Tuesday, January 13, 2009

F*ck me, but...

Jamie Kirchick actually makes some good points in his blog post on the Arab political party kerfuffle, and is suprisingly un-prickish in general (which is the greater accomplishment?). But this point is all wrong:

In the United States, if the Ku Klux Klan were to form a political party, advocating the dissolution of the American government and inciting violence from within and without, it would be banned, and rightly so.

Evidently Mr. Kirchick--in his zeal to defend this admittedly pretty questionable move by Israel to ban certain Arab political parties--has forgotten about this little thing we call the First Amendment, specifically the right to assemble. Banning a political party seems like a pretty egregious infringement on the constitution in that respect. So, I'm sorry, but this just doesn't hold water.

Plus, I think there's another factor to consider: it would be one thing if Kirchick's KKK party wielded serious power and influence and another if it had a tiny number of members and maybe a single congressional seat. Banning a political party under the latter circumstances would be pretty hard to swallow, despite the odiousness of the people involved.

Look, I get that Kirchick is Israel's self-appointed defender against any criticism, spurious or serious (though he treats them all as spurious). But he goes too far afield with this analogy in a pretty obvious attempt to manipulate American readers on an emotional level that plainly contradicts the principles upon which this nation was founded. Try again, son.

The Man, The Myth, The Bio

East Bay, California, United States
Problem: I have lots of opinions on politics and culture that I need to vent. If I do not do this I will wind up muttering to myself, and that's only like one or two steps away from being a hobo. Solution: I write two blogs. A political blog that has some evident sympathies (pro-Obama, mostly liberal though I dissent on some issues, like guns and trade) and a culture blog that does, well, cultural essays in a more long-form manner. My particular thing is taking overrated things (movies, mostly, but other things too) down a peg and putting underrated things up a peg. I'm sort of the court of last resort, and I tend to focus on more obscure cultural phenomena.