June 14, 2015

"Isn't that pretty similar to what Jeb Bush did, when he filled out a form calling himself Hispanic after marrying a Hispanic woman?"

Asks Jaltcoh, noting that "According to this article, she had several black family members who weren't related by blood, including her husband. And then she started calling herself black." He adds:
And who's more important: Jeb Bush, or Rachel Dolezal? Jeb Bush has a good shot at being president. As far as I can tell, Rachel Dolezal isn't important at all. Why is the internet focusing all this attention on Rachel Dolezal?
Someone responds, "Because the whole thing is comical," and he says — quite aptly — "I don't find it that comical for the internet to try to destroy an obscure person's reputation. I'd find it more comical to make fun of a presidential candidate."

79 comments:

Sammy Finkelman said...

Jeb Bush did by accident, one time.

Not quite what she did.

Beldar said...

No, these two things are not remotely similar.

One's probably an unthinking error. Even if it were intentional, it was ridiculously minor in scope -- a check mark on a form lost to history for decades.

The other was a deliberate fraud perpetrated consistently over a period of many, many years.

The Drill SGT said...

@Beldar said...

add to it: motive,

there was a financial and PR incentive for her fraud.

There was no anticipated value in his fraud...

Bay Area Guy said...

If Jeb Bush re-oriented his entire life to become President of La Raza, maybe you'd have a point

Sebastian said...

""Isn't that pretty similar to what Jeb Bush did, when he filled out a form calling himself Hispanic after marrying a Hispanic woman?""

If Bush runs for chapter pres of La Raza, yes. Otherwise, no.

So, no.

Sebastian said...

BAG beat me to it. Great minds and all that.

Expat(ish) said...

It's similar if you have a political stake in the ground where that is a useful assertion.

Gonna be hard to sell that to the public.

-XC

Xmas said...

People are going after Rachel because the NAACP nowdays seems like an organization that will destroy peoples reputations over minor blunders. For example, the white guy who used the word "niggardly" in D.C.

Beldar said...

Dolezal is an "obscure person" only in the sense that her fraud hadn't succeeded so spectacularly as to put her on a national stage (yet) when it was revealed.

But she was perpetrating that fraud daily, hourly, deliberately, for the specific purpose of allowing her to pretend to be what she had to be in order to be the kind of social justice worker (or however she viewed it) she's made into her career.

She had indeed used her fraud to become, as CNN just wrote in its lead paragraphs on the controversy, "one of the most prominent faces in Spokane, Washington's black community" who identified herself as being black in order to become the head of the local chapter of the NAACP. That's NOT someone who's trying to be obscure, that's someone who's trying her best to be influential in public! She just hadn't (yet) been as successful in that as Jeb Bush was when he became governor of Florida.

Put another way, Jeb Bush's career has put him on a national stage, but no part of it was built upon his theoretically wrongful (if not accidental) representation regarding his race. He got nothing for it at the time, nothing since, and now only grief.

Her wrongful representations got her her job at the NAACP. She's built her life around it.

And this isn't news because the internet is making fun of her. This is about illustrating a grim and unfortunate truth in the mindset of many, many leftists when it comes to their attitudes about race, and how dishonest they're eager to be in the service of those attitudes.

kcom said...

"For example, the white guy who used the word "niggardly" in D.C."

That's not a blunder. That's called having an education.

MayBee said...

I can't get the link to work.

But no, they don't seem remotely similar. One is a one-off check mark. No proof he ever did anything to actually pretend he's hispanic. (Why the voter registration form wants to know your race is another, troubling question).
She lived her life a certain way and even faked who her family members were.

Here's the thing: It only matters what race she pretends to be, or what box Jeb Bush checked, because *we* have developed a system where some people derive certain benefits from being certain races. "We", that is, in the form of the government. It isn't just a think about how you see yourself. It's about what the government can do for you based on what race you say you are. Get rid of that, and it would absolutely not matter what race you said you are.

Bay Area Guy said...

Soul Man from 1986.

Does anyone think they could make that movie today? Rachel D could replace Rae Dawn Chong.

kcom said...

Show me the time Jeb Bush picked out a random guy and declared to the world that was his father (a little tougher in his case) LOL.

Anyway, my main point is that the "Jeb Bush is more important" argument is quaint but pointless. After watching the press pour their heart into Bridgegate and ignore (or parrot the Democratic party line) on what happened in Benghazi I'm not looking for fair from anyone. And don't even think about the resources poured into examining Sarah Palin's emails after the election was over and she was a private citizen compared to the perfunctory examination of the man actually running the executive branch. That dog won't hunt. Not anymore.

Ken B said...

It's interesting because it's revealing. It illustrates how identity politics is about using rhetorical weapons, and that "victimhood" is power. Jeb Bush will not be president, but identity politics has and continues to corrupt debate, politics, and social interactions.

buwaya said...

According to Confucian precepts, Jeb Bush has conducted himself with rectitude and decorum, of the five virtues, while this woman has not.
These are necessary qualities of a minister of state (which would include a leader/public figure in our context).

Ann Althouse said...

"Jeb Bush did by accident, one time."

Is that a known fact?

Ann Althouse said...

Link fixed. Sorry.

MayBee said...

"Jeb Bush did by accident, one time."

Take what is known. A box was checked on a voter registration form, indicating Bush is Hispanic.

How is that similar to what Dolezal did?

The Drill SGT said...

@Beldar said...
Her wrongful representations got her her job at the NAACP. She's built her life around it.


Arguably she made money on her fraud. Far more African-Americans get scholarships to Howard and jobs teaching Afro-American Art, than Blondes...

MayBee said...

For those interested, here is Jeb's voter registration with the box checked.

The Drill SGT said...

Ann Althouse said...
"Jeb Bush did by accident, one time."


Can you postulate any benefit to Jeb from a check on a form that normally doesn't see the light of day?

MayBee said...

Here is the assumption JAC seems to be building his case around:

John Althouse Cohen If Jeb Bush said he's Hispanic once, I'm going to assume he said it many other times that we just don't have a record of right now.

Frankly, I'm not even sure what you're trying to say about Jeb Bush.


Talk about not sticking to the known facts!

Phil 314 said...

Ah yes, the pivot: take an event that is seemingly harmful/embarrassing to a group/tribe, connect in some way to an icon of the opposing group/tribe and run with it loudly.

Phil 314 said...

Why do they ask ethnicity on a voter registration form?

MayBee said...

PHil- that's my question too. Although in LA they try to create city council districts for black people, hispanics, and asian people. So they can have representation by race on the council. Which is another thing all together.
But it again demonstrates that none of this would matter if we weren't making it matter. If the government wasn't separating people by race every chance they got.

Anonymous said...

Tu Quoque, straight up.

MayBee said...

"I don't find it that comical for the internet to try to destroy an obscure person's reputation. I'd find it more comical to make fun of a presidential candidate."

I will also keep this in mind the next time Althouse fails to note the backlash against cake bakers and jewelers while defending the people who just want their money back!

SteveR said...

Assuming facts not in evidence

Paco Wové said...

Similar? No, not very similar at all. Jeb Bush and Rachel Whatshername are both assholes, but for different reasons.

Sometimes things just can't be reduced to red-troupe monkeys flinging shit at blue-troupe monkeys, and vice versa.

MayBee said...

Interestingly, her parents said there is no place to indicate race on the Howard entrance forms, or was not at the time.

Paco Wové said...

"I don't find it that comical for the internet to try to destroy an obscure person's reputation."

Did this ever bother him before? Because it happens every week, you know.

Original Mike said...

"I don't find it that comical for the internet to try to destroy an obscure person's reputation."

I think Dolezal is responsible for what's happened to her own reputation.

alan markus said...

If Jeb Bush said he's Hispanic once, I'm going to assume he said it many other times that we just don't have a record of right now.

Hopefully some enterprising media source will access the public records requests made by the oppo research firm that discovered this and sold it to the New York Times. Didn't someone pay the firm that did the Rubio speeding ticket discovery $50,000? Anyway, following the public records requests would reveal the scope of the investigation - I'm sure it was thorough.

I would think that if $50,000 was spent on researching Jeb Bush, we would be hearing about more than one checked box on a voter registration form. $50,000 spent by Demos for one mischecked box on a form seems plausible.

Anonymous said...

""Isn't that pretty similar to what Jeb Bush did, when he filled out a form calling himself Hispanic after marrying a Hispanic woman?""

Why yes, it is similar. They both got pilloried (are getting pilloried) for their claims, and they both have dumb apologists who'll justify any and all nonsense perp'd by someone on "their team".

"I don't find it that comical for the internet to try to destroy an obscure person's reputation. I'd find it more comical to make fun of a presidential candidate."

That's a loaded description - "obscure person", "destroy [her] reputation". It implies that a blameless individual is having her reputation sullied unjustly. Suit yourself, but not everyone's buying that, and I don't see why we can't make fun of both of them and the whole cultural clown show that enables their farcical behavior.

MayBee said...

I don't want Dolezal's life ruined. If the NAACP has trouble with her actions, that is up to them.
If she truly made up the hate crimes, I want that outed. I'm tired of these fake crimes being used to divide us all.

Fake hate crimes, fake "hands up don't shoot", fake mattress rape. Who knew as we became more enlightened we'd regress back to the witch trials?

Skyler said...

I don't recall anyone ruining that woman's reputation. She did it all by herself.

MayBee said...

They both got pilloried (are getting pilloried) for their claims, and they both have dumb apologists who'll justify any and all nonsense perp'd by someone on "their team".

They are nothing similar in scope, action, or outcome. It doesn't matter what team you are. That is completely evident.

MayBee said...

Next up: Jeb Bush appropriated an hispanic identity because he sometimes speaks Spanish.

Beldar said...

It's hard for me to tell. I know no one involved personally.

But here's my considered take on this:

I think Jaltcoh is trolling us. I don't read his blog regularly, but the bits and pieces I've seen frequently here make me think he's got some of his mother's sense of humor and sense of purposeful misdirection.

I suspect that makes his mother a very interesting Con Law prof in her day-job, actually, just as it makes her an interesting blogger, with her "cruel neutrality" and such.

But the "isn't this similar ....?" query is TOO blatantly ridiculous for me to continue to believe its asker didn't have a puckish purpose.

----

If I'm wrong, then I'm VERY wrong, to and past the point of self-delusion.

Beldar said...

And IF I'm right, neither of them will confess it here.

Ditto if I'm wrong.

Gahrie said...

"I don't find it that comical for the internet to try to destroy an obscure person's reputation.

Unless of course they own a pizza shop and oppose gay marriage.

Fernandinande said...

"Isn't that pretty similar to what Jeb Bush did,

No.

"I don't find it that comical for the internet to try to destroy an obscure person's reputation.

Reputation? She should probably be in jail for her fake hate-crimes.

Anglelyne said...
Why yes, it is similar. They both got pilloried (are getting pilloried) for their claims, and they both have dumb apologists who'll justify any and all nonsense perp'd by someone on "their team".


What they did isn't similar, but the reaction is similar.

Anonymous said...

And supposedly President Obama claimed to be a foreigner to get a discount in college, although those papers are locked up tight, so that they won't see the light of day....

T J Sawyer said...

If Jeb Bush though he was Hispanic on one particular day, who's to say he wasn't? Someone show us the legal definition of Hispanic.

You are what you say you are. Can't anyone here spell self-identify?

Anonymous said...

http://www.americanthinker.com/blog/2012/05/why_obama_touted_foreign_birth.html

Michael K said...

"That's not a blunder. That's called having an education."

So was what Tim Hunt said.

They both said something true in the hearing of SJWs.

fivewheels said...

Jeb Bush did not try to change his appearance to look more Latino, as far as I know. That's a large, large component of the comedy with Dolezal. Have you seen the before and after pics?

Amadeus 48 said...

If Dolezal had only checked "African American" on a voter registration card or comparable document, or if Jeb Bush had built his career on his self identification as a Hispanic, then they would be donig the same thing. (By the way I think Jeb Bush is an idiot for ever having done such a thing. I don't believe his persona was that of a great mocker of ethnic and racial political groupthink.)
As to Dolezal, I agree with Anglelyne: the whole thing is crazy. There are no lessons of general application here except crazy people do crazy things. Watch out!

Anonymous said...

We have an organization that once served the great cause of civil rights but has been focused on perpetuating racism the last several decades. And now we have someone in that organization who is a fraud. It's telling.

SteveOrr said...

Dolezal was grafting herself into a narrative of collective grievance. And by doing so, she was causing indifference to real suffering. Just like a false accusation of rape.

And this is more than a Republican witch-hunt on Dolezal. The #askrachel meme is mostly coming from black people who tend to be Democrats.

Unknown said...

The woman is emblematic. Her individual importance is miniscule but the thing she represents is huge. Her fifteen minutes are focused on a contradiction that is crippling modern society: Race (or any other distinction) is a social construct - except when it isn't. The either/or always depends on one side's perceived advantages. Whether this game continues to be a winner matters a lot. This is what makes her important, if only briefly. A small propaganda victory depends on reducing the significance of what she represents to match her individual stature.

rcocean said...

Jeb Bush actually considers himself a dual citizen - a Mexican-American. No wonder Bush I, and Bush II are so fanatical about open borders.

richardsson said...

Look, Rachel Dolezal has a teaching job in academia and has undoubtedly fraudulently benefited from affirmative action. Those of us who have been on the short end of that deal for the past 40 years have taken note.

MayBee said...

Jeb Bush actually considers himself a dual citizen - a Mexican-American

Where has he said this?

bbkingfish said...

Jaltcoh has a long way to go.

Unknown said...

Jaltcoh said ""I don't find it that comical for the internet to try to destroy an obscure person's reputation."

Troll level from the pro-gay/gay camp? EPIC!

Althouse and son: Social Justice Warriors Extrodinaire. Keeping it in the family since January 2004.

alan markus said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
n.n said...

Dolezal is yet another example of the dysfunction and corruption engendered by pro-choice doctrine. The social complex (e.g. civil rights) cannot have its cake and eat it too.

southcentralpa said...

Not a Jeb guy, but at least he never got a perm (that I'm aware of, anyhoo) ...

n.n said...

Perhaps Bush was mocking the insanity of emphasizing class diversity over individual dignity. Dolezal instead embraced and redistributed its poison as a career for profit.

Anyway, when it comes to pro-choice doctrine: Once, repent. Twice and more, amoral and opportunistic.

Zach said...

We want ten part balancing tests now? I thought Sandra Day O'Connor was retired. But here goes

1) How much deception was involved?

Bush, minor. Dolezal, lots.

2) Is the deception ongoing, or one time?

Bush, one time. Dolezal, ongoing.

3) Is there any possibility of an honest mistake?

Bush has a Hispanic wife and could have ticked the wrong box on the wrong card, or the same box on two cards, or had a brain fart. Dolezal, no possibility.

4) Are there any conceivable benefits to the behavior / any actions to take advantage of the deception?

Bush can't possibly pass himself off as Hispanic. Dolezal went into a career where minority status is helpful if not necessary.

5) Are there associated details or bizarre behavior which should be considered?

Bush, no. Dolezal, yes.

6) Is the incident a tripwire for reconsidering things we had thought settled?

Both cases might be a moment to consider whether "racial privilege" is really a useful concept, or if different races might be privileged at different times, or whether scoundrels might take advantage of privilege rhetoric to advance bad ends.

7) Is the protagonist such a nobody that the proper response is to cast a blind eye?

Bush, no. Dolezal -- arguably yes, arguably no. I had never heard of her before this, but you can't say she was trying to live her life out of the public eye.

That's all I can think of right now. In true O'Connor style, feel free to add one extra criterion that lets you ignore the results of all the others.

HoodlumDoodlum said...

I don't find it that comical for the internet to try to destroy an obscure person's reputation.

See, that HAS to be trolling. I mean, cake bakers, jewelers, astrophysicists/scientists....yeah, this is a joke, for sure.

Also, when a straight tu quoque fallacy is judged "quite apt" strictly because the TARGET is correct---that seems to say quite a lot, Prof.

traditionalguy said...

What JEB's reply meant was that as a Bush middle birth order child he feels His Panic.

Dave Schumann said...

I'm amazed that the word "blackface" doesn't appear in this post, Jaltcoh's post, or in any of the comments here.

Anonymous said...

Cui Bono, Professor?

wumhenry said...

As far as I know, Bush didn't shun his parents to prevent exposure of a racial-ID scam.

wumhenry said...

Nor did Bush plant fake hate letters in his own mailbox to pose as a victim of racism. Far as I know.

richardsson said...

Jeb checking Hispanic on an ethnicity questionnaire is really the answer the government deserves. I used to check Inuit or Samoan on those things. This kind of question deserves buffoonery and the Bushes are good at buffoonery.

Rockport Conservative said...


I read she received a scholarship as a minority, a black person. She also used this on job applications that in all probability gave her an advantage to those jobs. Someone who did not get that scholarship, or those jobs was harmed. This shows she has harmed others with her actions. How many more we do not know about? Money was spent investigating hate crimes she claimed against herself. This person is mentally ill or just flat out corrupt.

Clyde said...

With all due respect, the internet was not trying to "destroy an obscure person's reputation." She did a fine job of doing that all by herself by lying about who she was and having the truth come to light. When someone's fraud is exposed, that's not destroying an innocent person's reputation. That's justice.

And her fraud is not a victimless crime; she's been out trying to gin up fake hate crimes against herself, and was holding a job at the NAACP that could have gone to some deserving person of color.

Clyde said...

And let's face it, Dolezal is just a JV Elizabeth Warren. Funny thing: When Warren's fraud was exposed, it did her no harm among her liberal friends, and there were a number of Democrats/LIVs who wanted her to run for president.

HoodlumDoodlum said...

"Isn't that pretty similar to what Jeb Bush did...?"

No, it's not similar at all.

campy said...

Althouse & Son's logic really taking a beating in this thread.

Brando said...

How did Bush seek to profit from that voter registration form? It's not the same as say checking a box on an affirmative action application for school or work or federal contracting jobs. Nor like in this woman's case, heading an NAACP branch.

But for those of us who don't care what your race is, and will judge you as an individual instead, it doesn't matter what race you call yourself and it doesn't benefit you to lie.

Craig Howard said...

Jeb Bush was acting stupidly. Dole zeal has serious mental issues.

There's a difference.

Anonymous said...

This is always what the Democrats and the left try to do. When Clinton cheated on his wife, they said, "Look, everyone does it!"

When the scientist guy lost his job recently for making remarks about women (A few posts above this one) Inga came into the discussion and said "Walker did the same thing!"

It's the only thing they have in their playbook really. They can never discuss anything on substance. They can't focus on this woman and talk about what she does, is it right or wrong? They have to always draw a parallel to a conservative or a Republican.

Pathetic.

Anonymous said...

Who cares what anybody calls themselves? If race really doesn't matter, then in principle, it's just a label and nothing more. Does it really change anything about who Dolezal or Bush are if we change the racial labels between white, black, hispanic, mixed, or something else?

The problem is that race still matters to a lot of people, and it especially seems to matter to government. I used to work with some local non-profits, and the local government providing the funds decided that conducting a race-survey was going to be part of getting their funding going forward (basically a census by job title, gender, race, and pay rate). Rather ironic to be asking people their race in non-profits run by relatively progressive people in a blue city in a blue state, but irony always seems to be lost on the Democrats who propose these reporting burdens.

Personally I'd rather we stopped asking about race on forms, it seems so pre-civil rights era to ask. At the very least, there should be trigger warnings now so we don't upset anyone who is "other" or mixed that they're not one of the default choices or in any way "other" than everyone else.

JAORE said...

Sorry, the parallels are approaching zero. One (known) mis-checked mark. One life lived as a lie for personal gain, at others expense, with fake hate crimes and renunciation of family. And more....

And the blind spots exhibited! Horrors, an obscure person attacked (need I repeat pizza, bakers and more)? The presumption that Bush checked this obscure form to pass as or pander to Hispanics. Because we all know Jeb's mother and father, this is just a weeeee bit of a stretch. (FWIW I wish Jeb Bush a long and happy retirement from the public eye.)

Good grief, dear hostess, there must be better drawings by Jaltcoh that you can display on your refrigerator. That one should be tucked out of sight.

Bryan C said...

Aside from the other differences, "Hispanic" isn't a race. Or so I recall being told, back when it was convenient for certain Hispanic people to relabeled as "White Hispanics".