Crackpot portrayed as normal
Remember Cindy Sheehan? Neither does anyone else, which we suppose is why the Associated Press is now putting forward a new "folk hero" for the "anti-war movement": Rosemarie Jackowski, a diminutive sexagenarian from Vermont who was arrested in 2003 for disrupting traffic and has been appealing her conviction ever since. The AP makes her out to be just a regular old lady; "Vt. Woman Is an Unlikely Peace Activist," reads the headline, and the story, by John Curran, includes a putative veteran's endorsement:
"She's not a loony toon by any means," said Andrew Schoerke, 73, a retired U.S. Navy captain who was arrested with her. "She's a very down to earth,
sensible, caring person with some very strong convictions."
But as blogger Dan Riehl points out, a simple Internet search turns up lots of information the AP leaves out. Her page on SelvesandOthers.org describes her as an "advocacy journalist" and includes links to articles she has written. In "Reparations for Iran," dated Aug. 9, she writes:
The United States owes reparations to the people of Iran. How much should be paid for the 1953 coup? How much is a democracy worth? Here's a thought. Suppose the U.S. gave all of its nuclear weapons to Iran. Would that be a win, win, win scenario? The world would be safer because the only nation that had ever used nukes would no longer have any. The people of Iran would be compensated for the 1953 coup. The U.S. taxpayers would be spared a bill for reparations.
In "Vermont Vets Support Ward Churchill Statement" (June 19), she praises a statement in which the crackpot Colorado "scholar" seemed to endorse terrorism to "get those in power to stop killing Indian children":
When I first saw this Churchill statement on the Mickey Z blog site, my initial reaction was that it was beautifully constructed poetry. Ward Churchill, the
gentle poet, that was a new concept. As I read and re-read it over and over, I came to the conclusion that it is one of the most powerful pleas for peace and justice in literature.
Similarly, in a May 20 piece, she likened Churchill to Galileo. She also ran for attorney general last month as the nominee of the far-left Liberty Union Party, according to whose Web site she is also a member of the Socialist Party USA.
This information would seem to be useful in evaluating the AP source's claim that Jackowski is "not a loony toon." And surely it is a refutation of the AP's own claim that she is "an unlikely peace activist." It's hard to think of how she could be any likelier a peace activist.
Curran, the AP's reporter, at best shows a remarkable lack of skepticism about Jackowski's self-packaging as a normal grandma. But this is pretty much par for the course: The press tried to present Cindy Sheehan as a grieving everymom, when in fact she turned out to be an America-hating crackpot. Is it any wonder people don't trust journalists?
The Boston Globe reports on a silly new study that purports to reveal something about race relations in Massachusetts:
Despite the increasing diversity of the population here, the state's black, white, Asian, and Latino residents are living largely separate lives and take a dim view of race relations, according to a poll released today.
At work, in their neighborhoods, and socially, an overwhelming majority of white residents, for example, still interact predominantly with other whites. The survey showed that 61 percent of white respondents said they see "only a few" or no African-Americans in daily life, and 71 percent said they see only a few or no Latinos.
"We have made a great symbolic statement about Massachusetts as a home to diverse people," said Steve Crosby, dean of the John W. McCormack Graduate School of Policy Studies, which commissioned the survey along with three think tanks at the University of Massachusetts. "But this data tells us there is still serious work to be done in terms of race relations and conditions for all ethnicities in our community." . . .
According to the survey, African-Americans and Latinos also associate mostly with people of their own race and ethnicity, though they are not as segregated as the white residents. A large majority of Asians also said they interact with few or no African-Americans and Latinos, but they reported seeing more white residents in their daily lives than they do people of their own race.
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the population of Massachusetts is 83.4% white, 5.9% black, 4.7% Asian and 7.9% Latino (that last category overlaps with the racial ones). What this means is that if you came in contact with a representative sample of Massachusettsans each day, the vast majority of them (5 out of 6) would be white, while only a few would be black (about 1 in 17), Asian (1 in 21) or Hispanic (1 in 13).
The only finding the Globe describes that departs from this is that "African-Americans and Latinos . . . associate mostly with people of their own race and ethnicity." What sort of "serious work" would Steve Crosby do to prevent them from doing so?
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