A Forum for Vigorous Debate, Cornerstone of Democracy

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A FORUM FOR FREEDOM OF SPEECH AND VIGOROUS DEBATE, CORNERSTONES OF DEMOCRACY
[For the journal (guidelines, focus, etc.), go to www.theamericandissident.org ].
Encouraged censorship and self-censorship seem to have become popular in America today. Those who censor others, not just self, tend to favor the term "moderate," as opposed to "censor" and "moderation" to "censorship." But that doesn't change what they do. They still act as Little Caesars or Big Brother protectors of the thin-skinned. Democracy, however, demands a tough populace, not so easily offended. On this blog, and to buck the trend of censorship, banning, and ostracizing, comments are NEVER "moderated." Rarely (almost NEVER) do the targets of these blog entries respond in an effort to defend themselves with cogent counter-argumentation. This blog is testimony to how little academics, poets, critics, newspaper editors, cartoonists, political hacks, cultural council apparatchiks, librarians et al appreciate VIGOROUS DEBATE, cornerstone of democracy. Clearly, far too many of them could likely prosper just fine in places like communist China and Cuba or Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and Russia.

More P. Maudit cartoons (and essays) at Global Free Press: http://www.globalfreepress.org

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Sam Cornish

10 comments:

Timothy Bearly said...

Oh come on G-Tod,

We all know that the microcosmic literary world functions like a meritocracy. If you are an exceptional writer then you will become opulent and renowned, and if you lack poetic skill, then you (and your works) will languish in obscurity.

Any talk of nepotism, or of being ostracized for challenging the literary milieu, is just an unfounded pretense used by mediocre writers who are indignant because of all the rejection slips they have received.

Timothy Bos
(the younger brother of infamous rhetorical genius Zachary Bos)

G. Tod Slone said...

Tim,
Well, you made me smile... and that's what I needed! It just surprises me that these poet laureates don't realize (and I really don't think they do) what being poet laureate really means, implies, and demands. Thanks for the post!
T.

G. Tod Slone said...

Tim,
BTW, I hesitated posting the toon because the previous post also depicted a black man. But from all the posts one can easily ascertain that my crusade is not against blacks. Also, I’d originally titled the cartoon: Affirmative Action Poet. There’s certainly truth in the title. And I’m glad I open up here regarding it. I hate muzzling myself, but like everyone else do so now and then. Omnipresent forces push constantly in that direction. There is little, if any hope, for he or she who will not even recognize that fact. And, yes, Z amongst so many others seem likely candidates of the latter. I protested during the 4th of July celebration in my town holding a placard: Celebrate the First FUCKING Amendment, not Commerce. Many reasons assailed for why I should not… why I should put on the muzzle. Fortunately, my dignity as a free-speaking and thinking human being trumped the reasons. Yes, you can imagine the scorn and comments! I might put the write-up in next AD. Who else would publish it? Ibbetson Press? Agni? Poetry?
T.

Timothy Bearly said...

"Affirmative Action Poet", no wonder you have been excommunicated by the literary establishment, haha. You've got testicular fortitude, unlike most "poets"

I certainly agree with you regarding muzzles. It is not a question of one being muzzled or not being muzzled, but a question of what degree one is muzzled.

Some politicians are muzzled to such a degree that they are seemingly rendered catatonic when confronted with controversial topics.

People enjoy the anonymity of the internet and audaciously speak their minds, only to muzzle themselves at work the next morning.
I struggle with the fact that I too am muzzled, and am guilty of the same transgressions as those that I point my indignant finger at. Unfortunately sometimes the instinct for self preservation and thirst for recognition supersedes our thirst for truth.

But it seems to me that the degree that a person is muzzled is proportional to how popular and successful the person is. fortunately I am a destitute unemployed loner.

Thats awesome that you held that placard in protest on the fourth, I don't think I would have had the gumption. Maybe its just the muzzling demon on my left shoulder telling me that it sounds too "vitriolic". But I would imagine people focusing on the the cursing and consequently missing the point you were tying to make.

I went to a parade on the fourth and it did seem like it was more about commercialism that anything else. all of the vehicles in the parade were just advertisements wrapped with stars and stripes.

G. Tod Slone said...

Great statement on the muzzle, Tim! It would make a good essay. Send a photo of you, so P. Maudit can toonify you.
To me, certain people should self-muzzle less than others. Poets and academics, for example, considering their purported metier of truth telling and veritas seeking, should refrain from adorning the muzzle more than most. But of course, they muzzle as much or even MORE than most. And to me that's sad... sad for democracy, sad for the nation.
Holding the placard enabled me to see what fellow citizens were like underneath the veneer. Most apparently learned from their parents and are now teaching their children: Sticks and stones will break my bones AND names will be offensive to me. How they can be so offended by a mere word like "FUCKING," while so indifferent to censorship and banning of ideas in their own backyard, is beyond my comprehension.

Zoё said...

Hey Tod Sloan

You don't know me, I am just Zoe a reader of your site.

I just wanted to tell you that I was not trying to muzzle you, just engage with you. When I read the post and comments on the Cornel West post I felt an overwhelming desire to contribute to the conversation. I promised myself earlier this year I would stop writing negative comments on the internet. No, not to "muzzle myself" but just cos of something personal. Really was almost painful for me to read the discussion following the cartoon cos for years you have been a kind of hero for me... Not a total hero but an example of something the "literary world" or world needs. Honestly if you could see my happy face the many times I have sat in my dorm room or some other room reading your website you would ... understand perhaps why I wanted to give you the chance to vindicate yourself. Your politics via race appear different from mine but that does not excuse whatever in my language or presentation appeared to be dismissing you. You clearly take a lot of heat for the way you put yourself out there, and I didn't mind contributing to that heat. I'm telling you this now to add some cool. My lesson: If friendly heat exists on the internet, it is friendly fire. And maybe no fires are friendly.

G. Tod Slone said...

Thanks, Zoe,
I'm truly appreciative of your comment. I'm not a "hater" per se. I don't carry grudges. Too people carry to death do us part grudges. I don't have it in me for some reason. Sometimes I come out swinging too hard... and probably did with you. I like making friends like anyone else. So, making enemies is really not my goal. BUT I do wish to express myself and not in a way as to avoid making enemies. I'm definitely not a bridge builder. Anyhow, I'm real glad you've popped back on to the site.
G. Tod

Zachary Bos said...

Timothy, your aim is off.

G. Tod Slone said...

On race, I don’t really have a politic. But here’s what I think.
1. It is shameful that the left tends to hurl the racist accusation whenever their policies are questioned, hoping to drown out the logic and reason behind some oppositional viewpoints.
2. Affirmative Action is fundamentally wrong in its effort to somehow make TWO WRONGS equal a right. It also irks me when I discover an African (from Africa) or a well-to-do Spaniard (from Spain) might get a job over me, an American, because of their minority status.
3. It irks me to think that many leftists would think that a group of corrupt black administrators is somehow better than a group of corrupt white administrators.
4. It irks me to think that the left somehow thinks that a black kowtow is better than a white question and challenging individual.
5. All citizens should be treated equally, no matter what color or ethnic background. Non-citizens of color or minority ethnic background should not be treated better than white citizens.
6. We need to criticize BLACK and GAY PRIDE nonsense. How can one be proud when one has done nothing? If we are to accept this stuff, then we need WHITE PRIDE parades, and not of the KKK ilk.
7. We need to be outwardly critical of those like Cornell West who seem able to say imbecilic things and get away with it because of their protective cocoon skin color.
And of course I could go on… and probably will eventually.

Timothy Bearly said...

Well put G. Tod.
But I think when you got dressed this morning you forgot to put on the muzzle, haha.

Indeed, Instead of learning from the past, it appears that we are 'condemned to repeat it'. Consequently, I too am irked as I anxiously watch the pendulum swing to the other side.