Over the last few months, thenation.com has made an effort to foster a robust and thoughtful comments section befitting the mighty intelligence of our readership. We’re pleased to report that the shoe ads are gone, the name-calling is at a minimum and astute and witty commentary is on the rise. Here are our favorite comments from the last week. Let us know what you think — in the comments!
Micker: I believe it is high time that all schools once again include organized labor’s struggle, what it has given to all of the working class in this and other westernized countries. I mean we should bare our chests and tell it all from The Molly Maguires to the 1913 massacre in Copper country in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. Hopefully this will remind the baby boomers of what their parents and grandparents went through. My wish is that we baby boomers who allowed others to steal the ball from us because we didn’t see our natural opponents, steal the dribble, take the ball back, and once again start putting points on the board!
In Response to Natalia Abrams’ “Solidarity Teach-Ins at a College Near You.” October 27, 2011
DHFabian: Incidentally, what is this weirdness with the rich howling about "class warfare?" My gosh, right here in Wisconsin, all-out class warfare against the poor began a quarter-century ago. Ryan himself has consistently engaged in class warfare. Now Ryan is cryin’ at the "unfairness" when we point out the profound damage caused by years of right wing policies. That is one clueless guy.
In Response to John Nichols’ “Paul Ryan Can’t Hear the Catholic Church’s Call for Economic Justice.” October 29, 2011
jsg: “Everything in politics…costs money, and there’s no way to avoid that." Why not? Radio and television airwaves are government regulated, and that’s where the main cost lies. If the private entities who control them were required to provide broadcasting time for free political messages as part of their licenses to operate, then a HUGE part of this problem would disappear. Sure there are other costs, but they are dwarfed by the costs of advertising to get the message out. Second, many countries have full public financing for elections which are, after all, a PUBLIC process. Yes, there are free speech issues and court decisions (Citizens United and Buckley), but these are OUR invention and can be reversed by our intervention. Needless to say, I’m not suggesting that either of these reforms would be easy, only that there is nothing inevitable about the current system and its constraints.
In Response to Jamelle Bouie’s “What Should Be Done About Campaign Finance?” October 28, 2011
Amartic: Why are special crime-fighting units at OWS anyway? If there is a proven link between increased crime and OWS due to a lack of police presence than it’s the NYPD’s fault for positioning sex crimes units and violent crime units in and around a peaceful protest.
In Response to Ben Adler’s “Is Occupy Wall Street Responsible for a New York Crime Wave?” October 31, 2011
cka2nd: I was very active in the reproductive rights movement, including abortion clinic defense, for several years in the late 80’s and early 90’s (Chris Slattery was a very dapper man back then) and I just want to say, don’t kid yourselves. There are a lot of women involved in the anti-reproductive rights movement, including in leadership positions. They may not be leaders in the same proportion that they are frontline Crisis Pregnancy Center staffers and operators, demonstrators and sidewalk "counselors," but the movement, including its most radical, violent fringe, includes women at all levels. As to regulating so-called Crisis Pregnancy Centers, there are public disclosure laws of all kinds, from restaurants to financial companies, and requiring CPC’s to disclose that they do not provide or refer to abortion or contraceptive services seems to fall under this rubric. It is also far, FAR less than what many states have imposed on abortion providers, forcing them to provide scientifically questionable information about abortion and the fetus. Talk about compelled speech!
In Response to Kate Murphy’s “Regulating CPCs: Consumer Protection or Affront to Free Speech?” October 31, 2011
otherwise: My response is an unequivocal, so what. There will always be those who try to profit from any and all. After 9/11 people sold USA flags. Mass murders have auctions for their belongings. None of this means a thing to those who are part of the movement for change. I still have my red, black, and green Afro pick, but believe me I still fight the good fight. If someone makes a few bucks more power to them. The strength is with the message and perhaps spreading that message, while making a buck ain’t so bad.
In Response to Allison Kilkenny’s “The Commodification of Occupy Wall Street.” November 1, 2011