August 1, 2010

"[S]omething to aim for: an America where race isn't off-limits or restricted to certain times of the year but always part of our dialogue."

"The more we can talk about race in a substantive context, the more comfortably we can talk about race, period. Indeed, by regularly engaging with race, and on matters of policy especially, we can train ourselves to move beyond the typical arguments -- 'This is racist! No it isn't!' -- and toward a more nuanced discussion of racial issues."

All right, then! Let's get started: Talk about race all the time!

56 comments:

John Lynch said...

This is always such balogna. You can't win by talking about race. You can only lose. There's no "talking" there is only agreeing with whatever the PC view of the moment is. No one ever changes their mind.won

DaveW said...

This is where I made my mistake.

I actually believed we were striving for a society where race was irrelevant. So I spent my life getting to the point where I look at the TV and see the current president and don't even notice he's black, but I do notice he has jug ears.

Imagine my confusion to now learn I'm supposed to be thinking and talking about race all the time. Clearly I am hopeless.

Capt. Schmoe said...

I prefer the Sprint Cup series over Indy Cars or F1, despite the faster speeds of the latter. It has more to do with the level of competition than the top speed.

Oh wait. You mean THAT race. No effin' way will I go there, it's a loser.

Metamorf said...

Here's what it might go like.

wv: obeemer - Obama keener?

Kirby Olson said...

There are a lot of strange notions about race. First, it doesn't really determine very much on a biological level. There is apparently no genetic marker for it. It's not a species-level separator.

So it's a cultural phenomenon.

If so, it's an extremely unclear marker. Not all blacks who are in America have slave ancestry (those from Kenya, for instance, do not).

And almost everyone has a mixed ancestry.

Among whites, some fought for the north, some for the south. Some were abolitionists, some were poor dirt farmers in the south, some were wealthy episcopalian plantation owners.

Although there is something true and real about racial experience, that part is overwhelmed by the spin.

It's a like like our news in general. Something did happen, but it's the spin that makes up 99.7% of the news.

There are no facts without frameworks.

But race has always been part of human culture. Even in the Bible, Ruth was a Moabite. There were Canaanites. Egyptians, and so on.

I think the humorists do race best: whether it's Cosby or Chris Rock, Lopez or Sarah Silverman. They tell us more than the political people, and use race with greater precision.

William T. Sherman said...

So why are Asians such bad drivers?

TS said...

I'm watching the race today. Go Helio!

HDHouse said...

Race??? Moi?...

Almost Ali said...

So why are Asians such bad drivers?

Well, just try driving on the freeway with your eyes half shut.

AllenS said...

Never talk about race at work. Never.

The Crack Emcee said...

Hi, I'm the Crack Emcee, and I'm black and,...yeah.

That's it - I'm out.

EDH said...

Okay, let's start with some Word Association.

That always helps.

EnigmatiCore said...

There's only two things I hate in this world. People who are intolerant of other people's cultures and the Dutch.

DADvocate said...

John Lynch pretty much hit the nail on the head. Race has been talked to death. We need to get beyond that.

Having lived all my life in the South or Midwest, I talk to people from other parts of the country about what it's like there. What do they do for recreation. What industries and businesses are predominate. What sports teams are popular. Race rarely enters my thoughts unless it's about varying ethnic/regional foods available - Italian, Greek, German (good beer), real barbecue and other yummies.

Instead, we have bozos like Jesse Jackson who want to turn everything into a racial issue. Lebron James is being treated like a runaway slave!? You could talk to these idiots until you're blue in the face and get nowhere.

edutcher said...

And when we get it to be 'part of our dialogue', anybody who says something the Thought Police don't like ends up in Dachau.

The Lefties don't like dialogue. Somebody always comes up with fact-based reasons why they're wrong.

DADvocate said...

some were wealthy episcopalian plantation owners.

Were most or all plantation owners Episcopalian?

dbp said...

"Americans don't know how to talk about race because they only do it when they absolutely have to."

For most of us, talking about race is pointless--it just breeds resentment in all the participants. Of course it is win-win for advocates of discourse since they make their living off of racial discord.

Metamorf said...

Oh, and here's an alternate view of "talking about race".

ricpic said...

I'll bet The American Prospect wouldn't be so thrilled about hearing what the HBD (human bio-diversity) crowd has to say about race. In fact I wouldn't hold my breath waiting for our noble liberal brethren to invite Steve Sailer into the discussion.

SMGalbraith said...

Talk about race? No thanks, it's just another plot by "the Jews" to divide us.

More seriously, we're all talked out. Liberals demand equality of results and wish to skew the rules to lead to that; the right wants equality of opportunity and views changing the rules as improper.

Liberals then counter that opposing the changing of the rules is either insensitive or uncaring or, finally, racist. The right gets upset and off we go.

Rinse and repeat.

Fred4Pres said...

Let's not talk about race at all.

Trooper York said...

If Mort was awake he would say this discussion is racist.

That is if you don't agree with him.

Trooper York said...

If Charley Rangel was awake he would say what happened to him was racist.

Trooper York said...

If the basketball team from Rutgers were awake they would say that talkin' about their hair is racist.

Trooper York said...

Just talking about race is racist. Let's all take a nap.

It's Sunday afternoon after all.

Alex said...

Let's not and keep all our jobs. It's def a conspiracy by Obama to get white men fired.

Alex said...

So who is really allowed to discuss race without any consequences? For one it isn't white men. Basically you already know who your real friends who you discuss the sensitive matters. To even broach it with a co-worker is borderline suicidal.

Sixty Grit said...
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c3 said...

We have been talking about it.

The linked article wants to steer the argument to the "black folk as victim" discussion. Its worthy of discussion but its not THE discussion.

I do like Morgan Freeman's take on this issue

and I have to say he is one of America's finest black actors.

c3 said...

PS

Though hopefully Mr. Freeman would acknowledge that having Robert DeNiro play Nelson Mandela in "Invictus" would have been a poor casting choice,

and not just because of his New York accent.

Tyrone Slothrop said...

This will never end until minorities, and majorities, agree that the law should be absolutely colorblind. This means that blacks need to throw overboard the race-baiting demagogues, the Jacksons, the Sharptons, the Wrights. This means that to point out that minorities receive unfair preferences sometimes is merely to apply the law fairly, without regard to color, and it is not racism. It means that if young black men kill each other at a terrifying rate, it is their own behavior that is to blame, not some century-and-half-old crimes against their race. It means that if blacks can't get into college at the same rate as whites and Asians when colorblind admissions policies are applied, they didn't work hard enough in high school. What is, is.

Racism is not gone in this country and never will be. But if you make an unbiased comparison between today and 1960, racism ensconced in law is gone. The race-baiting demagogues cannot allow this reality to become widely accepted, because they will lose personal power, and wealth.

Peter V. Bella said...

I love NASCAR!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

ALP said...

This post makes me think back to my gym rat days. I did competitive weightlifting for several years, thus spent many, many hours training in pretty hard core gyms. Competitors came from the full racial spectrum - it was one of the most racially integrated environments I've ever been in, and nothing I've experienced has beat it since.

Race was discussed ALL the time, openly, and freely, as there were strengths and weaknesses experienced by each racial group while trying to get stronger or develop muscles.

Black guys whined about how they couldn't develop calf muscles to save their lives. If you ever want to make a big, 300-lb muscle-bound weight-lifting black man cry, ask him how his calf muscle development is coming along! So the Asians and whites would rib the Black guys about that, but they would come back with the fact that they could get great upper body mass and definition almost by accident.

The Asian guys bitched about having perfect proportions, but being only 5' 5" tall or something like that. So the whites and Blacks would pick on the Asians for being so puny.

White guys of far northern descent tend towards hairy bodies with an extra layer of stubborn fat underneath their skin - they could never get buff and chiseled no matter how much they worked out and dieted - so the Black and Asian guys would pick on them with taunts of "found your six pack under that fat yet?"

The point being - here is one situation where race was discussed in a matter of fact way, every day. It never led to any conflict that I am aware of - everybody got along very well - we had a strong coach leading the powerlifting team which may have helped. Most of the inter-racial friendships extended to life outside the gym. Maybe it was the shared experience of struggle and pain we all went through that gave us the feeling of unity. But my gym rat days stand out as one of the most open, tolerant environments I've ever experienced - and we didn't ignore race, we brought it up all the time in a good-natured way.

Rialby said...

African-American culture seems to produce an inordinate amount of out-of-wedlock births.

Why is that?

holdfast said...

I know that Alex is a Moby/Troll, but he's 100% correct to say that "To even broach it with a co-worker is borderline suicidal." I mean, why put your job at risk to please Eric Holder?


SistyGrit - sure, but a white guy is far more likely to die or get very sick from Malaria.

Rialby said...

Also, why does the black community produce rap and hip-hop that's rife with misogynistic lyrical content?

AJ Lynch said...

Trooper just used the words Rutgers and nap. He must be a racist or Don Imus writes his material.

Revenant said...

"An America where race is always part of our dialogue" is "an America where racism is omnipresent".

I prefer "an America where nobody gives a flip about race".

Kirby Olson said...

DADvocate,

You asked,

"Were most or all plantation owners Episcopalian?"

The top echelon of the Civil War south was almost entirely Episcopalian. Lee, Davis, etc. They were the landed gentry that came out of England's high church.

Most of the Baptists were against slavery. It was the Baptists that radicalized Lincoln.

Trooper York said...

Hey I didn't use them in the same post. So Mort said it was ok.

Mort is my guide in what is racist and what is not.

michaele said...

Thanks to HDHouse for the link to the Archie Bunker clip. It was weird to see how much healthier the whole issue was dealt with back then. That dialogue would probably be too unPC nowadays. Oh, sure, blacks to blacks could say it to each other but to think we white folks have to refer to the N word instead of saying the actual word even if we want to be critical of its use. Well, it's all just too goofy.

1jpb said...

F1, all other races are second class.

Sixty Grit said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
AJ Lynch said...

Actually Trooper I think you could write for Imus. Only the funny stuff natch- not the crap where he drones on and on like he's a NYC intelligentsia and big, thick book lover.

Kirk Parker said...

How about we submit this article to Michael Kinsley's "most boring" contest?

wv: reard

"The discussion was going fabulously, until the subject of race reard its ugly head."

Fen said...

Sure, lets talk about race in the context of why the federal government is so dysfunctional. Its not just the usual red tape, its what Sherrod touched on: too many blacks in government game the system with EEO complaints so that they do no work at work.

You've got offices that have "racial issues", which really means blacks complaining about having too much work to do, and falling back on the race card to malinger.

PatCA said...

I received notice last week that I now must declare my race to the feds, who are demanding "new procedures" for dealing with racial quotas...er, race at all institutions receiving federal funds.

I can't imagine why they would want this information.

TMink said...

I think a more important discussion is culture. Most middle class people hold similar beliefs. Poor whites are closer to poor blacks in their culture than they are to middle class blacks or whites.

My younger kids are in public school and it is a neighborhood school. So the families of the black kids from the school are like our family. We value work, education, Christianity, we complain about the government taking too much of our money and the moochers. At least we do when we are at cub scouts or having dinner together.

My daughter has the most black friends of the triplets, and we are happy with her friends. We would be concerned if she had friends who did not share our values, sharing our color is irrelevant.

Trey

Mortimer Brezny said...

Racists want to talk about race all the time so that no one can get beyond race. That is how they retain their race-baiting power and coerce individuals into valuing group identity over personal autonomy. It's called Marxism.

Mortimer Brezny said...

Race is real - what are the odds that I, a white man, will ever get sickle cell anemia? Zero.

1. Sickle cell anemia is not contagious. It is hereditary.

2. Sickle cell anemia is not racial. There are plenty of "white" people who have sickle cell anemia. They descended from populations that were coastal and exposed to seasonal malaria.

Scott said...

Why do black people like fabric softener?

AJ Lynch said...

Does this mean it is OK when we refer to Obama as DHOTUS?

Gene said...

I never did understand why the president (and apparently nearly everyone else) considers the president black. Why does being half-black somehow make you all black? The old one-drop-of-black-blood theory doesn't work anymore, not with modern genetics.

I remember when Obama was running for president, the media called him a post-racial candidate. Okay, that was fine. I was more than willing to buy that. But as soon as he got elected the media burst into helpless sobs of gratitude at "our first black president," who is only half black in any case.

When I was in college one of my sociology professors had a young son in grade school. One day his son came home from school, the professor told us, and asked if he could invite a kid from his class over to play. The professor, knowing that there were a lot of black students in his school, asked if his friend was black or white.

You can't imagine the pride with which the professor told us that his son answered: "I don't know, dad. I never noticed. I'll look the next time I see him."

Methadras said...

Niggers, spics, jews, kikes, mools, dago, towel head, dune coon, mo-mo's, mics, wop, guinea... Are there more? Am I now an equal opportunity racist, hence not making me a racist at all? Did I satisfy the racism that needs to be talked about? I can expound on my bigotry of other pathetic ethnical sub-human cultures around the world if you like.

Sixty Grit said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Methadras said...

Sixty Grit said...

Meth - there are plenty more. That is, in fact, a terribly limited list.


Oh I'm sure there is more, but frankly, I think I made my point in illustrating the absurdity of the racist dialogue.