Slavery and the Second Amendment

Abstract: It has become very popular by those arguing for the Second Amendment is simply an obsolete antiquity to claim that the Second Amendment’s original purpose was the preservation of slavery.  This article examines the evidence used to justify this claim and finds the evidence wanting.  Debates and other texts of the time show a consistent explanation by both Federalists and Antifederalists for a right to keep and bear arms, and one not designed to prevent insurrection, but to make it possible.

Source: Slavery and the Second Amendment

Five tenets of CRT and what they mean

What makes discussions of CRT more complicated is that people are conflating teaching about CRT, which happens in law school, with teaching in CRT, which happens in grade schools and high schools.

When people say CRT isn’t being taught in grade schools, guess which sense they’re referring to.

One of the problems with discussing and debating CRT is that it’s a complicated set of teachings and beliefs about which people know very little, and which probably vary at least somewhat according to who is doing the trainings. The most pernicious aspects of CRT are often in the details of how the trainings and/or classes go.

Source: Five tenets of CRT and what they mean

Put Your Money Where Your Mouth Is

In my latest column for AIER, I explain why it’s very often appropriate to ask intellectuals who assert that this or that ‘problem’ should be ‘solved’ by government interference to put their own money where their mouths are. Two slices:

A common response to my “put-your-money-where-your-mouth-is” challenge is that the persons to whom I direct it are almost always intellectuals rather than experienced business people. Being an intellectual myself – and aware of my accompanying incompetence in practical affairs – I sympathize with fellow intellectuals who realize that they personally have no talent to launch and operate businesses. I have no such talent. So I certainly don’t fault Aaron Klein for continuing to be a salaried employee at a think tank. I don’t fault Emily Stewart for earning her living by sticking to writing.


Obviously, if an intellectual does indeed identify an actual market imperfection, the opportunity that likely lurks in that imperfection can be seized by someone other than the intellectual who identifies it. And fortunately our world has no shortage of entrepreneurs hungry for profit. The deeper point of my challenge to intellectuals such as Klein and Stewart to put their money where their mouths are is to draw attention to the fact that, if the intellectuals’ claims are correct, we can rely upon market forces to correct the problem. There’s no need for government intervention.

Being intellectuals, Klein and Stewart undoubtedly are too incompetent actually to launch a retail store. But by publicly sharing their claim about this alleged market imperfection, they thus make this ‘information’ available to be acted on by countless competent entrepreneurs. The fact that Klein and Stewart’s public declarations incite no entrepreneurs to seize the profits that are available if these declarations are correct is compelling evidence that cash-paying retail consumers are, in reality, not being unjustly exploited for the benefit of credit-card-using retail consumers.

Perhaps not all asserted market imperfections can be profitably exploited – and, in the process, ‘corrected’ – by entrepreneurs acting in free markets. But a surprisingly large number of such alleged market imperfections would indeed be easily ‘corrected’ by private entrepreneurial actions if these allegations were accurate. Any and all allegations to have discovered that businesses in free markets are underpaying some groups of workers, or that businesses in free markets are overcharging some groups of consumers, are claims to have discovered profit opportunities that can be relatively easily exploited by entrepreneurs. (That the intellectuals who issue such claims don’t realize that their claims are really of profit opportunities speaks only to these intellectuals’ economic illiteracy.)

Source: Put Your Money Where Your Mouth Is

Imagine if We Paid for Food like We Do Healthcare

[creepy melodramatic music]

You enter the grocery store parking lot at 4:15 pm, having taken off work early because this particular store closes at 5:00 pm. This FoodMart wasn’t your personal preference based on quality, service, amenities, or price. You choose it, like all of your previous food choices, because it was included in your new food management plan’s network.


Thankfully, your new Green Cross Green Shield (GCGS) Bronze-Select food plan is a benefit provided by your new employer. There is some payroll deduction stuff that you don’t quite understand yet. Most of the plan’s $680 monthly premium is hidden from you and drastically reduces your wages. Still, you are happy that your food plan costs only (as far as you know) $123 per paycheck.

Despite not being particularly pleased with any of your previous food plans, you always try to take full advantage of the tax-preferred option of buying groceries and eating out as the plan allows. After all, you and most Americans haven’t known a different way of eating in your lifetimes. This is how you have purchased food since your parents’ employer’s food plan stopped covering you at age 26.

FoodMart’s entrance is not easy to find, but you finally make your way into the store. You are first greeted by a few women sitting behind a glass-enclosed desk. By greeted, I mean they ask you for your photo ID and food plan card and hand you a clipboard with a stack of forms to complete. The lobby is crowded, but you manage to find a seat amid the sea of impatient shoppers. 

Continue reading “Imagine if We Paid for Food like We Do Healthcare”

We should recognize the progress we’ve made on discrimination

By Alan Dershowitz

The welcome adoption of Juneteenth as a national holiday celebrating the end of slavery proves what should have been obvious for at least a generation — namely, that we are no longer a systemically racist nation. To the contrary, we have become a systemically anti-racist nation, albeit with far too many pockets of residual racism, particularly in certain areas of life. But our essential systems — our laws, politics, media, education, religion, corporations — have all become discernibly anti-racist, in every meaningful sense of that term.

By “systemically” racist and anti-racist I mean to describe how these important instruments of governance impact on the role of race in America today. A comparison with the not-so-distant past will make my point.

When I was born in 1938, the United States was systemically racist, sexist, homophobic, anti-Catholic, anti-Asian, anti-Hispanic and antisemitic.


The second half of the past century, following World War II, saw major changes in law, practice and attitudes.

We have seen the end of lawful segregation as well as the election of Catholic and Black presidents and vice presidents. For generations, the Supreme Court was comprised entirely of white Protestants. Then a handful of Catholics were appointed, and a “Jewish seat” was established, but it remained a dominantly white Protestant male institution. Now it has five Catholics, three Jews, three women, one African American, one Latina and one white Protestant. Jews, women and Blacks have become presidents of many major universities. Neighborhoods can no longer be “restricted.” Corporations, law firms, businesses and most private clubs are not allowed to discriminate. All sports leagues are integrated. Many groups that were previously discriminated against have members in Congress, in state legislatures and in other elected or appointed offices. Most universities and many other institutions have race-based affirmative action programs.

We have a long way to go in eliminating the residues of bigotry from our institutions — some, such as law enforcement, more than others. But compared to 1960, it is difficult to conclude that the racism that remains in this country — and it is still considerable, especially in some areas — can be fairly categorized as “systemic.”


So, no, we are not the systemically and top-down racist country we once were. We have become a systemically top-down anti-racist country with far too much bottom-up racism that we must end, especially in some important areas like law enforcement. But let’s not deny the real progress we have made as we celebrate our newest national holiday.

Source: U.S. No Longer a Systemically Racist Nation

The US needs to be given credit for these changes. Otherwise, people will, with good reason, decide it’s not worth the effort to make any further improvements, or to prevent any backsliding.

And if people insist on dividing the population into tribes, the largest tribe in the country may decide it can play that game too.

Don’t Ban Critical Race Theory. Expose It

There’s a liberal way to fight illiberalism. And it’s beginning to work.

The stories in the mainstream media this past week about the broadening campaign to ban critical race theory in public schools have been fascinating — and particularly in how they describe what CRT is. Here’s the Atlantic’s benign summary of CRT: “recent reexaminations of the role that slavery and segregation have played in American history and the attempts to redress those historical offenses.” NBC News calls it the “academic study of racism’s pervasive impact.” NPR calls CRT: “teaching about the effects of racism.” The New York Times calls it, with a straight face, “classroom discussion of race, racism” and goes on to describe it as a “framework used to look at how racism is woven into seemingly neutral laws and institutions.”

How on earth could merely teaching students about the history of racism and its pervasiveness in the United States provoke such a fuss? No wonder Charles Blow is mystified. But don’t worry. The MSM have a ready explanation: the GOP needs an inflammatory issue to rile their racist base, and so this entire foofaraw is really just an astro-turfed, ginned-up partisan gambit about nothing. The MSM get particular pleasure in ridiculing parents who use the term “critical race theory” as shorthand for things that just, well, make them uncomfortable — when the parents obviously have no idea what CRT really is.

When pushed to describe it themselves, elite journalists refer to the legal theories Derrick Bell came up with, in the 1970s — obscure, esoteric and nothing really to do with high-school teaching. “If your kid is learning CRT, your kid is in law/grad school,” snarked one. Marc Lamont Hill even tried to pull off some strained references to Gramsci to prove his Marxian intellectual cred, and to condescend to his opponents.

This rubric achieves several things at once. It denies that there is anything really radical or new about CRT; it flatters the half-educated; it blames the controversy entirely on Republican opportunism; and it urges all fair-minded people to defend intellectual freedom and racial sensitivity against these ugly white supremacists.


And no, 6-year-olds are not being taught Derrick Bell — or forced to read Judith Butler, or God help them, Kimberlé Crenshaw. Of course they aren’t — and I don’t know anyone who says they are.

But they are being taught popularized terms, new words, and a whole new epistemology that is directly downstream of academic critical theory. Ibram X. Kendi even has an AntiRacist Baby Picture Book so you can indoctrinate your child into the evil of whiteness as soon as she or he can gurgle. It’s a little hard to argue that CRT is not interested in indoctrinating kids when its chief proponent in the US has a kiddy book on the market.

The goal of education of children this young is to cement the notion at the most formative age that America is at its core an oppressive racist system uniquely designed to exploit, harm, abuse, and even kill the non-white. This can be conveyed in easy terms, by training kids to see themselves first and foremost as racial avatars, and by inculcating in them a sense of their destiny as members of the oppressed or oppressor classes in the zero-sum struggle for power that is American society in 2021.


This is not teaching about critical race theory; it is teaching in critical race theory. And it is compulsory and often hidden from parents. It contradicts the core foundations of our liberal society; and is presented not as one truth to be contrasted with others, but as the truth, the basis on which all other truths are built. That’s why teaching based on CRT will make children see themselves racially from the get-go, why it will separate them into different racial groups, why it will compel white kids to internalize their complicity in evil, tell black kids that all their troubles are a function of white people, banish objective measurements of success to avoid stigmatizing failure, and treat children of different races differently in a classically racist hierarchy.

And this is why — crucially — it will suppress any other way of seeing the world — because any other way, by definition, is merely perpetuating oppression. As Kendi constantly reminds us, it is either/or. An antiracist cannot exist with a liberalism that perpetuates racism. And it’s always the liberalism that has to go.


What parents and principled teachers of all races can do is protest, show up to school board meetings, demand accountability and total transparency, share and spread the evidence of this indoctrination, demand answers from teachers and principals, and, if all else fails, pull their kids from public schools if necessary.

And what the rest of us should do is support them, come to the aid of fired teachers, shaken students, bullied educators, and intimidated mothers and fathers. And never, ever concede the idea that opposing critical race theory is racist. Nothing could be further from the truth.

Insist that you are not attempting to ban CRT but to allow it to be taught as one idea among many in a liberal education. And do not conflate CRT with honest, painful accounts of our history, which can be taught just as well within a liberal context.

The legacy of this country’s profound racism, the deep and abiding shame of its genocidal slavocracy, the atrocities, such as Tulsa, which have been white-washed, the appalling record of lynchings and beatings, the centrality of African-Americans to the story and success of this country: all this must be better explored and understood. There is nothing wrong and a huge amount right about black scholars taking the lead in shining light on what others might miss, building on past knowledge, helping us better account for it. White scholars, like the hundreds of thousands of white citizens who gave their lives to end slavery, have a crucial role to play as well.

But we must also unequivocally insist that all of this is only possible within a liberal system — that sees the individual and reason and equality as our foundations. Liberalism can live with critical race theory; but critical race theory is committed in its foundational texts to the overthrow of liberalism. And this matters.

It’s not just a culture war gambit. It’s a deep defense of our liberal inheritance. Once a generation grows up believing that there is no such thing as reason — just “white thinking” and “black thinking”; once it grows up believing that free speech is a device for oppression not liberation; once it sees our founding documents as cynical lies to perpetuate slavery and “white supremacy”; once it believes that no progress has ever been made in race relations, because the “systems” sustain unaltered “white supremacy” for ever, then we have detonated the foundations of a free society.

Source: Don’t Ban Critical Race Theory. Expose It

Not Tired of Winning Yet CLV

I hope this will not be the last in this series, since I still am in expectation of the massive voter fraud of 2020 to be corrected, but by what means, even the wise cannot foresee.

EIGHT VINDICATIONS: Or, Eight time Trump Derangement News Stories the Fake News Finally Admits were Fake All Along.

Please note that in preparation for this column, none — I say again, not one —  of the debunked stories could be found using the Google search engine’s first page or two of results. I had to use Duck Duck Go. 

Trump ordered peaceful protesters be tear-gassed for a photo-op

The ‘lab leak’ was a ‘conspiracy theory’

Trump ignored Russian bounties on US soldiers

Trump told Georgia officials to ‘find the fraud’

Trump said white supremacists were ‘fine people’

Trump referred to illegal immigrants as ‘animals’

Trump ‘flat-out lied’ when he said his campaign was wiretapped

Trump removed MLK Jr. bust

Trump mocked Dead Soldiers as ‘Losers’ and ‘Suckers’

Source: Not Tired of Winning Yet CLV

R-E-S-P-E- C-T

The other night on facebook, I found myself in a weird argument with someone who thought there really was white privilege because “you can go anywhere and be treated like a human being.” I’m not 100% sure what he means by “being treated like a human being” because casting a long eye to history and how human beings who ain’t from around here are treated, I’m glad to say I’ve never been — on the mild side — run out of town or killed and thrown in an acid pit.


My sons don’t appear black (well, the younger if he’s tanned, looks half way there, partly because his hair grows upward) but they appear “mixed race” (Human race. We think. Most of the time.) and are both large, swarthy and male. By the time they were in their mid-teens they found that total strangers skeedaddled away from them backwards. Or — poor older son — that they had to argue for hours to get the “honors cords” for their graduation gowns. Or that their departmental honors and second degree wouldn’t be called out at graduation (while the “honors” of the tiny, bespectacled guys and chicks graduating from studies were.” Or that, when found in an area of school/college reserved for serious pursuits, they were questions and in one case told that “you jocks don’t know this.”

What have they done? They’ve mitigated by dressing in slightly old fashioned ways, wearing their hair short, and talking with old-fashioned courtesy.

White privilege? Well, hell no. “Insider privilege.” And you can fake it.

Source: R-E-S-P-E- C-T

GA Election Reform Makes It Easy to Vote & Hard to Cheat

Regardless of one’s political affiliation, it’s not difficult to find voters in Georgia who were discouraged by the messiness of the 2020 election process.


In evaluating federal, state, and local voting safeguards, these and other serious complications — glitchesmissing votes, even water pipe breakages at polling locations or ballot drop boxes — raised legitimate concerns and weakened voter confidence in Georgia’s election integrity.

Such concerns ultimately weaken voter confidence and decrease participation in elections regardless of political persuasion and prompted Georgia lawmakers to modernize voting laws to make it easier to vote and harder to interfere with Georgia’s elections.

As expected, a few partisan individuals and groups rushed to label Georgia’s new election reform law, the Georgia Election Integrity Act of 2021, (SB202) as an act of voter suppression. However, their claims are simply not true: reforms introduced in this legislation expand voting access for all Georgia voters while enhancing the security of the process.

Let’s begin by debunking one of the often repeated and misunderstood points of contention regarding Georgia’s election reform law: the restrictions that third-party groups now face when offering voters food and drink. Instead of allowing third-party groups to solicit or harass voters while they wait in line, Georgia’s new election reforms call for a 25-foot space established around voter lines.

Much of the heated rhetoric around this policy has been inaccurate. Voters waiting in line will still have access to water which can easily be arranged by poll workers. It simply establishes a boundary to prevent solicitation of voters while they wait in line.

Source: GA Election Reform Makes It Easy to Vote & Hard to Cheat

ANN ALTHOUSE RESPONDS TO CHARLES BLOW: If “most people” lack “any real concept of what critical r…


If “most people” lack “any real concept of what critical race theory is,” then why don’t Democrats and others communicate the information? Instead, as Blow describes in his column, Republicans use the term to generate anxiety about what those terrible left-wingers want to do to us.

I challenge proponents of Critical Race Theory to speak to ordinary people in terms they can understand and explain the theory, why it’s a theory, and what is meant by “critical.” Don’t just tell us conclusions and demand that we accept them and don’t just introduce another confusing term. That is, don’t just say that there is “systemic racism.” Explain the theory and what is critical about the theory.

Why can’t that be done clearly and straightforwardly? People are right to feel anxious and suspicious about something so big and powerful that can’t be talked about. To say “In fact, I don’t even believe that most people have any real concept of what critical race theory is” is to blame the people for failing to understand what isn’t being discussed clearly. That’s perverse and elitist.

Well, most “woke” stuff is perverse and elitist. And Critical Race Theory can’t be discussed clearly and straightforwardly because if it were, the vast majority of people would reject it. Hence the smoke and mirrors and charges of bigotry aimed at critics in place of reasoned argument.

Related, the Critical Race Theory Motte and Bailey:

Source: ANN ALTHOUSE RESPONDS TO CHARLES BLOW: If “most people” lack “any real concept of what critical r…