Archive for the ‘Human Nature’ Category

The Race Pool

Posted by Troy on 18th May 2015 in Human Nature

I’m listening to NPR in the car.  This American Life comes on, and one of the segments was on when to expose your child to race and racism.  The presenter was a black comedian that married a white girl.  He said that he had exposed his child to the concept of race (that she was black) at the age of five, but that he hadn’t exposed her to the concept of racism.

Instantly, I thought of my own upbrining.  At no time did my parents sit me down and tell me that I was white and that I should be proud of my whiteness.  It occurred to me what a vast disservice they did to the child in doing so.  They are creating a self-fulfilling prophecy.  They tell the child “you are different and separate based upon the color of your skin.”  How could anyone expect that such separating identity would not persist into adulthood?  And, in fact, if you heard of a white parent telling their kids about the grandness of their whiteness, people would be shocked and would decry it as racist, as would be befitting.  I grew up with a sense of myself as me.  I was not anything.  I was not white.  I don’t even really think I identified myself as a Southerner.  First and foremost, above all else, I was an American.  A flag-waving, unapologetic American.  It was a bedrock that all my other beliefs are based upon.  Of my personal heritage, I hail from English, Scott, Irish, and German lineage.  I disavow all.  I am American.

The concept of when to introduce someone to the concept of race?  I feel it is unnecessary.  Society will do that for you at some point.  I think it is more important to treat such a difference as unimportant and be ready to explain the concept when the child asks.  The man went on to talk about someone else that steeped his child in “the racism pool” at age five–telling the child of slavery and rape and murder.  Is it any wonder that the five year old got up in her church and demanded whites and blacks be separate?  How do you teach a child that an entire group of people are monsters, and then expect them to coexist with them?

Then the man goes into a story about being at a diner.  One of the waitresses thought he was pestering this lady and her child.  It turned out to be his wife and child.  The waitress apologized and when back to work.  Now, there are different ways I could see him responding to such stimuli.  The first could be a magnanimous gesture.  Laugh it off and go about your life.  The next would be to get angry and let it ruin your meal.  The most extreme response would be to storm out and never eat there again.  However, he went another route.  He posted the “ordeal” on facebook and youtube and called for a conference with media coverage and civil rights leaders and the owner of the diner and so forth.  Leading me to ask… “Dude!  How much free time do you have on your hands?!”

I keep going back to this…you know who I admire?  Jerry Lee Lewis.  He married his 13-year-old cousin.  You don’t think people talked bad about him?  Hell, I’m sure they did.  I’m sure he was the butt of many a joke.  Did he care?  NOPE.  Your opinion meant NOTHING to him.  I’m the same way.  I think it’s funny.  I’m a white guy that married an Asian girl.  Since she’s been up North for a while, people keep asking her about the racism in the South.  Her answer?  There’s not any.  They seem disappointed.  What about the controversy of our interracial relationship?  Nope, not any.  It’s never come up.  Not once.  No threats of disowning from my parents.  No nothing.  Sorry, rest of America.

What was funny was, the very next day, I’m in line to get out of Sam’s.  There is a couple ahead of me.  Smartly dressed.  Obviously straight from church.  Beautiful children, also smartly dressed.  The man was black.  The woman was white.  If I had to place a bet, one daughter was from the black man’s previous marriage, and the son was from the wife’s.  The other daughter, I believed to be theirs, together.  They went to check out, and the black lady at the door checked his receipt.  She then asked the lady for her receipt.  The man laughed and said they were together.  The lady apologized profusely.  To which, the man said.  “Oh, it’s okay.  No harm done,” and laughed hardily.

Life is 10% what happens to you and 90% how you react to it.

Long Live the Constitution!

Another type of racism

Posted by Troy on 1st May 2015 in Human Nature

Racism is all over the news of late.  Despite all the evidence to the contrary (ie, race riots in the northeast and stuff), the South is always held up as the poster child for racism.  Hollywood doesn’t own a calender, so they don’t know it’s not 1955 anymore.

However, there is another type of racism.  As C.S. Lewis said, the Devil sends sins in pairs.  There is the easy to spot racism that involves lynching and what not.  We’ll call this, “ugly racism.”  However, there’s “benevolent racism.”

Case in point, I read an article wherein the writer refused to pass judgement on rioters “as a white male.”  The mere terminology is indicative of someone that chooses to place all societal ills at the feet of the oppressor class as thrust upon them by college and Hollywood.  So he will not call people out on inexcusable behavior because he’s a white male.  Good thing he’s not a Southern White Male.  He might have to commit suicide for that sin.

This benevolent racism is like that.  It says that a race has been oppressed.  As such, they are not responsible for their actions.  As such, they are due x y and z.  As a result, their schools should be judged by a softer scale (they really do this, btw).  Job applicants should be given a preference even if a more qualified person is available.  And so on and so on.

Do you know who are not responsible for their actions?  Children.  And even then, I hold them to the standard that I hold adults to.  If a child punches someone, you should stop them and explain why they should not do that.  Anyone that says, “Oh, kids will be kids,” is inviting trouble when those kids grow up.  The only truly non-racist point of view is to hold everyone to the exact same set of standards.  To do otherwise is to say that that race or group is inferior to the other group.

Long Live the Constitution!

Toure, White Privilege, and Reparations

Posted by Troy on 28th May 2014 in Current Events, Human Nature

MSNBC host, Toure, has gotten into a lot of hot water with the Jewish community.  Apparently, Toure was discussing reparations, and a Jewish person responded that his family survived the Holocaust, came to America with nothing, and made it.  Rather than make some sort of intelligent response about this, Toure decided to write it off as “the power of whiteness.”  Which is basically Toure claiming that only white people can succeed in America, that their path is paved and all other races are barred (except for Asians…those crafty white people made sure that at least one race would surpass them so that they can hide behind this fact).

First of all, not even Toure is stupid enough to say that Holocaust survivors are privileged.  All he was commenting on was that he believes that white people can make it if they try and blacks (and other races) cannot.  This is because the deck is stacked.  So if a poor white person makes it, it is nothing to be really proud of.  The way was paved for them.  If a black person somehow makes it, they cannot be held up as an example.  They are merely an exception.  They were one of the few that somehow slipped through the cracks of the institutional racism that whites put in place to maintain the white power structure.  This really is how they view the world.

First of all, let me dispel a few myths here.  People like Toure claim that hard work will not let the other races get ahead.  I say that this thought DAMNS the other races to NEVER get ahead.  If you do not believe hard work is what it takes to succeed, you never will succeed.  This applies to school, at work, at your family life, at everything.  Nothing worth anything in this life is easy.  It all takes effort, and the more effort you put into something, the more God rewards you.  There was a story my dad once told me about a famous piano player.  After a concert, a woman told him “I’d give anything to play like you.”  He responded, “I did.”  We all start out with different advantages and disadvantages.  However, no advantage from birth can triumph over human will.  The talented musician who never practices will always pale against the musician that practices eight hours a day, every day.  Just ask Chet Atkins.  As far as reparations go, I’ve always said I would be in favor of it…as long as it comes with the following conditions: they forever renounce their US citizenship and they are banned from living in America.  If these terms are not accepted, then they are just after free money.  That’s it.

Reparations are based on the assumption that slaves should have been paid for their labor.  As such, their offspring should be paid (we’ll ignore the statute of limitations, naturally).  News flash: if they had been paid, they likely would have done what every other person does with their money: spent it.  As such, there would have been no inheritance.  Even if you think they would have saved it, then the majority of the savings would have been wiped out during the Great Depression.

Of course, what their side will say is that white Americans were only able to build their wealth due to slavery and that all whites have inherited that privilege.  As such, modern day white Americans owe modern day black Americans because modern whites are CURRENTLY benefiting from slavery.  Yeah, well…so are modern blacks.  Would any modern black American opt to move to Africa right now instead of America?  If they did, they are fools.  Their lives are infinitely better and full of infinite possibilities because of what their ancestors suffered.  Sorry, but that is true.  In fact, that person wouldn’t even exist if not for slavery.  Hell, they should get on their knees and thank God that slavery existed, for without it, they would not exist as their ancestors would not have met and born children which eventually lead to the existence of Toure himself.

And that brings me to my final point.  Black Americans invented peanut butter (Honey Roasted Peter Pan…yum), the cell phone, traffic lights, and other things.  They invented jazz and rock and roll.  They came up with Southern BBQ.  Anytime you want to get a chip on your shoulder about the past…be it the Holocaust or slavery, know this: you exist right now due to the fact that those evil things happened.  A million sperm vying for a chance to fertilize an egg.  We are each one in a million…more so given generations and generations it took for God to create us.  For whatever reason, he sent plagues and Holocausts and wars and slavery and disease and everything else imaginable because he wanted YOU to exist.  After He went to so much trouble, I just got to ask… what are you doing with your life?

Long Live the Constitution

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Gets It

Posted by Troy on 30th April 2014 in Entertainment, Human Nature

He understands the real offense here is that a private conversation was recorded with malicious intent and then betrayed.  It is nice to hear the rational and mature voices in the world.  There is no greater sin than betrayal.  It is the one thing that people will never condone.  A betrayer, a traitor, is always viewed with scorn, even to those they defected to.  Let me ask you a question, would someone rather associate with?

1 – A racist (assuming that they are not racist against you, naturally as that’s not really feasible).  For instance, two black men get together and are having a fun time.  One of them suddenly goes off on a tirade about how white people are the devil and should never be trusted.

2 – A betrayer.  Assume the other guy (the regular Joe) in number one meets someone and are having a fun time.  He finds out that his new friend got into the confidence of his grandmother, stole her identity, and saddled her with $50,000 in debt.  Let’s check that… that’s theft… okay, he finds out that the new friend got to know someone, and then spread all of their dirty laundry to the public just for kicks and giggles because it was juicy gossip.

Which of these two men does the regular Joe have the greatest chance to remaining friends with?  I say it’s gotta be #1.  While distasteful, he could say, “Well, it’s not really hurting anyone and not really affecting me personally, and we’re having a good time so…okay.”  But the second one?  No.  No amount of good time would ever make up for the fact that regular Joe could never trust #2 under any circumstances.

Long Live the Constitution!

The tyranny of being cool

Posted by Troy on 4th April 2014 in Entertainment, Human Nature, Political

You know, the cool always talk about freedom.  The cool always talk about tolerance.  However, the cool are actually the least likely to tolerate any deviance from their ideology.  The cool have no tolerance for anyone that disagrees with them.  Case in point:

Suppose Angelina Jolie (a darling of the cool) came out today and said that abortion is wrong and should be made illegal.  How fast would “the cool” turn on her?  It doesn’t matter that she agrees with them 99% of the time.  They would cast her out.  They would rip out her throat.

It’s interesting.  Isn’t it?  The cool always act like they are daring to defy conventions.  They question everything.  Blah blah blah, but they will never question anything that they believe, what they are fed.

Alternatively, I can say that the uncool are much more likely to tolerate other people’s views insofar that one deviance does not necessitate an end of a friendship.

So what is really cool?

It’s not Rolling Stone.  In fact, I think that’s the crappiest magazine ever.  It is nothing but a rag where people can learn what is “cool” so they don’t have to form their own opinions.  If you love Gordon Lightfoot.  Guess what, his music is great for you.  Enjoy it.  Who the hell cares?  If you don’t like Vampire Weekend, who cares if Rolling Stone tells you they’re so cool?  For you, they suck!  Don’t listen to them.  And whatever your tastes, realize this: your tastes are just as valid as anyone else’s, even if you don’t match up with what 90% of people think of as acceptable.  Hell, isn’t that the cools’ arguments for supporting gay marriage?  But that’s the only thing they apply that logic to.

So, who do I think is cool?  I think the coolest person in the world is Jerry Lee Lewis.  By God, he did what he wanted and he didn’t care.  He wanted to marry his 13 year old cousin.  Guess what.  He did.  Didn’t try to hide it.  Let it destroy his career.  Didn’t whine about it.  That’s what he wanted to do, and he did it, and the world be damned.  That’s what’s cool.

Although Huey Lewis is still cool.  Long Live Huey!

Long Live the Constitution!

Money Does Not Equal Success – My Proof

Posted by Troy on 30th October 2013 in Human Nature

Let us take 2 individuals:

The first man works very hard.  He becomes a billionaire, one of the wealthiest men on the planet.  He marries a beautiful woman and is admired by everyone who knows him.

The second man is a hard working man.  He works two jobs to support his family as best he can.  They never have the best of anything, but they have enough to live.  He breaks his back seven days a week.

So, who is the most successful?

Okay… now let’s change it up just a bit.

The billionaire has two kids.  They are both spoiled derelicts.  While the billionaire is running his charitable foundations, both of his kids are partying.  One dies of an STD and the other of an overdose.

The second man is devoted to his family.  He raised his kids as best he could.  They become honorable people.  One of them actually becomes the President of the United States.

Now…who is the most successful?

Do you doubt, even for one second, that the billionaire wouldn’t trade every dime and his social standing to have his kids back?  To save them from their character flaws?

Money’s nice, but it’s not the most important thing.  Past having what you need, it’s not even that important at all.

Long Live the Constitution!

Defending the South from Ryan Murphy

Posted by Troy on 24th October 2013 in Entertainment, Human Nature

The following is my letter to Ryan Murphy regarding the new season of American Horror Story: The Coven, which has depicted the South as racist, incestuous, and ignorant.  It is high time Southerns complain about the unfair treatment we receive at Hollywood’s hands.

Dear Mr. Murphy,

I will be typing this letter to you in addition to hand writing a letter. You are probably old enough to know and remember that a handwritten letter is a sign that someone is very devoted to saying what is in the letter. It is a mark of personal attention. However, the latest vogue of thought is that handwritten letters are to be mocked as unprofessional and backwards. Given your recent portrayal of the South, I do not wish to risk you thinking that I am some mere backwards hick from the sticks, as it were.

I have enjoyed your show, American Horror Story. However, I must take great exception to the newest installment, The Coven. Being a Southerner, I have always known and been forced to tolerate the portrayal of the South by Hollywood. However, it seems that your show goes one step further than even the worst movie about the South I have ever seen.

In the past three episodes, you have painted the South as racist. You have shown Southern religious people as fanatics that burn women at the stake. You have depicted us as rednecks that point guns in people’s faces with no justification. You have portrayed us as incest mongers. At every turn, you have used every single negative stereotype of the South and yet somehow managed not to show the nice stereotypes (such as that we are helpful, polite, and hospitable). If a director had given the same level of stereotypical treatment to any other group (blacks, gays, etc.), you would have been personally appalled. It seems as though the only groups Hollywood can slander are the South and Christians.

Racism has always existed and will always exist. It is not a Southern thing. It is not even a white thing. You can have a racist black man in Atlanta, Georgia. You can have a racist white woman in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. However, Southerners get along nicely. There is no open animosity as depicted by Hollywood. If you want race riots or police brutality, I suggest you look to New York, Chicago, or your own home of Los Angeles. As far as guns go, we have far more guns and far less homicides than our brothers in the north. Why? Because we were taught to respect human life. Also, we can defend ourselves. As far as the incest charge goes, just like racism, this is part of the human condition and can be found anywhere you go.

So, why am I writing you? I am writing you to tell you that I am disappointed in you. That is all. You tout yourself as breaking down barriers and stereotypes on your show, Glee. But here you are selling the same shlock that Hollywood has shoved down the throats of Americans for the last fifty years. Hollywood is the reason why the rest of America views us as uneducated, backwards, racist hicks. Again, if the show was on any other group, you would never dream of using such a cliché portrayal. I would challenge you to spend some time in the South. Stay a couple of weeks in Savannah. After you eat our food, you probably won’t want to leave. I plan to continue watching your show. It’s still probably the best thing on at ten o’clock on Wednesday, but know that falling back on stereotypes is a sign of lazy writing and is offensive.

Sincerely,

Troy David Newham

My Challenge to Socialists and Supporters of Socialized Medicine

Posted by Troy on 6th October 2013 in Entertainment, Human Nature

It was recently put to me that America needs to get in line with all other modern countries and have a socialized medical system for all of their citizens.  I won’t go into the fact that, in order for America to do that, we will have to seriously downgrade our military and will lead to more wars and the fact that all these other “modern” countries can afford these system due to the fact that we act like their protective older brother who the bullies are afraid of.  Instead, I will deal with the idea that  enacting a socialized medical system is the “moral” thing to do.

Let us pretend than there is a neighborhood.  In this neighborhood, their ancestors set it up where it is ruled by voting.  The charter allows for special assessments to be made for the general welfare of the neighborhood.  The houses were all passed down to the children of the people that lived there originally.  Some of these families had done very well and grew rich.  Others had not and were cash poor.  One day, one of the poorest among them got sick but couldn’t afford treatment.  A clever man proposed the following: “In case of sickness, the top 40% would pay the medical costs of the bottom 60%.”  They took a vote.  Everyone felt sorry for the sick resident.  The bottom 60% all voted in favor of this.  And thus, a socialized medical system was set up for this neighborhood.

Is this moral?

No.  It’s legalized theft.  The bottom 60% are all for it because it won’t cost them a dime.

How is this ANY DIFFERENT at a national level instead of a neighborhood?  Is it only because you don’t know the rich people personally?  It’s the same thing.  It’s legalized theft, and theft is never moral.

Long Live the Constitution!

Control vs Freedom

Posted by Troy on 29th September 2013 in Human Nature

In “A Case for Democracy,” the author states that the downfall of Soviet Russia was that the United States played hardball with Russia and forced them to give more freedoms to their citizens.  He states that freedom only creates a demand for more freedom.

I have a different take.  Control demands more control.  This is either if you are talking about governments or self-control.  A government demands more and more control.  Likewise, people will want more self-control, which is a different concept from freedom.  I would say that freedom, true, anarchist type freedom, is a self-destructive thing.  However, self-control is not.  You want to do what you choose to do as long as it doesn’t infringe upon someone else’s self-control.  That is to say, you want to be in control of your own life.

I always consider myself pro-freedom, but you always get some jerk that twists that word around to some insane degree.  However, there can be no such quibbling about self-control  Under self-control, you get to call all the shots as it relates to your own life (and no one else’s).

The interesting thing is that democracy has made it more difficult for governments to take more and more control away from their citizens because they have to somehow convince their citizens that it is in their own self-interest to give up their freedom for their own safety.  The sad thing is that our government is succeeding at this.

The fact of the matter (and you can look at statistics for free and controlled countries), the level of personal vs government control has little barring on your safety.  What does have an impact is the morality of the society you are living in.  In a moral society, you can walk the streets at night, you can leave your doors unlocked, etc.  In an immoral society, you cannot do these things because the police cannot be everywhere at once.  That’s the sad truth in the matter.  More government control will never make you any safer but will only serve to make you more miserable.

Long Live the Constitution!

Who would you bet on?

Posted by Troy on 6th August 2013 in Human Nature

One family raises their child.  They tell the child that the “system” is against him.  They tell them that, based on just how the child looks, people will hate and scorn him.  They will conspire to keep him down.  The cops will harass him.  They will be denied opportunity after opportunity.

The other family raises their child.  They tell the child that his life is his own.  They tell him that, if he tries hard and plays by the rules, that he can succeed.

Now, let’s assume that the first family is absolutely wrong.  The world is NOT against their child, and let’s assume, also, that the second family is absolutely wrong.  The world is TOTALLY out to get their kid.  Who would you bet on?

Even with all the opposition the second child faces, he is much more likely to succeed.  If someone refuses to give up and fights hard, you almost can’t keep them down.  They will also be prone to have a great attitude.  Despite what is happening in their lives, they know it will get better.  The first child will almost ensure his own defeat.  Every hardship is the opportunity to claim that “it’s no use.”  However, that might actually be the better experience.  The other option is that they become hard and embittered.  They fight and push the world away, knowing that it is unjust.  This leads to a self-perpetuating cycle.  They will raise their kids the same way.  As they show nothing but anger and hate towards “the system,” they only get that back.  After all, who wants to hang with an angry, bitter person except for other angry, bitter people?

Which is the greater tragedy?  The happy go lucky guy that is stuck at the low level by a corrupt system, or someone whose anger and bitterness have hardened their heart, especially if the world actually isn’t against them?

Long Live the Constitution!