Friday, July 18, 2008

The Proliferation Of "Thug" Describing Some Black Men

Some conservative bloggers are sticking up for one of their own whom I called out here for his attaching the term "Thug" to Milwaukee County Board Chairman Lee Holloway.

The bloggers' comments in that post defending their blogging cohort "No Runny Eggs" scramble spin and denial.

What made Holloway thug-worthy? Supporting a sales tax increase.

I guess in the mind of a conservative blogger, a tax increase is a crime, which would mean that some politicians are probably headed for the gallows!

Look out all you Republican legislators who supported the annual gas tax "indexed" increase (which I always thought was cowardly, bad public policy) - - these bloggers might be coming for you next.

Here is an interesting discussion about this phenomenon of racializing "thug" from the Atlanta Constitution.

Let's see how long it takes some people to spin it towards some tangential gripe.


James Wigderson said...

Rowen, Holloway is a thug because of his past behavior. You admitted you saw Eggleston call Holloway a thug on other posts on other issues. Holloway is a thug, whether you like the word or not.

Your attempt at thuggish bullying of a conservative blogger just because you like higher taxes for your pet cause is completely contemptible and you owe Eggleston an apology.

xoff said...

Just what is a thug, Wiggy? I always equated it with someone who was brutal or violent, maybe a bully.

Is it anyone who breaks the law, or just black people?

Is Scott Jensen a thug?

Just looking for some clarity here.

Other Side said...

Not a chance. It's Eggleston and the rest of that gang that owes black people an apology.

Perhaps we should label VP Cheney a thug because of language he has used in the past. Or how about that Republican legislator (I can't remember his name) that attacked his Democratic counterpart in the House. Should he be labeled a thug?

The thing is, the only time that you guys use the word thug is in relation to black people.

Personally, I think Eggleston is the thug. He attacks black people on his blog (as does Patrick Dorwin, another thug) regularly.

Anonymous said...

No, James, you are wrong yet again.

What made Holloway 'thug worthy' were his thug-like tactics with Supervisors Rice and Quindel which were well chronicled in the press and to which I referred in the earlier post.

I agree that your attempt to deconstruct Steve's post to find his motivation behind the use of the word 'Thug' to be worse than amateur psychology.

I agree with Wigdy. You owe Steve an apology.

James Rowen said...

I am copying this comment on to this post comment section from the original pos that got this discussion going.

These parallels some of you are drawing to Mike McGee, Jr., or to people being sought for murder, only prove my point.

You are throwing the term around where it is not accurate, and the referencers all seem to be mention other African-Americans.

The commenter asking for contemporary usage for the word is directred to the post linking to the Atlanta Constitution discussion about the racializing of the word.

The blogger who initially referred to Holloway as a thug mentioned it the sales tax context.

Not the incidents where Holloway behaved badly, but was not charged criminally, and which some of you have, after-the-fact, boot-strapped into the debate to make the word's use justfiable.

July 19, 2008 11:29 AM

Patrick said...

Note to OtherSide: I regularly oppose people of every race when I disagree with them. And when I do, it isn't because of the color of their skin, it is because of the content (or lack thereof) of their character. (see Bill Clinton, Tom Barrett, Jim Doyle, Russ Feingold, Steve Kagen etc.)

Lee Holloway is a thug that happens to be black. He is labeled a thug in my book, because he has attacked two (that we know of) members of the County Board. I also refer to him as a slumlord, because... well, he is.

I have also called the "Jude cops," thugs... They were all white, maybe I said that just to throw people off, huh?

Being a thug is a character flaw, not a racial slur, but by accusations made against someone, like those that have been made against Steve, minimizes the very real racism that still exists in the world. And I know that many would see this false accusation against Steve, as a thuggish attempt to intimidate an opponent into silence, and nothing more.

James Wigderson said...

" I always equated it with someone who was brutal or violent, maybe a bully." - Xoff

Sounds right. Holloway remains a thug. Rowen's bullying was thuggish, and he owes Eggleston an apology. I realize it's like "Fight Club" on the Left, and nobody will ever attack a false charge of racism, but I think Rowen is smart enough to realize he crossed a line here and owes Eggleston an apology. Let's see if he has the class to offer one.

Other Side said...

Patrick: Do you call them (Bill Clinton, Tom Barrett, Jim Doyle, Russ Feingold, Steve Kagen etc.) thugs?

Patrick said...

Other Side: If they behaved in a thuggish way, I sure would. Say, for instance, one of them was trying to intimidate a blogger by making false accusations, I would say they were behaving like a thug. Actually, now that I think about it, I have called Doyle and his political hacks thugs for the tactics they have used too.

When the white cops beat Frank Jude almost to death, I referred to them as thugs. (I also refer to Jude himself as a thug, that came after he attacked and nearly strangled his mother.)

When the Sheboygan Police Chief, City Attorney, and Mayor tried to intimidate a blogger, I called them thugs too.

I called a DNR warden that barged into a house a thug, and... well, this list could go on and on, but that won't mater to you, because you wouldn't admit you are wrong anyway. I know you won't admit it publicly, but admit to your self privately that the word thug is not a racial epithet, you will feel better, I promise.

Other Side said...

Patrick: The problem remains that Holloway was called a thug for something he did that was not remotely thuggish; regardless of any past behavior. There was no context for its use.

While I think that the word is used by your compatriots in connection with black people way too often (and if you really don't think there is a negative racial undertone to your site perpetrated by commenters, you are blind), I did more checking and found you are less prone to its use.

Still, what's the point? Does it make you feel superior to use that word? Don't you think there are more satisfactory literary means to say what you want without dipping into highly-charged epithets.

Something to consider: I do think that if modern usage of the "n" word was similar to its usage 40-50+ years ago, commenters at your place would be using it in place of thug regularly.