Category ►►► Asquirmative Action
April 26, 2014
A Tale of Two Rants
Here is Cliven Bundy, that desert rat who proffered this allegedly "racist" screed (this is the transcript that was not luridly edited by race-baiters):
...[A]nd so what I've testified to you -- I was in the Watts riot, I seen the beginning fire and I seen that last fire. What I seen is civil disturbance. People are not happy, people are thinking they don't have their freedoms, they didn't have these things, and they didn't have them.
We've progressed quite a bit from that day until now, and we sure don't want to go back. We sure don't want the colored people to go back to that point. We sure don't want these Mexican people to go back to that point. And we can make a difference right now by taking care of some of these bureaucracies, and do it in a peaceful way....
Let me tell, talk to you about the Mexicans, and these are just things I know about the negroes. I want to tell you one more thing I know about the negro. When I go, went, go to Las Vegas, North Las Vegas, and I would see these little government houses, and in front of that government house the door was usually open and the older people and the kids -- and there's always at least a half a dozen people sitting on the porch. They didn’t have nothing to do. They didn’t have nothing for their kids to do. They didn’t have nothing for their young girls to do.
And because they were basically on government subsidy -- so now what do they do? They abort their young children, they put their young men in jail, because they never, they never learned how to pick cotton. And I’ve often wondered are they were better off as slaves, picking cotton and having a family life and doing things? Or are they better off under government subsidy?
You know they didn’t get more freedom, they got less freedom -- they got less family life, and their happiness -- you could see it in their faces -- they wasn't happy sitting on that concrete sidewalk. Down there they was probably growing their turnips -- so that’s all government, that’s not freedom....
Now, let me talk about the Spanish people. You know, I understand that they come over here against our Constitution and cross our borders. But they’re here and they’re people -- and I’ve worked side by side a lot of them.
Don’t tell me they don’t work, and don’t tell me they don’t pay taxes. And don’t tell me they don’t have better family structures than most of us white people. When you see those Mexican families, they’re together, they picnic together, they’re spending their time together, and I’ll tell you in my way of thinking they’re awful nice people. And we need to have those people join us and be with us not, not come to our party.
And here, submitted for your comparison, is the raging anger of Donald Sterling, owner of the L.A. Clippers basketball team, berating his girlfriend for embarassing him by... well, take a read:
It bothers me a lot that you want to broadcast that you’re associating with black people. Do you have to?...
You can sleep with [black people]. You can bring them in, you can do whatever you want. The little I ask you is not to promote it on that ... and not to bring them to my games....
I’m just saying, in your lousy f******* Instagrams, you don’t have to have yourself with, walking with black people....
...Don't put him [Magic] on an Instagram for the world to have to see so they have to call me. And don't bring him to my games.
"One of these things is not like the other..."
April 25, 2014
In this Washington Post after-action report, you must scroll all the way to the bottom of the story to uncover the original "dangerous," "extreme," "hateful," "unhinged," "appalling," "racist" remarks, which allegedly lie at the heart of Cliven Bundy's supposed racism. But I'll put them right up top, so we can read his actual words before we form an opinion based solely upon previous opinions.
In a New York Times interview (as quoted by the Post), he said:
"I want to tell you one more thing I know about the Negro," he said. Mr. Bundy recalled driving past a public-housing project in North Las Vegas, "and in front of that government house the door was usually open and the older people and the kids -- and there is always at least a half a dozen people sitting on the porch -- they didn’t have nothing to do. They didn’t have nothing for their kids to do. They didn’t have nothing for their young girls to do.
"And because they were basically on government subsidy, so now what do they do?" he asked. "They abort their young children, they put their young men in jail, because they never learned how to pick cotton. And I’ve often wondered, are they better off as slaves, picking cotton and having a family life and doing things, or are they better off under government subsidy? They didn’t get no more freedom. They got less freedom."
On a subsequent radio show, Bundy added:
On Peter Schiff's talk radio show, however, he stood by his remarks. "Are they happier now under this government subsidy system than they were when they were slaves, and they was able to have their family structure together, and the chickens and garden, and the people had something to do? And so, in my mind I’m wondering, are they better off being slaves, in that sense, or better off being slaves to the United States government, in the sense of the subsidies. I’m wondering. That’s what. And the statement was right. I am wondering."
Cliven Bundy may be a racist; I don't know the man. But you couldn't prove it by these remarks.
Let's start with the obvious: Racism is the claim or belief that skin color is destiny. Its definition is not "rejecting affirmative action," as many on the Left clearly believe.
At the very least, racism must ascribe bad behavior primarily to a person's color. Racism is pernicious (destructive, ruinous) and perverse (wicked, contrary, the polar opposite of rightness), because -- Michael Jackson to the contrary notwithstanding -- a person cannot change his skin color; it is immutable, at least at this time. Racism thus imputes immutable characteristics to one's color: Folks with the "wrong" color skin are inferior and always will be.
Such belief by the so-called "superior" race leads to tyranny; such belief by the presumed "inferior" race leads to despair and random acts of violence.
But Cliven Bundy did not say that the problems he enumerated were caused by skin color; he ascribed the problems to social-welfare programs: "And because they were basically on government subsidy..."
But if you allow that some mutable characteristic is more important to one's destiny than skin color -- including culture, upbringing, education, religion, philosophy, entertainment, or one's own will -- then you are not a racist.
Bundy did not say color is destiny; if anything, he said a tyrannical government is to blame, with its government subsidies, government preferential treatment, government housing projects, government labor manipulation, and the destruction of an organic black culture.
Hard to disagree. I seem to remember a fellow named Daniel Patrick Moynihan (D-NY) using words of like effect.
Hard to disagree with, but easy to caricature and demagogue. Bundy is not an effective speaker, at least not on the nation's "plantation media," as I call them. He's no Phil Robertson!
Bundy garbles his terms, fails to relate his conclusions to any core principle, uses out-of-fashion words that allow the Left to seize control of his narrative, and terrifies the large portion of the country that believes guns, not people, cause murders. This doesn't mean his thoughts are wrong-headed, just that he doesn't articulate them well... like about 99% of the rest of the populace, on any side of every issue.
He likely is ill-educated in history, as when he postulates that black slaves had a stable family life, when in fact slavers could sell a husband away from his wife whenever it seemed profitable, and children could be auctioned on the block. Not every slaveholder was so callous or cruel, but the threat was omnipresent.
But instead of looking back to the nineteenth century, what if we look back to the organic black culture, black businesses, and largely intact black families of the early twentieth century, even under the Democrat leash of Jim Crow: Black culture before Lyndon Johnson's grandiose and gargantuan "Great Society" program was more robust, just, and prosperous -- and less perverse, violent, and fearful -- than today's horrors in Detroit, Chicago, Compton, Harlem, and even the nation's capital. (Score one for Moynihan.)
Clearly, that is what Bundy was getting at; and he's got a good point, despite his easily ridiculed analogy to slavery. Which raises the question: Those former supporters now "backing away" from Bundy's words... are they also backing down on their critique of government-wrought destruction and debasement of large swaths of American culture?
This is what Bundy decries, as do many other advocates, far more thoughtful, learned, compassionate, and articulate than he. Lovers of liberty cannot reject the well-sourced argument that the world-devouring federal hydra, and the rent-seeking state hyenas, are racing pell-mell to transform the United States of America into a jaded, debauched, decadent, liberal fascism in which "everything not compulsory is forbidden, and everything not forbidden is compulsory."
We cannot pretend that it isn't already happening, unevenly but relentlessly, in many parts of what used to be the land of the free. We cannot wish away the vanguard of this transformation, the leftist elites and their revolutionary foot soldiers, the "federally protected minorities" who have accepted a Faustian bargain, trading their souls for a scrap of power, and false power at that.
We can't back away from Bundy's exegesis, no matter how badly he managed to put it. For if we surrender that argument, we may as well summon up the Devil ourselves.
October 6, 2010
Shocked Democrats Discover - Hispanics Are Americans!
A report released yesterday by the Pew Hispanic Center has bewitched Democrats for two reasons:
- It shows that Hispanic registered voters are much less enthusiastic about voting on November 2nd than are registered voters in general; this "enthusiasm gap" almost certainly means they will end up voting in much lower numbers than they did in 2008, when Hispanic voters helped propel Barack H. Obama into the White House and a huge gaggle of Dems into Congress.
- But the same report also indicates that Hispanic registered Republicans are significantly more enthusiastic about voting. Which equally implies that the percent of Hispanics voting Republican will be far higher than in 2008, as Republican Hispanics vote while Democratic Hispanics sulk at home.
What bothers liberals, like a thorn in the heel, is that Hispanics in the United States appear to react much the same as other Americans: Those on the left are demoralized, those on the right happily anticipate the elections. Quelle dommage!
According to the PHC report, 50% of registered voters in general have given the upcoming elections "quite a lot" of thought, but only 32% of Latino registered voters; similarly, 70% of registered voters generally say they are "certain" to vote, but only 51% of Latino registered voters. However, among Latino registered Republicans, 44% have given the election "quite a lot" of thought. (Alas, Pew didn't tell us the gap between Latino Democrats and Latino Republicans on how certain they are to vote, so we must use the first question as a proxy for the second.)
But there is another result in this poll that will truly bewilder the Left. As the Washington Times discovers:
Pew interviewed 618 registered Hispanic voters in August and September. One surprising finding was that immigration does not top the list of concerns of Hispanic voters.
"Rather, they rank education, jobs and health care as their top three issues of concern for this year's congressional campaign. Immigration ranks as the fifth most important issue for Latino registered voters," said Mark Hugo Lopez, associate director of the center and the report's author. [The deficit ranked number four. -- DaH]
That finding surprised Clarrisa Martinez De Castro, director of immigration and national campaigns at the National Council of La Raza, who said fights over issues such as Arizona's immigration law play an "energizing role" for turning out Hispanic voters.
Thankfully for the country, the Democrats' dogma may bite them right in their aspirations. The Democratic Party and Latino groups such as La Raza and MEChA are shackled to their ideological premises, one of which is that Hispanics care first and foremost about immigration; consequently, that is the one issue through which they traditionally appeal to Latinos -- as Senate Majority Leader Harry "Pinky" Reid (D-Caesar's Palace, 95%) attempted to do in the last regular session of the 111th Congress:
Democratic lawmakers seeking re-election are hoping immigration is a motivating factor.
Just before Congress adjourned for the campaign season, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid tried to force a debate on a bill to legalize illegal immigrant students, known as the Dream Act. He tried to have that debate as part of the annual defense policy debate, but it was blocked by Republicans who said that was the wrong forum for considering immigration.
Mr. Reid, a Nevada Democrat, is counting on a large turnout of Hispanics to boost him in his re-election bid against Republican challenger Sharron Angle.
But Republicans, Tea Party activists, and conservatives can approach Hispanics on issues of education, jobs, health care, and the deficit, which are not only the top four concerns of Hispanic voters but are also top Republican strengths -- along with taxes, spending, small businesses, and of course national security, all of which should resonate very strongly with Hispanics. So Democrats have "no hand and no draw," as they say in Texas Hold 'Em.
Democrats are only capable of seeing "special interest" groups like Hispanics as one-note ponies: The Left demands that Hispanics care about immigration (in this case, code for "amnesty") above everything, just as they demand that blacks care about nothing but affirmative action, that gays care only about same-sex marriage, and that union members care about nothing but higher wages and pensions.
The idea that members of any of these groups might care more about the bread-and-butter issues that affect all Americans than about their liberal-selected, parochial, identity-politics issues... well, that thought simply doesn't cross the liberal consciousness. And when circumstances (actual votes) forcibly bring such dissent to their attention, liberals denounce dissenters as "inauthentic" (fill in the blanks). (How galling it must be for a Hispanic conservative to be told he's not authentically Hispanic... by an ivory-white "progressive" like Pinky Reid.)
And that might very well explain the enthusiasm gap between liberal and conservative Hispanics... as well as liberal and conservative blacks, gays, and union members. What we're really seeing is an ideology gap.
September 24, 2007
Cindy Sheehan's Day of Out-of-Tunement Manifesto
I rarely do this, as you know: I rarely link to some piece and say simply "read this." (I'm too in love with the sound of my own fingers typing on a keyboard.)
But here's an exception. Read Cindy Sheehan's Yom Kippur "sermon," delivered at Michael Lerner's Beyt Tikkun "synogogue;" you will be -- if not exactly glad, then at least agape. (Rabbi Lerner is Hillary Clinton's mentor, author of the Politics of Meaning and other works of Socialist agit-prop masquerading as theology.)
My response (I love this) is entirely contained in the list of categories I had to attach to this post.
(Well, one more thing. It has always been my understanding that Yom Kippur, the Jewish Day of Atonement, is a day for each person to atone for what he, personally, has done wrong -- not "atone" for his enemies failing to live up to his own lofty standards, apologize for all the times America hasn't followed his lead, or wallow in self-righteous indignation that nobody listens to him. 'Nuff said; read the list of categories above.)
July 23, 2007
Blundering Herd of RINOs: Endangered Species?
A couple of weeks ago, we published a post titled "Two More RINOs Join the Blundering Herd." In it, we noted a fascinating phenomenon: Every Republican senator who called for us to declare defeat and withdraw from Iraq or Afghanistan was a member of a very select group... GOP senators whose "partisanship" score was 75% or less.
In other words, all of the supposed "GOP collapse" of support for the war comes from the most liberal wing of the Republican Party -- from Olympia Snowe (ME, 36%) to Chuck Hagel (NE, 75%) and Pete Domenici (NM, 75%). And toting them all up, there simply are not enough of them to overturn a presidential veto of retreat and defeat.
I don't believe this point has sufficiently sunk in; at least, no other new analyst or blogger that I have seen has remarked upon it. But this is the single most important fact in the low-speed "civil war" between Left and Right in the United States Congress, with the fate of the War on Global Hirabah hanging in the balance: The anti-war crowd simply hasn't the votes in the Senate (or likely the House, either), until and unless President Bush begins losing actual conservatives... not just RINOs.
Once these sunshine patriots realize they're playing a dead hand, I suspect it will be harder and harder to lure them into alliance with the radical Democrats, especially if they begin drawing more conservative primary challenges. It doesn't affect the equation that a conservative who bumps a RINO off the ticket might well lose to the Democrat in the general election. Either way, the RINO is out looking for honest work.
So please, gentle readers, do your best to spread this word: There are not enough RINOs to override the president's veto of withdrawal or defunding legislation. So the rest of the GOP had better brace up and find a spine somewhere... or else there will be sufficient anti-war votes in the next Congress.
June 5, 2006
Anutter Grutter Cutter?
The U.S. Supreme Court has agreed to hear a case that has at least a good possibility of reversing what was arguably the worst Supreme-Court decision of the Bush era... a position that was ardently supported by the Bush administration itself.
The Supreme Court agreed today to consider an issue of enormous importance to parents and educators across the country: the extent to which public school administrators can use racial factors in assigning children to schools.
The court accepted cases from Seattle and Louisville, Ky., for its next term. The school districts in both cities defeated challenges to their assignment procedures in the lower courts.
"Looming in the background of this is the constitutionality of affirmative action," Davison Douglas, a law professor at William and Mary, said in an interview with The Associated Press. "This is huge."
The earlier case to which I alluded was Grutter v. Bollinger, 539 U.S. 306 (2003), in which the Court held that the "affirmative-action" (racial preferences) in the University of Michigan's law school were constitutional. And the reason I think there's a reasonable chance to chip away at that awful decision is that it was 5-4... with Justice Sandra Day O'Connor writing for the majority.
O'Connor has since retired, of course, replaced by Justice Samuel A. Alito: if Alito actually opposes racial preferences, as I suspect he does, then he could be the crucial flip-vote that might begin wrenching the country towards racial sanity.
Chief Justice William Rehnquist died in the meanwhile and was replaced by Chief Justice John Roberts; but Rehnquist was in the minority in this case. So assuming that Roberts is as opposed to "affirmative action" as Rehnquist was, this will result in no change. But the O'Connor retirement could lead to racial preferences moving from a 5-4 win to a 5-4 loss.
Seattle school administrators have wrestled for decades with the de facto segregation that tends to mirror the housing patterns of white, black and Asian families in the community. Students can pick among high schools. But since some schools have more applicants than they can handle, the district relies on tie-breakers, including whether a sibling attends a certain school, distance from a prospective student's home and race, to decide who gets into the over-subscribed schools. A group called Parents Involved in Community Schools sued in 2000, contending that it was unfair for the school district to consider race.
There are two cases here, and it could end up with another split decision (like Grutter v. Bollinger and Gratz v. Bollinger -- the latter involving U of M's undergraduate admissions, where the Court struck down racial preferences). The problem is that in the Kentucky case, there is an existing federal judicial order to desegregate:
The Kentucky case arises from a suit filed by Crystal Meredith, who contends that her son Joshua was not allowed into the neighborhood school because he is white. The Jefferson County school district has a history different from Seattle's, in that the Louisville schools operated for years under a federal order to desegregate. In 2001, the district began using a plan that includes racial guidelines. The plan was upheld by the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit.
I have always argued that the way to combat official segregation is by the complete lack of segregation... not by segregating in the other direction. It's as unfair to the white Joshua Meredith that he's kept out a good school because he's white as it was to black kids during Jim Crow to be kept out of good schools because they weren't white.
But we'll see how the Court sees it. Keep your eyes on the prize....
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