May 24, 2010

"Althouse ends up more or less agreeing with us, so of course we more or less agree with her."

Says James Taranto. He concludes:
The Civil Rights Act of 1964, subject of the current national conversation about race, was necessary not because "we're all racists"--indeed, if we are, such a law would seem to be an exercise in futility--but because a racist doctrine dominated, and defined the laws of, a region of the country. If "racism" is just a universal human shortcoming, then what was the point of condemning Jim Crow?
Violent urges are universal (or nearly so), yet we outlaw all sorts of acts of violence. We don't pretend that because we've criminalized murder, assault, and rape that we've eradicated violent urges. By the same token, if we enact a law that prohibits various harmful actions that people might take based on racist thoughts,  we don't pretend that we've eradicated the thoughts. We've come together as a nation over the belief that certain actions are wrong, but we might still want to look into our own hearts and question how good we really are.

I can think of 2 reasons why we might want to do this, even if we feel quite sure we're far from the stereotypical ugly racist.

1. We may aspire to a higher morality than the conventional norm. I think of Jesus saying "Be perfect... as your heavenly Father is perfect."

2. We might be deluded about the positions and policies we believe are right. Perhaps there are some deep or repressed beliefs about race that underlie something we think will do good. For example, those who support affirmative action should want to make sure that they are not motivated by racial prejudices that they are in denial about. So should those who oppose it. Doubt yourself. Test yourself. Don't be complacent.

98 comments:

Freeman Hunt said...

For example, those who support affirmative action should want to make sure that they are not motivated by racial prejudices that they are in denial about. So should those who oppose it.

Ha ha. Awesome. Thank you. Everyone assumes the latter, yet hardly anyone the former.

"Black people can't make it without special preferences."
"Isn't that assumption sort of racist?"
"What?! No! Racist!"

Seven Machos said...

I used to be against affirmative action. Then, I realized that, given two roughly equal job candidates, there is no question that I would hire a black person over a white person. So, I can't very well be against affirmative action.

I do argue, though, that affirmative action in government and public schools is wrong because the government has an obligation to treat everyone exactly the same.

Fen said...

Then, I realized that, given two roughly equal job candidates, there is no question that I would hire a brunette over a blonde

???

Stephen said...

Good advice at the end of the post! Here is a great place to start in examining views that one might hold implicitly rather than explicitly.

https://implicit.harvard.edu/implicit/demo/

Quayle said...

...was necessary not because "we're all racists"--indeed, if we are, such a law would seem to be an exercise in futility--....

See, I would have written, "...was necessary not because "we're all racists"--indeed, if we are, such a law would [never have been passed....]"

The left deludes themselves into thinking that the courts eradicated racism, or sent it underground, as a justification for giving the courts more power on all other "social issues."

This is wrong. A super-majority changed the constitution, and a majority changed the laws. No such majority exists for gay marriage, for example.

Ah Pooh said...

I really really believe that not holding black kids / adults to the same standards that white kids / adults are held to in terms of achievements is very racist. - so pervasive in education and social work. That is very different from hiring a equally qualified black person over an equally qualified white person - past injustice addressed.

Quayle said...

Should have been, ...The left deludes themselves into thinking that it was only the courts that eradicated racism...

Trooper York said...

Dude you always hire the one with the biggest tits.

Everybody knows that.

shoutingthomas said...

Another entry in the eternal Racism & Discrimination Derby.

Ugh!

Only appropriate reply. I know you've already seen it:

http://www.theonion.com/video/use-of-nword-may-end-porn-stars-career,14174/

Asking this is about the same as asking: When will Dylan worship disappear from public discourse, but I will do it anyway:

When will this bullshit die?

Are we condemned to relive Rhetoric 101 into eternity. When I die, will I go to hell and be obliged to write an essay on "How to Fix Black People?"

garage mahal said...

"Black people can't make it without special preferences."

Which side says this though? What I hear constantly [and on this blog] is Obama is the affirmative action hire. Pretty much every excuse aside from being qualified.

phantomfive said...

I'm pretty confident that I'm not a racist. I'm sorry you are having trouble with this.

Fen said...

What I hear constantly [and on this blog] is Obama is the affirmative action hire.

He is. Obama would not be President if he were white.

rhhardin said...

I didn't like the original comparison with sin.

The state of sin is the state of having no rights before the other guy, and is the original ethical experience. Call it ethics itself.

Religion poeticizes that original ethical experience.

Racism is the denial of that original ethical experience with respect to certain people.

Slavery though was an economic matter, not an ethical one. It became racist when it was no longer possible to justify slavery economically, and it became necessary to deny slaves were those other guys before whom you have no rights.

That argument could not be won, and at that point slavery ended.

The category distinctions seem to me more important than taking sin and racism as parallel.

Taranto has a completely dead ear, literarily; which is what the discussion is in any case about.

Fen said...

"Black people can't make it without special preferences." Which side says this though

The side that supports affirmative action and racial quotas.

shoutingthomas said...

Remember the scene in "The Meaning of Life" where people died and they were condemned to rot in the hell of cheesy TV game shows?

In reality, when we die and go to hell, we will be forced to endure an eternity of Rhetoric 101 discussions about racism. Weepy, condescending concern for black people will be mandatory.

In this hell, it won't even do any good to blow your brains out. Your brains will just magically flow back into your head, your skull will heal, and you'll be forced to watch eternal reruns of Oprah, listening to crying idiots moaning about discrimination.

Abandon all hope, sinners! Rhetoric 101 never ends!

HDHouse said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
HDHouse said...

@shoutingthomas...

unfortunately...a cop killer bullet to your "brains" would produce just a gasp of wind.

shoutingthomas said...

See, this is hell:

Now you assholes on here...you dirtbags of my rights, stick that up your everlovin' butts and explain to me how you want to be on that side of the pigpen.

Some fucking idiot pasting on his halo and demanding that we kiss his ass.

And, the fucking idiot thinks he's an original. Such passion!

Shit, I'm 60. I heard and read seven billion passionate shitheads issuing these kind of statements while masturbating their halos.

John Burgess said...

Or, in the words of Oliver Cromwell:

I beseech you, in the bowels of Christ, think it possible that you may be mistaken.

WV, in case they're needed: prods

Seven Machos said...

People don't respond to you HD because you are such a piss-poor troll.

Up your game.

Fen said...

All HAIL the moral righteousness of HDHouse and his courageous stand against racism!

Bonus points if you grasp the irony of his provincialism.

HDHouse: "Death to all bigots! Except me"

Sheesh.

rhhardin said...

I have an axe handle in the basement with axe head.

I use it to turn off the furnace.

One thermal delay relays hang up sometimes.

A perfectly measured Wally Cox thump on exactly the right spot fixes it, when it happens.

HDHouse said...

@shoutingthomas...

better my halo than your axe handles.

If I "scream racist form a line"...where will you be?

Hagar said...

There was a supposedly free and equal society wherein one set of citizens conspired to deny the benefits of citizenship to another set. These were large sets, so the situation gave rise to unrest and disorder, and interfered with trade and the free movement of people. The conspiracy had to be broken up somehow. I do not think the commerce clause was the proper tool to use, but be as it may be, it got the job done.

edutcher said...

There is a quote (hopefully on the 'Net)that affirmative action was created because Congress and the judiciary didn't want to expend the money and effort to enforce the civil rights acts. In those days, it was called The Philadelphia Plan.

You presumably can look it up

PS HD assumes that just because he had a thought (no comment), everybody had it.

Typical.

Fen said...

HDHouse: If I "scream racist form a line"...where will you be?

[...]

HDHouse: why is there a line forming behind me?

Fish. Barrel.

HDHouse said...

@fen and 7 nachos..

If this drew you two out then i rest my case.

idiocy explosed and solved.

what next agent Gibbs?

why is this soooo easy with your ilk? takes away a lot of the fun.

shoutingthomas said...

HDHouse, I kiss your sanctimonious ass a billion times.

You are the holiest of holies.

Sorry, but I don't give blow jobs.

See, I'm a homophobe.

HDHouse said...

@shoutingthomas..

unclean..unclean i say....putz.

i'm sure you give bj's freely and randomly and particularly freely..that is not something anyone in my knowledge would brag about...but then again...you are you.

sigh.

anybody else got anything? nahhh. ok.

Fen said...

Racemongerer: idiocy explosed and solved.

explosed?

But we get that in your fairy tale, you were explosed to the concept that racism is evil.

What did you do next? Tuck your tail and meekly finish your meal? The one provided by the racist you claim you loathe?

bagoh20 said...

The problem I have is that the government does not handle such things cleanly or fairly and as has already begun the government can't resist expanding it's power once it gets a taste. So first the law is not enforced fairly as evidenced by employers like BET and second I fully expect that civil rights law will eventually punish more citizens than it helps.

Even if racism disappeared tomorrow, I would expect an consistent number of enforcement suits. I think that already today the majority of use of the civil rights legislation is directed at perceived racism rather than the real thing. The 64 law undoubtedly ended a lot of racism's effects, but I do wish we gave ourselves more time to prove it unnecessary, as I think we would have. Then I believe racial relations would be better going forward from here. I fully expect that more discrimination would have taken place in the 60s through 80s, but less going forward from here. It seems to me that there was a huge reservoir of compassion between races that seems to have faded with government forced acceptance. Government has a way of killing charitable feeling between people that way. I think at the current time we have a pretty fair status. All races are regularly discriminated against roughly equally - not equal outcomes, but roughly equal opportunities.

shoutingthomas said...

I nominate HDHouse for Supreme Sacred God of the Universe!

What sensitivity!

What incredible moral fiber!

The most holy man who ever lived. Holier than Jesus!

Biggest halo in the Western world!

I bow before you, HDHouse. You are a moral example to all of us. Your halo blinds me.

Can you walk on water?

Sorry I asked. Please forgive me, Your Holiness!

I worship your visage. I am struck dumb by your brilliance.

GMay said...

What the fuck are you talking about HDH?

You appear to have gone full moonbatshit crazy.

wv: pecture - example.

shoutingthomas said...

The Deepest Room of Hell:

Strapped into a chair, forced to listen to HDHouse piss out his sanctimonious claptrap for eternity.

Palladian said...

HDHouse, there is as much hatred bubbling out of your poisoned soul as from any backwoods sheet-wearing goon I've ever encountered. You seem to believe that since you've exorcised the sin of racial animus from yourself that you walk in righteousness. But you've merely transferred your hatred of the "Other" from one category of persons to another, from hatred of the racial Other to the political Other. The hatred itself hasn't diminished at all.

This is why some of us fear giving power to humans to rule over other humans. That you have rearranged your prejudices into a more acceptable configuration does not make you any different from a racial supremacist.

Fen said...

The handles shown white and fresh in the Georgia sun.

As in brand new? Never used? Did it occur to you to ask what the axe handles were for?

Its not uncommon to see axe handles on display for sale like that in small rural towns.

Perhaps the ignorance is a mote in your own eye.

Fen said...

That you have rearranged your prejudices into a more acceptable configuration does not make you any different

Echo. Provincialsim, Tribalism, Racism. Bigotries all cut from the same cloth.

Screwtape is tapdancing all over your soul HD, you poor miserable wretch.

Freeman Hunt said...

What I hear constantly [and on this blog] is Obama is the affirmative action hire. Pretty much every excuse aside from being qualified.

Saying it about Obama is saying it about an individual based upon his individual qualifications. Saying that Obama is not qualified is not saying that no black people are qualified. Also, this is a bad example in that Obama is objectively far less qualified than most Presidential candidates.

Andrea said...

1959? Jeez, HD, you sure are old.

PS: you meant to write "the axe handles shone white in the sun," didn't you? Though that is odd -- most axe handles aren't white, they are usually the pale beige color of the wood they are made of. Usually oak or ash, I think. One more thing -- how do you know the axe handles where there to beat on black people? (I won't use the word you used -- which will probably get your comment removed once Ann sees it) How do you know that they weren't there just waiting for new axe heads to be attached? Here's what I think: I think you took a childhood memory (if indeed it is even your own) and decided to make it mean what you wanted it to mean.

Freeman Hunt said...

Wait, did HDHouse really just assert that a barrel of axe handles must have been outside so that they'd be at the ready to beat people with? HDHouse, you do realize that they sell those, don't you? I live in town with a yard, and even I find frequent use for a hatchet.

Andrea said...

Argh -- "were there." And also like Fen said. I type too slow.

Ah Pooh said...

As I read through this thread I am struck by the banality of so many comments. Why? This issue is really a big deal.

Brian said...

HDHouse, I guess you assume if affirmative action was ended, a large number of blacks would lose their jobs. Because the only reason they have their job is that they're black and affirmative action put them there. Because America is so racist.

But then America elects a POTUS with African heritage, putting an African-American family in the White House. I don't think when white people pulled the lever for Obama they were thinking if they didn't, they worried getting called "racist" by the likes of you.

I don't doubt your story from 1959, but still, you assume nothing's changed in 51 years? And I say this as someone who thinks the '64 CRA has largely been a success.

Fen said...

As I read through this thread I am struck by the banality of so many comments. Why?

Racemongerers like HD have a vested interest in exploiting racial tensions for their own gain.

Hence the derailment by HD.

ken in sc said...

Hey HD, that’s the same Georgia that produced Jimmie Carter, the nuclear physicist who thinks you have to be a racist to oppose Obama’s policies, and Cynthia McKinney, the intellectual congress woman who thinks she is exempt from going through security lines because she is black, and Hank Johnson, the guy who thought that Guam might tip over if too many Marines were there. Which is worse, hypothetically, being a racist, or being an idiot? Hypothetically speaking, of course.

Pastafarian said...

Andrea, I believe hickory is the preferred material. At least in this here neck of the Althouse hillbilly hills.

ken in sc said...

BTW, I would hire a redhead with green eyes.

Pastafarian said...

Brian said: "HDHouse, I guess you assume if affirmative action was ended, a large number of blacks would lose their jobs. Because the only reason they have their job is that they're black and affirmative action put them there. Because America is so racist."

I hate to put words in HDHouse's mouth -- but let me try:

No, he believes that if it weren't for affirmative action, few blacks would be hired or would retain their jobs because they're just not very bright or hard-working. In the preppy private school that HDHouse attended, the only coloreds were the custodians.

And he'd sneak up behind them and yell "axe handle!!" and then run away. Good times, good times.

The Crack Emcee said...

(Humoring HDHouse)

I want to thank the slave traders, for bringing my people here, so we can share in the glory of being Americans.

I want to thank the racists, who fought so valiantly to keep the country pure, ensuring we blacks would reap the benefits of a unspoiled land once we gained our freedom.

I want to thank the guys who shot JFK, RFK, and MLK - making the Civil Rights Act a reality.

And I want to thank everyone who voted for Obama - so we can all see the error of our ways in continuing this idiotic racial outlook into the future.

Thank You. (Go to the end of this article to see a previous, more liberal, version of these thanks. I've been there, dude: you're wrong. Now go to my site and making a bleeding heart donation. I'm black and need the money - put up or shut up.)

The Crack Emcee said...

Folks, the axe handles were there to beat black people with.

Lester Maddox was famous for them.

Brian said...

Trying to get back on topic: It's useful to go back to the original defnition of racism, as a perception of racial superiority, when you've gotten off in the weeds of trying to prove who's morally superior by insinuating the other side in a debate must be "racist." Akin to painting your opponent as "immoral."

We've seen this recently: Someone doesn't like the health-care bill, but since it's "Obamacare," if you oppose it, you must be racist. Because there's no valid reason otherwise to oppose it.

shoutingthomas said...

Hey, Crack:

Are you a Warren Farrell fan?

Me linkee to you. You linkee to me?

ricpic said...

Most of the behavior smeared as racist by the holier than thou busybody shits stems from the entirely normal human desire to be left alone.

Pastafarian said...

To return to the topic of the post: Althouse said: "Violent urges are universal (or nearly so), yet we outlaw all sorts of acts of violence."

Are violent urges really universal?

I mean, who here has actually thought to themselves: "Well, I'd really like to commit bloody murder this morning, but there's that damned law against it."

Just speaking for myself, that doesn't happen very often. Maybe things are different in Madison.

So if there are a few people out there that don't have violent urges (let's give these outliers a name -- say, "the sane"), then is it perhaps possible that there are a few without dark hearts full of racism?

Now, I don't mind your point about self-examination. I've checked. I'm clear.

Can we now move on to something else? Or do I have to continuously prove, over and over, that every opinion I put forward is not borne of racial hatred?

Althouse, I really think you're too sensitive about this. How can I know that your hypersensitivity to issues of race isn't due to some deep-seated and irrational hatred you hold toward the Swedish? Perhaps some shifty male Swede in shorts once served you an egg salad sandwich, and you nearly died from salmonella.

And perhaps you've blocked this painful event from your memory. Can you prove that it didn't happen?

Big Mike said...

@Crack, yeah, I remember. Would that Rand Paul had seen the pictures of Lester Maddox chasing black people from the door of his 2-bit restaurant using axe handles as a club -- he might have pulled his head our of his butt and saved his candidacy.

Lester is one reason why I demonstrated for Civil Rights.

Pastafarian said...

Brian, that's a good point. If we're going to have a rational discussion about it, someone should define racism.

Racial superiority seems too specific. I'd think that it might be more inclusive to define it as hatred of another race. Or maybe there are two different attitudes there with a large intersection.

You'd have liberal racists, who feel superior to other races, but don't hate them, but instead pity them. You'd have KKK-type racists who feel superior to other races, and hate them. And maybe you'd have a few redneck racists that don't actually feel superior to other races, but hate them anyway (because that black kid stole his bicycle when he was 12, say).

traditionalguy said...

H D is right about the socially required insults towards black men in the south. Actually Atlanta was less virulent than most of the South leading up to the changes wrought by the WWII experiences. The fight for segregation was suddenly erupting everywhere as it was passing away startin after Truman integrated the military. After WWII no rationalisation for calling black men inferior could stick as anything except a weird and outdated socially required falsehood. That was also the era of confedrerate battle flags replacing the real State Flags that flew in 1865. But the segragation control had always first been a social control over whites that would not play the game...that was who Lester Maddox's ax handles were there for: to remind the whites not to act humane or they would be taken out and beaten. Lester Maddox of course was a big D Democrat. In his race the Republican won the popular vote but not 50%+ and the Democrat Legislature gave the office to the loser, Lester Maddox. But that was all 50 some years ago. Today interacial cpuples are ordinary and totally accepted. The 1964 Act worked quite well. So, don't let Ron and Rand Paul suggest otherwise to re-create the divisions from 50 years ago for fun.

shoutingthomas said...

@Crack, yeah, I remember. Would that Rand Paul had seen the pictures of Lester Maddox chasing black people from the door of his 2-bit restaurant using axe handles as a club -- he might have pulled his head our of his butt and saved his candidacy.

Lester is one reason why I demonstrated for Civil Rights.

To this very day, a white man would have to be out of his mind to walk down certain streets in South Chicago or Bed-Stuy at high noon. Want to commit suicide? Walk down those very streets with a black babe on your arm.

Listen, Jim Crow had to end. To end it, the left built a propaganda image of black people as sainted, pure martyrs. We're stuck now with that bullshit propaganda.

50 years of criminal assaults and murders by blacks on whites have evened the score as far as I'm concerned.

Try appealing to a black thug's conscience when you're getting attacked in Bed-Stuy. And, yes, black thugs do deliberately target white people... because they know that white people are soft targets.

Ah Pooh said...

An interesting conversation might be had about the differences, similarities between culture, class, racism. Where does one belief, observation begin / end.

Ann Althouse said...

"Althouse, I really think you're too sensitive about this."

I've only said something that should be obvious. I think the people who have a problem with it are being sensitive.

bagoh20 said...

Didn't know much about Maddox, so I Wikied him. In addition to hating the 64 act, he did this as Govenor:

* He appointed more African Americans to state government positions than any other governor before him.

* Appointed the first African American to head a state department (the Board of Corrections).

* Named the first black GBI agent.

* Named the first black state trooper.

* Ordered state troopers to desist from using the word "nigger", and to address African-Americans using "Mr." instead of by their first name.

*He integrated the lines of farmer's markets throughout the state.

Eric said...

Lebanon, here we come!

Dust Bunny Queen said...

Folks, the axe handles were there to beat black people with.


Then according to HD's recollection they must not have used them since the handles were all shiney and white in the sunshine of his mind. (snarking)

I also was in the South (Mississippi) in 1959 as a child and remember the segregation. At the risk of being labled senile and repeating my story......

We pulled into a town, pulling our trailer...yes...authentic trailer trash. My parents were looking for the local newspaper, where they were going to work for a while (traveling printers both of them). Next to us was a nice park with big trees and a couple of drinking fountains. My brother who was 5 and myself 8 asked to get out and go drink. Being the 50's and no one afraid of pedophiles in the middle of the day...we did.

We ran up to a fountain and a lady stopped us and said..."Don't drink out of that!!! That's the colored fountain. Drink out of this one". Meekly we did as told and when she left we snuck back over to the colored fountain and turned it on.

Imagine our disappointment. The water wasn't colored at all!! It was clear. We were hoping for green or pink or something.

We were totally clueless about segregation since we had lived in other parts of the country where it wasn't a big deal and had recently lived in Mexico for some time. I can't imagine what my parents must have thought when we told them about the uncolored colored fountain.

Not as terrible as the ax handles, but hurtful to the segregated blacks nevertheless.

Dust Bunny Queen said...

Another racial story. (as relayed to me by my parents since I don't really remember this)

One of the teachers in that school was a black woman. My parents were concerned that we would be picking up the racist attitudes of the children before we would be moving again.

SO... they asked me if I had ever heard any one say (sorry Ann) "nigger" and I said yes. They were really dismayed and asked me if I knew what that meant. I said: "Sure...Those short pants that come just below the knees" Evidently I was hearing it as "knickers" and had no clue about what the N word meant. I guess we had just read a story with knickers in it so that was where my head was at.

Thankfully, we moved in a few months.

sunsong said...

43Ye have heard that it hath been said, Thou shalt love thy neighbour, and hate thine enemy.

44But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you;

45That ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust.

46For if ye love them which love you, what reward have ye? do not even the publicans the same?

47And if ye salute your brethren only, what do ye more than others? do not even the publicans so?

48Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect


one of my favorite Jesus passages! It says so much - and so very few live it

Revenant said...

Violent urges are universal (or nearly so), yet we outlaw all sorts of acts of violence. We don't pretend that because we've criminalized murder, assault, and rape that we've eradicated violent urges.

Violent urges are universal. Urges to commit murder, assault, or rape which are so strong that only the threat of prison can contain them are not even remotely close to universal. Even if murder were legal, most people still wouldn't commit murder.

Freeman Hunt said...

Folks, the axe handles were there to beat black people with.

Lester Maddox was famous for them.


Well, if they really were there for that reason, my apologies to HDHouse.

Freeman Hunt said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
bagoh20 said...

Taranto's and Ann's reasoning misses the primary argument against the 64 act. It's not about choosing to outlaw bad behaviors that are never going away or just simply choosing to create a higher standard for it's own sake. The argument is that it restricts freedoms in the purpose of that ends. That trade off may or may not be worth it. If the law ends up eventually only restricting freedoms and doing little to improve equality in the long run, then it was what we now call a "suboptimal solution".

roesch-voltaire said...

Funny I thought Bush was elected because of family action- is that different?

Hagar said...

They were there for that reason - at least symbolically - and Lester Maddox proudly referred to them as "Georgia toothpicks" and handed them out as campaign symbols in his run for governor.

Maddox were involved in a scrape where he and some associates chased off some black people seeking to enter his "Pickrick" restaurant.

Some George Wallace supporters in Michigan - Michigan! - chased black school children with pickhandles and may have been inspired by the publicity generated by Maddox.

I do not think that the changes in policy followed by Thurmond, Wallace, Maddox and others of their ilk after the public climate changed is any excuse for them - quite to the contrary. They never really believed in racism to start with and only promoted segregation as a means for their own political advancement. This is worse, far worse, than if they had actually believed in what they were saying.

Hagar said...

You could argue that the conservative position is that they don't care what you think, but you must control your actions, while the liberals don't care much what you actually do, but you must think like they do - at least in public - or else.

George Grady said...

...we might still want to look into our own hearts and question how good we really are.

I don't agree with this. In this case, I don't think it matters much what's in our hearts. It's that we try to do what's right despite what's in our hearts. It's our actions and interactions that matter. Narcissistic navel-gazing doesn't help anyone, and trying to judge others' hearts is pointless.

Seriously, this "search your feelings--you know deep down you're a racist bastard" stuff is the stuff of freshman orientation.

Doug Wright said...

Consider if the whole country back in the 1960s had had the attitude of Northern folk, then people might not have thought the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965 as necessary.

Personally, that might have pushed the problem off beyond that era. IMHO without the blatant discrimination policies of the South back then, those two important 1964 and 1965 Acts would not have been possible.

OTOH, Affirmation Action is a whole different kettle of fish and it could be argued that it's no longer needed. Right now, it swings both ways and that's a real problem for proponents of AA.

We still don't know how to deal with race or real racist today.

Seven Machos said...

Doug Wright -- Except that desegregation has gone just as poorly in Boston and Detroit and Kansas City as it has gone anywhere in the South.

Seven Machos said...

Also, Fen -- The reason that I would hire an equally qualified person over an equally qualified white person is because black people to this day have to deal with racism and being the historical other. That's not easy. Further, it's a simple preference that has to do with a moral imperative that I personally feel.

As for brunettes and blonds, I have a thing for brunettes, so if there was no difference in qualification, I might very well hire the brunette.

The important thing here, that you miss entirely, is that the government has an obligation to treat everyone equally.

Revenant said...

Then, I realized that, given two roughly equal job candidates, there is no question that I would hire a black person over a white person.

That's not affirmative action, that's just private racial discrimination. :)

Seven Machos said...

Rev -- But what if I work for a large corporation?

Fen said...

The reason that I would hire an equally qualified person over an equally qualified white person is because black people to this day have to deal with racism and being the historical other

Its still wrong. And by favoring one race over another, all you are doing is giving momentum to a pendulum that will destroy both.

And how do you divine that particular black person has been the victim of racism? Or of being the historical other? Are you rewarding him because you think his ancestors were oppressed, while assuming the white person's wasn't?

You might as well award based on something as frivolous as hair color. The blonde's gotten all the breaks, the brunette has been discriminated against all her life.

Denying someone a job because of their race is racist. I don't carte how you justify it.

Seven Machos said...

And how do you divine that particular black person has been the victim of racism? Or of being the historical other?

Because every black person in the United States who is a descendant of slaves is a victim of racism and has been the historical other. In addition to the racism that still happens today, there is a generational effect. Black people aren't poorer and less educated as a whole by happenstance. Note that I am not talking about, say, a half-black person whose father was born of a wealthy Kenyan family. That is a different story.

the brunette has been discriminated against all her life

This is stereotypical.

Denying someone a job because of their race is racist. I don't carte how you justify it.

No one is being denied a job. Here we have one job and two basically equal applicants. One of them is not going to get the job.

Again, I remind you that I am advocating affirmative action in the private sphere as a purely voluntary phenomenon, and only in cases of roughly equal qualifications. Government entities manifestly should not so discriminate.

All of this said, I would be interested, Fen, in your position on the following question: should a person renting a single-family home be able to abjectly refuse to rent to blacks, or brunettes? Not a trick question, just curious about your position.

Doug Wright said...

Seven: You're correct in every way! My point remains that only blatant Southern segregation pushed those two 1960s acts into being. Northern discrimination was mostly covert and still exists under cover. Black ghettos exist in many Northern towns.

Does the new South exist outside Metro Atlanta? I doubt it.

The Crack Emcee said...

ShoutingThomas,

No, I don't know who Warren Farrell is. I'll look him up. And yea, dude, I'll link to you - gladly - you've got a cool site. (I didn't know.)

bagoh20,

Thanks for all the info about Maddox. That's the reason why I can't do the racist thing: the stories we've learned are wrong and they're all more complex than most claim. Lester Maddox (and Trent Lott) did nice things for blacks. MLK got off on fucking white girls and was a total jerk to Corretta. A lot of this racial bullshit everyone's arguing about, today, could end if we just told the truth about what's already happened, but the silly you're-a-racist-no-I'm-not shit is just too damn irresistible for anything like that.

Oh - and Paul Rand didn't say anything wrong that I know of.

Fen said...

Because every black person in the United States who is a descendant of slaves is a victim of racism and has been the historical other.

False.

Even without your qualifier "descendant of slaves".

And are you aware that there are blacks in this country that are descendants of not slaves but slavers and, have not only never been victimized by racism, but have victimized others with their own racism?

How do you divine?

there is a generational effect. Black people aren't poorer and less educated as a whole by happenstance.

And yet you assume its a result of racism, but its just as likely to be welfare and the fatherless family. Look to Africa itself - its own leaders refuse global welfare because they recognize that its keeping them down.

No one is being denied a job. Here we have one job and two basically equal applicants. One of them is not going to get the job.

You are denying a job to one person because he's not the "right" race.

Review your own tortured explanation: "no one is being denied a job... one of them is not going to get the job."

I am advocating affirmative action in the private sphere as a purely voluntary phenomenon, and only in cases of roughly equal qualifications.

With the added assumption that you know enough to identify and correct racial injustice.

You are discriminating based on race. You should expect to be sued for it.

should a person renting a single-family home be able to abjectly refuse to rent to blacks, or brunettes?

No.

Seven Machos said...

And yet you assume its a result of racism, but its just as likely to be welfare and the fatherless family.

There is no question that the disastrous welfare regime implemented in the 1960s caused a spike in fatherless families and has been an awful, awful thing for poor Americans, especially poor black Americans.

But, Fen, think about it: were black people and white people on equal socioeconomic footing before the disastrous welfare regime implemented in the 1960s? No. The disastrous welfare regime was implemented to combat the problem of poverty, which, of course, was a problem endemic to black people because about 100 years before virtually all of them were chattel.

For you to sit here and suggest that negative racial discrimination somehow hasn't been a problem for black people is just absurd.

The Crack Emcee said...

I just read the whole Taranto piece, and he disagrees with Ann about changing the meaning of racism - just as I disagree with getting rid of the word nigger. He also says global warming may be mass delusion - another of my bugaboos. To which I say:

"I've got Taranto, Ann,...what say you now?!?"

I swear, I'm right about everything,...

Fen said...

I agree with your other points, but:

For you to sit here and suggest that negative racial discrimination somehow hasn't been a problem for black people is just absurd.

Whats absurd is that you believe racial discrimination has only been a problem for black people. Its 2010, not 1970. You act as if no one else has ever been negatively affected by it and you are willing to make that judgement based on what you think the color of their skin is.

That "white" guy you just discriminated against is a half-Cherokee that passes. And his family is going to get the shaft again because you think blacks cant thrive without your interference.

You don't have the Wisdom to balance racial injustice. No one does. All you are doing is adding to the problem.

Seven Machos said...

Half Cherokee? Come on. So his parents got married at a banquet hall near the reservation in '65?

The plight of American Indians is also pretty bad, but it's more of a plight of poor choices. Also, at least the Cherokees got land and a good deal of money. What'd freed blacks get?

Fen said...

Wow.

Like I said, you dont have the Wisdom to do what you think you are doing.

It would be better for all of us if you just flipped a coin.

Paco Wové said...

7M, what you're saying boils down to:

"My interactions with this individual are based on what I know (or think I know) about his ethnic group."

You don't find that just the teeniest bit prejudicial?

Jason Greaves said...

How do you test yourself? I don't have years of "race theory" under my belt.

To the best of my knowledge it is impossible to prove a negative. I cannot prove to you, or maybe even to myself, that I am not a racist.

What I do know, is that I believe the ONLY function of government is to protect the individual rights of citizens. These are negative rights, so your sole obligation is to not interfere with my life, liberty and property.

A positive right in this context is a gross contradiction in terms, because one person's positive "right" would necessarily impose obligations on someone else which violates their negative rights.

I abhor racism, but we cannot grant positive rights of equal treatment and service in the private sector to anyone (regardless of race or gender) because it violates the negative rights of others.

A business can fire someone for any number of reasons, but if that person is black, the employer bears the burden of proof that the motivation was not racially based... an impossible task.

Even if the motivation was racism, which would be ignorant and irrational, are we prepared to say that people have no right to be ignorant or irrational?

But I guess you don't have to answer these questions, because you can dismiss me as a racist.

Ann Althouse said...

@Jason How do you prove you are a good person? If there is no definitive way to do so do you give up on thinking about whether you are good? Should you? My point about racism is the same. We should be reflective, not to prove something but out of a desire for knowledge and wisdom.

The Crack Emcee said...

Occult=NewAge=Mind/Body/Spirit.

Oh, come on, Ann, trying to change meaning is the oldest NewAge trick in the book. And it's always attempted so we poor Neanderthals can gain enlightenment. And it's always bullshit.

Racism is racism, and it needs no redefining now that it's outdated. Nigger is nigger, and it doesn't need to become the juvenile n-word now that it's safe for you to be offended.

You've been slapped down, twice, by Taranto - when will you admit you're wrong and let this race nonsense go?

Fen said...

Hey Crack, I'm a bit confused by your position. The problem here is not racism itself but frivolous accusations of racism to stifle free speech.

You seem to be telling everyone to get past "it", but you've never been affected by "it".

Or are you routinely slimed with the henious charge of being a racist?

Daleep said...

Yesterday we were all sinners. Today we are all violent. "Stop digging..."

Ann Althouse said...

@Crack What you don't seem to want to recognize is that I am employed at what was Ground Zero for Critical Race Theory and I have been surrounded by it for 2 decades. By contrast, Taranto's dictionary look-up of the word "racism" is pretty minimal. Your rejection of CRT is fine, but acting like it's nothing is willful ignorance. I'm not a Critical Race Theorist myself either, but I know what it is and I understand what people are saying when they talk about it, even though I think a lot of the analysis is overstated.

The Crack Emcee said...

Fen,

I'm The Crack Emcee. I'm regularly accused of everything - including being a racist.

And, if you want to know a lonely feeling, try having "Uncle Tom" hurled at you - even by whites. Black people will abandon you, in a heartbeat, once that charge is out there. They may even kick your ass.

But so what? Are we Americans - people of courage - or are we pussies to be pushed around? Nothing worth doing is easy, right?

Anyway, when untrue accusations are lobbed at me, I shrug it off. Sticks and stones. They've got no power over me. I'm the motherfucking man.

Who are you?

The Crack Emcee said...

Ann,

"Your rejection of CRT is fine, but acting like it's nothing is willful ignorance."

Bullshit. This is a fucking fight, but it's a fight that calls for unconventional warfare. You haven't noticed but, by voting for Obami, the sand has shifted under your feet. Blacks now have you on the defensive. What do you do? Keep playing tit-for-tat? That's stupid - it's how you lost to begin with. This shit calls for a strategy that's equal to the crime: and the crime is rape.

Rapists lose interest if you don't fight back. They're into "the struggle". Why give them the satisfaction? Let them talk. Let them accuse. Let them do whatever they're going to do, trying to get you riled up - and then ignore them. Willingly. Believe me, they'll decide you're "no fun" in no time. Meanwhile, you look for areas to do battle that are to your advantage and, when you strike, you strike - HARD.

This, Dear Ann, is The Art of War.

And regarding Madison (or South Central, L.A. or San Francisco) don't forget the advice of the great Hip-Hop artists, Eric B & Rakim, about maintaining your own head space:

"It ain't where you from - it's where you at."

wv: "motions" - start making some, law lady.

The Crack Emcee said...

One more thing:

This would all be over a lot quicker if y'all with no stomach/mind for it would support the black men who want to have this fight and let us get on with it. Not just in politics, but the arts, and other areas, as well.

Donations, people, are the grease that starts the ruckus.

I would've thought a troublemaker like you, Ann, would be totally there already.