with John McWhorter
I might be a good example of the kind of “independent”, “moderate” white voter Glenn and John refer to. One who was and is shaped indelibly by an antipathy to divisive and often bigoted GOP racial politics. Except, for those wondering just how big that semi-invisible, silent cohort of voters is, and who wonders just how intensely some of us oppose, are appalled by, frankly feel betrayed by, this newer Dem/ideological left style of grossly racially-divisive lies in service of a narrative and agenda, I might be an even more notable example. I made a campaign poster on school supply poster board in support of Jesse Jackson when I was a kid. I was president of the College Dems chapter of my large Midwestern state university. Jumping ahead a number of years, I was enough of a super-volunteer for the 2012 Obama re-elect, I was offered a paid staff position based in the suburbs west of Philly. What was I arguably most proud of? Helping lead several voter outreach/registration/ballot access troubleshooting/volunteer recruitment trips to West Philly. Not far from where Rizzo dropped a bomb on the MOVE HQ. you know what else I did? Virtually lived (during working hours) in NYCHA buildings in Brooklyn to listen to and help organize residents rightly concerned about things like racially disparate enforcement of minor nonviolent drug offenses, and official indifference re: a pattern of wrongful convictions. I spoke with damn near everyone in Red Hook Houses (much nicer people btw than in Park Slope where last I heard Charles Blow lives, quite comfortably I’m certain).
Now? I am pissed. I am so angry and alienated at the corrosive racialist if not actually racist lies and blanket smears which have become the go-to left of center and partisan Dem playbook for sliming and ruining anyone who call them on their rampant BS, I am open for the first time in my life to voting for reasonable Republicans. If you’ve ever, say, mangled an earlobe by pressing a Donkey lapel pin into service as an earring, you’ll know how jarring a change that is. But I’m not someone who was a hardcore partisan of one side who either through wholesale ideological conversion or David Brock-style mercenary cynicism flipped 180 degrees to the other side. I’m a vegan animal rights activist for chrissakes. I’m on many issues still what, as recently as the end of Obama’s first term, we might’ve called a mainstream liberal Democrat. I’ve lost two 20+ year close friends merely for not being willing to continually 100% toe the line and echo the same jargon, the same lazily sweeping assumptions and smears, the same vicious dehumanization of anyone who disagrees politically as an “insurrectionist” or “white supremacist”. I worked a bit for a Dem congressional candidate as recently as 2018. But I’m beyond exhausted with the disastrously clueless, counterproductive far-left identitarian policies of “my side”. The near-total triumph of sneering ideology and partisanship over a good faith defense of a program remotely suited and effective at even addressing the needs of the preferred intersectional caste members they claim to care about. I am so tired after all I’ve done to put other groups ahead of me - regardless of my own needs - that my response to attempts to bully and gaslight me into accepting 2022 is somehow worse for all of my black fellow citizens than 1980 or 1950 or maybe even 1920 - due to unwoke and on that basis alone supposedly white supremacist deadenders like me, my weariness has begun to calcify into contempt. I am so tired of being lied to. I am so tired of being expected to join in with the liars and echo and the lies - or else. My curiosity as a flawed but well-meaning and truth-seeking human being is offended at this lockstep deceit and refusal to have adult discussions about complex and difficult issues of great public import. I didn’t flip to anything or become anything. I’ve still never voted for a Republican and the idea still makes me uncomfortable. But on these critical issues and so many others, in both style and substance Dems and the broad left of center have become so willfully unmoored from reality, so giddily ready to condemn and consign to misery on the flimsiest basis half of the country, and so ideologically self-indulgent and incompetent their policies seem to sow destruction and chaos at every turn, I am now a gettable voter for at least some more moderate, reasonable, and competent Republican candidates. And I am so sick of the lies and extortionist smears and demands of the BLM-style hucksters, so tired of the industry of race-baiting grifters who chime in without fail to try to blame every single problem in the world on everyone with a similar skin pigmentation to mine - no matter how we’ve lived our lives and invested our time energy and passion to actually stand up for equal dignity, equal opportunity, and equal standing - I feel more and more motivated to push back.
I did a review of Rest in Power and thought I would share. Doubt Glenn and John read the comments, but for others:
Call me a racist but as a former resident of Sanford, this story stunk from day one. Something to ponder. . .
The notion of "equality" was used to depose kings. It has devolved into an ideology of covetousness, bribery, entitlement and WOKE oppression, undermining the very notion that America is a place where you can "get ahead." Virtually all the celebrated black victims of recent note were punks, plain and simple, who almost certainly got what they had coming to them. I would feel the same if they were white. And the exception proves the rule. The great puzzle is why do people who identify as "black" see them as their heroes. People who identify as "black" are being played by power-hungry, phony whites and blacks in politics and the media. Wake up, if you can.
Zooming out. What we are seeing is what the founding fathers predicted. Any republican or democratic form of government is doomed to failure outside of a common culture. In a multicultural nation, especially a growing one, there are simply too many cultural differences to resolve and not enough time or efficient patches to fix them. And the notion that we would all become pals as things went along, has been clearly disproven, outside of television and the movies. Be honest. With war, pestilence and starvation on the horizon, does anybody seriously believe that things are going to get better. Food for thought.
Tray von thought Zimmerman was gay. Tray von was on his phone talking to his girlfriend and calling Zimmerman a punk. He said a punk was following him around. While talking to his girlfriend on the phone he decided to go back and put on a show for his girlfriend and beat the crap out of Zimmerman. The punk. Tray von probably thought why would some white guy befalling him around at night. He had to be gay. He said as much to his girlfriend by calling Zimmerman a punk. However, that doesn't fit the narrative of the media. Just like poor Michael Brown. The media kept pushing hands up don't shoot. That was another lie. Unfortunately, the media never tells you that poor Michael Brown was according to his friends and witnesses claiming he had been talking to angels in the days leading up to him getting shot while fighting with the policeman. I'm not a doctor but I think poor Michael Brown was having schizophrenic episodes which would explain all of this odd behavior. But you will wait a long time for the media tell you anything about that at all. It doesn't fit their narrative. The media has been hell-bent on starting a race war in America ever since 2010 when half the country was focus on the excessive greed in Wall Street and our banking system. The people of the top decided to make sure we would not look at them anymore and focus on the bogeyman of race. Why worry about Wall Street when the country is full of white supremacist. It's all a big distraction. We are being played.
I used to work with Mr Zimmerman. He was , in fact , a liberal. He was definitely slandered by the liberal media.
Back then , he was young and a very good guy. I enjoyed his company.
When the facts finally came out , the acquittal was not surprising. I remember seeing Zimmerman in a news clip being brought to the police station. You could see the top of his head was bloodied and his nose was swollen. He didn’t look like I remembered. This was self defense whether the other side sees it that way or not.
What is amazing to witness is how badly so many can not conceive of admitting right wingers are correct on how to manage society. Like the nuclear family is a chemotherapy treatment or something to accept, except worse? At least chemotherapy might heal you. Data says you may go into remission if caught early, yet no one on the Left can ever admit a GOP'er has a good idea. I frankly have stopped caring about society as a whole. Society is a perpetual Catch-22, with no one from either side ever daring to call a spade a spade. Oops sorry, not allowed to say that? When someone on the Left is ready to start admitting that two parent families, regardless of race, with both a mom and a dad are good for society, maybe then progress will ensue. Oh and Karl Marx is poison. Weird how an entitled white guy is the bedrock saint of the Left, but its 'white supremacy' of the GOP that is ruining the world? Excuse me if I've withdrawn my consent of being governed by anyone but myself from now on. The entire public sphere has gone mad.
What John is describing in the last paragraph is the definition of "Cognitive Dissonance". It has become popular to hurl that around as another dismissive of those with whom you disagree, but few take the time to truly understand what it is, how we are all subject to it to some degree.
The idea that, in order to accept or believe a piece of information, would require the undermining of a great deal of one's foundational beliefs, then that information is rejected out of hand, without consideration.
As stated, all are subject to this, and only by being willing to challenge what we believe can we hope to rise above it.
Currently, due to the preponderance of liberal views in media, government and academia, it is the liberal viewpoint which is most frequently associated with this malady.
It manifests itself in a "The Emperor's New Clothes" style of willful, even cheery, rejection of obvious truths in favor of "narrative" supporting falsity's.
Ok, all well and good, now discuss George Floyd.
Shoot Trayvon Again.
Does McWhorter have the guts to make this case in the NYT?
A lot of the narrative is down to electioneering, I fear. The Obama team was looking for a racial incident to highlight early in 2012 to help motivate African-American turnout. Trayvon was in the wrong place at the wrong time in Florida, but in the right place (a swing state) at the right time for the Obama campaign. Ferguson in 2014 (right before midterms) confirmed this pattern of campaign activity. Jump on a well-timed incident and create a narrative that need not pay much attention to fact. They tried it again in 2016 in Charlotte, once again picking an incident where facts really didn’t support the narrative. The traffic stop shooting in Minnesota around the same time had much more egregious and narrative-supporting circumstances, but Minnesota isn’t a swing state and there were plenty of progressive activists already on the ground in North Carolina and ready to go. Needs must. Of course we had George Floyd in 2020, where at least the facts of this horrific incident fit the narrative. The reality, though, is that nationwide protests were already planned (as was the “defund the police” meme)….merely waiting for the trigger incident that would be used as the focal point. What the police did to Mr. Floyd was horrible and unforgivable, but there are a half a dozen incidents like this every year with more innocent victims (remember the boy on the swing in Cleveland?) that don’t trigger a year of riots….at least not in a year without an election. Obama proved that getting people riled up with hate was a winning strategy. No surprise that Trump and Biden copied this with their supporters. Pols may not be very bright, but they know what works. Cooler heads can prevail only in odd-numbered years.
Unfortunately so many cases can be described as "when idiots collide."
As much as I'd like to accept what Glenn and John say here, I always come back to the fact that Zimmerman got out of his car when specifically advised not to by the police dispatcher. That was the fatal choice.
And for anyone suggesting that Martin ought to have just said "my dad's place is right there" and defused the situation--why should he have? What right of information did he owe Zimmerman? If I'd been walking lawfully to the home of a parent--or a friend or relative--and a stranger demanded to know who I was and what I was doing there, I'd be pretty pissed off myself.
For me the only "why didn't he just" is Zimmerman staying in his car and waiting for the lawful authorities.
He remains with that culpability, morally, even if by law and fact he was properly acquitted, and if the full picture is as Glenn and John say, then I support that acquittal in law and fact.
Professor Loury, thank you for your important work. - The PEW Center just put out new findings titles “ Black Americans’ views of race and identity”. Could you possibly comment on the PEW report in your show. Thank you.
Ah, yes; the incident that introduced us to the term "white Hispanic" from the chief hustler of the day, Reverend Al. A wholly avoidable situation all around. As I recall, Martin's father lived in the subdivision. How hard to say, "My dad's house is right around the corner. Follow me."
In fairness, an ARMED community watch person is not the norm. The job is to be eyes and ears, not an enforcement mechanism. Again, avoidable, except that cannot happen with the activist wing of any cause. When possible, an incident must be framed through the lens of the cause. Perpetuating grievance is a livelihood for too many and a source of political power for others. No one is jumping off the gravy train when the grift remains in play.
McWhorter has a pretty big megaphone at NYT. He could lay this all out there, could he not?
It appears that when viewed through the Loury-McWhorter lens, the whole Emmett Till narrative should be revisited. Clearly the young teen wasn't accosted and then killed because he whistled at a White woman (which later proved false by her own admission), but rather the Mississippian husband went after Till because he was "young and ain't from around here." It makes sense, then, that Goodman, Schwerner, and Chaney were murdered because they weren't respectful of authority in the middle of the night in Mississippi. Similarly, we should look again at the middle 1960s antics at the Pickrick in Atlanta. Lester Mattox had every right to brandish ax handles because after all, the people who fried the chicken were Black. Now tell us, (1) why was a young Black 17 year old walking from the convenience store reason for alarm? (2) Why would it be necessary to get out of your truck with a firearm, especially when advised not to do so by authorities? (3) Why was it necessary to walk upon Trayvon Martin, to demand that he stop and divulge why he was in the neighborhood and where was he going? (4) The fact is that Trayvon Martin could have been on weekend release from a juvenile detention center (which he was not) yet George Zimmerman had no right to impose himself in Trayvon Martin's space. It is seldom "truth" that Loury and McWhorter are after. It clearly is appeasing and or giving the benefit of the doubt to those whose actions are blatantly bigoted.