Monday, February 27, 2012

Music: Koja Misako - Warabi-Gami

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Al Jazeera English: Empire: Hollywood and the war machine

Al Jazeera network explore how Hollywood working with the pentagon and the U.S military to create war propaganda movies

the white supremacist kommando camp that turns boys' doubts to hate


Thick clouds of diesel smoke fill the air outside a run-down guest farm outside the town of Carolina in Mpumalanga. As the stench dissipates, a group of boys, aged between 13 and 19, spill from the bed of a rusty truck. The trip from the city to the country was long and hypnotic in the old jalopy.

It is after midnight when the boys heft bags full of military clothing. "There are old blood stains on my uniform," one of them says, as he trades his sneakers for army boots.

Shouted orders ring out. The harsh intimidation begins immediately. Groaning, the boys raise 4m tent poles among the cowpats dotting the grassland. The large army tent will be their home for the next nine days.

Thirteen-year-old Jano, the youngest at the camp, spreads his sleeping bag on the bumpy floor. He is at the camp because he wants to prove to his father that he isn't a sissy but a real man, he says with a shy smile.

At 18, Riaan is already a little more self-assured. His lily-white skin is recovering from acne. "I want to learn how to camouflage myself in the veld." He, too, seems excited to be camping out and playing soldier, as if he's living an adventure out of a boyhood novel.

But soon they will realise this survival camp is different to others held in the veld.

The boys run from the tent to the mess hall. Before them, under the glare of fluorescent lighting, stands 57-year-old Franz Jooste. Old army decorations gleam on his apartheid-era uniform. The uniforms of the boys also come from that era.

"We're going to make men of you all," he tells them in Afrikaans.

'Protecting its own people'
Jooste is the head of the Kommando-korps, a small, little-known right-wing group bent on breeding hate and banking on some young Afrikaners' sense of not belonging in the new South Africa to get there. 

On its website, the Kommandokorps describes itself as an elite organisation "protecting its own people" in the event of an attack, it writes, necessary "because the police and the military cannot provide help quickly enough".

Last year, it signed a saamstaanverdrag (a unity pact) with the Afrikaner Weerstandsbeweging (AWB) and the Suidlanders -- a small whites-only group that is awaiting the racial apocalypse -- to coordinate their security strategy together.
The organisation claims to have trained more than 1 500 Boere-Afrikaner jongmanne in defence skills over the past 11 years. Jooste, who spreads his message by e-mail and in newsletters, says that 40% of boys sign up themselves. The rest are volunteered by their parents.

The teenagers at the camp all know crime horror stories and feel responsible for protecting their families. "We always have to lock our doors at night," 18-year-old Nicolas says. "This camp will teach me how to protect my father and mother, and little brother and sister."

At 4.30am on the first morning of camp, the boys are sent out on a 2km run in their heavy army boots, down a rocky country road filled with potholes. The organisation aspires to instil discipline through sweat. The war of attrition has begun. Indoctrination takes root best in exhausted ground.

Sixteen-year-old EC is in the middle of the panting troop. He is one of the smallest boys here, a childlike teenager who is thrilled at being able to shoot his paintball gun.

'I don't like racism'
"I want to be able to defend myself. And I am also doing this for my paintball career," he says with a smile. His mother is a single mom and sent him to the camp because she feels it will be good for her boy to be surrounded by men.

After they catch their breath, we talk about their country. The teenagers say they believe in the idea of the rainbow nation but the contradictions soon emerge.

"People generally get along pretty well," Riaan says. "We have to fight racism." EC has two black friends, Thabang and Tshepo. "I don't like racism."

"I don't know what apartheid is," Jano says. "But a long time ago, Nelson Mandela made it so everyone has the same rights." Then EC adds he would never marry a black woman and Jano says he is afraid when he walks past black people.

The group is called to a small field next to the community hall. They line up in military formation while a camp leader unfolds the old South African flag. They fill their lungs with air and start singing: "Uit die blou van onse hemel, Uit die diepte van ons see, Oor ons ewige gebergtes waar die kranse antwoord gee."

Some struggle with the words of the apartheid national anthem.

Meanwhile, Jooste sits in the mess hall. Kitsch paintings of buffalos, elephants and rhinos hang on the walls, and the wicker furniture is covered in zebra print. He looks through the glasses on his nose at the camp's schedule. It is written down in military style and every minute seems accounted for.

Proud veteran
There are slots for self-defence techniques, radio communication and how to patrol, as well as lectures on patriotism and the history of the border wars.

Jooste is a proud veteran. He fought on South Africa's borders with Zimbabwe and Mozambique and in Angola. He is scarred, he says, by what he calls treason; while
he was fighting for the white regime, his leaders were making peace with Nelson Mandela. After his army service, he was active in the AWB.

Before his most important lecture, "Die vyand en bedreiging" (The enemy and the threat), Jooste boasts that it will take him just an hour to change the boys' minds. "Then they'll know they aren't part of the rainbow nation but part of another nation with an important history."

His cadets sit cross-legged on the ground in the mess hall. When he speaks the teens listen quietly. "Aside from the Aborigines in Australia, the African black is the most underdeveloped, barbaric member of the human race on Earth," he says. He tells the boys that black people have a smaller cerebral cortex than whites and thus cannot take initiative or govern effectively.

"Who is my enemy in South Africa? Who murders, robs and rapes?" "Who are these creatures?" he asks. "The blacks," he answers.

He picks up the current South African flag and lays it before the entrance to the mess hall like a doormat. He orders the boys to wipe their filthy army boots on it. They laugh uncertainly, then they do as they are told. Only Nicolas stands back.

Jooste tells them that they should love the old South African flag and the old national anthem.

Fear and superiority
An extreme form of patriotism runs through groups like this one; the cadets at this camp are taught that the country should not return to apartheid but, rather, they must work to acquire their own independent nation. Jooste last year got elected on to the Volksraad Verkiesing Kommissie (People's Council Electoral Commission), a group that fights for Afrikaner nationalism.

Hermann Gilomee, a renowned writer on Afrikaners and an extraordinary professor in history at the University of Stellenbosch, says apartheid stemmed from two sources: fear and a sense of superiority. You can still see them in Jooste. The primary fear is for the loss of Afrikaner identity -- their culture, language and symbols -- as a separate people. Jooste is desperate to conserve this sense of separateness and create a new generation of Afrikaners who carry his ideas. It is his mission to indoctrinate young Afrikaners like Nicolas, Riaan, Jano and EC, who are struggling to determine their position in the country.

Born after the end of apartheid, they feel unwanted, says Unisa associate professor Eliria Bornman of the department of communication science who did research on Afrikaner identity. "They know they're different from the rest of the population. Any leader can take their frustration and channel it in a negative way."

Outside the tent, the cadets are made to crawl across the ground, army-style, gripping a wooden beam they call liefie in their arms, their knuckles bleeding. "Persevere! You've got to learn to persevere," Jooste shouts. The sound of crying rises from the rearmost ranks. Jooste's assistants, older members of the Kommando­korps, grin as they take photos of the boys with their cellphones.

EC is struggling. The beam weighs almost a third as much as he does. The nights, too, are hitting him hard. "We sleep on the ground and our sleeping bags get wet. In three nights, I've slept six hours. Every day I think about giving up." But his paintball career seems to keep him going.

'You should hate black people'
The next night they move from the army tent to a nearby forest where they set up two camps. They each get one small tin of canned beans or vegetables to eat and warm themselves near the fire. At first light, one of the groups launches an attack. With the sleep still in their eyes they point and shoot their paintballs.

The young faces are increasingly marked by exhaustion as the days pass, yet the boys seem to grow more and more confident. "The training has taught me that you should hate black people," EC says. "They kill everyone who crosses their path. I don't think I can be friends with Thabang and Tshepo anymore."

Riaan repeats what he has learned in nine days almost word for word. "There's a war going on between blacks and whites. A lot of blood will flow in the future. I definitely feel more like an Afrikaner now. I feel the Afrikaner blood in my veins."

Jooste insists his job is to teach them to defend themselves. He doesn't want to force the boys into any particular direction. "All we want to do is channel the feeling they already carry within them. We don't want them to hate."

But in nine days, boys who once carried a budding belief in South African unity have become toughened men with racist ideas.

At the end of the camp the two boys who performed best are selected. They will get the next course, the gevorderde weerbaarheids kursus (advanced preparedness course), for free. There the paintball guns will be traded in for the real deal.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Madonna to face lawsuit over 'Give Me All Your Luvin''?


Madonna may face a lawsuit over her latest single 'Give Me All Your Luvin''.

Brazilian singer Joao Brasil claims that the track's chorus contains elements from his song 'L.O.V.E. Banana'.

Brasil's record company are contemplating a possible lawsuit over the track, however Brasil himself has revealed he would rather not face off against the singer.

"I still don't understand what happened. I'm a huge fan of hers. If it's plagiarism, then even better. She is always at the cutting edge of music, so it's a good sign about what I do," he told Brazilian newspaper Folha da Sao Pauolo.

"It's in [the record label's] hands, they're looking at how to proceed and what they can do. But personally I don't want to do anything. The last thing I need in my life is a fight with Madonna."

'Give Me All Your Luvin'' will feature on Madonna's upcoming LP MDNA, which will be released on March 26.

Madonna recently denied rumors that Britney Spears will feature on MDNA.

 Joao Brasil's song

Madonna's plagiarized version

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Music Video: Hideaki Tokunaga - Wednesday Moon

A racist flag in a racist war


A racist flag in a racist war

Racism an essential tool for the 1%

February 14, 2012
By Kevin Baker
The author is a former Staff Sergeant in the U.S. Army infantry who served 28 months in Iraq.

The U.S. Marine Corps is in hot water once again over leaked images that give a glimpse into its inner workings.
Just like the recent release of a video showing Marines in Afghanistan urinating on the corpses of Afghan men, the new photo of Marines posing with a Nazi SS flag doesn’t shock me at all, either.
These two situations emerged in different times and locations in the country, but are completely bound together. They are bound with the racism, sense of superiority and sense of nationalism that the military itself embraces and promotes.
Racism is embraced, coddled and on full display by the top leaders of the U.S. military. We see it everywhere, in plain sight. In my time in the U.S. Army, I wore a patch on my shoulder of the 2nd Infantry Division, bearing the image of an “Indian head,” a racist image that Native Americans have fought for decades to have removed as an icon from sports teams, commercial products, and so forth. An image, ironically, once used to dehumanize the people who were being killed and colonized.
But the racism is far more brazen than that. Anyone who has served in the U.S. military knows that, despite the official line of its “Equal Opportunity Program” and official rules and regulations against racism, use of racist terms to dehumanize Muslims and the peoples of the Middle East and South Asia are so common they are part of the everyday vernacular.
Nazi paraphernalia is not uncommon
Many were shocked to see U.S. troops flying a Nazi flag, and there was the immediate excuse that “they didn’t know what it meant.” They must have only meant “Scout Snipers,” with no knowledge that it was a Nazi flag, or that it could be interpreted as such.
That is an absolute joke. In my time as an infantryman, I saw Nazi paraphernalia regularly. Soldiers complained to me that in the barracks of Ranger Regiment on Fort Lewis, Nazi flags being hung in soldiers’ rooms without repercussion. My first tour in Iraq was the first time I remember seeing the “Deaths Head” pin, a symbol of the Nazi SS, placed on the front of soldiers’ vests. It was not the last.
Especially in Special Operations units—such as the Marine snipers in the photo—Nazi symbolism is revered. Why? Quite simply because the Nazis are famous for mercilessly killing and terrorizing millions of people. It fits right in to the mentality expected of Spec Ops.
In fact, when the U.S. military was experiencing a recruiting shortfall in 2005, the Department of Defense changed its supposedly strict policy against allowing self-avowed Nazis to join, and adopted an official “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy regarding members of neo-Nazi and white-supremacist organizations. They could get “moral waivers,” as long as they could “perform satisfactorily” in combat.
The Pentagon needs racism
As the Marine Corps denounced the leaked photo, they announced that there would be no disciplinary action for the Marines flying the Nazi flag, which is not surprising at all. Why would a military so reliant on racism punish racist behavior?
The reality is that U.S. troops have far more in common with the people we are sent to fight than the millionaire politicians who send us. We are told to fight people who also just want a decent life for their families; people who also needlessly suffer under bogus policies of corrupt governments; people who are doing the same thing we would be doing if we were in their shoes. The last thing the Pentagon wants is for rank-and-file troops to identify with the people we are sent to fight, relate to them as human beings, and correctly identify that they are not our enemies.
So in order for the Pentagon to continue sending poor people in the United States to kill and die fighting poor people in Afghanistan, all for the super-profits of a handful of billionaires, they need to wrap the mission in racism, national chauvinism and a sense of superiority.
This is why service members must take a strong stand against racism: it’s a barrier to unity within the ranks of the military, hindering our ability to collectively advocate for our interests, and it distorts who our real enemies are in the world.
A racist war
The rationale for the war rests on several racist assertions. On one hand, there are the assumptions that the people of Afghanistan are too backward or inferior to determine their own destiny; that they’re too helpless to survive without the U.S. occupation; that they need saviors from the West to teach them about democracy, human rights and modernity. On the other hand, there are the assumptions that the people of Afghanistan are somehow responsible for the 9/11 attacks and will launch more attacks; that it is a country of “terrorists” or people who “harbor terrorists”; that they are somehow the aggressors, motivated to fight by anti-American extremism and not by the daily misery and humiliation of life under foreign occupation.
The result is that the lives of the people of Afghanistan are seen as inferior. When Afghan civilians are killed—like the eight children massacred by a NATO aircraft revealed this week—it is supposed to be acceptable collateral damage, barely a footnote in the media. The tens of thousands of innocent people who have been buried, and the hundreds of thousands wounded and displaced, is considered acceptable. It is “acceptable” because we are told it is to somehow save American lives, which by implication are more valuable than Afghan lives.
Without racism and Islamophobia, the reality of the war in Afghanistan would be on full display: An unpopular war waged by millionaire politicians and incompetent generals, who tell us flat-out lies, aimed at nothing other than expanding the reach of Big Business in yet another resource-rich region of the world. Because people in the United States would never want to send their loved ones to die for such an absurd cause, and troops would never want to die for it either, racism becomes an indispensable tool for those who say we must continue to fight.
Those wanting a “kinder, gentler” war, where the troops do not urinate on dead bodies, kill innocent civilians or fly Nazi flags, will continue to be shocked and disappointed. This is an imperialist war. It does not get any “kinder and gentler” than this.
Similar leaks will continue to show—not examples of a few “bad apples”—but the real and inevitable manifestations of the core nature of U.S. foreign policy.

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Actress in Pete Hoekstra ad accused of racism and stereotypes issues an apology


The actress who starred in a political attack ad accused of promoting racial stereotypes has apologized.
Lisa Chan called her participation in the commercial “a mistake” on her Facebook page.
“I am deeply sorry for any pain that the character I portrayed brought to my communities,” Chan wrote.
In the 30-second spot, which aired during the Super Bowl and served as a campaign ad for GOP Senate hopeful Pete Hoekstra, Chan was seen riding a bicycle through a field of rice paddies, as ancient Chinese music played in the background.

“We take your jobs,” she told viewers in broken English.
The ad was attacking Hoekstra’s opponent and incumbent, Sen. Debbie Stabenow, for spending and borrowing money from China.
It sparked a media firestorm and drew criticism from fellow politicians as well as Asian-American groups, who said the ad promoted anti-Asian stereotypes.
This is what prompted Chan to issue an apology, which was first reported by the blog Angry Asian Man.
“As a recent college grad who has spent time working to improve communities and empower those without a voice, this role is not in any way representative of who I am,” she wrote on Facebook.
“It was absolutely a mistake on my part and one that, over time, I hope can be forgiven. I feel horrible about my participation and I am determined to resolve my actions.”
Despite Chan’s regrets, Hoekstra had stood by his decision to run the ad.

“The only group of people that this ad is ‘anti’ — it’s anti-Debbie Stabenow, it’s anti-Barack Obama, the spending policies of the liberal left,” he told Fox News.
“There’s nothing in here that has a racial tint at all.”

Shock Jocks Suspended For Calling Whitney A “Crack Hoe”


On Thursday, popular radio shock jocks John Kobylt and Ken Chiampou (pictured) of station KFI AM 640 in Los Angeles were suspended and forced to apologize for making insensitive and callous remarks about the late iconic songstress Whitney Houston, reports the Los Angeles Times.

The controversial tag team referred to Houston as a “crack h*” and then went on to say that she had been “cracked out for 20 years.”  They also asked, “Really, it [Whitney's death]took this long?”
For their disrespectful remarks, Kobylt and Chiampou, who broadcast their show on weekday afternoons, were suspended by KFI station heads until February 27.
In a statement on the KFI website, the following apology was made to the listeners:
Effective immediately, KFI AM 640 hosts John Kobylt and Ken Chiampou have been suspended for making insensitive and inappropriate comments about the late Whitney Houston.
KFI AM 640 Management does not condone, support or tolerate statements of this kind.”
John Kobylt also released a statement:
We made a mistake, and we accept the station’s decision. We used language that was inappropriate, and we sincerely apologize to our listeners and to the family of Ms. Houston.

This is not the first incident for Kobylt and Chiampou. Just last year, they raised the ire of the Hispanic population, when they gave out the phone number of Jorge-Mario Cabrera, a local immigration rights advocate, on the air.  In no time, Cabrera, a staff member with the Coalition of Humane Immigration Rights of L.A., reportedly received hundreds of hate-filled calls.  The inappropriate move by the foul-mouthed pair was met with a major protest outside of their offices and also resulted in Verizon and AT&T Wireless pulling their advertising revenue from the station.

Asian stereotypes appearing in coverage of Knicks' Jeremy Lin


The feel-good story of the year is taking a bit of nasty turn with Asian stereotyping beginning to appear in media coverage of New York Knicks star guard Jeremy Lin, the NBA's first American-born player of Chinese or Taiwanese descent.

CNBC's Darren Rovell got the ball rolling Wednesday night by questioning why MSG Network showed Lin's face above a fortune cookie during coverage of the Knicks' victory against the Sacramento Kings, with the words, "The Knicks good fortune."
Tweeted Rovell: "MSG walking a fine line with this Lin fortune cookie graphic tonight."

MSG put out a statement Thursday saying it had nothing to do with the image: "What appeared briefly last night was not an MSG graphic, it was one of many fan signs in the arena."
The network declined to comment on why it telecast the image.
Rovell corrected himself on Twitter on Thursday.
It's a "tough call" whether MSG should, or could, be faulted for showing a fortune cookie sign created by a fan to TV viewers, says Andrew Kang, senior staff attorney at the Asian-American Institute in Chicago.
"I would prefer maybe they didn't show that — although I could imagine people finding it humorous. But I think it does go to what people think when they think of Asians. They think of food. Because that is really their only point of contact, or awareness, with the Asian-American community."
The New York Post also took criticism for using the headline, "Amasian," after Lin drilled a game-clinching three-pointer for the win against the Toronto Raptors on Tuesday.
During CBS' The Late Show with David Letterman on Wednesday, Jon Stewart of Comedy Central mocked the headline, according to SportsBusiness Daily.
Stewart told Letterman: "It'd be like when Sandy Koufax threw a perfect game, you just wrote on there 'JEWTIFUL!' … I feel like it's very 'Lin-sensitive.'"
Boxer Floyd Mayweather caused headlines earlier in the week by saying Lin is only getting a lot of attention "because he's Asian."
Columnist Jason Whitlock embarrassed Fox Sports with a tweet about Lin playing off Asian stereotypes. On that, the Asian American Journalists Association (AAJA) sent a letter to Whitlock that read, in part:
"The attempt at humor — and we hope that is all it was — fell flat. It also exposed how some media companies fail to adequately monitor the antics of their high-profile representatives. Standards need to be applied — by you and by Fox Sports.
"The offensive tweet debased one of sports' feel-good moments, not just among Asian Americans but for so many others who are part of your audience.
"Where do we go from here? How about an apology, Mr. Whitlock."
Whitlock apologized, and the AAJA thanked him for that.
The sophomoric, sexual stereotype was "completely out-of-line," Kang says. It was also "misogynistic" — so he's not sure who the columnist offended more: Asians or women.
"There's this idea that it's OK to stereotype Asians — just don't with African-Americans or Latinos because you'll get in trouble and you'll get an aggressive response," Kang says. "But somehow it's OK to do that to the Asian-American community. …
"In some ways, I'm grateful that it is coming out so we can talk about it and people can really start to challenge what are their pre-conceived notions about the Asian-American community or Asian-American athletes."
But Kang also sees "soft" racism in media debates about why Lin went unnoticed for so long by the basketball establishment and why he's setting the NBA on fire now.
"You hear endless debates about: 'How can this be happening? How can he be doing so well?'" Kang says.
"The very simple answer is he's very talented, he was overlooked by scouts or they missed that one. What they really mean is: 'How can an Asian-American be doing so well in the NBA?'
"I think they're looking for answers other than he's athletically gifted," Kang says. "They're trying to attribute it to (Knicks coach) Mike D'Antoni's system, (All-Star forward) Carmelo Anthony's not around. So somebody has to put up the shots. They're trying to figure out how can this Asian-American be such a playmaker — and why didn't anyone else notice him earlier."

Friday, February 17, 2012

Music Video: Las Hijas del Sol - Ay Corazon

Music Video: D'Prince ft. D'Banj - Give It To Me

Dems blast Fox host for 'crack pipe' comments about Rep. Waters


The Fox News commentator who said Rep. Maxine Waters (D-Los Angeles) should "step away from the crack pipe" referring to remarks she made about House Republican leaders said his comments were a joke. But the Los Angeles County Democratic Party didn't find it very funny.
Rep. Waters, a Democrat representing parts of Los Angeles, was a topic of conversation on Thursday's edition of the Fox News morning newscast "Fox and Friends," because of a speech in which she called House Republic leadership "demons."
That riled up commentator Eric Bolling. "Congresswoman, you saw what happened to Whitney Houston," he said. "Step away from the crack pipe, step away from the Xanax, step away from the Lorazepam, because it's going to get you in trouble."
The show's hosts were caught by surprise and gasped. After the show returned from a commercial break, Bolling said it was a joke. "I just want to say I was kidding about the crack pipe," he said. "Just kidding."
Eric C. Bauman, chairman of the L.A. County Democratic Party, called for the network to remove Bolling, condemning his remarks as, at best, "insensitive and inappropriate" and a "horribly offensive characterization of a longtime member of Congress."
"At worst," he said in a statement, "Bolling's comment oozes racism, which serves to discredit a strong African American woman by perpetrating racial stereotypes. Regardless of whether this remark was deliberate or offhand -- it was irresponsible, despicable and reprehensible."

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Hollywood racism and WhiteWashing "Earthsea"



A Whitewashed Earthsea

How the Sci Fi Channel wrecked my books.

On Tuesday night, the Sci Fi Channel aired its final installment of Legend of Earthsea, the miniseries based—loosely, as it turns out—on my Earthsea books. The books, A Wizard of Earthsea and The Tombs of Atuan, which were published more than 30 years ago, are about two young people finding out what their power, their freedom, and their responsibilities are. I don't know what the film is about. It's full of scenes from the story, arranged differently, in an entirely different plot, so that they make no sense. My protagonist is Ged, a boy with red-brown skin. In the film, he's a petulant white kid. Readers who've been wondering why I "let them change the story" may find some answers here.
When I sold the rights to Earthsea a few years ago, my contract gave me the standard status of "consultant"—which means whatever the producers want it to mean, almost always little or nothing. My agency could not improve this clause. But the purchasers talked as though they genuinely meant to respect the books and to ask for my input when planning the film. They said they had already secured Philippa Boyens (who co-wrote the scripts for The Lord of the Rings) as principal script writer. The script was, to me, all-important, so Boyens' presence was the key factor in my decision to sell this group the option to the film rights.

Months went by. By the time the producers got backing from the Sci Fi Channel for a miniseries—and another producer, Robert Halmi Sr., had come aboard—they had lost Boyens. That was a blow. But I had just seen Halmi's miniseries DreamKeeper, which had a stunning Native American cast, and I hoped that Halmi might include some of those great actors in Earthsea.
At this point, things began to move very fast. Early on, the filmmakers contacted me in a friendly fashion, and I responded in kind; I asked if they'd like to have a list of name pronunciations; and I said that although I knew that a film must differ greatly from a book, I hoped they were making no unnecessary changes in the plot or to the characters—a dangerous thing to do, since the books have been known to millions of people for decades. They replied that the TV audience is much larger, and entirely different, and would be unlikely to care about changes to the books' story and characters. 
They then sent me several versions of the script—and told me that shooting had already begun. I had been cut out of the process. And just as quickly, race, which had been a crucial element, had been cut out of my stories. In the miniseries, Danny Glover is the only man of color among the main characters (although there are a few others among the spear-carriers). A far cry from the Earthsea I envisioned. When I looked over the script, I realized the producers had no understanding of what the books are about and no interest in finding out. All they intended was to use the name Earthsea, and some of the scenes from the books, in a generic McMagic movie with a meaningless plot based on sex and violence.
Most of the characters in my fantasy and far-future science fiction books are not white. They're mixed; they're rainbow. In my first big science fiction novel, The Left Hand of Darkness, the only person from Earth is a black man, and everybody else in the book is Inuit (or Tibetan) brown. In the two fantasy novels the miniseries is "based on," everybody is brown or copper-red or black, except the Kargish people in the East and their descendants in the Archipelago, who are white, with fair or dark hair. The central character Tenar, a Karg, is a white brunette. Ged, an Archipelagan, is red-brown. His friend, Vetch, is black. In the miniseries, Tenar is played by Smallville's Kristin Kreuk, the only person in the miniseries who looks at all Asian. Ged and Vetch are white.
My color scheme was conscious and deliberate from the start. I didn't see why everybody in science fiction had to be a honky named Bob or Joe or Bill. I didn't see why everybody in heroic fantasy had to be white (and why all the leading women had "violet eyes"). It didn't even make sense. Whites are a minority on Earth now—why wouldn't they still be either a minority, or just swallowed up in the larger colored gene pool, in the future?
The fantasy tradition I was writing in came from Northern Europe, which is why it was about white people. I'm white, but not European. My people could be any color I liked, and I like red and brown and black. I was a little wily about my color scheme. I figured some white kids (the books were published for "young adults") might not identify straight off with a brown kid, so I kind of eased the information about skin color in by degrees—hoping that the reader would get "into Ged's skin" and only then discover it wasn't a white one.
I was never questioned about this by any editor. No objection was ever raised. I think this is greatly to the credit of my first editors at Parnassus and Atheneum, who bought the books before they had a reputation to carry them.
But I had endless trouble with cover art. Not on the great cover of the first edition—a strong, red-brown profile of Ged—or with Margaret Chodos Irvine's four fine paintings on the Atheneum hardcover set, but all too often. The first British Wizard was this pallid, droopy, lily-like guy—I screamed at sight of him.
Gradually I got a little more clout, a little more say-so about covers. And very, very, very gradually publishers may be beginning to lose their blind fear of putting a nonwhite face on the cover of a book. "Hurts sales, hurts sales" is the mantra. Yeah, so? On my books, Ged with a white face is a lie, a betrayal—a betrayal of the book, and of the potential reader.
I think it is possible that some readers never even notice what color the people in the story are. Don't notice, don't care. Whites of course have the privilege of not caring, of being "colorblind." Nobody else does.
I have heard, not often, but very memorably, from readers of color who told me that the Earthsea books were the only books in the genre that they felt included in—and how much this meant to them, particularly as adolescents, when they'd found nothing to read in fantasy and science fiction except the adventures of white people in white worlds. Those letters have been a tremendous reward and true joy to me. 
So far no reader of color has told me I ought to butt out, or that I got the ethnicity wrong. When they do, I'll listen. As an anthropologist's daughter, I am intensely conscious of the risk of cultural or ethnic imperialism—a white writer speaking for nonwhite people, co-opting their voice, an act of extreme arrogance. In a totally invented fantasy world, or in a far-future science fiction setting, in the rainbow world we can imagine, this risk is mitigated. That's the beauty of science fiction and fantasy—freedom of invention.
But with all freedom comes responsibility. Which is something these filmmakers seem not to understand.

PETA a racist "animal rights" organzation comparing enslaved Black Americans to Whales


Five killer whales got their day in court Monday.
People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, the vocal group behind those eye-popping anti-fur ads, filed a lawsuit against SeaWorld for capturing and "enslaving" orcas named as plaintiffs in the case.
At a Monday hearing in San Diego, PETA Attorney Jeffrey Kerr argued that the big mammals should be protected under the 13th Amendment.
"Tilikum, Katina, Kasatka, Ulises and Corky have been captive and subjected to treatment that we feel is slavery," Kerr told U.S. District Judge Jeffrey Miller, who is now weighing SeaWorld's request to toss the case, the Los Angeles Times reported.

Miller noted that there is no legal precedent for protecting animals under the 13th Amendment.

SeaWorld argued the consequences of setting such a precedent could be difficult to contain and may lead to cases brought against police departments and the military for their use of service dogs.
"We're talking about hell unleashed," The San Francisco Chronicle quoted SeaWorld attorney Theodore Shaw as saying. "Neither orcas nor any other animal were included in the 'We the people' ... when the Constitution was adopted."
Judge Miller said he would review all the information before deciding whether to dismiss or proceed with the case.
PETA officials heralded the hour-long hearing as a victory in and of itself.
"This is truly a historic day for the law and for the animals," spokesman David Perle said. Kerr added that "for the first time in our nation's history, a federal court heard arguments as to whether living, breathing, feeling beings have rights and can be enslaved simply because they happen to not have been born human."
SeaWorld called the lawsuit a "publicity stunt" without merit.

Monday, February 13, 2012

Music Video: Kitano Kie - Hanataba

Sioux tribe sues brewers for alcohol woes


The Oglala Sioux Tribe is suing some of the world's largest beer brewers, saying they knowingly have contributed to devastating alcohol-related problems on Pine Ridge Indian Reservation.

The lawsuit, filed Thursday in U.S. District Court of Nebraska, seeks $500 million in damages for the costs the tribe has incurred in dealing with crime and providing social services and health care as a result of rampant alcoholism among the 20,000 tribal members.
The suit is on behalf of the tribe, however, and no individual tribal members are plaintiffs and eligible for money.
It also targets four beer stores in Whiteclay, Neb., a tiny town in northwest Nebraska at the South Dakota border near the reservation. Despite only about dozen residents in town, the stores sold almost 5 million cans of beer in 2010 -- almost 250 cans per Pine Ridge tribal member. Alcohol is not legal on the reservation.

Tribal leaders and activists blame Whiteclay businesses for chronic alcohol abuse and bootlegging on the reservation. They say most of the stores' customers come from Pine Ridge.
"In a town of 11 people selling 4.9 million 12-ounce servings of beer, there is no way that alcohol could be legally consumed. It's just impossible," said Thomas White, a former Nebraska legislator and Omaha, Neb., lawyer who is representing the tribe.
Equally as important as the damage award the tribe wants is that the lawsuit seeks a ruling on how much beer Whiteclay retailers can sell, White said. This is the key to stopping beer trafficking at Pine Ridge.
"We are not saying you can't sell beer," White said. But he points to the large amount of beer sold in Whiteclay in 2010 and says, "you cannot sell in volumes you know will be illegally transported and sold. You have to reduce sales to a responsible level."
The lawsuit alleges that beer makers and stores sold to Pine Ridge residents knowing they would smuggle the alcohol into the reservation to drink or resell. Beer makers supplied the stores with "volumes of beer far in excess of an amount that could be sold in compliance with the laws of the state of Nebraska," tribal officials allege in the lawsuit.
Most of Whiteclay's beer store customers have no legal place to drink alcohol because it's banned on the reservation, state law prohibits drinking outside the stores and the nearest town that allows alcohol is 20 miles south, said Mark Vasina, president of the group Nebraskans for Peace.
Owners of the four beer stores in Whiteclay were unavailable or declined comment Thursday when The Associated Press contacted them. A spokeswoman for Anheuser-Busch InBev Worldwide said she was not yet aware of the lawsuit, and the other four companies being sued did not immediately return messages.
The lawsuit's defendants include the distributors and brewers and Whiteclay retail outlets because those higher up the sales and distribution chain exert pressure to maximize beer sales, White said. In hearings before the Nebraska Legislature in the past, distributors have argued their contracts with brewers require them to sell all the beer they are supplied.
"If the brewers say that to their distributors, then they all deserve it," White said of including brewers in the lawsuit. "These guys have an obligation to control their distributors."
Frank Pommersheim, a University of South Dakota law professor, is not sure the federal government can oversee the way Nebraska regulates beer sales.
"There is no doubt of the incredible harm caused by the actions in Whiteclay," Pommersheim said. "The question is whether that translates into an actionable claim of federal jurisdiction."
The tribe sees the lawsuit as a last resort after numerous failed attempts to deal with the abuse through protests and public pressure on lawmakers. Oglala Sioux President John Yellow Bird Steele said the tribal council authorized the lawsuit in an effort to protect the reservation's youth.
"Like American parents everywhere, we will do everything lawful we can to protect the health, welfare and future of our children," he said.
Nebraska lawmakers have struggled for years to curb the problem and are considering legislation this year that would allow the state to limit the types of alcohol sold in areas such as Whiteclay. The measure would require local authorities to ask the state to designate the area an "alcohol impact zone."
Nebraska's liquor commission then could limit the hours alcohol sellers are open, ban the sale of certain products or impose other restrictions.
Thomas Horton, a USD law professor who has a lengthy career litigating federal antitrust and civil cases, said the tribe's case could have national significance.
And Horton knows the beer business. "I was the lead attorney on the Miller-Coors merger," he said.
"This sounds like a very interesting lawsuit that is going to have some legs," Horton said. "I would think the tribe's jurisdiction over alcohol sales is protected, and this sounds like a scheme to circumvent that.
"I imagine this is going to be a spectacular battle."

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Racist Threats at NJ University Warn Student: "You Will Die"


students charged with faking racist graffiti


After racist threats were found on the door and adjacent wall of a Montclair State University student's dorm room, the sophomore has decided to move back to her parents' home in Newark, N.J.
On the wall were the words "BLACKS ONLY," with an arrow pointed toward the room. And on the door, someone wrote the N-word, and "Black B---- you will die."
"I instantly started crying," Olivia McRae, 19, told NBC New York..
McRae told her RA, who then called campus police to investigate.
Police were already in the middle of investigating an earlier bias incident from late January, when someone wrote anti-gay graffiti on walls in a commons area.
That sparked the university to sponsor a Day of Unity earlier this week.
Just hours after that rally, the racist writings were found outside McRae's room.
She wants the university to install security cameras in residence hallways, something that Montclair State was already considering, according to Karen Pennington, vice president for Student Development and Campus Life.
"This is just so much of an anathema to who we are as an institution," Pennington said. She added that the university is taking these incidents "very seriously."
McRae, a sophomore who is studying to be an accountant, has moved back to her parents' home in Newark.
She said she will not drop out of school.
"I'm never going to let anybody stop me from being successful -- I already had a hard enough life," McRae said.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Menominee Seventh Grader Suspended for Saying "I Love You" in her Native Language


SHAWANO, WISCONSIN - What's love got to do with it? Not much, especially if you say the words "I love you" in the Menominee language in front of a certain Wisconsin teacher.

Seventh grader Miranda Washinawatok, Menominee, found this out.
Miranda speaks two languages: Menominee and English. She also plays on her basketball team. However, two Thursdays ago she was suspended for one basketball game because she spoke Menominee to a fellow classmate during class.
Miranda attends Sacred Heart Catholic Academy in Shawano, Wisconsin. The school body is over 60 percent American Indian. The school is approximately six miles from the south border of the Menominee Indian Tribe Reservation.
"On January 19 I was told by Miranda she was being benched from playing that night. I found out at 4:20 and we were back at school at 6:30 pm so I could get to the bottom of why she could not play,"
said Tanaes Washinawatok, Miranda's mother.
"Miranda kept saying she was only told by her assistant coach she was being benched because two teachers said she had a bad attitude. I wanted to know what she did to make them say she had a bad attitude."
At the school, the teachers and coaching staff seemed to want to cast blame on each other, according to Miranda's mother.
"I wanted to talk to the principal, but he was not there before the game started,"
stated Tanaes Washinawatok. Being a persistent concerned parent, Washinawatok was back at the school by 7:30 the next morning to speak to the principal.
The principal told Washinawatok that the assistant coach told him she was told by two teachers to bench Miranda for attitude problems.
The alleged 'attitude problem' turned out to be that Miranda said the Menominee word

that means

and said


in Menominee that means "I love you."
Miranda and a fellow classmate were talking to each other when Miranda told her how to say "Hello" and "I love you" in Menominee.
"The teacher went back to where the two were sitting and literally slammed her hand down on the desk and said, "How do I know you are not saying something bad?"
The story did not end there. In the next session, another teacher told Miranda she did not appreciate her getting the other teacher upset because "she is like a daughter to me."
By the time, Miranda was picked up by her mother she was upset for being suspended.
"Miranda knows quite a bit of the Menominee language. We speak it. My mother, Karen Washinawatok, is the director of the Language and Culture Commission of the Menominee Tribe. She has a degree in linguistics from the University of Arizona's College of Education-AILDI American Indian Language Development Institute. She is a former tribal chair and is strong into our culture,"
states Tanaes Washinawatok.
Washinawatok has had a total of three meetings with school officials and was promised Miranda would receive a public apology, as would the Menominee Tribe, and the apologies would be publically placed.
"On Wednesday, a letter was sent to parents and guardians. A real generic letter of apology, that really did not go into specifics as to why there was this apology,"
Washinawatok told the Native News Network Thursday evening.
"I still don't think it was enough,"
Sacred Heart Catholic Academy is operated by the Diocese of Green Bay, which ironically has an option on its answering machine for Spanish, but not Menominee. A call put in late Thursday afternoon by the Native News Network was not returned by press time.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Chinese American Citizens Alliance Condemns Pete Hoekstra’s Ad


SAN FRANCISCO, CA–The Chinese American Citizens Alliance condemns the campaign ad broadcast over Michigan stations during the Super Bowl this past Sunday by U. S. Senate hopeful Pete Hoekstra. The ad depicts an Asian woman pedaling her bicycle down a dirt road surrounded by rice fields with Chinese instruments comprising the soundtrack. As she speaks in broken English, the Asian actor, complete with a cone, straw hat, boastfully gloats to the audience that the strong economy in China due to our insatiable appetite for debt is the reason for our weak economy and the loss of American jobs.

In a state that has witnessed its share of Asian bashing such as in the 1980’s when Japanese cars were singled out for vandalism and destruction and young Chinese American Vincent Chin was beaten to death in 1982 by two unemployed autoworkers angry about the influx of Japanese cars (purchased by any and all of us as American consumers), the Alliance believes Hoekstra and his team should know better than to incite others with this inflammatory message. Though his rival, incumbent Sen. Debbie Stabenow is the target, the irresponsible rhetoric of the ad only creates divisiveness and finger pointing at Asian Americans among those who view Asian Americans not as U.S. citizens but somehow as representatives of China.
The Alliance is well aware of the economic hardships but steadfast fortitude of the citizens of the state of Michigan and their importance to our overall economy as the state and nation recover. Side-by-side on assembly lines in Michigan’s automotive plants, hardworking people of all races, including Asian Americans, are found. The Alliance asks that the citizens of Michigan immediately reject this type of racial stereotyping, race baiting and bullying that this type of campaign message could incite and seriously question the wisdom of electing someone who could occupy one of the 100 most revered and respected seats in the U.S. Senate chambers, yet displays little understanding and knowledge of the harmful effects of discrimination and racism.

Pittsburgh basketball game marred by horrible racist banana suited monkey chants


Vile racism raised its ugly head during a boys basketball game near Pittsburgh on Friday when fans of a nearly all-white suburban school ran on the court in banana suits and made monkey noises to taunt the players for their rivals, who play for a school which is predominantly African-American.

As reported by a variety of Pittsburgh media outlets, the Monessen Valley Independent and WPXI prominent among them, the annual basketball rivalry game between Pittsburgh (Pa.) Brentwood High and Monessen (Pa.) High turned extremely ugly when the two teams tried to head to their respective locker rooms for halftime. Before the players could leave the floor, three fans from the visiting Brentwood student section ran onto the court in full-body banana suits.
The fans surrounded the Monessen players and allegedly began making monkey noises and hurling racial epithets at the Monessen players, with no one entering the fray to stop the horribly inappropriate catcalls.

"I was appalled and shocked," Monessen parent Terri Payne told WPXI. "I was like, 'I can't believe they're doing that, and they didn't do anything about it.'"
Disturbingly, other Monessen parents claim that the Brentwood players hurled similar racist epithets themselves, calling the Greyhounds "monkeys and cotton pickers," as one Monessen fan told WPXI.
Meanwhile, Valley Independent staff writer Jeremy Sellew claimed that Brentwood Director of Security Joseph Kozarian, who was on duty at the game, refused to intervene, instead sitting back and at one point smiling and laughing with the Brentwood fans in the stands.

As more media attention has swirled around the disgusting incident, Brentwood officials have scrambled to try and alleviate pressure on the school and district as a whole. As of Tuesday the three students involved had been identified and disciplined, though their punishment was not disclosed to the media. Similarly, officials claimed they were "reviewing school policy to make sure a similar incident doesn't happen again."
Clearly, that's not strong enough. If the banana suit incident and subsequent racist abuse from Brentwood players occurred as numerous witnesses claim it did, the entire Brentwood season should be put under much deeper inspection before moving forward.
This is legitimate hate speech, after all, and the teenagers who were responsible need to realize just how damaging that is, both to their victims, themselves and society as a whole. At the very least, any players who made racist comments during the game itself should be punished significantly.

Monday, February 6, 2012

Music Video: Lia - Light in the Air

Woman filmed hurling racist abuse at Tube passengers in yet ANOTHER video of a vile rant on London transport


Police are investigating yet another video of a London Underground passenger hurling racist abuse at foreign passengers.
The film shows the middle-aged white woman direct a tirade of abuse at Asian passengers on a Central Line train between St Paul’s and Mile End stations.
She begins by shouting 'all f****** foreign s********' in a shocking seven-minute long expletive-ridden rant in front of stunned onlookers.

The woman - with shoulder-length black hair and a thick Cockney accent - then asks 'where do you come from? F****** like, f****** all over the world'.
Footage of the incident emerged on YouTube on January 24 after a string of similar rants by women were made public last year. It is believed to have been filmed on January 23.
It shows the woman, whose name is not known, sitting between two Pakistani men.

After saying that they come from all over the world, she asks: 'I'd like to know if any of you are f****** illegal, I'm sure 30 per cent of you are. It's taking the f****** p***.'
The woman then becomes aggressive towards the Asian man sitting next to her. 'I hope they f****** catch up with you and shove you off,' she says.
She adds: 'I shall punch you in the f****** face. Ninety per cent of you are f****** illegal. I wouldn't mind if you loved our country.'

After singing in his language, he defends his native country as other passengers on the carriage laugh at his gestures.
The woman then turns her attention to the man who is filming the abuse on his mobile phone, who says he is British.
He tells her to 'watch what you say' but she responds: 'I used to live in England now I live in the United Nations.'
The woman then appears to become increasingly aggressive in an argument that lasts for another four minutes.

At one point she appears to try to attack the Pakistani man before she is thrown into a seat on the other side of the train.
She gets up and screams: 'As long as you're f****** working, and not claiming benefits.'
A second clip uploaded on the video sharing site shows her standing up as she waits to leave the train.
She says to another foreign traveller: 'This is what we've got to put up with... that's what we don't like about you people. I'll show you what kind of government lets people like you in.'
The video emerged after similar clips were uploaded onto the internet.

One, recorded on a Croydon to Wimbledon tram, showed a woman holding a toddler as she shouted at passengers.
Emma West was charged with a racially aggravated public order offence in connection with the incident in December.
West, a 34-year-old mother from New Addington, Croydon, will appear at Croydon Crown Court at a later date.
Another video called 'Welcome to London' showed a woman holding a pink rose on the London Underground as she abused passengers.
Another was of a drunk woman who tried to punch a black passenger on a London bus, but ended up falling over herself then being thrown into the street.
A British Transport Police spokesman said: 'BTP is aware of the videos posted on YouTube which show a woman making alleged racist comments on board a Central Line Tube train between St Paul’s and Mile End stations during the evening of Sunday, 23.
'Detectives were made aware of the videos on January 24 and immediately launched an investigation.
'Anyone who witnessed this incident, or who has information which they believe can assist police, is asked to get in touch and help us build up a full picture of what took place.
'BTP treats all allegations of racism on the London Underground very seriously and would urge anyone with information about this incident to contact us.'

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Racist, hateful graffiti covers Dundas neighbourhood


Residents of a quiet Dundas neighbourhood awoke Thursday morning to hateful, racist and profane messages spray painted on homes, garages and vehicles.
The messages, in black paint, targeted black and Jewish people, and included swastikas and anti-suburbia sentiment.
Fernando Gastaldo said another neighbour called him around 7 a.m. and told him to take a look outside. He was shocked to see his white vehicle and four neighbour’s homes on Woodlawn Court covered in the hateful graffiti.
“It’s the hate that’s so shocking,” he said.
Neighbour Joan Hynes said her home was not vandalized, but she said the graffiti is disturbing for the whole neighbourhood.
Her 10-year-old son read the messages and asked her what some of the words meant.
“Now I have to explain that there are bad people out there,” she said, adding that there are many young children on the street.
Neighbours believe the incident likely occurred around 2 a.m., when a dog in one home began barking.
Hamilton police were on the scene around 8 a.m. taking pictures of the graffiti.
The path of the graffiti appears to show that the suspect or suspects walked up Queen Street, took climbed a hill that is a commonly used pathway up to Woodlawn, and then chose houses at random before the paint wore out. An empty spray paint can was discarded at one of the homes.
Graffiti at a home on Queen Street included the message RIP Arty and Jake.
The front walkway of another home was littered with tree branches arranged in crosses.
The neighbourhood has had an issue in the past with items being stolen from cars, but never anything like this, neighbours said.
More to come.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Georgia woman missing for 5 months with no media coverage


On a bright sunny day last fall, a tall, slender, dark-skinned black woman left her Georgia home and then simply vanished into thin air.
Thirty-five-year-old Shandell McLeod was last seen outside her house located in a quiet suburban neighborhood in Lithonia on the 24th of September, says Detective H. Guest, of Dekalb County Police Department, who is working on the case. Her distraught family says they now fear for her life.
"She is a single, professional, career-orientated woman, with no criminal record and her disappearance is completely uncharacteristic," says Detective Guest.
What makes this story even more tragic is that her inexplicable disappearance has received absolutely no coverage from local or national media operators.

The only platform that has drawn attention to McLeod's mysterious departure is the Black and Missing Foundation, Inc. (BAM FI) website and their social networking sites. "What is so frustrating is what we have to go through to get attention for our missing persons," says Natalie Wilson, co-founder & director of public relations at the Black and Missing Foundation.
In fact, according to FBI statistics African-Africans and other minorities make up roughly 40 percent of all missing persons.
"How often do you see these stories getting media attention," says Derrica N. Wilson, a veteran law enforcement official and co-founder, president and CEO of the Black and Missing Foundation. "The public are misled to believe all victims are blond and blue eyed."
It is this nagging feeling among many black Americans, borne out by facts, that their missing-person cases don't get as much attention as missing-person cases involving whites that has led to accusations of media bias.
So much so that producers at TV One felt the need to devote an entire series to unsolved cases of missing African-Americans, with a hope to unearth clues and encourage viewers to come forward with information. The 10-part documentary-series, "Find Our Missing," premieres on the cable network tonight.
"Though African-Americans are disproportionately affected there clearly is a void in the coverage of some of these cases," Craig Henry, co-executive in charge of production at TV One told theGrio. "We are just pleased we can use our resources to fill in this gap."
Blacks account for 12 percent of the population yet are involved in about a third of the country's missing-persons cases, says Toni Judkins, programming chief at TV One.
"Unfortunately there's a history of distrust between the black community and the police," says Wilson of the Black and Missing Foundation, which aims to put the spotlight on missing persons of color and educate the minority community about better personal safety. "So we have created a forum where people can come to our website and report anonymously."
Psychologists say when a person is missing or a body cannot be found it is often more traumatic than facing death, even homicide, for loved ones left behind, because there is no outlet for emotional closure.
"I just want to give her family closure," says Det. Guest, who adds that so far they have one main suspect in the McLeod case, "an African-American man called Ricky Noble who was last seen in possession of her car before fleeing from police."
Anyone with information about Shandell McLeod's disappearance contact Detective H. Guest on 770-724-7866 or visit and click on "Tip Line."

Man charged in racist attacks


An interracial couple, who yesterday found out a man was arrested in connection with racist graffiti scrawled on their Newmarket home, say they have given up their home because of the ordeal.
Although they are relieved someone has been arrested, they made the "mistake" of selling their home last week after more threats were mailed to the Hodgson Drive address, Rita Brown and her partner, Seun Oyinsan, said this morning.
"We got a letter saying someone was planning remote control explosives and to kiss my kids goodnight," she said. "That was enough for us and we sold our home."
Only yesterday, the couple found out a man Rita described as her ex-boyfriend had been arrested by police.
"To say I was shocked is an understatement," she said. "I was just talking to him and trying to help him out last week.
Now, the couple is left searching for a new house in which to live.
"We have huge regrets over the sale of our home. We lost $30,000 on the deal," Ms Brown said.
"We plan on staying in Newmarket, but I think we are going to rent for a while."
Between September 2011 and January, a mixed-raced couple had racist words and symbols spray-painted on their home and vehicles. Police confirmed the man had been involved in an earlier relationship with the female victim.
“I always felt it was an isolated incident and that it did not reflect the way our community embraces our diversity,” Newmarket Mayor Tony Van Bynen said.
He appreciates the hard work of the police as well as their commitment, from the onset, to solving the crime.
Although many residents and those following the story from beyond the town’s borders were appalled with the act when it came to light, there is a silver lining.
“On a positive note, this incident actually helped the surrounding neighbourhood rally together as many felt this was not how they wanted their neighbourhood identified,” Mr. Van Bynen said. “Many of the residents had lived there for years and were saddened to see their neighbourhood identified because of this incident.”
It was the catalyst for the formation of the Newmarket Cares community group that has worked to get support for the victims of this crime.
“Newmarket is an inclusive community in which we pride ourselves on being accepting of others and celebrating cultural harmony, heritage and ethnic diversity,” he said,
Four separate reports of property damage or threats involving hateful language were made to police.
Police identified a suspect and a man was arrested Monday.
A 63-year-old Bradford man is charged with two counts of mischief, uttering threats and criminal harassment.
He was released and is to be back in a Newmarket court in March.
York Regional Police also consider the episode to be an isolated incident, Const. Rebecca Boyd said.
The Newmarket Crown attorney’s office will consider the legal definition of hate crime as this case proceeds through the courts, police said.
Ms Brown plans to speak with police about what to do with the camera that was donated to her by the Newmarket Cares community group.
"I plan on donating it to whoever needs it," she said.