…Since everything is seemingly spinning out of control!
1. The party of Soviet-style historical airbrushing…Virginia Governor Northam, who you would think would now have to airbrush away himself, being a veteran black-face performer, has decreed that he will remove Richmond’s famous statue of Robert E. Lee from its pedestal and place it in storage, reports the Associated Press.
The monument was erected in 1890. Northam is expected to follow this cultural censorship with the virtual toppling of all Confederate monuments along Monument Avenue, including those of J.E.B. Stuart, Stonewall Jackson; Confederate naval commander Matthew Fontaine Maury, and Confederate President Jefferson Davis.
I’ve written a lot about the ethical folly of Americans adopting this Soviet habit; most of the essays are collected here. The American Civil War was probably the most important and complex event in our history with continuing influence and impact today, yet progressives think the wisest approach is to make it as invisible as possible to future generations. This is as good a symbolic signal regarding what’s dangerously wrong with 21st Century progressivism as one could find. The ethics values being missed are competence, responsibility, respect, perspective, humility and citizenship.
Lee, especially, deserves to be remembered and studied. I am not a Lee admirer in most respects, but it is indisputable that he was an important historical figure, and that all of his significant moments in the spotlight were not negative ones. In particular, Lee probably deserves credit for ending the Civil War and stopping the Confederacy from becoming a long-term guerilla insurrection. That alone earns him a statue.
What Northam and the statue-topplers are doing is lobotomizing America.
2. Seems ripe for a fact-check…In a virtual town hall yesterday, Joe Biden claimed that “10 to 15 percent” of Americans are “just not very good people.” This is exactly the kind of off-the-cuff, seat-of-the-pants observation that regularly gets added to the “Trump Lies” lists. Personally, I think Joe’s estimate is terribly low, and that he is mistaken about who the “bad guys” really are. Him, for example, and any party that would offer him to the America people as a competent President.
3. Justice for New York. All of a sudden, New York seems to have turned against Mayor De Blasio. The city’s voters, with open eyes, elected a preening socialist with a crypto- Communist wife. His policies turned Times Square back into a cesspool and he was still re-elected. Then his second term was even worse than his first. De Blasio continued his pattern of undermining his own police force, most recently denouncing one of his cops for drawing his gun. Then the full video of the incident was released showing the officer coming to the defense of another cop who had been hit with a brick.
Before the George Floyd Freak-out, the Mayor urged citizens to go to the theaters as the Wuhan virus was infecting his city. NYC turned into the epicenter of the national epidemic. Continuing a pattern of attacking the Jewish community, De Blasio had cops harassing Jewish mothers and kids who were violating lockdown rules while the same cops were defending protesters who violated social distancing rules. Videos showed police officers dispersing the mothers and their children at a playground while a larger group of protesters gathered in open violation of the lockdown.
While his city was being torn apart by riots, De Blasio praised his daughter for getting arrested with the mob. Here’s the mugshot…
“She wants to see a better and more peaceful world. She believes a lot of change is needed. I’m proud of her that she cares so much and she was willing to go out there and do something about it,” was his response. This is known as “mixed messaging.”
Now people on both ends of the political spectrum are demanding the the mayor resign. At the George Floyd memorial yesterday, the city’s first couple showed up 20 minutes late—this is typical—and De Blasio was booed by the congregation.
Everything voters needed to know about his politics and character was apparent when he was first elected, and certainly when he was re-elected. Irresponsible citizenship has consequences. In this case, the consequences were deadly, and perhaps irreversible. [Sources: The Blaze, The Lid, Stephen Kruiser]
4. So now the New York Times will be unable to claim it doesn’t operate with a permanent political bias. I wonder if all the Ethics Alarms exiles who denied there was any mainstream media bias will finally…oh, what I am I saying. Of course not.
The AP reports,
In an embarrassing about-face, The New York Times said Thursday that an opinion piece it ran by U.S. Sen. Tom Cotton advocating the use of federal troops to quell nationwide protests about police mistreatment of black Americans did not meet its standards.
Cotton’s op-ed, titled “Send in the Troops” and first posted online late Wednesday, caused a revolt among Times journalists, with some saying it endangered black employees. Some staff members called in sick Thursday in protest.
The Times said in a statement that a “rushed editorial process” led to publication of a piece that did not meet its standards.
I will defy anyone who reads Paul Krugman, Charles Blow, Don Leonhardt, Michelle Goldberg or any of the other hyperbolic far-Left writers in the Times op-ed stable to point out how Senator Cotton’s piece didn’t at least reach the loose standards of fact and bloviation the Times tolerates daily. Cotton reacted to the Times humiliation by saying that the paper was”surrendering to the mindless woke mob.” That’s true, but the surrender happened long ago. Now, thanks to this episode, the Times’ abandonment of a commitment to open-minded journalism and to publishing opinions that offend its most doctrinaire staff and readers should be undeniable.
Well, good. I’ll be citing this development frequently. I only wish the departed EA commenters who constantly denied that there was pervasive mainstream media bias were still around so I could shake it in their faces.
5. Does the irony of this register on anyone? Students at the University of Washington are demanding that black students be graded more leniently on finals because they are too “busy fighting for [their] rights to sit down and study.” An online petition calling for relaxed grading based has more than 26,000 signatures. It says in part,
“…Give Black students a break! We are already DISPROPORTIONATELY impacted by this pandemic in terms of health care access and financial hardship. Now add state-sanctioned violence, how do you expect us to enter finals in this headspace?!” reads the petition.You need to encourage and demand professors to accommodate their black students during this time. If UW truly understands our pain, UW will be a part of alleviating it…We can’t sit back and watch as injustices unfold before our eyes. We don’t have the privilege that white and non-black students do to ignore what’s happening and stay at home to study for finals.We are busy fighting for our rights and for the rights of future black children and students to sit down and study. The least UW could do is demand professors to accommodate us during this time”
So now the university has actually advised professors to “…be especially responsive to the needs that your students, especially those who are members of the Black community, may have for accommodations as we conclude the school year.”
Funny—if I was determined to fight “white supremacy,” I would demand that policies based on the presumption of some kind of genetic or cultural weakness among non-whites be abolished, not magnified.