Wednesday, February 28, 2018

The Triple K

No it is not the latest burger from your favorite fast food spot it is the traditional more old school kind as in the KKK.

When I found out that Tennessee is number one for hate groups I thought how would you know as this place is full of hate and anger so you fit right in.

I have said that in Nashville it is less socially conscious or aware of how integration occurs here.  There are some very clear marginalization and segregation as noted by the amount of residents of color in public housing and in turn the shitholes that are not called Haiti but the public schools; however, the reality is that places where in Seattle I would see nary a black person - the Columbia City bakery despite it's location in South Seattle, my Yoga classes, Bumbershoot and other larger scale events that were about arts and literature is not the case here.  I see many faces of color at the Southern Festival of Books and the many many other free events that occur here on a regular basis.

Now on the other hand issues that matter and protests are few and far between.  There will be no walk out I am sure in the schools on the designated March 24th for gun violence.  The woman's march has come out with not a candidate nor any organized structure for the upcoming elections nor any supportive core for transit, Mayor Megan Barry or well anything.  Groups pop up and most of them are heavily funded by the Big 3 here.. no not the ones on This is Us, but the predominate businesses here in the city.  (Beaman family, the Ingrams and the other is a Construction family whose name I cannot recall) And frequently they are fronted by a face of color but unclear as to who is behind the group and funding its actions rarely mentioned.   These are the same "businesses" buying out a great deal of residential properties in desirable areas and no one knows who or where the money is coming from.  Trump or Russia maybe?

Again if you are a face of color, a Democrat, a woman, a person who is not Christian you will find your tribe or not and in my case I walk alone here so I better be careful!  As I said in my last blog post, Taking Offense, I am going to ask them what and how I should do so since clearly I am failing at that or you would not need to tell me.  Again best defense is offense and by offense I mean offend.  You took a shot now its my turn.

Yesterday once again being utterly neutral and showing no emotion really confuses them here.  When kids ran amok at the Middle School I was at,  I called the Administration and asked to leave as I found being abused by children something intolerable and of which I was unwilling to subject myself to.   The kids kept asking over and over again if I was upset or mad.  And I just said no and explained to them I will not subject myself to abuse from adults or children and that is my line in the sand.   I simply want to leave and go where I am welcome and treated and acknowledged with respect and dignity.  Their faces showed their confusion as they did not even understand that their behavior and actions were abusive.  We spent the rest of the day in the Library where I watched the Librarian literally speak to them like dogs and they sat there in utter silence, that is not a solution that is avoidance of a problem.  Welcome to Nashville public schools.

And when an Adult watches kids go wild including two children who pretended to be Autistic in order to get earphones, I made a point of mentioning that when Administration came how offensive I found that behavior.   The children who did this (one a young black male and the other a girl all encouraged and egged on by a young man of African descent), when I asked them why they did so both  lied and said they did not.  (That ability to lie with such confidence is a true Southern Culture thing which I think confuses them in the same Southern Hospitality does me) So I asked them how I came up with that and if  that did not happen and I imagined it then perhaps I need to leave as I am seeing things and am a liar.  Then again the confused faces and again more demands/inquiries was I upset/mad.   I said just try an apology and acknowledge the behavior, you know like all these signs for restorative justice that were posted throughout the room.  I pointed to the numerous signs about touching equipment, opening cabinets/drawers, personal space and other signs about behavior and expectations to demonstrate what I speaking of.  (Again clear signs that there are immense problems here). 

Then as all conversations do here they circled back again to ask if I was upset/mad?  Dear God kid that question may be the thing that will do it!  These are the only two emotions that resonate with these children and in turn tells me that is all they know.  And then I decided to note the gender/color and ethnicity of the kids in some sort of convoluted way to determine if:  A) I am a racist or B) using data in to see if I am in fact racist. And well after analyzing the data (they love data here oddly Seattle the land of data notsomuch) and  from looking at the class roster of 40  kids (the two classes where the first was 5th graders the second 6th and way more problematic), I found that two insane kids were white males (shocking no!), two were Muslim given their names (presumption I know), one was African descent and maybe Muslim, two black females, one black male who I knew was a special ed kid from another class and he was just annoying and one of the  Muslim kids was a  girl who was more sarcastic and less compliant as opposed to the other kids.  There was one interesting Latino kid but not a problem but fell under the category of a piece of work but I liked him.  So what did I learn? That 5th graders had smaller portion of equally annoying kids (one white one Middle Eastern) and 6th graders are fairly nuts  regardless.  And I recall another class in another school where they went insane but their behavior problems are magnified by the sheer level of insanity that I have only seen here.  And when you have extremes you have what you have.

Which is why the reliance on churches and charity to provide resources as the reality is that the economy and growth in Nashville is not spread among the residents and given that Jesus determines one aspect of the hypocrisy with regards to race and poverty they proudly tout varying fundraising drives, a new app that enables you to donate directly to a homeless family and other ways to absolve guilt and pretend you care.  In Seattle we wore T-shirts, painted thoughtful messages in bathrooms and above water fountains to boost a child's self esteem and remind them of their value in life and nothing says that more while taking a shit! And often many lined up and shook hands in front of at risk schools to show them what adult professionals were like and that they cared!  I compare it to a wound.  In Seattle we hand you a band aid in which to apply over said wound (because if you do it yourself you are empowered) and here they give you iodine to at least clean the wound before they hand you the band aid.   I respect that at least there is a much larger effort to provide, however, in either case there is no real examination of the root cause why said wound exists and how to resolve it.   Seattle is very aware and they talk endlessly about it.  Again talk endlessly about it. And still do nothing.

So when you think that this the state that gave us the KKK and home of Nathan Bedford Forrest it is not surprising that hate groups would find a home here.  There is a tacit agreement between all the residents here that as long as you don't make waves and cause too many problems you will get public housing, some crappy ed, some free education after high school (which you will drop out) and in turn a lousy gig in the service economy.   There will be neighborhoods to serve you and your own kind and you can come into ours but remember your place.  That place is unclear but clear that know it.

And add to this the amount of lying that I find across the board here.  They lie habitually, they lie without recourse, they presume every one else lies and in turn deny it when asked.   So it would not shock me that half the people are involved with some nascent group. The Tennessean wrote one article last year about the private club in the restaurant The Standard and since outed we have never heard of it since.   I am sure it goes on and does in homes and other establishments throughout Nashville we just aren't invited.

Nashville loves to tout the lists we are on, the ones that make them feel proud. The other side of the coin not so much.   

Tennessee Ranks No. 2 With Most Hate Groups In US, Analysis Shows

The Southern Poverty Law Center's 2018 Hate Map shows growth in alt-right white supremacy and anti-Muslim groups

  By Don Johnson, Patch Staff |

White supremacists and nationalist groups thrived in President Trump's first year in office, according to a new report that showed a 4 percent increase in the number of hate groups nationwide. An analysis of the Southern Poverty Law Center's report showed Idaho, an overwhelmingly white state where only 5.8 percent of the population is the most hateful state in the country, with 12 active hate groups.

Tennessee ranked No. 2 on the list with 37 hate groups (5.6 per million people), according to a report by 24/7 Wall Street. The states ranks higher than almost all other states when adjusted for population.
Tennessee has the most neo-Confederate hate groups of any state other than Florida, with which it is tied. These groups include Identity Dixie, several local chapters of League of the South, and the Mary Noel Kershaw Foundation, 24/7 Wall Street reported.

In its 2018 Intelligence Project report, the civil rights advocacy group Southern Poverty Law Center said the number of active hate groups in the United States has risen from 784 in 2014 to 954 in 2017 as "alt-right" white supremacy groups broke through a firewall that for decades kept overt racists underground.

"President Trump in 2017 reflected what white supremacist groups want to see: a country where racism is sanctioned by the highest office, immigrants are given the boot and Muslims banned," Heidi Beirich, director of the SPLC's Intelligence Project, said in a statement. "When you consider that only days into 2018, Trump called African countries 's---holes,' it's clear he's not changing his tune. And that's music to the ears of white supremacists."

In its analysis of the hate map, 24/7 Wall Street reported the 10 most hateful states are Idaho, Tennessee, Mississippi, Alabama, Indiana, Virginia, Oregon, Arkansas, Georgia and Colorado.
The online financial news and opinion site looked at the number of hate groups per 1 million state residents, immigrant populations, and a range of socio-economic data, including the percentage of adults 25 years and old who hold at least a bachelor's degree, the percentage of each state's population that is white, poverty rates and median household income. The data came from the U.S. Census Bureau's 2016 American Community Survey and the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Click here for more on the methodology

In Idaho, a fourth of hate groups are overtly anti-Muslim, including ACT for America, the Committee to End the CSI Refugee Center and Pig Blood Bullets. They have backed a spate of anti-Sharia law legislation whose intent is in inflame passions rather than serve any useful purpose, as the U.S. Constitution already denies authority to any foreign law. Idaho also has Ku Klux Klan chapters and Neo-Nazi groups.

In its 2018 Spring Intelligence Report, the SPLC said that within the white supremacist movement, the greatest growth was in neo-Nazi groups, to 121 in 2017 from 99 the year prior. The number of anti-Muslim groups increased for a third straight year, to 114 chapters in 2017, up from 101 in 2016. Those groups had tripled in growth in 2015, according to the report.

The number of Ku Klux Klan groups decreased to 72 nationwide in 2017, down from 130 a year earlier. The SPLC said the decline "is a clear indication that the new generation of white suprem­acists is rejecting the Klan's hoods and robes for the hipper image of the more loosely organized alt-right movement."

Click here to read the report from the Southern Poverty Law Center.

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