;These gatekeepers made sure that only politicians who could be counted on to be loyal to the party were nominated. Under this system a Donald Trump could get nowhere.</p><p>Today, of course, we don't have party bosses, at least not in the way we used to. &nbsp;There are no gatekeepers any longer. &nbsp;Politicians self-select. &nbsp;</p><p>A short history lesson is in order to understand why this happened.&nbsp;</p><p>In the early 1950s Estes Kefauver, the junior senator from Tennessee, held hearings to expose the criminal operations of the mob. &nbsp;The hearings were a phenomenon and became a television sensation just as television was taking off. &nbsp;Kefauver held his hearings around the country, giving them a wide audience.&nbsp;</p><p>In 1952 Kefauver, over the objections of the party bosses, decided to run for president of the United States. &nbsp;He entered 15 primaries and won 12. He lost the nomination to Adlai Stevenson, whom the bosses preferred. &nbsp;But his success in the primaries taught a lesson. &nbsp;The Television Primary would be the one that counted as time went on. &nbsp;And within a few short years a young senator from Massachusetts figured that out. In 1960 John Kennedy, like Kefauver, a self-selected candidate, threw his hat in the ring and won &nbsp;–&nbsp; &nbsp;over the opposition of many of the party's most powerful bosses.</p><p>Donald Trump is a creature of television. &nbsp;In this regard he isn't unique. &nbsp;He simply mastered the skills required in the television age better than others and vanquished them. &nbsp;And today there aren't any party bosses powerful enough to stand in the way of somebody like him.</p><p>The moral of this story is that we either have to get smarter voters (who won't be taken in by a politician who lies five times a day) or more powerful party bosses. Short of that there will be more Donald Trumps in our future.*</p><p>Getting smarter voters sounds like the easier of the two tasks. &nbsp;It isn't. &nbsp;The reason is it's not facts that they need, though I'm all for facts. As I explain in <i>Political Animals</i>, it's self-awareness. &nbsp;Voters need to understand how our unconscious brain guides our responses and shapes our behavior at the ballot box. &nbsp;To be sure, our evolved psychological mechanisms &nbsp;– &nbsp;our instincts &nbsp;–&nbsp; drive everybody's politics to a certain extent. But they drive low information voters the most.</p><p>The other solution is an affront to good democrats. &nbsp;Who wants political bosses telling us how to vote? &nbsp;But we still need gatekeepers and putting them in place at critical political junctures would be a small inconvenience compared with the awful alternative. &nbsp;We need to make sure we never put another Donald Trump anywhere near the levers of power available to the person who sits in the Oval Office.</p><p>*I don't think Trump is likely to be immediately succeeded by another person like him. America will tire of his shenanigans and lies as we always tire of our presidents. &nbsp;That's in part why a George W. Bush, a not too-smart or articulate politician, was followed by a Barack Obama, who was both. So there's that. &nbsp;But we're doomed to see another Trump eventually if we don't address the problem of ignorant voters operating in a world without party bosses.</p><p><br></p><p><br></p><p><br></p><p><br></p>