Thursday, July 06, 2006

Okay, So We'll Talk About Fascism on Thursday

We start with the story of a quiet little Delaware school district wherein some Jewish residents sue the Indian River School District over the public schools' promotion of and sponsorship of Christianity.

We know how this goes - the ACLU hooks them up with a lawyer, the lawyer gives the school district a little lesson in Constitutional law - focusing on the First and Fourteenth Amendments - and the Jews get a nice, fat, well-deserved check. Hopefully, the fundies learn their lesson and back off for a few years before resuming shoving their hate-twisted parody of the Prince of Peace's teachings down little kids' throats.

Well, that's not how it went this time.

Jesus' General is on it. So is Atrios. The inestimable Glenn Greenwald is there. And, finally, the word fascism is hitting the mainstream.

Why do I bring this up? Well, note the tiff I'm having over Online Integrity and the Puff Piece Fiasco starring Cheney and Rumsfeld. Well, this is worse. The Jewish family has been driven out of town, threatened with death, and those sheet-wearing, sieg-heiling fascist wannabes over at Stop the ACLU helpfully published their contact information.

I think Glenn Greenwald lays it out the best, although I'm having a hard time deciding who to quote:

One of the favorite tactics used by such groups is to find the home address and telephone number of the latest enemy and then publish it on the Internet, accompanied by impassioned condemnations of that person as a Grave Enemy, a race traitor, someone who threatens all that is good in the world. A handful of the most extremist pro-life groups have used the same tactic. It has happened in the past that those who were the target of these sorts of demonization campaigns that included publication of their home address were attacked and even killed.

But these intimidation tactics work even when nothing happens. Indeed, these groups often publish the enemy's home address along with some cursory caveat that they are not encouraging violence. The real objective is the same one shared by all terrorists -- to place the person in paralyzing fear. The goal is to force the individual, as they lay in bed at night, to be preoccupied with worry that there is some deranged individual who read one of the websites identifying them as the enemy and which provided their address and who believes that they can strike some blow for their Just Cause by visiting their home and harming or killing them.

That is why I swore I would never publish personal information. My fellow signatories at Online Integrity so swore as well - and many of them link to Stop the ACLU.

I urge you - all of you - to drop that link now. If you don't, then don't come crying to me if I portray the face of the Republican Party wearing a KKK hood.

So far, the only one who has impressed me with his online integrity is Peter Porcupine - the man should know what it's like, it happened to him.


Mistress Sky said...

That's unbelievable - this still happens in this day & age? And we call ourselves enlightened. :(

durante vita said...

Yeah, I can't believe people do that. People need to get a life.