“That Conversation about Race” category archive
In The Roanoke Times, mental health professional Maurice Fisher offers a clinical profile of a white supremacist, stressing in the beginning that it is a theoretical exercise and not a case study of any particular individual.
Here’s one item; follow the link for the rest (emphasis in the original):
Third, a white supremacist is generally narcissistic, self-centered and selfish. Any issue with which the white supremacist is confronted is turned into an issue about the quasi-benefit of being white. In terms of narcissism, the white supremacist is angry with any other individual or group of individuals who fail to appreciate how great he or she is.
Sound like anyone who is constantly in the news?
In The Roanoke Times, Dan Casey imagines Donald Trump’s inner struggle to denounce racists. A snippet:
TRUMP: After the tragedy in Charlottesville, everyone is demanding I denounce white nationalism, white supremacists and neo-Nazis. But I just can’t seem to bring myself to do it. I laid off Saturday and today, and now the furor’s only growing.
THERAPIST: Sir, do you mean you’re morally incapable of fingering the forces promoting racism, bigotry and hate?
TRUMP: Not exactly. A lot of those marchers in Charlottesville admire Hitler, and it’s easy for me to denounce him. But I can’t seem to condemn them. It’s no coincidence that 100 percent of ’em voted for me. My mouth won’t work when I try to denounce my own supporters. My tongue gets tied.
At Philly dot com, Professor David Livingstone Smith reminds us that Faulkner was correct when he said, “The past is never dead. It’s not even past.”
In related news, Josh Marshall points out that
Elie Mystal explains the dangers of the enablers of evil, those self-styled “intellectuals” and pundits who provide the rationales for hatred and bigotry. A snippet:
The law can confiscate and incarcerate all the spear points in the world, but it’s powerless to do anything about the shafts. The shafts are protected, not by the Second Amendment, but by the First. And the white supremacists hiding in plain sight know that and celebrate that and dare you to challenge them. When you do, they slither up their Free Speech crosses and claim the “high ground.”
Petula Dvorak puts the blame where it belongs. A snippet (emphasis added):
Except today, there are no hoods.
Donald Trump gave everyone permission to take those hoods off with his winks, nods and refusal to take a moral stand on racial hatred and intimidation during his campaign and during the first six months of his presidency.
In a related article, Austin Gonzalez, who was present in Charlottesville, calls out Donald Trump’s “many-siderism,” which, I reckon, is sort of like both-siderism on siderism growth hormones.
President Donald Trump might claim that there was violence from “many sides” in Charlottesville, drawing a parallel between white nationalist terrorism and anti-racist protest. But I was there. And there is no parallel. We will continue organizing and demonstrating against white supremacy that manifests as terrorism and white supremacy that manifests in subtler, more insidious ways. And white supremacists will continue to wage a violent war against equality, while Trump refuses to label the nature of their crimes.
Dick Polman considers Donald Trump’s weaselly reaction to the racist terrorism by vehicle in Charlottesville, Virginia, yesterday. A snippet:
After a white racist terrorist plowed his car into a crowd, killing 32-year-old paralegal Heather Heyer and injuring 19, Trump showed up at a country club podium and disgorged a vague lament about violence “on many sides.” Then he fled as fast as his bulk could take him, refusing to answer press questions. Questions like whether, by dint of his hate rhetoric, he feels he bears any responsibility for emboldening the rabble that had tried to turn a college town into a mini-Nuremberg circa 1933.
Of course, denying responsibility would’ve made him look even worse, because the sheer weight of the evidence renders him guilty as charged. Yesterday’s spilt blood is on his hands.
Read the rest.
Leonard Pitts, Jr., argues that one factor contributing to yesterday’s racist violence in Charlottesville, Virginia, was our society’s inability to be honest about racism. A snippet:
Indeed, as the moral authority of the Civil Rights Movement recedes deeper into memory, as cable news and social media offer new platforms and broad reach to voices of acrimony and hate and as facts become “facts” become untruths become lies and too few of us seem to notice or care, the intellectual dishonesty surrounding race has become starker, more brazen and more creative than we have seen in years.
Like when people say that talking about racism is racism.
Or when they babble pious inanities like “racism goes both ways” and “all lives matter.”
Nor have news media always brought clarity. It was pundits, after all, who kept ascribing Donald Trump’s rise to “economic anxiety” even as his followers were yelling racist, homophobic and anti-Semitic slurs with unbridled glee. And leave us not forget how media have allowed the folks who brought such chaos to Charlottesville to brand themselves under a banal-sounding new euphemism — the “alt-right” — as if they were not the same bunch of mouth-breathing, lowlife racists they always were.
Addendum, Later That Same Day:
The Charlottesville Daily Progress has more on today in hate. An excerpt:
James Alex Fields Jr., of Maumee, Ohio, has been charged with second-degree murder, three counts of malicious wounding and failing to stop at the scene of an accident that resulted in a death after a car plowed into a crowd on the Downtown Mall.
There’s nothing like imported hate.
I spent a year at U.Va. a long time ago, during which I realized I was not cut out to be an academician. (Dammit, it’s “academician,” not “academic.” “Academic” is an adjective, for Pete’s sake; “academician” is a noun. It’s called “grammar.” Grumble grumble.)
At the New York Times, Emory University Professor Carol Anderson explores how racism and bigotry infuse the politics and political tactics of Donald Trump and his dupes, symps, and fellow travellers. Here’s a snippet; follow the link for the rest.
If there is one consistent thread through Mr. Trump’s political career, it is his overt connection to white resentment and white nationalism. Mr. Trump’s fixation on Barack Obama’s birth certificate gave him the white nationalist street cred that no other Republican candidate could match, and that credibility has sustained him in office — no amount of scandal or evidence of incompetence will undermine his followers’ belief that he, and he alone, could Make America White Again.
The guiding principle in Mr. Trump’s government is to turn the politics of white resentment into the policies of white rage — that calculated mechanism of executive orders, laws and agency directives that undermines and punishes minority achievement and aspiration.
I recently purchased a Sunday-only print subscription to the New York Times, and I’m glad I did. Although I adhere to the “why would anyone want a newspaper that doesn’t have comics” school of thought, it really is darned good reading (except for David Brooks’s column, which is mindless piffle why they keep someone who is always wrong on the payroll is beyond me).
I must say I’m quite impressed with their customer support. The first paper was supposed to arrive last Sunday and did not. When I called the number in their “Did You Enjoy Your First NYT” email, their Automatic Lady was without question the best Automatic Lady I’ve dealt with on a toll-free number. Automatic Lady credited my account without question and suggested I call back during normal business hours on Monday.
I did so and I was talking to a courteous and competent Real Live Human Being in fewer than 30 seconds. And my Sunday Times was there on the doorstep this morning.
I reckon reading it will take me all week.