Monday, February 26, 2007

Dept. of Corrections

When I first considered creating this blog, because of what I found to be direct connections between the Second Vermont Republic organization and racist ideologues who come primarily from a white supremacist, neo-Confederate group known as the League of the South, I understood that the revelation of these ties could generate some heat.  And not surprisingly, they have.

SVR's leadership has taken a number of steps that reflect a deep misunderstanding of what matters to Vermonters.  In response to legitimate concerns expressed by many in our state about their active associations with groups like the League of the South, SVR, through its co-chair, Rob Williams, first replied by openly adopting a policy best characterized as, "Don't Ask, Don't Care."
"Is (Livingston) a racist? I don't know. And frankly, it is none of my damn business, at a personal level."
Following that, on February 19 and again sometime over this weekend, SVR's leadership issued press releases that have relied on half truths, lies, wild and even delusional speculation, and a despicable, desperate personal attack on a well known Vermont blogger and his family. [2]  Naylor and Williams have charged that I have labeled people like Marco Bassini and Jason Sorens as racists. That is a lie.

Bassini has been mentioned only once on my blog, and then only in conjunction with a list of demands from another organization.  I have never written about Jason Sorens. [3]

Thomas H. Naylor and Williams charge that I rely "solely" on the well respected defender of civil and legal rights, the Southern Poverty Law Center, as my source.  That too is a lie.  One need only look at my very first citation from a source on this blog that was about LoS's avowed racist president, J. Michael Hill, to see that this is not true. [4]

Naylor and Williams also incorrectly allege that the "federal government imprisoned" Franklin Sanders "for tax resistance."  That too is more of SVR's bull in lieu of the real facts.  While Sanders also has been arrested in the past by federal authorities on different charges than the ones that I brought to light, the only imprisonment that I am aware of is that imposed by his fellow Tennesseans for his poorly thought out sales tax scheme that meant to deny the state legitimate tax revenue for the benefit of his customers, not some lofty "tax resistance" as team Naylor and Williams would spin it. Sanders is a mere criminal and nothing more. [5]

I don't intend to spend my time on this blog tracking and revealing all of the misstatements, lies and misrepresentations of fact and substance made by Naylor and his would-be spin meister, the so-called "media expert," Rob Williams, in response to what I post here - that would be a neverending task - but I do insist that they issue an immediate correction to these blatant lies.

Naylor and Williams should understand that Vermonters just aren't buying their dissembling. [6]  They are truly clueless about the damage that they have done and continue to do to their own reputations and that of their organization's.

I also don't seriously expect them to comply and issue the appropriate, unqualified corrections since Naylor and Williams have adopted the iron-fisted leadership style similar to that of the racists at LoS and the Sons of Confederate Veterans, and have begun to purge the not-so-true believers from their ranks. [7] [8] [9]

While Naylor and Williams have routinely paid lip service to the notion that they wish "to dialogue" with Vermonters, they have in fact cancelled an important opportunity to do so because they fear that Vermonters would ask them hard questions this coming Sunday about their peculiar associations.  I am not the only Vermonter to note the irony of their replacement event, a funeral. [10] [11]  I mean, really, what was this self-described "think-tank" thinking when the substituted a real occasion for dialogue with a (as one friend might describe it) a Ruritanian stunt?

For a good deal more insight into Thomas H. Naylor's views on "white" Vermont, integration and race in general, I would strongly urge you to read yesterday's post at one of the other sources that I have often relied on in this discussion about secession, secessionists and what it is that Naylor and the SVR would like Vermonters not to know about them.  Here's but a small sample of what that blogger has found:
"In the opening paragraph (Naylor) states, "Since the 1960s the official policy of the U.S. government has been the forced racial integration of public schools, colleges and universities, public accommodations, restaurants, stores, and more recently the workplace." Segregation was forced in some states, with state laws mandating it. Also, who is being forced? Most Americans go to stores, restaurants, workplaces, etc. that are integrated, and don't feel forced, that they have to go to integrated places against their will, because they aren't segregationists. Being forced is the terminology of a segregationist."

"Then Naylor states, "Although this commitment to racial integration once enjoyed broad-based public support, today an increasing number of whites, blacks, and Hispanics have either become ambivalent or hostile to forced integration." The fact is that the overwhelming majority of Americans of all races support integration. "an increasing number" doesn't really say anything, is it 48 people increasing to 79 people? There is a growing awareness that integration is perhaps only the first step to solving racial issues in America, is that the "ambivalent" that Naylor lumps with "hostile?"
Vermonters have long welcomed newcomers like Naylor who hold disparate views on matters even as contentious as race, but Naylor is fast wearing out that welcome in his increasingly apparent plan to radically alter Vermont society, so that Vermont becomes a stalking-horse for the secessionist goals of white separatist groups like the League of the South.  Is it any wonder that the advisory board out-of-state membership of SVR has been packed with LoS types?

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