'The Good, Racist People' of Manhattan
But Coates saves the real bombshell for last:
The other day I walked past this particular deli. I believe its owners to be good people. I felt ashamed at withholding business for something far beyond the merchant’s reach. I mentioned this to my wife. My wife is not like me. When she was 6, a little white boy called her cousin a nigger, and it has been war ever since. “What if they did that to your son?” she asked.
And right then I knew that I was tired of good people, that I had had all the good people I could take.
Wow, that’s some admission -- how does Coates' wife wage a one-person "war" for presumably a quarter century or so? And just imagine the reaction if the colors and/or political parties were reversed.
Which brings us to the title of Coates’ article: “The Good, Racist People.” About which, Althouse herself wrote, “My question is: How did some people get to be considered the ‘good’ people in the first place? It’s that question that fires my antagonism to liberals. They think they are good.”
The disparity between how liberals view themselves and how they function in reality was explored by Ace in a lengthy 2007 post titled “The Toxic Self-Delusions of the Liberal Psychology”; in the middle of which, he wrote:
To bring this 'round to current politics: Liberals, of course, also have a great deal of distance between their own capacities for unfairness, nastiness, dishonesty, and hypocrisy than they believe they do. Again, their sense of self depends heavily on the proposition that they are superior, if not superlative, in their fairness, civility, honesty, and integrity; they have great difficulties admitting deficiencies (beyond a fairly trivial sort) in any of these virtues.
Now, I don't believe that either group, liberals or conservatives, has a particular monopoly on virtue. Individual people, obviously, may be more virtuous than others, but when it comes to large groups, I tend to imagine that all the usual sins are spread, collectively, about equally over both.
However -- I strongly believe that the liberals have a far less realistic self-assessment as regards their own, and their political brethren's, scores on these virtues.
I don't believe conservatives or liberals are more honest, generally, than the other.
But I do believe liberals are strongly convinced they're more honest.
I don't believe conservatives or liberals are more fair, generally, than the other.
But I do believe liberals are strongly convinced they're fairer.
I don't believe conservatives or liberals are more civil, generally, than the other.
But I do believe liberals are strongly convinced they're more civil.
I don't believe conservatives or liberals have more integrity, generally, than the other.
But I do believe liberals are strongly convinced they have more integrity.
And to toss out the obvious:
I don't believe conservatives or liberals are more intelligent, generally, than the other.
But I do believe liberals are believe zealously, rabidly that they're more intelligent.
This lack of accurate self-assessment has caused a great distortion in our current politics.
And that was before the nomination of Obama was a done deal. A nomination sold to the American people, among other things, as healing a nation bitterly divided by race. Who imagined back then that it was the left that was being torn apart by racial animosity?
Well, before Nora Ephron told us that it was so the following year, of course.
Also in 2007, Dennis Prager wrote:
A lifelong study of good and evil has led to me conclude that the greatest single cause of evil is people perceiving of themselves or their group as victims. Nazism arose from Germans' sense of victimhood — as a result of the Versailles Treaty, of the "stab in the back" that led to Germany's loss in World War I and of a world Jewish conspiracy. Communism was predicated on workers regarding themselves as victims of the bourgeoisie. Much of Islamic evil today emanates from a belief that the Muslim world has been victimized by Christians and Jews. Many prisoners, including those imprisoned for horrible crimes, regard themselves as victims of society or of their upbringing. The list of those attributing their evil acts to their being victims is as long as the list of evildoers.
This is also true in the micro realm. Family members whose primary identity is that of victim usually feel entirely free to hurt others in the family. That is why psychotherapists who regularly reinforce the victim status of their patients do the patient and society great harm.
If my belief is even partially correct, the preoccupation of much of America with telling whole groups that they are victims — of racism, sexism, homophobia, xenophobia and classism, among other American sins — can only increase cruelty and evil in America.
In his epic f-bomb-laden rant inspired by California's woes, as quoted in the Daily Caller this past weekend, Adam Carolla noted that:
“You are the system, Gavin Newsom,” Carolla said. “Fix the system, but you won’t fix the system, because you know what it takes to fix the system and you’re a f***ing coward. And guys like Huffington Post — you guys f***ing line up behind these people and let me tell you something, you guys all have blood on your hands, because the problem could be fixed. It’s a problem, and it’s a problem that involves bodies. People die every year.”
“There’s people getting shot,” Carolla added. “There’s brown people shooting other brown people on the streets of Chicago every f***ing day of the week. And you guys sit there silently. If it was a Sandy Hook situation or anything else, you’d be all up in arms. But you can’t say a word, so you sit there with your f***ing coward hands over your f***ing little cowardly soup coolers. And then when somebody has the guts to say something — to speak the truth for f***ing one hot second, you jump up his ass and call him a racist. Thus, you silence the media. Now you perpetuate the problem.”
As much as any Democratic politician, the Times is the system as well -- long before the Huffington Post, the Daily Kos, DU, and other sites were gleams in their creators' eyes, it's been the Democratic Party’s most prominent house organ, even more so considering how the Times feeds other newspapers and the TV news cycle. And this is what it thinks of its core readers. Good luck sustaining that worldview as a viable governing principle over the next decade or two.
Update (12:08 PM PDT): When I wrote the above late -- very late -- last night, I hesitated typing the word “Trayvon” into the post, but it does have some similarities, doesn’t it? When the wire services announced that Trayvon Martin was shot by George Zimmerman, the names alone initially made it seem extremely easy for liberal pundits to go to town attacking Zimmerman. Until his photo ran, and somehow, the designated Emmanuel Goldstein of early 2012 became possibly the first “white Hispanic” in the history of the New York Times. If we don’t know the race of the person who failed to recognize Forest Whitaker, doesn’t it make it rather difficult to write an article with a theme right out of 1963 that presupposes racism in the heart of everyone residing in a particular region, based on one incident? (And it’s not the first time an article has appeared in the Times doing just that.)
Setting that aside, every few months newspapers trot out Finley Peter Dunne’s century-old aphorism that the role of the journalist is to “comfort the afflicted and afflict the comfortable.” How exactly does attacking a minimum wage shop clerk and transforming him into one of Danny Aiello’s sons in Do the Right Thing fit in with that paradigm?
The subtitle of Thomas Sowell's 1996 book The Vision of the Anointed is "Self-Congratulation as a Basis for Social Policy." Might want to check your premises first, as another libertarian author would say, before d0ling out all that self-congratulation.