ABOUT A LUCKY MAN WHO MADE THE GRADE
HE BLEW HIS MIND OUT IN A CAR
HE HADN'T NOTICED THAT THE LIGHTS HAD CHANGED
A CROWD OF PEOPLE STOOD AND STARED
THEY'D SEEN HIS FACE BEFORE
NOBODY WAS REALLY SURE IF HE WAS FROM THE HOUSE OF LORDS ...
In the wake of David Sirota’s hot-button essay last week, “Let’s Hope the Boston Marathon Bomber Is a White American,” conservatives swarmed to trash Sirota and Salon. I’m not here to defend or criticize Sirota’s piece – I get in enough trouble on these issues myself — but the storm it provoked was revealing, especially once we learned the identity of the two suspects: Tamarlan and Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, ethnic Chechens who grew up in Russia and came legally to the U.S., who were also Muslim.
Hate mail and punditry targeting Salon and Sirota declared that Sirota was not only morally wrong in hoping the terrorists would turn out to be white — but that he was proven spectacularly incorrect, because the Tsarnaev brothers are not white. “Sorry David Sirota, looks like Boston Bombing suspects are not ‘white Americans,’” wrote the folks at Newsbusters. “Is David Sirota crying uncontrollably because the Boston bombers weren’t whites??” one conservative emailed Salon. There was a lot of other email in the same tedious vein.
But are we sure the Tsarnaevs aren’t white? They are quite literally Caucasian, as in from the Caucuses: Rebecca Eisenberg helps with this handy map. And ethnically in this country, we count Americans of Russian descent, as well as Chechens, as white. Dzhokhar was a naturalized American citizen; Tamarlan had applied for citizenship but reportedly didn’t get it because of FBI concerns about his possible ties to Islamic radicals.
So why are the Tsarnaev brothers not white, at least to right-wingers? Is it only because they’re Muslim? Muslim immigrants? Or is it because they’re “bad,” and whiteness must be surrendered when white people are bad?
Canada Thwarts Major Terrorist Attack on New York to Toronto Train – Linked to “Al-Qaeda Elements Within Iran”
WASHINGTON (AP) — Two U.S. officials say preliminary evidence from an interrogation suggests the suspects in the Boston Marathon attack were motivated by religion but were apparently not tied to any Islamic terrorist groups.
The two brothers, born in the Chechen region of Russia, practiced Islam.
The U.S. officials spoke Monday on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to publicly discuss the investigation.
One of the brothers died in a police shootout Friday. The other brother was formally charged Monday after being questioned by federal officials in his hospital room where he is recovering from multiple injuries.