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Friday, June 10, 2016

Hate Speech as MainStream news.

So, I was reading a "Yahoo News Story," which I realize is an oxymoron. Still, Yahoo is a main stream media source, which is why I was stunned and worse to read hate speech casually flipped into a minor news story. 

The article was about Laura Olin, who made Emoji Art to mark Hilary Clinton's presidential nomination, riffing off some marvelous art by Patrick Moberg designed for his blog to mark Obama's election as president. 

Olin was objecting to people who were retweeting her emoji art without giving her credit. (Though I'm not sure she was giving Patrick Moberg credit, but I'll give her the benefit of the doubt.)

But the author of the story, Lauren Tuck, casually states that "soon after, she saw celebrities, influences, and the media companies "pull a fat Jewish" and share the image without credit. 

The phrase, "Pulling a fat Jewish," comes from a guy named Josh Ostrovsky, who has made a lot of money tweeting jokes, some of which he has stolen. 

But--stop and think about it. Could anybody get away with casually writing, "Pulling a fat Lebanese?" How about "Pulling a fat Black guy, Pulling a fat woman, pulling a fat Christian, Muslim, Hindu, Bahai, Pulling a fat African?" No fricking way. Our words have such power. And when speech like this becomes common venacular--when Trump can get away with calling all Mexicans rapists and robbers and all Muslims terrorists, and Paul Ryan is still willing to support him, even though he admits its racist, when Yahoo doesn't even seem to think twice about using, "pulling a fat Jewish," as a casual meme, then hatred becomes acceptable and commonplace, and the world grows scarier for most of us. 

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