Playing The Race Card For Intimidation, Power, And Profit

“Nice little airline you got there. Too bad if anything were to happen to it…”

The NAACP has hit on a new, unethical and brilliant extortion tactic. The venerable civil rights group issued an advisory warning calling for black travelers to be cautious about flying on American Airlines. This prompted the airline’s chairman, in response, to announce that the company does not “and will not tolerate discrimination of any kind.” In a previous advisory, the organization told African-Americans to stay out of Missouri. Next, it will tell them not to watch Fox News.

The NAACP attributed its warning to what it called “a pattern of disturbing incidents reported by African-American passengers, specific to American Airlines.”  It cited four incidents  as examples that “suggest a corporate culture of racial insensitivity and possible racial bias on the part of American Airlines.” Four incidents, of course, do not suggest a corporate culture or a pattern. How many white or Asian flyers have had similar confrontations? The NAACP doesn’t care, and I doubt it bothered to find out. The man who was dragged off a United flight in April was Asian. The female passenger who was allegedly struck by an American flight attendant earlier this year was white.  I consider myself abused by every airline I fly. Unfortunately, since I’m a Greek American, my only recourse is to conclude that the reason for my discomfort is that the industry is callous and incompetent, and its employees are poorly trained and supervised. If I were black, I would know my treatment was based on race.

The NAACP did not ask American to supply its side of the alleged racist incidents. As with the police shootings narrative, all that matters is the race of those involved: if a black passenger was ejected from a flight, that’s prima facie evidence of racism. The tactic is a boon for black passengers who feel like being difficult: is there any doubt that American will issue a memo telling its employees to be extra-tolerant and especially patient when black passengers misbehave? The result will be a racial double standard favoring African Americans. That, and the inevitable corporate contribution to the NAACP by American to show they are trying, is the real motivation behind the “advisory.”

Writes Isaac Bailey, a black CNN reporter, in a weird and self-contradictory piece:

It’s hard to be alarmed by the advisory, given the paucity of evidence the revered civil rights organization has so far presented..

Actually its easy to be alarmed by a civil rights organization calling your company racist. Who is he kidding?

And then Bailey goes on to make this the center of an “It’s not the worst thing” argument.

— and because we are living in volatile times during which profound questions about racial and other forms of inequality are popping up everywhere.

Naturally, he cites the fact that Colin Kaepernick isn’t employed, and that football fans don’t appreciate having to watch millionaire athletes turn the games they are paid to play  into agitprop for vague social justice complaints. Among other things, Bailey is also troubled that the FBI has created the term “black identity extremists,” as if everyone, including him, doesn’t know exactly what that refers to, and that is an accurate and useful description.

“I reached out to the NAACP to see if there was a compelling reason for the advisory I hadn’t thought of,” he writes, ” or if they had more evidence of a broader pattern of discrimination, but I didn’t hear back.” Bailey’s point appears to be that America is relentlessly racist, but focusing on the airlines is trivial.

It won’t seem trivial when an extorted corporation has the guts to sue the NAACP for disparagement and slander, as the organization deserves.

37 Comments

Filed under Business & Commercial, Ethics Alarms Award Nominee, Law & Law Enforcement, Philanthropy, Non-Profits and Charity, Race, Workplace

37 responses to “Playing The Race Card For Intimidation, Power, And Profit

  1. Rick M

    There are black professionals and then there are professional blacks. As far as American Airlines I believe they were the first Legacy carrier that had an all black flight crew and that means the flight deck and the flight attendants.

  2. Other Bill

    The NAACP must be moving into the corporate shake-down business. Tell a big corporation they have racial problems. Then tell them if they are interested, you will come in for a large fee and conduct seminars to rectify the problem. Collect a huge fee and move on to the next target.

    My neighbor from Missouri told me the NAACP issued a travel advisory telling black people not to travel to MIssouri.

  3. JP

    In a previous advisory, the organization told African-Americans to stay out of Mississippi. Next, it will tell them not to watch Fox News.

    Minor correction it was Missouri.

  4. Complete non-sequitur… But has anyone else seen the news that Mueller has apparently filed the first charges in the Russian investigation? We don’t know who he’s charging yet (I’m kinda surprised charges are coming, but if I had to guess, I’d say Manafort), but there are progressives literally about to vibrate their way through their office chairs as they hyperventilate in anticipation.You’d think after all the Geraldo Rivera moments since Trump was elected, they’d curb their enthusiasm, just a little.

    • JP

      I think waiting is better than speculation at this point.

    • Chris

      Surely the Russia investigation has nothing to do with ethics at all.

      • The Russian investigation, based on what we know so far, has to do with the Clinton campaign smearing the election as its excuse for failure, and the Trump Justice Department doing what the Obama Justice Department never had the integrity to do: recusing itself when it would have had to investigate a politically charged issue involving the Executive Branch.

        • Chris

          This is a beclowning, Jack. The intelligence community was examining inappropriate contacts between the Trump campaign and Russia in Summer of 2016. Your theory that it’s just about finding an excuse for Clinton’s loss requires time travel. Your desperate spin of using the investigation to make the Trump administration look better than the Obama administration is the worst display of bias you’ve revealed so far, and shows how far this site has fallen towards just becoming another right-wing blog.

          • Chris, I hate to play the lawyer card, but since you’ve played that “I am as ignorant as a rock” card, I have to. Investigations mean nothing. They aren’t evidence. The use of investigations in Washington is political, and a form of harassment and disinformation as often as not. Until the investigation has actually uncovered something solid, then there is nothing to talk about, unless, as in the case of the investigation of Hillary’s e-mails, there is already something seriously wrong on the record, which there was in that case (the destroyed e-mails, the existence of the server…).Ethics Alarms has covered almost every specific controversy related to the Democratic effort to delegitimize the election, which is what all of this is so far, as well as others, more often than I would prefer, like the specious obstruction of justice claim regarding Comey’s well-earned firing, and the aborted Don Trump meeting with Russians to get dirt on Hillary Clinton.

            I have seen nothing but rumors, innuendos, speculation and bad legal theories, none of which are worthy of daily flogging. I live in Washington, I read all this junk, I watch it on TV, and there still doesn’t appear to be anything substantive about the investigation that impugns Trump. In hyper-ventilation by the media and partisans over a manufactured “scandal,” it reminds me of the Plame Affair, which sent a White House aide to jail for misleading the investigation of a non-crime that the Special Counsel knew was probably an innocent mistake from the start, in a fiasco started by a Journalist publishing what he should not have, and allowing this to spin out of control while he protected his source, who was eventually revealed anyway.

            The legitimate legal analysts I follow and respect don’t see the shadows you seem to.

            I don’t know what you want, or what you think you want. I’m temped to designate Trump an Ethics Hero for managing to muddle through while he’s being undermined and his staff is being harassed by the accusations and a lynch mob news media—but that would be wrong, because I would mainly be doing it to annoy you.

            As it becomes more and more apparent that Trump is going to finish his term like voters intended, tweeting all the way, it seems like the most passionate Trump-haters are losing their minds. You appear to be a case in point.

            • Addendum: I see that Manafort, as everyone expected, is going to be indicted. I assume Flynn will follow. I have absolutely no interest, in this point, in either of those characters. Yes, breaking the law is unethical. I think I’ve covered that several times here.

            • Chris

              “I’m tempted to designate Trump an Ethics Hero”

              The day you do that is the day this place officially becomes useless as an ethics blog and completes the transition into just another right-wing blog.

              • You’re tempting me sorely.

                • Chris

                  Do what you must. I am not the first here to comment on this blog’s hard-right turn since the election, and if I’m the last, it’s because none of those other people are ever here anymore.

                  Take this, for instance:

                  The metaphorical leak included the rejection of US sovereignty in the progressive approval of illegal immigration; the contempt for process as shown by the passage of the Affordable Care Act with tricks and maneuvers; the anti-white, anti-male rhetoric from Democrats, the embrace of anti-wealth and anti-success and anti-merit Occupy ideology by Obama and Democrats like Elizabeth Warren; the pro-Black Lives Matter stance of the DNC, the “men are presumed rapists” policies of the Obama Education Department, the disgraceful use of race-baiting and gender-baiting to intimidate critics; the extreme racial, gender and ethnic spoils system being established by Democrats as “social justice,” the slow and steady retreat from personal liberty, personal responsibility and individualism, the utter lawlessness and arrogance of the Clintons and their grubby venality, the vilification of police, the Obama administration’s willingness to erode national self-determination for world government; the pandering to Russia, Iran and Islam, the assault on freedom of speech and expression, the Second Amendment and Due Process; and, for me, the dangerous alliance between the news media and a single party, allowing the government to avoid accountability while deceiving and misleading voters.

                  There is not a single line of this rant that wouldn’t feel entirely natural coming out of Sean Hannity’s mouth. I understand you will view that as a “slur,” but I can’t say I’m sorry for saying it, because it is 100% true. You are better than Sean Hannity, which is why the fact that you sound more and more like him every day should alarm you.

                  • Steve-O-in-NJ

                    Then go to democratic underground or daily kos, where partisan hacks like you belong.

                    • Chris

                      No, see, I’m trying to avoid partisan blogs. Which this blog is increasingly becoming.

                    • Steve-O-in-NJ

                      So you can be the one liberal voice insulting the conservatives and browbeating the moderates to see it your way already? Not to mention your recent attacks on the moderator and attempts to hijack the blog by essentially telling him to write on what you choose, not what he chooses. Maybe you don’t thrive on partisan garbage a la The Bubble, but you obviously thrive on conflict, and the ability to stack the deck in your own favor. When others won’t genuflect to you as the apostle of truth you go on the attack, and when the attacks don’t work, you just get shriller and shriller.

                      Unfortunately the rest of us here can’t just bust you one in the grill, or we’d have done it long ago. Insisting on dominating the conversation is rude. Insisting on trying to dominate the conversation when you just don’t have the chops to do it is stupid. I’m telling you now, you don’t have the chops to dominate the discussion here. There are just too many people here who are more experienced, wiser, and smarter, who won’t take the shrill partisan rantings of a teacher under 30 seriously.

                      To us you are like the mouthy little freshman who has just come off being king of the lunch table in eighth grade, but who doesn’t grasp he is now playing in a different league and is trying to give the seniors grief. Unfortunately this isn’t high school, and we can’t waylay you, pull your shirt up and slap your belly until it’s as red as a lobster, pull your underwear up over your head, gag you with a dirty sock, then tie you up and leave you hanging from a tree branch for a good 6 or so hours (figure 2-3 until you’d be missed at home, an hour placing calls, then 2-3 to find you and cut you down). That’s how we think of you, though.

                  • Everything looks like a hard-right turn to someone who has upped stakes and charged widely to the Left to entrench further in fringe-land.

                    • Other Bill

                      Jack is clearly unhinged insofar as he has the absolute, unbridled temerity to not be a fan of the Obama administration and its policies and come right out and say so. Case closed.

              • philk57

                Maybe it does seem as though this blog has taken a hard right turn. I have to say, though, that the left is giving him so much more to work with than the right in recent weeks. The velocity of the crazy coming from the left in response to the very existence of Trump is pretty astonishing to me.

                However, I still see Jack calling out right wingers for their ethical lapses.

  5. The world has gone nuts.

    Airlines should add many digital video cameras to every passenger plane and tell customers if they don’t want to be videoed on the plane then should drive their car. Save the digital videos for a period of time. Raise the prices of airline tickets to pay for it.

    End of argument.

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