•Why no outrage of blacks at their own “problems” (killings, etc)
•More whites are shot by police than blacks
•Turning groups of people into monolithic entities, for broad sweeping judgments
•Denial of Southern Strategy (Democrats were always the “racists”, now "enslaving blacks another way")
•Lincoln and the North were racist and slaveowners too
•Africans sold each other into slavery, Black and Native Americans owned slaves (and slavery also in the Bible)
•What Confederate Flag has come to symbolize (What was “taken from” them, and they want “back”?)
•KKK and other hate groups used the USA flag
•Most Confederate soldiers (and Southerners in general) weren’t slave owners
•Conservatives have total claim to all “truth” (any response to them is just wrong and the true racism)
There are several statements that have been oft repeated in response to claims of racial disparity, especially in light of widely controversial deadly incidents involving race. Since the completion of Makers-Takers, which reflected the political landscape in the aftermath of Trayvon, there have been several similar incidences of deaths of black males by police, ensuing unrest, and some other attacks, which by now are hard to even keep track of:
The most notable ones:
7-17-14 Eric Garner, Staten Island, NY; choked for selling loose cigarettes. Said "I can't breathe!"
8-9-14 Michael Brown, Ferguson, MO; shot for supposedly threatening officer, though unarmed. Major riots
11-22-14 Tamir Rice, Cleveland, Ohio; officers mistook 12 year old's toy gun for a real weapon
4-4-15 Walter Scott, North Charleston, SC; unarmed, shot while running away from officer
4-12-15 Freddie Gray, Baltimore; sustained fatal injuries during his arrest; triggering major rioting
Here is a list of all the deaths for a one year period, 2014-5:
Another notable incident was the "Texas Pool Party chaos" (6-5-15); a teenage girl (too young for the name to be released) being roughed up by an officer at a pool party in McKinney, Texas, in which a disturbance was occuring, which reportedly started when two white women told a group of African-American teens they should leave and "go back to their Section 8 homes", and one of them smacked a girl in the face. (That part often not reported; even left out of the Wikipedia article, I see). No one was killed, but the officers did also draw their guns at several unarmed teens.
(Right as I publish this, the internet is buzzing about the just released video footage of the arrest of Sandra Bland [7-10-15], who then was found a few days later hung in prison).
It seems almost like these major incidents flared up after Trayvon, or at least, were more publicized. And the Right continued the same responses to "the black community", and "the liberals" that became louder beginning with Trayvon.
The final incident, to date, while not involving the police, was the shooting of a black church in Charleston, SC by a young white supremacist, Dylann Roof, 6-17-15, which led to a huge outcry against the Confederate flag, which he used, leading to the one on the SC Capitol grounds, to be taken down. This of course leads to a further debate on race relations, and the conservatives feeling under attack (which is what the flag was all about in the first place; leading to the argument that its use is innocent, and defensive, rather than offensive. But as we shall see, offense under the premise of defense is precisely the problem in this whole race issue!)
So these ten arguments make up major component in race debate on the “conservative” side:
Why no outrage of blacks at their own “problems” (killings, etc)
This is repeated so often that it sounds like there are no answers to it, but actually, there are:
Actually, Blacks Do Care About Black Crime
And in short, it’s easy to find examples of marches and demonstrations against crime. In the last four years, blacks have held community protests against violence in Chicago; New York; Newark, New Jersey; Pittsburgh; Saginaw, Michigan; and Gary, Indiana. [ http://www.theatlantic.com/national/archive/2012/04/why-dont-black-people-protest-black-on-black-violence/255329 ] Indeed, there’s a whole catalog of movies, albums, and sermons from a generation of directors, musicians, and religious leaders, each urging peace and order. You may not have noticed black protests against crime and violence, but that doesn’t mean they haven’t happened. Black Americans—like everyone else—are concerned with what happens in their communities, and at a certain point, pundits who insist otherwise are either lying or willfully ignorant.
To that point, it’s worth noting the extent to which “what about black-on-black crime” is an evasion, an attempt to avoid the fundamental difference between being killed by a citizen and being killed by an agent of law.
Regardless of cause or concern, a community doesn’t forfeit fair treatment because it has crime. That was true then when the scourge was lynching, and it’s true now that the scourge is unjust police violence. Say what you will about “black-on-black crime,” just don’t pretend it has anything to do with unfair killings at the hands of the state.
Someone nails the distraction when uttered by former mayor Guiliani:
Better player imbedded (YouTube):
First of all, most black people who commit crimes against other black people go to jail. Number two, they are not sworn by the police department as an agent of the state to uphold the law. So in both cases, that’s a false equivalency…drawn, which has exacerbated tensions deeply embedded in American culture.
Then, you even had a controversy where Guiliani-era police commissioner Kelly blames DeBlasio for “setting off this firestorm” by “raising concerns over his son’s safety” and training him “to be careful when he’s dealing with the police”. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/12/21/ray-kelly-bill-de-blasio_n_6362762.html
A white NYC mayor was criticized just for warning his black son about the possibility of him falling victim to a police shooting. It got to the point that many officers physically turned their backs on him during speeches!
Is this classic denial, or what? It’s not DeBlasio’s fault that there was a genuine danger for his biracial son. (And he’s telling him to “be careful”. Shouldn’t that make them happy, since in their view, black kids would not get harassed or killed if they just changed their behavior toward the police? Cops even mocked the “I can’t breathe” slogan with “Breathe Easy; Obey the Law!”)
It seems like any defense of blacks or trying to express things from the black perspective is in itself seen as anti-cop and anti-white. Any mention of this stuff is “fanning the flames”, and calling all cops bad or racist. The only people wrong here are always the blacks themselves.
It all seems to be summed up in that we have no rights to protest what we see as unjust treatment, until we clean up all of our crime first; I mean, even for a white father of a black son to caution him about the police. I guess he should just be willing to have the son die too, until the rest of the black community cleans up its act. (For they would never kill him unless he was threatening them!)
Imagine, a black person gets robbed by one of these “urban criminals” everyone talks about, and then walks onto the next block, and gets shot by a cop or by someone like Dylann or Zimmerman, and you come along and tell him “That’s GOOD for you, because of that criminal back on the other block you just got robbed by. You should have made him reform himself, but since you didn’t, you’re complicit in his crime, and deserve the same consequences he does”!
THAT is what people are essentially insinuating!
And let’s not forget people similarly still throwing up black-on-white crime. Every “conservative news” site story on heinous black crimes I’m now seeing, is followed by commenters saying lynching should be brought back, with pictures of nooses, even! Some even take it as the green light to toss out no less than the N word, (sometimes with the “understanding” that it only refers to “those who act this way”).
(And then, "Where is Sharpton, Jackson, Obama, Holder... etc. at these incidences?". That answer to that, is that racially motivated violence against blacks is what has come into focus more than every day crime. One is against an individual at a time, while the other is against a whole people, and this is why it's a false equivalency").
This whole deflection about black-on-black crime, while having a lot of truth, is still not something that easily changed. Part of it comes from all the anger from what we’ve gone through in history (which does pass down through the dysfunction in families, and many people who suffered in Civil Rights days and earlier are still alive). And then, it has become “cultural”, including pop-culture, when venues such as rap (which started out more “message” or at least “fun” oriented) were then transformed into the whole “gangsta” idiom, which (being driven by market forces like every other form of entertainment) now broadcasts everywhere as what it means to be young and black. This basically “validates” the tendency to behave and also carry themselves in a way that evokes fear (which is a basic survival instinct now on overdrive); including all the rap ideations of fighting back the police.
So it is very hard to get all of these kids and others to change. Just preaching at them, or something (whatever these detractors want) won’t do it. And neither will blaming the rest of the race (through terms such as “the community”) and excoriating it, as if they were all complicit, somehow.
The police, and other institutions, on the other hand, are just that; institutions, that a person joins, and consists of laws/rules everyone must follow, and these rules can be enforced, or even changed if found problematic or outdated. That’s why there’s a lot of heat on police violence.
(And again, those blacks who do kill, and other crimes, get hunted down, jailed, or maybe even killed, and the rest of the community, who are usually the victims, also end up profiled because of them. Some of the arguments insinuate they’ve forfeited any rights to not be brutalized or profiled, because of these others. Again, one group is a loose knit “community” consisting of individuals, the other is a tight knit organization individuals must submit to).
There's always been the pressure for us to act "twice as good", to "prove" our equality, and counter these negative images, and the whole push to "correct" us goes right along with it. Many of these people acting up and doing other things such as wearing the sagging pants are likely in part rebelling against this expectation. I always get frustrated hearing about petty and violent crimes, wishing they would just cut all this stuff out already, if for nothing more that to "improve our image". But to go along with that under that premise is to basically own "inferiority", and then aim to "earn" equality with those already "superior"; but who is going to want to accept something like that? The whole point is that an inferior/superior relationship is wrong. So another way has to be found to address these criminals and what can be done about their "subculture", and to also stand up to those political elements who use these points to try to prove old stereotypes about a whole people (including various "white nationalists" and other supremacists who infiltrate political discourse and blend in with the prevailing "crime and welfare" concerns, but are clearly pushing it as an agenda of isolation; the universal motto being "take back the country", of course).
On the other hand, it is pointed out that black parents ironically, sometimes go too far in trying to prove they are fixing their problems, like the parents giving their sons an older man’s “male pattern baldness” haircuts to humiliate them into obedience. (Dear Black People, Please Stop Shaming Your Kids On Social Media
The points I think are most noteworthy:
“But it also reflects a response to the way Black parents have long been blamed as absent and inadequate, and for social breakdown of our communities. It’s an overcorrection, these public displays of extreme disciplining, a declaration to the world,‘Look what we are doing; we are parenting, we are demanding disciplined children, so shut the hell up, America.’”
I’ve always said we’ve ignored people’s perception of us, or didn’t care. The classic [fictional] example of many people’s attitude is George Jefferson’s “I’m sick of what the white man thinks; what about what I think?”, when his son said he was going to go looting after King was assassinated and the mother objected with the fear of “proving what they say about us”. But it seems we are affected by what “the man” thinks, and sometimes reacting toward it in a rash way.
On the other hand, you have the Baltimore rioter mother who was filmed beating her son, ( http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2015/04/29/toya-graham-hero-mom_n_7175754.html
Dear White America: Toya Graham Is Not Your Hero ).
“On a very basic level, the worship of Graham is built on a misunderstanding of her motivation. Many in the media have presumed she was furious at her son for taking part in a riot, and dished out the blows that police and pundits think young black men need to get them back in line. But that’s not what she says drove her.
Young black men, like Graham’s son, are 21 times more likely than young white men to be shot dead by police. Graham was scared for her child.”
More whites are shot by police than blacks
You can see this claim here: http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2015/apr/21/police-kill-more-whites-than-blacks-but-minority-d/?page=all
I notice towards the end, an "adjustment" for "the racial disparity in the homicide rate or the rate at which police are feloniously killed" to switch the figure of how many more "times more likely to be killed by police" from black men at 3.5 to whites at 1.7. This to me shows how all sorts of things can be drawn from statistical figures by playing with the numbers the right way (like the argument on how much money really is going to welfare with both sides claiming the numbers in their favor), and why I don't trust them a lot of time. (Recall, they figure prominently in the crime statistics the Right loves to throw at "blacks"). Of course, the fact that there are more whites will be a factor as well (just as in the crime numbers. It seems most, instead of taking this route, will say "more blacks are killed because they are committing more crimes").
I think the issue here is the deaths as within the larger context of police harassment (which of course includes all of the incidences that don't lead to death). So you may be able to produce a larger number of whites, but recall, the examples shown of whites being arrested, and how they can go as far as having their weapons drawn, and the police will still manage to capture and detain him without shooting. Dylann was a prime example of a deadly assassin treated basically well upon arrest. Sometimes, they continue to beg and plead with the suspect. With the blacks, a young kid can get shot for having a toy gun! So some whites may get shot, and even if it is technically more than blacks, still, the overall treatment is vastly different, and this is what will make the black deaths stand out and lead to a bigger outcry.
Turning groups of people into monolithic entities, for broad sweeping judgments
That’s the whole basis of the focus on “black crime”, or “the black community”. Even in conservative Christian discussions on recent events, I see people give lip service to memes like “sin, not skin”, but then proceed to address a group by skin color, and then attribute particular “sins” to that one group, and then focus on them. They refuse to acknowledge any sins of the other group (said to be an “excuse” of the first group). It’s like the other group is “up to par”, which the first group falls far below, and they thus want to “discuss” (basically, ‘upbraid’ them for), they and their “problems, like angry, stern parents or bosses.
Yet they do not see how this right here arrogates a position of superiority!
The people accusing others of being “race baiters” are the ones claiming we should now be “post-racial”, and that it is always the other side “playing the race card”, but then why are they themselves in the first place, still attributing crimes to RACES (and combing the news for crime stories, and comparing statistics as to “who commits more crime” in order to “prove” it) and not INDIVIDUALS for whom race is a surface feature they happen to be apart of, but their behavior is a combination of personal choices, affected by an environment? Is the noteworthiness of the [“ignored”] crime story of the day its heinounsness, or is it just who is doing it?
If one says “well the other side is doing it to us”, still isn’t the whole point being claims of “truth”, while the other side is wrong? Both sides doing the same things just creates an endless cycle of wrong.
The real root of the rhetoric is seen in this article:
“White Supremacists Worried Charleston Shooting Makes Them Look Bad”:
People were beginning to talk about the race issue openly after ferguson, baltimore, and now the Rachel Dolezal scandal. Looks to me like the powers that be wanted to turn attention back to whitey if it turns out to be a white perp.
It’s a shame this happened and I do feel bad for the victims and their families. However, it’s making me sick (although no surprise) how this is being spun by the media. Racially charged killings? It’s a fact that Blacks commit way more crimes per capita and behave a certain way, that’s why they get chased and hurt. They do rape our women, and they are taking over our country and cost way too much money to maintain. But none of these points will ever be addressed because then it would bring open discussion to the NEGRO PROBLEM IN OUR SOCIETY … which is theREAL news.
The guy comes right out and tells us directly the “open discussion on race” they want (what they feel the liberals have censored), and that’s “the negro problem”. (Notice, the race is something that has to be “maintained“, at a cost!) This folks, is the root of all the rest of the conservative “takers” rhetoric, which has been smoothed over in the mainstream. (Deliberately changed into code language in rhetoric, as Lee Atwater once admitted). But it’s the same exact sentiments.
As one commenter pointed out: “So these folks are trying to distance themselves from exactly the type of person their group inspires and attracts. Sorry bigots but that s___ ain’t gonna fly!”
In other words, this Dylann kid aimed to take care of “the negro problem”! Why do those complaining so much about this “problem” (and agreeing verbatim with all of his concerns) now try to disown his actions?
On conservative sites and social media, the news is constantly mined for examples of black crime. The media has always focused on black crime, but during the whole Trayvon affair, conservatives turned this reality on its ear and began complaining that only white-on-black crime was being focused on, and “not a word from the liberal media” about black crime. So then they and their news and web outlets began aiming to fill in this void. And it can’t be repeated too often, that it always becomes the platform to hurl the N word, or others like “apes”, and argue lynching should be brought back!
But of course, they [these commenters] are the victims of the true “racists”, the “race hustlers” playing “the race card” on them; right?
“Why is no one keeping track of these kids? Take a good look, folks. This is what is wrong with America today.”
It is not America that is at fault, it is a Culture that is at fault.
Americas fault is that we allowed our government to perpetuate the problem instead of assimilating the culture. And if history is any judge, that culture has a low probability of successful assimilation. The practice of genocide against themselves is even greater. America was founded on sound principles, which this culture has adopted – poorly.
(And another comment, “Didn’t look like a group of teens to me, it looks like a group of blacks”)
Here we see again, the isolating of the problem to what they’re calling a “culture”. What’s really meant is a race (since it’s obviously a whole group that hasn’t “assimilated”), but most don’t want to say it in that term all the time. (Though some clearly do!) They can’t acknowledge it as more likely a SUB-culture, perhaps of angry individuals who haven’t learned how to constructively handle their anger. So they have to specify a fixed group, that they then surmise perhaps can’t assimilate. (And notice, the government was supposed to “assimilate” the culture instead of “perpetuating its problem”. I wonder how the government, who these conservatives are usually against, was supposed to carry that out!)
Checking back on a Christian board to see what was going on in light of recent events, I found what was to be expected:
I’ll address the root cause of the rage held in the black communities. It stems from the fact that the black communities are racist. They feel they are entitled to things that other hard working Americans are not. They feel they are owed something, instead of trying to earn something. It lies in the fact that black communities are violent and drug infested. It comes from a blame everyone else for their problems mentality.
History shows blacks aren’t concerned with much other than a violent culture. Explains their fascination with guns, gansta rap, gangs, drugs, and riots.
To which one adds:
Don’t forget, they need the right people in office to continue to give them money in order to remain in slavery to the government that is really oppressing them. It is not white and black. It is putting something, anything their hands, BUT just enough to barely keep a roof over their heads and food on the table. Then they can get cabin fever and all riled up at the right time in order to riot and blame it on anyone but themselves.
Another elsewhere responds to the standard Christian doctrine “The real problem: humans are evil and have a sin nature” with “But why does it actualize so much more in some places than others?” (One of these posters would go on to mention visiting New Jersey, and hearing people say stuff like “you know those blacks…”, figuring it was safe to say this around a Southerner. This is supposed to prove Northerners as the true racists, but he does the same exact things on the internet!)
This is the root of the problem from this side. They resent having “the race card” played on them in a way that would generalize “racism” to all whites, but then they continue holding these stereotypes of ALL blacks (including now throwing the term “racist” back at the WHOLE “community”!) Notice, no distinction is made between the people as a whole, and either the rioters, or the gangs or drug addicts among them, anti-white people or groups, “the poor in the ghetto”, or especially kids (who are the main players the so-called “thug” culture and gangsta-rap, saggy pants, etc; it’s not the older people who are doing most of that stuff).
Yet, people keep making this blanket statement that “blacks just want free money and don’t want to work [like WE do] and that’s the WHOLE problem”. This is what it always comes back to.
But how could you expect people to not be angry and suspicious of “racism” when you keep parroting stuff like this? Who really is playing “the race card”, here?
None of this is to deny that black communities have more violence and more crime than their white counterparts. It is true. And indeed, blacks are more likely to face criminal victimization—up to and including murder—than any other group. But it’s wrong—morally and analytically—to treat these facts as racial problems inherent to black people or any particular aspect of blackness.
That’s what the idea of “black-on-black-crime” does: It collapses a whole world of distinctions, circumstances, and situations into a single frame, where crime in Prince George’s County, Maryland, is the same as crime in Gary, Indiana, is the same as crime in Houston, and all are part of a nebulous “black crime” problem. Indeed, to rely on the idea for any explanatory power is to embrace racist mythmaking while disavowing any responsibility for the existence of impoverished, high-crime black neighborhoods.
Or, to make that more concrete, we need to consider all other options before we attribute high crime in black neighborhoods to “culture” or some inherent black criminality, especially given the long abuse of “culture” as an explanation for perceived black inferiority. We need to account for the effects of hypersegregation and broad, concentrated poverty. We need to account for the collapse of urban economies and the presence of illicit drug markets. We need to account for the huge, heavy-handed police presences that lead to more crimes being caught and more actions being classified and treated as crimes. And we need to account for the real effects of public policies like the war on drugs and mass incarceration on violent crime rates. “Without the War on Drugs, the level of gun violence that plagues so many poor inner-city neighborhoods today simply would not exist,” notes Heather Ann Thompson for the Atlantic. “The last time we saw so much violence from the use of firearms was, notably, during Prohibition.” It’s only when we consider these factors that we can bring culture and alleged criminality into the picture. Anything else is dishonest and treats black Americans as a dangerous exception, not part and parcel of the country’s fabric.
What I keep seeing in conservative rhetoric is “we’re totally innocent, and it’s all THEM”. (Never mind that these same conservatives themelves are the ones the most obsessed with guns, and blacks aren’t the only ones who have forms of violent music, drug use and types of “gangs”—including ones actually stockpiling weapons to fight against the government, and let’s not forget, a rebel regime that once did fight the Unites States and lost, and yet many, priding themselves as the true “patriots”, have placed their whole identity in).
It seems most in those discussions will speak favorably of the [“Republican-led”] Civil Rights movement and Dr. King, but a lot of this stuff (including statistical “fact” on crime/”violence”, sexual looseness, etc) is exactly the same as what was used by those opposing progress back then.
Then you have Bill O’Reilly on FOX countering the “Demonization of America as a Racist Nation” with “There are problems in the African American Communities, especially in the inner cities”.
I actually agreed to some point, as saying stuff like “America is a white Supremacist nation” [i.e. still is] is way too strong language, and glosses over all the changes that have occurred over time, and that the nation consists of individuals who either can go along with or not go along with that. Also, terms like “white privilege” get tossed around, and not always articulated enough as to what they mean by that.
But then, the same thing is being done by these same speakers. Right after he makes the point about the country being “defined by them” [the racists], and that it would be like saying that African American community is “all defined” by Louis Farrakhan or the Black Panthers, he then goes into the “problems” of the community, which ARE often used to “define” it in conservative talking points. He may soften it with “however there are problems in the African American precincts…”, but he still comes close to this sort of generalization by charging straight into the “corrosive culture” statement, which others often use to paint “the blacks” as a whole without any apparent distinction.
And then all the “decent, fair-minded among them” he mentions, seem to suddenly become invisible, and all anyone sees are angry rioters, criminals and single mothers gaming the system! But these are just a subset within the community, not “the [whole] community” itself. (The “decent, fair minded among them” are basically what’s traditionally known as “the good ones“; which were the “exceptions” in the otherwise “bad” whole group).
And then, as a lot of the criticism is based on the actions/statements of the main public political media figures, Jackson and Sharpton, this IS “defining” the community by these two figures (whom many seem to regard as just as “radical” and “hateful” as Farrakhan and the Panthers!)
The point is, all of the generalization [seeing the other side as a monolothic entity with one mind rather than as individuals] both sides do is what keeps this ball rolling, and as anger flares up on both sides, this is why we’re getting more and more unrest.
So doing back to them what you’re complaining of them doing to you is not the answer, nor is it founded by any more “truth”, supposedly justifying it. People are ultimately the same, and their actions stem from our nature, and are shaped by various circumstances throughout their lives (individual and collective), and no one is on any sort of moral/cultural higher ground.
So people are charging the entire black “community”: “blacks’ problem is this…”, “blacks need to do that…”, and it’s obvious they are not seen as up to “par”.
Well, what is “par”? When you insist on national “exceptionality”, that is obviously what they are being judged in light of.
“We built this great nation, and things were going so well here in the past, and anyone can do well, no matter what”, we have heard over and over from conservatives over the years; and yet, “these people over there have so many problems. What’s wrong with them?”. (And people even try to argue the slaves and segregated blacks were ultimately happier or at least “better off” than afterward).
And then is quickly supplied the answer: “Oh, they just don’t want to work like everyone else [again, the “par”], but instead only want free stuff from others”.
And then, add in the white “rebels”: the “liberals”, who only want to “destroy the nation” (which is what solely ruined that “golden age” of the past), who are said to be taking advantage of these greedy, lazy, blind “problem people”, by offering them the “freebies” so they can get the “votes” to gain the power they went to carry out their agenda.
So in denying “the race card”, it’s often attempted to make white liberals the “real” culprit and thus who conservatives are really against rather than the blacks (and only showing a very patronizing “concern” for these “poor blacks” being “used” by them), but then the “black” character judgment of “just wanting free stuff” still [and always] comes up.
And you still have to explain why only blacks developed this problem. (Which they will point out by comparing to various other ethnic groups who faced discrimination in this country). If you then acknowledge slavery and oppression, on the premise that “the liberals took advantage of the situation for their own agenda”, then you are, in fact, acknowledging a “legacy of slavery” (which conservatives are saying is just an “excuse”). You’re only blaming this “legacy” on just one party or political wing. (And yet, the point, regarding the liberal side of the problem, is actually not totally disputed by most blacks).
Otherwise, you have to fall back on the old genetic causes, or among the religious, “spiritual” causes such as “curses”.
So they’ve isolated “the problem” down to two “entities”, basically, as the “root problem”, as I’ve seen it put. (Not even groups of individuals, but rather these monolithic collective characters who act as one single person each. Or maybe not even a person, since they have to be “maintained”, which is a terms used for objects. So therefore, each individual in those groups is not really a “person”, and such has no worth, or good, or value to his life). And to one person I was debating with, the “root problem” is the racially defined “permanent poverty class” themselves, and the political party involved is only the [separate] cause of it.
The problem here, is that people seem to want some sort of en-masse scolding, correcting, disciplining, etc. of an entire “people”. When you isolate the culprit of a crime, then the solution is to catch and punish him. It’s like you’ve caught a bad child doing something wrong, and aim to rehabilitate him, but that’s ONE person; a single individual. Now, we’re talking about an entire “class” or “race”; millions of individuals, all different, and each making separate sorts of choices. What do you want done?
So to say common clichés like “you [people] just need to restore the family” (re: other critics mention the “breakdown of the black family”) is not going to do anything. You already have families working, raising their children as best as they can. What do you expect them to do, (since it’s the whole “community”)?
Without any real solution ever articulated, they apparently just insist that the rhetoric should be repeated over and over, until “the liberals address the problem of how they’ve enslaved blacks through their programs” (which again is precisely “the negro problem in America”, as white supremacists more openly put it). But it looks to me like this is just deflection from something else, which they don’t want to address. Which they in fact, defend, as good! (i.e. the economic basis of a lot of the problem, in the black community as well as the entire nation; from the beginning).
Then, you have the angry people themselves, and as should be obvious, they’re not going to listen to anything finger-wagging conservatives say. And not all of them are even trying to abuse the system. Many of the most angry, “revolutionary” types are so against the system, they don’t trust it to help the community. The Nation of Islam and others, from the beginning, have been preaching self-improvement, self-reliance of the community, etc. but unfortunately, had taken an anti-white stance (in an almost “tit-for-tat” fashion), and sometimes violence, and this is what has influenced certain elements in the community (not the whole community itself), such as gangsta rap.
Yet because of the angry people and criminals, the entire community is seen as having no right to even protest police violence. A mayor virtually should accept the prospect of his interracial son getting shot, because of what others in the “community” do, until someone in the community waves their hands and magically fixes everyone else!
(And still, what’s always glossed over, was the white “riots” at sports games. So one group of people is seen as having no right to be so angry, but then we have the supposed “good” group [i.e. which the others always get measured by], rioting over anger at a more trivial event, if not just for fun. At that point, the “who does it more” statistics will come up, ignoring the point that the proclivity to act badly is in all of us, regardless of who happens to be recorded doing it “more”).
There may be SOME instances of people doing wrong, and then suffering the consequences for it. There are also SOME instances of them doing wrong, but the reaction (such as death) is greater than what they were doing called for. And there are some instances of mistakes or discrimination, where the victim wasn’t doing anything.
There are what are known as “cultural sins”, which are negative behaviors (such as the crime problems being referenced by Trump and other conservatives) that spread through a “community” simply from the people being influenced by the others in close proximity to them. Conservatives will appeal to “the truth” of these behaviors to make a point, and it comes off as “slamming” other races. But then, they don’t want to hear their own reputed “cultural sins”, of racism (in whatever form it may take, and other forms of control, such as economic).
I’m not saying that people should pretend the problems of urban American or Latin American crime don’t exist. But they need to find other ways to address these things than broad, sweeping statements that insult the people themselves.
Basically, a general rule we can give, is that if you describe "the black community" (or others like Mexicans) as "problem people" (or "parasites", "leeches", "dangerous thugs", "animals" etc.) who "just want free stuff"; (or all Muslims as potential terrorists or complicit with it, etc.) and need to be publicly scolded or isolated, and you can't see them as simply "people", like yourself, who are imperfect and have problems as we all do, then you can safely fit the definition of "racist", and should wear the label proudly, instead of as a "card" someone else is wrongly "playing" on you, (and that you aim to turn back toward them)! You say you have the "facts" to prove these views, then "racism" is "fact", and not a "card". Own it, already!
If you can't own it, and react defensively, then there is a sense of guilt (which indicates a sense of potential error, somewhere, and that to even you, the stance you're holding looks bad), and then maybe it is not so factual after all (despite whatever statistics or other data you can spin), and you just hold onto it because it is simply pleasing to your own sense of identity (individual or collective).
One's self and/or group being up to "par" or "exceptional" (superior), and others "inferior" in some way is naturally pleasing to the ego in that way. (Our perspectives will naturally tend to skew reality that way, which we should never forget, but always do). But others will naturally oppose that, and they have the right to; your claims of "absolute truth", notwithstanding. Especially from a premise of all men being "created equally".
There are an apparent growing number who are being more honest about their beliefs, as radical white nationalists and supremacists are standing out, with a new term they have recently coined, "cuckservative", leveled at conservatives (and particularly the GOP mainstream) who essentially don't "admit" that true conservativism means specifically defending the rights of "whites". The GOP crack-up continues: The raging civil war over the disgusting “cuckservative” slur
The term will include someone who believes blacks thrived before the Great Society (a common conservative argument against social programs), without admitting it was Jim Crow that kept them in check, and a person who argues abortion is wrong because it harms primarily blacks (an argument Christian conservatives will often use), without seeing how blacks harm civilization. The analogy is to a husband twistedly getting off on watching a [likely black] man have sex with his wife [i.e. a "cuckold"], and thinking he's still in control because he's "allowing" it.
Those two examples are what has been the biggest implication of conservative "code" language (especially the universal praise of the past) the whole time, and it's about time someone on that side finally stood up and admitted it and owned the "race card"! Likely 'loosing their minds' from the recent attacks against the confederate flag, it will hopefully serve to help distinguish them from the mainstream they had blended into (by hiding these sentiments behind the "codes") for decades, and the mainstream conservatives will eventually have to make a stand, as to whether they will continue to cuck the code while denying its full meanings, or to completely turn from racial politics in all its disguised forms.
Also, we need to think about constantly tossing these “victim” and “whining” terms at others, when the same ones doing it are complaining louder than anyone else about taxes, their country being “destroyed” or “taken” from them, losing “all their freedoms”, etc. (yet most still live this “American dream”). The only thing that’s been taken is certain aspects of power (over others). So there are very loud voices right in their own ranks screaming “persecution!” “Stop them before they destroy us!” ?as well as “the hard truth is on our side”?. This surely is contributing to what we’re seeing going on.
Denial of Southern Strategy (splitting all "racism" onto one “party” now "enslaving blacks aother way")
Every conservative argument without fail appeals to the “liberals” (currently embodied by the Democratic Party) as “the real racists”, pointing out that this is the party that favored slavery and segregation, while the Republicans opposed those institutions.
So then the evil that is seen here is then SPLIT off, by being isolated to this one rogue party, and this one group of people, whom the party first tried to directly oppress, but then supposedly changed their tactic to [re-]“enslaving” them through the “freebies” of government “socialism”.
But this ignores that these earlier “Democrats” were the conservatives, defending the Constitution and fighting against Communism, as their premise against the blacks, whom they said the same things about (i.e. them being lazy and violent and used by the “enemy”) as today’s conservatives.
Again, lumping groups into monolithic entities, it’s ignored that both parties differed in places, especially along the divide of south versus north. So while Southern Democrats were the ones favoring slavery and segregation, there were northern ones who were more liberal, and leaders would arise who would begin passing legislation that gave blacks more rights. It was in the 60’s, with Kennedy and Johnson’s policies (and NOT just the Great Society as those who reduce the whole move of blacks, to “free stuff” claim), that the Southern Democrats felt obviously betrayed by the party, and at first some tried to split off into parties of their own such as “Dixiecrats” or independent, but were then lured en-masse into the Republican party by a strategy begun by Nixon.
Here’s a couple of good rundowns of the Southern Strategy:
This one gives a detailed synopsis on the shift that became known as the Strategy without even using the term, and also how other aspects of conservatism stemmed from the racist cause (which they of course deny).
The best point:
By the Johnson-Goldwater election, it had become clear that overt racism and segregationism was politically doomed. Brown v. Board of Education and LBJ’s support for the 1964 Civil Rights Act saw to that. As this scary recognition dawned on Southern whites, they began searching for a new vehicle through which to shield themselves and their communities from the consequences of integration. The young conservative movement’s ringing endorsement of a minimalist federal government did the trick — it provided an on-face racially neutral language by which Southerners could argue against federal action aimed at integrating lily-white schools and neighborhoods.
Kevin Kruse, a Princeton historian whose work focuses on the South and the conservative movement, finds deep roots in segregationist thought for this turn. “In their own minds, segregationists were instead fighting for rights of their own,” Kruse suggests. These “rights” included “the ‘right’ to select their neighbors, their employees, and their children’s classmates, the ‘right’ to do as they pleased with their private property and personal businesses, and, perhaps, most important, the ‘right’ to remain free from what they saw as dangerous encroachments by the federal government.”
Kruse traces this language through white resistance to desegregation from the 40s through the 60s, using a detailed examination of “white flight” in Atlanta as a synecdoche. In the end, he finds, “the struggle over segregation thoroughly reshaped southern conservatism…segregationist resistance inspired the creation of new conservative causes, such as tuition vouchers, the tax revolt, and the privatization of public services.” The concomitant rise of the modern conservative movement and the civil rights movements’ victories conspired to make Southern whites into economic, and not just racial, conservatives.
Conservatives for a long time completely ignored these points, and then, when I would mention it to them in discussions, some would reduce the whole scheme down to just Thurmond or Byrd, or claim it was only Johnson’s plot to lure the blacks to the Democrats. But as time went on, they became forced to finally admit some people switched parties, but totally leaving out bits and parts of information (including the term “Southern Strategy” and those that deliberately conceived of it) as this article does:
Following the epic civil rights struggles of the 1960s, the South began a major demographic shift from Democratic to Republican dominance. Many believe that this shift was motivated by racism. While it is certainly true that many Southern racists abandoned the Democratic Party over its new support for racial equality and integration, the notion that they would flock to the Republican Party — which was a century ahead of the Democrats on those issues — makes no sense whatsoever.
Yet virtually every liberal, when pressed on the matter, will inevitably claim that the parties “switched,” and most racist Democrats became Republicans!
He admits “It is true that Barry Goldwater’s opposition to the Civil Rights Act of 1964 probably attracted some racist Democrats to the Republican Party.” and then goes on to try to clear Goldwater of the charge of “Racism” in favor of a simple concern for “states rights” (which from the Civil war on was heavily tied up with racism, for that is one of the key things they resented the government for interfering with in the first place).
But Goldwater’s opposition to the 1964 Civil Rights Act provided liberals an opening to tar the Republican Party as racist, and they have tenaciously repeated that label so often over the years that it is now the conventional wisdom among liberals. But it is really nothing more than an unsubstantiated myth — a convenient political lie. If the Republican Party was any more racist than the Democratic Party even in 1964, why did a higher percentage of Republicans than Democrats in both houses of Congress vote for the 1964 Civil Rights Act?
But 1964 was not when the Southern Strategy was complete, it’s basically around the time it began. It was really Nixon that pushed it along (on the white conservative side) over the next decade.
Also notice, he admitted “many Southern racists abandoned the Democratic Party”, and that “some” were “probably attracted” to the Republican Party, but doesn’t tell us what happened to the rest of the “many”.
With all the hatred many of the opposers of civil rights had back then (both officials and the voting base alike), most were not going to go along with the party on social programs, figuring on “oh, we’ll just enslave them another way”. They didn’t want them merely “dependent”, they wanted them either subjugated the old fashioned way, or disposed of altogether! They already thought their nation was being “taken from them” and wrongly given to these people, so why would they favor a tactic of “giving” more to those people?
So in the heat of the moment, when they fear their own livelihood is at stake with too much integration, they are not going to be thinking (planning for “down the line”) that way.
He also adds:
A more likely explanation for the long-term shift from Democratic to Republican dominance in the South was the perception, fair or not, that the Democratic Party had rejected traditional Christian religious values and embraced radical secularism. That includes its hardline support for abortion, its rejection of prayer in public schools, its promotion of the gay agenda, and many other issues.
Well, yes, that too. In fact, all of those issues were tied together (both racial and religious) as “the values of our nation”. (And this is what would further drag the religious part of it down as corrupt and irrelevant; only a tool of dominance, in the minds of many liberals).
Then, of course, it goes into the “real” switch, of “Democratic Party chang[ing] its strategy for dealing with African Americans.” by getting them “dependent on the government”, and citing LBJ (the citation about “having the n______ voting Democratic for the next 200 years”, which is heavily questioned as being authentic).
This leads to the usual sweeping assessment of the urban black community:
Most major American city governments have been run by liberal Democrats for decades, and most of those cities have large black sections that are essentially dysfunctional anarchies. Cities like Detroit are overrun by gangs and drug dealers, with burned out homes on every block in some areas. The land values are so low due to crime, blight, and lack of economic opportunity that condemned homes are not even worth rebuilding. Who wants to build a home in an urban war zone? Yet they keep electing liberal Democrats — and blaming “racist” Republicans for their problems!
That is what this is all about. Once again hyping up “the negro problem” and cloaking it under a criticism of a [white] political party.
A big part of the strategy was encoding more racist language in terms of basic “freedoms” being eroded:
As the article http://www.salon.com/2014/03/17/paul_ryans_race_flap_even_worse_than_it_looks points out, “In his 1984 book ‘The Two Party South,’ political scientist Alexander Lamis quoted a conservative operative later revealed to be Ronald Reagan confidant Lee Atwater, who traced the evolution.”
You start out in 1954 by saying, ‘N—-r, n—-r, n—-r,’” Atwater explained. “By 1968 you can’t say ‘n—-r’ — that hurts you. Backfires. So you say stuff like forced busing, states’ rights and all that stuff. You’re getting so abstract now [that] you’re talking about cutting taxes, and all these things you’re talking about are totally economic things and a byproduct of them is [that] blacks get hurt worse than whites. And subconsciously maybe that is part of it. I’m not saying that. But I’m saying that if it is getting that abstract, and that coded, that we are doing away with the racial problem one way or the other. You follow me — because obviously sitting around saying, ‘We want to cut this,’ is much more abstract than even the busing thing, and a hell of a lot more abstract than ‘N—-r, n—-r.’
“Treating intergenerational laziness of inner-city men as established truth, and bemoaning the ways social spending programs supposedly nurture that ‘culture,’ blends seamlessly into Atwater’s framework.”
Another article citing Atwater and nailing the issue:
Impossible, Ridiculous, Repugnant
By BOB HERBERT
Published: October 6, 2005
The truth is that there was very little that was subconscious about the G.O.P.’s relentless appeal to racist whites. Tired of losing elections, it saw an opportunity to renew itself by opening its arms wide to white voters who could never forgive the Democratic Party for its support of civil rights and voting rights for blacks.
Ronald Reagan, the G.O.P.’s biggest hero, opposed both the Civil Rights Act and the Voting Rights Act of the mid-1960’s. And he began his general election campaign in 1980 with a powerfully symbolic appearance in Philadelphia, Miss., where three young civil rights workers were murdered in the summer of 1964. He drove the crowd wild when he declared: ”I believe in states’ rights.”
Bill Bennett’s musings about the extermination of blacks in America (it would be ”impossible, ridiculous morally reprehensible”) is all of a piece with a Republican Party philosophy that is endlessly insulting to black people and overwhelmingly hostile to their interests.
Today’s conservatives claim “we’re just giving ‘hard truth/fact’, and truth is not racist”. But then the opposers of Civil Rights (whom they seem to be admitting were “racist”, but blaming it only on the political party) claimed the same “truths” (crime, laziness, etc).
I was surprised to see Jesse Jackson finally answering the charge of being a “race baiter”:
“You know Dr. King was accused of being a race baiter as he fought the forces of the south, as he fought the George Wallaces,” Jackson said on the program, “they called him a communist at the same time.”
Notice how the conservative article blows right over this point. That under their political views, King was in fact described as these things, for the same reasons.
As part of their “GOP: good; Dems: bad” rhetoric, the conservatives now all claim to own King as a good Republican conservative who only wanted people to be “judged on the content of their character” (as if this was ALL he was fighting about; his whole mission essentially reduced down to a single statement).
So the responses to Jackson all focus on how dare he compare himself to King. (I’ve never seen him as coming anywhere near King, but still, they should come clean with this pretense of being so in favor of him. If King’s ideology [of integration and equality] was “Communist” then, then has that changed?)
They just don’t get it. It’s easy for them to romanticize King now, because we are almost a half century removed from him. They’re not thinking of the threat that their grandfathers felt when their beloved racial status quos were being overturned by him, (or at least, they felt change was being pushed “too fast”). It’s just splitting all evil onto someone else. “OK, King was good, and the racist Democrats were evil…but now, what King was fighting has been fixed, and those still who still feel something is wrong are simply those trying to get something for free, —at the hand of the same Democrats, who have simply changed their ‘enslavement’ tactics— or justifying their uncivilized behavior, which is garnering the treatment they are getting (by police)”.
In a similar vein:
Lincoln and the North were racist and slaveowners too
People will dig up instances of racism in the North, and that Lincoln did not hold blacks as equal. They will even point to slaves still being held in the North up to 1865, while individual Southern leaders gave up theirs a few years earlier.
Then, it’s all “put together”. Those evil Democrats ran the Northern (formerly Union) cities where all of these “problems” occur today; just like the party ran the old Southern systems of oppression! (But uh, oh, those old Southern Democrats said the same exact things about the Northern cities, minus the party distinction!)
But no black person, I don’t think, has ever denied that there was racism in the North.
No one denies that there was racism all across the board. I would say the difference, being that blacks were regarded as less then human, could be comparable to one of “be kind to animals” versus “cruelty to animals”. The one favoring “kindness” is still going to see them as animals, and not give them all the same rights as humans!
Still, we are naturally going to favor the ones who are the lesser of the evil.
Generally, there were probably very few people back then who saw blacks as equal. So Republicans across the board, and both Republicans and many Democrats in the North may have opposed slavery and then segregation, but still held a lot of feelings of superiority that looked moderate if not egalitarian when compared to the old Southern Democrats. But they were still the “lesser of two evils” to the blacks themselves.
When the Southern Strategy occurred, the Republican party now became the “lesser of two evils” to the opposers of racial progress (as the Democrats became the “lesser of two evils” to most of the blacks, and the North in general had as well), but they could always still be able to try to deflect from this by pointing to racism elsewhere, for it was everywhere. It doesn’t reduce their consistent opposition to equality.
To sum up all five topics so far (black “problems”, police violence, monolithic entities, Southern Strategy and northern racism), the problem “liberal” cities in the north, are simply the large, densely populated ones. That’s something that will figure in a dynamic like this. The more people there are, the more problems and conflicts there will be. Thus, while all communities have problems, blacks end up as more visible from being in the big urban areas pop culture and politics alike are centered on.
But as much as the people who constantly point these things out deny “racism”, the “facts” they select and focus on seem to serve to validate what the racists of generations ago believed!
Africans sold each other into slavery, Black and Native Americans owned slaves (and slavery also in the Bible)
This is sometimes thrown in there as the ultimate answer, even when slavery is not the immediate topic (like in all the cop violence incidents).
Some may have had or sold slaves, but the reason the European and American sellers and purchasers are focused on, is because it was big business with them (the whole point of it all along, actually), and maintained for the sake of profit (cheap labor, etc.) and thus trying to prolong the institution (against the outcry that developed toward it) based on race in itself. That is NOT the same as one tribe selling its slaves to someone else.
That was not based on any such deliberately constructed philosophical basis. It was usually the spoils of war, and not based on any notion of inherent “inferiority”.
It should be pointed out that it’s actually not “slavery” per-se that’s necessarily being regarded as so evil in itself; it’s the way American slavery was carried out (you can see this here: http://atlantablackstar.com/2014/12/22/10-slave-codes-that-were-designed-to-oppress-and-humiliate-black-people. And particularly in a land priding itself on being so “free” and "exceptional"), and again, the justifications used for it, which just piled more problems on top of everything else, and have led to the resentment of those feeling something has been “taken” from them by the government and other progressive forces.
The same with the much touted black-on-black crime. The black killers of other blacks are not killing the other people because of their race (which they share with the victim), but for some other reason, often a dispute (drug battles, etc), or just plain everyday crime. It is not the same thing as people, including those trusted to maintain order, killing someone because of their race.
And for people to keep pointing out these things that don’t even match just shows them, like children caught doing something wrong (as much as they want to be the angry “parents” scolding the bad “children”), trying to deflect the blame to someone else appearing to do the same thing, but in the reactive rush they haven’t even had the time to look and see it’s not the same thing.
What Confederate Flag has come to symbolize (What was “taken from” them, and they want “back”?)
Defenders maintain the flag is only about “heritage”, while to blacks and liberals, it represents a “legacy” of racism. What I found striking was how the one in South Carolina was fixed to not be lowerable, and while the US and state flags were lowered after the massacre, the Confederate flag remained flying high (over the other ones), as if to represent a sort of “victory” during the tragedy!
Historians emphasize that defense of African-American slavery was inextricably intertwined with white southerners’ defense of their own constitutional liberties and with nearly every other facet of southern life. Descendants of Confederates are not wrong to believe that the flag symbolized defense of constitutional liberties and resistance to invasion by military forces determined to crush an experiment in nationhood. But they are wrong to believe that this interpretation of the flag’s meaning can be separated from the defense of slavery. They need only read the words of their Confederate ancestors to find abundant and irrefutable evidence.
Dozens of quotes are commonly cited. The strongest one of all is: “Here’s the Racist Meaning Of the Confederate Flag, In the Words of the Man Who Designed It” http://mic.com/articles/121082/here-s-the-racist-meaning-of-the-confederate-flag-in-the-words-of-the-man-who-designed-it
Also good is:
“The Confederate Flag In Every State, In Every Form, Must. Come. Down”
Whatever its benign significance to some people, it historically signifies an era of slavery and oppression, and it has been appropriated as a symbol of hate by other groups. Those are facts, not an interpretation.
In his 1861 “Cornerstone” speech, Alexander H. Stephens, vice president of the Confederate States of America, left no doubt about what the Confederacy represented when he rejected the idea that slavery was a moral wrong: “Our new government is founded upon exactly the opposite idea; its foundations are laid, its corner-stone rests, upon the great truth that the negro is not equal to the white man; that slavery subordination to the superior race is his natural and normal condition. This, our new government, is the first, in the history of the world, based upon this great physical, philosophical, and moral truth.”
“Why do people believe myths about the Confederacy? Because our textbooks and monuments are wrong”
“As soon as the Confederates laid down their arms, some picked up their pens and began to distort what they had done and why. The resulting mythology took hold of the nation a generation later and persists — which is why a presidential candidate can suggest, as Michele Bachmann did in 2011, that slavery was somehow pro-family and why the public, per the Pew Research Center, believes that the war was fought mainly over states’ rights.
The Confederates won with the pen (and the noose) what they could not win on the battlefield: the cause … and the dominant understanding of what the war was all about. We are still digging ourselves out from under the misinformation they spread, which has manifested in our public monuments and our history books.”
Texas also made clear what it was seceding for — white supremacy:
We hold as undeniable truths that the governments of the various States, and of the confederacy itself, were established exclusively by the white race, for themselves and their posterity; that the African race had no agency in their establishment; that they were rightfully held and regarded as an inferior and dependent race, and in that condition only could their existence in this country be rendered beneficial or tolerable.
This is basically the “hard truth” or “open discussion on race” the far Right tries to convey through statistics on black crime and how liberals are at fault for all the “problems” in “giving them too much”. I kept asking in discussions (rhetorically), “what should be done?” and people never answer, for this is basically it (as originally intended under the old “values of the nation”), but no one can admit it (except for commenters on radical Right sites, though!)
So if they couldn’t have slavery back then the people should be expunged, through segregation; or create a new “slavery” of low paid labor, and just blame their own “laziness” (lack of “agency”) for it!
From one Confederate general’s statement:
By the time the North shall have attained the power, the black race will be in a large majority, and then we will have black governors, black legislatures, black juries, black everything. .?.?. The consequence will be that our men will be all exterminated or expelled to wander as vagabonds over a hostile Earth, and as for our women, their fate will be too horrible to contemplate even in fancy.
This is basically the sentiment expressed in all the “black crime” rhetoric, and exactly what Dylann was saying (and now expanded to Mexicans by Donald Trump).
As this article put it:
Not a Tea Party, a Confederate Party
It wasn’t just that Confederates wanted to continue the war. They did continue it, and they ultimately prevailed. They weren’t crazy, they were just stubborn.
The Lost Cause. At about the same time my American history class was leaving a blank spot after 1865, I saw Gone With the Wind, which started filling it in like this: Sadly, the childlike blacks weren’t ready for freedom and full citizenship. Without the discipline of their white masters, many became drunks and criminals, and they raped a lot of white women. Northern carpetbaggers used them (and no-account white scalawags) as puppets to control the South, and to punish the planter aristocrats, who prior to the war had risen to the top of Southern society through their innate superiority and virtue.
In particular, 1865 was a moment when reparations and land reform were actually feasible. Late in the war, some of Lincoln’s generals — notably Sherman — had mitigated their slave-refugee problem by letting emancipated slaves farm small plots on the plantations that had been abandoned by their Confederate owners. Sick or injured animals unable to advance with the Army were left behind for the slaves to nurse back to health and use. (Hence “forty acres and a mule”.) Sherman’s example might have become a land-reform model for the entire Confederacy, dispossessing the slave-owning aristocrats in favor of the people whose unpaid labor had created their wealth.
Instead, President Johnson (himself a former slave-owner from Tennessee) was quick to pardon the aristocrats and restore their lands. That created a dynamic that has been with us ever since: Early in Reconstruction, white and black working people sometimes made common cause against their common enemies in the aristocracy. But once it became clear that the upper classes were going to keep their ill-gotten holdings, freedmen and working-class whites were left to wrestle over the remaining slivers of the pie. Before long, whites who owned little land and had never owned slaves had become the shock troops of the planters’ bid to restore white supremacy.
Along the way, the planters created rhetoric you still hear today: The blacks were lazy and would rather wait for gifts from the government than work (in conditions very similar to slavery). In this way, the idle planters were able to paint the freedmen as parasites who wanted to live off the hard work of others.
The larger pattern. But the enduring Confederate influence on American politics goes far beyond a few rhetorical tropes. The essence of the Confederate worldview is that the democratic process cannot legitimately change the established social order, and so all forms of legal and illegal resistance are justified when it tries.
Again and again, we see the whole race issue is and always has been economic to the core. It was and is all about defending the corporate “masters” from the government using the stupid black masses in their war against the “freedom” of these masters as embodied by the Old South.
(This again, is why it’s not the same as the current “Africans sold each other into slavery”, or “they’re killing themselves in the cities”).
As much as today’s conservatives protest “the truth is not racist”, they’re just regurgitating the same ideology regarding the “childlike” blacks, who are just forever below par (“not ready for freedom”, which the old conservatives had claimed was being forced on the nation too quickly), and “dependent”, as well as “violent”, and thus needing a good disciplining from the “guardians” of the nation.
Here’s an article by a conservative commentator admitting the truth about the flag: The ‘Southern Avenger’ Repents: I Was Wrong About the Confederate Flag (Jack Hunter, editor of Rare Politics)
Another point worthy of mention:
This Myth Obscures the Surprising Truth About the Confederacy
Addresses the “myth” that “the entire population of Southern whites supported the Confederacy in 1861.”
“The Confederacy was so deeply divided that some historians believe that is the principal reason it lost the war.
So when white Southerners proclaim that the Confederate flag represents their history, they are misrepresenting their own history. Some of their ancestors opposed the war effort, and some of them fought for the United States flag. The myth of the united South is just that—a myth.”
Both sides will use as part of their argument that there is a difference between the Confederate States of America national flag and the Northern Virginia battle flag: http://conservativepost.com/five-important-facts-you-did-not-know-about-this-flag
Notice, after they ditched the first design that looked too much like the union flag, they adopted the same “battle” design, but only minimized it in the upper left. (The flag was almost completely white, said to represent white racial purity, but looked like a surrender flag when the left side was obscured, so they then added a red bar on the right, said to represent blood).
So it’s essentially the same thing! (And what is all of this saying? The whole defining purpose of this “nation” was the “battle” against the Union! So to oppose the battle is to oppose the dissident “nation” and vice versa!)
With the argument that this was not the “national flag” of the Confederacy, I might have felt those calling for its removal should just leave it alone. But with the revival of the flag in the 20th century to oppose integration, its proponents themselves have tainted it with direct racism, and thus tarnished it as a racist symbol.
(Down with the Confederate Flag
The widespread use of the Confederate battle flag during the Civil Rights era, to defend white supremacy, removed the benefit of the doubt that might have been extended to those displaying the flag in memory of the war dead. In other words, modern white supremacists robbed the flag, as a symbol, of a plausible claim of innocence.
KKK and other hate groups used the USA flag
Here, it is pointed out that all the evils done under the Confederate flag were also done under the American flag (so “I’ll bet that will be next” is the battle cry, including figures like Limbaugh, and people are also pointing to the likes of Farrakhan, who in fact is making the argument that one flag is just as bad as the other).
But as I had seen acknowledged, America as a whole changed its position on those things. While there may be a lot of room for improvement in race relations, you still have to give the USA at least some credit for that. Again, we’re not dealing with a singluar monolithic entity, but rather a nation of millions of people. While the Confederacy was that also, its leaders and defenders did define it largely on institutions that were mixed up in slavery and later other forms of oppression (like the “states’ rights” to maintain these practices). Those who resurrected it in recent generations did so in the context of racial hatred.
Most Confederate soldiers (and Southerners in general) weren’t slave owners
I keep seeing “very few of those soldiers were slave owners”, but it’s true that most people didn’t own slaves. Slavery was the “big business” of the time, and of course, the owners are not going to be out on the battlefield. They’re the ones being protected. The “Not a Tea Party, a Confederate Party” article quoted above already mentioned how the economic aspect of the situation led to the phenomenon that “whites who owned little land and had never owned slaves had become the shock troops of the planters’ bid to restore white supremacy.” There is far more evidence of why people who were not the owners would support the system:
Five myths about why the South seceded
However, two ideological factors caused most Southern whites, including those who were not slave-owners, to defend slavery. First, Americans are wondrous optimists, looking to the upper class and expecting to join it someday. In 1860, many subsistence farmers aspired to become large slave-owners. So poor white Southerners supported slavery then, just as many low-income people support the extension of George W. Bush’s tax cuts for the wealthy now.
Second and more important, belief in white supremacy provided a rationale for slavery. As the French political theorist Montesquieu observed wryly in 1748: “It is impossible for us to suppose these creatures [enslaved Africans] to be men; because allowing them to be men, a suspicion would follow that we ourselves are not Christians.” Given this belief, most white Southerners — and many Northerners, too — could not envision life in black-majority states such as South Carolina and Mississippi unless blacks were in chains.
This ties directly why in this same body of issues, when blame is aimed to be turned back on the minorities themselves, or the poor in general as not only causing their own problems by being “lazy”, but also draining the economy for everyone else, the rich always end up being defended as “earning” everything they have, and are thus the real “victims”, and would share the wealth if they weren’t so taxed and regulated by the “liberals” in order to give it all to the “undeserving”.
Reasoning among themselves much like the Pharisees who realized “if we rationalize it this way, then [Jesus] will say that about us”, they have to prove that they and their forefathers who uttered those statements are “Christians” (or at least “good, upstanding people" comprising an "exceptional” nation) after all, who would never do wrong to fellow man, so those uh, beings, or whatever they are, that they oppressed physically back then, and economically now (and often still physically, in today's police incidents) must not really be men, or at least have forfeited all human “rights” through their “problems”.
That's what all of this is really all about.
For more on how plain everyday people can look up to the rich, and then judge the fellow struggling poor next to them:
“To make up for my own failures, I voted to give rich people tax cuts, because somewhere deep inside, I knew they were better than me. They earned it. My support for conservative politics was atonement for the original sin of being white trash.
I was still paying little if any income tax, but I believed in “fairness.” The “death tax” (aka the estate tax) was unfair and rich people paid more taxes so they should get more of a tax break. I ignored my own personal struggles when I made political decisions.”
This is very revealing, showing how these sentiments work, psychologically! Of course, if he thinks this way about even himself, then he will naturally feel the same way or worse about the struggling person next to or especially below him. The "atonement" is increased with the "sacrifice" of the poor on the altar of the honor of those "better" rich people! So when people in online forums and articles or article comments tell others things like the rich have “provided more value for the rest of society than either your life or my life in total. It’s a really humbling thought to realize that the reason that you’re not wealthy yet is…because you’re just not as good as the rich at giving the world a lot of value.” (http://www.capitalisminstitute.org/stop-hating-the-rich), they really are actually including themselves in that! (I say, “speak for yourself!” Thankfully, the Salon writer came to realize that the rich were not really "better", as evidenced by the financial collapse they had caused [including receiving government bailouts themselves], and saw "the illogic of supporting people who disdain me").
As #5 the myth that “slavery would have ended on its own” (as fundamentalist leader John R. Rice and others reportedly put it, “give good men time to resolve this on their own”): “Slaves were worth more than all the manufacturing companies and railroads in the nation. No elite class in history has ever given up such an immense interest voluntarily.
To claim that slavery would have ended of its own accord by the mid-20th century is impossible to disprove but difficult to accept. In 1860, slavery was growing more entrenched in the South. Unpaid labor makes for big profits, and the Southern elite was growing ever richer. ”
That, we see yet again, is what it was all about (and again, today’s ongoing pro-rich arguments are just a continuation of the old values).
Conservatives have total claim to all “truth” (any response to them is just wrong and the "true" racism)
Conservatives are saying the other side “doesn’t want to address” (let alone fix) the problems, causing all these police shootings. But why do they seem to think the “truth” is always completely on their side and only “hurts” the other side?
Both sides are complaining about things. It seems everyone is unhappy in the nation today. But when one side complains, it’s “fighting for ‘truth’” and stolen “freedoms”. When the other side complains of anything, it’s “whining” for an evil agenda to take what belongs to someone else. (This is a common “fundamental attribution error”).
I had many years ago (when I first reached adulthood, and became aware of the history of racism, and the total denial occuring in the otherwise outspoken Religious Right, and the reverse blaming going on in political rhetoric), tended to blame certain things I was unhappy with in life, on “America” and “racism”, but came to see that that was wrong; while that may have made some things more difficult, they were not the cause of all unhappiness. But when conservatives blame all their unhappiness on “Democrats” and “black government dependency”, they’re doing the same exact thing.
And speaking up and voting for whom you want is a right that seems to be denied the people at the focus of this rhetoric. They vote for those who either best represent their interests, or are at least the “lesser of two evils”, which is a term we have heard, when conservatives vote the same way. (Those people are certainly not going to vote for a party deriding them as “lazy, contemptible moochers” as one meme ingeniously portrays it).
So the liberals may not have solved all black problems, and some may have had self-serving agendas they were only using the electorate for. But apparently, the same is happening on the conservative side, as the voters have gotten their candidates in, yet feel they have not solved any of the problems they were concerned about either. They promise “vote for us, and we’ll stop these ‘takers’/’leeches’, etc. from draining your tax dollars” (in addition to limiting government, etc). But it never happens, apparently. The Christians vote for them as the “lesser of two evils” on abortion, gay rights and religious liberties. Yet the country is still “sliding” in these areas, in their estimation.
Yet they still continue to vote for them, and advocate the party. Occasionally, there will be a push for a third party, but that never goes anywhere, for long. Many even fear voting for them, knowing the votes will end up going to the Democrats in the end of the race.
So if the blacks are being duped by liberals luring them in, but really only serving their own [the politicians] evil agenda, then the same thing is going on on the conservative side.
But don’t forget, with the blacks, it’s not just the motives of the politicians, but also the character of the entire voting base; the entire race, that’s being questioned, only voting for them “because they want free stuff”.
If people want to raise awareness of problems politicians aren’t solving, great; but if it’s about just blaming one side for everything, while ignoring any wrong on any other base (such as corporatism, and how they milk and control all of us, continuing the legacy of the economic basis of injustice), then the other side is not going to hear or address the “problem”, and all anyone is doing is tickling the ears of the choir.
(I imagine some may try to say I’m doing to the “conservatives” the same thing I’m criticizing them for doing to blacks.
But race is what one IS by birth, and thus can’t be right or wrong. Political views are something one CHOOSES, and thus CAN be wrong, or part right and part wrong, and is not what you are, but rather can be changed).
Conclusion: Nature vs integrity
I not too long ago read a book explaining the concepts of “Tao vs te” (“Nature” vs “integrity”; the latter meaning “untouched”; a “wholeness” that transcends nature and its resulting “brokenness”). So then I recently began looking at the political strife through this lens and its terms.
The whole problem is that both sides are acting purely out of nature. The Left, including minorities and the poor, will complain about slavery and discrimination in the past, as well as economic inequality today. The responses by the Right basically boil down to “it’s nature” (as embodied most strongly in the teachings of Ayn Rand). The “fittest” survive, the weak will be consumed or swept aside, “the cream rises to the top”, “producing value gets rewarded”, you must pull up your bootstraps to stay afloat, “free market”, “If you obey the law, the police won’t shoot you”, etc. and thus the demands of the Left to go against these principles are totally contrary to nature.
On the other hand, the reactions of people like the poor and minorities, such as all this crime and unrest people keep pointing to, are also “nature”. Other living creatures who are treated a certain way will become violent, and it will become an environmental influence on new ones born into their environment, and humans still have this same tendency. That’s basically why they speak of “the effects of oppression” not wearing off. To say stuff like “you should have gotten over it by now” is using pure reason (which is connected with “integrity”), but nature does not always regard reason. Wit, the conservatives always accusing liberals as being “without reason”.
So what’s happening is that both sides are expecting the other to act with integrity and not nature; with the accusing side taking for granted both as being united in its own beliefs and behavior. And that’s why this issue is persisting. No matter how much “shoulds” each side throws at each other, the other side will continue to follow nature, in one way or another.
It’s hard to know what solution” to try to follow, as on either side, it will appear to mean swallowing the “injustice” of changing yourself, while the other side continues its course (I call this “inertia” Here's an article that speaks to blacks: http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2015/07/11/black-people-should-stop-caring-what-white-people-think.html). But of course, if both sides did it, the problem would be completely eliminated.
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