Accumulated Ethics Notes On The Charlottesville Riots, The Statue-Toppling Orgy and The Confederate Statuary Ethics Train Wreck, Part 3 Of 3: Potpouri! [Continued]

  • Grandstanding as always, Nancy Pelosi proclaimed that all of the Confederates honored in the Capital Gallery should come down. How odd that this never occurred to her when she was Speaker of the House and the Democrats held the Senate and the White House.

The Gallery is exactly the kind of enclosed public space for display that the statue-topplers argue should house the controversial statuary, places where their context can be considered outside of the public square. They don’t mean it, though. They want the statues hidden away, so nobody will see then without searching for them like Indiana Jones.

  • It was nice of Duke to show just how calculated and hypocritical this sudden eruption of horror at long-standing monuments is. While the school is capitulating to students by removing another statue of Lee from its chapel, there seem to be no plans to tear down the statue of George Washington Duke  a Confederate soldier and a slave owner. Duke’s son, Buck, gave a large endowment to  what was then called Trinity College, and in appreciation, the school changed its name to Duke University. And this happened in the twenties, which proves that the real objective was to salute Jim Crow—or so we are being told now.

Duke was named after a confederate soldier and a slave owner, meaning that by the Left’s logic the entire school is a memorial to white supremacy and slavery. But the students who happily agreed to have his name appended to their life forever are traumatized by a campus statue of General Lee.

  • Back to Trump: This episode was another example of Democrats, Never-Trump Republicans, pundits and news media seizing on a statement that was objectively reasonable and distorting it out of all recognition to savage the President without justification. First he didn’t condemn the right side—you know, the side that had a permit, the side that had  a legitimate case regarding the objective of its protest, the side that the Virginia authorities deliberately allowed to be attacked. That fed back into the “Trump is a fascist” narrative that had been discarded for the “Trump conspired with Russia” tactic, which appears to be losing steam since it is based on nothing. The reaction to Trump’s clumsy-as-usual words (Presidents who can’t say something well shouldn’t say—or tweet—anything at all) was pure confirmation bias. Then, when in a subsequent statement he clarified—he shouldn’t have had to—his opposition to racism and hate, it was attacked as “too late.” Then Trump reacted typically and predictably, lashing back and fanning the flames.

He’s an idiot. However, the criticism this time was no more and no less than residual, “We can’t stand the fact that this guy was elected, and we’re going to scream and spit about it every chance we get.”

A ridiculous exception came over the weekend when the President praised a huge Boston demonstration that successfully shut down a “Free Speech” rally by the right. A rally to promote free speech—the New York Times called it “free speech,” with scare quotes, suggesting what, exactly? The free speech shouldn’t be promoted? That a rally by right-wing nuts shouldn’t have the protection of free speech?—  was, the Times reported, “undercut by police planning and starved by an enormous buffer zone between the handful of protesters and the overwhelming numbers of their opponents.” What a victory for democracy, then: as long as opponents of bad speech can overwhelm it with sheer numbers and police action, all is well!

This time, the President praised opposition to free expression based on content, tweeting that he wanted “to applaud the many protestors in Boston who are speaking out against bigotry and hate. Our country will soon come together as one!…Our great country has been divided for decades. Sometimes you need protest in order to heal, & we will heal, & be stronger than ever before!”

The statement is simple-minded blather, but it’s politically correct incoherent blather, so most news media noted it and moved on to more features about what a racist and fascist  Trump is.

There was blame on both sides in Charlottesville,

 

37 Comments

Filed under Citizenship, Ethics Alarms Award Nominee, Ethics Dunces, Ethics Train Wrecks, Government & Politics, History, Journalism & Media, Leadership, Race, Rights, War and the Military

37 responses to “Accumulated Ethics Notes On The Charlottesville Riots, The Statue-Toppling Orgy and The Confederate Statuary Ethics Train Wreck, Part 3 Of 3: Potpouri! [Continued]

  1. ”Duke was named after a confederate soldier and a slave owner, meaning that by the Left’s logic the entire school is a memorial to white supremacy and slavery” (bolds mine)

    Perhaps why Yale and its slave-TRADER founder have thus far been spared the Lefty guillotine is because Elihu wasn’t a confederate soldier?

    And using what passes for deductive reasoning these days, shouldn’t Eli grads Bill & Hillary Clinton qualify as having ties to/benefited from, the slave trade?

    • Other Bill

      And wasn’t Mr. Wellesley alive before slavery was outlawed? And King George wasn’t against slavery! The Clintons will have to re-do their resumes!

  2. Jack wrote, “There was blame on both sides in Charlottesville.”

    That’s a fact, Jack! 🙂

    I doesn’t seem to matter to anti-Trump’ers how many times that fact is stated, it’s always seems to be unethically twisted into something along the lines of it’s a racist supporting a group of fascists; in other words, attacking the messenger like a rabid political attack dog.

    P.S. Suggestion: Put a combined a version of these particular blogs on this topic to print in one large PDF document. Include links to each of the individual blogs that make it up so those that read the PDF can follow through with reading the wide array of discussion comments.

  3. Lefty’s unequivocal tolerance will be on full display after this Elbert Guillory vid makes the rounds.

  4. Wayne

    I’m hoping that Nancy Pelosi will retire from politics very soon. She is 77 years old and her role the Affordable Health Health Care Act that she was instrumental in getting passed is only one example of her awful leadership in Congress. This latest proposal to move the Confederate statues from the Capital Gallery leads me to believe that their should be term limits for members of Congress.

  5. Regarding Duke: I’ve found through the years that one of the main frustrations in discussion with progressives is that analogy nearly always just bounces off. The idea that if this honor is revoked from this person, then it should be revoked from that person, too, because that person is similarly situated, is not accepted as relevant. I think that this has a connection to the progressive way of looking at things – these today on their merits, those tomorrow on their merits, but without a recognition that those “merits” contain a lot of confirmation bias that can be dispelled by analogizing to these other cases that one is not emotionally connected to.

    One of the things coming down the highway is the restoration in some form of the House Un-American Activities Committee. This was dismantled in early 1975, by the 94th Congress that contained 291 Democrats and 144 Republicans, as a post-Watergate reform because it was deemed Un-American to term systems of thought Un-American. A large part of the progressive world is now in favor of limiting what ideas can be pursued, and unless they want to enforce this by literal mob rule it will be necessary to set up a government entity that does this. And it will be done without qalm, because that situation has no relevance to this one….

  6. urbanregor

    Hi Jack. Been a long time since I’ve commented, but still try to read weekly. I wanted to point out what I believe to be incorrect information in your post relative to the issue of permits and free speech. I’ll leave the statues and their significance for another day, but have a different perspective. The unite the right protesters were marching for the 3rd time since May 2017 in Charlottesville. I’m going to assume that they were all permitted. It is also my belief that the KKK and other alt right trouble makers/statue supporters were in attendance at these marches. If we can agree that this is true, how were their free speech rights infringed upon? The March that recently turned violent was asked to hold their protest in another park, but sued to hold it downtown in ironically named “Emancipation Park”. The city didn’t issue a permit, but based on the court ruling they were within their rights to hold the rally. Now, the counter protesters also had legally attained two permits for various parks in the downtown area. This link is from politifact and has a map of the various parks for those interested in proximity. http://bit.ly/2uVwYpJ None of this speaks to the violence, but I’m interested in how this new information might factor in your analysis. This still is an ETW, but I’m still not ready to cast equal blame on “both sides”. I also am no fan of violence regardless of the perpetrator, but simply can’t view these antifa idiots as anything other than a loose band of trouble makers. They are not on par with the KKK who has a long and well documented history of violence and terror. in antifa reacting to such a group, while not right if it devolves to violence, still wouldn’t put them on par in my opinion. And if this is an ethics inconsistency, I’m prepared to wear this one. Much more to explore later…

    • How many KKK and neo-Nazi marches turned violent in the last forty years?

    • Kyjo

      Yes, the counter-protesters had a permit to assemble in McGuffey Park and Justice Park. Politifact does its best to pretend that this somehow gave the counter-protesters carte blanche by quoting a city official who states the very technical truth that no public area would have been off-limits to individuals. Of course, because permits aren’t issued to individual persons who happen to wander through, but for planned events! But the counter-protesters from the start formed human barricades to prevent the neo-alt-Naziconfascionalemascists from entering Lee Emancipation Park, where a court injunction required that they be allowed to assemble. No one has a right, much less a permit, to physically prevent fellow-citizens from exercising their rights of assembly and speech in accordance with the law.

    • Hi, UR. I’m sorry it took me so long to respond: I was saving your comment for a time when I wasn’t dashing off replies off the top of my head.

      As you may know from reading here, I am generally anti-protest. They are too often wasteful, expensive, and substitutes for more productive and substantive action. Nonetheless, I agree with the Constitution that they must be permitted and protected as a core right of citizenship. Moreover, the nation’s core values should be aligned with the First Amendment. The government must not infringe on free speech, and the public should not. The government also must impede and prevent private efforts to chill speech based on content, or the right is meaningless.

      I am old enough to remember the jeers, thrown objects, threatening signs and ugly faces of the Southerner and anti-integration protesters on the sidelines as civil rights marchers passed by. I remember thinking that the marchers were extremely brave. Well. you shouldn’t have to be brave, and be in fear of your life, to express your opinion in this country, in marches or otherwise, and how many times you express those view is irrelevant. The counter-demonstrators were there to interfere with the demonstration, either by shouting down its message or by intimidating the protesters. That’s unethical. It is a heckler’s veto, and the heckler’s veto isn’t speech, it’s a speech prevention tactic.

      The groups should have been kept apart by the conditions of the permits. A counter demonstration designed as a confrontation is anti-speech, whether it occurs at the first protest or the 50th.

      I think efforts to compare thugs misses the point, and is a distraction. The current KKK is a vestige; the antifa is a much larger group, and has been responsible for far more recent violence than the Klan. Both are extremist groups that extol violence: they deserve each other, but they also have the same rights to protest that I do. That has to mean that they should not have to consider whether expressing their political views, however ugly, in a legal protest will result in an injury. If they do, then our rights of free speech are a sham.

      I hope you keep weighing in, my friend. Your perspective is a gift here.

  7. Kyjo

    Readers here might like to know this information about how the Lee statue in Charlottesville came to be:

    On May 28, 1917, Paul McIntire purchased a city block that encompassed 45,435 square feet bound by Jefferson and Market Streets and by First and Second Streets, NE. On the lot stood the 1829 Southall-Venable home which was owned by the Charles S. Venable family. The house was a two story brick dwelling surrounded by several smaller outbuildings and beautiful gardens containing fir, oak, and weeping willow trees. During the following year, McIntire had the dwelling demolished and created a formal landscaped square, now known as Emancipation Park (formerly known as Lee Park). McIntire gave the site to the City of Charlottesville in order “to erect thereon a statue of General Robert E. Lee and to present said property to the City as a memorial to his parents…” This park was the first of four parks he eventually gave to the City of Charlottesville.

    Further details about the history of Lee Emancipation Park can be found on the city’s own website, here. Don’t expect to find this level of investigation in any major media outlets. Without a doubt, McIntire’s primary motive was to celebrate Jim Crow and intimidate black people. (Never mind that he also gave Washington Park, named for Booker T., to the city for its black citizens.) Charlottesville had best get busy removing not only the Lee and Jackson statues, both of which McIntire commissioned, but also the Lewis, Clark, and Sacajawea statue and the separate Clark statue. They definitely need to rename McIntire Park, McIntire Rd, and UVA’s McIntire Shool of Commerce and McIntire Amphitheater, and should probably seek to have the old McIntire High School building demolished. Might as well remove his grave in Maplewood Cemetery while they’re at it. This will undoubtedly be easier than the next movement for racial justice in Charlottesville: erasing all memory of the abominable slaveholder and white supremacist, Thomas Jefferson.

  8. Still Spartan

    So, Duke was called Trinity first. Do you think that there was “outrage” when the school was renamed? Do you think if you gifted $100 M to Duke right now that it would be ridiculous for the school to rename itself Marshall University? That is how endowments work. If you want to have a building named after you, you have to have done something great or have donated piles of money. Now, excuse me, but I have to leave, I have tickets to the MCI Center, I mean Verizon Center, I mean Capital One Center tonight.

  9. For those of you on Facebook…

  10. Well, the Robert E Lee statue in Dallas has finally come down, we expect the problems in the African American community to be resolved by Monday. Already fathers are returning to households in droves, out of wedlock births are disappearing and the abortion rate in the community reduced by half. Progressive economic policies are miraculously no longer holding African Americans back.

    We need to bring these statues down now! How on earth did we not know that they were what was plaguing the community all this time?

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