Tuesday, July 30, 2019

The Politics of Racism

Has Democrat identity politics so saturated our culture that we must all think our race the primary determinant of who we are? It sure seems that way when listening to what passes for political discourse these days.

It’s been a long time — so long I cannot remember the last time it bothered me when someone called me a racist. It did sting the first few times and it put me on the defensive. I felt compelled to refute the charge, but I don’t anymore. The accusations are most often in anonymous comments on my web site, but also in signed letters to the editor in newspapers carrying my column.

When on my “Left & Right” TV show, one leftist opponent habitually calls Republican policies or individuals racist, I ask for specific evidence. His answers indicate he doesn’t know what racism actually is. Dictionary.com defines it as:

a belief or doctrine that inherent differences among the various human racial groups determine cultural or individual achievement, usually involving the idea that one's own race is superior and has the right to dominate others or that a particular racial group is inferior to the others.

Early charges of racism against me came after I wrote columns arguing against Affirmation Action policies enforced by the federal government. According to HG.org Legal Resources:

The purpose of affirmative action is to promote social equality through the preferential treatment of socioeconomically disadvantaged people.

My point was that in order to grant preferential treatment to historically disadvantaged groups like blacks and women in hiring, college admissions, and granting of government contracts, other groups like white men must necessarily be passed over. That, of course, requires bona fide racial and sexual discrimination.

There can be no argument that so-called “affirmation action” discriminates against white men. College admission policies discriminate against Asian men and women as well as whites as evidenced in recent lawsuits against Harvard University by Asian students who have been denied admission on the basis of race. Evidence indicates other Ivy League colleges do the same.

A 2015 LA Times article reported on a Princeton study using SAT scores to measure advantages and disadvantages of applicants according to their race. It was summed up by a college admission specialist named Ann Lee who said: 

African Americans received a “bonus” of 230 [SAT] points. Hispanics received a bonus of 185 points. Asian Americans, Lee says, are penalized by 50 points — in other words, they had to do that much better to win admission.

It’s the ultimate irony that Asians and whites who argue against such racially discriminatory policies are the ones accused of racism. Who is making these racist accusations? New York Times columnist David Brooks last week claimed that for the past twenty years:

…white educated Democrats have moved left is true, but it’s not the essential truth. The bigger truth is that this segment is now more likely to see politics through a racial lens. Racial equity has become the prism through which many in this group see a range of other issues.

While I find myself agreeing with Brooks less and less lately, I’m with him on much of what he says in this column. Charges of “racism” hurled against me for more than twenty-five years have nearly always come from educated white liberals. Though many are still impressed by them, I’ve learned that college degrees do not prove intelligence, and I believe educated liberals yell “racism” when they run out of logical arguments. Another driving force behind accusations of racism is “white guilt,” especially as described by Shelby Steele in his 2006 book by that name. Educated white liberals are terrified that anyone may think them racist, so they bend over backward to forestall any such possibility.

As Brooks put it last week: 

“…if you’re a rich white child of privilege you have to go to extraordinary lengths to prove you’re one of the good children of privilege and not one of the bad ones. In this take, white progressives don noble clothing to make themselves feel good…

Are educated white liberals signaling their virtue when calling the rest of us racist? It was less than three years ago that candidate Hillary Clinton labeled half of Trump supporters racist. Compared to today’s far-left Democrat candidates she was a moderate. It’s Tuesday as I write this and I expect charges of racism against the president and his supporters to dominate tonight’s Democrat debate in Detroit.

Our Supreme Court recently forbade the 2020 US Census to ask people if they’re citizens of the United States but has no problem with questions about race — for which there are over a dozen possible categories. If even the United States government is now officially more concerned about people’s race than their citizenship, what kind of country have we become?


Brian said...

OK Tom, you got me...I actually spit up a bit of my coffee when I glanced at your opening cartoon which, in a twist of Twilight Zone proportions, tries to claim that it is actually the DEMOCRATS that are running on identity politics!!

From the first day as a candidate talking of Mexican rapists and foreign invasions, to telling people to go back to their countries (you think he would have said that to a white man of Irish descent who was born in the USA?)

....to Muslim bans...to "Why are we having all these people from shithole countries come here, we should have more people from places like Norway"....to referring to a latina beauty queen winner as "Miss Housecleaning"...to "Look at my African-American over there...look at him!"....to trying to pass off some people marching with Neo-Nazis as really fine people....

....Trump ran on identity politics last time and won because of it. Polls say his approval with Republicans went up after his latest racist "go back" Twitterstorm. So of course now he is amping it up even further. But he knows deep within that withered black pit of a soul, that what he is doing is wrong. That is the reason for man of his pathetic lies.

Like when the bastard outright lied (surprise) again by claiming he tried to stop the fascist like chanting of "send her back", and that he "talked pretty quickly" once it started. Right. Watch the video and see the racist soak it all in, basking in a sea of racism.

It is telling that you don't care any more if somebody calls you a racist. People that get falsely called a name are the ones that get offended and care.

Paul Gallant said...

To refuse to judge someone based on the color of their skin, their gender or how they indentify, their ethnicity, their religion, their sexual orientation, etc. is now somehow wrong. I treat people based on their character, their actions, and I know what intent means. Sad times. Identity politics only divide us and therefore will bring our downfall.

Tom said...

Great column by the Helen Keller of bloggers.

CaptDMO said...

Racist? That's it?
Folks with assorted "higher" education degrees have decided by virtue of my "traits", that I'm a racist, misogynist, homophobic, xenophobic, anti Semite, Chauvinist, Fascist, conspicuous consumption , bourgeois, ablist,ageist, rapist, xenophobe.
A few even knew what SOME of those words meant, before desperately "tossing them out" Many do not, and that includes public and private school teachers.
Serially "Edited" dictionaries have proved to be problematic in their nod to ignorant, or stupid "usage". American Psychiatric Association has been problematic in the revisions to their "handbook".
I see that electronic social media has become problematic with censorship
of unapproved reasoning.
Tee Vee news...? Well...

I suppose I COULD travel to the Mahalangur mountains, seeking the wisdom of hermit gurus, but .....nobody goes THERE any more, it's too crowded.

I USED to aspire to get to Grateful Dead concerts, NOW?
I hear Lord Monckton was part of the Monday Night Live Battle Royal Smack Down at St. Anselms Institute of Politics.

Brian said...

CaptDMO said "Serially "Edited" dictionaries have proved to be problematic in their nod to ignorant, or stupid "usage".

So let's use the definition Tom supplied for "racism":

"a belief or doctrine that inherent differences among the various human racial groups determine cultural or individual achievement, usually involving the idea that one's own race is superior and has the right to dominate others or that a particular racial group is inferior to the others."

Now let's see if Trump fits the bill:

“Black guys counting my money! I hate it. The only kind of people I want counting my money are short guys that wear yarmulkes every day. … I think that the guy is lazy. And it’s probably not his fault, because laziness is a trait in blacks. It really is, I believe that. It’s not anything they can control.”

Trump at first denied the remarks, but later said in a 1997 Playboy interview that “the stuff O’Donnell wrote about me is probably true.”

So by your definition, Trump is a racist. Taken alone, a few of these things might be poo-poohed away, but the whole story is very revealing, and damning. Starting when way back he was a young, pampered businessman playing with his daddy’s money he got sued in 1973 by the US Department of Justice — under the Nixon administration, of all administrations —  for violating the Fair Housing Act. Federal officials found evidence that Trump had refused to rent to black tenants and lied to black applicants about whether apartments were available, among other accusations. 

Also, in 1992 The Trump Plaza Hotel and Casino had to pay a $200,000 fine because it transferred black and women dealers off tables to accommodate a big-time gambler’s prejudices.

Among all the other things I mentioned in my previous post, there is the birtherism thing. Research has found a strong correlation between “birtherism,” and racism. Trump has reportedly continued pushing this conspiracy theory in private…and he also still claims the “Central Park 5” are guilty despite DNA evidence to the contrary.

So just stop pretending there is any question as to whether Trump is a racist or not. There is a reason the David Dukes and white supremacists of the world love him. And the love affair seems mutual, as Trump regularly retweeted messages from white supremacists and neo-Nazis during his presidential campaign.

Extremists openly endorsing Trump, include Don Black, a former grand dragon of the Knights of the Ku Klux Klan and founder of the neo-Nazi site Stormfront; Rocky Suhayda, chair of the American Nazi Party; and Rachel Pendergraft, a national organizer for the Knights Party, the successor to David Duke's Knights of the Ku Klux Klan, who said: “The success of the Trump campaign just proves that our views resonate with millions”

And his latest racist tweets have pleased these cretins even further, with one white supremacist writing, “Our Glorious Leader and ULTIMATE SAVIOR has gone full-wink-wink-wink to his most aggressive supporters.”

Claiming that Trump is not a racist is similar to those who up to Liberace's death claimed he was not gay.

DAWN said...

I find all of this quite disturbing. My boys who are white, highly educated and well established in their careers are feeling the so called lie of "white privilege."

They worked hard going to college while working part time and full time on breaks. They paid all their loans without getting any help other than their parents. Now they are quite highly respected in their fields but being told...."we just want you to know that we will be hiring blacks/women and they will come in about 20% higher pay than you!" In one case...my son found out a Hispanic woman was offered double what he was offered doing the same type of job. She turned out to be a flat out failure and they're having meetings on what to do with her!!

In Academia right now there are long meetings telling those in positions of hiring that they need to hire blacks and Latinos. No more women per se. No whites. No Asians. Their funding is at risk if they don't. Is this NOT blackmail?

I'm wondering now if the whole Broward County thing in Florida isn't a result of this type of hiring scheme? She failed miserably. Twice Florida was a laughing stock after the elections when they couldn't get their act together. She was so inept...but she had the right skin color! Isn't that what counts now? When the new Governor came in he got rid of her. They said he was racist!

We are in some pretty big trouble when the color of your skin is more important than the content of your character or your ability to do the job. This is going on all over the place.

I thought we were NOT supposed to hire anyone on their skin color or gender? How is this NOT being challenged? We are NOT moving forward. We are stepping backwards.

Brian said...

Tom said: "I believe educated liberals yell “racism” when they run out of logical arguments."

Well, I stated in my last two posts many facts that when put together create a strong and logical argument that Trump is a racist. And surprise!.....there is no counter-argument denying this!

So logic tells us that "ignorant conservatives yell "I quit" when presented with logical arguments"

And to Dawn, I agree with you 100% when you say:

"We are in some pretty big trouble when the color of your skin is more important than the content of your character or your ability to do the job. This is going on all over the place. "

I also agree that with Trump "we are stepping backwards" in these areas.

Jay said...

If Donald Trump is a racist, Brian is the queen of England.

Brian said...

Ah, thanks for proving my point about ignorant conservatives being unable to refute logical arguments and facts!

Jay said...

I have learned over the course of several debates with Brian that it is a fruitless endeavor to present facts and refute fake news that Brian brings to the table. To wit, I recall a debate between he and I about illegal immigration in which he posed himself an expert and claimed that I had no clue about any of it. When I brought up the subject of the coyote problem and how they were taking large payments for smuggling people into this country and then leaving their victims to die he thought I was talking about an animal. I even generously left him several clues to what a coyote actually was that he totally missed.

When I finally had enough and called him on it he gaslighted and ignored his own error and lack of information about a subject he professed to be much more schooled in then I. So much for the expert.

And such is the way of folks like him. He will never open his eyes to the truth. The hate he feels which has been instilled in him by the fake news media consumes him and his ilk and will never be replaced by the light of truth. Therefore I chose to stop debating someone like that. It is a waste of time. His only goal is to regurgitate the lies he hears from his favorite fake news media outlets and try to prove for his own self aggrandizement his mental superiority. It is not a question of exchanging ideas and learning for him. It will never be.

It’s just not worth my time to present facts that he will never realize and debates that he will never understand.

So, brian, BS, (brian/Spartacus), God save the Queen.

Brian said...

jay said: "I chose to stop debating someone like that"

Exactly what I predicted. When presented with facts and a logical argument, what else is there for an ignorant conservative to do? Quit. Run. Hide behind mommy's aprons and dopey excuses. Rather than try and debate, jay, sore from losing countless debates and being made to look like a fool over and over, is forced to hilariously and pathetically hangs his white flag over some lame-ass excuse about the slang term for a smuggler of immigrants!

I do remember presenting him with many facts that directly refuted the propaganda he had been regurgitating concerning the immigration and the border "crisis", but apparently what lets him sleep at night is some trivial detail of no importance.

jay: I tried to convince him that the world was flat, but I ignored all the facts he gave me because he didn't know that astronomers are sometimes called "astro-boffins" I'll never debate him again!

And what a cop-out it is for jay to say it's not worth his time to present facts! He never presents facts, it is always pure opinion. I challenge jay to copy and paste any time he was ever able to refute a fact I gave him, or even to present a time he ever gave a fact that countered something I said . Ever. He can't do it.

So to sum up, his chickenshit excuses are pathetic and cowardly. And it burns him up that he has to resort to this because he can't respond with logic and facts. All the evidence of his "Glorious Leader and ULTIMATE SAVIOR" being a racist makes him see what kind of person he really is....

Brian said...

And now there is a recording proving that Reagan was also a racist:

"To see those — those monkeys from those African countries — damn them, they’re still uncomfortable wearing shoes," - Ronald Reagan

Undeniable proof. (See how that works, jay? It's called a "fact")

Time to start admitting that you have something in common with your heroes.

Brian said...

Ah.....such sweet silence!

Brian said...

And now we see the horrible effects of a President who actively stokes the anti-immigrant flames. "Invasions", "rapists", "send them back" even if they are citizens who were born here, and most chillingly, snickering along with a laughing crowd at a rally after somebody shouted out how to stop immigrants - "shoot them!", and then joking that you can get away with that in the panhandle.

A recent study by scholars from the University of North Texas has shown that “counties that had hosted a 2016 Trump campaign rally saw a 226 percent increase in reported hate crimes over comparable counties that did not host such a rally.”

The Hater in Chief certainly has some responsibility for these latest acts of terrorism.

But rather than be concerned about these acts towards non-whites, people on the right like Dawn and Tom are more concerned not with the murders of these non-whites, but instead riled up about them maybe getting into schools unfairly. Twisted priorities.

George said...

This is strange coming from a Zionist, a supporter of an apartheid state. Which means by definition yes, you're a racist. And I am more than a bit concerned when 27 states have passed legislation forbidding criticism of said apartheid state! In the United States ! Imagine what George Washington would say! Where is the outrage? Unbelievable. Truly. Treasonous cowards and war mongering shills all. Why are you in Maine? Shouldn't you be in the Bible Belt with the rest of the wack job zio- Christians waiting for end times?

Brandon F. said...

Trump on cities

Atlanta: "falling apart"

Baltimore: "a filthy place"

Chicago: "totally out of control"

Philadelphia: "struggling"

San Francisco: "disgusting," "not even recognizable"

Moscow, Russia: "a great city" and "an amazing place"

Perhaps he should move.