L. Neil Smith's
THE LIBERTARIAN ENTERPRISE
Number 48, June 15, 1999
The Compassionati Speak
by Mike Arst
Special to The Libertarian Enterprise
This from Rick Tomkins' recent e-mail:
"Vin Suprynowicz grew up in a nice Politically Correct Democratic
family, fine folks who taught him that it was wrong to steal or to
hate people for being different from them. He still feels that way."
This is true of me as well--same kind of upbringing (and in an
anti-gun household, at that). My mother was an uncompromising civil
libertarian ... unfortunately, however, she had the short-sightedness
to be virulently anti-gun. I was able to talk her out of voting for
the ghastly initiative 676 here, even so. The "pitch" was that the
cure was worse than the disease, in terms of the law's predation on
But I wonder what she would think if she were alive now and reading
all of the vilification and demonization of the NRA and of gun owners
in general. She'd probably be cheering.
Freaky stuff happening. No doubt you've read about the Makah whale
hunt, which elicited so much anger from animal-rights people. Last
Sunday, the major Seattle paper carried a double-page spread of
letters to the editor. Most of the responses were unfavorable toward
But in an article elsewhere in that issue, the paper noted that many
of the letters went well beyond merely "unfavorable." The
Compassionati have let this incident give them excuses to vilify the
Makah in graphic terms. I don't recall ever having seen
unfettered racism like this in print within one of our newspapers.
Really vile Indian-as savage stuff has begun appearing. The people
who, a few months ago, were probably thinking of Indians as paragons
of spirituality and harmony -- as one columnist put it, as people
whose fantasy-selves suited the emotional needs of the white person
of the 1990s -- have abandoned their Birkenstocks and bracelets in
favor of steel-toed boots and brass knuckles.
There were some letters in which people expressed outright
genocidal fantasies about the Makah -- their revenge for the
whale-hunt. One guy wondered if he couldn't please buy a license to
hunt Makah Indians. A woman and her daughter wrote in -- asking that
only their first names be used, lest they be "scalped" (I am
not making this up)--saying that "we" ought to be able to take
the Makah's land away from them if the Makah are going to take "our
whales". A man wrote that in response to the whaling, now he feels
hatred for all Indians. Another said that his forefathers
killed a "Redskin" any time they saw one, and he himself would like
to follow in his ancestors' footsteps, too.
We read this stuff with our jaws hitting the floor; we felt ill about
A bunch of the Compassionati in this town attended a candle-light
vigil for the dead whale a couple of days ago; the local news carried
a brief shot of a woman with tears dripping down her face.
(Republican Congressman Jack Metcalf showed up, no doubt hoping to
lick a few votes off the rotting carcass of common sense.)
(When we're done mourning the whale, let's go back to dropping bombs
on Kosovo, Congressman. The relentless forced march of
humanitarianism must not be delayed.)
Some weird widespread feeling of personal victimization seems
to have been projected onto that whale -- and in the aftermath, the
"compassionate" people have, with apparent pride in their higher
consciousness -- and perhaps even with glee -- given themselves leave
to smear shit all over the Makah tribe (which went on a kind of
war-footing in its reservation, due to all the bomb threats and other
That this would be happening at a time when the Compassionati are
also gleefully speaking of gun owners and gun-rights supporters as if
we were evil incarnate -- and at a time when Rosie O'Donnell figures
aloud that gun owners should simply be put into prisons -- does not
There is some larger connection in these sudden upwellings of
viciousness from the ranks of The Anointed. It makes me think of the
hysterical enthusiasm among many countries' populations at the time
that their politicians were whipping up excuses to start World War I.
Why this is all occurring so suddenly is perplexing ... and
more than a little frightening.
Methinks the Waco holocaust was just a shot across the bow.
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