Dispatches From the Culture Wars – April 9, 2024

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  1. Bridge Tragedy and Immigrants’ Gift
  2. The Rise of ‘Uncommitted’
  3. Teachers Fight Book Bans and Firings
  4. Democracy? State Governments Could Go Either Way
  5. Beyonce’s “Jolene”
  6. SD Tribes Take On Governor
  7. Another Radical Anthem Ripped Off by the Right
  8. The Fall of the House of Zeigler
  9. Reparative Justice for Black Tulsa
  10. How Barbara Ehrenreich Broke Through

Bridge Tragedy and Immigrants’ Gift

By Will Bunch
The Philadelphia Inquirer

Even before the first divers had arrived on the chaotic scene, an army of pampered coffee shop keyboard commandos and a few overpaid TV hairdos were denying the reality that the Baltimore bridge disaster was a tragic disruption of the diversity that keeps America running.

The Rise of ‘Uncommitted’

By John Nichols
The Nation

What started with the “Listen to Michigan” campaign, which shocked Democratic insiders by securing more than 100,000 votes for the “uncommitted” option on that state’s February 17 primary ballot, has grown into a national phenomenon that has won at least 25 delegates and continues to organize in late-primary and caucus states.

Teachers Fight Book Bans and Firings

By Eleanor J. Bader

Right-wing rhetoric has turned from opposition to books about the role of race and racism in United States history to language about children reading “obscene” or “pornographic” materials in school. But the tide may be turning as a variety of resistance tactics are on the rise. 

Democracy? State Governments Could Go Either Way

By Conor Lynch

The right-wing takeover of state governments has been one of the major stories in American politics over the past two decades. State legislatures have turned into laboratories of right-wing extremism in the 21st century. With trifectas and supermajorities across the country, Republicans have faced little resistance to reactionary agendas that have grown increasingly bold and expansive.

Beyonce’s “Jolene”

By Kyndall Cunningham

Beyoncé is one of many artists across generational and cultural lines to put their own twist on Dolly Parton’s heralded ditty. Her remake turns what was originally Parton’s plea to a red-haired bank clerk to stay away from her husband into a more aggressive (and funny) threat. “You don’t want this smoke, so shoot your shot with someone else.”

SD Tribes Take On Governor

By Darren Thompson
Last Real Indians

Governor Kristi Noem made comments about wanting to improve Native American students’ achievement, and blamed parents and Tribal leaders for their poor performance. She also said that some Tribal leaders were in partnership with Mexican cartels, and four Tribal Nations have responded demanding an apology. 

Another Radical Anthem Ripped Off by the Right

By Boff Whalley
The Guardian

The thing with songs, with literature, with art, theatre, cinema, with most of the beautiful, creative, cultural things we love – they are very rarely created by those on the political right. The bigots don’t have any good songs of their own.

The Fall of the House of Zeigler

By Jacob Ogles

Christian Ziegler felt fortunate to grab the internet domain ChristianGOP.com more than a decade ago. He boasted back then about how perfect the web address was to the image he wanted to project. Today, his brand stands in stark contrast to those values, that carefully cultivated reputation only serving as evidence of his hypocrisy. 

Reparative Justice for Black Tulsa

By Ed Pilkington
The Guardian

The two remaining survivors of the 1921 Tulsa race massacre, thought to be the worst single act of white supremacist violence against African Americans in US history, attended a momentous hearing on Tuesday. The supreme court of Oklahoma considered an appeal in what is almost certainly the women’s final shot at reparative justice.

How Barbara Ehrenreich Broke Through

By Sarah Jaffe
In These Times

At the time Ehrenreich wrote Nickel and Dimed, and for decades before and after, she was a voice in the dark. When so many of her generation had abandoned the struggle for even slight political improvement, let alone social transformation, Ehrenreich stuck with the fight. She saw a polarized world coming when many of her contemporaries were still drinking the Kool-Aid of Clintonism.

Source URL: https://portside.org/2024-04-09/dispatches-culture-wars-april-9-2024