Friday, April 20, 2007

"Politically-Correct" Racism

"Politically Correct" Racism
By Thomas Lessman, Date: 4-20-07

A joke by shock-jock Don Imus about "nappy-headed hos" helped set off another mini-explosion in the powder keg of racial issues in America. Imus apologized repeatedly but was suspended from his show and later fired. Several things about this whole episode bother me.

Why do some people think it's ok to insult, degrade, or discriminate against other races, but not their own?

Imus' joke was nothing compared to racial jokes told by Carlos Mencia, Dave Chapelle, or Chris Rock (who doesn't hide his contempt when he calls white people "crackers"). Many rap stars sing about "nappy-headed hos" (among other terms far more insulting*). Do the race crusaders think it's okay for some people to be racist, but not others?

Welcome to "politically-correct" racism and the glaring hypocrisy of racial politics in America.

Some of the most vocal protesters demanding Imus' blood openly flaunt their own racism, saying it's not really racism if it's said by someone who is black. The "politically-correct" racists were silent when Al Sharpton spoke about "blood-sucking Jews", but raised hell when Mel Gibson said it. Snoop Dogg, of all people, said that Imus' words were demeaning to black women. This from the guy who raps about using women and putting them in their place because, "we don't love them hoes". (While I like some of Snoop's songs, that doesn't change the fact that he's a racist hypocrit!)

When confronted with proof of their racism, most "politically-correct" racists respond predictably. First they try to deny it and accuse their critics of being racist. Then they try justifying their racism by claiming it's not really racism when blacks are racist because blacks are a minority.

I fully support the right of free speech whether I agree with the opinion or not. Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton are hypocritical, race-baiting opportunists, but in a free nation they have the same right to speak just like everyone else. What bothers me is that they think the right to be pompous, self-righteous, racist hypocrits belongs only to them.

Either racism is wrong and it's wrong for anyone to be racist, or it's not wrong and everyone can be racist. I personally believe racism is ignorant, but I refuse to stay silent while racist hypocrits like Sharpton, Jackson, and Snoop Dogg promote their own racism.

Some civil rights leaders DO understand that point. The only real civil rights leader in Topeka, Sonny Scroggins, has spent decades fighting racism in all forms. While Scroggins dislikes the terms used by Imus, he also understands that Imus' words were no worse than what Snoop Dogg raps. Recently, Sonny has been protesting on Wanamaker to stop Gangsta Rap (which made Snoop Dogg rich). Says Scroggins, "Either racism is wrong, or it isn't, but they can't have it both ways."

I respect those words of wisdom from Sonny, and I will be joining him in protest as time permits. I encourage you to protest with Sonny too, if you truly believe racism is racism regardless of the color of the racist. You can contact Sonny at 785-232-3761 or

Thomas A. Lessman
Phone: 785-230-4546

* "Where them nigga hoes at?" (FYI, that's the opening line of the rap song "Playa's Ball" by E-40 & Too Short.)

Thursday, April 05, 2007

Apology to Reporters Tim Hrenchir & Fred Johnson

I owe Topeka Capital-Journal reporters Tim Hrenchir and Fred Johnson an apology.

About a month ago, I called into Jim Cates Show to voice support for Jack Woelfel's campaign, and we later began discussing certain problems the Topeka Capital-Journal has with "shoddy reporting". Jim asked what I meant by that, and I brought up a few examples.

One article in particular that I pointed out was the CJonline article from Oct. 30, 2006, titled, "Voting Habits Steady". The author of the article highlighted my voting record as the worst, saying I had voted in only 12% of the elections I was elegible to vote in. (Article link:

That's incorrect, because as a registered Libertarian, I'm not able to vote in many elections that registered Republicans or Democrats are able to vote in. The author also downplayed the fact that I've shown up to vote during elections, only to be told there was nothing I could vote for because I'm registered Libertarian.

Anyway, Jim asked who the reporter who wrote that story, and I replied that I wasn't sure, but it may have been Fred Johnson or Tim Hrenchir. I was wrong; it wasn't Fred or Tim. Earlier today I re-read the story and realized it was Barbara Hollingsworth who wrote the story.

That's not the only time I've noticed factual in-accuracy of some articles published in the Topeka Capital-Journal, but it was the first one that came to mind when I was on air.

In any case, I named the wrong reporters, and I apologize to them for my error.

Thomas A. Lessman