So I was doing my usual channel surfing ( 6 stations in a ‘loop’ and round robin between them ) and landed on Fox ( I think it was “The Five” ) and they were covering the recent shooting of some Sikhs in Wisconsin. Yes, it was a horrid thing to have happen. Yes the guy who did it was a nut job at best and a miserable excuse for a human being.
We all know that.
Now begins the usual round of LibDems trying to turn it into a political lever via demonizing guns and gun ownership.
On the TV was Bob Beckel (one of the “Token Liberals” on Fox) who is usually presenting a particularly bent point of view. Lots of talking points, not much substance, thinking not necessarily applied. ( Though during his time at Fox he has slowly started showing a bit more tendency to think about things before talking. Perhaps there is hope…)
At any rate, all that is not what’s got me bothered. No. That was Bob Beckel spouting off that the shooters were “Right Wing”.
He got into a bit of a dust up with the others on the panel but stuck to it. Saying things like “They are all Right Wing” and “All those skinheads are Right Wing” and tying Right Wing to Neo Nazis and all the rest.
Aside from the fact that the Fascists and Nazis were NOT “Right Wing” but were, in fact, Socialists (just not Communist Socialists so Stalin called them “right wing” as anything NOT Soviet was ‘to the right’ of him…) the simple fact is that Skinheads are NOT all racists nor all “right wing”. He simply has his facts quite wrong.
One can almost forgive him his ignorance of the history of the Italian Fascists and German Nazi party as that history has been so regularly propagandized that you actually need to spend an hour or two to find the truth. ( As we did in an earlier posting series.) But the Skinheads came into existence fairly recently and the history is there for anyone who had their eyes open the last few decades to see.
Hell, even the “progressive / liberal” biased Wiki has it right:
A skinhead is a member of a subculture that originated among working class youths in London, England in the 1960s and then soon spread to other parts of the United Kingdom, and later to other countries around the world. Named for their close-cropped or shaven heads, the first skinheads were greatly influenced by West Indian (specifically Jamaican) rude boys and British mods, in terms of fashion, music and lifestyle. Originally, the skinhead subculture was primarily based on those elements, not politics or race. Since then, however, attitudes toward race and politics have become factors by which some skinheads align themselves. The political spectrum within the skinhead scene ranges from the far right to the far left, although many skinheads are apolitical. Fashion-wise, skinheads range from a clean-cut 1960s mod-influenced style to less-strict punk- and hardcore-influenced styles.
In the late 1970s, the skinhead subculture was revived to a notable extent after the introduction of punk rock. Most of these revivalist skinheads reacted to the commercialism of punk by adopting a look that was in line with the original 1969 skinhead style. This revival included Gary Hodges and Hoxton Tom McCourt (both later of the band the 4-Skins) and Suggs, later of the band Madness. Around this time, some skinheads became affiliated with far right groups such as the National Front and the British Movement.
Notice that this is largely a FASHION and MUSIC driven identity and only SOME are on the “far right” (even though we know that “far right” is often simply a bogus name that is in fact the old Nazi Socialist / Racist blend and far more “left” than “right”…)
The skinhead subculture was originally associated with black popular music genres such as soul, ska, rocksteady and early reggae. The link between skinheads and Jamaican music led to the development of the skinhead reggae genre, performed by artists such as: Desmond Dekker, Derrick Morgan, Laurel Aitken, Symarip and The Pioneers.
In the early 1970s, some reggae songs began to feature themes of black nationalism, which many white skinheads could not relate to. This shift in reggae’s lyrical themes created some tension between black and white skinheads, who otherwise got along fairly well. Around this time, some suedeheads (an offshoot of the skinhead subculture) started listening to British glam rock bands such as The Sweet, Slade and Mott the Hoople
Gee, Black Skinheads… So, about that “racist” identity Mr. Beckel?
Yes, there are SOME who are racist and haters, but that’s true of any large category of humans. (Want to see racism? Be a white guy asking to date a Chinese girl in high school… We eventually had that date, at our 10 year reunion.) So no real surprise that SOME have that attitude. Though, as we’ve seen, being Racist is an attribute of National Socialism, not “right wing” at all.
(Those wanting a review can see:
in their own words:
Although many white power skinheads listened to Oi! music, they also developed a separate genre that was more in line with their politics: Rock Against Communism (RAC). The most notable RAC band was Skrewdriver, which started out as a non-political punk band but evolved into a neo-Nazi band after the first lineup broke up and a new lineup was formed. RAC started out musically similar to Oi! and punk, but has since adopted elements from other genres. White power music that sounds like hardcore is sometimes called hatecore.
Even the skinheads recognize it as hateful behaviour, calling it “hatecore”. Interesting to note, we continue to see the conflict between Communism and National Socialism playing out…
And anyone inside the Skinheads making noises about their Nationalist neighbors?
Also during the late 1970s and early 1980s, however, many skinheads and suedeheads in the United Kingdom rejected both the far left and far right. This anti-extremist attitude was musically typified by Oi! bands such as Cockney Rejects, The 4-Skins, Toy Dolls, and The Business. Two notable groups of skinheads who spoke out against neo-Nazism and political extremism—and in support of traditional skinhead culture—were the Glasgow Spy Kids in Scotland (who coined the phrase Spirit of 69), and the publishers of the Hard As Nails zine in England.
In the United States, anti-racist skinheads countered the neo-Nazi stereotype by forming organisations such as The Minneapolis Baldies, which started in 1986; Skinheads Against Racial Prejudice (SHARP), which was founded in New York City in 1987 and then spread to other countries; and Anti-Racist Action (ARA), which was formed in the late 1980s by members of the Minneapolis Baldies and other activists.
On the far left of the skinhead subculture, redskins and anarchist skinheads take a militant anti-fascist and pro-working class stance. In the United Kingdom, two groups with significant numbers of leftist skinhead members were Red Action, which started in 1981, and Anti-Fascist Action, which started in 1985. Internationally, the most notable left-wing skinhead organisation is Red and Anarchist Skinheads, which formed in the New York City area in 1993 and then spread to other countries.
Notice anything MISSING from this? It’s almost entirely about style, clothing, music, and some racist / anti-racist elements. Nothing about the virtue of home schooling. Not a lot of discussion of the merit of a balanced budget. Nothing much at all about the virtue of traditional religion in building good character. Pretty much absent is the need for the Rule Of Law and a strong support for Law Enforcement. How about “modest dress” for women? The sin of killing a child in abortion? The need for sex to be only in the context of marriage? Marriage as being between one man and one woman? Hmmm? Not seeing a whole lot of the Right Wing Agenda in the definition of who these folks are.
So what IS here? What could possibly be the thing that sets Mr. Beckel on a course of rampant insult and blatant bias?
SOME of the skinheads like guns. SOME of them are racists. SOME of them support the NAZI ideals. EXACTLY as did the Democrats in the 1920’s and 1930’s… (Heck, even into the 1960s near as I can tell. “Southern Democrats” were some of the last folks to get on board with equal rights for Blacks). And need I remind Mr. Beckel that it was a REPUBLICAN who issued the Emancipation Proclamation?
Why Do I Care?
I don’t really know. I think it is just a sense of moral outrage at the Blatant Lies foisted on the public by the Dimocrats and their Useful Idiots. There are a great many good and honest moral Democrats ( my friends and family ) and I find it offensive that they are represented by folks so willing to indulge in flat out propaganda lying.
It is as though they figured that they would just stick the Tar Baby of Racism on the Republicans to get it off of their historical card and figured they could ditch that whole connection of National Socialist German Worker’s Party and their endorsement of Mussolini in the pre-War years too via the deliberate Big Lie. And that’s just wrong.
Look, there’s nothing wrong, at all, in saying “We were wrong then. We now despise those beliefs.” Just say it and move on. No big. But to LIE about it to try to hide it, and to try to stick it on the opposition via such lies is just evil. The cover up is always worse than the original sin.
Frankly, I think part of why this is so annoying is that I can make a better case for Lange Type Socialism than most other kinds of economic structure (modulo the small fact that we’ve never had one be stable longer than 50 years…) and making the waters muddy about what IS good and DID work well in the “National Socialisms” just makes it that much harder to “make the case”.
Yes, the “National” part where they were profoundly racist and advocated for the “Folk” being only a very narrow slice of humanity was a pretty bad move. Caused millions to die and lead the Germans to believe they could just take what they wanted from their neighbors. That doesn’t change the fact that they did a pretty good job of running their industrial capacity (even if they did have a bit more emphasis on “Labor Unions” than was warranted – a classical behaviour of Socialists).
It just makes it all so darned hard to “Keep a Tidy Mind” when folks want to change some of the elements of historical fact and ignore some of their past mistakes. The parts just “don’t fit right” and it leaves a persistent discontinuity in the mind space.
So Beckel wants to define “anything evil is Right Wing” as near as I can tell. Not only is it in conflict with past history, and with human nature, but it’s even pretty lousy propaganda.
In short: Skinheads Are People Too!
You’d think that someone who’s all for embracing “diversity” would “get it”…