Racial Politics This Week -- A Roundup

I saw Borat last night. The movie has its defenders and its detractors. I think that Borat is one of the most subversive movies since Farenheit 9/11. Two different movies to be sure. But like Michael Moore, Sacha Baron Cohen seeks to expose the truth behind the lies we tell ourselves about our country. Borat uncomfortably rips the lid off of what many Americans, unfortunately, really think. There's a lot of humanity and kindness. There is also a lot of racism and anti-Semitism that is casually thrown around. When the frat boys openly wish slavery still existed in America and bemoan the fact that in their minds, minorities actually "have more power", we all know: those drunk jerks speak for far too many. We don't really have the "upper hand" just yet, dipwads, but we're working on it. Like F 9/11, I've got some problems with the movie. But any movie that exposes the dark racist and homophobic underbelly of America and gets people talking about it is ok with me. Also, it's really funny. And just in case you're not sure of Cohen's intentions, know that he has a long history as an civil rights activist (Props: Racialicious). His dissertation at Cambridge, "A Case of Mistaking Identities - the Jewish Black Alliance" focused in part on the 1964 murders of James Chaney, Andrew Goodman and Michael Schwerner in Mississippi. (Photo: Sepia Mutiny)

But who cares what I think! See it for yourself or tell me what you think in the comments. For what's happening this week at the crossroads of race and politics, check out these quick links:

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Racial Politics This Week -- A Roundup

Yo, I heard it's said the revolution won't be televised
But in the land of milk and honey
There's a date you gotta sell it by
Otherwise it just expires and spoils....

The revolution's here
No one can lead you off your path
You'll try to change the world
So please excuse me while I laugh

-- lyrics from Talib Kweli's The Beautiful Struggle

Welcome to another look into the cross-section of race and politics in America. Things are getting down to the wire; the clock is running out on what we hope will be D-Day -- Democrats' Day -- on Nov. 7. Republicans are desperate and trying a new flava of fear -- instead of terrorism, it's fear of the brown, fear of the Other. Trouble is, this time, it's failing. People have stopped buying the Rethuglicans' bull and between Iraq, child sex predators, indictments and other assorted crimes and misdememors. Join the beautiful struggle and let's keep working towards a Nov revolution. Please excuse me while I laugh. --Jill

Lead Story: Tan Nguyen Gets His 15 Minutes of Fame

In the CA 47 race for Congress, Republican candidate tries to erode incumbent Rep. Loretta Sanchez's base by sending out a flyer to 14,000 Latino residents in her district that read in poorly written Spanish:

You are advised that if your residence in this country is illegal or you are an immigrant, voting in a federal election is a crime that could result in jail time, and you will be deported for voting without having a right to do so.

Nguyen quickly adopted the Hastert Defence: blame a staffer. He's been asked to withdraw by Orange County CA Republican party officials. But there's more to this story than meets the eye. Nguyen had been running on an anti-immigration platform and drew support from organized, "border security" racists on the fringe of the Republican party exemplified by Pat Buchanan. DailyKos Diarist Duke1676 has the best analysis on this I've read so far.

Meanwhile over at AsiansVote.com, they're encouraging local Asian Americans to do the right thing:

...the fact that [Nguyen's] campaign was involved eliminates him from any serious consideration by anyone with any commitment to democracy in America. Orange County readers, vote for Nguyen's opponent, Democrat Loretta Sanchez. BTW, Jim Webb's campaign has had its ups and downs with VA black folk(mostly up right now post-Barack Obama visit), but hanging out at AsiansVote.com, I learned Webb's got strong cred in VA's Vietnamese-American community. Also, Tammy Duckworth, Asian-American Iraq war veteran, got a big boost in her run for IL 6 with an endorsement from the Chicago Tribune.

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Harold Ford and Awesome Ads

Harold Ford Jr. is running for Bill Frist's Senate seat this year.  Even though he's a conservative Democrats, he has some of the best ads I've seen this election season.  Take a gander at them:  http://www.haroldfordjr.com/index.php?lo c=top_podcasts&title=Audio%20and%20V ideo&Itemid=88#

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