Chris Kyle fanatics chilling Abby Martin threats

Former Russia Today journalist, Abby Martin, who’s show Breaking the Set asked the questions most journalist would dream of, has faced a recent tirade of online abuse of the highest order for challenging the hero worship of American idol, Chris Kyle, the main protagonist in the recent movie American Sniper, by wearing a t-shirt that said ‘fuck Chris Kyle’.

Abby Martin

Fans, or rather fanatics, of Chris Kyle, have been posting messages on Facebook and Twitter calling for Abby Martin’s rape and murder, for daring to question the American war porn account of deceased soldier, Chris Kyle, in the movie American Sniper. The movie, starring Bradley Cooper and directed by Clint Eastwood, made the case that Kyle was a hero that saved countless American soldiers lives at the barrel of the rifle he used during his four tours of Iraq. He is renowned for allegedly having the most confirmed kills of a US sniper. In tense scenes throughout the film, it justifies the killing of women and children for ‘the greater good’ in protecting the lives of US soldiers.

Chris Kyle

The response is chilling.

  

It’s amazing to think you call out a war porn movie like American Sniper for what it is, sick propaganda, and people respond like this. Where is the media and Hollywood outrage and denouncement of this? Justifying the murder of children ‘for the greater good’ is never right, we should have been asking ourselves the question of why we were there and why these children were radicalised in the first place? Perhaps they watched their mothers or brothers and sisters get blown up by drones or cluster bombs? Instead people want to rape and kill a journalist for asking the questions or challenging the narrative that 99% of the mainstream media wouldn’t dare to ask.

Bradley Cooper and Clint Eastwood

These online trolls accuse Martin of disgracing the memory of their idol, citing the fact that he died for her right to freedom of speech and to wear skirts, which is ironic but not because Abby Martin was exercising her freedom of speech, but because Chris Kyle was killed by a veteran with mental health issues on a shooting range in America, a year or so after he left the military. That’s not an issue of freedom of speech, but a serious issue surrounding mental health and the post traumatic stress of our armed forces peronnel subjected to endless tours of a horrific war zone that our political leaders created purely for business interests. Nothing to do with freedom. Anyone that wants to challenge that should listen to the impassioned words of Patrick Stewart.

Abby Martin Twitter

The threats are ironic as these right wing rantings would be from the same people that think it is appropriate for Pamela Geller to hold a cartoon exhibit of the Prophet Mohammad but not for Abby Martin to wear a t-shirt that besmirches their false god. The same people would, I am sure, also agree that the illustrators at Charlie Hebdo had the freedom to offend with their depictions of Mohammad, yet they do not see that this right extends to Abby Martin or others stands out as rank hypocrisy.

The freedom of speech extends to us all, including the freedom to disagree. No one has the right to threaten another for disagreeing with that speech. The challenge is to have a better a better answer to the thing you disagree with.

In the mean time, people like Abby Martin will have to face down these trolls, a problem becoming ever more prominent in the Internet age, particularly for women and young people, which says much about how far we have come, our misogynistic underbelly and how civilised we are in the year 2015. Social media giants such as Facebook and Twitter have much to do in combatting online abuse, though the former has a much better report feature than the latter, too much time goes between a report and action being taken.

With nationalism on the rise across the globe as media outlets continue to bombard us with patriotic babble and meaningless slogans such as ‘support the troops’, delusional behaviour like this will only increase. So much for the freedom of speech and the freedom to disagree.

Five more years guys, five more years

screen shot of exit polls

Exit polls… Not as close an election as we were lead to believe? One downside to living in the future, is having to be up during your sleeping hours whilst Tory triumphalism pours through my social media feeds (though the sight of the SNP across from them will make interesting viewing). Labour must now focus on life in opposition, which is ironic because they have been anything but opposite in many of the key policy areas.

There will be people who will scream at me about the disabled and the poor, the people we should have voted Labour for, as they have suffered the worst as victims of bedroom tax, but the harsh reality is that we must share responsibility for their suffering with our failure to act. Far too many of us have let the ConDem government get away with their actions this last parliament. Bedroom tax is poll tax by other means but this time we did nothing to stop it. At one time the public stood up to this and let the establishment know exactly how they felt about progressive taxes on vulnerable members of society, today, we have accepted the lies and propaganda of reality TV to demonise these people as a whole.

Now Ed, it is said, must resign as the casualties from this open goal election start to reveal themselves.

This election has been fought on fear. Fear of foreigners, the EU, fear of an economic downturn (not that it was the previous governments fault) fear of the unknown of alternative parties and it is fear that has won. The Tories look likely to almost secure enough seats for a majority, amazing considering the level of suffering experienced by the vast majority of this country for the last five years.

Some are blaming the SNP after they surged to victory in Scotland, others will blame Russell Brand for first saying not to vote and then just hours before the polls opened a, endorsing Labour but Labour have only themselves to blame for tonight’s results. They must blame themselves for not being opposite enough and not giving us something that people could rally behind. Now it falls on us, as it always did, to offer the resistance needed against these tyrannical ideologies and protection for the most vulnerable in our society.

Of all the things said by political commentators in recent weeks, the truest, most relevant thing is this; democracy is not a day out at the polling booth every five years but a daily act of vigilance and a commitment to hold accountable and challenge those people who took seats in Westminster.

Without your consent, they govern nothing. You can still influence the outcome, you just have to be daring enough to do so.

David Cameron, a firefighter he is not.

It’s finally happened, after five years in office, David Cameron has finally gone mad.

David Cameron has twice compared himself to a firefighter in the final days of the General Election campaign. Most recently he calls Ed Miliband an arsonist and compares himself to a firefighter… Words escaped me, for a while.  

 Cameron might be many things, but a firefighter he is not. 

For a start, he would have seen his offices shut at Downing Street and Westminster with the DCLG building being downgraded to a post office. He would have had a reduction in his staff of 20% and his state of the art, chauffeur driven cars would be procured at a much lower spec and spend most of their time in workshops for repair. His suits would now be procured from Primark and he would have had a pay freeze for 6 years. At 48, he would have 12 years left to access his pension, or be just over 7 years away from losing it for failing a fitness test that he has less than 50/50 chance of passing.

Yes Cameron might be many things, cowardly, scheming and duplicitous, but a firefighter he is not. Remember that when you head to the polls.

 

@UtopianFireman

If you want to know what firefighters really think of Cameron, read this.