Tag Archives: Response
My latest from ReadingTheScore.com:
“If you believe that when the rich get richer, the poor get poorer, than you believe that creating wealth causes poverty, and you’re an idiot.” -Michael Medved
The most common counter to this line is shock that someone could not believe in the ever growing gap between the rich and the poor, this was recently personified by author Tim Wise:
The words desperate, pathetic, and vapid don’t fully describe Lawrence O’Donnell’s recent interview. O’Donnell tried to use murdered civil rights victims, Vietnam vets, homosexuality… and the performer of the Monday Night Football opening theme song, in an attempt to publicly humiliate Cain. Herman Cain must really get under the skin of leftists. The media double standard is obvious, but the drive and enthusiasm O’Donnell displayed trying to humiliate Cain, is not only contemptible, it’s kind of just sad.
One of Elizabeth Warren’s quotes is being promoted by moveon.org as a brilliant insight (Read the quote here). I was intrigued when I saw that it’s apparently a quote “every American needs to see,” and people have described it saying “She just said the best thing. Possibly ever.” But I was surprised when I read it to discover it can hardly even be called an argument. I mean, it is an argument for taxation in general, and for some of the most uncontroversial government functions like roads and the police, but its not some serious talking point for our current taxation debate. It really seems like the left falls in love anytime someone says anything against conservatives on economics, even when it has as little profundity as this.
I like to understand people who differ with me and occasionally I try to get a few conversations started online, despite the tendency for them to go poorly (conversations in person go much better, people are usually much more considerate). A recent conversation on twitter with a few sociology professors proved to be interesting, yet typical. Hopefully in the future I can post more serious conversations with people who disagree with me.
I began with asking a few basic questions that normally are answered with very broad and vague responses by their comrades. I asked how one can combat “White Privilege,” this almost always is followed up by: we need to talk about it.
Donald Trump is Donald Trump. This may be the biggest oversight Tim Wise commits in his latest column, next to viewing nearly every criticism about the president as racist. Clearly, most of the things that come from Trump’s mouth are meant to get attention. He is good at it; it’s basically his job. Likewise, Wise’s job is to interpret whatever is getting attention as racism. Wise is good at this too, which is why he is one of the most popular racialists.
The idiotic claims Trump makes, like Obama possibly not being born in the US, are framed in racial terms by Wise. Wise explains why this particular conspiracy theory is actually racist:
On March 30th colorlines.com posted an article titled “Michelle Alexander: More Black Men in Prison Than Were Enslaved in 1850.” The article represents a very common belief by racialists about the American justice system: essentially that it is severely racist. The article states: “It’s a heartbreaking, but often understated, reality that America’s criminal justice system imprisons black folks at astonishingly high rates.” It certainly hasn’t been understated in this article, with direct comparisons to Jim Crow laws, and a vague comparison to slavery. It is heartbreaking, but what is the implication? What exactly are we meant to be heartbroken about? That so many blacks commit crimes? That we have unfair laws? Or is it that only racial discrimination could be the cause? While this is probably the most important question, it is typically just treated as a given that racism must be the primary cause. With the type of language that is used throughout the article, and by racialists in general, it is as if the police are imprisoning completely innocent men.
The first problem with racialists is that their conclusions are factually untrue. Most people don’t make their decisions based on race unconsciously or otherwise. Most opposition to President Obama isn’t due to racism as they claim, nor was Hurricane Katrina large scale “ethnic cleansing”, as Tim Wise has written. Disparities among racial groups in education, housing, wealth, employment, health, and the justice system largely can’t be explained by discrimination and racism (all of this will be argued for in great detail).
When someone is in the unfortunate position of being in a sociology class, or a diversity training seminar, or reading people like Michael Eric Dyson or Tim Wise, one will most likely be exposed to a self proclaimed “anti-racist” crusader. When someone devotes his or her life and career to uncovering racism, a noble intention, then unfortunately his or her perception of society is likely to center around race. When bad things happen to “people of color,” it is inevitable that someone who professionally looks for racism will find what he or she is looking for.