Morning Ethics Warm-Up, 7/15/2019: A Double-Talking Star, A Doxxing Law Prof, And…Grandstanding Paper Towels?

It’s a good day, a new week, and anything is possible…

Perry may be a good example of that. Supposedly he was told early on in life that he had a two-digit, sub-normal IQ and should seek a trade rather than anything too intellectually demanding. Como dutifully went to barber school, and was cutting hair when his singing talent made him a star. This story should make us doubt IQ tests more than we doubt the intelligence of “Mr. C”….

1 And today’s ridiculous virtue-signaling and pandering to political correctness goes to…Brawny paper towels!

Ugh.

Keep repeating falsities frequently enough, and people will begin to think they make sense. I guess that’s the theory, right? The truth is that one gender is stronger than the other in about 99.9% of the population, or to put it another way, the average male is much larger and stronger than the average female. This is why women who make themselves look like this…

…are regarded as unusual–because they are.  But Brawny’s lie is used to, for example, pretend that there is nothing unfair about allowing biological men transitioning to womanhood to compete in sporting events as women.

From now on, it’s Bounty for me!

2.  Scarlett Johansson demonstrates why most performers should shut up about politics and social issues. You may recall the post about Johansson being forced to withdraw from playing the role of a real life transgender male. Speaking about the controversy, the actress opined,

“You know, as an actor I should be allowed to play any person, or any tree, or any animal because that is my job and the requirements of my job… I feel art should be free of restrictions. I think society would be more connected if we just allowed others to have their own feelings and not expect everyone to feel the way we do.”

Then she began getting criticism from the social media mob (and maybe her agent), and in a subsequent interview said,

“I recognize that in reality, there is a wide spread discrepancy amongst my industry that favors Caucasian, cis gendered actors and that not every actor has been given the same opportunities that I have been privileged to. I continue to support, and always have, diversity in every industry and will continue to fight for projects where everyone is included.”

Translation: “Tell me what I have to believe to maintain my income and popularity, and I’ll say I believe it.” Ah, integrity! It’s a wonderful thing. Unfortunately, it requires courage and the ability to think.

Shut up, Scarlett. When you end up only being able to play blonde bimbos, it will be nobody’s fault but your own. [Pointer: Amy Alkon]

3. Speaking of  Big Lies…Jeffrey Omari, a Gonzaga University Law School professor, wrote an article published in  the ABA Journal about his reactions when a student wore a MAGA hat to class. He writes,

From my (progressive) perspective as a black man living in the increasingly polarized political climate that is America, MAGA is an undeniable symbol of white supremacy and hatred toward certain nonwhite groups. For its supporters, MAGA indexes an effort to return to a time in American history when this country was “great” for some—particularly, propertied white men—but brutally exclusionary for others, most notably women and people of color. Recent statements by MAGA-supporting politicians such as Roy Moore have given this perspective added credence.

It’s an embarrassingly biased and reason-free article. Imagine citing Roy Moore as a authority for anything! Not to spoil my upcoming Big Lie review on this topic, but “Make America Great Again” is no more a racist dogwhistle than Obama’s “Hope and Change.” The difference is that Obama’s mainstream political opponents didn’t spend years spreading the lie that what “change” really meant was to subjugate white Americans to a system where they were treated as second class by law, and that America’s system of personal liberty would be “changed ” into a socialist nanny state, with the necessary restrictions on the First, Second, and Fourth Amendments, of course.

The statement that the intended racism of the MAGA caps is “undeniable” is a disgraceful argument for a law professor to make. Of course it is deniable. I deny it; so do plenty of other serious analysts. Using “it’s undeniable” as a substitute for an actual argument is the sign of an emotional position rather than a considered one.

(Now someone will find a post or six where I used the adjective “undeniable.” )

Pepperdine Law School dean Paul Caron collected opinions from other law professors on the article. Some of the reactions:

Howard Wasserman (Florida International): “[I]f, under the rules of the school and the professor, student can wear a baseball hat with any political message in this classroom, in what way did this student fail to meet his “professional expectations”? Other than by wearing a hat with a message the prof does not like. … Arguably, in fact, Omari, not the student, disrupted the class when he took the time from the substantive discussion to comment on the student’s sartorial choices. …I think the dean, who presumably knows something about law, has a bigger problem: One of his faculty members took to a national publication and called a student–unnamed but readily identifiable within a small institution (Gonzaga has about 350 students)–unprofessional, insensitive, disrespectful, and racist. For engaging in constitutionally protected speech supporting the sitting President. …

Jonathan Turley (George Washington University): “[Professor Omari’s op-ed] demonstrates the increasingly shrill environment faced by conservative students. Omari took to the pages of the Journal to recount his almost breathless encounter with a student wearing a “Make America Great Again” (MAGA) hat. … For Omari, the incident was chilling since he declares the MAGA hats worn by many conservatives to be per se racist symbols. Omari insisted that anyone wearing the hats are advancing “racial antagonism” since they are an “undeniable symbol of white supremacy.” …The mere fact that some kid wears a MAGA hat does not mean that he is a racist or that he is trying to racially intimidate an African-American professor. Omari simply concludes that the hat was by definition improper and inciting . … Omari assumed that the interpretation of the hat (which is not shared by many) was manifestly true. This is part of the trend that we have discussed on campuses where speech is being curtailed as racist or microaggressive based on how it is perceived by others as opposed to how it is intended….”

Scott Fruehwald (Legal Skills Prof Blog): [T]he ABA article was not appropriate. Students and probably professors at Gonzaga can certainly identify the student. A professor has publicly shamed a student when his actions were probably innocent. A professional teacher does not do this.”

Dean Caron adds, “But wasn’t that most likely the professor’s goal? I mean, if we’re going to apply his metric of accepting the most cynical view possible, doesn’t it make sense to assume that the professor’s goal was effectively to dox the student? What possible ramification is the professor going to face other than a little light chiding on an internet board?”

24 thoughts on “Morning Ethics Warm-Up, 7/15/2019: A Double-Talking Star, A Doxxing Law Prof, And…Grandstanding Paper Towels?

  1. What possible ramification is the professor going to face other than a little light chiding on an internet board?”

    I think the fact that this is the most common result when a Democrat is “doxxed” is sufficient, when compared to the converse reality, to demonstrate the substantial inferiority of one party’s constituency. It seems that catering to and fostering a class of undignified, ungrateful parasites, bought and paid for through revenues seized by force of law from the very people they’ve been agitated against, lends itself to amassing a certain kind of agitated degeneracy amongst that constituency. Sow the wind, reap the whirlwind, as they say. They’ve rigged the game to weaponize the proverbial whirlwind, but it’s been done a dozen times by now and always ends the same way.

  2. #3: The most recent notable use of the word “undeniable” I recall was quite similar to this one, when the knitting site Ravelry declared that “support of the Trump administration is undeniably support for white supremacy”.

    It sure makes it easy to win the debate when your argument is undeniable.

  3. 1. Mrs. OB is plenty strong, as were my mother and my aunts and lots of wonderful women I’ve had as teachers and co-workers and friends. Physically? Not as strong as guys, But emotionally and intellectually? Sure. Oftentimes stronger. I’ll take a pass on having a baby, and not just thanks to Cory Booker’s proffered taxpayer funded generosity.

    2. Hey, at least Scarlett can still memorize and recite scripted apologies or corrections, whatever that was. But maybe it was on a teleprompter. In any event, she’s got that going for her. Which is good. And for quite a while longer, a deliciously surgurized face and body. Yum.

    3. More crackpot faculty soiling American academia. Depressing. But hey, the guy’s probably of color, gay and Muslim. A triple minority on the Gonzaga law school faculty. An HR trifecta! Although, as I understand it, such doubling and tripling up is not allow under DOL regs.

  4. (Now someone will find a post or six where I used the adjective “undeniable.” )

    In the words of Barney Stinson: “Challange Accepted.”

    A Nation Of Assholes: The Ultimate, Undeniable And Crucial Reason Donald Trump Must Never Be President

    The Marco Rubio Traffic Ticket Story: Is The NY Times’ Anti-GOP Bias Finally Undeniable…and Unmanageable??

    NOW You Tell Us: The Undeniable Deceit In The Post-Sandy Hook Anti-Gun Push

    There are more, but here are three with it in the title.

    4. I have seen many people point out that the professor is doxing the student, but I’m willing to give him the benefit of the doubt. Not that it helps his case, it just goes to show you how short-sighted and selfish the whole thing was. Not that reading it didn’t already give you that impression.

  5. The difference is that Obama’s mainstream political opponents didn’t spend years spreading the lie that what “change” really meant was to subjugate white Americans to a system where they were treated as second class by law, and that America’s system of personal liberty would be “changed ” into a socialist nanny state, with the necessary restrictions on the First, Second, and Fourth Amendments, of course.

    Would that not make Obama the real racist if “Change” was “really meant was to subjugate white Americans to a system where they were treated as second class by law”?

  6. 1. In defense of Brawny… No, wait, I can’t defend them. They are pandering, pure and simple.

    This stupidity has polluted the thinking of my dear wife, who has for some reason taken the notion that the female USA soccer team deserves the same money as the men. After beating my head against that wall repeatedly and getting a fusillade of rationalizations, we simply agreed to disagree on that, and agreed that professionals such as her doing the same job as a man deserve the same salary.

    I live by “happy wife, happy life.”

    2. Oh, God. “Better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to speak out and remove all doubt.”

    She removed all doubt. Not because she was wrong, but because in her industry, being right and athwart the revealed Social Justice Wisdom carries a terrible price. She has to know this, it is her responsibility to know it as a professional actor.

    If you are going against the Hollywood Left, Scarlett, do it with class and integrity, and damn the torpedoes. Otherwise, silence is golden.

    3. I read about this a while back.

    I can only say I don’t know whether to feel sorry for the professor, or angry with him. You’d think an intelligent man like he obviously is would remember the old “sticks and stones” saying, if he feels assailed by the MAGA hat.

    Honestly, though, I think his reaction is simply Trump hatred in writ large. He hates Trump, so that makes him quick to conclude Trump is racist. If Trump is racist, everyone who supports him, and everything that refers to him or his campaign is racist by association. Once we get there, it’s no wonder he felt triggered.

    • Ask your wife if they (the women’s soccer team) deserve the same rate of pay such that they will get 10% of all proceeds of the league’s gross revenues. If she says yes then tell her they currently get 13% of the gross receipts earned by the league.

      Then run like hell.

      • I tried. As I said, a fusillade of rationalizations and a refusal to listen to my explanation.

        So we found something we could agree on and called it even. 🙂

        • The math does not work out.
          The total gross reciepts for women’s soccer is 600 million which is exactly 10% of the 6 billion in revenue from the men’s league. Pay equity for the women players would mean no one else gets paid because it would take 100% of all revenues to achieve that goal.

          If the men’s soccer league is compelled to subsidize women’s soccer league it would be prima facie evidence that women are unable to compete for audience dollars. Do women want to know that they realy want men to support them financially?

  7. Here is the rub on the Brawny packaging. The images of females in flannel lumberjack outfits were fine. But when you drive home a political point with overt text on your packaging that is pandering.

    The irony here is that whole issue suggests that only women do the shopping for the household goods. That is sexist thinking. I can see the copy writers huddled around the whiteboard saying “gee, what tag lines will resonate with the ladies?”

    We used to buy Brawny paper towels but stopped about 6 weeks ago when the packaging appeared on the shelves of our grocery store. Now we just buy the one on sale.

    Scarlett should raise the question “Why is the next James Bond going to be a black woman if cis-gendered whites cannot play gay persons?”

    I deny that MAGA hats are just a symbol of white supremacy. My denial makes Professor Omari a liar. By the way who is driving the social polarization of which he speaks? I personally find the red, green, and black colors of the ANC that adorn many items of clothing to be symbolizing black separatism. Does that make those items racist messages?

  8. Scarlett should raise the question “Why is the next James Bond going to be a black woman if cis-gendered whites cannot play gay persons?”

    Oh. Great question.

    Except we both know the answer, and the answer is, “double standard.” Pie for me, but not for thee.

  9. Regarding #3, I propose a Rule for adoption by the ABA that: 1) any law school student who wears a MAGA hat must pin a sign to the back of the hat that reads, “Fuck the Draft”; and 2) any law professor who complains about such a MAGA hat will retroactively flunk Con Law.

    -Jut

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