June 28, 2013

"What does anybody learn? I'm not sure what the purpose of these teaching moments are."

Wonders John McWhorter, talking to Glenn Loury about the Paula Deen thing (which the NYT columnist Frank Bruni had declared a "teaching moment").



It's at least a teaching moment in the sense of: this'll teach you not to be the next teaching moment.

IN THE COMMENTS: Lem said: "I voted with my wallet.... and I don't have much. In fact, I have nuthing."

46 comments:

Greg Hlatky said...

I'm not sure what the purpose of these teaching moments is.

Fear.

ALH said...

I am sure the same people that are enraged at Paula Dean's decades old comments will also be enraged at Alec Baldwin's homophobIc rant from yesterday. Right?

Farmer said...

Alec Baldwin doesn't have a southern accent.

ricpic said...

Yeah, fear is a good one word answer. I was going to say terror.

edutcher said...

If anything, don't count anybody finished until you see their latest sales.

Farmer said...

When did the USA get so fucking sanctimonious?

"You think the wrong thing, and you said it out loud. Apologize at once!"

"I'm sincerely sorry. I was totally, 100% wrong. Please forgive me."

"Not good enough!"

Who are these morally superior assholes anyway?

hombre said...

Paula dean learned that PC can be applied retroactively to destroy one's livelihood.

AJ Lynch said...

Libruls always get a pass or a 2nd chance...Jesse Jackson, Alec Baldwin, Hillary Clinton, Joe Biden, Bill Clinton, Bill Maher.

Repubs get their heads chopped off.

bpm4532 said...

The rise of the thought police and future crime apprehension. The NSA data and all those nifty campaign algorithms will come in handy.

Saint Croix said...

It's at least a teaching moment in the sense of: this'll teach you not to be the next teaching moment.

Yes, exactly. We can destroy you. That's the lesson.

I don't think anybody actually cares if she's a racist or not. Immaterial.

ricpic said...

"We can destroy you" is another way of accomplishing Althouse's "giving people time to accommodate to the nature of things." It's bad cop to Althouse's good cop method of intimidation.

Chip Ahoy said...

What did Aristotle say about Plato?

He was very direct. Don't eat it. It tastes like shit, and put the lid on tight after you play with it or it dries out to like a rock.

Fernandinande said...

Another "teaching moment" from our informal NKVD.

Methadras said...

Teaching moments are what leftists use as euphemisms for diktats.

Methadras said...

Farmer said...

When did the USA get so fucking sanctimonious?

"You think the wrong thing, and you said it out loud. Apologize at once!"

"I'm sincerely sorry. I was totally, 100% wrong. Please forgive me."

"Not good enough!"

Who are these morally superior assholes anyway?


Leftists.

Cedarford said...

All "teachable moments" are is a sign the Left, the inheritors of the original Jewish Bloshevik "apology tour -

First done on those Russians the Bolsheviks had selected for execution, starvation doing slave labor under Yagoda on the canal projects, or just worked to death in the Gulags with minimal food and shelter.
Their only chance was to apologize for being a class enemy to the Soviets, promise they would rehabilitate themselves. Of course, the Jewish Bolsheviks had predetermined who would continue to be demonized. No apology would do them any good, but the admission of error and the public grovelling would advance social/revolutionary justice.

Later, other communist regimes emulated the Jewish Bolsheviks, then the Nazis, then Uncle Saul Alinsky resurrected his Bolshie kinfolks ideas.

Lem said...

I voted with my wallet.... and I don't have much.
In fact, I have nuthing.

Greg Hlatky said...

In the auto-da-fé during the Inquisition, those who did not repent were burned at the stake while those who did were just beheaded.

Ben Calvin said...

The auto de fe was quite a teaching moment.

Left Bank of the Charles said...

Paula Deen should have paid the extortion, even if it was a white woman playing the race card on her in the lawsuit, that's the lesson of this teaching moment.

Meade said...

Rachel Jeantel should tutor Paula Deen in speaking proper English..

rhhardin said...

It seems reasonable to me. He's not accusing anybody but pointing out that it's not justice, as if he wanted to persuade with an idea that appeals to the opponent.

This is what was classically called an ad hominem argument.

Michael K said...

The teaching moment, if she is smart enough to do it, is to respond to her publisher's cancellation of her book by self publishing. We are seeing the beginning of a Chick-fil-A moment.

Here is the statement.

I hope she is smart enough and feisty enough to take advantage of it. I interpret the cancellation by the publisher, before the book is published, as cancellation of her contract with them. Maybe they will even sell her the thousands of unsold copies but it is better if she just uses the pdf files and redoes the title pages.

rhhardin said...

I myself would proceed as a lexicographer would, and figure out what nigger means.

1. Head meaning: black person. Always dangerously likely to spring up.

2. Implications, that today can sometimes be cut loose as an independent sense :

2a. Probably up to no good, at best up to nothing;

2b. Sometimes useable for performing low tasks.

Byrd (?) used white nigger, thinking he could separate the senses as a white person. This doesn't work out well.

Blacks can do it, and use sense (2) as a played-at insult.

Sense (2) gets a positive boost from the rogue sentiment, favoring the outsider who's natural, not putting on airs, fresh insights and so forth, that can make it friendly.

Does this start to break down the tripwire functionality of the word?

rhhardin said...

Radio Derb is exceptionally good this week (available tomorrow Saturday unless you know the .mp3 filename system), on the Supreme Court, Zimmerman, Paula Deen.

Favorite shot: "Rachel Jeantel, a three hundred pound slab of ghetto attitude, ..."

Check Saturday 6/29.

edutcher said...

Farmer said...

When did the USA get so fucking sanctimonious?

Around 1980, when the Lefties found they could destroy people's lives.

hombre said...

Paula dean learned that PC can be applied retroactively to destroy one's livelihood.

Not yet.

The cookbooks are doing a land office business and the restaurants are full.

As I said yesterday, Carbonite, anyone?

paul a'barge said...

I promptly went to Amazon and ordered the book. Then the publisher dumped it.

Self-publish, Paula Deen. Do it for all the people out here not living in glass houses just waiting for the rocks to hit.

paul a'barge said...

@ALH - Alec Baldwin was right. Paula was wrong. Big diff...

paul a'barge said...

Folks, watch the movie with Russell Crowe called "Gladiator". Take note of the crowds in the stands.

Because that's where we are right now as a culture.

Rick67 said...

The goal is power - achieved through fear.

rhhardin said...

A British friend of mine in the 60s, writing specifications for a Navy job, wrote that two riggers were required.

It came back from typing as "two coloured gentlemen."

His reputation in the typing pool would be ruined today, but the typist did catch the implications of the word.

Ann Althouse said...

rhardin's comment made me look up the n-word in the OED.

Lots of interesting material there. Simple version: It's a very old word. To use it today: be black, and refer to your friends. Otherwise: Don't use it.

Interesting that the OED got that so completely politically correct, but I bet they worked really hard on that entry.

Fritz said...

Paula Dean is a democrat, so I experience a certain Germanic emotion seeing her hoist on the petard of liberal intolerance. Schadenfreude, that's it.

rhhardin said...

I bet the rogue sentiment can save it.

You have to get hidden equations between senses right, in addition of course to getting the senses right, which I have made only a first cut at.

"A nigger independence" seems to me to be positive, trading on the rogue sentiment. It's an independence that concedes has both positives and negatives, but there's a spirit to it. Black hasn't arisen except as a possessor of dignity.

The rogue sentiment transfers what had been predicates to the subject.

fivewheels said...

I've had a cheap Paula Deen cookware set in my Amazon wishlist for a while. It's now been discounted 12 percent since I added it. I might hold out for 20.

If I buy it, can I get on the purchase of the day post?

Dust Bunny Queen said...

Teaching moments

1. LIE when asked about anything that might be construed as not Politically Correct when liberals are in power.

2. HIDE any feelings or thoughts that might be considered not Politically Correct according to the latest liberal orthodoxy.

3. INFORM on those who are not adhering to the party line.

4. JOIN THE LYNCH MOB and attack the latest target who strayed from the Politically Correct Group Think. She/He must be totally destroyed for transgressions.

5. HOPE that YOU won't inadvertently be the next target and to prove that you aren't be sure to loudly and publicly repeat lesson number 3 and lesson number 4.

Do I get an A in this current teaching moments?? I really really hope so. Do I also get a merit badge to proudly display and with which to shield myself? Please oh please grand poobah powers that be.

Chuck said...

Ann Althouse said...
"rhardin's comment made me look up the n-word in the OED.
"Lots of interesting material there. Simple version: It's a very old word. To use it today: be black, and refer to your friends. Otherwise: Don't use it.
"Interesting that the OED got that so completely politically correct, but I bet they worked really hard on that entry."

So Ann, I am wondering if there are any whites-only words these days? I'd have thought, that if the word "nigger" was to be banned from all usage, it would be done as a courtesy to, and in respect of black people who were historically so violated by all that was consumed by the word and the word's history. But when blacks themselves popularize it (or it becomes daily code-language), does the non-usage rule still hold? I don't think that it is fair to say that it is code-language exclusively within the black community; not when it is made a part of black popular culture. See, e.g. Niggaz With Attitude a/k/a top-selling hip hop stars "NWA."

I don't like, and don't understand, the term "n-word" as a euphemism in this regard.

Do you say "f-word" in your common speech and blog writing? Do you say "s-word"? Isn't it better, and better linguistic hygiene, to either use the word in all of its natural ugliness if and when it is necessary to do so (like discussing the left's sanctimonious scolding over someone's 30 year-old utterance of THAT WORD), or to ignore it in all of its forms?

If anybody really wanted to get to the end of the "n-word" (I feel more stupid every time I type that contraction) then JUST STOP DISCUSSING IT, and STOP TALKING ABOUT WHEN AND HOW IT MAY HAVE BEEN USED.

If one side of the political divide is going scold opponents over something this trivial, my response is going to be, "You mean the word, 'nigger'?"

Dust Bunny Queen said...

Paula Deen campaigned for Obama. She is a Democrat.

Obama, could put a stop to this lynching (and I use that word deliberately) by taking some sort of moral stand. But he won't because he is a colossal racist dick himself.

So Paula said "nigger" aka the N word (what pussies we are) when she was a child or younger. So what? It was common in the 40's and 50's It was just what it was. If you didn't say the N word, which was considered rather impolite you said Negro (with a long E sound) Colored or Darkie, the word of choice by my husband's Grandmother. When we lived in Mississippi in the days of segregation my mother was adamant that we didn't use the N word and use Colored or Negro.

So what. The fucking liberals want to take away my birthday because when I was a kid I used a word that 50 years later is now Verboten?

Paula should have just lied.

AJ Lynch said...

I would bet Frank Bruni probably used the N- word, at least once, when he was younger. Now, he is a doctrinaire librul who toes the PC far left line. I wonder if Bruni would tell us about his own teachable moment?

AJ Lynch said...

I would bet Obama & Michele Obama have used the word honkie and cracker many times.

jr565 said...

Libruls always get a pass or a 2nd chance...Jesse Jackson, Alec Baldwin, Hillary Clinton, Joe Biden, Bill Clinton, Bill Maher.

Repubs get their heads chopped off.


Paula deans not even a repub. she voted for Obama. (that,ll teach her.) but she has the double sin of being white and a southerner. And we all know white southerners ae all racist.

jr565 said...

I do like how her books went to number one on the charts on Amazon.
If I had money to fund a cooking show Id hire her in a second. Because she's getting railroaded something fierce here.

jr565 said...

Paula dean said nigger thirty years ago in the south. Trayvon Martin said cracker right before he died and his gf testified that that's common usage in her community

Eric said...

The rise of the thought police and future crime apprehension. The NSA data and all those nifty campaign algorithms will come in handy.

I wonder if the self-proclaimed guardians of free speech on the left realize they're building just the kind of state they rail against.

Lem said...

ATM

A Teachable Moment.

ken in sc said...

Can Mexicans still call dark beer cerveza negra? Do we have to change the name of the Niger river? I had a 6th grade student complain about it being on the map once.