Nazipalooza: A Closer Look at the Right's Obsession With Obama/Holocaust Imagery

The cause du jour for the Republican Party is to make as many rapid-fire comparisons between the Democrats and the Nazis as humanly possible. There’re the posters altered to make the President look like Hitler, Glenn Beck’s use of Nazi imagery, and the GOP’s tendency to parade around pliant Holocaust survivors, who are willing to lie and convince hapless boobs that they’re seconds away from being loaded onto the trains headed to New Auschwitz, located… somewhere — probably in those FEMA camps Beck has been trying to warn us about.

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Imagine you've forgotten once again the difference between a gorilla and a chimpanzee, so you do a quick Google image search of “gorilla." But instead of finding images of adorable animals, photos of a Black couple pop up.

Is this just a glitch in the algorithm? Or, is Google an ad company, not an information company, that's replicating the discrimination of the world it operates in? How can this discrimination be addressed and who is accountable for it?

“These platforms are encoded with racism," says UCLA professor and best-selling author of Algorithms of Oppression, Dr. Safiya Noble. “The logic is racist and sexist because it would allow for these kinds of false, misleading, kinds of results to come to the fore…There are unfortunately thousands of examples now of harm that comes from algorithmic discrimination."

On At Liberty this week, Dr. Noble joined us to discuss what she calls “algorithmic oppression," and what needs to be done to end this kind of bias and dismantle systemic racism in software, predictive analytics, search platforms, surveillance systems, and other technologies.

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