The Conversation

Culture: Cultural happenings and discussions.

Why Are They Skeered of the Confederate Flag?

Apr 17, 2014 4:22 PM PT

According to FOX News, two Long Island, New York high school students have been suspended from school for displaying a Confederate flag to a school sporting event.

Brother Gary Cregan, the principal at St. Anthony's High School in South Huntington, told WCBS-TV the boys walked into the after-hours sporting event with the flag draped around their shoulders.

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Government spends our money to propagandize us

Apr 15, 2014 11:02 AM PT

The Washington Free Beacon chronicles one of the many ways in which Big Government forces us to spend our money on propaganda designed to further the interests of the State: a taxpayer-funded play dubbed "Global Warming: The Musical," for which the National Science Foundation wasted almost $700,000 of our money.

The story revolves around Karl (Marx?), who has been kicked off Nature Channel’s Shark Week because he hijacked the program, using it to make a point about climate change. People shouldn’t be terrified of sharks, he explains, they should be terrified that sharks aren’t killing more people. Something about their population dying due to, what else, global warming.

After the Shark Week “debacle,” Karl is having an identity crisis in Barro Colorado Island, in the middle of the Panama Canal. He still has his camera gear, so he decides to start interviewing the local environmentalists.

There’s Allie, a plant ecologist on the island, and Rob, who is first and foremost described as “Allie’s husband.” Somewhat of a dunce, Rob is also a plant ecologist. They study baby leaves.

Karl says the interviews are for a “f**k that experiment,” meaning he can “do whatever” he wants.

He then meets Julie, a rather foul-mouthed 15 year-old girl who is willing to “set herself on fire” to send a message about climate change.

A blonde, fair-skinned millennial, Julie has plenty of lines about Twitter and her quest to become famous. She sings the first number, in a rather annoying high-pitched voice, about floods and polar bears. They’re “getting hungry because the ice is melting,” the song goes.

Scenes of Detroit show the city all gone, Julie starts fading out, repeating “this is a picture …” until there are no more pictures. The message: Nothing will be spared from global warming’s wrath.

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Attacks on Kansas Jewish Community: This is What Hatred Looks Like

Apr 14, 2014 10:08 AM PT

Since the 2010 midterm election, we've seen many Democrats and the mainstream media attempt to label mass shootings by deranged people as political "hate crimes" by conservatives and the Tea Party. The enthusiasm for such prejudice has declined somewhat recently, but it lingers in the background whenever such events occur.

The shootings at Jewish community centers in Overland Park, Kansas this past Sunday are a reminder of what hate crimes really look like. The alleged perpetrator had been a radical antisemite and racist for decades, was directly tied to the Ku Klux Klan, and shouted "Heil Hitler" when he was arrested after carrying out his attacks.

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Making It Count

Apr 9, 2014 8:00 AM PT

After a life-changing experience in 2001, I have tried to remind myself as often as possible that life is really short, that sometimes you don't get a tomorrow, and that making the most of each moment is really what this thing called life is all about.

I don't always do a great job. I could definitely stop to smell more roses. I could take more breaks to see the world and spend more time on the projects I love and less on the ones that drive me crazy. I think we all make those mistakes. And in a world divided on so many issues--politics, culture, religion, you name it--I think we can all come together and relate to this concept of limited time, of making things count, and of living in a way that will hopefully let us look back years from now and conclude that we had our heads and hearts in the right places.

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'Shut up,' Mozilla explained

Apr 7, 2014 11:44 AM PT

In response to Mozilla Clams Up As It Reaps a Whirlwind Of Disapproval :

Nothing says "wide diversity of views" and "culture of openness" quite like nailing boards over the window to the company press office while thousands of disgusted users uninstall its products!  You'd think our champions of tolerance would be eager to discuss the wonderful thing they just did.  Come on, guys, polish up those jackboots and give us a victory parade!  Brendan Eich even co-authored a book you could burn at the climax of your frenzied celebration.

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Jay Z and 5 Percenters more about 'street cred' but dangerous all the same

Apr 7, 2014 9:13 AM PT

First, call the ‘five percenters’ what it is. Initially like Kwanzaa another made-up black nationalist movement but with a perverted racist and sexist twist that has now taken on gang affiliation as classified by many state prison systems. There’s real danger in this gang aspect and the dangerous undercurrent of radicalism should not be ignored. 

Now to current Jay Z reality and the medallion he wore at the Nets game last week.

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Mozilla Clams Up As It Reaps a Whirlwind Of Disapproval

Apr 6, 2014 8:19 PM PT

In the wake the forced resignation of Mozilla's embattled co-founder Brendan Eich, Mozilla, the company that operates the web browser Firefox, now finds itself  embattled.

When Eich was hired as CEO last month, outraged gay activists immediately started calling for his scalp because of his support for Prop 8, which passed in California with 52 percent of the vote in November of 2008. 

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On fanaticism

Apr 6, 2014 7:12 AM PT

Andrew Sullivan, as staunch a proponent of gay marriage as has every picked up a keyboard, denounced the jihad against former Mozilla CEO Brendan Eich:

Will he now be forced to walk through the streets in shame? Why not the stocks? The whole episode disgusts me – as it should disgust anyone interested in a tolerant and diverse society. If this is the gay rights movement today – hounding our opponents with a fanaticism more like the religious right than anyone else – then count me out. If we are about intimidating the free speech of others, we are no better than the anti-gay bullies who came before us.

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More on donor lists and the Mozilla oppression

Apr 4, 2014 4:51 AM PT

When discussing the thoughtcrime prosecution and ouster of Mozilla CEO Brendan Eich last night, I quoted a passage from a First Things article which appeared to assert that Eich's donation to the campaign for the Prop 8 gay marriage ban in California in 2008 - the sole reason he was hounded out of his job by a fascist mob - was made public when corrupt agents of the Internal Revenue Service leaked the donor list for the National Organization for Marriage to a gay-rights group.  In an update to the post, I mentioned that I had quickly grown doubtful of this claim after quoting it, because I thought the media exposure of Eich's donation in 2012 was based on a search of public records.  I can't recall where I read it, but I thought Eich himself had said something to that effect.

The IRS connection would be a bombshell revelation, and was treated as such by just about everyone who read these sentences from First Things: "Why, then, the ruckus?  Amazingly enough it is entirely due to the fact that Eich made a $1,000 donation to the campaign urging a 'yes' vote on California's Proposition 8.  When this fact first came to light in 2012, after the Internal Revenue Service leaked a copy of the National Organization for Marriage's 2008 tax return to a gay-advocacy group..."

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