Thursday, November 06, 2014

It is all still about race

From Salon:

But 40 years of data from the General Social Survey — the gold standard of American public opinion research — say otherwise.  They tell us that Southern whites overwhelmingly blame blacks for their lower economic status, ignoring or denying the role played by discrimination, past and present, in all its various forms, and that the balance of Southern white attitudes has barely changed at all in 40 years. At the same time, attitudes outside the white South have shifted somewhat — but still tend to blame blacks more than white society, steadfastly ignoring mountains of evidence to the contrary — such as 60 years of unemployment data, over which time “the unemployment rate for blacks has averaged about 2.2 times that for whites,” as noted by Pew Research. It is only Democrats outside the white South who have dramatically shifted away from blaming blacks over this period of time, and the tension this has created within the Democratic Party goes to the very heart of the political challenge both Obama and Landrieu face — a challenge that is not going to simply go away any time soon.

More here.

How many "isolated incidents" do we have to endure before people are willing to admit that there is a problem, that there CONTINUES to be a problem?  How many shootings?  How many bizarre racist outbursts?  But really, all these "isolated incidents" aren't anything but the tip of the iceberg protruding from the racist American ocean of culture.  Racism is DEFINITELY alive and well in this country, all over the place really, but making its home of homes in the Republican Party.

Yes, yes, I know that outrages conservatives.  I know that many, if not most, of them firmly believe they're absolutely positively NOT RACIST.  That's because conservatives have done a remarkable job over the years of confusing and distorting the issue of race in this country such that it's now pretty difficult for white people even to understand what racism actually is.  I mean, for conservatives, it's the handshake test, or the have-a-beer-with test, or the I-don't-care-if-you're-green-or-orange test, and so on.  For conservatives, you're a racist if and only if you wear a pointy white hood.

So let me simplify things for everybody.  Here's a REAL test: do you think most blacks are in poverty because they lack the motivation to rise above it?  If your answer is "yes," then you're a racist.  There's no point in even arguing about this.  As the Salon essay observes, it has been overwhelmingly documented, with real data, real evidence, again and again, that African-Americans suffer a chronically high poverty rate because of historic and current discrimination.  That is, discrimination is a FACT, not to be argued.

If you think it's because blacks are too lazy, then you're a racist.  Period.  But Republicans should relax a bit: the Salon essay also cites data showing that a large number of white Southern Democrats possess the same view.  Of course, white Democrats outside the South tend to counterbalance this racism to some extent with more progressive views.  Not really so with non-Southern Republicans.  So don't relax too much, conservatives.  We've ALL got a problem here, but it's far, far, far worse with the GOP.

I mean, the majority of conservative philosophy is about lazy poor people mooching from the rich.  You guys are philosophically LOCKED INTO a view that necessarily makes you racist.  I have no idea how you're going to remove this evil lodged in your brains like a failed assassin's bullet, but you must.  Until y'all get this figured out, your party is the party of racism in this country.  Whether you want to admit it or not.