|American Renaissance magazine|
|Vol. 18, No. 3||March 2007|
The National Front: Going Soft or Getting Wise?
New platform leaves some disappointed.
The first thing I ever did as an activist for the National Front was put up posters with a picture of an Arab and the words: ‘When we show up, they clear out.’ Well, clearly, things are changing . . .” Philippe is a long-time member of Jean-Marie Le Pen’s party, the National Front. Today, he has agreed to meet me in a cafe in a working-class neighborhood in the 19th Arrondissement of Paris. He is disillusioned by the front’s new campaign, especially by the poster everyone is talking about: a picture of a young woman of African origin promoting the theme: “Right/Left, they’ve made a mess of everything!”
This poster is one of a series of six on the same “mess” theme — they depict three women and three men — and the front has printed 750,000 of them. A seventh shows Mr. Le Pen, together with the other six, and the slogan “All together, we’ll get our France back on her feet.”
The reaction was quick, not just on the Internet but among the front’s regional supporters and at the NF’s headquarters in the slick Paris suburb of Saint-Cloud. The most radical activists feel betrayed and are not shy about saying so. At the cafe where we are meeting, tempers flare. “They don’t give a sh*t about us!” says Mikael, a young activist. “They are not going to send the blacks and Arabs home after all! The fight for our people — it’s not about some mulatto in pink underwear (in the color version of the poster, the girl’s pink panties are just visible over her blue jeans). France is not ‘an idea;’ it’s an ethnic identity!” His comrades loudly agree.
This latest poster on immigration has raised doubts among many of the front’s most loyal supporters. The leftist paper Lib”ration claims that the Catholic wing of the party considers the photograph out of keeping with front ideology. In fact, only a few members have spoken out about the poster. Bernard Antony, the leader of the traditional Catholics, went no further than to joke that he opposed the poster because the young woman is dressed immodestly.
It is, of course, undeniable that for the last 20 years, Jean-Marie Le Pen and his lieutenants have been lambasted as “racists” (some of his followers have been pilloried during the last 20 months — see the first O Tempora item of this issue), but the ideology of the front has never been racial. It is the front’s opponents who have painted it as “racist” — with considerable success, one might add — as part of their demonization campaign.
The National Front has, for years, been a home to blacks, Arabs and Jews. When he was elected to the National Assembly in 1956, Mr. Le Pen had a black from the Antilles as his substitute. Mr. Le Pen was even the first political leader to campaign for the election to a regional council of a woman of Algerian origin. Before that, he had already sponsored the election of an Algerian Muslim man, Sid Ahmed Yayaoui. For several years, mass meetings of the National Front opened with performances by a singer whose roots are in Madagascar. Nor should we forget St”phane Durbec from the Antilles, the Algerian Farid Smahi, and Huguette Fatna from Martinique. All have held elected office under the NF banner, and the last two have even been members of the front’s political bureau. It is therefore perfectly consistent that a young lady of African origins speak for the National Front, and criticize the failure of the mainstream parties’ assimilation policies.
Notwithstanding the disappointment of many of its activists, the front’s platform has never been racial, and for good reason: It would be against French law, it would run counter to the party’s own name (“national” includes all Frenchmen), and it would not sit well with the representatives of the traditional Catholic wing. Finally, it would not be in keeping with the personal views of many of the “old guard,” who were active in trying to keep the French Empire, and believe some loyal Vietnamese and Algerians can be fully assimilated as citizens. By no means do these traditionalists want France swamped by immigrants, but for them, former colonials steeped in the imperial system have both a loyalty to and a legitimate claim on France. The party’s goal is therefore to rally support from all Frenchmen.
Contrary to years of mainstream propaganda, the National Front has never rejected the idea of assimilation. As Jean-Marie Le Pen has explained, “The presence of a minority of completely assimilated immigrants does not in any way threaten the permanence of our identity, and the young woman in the new NF poster does not look like she wants to pick a fight with France. Moreover, the NF has always taken the position that integration concerns a limited number of people, and it has never been a question of approving mass immigration, even if the newcomers were perfectly assimilated or assimilable.” It is also worth noting that the NF has always favored pro-natalist policies that would maintain the youth and vigor of the French people and avoid demographic decline.
Jacques Vassieux, a regional councilor for the NF in Savoy puts it this way: “Certain fringe groups that consider themselves ‘radical’ have been quick to accuse the National Front of treason against the nation and against all that it represents. Some critics have even taken aim at our president [Le Pen] himself, claiming that he has renounced the very purpose of the National Front with his call to patriots of all stripes — ethnic, social or political. Their criticisms boil down to this: The NF has adjusted itself to a cosmopolitanism that accepts a change in the very nature of national identity.”
He explains further: “To be French is something inherited — French nationality is above all an ethnic heritage. It means participation in a glorious past, built by noble heroes and by glorious conquests — territorial, political, and cultural. The France of the Gauls, Greco-Latin France, the France of Germanic and Catholic peoples, the imperial France of Napoleon — we have never turned our back on that heritage and in fact make it a point of honor to defend it.
“France had a great empire, extending from the rice fields of Indochina to the deserts of the Sahara. Yes, there were three colors, running from Asia through France and to Africa, and one tricolor flag. We have never, however, accepted the view of our adversaries, of France as a racial mish-mash. At the same time, France has overseas departments and territories, among whose citizens there are many patriots. How can we not think of them as fully French?”
The NF has always played by the rules of republican democracy. With every election its support grows, showing that a republican system could put it and its ideas in power. As for those ideas, Mr. Le Pen has always been clear: “Our enemy is not the immigrant but the politician who has permitted him to take root in our territory.”
Martial Bild, one of architects of the front’s presidential campaign for this spring, explains that “this poster speaks to Frenchmen worried about immigration as much as it does to Frenchmen of foreign origin.” He adds: “Following Jean-Marie Le Pen’s appeal in Valmy last September (see below) to all Frenchmen of every origin, the NF is concerned with the problem of social cohesion and the challenge it poses to all citizens, including immigrant citizens.”
Those close to the party leader like Euro-MP Jean-Claude Martinez, and a former Marxist, leftist writer Alain Soral, have pushed Mr. Le Pen towards a “more generous discourse” on immigration and to redirect his political strategy more towards a working-class and even leftist electorate. It would appear that Mr. Soral’s support for the party has played a significant role in this shift (see next article). His affiliation with the party became official in October 2006, but he had been cooperating with the front for more than a year. And although Mr. Soral’s leftist and even multicultural views have been much criticized by party “radicals,” it is above all Mr. Le Pen’s daughter Marine who is behind the campaign of “normalization.”
Mr. Le Pen has turned over to her the management of the presidential campaign, and her chances to succeed her father as head of the party are likely to turn to a considerable degree on how well she does. With her new slim figure (she recently lost 20 pounds) and fashionable wardrobe, the 38-year-old Marine Le Pen is the party’s modern, new “with-it” image. She is invited to appear on the biggest television and radio programs, and socializes easily with the other members — both right and left — of the Paris-area regional council, for which she leads the NF group. She travels without a bodyguard whereas her father, who has been the target of violence, takes no chances.
She may have succeeded in getting attention, even among people not much interested in politics, but her attempt to make the NF an ordinary, credible party is another matter, because before she can seduce the voters she must convince her party.
The traditional Catholics are already choking on her tolerant views of abortion and homosexuals. Now, she is going even further in presenting the NF as defender of “the Republic.” This is a break with the considerable number of front supporters who are not sympathetic to the democratic tradition, and who incline toward a variety of less populist philosophies. Because all the other parties display a religious veneration for democracy and the republic, Marine’s new stance is yet another step towards normalizing the front.
This initiative arose two years ago out of conversations with Alain Soral in light of various Interior Ministry decisions on giving foreigners the right to vote, the creation of an official French Council on Islam, and the debate over what the French call “double jeopardy.” This refers to the fact that under current law, a foreigner who commits a crime serves his sentence and is then deported. Interior Minister Nicolas Sarkozy, who is now an official presidential candidate for 2007, says this is excessive, that foreigners should be allowed to stay in France after they get out of jail.
The trick for Marine was to find the right time and place to announce a series of positions that were sure to disappoint some of the party’s most loyal supporters. She chose the kickoff for Jean-Marie Le Pen’s 2007 presidential campaign, which was held on September 20th, 2006, at Valmy. The choice of Valmy was no accident: It was the site of a 1792 victory by the republican French army over Austrians and Prussians sent to crush the revolution. Her choice was another poke in the eye for the wing of the party that views the republic with disdain, but it was another claim to mainstream respectability.
For the presidential campaign, Marine put together a team of some half-dozen company presidents not affiliated with the NF, with the idea of implementing “pragmatic” new ideas. One, for example, was to reserve a certain number of slots in the public sector for people over 45 so as to give jobs to out-of-work middle-managers. Like much of the new party trimming, this will not be a quick sell to the free-marketers and other traditionalists. “I play the role of minesweeper,” says Marine. “It’s not easy to explain that not everyone on unemployment is a layabout, that not all homos want to get married, that not all bureaucrats are time-servers, that not all corporate bosses are saints.” “But I don’t care,” says Mr. Le Pen’s youngest child, “I’ll take all the risks.” And those risks include reaching out to non-white voters.
Despite all this, however, the fight against immigration remains crucial. Jean-Fran”ois Touz”, a close friend of Marine and the man in charge of matters of immigration for the front, explains that policy continues to rest on two main objectives: zero immigration and the expulsion of all illegals.
Mr. Touz” expresses the problems in round numbers:
- 400,000 to 550,000 — the official count of new immigrants who enter the country each year.
- 40 million — the number of non-European immigrants now living in Europe.
- 60 billion Euros — the annual cost of immigration for France alone.
- 25 percent — the percentage of the prison population accounted for by foreigners, and that figure probably approaches 80 percent if non-white citizens are included.
- 5 percent — the percentage of immigrants who arrive in France with an employment contract, which is to say that 95 percent show up without one.
“It would be out of the question,” he says, “to abandon our program or replace it with another at the very moment when the facts show we have been right all along, when public opinion is moving our way, and when our opponents finally claim to be coming to grips with the problem but do not offer the right answers.”
For Mr. Touz”, the front’s immigration platform has five planks.
- Remove incentives to immigration by reserving welfare and public housing for French citizens and by giving citizens priority in all employment. Sharp restrictions on naturalization would be put to a referendum. The goal remains zero immigration.
- Add disincentives by reestablishing French borders. This would mean withdrawing from the Schengen and other agreements that give anyone legally residing in any European Union country the right to live in any other member country. France would also withdraw from any treaty that gives the European Union authority in matters of immigration or granting of visas or asylum.
- Put in place a system of identity controls that would result in the detection and expulsion of all illegals. Revoke the policy of family reunification that has been in place since 1974, and implement a policy whereby the entire family of legal immigrants would be deported if a child commits a serious crime.
- Vary the level of foreign aid in accordance with the willingness of countries to take back citizens deported from France. France would take the initiative in holding a Euro-African conference on how to limit the aspirations of Africans for the supposed riches of Europe. It would be understood that with half of Africa’s population under age 25 — that is 500 million people — unchecked migratory pressures would swamp Europe.
- Implement a proper policy of assimilation. No one will assimilate to a country that has lost its principles, its values and its pride. The policies implemented by a genuinely nationalist president would be comprehensive: a return to family values, a nationalist school curriculum, voluntary military service of six months that would pave the way to public sector employment, and recognition that an understanding of morals and of the history of France is integral to assimilation. Citizens would get priority in all public benefits, with no religious preferences of any kind. Public order would be reestablished, in particular in the non-white suburbs.
In brief, as Bruno Golnisch explained at a press conference announcing a new nationality code several months ago, “to be French is something one inherits or merits.” Or, as our disgruntled friend Philippe says, quoting from yet another NF poster that is still popular today, “France: Love it or leave it!”
Frédéric Legrand is the pen name of a Tours-based writer with close ties to the National Front.
Conversation With Alain Soral
One of the powers behind the throne?
Alain Soral is a French writer who has achieved some prominence for his leftist critiques of “communitarians,” or those whose narrow loyalties put them in opposition to “republican universalism.” His targets have included Muslims and homosexuals, and the latter have been very active in trying to intimidate his publishers. Many believe that Mr. Soral, along with Marine Le Pen, has played an important role in crafting the new guidelines for the 2007 campaign.
Although Mr. Soral’s shift to the National Front is a logical reflection of his hopes for a united France, his friendship with Mr. Le Pen shocked the establishment when he made it public in an interview in November 2006. Recently, he explained his position as follows:
Why would a mainstream journalist associate himself with the National Front?
I support the National Front without second thoughts because I am convinced that in the face of a system that has failed, Jean-Marie Le Pen is the only candidate who still embodies the values I hold dear: constancy, fidelity, free thought, honor, independence . . . These are qualities to which I would add Marine’s: modernity and openness . . . When one sees what “mainstream” means these days, I couldn’t care less about being mainstream. I prefer to run risks that I hope will encourage progress in what I see as the right direction. I have always been in the vanguard; others will follow.
What role, exactly, do you play with regard to Jean-Marie Le Pen?
I am part of the campaign team, which means I work with Marine and her father. My role is to offer ideas on those subjects on which I have written and in which I have a certain competence: the fight against one-world ultra-liberalism, problems in certain communities, the non-white suburbs . . .
Do you think you can increase the vote for the NF, and if so, how?
I think the NF has a great future on the left, and by the left, I do not mean the yuppie left but the economic and social left. We must defend small and medium-sized companies, artisans, and employed Frenchmen against the forces of big business and deindustrialization. The NF is already the number-one workers’ party in France, and it is also the natural party for artisans and entrepreneurs who will realize sooner or later, that the UMP (French acronym for Union for a Popular Movement, the ruling center-right party) is the party of the bosses and thus their enemy.
The NF therefore has a real future on the left, on the right, and even in the non-white suburbs, because its values of honor and courage are also those of young Frenchmen of immigrant origin to whom the UMP system offers nothing but manipulation and handouts.
Do you plan to run for office?
I haven’t even thought about it. For the time being, all my energy is going into Jean-Marie Le Pen’s campaign, and my greatest reward will be to see him once again in a runoff for the president-and this time win!
To which are you most attached, the party or its leader?
My experience has been first, one of friendship and respect for a man whose intelligence and courage have touched both my head and my heart. There is also my friendly, intimate cooperation with Marine and her close associates. Because I am not yet a member of the party, that is the extent of my association for the time being.
What has changed in your life since you became associated with the NF?
What has changed is that after years of disappointments at the hands of the left, of the Communist Party and of Liberation [a prominent leftist newspaper], I have finally found a family, a family of humane, nonconformists . . . The jerks continue to hate me, of course, but after 20 years of that, I might as well be wearing armor.
Crime or Guerilla Warfare?
The view from Rivarol.
Even [the leftist-establishment paper] Le Monde agrees: the police have become the “targets of choice for urban violence.” Attacks likewise on “public servants such as firemen and health workers” and even street cleaners are up 30 percent from August to September . On the eve of the first anniversary of the murderous riots (three killed, 135 wounded) that set France ablaze from October 27 to November 18, 2005 (see “France at the Crossroads,” AR, Jan. 2006), it seems that the favorite sport of the housing project bosses is to set ambushes for the police.
After the full-scale assault against riot police in Tarterêts (Department of Essonne) and the ambush at Mureaux (Yvelines Department — there is even a video of the attack on YouTube), this time it was in Epinay (Seine-Saint-Dauphin) that 40 “youths” set a trap for a police patrol on October 13. Hooded, armed with paving stones, baseball bats and Molotov cocktails, they lay in wait for police to respond to a call reporting a theft from a vehicle. They had even set up cars to block escape routes.
At Tarterêts, the captain of the riot police, who suffered two concussions and may lose an eye, was nevertheless glad not to have fired his weapon. At Epinay, the police fired into the air in order to get away, but one still suffered a serious face injury, and it took a large number of reinforcements to break up the attack.
“We’ve had enough of this” grumbled Bruno Beschizza of the Officers Synergy union, who wonders “how much worse is it going to get leading up to the presidential elections in 2007.” He calls for full prosecution of the attackers. The secretary general of the Force Ouvri”re-Police union says “this is becoming more common, and things are no better than they were during the riots.” Action Police puts it bluntly: “We are not dealing with youngsters who want more social programs, but with people who have declared war on the Republic.”
Is it republican government or simply France that these “youths” want to humiliate, and how much are the rioters driven by political motives or just plain thuggishness? One thing is certain: Not only do we have more and more “no-go zones” (or, to put it more accurately, “occupied territories”) but the gangs who flourish in them resort to the most extreme violence to keep the rest of us out.
It remains to be seen whether they are acting on their own initiative or whether they are quietly following instructions, a question that was raised at the time of last year’s “Ramadan Riots.” These gangs are inherently uncontrollable. If there is behind-the-scenes coordination for the purpose of fomenting guerilla politics it would be a crime against the state.
But what are we to think of a Minister of the Interior who is so preoccupied with his run for the presidency that he has turned over all responsibility for law and order to his under-strappers? Nicolas Sarkozy has to choose: Either he should devote himself full-time to his ministry or he should resign.
Translated with permission from Rivarol, Oct. 20, 2006. Please see www.rivarol.com.
Free Speech? Not in Canada
Thugs in masks break up race lecture.
In the competition for which country is most afraid of the truth about race, Canada is surely at or near the top. In Halifax, Nova Scotia, I was recently treated to a wall of closed-mindedness that would be comic were it not for what it says about the cowed state of Canadian whites. In the end, AR stirred up a lot of media, but mainly because of a particularly disgraceful kind of closed-mindedness that not even self-righteous Canadian newspapers could ignore.
My Canada tour began when Brian Boothe, an independent booking agent, set up a debate between me and Prof. David Divine, head of the Black Canadian Studies department (yes, they have such a thing) at Dalhousie University in Halifax, Nova Scotia. Mr. Boothe appears to be an anti-racist, but must enjoy a fight; he arranged for me and Prof. Divine to debate the subject: “Racial Diversity: North America’s Strength or Weakness?” The day was set for Jan. 15, 2007 — the Martin Luther King, Jr. holiday, on which almost as many Canadians as Americans at least pretend to bow the knee to multi-racialism.
I had not been to Canada in years, and was looking forward to the trip. Dalhousie University had printed up an attractive poster, I had bought my air tickets and made hotel reservations, but on Dec. 20, Mr. Boothe warned me there was trouble. He was right: According to a later press account, on that day, President Tom Traves of Dalhousie University got a message from something called the Atlantic Jewish Council. Whatever the message said, Mr. Traves immediately suggested to Prof. Divine it would be “odd” to hold the debate. As he later explained, “When a university feels that, essentially, it is being taken advantage of by someone who just wishes to use the credibility of the institution to advance a noxious cause, obviously it’s our duty to preserve our institutional integrity.” Translation: “We don’t like Jared Taylor’s views, we can’t refute them, so we won’t debate.”
On Dec. 21, the university issued a statement saying it “learned more about the background and standpoint of the others involved in the proposed debate and has concluded a debate with people who held such views would not be a useful way to explore the topic [of racial diversity].” Mr. Boothe assured me he had forwarded a generous selection of material about me to Prof. Divine and, anyway, a ten-year-old with a computer can learn a lot about me in 15 minutes. I asked Prof. Divine by e-mail what was going on, and got a classic — of, well, something — in reply (see “Mush From Divine,” below).
Prof. Divine did not actually cancel the event. The date and place were already set and weren’t to be wasted, after all, so he simply pitched me off the program and turned it into a monologue. He reportedly said he would be kind enough to summarize my views before refuting them. It was quick work to turn the original “debate” poster into one for a “lecture” on diversity in which no diversity of views was to be allowed.
The press found this of some interest, and correctly reported my view that I thought Prof. Divine had backed down because he was afraid he would lose the debate. He piously claimed he could not be seen as permitting me to “espouse hate.”
I thought this unmanly behavior deserved a comeuppance, so I decided to go to Halifax anyway, attend Prof. Divine’s lecture, ask a few questions during the Q & A period, and give my reply in a hotel ballroom the following evening, Jan. 16. I sent Prof. Divine an e-mail message explaining my plans and urging him to return to the original debate program. Failing that, I invited him to appear with me at the hotel, where we could have a proper exchange. He never replied.
We booked a hall at Halifax’s oldest hotel, the Lord Nelson, and made both print and radio ads for my Jan. 16 talk. Enthusiastic advertising people at the Halifax Chronicle-Herald accepted payment for an ad but then must have had an unpleasant talk with higher authority. They returned the money without explanation. The Halifax Daily News turned down the same ad. The sales staff at the local news radio station were also eager to take our money, but they, too, must have had a disagreeable chat with management. Merely to advertise a talk doubting the advantages of racial diversity appears to have been too much for the media barons of Halifax.
Mush From Divine
Dear Mr. Taylor,
I am disappointed too that the debate had to be cancelled.
As the Dalhousie University statement outlines, it was felt after further reflection and recent coverage of the issues, that the debate as envisaged which was designed to contribute to a dialogue, a conversation, with the prospect of enhancing open discussion and potential for change of opinions and attitudes, would be unlikely to meet that goal.
Instead there was a real possibility of major offence being occasioned which I am sure you or I would not wish to unintentionally be part of. Neither you or I have any control over how individuals or organisations wish to interpret our words and deeds, but I have a duty as far as I am able, to diminish the potential of such parties to take advantage of genuine efforts to enhance understanding of the challenges and opportunities in working with racial diversity, to promote intolerance and hate.
I apologise for any inconvenience caused by the cancellation of your participation in this event.
This meant that although I had told the press about my plans, there was no way to tell the public. My only opportunity was to attend Prof. Divine’s lecture and announce to his audience I would be offering a reply the next evening. I designed a flyer, printed it off at the Halifax Kinkos, and prepared to disconcert Prof. Divine. He escaped me. There were a few inches of snow on the afternoon of the 15th, and the champion of diversity celebrated Martin Luther King’s birthday by calling off his talk. I telephoned the Dalhousie switchboard to ask if the snow had affected any of the campus’s evening events. “Only a lecture by Prof. Divine on diversity,” the operator told me cheerfully.
Dalhousie did not put a cancellation notice on its web page, so I decided to go to the lecture hall and hand out leaflets to whoever might show up — there was a total of three people. There seems not to have been much appetite for a monologue on diversity. I put up the rest of my flyers in the Student Union, and switched the reservation at the Lord Nelson to a smaller room.
The night of the 16th, I had an audience of perhaps a half-dozen people, with about twice as many journalists. A few minutes before I was to be introduced, about two dozen scruffy youngsters — male and female, all apparently white — filed into the room and took seats. Perhaps a third had kerchiefs over their faces likes Wild-West bandits.
One thug went to the literature table and took my sample copies of AR. I followed him to his seat and took them back. Then a woman began beating pans together, while the rest chanted like lobotomy victims: “Jared Taylor, racist scum, let’s put fascists on the run!” During the lulls, people shouted elegant, witty things like “Do us a favor and put a bullet in your head, you f**kng Nazi.” Hotel security was quickly attracted by the din, and I signaled to them to call the police, which they said they would. I mocked the louts for their gutter language, and urged them to shout louder — I wasn’t getting the message, I told them. I let them wail and chant, expecting the police to arrive, restore order, and let me give my talk.
After perhaps five minutes, half a dozen of the men — boys, really — came to the front of the room and surrounded me. Others went over to the literature table and started tearing issues of AR to pieces and throwing them around the room and at me. Then the boys who had surrounded me linked arms and made a human wall, forcing me to the door.
While the shouting had been going on, I felt sorry for this band of losers, so pathetically afraid they would lose an argument that they had to prevent me from speaking. When they started pushing me around physically, I felt like killing them, but restrained myself. If there had been any damage I would probably have been blamed, not my assailants.
When the human wall got me to the door, one of the boys put me in a bear-hug and pushed me into the hall. He didn’t then seem to know what to do. A tall man walked up, laid hold of him, and told him to let go. I thought for a moment I had a friend in the audience, but the man later told a reporter he was from the Atlantic Jewish Council and was there only to see if I said anything about Jews. From what he said to the bear-hugger, I gathered he wanted to stop any further loutishness because it reflected badly on the anti-racists.
At about that time, hotel security decided to clear the room, and that was the end of the lecture. The banditos left, unmolested by the police, who were reportedly somewhere on the premises. The louts had brought flyers of their own — photographs of me with the words “Racist Scum” in big letters. I offered to autograph them, and got one taker. I gave several short interviews to the reporters who were still there, and then returned to my room. I e-mailed to the print journalists copies of the talk I had been unable to deliver, and waited to watch the late television news. What appeared was a good, factual account, with footage of screaming protestors, leading up to my being muscled out of the room. There were also several good excerpts from my later remarks to the press. What I did not hear on the air was the question I had been asking the journalists all night: “If my views are wrong or even loathsome, they should be easy to refute. Why isn’t Prof. Divine or someone else jumping at the chance to prove me wrong?”
I had reservations to leave Halifax early the next morning, so I went down to the police station late that night and wrote out a lengthy complaint against the people who had disturbed the peace, destroyed my property, and assaulted me. The radio was on at the police station, and as I was leaving, a report came on about the events at the Lord Nelson. “That’s the assault I’m talking about,” I said. The police just looked bored.
The next day, back in Virginia, I was in great demand from the Halifax media. I gave an interview at the Washington bureau of Canadian TV, which reported fairly and accurately. The papers and radio station that had refused ads for my talk had perhaps tumbled to the thought that the effect of their refusal was no different from that of the thugs they were now denouncing: to squelch unpopular speech. My views were “clearly repugnant,” huffed the Chronicle-Herald (funny — they hadn’t heard them), but “mobs have no legitimacy as arbiters of permissible speech.” One columnist looked over the copy of the refused ads and wondered why they had been rejected, noting that they “didn’t seem incendiary.” Some of the less hopped-up anti-racists grumped that the louts had drawn more attention to my talk than it would have gotten without them.
And how about the brave and noble Prof. Divine? He told Canada Television he thought I had been hoping for a mob to break up the talk so as to get more attention. He also told one newsman the louts were right to shout me down, that there is a difference between free speech and irresponsible speech, and that I had crossed the line. I told the reporter that if Prof. Divine said that, he was not fit to be a university professor.
In the meantime, the people who were afraid to defend their views were making excuses. Karen Mock, former executive director of the Canadian Race Relations Foundation, explained to a duly credulous reporter for the Canadian National Post that to propose a debate is “an old Klan trick.” “They [people like me] can’t be refuted because their lies are propaganda and the arguments are circular and conspiratorial,” she added helpfully. Dr. Mock went on to explain that racism can be discussed, but not with “racists.” Canada seems to be full of people who think they should decide who gets to speak and who doesn’t.
How is the police investigation coming along? The press photographers were snapping away and the TV cameras were whirring while the mob destroyed my property and assaulted me, so these must have been some of the best photographed crimes in Halifax history. The detective assigned to my case is going through the legal process of securing the photographic evidence. He knows the media have their eye on this case, and he wants to have everything in order before he makes arrests. In the meantime, members of the web site Stormfront.org have monitored lefties bragging on the Internet about how they shut down a talk by “racist scum,” and have positively identified even some of the louts who wore bandannas. When the police make their move, they will have a mountain of evidence.
Three weeks after the debate that never happened, I am still trying to organize a civilized exchange of views. A philosophy professor at another university in Halifax is willing to step into the ring, and we are looking for an appropriate venue. This time, given the extended publicity the non-debate received, I expect to draw a crowd — and a rather better-behaved one. In the meantime, we have received a great many inquiries from Canada, and subscriptions are rolling in. The authorities are, if anything, even more closed-minded in Canada than in the United States, but the people still see things clearly.
An Old Friend Speaks
A first-rate selection from the papers of Sam Francis.
Peter Gemma (ed.), Shots Fired: Sam Francis on America’s Culture War, FGF Books, 2006, 364 pp. $18.95 (soft cover)
Sam Francis was born with three great gifts: one of the finest minds of his generation, wit and humor, and a brave heart to pursue and tell the truth.” So begins Patrick Buchanan’s generous and affectionate foreword to the best collection of Sam Francis articles now available, Shots Fired. Mr. Buchanan was right, of course, and even people who never met Sam know it. Few writers express themselves as fully and authentically as Sam did, and to loyal fans across the country, Sam was a vivid presence without even leaving the page. Even a cursory dip into this volume will show why.
Sam’s friend, colleague, and posthumous editor Peter Gemma, who undertook the difficult job of choosing which of Sam’s hundreds of columns and articles to include, has organized this book into 16 different sections with themes like Lincolns Legacy, Symbols — Southern and Otherwise, the Second Amendment, Education, History, and The Grand Old Stupid Party. By the time of his unexpected death almost exactly two years ago on Feb. 15, 2005, however, it was clear that of all the subjects on which Sam wrote so forcefully none was more important to him than the fate of the West. As Mr. Buchanan writes:
“Sam Francis believed Western Civilization was superior, that it was the unique achievement of European peoples, that they alone could have done it. And he would defend it and the race and people he believed would alone sustain it, no matter the cost.”
Sam also recognized that whites everywhere — not just in the United States but in Europe, Canada and Australia — had lost faith in themselves and were ripe for dispossession. He feared that if Third-Worlders kept swarming into traditional white homelands, a great and ancient civilization would be disfigured or even lost.
And this leads to the question readers of this magazine will ask about Shots Fired: Why does it include nothing from American Renaissance? Sam’s by-line appeared 14 times in AR — usually on the cover — and this does not include his pseudonymous writing. It was in AR that Sam wrote about race at greatest length and with greatest candor, and it is no coincidence that it was a lecture at the first AR conference in 1994 that finally lead to his dismissal from the Washington Times.
For people who are already familiar with his writing in AR, however, the absence of Sam’s pieces is, if anything, an advantage because it makes more room for his trenchant observations on other subjects. Not in AR would he have loosed this blast against the people who get the National Endowment for the Arts to subsidize their genius:
“Unable to peddle its garbage on the market, incapable of duping or flattering wealthy patrons into supporting it, and despising the prospect of working for a living like everyone else, the cultural elite has no other recourse but to rely on bureaucratic mechanisms to sustain itself, its privileges, its productions, and its power.”
Nor, of course, could race be entirely absent from a Sam Francis collection unless it were deliberately sanitized. One essay begins: “Black History Month, previously known as ‘February,’ . . . will be a month-long wallow in white guilt and anti-white hatred.” Shots Fired also contains a number of observations on the perverted purpose to which liberals put the notion of “equality.”
The egalitarian ethic, Sam wrote, “starts from the premises that human beings are fundamentally identical, that variations and inequalities among them are due to an artificial environment, and that that environment can be molded, manipulated, and reconstructed to make of men what you will.” It was clear to Sam that this great hoax had one purpose: to blame whites for the failures of others and thereby soften them up for endless and ultimately fatal demands from blacks, Hispanics, American Indians, and Asians.
As he wrote: “The irony — not to say the hypocrisy — of modern egalitarianism is that it is used not, as its proponents claim, to restrain or reduce the power of all but to get rid of the power of some while at the same time perpetuating the power of others.”
Sam also tried repeatedly to explain to whites the true purpose of attacks on Southern heroes and symbols. Northerners must understand, he wrote, that demonizing Lee and Jackson or banning the Confederate Battle Flag is just the opening salvo in a war on all whites. Even George Washington’s name, he pointed out, has been removed from a black Louisiana elementary school because the father of his country owned slaves. Whites should realize, he argued, that “We are all Southerners now.”
Shots Fired will give readers a better-rounded view of what was perhaps Sam’s second-favorite subject: the doltishness of Republicans and the duplicity of the neo-conservatives who have repeatedly bamboozled them. For 15 years or more, Sam had been calling on real conservatives to shuck the Republicans, who court their votes and their money only to betray them. Here is the problem as only Sam could have put it:
“At least since the nomination of Dwight Eisenhower in 1952, the real Right in the United States has voted for the Republican ticket on the grounds that it was choosing the lesser of two evils, and every four years we hear the same refrain from the ticket’s apologists — that the country just can’t survive Adlai Stevenson, John Kennedy, Lyndon Johnson, Hubert Humphrey, George McGovern, Jimmy Carter, Walter Mondale, Michael Dukakis, or Bill Clinton. But the truth is that of course it does survive, and that the victories of the centrist Republicans who are these villains’ foes never make any difference anyway. Conservatives, having worked themselves into a dither over the iniquity of the Democrats, fall for this argument in every election, and then, within a few years or a few weeks are amazed to find that the centrist Republican candidates whom they have put in power have betrayed and ignored them once again.”
As he concluded in a different essay in this collection, “as long as rank and file conservatives are content to allow themselves to be stampeded into the Republican corral by the red flag of a Democratic victory, they can expect the Republicans they elect and re-elect to betray them.”
Sam also explained that Republicans are, ultimately, no defense against Democrat mischief because Republicans do not have the spine to fight assumptions that will ultimately send them the way of the dinosaur. In an essay called “Neo-conned Republicans,” he writes of the real capitulation that lay behind the Republican flirtation with multi-culturalism at the party’s 2000 convention.
“There was Colin Powell, a black man (sort of) whom the Stupid Party actually let enter through the front door and sit at the dinner table, denouncing the conservative critics of affirmative action. There was Condoleeza Rice, soon to be the Bush administration’s black hood ornament at the National Security Council. There was Linda Chavez, smirking fetchingly as the GOP’s pet wetback . . .”
All this was to give the impression of up-to-the-minute multi-whatever, but Sam warned that not everyone was taken in: “The multicultural mask is not really intended to fool blacks, Hispanics, women, and homosexuals so much as it is supposed to fool other Republicans and make them feel comfortable . . . When the nation’s first Republican president said you can fool some of the people all of the time, he was undoubtedly thinking of the members of his own party.
“As for multiculturalism itself, the pretty little tokens sprinkled strategically about the GOP convention floor and podium like children’s Easter eggs hardly rate. If it’s real multiculturalism you want, give us Arab slave drivers from the Sudan who castrate 12-year-old boys kidnapped to be sold as catamites; give us Ubangi concubines with lip plates like Thanksgiving dinner platters . . . or Kalahari Bushmen who spend their days sniffing the desert for underground roots to eat. That is what different cultures really are, and that is what a real multiculturalism would really be (and will be, once such colorful characters make it across our borders), but don’t tell us Gen. Powell, Chancellor Rice, Miss Chavez, and all their well-scrubbed cohorts really represent ‘diversity.’ No one — absolutely no one, except Republicans — is dumb enough to believe that.”
Nor is this just harmless eyewash: “By going to the trouble of sticking non-whites and tame drag-queens onto their convention program at conveniently visible points and places and drafting the odd rabbi or mullah to recite the ceremonial prayers, the Republicans are acknowledging their agreement with what ideological multiculturalism preaches — that there is something wrong with being too white, too male, too Christian, and too straight.”
Once again, Republicans have made a fatal mistake, because “granting the premises of your enemy is the key to his victory.”
Elsewhere, Sam completely takes the stuffing out of the Republican mania for proposing amendments to the Constitution that not even a single chamber ever manages to pass — amendments to support school prayer, ban abortion, criminalize flag-burning, or balance the budget. “Amending the Constitution to correct flaws conservative politicians are unwilling to confront in serious ways,” he writes, “is a cheap and easy way to make everybody happy and make sure nothing is done.”
He concludes: “You amend the Constitution when there is something wrong with the Constitution. But there is nothing wrong with the Constitution. What is wrong is with the American political class and especially the judges it keeps appointing and refuses to control.” He notes that Congress has the power to keep cases in certain areas from going to the Supreme Court on appeal, but Congress is too timid to assert itself, and Republicans are content to preen over amendments they know will go nowhere. Sam was among the first to warn Republicans to stop their futile wooing of non-whites and start cultivating their natural allies — white people — before they shrivel into irrelevancy.
Sam shows considerable sympathy to the religious right, whom he saw as defenders of deeply-felt convictions our rulers despise. However, in other respects they were no better than Republicans, and he urged Christian leaders to look beyond strictly religious goals:
“If they ever ended abortion, restored school prayer, outlawed sodomy and banned pornography, I suspect, most of their followers would simply declare victory and retire. But having accomplished all that, the Christian Right would have done absolutely nothing to strip the federal government of the power it has seized throughout this century, restore a proper understanding and enforcement of the Constitution and of republican government, prevent the inundation of the country by anti-Western immigrants, stop the cultural and racial dispossession of the historic American people, or resist the absorption of the American nation into a multicultural and multiracial globalist regime.”
If, in Sam’s view, Republicans have conned and neutered real conservatives, neo-conservatives have conned and neutered the Republicans. He laughs bitterly at the frauds who brag about living in a “creedal” or “proposition” nation: “no society and certainly not America is ever founded on anything as abstract and anemic as a mere proposition.” Also, he asks, if America is nothing but a creed, it can presumably crop up anywhere, so long as enough Cambodians or Haitians — or Martians, for that matter — can be got to mouth the creed.
Among his choicest targets is Weekly Standard editor, Bill Kristol, whom he sees as one of the main impresarios of the idea that conservatism is compatible with big government, mass immigration, and spreading democracy by force. Mr. Kristol and his friends try to define neo-conservatism by gushing over Franklin Roosevelt and downplaying Goldwater, which prompted this retort from Sam: “Since the vast majority of Americans who have called themselves conservatives for the last 70 years regard Goldwater as a hero and Roosevelt as a villain, what it should tell you is that whatever else Mr. Kristol says neo-conservatism is, it’s not conservatism.”
Sam also qualifies as a sentiment “worthy of Leonid Brezhnev” Mr. Kristol’s question: “How can Americans love their nation if they hate its government?” Sam answers — with surprising patience: “Especially in the contemporary world, conservatives distinguish between the people, traditions, norms, and institutions that have defined and characterized the country — the nation — throughout its history, on the one hand, and the structures, ideas, and groups that embody forces that are inimical to the country but are at present dominant, on the other.” Neo-conservatism, which Sam called the lap-dog opposition to Democratic idiocy, is, in his words, “merely a more ‘moderate’ or ‘pragmatic’ version of liberalism.”
Sam understood even the best government to be a barely necessary evil, to be watched constantly to make sure it does not follow its instincts and turn into tyranny. This lively suspicion was an important part of his defense of gun ownership: “The old saying that when guns are outlawed, only outlaws will have guns isn’t entirely true; it’s also true that when guns are outlawed, only the government will have guns, and that statement is just as important to remember as the first.”
In an extensive and learned account of gun ownership in Britain, he concludes: “It is meaningless to say that we have a republic unless we also have the right to keep arms, since the capacity of the people to protect and defend themselves — against criminals, foreign aggressors, or their own government — is also a condition of their capacity to rule themselves and to prevent others from ruling them.”
Sam’s critique of the political class — never our friends and always, potentially, our worst enemies — was a particularly pungent variant of his critique of all elites, whether academic, cultural, or economic. Traditional elites, he wrote, had a centuries-old stake in their nations. With the rise of big government and big industry, technocrats supplanted the old elites, and their loyalties are to themselves, their fashionable globalist causes, and their counterparts in other countries. “The New Class has no country,” Sam writes, and the privileged classes in Los Angeles “feel more kinship with their counterparts in Japan, Singapore, and Korea than with most of their own countrymen.”
“Corporations,” in particular, he added, “have no commitment to any particular country or culture, and it is in their interests to break down national borders and national cultures for the purpose of promoting a global economy, in which all human beings are merely producers and consumers and are bound only by economic relationships . . .”
The ruling class find real Americans — who are, to them, merely producers and consumers — as inscrutable as Trobriand Islanders. For example, “they fail to understand what the outlawing of private gun ownership would mean for those who do not and cannot rely on private security forces and high-rise apartment houses fortified like Hitler’s bunker.”
Sam quotes the president of NCR, who says “We at NCR think of ourselves as a globally competitive company that happens to be headquartered in the United States.” Sam adds: “I think many in the elite are not just indifferent to national decline but actually welcome it and encourage it all they can.”
Here I believe Sam was wrong. The president of NCR no doubt values profits over jobs for Americans, but I doubt he applauds our decline, for no other reason than that a barren and blasted America will yield fewer sales and fewer profits. Nor do I think American elites are quite as deracinated and international as Sam believed. Few of them speak foreign languages, which means Japan and Korea remain opaque to them, and they still care more about the Superbowl than the World Cup.
Sam was inclined to think globalists and liberals knew very well what damage they were doing their country and race, and reveled in it. I think vanity, self-deception, incompetence, and just plain selfishness explain far better than malevolence what the various Bushes and Clintons get themselves up to.
Sam was certainly right, though, to see American politics as no longer a battle between a genuine right and left but as a combined attack by outright liberals and crypto liberals on everything that is local, traditional, visceral, organic, and authentic.
Although race, Republicans, neo-cons, and elites are the subjects on which Sam wrote most forcefully and famously, Shots Fired contains many other sharp engagements in what has been called the culture wars. “The issue,” as Sam put it, “is simple: Who gets to define the norms by which the American people will live?” Needless to say, today the wrong people get to. “The psycho-doctors,” writes Sam, “have come full circle, from regarding homosexuality as a mental illness and something to be cured to regarding opposition to homosexuality as a pathology all by itself.” Schools are now full of “therapeutic voodoo masquerading as education.” Years of battering have taken their toll, and “what we have now in this country is a people that no longer wants a free republic or even knows what a free republic is, a people entirely prepared for their own enslavement.”
This, ultimately, is what Sam hated most: to see a great people — his people — reduced from the nobility and stature of the Founders and of his Confederate ancestors to that of cattle, content to be fattened and milked. His life’s work was a call to arms, and when that went unanswered a call at least to consciousness. Sam believed Americans still had the capacity to live as free men, to take back the culture and dignity their enemies within have worked so hard to undermine. The fight must now go on without him, but Shots Fired is an invaluable broadside against forces that never sleep.
|IN THE NEWS|
O Tempora, O Mores!
Persecuting the Euroright
European nationalist parties such as the French National Front and Belgian Vlaams Belang (VB) have been in the European parliament for years, but without enough members to form a voting bloc that would give them real influence. When Bulgaria and Romania joined the EU in January, nationalists finally met the threshold to form a separate caucus — a total of 20 members from six different countries. The nationalists promptly formed the Identity, Tradition, Sovereignty caucus (ITS) with the National Front’s number two man, Bruno Golnisch, as its president (Dr. Golnish, who is a professor of Japanese at the University of Lyons, was a speaker at the 2000 AR conference). Members are from France, Romania, Italy, Austria, Bulgaria, and Britain.
The nationalists are guaranteed the equivalent of $1.5 million, but will face an uphill battle trying to influence the Euro-parliament. In January, EU leftists called for all other parties to enforce a “cordon sanitaire” against ITS members, to deny them important parliamentary positions in the 785-member body. Because it is now an officially-recognized group, ITS should have had two committee vice-chairmanships, but leftists used parliamentary maneuvers — described by one insider as “legal” but “unfair” — to vote down the ITS nominees to the culture and transportation committees. Socialists on the culture committee issued a statement saying, “A vice-chairman is our face to the outside. In the culture committee we cannot have a vice-chairman who works against immigration.”
Italian MEP Luca Romagnoli of the Fiamma Tricolore party, who was slated to become vice-chairman of the transportation committee, says of the maneuvering, “I thought that the European parliament had a high democratic level — that it was an example for democracy and minority rights. But it’s not like that at all.” The VB’s Philip Claeys, vice president of ITS, is only too familiar with the left’s cordon sanitaire, which has been used to great effect to keep his party out of the Belgian government. He describes the tactic as “a perfect example of discrimination and bias based on old ideas about multicultural political correctness,” adding, “we were all elected to this body, we have a right to representation.”
ITS leaders vow to keep fighting, pointing out that they represent 23 million voters across Europe and that the issues they are most concerned with are at the center of European politics. “Identity is the core issue in Europe today,” says Mr. Claeys, “and our ideas put us in the center of every major debate about Europe’s future. Immigration used to be a taboo issue. But with large masses of people not willing to integrate, and with problems getting worse and worse in the cities, it is time to talk.” Many scholars fret that the European right is making gains, especially among the new Eastern European members of the EU. Mr. Claeys says ITS is in negotiations with other parties, including one in Poland, and that he hopes to add significantly to ITS membership after the next EU parliament elections in 2009. [Far-Right Wing Group Sidelined in European Parliament, Deutsche-Welle, Feb. 2, 2007. Robert Marquand, Europe ‘Ripe’ for Our Ideas, Says Far Right, Christian Science Monitor, Feb. 6, 2007.]
In the same week when he was elected president of ITS, a French court found Bruno Gollnisch guilty of “disputing crimes against humanity,” and fined him “5,000 ($6,470) and gave him a three-month suspended sentence. The court also ordered him to pay “55,000 to associations that were civil plaintiffs in the case. During a 2004 press conference, Prof. Gollnisch pronounced words that prosecutors say violated France’s law that prohibits Holocaust denial. While acknowledging that millions died, Prof. Gollnisch said, “As for the way they died, there has to be debate,” adding, “I do not deny the existence of deadly gas chambers. But I am not a specialist on this, and I think we should leave historians to discuss it. And this discussion should be free.”
Prof. Gollnisch intends to appeal the verdict, which he describes as a “serious abuse by the thought police” and a “clear-cut violation of freedom of expression.” [National Front Number Two Spared Jail Over Holocaust Remarks, AFP, Jan. 18, 2007.]
Justice in Long Beach?
In January, we reported on a Halloween hate crime in Long Beach, California, in which a gang of blacks yelled racial slurs and severely beat three young white women — Loren Hyman, Laura Schneider, and Michelle Smith — at a block party. Police eventually identified 10 attackers and charged them with assault and hate crimes. Several are related, and the others knew each other from track meets. All are from middle- or working-class backgrounds, and none had a prior record. All were tried as juveniles, so the case went quickly — to court in November, and judgment in January. There was heavy security; supporters of the defendants claimed police and prosecutors were railroading innocent blacks to mollify the largely-white neighborhood where the attack took place.
The trial appears to have been something of a circus. Juvenile Court Judge Gibson W. Lee spoke so softly that lawyers often talked over him. Testimony was halted repeatedly by objections. Defense lawyers accused the lead prosecutor, Andrea Bouas, of misconduct, and asked several times for a mistrial. The 10 defendants (nine girls and a boy) were in police custody, and arrived in court each day in shackles. They passed notes to each other, braided each other’s hair, and occasionally giggled at the testimony. Many witnesses were intimidated (one woman’s car was vandalized) so Judge Lee ruled that some witnesses could testify anonymously — and then reversed himself three times. Outside the courthouse, defendants’ supporters joined hands and held vigils.
Judge Lee delivered his verdict on Jan. 26 (Juvenile Court does not have jury trials). He found nine of the blacks guilty of assault with “hate crime enhancements,” and dismissed charges against the youngest defendant, who was 12. Several of the others burst into to tears, and many supporters were outraged. “It’s not over yet,” said one.
At the first sentencing session on February 3, Judge Lee gave four defendants a gentle slap on the wrist — 60 days of house arrest, 250 hours of community service, and probation until age 21. They must also take an eight-week “racial tolerance” course at the Simon Wiesenthal Center. “It was an awful crime” with “terrible physical and emotional injuries,” he said, but a juvenile court judge “must pick the least restrictive disposition that can lead to the rehabilitation of a minor.” All four defendants could have gone to youth camp for nine months, but went home the same day.
DA Bouas, who pushed for the maximum penalty, burst into to tears when she heard the sentence, and the victims and their families let out gasps of indignation. “Juvenile court is a joke,” said Laura Schneider’s mother. “We’re just disgusted. That judge is a joke. He’s going to be recalled. People are going to be screaming about this.” Speaking later on local radio, two of the victims, Miss Schneider and Miss Smith, accused the judge and the DA’s office of bowing to political pressure.
The defendants and their families were pleased. “God had his hand in this,” said Geraldine Caldwell, great-aunt of three of the defendants. The mother of the fourth described the sentence as “bittersweet.” “I’m thrilled to have her home,” she said. “But we’re still appealing. I know without a doubt that my child had nothing to do with this, did not participate in no way, no form.”
On February 5, Judge Lee sentenced three more defendants, including one who had beaten one of the victims and bashed her head against a tree. They all got the same, light treatment. He sentenced the last defendant, 18-year-old Allyson Stone, to probation, community service and the racial tolerance class, but did not put her under house arrest because she is a freshman at Cal State Long Beach on a track-and-field scholarship, and lives in a dormitory. Like all the other defendants, Miss Stone claims she is innocent, saying she was at the scene only because she was looking after some children. She says she will appeal, and claims she is not a “hater.” “I congregate with whites, Hispanics, blacks and other groups,” she says. “I have always judged my friends on the content of their character and not their color.”
During the week sentencing took place, Miss Hyman, who had many facial fractures and was the most seriously injured victim, had surgery to re-position an eye. She may yet lose vision in that eye. [Joe Mozingo and John Spano, Eight Guilty of Hate Crime in Long Beach Beating, Los Angeles Times, Jan. 26, 2007. Joe Mozingo, 4 Teens Get Probation, House Arrest in Long Beach Attack, Los Angeles Times, Feb. 3, 2007. Jeremiah Marquez, More Probationary Sentences in Long Beach Hate-Crime Beatings, AP, Feb. 5, 2007. Tami Abdollah, Last Teen Sentenced in Hate-Crime Case Gets Probation, Los Angeles Times, Feb. 7, 2007.]
‘Get Over It’
In spite of repeated requests, neither the President of the United States nor the Congress has ever issued an official apology for slavery. President Clinton came close in 1998 during a trip to Africa when he said US participation in the slave trade was “wrong.” No state legislature has ever apologized for slavery either, but that may be about to change. On January 31, the Rules Committee for the Virginia state legislature voted unanimously for a measure expressing “profound regret” for the Old Dominion’s role in the slave trade and for other “injustices” inflicted on blacks and Indians. The apology is the brainchild of black delegate Donald McEachin.
Mr. McEachin’s original bill called for “atonement,” but the committee changed the wording when lawmakers pointed out “atonement” might put the state on the hook for reparations. Mr. McEachin calls the bill a “good first step,” and says it is important for Virginia as it prepares to celebrate the 400th anniversary of the founding of the Jamestown colony (the first slaves landed in Jamestown in 1619). A subcommittee of the Virginia senate passed a bill expressing “profound contrition” for slavery the day before the House measure passed. Speaker William Howell expects both chambers to vote an apology before adjourning at the end of February. It will not be the first time Virginia apologizes for a supposed historic wrong. In 2001, the legislature declared its “profound regret” over a “eugenics” program under which more than 7,000 people were sterilized between 1924 and 1979. [Wendy Koch, State of Virginia to Issue Public Apology for Slavery, USA Today, Feb. 1, 2007.]
Not all Virginia legislators are eager to apologize. Interviewed by a newspaper in Charlottesville, Del. Frank D. Hargrove, Sr. said that “not a soul in this legislature had anything to do with slavery,” adding, “Are we going to force the Jews to apologize for killing Christ? Nobody living today had anything to do with it.” Blacks, he concluded, should just “get over it.” These remarks caused much fury, but Del. Hargrove refuses to back down. [Pamela Stallsmith and Olympia Meola, Hargrove Offends Blacks, Jews, Richmond Times-Dispatch, Jan. 16, 2007.]
Del. McEachin, sponsor of the apology bill claims that his great-grandfather Archie was a slave. If that’s true, the elder McEachin’s view of slavery may have been different from that of his descendent. In the 1930s, Franklin Roosevelt’s Works Progress Administration sent writers and journalists to interview former slaves. Mrs. Tempe Herndon Durham of North Carolina, aged 103 at the time, said this:
“Freedom is all right, but de niggers was better off befo’ surrender, kaze den dey was looked after an’ dey didn’ get in no trouble fightin’ an’ killin’ like dey do dese days. If a nigger cut up an’ got sassy in slavery times, his Ole Marse give him a good whippin’ an’ he went way back an’ set down an’ ‘haved hese’f. If he was sick, Marse an’ Mistis looked after him, an’ if he needed store medicine, it was bought an’ give to him; he didn’ have to pay nothin’. Dey didn’ even have to think ‘bout clothes nor nothin’ like dat, dey was wove an’ made an’ give to dem. Maybe everybody’s Marse and Mistis wuzn’ good as Marse George and Mis’ Betsy, but dey was de same as a mammy an’ pappy to us niggers.” [Travis Jordan, Interview of Tempe Herndon Durham, American Slave Narratives: An Online Anthology]
Tijuana, Mexico, just across the border from San Diego, is a den of corruption and violence. Three hundred people were murdered in the city last year, including 13 police officers. Tijuana is also a major drug-smuggling hub, and the Mexican government says many police officers are on the take. In January, new Mexican president Felipe Calderon sent 3,300 soldiers and federal police to clean the place up. They took over police stations and seized the firearms of the city’s 2,000-man police force. Officers patrolling tourist districts are now armed with slingshots and ball bearings, according to police spokesman Fernando Bojorquez. [Tijuana Police Have Guns Confiscated, Issued Slingshots, AP, Jan. 23, 2007.]
107.9 FM La Ley is a Spanish-language radio station in Chicago, owned and operated by the Spanish Broadcasting System (SBS). In July 2005, it raffled off a brand new Corvette to listeners. Twenty-year-old Maribel Nava Alvarez won the car, but was unable to take possession because she is an illegal alien and the station is required by law to get either a valid Social Security or taxpayer identification number from anyone who wins a prize worth more than $500. Miss Alvarez had neither, so the station told her she was out of luck.
Miss Alvarez has learned something from living in America — she’s suing the radio station and its parent company for breach of contract and emotional distress, claiming nobody told her she had to be legal to win. Miss Alvarez is also suing SBS attorney James Cueva for a letter he sent to her lawyer in December 2005, in which he wrote, “I will caution you that if you insist on filing suit against SBS, I will in turn be forced to refer this matter to US Immigration and Customs Enforcement as I believe your client is in this country illegally.” Miss Alvarez is pursuing her lawsuit from an undisclosed location; she left Chicago for fear she would be deported. [Undocumented Woman Sues Chicago Radio Station Over Unrewarded Corvette, AP, Jan. 25, 2007.]
Vlaams Belang to Speak in Arlington, Virginia!
The Vlaams Belang, the largest political party in Flanders, is one of Europe’s most successful nationalist parties. It has come under intense criticism, and its predecessor organization was even legally dissolved because of its strong position on immigration control. At the invitation of the Robert Taft Club, its two top leaders, Chairman Frank Vanhecke and spokesman Filip Dewinter, will speak on the subject, “Immigration, Multicul-turalism, and Free Speech in Europe.”
This will be an extraordinary chance to hear from two of Europe’s most dynamic and promising political leaders. Do not miss this great opportunity!
Friday, Feb. 23, 2007, 7:00–10:00 p.m.
Crystal City Marriott.
1999 Jefferson Davis Highway.
Arlington, Virginia (Crystal City Metro).
Admission is free.
Islam reportedly prohibits Muslims from facing or turning their rumps towards Mecca when they relieve themselves. Muslim “community leaders” say the toilets in Brixton prison in London are pointed the wrong way, and have put the pressure on British authorities to turn them 90 degrees. The Home Office says it will do this as part of an “on-going refurbishment.” One quarter of the inmates at Brixton are Muslim, and the devout complain they have to sit sideways on toilets.
A prison guard is unsympathetic: “If they didn’t get locked up for committing crime they would not have this problem. Yet we have to sort out the loos. If we weren’t paying for it as taxpayers I’d laugh my socks off.” The British prison authorities may have been snookered: “As far as I understand, this rule only applies in a place of worship,” says Muslim Labour MP Khalid Mahmood. [Jamie Pyatt, Jail Loos Turned From East, The Sun (London), Jan. 30, 2007.]
All Our Fault
In January, Justice Department Inspector General Glenn A. Fine released a report on illegal immigrants and crime. His conclusion: “The rate at which criminal aliens are rearrested is extremely high.” The report was based on a sample of only 100, so it was hard to extrapolate to the 262,105 illegals arrested by federal and local police in 2004, and pro-immigrant groups dismissed the report. [Study: High Arrest Rate of Illegal Aliens, AP, Jan. 8, 2007.]
Some went even further. Jesse Diaz of the League of United Latin American Citizens said on a Dallas radio station that if illegals do commit crime, it’s because America is a bad influence: “They’re picking up those bad habits of cheating, of drinking, and drugs,” he said, adding that American popular culture undermines the “conservative Catholic values” illegals bring with them from Mexico.
Listeners were shocked. “My mouth just flew open,” says one. [America to Blame for Illegal Aliens Turning to Crime, Latino Advocate Says, Fox News, Jan. 10, 2007.]
Immigration reformer Tom Tancredo (R-CO), mulling a White House bid, also wants Congress to eliminate racial caucuses. “It is utterly hypocritical for Congress to extol the virtues of a colorblind society while officially sanctioning caucuses that are based solely on race,” he says. The Congressional Black Caucus has refused admittance to a white Tennessee congressman who represents a majority black district. [Tancredo: Abolish Black, Hispanic Caucuses, NewsMax.com, Jan. 25, 2007.]
|LETTERS FROM READERS|
Sir — It is disgraceful that you received such a poor reception in Halifax. In defense of Nova Scotia, I think there are more than a few similar idiots wherever you go. On the bright side, their actions speak volumes about their character and flimsy arguments. Eyes will be opened.
Sir — I believe it is appalling that these Leftists, who are such staunch advocates for “tolerance,” are “tolerant” only of their own “progressive” propaganda. Looking back at the past 40 years of extortion in the name of “diversity” and “multiculturalism,” as a Jew, I agree that it is a total and absolute failure. I wish I had attended your lecture to stand with you against the so-called “progressives” who infect virtually every aspect of Canadian society. That Alan Dershowitz is considered “right wing” here really shows how much “free speech” we have, and shows where our society is going. Canada is a once great country. It is like watching the fall of Rome.
Good luck with your efforts. Perhaps you might consider legal action against the wretched university or the Communist group that organized the protest.
Sir — I am not sure I agree with your arguments about diversity, but I am intrigued and will study your point of view further as a political science hobbyist. What I did wish to say is that the treatment Jared Taylor received in Halifax certainly was not reflective of the open and democratic society Canada truly is. I hope he has a chance to come back and present his point of view.
Sir — Your hero Jared Taylor got what he deserved in Halifax. Keep your racist s*** out of our country. Next time he comes we’re going to cut off his head. And whoever is reading this, your head will be cut off, too. Chicken s*** Taylor. Fascist Nazis! Come on! Bring it on, you pathetic subhumans.
Billy Bob, Canada
Sir — I just saw Jared Taylor’s interview with CTV news. I can’t believe the treatment you received at the hands of those idiot protesters. They didn’t even have the guts to show their faces. Whatever happened to freedom of speech? Is it because he was speaking the truth that people decided he should not be heard? I’ve often found that when confronted with the truth, many people get agitated, preferring to hide in their shells and keep believing whatever fairy tales they were once told.
I just hope you won’t judge all people from Halifax on the actions of a few ignorant savages.
Al Henneberry, Nova Scotia, Canada
Sir — I would like to apologize to Jared Taylor for what he had to endure on his trip to Halifax. As a Canadian I am truly ashamed by those mask-sporting fascists. Physically to assault a man for wishing to legally and responsibly present his views on any subject violates everything we stand for.
Jeff Weeks, New Brunswick, Canada
Sir — I rarely watch the local news because it is too provincial, but I was so pleased to catch the interview with Jared Taylor.
I am appalled by the ill treatment Mr. Taylor received and yet not surprised. This is a country that really believes multiculturalism is the way to go — I disagree. I am so sorry he had to experience the ignorant side of this province and perhaps this nation.
Sir — Halifax IS NOT the place for your UGLY pathetic racism. Jared Taylor is a hate monger and a pathetic excuse for an American. But of course, isn’t most of America racist? I heard him say he would like to visit Halifax again — I hope MORE people toss him OUT again.
Sir — I wish to express our regret and disappointment that Jared Taylor’s lecture in Halifax was disrupted by hooligans. It is a sad day for Canada when anyone is prevented from exercising the right to freedom of expression. We have sent letters of protest to the Halifax mayor and police chief, as well as to the provincial premier and attorney-general.
Bob Smith, Secretary, National Party of Canada, www.natparty.com
Sir — I would just like to say that yes, David Divine may very well be a coward. I think Mr. Taylor makes him nervous. I think that he makes a lot of people nervous. I feel bad for Mr. Taylor, that he came all the way here to make a speech and didn’t get to. I am an academic and I know how much work goes into quality papers, and I can see how much work went into the speech he intended to give.
The problem, really, is the audience here in Canada. You see, there are a lot more people up here who think that we should be nice to everyone; that most people are good. A lot of people even think that it’s wrong to generalize and use stereotypes. It’s amazing that Mr. Taylor wasn’t injured. My advice for him is to not come up here anymore. Also, it might be good to stop writing about Canada and Canadians, too. Just to be safe.
Name Withheld, Halifax, Nova Scotia
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