The Silence of Our Friends

Monday, October 02, 2006

Who are our enemies? Who are our friends?

I guess life is just more complicated than this simple Maliseet woman ever thought...

We are told that Chavez and Venezuela are eeeevvvviiiillll! And yet they go and do something like this, something our own government will not do for us.

From Indian Country Today, Venezuela offers cheap heating oil
NEW YORK - An unprecedented gift of warmth is destined for North American reservations this winter, where tribal governments have been offered drastically discounted heating oil by Venezuela's nationally owned petroleum company.

The offer comes through Houston-based CITGO Petroleum Corp., which has committed to 10 million gallons of fuel for tribes at a 40 percent discount, with the discounted portion treated as a charitable donation to American Indians and Alaska Native governments.

CITGO is a subsidiary of Venezuela's Petroleos de Venezuela S.A., which distributed 40 million gallons of discounted fuel through nonprofit organizations last winter in the aftermath of hurricanes Katrina and Rita. The program has been expanded to a total of 100 million gallons this year.

Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez inaugurated the program before an enthusiastic audience in New York on Sept. 21, where blacks, Latinos and more than 300 American Indians packed Harlem's Mount Olive Baptist Church.

Wow, now that is a multi-ethnic group in Harlem. How unexpected. It's almost as unexpected as getting discounted heating oil from our enemy. Read the whole story, this will be the second year the Wabanaki tribes are benefiting from this program.

Meanwhile what have our friends been up to? It appears they have been to Harlem too, the Official Blog has the info.

...Well, what some of you may not know is that the lack of people of colour (POC) in the lineup also brought some criticism. How, pray tell, does the liberal blogsphere respond? By supporting the POC who, having seen this kind of thing countless times, have raised this issue? Of course not...

...The point, of course, being that there weren’t any POC on the panel because the effort to reach out to them was non-existent (and, no, sorry, but no cookie is given for “effort” because the person set up to be the “token minority” declined the invite). And, no, it’s not because there aren’t excellent political bloggers who aren’t white, either. Yet again, the privileged section of the blogsphere was given a chance to examine their privilege and go, “Huh. That is unfortunate. Next time we gotta do better,” and, yet again, they passed it up and instead went with the familiar comfort of racism.

According to Kai at Zuky the “good intentions” monster reared its ugly head (reminding me that I need to add that to the list of things I need to post about). I’ve gotten to the point where I just don’t buy the “good intentions” line anymore because it’s so often used to silence dissent from the minority group or person in question. Hey, dissenters, if your intentions are so good, put your money where your mouth is and actually listen to what the POC bloggers are saying! Seriously, how hard it is it to translate good intentions into good actions? And I’ll give you a tip: personally attacking a POC blogger for speaking out isn’t the way to prove to the world the purity of your intentions. Neither is de-linking them, as seems to have happened over at Kos’ blog.

How does the saying go? "With friends like these..."

6 comment(s):

With friend like these....

you develop twitches and homicidal urges from stress?

Awesome blog

By Blogger Blackamazon, at 10/04/2006 12:37 AM  

Oh I am developing those twitches and homicidal urges, especially watching what is going on with that burqa graphic at Pandagon.

I'm glad you found my blog and I think yours is awesome too!

By Blogger Donna, at 10/04/2006 1:54 AM  

"With friends like these, who needs enemas?"

By Blogger belledame222, at 10/07/2006 10:32 PM  

Yes - is is so odd that people accept this idea that Chavez is the enemy.

Anyway: I got your message, went to Womenspace, and am working on that translation!

By Anonymous Professor Zero, at 10/22/2006 6:23 PM  

I don't doubt that part of the reason Chavez does some of these things is simply to tweak the Bush administration. But I definitely do not buy any American government line on who our enemies or friends are. Friends are always either friendly to American corporations for their own purposes, many times because they are corrupt, or US puppet governments. This is why Saddam Hussein was our "friend" even while he was "killing his own people" when he would play ball American style, and our enemy when he started talking about using euros for oil instead of dollars. We can't have that!

By Blogger Donna, at 10/23/2006 3:06 AM  

Oh and thank you so much for taking the time to translate. That story is simply heartbreaking, she was so close to realizing her dream and coming home to her children.

By Blogger Donna, at 10/23/2006 3:11 AM  

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