Thursday, August 28, 2008

America's Not Racist Anymore! Spread The Word!

After talking about Kenyan success in running events at the Olympics and immediately afterwards trying to draw the most broad conclusions he could from it, Dinesh D'Souza continues to ramble incoherently on the subject of race.

Who could not be moved at the sight of a major political party naming
Barack Obama, an African American, as its presidential candidate? To me, there
could not be a better sign that America has left behind its racist past.

Yeah, no. Considering that you are only talking about slightly more than half of a political party that makes up roughtly half of the country showing their support of Obama up to this point, it only shows that most Democrats are tolerant enough to support a black man instead of Hillary Clinton. Unfortunately, there is plenty of room for these people to still have a level of racism in them that they are either trying to suppress or that is slightly less than their hatred of women and/or Republicans. And of course, we still have half of the country who will refuse to support Obama, squarely within the Republican party tent, whose ranks leave plenty of room for America's racism to dwell within it at full strength, under the veil of whatever misguided justifications they can concoct for such a refusal.

If we appreciate the significance of our current moment, we are driven to
an ironic but rational conclusion: perhaps the best way to recognize Obama's
historic achievement is to vote for John McCain this November.
Yes. Voting McCain will definitely prove that racism doesn't exist. Willing to vote in a continuation of an almost universally despised president in order to avoid plopping a black man into the Oval Office. Acknowledge a historic achievment by making it completely irrelevant and telling them "oh, so close but yet so far. Better luck in 2012, but America has spoken, and they want another old white warmonger". The fact that you use the word "rational" for this idea is disgusting.

for the past several years we have been hearing liberal Democrats emphasize how
racism still defines America, how things haven't really changed all that much,
how racism has gone underground and is now more covert and more dangerous than

It has. In lieu of obvious vehemence, hatred, and violence directed towards another race, there is now just a casual fear, distaste, and racial favortism that simmers, hidden as much as possible but still everpresent. And, due to this subtler, less visible, less obvious form that racism has taken, it is almost impossible to counteract, and impossible to overcome.
It may seem strange that a racist country would adopt legal policies that
discriminate against the majority and in favor of minorities.

Completely missed the point! Do you know why those policies to exist? To circumvent existing racist discrimination against those minorities, enacted by people who knew that it existed, and that it was having negative effects on them. And guess who these people were? If you said: the liberals who were fighting for civil rights from the outset and who have voted Obama to be their presidential candidate, than you would be correct.

Well, I don't know how many people have been drinking the liberal Kool-Aid, but
these people must be utterly shocked at the success of Barack Obama. Here is a
guy who could not possibly have made it as far as he has with only black votes.
He has attracted not only white votes but the votes of some of the most affluent
and successful segments of the white community.

Yes. White liberals. White people who are either plagued enough by white guilt, empathetic enough to not become hung up in regards to skin color, or just plain don't like Hillary enough to support Obama. And, guess what? They do not make up the majority of white people in our country! Hurrah, hooray! You've got to love the attempt to make it seem like racism doesn't exist by using the people who oppose the racist elements of society as evidence.
Obama's public message is that race doesn't matter and that transracial
alliances should be built on shared political and cultural values. It's a good
message, and how it must dismay professional civil rights activists to hear it.

That is some kind of epic retardation, right there. Civil rights activists fully support transracial alliance and wholeheartedly believe that race SHOULDN'T matter, you twit. The only problem, is that for a good segment of society (and a powerful one at that), it still DOES matter. Does it matter universally? No. Does it matter objectively? Should it matter to anyone? No. Does it matter to people? YES. And that's what civil rights activists are active against.
Clearly there are many in the liberal Democratic camp who are made profoundly
uncomfortable by the recognition that racism is no more a defining feature of
American life or even African American life.

No. Not really. Not uncomfortable at all. I am made "profoundly uncomfortable" by people who are both ignorant and overly optimistic enough to believe that this is true to an incredibly large degree. It may not be a "defining feature", but it sure is a significant influence, even if it is below the surface. There is still is racial tension, and there still is a segment of people who are as hateful towards different races as they were decades ago. The idea that this wouldn't have an effect on the recipients of this closeted hatred is leaves me simply flabbergasted. It may not be "defining", but it sure as hell isn't negligible.
Don't get me wrong: I'm not saying that racism does not exist. This is a big
country, and surely one can find several examples of it. But racism, which used
to be systematic, is now only episodic

Racism still is systematic. It's just that the system has been made less focused on segregation and violence, and more on exclusion and avoidance. If you define racism as only those actions which were defined by the old paradigms, before there were laws to prevent them or weed them out, then obviously there will be rare instances of it. But, unfortunately, racism is in intent, not in action, and the racism that once manifested itself before in certain ways has found new venues now that the old methods are no longer permissible. Instead of lynching black people and giving them separate water fountains, we simply have cops pull them over a little more often than their white counterparts, and have some white flight when they dare to move into our neighborhoods.
It exists still, it occurs reguarly still (though less dramatically and less often). The only difference now is that the government doesn't tacitly condone it anymore. So...that's something.
In fact, when I ask young blacks on the campus today whether America is racist,
many say yes. But if I ask them to give me examples of how that racism affects
their lives, they are hard pressed to give a single one. The best they can do is
to mention "Rodney King" or provide some well-known, recycled horror story.

OMG! Young people who don't have evidence from their own personal experiences to support their beliefs! The horror!
Recently someone told me that McCain is still winning the white vote by a
substantial majority and that shows "we have a long way to go" in overcoming
white bigotry. By this logic, blacks are have even longer way to go in
overcoming their bigotry since Obama is winning almost 98 percent of the black

Except, you know, for the fact that white people along with black people have been voting white for every election since their respective rights to vote where granted to them. Are you telling me that it would be bigotry to support a candidate from a never before elected minority group that you happen to be part of and who is not only supportive of the rights of your group, but of all other minorities as well? As compared to the alternative candidate, who is not only not part of your group, part of a group that has been elected 43 times consecutively in the past, but also represents a party that is composed of people that hate you? Yeah. A reaction against bigotry is not bigotry.
Even though Obama's candidacy signals that America is overcoming its racial
past, neither Obama nor his wife recognize that. Their personal statements, as
seen for example in Obama's books, are suffused with race-consciousness,
race-obsession and even racial resentment. The more privileges they have
received on the basis of race, the more embittered they seem to become

Just because you are fortunately in a position of privilege doesn't mean that you cannot sympathize with the plight of your less fortunate brothers, and it doesn't mean that you forget the past you had when you were not in such a position. They are "race-obsessed" because of all of the times they have most likely been subjected to questions, and criticisms based upon that very trait. A person in a society that doesn't care about race (i.e. one that isn't racist) would not become "race-obsessed". One that is responding to a society that has focused on such a trait unduly, however, would become one.
The source of these pathologies is the very liberalism that the Obamas have
embraced: a liberalism that declares them equal while treating them as inferiors
who need preferential treatment.
No. That is a strawman of affirmative action, which is intended to counteract institutional racial favoritism in regards to hiring policy, rather than to give them compensatory handicap. The "pathologies" are due to a hostile and racist climate that, surprise surprise, didn't just fade away into nothingness in the 40 years after the Civil Rights Act (in much the same way that it hadn't faded in the century or so since slavery had been abolished up to that point).
If you want to get rid of racial obsession, stop talking and thinking about race
so much. If you want to remove race as the basis of decision-making in America,
let's eliminate America's policies that make race the basis of decision-making.

Finally, something I can agree with. Almost. Racial obsession and racism will fade if people stop talking and thinking about it. The problem is that many people refuse to do so. Many people refuse to give up their blind, racially motivated hatred and cannot be forced to do so. But, as long as these people remain, and as long as they exist in a large quantity and have even a small amount of power and presence, racism will not die. In that sense, we must keep race in mind: not as something to judge people by, but as an indication of the potential prejudices that such people had to overcome. Hence, why we can't totally abandon race entirely as a basis of decision-making in regards to the protections provided affirmative action.

And if you want a party that stands for color-blindess and equal opportunity, you might consider voting for the Republicans.
Hilarious. They are "color-blind" in the sense of not being willing to defend people from those who adamantly hate a specific color. They are "equal opportunity" in the sense of giving people in a position of a power an equal opportunity to discriminate against people who are not part of one their arbitrarily defined groups, including race. They want a color blind government for a racially divided nation. Democrats want a color blind world, and will make sure that the laws protect the softer targets until then. Dinesh's futile attempt to spin that is both entertaining and depressing.

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