Our 2007 Fall Fund Drive Special featured Reverend Billy of the Church of Stop Shopping and social scientist Allyson Cole, author of The Cult of True Victimhood: From the War on Welfare to the War on Terror. Here is a bit about/from the guests!
“Reverend Billy and the Stop Shopping Gospel Choir believe that Consumerism is overwhelming our lives. The corporations want us to have experiences only through their products. Our neighborhoods, “commons” places like stoops and parks and streets and libraries, are disappearing into the corporatized world of big boxes and chain stores. But if we “back away from the product” – even a little bit, well then we Put The Odd Back In God! The supermodels fly away and we’re left with our original sensuality. So we are singing and preaching for local economies and real – not mediated through products — experience. We like independent shops where you know the person behind the counter or at least – you like them enough to share a story.We ask that local activists who are defending themselves against supermalls, nuke plants, gentrification — call us and we’ll come and put on our “Fabulous Worship!” Remember children… Love is a Gift Economy! “— The Rev
Allyson Cole: According to the publisher, “Condemnations of ‘victim politics’ are a familiar feature of American public life. Politicians and journalists across the ideological spectrum eagerly denounce “victimism.” Accusations of “playing the victim” have become a convenient way to ridicule or condemn. President George W. Bush even blamed an Islamic “culture of victimization” for 9/11 … Cole investigates the ideological underpinnings, cultural manifestations, and political consequences of anti-victimism in an array of contexts, including race relations, the feminist movement, conservative punditry, and the U.S. legal system. Being a victim, she contends, is no longer a matter of injuries or injustices endured, but a stigmatizing judgment of individual character. Those who claim victim status are cast as shamefully passive or cynically manipulative.”