Well, KFSM Channel 5) found itself in with some very unsavory company this week, as right-wing and anti-immigration bloggers around the country spread the story about our leprosy “outbreak” Northwest Arkansas. Naturally enough, now some are using the word "coverup” to describe the fact that an embarrassed KFSM had to remove the story from their website.
And As for Dr. Jennifer Bingham, the Springdale physician who blew the whistle on our “outbreak”? Well, she and Springdale mayoral candidate Nancy Jenkins are the darlings of right-wing Websites this weekend. Bingham herself is quoted on the League of the South website as saying,:
“ . . .the only way to truly protect our community and our economic growth, is to think of this as a very important, panic-mode attempt to treat leprosy——before it gets out of hand.””
This is from “Western Voices World News.” which advertises itself as a “media service of “European Americans United”:
One person brave enough to link these kinds of problems with America's out of control immigration policy is Nancy Jenkins, who is running for the post of Springdale mayor. "We've just opened the borders and said, 'Come on in! Bring your diseases! Bring 'em!' Why are we doing that? Those who have it need to be quarantined and treated, or sent back to their country."
Look for Lou Dobbs to run with this story any day now.
For myself and my contemporaries, growing up largely overseas as military dependents in the early 1970's, it was easy to convince ourselves that racism was a thing of the past. After all, we were living proof (and were taught accordingly) of the "melting pot" concept. Apart from the language of some of our elders, bigotry was something we never really experienced, outside of the pages of a magazine, or the television screen.
In our youthful innocence, it never occurred to us that other "isms," like sexism, or agism could exist. And we probably practiced some of those "isms "ourselves.
Returning to the United States in 1972, what a shock to discover that some of my classmates in rural Pennsylvania were every bit as bigoted as those we thought of as dinosaurs. Flashing ahead to 2008, what a sad note it is to hear children with cherubic voices, pronouncing, "We don't want them here," with reference to our growing Hispanic population
And now we have the spectacle of race being an issue in the upcoming Springdale mayoral race, especially if both Nancy Jenkins and Jim Holt are in the race.
It makes me tired.
Sugar dust likely powered blast in Geogia Plant: 4 bodies found - Arkansas Democrat-Gazette (Feb. 9)
Who knows how high the death toll will be? This image brought back memories of working in a certain tortilla plant in Fayetteville 20 years ago, when flour dust was so thick in the air that we joked that “you could see the air.”
When safety inspectors were scheduled for a visit, great pains were taken so that the air was much nicer to breathe when they came through. The next day, of course, it was always back to business as usual.
Tone it down, TNT
Picking up my copy of TV Guide on Saturday, I see that NASCAR is once again headed our way. Not being a big fan of folks just driving around in big circles, I generally give it a pass, but even NASCAR fans try to stay away from any programming on TNT during the season that isn’t automobile related.
Who really wants to watch “Law and Order” with some guy revving his motor loudly at the bottom of the screen?
Oh, the humanity!