Heather Mallick's Column

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Ghislaine
Heather Mallick's Column

 

Ghislaine

Did anyone else find parts of [url=http://www.rabble.ca/columnists_full.shtml?x=75127]this column[/url] incredibly offensive?

quote:

She added nothing to the ticket that the Republicans didn't already have sewn up, the white trash vote, the demographic that sullies America's name inside and outside its borders yet has such a curious appeal for the right.

White trash has roots as a racist term (ie whites that associate with blacks) and is also classist.

quote:

Palin was not a sure choice, not even for the stolidly Republican ladies branch of Citizens for a Tackier America. No, she isn't even female really. She's a type, and she comes in male form too.

She is wrong on a lot of things and has been loose with the truth, but she is definitely female. I find it incredibly offensive when people make the comment " she is not really female" or "he is not really black" based on politics. Ugh.

The original thread on cbc.ca has some commentators saying they will complain to the CBC ombudsman about this column.

[ 10 September 2008: Message edited by: Ghislaine ]

josh

Yeah, that's not a term I would have used.

N.Beltov N.Beltov's picture

It's a shame that Mallick concedes Alaska hillbillies and "white trash" to the Republicans. As she notes, with reference to Thomas Frank, the mystery of the hick vote is that they'd be better served by another political party. But her descriptions of the type that supports the thuggish right, despite their own social interests, is excellent and on the money ...

quote:

White trash ... is rural, loud, proudly unlettered (like Bush himself), suspicious of the urban, frankly disbelieving of the foreign, and a fan of the American clichй of authenticity. The semiotics are pure Palin: a sturdy body, clothes that are clinging yet boxy and a voice that could peel the plastic seal off your new microwave.

Palin has a toned-down version of the porn actress look favoured by this decade's woman, the overtreated hair, puffy lips and permanently alarmed expression.


A follow-up column in which Mallick discovers her "inner hick" and quotes Don Herron's Charlie Farquharson, Will Rogers from Oklahoma, or RedGreen from Possum Lodge, would be a good supplement to the first article and draw attention to a different sort of rural tradition that stands for something other than Republican venom and microcephalic heads.

N.R.KISSED

quote:


Did anyone else find parts of this column incredibly offensive?

If you are looking for offensive try checking out Palin's response to Obama's victory over Clinton.

[url=http://www.laprogressive.com/2008/09/05/alaskans-speak-in-a-frightened-w... I'd rather not repeat[/url]

As far as the comments on the CBC site it looks like someone must have linked the article to freedominion or something as the spittle-flecked, reactionary rantomatic generators seem to be in full force.

Personally I avoid using the term white trash,(no it is not racist) it is however classist, however as North America seems ready to further embrace fascism I think I'll find something else to worry about.

HeatherM

Hi fellow babblers
Thank you for being so civilized, even if you disagree. I called Palin "white trash" (why? because she is white and she is trash, and she thinks raped incest victims should bear their dad's baby, don't get me started ...)

God knows what's happening to John Doyle for having called Palin an Alaskan hillbilly, but I am getting hundreds of emails from the American south. My husband vets all my email for death threats and he comes in with my coffee in the morning, saying "The consensus in West Virginia is that you are a f------ c---. In the Caroliinas, however, you are a lonely lesbian. The coffee this morning is organic fair trade Costa Rican." Then he laughs quietly to himself in his British way.

I feel so bad making the guy read alll this stuff from Obama-haters. But he says the Canadian right-wingers are angry but restrained, which is good. I am proud of Canadians for their sanity and politeness.
Is there really a Bob Jones of Bob Jones University? He wants to meet me, I take it with an AK-47 in his hand.

Sven Sven's picture

quote:


From Mallick's column:
[b]What normal father would want Levi "I'm a fuckin' redneck" Johnson prodding his daughter?

I know that I have an attachment to children that verges on the irrational, but why don't the Palins? I'm not the one preaching homespun values but I'd destroy that ratboy before I'd let him get within scenting range of my daughter again, and so would you.
[/b]


I didn't know that parents had the right to dictate who their 17 year old daughters have sex with...

Ghislaine

quote:


Originally posted by HeatherM:
[b]Hi fellow babblers
Thank you for being so civilized, even if you disagree. I called Palin "white trash" (why? because she is white and she is trash, and she thinks raped incest victims should bear their dad's baby, don't get me started ...)

[/b]


Fine. The term does have racist and classist undertones however.

Why did you write that she is not female? Women can hold any views - even anti-feminist ones- and they are still female. That is the part I found most offensive and frankly sexist.

contrarianna

quote:


Is there really a Bob Jones of Bob Jones University? He wants to meet me, I take it with an AK-47 in his hand.[/QB]

Yes, Heather, there is a Bob Jones (though I prefer Billy-Bob Jones University).

You can identify your tryst-mate by this enlightening video (where he is born again--twice--so it looks like your only defense against the AK 47 is a wooden stake).
[url=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3MRJ3wA5neU]Bob Jones died--and was sent back from heavens gate[/url]

contrarianna

quote:


Originally posted by Ghislaine:
[b]

Why did you write that she is not female?[/b]


Now that's a literalist enough reading of what Heather said to get you tuition to Billy-Bob Jones University.

Mallik:"No, she isn't even female really. She's a type, and she comes in male form too."

Wally Keeler

I have a close friend who gave birth to the daughter of a rapist. I will have to inform her that Heather Mallick wishes her fine and loving daughter was never born.

contrarianna

quote:


Originally posted by Wally Keeler:
[b]I have a close friend who gave birth to the daughter of a rapist. I will have to inform her that Heather Mallick wishes her fine and loving daughter was never born.[/b]

Assuming for just a moment you are not just a troll,
--how clueless are you? The essence of "choice" is precisely not other people's "wishes" (or state demands), it is that your alleged friend has a choice whether or not she wishes to carry her rapist's fetus to term.

[ 10 September 2008: Message edited by: contrarianna ]

Ghislaine

quote:


Originally posted by Wally Keeler:
[b]I have a close friend who gave birth to the daughter of a rapist. I will have to inform her that Heather Mallick wishes her fine and loving daughter was never born.[/b]

That was her choice and no one here is suggesting that she should not have that choice.

remind remind's picture

quote:


Originally posted by Ghislaine:
[b]Did anyone else find parts of [url=http://www.rabble.ca/columnists_full.shtml?x=75127]this column[/url] incredibly offensive? [/b]

Nope, i thought she was dead on the money, so to speak, and very amusing while doing it.

What I found really offensive was having a Stephen Harper picture up, with his thumb up, on the rabble main page. Though one could choose to take it as his giving approval for Mallick's words, I suppose. [img]wink.gif" border="0[/img]

quote:

[b]The original thread on cbc.ca has some commentators saying they will complain to the CBC ombudsman about this column.[/b]

For what? Giving her opinion?

Ghislaine

quote:


Originally posted by remind:
[b]

For what? Giving her opinion?[/b]


For being paid by the taxpayer for using an arguably racist and classist phrase.

Wally Keeler

"I called Palin "white trash" (why? because she is white and she is trash, and she thinks raped incest victims should bear their dad's baby"

Any woman who freely chooses to bring a child to birth, regardless of who the father is, deserves to be respected. The daughter of my friend knows full well the stigma of being the daughter of a rapist -- there are people who have taunted her for being born, and she had known people who have especially degraded and trashed her white-skinned mother for her free choice. Mallick has clearly demonstrated that if a woman does not freely choose as mallick would have chosen, then that woman deserves to be trashed for her free choice.

Get it?

Wally Keeler

Contrarian said: "your alleged friend's daughter has a choice whether or not she wishes to carry her rapist's fetus to term."

You need a reading and comprehension refresher course. I never said that my friend's daughter gave birth to the rapist's child.

ElizaQ ElizaQ's picture

quote:


Originally posted by Wally Keeler:
[b]"I called Palin "white trash" (why? because she is white and she is trash, and she thinks raped incest victims should bear their dad's baby"

Any woman who freely chooses to bring a child to birth, regardless of who the father is, deserves to be respected. The daughter of my friend knows full well the stigma of being the daughter of a rapist -- there are people who have taunted her for being born, and she had known people who have especially degraded and trashed her white-skinned mother for her free choice. Mallick has clearly demonstrated that if a woman does not freely choose as mallick would have chosen, then that woman deserves to be trashed for her free choice.

Get it?[/b]


No that's not what Mallick is saying at all. I don't like the phrases either but that doesn't mean that she's saying that.

She is saying that she thinks Palin is not good (trash) because PALIN thinks that no woman should be given the choice. PALIN wants to make it illegal for women to have any say in the matter, no matter what their end choice is. So your friend would not have even had the ability to make any choice whatsoever. It would have been made for her by somebody else.

Get it?

M. Spector M. Spector's picture

Mallick has the unfortunate habit of dealing in caricatures and stereotypes. Reading her stuff is (stylistically) a lot like reading a monologue by Bill Maher or Dennis Miller, only not as funny.

Wally Keeler

In every legal sense, I have voted for free choice, however, I am disgusted with the unbridled malice of too many pro-choicers, and as much as you want to downgrade Mallick's hateful and spiteful rant, makes me want to say that Mallick is more representative of maliciousness of too many feminists.

Mallick has brought down a once respectable movement to a gang of schoolyard bullies who tease, taunt, and degrade those who do not hold the same political view 100% of the time.

I disagree with Palin's stand of compulsory birth, but I disgree more deeply with Mallick's highly degenerate and offensive behaviour towards another woman.

contrarianna

quote:


Originally posted by Wally Keeler:
[b]Contrarian said: "your alleged friend's daughter has a choice whether or not she wishes to carry her rapist's fetus to term."

You need a reading and comprehension refresher course. I never said that my friend's daughter gave birth to the rapist's child.[/b]


Thanks for pointing that out wally, I have corrected my error in reporting your relationships, yet my point is unchanged and your illogic persists.

M. Spector M. Spector's picture

quote:


Originally posted by Wally Keeler:
[b]Mallick has clearly demonstrated that if a woman does not freely choose as mallick would have chosen, then that woman deserves to be trashed for her free choice.[/b]

Either this is a bald-faced lie, or you are the one who needs to take a reading comprehension course.

You choose.

[ 10 September 2008: Message edited by: M. Spector ]

remind remind's picture

Interesting, I find Maher and Miller to be less than funny, and also find Miller quite sexist.

And I see we have another example of sexism with our newest whitest knight running to Palin's rescue trying to deliver and ALL women from us bad feminists, who give feminism, a bad name apparently.

Oh, the guilt, the shame, the horror... [img]rolleyes.gif" border="0[/img]

[ 10 September 2008: Message edited by: remind ]

contrarianna

quote:


Originally posted by Wally Keeler:
[b]
I disagree with Palin's stand of compulsory birth, but I disgree more deeply with Mallick's highly degenerate and offensive behaviour towards another woman.[/b]

"Highly degenerate" is a better description of your fake libertarianism. It's fake because you take more offense at the tone of those you disagree with than with those who actually want to legislate a faith-based elimination of choice. Your linked blog indicates a devotion to right-wing oriented "free speech" sites yet your support of Palin ignores her attempt to get a librarian fired for failing to ban books she didn't like. "Choice" and "Free speech", for you, is obviously just a disposable talking point.

lagatta

I like Heather, and get what she means about "Palin" being a manufactured product.

What I do find very questionable about what she wrote is the idea of parents considering teenagers who are past the "age of consent" as their chattel. It is none of her parents' f-ing business whom a 17-year-old chooses to sleep with. God knows we've all made mistakes in that regard. Oddly, in that Heather resembles Sarah Palin.

Though teenagers must have access to sex education and contraception, including abortion.

contrarianna

I don't always agree with Mallick, and for me there are a number of dead lilys in this bouquet. But don't forget this is meant as a humour column and hyperbole is a device she favours.

So if you are referring to the following quote in your criticism, you might just as well decry that she is advocating killing "ratboy".
"I know that I have an attachment to children that verges on the irrational, but why don't the Palins? I'm not the one preaching homespun values but I'd destroy that ratboy before I'd let him get within scenting range of my daughter again"

morningstar

good grief---I'm still laughing---I thank the universe for H.M.everytime I begin to feel that it's all just too much.
She says all of the things that I was carefully trained out of saying and it's honest and hiliarious.
If any of it prickles a bit, just take it with a dose of giggles--it surely does us good.

al-Qa'bong

I like Mallick too, although she does tend to come across as snobby quite often, even when I agree with her.

I chanced to hear some of "The Stafford Show" after "Leafs Lunch" on the internet today. Even if by accident, and even if hearing these yahoos encourages my inner hick to reach for the shotgun and blow up my computer real good, it's occasionally interesting to hear what the looney-tune right-wing fringe, (a.k.a. "The Mainstream Media") has to say.

Guess, what? Mike and his sidekick were talking about our Heather today. Mike said she's insane, although characteristically, he wasn't bothered by questions of sexism or classism, two issues which rate far lower in importance than the heartbreak of psoriasis or pattern baldness in his books.

He also said she should be kicked off the taxpayer-funded CBC and get a real journalism job; one where she would have to answer to advertisers. Mikey has a point there, anyone who strays from the message that liberal-capitalism in all its glorious manifestations is the Lord's work ought to be unemployed.

There really isn't room for unfettered thought in the arena of public opinion. It's just bad for business.

That said, as a working-class Saskavite with strong rural roots, I'm not crazy about such classist terms as "white trash" or "hillbilly," given that we here in the land of living skies have been called, for example, "inbred banjo-pickers" by those to the east of us.

Wally Keeler

Contrarian writes: "Your linked blog indicates a devotion to right-wing oriented "free speech" sites yet your support of Palin ignores her attempt to get a librarian fired for failing to ban books she didn't like. "Choice" and "Free speech", for you, is obviously just a disposable talking point."

You can be sure that I would have slapped Palin's hand in that instance of her banning a book. You assume that I am a supporter of Palin in every instance -- your presumption is erroneous. Yes, I habituate several "right wing" sites because, unlike the left, I support their premise that the Human Rights Commissions in Canada are gagging free speech above and beyond what the Victorians did in their day.

I guess you are one of those who tar people as guilty by association. So if there is "white trash" then what would qualify as "black trash?"

Wally Keeler

Heather Mallick is a paid agent of the government of Canada via the CBC. Part of my tax paid for the malevolent fungus growing inside her mouth. If there is any "white trash" on this thread it is her. Why? Because she is white and because she is trash, and because she uses taxpayers money to poison debate with malevolent and peurile arguements. She sucks federal taxcock and swallows it. She is a typical bureauCRAP.

Michelle

quote:


Originally posted by Wally Keeler:
[b]She sucks federal taxcock and swallows it. [/b]

Uh, yeah. Bye, misogynist.

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

That last comment was unnecessary and offensive. I don't think it is fitting on Babble to have a Rabble columnist subjected to overt misongyny.

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

Cross posted with Michelle. Thx Michelle

Michelle

Jinx, buy me a drink!

N.R.KISSED

sometimes Maoist re-education camps just seem to make sense

M. Spector M. Spector's picture

quote:


Originally posted by kropotkin1951:
[b]That last comment was unnecessary and offensive. I don't think it is fitting on Babble to have a Rabble columnist subjected to overt misongyny.[/b]

You don't, however, seem to have any problem with babblers accusing each other of a [url=http://www.rabble.ca/babble/ultimatebb.cgi?ubb=get_topic&f=47&t=000029&p... debating style[/url].

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

quote:


Originally posted by M. Spector:
[b]You don't, however, seem to have any problem with babblers accusing each other of a [url=http://www.rabble.ca/babble/ultimatebb.cgi?ubb=get_topic&f=47&t=000029&p... debating style[/url].[/b]

Back to stalking people are you. Go get a life. You seem to know how to write sarcasm why can't you understand it?

lagatta

By the way, Heather Mallick is not "white". She is of mixed background; South Asian and Scottish, if I'm not mistaken.

al Q, I've never heard that about people from Saskatchewan. The only Westerners I've heard slagged here in a stereotypical sense are Albertans. I think there is a lot of respect for Saskatchewan as the cradle of social democracy.

N.Beltov N.Beltov's picture

The culture wars are too important to be sidetracked by sniping, misogyny, and so on. There's no reason why Mallick's remarks can't be a catalyst for good debate on babble in which light, and not only heat, is produced.

Crap. Did I take a liberal pill or something? Anyway, carry on.

Michelle

I didn't see that at the time or I would have said something.

The term "white trash" is not only classist, which is obvious, but racist as well. And I don't mean "reverse racism" either. When someone says that someone is "white trash" there is an assumption in that phrase. An assumption that "trash" usually isn't "white" and therefore when it is, the phrase needs to be qualified.

White trash, as opposed to the usual plain old trash.

[url=http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/White_trash]What "white trash" means.[/url]

A way to insult poor people with low education and no prospects. (Complete with the racist assumption being that you have to differentiate the WHITE "trash" from all the rest of the "trash".)

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

quote:


Originally posted by Michelle:
[b]I didn't see that at the time or I would have said something.

The term "white trash" is not only classist, which is obvious, but racist as well. And I don't mean "reverse racism" either. When someone says that someone is "white trash" there is an assumption in that phrase. An assumption that "trash" usually isn't "white" and therefore when it is, the phrase needs to be qualified.

White trash, as opposed to the usual plain old trash.

[url=http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/White_trash]What "white trash" means.[/url]

A way to insult poor people with low education and no prospects. (Complete with the racist assumption being that you have to differentiate the WHITE "trash" from all the rest of the "trash".)[/b]


quote:

Only a fool would seek to expunge from the English language all references to the colour black, out of a combination of ignorance and white liberal guilt.

If you had responded to this comment which is what my sarcastic response was replying too I wound not have. When I am being called a fool, ignorant and a liberal seldom will I not respond.

Timebandit Timebandit's picture

quote:


Originally posted by lagatta:
[b]I like Heather, and get what she means about "Palin" being a manufactured product.

What I do find very questionable about what she wrote is the idea of parents considering teenagers who are past the "age of consent" as their chattel. It is none of her parents' f-ing business whom a 17-year-old chooses to sleep with. God knows we've all made mistakes in that regard. Oddly, in that Heather resembles Sarah Palin.

Though teenagers must have access to sex education and contraception, including abortion.[/b]


I agree with your last line, lagatta, but I am totally with HM on the "ratboy" comment. It's more complicated than the idea of teenager as chattel -- and yes, as the mother of two daughters who are not yet but will in a few years be teenagers, everything that has a big effect on their lives has a huge effect on mine.

I might have agreed with your assessment before I had kids, but now I just don't see it through the same lens. It's different remembering what it felt like to be a teenager and knowing what it feels like to be responsible for someone else.

quote:

I didn't know that parents had the right to dictate who their 17 year old daughters have sex with...

What does "right" have to do with it?

Ghislaine

quote:


Originally posted by Michelle:
[b]I didn't see that at the time or I would have said something.

The term "white trash" is not only classist, which is obvious, but racist as well. And I don't mean "reverse racism" either. When someone says that someone is "white trash" there is an assumption in that phrase. An assumption that "trash" usually isn't "white" and therefore when it is, the phrase needs to be qualified.

White trash, as opposed to the usual plain old trash.

[url=http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/White_trash]What "white trash" means.[/url]

A way to insult poor people with low education and no prospects. (Complete with the racist assumption being that you have to differentiate the WHITE "trash" from all the rest of the "trash".)[/b]


So is Heather M banned along with Wally?

al-Qa'bong

"While white trash is most commonly used as a pejorative, low- to middle-income rural whites often self-identify as rednecks."

Didn't that guy who may soon become Sarah Palin's son-in-law call himself a redneck?

About a year ago I was in a room full of tractor mechanics who proudly self-identified as "crackers." They thought it was funny being a cultural stereotype, down to the clichй of having gun-racks in the rear window of their half-tons.

M. Spector M. Spector's picture

quote:


Originally posted by kropotkin1951:
[b]Back to stalking people are you. Go get a life. You seem to know how to write sarcasm why can't you understand it?[/b]

Stalking you? Ha. I wouldn't bother. I was in this thread a long time before you were. You came along and started making pronouncements about what babblers shouldn't be calling one another. I merely exposed your hypocrisy.

Ironic racism is not allowed on babble. Yet you defend classist, racist terminology directed in anger at another babbler as being "sarcasm".

Maybe you're the one who needs to get a life. Or at least a clue.

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

Then just ignore my posts. You insulted me instead of debating the issue of language respectfully and I responded. I admit responding to your comments was beneath me and I apologise for stepping into the gutter with you to respond.

Michelle

All right, guys. Calm down. I wasn't getting you in trouble, kropotkin, I was just saying that I think that the term "white trash" is really problematic, whether people are using it for humour, sarcasm, anger, justified outrage or whatever. In case people thought I was being inconsistent in having a problem with Wally's overt sexism, but not having a problem with "white trash". I definitely do have a problem with it.

In Wally's case, though, it was clear trolling, whereas Heather and kropotkin have a history here of being progressive, positive contributors to our forums and our web site, so obviously a different approach is needed when we or our allies say something problematic, right?

[ 10 September 2008: Message edited by: Michelle ]

Ghislaine

quote:


Originally posted by Michelle:
[b]All right, guys. Calm down. I wasn't getting you in trouble, kropotkin, I was just saying that I think that the term "white trash" is really problematic, whether people are using it for humour, sarcasm, anger, justified outrage or whatever. In case people thought I was being inconsistent in having a problem with Wally's overt sexism, but not having a problem with "white trash". I definitely do have a problem with it.

In Wally's case, though, it was clear trolling, whereas Heather and kropotkin have a history here of being progressive, positive contributors to our forums and our web site, so obviously a different approach is needed when we or our allies say something problematic, right?

[ 10 September 2008: Message edited by: Michelle ][/b]


So should such problematic terms be part of public broadcasting? I resent someone who is obviously well off using racist classist terminology and getting paid by us. I am surprised that the CBC editors would allow it as is.

Scout

Send them a letter then and spare us. [img]rolleyes.gif" border="0[/img] [img]rolleyes.gif" border="0[/img] [img]rolleyes.gif" border="0[/img] [img]rolleyes.gif" border="0[/img]

Sineed

quote:


Originally posted by Michelle:
[b]
The term "white trash" is not only classist, which is obvious, but racist as well. And I don't mean "reverse racism" either. When someone says that someone is "white trash" there is an assumption in that phrase. An assumption that "trash" usually isn't "white" and therefore when it is, the phrase needs to be qualified.

White trash, as opposed to the usual plain old trash.

[url=http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/White_trash]What "white trash" means.[/url]

A way to insult poor people with low education and no prospects. (Complete with the racist assumption being that you have to differentiate the WHITE "trash" from all the rest of the "trash".)[/b]


This objection to Heather's use of "white trash" misses the point because you're taking it out of context.

If I were to call, say, one of my clients at the methadone clinic "white trash," it would be hurtful and offensive. But Heather is taking this pejorative and turning it on its head to apply it to someone who is potentially a heartbeat away from the presidency; someone who used her position as governor to exercise a petty vendetta; someone who forbids sex ed for teens; someone against abortion in all cases.

Heather is not using this term strictly as a pejorative. She's using it as a cultural critique.

When Heather speaks of "white trash," she is pointing to a damaging aspect of American culture. She enlarges on this more eloquently than I can, but basically it's that part of America that's proudly anti-intellectual, bigoted, hypocritical, falsely and manipulatively sentimental, xenophobic, war-mongering, and socially regressive.

And that's why so many people are pissed off at Heather: she's not just insulting Palin, but a lot of Americans.

remind remind's picture

quote:


Originally posted by Sineed:
[b]Heather is not using this term strictly as a pejorative. She's using it as a cultural critique.

When Heather speaks of "white trash," she is pointing to a damaging aspect of American culture. She enlarges on this more eloquently than I can, but basically it's that part of America that's proudly anti-intellectual, bigoted, hypocritical, falsely and manipulatively sentimental, xenophobic, war-mongering, and socially regressive.

And that's why so many people are pissed off at Heather: she's not just insulting Palin, but a lot of Americans.[/b]


This bears repeating! Thank you, for pointing out Heather's, what I now consider brilliant, social critique, as I thought it was just amusing before, and thought everyone would get it.

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