More relevant is the principle that large mobs are more dangerous than small mobs, and likely to harbor more psychopaths. Apparently running out of Nazis to resist, Boston protesters threw rocks and urine-filled bottles at police. Any shortage of white supremacists can always be corrected by expanding the definition. Opponents of a $15 minimum wage are racist. Skeptics about a pending climate crisis are racist. Anyone questioning the utility of pulling down old statues is racist.
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I’ve lately been seeing lots of very troubling sentiments on social media in regards to Charlottesville and the Alt Right white identitarian movements protest at historical monuments. What I seem to be witnessing is more of a show or performance than an actual condemnation for what identitarian movements stand for. People are very swift to call out the white identitarian movements and their obvious troubling political stances. However these same people are very much silent when it comes to calling out violence on the left for example the shooter who attacked the Republican congressmen or the constant violence antifascists cause when someone they dislike has a speaking engagement. Some even go so far as to label anybody politically right of their position as never condemning racism and that that white identitarians are representative of mainstream Republicans and conservatives. This is not an arbitrary characterization but a deliberate act.
This sort of disconnect appears to be ingrained in the positions of left leaning individuals. They for whatever reason whether it be willful ignorance or simply naivety are unable to grasp why a white identitarian movement would grow despite countless other groups creating their own to display their grievances. The left demands that a person’s outward “labels” only qualify them to weigh on the feelings of people with the exact same characteristics. If color or sex or gender or other identity determines one’s interests, then the Klan is right to argue for the “interests” of white people. Why shouldn’t they? If social legitimacy is a zero-sum game, then why shouldn’t each group have its exclusive advocates? Their understanding of why Trump was elected is laughably ridiculous from conspiracies with Russians or that America secretly has millions of racists who came out just for this election. This would be wrong on both counts. Trump was elected in part to smash the pieties and hypocrisy that held Republicans always guilty and Democrats always innocent.That sort of thing gets noticed. And when it continues despite polite requests to stop, blunter means will be utilized. Why the hell do you think the goons in Charlottesville were chanting”You will not replace us”? Where do you think they got the idea? I’ll tell you where: from a media that for over a decade has been gleefully telling all who’d listen that white people are on the way out.
Ideally people would be able to see that they dislike white identity politics and be self aware enough to realize the trouble that their own clinging identity politics is causing. Despite what identitarians will tell you there is an alternative. Rather than focusing on the person putting forth the argument, rather than elevating ad hominem attacks to a moral principle, focus on the argument, and what it means for us a society. You don’t have to be any particular color to know that racism, sexism and bigotry of all kinds is wrong. You don’t have to have lived injustice to recognize it and work against it. If we as people adopted the approach of striving for what is actually morally right instead of living with a morally relativistic mindset we would be far better off. We would be able to see actual progress if we fought for the ideals of procedural justice for all under the law rather than seeking social justice we would see progress. After all JFK didn’t say “Ask what your country can do for you based on your identity” did he.
Antifa believes it is pursuing the opposite of authoritarianism. Many of its activists oppose the very notion of a centralized state. But in the name of protecting the vulnerable, antifascists have granted themselves the authority to decide which Americans may publicly assemble and which may not. That authority rests on no democratic foundation. Unlike the politicians they revile, the men and women of antifa cannot be voted out of office. Generally, they don’t even disclose their names.
The Southern Poverty Law Center’s philological gerrymandering has been far too influential for far too long. Liberals and conservatives who want more for the public square than echo chambers and outrage factories should hope that Maajid Nawaz wins his lawsuit, and that the SPLC learns a costly lesson about bearing false witness.
“Socially and morally conservative opinions are treated as phobias and heresies.” This appears to not only be an English phenomena as it is prevalent across all Western countries. “Sorry, but the market just isn’t a substitute for morality and human decency.” I concur with this sentiment.
“The use of mass emails to express racism, sexism, and other forms of bigotry is offensive and unacceptable, especially in a Christian institution,” Strange I fail to see where there was racist or sexist things stated by the professor, Elaine. What this professor stated concerning diversity training is absolutely correct even if his wording was rather abrasive. Nothing but cliches and common sense at best and totalitarian post modern drivel at its worst. I disagree with the professor resigning and not fighting the institution further on this issue. It is imperative that we don’t secede ground to these loonies who see the world only in economic or power structures.
Roaming Millennial a right leaning Youtuber decided to conduct an interview with Alt-Right icon and spokesperson Richard Spencer which of course was met with resounding criticisms. These criticisms range from those appalled that Spencer was granted an interview at all to those upset that Roaming Millennial didn’t press Spencer more by combating his points during the interview. I hope to address some of these issues and in turn to show why I think the interview was perfectly reasonable and the outrage is unwarranted.
Firstly on the issue of Spencer being granted an interview that just seems a bit ridiculous being that Spencer is a nationally recognized figure in the media who has been on countless other programs and interviews. Why then is it an issue when Roaming does it but not CNN? I seem to be missing the problem there. Some say that by giving Spencer a platform we are essentially normalizing his ideas. I fear this to be greatly misguided thinking. By denying his ideas sunlight we would be doing a far greater service not only to him but his movement by allowing it to grow outside the public square of ideas. This is far more dangerous than the possibility of Spencer saying a disagreeable policy idea.
Additionally on the issue of the interview itself there seems to be this weird notion that an interviewer ought to be pointed and cutting with the questions almost in a combative manner. Unfortunately what people appear to desire is more of a debate than an actual interview. The true purpose of an interviewer is to make the interviewee comfortable to the point where they are able to respond and freely communicate their ideas with little coercion. The interviewer is meant then develop those ideas in a manner that can be better understood by the reader or viewer. The interviewer is not meant to be combative by lecturing the source, arguing or debating . Moreover it makes zero sense to create a hostile situation when the goal is to create a comfortable environment and thus allow for defenses to be bypassed. It seems rather foolish to have different principles for different people. If the interviewee was somebody other than Richard Spencer I would wager that nobody would have thrown the fuss on display about the manner of the interview.
I also see some individuals upset that Roaming didn’t refer to Spencer as a Nazi. Yes its possible that Spencer shys away from the term due to the negative historical connotations. However I don’t understand why people are so quick to use such terminology to refer to people who are clearly not Nazis. Nazis have a historical legacy which isn’t good so why would these individuals want to empower the movement by associating this new ethno nationalist element with historical Nazis? What is to be gained by doing so? I simply don’t see what is to be gained especially since the term Nazi is being diluted in American political discourse already by progressives.
Finally there were some who became indignant due to Roaming referring to the hypothetical policy proposals of the ideal Alt-Right candidate being similar to center Left. This sort of indignation is to be expected from people who simply throw political terminology around without the requisite knowledge of what the terms are. Anybody with a basic understanding of political science ought to know that the far right/ethno nationalists/Nazis are essentially progressives but instead of caring about POC justice they care about white justice. Their policies are essentially the same on the environment, healthcare, infrastructure, etc. They differ on things such as societal make up and immigration policies. They are fundamentally different sides of the same coin. Perhaps that indignation comes because the left can’t simply dismiss them due to having similar policy positions. To me this seems likely. But even more likely it is due to the inability of the left to combat these ideas in an intellectual manner. The left is so used to simply stating that the debate is over on issues it has forgotten the ability to debate. If you disagree with Spencer then state why he is wrong. I personally have already done so in an older post on the subject of ethno nationalists and am happy to debate ones I encounter and show why I believe their ideology is wrong.