Hilaria Baldwin has been claiming to be Spanish for a decade, as Megan Fox details here (and Stephen Kruiser hilariously skewers here), but now that she has been outed as being the daughter of two old Boston families, she made the obligatory Maoist self-incrimination that our moral superiors demand. “I am a white girl. Let’s be very clear that Europe has a lot of white people in there.” But for all the ridicule Hilaria Baldwin is receiving, there is much more to this story than the foolish audacity of one attention-seeking white girl. It reveals an ominous trend in American society today: our society is so post-racial that it’s racial again.
Hilaria Baldwin’s statement that “Europe has a lot of white people in there” is odd. Did anyone actually doubt this? Europe is, after all, the ancestral home of white people. But Hilaria seems to be assuming that if she had really been born in Spain of Spanish parents, she would not be white. And clearly, that would have been far more preferable to her than her actual background. Still, it’s odd: Spanish-speaking people from the Americas may not be white, but Spaniards generally are. Did Hilaria Baldwin, in her haste to shed her white identity and take on one that was more exotic and socially acceptable, conflate Spain with Latin America?
In any case, Europe really does have a lot of white people in it, whether or not that white population includes the people of Spain, and that’s so much the worse for Europe. It is now acceptable on the Left to despise white people as a group. Search through the Twitter feeds of The Washington Post’s Karen Attiah or activist Shaun King and you’ll see statements about “white people” in the aggregate that would result in firing and ostracism if they were said about any other race. All this has given rise to the recrudescence of one of the most shameful phenomena in American history – claiming to be of a different race in order to escape social opprobrium, as Hilaria Baldwin herself exemplifies.
Back in the old South during the Jim Crow days of institutionalized racial discrimination, some light-skinned blacks tried to pass for white in an attempt to avoid the discrimination and harassment that came to blacks all too often in those days. The old folk song “Delia” mentions “men in Atlanta, tryin’ to pass for white.” Way back in the 1980s, I saw a documentary about jazz pioneer Jelly Roll Morton that noted, in tones of high indignation, “But he denied his blackness.” Clearly, the producers of the documentary believed that even in the Jim Crow era, this was a moral failing on Morton’s part. He should have been true to himself. He should have been proud.
Nowadays the shoe is entirely on the other foot. There are still people trying to pass, who should instead be true to themselves and proud of who they are, but they’re white. Besides Hilaria Baldwin, there was the white Jewish professor Jessica Krug, who passed as black for years. So did Rachel Dolezal, the former NAACP official who famously turned out not to be a CP at all. Still at it is Shaun King, aka Talcum X, who strenuously insists that he isn’t white despite photographic evidence of his being a light-haired white child before he was woke.
Then of course there is Elizabeth Warren, as white a white person as you’ll ever find, who for years passed as Native American for social approval and career advancement. She was even hailed as the first “woman of color” on Harvard’s faculty. What color? A light peach, apparently.
Muslim “feminist” activist Linda Sarsour is also passing: in a Vox video published in January 2017, she revealed: “When I wasn’t wearing hijab I was just some ordinary white girl from New York City.” But in an April 2017 interview, Sarsour referred to “people of color like me.” All it took was a hijab to enable Sarsour to change races.
Baldwin, Krug, Warren, Dolezal, King, and Sarsour are the vanguard of the society the Left is working hard to create – a society in which being white carries so much of a social stigma that it results in job discrimination and more, and those who are clever and audacious enough to pull it off avoid this opprobrium by passing as being a “person of color.” Or a person from Spain, if you’re Hilaria Baldwin. Today, to be white is to be evil. No wonder an increasing number of white people want to escape the stigma.
All this is insane, of course. Race hatred should be no more acceptable today than it was in the days of Jelly Roll Morton, and no one should ever feel compelled to pass as a member of another race. The impulse today, however, springs from the assumption that white people are uniquely evil in a way that people of other races are not. To that, Soviet dissident Aleksander Solzhenitsyn, an enduring hero of freedom and one of the towering figures of the twentieth century, gave the most apposite response: “If only it were all so simple! If only there were evil people somewhere insidiously committing evil deeds, and it were necessary only to separate them from the rest of us and destroy them. But the line dividing good and evil cuts through the heart of every human being. And who is willing to destroy a piece of his own heart?”
Robert Spencer is the director of Jihad Watch and a Shillman Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center. He is author of the New York Times bestsellers The Politically Incorrect Guide to Islam (and the Crusades) and The Truth About Muhammad. His new book is The History of Jihad From Muhammad to ISIS. Follow him on Twitter here. Like him on Facebook here.