Where’s The Outrage?

The supposed artist formerly known as Prince made a little news over the weekend, when he said that:

…blacks in the deep south forced to drink from separate fountains and ride in the back of the bus were “happy” to do so.

“It would have been fun being in Mississippi, to know there’s only one correct social order,” Prince told the British newspaper. “There was order. You ride in the back of the bus. There’s no choice. People were happy with that.”

The Guardian pointed out that perhaps not every black forced to drink from separate fountains was thrilled with the idea. The singer acknowledged: “There are people who are unhappy with everything. There’s a dark side to everything.”

Oh. Wait. He didn’t say that? You’re right. Here’s what actually happened.

…women forced to wear burqas in Islamic countries are “happy” to wear them.

“It’s fun being in Islamic countries, to know there’s only one religion,” Prince told the British newspaper. “There’s order. You wear a burqa. There’s no choice. People are happy with that.” (Burqa bans grow fashionable in Europe)

The Guardian pointed out that perhaps not every woman forced to wear a burqa is thrilled with the idea. The singer acknowledged: “There are people who are unhappy with everything. There’s a dark side to everything.”

And here I thought he said something outrageous. Never mind.

[Update a few minutes later]

The idiot political hack formerly known as Speaker of the House said something interesting over the weekend, too. Referring to the summer of 2008, she said:

“When the … unemployment rate is high, it’s hard for the incumbent to win,” Pelosi said in an interview with CNN Chief Political Correspondent Candy Crowley. “I remind you though, the Republians weren’t the incumbent. We were the incumbent.”

Well, that makes sense, right? I mean, after all, the Democrats had held the entire Congress for over a year and a half. Why blame George Bush?

What? She didn’t say that? She actually said…?:

“When the … unemployment rate is high, it’s hard for the incumbent to win,” Pelosi said in an interview with CNN Chief Political Correspondent Candy Crowley. “I remind you though, we’re not the incumbent. The Republicans are the incumbent.”

Well, that would be consistent with what she said in 2008, even though, of course, the Republicans only control the House, and they’ve only done it for six months or so.

What? She didn’t really say that in 2008? She campaigned as though the Republicans still controlled the government, and blamed everything on George Bush? That can’t be true. If that were the case, she’d be a rank hypocrite.

Oh.

21 thoughts on “Where’s The Outrage?

  1. Andrea Harris

    Actually, I think people are being a bit hard on the former TAFKAP (“The Artist Formerly Known As ‘Prince'”). He may be a jerk, but he’s just pointing out a truth that most of us in this part of the world don’t like to face: the sad fact is most people in the Whole Rest Of The World don’t really want what we think of as “freedom.” They want order, safety, and stability, and the only “freedom” that they want is to be free of anything that disturbs them. Many people in other cultures see the sort of freedom we have here and it looks like chaos to them. Never mind that innovation, real progress, anything that actually improves life can only come about if a certain amount of chaos is accepted — the default position of human beings is to reject change.

    As for women being unhappy about wearing restrictive clothing — well, “happiness” as the West has come to know that term is a recent phenomenon. Most people in the world don’t believe that pleasure (which is what the Western version of happiness is) is humanity’s lot, and for the most part it’s more important that order and stability is maintained in the community than (as they see it) people are allowed to run about doing whatever they feel like because it feels good. These women who are being urged to doff their burkas in the name of freedom nine times out of ten will tell you that there’s a trade-off they’ve accepted: a woman gives up what freedom she has in order to have food on her table and a home for her children. Even if her husband is abusive and her life is crappy she may still prefer known misery to the unknown.

    I’m not saying this is a great thing, I’m saying this is the way most of the world is like. Americans tend to forget this in our shiny, happy plans for bringing “freedom and democracy” to the rest of the world.

  2. Andrew W

    Agree with Andrea.

    Most people aren’t leaders, they choose to follow the life they know and those who they know. Outsiders trying to imposing their own ideas of what is freedom can itself turn into a form of tyranny.

  3. Abelard Lindsey

    No, I don’t think its being too hard on Prince. I think Rand’s play on words is quite valid (and entertaining!).

  4. douglas

    I think that once you get a taste of it, without facing the lase, then it’s a pretty steep learning curve (I think I used that correctly.) Just because you spent your life imprisoned and beaten, doesn’t mean you don’t have the capacity for leadership. Ask the majority of people in the military. I was a scrawny kid who saw it as a civic duty, and it didn’t take long for me to learn to not take any crap.

    As for pelosi. The Dems ran the entire GOVERNMENT for 2 years, the entire congress for 4, and now because they have 1 1/2 branches of government they are the victims. She’s an idiot.

  5. FB

    No, Andrea. He’s not just pointing out reality, he’s glorifying the situation. It’s one thing to point out that cultural change can be difficult and may be unwanted by the majority, and quite another to call discrimination “fun” and talk about how great it is to have so much “order.” When confronted with the fact that not all women in these countries willingly conform, he glibly dismisses them by saying “There are people who are unhappy with everything.”

  6. Assistant Village Idiot

    There were Americans who said similar things about black people before integration. Hell there were black leaders, frustrated with some of the people they were trying to awaken, who said similar things. There is a truth in it, that a lot of people will adjust to just about anything and fear change.

    But such sentiments about American blacks now ring strange on our ears – and why? Because we have seen that such attitudes do not have to be the reality. That people can rise to the occasion.

  7. Doug

    The crap thing about Prince is… what about the Christians in Egypt (10 percent of the population, or roughly equivalent to the percentage of blacks back in the day) who don’t have a desire to wear the Burqa, and no religious reason to do so. That whole “one religion” thing only applies to Saudi Arabia because the Religion of Peace threw all the non-believers out… er, except the ones who built their oil wells and… well, nevermind. In every Muslim country… including so-called moderate states such as Turkey and Malaysia and Indonesia, non-Muslims are harrassed and oppressed, and under pressure from Islamists to don Burqas, etc., etc. Even in majority non-Muslim states, Muslims work to implement their religious laws-forbid criticism of Mohammed or Islam, and eat halal food.

  8. pst314

    Andrea Harris “Actually, I think people are being a bit hard on [Prince]”

    I disagree. Prince was not dispassionately describing a social phenomenon, he was expressing approval for a totalitarian system.

    “I knew a fools named Prince
    I guess you could say he was a power fiend.
    I met him in a Tehran coffee shop
    Apologizing for a fascist regime….”

  9. Mitch H.

    I’m about 85% sure that he was just messing with the reporter, Dylan-style. Prince is still a Jehovah’s Witness, right? He’s a minority-sect sort-of-Christian even in Minneapolis, and probably wouldn’t even be classified as a person-of-the-Book-class dhimmi by the mutaween, if they noticed him on one of their little legal micro-pogroms.

  10. Andrea Harris

    “He’s not just pointing out reality, he’s glorifying the situation.”

    Who cares? Do you live and die by what Prince, a washed-up musician no one cares about anymore, thinks about things? Did you throw away your copy of Purple Rain in wrath when you heard about this?

    I mean, I guess you didn’t read anything else I wrote, you were too busy spazzing over my disinterest in jumping on the “condemn Prince!” bandwagon. Perhaps I was not clear enough. Prince is merely illustrating (with his own revealed attitude) the fact that the majority of humanity is not interested in freedom as we in the United States and some part of Europe have come to know it. And Prince also illustrates that we shouldn’t be so smug about our freedom-loving mindset: too many people in the West are just one personal disappointment, bad love affair, lost job, or frightening news report away from deciding that this whole “freedom and democracy” thing is a crock and what we really need is a Big Daddy to take care of us and destroy our enemies.

    Of course, in the West it’s still socially necessary to pay lip service to the ideals of F&D, so people will still say they vote Democrat because “Republicans are fascists.” But as we can see (as Prince demonstrates), that need is becoming less felt day by day. Instead of reacting to people like this, we need to study them. They just might be the canary in the coal mine of our future.

  11. Mo

    Hopefully, Prince applauds the Saudi ban on women drivers, too, now there’s a desirable thing. I KNOW all the women are glad to be imprisoned in their own houses until some male can be found to shlep them around.

    Maybe Prince just did a little too much “partying” back in 1999, and his brain is on the fritz. What a jackass.

  12. Don Rodrigo

    For those of you on this thread cutting “Prince” some slack: get a grip you patsies.

  13. mike in nc

    I plan on becoming a Muslim so I can say anything and not have anyone confront me with that “sexist”, “homophobic” criticism.

  14. teapartydoc

    I don’t agree with Andrea. Ask anyone in a third world country if they would like to live in America. You can bet on a ninety percent “yes” rate and for most of these the reason is freedom. The difference is in that they understand this only as freedom for themselves, as there is no tradition of liberty in many if not most of these countries.

    By this (and in this respect I am in agreement with many of the above, if we are talking about the same thing) I refer to what I call the religious impulse. By this I mean the impulse to force others to live according norms that are determined by us, rather than just letting them be. Most of us have some of this whether we are religious in practice, or not. It runs rampant in developing countries.

  15. Andrea Harris

    Erm, teapartydoc, you basically agreed with me when you said “The difference is in that they understand this only as freedom for themselves, as there is no tradition of liberty in many if not most of these countries.” Maybe you meant to say you do agree with me?

    As for your second paragraph, I don’t understand it at all. Are you saying it’s bad that we want people who move to this country to live like us (that is, abiding by our laws and not pretending they still live in their own country), and that this requirement is caused by some sort of irrational “religious impulse” instead of a deliberate decision on the part of the founders of this country?

  16. vladdy

    Andrea’s letter was approving of Prince, who was approving of islam. But it looks like someone touched a nerve.

    About Prince…hilarious that the dude who broke all the “barriers” he could find, now preaches how great “order” is. Heh. Now we all KNOW what he would have said if Tipper Gore or somebody (who was actually against misogyny in
    music, not sex) had told him to cover up the females in his group.

    He happily made money off the bodies of the lovely ladies in his band, but will not support their right to dress as they like no matter where they are.

    Silly man.

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