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How racists advance
    The ploy that racists have used in the last decade or more is that we Americans are "beyond" racism. This was the thesis of one reactionary author's book & undergirds the support given to Arizona's utterly racist "illegal immigration" law, which is in actuality a law designed to give the appearance of legality to the disfranchisement & harassment of the latino community. The same white racist legislature has also classified a latino studies law as ITSELF racist . . . and this is in keeping with their strategy of trying to de-legitimate all ethnic or gender studies courses at all levels of education.

    We see reactionary laws and parties succeeding in the US and globally because they employ the old tactic of divide and conquer, which worked so well following the Napoleonic wars & America's Civil War. The coalition that made a struggle for the Union in the US into a struggle against slavery was driven apart in the aftermath by the internal battle that developed between the advocates of women's suffrage & advocates for ex-slaves' suffrage, and into the breach, once Reconstruction was ended, the defeated Confederate states managed to create Jim Crow laws & extend their influence beyond what could have been suspected after the success in destroying the CSA which had enshrined slavery in its constitution.

   In the same way, the right-wing in 1972 and in 1980 & subsequent elections has exploited differences within the large movement for civil rights in the '60s, creating falsely 'independent' groups (like the Orwellian 'Independent Women's Forum' or The Log Cabin Republicans) while trying to exacerbate divisions between the various camps which stand FOR the advancement of long-disfranchised communities still struggling to achieve equality. 

    Existing racial tensions within the women's movement expanded to frankly crippling divisions over distribution between white-european-derived women & women of color. Many women who were happy to take the advancement of perosnal prosperity as proof of feminism also turned on others to demonstrate that they could be relied on to preserve class structures intact as well.

    Part of the ineffectiveness of left politics in recent generations has been the absence of a critical tool which can assist in distinguishing the difference between those who genuinely seek equality though being raised & educated & placed in the groups which previously held power, and those who oppose equality. My family & I were, like so many, born on the fault lines in society, and it took my older sister & I a good deal of energy & effort to deal with those divisions within ourselves individual. But those divisions exist everywhere, and actually seeking & creating the sort of commonality which recognizes the divisions without at the same time exploiting & exaggerating them is no easy work, but the real minority & reactionary powers in society have & will take advantage, as Chirac & Sarkozy took advantage of the divisions in the left in France, as the Tories did in the UK, as the anti-reproductive freedom groups have in the US -- and those of us who work mainly in the imaginative field & try to bring out its full social & political realities to the fore are, whether we want to be or not, in the frontlines of this struggle. When someone IS in fact plainly on our side -- and for all the feminist objections to parts of his work, Joss Whedon IS absolutely & reasolutely on the side of the angels, NOT on the side of racists & homophobes & misogynists, and when I'm engaged in criticism, I feel it's necessary for me to clarify & affirm this. Those who are anti-feminist, anti-gay, anti-racial equality will find no support or friend in Jossverse, even when they try to claim parts of his work.