Hot Air

Hard Work Doesn’t Pay

Running a racist society takes a lot of work. Hard work. You’ve got to hand it to the folks who’ve marginalized and demonized people who are brown, black, or even slightly tanned after the company picnic last weekend.

Hell, not only do they have to crush the hopes and dreams of an entire segment of the population, they have to keep them docile while they do it. Then times change and next thing they know they have to pretend they’d never intended to keep those people down. In fact, they must holler to high heaven that no one is so near and dear to them as (pick one) the red man, the black man, the brown man, the yellow man, or — if they’re trying to appear particularly open-minded — the woman of any dusky hue.

In any good, progressive society wherein the appearance (if not the reality) of racism is frowned upon, leaders must work overtime to assuage their consciences and convince the general pop. that — horrors! — de facto disenfranchisement is the last thing they’d want. Even if it is an article of faith among many leaders that a lot of dark people don’t particularly care to work.

Sometimes all that hard work can lead to unforeseen problems.

Take, for instance, that ugly child molestation ring authorities in the United Kingdom announced they’d cracked yesterday.

Allegedly, a group of men conspired to abduct, rape, beat, and traffic upwards of 1400 kids, some as young as 11, acc’d’g to an inquiry commissioned by the Rotherham Metropolitan Borough Council. The men had been engaged in this pastime at least since 1997.

Prof. Alexis Jay, author of the inquiry’s report, wrote, “It is hard to describe the appalling nature of the abuse that child victims suffered.”

Alexis Jay

Prof. Jay Searches For The Words

Now you may ask how this gang got away with it for so long. After all, 1400 youngster gone missing might tend to raise an eyebrow or two even if the mass snatching took place over more than a decade and a half. The Rotherham report actually acknowledges that upper-level police officials and many elected officials had heard about the scheme but declined to take action for a variety of reasons including disbelief, institutional inertia, and indifference. (The report did not mention anything about officials partaking of the services of the ring so neither will I.)

One significant reason why authorities looked the other way as the men threatened kids with guns, forced them to watch rapes to intimidate them, and snatched their innocence from them was the fear of being labeled “racist.”


Yep. The men in the ring were described in the report as “Asian.” NPR reported yesterday they are Pakistanis. Here’s how the report explains things:

Several staff described their nervousness about identifying the ethnic origins of perpetrators for fear of being thought as racist; others remembered clear direction from their managers not to do so.

See, maintaining a veneer of kumbaya trumps a little child rape, you know. Families torn asunder, lives ruined, the standards of civilized society pissed upon with glee — none of these things were as pressing as the need to appear not racist.

No doubt the functionaries who turned a blind eye to this mess will be criticized, fired, perhaps even prosecuted. It’s a damned shame. Doesn’t anybody want to reward hard work anymore?

Please Police Me

It’s high time we realize we’ve got a bit of an unrecognized treasure here in Bloomington.

Doug Storm hosts a fab talk show called Interchange on WFHB radio. On it, he delves deeper into issues than any other ten gabfests put together. Take last night, for instance.

Storm corralled Monroe County Sheriff Jim Kennedy as well as University of Wisconsin-Whitewater sociology prof Greg Jeffers. The three (Storm incl.) hashed out what we want from the police , especially in light of the ongoing and decades-long militarization of local police forces. The Q., as Storm posed it, is Do we want officers of the law or of the peace?


Sheriff Kennedy

It’s not the first time Storm has tackled the eggshell issue of policing America. He has links to previous shows on his program webpage.

Go here to hear the program. And try to catch it live whenever you can.

Me, Yelling At Clouds

I’m going to pose a question here, one that I’ve been asking for a good decade or more. And still I haven’t gotten a satisfactory answer.

Who is everyone talking to on their cell phones?

This puzzlement first came to me when I’d be driving early in the morning back in Chi. around 2003 and 2004. I’d see scads of people yakking on their phones even though the sun had barely risen. I’d be behind a driver for a couple of miles on Pulaski Avenue, say, and all the while she’d be pressing her phone to her ear. Believe me, driving a couple of miles on Pulaski during morning rush hour can take anywhere from a day and a half to three weeks. Yet all that time, the driver ahead of me would be conversing.

With whom? About what?

And Why?

From "The Simpsons"

I loathe humanity in the morning. If I had my finger on the nuclear button a 7:45am, the Earth would be a burned-out cinder. Hell, if my mother’d called me that early in the morning to tell me she loved me and that I was the jewel among all her children, I’d have hung up on her.

Morning is for misanthropy and coffee, in that order.

Yet there people were, chit-chatting away.

And, then as now, they’d do it all day long.

Even after my coffee, my tolerance for my fellow humans only rises slightly.

There was a time when I imagined a lot of people with phones pressed to their ears while in their cars, walking down the street, waiting in line at the grocery, or while ordering lunch might be engaging in something wholesome and constructive — phone sex, perhaps. Husbands, wives, lovers of any sort, even those who hadn’t yet crossed the nudity threshold in their nascent affairs, all of them titillating each other via Verizon — that I could understand.

I’ve spent many an hour (back when I was a randy oats-sower) asking the person on the other end of the line what color nail polish she was wearing. The mind, mind you, is the most powerful sex organ any of us possesses.

Phone sex is so 1999, though. (Too bad, I might add.) The looks on people’s faces as they gab indicates nothing so scintillating as aural eroticism is going on.

Unless you’re talking a fellow neurosurgeon through a Novalis® Shaped Beam Surgery procedure on the brain of the President of the United States or you’re inducing tumescence of one sort or another in that special someone, what is so important that you must be on the phone all day long?

Beam Surgery

So, What Do I Do Next?

You should thank me for not asking about all those people texting.


One thought on “Hot Air

  1. First, this praise will go to a fella’s head, and second, amen about phones. There’s a woman that walks by our house every day, north and south, to and fro, house to work, work to house. I have never seen her not talking on the phone, rain or shine. My plan has always been to buy crappy technology so that I can’t easily succeed at distracting myself.

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