On the Armenian Genocide:

Some thoughts from The Weekly Standard. It’s a little chilling to think how obsessed some in our society are with placing individuals into neat categories:

Mass exterminations generally involve two prerequisites: 1) a mandated program by a centralized state power, and 2) a well-coordinated, aggressive propaganda campaign that enlists public support in vilifying the targeted group. It’s also worth noting that war often serves as cover for genocide; the Armenian Genocide took place during the total war conditions of World War I.Propaganda campaigns to dehumanize the victims are central to virtually every mass killing in history. Generally, the targeted group — in this case, Armenian Christians — is vilified and ostracized by the rest of society. Such messages saturate the media and mobilize the culture until the groupthink emerges and takes on a life of its own. Opposing opinions are easily suppressed under the weight of groupthink. Once they’ve cultivated an us-versus-them mentality, perpetrators feel justified and enabled to commit acts of violence. This seems to be a human default position to which most people succumb – whether as culprits, victims, or silent bystanders.Perhaps most fascinating about this phenomenon is how often the perpetrators actually project onto the victims their own intentions. Consider that the Jews in Nazi Germany were exterminated for being a “threat” to the German nation. Likewise, the genocide of up to a million Tutsis in Rwanda in 1994 was accompanied by a massive propaganda campaign in which the Hutus totally demonized the Tutsis, for having wild designs against the Hutus.Pre-homicidal propaganda campaigns don’t always center on ethnicity or religion. They can be about anything else in identity politics, including class status. In the 1930s, for example, communist dictator Joseph Stalin forced the collectivization of agriculture in the Soviet Union by systematically killing and starving millions of industrious peasants — the “kulak” class – who were labeled “enemies of the people.”

Source: Genocide Begins with Groupthink | The Weekly Standard

Slate – Monica Lewinsky returns: How Maureen Dowd caricatured Bill Clinton’s mistress as a crazy bimbo.

When the scandal broke in January of that year, Dowd was initially sympathetic to Lewinsky and damning of an administration that rushed to smear her in a bid to cover its own ass. “Inside the White House, the debate goes on about the best way to destroy That Woman, as the President called Monica Lewinsky,” Dowd wrote. “Should they paint her as a friendly fantasist or a malicious stalker? … At least some of the veteran Clinton shooters feel a little nauseated this time around, after smearing so many women who were probably telling the truth as trashy bimbos. … It is probably just a matter of moments before we hear that Ms. Lewinsky is a little nutty and a little slutty.” Dowd also had words for feminists who were eager to throw Lewinsky under the bus to save their Democratic overlord: “[O]nce you decide it’s O.K. to sacrifice individual women for the greater good, you set a dangerous precedent,” Dowd wrote. “The revolution always eats its own.”

And how! It didn’t take long for Dowd to buckle under the power of the Clinton narrative and join the pile-on herself. By February, she was calling Lewinsky “a ditsy, predatory White House intern who might have lied under oath for a job at Revlon” and “the girl who was too tubby to be in the high school ‘in’ crowd.” At first, Dowd attempted to pass this nastiness off as a sly, satirical commentary on the caricature of Lewinsky that the Clinton administration had painted in the press. But soon, the artifice disappeared, and Dowd devoted her column to arguing that, come to think of it, Lewinsky was both nutty and slutty.

via Monica Lewinsky returns: How Maureen Dowd caricatured Bill Clinton’s mistress as a crazy bimbo..

Female inmates sterilized in California prisons without approval – Health and Medicine – The Sacramento Bee

"As soon as he found out that I had five kids, he suggested that I look into getting it done. The closer I got to my due date, the more he talked about it," said Christina Cordero, 34, who spent two years in prison for auto theft. "He made me feel like a bad mother if I didn’t do it."

Cordero, released in 2008 and now living in Upland, agreed to the procedure. "Today," she said, "I wish I would have never had it done."

The allegations echo those made nearly a half-century ago, when forced sterilizations of prisoners, the mentally ill and the poor were commonplace in California. State lawmakers officially banned such practices in 1979.

via Female inmates sterilized in California prisons without approval – Health and Medicine – The Sacramento Bee.

Sex Abuse Scandals Rock the BBC | Via Meadia

I’ve said it before – you could probably take just the LA School District and have more sex scandals than the entire Catholic Church over the same time period.

It’s almost enough to make a person think that when a society casts sexual restraint and self control to the winds, the young and the weak become victims of a culture of exploitation and gratification. It’s almost enough to make someone wonder if unbridled and socially glorified libertinism rather than celibacy is the leading cause of the sexual exploitation of minors.

But no… Thoughts like that are much too depressing. That train of thought leads to the dismal conclusion that some sort of, well, original sin has twisted human nature so that terrible things happen in all our institutions, however modern and freethinking they are. Let’s stop that kind of thinking as quickly as possible; it’s much more comfortable to think that good resolutions, lots of police, and a healthy attitude toward recreational sex will make everything right. Eventually.

via Sex Abuse Scandals Rock the BBC | Via Meadia.

Egyptian mosque turned into house of torture for Christians after Muslim Brotherhood protest | Fox News

Ayad said he was beaten for hours with sticks before being left for dead on a roadside. Amir’s brother, Ezzat Ayad, said he received an anonymous phone call at 3 a.m. Saturday, with the caller saying his brother had been found near death and had been taken to the ambulance.

“He underwent radiation treatment that proved that he suffered a fracture in the bottom of his skull, a fracture in his left arm, a bleeding in the right eye, and birdshot injuries,” Ezzat Ayad said.

Officials at the Bilal ibn Rabah Mosque said radical militias stormed the building, in the Cairo suburb of Moqattam, after Friday prayers.

“[We] deeply regret what has happened and apologize to the people of Moqattam,” mosque officials said in a statement, adding that “they had lost control over the mosque at the time.”

The statement also “denounced and condemned the violence and involving mosques in political conflicts.”

via Egyptian mosque turned into house of torture for Christians after Muslim Brotherhood protest | Fox News.