A psychoanalyst recently diagnosed Whiteness as a mental illness. Another psychiatrist said she had fantasies of shooting White people. These are just two examples of the intensity of the disapproval of Whiteness currently taking place in America. But Whiteness is essential to American society as well as Western Civilization so it should be esteemed and preserved.
Conflicting opinions of Whiteness are offered in two recent books; “White Fragility” by Robin DiAngelo and “The Diversity Delusion” by Heather Mac Donald
Robin DiAngelo takes the standard Leftist view. Her book. “White Fragility” is based on two basic assumptions: “All Whites are racists” and “Its hard for Whites to talk about racism.” Social justice activists and Left-leaning journalists might promote DiAngelo’s two assumptions but I disagree with both. Her claim, “Its hard for Whites to talk about racism” might be true but that doesn’t mean Whites are racists.
You would think DiAngelo’s cliches would no longer hold an audience’s attention but people actually pay to attend her lectures. They also pay to participate in her workshops where guilt-ridden Whites are scolded for denying their racism.
At the other end of the spectrum is Heather MacDonald who refers to herself as a secular conservative. She uses the modifier “secular” because she feels conservatism does not need to be propped up by religion. In essence, MacDonald rejects Leftist racial banalities in favor of ‘common sense.’ Problems within the Black community cannot be blamed on White racism nor is it the cause for the disproportionate number of Black males serving prison sentences.
Heather MacDonald’s level-headed interpretations of race relations is what we need to hear instead of DiAngelo’s one-sided accusations. Also MacDonald’s writings and lectures tend to uphold the importance of Whiteness.
For most of our history ‘Whiteness’ was a euphemism for what was considered ‘normal’ and beneficial. White society was a crucial part of Western Civilization and ancient Greece was generally considered the birthplace of Western Civilization. Greece, with help from the Roman Empire, spread Western Civilization (aka White Civilization) throughout Europe. This White European culture permeated the newly formed American colonies.
But Western Civilization has had little impact on what are categorized as ‘Third World’ countries, so-called because their development lagged behind USA and the Soviet Union (identified as the first and second worlds). Countless citizens of under-developed Third World countries have immigrated to America and have not been turned away. Today, one out of every 10 American voters is an immigrant.
The Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture had a “Whiteness” poster in its “Talking About Race” series. The poster contained this statement, “If you identify as white, acknowledging your white racial identity and its privileges is a crucial step to help end racism.” The poster ascribed traits such as hard work, being on time, and politeness to “white culture.” But ascribing a multitude of positive traits to Whiteness was considered to be condescending and unfair to Black people, so the poster was removed.
In this age of coerced equity, the concept of separate races is considered “old-hat.” Today everyone is assumed to belong to the same race and that lessens the uniqueness of Whiteness.
The existence of racism was originally determined empirically by social scientists but today political organizations, social justice warriors, and far-Left zealots are deciding what constitutes racism. These zealots have actually described Whiteness as “an existential danger to the country and the world” and have demanded its elimination.
The USA was founded by White Europeans who created a White dominant society. However, non-White minorities have continually relocated to America. But although Whites as a percentage of the population has declined it remains the ascendant culture. And Whiteness still characterizes America.
Preferential treatment and White privilege are either positive or negative based of your socio/political persuasion. They both concern racism but one involves providing favorable advantages to persons based on race, sex, color, ethnicity, national origin, age and sexual orientation, whereas the other refers to unfair societal advantages certain people are deemed to have over others. But I’m primarily concerned about another racial phenomena, race hustlers.
When slave labor ended, many freed slaves and former masters negotiated future working arrangements and continued their association. But other freedmen had to seek employment wherever it could be found in the larger society. Practical difficulties involved in transitioning slaves into freedmen have had long-standing consequences. The process simply hadn’t been thought through. So in the contentious era following emancipation, Whites and Blacks had to assume new roles and adjust to new ways of coexisting.
Government coercion, Reconstruction, made the already strained race relations worse and the term “racism” has become an essential part of our vocabulary. Over time, the media-hyped phenomenon ‘racism’ has helped create a new profession, race hustlers. These are persons who exploit racial situations to serve their own interests. The race hustling of Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson literally built empires. Race hustling has become such a profitable and newsworthy career that some of this generation’s race hustlers have become celebrities.
A popular race hustler is Ibram X. Kendi (Ibram Henry Rogers) , a college professor and the director of the Center for Anti-Racist Research at Boston University. Kendi is obsessed with racism and finds it everywhere: “When I see racial disparities, I see racism.” Others may offer various explanations for these disparities but for Kendi, racism is the cause of all racial disparities. There are no shades of gray for Kendi, everything is “racist or anti-racist”.
I find his conclusions on racism and antiracism simplistic and unacceptable but he has a large following, who, we assume, are taken in by his reasoning: “Racism is a powerful collection of racist policies that lead to racial inequity and are substantiated by racist ideas.” And he makes this cynical assertion: “The only remedy to past discrimination is present discrimination. The only remedy to present discrimination is future discrimination.”
I’m surprised that Kendi publicly admitted the following truthful admission: “Racist ideas love believers, not thinkers” And consider this quote: “The opposite of “racist” isn’t “not racist.” It is “anti-racist”. In other words, those who don’t actively oppose racism are supporting it.
Kendi’s disparagement of capitalism shouldn’t come as a surprise., he says: "Capitalism is essentially racist," and "racism is essentially capitalist." This sounds like a rehashing of the opinions of Angela Davis, the 1960s counterculture Marxist/Feminist. She said: "I am convinced that the ultimate eradication of racism is going to require us to move toward a more socialist organization.”
It is claimed that Ibram Kendi is” the closest approximation we have to a national guru on race relations.” But before we make him a guru, we should consider his superficial cliched comment about America. “The full arc of American history can be understood as a battle between these two souls (Trump and Biden) with genocide, enslavement, Trump and bigotry on the one side and equality, science, Biden and empathy on the other.”
I’m opposed to constant societal upheavals because our country has been so successful. So I think our minority groups should assimilate into the White majority, preserving only essential aspects of their own culture. But Ibram X. Kendi objects to assimilation:“Assimilationist ideas are racist ideas. Assimilationists can position any racial group as the superior standard that another racial group should be measuring themselves against, the benchmark they should be trying to reach.”
Professor Ibram X. Kendi has even proposed a Constitutional Amendment that would create a Department of Anti-racism to pre-clear all proposed public policies to assure that they wouldn’t cause any inequalities. A department to assure proposals wouldn’t cause inequalities? This is what I would call a “Kinder Garden” proposal.
I strongly disagree with Kendi’s self-serving opinions about racism in the 21st century. The harm it is supposedly causing Black society is greatly exaggerated and will not stand up to scrutiny. Kendi and long-time associate, Bina Venkataraman, editor-at large of The Boston Globe, hope to create a publication to focus people’s attention solely on racism. Hopefully Ibram Kendi’s temporary celebrity-hood will end before this anticipated publication comes to fruition.
The Social Security Administration currently allows retirement at age 62 with reduced benefits and full benefits with retirement at 66. And most organizations, business and nonprofit, have a fixed retirement age usually between 65 and 70. Some state legislatures and charitable organizations have term limits as well as age limits.
But our Congress has neither age nor term limits consequently it has many older career politicians , some in their 80s. And quite a few of these elderly career politicians seem to be just going through the motions. Some are essentially abusing the system and some have actually been corrupted. Nancy Pelosi is a classic example of a corrupt career politician. She has been in congress almost four decades and although she will soon celebrate her 83rd birthday, she refuses to retire. Nancy Pelosi is essentially the poster girl for term limits.
For a long time Pelosi was a pet of the Leftist establishment, especially news media who would not report anything unfavorable about her. But a recent public poll indicated that 37% had a ‘very unfavorable’ opinion of Pelosi whereas only 18% had a ‘very favorable’ opinion.
Although Nancy Pelosi insists that she is a devout Catholic, San Francisco’s Archbishop Cordileone has barred her from receiving Holy Communion for advocating abortion. But the Archbishop’s censure didn’t prevent her from summoning Catholic priests to perform an exorcism on her home to get rid of evil spirits after her husband was attacked,
As House Speaker, Pelosi stacked the J6 committee investigating the riot on the Capitol with 7 Democrats and only 2 Republicans. And both had voted for Trump’s impeachment. As we would expect, Pelosi’s Committee blamed Trump for the riot and the Biden White House made the ridiculous claim that the riot damaged the country as much as the Civil War.
Some may have naively thought Pelosi’s husband, Paul Pelosi, was a shrewd investor who was able to anticipate legislation and governmental actions that would benefit or constrain a corporation or an industry. But various accusations of ‘insider trading’ have surfaced, implicating Nancy and Paul Pelosi. Finally Congress introduced the “Pelosi Act”, a bill to prevent Congress members and their families from investing in the stock market.
Pelosi removed a statue of Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee from the Capitol and replaced it with a statue of civil rights icon Rosa Parks. Her justification: “The statues in the Capitol should embody our highest ideals as Americans, expressing who we are and who we aspire to be as a nation. Monuments to men who advocated cruelty and barbarism to achieve such a plainly racist end are a grotesque affront to these ideals.”
Trained historians would never describe Robert E. Lee as someone who “advocated cruelty and barbarism.” In fact, Lee is held in esteem by many historians. But Pelosi interprets the past in the way that best suits her political positions which are based on today’s Leftist cliches.
Although Pelosi didn’t approve of the use of slave labor in the 1800s she justified today’s using illegal immigrants as slaves “to pick the crops in Florida.” This is another example of those ill-advised comments she is noted for.
Nancy Pelosi has neither ethics nor integrity and no one would accuse her of being a deep thinker. Her confused verbal offerings give the impression of someone who has had too much to drink. But she insists that she doesn’t drink so her frequent befuddled ramblings might be caused by the senility of an 83 year old woman. Nancy Pelosi represents the need for Congressional age and term limits.
Gail Jarvis is a Georgia-based free-lance writer. He attended the University of Alabama and has a degree from Birmingham Southern College. His writing is influenced by years of witnessing how versions of news and history were distorted for political reasons. Mr. Jarvis is a member of the Society of Independent Southern Historians and his articles have appeared on various websites, magazines, and publications for several organizations. He lives in Coastal Georgia.