May 20, 2018

"Afro-pessimism and its treatment of withdrawal as transcendence is no less pleasing to white supremacy than Booker T. Washington’s strategic retreat into self-help."

"Afro-pessimism threatens no one, and white audiences confuse having been chastised with learning... My father used to say that integration had little to do with sitting next to white people and everything to do with black people gaining access to better neighborhoods, decent schools, their share. Life for blacks was not what it should be, but he saw that as a reason to keep on, not check out. I had no idea how much better things were than they had been when he was my age, he said.... A couple of decades later I was resenting my father speaking of my expatriate life as a black literary tradition, because I understood him to be saying that I wasn’t doing anything new and, by the way, there was no such thing as getting away from being black, or what others might pretend that meant. Black life is about the group, and even if we tell ourselves that we don’t care anymore that America glorifies the individual in order to disguise what is really happening, this remains a fundamental paradox in the organization of everyday life for a black person. Your head is not a safe space."

From "The Afro-Pessimist Temptation" by Darryl Pinckney in the New York Review of Books, reviewing "We Were Eight Years in Power: An American Tragedy" by Ta-Nehisi Coates.

93 comments:

gspencer said...

Is this another "Woe is us" piece?

mccullough said...

The US is becoming less white but not more black. Miscegenation is the only way. No escape from it. No writing your way out of it or around it. Tiger Woods and Harry’s Wife are the future. Coates is the past. If you want Black then SubSaharan Africa is the only place to go. The blacks in the US are becoming more white or dying off.

Beloved Commenter AReasonableMan said...

gspencer said...
Is this another "Woe is us" piece?


Part of integration. Have to keep up with all those poor oppressed white men stories

Sebastian said...

"Afro-pessimism and its treatment of withdrawal as transcendence is no less pleasing to white supremacy than Booker T. Washington’s strategic retreat into self-help." Until blacks stop obsessing about being black, white supremacists got it made.

"My father used to say that integration had little to do with sitting next to white people and everything to do with black people gaining access to better neighborhoods, decent schools, their share." His father was wrong: modern progs do want blacks to be "next to" white people. It's almost as if they assume whites are somehow better.

"Black life is about the group" Yup. Understandable, but ultimately stifling and self-defeating.

"even if we tell ourselves that we don’t care anymore that America glorifies the individual in order to disguise what is really happening, this remains a fundamental paradox in the organization of everyday life for a black person. Your head is not a safe space." As long as blacks keep thinking that "America glorifies the individual in order to disguise" something, they'll remain stuck in their unsafe space.

MayBee said...

" A couple of decades later I was resenting my father speaking of my expatriate life as a black literary tradition, because I understood him to be saying that I wasn’t doing anything new and, by the way, there was no such thing as getting away from being black, or what others might pretend that meant. Black life is about the group, and even if we tell ourselves that we don’t care anymore that America glorifies the individual in order to disguise what is really happening, this remains a fundamental paradox in the organization of everyday life for a black person. Your head is not a safe space." "

I know I could click through and find out, but this excerpt is confusing to me. Is this what he understood his father to be saying, or is this what he is thinking?

mccullough said...

Most white people dont think of themselves as white. Looking at the census data, most people self identify with an ethnic group (German or Irish or Italian). It took white ethnicities in the US awhile to start inter-marrying but they’ve done a good job, even more of the Jews do it these days.

Guys like Coates want to impose whiteness. Helps him make sense of things. Obama is half white. That’s why he got elected. He didn’t grow up in Baltimore or Detroit. But guys like Coates got to impose order.

Scott said...

Who the hell is Darryl Pinckney writing for? A presumably black man critiquing Ta-Nehisi Coates' latest literary ejaculation, in a journal read mostly by whites with liberal arts degrees. Really. Black people fulminating about other black people. Almost nobody reading the review has a dog in the fight. This is farce -- over-the-top silly.

chuck said...

> the only notion the current administration has is to undo whatever President Obama did, to wipe him out

Yeah, right. Does anyone give a sh*t what Obama did at this point? He isn't calling the shots, and Trump isn't his negative impression. We all are off on the roller coaster having a fun time while this poor sucker sulks in the slough, mourning what never was.

Scott said...

And the fetishization of racial culture continues apace.

Big Mike said...

They need to recarve the Martin Luther King, Jr. monument in downtown Washington to show him weeping in shame and humiliation at what’s become of his revolution just fifty years after his death.

Kevin said...

“Nothing could be further from the left’s current vision, which is that the very concept of post-racial integration is an illusion designed to mask the reality of an eternal “white supremacy.” Today’s left-liberal consensus is that Obama, however revered he may still be as president, was and is absurdly naïve in this respect: that there is no recovery from the original sin, no possible redemption, and certainly no space for the concept of an individual citizenship that transcends race and can unite Americans. There is no freedom here. There is just oppression. The question is merely about who oppresses whom.”

Andrew Sullivan

Caldwell P. Titcomb IV said...

"We Were Eight Years in Power..." by Ta-Nehisi Coates

Speaking of jokes, "What you mean 'we', white man?"

rhhardin said...

The trick is to make a living at it.

Derek Kite said...

I read this stuff and see why these problems are unsolvable.

A couple decades ago I realized that the most threatening act of rebellion a person could do is to marry a woman, stay with her till death, have children, teach them the value of hard work, diligence, honesty and faithfulness.

You can't change 8 billion people. Don't waste your time.

Jersey Fled said...

"Black life is about the group"

I noticed this among many of my African American students when I taught at a predominantly black urban university. I think it held many of them back. They were caught in a worldview that they had made for themselves, and never thought to push on the door that might have led to better things for them. As individuals. They only saw progress as something to be gained collectively.

Strangely, my African immigrant students didn't see things the same way. So it seems to be a cultural thing rather than a racial one.

Maybe this is part of what Kanye meant when he said slavery was a choice.

Scott said...

"Black life is about the group." In other words, it's tribal. And tribalism is the ultimate end state of societal collapse.

J. E. Malthaus said...

I dated a black man in college, because that is what some of us Jewish college girls did, we dated a black man or pretended to be a lesbian for awhile. I dated a lesbian briefly too, but that's not germane to this subject.

His black friends hated me; at first I wasn't sure if it was because I was white or because I was Jewish, but then I realized that either was sufficient, really.

At first I thought we shared something, that we were both outsiders to most of society, but he explained that blacks were outsiders with no power, while Jews were outsiders that had too much power. I asked him what power did I have over him -- I was barely a hundred pounds -- and he laughed and said "white pussy." Which is what I liked about him, he had a nice sense of humor when he wasn't trying to act militant in front of his friends.

After awhile he would affectionately call me his 'Jewish white pussy', except then he sometimes said it when he wasn't being affectionate, and I could see where this was going.

We were drinking cheap college-student wine one night at his apartment, talking the things you talk about when you're in college and drinking cheap college-student wine, and I asked him if he referred to me as 'Jewish white pussy' with his friends. He took a slow breath, then replied "Sometimes, yeah."

There was uncomfortable silence for a few moments, then he began explaining how American slavery was a Holocaust, too. And this was kind of Godwin's Law: when you're Jewish, eventually the subject is going to turn to the Holocaust. Then he put on Coltrane's "A Love Supreme", which I don't think he really enjoyed, but he liked being thought of the kind of black man who listens to Coltrane.

I left in the morning with a bit of a hangover, and we didn't see each other again for a few days. When we did run into each other we said our 'Hellos' but it was obvious that we had broken up, even though we never said anything like that to each other, we just both knew.

A year or so later I saw him on the commons, handing out flyers for a black student group's upcoming event; he was wearing an army jacket with patches that included the flag of Ghana. He nodded at me, but didn't take off his sunglasses. I took a flyer and left.

LWL

Beloved Commenter AReasonableMan said...

Loren W Laurent said...
I dated a lesbian briefly too, but that's not germane to this subject.


Do we get a vote on this?

tcrosse said...

Black women typically are not very happy about black men dating white women, particularly blondes.

Wince said...

You start a conversation you can't even finish it
You're talking a lot, but you're not saying anything
When I have nothing to say, my lips are sealed
Say something once, why say it again?

Christopher said...

I dated a black man in college, because that is what some of us Jewish college girls did...

That's quite a story, thanks for sharing.

Caldwell P. Titcomb IV said...

tcrosse said...
Black women typically are not very happy about black men dating white women, particularly blondes.


"Did you happen to see a big, tall, black, blonde chick here?"

Michael K said...

They were caught in a worldview that they had made for themselves, and never thought to push on the door that might have led to better things for them

They should talk to one of my African or West Indian students sometime, but they won't.

African or West Indian blacks can't figure out American blacks. All this opportunity and it is right here at home and they won't make use of it. Even if they do get an AA spot in college. they don't make good use of it.

Instead, they are marching around complaining about black lives, as if those were their lives.

mikee said...

If black life is indeed "about the group" then it is clear that America, founded on a concept of individual rights outweighing collective wants or needs, needs to re-orient Blacks from being collectivists to individualists. Rights of the individual stop racism, dead in its tracks. Collectivist identity politics breeds racism, purposefully. One should choose wisely which philosophy to follow, because only one succeeds in accomplishing what everyone claims to want.

narciso said...

coates, thinks he really is dubois or Baldwin, which is a deep delusion, dyson is a heftier fool along those lines,

Oso Negro said...

It’s better to be negrodocious than Afro-pessimistic.

Tommy Duncan said...

"Black life is about the group"

It has to be about the group. Otherwise it's just "life", where concepts like free will, personal responsibility and self determination come into play. It's harder to be a victim when your life is self determined.

Jupiter said...

"My father used to say that integration had little to do with sitting next to white people and everything to do with black people gaining access to better neighborhoods, decent schools, their share."

Why is it the white people had access to better neighborhoods already? Integration is about giving black people what they want by denying white people what they want. Which in both cases, is to live around white people.

Bilwick said...

"Black life is about the group. . . ." And therein lies the problem. And the reason individualistic African Americans are seen as not "real" Blacks, and why "real" Blacks are beloved by "liberal" government sniffers and State humpers.

Michael K said...

" needs to re-orient Blacks from being collectivists to individualists."

That battle was lost by Lyndon Johnson and "The Great Society," which attached blacks firmly to the national teat.

Some have escaped but the rest will probably died off from abortion and homicide.

Michael K said...


"My father used to say that integration had little to do with sitting next to white people and everything to do with black people gaining access to better neighborhoods, decent schools, their share."

Why is it the white people had access to better neighborhoods already?


This is the fallacy that even Margaret Thatcher fell prey to. Middle class behavior does not come as a result of middle class things, like houses and cars.

"Bourgeois Values" should be required reading instead of the Marxism so prevalent in college.

SDaly said...

It's essays like this (and Coates's) that make us remind ourselves: Diversity is strength!

robother said...

Pessimism is a gateway drug. Booker Washington could see that, and that the antidote is often just doing what you can.

Sadly, doing what you can as a black intellectual is writing books that sell Afro-pessimism. Works for them, but its like being an industrious drug dealer.

Sal said...

black people gaining access to better neighborhoods

Thankfully, black people now live in better neighborhoods

AlbertAnonymous said...

I can’t believe no one has comment yet on this statement “your head is not a safe space”.

Oh, for the love of God! Now blacks are complaining they can’t even be safe from whitey in their own heads?
Well, this one black anyway, and maybe his father.

Honestly, I give up. This is why I hate the “we just want to have a conversation” BS. No you don’t. You want to lecture us on your crazy views. We think they’re crazy, so we don’t accept them. You think anyone who doesn’t accept your (crazy) views must be racist because your (crazy) views are so “normal”. And there you go. We are deplorable racists. QED

Marc said...

I've always found it fascinating that in much of Black American culture it is taboo to criticize another member of the community, whereas in Jewish culture in general it is practically required for membership. I think I understand the roots of the former better than the latter.

Marc said...

I should clarify: "it is taboo to publicly criticize"

J. E. Malthaus said...

When I was dating the black man in college we went to a house party thrown by a couple of his friends.

I was not the only white person there, but it is almost more uncomfortable when you are one of only two white people in that situation: it feels like everyone is expecting you to hang close to the other white person, and you will be disdained if you do, so you make a conscious decision to keep your distance so that it doesn't seem like you're afraid of black people. Awkward.

I remember feeling as if I was having an out-of-body experience, like I was watching myself and my boyfriend from above, hovering just below the popcorn ceiling. One of his black friends laughed and asked me why I didn't bring any white girls along with me to the party, which made the others within hearing distance laugh.

Actually, I should say it made the males within hearing distance laugh; the women looked at me like I was the human equivalent of a stopped-up toilet.

There was one girl that I had been friendly with before -- we shared a literature class -- so I went over to talk with her. She said a few words, but never really looked at me; she then excused herself to go to the bathroom, and when she returned she went to the other side of the room. Okay.

As the evening went on the music got louder, and eventually people were dancing. Which made me the Jewish white girl at the party that wasn't dancing.

Finally I said to myself the hell with it, and I started dancing, too. Which I quickly realized was a mistake: I was watched as if I was a dog doing tricks in front of someone who didn't like dogs.

I tried to ignore the looks and just be loose and in the moment, but I was now physically incapable of looseness, or even rhythm: I had the dance moves of a plywood board with menstrual cramps. When the current song ended -- Ice Cube's "It Was A Good Day" -- I went to the kitchen to pour myself a beer into the inevitable plastic cup.

In the kitchen there were several boys drinking; one of them held up a bottle and asked if I wanted some. And I started laughing.

He wanted to know what was so funny, and I knew I couldn't tell him: it was a bottle of Hennessy, and I couldn't help but think of the old Digital Underground video:

Now gather round
I'm the new fool in town
And my sound's laid down by the Underground
I drink up all the Hennessy ya got on ya shelf
So just let me introduce myself
My name is Humpty, pronounced with a Umpty
Yo ladies, oh how I like to hump thee

Although he probably was thinking he was more like Tupac:

Up late nights (c'mon) under the city lights
The Henn got me feelin right, I'm tryin to keep from swervin
She's so fine and she love Henn too
After a couple of shots she said, "I could do what I wanna do"
(That's right) We ain't sippin champagne (nah) we off the Henn-Rock
Alcoholics back at the liquor sto' cause we can't stop (can't stop)
And won't stop (we won't stop) all night long
'til the break of dawn, gettin it on, Hennessy

I politely passed on the offer, and soon found a quiet space in a back bedroom, where I pulled a book from the bookshelf and began reading. So, yes, I was the white Jewish girl at a black house party who was in the back bedroom reading “Your Blues Ain’t Like Mine."

cf said...

In an Alternative Universe there is a President Obama who -- right off the bat -- says,

"OK, now, you boys and young black men, you wanna grow up and marry one of my daughters and be my son-in-law? Then have the courage to be a square, pull up your pants, work hard in school and look for ways to be excellent as a man."

Or something like that. My transmissions from the Alternative Universe Obama has a lot of static, but oh! What Might Have Been.

Sad.

Gahrie said...

The biggest problem for Black people today is not White racism...it is Black culture.

Seeing Red said...

Didn’t Coates up and move to France for a time?

Lucien said...

Makes me wonder whether Loren W Laurent runs a sketchy adult bookstore with James James.

gspencer said...


Loren's better ending with a better choice,

"I politely passed on the offer, and as soon as I could, got the f**k outta there, leaving the boyfriend and my coat as but a small sacrifice in learning a life lesson, namely, that black culture is just different, usually not in a good way."

Anonymous said...

@LWL Thanks for your insightful comments.

Seeing Red said...

Bourgeois Values" should be required reading instead of the Marxism so prevalent in college.


Lack of History. I think it’s insulting to assume those values are only white values. They were and are practiced the world over.

White people might have written about it more.

Charles Dickens: His advice in David Copperfield was this: ‘Annual income 20 pounds, annual expenditure 19 [pounds] 19 [shillings] and six [pence], result happiness. Annual income 20 pounds, annual expenditure 20 pounds ought and six, result misery.’

Michael K said...

The biggest problem for Black people today is not White racism...it is Black culture.

Bingo !

And it's American black culture. Africans and West Indians don't have it and succeed.

Achilles said...

Enough Black people are figuring out that the best thing for them and their family is to leave the culture foisted on them by rich white leftists.

This will be the end of the democrat racialist coalition.

James Graham said...

The first thing I ever read about Tennessee Coast was that he had no sympathy or interest in the 9/11 attack on WTC because mostly white people were killed.

As a native New Yorker who spent thousands of hours in tall buildings including the WTC I would not spend time reading anything else such a person wrote or said.

I've also decided to break my rule of never ridiculing a person's name.

rcocean said...

Obama presidency was an "American Tragedy"? Finally, TNC gets it right.

"..Tennessee Coast was that he had no sympathy or interest in the 9/11 attack on WTC because mostly white people were killed."

When discussing the Civil War, TNC said it wasn't a tragedy that 500,000 soldiers died. He said he didn't feel sad about that and would gladly sacrifice another 500,000 to free the slaves.

Which was pretty white of him.

YoungHegelian said...

@Loren,

I had the dance moves of a plywood board with menstrual cramps

That phrase wins the Internet for today!

John henry said...

Rcocean said


When discussing the Civil War, TNC said it wasn't a tragedy that 500,000 soldiers died. He said he didn't feel sad about that and would gladly sacrifice another 500,000 to free the slaves.

And yet slavery, of blacks and all other races and nationalities, went from being common and universal in 1800 to rare and isolated in 1900.

Other than the US, who else needed a war to free the slaves?

John Henry

wildswan said...

Reading this one individual reminds of the map of New York City which was on the cover of the New Yorker once. In that picture called View of the World from Ninth Ave. In that view the block from Ninth to Tenth is detailed, blocks further on diminish in detail, then we see, Hudson River, then Jersey, then the rest of the US as a few scattered landmarks and cities, the Pacific Ocean slightly wider than Hudson River, and then a miniscule line of hills on the father shore labelled Russia, China, Japan. Similarly "white" culture and "white" people is depicted in this book review as totally preoccupied with holding down the black community. Only, in this map, beyond the detailed area, there is nothing, just empty space. There's no Europe and no America, Canada, Australia. There's no literature, math, science, Greek philosophy, Renaissance painting, engineering, IT - no canzones, no calculus, no Socrates, no Michelangelo, no Brooklyn Bridge, no Windows 10 and no one involved with them. The individual who wrote the review is depicting a self-centered view and it is like all other self-centered views - not very interesting, not much fun, disproportioned. All the "intersectional" views are also the same; self-centered and thereby massively limited. In life there's nothing you can do for someone who thinks solely about their own grievances. It's like being on a Hillary tour after the 2016 election. The election was hugely interesting and Hillary was a central player. But listening to her talk steadily about herself without wit or insight is painfully boring; and what if you had to listen and then a few days later the same thing; and then a new venue and the same thing; and so on and on and on? And your job required you to look interested all the time and say how great she was being? And applaud wildly?

Yancey Ward said...

Is it just me, or does LWL seem like the new version of the ever ingenious Laslo?

YoungHegelian said...

While Pickney & Coates write as if Jim Crow is alive & well in all 57 states, I'd like to give my report from the field. It's much more hopeful.

While I was visiting my Mammy in Alabammy last weekend, I noticed that there was no shortage of interracial couples in my town in northern Alabama. Matter of fact, I saw percentage-wise as many as I do in the DC area.

But what really took me back is how, on the plane back from Huntsville to DC, there were multiple seats where blacks sat next to whites, & they, in the best southern tradition, chatted up the total stranger next to them. Hell, the two behind me, a black woman a few years short of retirement & a white man in his mid thirties, talked the whole damn flight from take off to landing.

When people have things to do, like make a living & take care of their families, it's amazing how quickly they can find common ground.

Rabel said...

Loren went back.
Never say never.

Yancey Ward said...

It is stuff like this that is why I don't give a shit any longer about black people and their problems. You are ultimately responsible for yourself, and if you can't be roused to that level of self-care, I have nothing to offer you and feel no obligations at all.

William said...

I enjoyed reading Loren's comments.......When I was younger, I had, for a brief time, a black girl friend. I went to a party with her where the other people were mostly black. The host offered me a drink. Somebody said "what are you the butler?". Everybody laughed like it was the greatest joke they had ever heard. A couple of guys came up and started hitting on my girl like I wasn't even there. I didn't have a good time at the party.

The Cracker Emcee Refulgent said...

Afro-pessimism (and how many hours of fun could you have with that term!) is a state very deliberately designed for Black people by a certain kind of White person. Black people are still trying to puzzle out who these White people are but, despite glacial and even halting progress and many a blind alley, they will figure it out eventually. I hope I’m still here when that particular light bulb comes on.

Michael said...

I taught English at an historically black college in the early 70s. My students were typical college students with some eager to learn and some happy to coast. This was in the Deep South not so long after the civil rights movements heyday. The kids were out to get degrees to get ahead and were eyeing careers in everything from teaching to entering business. I am certain most ended up fine. I weep for their children and grand children who have been marinated in the victim mentality that gained traction by the middle 80s and exploded since. I never heard the MF phrase or the N word a single time in those years. .

Michael said...

YoungHegelian
And so it is in every crossroads hamlet in the Deep South. Startling amount of interracial marriage. Rednecks and blacks. The coastal elite fucks lecturing us on race morning to night do not have eyes to see.

William said...

I haven't read much of anything by Coates but I did read the New York Review article about him. I didn't get much from it.......I knew some aspirational black families, back when, who didn't want to send their kids to any Black Panther breakfast program. Who wants their kids instructed by Marxist revolutionaries with a history of violent crimes. They showed more sense than those people in Chicago who wanted their kids educated by Bill Ayers. Anyway the Black Panthers had more to do with the destruction of the Black Panther Party than the FBI.......Similarly with the Rev. Farrakhan. The Million Man March was his high water. All that talk about numerology and space ships did more to cause WTF among the attendees than his anti-semitism.

tcrosse said...

Loren went back.
Never say never.


OTOH it's been said that once you go black you never go back.

buwaya said...

Haiti of course had a terrible series of wars whereby the slaves freed themselves, and moreover the Haitians abolished slavery in Santo Domingo as well (modern Dominican Republic).

In Cuba it was at least partly the slave revolts that were part of the failed revolution of the Ten Years War (1868-78) that eventually forced Spain to abolish slavery there in order to remove that vexing issue.

Brazil sacrificed its Emperor in the process. Pedro II of the House of Braganza bucked the powers that be and freed the slaves, creating such enmity that he was deposed and the monarchy abolished. T his was amid increasing unrest among the slaves.

In Venezuela and other parts of Spanish America it was the revolutions of the 1820's that, mostly, abolished slavery. The ins and outs of this were complex. The slaves in many places emerged as an important political force because their manpower was useful to both sides.

The British emancipation was prompted by a very bloody slave revolt in Jamaica in 1831-32.

So its not correct to say that slavery ended peacefully, on the whole. It had become uneconomically expensive to maintain it, not least because the cost of repression was too high.

hstad said...

"White Supremacy" another propaganda concept pushed by "Leftists". In my time, I never looked at myself as "White" only as Irish American. I would guess everyone else also did the same - Italian, French, Dutch, German, Danish, Swedish, etc., - American.

narciso said...

so of course, they gave him a captain America issue, to write, yikes, he thinks his Baldwin re 1972. and dyson even more ridiculous if that were possible,

buwaya said...

An interesting historical footnote.

In Romania (traditionally in Wallachia and Moldavia) Gypsies and Tatars were enslaved (not serfdom, slavery) and worked the estates of the church and aristocracy. This was only abolished in 1856.

Charlie Eklund said...

Yancey, Loren reminds me of James James, the writer of tales taking place “at the bar”. James’ posts were always interestng and stylistically very similar to Loren’s equally interesting tales.

Big Mike said...

"White Supremacy" another propaganda concept pushed by "Leftists".

Oh, back before the mid-1960s and for a short while thereafter there were real white supremacists around. Not today.

Michael said...

White Supremacy is, of course, inarguable. Whites are the majority in the population and whites are (and will be) the prime actors in business, technology, philanthropy, finance, engineering, literature, and defenders (and erstwhile destroyers) of western culture. Changes in demography won't change this for a long, long time.

Michael K said...

Changes in demography won't change this for a long, long time.

Genetics are most likely the cause and interracial marriage and children will help.

Neanderthals had bigger brains and those of us with 3% or so of Neanderthal DNA got the benefit.

FIDO said...

Shrug. I have nothing to say to Black People. There is nothing I will give Black People. I dare not suggest even basic obvious things lest they rise in ire and outrage.

And since, as a block, they have positioned themselves as a mere 90% my political enemies...I REALLY have nothing to offer them except what everyone else gets: an education and the opportunity to remake oneself. There are no legal hurdles they face and any cultural, educational, or reputational issues are on them.

Strangely, I offer this to Jamaicans, Asians, Russians, Mexicans and South Americans and they RUN with it.

I think most of the Republicans have also given up on them. Trump hasn't.

And after losing pretty much EVERYWHERE, Democrats can no longer hide the fact that they no longer have their hands on the purse strings...

Funny how those things work.

buwaya said...

Part of the American Black problem may be related to the circumstances of their liberation.

They did not free themselves, or contribute particularly much to doing so, compared to most other countries with populations of ex-slaves. That was a costly gift from certain white people. And the aftermath left them under the control of defeated, aggrieved white people.

It did not help that the 50's-60's were so distorted by intellectual Marxism.

Jon Ericson said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jon Ericson said...

Loren &c:
Like a box of chocolates.

FIDO said...

There are two kinds of people: those who, when you rant angrily at people for...well...everything, try to make you feel better...and those who avoid this ranting fool.

Some of the former try to offer sex to amiliorate these rants (hat tip LWL).

I am the later and thIs, in large part, explains the current political reshuffling.

FIDO said...

There are two kinds of people: those who, when you rant angrily at people for...well...everything, try to make you feel better...and those who avoid this ranting fool.

Some of the former try to offer sex to amiliorate these rants (hat tip LWL).

I am the later and thIs, in large part, explains the current political reshuffling.

Even many Democrats are avoiding these ranting fools

J. E. Malthaus said...

FIDO said...
"Some of the former try to offer sex to amiliorate these rants (hat tip LWL)."

I am unclear as to what this was meant to mean.

"Offer sex"? Explain how this is insight from whatever I've written, rather than a slur.

And when you say "some of the former offer sex" are there any men included in this group, or is this insight applicable only to women?

Because you say that there are only"two kinds of people", and the first category would otherwise just be women, which means all men are in the latter group, no exceptions.

If you need to mansplain that is fine by me.

-LWL

James Graham said...

"His [Coates] monstrous passage about 9/11 is a good summation of where he’s coming from. He writes of the police and firefighters who died running into the burning buildings in a forlorn effort to save all the people whose bodies were about to be obliterated into dust, “They were not human to me. Black, white, or whatever, they were menaces of nature; they were the fire, the comet, the storm, which could — with no justification — shatter my body.” "

"Really? Firefighters go about shattering the bodies of black people without justification? One doesn’t read about, say, Anthony Rodriguez, 36, father of six, whose last child was born days after he died in the attack, who joined the Navy before becoming a firefighter, who coached youth basketball, and naturally think of the depredations of white America."

"Coates does. This isn’t an act of moral discernment on his part, but a willful effacement of the individuality of Rodriguez and anyone Coates deems part of the impersonal apparatus determined to dispossess blacks."

https://www.politico.com/magazine/story/2015/07/the-toxic-world-view-of-ta-nehisi-coates-120512


Why would anyone pay attention to anything else this person writes or says?

chickelit said...

Seeing Red said...”Didn’t Coates up and move to France for a time?”

Yes, but that was a long time ago now — well before he used to post here under the handle The Crack EmCee.

William said...

Loren had an interesting story to tell. The novelistic details lend both credibility and maybe embellishment to the story. Anyway, it's an interesting story, and it sounds true.....,,I had a black girlfriend for a while in the seventies and another girlfriend in the nineties, for a far longer time, who was a dark skinned Puerto Rican. The relationship in the nineties didn't attract as much attention, was less stressful and died a natural death. Race relations have gotten better, at least on the visible level over time...... What I remember about Evelyn, the girl from the seventies, was that she was good looking and had a contentious relationship with her Jehovah Witness mother. I think if she had been white, I would have been just as out of water with her. I do not connect well with people from strict religious backgrounds, even when they're rebelling against such backgrounds.

William said...

Over time white people have become less prejudiced and black people--the thoughtful ones anyway--have become less hostile to middle class norms. Maybe the twain shall meet......I grew up in a housing project. I had some bad experiences with black people, but most of the black people of my acquaintance also had some hairy stories to tell about their experiences in the white world.

FIDO said...

LWL,

I expect the number of liberal girls who sleep past the color barrier out of some amount of 'liberal guilt' to be far larger than zero, though perhaps not 100% of their motivation (daddy issues always seem popular). I certainly won't speak to your personal motivations.

A way to heal the racial divide in a rather pleasant way, plus one earns that Girl Scout 'Not a Racist' badge for her sash.

Kind of a Roxanne-ian 'taking one for the team', like Alexander the Great's mass weddings between Macedonians and Persian women.

No slur intended at all. I found your experiences insightful and rather brave to relate, though unsurprising. Black are racists too. But if you want to take it as one, please don't let me stop you. Outrage is so addictive, isn't it?

Sam L. said...

I pooh-pooh Pinckney, and Coates, too

The Godfather said...

If B. T. Washington actually believed that if Blacks achieved economic success then White prejudice against them would disappear, then he was overly optimistic. Prejudice against the "Other" is embedded pretty deeply in the human psyche. But if he was too optimistic, he wasn't entirely wrong. The civil rights revolution, that started with the election of Harry Truman as President, was supported by White voters and White politicians. M. L. King preached a color-blind Gospel (his children should be judged by the "content of their character", not the "color of their skin"). Republican votes passed the Civil Rights Act.

It was only after these victories that civil rights morphed into a racial spoils system, where what matters, to people like Coates, is not the character of King's children, but the color of their skin. "White supremacy" is an excuse for the failure of some Blacks to achieve what they aspire to (or what other Blacks think they should aspire to). Do Blacks still face prejudice from some Whites? Of course. Do you see that prejudice as a challenge or as an excuse for failure. That's really the question.

Unknown said...

If sub-Saharan Africa becomes a booming industrial and agricultural power-center under Chinese, American and Hindi leadership, what will American blacks do? While rising living standards in [sS]cause widespread migration of American Blacks to Africa or will American Blacks avoid the opportunities available in a rising Africa?

J. E. Malthaus said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
J. E. Malthaus said...

FIDO said...
"I expect the number of liberal girls who sleep past the color barrier out of some amount of 'liberal guilt' to be far larger than zero, though perhaps not 100% of their motivation (daddy issues always seem popular). I certainly won't speak to your personal motivations."

But you did speak to my personal motivations -- don't be so coy, you little minx. You put me in the category of "offering" sex to a black man because I was a guilt-plagued liberal female. Because I had sex with a black man. And the only reason for that could be daddy issues or white liberal guilt.

As opposed to him being a boy in one of my classes who was good-looking, funny and smart and did a hilarious rendition of a (white) Marvin Gaye singing "Let's Get It On." Probably had to be there. (I suppose I should probably mention that, as a white Jewish girl, I also once slept with a man of German descent. So I am compelled to fuck Nazis, too, if you are psychoanalyzing.)

FIDO also said...
"No slur intended at all.. But if you want to take it as one, please don't let me stop you. Outrage is so addictive, isn't it?"

I'm not outraged: I was teasing you. I dryly pointed out that your insight had only two groups of people -- guilt-stricken white liberal women and men who are just like you. That seems like it wouldn't leave you a lot of choice in possible sexual partners. Unless you include socks. Non-white, non-liberal, non-female socks. In fact, it sounds like your sexual choices would be pretty homo

geneous.

As far as daddy issues -- don't you fucking DARE to talk about MY DADDY, YOU UNDERSTAND? SHUT THE FUCK UP ABOUT MY DADDY, ASSHOLE! MY DADDY COULD BEAT YOUR ASS! MY DADDY COULD BEAT YOUR ASS!!!!

Now stop thinking about black men and my naked breasts, you naughty boy.

LWL

FIDO said...

Ah. No.

There are those who hold the hands of the upset, in a variety of ways. Soothing tones. Gifts. Listening patiently to Afro-centric nonsense about Cleopatra being a black woman...and...erm...nookie.

Then there are people like me who see an upset person and maybe after a time or two of trying to make them feel better (or just shut them up) decide that they are malcontents, either unwilling or unable to attempt self control or be appeased. (See Mr. Coates)

So it's a bit broader than just Jewish nookie thrown at Mandingo out of daddy issues, though that seems to be (according to you,) a common Jewish subset of the idea

And I have a thing for Ashkenazi breasts among the politically incoherent (see Michelle Goldberg) So you are out of luck.

FIDO said...

Humor is hard in posts

J. E. Malthaus said...

"Humor is hard in posts"

Indeed. And I am suspicious of when the hardness lasts for four hours.

After a half-hour of laughing I usually want a cigarette.

-LWL

FIDO said...

Indeed. And I am suspicious of when the hardness lasts for four hours.

Pfizer has not been kind to Jewish women, then or now. How can you say 'no' for four hours straight?


The Cracker Emcee Refulgent said...

Laslo, you magnificent bastard.

The Cracker Emcee Refulgent said...

I had my suspicions but your 9:02 gave the game away.