Paul Mushaben, a radio host in Billings, Montana, was not suspended after calling for the segregation of Native Americans students.
Paul Mushaben is a symbol of all that is wrong and rotten in this country. Indeed, he is the latest media-based bigot to publicly spew his racist depravity onto the airwaves; from his dark hole at KTCR in Billings, Montana – a studio riddled with wires and dials and his seething hate – the clannish jackal radio jockey called for the segregation of a group of Native Americans … kids, to be exact.
Mushaben said that the Montana High School Association (MHSA) should consider creating a separate basketball tournament for Native American students because they are “unruly” and “disrespectful of the facility,” he uttered. On Tuesday, Mushaben wrote on KTCR’s website (a post that has since been taken down) that an “Indian team involved in a tournament left people re-thinking if it’s worth it or not to host a tourney,” The Washington Post reported.
Mushaben added that having Native American student athletes participating in the tournament is “not safe anymore … enough is enough and it’s the kids that suffer.”
In response to Muchaben’s overt ugliness, the league’s Executive Director, Mark Beckman, told the Billings Gazette that “the MHSA will not exclude or discriminate against any participants or their fans, and further is concerned with the intolerance expressed through certain online postings and social media.”
Adding insult to injury, Mushaben took his putrescence a step farther in an interview with the Gazette: “It seems that the majority of the problems occur when Native Americans play,” Mushaben said, according to The Washington Post. Mushaben then likened the situation to gang violence that “comes basically from the African American community.”
Let’s face it, folks, Trump’s bigotry has unleashed the savage racist beast in people – many who, at one time, would’ve kept such viciousness to themselves – and that may be the case with Mushaben here; maybe he was a decent man at one point, a gent who’d offer his seat to a sweet old Native American lady with grocery bags, but then Trump twisted his skull and rotted his heart. Well, who’s to say? The discrimination of Native Americans in places like Montana is no secret; it’s widely known, even to weekend travelers who’ll never go to the state simply to avoid people like Mushaben.
I’m not a professional sports fan, really. If they’re not seedy politicians, I could give two shits about the doings or stats of the seriously rich. I admit I’ll enjoy the occasional game on the tube whilst wolfing down a pizza and garlic knots, but even I know that unruliness is the name of the game in sports, whatever level. You don’t have to be a certain creed or color to go completely ape shit because of a foul or bad call or a lost game with some sworn enemy rival team. I recall seeing a corpulent white, middle-aged Denver Broncos fan gnaw on the neck of a fat fanatic in an Oakland Raiders jersey who had the balls to yell at him, “Oh! How’dya like that, man!?” Their wives or girlfriends – whoever the hell they were – had to pull them apart like two humping dogs snared at the crotch; children cried in the distance, one in particular was in a complete tantrum because she was left standing alone in the parking lot amid booming jeers and cheers and “fuckin’ lay into him!” to witness as the fat man in the black and silver jersey pummeled haymakers square into her father’s eye socket, slamming the back of his head into the pavement.
But that’s sports. And these were white men, not Native Americans.
It’s people like Mushaben that remind us that we’re really not that far from the days when white people reveled in segregation, championed it, and blamed all people of color for being “unruly.” Even then, going back as recent as the ‘60s, they’d declare that, since the brown and black families moved in, it’s “not safe anymore … enough is enough and it’s the kids that suffer.”
Remember a couple years ago in Rapid City, South Dakota, when a posse of white racists doused beer on the heads of Native American kids at a hockey game there? The man found responsible got a slap on the wrist, remember that? You want to talk about what’s “not safe anymore,” Mr. Mushaben? Being Native American in places like Rapid City and Bismarck and Billings is not safe – because of people like you, and it hasn’t been safe since the cavalry came over the hill with that Christian cross preaching conversion or death. Know your history, Paul. You’re OUR guest. You and yours have invariably been our guest. We’re not yours. “Fish and guests stink after three days.” The flip-flopper Benjamin Franklin said that, and it’s been a hell of a lot longer than a triplicate of days since the white undocumented farm worker (or, to be P.C., the “colonists”) stumbled here dirty and needing help tilling the soil. Centuries later, people of color are STILL told “we don’t want your kind here” by the descendants of those who really didn’t believe that “all men are created equal,” but did believe, however, that “inalienable rights” were exclusively for themselves. The jackasses.
America has not evolved as much as folks wish to believe. Trump is an example of that. Bannon is an example of that. Morton County Sheriffs are an example of that, and Mr. Mushaben is, indeed, an example of how far we haven’t come as a society and how far we still have to go in this failing republic of reprobates and wiggy right wing radicals.
Still, it takes a certain kind of degenerate to go after kids, kids of color, and in the same breath suggest segregation. Well, that’s ‘Merica. Foul shit. I’m not surprised by this latest iteration of evil, nor am I surprised that Mr. Mushaben hasn’t been suspended or fired by KTCR, because that’s this country – a place where Native American kids are doused with booze by sauced assholes who walk away scot free, where Sheriffs take aim with loaded rifles at water protectors, and where radio jockeys can call for the segregation of Native American kids because he thinks they are “unruly.”
I, for one, would rather be unruly than a racist. But that’s just me.