Slain World War II vet Delbert Belton honored at candlelight vigil [photos]I know there are those who think there's a need to rebalance public opinion after the distortions that surrounded the George Zimmerman case, which skewed racial discourse in this country over the past year, but it's a terrible idea to go looking for incidents in where the killers are black and the victims are white and to exploit them in what seems like an effort to undo the distortions. I saw this happening earlier this week over the Christopher Lane murder, I labeled it "counter-Trayvonistic," which was a too-subtle way to say: Don't fight skewing with skewing in the opposite direction.
Conservatives have rested on the principle of colorblindness for a long time, and they've taken abuse for it. Look at how left liberals abuse Chief Justice Roberts for writing, "The way to stop discrimination on the basis of race is to stop discriminating on the basis of race." They consider that kind of talk naive (at best). They push the perceived sophistication of what Justice Blackmun said back in the first affirmative action case: "In order to get beyond racism, we must first take account of race. There is no other way."
Those are the 2 well-defined and socially presentable opinions in this country, and decent, sincere Americans have argued from these positions for decades. Now, we're seeing some conservatives who seem frustrated by this taking account of race that's been done on the left. They seem to think it's a good time to spotlight violence committed by black people. This is not a good idea! It's fine to mourn Shorty, but these candlelight vigils are intended to stir hearts the way hearts were stirred at the Trayvon Martin demonstrations.
Trayvon Martin — an individual human being — was used by demagogues to score points about the suffering of black people in America, but this is not a game, and it is delusion to imagine that there is a need to score points on some imagined other side. This is not a game. There is no score. And we are all on the same side.
To paraphrase the Chief Justice: The way to stop skewing public opinion based on race is to stop skewing public opinion based on race.
To stir hearts counter-Trayvonistically is to nurture feelings that white people are oppressed by black people. This alternative to colorblindness is profoundly stupid. 1. It abandons the easy to express, principled position that many people perceive as the high ground. 2. It steps into the arena of taking account of race, where the left liberals would love to take you on. And 3. It gives air to the white supremacists among us. These people have been outcasts for a long time, but they exist, perhaps not quite yet recognizing what they are.
What sparks catch fire in that candlelight vigil for Shorty?