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

ANN ALTHOUSE RESPONDS TO CHARLES BLOW:

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…

The Whiteness of Woke

“If You’re Not Outraged, You’re Not Paying Attention” the bumper stickers on a thousand SUVs in the upscale bedroom communities of dysfunctional cities read. “Deutschland Erwache,” the National Socialists used to shout in the streets of Munich. Woke compresses it all to one word.

Wokeness means believing that politics is all there is to life. And nothing is whiter than that.

….

What’s whiteness? As the Smithsonian Museum of African-American Culture’s chart of “white culture” put it, whiteness covers everything from a serious work ethic to self-reliance, rational thinking, delayed gratification, achieving goals, being on time, and, finally, “competition”.

Get rid of academic standards, intellectual seriousness, punish success, and the mediocre woke white elites who first created quota systems a century ago have much more of a shot at the top.

The inherent assumption of class warfare was that the proles were too backward to be a competitive threat. The racist assumption behind critical race theory is that black people can’t compete. If the wokes thought otherwise, they would be denouncing black people as racist the way that Asian-Americans and Jews are repeatedly accused of racism and privilege.

Being accused of group privilege isn’t an insult: it’s a backhanded compliment. Wokes pander to those groups they think of as inferior and attack those groups they see as competition.

Source: The Whiteness of Woke

The left exposed as racist on Voter ID

Just so we’re not throwing around numbers arbitrarily, Crowder’s site lined up the stats for you to see for yourself:

  • Majorities of whites (74%), blacks (73%), and other minorities (82%) say voters should be required to show photo identification before being allowed to vote. SOURCE: Rasmussen
  • 87% of black people have some form of confirmed photo ID. SOURCE: ProjectVote (pg. 3)
  • 90% of Latin Americans have a form of confirmed photo ID. SOURCE: ProjectVote (pg. 3)
  • Percentage of Americans who have ID vs. percentage who vote. SOURCE: CNN
    • 87% of black people have ID, only 13% voted in the 2020 Election.
    • 90% of Latin Americans have ID, only 13% voted in the 2020 Elections.
    • 95% of white people have ID, only 67% voted in 2020 Elections.
  • 97% of registered voters in Georgia have a valid ID. SOURCE: AJC
  • Voter ID laws have been shown to actually INCREASE turnout in states that recommend them, such as Georgia and Indiana. SOURCES: HeritageHeritage
    • Specifically in Georgia from 2004 to 2008, turnout increased
      • 140% among Hispanic/Latino voters
      • 42% among Black voters
      • Compared to 8% of Whites

This confirms what I have been saying all along about the racism of those who think blacks are incapable of getting an ID.  It is absurdly racist on its face.  The real reason Democrats oppose voter ID is that it makes it harder for them to cheat.  It makes it harder to stuff the ballot boxes.

Source: The left exposed as racist on Voter ID

Official cause of Officer Sicknick’s death finally announced – and it’s about as you suspected

No, Officer Sicknick didn’t die from a fire extinguisher to the head, thrown by Trump supporters on January 6th. Nor did he die from an allergic reaction to bear spray wielded by those same protestors. Here’s the actual story as announced by the medical examiner – which conforms to what for quite some time has seemed the most likely cause of his death to anyone paying attention to the facts:

Francisco Diaz, the chief medical examiner for Washington, D.C., told the Washington Post that Sicknick died on Jan. 7 after suffering two strokes and that he did not suffer an allergic reaction to any chemical irritants.

The medical examiner’s office told the Washington Examiner that Sicknick’s “cause of death” was “acute brainstem and cerebellar infarcts due to acute basilar artery thrombosis” — a stroke — and the “manner of death” was “natural.” The office said Sicknick was sprayed with a chemical substance around 2:20 p.m. on Jan. 6, collapsed at the Capitol around 10 p.m. that evening, and was transported by emergency services to a local hospital. He died around 9:30 p.m. on Jan. 7, the office added.

But the political damage was done by the Times reporting the lies about Sicknick’s death, and those lies almost immediately getting halfway around the world. I bet a lot of people will never read Officer Sicknick’s actual cause of death, and will instead continue to believe the lies.

And that’s the purpose of the lies in the first place.

….

The WaPo story from yesterday that announced Diaz’s findings also says this:

The ruling, released Monday, likely will make it difficult for prosecutors to pursue homicide charges in the officer’s death.

Yes indeed, it’s often “difficult to pursue homicide charges” when no homicide has occurred. But where there’s a will, there’s a way – as we’ve seen in the Chauvin trial, for example.

….

[NOTE: Glenn Greenwald, who has written a lot about the Sicknick case, has an excellent article about yesterday’s announcement, in which he states this:

It was crucial for liberal sectors of the media to invent and disseminate a harrowing lie about how Officer Brian Sicknick died. That is because he is the only one they could claim was killed by pro-Trump protesters at the January 6 riot at the Capitol…

…[C]able outlets and other media platforms repeated this lie over and over in the most emotionally manipulative way possible…

As I detailed over and over when examining this story, there were so many reasons to doubt this storyline from the start. Nobody on the record claimed it happened. The autopsy found no blunt trauma to the head. Sicknick’s own family kept urging the press to stop spreading this story because he called them the night of January 6 and told them he was fine — obviously inconsistent with the media’s claim that he died by having his skull bashed in — and his own mother kept saying that she believed he died of a stroke.

But the gruesome story of Sicknick’s “murder” was too valuable to allow any questioning. It was weaponized over and over to depict the pro-Trump mob not as just violent but barbaric and murderous, because if Sicknick weren’t murdered by them, then nobody was.

Much more at the link, including the fact that Greenwald had been derisively labeled by MSM reporters as a “Sicknick truther.” They will not be saying any mea culpas about that, either, nor about the other lies they promulgated. They will just move on to the next one.]

Source: Official cause of Officer Sicknick’s death finally announced – and it’s about as you suspected

On Sparing The Rod

Justice is either the same for everyone, or it’s not justice. People are either punished according to their deeds and those deeds injuriousness to society, or they aren’t. But even the most lax of systems, in which everyone is left to defend themselves as best they can is better than one in which the law plays favorites.

….

When an entire class of people think they’re immune from punishment, no matter the reason — skin color, features, size, or whatever — those people will naturally supply the vast majority of criminals.

In fact, being human, they’ll let their inner demons out to play. The more so if everyone has told them others hate them and are “keeping them down.” They will unleash a reign of terror on everyone else.

And while the idiot activists and the left will cross their arms and nod and say it’s deserved…. well, no. Because people today haven’t done anything to unleash this.

But even if it were balancing some eternal scale, it would still be stupid. Because that’s not the way humanity works.

Sure, in the short term, they’re going to run every competent policeman out of a job, and those that remain will let black people get away with whatever. Which means the psychos who happen to be black will feel empowered and be even more blatant and obvious. The lack of police will also mean more vigilantism.

It also means you bring back, in the mid term, real racism. Because you know that black people won’t be punished if they kill you, how long till truck drivers refuse to enter black neighborhoods? How long before every store closes? How long before a black person in any setting is watched very carefully and with suspicion, because you know they have license to do whatever they want and no one will call them on it or punish them? Some of this is already happening.

In the long term, it’s going to lead to genocide. And not the say the left thinks it’s inciting it. The left assumes that it’s empowering black people and in the long run they’ll kill a majority of whites, or something.

….

And what the stupid policies of the left are doing is convincing people black people are dangerous and not quite “normal human.”

We do know how this ends up, because we’ve seen it.

Every primitive society that the Western Culture contacted thought of white people as just another tribe, about the size of their own tribe. So they practiced tribal warfare. You go to the village or settlement that has encroached on your territory and you kill everyone in HORRIBLE WAYS. This is important, because it shows how savage you are. The other tribe then backs off. Everyone is happy, and more bloodshed is spared.

The problem of course was that Western Civ wasn’t tribal; had a lot more people; and had the printing press. Which in turn caused them to read about the horror and decide these people weren’t QUITE human. Which led to a lot of the racism of the 19th and 20th century. It also led to the effective genocide of the Amerindians and the colonial subjugation of Africans.

Source: On Sparing The Rod

A cry from the heart against rot in education

The Brearley School is a private all-girls school on the Upper East Side of Manhattan. It costs $54,000 a year to attend and, according to Bari Weiss, prospective families apparently have to take an “anti-racism pledge” to be considered for admission.

Brearley’s supposed commitment to anti-racism does not prevent it from discriminating on the basis of race in admissions and hiring. Nor does it stop the school from indoctrinating its students in the racist doctrines of critical race theory.

One parent has had enough. Andrew Gutmann has pulled his daughter out of Brearley and sent a letter explaining his decision to the families of every student body member (around 600 of them).

Bari Weiss presents the letter on her website. This is the full text:

Dear Fellow Brearley Parents,

Our family recently made the decision not to reenroll our daughter at Brearley for the 2021-22 school year. She has been at Brearley for seven years, beginning in kindergarten.

In short, we no longer believe that Brearley’s administration and Board of Trustees have any of our children’s best interests at heart. Moreover, we no longer have confidence that our daughter will receive the quality of education necessary to further her development into a critically thinking, responsible, enlightened, and civic minded adult.

I write to you, as a fellow parent, to share our reasons for leaving the Brearley community but also to urge you to act before the damage to the school, to its community, and to your own child’s education is irreparable.

It cannot be stated strongly enough that Brearley’s obsession with race must stop. It should be abundantly clear to any thinking parent that Brearley has completely lost its way. The administration and the Board of Trustees have displayed a cowardly and appalling lack of leadership by appeasing an anti-intellectual, illiberal mob, and then allowing the school to be captured by that same mob. What follows are my own personal views on Brearley’s antiracism initiatives, but these are just a handful of the criticisms that I know other parents have expressed.

I object to the view that I should be judged by the color of my skin. I cannot tolerate a school that not only judges my daughter by the color of her skin, but encourages and instructs her to prejudge others by theirs. By viewing every element of education, every aspect of history, and every facet of society through the lens of skin color and race, we are desecrating the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., and utterly violating the movement for which such civil rights leaders believed, fought, and died.

….

Source: A cry from the heart against rot in education

I Refuse to Stand By While My Students Are Indoctrinated

As a teacher, my first obligation is to my students. But right now, my school is asking me to embrace “antiracism” training and pedagogy that I believe is deeply harmful to them and to any person who seeks to nurture the virtues of curiosity, empathy and understanding.

“Antiracist” training sounds righteous, but it is the opposite of truth in advertising. It requires teachers like myself to treat students differently on the basis of race. Furthermore, in order to maintain a united front for our students, teachers at Grace are directed to confine our doubts about this pedagogical framework to conversations with an in-house “Office of Community Engagement” for whom every significant objection leads to a foregone conclusion. Any doubting students are likewise “challenged” to reframe their views to conform to this orthodoxy.

I know that by attaching my name to this I’m risking not only my current job but my career as an educator, since most schools, both public and private, are now captive to this backward ideology. But witnessing the harmful impact it has on children, I can’t stay silent.

My school, like so many others, induces students via shame and sophistry to identify primarily with their race before their individual identities are fully formed. Students are pressured to conform their opinions to those broadly associated with their race and gender and to minimize or dismiss individual experiences that don’t match those assumptions. The morally compromised status of “oppressor” is assigned to one group of students based on their immutable characteristics. In the meantime, dependency, resentment and moral superiority are cultivated in students considered “oppressed.”

….

Recently, I raised questions about this ideology at a mandatory, whites-only student and faculty Zoom meeting. (Such racially segregated sessions are now commonplace at my school.) It was a bait-and-switch “self-care” seminar that labelled “objectivity,” “individualism,” “fear of open conflict,” and even “a right to comfort” as characteristics of white supremacy. I doubted that these human attributes — many of them virtues reframed as vices — should be racialized in this way. In the Zoom chat, I also questioned whether one must define oneself in terms of a racial identity at all. My goal was to model for students that they should feel safe to question ideological assertions if they felt moved to do so.

It seemed like my questions broke the ice. Students and even a few teachers offered a broad range of questions and observations. Many students said it was a more productive and substantive discussion than they expected.

However, when my questions were shared outside this forum, violating the school norm of confidentiality, I was informed by the head of the high school that my philosophical challenges had caused “harm” to students, given that these topics were “life and death matters, about people’s flesh and blood and bone.” I was reprimanded for “acting like an independent agent of a set of principles or ideas or beliefs.” And I was told that by doing so, I failed to serve the “greater good and the higher truth.”

He further informed me that I had created “dissonance for vulnerable and unformed thinkers” and “neurological disturbance in students’ beings and systems.” The school’s director of studies added that my remarks could even constitute harassment.

A few days later, the head of school ordered all high school advisors to read a public reprimand of my conduct out loud to every student in the school. It was a surreal experience, walking the halls alone and hearing the words emitting from each classroom: “Events from last week compel us to underscore some aspects of our mission and share some thoughts about our community,” the statement began. “At independent schools, with their history of predominantly white populations, racism colludes with other forms of bias (sexism, classism, ableism and so much more) to undermine our stated ideals, and we must work hard to undo this history.”

Students from low-income families experience culture shock at our school. Racist incidents happen. And bias can influence relationships. All true. But addressing such problems with a call to “undo history” lacks any kind of limiting principle and pairs any allegation of bigotry with a priori guilt. My own contract for next year requires me to “participate in restorative practices designed by the Office of Community Engagement” in order to “heal my relationship with the students of color and other students in my classes.” The details of these practices remain unspecified until I agree to sign.

Source: I Refuse to Stand By While My Students Are Indoctrinated

When the Good News is Racist

The Wall Street Journal reports on a U.K. government finding that the U.K. “is no longer ‘deliberately rigged’ against minorities”. Apparently this is bad news.

In July the government of Prime Minister Boris Johnson responded by impaneling the Commission on Race and Ethnic Disparities. “We decided to step away from the heat and all that vitriol,” says its chairman, Tony Sewell, “and just take a cold look at the data on racism.” In doing so, “we examined ideas that weren’t to be questioned,” namely “the race industry’s articles of faith.” In its March 31 report, the commission concluded that while Britain isn’t yet “a post-racial society,” neither is it any longer a place where “the system” is “deliberately rigged against ethnic minorities.”

As a result, Mr. Sewell, who is black—only one of the 10 other commissioners is white—has come under blistering attack. It ranges from the achingly predictable (a profusion of “Uncle Tom” accusations on Twitter ) to the grotesque. A Cambridge professor of postcolonial studies likened Mr. Sewell to Nazi propagandist Joseph Goebbels. A Labour member of Parliament suggested that he belonged in the Ku Klux Klan. Add in put-downs like “house Negro,” “token” and “race traitor,” and you have a picture of the liberal rage ignited by the commission’s refusal to endorse the belief that Britain is irremediably racist.

Mr. Sewell, 62, runs a charity that coaches black schoolchildren in science and math. “It’s a STEM pipeline program,” he says via Zoom from the study of his house in London. “It starts when they’re young and takes them up to university, using summer schools.” Thousands of black kids have been given a college opportunity they “didn’t have in the first place.” Yet he’s called an “Uncle Tom.”

He characterizes the abuse as “a sort of antiracism that borders on racism.” He also detects some desperation, “not only in black lobby groups but on the white left”: “they’re frightened of the report.” Since few ordinary citizens will read its 258 pages, its opponents have busied themselves spreading “distortions” in a bid to capture public opinion. He singles out the leftist Guardian newspaper, which published a sweeping condemnation by David Olusoga, a historian of slavery, who scorns the report as “poisonously patronising” and “historically illiterate.”

Wall Street Journal

Anti-black Crime Is Dropping

Kevin Drum is a liberal blogger but is always worth a read. He was with Mother Jones. He now appears to be on his own with his Jabberwocky blog. When liberals mocked Republicans for making the national security case regarding admitting scores of Syrian refugees, Drum said that stance was “absurdly out of touch.” He also said Senate Democrats forced him to side with the National Rifle Association when the Left wanted to push prohibiting those on terror watch lists from buying guns. There are serious constitutional issues with this policy, the least being the lack of due process and transparency. We had cub scouts get on this list, folks. 

And he also noticed how schools in Irvine, California, which reopened last September, really didn’t suffer a COVID spike. Drum is a liberal, he’s just not insane. 

Recently, he noticed something while analyzing FBI data on hate crimes since we’re a nation whose media establishment is obsessed with racism. Anti-black crime is dropping—and it’s not a little dip either. It’s a massive drop:

 A number of people, including me, have posited that the Obama era produced a white backlash that eventually elected Donald Trump president. There’s some evidence to support this, but it sure doesn’t show up in the hate crime statistics. Hate crimes against Black people plummeted by nearly half during Obama’s term and have pretty much stayed there ever since. This is despite the fact that presumably the Obama administration put a greater focus on hate crimes than either George Bush or Donald Trump.
Violent assaults on Black people have gone down by nearly half since 2005, far more than violent assaults in general. In this case, however, the decline has been fairly steady over the entire period.
The FBI is not the only authority on hate crimes and the NCVS is not the only authority on victimization. Still, they’re generally well respected and use the same methodology from year to year. This probably represents reality pretty well.
I have been accused—rightfully—of constantly telling you that things are better than you think. The reason is simple: Whenever I look into something, it very often turns out to be better than the media focus would have us believe.
In the graph, he noted that the number of racially-motivated incidents deemed anti-black went from 126 per million in 2004 to 70 per million in 2019.

Could it be better? Sure. We all could do better on the issue of race. We just can’t have that discussion now because liberal America is projecting a narrative for which the data simply does not exist. Why? It’s because white liberals are doing what they do best: being on the wrong side of an issue. Not even black Americans have the same feelings on the issue of racial resentment as white liberals, who go off the charts on this question. The Manhattan Institute did a lengthy study on the social constructs of racism in America and found that ideology is one of the key factors in determining your view on this subject. They also found that black men were more likely to die in car accidents than being shot and killed by police. I know, they’re truly skirting on the edge of being canceled by the woke Left. They provided nuance and data to back up their claims and analyses. 

You probably already knew the ideology hook to this, but it’s interesting to see how deep this issue goes. The Skeptic Research Center found that 44 percent of liberals thought that 1,000 unarmed black men were shot and killed by police last year. It was actually 27. And this misinformation feeds into and infests the wider Democratic-media establishment, which claims that America is an irreparably racist country that is becoming a shooting gallery thanks to white guys who can’t stand nonwhites. The data doesn’t support that claim. 

Townhall.com

When Will Liberals Reclaim Free Speech?

My fellow liberals in academia have abandoned ‘the great moral renovator of society and government.’

It’s the difference between “Liberal” and “Leftist”.

‘Professor, why are you so conservative about free speech?” Several students have asked me versions of this question recently, which speaks volumes about universities right now. I’m a liberal and a Democrat: I’m pro-choice, pro-ObamaCare and vehemently anti-Trump. But I’m also a strong supporter of free speech, which marks me as a right-winger on campus.

That’s because my fellow liberals have largely abandoned free speech to conservatives. Turn on Fox News, and you’ll see “cancel culture” decried in bright lights. But in the liberal press—and most of all in the liberal academy—free speech has become a rhetorical third rail. Sure, we’ll invoke it when Republican state lawmakers try to ban critical race theory. But in our own house, free speech is seen increasingly as a tool of repression rather than liberation.

Here’s how the argument usually goes: White people love free speech, because it lets them say any hateful thing they want. But the real burden of it falls on racial minorities, who are forced to absorb constant slights and slurs against their very existence. That’s why we need to police racist speech: to protect its victims.

The problem is that people will inevitably differ about which speech qualifies as racist. The term has become our own scarlet letter, an all-purpose way to prohibit ideas you dislike. So we need to defend the free-speech rights of everyone, even avowed racists. The best response to hateful speech is to raise your own voice against it, not to ban it.

Once you decide to swing the censorship hammer against racist speech, almost anything can look like a nail. A business-school professor who discusses a Chinese word that sounds like an American slur. A law-school professor who says that her African-American students underachieve academically. A math professor who criticizes diversity training. And so on.

All these examples are real, and in each case the faculty member was recently fired or suspended for the allegedly racist transgression. Most of my liberal colleagues stayed quiet about it, even when they believed these people were treated unfairly.

I get it. You don’t need a weatherman to know which way the free-speech winds are blowing these days. It’s prudent to keep your big mouth shut. But that’s anathema to a liberal university, which requires debating differences fully and openly.

It’s also hardly clear that this censorship will help the minorities it purports to protect. The University of Michigan instituted a code in 1987 barring speech that “stigmatizes or victimizes an individual” on the basis of race, ethnicity, religion or gender. In the ensuing 18 months, blacks were charged with violating the code in 20 cases. One black student was punished for using the term “white trash.”

When speech can be suppressed, the people with the least power are likely to lose the most. That’s why every great tribune of social justice in American history—including Frederick Douglass, Susan B. Anthony and Martin Luther King Jr. —was also a zealous advocate for free speech. Without it, they couldn’t critique the indignities and oppression that they suffered.

In the antebellum years, slave owners tried to block abolitionist literature from the U.S. mail and even from the floor of Congress. But abolitionists fought back, invoking what Douglass called “the great moral renovator of society and government”: free speech. They kept writing and talking, censors be damned.

In the mid-20th century, government authorities routinely censored gay publications, which were deemed “obscene” and “degenerate.” But the courts ultimately allowed distribution of these materials, which in turn helped gay people connect and organize. The modern LGBT-rights movement owes its birth and growth to free speech. Ditto for black civil rights, women’s liberation and every other cause that the American left holds dear.

I’m glad that conservatives have embraced free speech, but I’d also like to see my fellow liberals reclaim it. We need the courage to speak up again for free speech, which remains the best vehicle for righting the wrongs of America.

Source: When Will Liberals Reclaim Free Speech?