Saturday, February 26, 2011

Support Indigenous People Protesting the Militarisation of the Border, Border Patrol Abuses, and Racist,Terroristic Legislation in Arizona

image of protest is from here
With thanks to Brenda at Censored News. Please click on title to link back.
Thursday, February 24, 2011

Two more arrests as Indigenous protest Border Patrol and militarization

Border Patrol Headquarters Occupation Protesters Stand Trial to Fight Charges

Two Arrested During March to End Border Militarization and Racist Laws

Press statement

TUCSON – On February 23, more than 40 protesters took to the streets – two were arrested – while six people who locked-down and occupied the US Border Patrol Tucson Headquarters on May 21, 2010 stood trial fighting charges of "criminal trespassing" and “disorderly conduct.”

Lawyers William G. Walker and Jeffrey J. Rogers represented the six as the city prosecutor called Border Patrol agents and Tucson Police to testify. The defense argued the trespassing charge was not properly filed and were granted a request to file a memorandum addressing the technicality. The trial is expected to continue on March 22, 2011. Corresponding rallies and actions are being planned.

At 1:30 pm people gathered in downtown Tucson at Library Park for a rally and then took the streets with banners reading, “Indigenous Resistance, Protect Sacred Places”, “Free Movement for People Not Commerce, Tear Down the Wall” and chanting “No Borders, No Border Patrol.”

Two people were arrested for allegedly hanging a banner that read “Las Paredes Vueltas de su Lado son Puentes (Torn Down Walls Become Bridges)” on a street traffic light. They were arraigned and released at 8 pm at Pima County Corrections.

Additional banners were hung at various locations throughout Tucson stating “Egypt, Wisconsin, O’odham Solidarity," “No raids, No deportations, No colonialism” and “Stop Militarization on Indigenous Lands."

O’odham Elders attended the court proceedings to demonstrate their support.
Donations can be made to support direct action efforts through Border Opposition Action Fund at

Communiqué from the occupiers of the Border Patrol Headquarters in Tucson, Arizona

We demand that the Border Patrol (BP), Immigration Customs Enforcement (ICE), their parent entity, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), and the Obama administration end militarization of the border, end the criminalization of immigrant communities, and end their campaign of terror which rips families apart through increasing numbers of raids and deportations.

The state thrives off of the climate of terror and fear that racist laws like HB2281 and SB1070, and new proposed laws like SB1611, 1308, 1309, 1405, have caused. This terror also manifests with thousands of troops invading indigenous lands, such as the Tohono O’odham, Yaqui, Kickapoo, Lipan Apache, to name a few. Since the creation of the current U.S./Mexico border, 45 O’odham villages on or near the border have been completely depopulated. This terror manifests with the bones of thousands – making the southern Arizona desert a grave yard, where the hopes and dreams of migrant families are stomped into the ground by border patrol agents, National Guard, minute men, and profiteering coyotes.

Through the military strategy of terror and fear the state maintains power and control.

We take direct action because we have decided not to be afraid. We are more afraid of not standing up to the state and what other crimes against humanity will be committed if it remains unchallenged.

We are not guilty of criminal trespassing or disorderly conduct.

The state, and by extension the border patrol, is guilty of occupying and destroying indigenous communities and ripping families apart. The development of the border wall has led to desecration of ancestor’s graves, it has divided communities and prevents them from accessing sacred places. When will this end?

These buildings, the court house, are made of brick and mortar and are the same brick and mortar that are the operation streamline immigration court just down the street. It is a direct manifestation of this system’s criminalization, where in the 3 hours that we’re in court today, nearly 100 people will be detained, adjudicated and deported through the streamline process.

Who are these building for? Who do they benefit? These are the same brick and mortar prisons are made of. It’s the same steel and concrete that is ripped from Mother Earth that’s used to build the border wall.

Politicians aren’t going to negotiate away our oppression. They are sitting in the chairs in their offices that are built on it. Our oppressors can only maintain their oppression as long as we are afraid of them.

If they are not going to do it, then we are going to find creative and direct ways to ensure that our communities are safe. We recognize that this is not going to happen within the walls of these institutions, these walls, these borders. It’s only going to happen if we tear them down. What does that look like?

Let’s come together, strategize, and embrace diverse tactics to effectively become the answer.

Today we also shed the term immigrant that has been used to attack our brothers and sisters, mothers and fathers, grandmothers and grandfathers, and children, many of whom are also indigenous, and to acknowledge and help restore the full human dignity that has been stripped away. To be immigrant should not be considered a crime unless 99 % of the U.S. is going to be ashamed and guilty of their pasts.

Our relatives are attacked on both sides of the border by colonial governments. The migration that the U.S. government is attempting to stop is driven more than anything else by the economic policies of the U.S. Free trade agreements such as NAFTA have severely reduced the ability of Mexicans and others from the global south to sustain themselves by permitting corporations to extract huge amounts of wealth and resources from these countries into the U.S. This has led to millions of people risking the terror and death that so many face to cross into the U.S. looking for ways to better support their families.

If the U.S. really intends on reducing migration it must end its policies of exploitation and wealth extraction targeted at the global south and instead pursue policies of economic, environmental and social justice for all human beings on the planet, thus reducing the drive to immigrate. But are they really going to do that?

Direct Action is about Direct Democracy. Building community is about communication, having respect for each other and doing something.

This is a struggle for freedom of movement and self-determination for all!

No racist laws, No colonial borders, WE WILL NOT STOP!


Feminist Action Alert: Please Stand with Women in Afghanistan to oppose a new bill that would significantly control, imprison, and endanger abused women seeking safety and justice

photo of Afghan women is from here

The first article is from AsiaOne News, *here*. I have edited the first paragraph as it was, to me, exploitive. Everything else in this post is hyperlinked back to the original source. At the end is a link where you can show your support by signing a petition to block passage of the profoundly misogynist and dangerous bill.

Abused Afghan women fear for future of shelters

Sat, Feb 26, 2011
AFP KABUL - At a secret women's shelter in Kabul, a mother with her children [has fled her abusers--family members who assaulted her. She] explains her fears over Afghan government plans to take over the refuges.

The 28-year-old left her home in Laghman province, east Afghanistan, three months ago and now lives at the shelter, which keeps its windows whitewashed and curtains drawn so neighbours do not guess what it is.

"My husband wasn't a good person and all the time he was out and we didn't have any food. When I told my husband's father and his brother to bring food, they abused me," she told AFP while breastfeeding her youngest, aged six weeks.

She plucked up the courage to flee her home but now her father-in-law has followed her to Kabul to try and force her to come back, she says. "He came to the Ministry of Women's Affairs and said 'I want the children.' I'm very worried about this," she explains, speaking on condition of anonymity because of safety fears.

Her story highlights concerns among activists that plans, announced last week, for the women's ministry to take control all 14 of Afghanistan's women's shelters will make it easier for abusers to track down their victims.

The move has drawn criticism from the United States as well as rights groups including Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch.

Activists say government-run shelters are more likely to yield to pressure from families to hand back abused women than if they are run by independent NGOs, as is currently the case.

HRW has accused President Hamid Karzai's government of making the announcement under pressure from powerful conservative, religious elements in Afghan society.

"The government is increasingly dominated by hard-line conservatives who are hostile to the very idea of shelters since they allow women some autonomy from abusive husbands and family members," HRW's Afghanistan researcher Rachel Reid says.

Shafika Noori of NGO Humanitarian Assistance for the Women and Children of Afghanistan (HAWCA) says the new rules would force women to appear before an official committee and face intimate forensic examinations before being admitted to shelters.

"When the women are with us, we can make them safe but when it belongs to the ministry, we think they will give back the women to those people (abusive families) and there will be a deal between the influential people and the ministry," she adds.

She and the 28-year-old rape victim are speaking at a HAWCA-run shelter which was forced to move a few days ago after a controversial national TV show threatened to broadcast the location of all safe houses.

The same show previously suggested that women's shelters acted as a front for prostitution.

In fact, most residents end up at shelters because they face domestic violence or being forced to get married while still children, Noori says.

Another resident, who did not know her age but said it was "less than 20", told of how she fled from war-torn Helmand province in southern Afghanistan because her brothers disapproved of her lover.

"I wanted to marry him but when I told my brothers, they didn't accept it and they beat me," she said, scars still visible on her arms.

The man bought her a mobile phone so they could stay in touch but her brothers heard about this, she added.

"When my older brother found out, he said: 'Now I don't want to beat her, I want to hang her tonight.'"

As the rest of the family ate dinner, she escaped to a nearby international military base. "I put on my brother's clothes and turban and left the house," she said.

Karzai insists the government does not plan to take control of all shelters, saying that only "one or two" were causing problems with corruption and "wastage."
But the US says it is "concerned" by the issue, while Amnesty calls the proposals a "terrible piece of legislation."

Women's activists in Afghanistan say the issue highlights how their work overall has become harder in recent years, despite efforts by the international community to encourage gender equality.

"There are some political issues behind this. It's not just safe houses, I think it's to close down the voice of women in Afghanistan," Noori says.

Another campaigner, speaking in a low voice on condition of anonymity during a meeting at a cafe, adds: "Every year it becomes more dangerous for us. The government is with dark-minded people, you can't be open any more."
*          *          *
Women for Afghan Women writes:

The government of Afghanistan has recently introduced a bill that wrests control of women’s shelters in Afghanistan from the local Afghan women’s NGOs that have founded and run them, and transfers that control to the Ministry of Women’s Affairs (MoWA).  This bill could become the law of the land ANY DAY NOW.

If this bill becomes law:

Women and girls seeking shelter will be required to plead their case before an eight-member Government panel, including conservative members of the Supreme Court and Ministry of Justice.  This panel will determine whether a woman needs to be in a shelter or should be sent to jail or returned to her home (and her abuser).

Women will have to undergo “forensic” exams (virginity tests) to determine whether they have had sex and therefore committed adultery. The tests are medically invalid.

Once admitted to a shelter, women will be forbidden to leave. Their shelter will become their prison. If any family member comes to claim her, even her abuser, she will be handed over to that person, in most cases to be subjected to the harshest retribution for shaming the family.

Also see the NY Times and the Ms. Magazine Blog for more information.

And please, please take a minute or two to sign this petition:

Thanks to Cara at The Curvature for posting on this.

"Consciousness Rising, World Fading" by radical profeminist Robert Jensen. His Journey to Feminist Consciousness and Action, In His Own Words.

photo of Robert Jensen with political posters is from here

I only know of a few men that I'd call "radical profeminist" and none of them is gay or Jewish. (Although Robert Jensen has spent some of his life in gay relationship to at least one man; as far as I know, he's been heterosexual for quite a while, though.) Some are white. Some are U.S. EFL (English as a First Language) speakers. One is South African.

I have read Derrick Jensen's own very intense personal story woven into his beautiful, powerful book A Language Older Than Words. I understand and appreciate his journey to radical profeminist activism. And I know he's accountable to women in his life. A man unrelated to him is Robert Jensen. His story is more unfamiliar to me, and is harder for me to relate to as my consciousness journey began at age nine. I think me being intergender, not heterosexual, Jewish, with an ill mother, raised by more than one self-respecting woman and more than one non-masculinist man, was a big part of why that is.

I'd like to hear more stories by men around the world, or intergender or transgender males, about how it is they came into their commitments to radical profeminist activism and being. Katlego, want to tell your story here? Chris O.? Malik? Anyone out there?

Oh, I'll mention that many radical activist men are deeply committed to many social justice causes and radical social change but don't take seriously or don't center the work of women, of white feminist women, of radical women of color, of radical feminist Black, Brown, Asian, Indigenous, and white women.

Byron Hurt is very profeminist, but I'm not sure he centers the work of radical feminist women of any color. And, his spiritual and political journey is his own. I wish him well.

Tim Wise, who may well be progressive not radical, is not very feminist, and I think his work would be much stronger if  he centered the work of radical feminist women of all colors. I don't see his work even centering the experience of women of any political location. I appreciate his fierceness as a white man on racism as it effects men in the U.S., though.

In his writings thus far, John Stoltenberg hasn't integrated any significant understanding of race, and hasn't seemed to grasp the experiences of radical feminist women of color who made it clear RADICAL feminism means dealing with gender and race, at the very least. John wrote as a white man without understanding what his whiteness meant, in my experience. I don't call that work "radical". But I do acknowledge John Stoltenberg's writing as very important for many men. I appreciate his work and have linked to it here, in some posts.
I also appreciate the work of Chris Kendall. He is gay, white, and Australian and has written mostly about pornography and sexual violence, focusing on how each effects white gay men. I also don't see him putting the experiences and analysis of radical women of color and radical feminist women of all colors at the center of his work. And I've linked to his work here at times. I feel great appreciation for his work. I know he's struggled a lot.

The writings and actions by women of color and white women radicalised me, not the work of men, although some men of color's writings have informed my experience and analysis of the world I live in. Particularly and especially James Baldwin and Martin Luther King, Jr.

I've told parts of my story throughout the posts on this blog. One day, perhaps, I'll write it out in one place. I state this after getting another death threat by email. :(  One thing John Stoltenberg wrote somewhere was "If you're not catching shit, you're not doing shit." That's a solid, simple measure of whether or not men's work is challenging male supremacy and male supremacists. I guess that means my work is catching shit, and hopefully also composting CRAP. ;)

All that follows is from *here*.

Real and Corporeal: Consciousness and Being

[For complete article features, please see source at Common Dreams here.]

Consciousness Rising, World Fading
Our stories of awakenings -- whether moral, intellectual, religious, artistic, or sexual -- are tricky. Honest self-reflection doesn’t come easy, and self-satisfied accounts are the norm; we love to be the heroes of our own epics.
That’s true of accounts of political awakening as well, especially for those of us born into unearned privilege as a result of systems of illegitimate authority. Not only do we love to tell stories in which we come out looking good, but we know how to decorate the narrative with the trappings of humility to avoid seeming arrogant.  We use our failures to set up the story of our transformation; even when we speak of our limitations we are highlighting our wisdom in seeing those limitations.
So, when I got a request from a researcher to tell my story about how my political consciousness was raised, I was hesitant.
I don’t like feeling like a fraud, and something always feels a bit fraudulent about my account, even when I am being as honest as I can. But, like most people, I feel driven to tell my story, mostly to try to explain myself to myself. So, here I go again:
As a teenager coming of age in the 1970s in mainstream culture in the upper Midwest, I missed the United States’ radicalizing movements by a decade and several hundred miles. I developed conventional liberal politics in reaction to the conventional conservative politics of my father and his generation. But in a more basic sense, I grew up depoliticized -- like most contemporary Americans, I was never taught to analyze systems and structures of power, and so my banal liberal positions seemed like cutting edge critique to me. After college I worked as a journalist at mainstream newspapers, which further retarded my ability to think critically about power; reporters who don’t have a political consciousness coming into the field are unlikely to develop one in an industry that claims neutrality but is fanatically devoted to the conventional wisdom.
The raising of my consciousness began when I started a journalism/mass communication doctoral program in 1988, a time when U.S. universities were somewhat more intellectually and politically open than today. After years of the daily grind in newsrooms, I felt liberated by the freedom to read, think, and talk to others about all the new ideas I was encountering. My study of the First Amendment led me to the feminist critique of pornography, which at the time was an important focus for debate about the meaning of freedom of expression. My first graduate courses were taught by liberal defenders of pornography, who were the norm in the academy then and now. But I also began talking with activists in a local group that was fighting the sexual-exploitation industries (pornography, prostitution, stripping), and I realized there was a rich, complex, and exciting feminist critique, which required me to rethink what I thought I knew about freedom, choice, and liberation.
As a result of those first conversations, I started reading feminist work and taking feminist classes, and I kept talking with folks from the community group, which led me to get involved in their educational activities. I didn’t make those choices with any sense that I was constructing a radical philosophical and political framework. I was just following the ideas that seemed the most compelling intellectually and the people who seemed the most decent personally. Those ad hoc decisions changed my life, in two ways.
First, they opened up to me an alternative to the suffocating conventional wisdom, in which liberals and conservatives argue within narrow ideological boundaries. This exposure to feminist thinking, especially those people and ideas most commonly described as radical feminist, allowed me to step outside those boundaries and ask two simple questions: Where does real power lie and how does it operate, in both formal institutions and informal arrangements?
Second, they helped me realize the importance of always having a political life outside the university. Instead of putting all my energy into my teaching and research, I was anchored in a community project and connected to people who weren’t preoccupied with publishing marginally relevant research in marginally relevant academic journals. Although I had to publish scholarly articles for my first six years as an assistant professor, once I got tenure and job security I immediately returned to community organizing and ignored the pseudo-intellectual pretensions that dominate in most of the so-called scholarly world in the social sciences and humanities. I had developed respect for rigorous and relevant scholarship but had come to realize how little of it there was in my fields in the contemporary academy.
From those first inquiries into the sexual-exploitation industries and the role of a pornographic culture in men’s violence, I continued to think about how power is organized and operates around other dimensions of our identities and statuses in the world. After opening the gender door, it was inevitable that I would have to open the race door. From there, questions about the inherent economic injustice in capitalism and the violence required for U.S. imperial domination of the world became central. Finally, I began thinking more about how human domination of the living world is destroying the ecosphere’s capacity to sustain life as we know it.
All of those inquiries led me to the same conclusion: We live in a world structured by illegitimate hierarchies and based on a domination/subordination dynamic. For those of us with unearned privilege, the rewards for ignoring this conclusion are whatever status and money we can squeeze out of the system, while the cost of capitulation to power is a surrender of some essential part of our humanity. More than 20 years after embarking on this investigation, I can see that clearly. But when I first started confronting these issues, I only knew that the conventional wisdom seemed inadequate, that the platitudes uttered by people in power seemed empty, and that the rationalizations offered by the intellectuals in the service of power seemed self-serving. I didn’t know what I wanted, but I knew I didn’t want that kind of career or life.
All that seems clear to me now, but it wasn’t at the start. The researcher’s query that prompted this essay asked about my “earliest consciousness-raising memory.” I have no simple answer, because my awakening was such a gradual process. But there were some moments along the way, such as the day I read Andrea Dworkin’s 1983 speech entitled “I Want a Twenty-Four-Hour Truce During Which There Is No Rape,” in which she asked men for “one day in which no new bodies are piled up, one day in which no new agony is added to the old.”[1] In that speech she pointed out that feminists don’t hate men, but instead “believe in your humanity, against all the evidence.”[2]
I also remember the crucial role of one friend in the anti-pornography group, a white man who was older than I and was a part of not only the feminist movement but the civil-rights, anti-war, and environmental struggles. He provided me with a model for how someone with privilege could contribute to radical politics in a principled fashion. In my book on pornography, I wrote about one particularly important moment with Jim Koplin, when we talked about my motivation in volunteering with the group:
“If you want to be part of this because you want to save women, we don’t want you,” he said. At first I was confused -- wasn’t the point of critiquing the sexual exploitation of women in pornography to help women? Yes, Jim explained, but too many men who get involved in such work see themselves as knights in shining armor, riding in like the hero to save women, and they usually turn out not to be trustworthy allies. They are in it for themselves, not to challenge masculinity but to play out the role of heroic man in a new, pseudo-feminist context. You have to be in it for yourself, but in a different way, he said.
“You have to be here to save your own life,” Jim told me.
I didn’t understand exactly what he meant at that moment, but something about those words resonated in my gut. This is what feminism offered men -- not just a way to help those being hurt, but a way to understand that the same system of male dominance the hurt so many women also made it impossible for men to be fully human.[3]
Jim challenged me to ask myself why I was there and what I hoped to gain, and I came to understand that my interest in feminist politics was driven in large part by my own alienation from traditional definitions of masculinity. For me to tell a simple story about doing the right thing, implying nobility on my part, wasn’t going to cut it.
More than 20 years later, I’m still wrestling with these questions about why I make the choices I make. I am a man who is part of a feminist movement and a white guy who critiques the white supremacy deeply embedded in mainstream culture. I am an American who opposes U.S. imperial foreign policy and a middle-class academic working with a local group that organizes immigrant workers. For these efforts, I get attention and praise that is disproportionate to my effort and ability, a fact I point out as often as possible. People sometimes listen to me not because I’m smarter than feminist women, but because I am a man. My writing on race is not better than the work of non-white authors, but I’m appreciated because I’m white.
This is the tricky part of my awakening story. I was lucky to learn to see the world from the point of view of those who struggle against power, and I’m rewarded in many ways when I speak, write, or act in public in these movements. But I recognize that those rewards are unfair, and so my professed humility becomes another mark of my alleged sophistication. Yet if I were to refuse to use my privilege -- if I dealt with this angst by fading into the background -- I would be throwing away resources that come with my position in the world and which I can offer to these movements.
I am trapped, yet I am trapped in a system that makes my life relatively easy. Even when there is some threat of punishment for my political activities, such as during the fallout from critical essays about U.S. war crimes that I wrote after 9/11, I have so much support from outside the power structure and so much privilege as an educated white guy that I never really felt threatened. Even if I had been fired from my university position after 9/11, I likely would have landed on my feet.
I realize not all who adopt a critical perspective, even those in privileged categories, fare as well as I have. But in recent decades in the United States, in which dissent by people who look like me is mostly tolerated, there has been no widespread repression of people in the privileged sectors. People in targeted groups (particularly immigrants, Muslims, Arabs) have had to be careful, and there’s no guarantee that a more widespread repression won’t return to the United States, especially as U.S. power continues to decline around the world and elites get nervous. But for now, white men with U.S. citizenship are pretty safe. We may risk losing a job, but that’s trivial compared with the fates suffered by radicals in other eras in U.S. history or in other places today.
So, here’s my consciousness raising story summarized: I wandered through the first 30 years of my life mostly oblivious to the workings of power, protected by my privilege. For the past 20 years I’ve been struggling to contribute to a variety of movements for social justice and ecological sustainability, getting my consciousness raised on a regular basis whenever I seek out new experiences that push me beyond what I have come to take for granted (lately for me that has been happening at 5604 Manor, our progressive community center in Austin, TX, Although I love teaching and put considerable energy into my job as a professor, my community and political activities are just as important to me -- and a greater source of intellectual vitality. If consciousness-raising is an ongoing project, it’s not likely to happen in moribund institutions such as universities but will come through engagement with people taking real risks in political work.
That’s as accurate an account as I can offer about how I became, and continue becoming, the political person I am. But telling this story always makes me a bit queasy; I have yet to find a way to describe my political development that doesn’t sound self-aggrandizing, as if I am casting myself as an epic hero.
That longstanding discomfort in telling my story is further complicated by new concerns in the past few years. More than ever I’m aware that no matter how high anyone’s consciousness in the United States is raised, there may be very little we can do to reverse the consequences of modern industrial society’s assault on the living world. I don’t mean that there is nothing we can or should do to promote ecological sustainability, but only that the processes set in motion during the industrial era may be beyond the point of no return, that the health of the ecosphere that makes our own lives possible may be compromised beyond recovery.
In contemporary left/progressive organizing, we typically focus on those small victories we achieve in the moment and on a vision for social change that sustains us over the long haul. With no revolution on the horizon, we pursue reforms within existing systems but hold onto radical ideals that inform those activities. We are willing to work without guarantees, bolstered by a faith that, as Martin Luther King, Jr. put it, “the arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice.”[4] That’s supposed to get us through; even if our movements don’t prevail in our own lifetime, we contribute to a better future.
But what if we are no longer bending toward justice? What if the arc of the moral universe has bent back and the cascading ecological crises will eventually overwhelm our collective moral capacities? Put bluntly: What if homo sapiens are an evolutionary dead-end?
That’s the central problem with my consciousness-raising story. When I was politicized 20 years ago, I made a commitment to facing the truth to the best of my ability, even when that truth is unpleasant and painful. My ideals haven’t changed and my commitment to organizing hasn’t waned, but the weight of the evidence suggests to me that our species is moving into a period of permanent decline during which much of what we have learned will be swamped by rapidly worsening ecological conditions. I think we’re in more trouble than most are willing to acknowledge.
This is not an argument for giving up on or dropping out of radical politics. It’s simply a description of what seems true to me, and I can’t see how our movements can afford to avoid these issues. I’m not sure I’m right about everything, though I am sure this analysis is plausible and should be on our agenda. Yet it’s my experience that most people want to push it out of view.
In trying to make sense of my political consciousness-raising, I try to avoid the temptation to cast myself as an epic hero who overcomes adversity to see the truth. That’s a struggle but is possible when one is part of a vibrant political community in which people hold each other accountable, and for all my fretting in this essay, I think I’ve done a reasonably good job of keeping on track. We can overcome our individual arrogance.
More difficult is facing the possibility that the human species has been cast as a tragic hero. Tragic heroes aren’t characters who have just run into a bit of bad luck but are protagonists brought down by an error in judgment that results from inherent flaws in their character. The arrogance with which we modern humans have treated the living world -- the hubris of the high-energy/high-technology era -- may well turn out to be that tragic flaw. Surrounded by the big majestic buildings and tiny sophisticated electronic gadgets created through human cleverness, it’s easy for us to believe we are smart enough to run a complex world. But cleverness is not wisdom, and the ability to create does not guarantee the ability to control the destruction we have unleashed.
Not every human society has gone down this road, but we live in a world dominated by those who not only exhibit that arrogance but embrace it, refusing to accept the reality of decline. That means our individual awakenings may be taking place within a much larger dying. To face that is to live in a profound state of grief. To stay true to a radical political consciousness is to face that grief.

[1]Andrea Dworkin, Letters from a War Zone: Writings 1976-1987 (London: Secker & Warburg, 1988/Chicago: Lawrence Hill Books 1993), pp. 170-171.
[2]Ibid., pp. 169-170.
[3]Robert Jensen, Getting Off: Pornography and the End of Masculinity (Boston: South End Press, 2007), p. 9.
[4] “Where Do We Go From Here?” (annual report to the Southern Christian Leadership Conference), August 16, 1967.
Robert Jensen

Robert Jensen is a journalism professor at the University of Texas at Austin and board member of the Third Coast Activist Resource Center . His latest book is Getting Off: Pornography and the End of Masculinity. Jensen is also the author of The Heart of Whiteness: Race, Racism, and White Privilege and Citizens of the Empire: The Struggle to Claim Our Humanity; and Writing Dissent: Taking Radical Ideas from the Margins to the Mainstream (Peter Lang). He can be reached at and his articles can be found online here.

Charlie Sheen is a drug addict and the equivalent of two and a half men who are male supremacist scumbags. And Charlie Sheen HAS BEEN FIRED, finally! Details here.

image is from here
March 1, 2011: Breaking news on Charlie Sheen: Brooke Mueller, his ex-wife, has files a restraining order against him.
For more, see:

This is a man CBS has been paying about two million dollars to every week he "works" at playing a shallow misogynist on TV. With a fraction of that money (or perhaps all of it) he has been scoring more drugs and exploiting and/or abusing more women in systems of prostitution. He claims to have no savings! No savings with two mill a week? That'd be a lot of drugs and a lot of renting of women as sexxx-things. And now he wants 3 million per episode. Prince Charming, he's not. As was astutely noted on SNL's Weekend Update, on May 14, 2005:

Tina Fey: This Monday marks the final episode of the sitcom “Everybody Loves Raymond.” Next season, CBS Monday will be anchored by the show “Everybody Has Mixed Feelings about Charlie Sheen.” [source: here]
But not because he's creepy, folks. Because he's one more man, a very rich one, who can pay to abuse women and not be charged with any crime.

If I hear any more about how victimised Charlie "the procuring prick" Sheen is, I'm going to... well, possibly write up another post about him. I've posted on this male supremacist racist abusive jerk before, *here* and *here*. But clearly three time's a charm, because now the arrogant, abusive, obnoxious actor is finally gone from the TV screens and hopefully will get his ass kicked to the curb just outside the border of Hollywood. Why am I hoping for this?

He's a chronically exploitive man who procures women (for sexxx) who have been raped and pimped. He sexually exploits and sometimes harms the women. He's a misogynist, racist jerk, along the lines of Mel Gibson. He may also be anti-Semitic, but certainly not as anti-Semitic as that son-of-a-HaShoah-denier, Mel. Both men are what they are because they choose to do what they do--they practice being that way. Over and over again. They aren't racist and misogynistic because of drugs and alcohol. Drugs and alcohol don't cause people to be white supremacists or male supremacists, just so you know. How can I know this?

There are other men who've been caught with drug and alcohol problems of some kind, such as David Cassidy. Anyone see David spouting off anti-Semitic, racist, misogynistic terms when being arrested or caught in an embarrassing situation? Nope. How come the substances didn't do to him what they apparently do to oppressive and bigoted scumbags like Charlie Sheen and Mel Gibson? Could it be because David Cassidy isn't a racist, anti-Semitic, battering misogynist and serial procurer of pimped women?

A typical quote by Charlie Sheen: "I hope you fucking die, b*tch." When will a man being an unrepentant misogynist be seen as reason enough to deny him any custodial parental rights to keep children in his home?
Just in: An all-new picture of Charlie Sheen and his new roommates, who include ex-wife Brooke Mueller, porn star Bree Olson and former nanny Natalie Kenly. The three women, who are pictured above in Sheen's home theater, are now living with the "Two and a Half Men" star, who is expected to return work on Monday after undergoing month-long rehab. Sheen and Mueller's twin sons Bob and Max, nearly two, are also living in the home and a source tells "The Insider" he would like to have an even fuller house. The source says the actor would also like his ex-wife Denise Richards and their two daughters, Sam, 6, and Lola, 5, to also live at his opulent Los Angeles home.[ Read full article on The Insider] [source for this blurb is *here*]
His dad Martin Sheen sees him as fully human, which Charlie is. But asking any of us to feel for the 45-year-old lad is a bit much, at this point. He's a big boy now. And even though too many men will be boys, this man has been a male supremacist for far too long.

I wonder if Martin has ever told him, "Charlie, using women as sex-things isn't cool and it's not okay. Renting, exploiting, and sexually abusing people is wrong and you ought to be put in jail for the way you mistreat women, particularly pimped women in systems of prostitution. You're also a racist, son. A racist misogynist. Now, when are you going to admit that with any degree of remorse or shame? And, when are you going to commit yourself to treating women--all women--with respect and regard for THEIR full humanity--the full humanity YOU demand everyone acknowledge you have?

He and Mel Gibson ought to take their millions and donate them to anti-trafficking and anti-battery organisations. They've sure got millions to spare.

What do you say, fellas? Care to transform yourselves into two men who don't fuck over women, beat women, harass women, terrorise women, and use and abuse women as sexxx-objects?

This just in: Two and a Half Men has been cancelled. Hurray!!! Now the producers CAN give the obscene amount of money that would have gone to C. Sheen to several international anti-trafficking organisations instead.

For the story on the cancellation of the show, see this, from the UK's Daily Record. You can link to the original by clicking on the title below.

Charlie Sheen rant results in hit show being cancelled as star goes off the rails

Feb 26 2011 Simon Boyle

TROUBLED Charlie Sheen's hit TV comedy was cancelled yesterday - after he unleashed a bizarre rant at the show's creator.

He branded producer Chuck Lorre a "stupid, stupid little man", then rounded on his critics, claiming: "I'm not perfect, but look what I'm dealing with - fools and trolls."

After the attack, TV chiefs cancelled production of his hit show Two And A Half Men.

But Sheen still refused to shut up.

In a letter to fans, he said of Lorre: "Clearly I have defeated this earthworm with my words - imagine what I would have done with my fire-breathing fists."

The outburst could signal the end of his £1.2million per episode deal with CBS to star in the comedy, which made him the highest-paid actor on TV.

Sheen, 45, was hospitalised recently after a cocaine and booze party with porn stars.

Earlier this week, he jetted out to the Caribbean with his ex-wife Brooke Mueller, porn star Bree Olson and "nanny" and glamour model Natalie Kenly. Mueller has since returned to Los Angeles.

From the Bahamas, Sheen called a US radio show to insist he had kicked his drug and alcohol addictions, roaring: "I don't have time for these clowns and their judgment and stupidity.

"They lie down with their ugly wives in front of their ugly children, and then they look at me and say, 'I can't process it'.

"Well, stop trying, just sit back and enjoy the show.

"I'm gonna stay here with these two smokin' hotties and fly privately around the world. You know it might be lonely up here but I sure like the view."

Lorre quickly called a halt to the rest of the current series of Two And A Half Men.

That prompted Sheen to furiously pen an open letter to fans, stating: "I fire back once and this contaminated little maggot can't handle my power and can't handle the truth.

"I wish him nothing but pain in his silly travels, especially if they wind up in my octagon.

"I urge all my beautiful and loyal fans who embraced this show for almost a decade to walk with me side-by-side as we march up the steps of justice to right this unconscionable w rong."

During his on-air rant to US chat host Alex Jones, Sheen claimed his own methods of beating his addictions were much more effective than the techniques offered by support group Alcoholics Anonymous.

He sniped: "The only thing I'm addicted to right now is winning. AA has a five per cent success rate, my success rate is 100 per cent.

"Their entire manifesto is built on complete and total surrender. They say 'Don't be special, be one of us'. Newsflash: I am special."

And in an odd blast, he went on to attack United States founding father and former president Thomas Jefferson.

Sheen claimed: "I'm not Thomas Jefferson, he was a p***y, but I dare anyone to debate me on things.

"Debate me on AA right now.

I had a disease, I cured it with my brain, with my mind. I can't use the word sober, cause that's a term from those people, but I have cleansed myself. I closed my eyes and in a nanosecond I cured myself from this ridiculous model of disease, addiction and obsession."

He defended his relationship with a string of porn stars and models, claiming he and his group of "goddesses" enjoyed "a marriage of the heart".

The outburst leaves his Two And A Half Men career hanging in the balance - and threatens his return to the hit film franchise Major League.

Reports have linked the star to the third film in the series, but Sheen insists producers have yet to sign him, adding: "If they want me in it, it's a smash, but if they don't it's a turd that launches like a tugboat."

After Sheen's rant, the movie boss behind the Major League franchise James Robinson warned: "I'm not going to risk putting Charlie in the movie if he continues messing up."

[Charlie Sheen] ON HIS CRITICS

I don't have time for these clowns.. They lie down with their ugly wives in front of their ugly children, and then they look at me and say, 'I can't process it.

[Charlie Sheen] ON HIS WOMEN

I'm gonna stay here with these two smokin' hotties and fly privately around the world. You know it might be lonely up here but I sure like the view

[Charlie Sheen] ON CHUCK LORRE

I've defeated this earthworm with my words. Imagine what I would have done with my firebreathing fists

Below is a time line of some of Charlie's abusive and/or illegal and/or notorious behavior. To the general public: How about caring more about the women and other people he fucks over than about him? Or, even, caring as much about them as so many do about him?

What follows is from and may be linked back to by clicking on the title. Regarding that title: His behavior isn't "bad" so much as it is grotesquely and systematically white het male supremacist--whether or not he is of Latino heritage. His behavior is at times terroristic, abusive, threatening, criminal, illegal, and wrong. It's also obnoxious, selfish, self-absorbed, and not at all worthy of being reinforced with millions of dollars paid to him by men who want to profit off his abuses of other people. His behavior is disgraceful and ought not be condoned by anyone in Hollywood. At least he's no longer on the air in a weekly sitcom.

He and Mel Gibson need to call it quits with their careers and leave women and children alone for the rest of their lives. Maybe they--Charlie and Mel--can live together, hopefully without a boy (or girl) in the house, and hopefully they won't develop a reality show called "Two Racist-Misogynist Men".

Charlie Sheen: A Timeline of Bad Behavior

Charlie Sheen
As Charlie Sheen continues his anti-Chuck Lorre and Two and a Half Men tirade, takes a look back at more than 20 years of Sheen's bad behavior.
Charlie Sheen: The history of a promising acting career

January 1990: While in their home, Sheen accidentally shoots fiancée Kelly Preston in the arm. The relationship ends.
September 1990: Sheen completes drug rehab a month after checking himself in.

July 1995: Sheen testifies in the tax evasion trial of Hollywood madam Heidi Fleiss, admitting he spent almost $53,000 on her prostitutes.
December 1996: Sheen is arrested for allegedly beating porn star girlfriend Brittany Ashland, who claimed he slammed her into the marble floor of his home and threatened to kill her if she told anyone.
June 1997: Sheen pleads no-contest to the Ashland charges and is sentenced to a one-year suspended prison term and two years of probation.
May 1998: Sheen is hospitalized after a cocaine overdose. Father Martin Sheen turns him over to authorities for violating his probation. Sheen later checks himself into Promises rehab center.
March 2005: Denise Richards, Sheen's second wife, files for divorce while pregnant with the couple's second daughter. She says Sheen had been abusing drugs and alcohol.
Charlie Sheen: I'll go back to Men... without Chuck Lorre
March 2005: Porn star and escort Chloe Jones tells the National Enquirer Sheen was among her clients and had paid her $15,000 for oral sex. Sheen's agent disputes the claim.
April 2006: In order to obtain a restraining order, Richards signs a declaration stating that in the middle of an argument on Dec. 30, 2005, Charlie pushed and shoved her while she was holding their daughter Lola. According to the declaration, Charlie pointed his finger at her and screamed, "I hope you f---ing die, b----."
March, 2008: Jason Itzler claims he sent Ashley Dupre (the same Dupre who later had a relationship with Eliot Spitzer) and another girl to have a threesome with Sheen for $20,000. Sheen's reps deny the report.
December 2009: Sheen is arrested in Aspen, Colo., on domestic violence charges after an alleged altercation with third wife Brooke Mueller, the mother of his twins.
Two and a Half Men ends production for the season following Charlie Sheen's radio rant
February 2010: Sheen's Mercedes is stolen and found upside-down at the bottom of a cliff near Mulholland Drive. Police say they do not believe Sheen was in the car because he would have been injured in the accident.
February 2010: Sheen is charged with felony menacing and misdemeanor third-degree assault and criminal mischief in connection with the Aspen arrest. He pleads not guilty in March.
February 2010: Sheen announces he's voluntarily checking into rehab and takes time off from Two and a Half Men. In May, he signs a two-year deal that will pay him $1.8 million per episode.
August 2010: Sheen pleads guilty to the Aspen charges and is sentenced to 30 days in rehab, 30 days of probation and 36 hours of anger management.
October 2010: Sheen is reportedly removed from The Plaza Hotel in New York City after causing a disturbance, and allegedly doing $7,000 worth of damage to the room. Richards, who was also staying at the hotel, separately from Sheen, accompanies him to the hospital. His rep says Sheen had an "allergic reaction" to medicine.
November 2010: Capri Anderson, an adult film star who was with Sheen at The Plaza, sues him, claiming he choked her. Sheen countersues Anderson, claiming she tried to extort him. Sheen is not prosecuted for the incident at The Plaza Hotel.
January 2011: Sheen goes on a reported bender in Las Vegas — where he allegedly parties with a group of women that includes porn stars, strippers, and Michelle "Bombshell" McGee — but returns in time for work on Two and a Half Men.
What's next for Charlie Sheen?
January 2011: Sheen is rushed to the hospital for severe abdominal pains that a friend of Sheen says came from the actor laughing too hard at the TV. Shortly after, Sheen begins a rehabilitation program in his home. Two and a Half Men goes on production hiatus.
February 2011: Sheen begins a rant about Two and a Half Men creator and executive producer Chuck Lorre on The Dan Patrick Show, where he blames the producers for delaying the return of the show. Lorre responds with a vanity card reading, "If Charlie Sheen outlives me, I'm gonna be really pissed." Sheen's ensuing rants (challenging Lorre to a fight, and saying he owns him) and behavior force CBS and Warner Bros. TV to shut down production for the rest of the season. Sheen responds by saying he would return to the series for Season 9 if Lorre is not involved.