Have you ever been called racist? What am I saying — of course you have. These days you’re either a perfect progressive, supporting all the Left’s current policies and saying all the right things all the time, or you’re “problematic”: a racist, sexist, Islamophobic homophobe.
Over at Townhall, Carl Jackson asks if the term “racist” has become meaningless:
White slave masters never admired their black slaves, yet white sports fans all around the world worship their favorite black athletes. Nike endorsements, sports arenas, and college campuses aren’t exactly what I’d call slave ships, chains or whips. Yet, if you listen to black activists, ESPN analysts Michael Wilbon and Jamele Hill, or Black Lives Matter, you’d get the impression that racism and oppression are just as prevalent in America today as it’s ever been. Nothing could be further from the truth, and most American’s instinctively know it.
Democrat overreach has caused a backlash amongst non-blacks. Black racism fatigue is real, and the left is making it impossible to root out real racism by yelling racist every time they “feel” offended by a white person. Congresswoman Frederica Wilson (D-FL) is the latest to claim White House Chief-of-Staff, Gen. John Kelly, used a racial slur when he implied she was an “empty barrel.” Nonsense! Outlandish accusations like that do nothing to stop racism or improve race-relations. To the contrary, unfounded racial assertions needlessly reopen old wounds by turning all whites into enemies without evidence or warrant.
The term has become meaningless for use in popular discourse.
It used to mean something definitive. Calling someone a racist was the kind of thing that could destroy a life, so it wasn’t used lightly. It wasn’t thrown around; it was held close to the vest until it was warranted.
At least, that’s how it was for most people. There were always race-baiters who sought to stir things up, but most people paid little attention.
Today, the term flies freely. Since the beginning of the Obama administration, those who opposed his policies were labeled racists. Talking heads routinely claimed that the only reason some people had a problem with Obama was because he was black. It let the Left feel justified in treating the opposition like scum.
Now that Obama’s out of office, the Left has exponentially ramped up this line of attack.
Rep. Frederica Wilson’s claim that the term “empty barrel” is racist is just the latest and greatest example. She got hammered, and despite her rodeo clown persona, Gen. Kelly made a factual claim about Wilson’s lack of accomplishment as a member of Congress. And she deserved all she got for exploiting that sacred phone call.
Racism is such a serious issue, yet the Left chose to drain the term of all seriousness.