We’re All Redskins Now

Redskinsby Fay Voshell   6/23/14
Conservatives should be disabused of any notion that the recent revocation of the Redskins’ trademark by the US Patent Office had anything at all to do with the disparagement of Native Americans, real or perceived.

On the contrary, the exercise in political correctness is not about aggrieved Native Americans. It’s about the power to redistribute wealth and to eliminate private property. Essentially, the Left has declared that no person’s or company’s trademark (or patent) is safe. Get together a group of lawyers who are experts in victimization and who have access to some aggrieved group, find a trademark name — or even an invention — offensive and go at it. Now everyone can have a chunk of the Redskins franchise. It’s been equitably redistributed among the masses — if any of the proletariat actually wants to risk being called “racist.”

It should be noted the real issue for the Left is not that the Redskins trademark is egregiously offensive. The real issue is about the power to control any entity that will not adhere to the current politically correct commandments. It is about targeting anyone who has bad, bad thoughts. For instance, companies with perfectly innocuous trademark names like Chick-fil-A and Hobby Lobby have as their CEOs people who think, according to liberals, “disparaging thoughts.” Therefore, those companies also should be driven out of business and their CEOs turned out to beg on the streets or forced to enter thought reform classes.

The contrived controversy over the term “Redskin” indicates the devolution of the law into linguistic analysis. Somewhere, everywhere, there is a Stasi-like human being in the IRS or the NSA who is poring over every word any given person is saying. Actual transgression of or actual guilt before the law? Jettisoned as inconsequential. Guilt is affixed because of a word or thought deemed unspeakable or unthinkable by leftist thought police who analyze every twitch of vocabulary in order to find transgression. Every word of a conservative is parsed as carefully as preachers search for the meaning of holy writ.

In brief, the Left has abrogated to itself — to mere humans — the god-like power to declare a person or persons guilty on the basis of one, solitary misspoken word; one suspect trademark.

It’s all very dangerous stuff.

For one thing, playing linguistic footsie with words like “offensive,” “disparaging,” “racist” and “hater” means those words take on the same amorphous meaning as certain words used in the Soviet Union (and Maoist China) to get rid of political opponents. Certain vague, all encompassing terms were used against innocent citizens in order to give the government the authority it wanted to attack, arrest and send millions to the gulag.

“Hooligan” was one such term. It was employed with great effectiveness to incarcerate just about anyone the government wanted to get rid of.

As Brian Lapierre wrote in his abstract, “Making Hooliganism on a Mass Scale,” in 1956, the Russian government decided to crack down on what it called its accelerating “hooligan” problem by handing out sentences for the crime of hooliganism to a huge number of people. He writes:

“With the passage of the 1956 RSFSR petty hooligan decree, the state created a less serious form of hooliganism and a less serious form of hooligan punishment in order to combat this multivalent criminal category’s most minor and mundane manifestations. The petty hooligan decree, by watering down the definition of hooliganism, transformed the commonplace borderline behaviors of the everyday into imprisoning offenses. By defining deviance downward, it made millions of ordinary citizens, whose behaviors would earlier have escaped punishment, into hooligans; exposed them to police power that was often arbitrary and unregulated; and dragged them through a degrading detention process. The petty hooligan decree shows us that 1956 was more than a year of liberalizing political reform. It was also a time of increased prosecution, coercive refashioning and aggressive state intolerance towards an expanding array of outsider identities.”

Two other favorite terms during the Stalin era were “undetected criminals” and “wreckers.” The search for “wreckers (saboteurs) resulted in show trials of engineers, who were deemed “enemies of the People”—another favorite catchall phrase now summed up by the current Left by the term “Republican.” It seems the entire GOP is filled with “arsonists,” “jihadists” and “terrorists?” In fact, though most did not know it, the military is loaded with evangelical Christians who are also “terrorists?”

It is scarcely a stretch to see that the words “racist,” “hater,” and even “offensive,” and “disparaging” can be and are being used to condemn masses of basically decent folks who are for the Left, “undetected criminals.”

All the above is nothing new, of course.

The Prophet Isaiah was quite familiar with those who targeted the innocent with frivolous accusations. And he had strong words of condemnation for them.

He wrote there were those “who with a word make a man out to be guilty.” In other words, there were people who caused a person to be indicted because of one word. The accusers were ready to defraud the innocent with meaningless arguments, making a man an offender for a mere word—a word inadvertently spoken without any intent to harm; or a word without any bad meaning.

The result was that any person could be condemned on frivolous pretences; actually, for nothing at all.

What Isaiah had to say about those who condemned the innocent for a mere word applies to the manufactured Redskins non-controversy. By using the now catchall word “racist,” or some other vague word like “disparaging,” the Left seeks to destroy the entire franchise by making it essentially worthless.

The Redskins controversy is not the first time the tactics have been employed; and doubtless, it will not be the last. But if history is any indicator of where such tactics lead, the targeting of the innocent for a mere word is a sure sign of tyranny.

It must be stopped.

Time to go on the warpath.

This article originally appeared in AmericanThinker.


Fay Voshell is a frequent contributor to American Thinker and other online publications. She received the Charles Hodge Prize for excellence in systematic theology from Princeton Seminary. She was also selected as one of the Delaware GOP’s “Winning Women,” Class of 2008. She may be reached at fvoshell@yahoo.com. • (1238 views)

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9 Responses to We’re All Redskins Now

  1. Timothy Lane says:

    I’m not sure if the desire to loot private property has much to do with the Obama Gang’s action, but you’re quite correct that the overweening lust for power by the modern Left is the root of their evil action here. One must also remember that they undoubtedly do want to assuage the professionally aggrieved, since their concerns are a major part of IngSoc politics.

    One way to respond might be to do unto them as they’re doing unto Dan Snyder. Nearly ever Demagogue Senator signed the letter demanding the name change (though not the 2 Virginians). Presumably this included Joe Biden’s replacement, Senator Christopher Coons. So why not get some conservative blacks, such as Allen West, Star Parker, Crystal Wright, Mia Love, and Tim Scott, to demand that Coons change his last name to Blacks instead of perpetuating a racial slur?

    • David Ray says:

      Hilarious satire about Coons.
      I remember Mia Love running for office. I’m not sure what she looks like because George Stephie thought it time for a long commercial break when she spoke at the RNC 2012 convention.

      One could write a book with the voluminous examples when liberals either black-out favorable pictures, present them out of context (Sarah Palin on Newsweek) or, as usual, pick the worse possible photograph.

  2. Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

    Soon these same Commissars of Compassion will demand that Crayola remove red from its box of Crayons. Does that sound absurd? Well, there are people on the Left who already think that phrases such as “black cloud” or “black mark” are racist.

    We’re dealing with people who have learned that the path to power and to a personal sense of purpose is to be forever aggrieved. And there are many useful idiots in society who go along to show that they are not racists and that, instead, they are also very “compassionate.”

    One of the bizarre things in our culture — and you have to laugh at the absurdity of it when you can step back and take a look at the broad view — is how “compassion,” “sensitivity,” and “caring” have become weapons, not means to actual compassion, to actual sensitivity, to actual caring. None of these attributes is used toward the owners of the Redskins or their fans.

    And who is the target market for these abused words? It’s the dumbed-down infantilized culture of narcissists and ninnies that we now live in. Granted, there are worse evils than some fascist nitwit trying to demonize a football team while the stupid, compliant, thoughtless masses go along. But the danger is not about a name change today. It’s that the appetite of these fascists knows no bounds. You have to push back somewhere. Feeding the crocodile just makes him hungrier.

    But few will push back because by feeding the crocodile they hope that it will then eat someone else first. Eric Holder was right about this being a nation of cowards. But this was something said by an evil person who espouses beliefs and methods that are meant to turn people into cowards. Only a cynical political monster could have uttered such words with a straight face. But he is essentially correct.

    • Kung Fu Zu Kung Fu Zu says:

      We’re dealing with people who have learned that the path to power and to a personal sense of purpose is to be forever aggrieved

      Another case of the inner party knowing how to use the outer party idiots.

      “there is nothing like grievance to prevent a man from examining his own responsibility for his situation”–Theodore Dalrymple

    • Timothy Lane says:

      The advantage of creating and playing to grievances is that it means you don’t actually have to accomplish anything. This makes it especially convenient for liberals. This is why they no longer particularly care about the economic situation — leeches only need a live host animal, and the grievance-seekers are only concerned about revenge on those they have been told to hate. (This is why so much liberal discourse sounds like a Two Minutes Hate.)

      • Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

        Well said, Timothy,

        I read something in one of Theodore Dalrymple’s books the other day that just floored me. And it jibes with my general belief that a people who view the glass as half full are fit for self-government, while the more pessimistic and grievance-based souls are fit only to have masters. Dalrymple was writing about the financial crisis in Ireland:

        The Irish are right to think that the crisis is more than economic, that it is existential; but they are wrong to think that it is specifically or mainly Irish. It is, in fact, a crisis of western man who cannot control his appetites, who wants today what only the labour of the future can supply, or supply honestly. Western man is, in effect, a child. 

        In my own country, for example, there has been a decisive shift in attitude to debt within my lifetime. The British people are now among the most incontinent and childish in the management of their own affairs of any people in the world, which is why they are so deeply indebted for what are, essentially, trifles. It is within my memory that people took pride in not buying what they could not afford; they feared debt as if it were a disease. The idea of repudiating debts, of simply walking away from them, was totally alien to them. They would not behave in this fashion, not because it was illegal, but because their self-respect would not allow them to do so. How can you hold your head up after you had indulged in an elaborate form of theft?

        What had effected this change? I suspect that the decline of religion, both as a system of belief and a system of social control, has something to do with it. (Is it really a coincidence that the Irish crisis has struck at precisely the same time as the total evaporation of Catholicism’s influence in Ireland?) I say this as someone without religious belief. But where there is no belief that life has transcendent purpose, that there is in effect more to life than this life itself, it is hardly surprising that people – that is to say, many people – take as their philosophy ‘Après nous, le déluge.’ The problem is that the deluge may not be après nous.

        I love it when eggheads thrown in foreign phrases without translating them. [After me the deluge.] It’s not a good practice unless it’s extremely well known. It was a particularly bad practice in this case because it was his punch line.

        Anyway, that is particularly well said, and the first paragraph sounds as if it’s right out of the mouth of Glenn.

        To gain the larger context on all this, including attacking the name of a football club, we can understand that we are seeing the inevitable results of godless Communism. As cheeky as that may sound to those indoctrinated in Cultural Marxism (or “Progressivism”) as “normal,” it is nonetheless true.

        • Kung Fu Zu Kung Fu Zu says:

          I love it when eggheads thrown in foreign phrases without translating them. [After me the deluge.] It’s not a good practice unless it’s extremely well known. It was a particularly bad practice in this case because it was his punch line.

          I agree in general. One example of this which has come about in the last 30 years is the use of “angst”. All that means in German is fear. It’s use is similar to the use of “Gestalt” in psychology although the use of Gestalt can refer to a specific school of headshrinkers.

          But I believe the particular French line Dalrymple used is well known and attributed to Louis the XV of France. Given the fact that the flood did, in fact, come after him this line has a particular connotation.

          Furthermore, “deluge” has the same definition in both French and English. So I think a lot of people could figure out the meaning despite the nous instead of moi.

          • Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

            I think the refined meaning of “angst” that has emerged is that it’s not just fear. It’s the sort of low-rolling boil of a fear that you get that makes you concerned about such things as “food insecurity,” which the Communists have been floating the last few years as yet another attack on the free market.

            The idea from the perspective of the Communists is to plant in the minds of people that our freedom-based American system isn’t working. After all, when they do these surveys they don’t find people who are starving. Far from it. Our “poor” tend to be overweight if not obese. But if you load the questions just right, you can ask people if they have any anxiety over where their next meal might be coming from.

            Thus you get “food insecurity,” brought to you by the Communists even if they go under the name of “Progressives.” And anyone who expects to be free from the need to secure food, clothing, and shelter — both for today and tomorrow — is pining for the utopian world of pure Communist equality where we are all but children and our Good Masters will never make us angst for anything.

        • Timothy Lane says:

          I read a book years ago, I think by Edward Luttwak, which suggested that our problem was “Calvinist deficit disorder” or something similarly phrased. Basically, his idea was that the Calvinist social (as opposed to theological) ideas (such as a strong work ethic and restraint of appetites) were badly needed (always), and disappearing.

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