5. Breitbart Counter-charges the NAACP with Racism
|Level of Actual Racism:
Web media mogul Andrew Breitbart was appalled at what he felt was the NAACP’s flimsy accusation of racism against the entirety of the Tea Party movement, and announced he would strike back with a video which showed that the NAACP were the ones exhibiting racism. When he delivered on his promise, the resulting video stunned everyone — including the Obama administration, who were apparently following this whole brouhaha closely.
You’ve undoubtedly seen the video by now, but just to be thorough, here it is again:
The key point to remember here is Breitbart said he was posting the video not to impugn the speaker, USDA official Shirley Sherrod, but rather the audience, composed of NAACP officials and members at a banquet.
When Sherrod recounts a tale which appears to describe how she denied help to a farmer simply because he is white, the audience laughs and murmurs in approval at her apparent mistreatment of the white farmer.
As is outlined in the next entry, the full video of the incident reveals that her tale later had a twist ending — that she eventually learned her lesson that it wasn’t only about race, that she realized she should discriminate against well-off people in favor of poor people, rather than just against white people in favor of black people.
This is exactly the point Breitbart later made on the Hannity Show:
HANNITY: She decides that he’ll get help from one of his own kind and she referred him to a white lawyer. But she also said on the tape that — admits that she didn’t do everything she could for him because he’s white.
Now what critics are saying is well that was edited. And what she’s claiming is that that was edited, that she left out the part that she had learned from this at the end of the tape which we just heard.
BREITBART: The reason why Shirley Sherrod is the story right now, not the NAACP, is because the White House which stands by the firing or the forced resignation — harassment as she said — they made the story about Shirley. They threw her under the bus.
I have not asked that she get fired. I’ve not asked for an investigation into her. The whole point was to show that the — for the NAACP to spend five days on national TV saying that the Tea Party is racist without any evidence when we can prove that the central argument didn’t happen and the mainstream media won’t play it — for them to talk about racism they should not be throwing stones in glass houses.
And what this video shows and what the NAACP affirms in their initial rebuke is not just that Shirley Sherrod, what she said was wrong, but that the audience was laughing and applauding as she described how she maltreated the white farmer.
HANNITY: Before she gets to the end of the story which is — which she’s claiming puts context. But there’s a —
BREITBART: Did the people in the audience know that there was going to be a point of redemption?
BREITBART: The point is that the NAACP at a dinner honoring this person is cheering on a person describing — describing a white person as the other. This is far worse than anything —
HANNITY: Let me ask you this.
BREITBART: — that has ever been alleged against the Tea Party and certainly not proved.
Now, totally aside from the speaker, did the NAACP audience in the video seem to briefly take delight in the portion of her tale in which she describes how she denied help to a farmer because of his race? From what I can see, the answer is a mild Yes. Sure, they didn’t erupt in wild applause at her tale of discrimination, but there were smiles and laughs and general nods of approval. So because of that I assign an Actual Racism ranking a low-to-moderate 3.5 in this case, because the audience was merely expressing approval of someone’s else‘s tale of racist mistreatment before they knew the tale had a twist ending.
6. The Firing of USDA Official Shirley Sherrod
Obama Administration & NAACP
|Level of Actual Racism:
This story is still unfolding as I write this, so apologies if it seems a bit out of date by the time you read it.
Shortly after the original short Shirley Sherrod video was released, members of the Obama administration called her up and demanded her immediate resignation. Furthermore, the NAACP issued a statement condemning her remarks. It seems that just about everyone who viewed the video — including the White House and the NAACP — felt the need to condemn it and the people in it.
But then the full video was found, and in the complete version of her speech, she goes on to say that she learned her lesson not to discriminate against all white people, because poor white farmers need help too, and that she learned that the real struggle was a class struggle, not a race struggle. But her later words don’t erase what she said at the conclusion of her anecdote:
That’s when…it was revealed to me that it’s about poor versus those who have. And not so much about white — it is about white and black — but it’s not, you know…it opened my eyes.”
Here’s the full 43-minute long video of her whole speech, if you want to judge for yourself:
As you will see, she transitions from her discussion of race to a discussion of class.
Now, it kind of disturbs me even more that the rest of her speech becomes essentially a parable about how she became converted to what is essentially Marxist ideology, how she learned to use bureaucracy to further the class struggle. But that’s a different topic altogether. What we’re talking about here is: Was the Obama administration right to fire her, and was the NAACP right to criticize her, now that we see from the full video that she’s no longer a racist?
Well, as we now know, she’s been offered her job back by the administration, and NAACP retracted their criticism of her. Everyone’s head is spinning and trying to grasp why the White House and the NAACP so swiftly denounced her in the first place, and just as swiftly undenounced her. It seems that they are both so afraid of the accusation of racism and were themselves so appalled at what they saw in the original video that they threw her under the bus before she even knew there was a bus. Her insta-firing based solely on a YouTube video shows just how hyper-sensitive the Obama administration is to matters of race.
Wasn’t this supposed to be a “post-racial America” under Obama? What is being spun as a “quick reaction” by the White House communications team instead appears to me like the amateur flailings of political novices running hither and thither the moment after someone hits the panic button. Ponder how the administration acted in this case and then ask yourself: Would we want these flighty people in charge during moments like the Cuban Missile Crisis or the 9/11 attacks? I cringe at the thought.
Anyway, a zillion pundits and cable networks and blogs are dissecting this whole story right at this moment, but from where I stand, having listened to the whole video, Shirley Sherrod is not entirely off the hook, because despite her self-congratulatory tale of redemption, she still conceded that it’s “not so much about white — it is about white and black — but it’s not, you know…”, meaning that it still is about race, but it’s merely not exclusively about race in her mind, but about class as well. Even though the focus on her is a clever misdirection to take the focus off the NAACP audience, I still think she shot herself in the foot with her words, and so I’ve assigned a moderate 4.5 racism rating to this incident.
7. New Black Panthers/Department of Justice Imbroglio
The public/DOJ attorneys
New Black Panthers/DOJ
|Level of Actual Racism:
This story mostly played out earlier this month and fell outside our timeframe, but the tail end of breaking revelations about the New Black Panthers happened just at the beginning of the week, so it merits a brief discussion here — especially since it is the most intensely racial and possibly the most noteworthy of all the race-obsessed incidents this month. (So far at least — still got ten July days to go for more Obama-era racial strife!)
The story started back on Election Day in November of 2008, when members of the “New Black Panther Party” positioned themselves in military garb and wielding weapons in front of a Philadelphia polling station, in an apparent attempt to intimidate voters.
Considering that the New Black Panther Party was already well-known for its scathing anti-white sermons, and in light of the self-evident menacing attitude of the Panthers trying to scare away non-Obama voters in the video, the Department of Justice, in the waning days of the Bush administration, filed a civil rights violation case against the men depicted in the video. When they later failed to show up in court to even defend themselves, the DOJ won the case by default.
Incomprehensibly, the new Department of Justice, under Obama appointee Eric Holder, simply dropped the case against the New Black Panthers, despite having already won it.
The public became very suspicious: Was the case dropped because, in Eric Holder’s worldview, only whites can be guilty of racism? What else could explain his decision to drop this case? Would he have dropped it if the races were reversed, and white supremacists tried to prevent black people from voting? Obviously not.
The scandal then escalated further when a DOJ attorney, J. Christian Adams, resigned in protest over the case, and became a whistleblower who accused Obama’s Department of Justice of only pursuing civil right violations committed by white people but ignoring civil right violations committed by black people. At last, an insider had come forward and confirmed what many people had already suspected.
Day by day, the scandal grew, as more disgusted DOJ staffers backed up Adams’s claims, detailed here on PajamasMedia.
Meanwhile, on another front, Naked Emperor News dug up a clip from a National Geographic documentary featuring none other than King Samir Shabazz, the very person protected from prosecution by Eric Holder and the Department of Justice, saying the most incontrovertibly racist things you’ll ever hear:
“I hate white people. All of them. Every last iota of a cracker I hate him. … You want freedom? You’re gonna have to kill some crackers. You gonna have to kill some of their babies.”
Prior to the emergence of this video, some dedicated Obama defenders were trying to explain away the DOJ’s decision to drop the voter intimidation case by claiming there was no evidence that the New Black Panthers blocking the polling station had any antipathy toward whites.
You might think things couldn’t get any worse, but they did. The B-Cast then unearthed photos of Shabazz proudly displaying his rather terrifying arsenal of high-powered guns, proving he had the firepower to back up his threats.
Things got so bad that the real original Black Panthers — the ones from the ’60s and ’70s — began making media appearances to explain that they had no connection whatsoever to these “New” Black Panthers, who apparently had just hijacked the name to give themselves some credibility as an organization:
The NBPP’s divisive positions have been condemned by members of the original Black Panthers. Co-founder Bobby Seale believes that the NBPP has “hijacked our name and are hijacking our history.” David Hilliard, a former Panther and executive director of the Dr. Huey P. Newton Foundation, has said that the racism that the group “espouse(s) flies directly in the face of the Black Panthers’ multicultural ideology and purpose.”
I almost burst out loud laughing at this, because apparently the original Black Panthers are beginning to believe the historical rehabilitation they’ve been receiving courtesy of revisionist apologists. Let us not forget that the original Black Panthers were if anything even more outrageously racist than the New Black Panthers. As evidence, we can look at an image posted by Shabazz on his personal Web page:
Turns out that Shabazz didn’t create this image himself, but simply took it from a children’s coloring book produced by the original Black Panthers sometime during the late ’60s or the early ’70s. It features many similar images, such as…
Oh, but we respectable original Black Panthers are not associated with those awful New Black Panthers! We’re not like them at all!
Anyway, we’re going a little far afield here, but there is so much egregious racism of all kinds coming from all directions in this complicated scandal that it easily earns a 9.5 on the Actual Racism scale.
8. The Resegregation of North Carolina Schools?
NAACP and various protesters
Wake County School Board
|Level of Actual Racism:
On Tuesday, a school board meeting in Raleigh, North Carolina, erupted into chaos as protesters refused to accept a vote to re-establish neighborhood schools for Raleigh students.
What could possibly be wrong with the concept of neighborhood schools, a system in which students can elect to go to schools near their homes? According to the protesters, neighborhood schools would “bring back segregation” since local schools would reflect the demographics of the local neighborhoods; and since Raleigh still has (apparently — I’ve never been there) self-segregated racially homogenous neighborhoods, the schools would become segregated once again too.
The new proposal would change the current system in Raleigh, in which students are bussed across town, generally to schools far from their homes, all in the name of “diversity” — the unimpeachable buzzword of modern education. Doesn’t matter that kids would prefer to go to nearby schools; doesn’t matter that endless hours of unnecessary bus-rides pollute the atmosphere and spew greenhouse gasses and increase our addiction to oil; doesn’t matter that the new proposal would try to ensure schools of equal quality for all students; DIVERSITY is the trump card which defeats all others in the name of race-based policies.
From what I’ve read of this case, the Wake County School Board has no racist intent whatsoever, but on the other hand the protesters are the ones who won’t stop focusing on race, so I’ll give the Board an Actual Racism rating of 0.0 and the protesters an Actual Racism rating of 3.0.
9. Pro-Johannes Mehserle Rally in Walnut Creek
Oscar Grant supportes
|Level of Actual Racism:
On Monday, something unexpected happened in Walnut Creek, a suburb east of Oakland: protesters held a rally supporting Johannes Mehserle, the BART policeman who was convicted of Involuntary Manslaughter for accidentally shooting Oscar Grant during a chaotic mass arrest on a train platform. This was unusual because, until now, every single rally and public event about the incident had been against Mehserle specifically and against police in general.
Needless to say, the anti-police activists got wind of the suburban pro-police rally and showed up en masse to counter-protest, leading to scenes like this:
Because Mehserle was white and Grant was black, the shooting incident has become inextricably suffused with racial overtones, despite the fact that no one — not even the prosecutors in the case — has ever produced any evidence that Mehserle was racist nor that the shooting was racially motivated. Even so, most of the counter-protesters held signs declaring that the shooting was a “racist murder,” while the police supporters wanted Mehserle to be released with no charges.
In this case, I disagree with both sides: I don’t think Mehserle acted out of malice, but on the other hand he did perform his duties with fatal incompetence, so I actually agree with the Involuntary Manslaughter conviction. Yet both sides at this demonstration demanded extreme results: the Oscar Grant supporters wanted to see a first degree murder conviction, while the Johannes Mehserle supporters wanted him to be found Not Guilty on all charges.
Were the pro-police protesters “racists” for supporting Mehserle, as the counter-protesters claimed? Once again, although I did not attend the event, photo essays made by people specifically looking for evidence of racism (http://www.indybay.org/newsitems/2010/07/20/18654335.php and http://www.indybay.org/newsitems/2010/07/19/18654295.php) revealed nothing amiss, except for a few contorted faces on both sides during heated arguments. Could there have been some kind of subconscious “white solidarity” hidden in the hearts of some of the pro-Mehserle protesters? Eh, who knows? Especially in the absence of any tangible evidence. As a result, I give this incident an Actual Racism rating of 1.0 out of 10, mostly because it just didn’t look good having a mostly white-attended protest facing off against a mostly black-attended counter-protest.
10. “Machinery of Whiteness” Book Tour
United States & all white people
|Level of Actual Racism:
Bay Area activist and San Francisco State instructor Steve Martinot just launched a book tour for his recently released title The Machinery of Whiteness, appearing at local venues. A listing describing one of his readings is a revelation into the mindset of the modern Left — but you’d better strap yourself into your chair if you’ve never encountered what American universities teach about race these days:
In The Machinery of Whiteness, Martinot examines how race and racism are produced in the United States, analyzing the politics of racialization and the racial segregation and racial deprivation that have kept the United States a white-dominated society throughout its history. Martinot dedicates this work to expunging white supremacy from the earth.
The Machinery of Whiteness investigates how “whiteness” came to be foundational to the process that then produced the modern concept of race. Martinot addresses the instrumentalization of women as a necessary step in the formation of the concept, furthering the debates regarding the relationships of race and gender. He also addresses U.S. international interventionism, the anti-immigrant movements, and white racist populism to describe the political forms that white supremacy takes.
Martinot brings together these ideas to analyze the underlying cultural structures of racialization that have driven and conditioned the resurgence of white supremacy and white entitlement in the wake of the civil rights movements. This book is a call to transform the cultural structures of the United States to make justice and democracy—which depend on inclusion and not segregation—possible.
I assigned this entry an Actual Racism rating of ≠⅝.Π (does not equal five-eighths point pi), which makes about as much sense as academia’s current thinking on race.
Can’t We All Just Get Along?
Is there any antidote to this escalating nightmare? Perhaps. To wrap things up, we travel to England for an inspirational palate-cleanser:
THE stunned black dad of a newborn, WHITE, baby girl declared yesterday — “I’m sure she’s my kid … I just don’t know why she’s BLONDE.”
British Nmachi Ihegboro has amazed genetics experts who say the little girl is NOT an albino.
Dad Ben, 44, a customer services adviser, admitted: “We both just sat there after the birth staring at her.”
Mum Angela, 35, of Woolwich, South London, beamed as she said: “She’s beautiful – a miracle baby.”
All together now: Awwwwwwwwwwww….