Moral Cretinism and the Inversion of Reality
An LA Times op-ed columnist weights in on two recent brouhahas:
The O.J.-Kramer divide: Recent flaps show that we’re more tolerant of a white man’s blunder.
Erin Aubry Kaplan:
But the reality is that there is far more tolerance for a white person’s unseemly behavior than for similar behavior of somebody who isn’t white, especially if the unseemliness involves race. [Michael] Richards’ “racist rant” has been described as a terrible but isolated incident. O.J., meanwhile, is condemned for his character.
No, OJ’s condemned for damn dear sawing two people’s heads off, plus whatever else he did to Ron Goldman.
“Huh?”? More like, WTF?
You’ve got to be pretty far gone to write something like that, the Op-Ed version of a Gould or Lewontin in fact. That’s diametrically opposite the observable facts (never mind making equivalent a barrage of insults and a double-murder -mutilation); whites are held to far higher standards than blacks. That’s why Star Jones can state on national TV (paraphrasing) “I found a smart, rich, black man to marry” (emphasis hers, with the context clearly implying how fortunate she was to do so) and everyone smiles and claps, but if a white woman stated something converse there’d be hands in front of mouths and she’d probably have to fight for her job afterwards. That’s why the gatekeepers don’t bring up Jackson’s “hymietown” statement everywhere he goes. That’s why the NOI isn’t in the SPLC’s dock. That’s why black comedians routinely skewer whites, but white comedians know better than to reciprocate (they do feel free to pile on). That’s why black males aren’t referred to as closeted homosexuals when they wear purple suits. That’s why it’s okay that black women are famously resentful of the white women who “steal their men” and the black men who allow themselves to be “stolen.”
That’s why blacks in general are allowed to express ethnocentrism, even the aggressive kind, without fear of opprobrium, and whites are not.
Of course, most of this applies to non-Europeans in general, but it applies in spades to Africans. Anecdotal evidence for this abounds. Whites have been conditioned to expect and accept a wide range of behaviors from blacks that they do not tolerate in one another; this exists alongside egalitarianism with very little cognitive dissonance, mostly via the “culture” explanation and the “white racism” excuse. I could go on about this for hours but I think most readers know this already without me beating the horse.
Update: another recent Kaplan piece – Juan Williams, Turncoat – is a fine example of the paradigms:
The black journalist is the latest in a line of black leaders who point fingers at their own community.
OK, I’VE HAD enough. Enough of the blaming, the whining, the righteous posturing that sucks all the air from discussions of the problems of black people and what can be done about them.
For years I’ve tried to be cool and close ranks, as dictated by a tradition of African American survival and tenuous solidarity. No more. The recent coronation of yet another righteous posturer makes me realize that I have to break my silence and call out my brothers and sisters in the chattering classes who are sapping our dwindling credibility with their constant tirades against oppression and popular misunderstanding of black people.
Williams is a veteran reporter for newspapers and radio, the man who wrote the companion book to the vaunted “Eyes on the Prize” public television series on the civil rights movement. He is also one of a disturbing new breed of black social critics who, after having spent their careers trying to lift up the race, has decided that black people are pretty much responsible for their own decline and for perpetuating a broken culture of bling and victim politics, to name but two.
I am emphatically not saying that black leaders did all they could to keep the pressure on to meaningfully enforce Brown and other measures addressing equity. I don’t disagree with Williams and even Cosby on the failure of leadership in this sense.
“Own”? “Community”? “The problems of black people”? “Ranks”? “Survival”? “Solidarity”? “Brothers and sisters”? “Our”? “Lift up the race”? “Black leaders”?
So what’s all this then?