bonnie wright? oh do you mean the actress, model, screenwriter, director, and producer? the one who has a degree? the one who owns her own production company? the one who has accomplished over 7 movies within that along with starring in the harry potter franchise? the one…
Cliven Bundy, Asshole of the Day for April 24, 2014
Cliven Bundy is a rancher who claims to be a patriot, flies the American flag, but doesn’t pay his grazing fees (now over $1 million for last 15 years) or recognize the federal government. He’s also threatened to open fire on government officials.
And yet somehow Sean Hannity and other people who claim to be patriots but latch on to any opportunity to side with people against America while Obama is president— Putin for example— have decided to take up Bundy’s cause. Having him on the show, encouraging people to defend him, and praising the militias that went out for a chance to fire on government troops. Jon Stewart did a good job taking apart all this treasonous silliness, including how you can’t pretend you care about the Constitution or the Founding Fathers and support guys like Bundy who are no different than the Whiskey Rebellion that George Washington himself crushed.
But now that Hannity has given Bundy this platform, Bundy keeps on talking. And it’s not pretty. Here’s what Bundy had to say about black people, which isn’t even related to his land dispute, but he just felt he had to tell the world:
“I want to tell you one more thing I know about the Negro,” the rancher began as he described a “government house” in Las Vegas where he recalled that all the people who sat outside seemed to “have nothing to do.”
“And because they were basically on government subsidy, so now what do they do?” he said, as quoted by the Times. “They abort their young children, they put their young men in jail, because they never learned how to pick cotton. And I’ve often wondered, are they better off as slaves, picking cotton and having a family life and doing things, or are they better off under government subsidy? They didn’t get no more freedom. They got less freedom.”
Black people were better off as slaves.
He really said that.
And what does Hannity have to say? He says Bundy’s remarks are “beyond repugnant” and reinforce the “ignorant view” that conservatives are racist.
But now this is where it gets interesting. Hannity thinks it’s an “ignorant view” that conservatives are racist. But how ignorant is it? Let’s review where Mr. Bundy might have heard such things:
Maybe he heard the GOP’s Virginia Lt. Governor candidate E.W. Jackson say that “welfare hurt black families more than slavery ever did”.
"Slavery had a disastrous impact on African-American families, yet sadly a child born into slavery in 1860 was more likely to be raised by his mother and father in a two-parent household than was an African-American baby born after the election of the USA’s first African-American President," the opening statement reads.
Mr. Bundy didn’t come up with these ideas on his own. The racist view that African Americans were better off under slavery or Jim Crow is something that gets said by conservatives from time to time. Hannity’s claim that it’s an “ignorant view” that conservatives are racist is just hot air. Hannity and others may not be personally racist, but they are popular with racists, and they know it. Or more concisely:
Cliven Bundy is not a racist for saying “blacks were better off as slaves”; he’s just plagiarizing Michele Bachmann and E.W. Jackson.— Top Conservative Cat (@TeaPartyCat)April 24, 2014
So, for claiming that people were better off under slavery, Cliven Bundy is the Asshole of the Day, but let’s not pretend he came up with this all on his own.
It is Cliven Bundy’s first time as Asshole of the Day.
Full story: Talking Points Memo
When Andrew first arrived he was introduced to a sandy-haired, four-year-old girl called Rylee Nosworthy, who was diagnosed with autism at the age of two.
The actor took a particular liking to the shy, smiling darling as she hung back behind her parents, too overwhelmed to approach the star herself.
He spent the morning talking to her parents, Amy and Jason, trying to find out more about Rylee and watched on with a smile as they gently encouraged her into the water and onto a surfboard for the first time – this being no easy feat for a little girl whose life can be rocketed by a change in routine.
Talking about the Spider-Man star, Rylee’s mother Amy, 30, said she was blown-away by how genuine and laid-back the actor was.
“It felt like we were just catching up with friends at the beach – not meeting a celebrity,” Amy said.
“Andrew arrived early and just strolled down the beach, shook our hands and introduced himself to us and straight away started asking questions about Rylee and when she was first diagnosed with Autism.“
The rising Hollywood star spent close to two hours with the children, taking them out on the surfboards and signing merchandise, including Spider-Man branded surfboards to be auctioned off to support children with autism.
But it was a DVD that he signed for Rylee and the events that unfolded afterwards that captured everyone’s heart.
Rylee, whose struggle with normal social interaction is a daily battle, didn’t want to get a photo with Andrew and flatly refused a request for a hug, despite the actor frowning and turning his puppy dog eyes on her.
The actor joked about being rejected by the adorable infant, to which her mother quipped, “You wouldn’t get that very often.”
But his charm and gentle nature eventually wore down Rylee’s barriers resulting in a melt-your-heart moment, not even Rylee’s parents saw coming.
“Towards the end of the day he was signing The Amazing Spider-Man DVDs for the children, when he picked up Rylees and wrote, ‘I hope one day we get to hug.’”
Little did he know – his hug was coming sooner than he thought.
The little girl surprised everyone when they told her the actor was leaving. She was prompted to give him a high-five before he left but instead followed it up by running into his arms and giving him the hug he was hoping for.
“The look on his face in the pictures we captured was priceless – he really is a superhero!” Amy said.
Like many people, I’ve been horrified at the treatment of women who address topics like racism or rape or other issues online. But I haven’t found the words to express it or address it, which is why I was glad to see this post from i-come-by-it-honestly which compiled what John Scalzi had to say on it. You can add this blog and teapartycat to the list.
And if you don’t follow @scalzi, you should: Follow @scalzi
Judge Jan Jurden, Asshole of the Day for March 31, 2014
What would it take to keep a man out of prison after he raped his 3-year-old daughter?
The answer should of course be NOTHING. But apparently is “lots and lots of inherited money”. Or at least that’s Judge Jan Jurden’s answer:
A Superior Court judge who sentenced an heir to the du Pont fortune to probation for raping his 3-year-old daughter wrote in her order that he “will not fare well” in prison and suggested that he needed treatment instead of time behind bars, according to Delaware Online.
Court records show that in Judge Jan Jurden’s sentencing order for Robert H. Richards IV she considered unique circumstances when deciding his punishment for fourth-degree rape. Her observation that prison life would adversely affect Richards confused several criminal justice authorities in Delaware, who said that her view that treatment was a better idea than prison is typically used when sentencing drug addicts, not child rapists.
Jurden gave Richards, who had no previous criminal record, an eight-year prison term, but suspended all the prison time for probation.
“Defendant will not fare well in Level 5 [prison] setting,” she wrote in her order.
Someone who molests his own 3-year-old has a problem. And ignoring what justice demands here, or how unevenly it is enforced between rich and poor, or even between rich and anyone else, there’s a safety issue. Someone with this problem needs to be locked up and not released until there’s some reason to believe he no longer poses a threat to children. Oh, sure, it’s nice to insist on treatment, but what’s to stop him from molesting more children while he’s under treatment if he’s free? Nothing.
And what is this sentence? Here’s more detail:Jurden also ordered Richards to “participate in a sex offenders” treatment program after his lawyer provided her with an evaluation from a clinic in Massachusetts. Her order stipulated that he undergo inpatient treatment followed by outpatient treatment. The judge also ordered him to have no contact with children under 16 and prohibited him from possessing pornography.
But of course who’s going to check? Why let him go free while in treatment? Why not lock him up? What if he’s never cured? He is a danger to children, but therapy and a promise not to go near children is enough? No. Lock him up during treatment, and let him make promises after he completes it and is evaluated. Isn’t that how a non-rich offender would be treated? Look, I get that this guy probably suffers from “affluenza”, it’s just that I don’t think that’s an excuse to avoid prison.
It appears the only thing the judge is worried about is how this super rich guy will fare in prison. So, for caring more about him than for the victim, and for all future victims, Judge Jan Jurden is the Asshole of the Day.
It is Judge Jan Jurden’s firs time as Asshole of the Day, but not the first judge to be featured on the site. Previous judge winners were
- Montana Judge Todd Baugh, who gutted a sentence for a statutory rapist saying the girl “looked much older” even though the rapist was her teacher who knew her age
- Texas Judge Jean Boyd, who let the rich kid off after killing four people because his lawyer said he suffered from “affluenza”
- Nevada Judge Brent Adams, who reduced a child molester’s sentence from life to one year after the fact
Full story: Raw Story
Book Ron was an interesting, attractive and relatable character, and I feel that the movies really unfairly relegated him to the position of comic relief. The dynamics of the trio had to be simplified into hero + heroine + mascot, and that robbed us of a truly fascinating character. So here are a few things you should remember:
1. He really is poor and it matters. HP may have huge issues when it comes to representations of race and sexuality, but deserves a round of applause for having a character come from a low-income background, with the fact of their poverty not glossed over but made into a plot point. JKR is really consistent about this – about the things Ron eats and wears and buys and doesn’t buy, the way he reacts when Harry unwittingly flaunts his own wealth. Poorer kids who have to go without brand name clothes will see themselves in Ron, and richer kids will learn that poverty isn’t something you deserve. Kids who empathize with Ron because he can’t afford to replace a broken wand are less likely to grow up to be assholes who complain about the extravagant lifestyle of people on welfare.
2. He has knowledge about the world. Out of the trio, he is the only real insider in wizarding society. Hermione is the one who knows magical theory and basically everything that can be found in a library. But when it comes to wizarding society and all of its habits, rules and unspoken assumptions, he is the one who can fill the other two in. Throughout the course of the septology, he does almost as much exposition as Hermione.
3. He is actually quite intelligent. Despite what the movies would have you believe, he is not dumb. He is mediocre in most of his schoolwork, and lacks Hermione’s booksmarts, but he is an excellent chess player, meaning he possesses good strategic abilities. He is the one who keeps a calm head while throttled by Devil’s Snare, and he talks Hermione through saving both their lives. He has decent observational skills, after all he was to one to spot inconsistencies in Hermione’s third-year time table. Seeing his common sense and social insight as less valuable than Hermione’s academic knowledge betrays an inherently flawed definition of intelligence. (Especially since academic knowledge tends to be gendered as male, and social knowledge as female, think of Poirot and Miss Marple.)
4. He is loyal. He is the embodiment of loyalty. The movies erase some of the most poignant moments proving this, and hand some of them over to Hermione. But it is Ron who stands in front of Harry, daring Sirius Black to kill them both, despite his broken leg. It is Ron who repeatedly defies Malfoy and even Snape to protect Hermione from verbal abuse. When his mother believes tabloid lies about Hermione, he takes Hermione’s side. When his brother tells him to stop being friends with Harry because of the political risk, he is so furious at the suggestion that he tears up the letter. He is unthinkingly loyal to his friends, this is why it is such a big deal that he leaves in the seventh book – because it contradicts who he really is.
5. He is genuinely funny. In the movies we are more likely to laugh at Ron than laugh with him, and the jokes he makes tend to be somewhat juvenile. But in the books his sense of humour evolves with him and with the reader, leading to this dry, snarky, irreverent tone that is genuinely very enjoyable. Ron is fun to read, and he sounds like someone who would be lots of fun to be around. He jokes a lot, but it is rarely spiteful, and often meant to comfort or distract someone – a proof of emotional intelligence.
6. He is kind. I don’t really how to put this, other than the fact that if Ron was a girl, he would be immediately defined as a caretaker. He stays in Hogwarts over Christmas so that Harry doesn’t have to be alone. He often acts oblivious and selfish on the surface, but ultimately he really obviously pays attention to the wellbeing of his friends. From his words and actions and body-language we can piece together the sort of person who can make life suck less just by showing up, who is always there for his friends even if he cannot do anything specific to help.
7. He has a huge inferiority complex. The movies hardly touch on it but in the books it is his main character arc. He feels inferior to his brothers’ achievements, to Harry’s chosen status, to Hermione’s intelligence. It is explicitly stated in book four that he doesn’t understand how can someone not want to be chosen. The books are far more clear in implying that he gets together with Lavander because he’s insecure about romance. The Horcrux doesn’t get to him through his love for Hermione like it does in the movie, it gets to him through the nagging suspicion that he has never been good enough for anything or anyone ever, including Hermione. And the movie laughed off the scene after the destruction of the Horcrux, when Harry finally gets how much Ron suffered of this fear of being second best and Ron gets that Harry never chose to be chosen. But fear of being inadequate is the primary driving force of Ron throughout the septology, and the movie fails to see value in Ron just as Ron fails to see value in himself: his caring, his loyalty, his wealth of non-academic knowledge and his awesome sense of humour are not tangible achievements, and they are not something somebody notices about themselves.
Movie Ron is the person book Ron is afraid of being in his lowest moments, an incompetent oaf who makes rude jokes and chews with his mouth open, somebody their friends only keep around out of pity and habit, somebody Hermione would have to settle for out of a lack of better options. But book Ron, for all his flaws, is a loyal, funny and warm person with many valuable practical skills. Also: I can imagine Hermione regularly thanking her lucky stars for ending up with someone as amazing as him.
Ginny Weasley 30 day Character Challenge: Day 10
Who is her ideal life partner in your opinion? Is it Harry, anyone else from HP or an OC?
Harry is Ginny’s ideal match and life partner. How do i know this? Let me count the ways….
1. JK created them to be soulmates. It really doesn’t get better than that. They are each other’s perfect complements.
2. Harry is the one Ginny wanted. This is an incontestable fact. She loved him from the very beginning. And her love only grew and matured with age.
3. Their shared experience of having their souls so intimately touched by Voldemort makes them ideally suited to understand each other’s demons and help each other deal with them.
4. Harry loves Ginny and has always cared for her. All seven books have instances of Harry noticing Ginny, worrying about her, disapproving of her brothers’ treatment of her, gently dispelling her fears, being attracted to her, and loving her. What more could a girl want?
5. Harry shares her sense of humor and values the same things as Ginny does. I have no doubt that Harry would be her fiercest defender and biggest cheerleader in all her endeavors.
6. Harry would never underestimate Ginny. Ginny is surrounded by men, and a mother, whose aim is to coddle her and protect her, severely underestimating her in the process. Little wonder she could hardly bear Dean’s gentlemanly overtures towards her. Harry, despite his extreme urge to protect her during the war, doesn’t underestimate her and is fully cognizant of her abilities. I think he would not come between Ginny and her independence.
7. Harry brings out the best in Ginny. He brings out her fierceness (no one, not even Hermione criticizes Harry in her presence) and her tenderness. He challenges her, and inspires her. And best of all, she knows she can trust him with her life.
1eyedgillysnake It’s all gone wrong