“My Name Is Jack, I Am Not A Racist, And All Of You Are A Disgrace To The Nation.”

Columnist Rod Dreher reports that Northwestern University Law School held a town hall meeting online, and participants were “require  to begin with  a ritual denunciation of themselves as racist. The screen shot above is from the discussion.

You know, I am increasingly seeing ethics stories that require little or no elaboration or commentary, like this morning’s post about the Washington D.C. government favoring eliminating the Jefferson Memorial and Washington Monument. If you have to have these things explained to you, the probability is that you are already beyond helping, or, perhaps, six.

What we see above is reminiscent of the forced behavior in Communist re-education camps. I do not what kind of Americans would submit to such a directive, but I do know what must be involved: weak character, weak self-esteem, destructive education, flaccid parenting, basic estrangement from American culture, and dangerous vulnerability to peer pressure.

And cowardice. Let’s not forget that. These people are cowards. The United States is too good for them. They weaken the nation’s values, strength and spirit by submitting to coerced “confessions” of this kind.

Oh, how I would have loved to be in the meeting, and announce myself to these sad shells of human beings, so willing to abandon their liberty and self-respect to signal imaginary virtue.

39 thoughts on ““My Name Is Jack, I Am Not A Racist, And All Of You Are A Disgrace To The Nation.”

  1. So now, American universities are hosting “conversations” that require participants to begin with a ritual denunciation of themselves. Nice to know. What’s next?! Mandatory self-flagellation?

    Reminds me of my favorite line (and biggest laugh) from “Gone With the Wind:” Rhett growls to Scarlett, “I’ve always thought a good lashing with a buggy-whip would benefit you immensely.”

    • So far it’s just kneeling foot-washing, and being forced to utter the phrase “black lives matter.” Flagellation is coming, I’m sure. I kneel to no one except God, in all my life the closest I’ve come or will ever come to foot washing is to give my lady friend a bottle of water to wash beach sand off her feet before putting on her shoes, and I will not say anything at a rhetorical gunpoint.

    • This sort of petulance disguised as “a necessary conversation” reminds me of a line told me in the ’80s by a friend and client from Oklahoma that could have been from “Gone With the Wind:” “If I’d known you were going to be this much trouble, I’d have picked my own damned cotton.”

  2. This is pure brainwashing. Keep repeating something until it becomes a reality to the victim. Cults use this same tactic with great results. I never would have thought our own universities would be that nefarious.

  3. The examples shown are female participants. Why? Are women more likely to be coerced into such self debasement or are these just the two he had. I don’t know a single male that would write such a statement about themselves. In fairness, I don’t know a single female that would do that.

    If this represents how the majority of our current college age generation of people think I would recommend that colleges begin requiring Chinese language courses so they will be able to understand the directives they are given.

    I wonder what would be said if the black students had to denounce themselves as shiftless and lazy.

  4. My name is Steven, and I am a conservative and a Republican. I’ve been a Republican since I was 18 and never once considered walking away.

    I believe Europe and the Europeans got to where they are because they learned to be better at navigation, exploration, and warfare than others, no other reasons.

    I believe Christopher Columbus was a brave navigator who sailed where no one else dared to go, and that without his opening the way between old world and new, the United States would not have come to be, and the world would be the poorer for it.

    I believe that George Washington, Andrew Jackson, Ulysses S. Grant, and FDR were the right men at the right time to deal with the biggest crises this country found itself in, and lesser men might well have failed, and we’d be worse off for it.

    I believe that the Founding Fathers got it right, and that their work doesn’t deserve to be discarded because men two centuries ago did not measure up to the values of less than two decades ago.

    I believe that the conquest of the frontier was inevitable, as is always the case when a more developed society meets a less developed one.

    I believe that slavery was wrong, that it benefitted increasingly fewer and fewer as time went on, and that the US took longer than it should have to abolish it. I also know that abolition came at a terrible price when it did come, and that if the issue had been forced in 1787 this country would never have come to be. I also know that it now hasn’t existed in this country for 155 years and no one who was a slave or who owned, traded, bought or sold a slave, or did so on another’s behalf, is still alive.

    I believe in individual rights, not group rights, and that the color of your skin, your gender, what name you use when you pray (or if you pray at all), or how you work out your sexuality gives you no more and no less rights than anyone else.

    I believe that no one owes anyone else anything except by whatever transaction he and another may freely choose to enter into.

    I believe that everyone is himself primarily responsible for his success and happiness, and that everyone should make the best use of what talents he has to overcome whatever obstacles he meets.

    I believe in individual responsibility, not group responsibility, for wrong acts. No one should be made to answer for wrong acts that he himself did not commit.

    I believe the playing field is NOT level and the books of life do NOT balance out perfectly, and that’s just how it is, how it always has been, and how it always will be.

    I believe in freedom of speech – and that means I may not like what you have to say, but I will not interfere with your ability to say it. I ask that you reciprocate.

    I believe everyone is free to choose to honor or not to honor whoever and whatever he chooses, but not to tell others who they can and can’t, nor to destroy what he disagrees with simply because he does.

    I believe it is government’s role to protect people and provide necessary services, not to run their lives, and that includes not trying to enforce civility, kindness, or “right thinking” among citizens.

    I believe in freedom of religion, not just freedom of worship. That means the power to compel someone to go against his conscience is very limited, and that if the government can’t compel you to vote for your leadership or to pick up a gun and defend your country, it should not be able to compel you to bake a cake or arrange flowers.

    I believe that anyone is free to move about this country and free to move about the world, although other countries may have their own ideas on the matter. That’s all right, each country gets to decide these things for itself. However, if you choose to enter this country with the intention of staying, you must do so by the rules we have decided apply.

    I believe that if you want the government to do something, you need to go through the established process, not force it by mob action or vandalism.

    I believe society should try to help those who find themselves in difficult circumstances through no fault of their own. However, I believe there is a limit to that help, and it is meant to be help, not a lifestyle.

    I believe those who break society’s rules should receive appropriate punishment. Sometimes that means lengthy confinement or even execution. Justice may be combined with mercy, but there is no requirement that it be, especially for those who persist in breaking society’s rules.

    I believe that your success or failure is mainly yours, and one person’s failure does not create a lien on another’s success.

    I don’t believe I owe anyone an apology just for being who and what I am. I believe there is always room to do better, but that doing better means increasing your knowledge, your skills, or the good you do, it does not mean thinking the way others want to force you to think.

    I don’t believe any of this makes me a racist, and if anyone believes it does, it says more about him than it does about me.

    • Wow. Looking over your Credo in more detail . . . it really nicely illustrates the ‘basic tenets of Liberalism’. That is, as a sort of *tent* under which everyone & anyone can live . . . and must live.

      I don’t believe any of this makes me a racist, and if anyone believes it does, it says more about him than it does about me.

      You are still begging here. Begging not to be condemned. Begging not to be seen in a harsh light. But you are also begging not to see yourself. Not to see what is there just under the surface, so to speak.

      Nevertheless, your Credo is essentially that of American civil society. What you object to it they *they* have broken the Rules of Liberalism. They are not playing by the rules you had adjusted yourself to. like a social pretzel. And you really did think it would turn out differently! A liberal Brave New World. You really did think that by flooding the nation with incommensurate demographics — by surrendering *super-majority status* — that they New Comers would kneel before America’s Icons. They seem to have other plans and designs however.

      The reality is very different. The dog has teeth. The teeth bite. Ouch!

      The problem with this deviant phase of Hyper-Liberalism is that though it will have to be superseded, it is quite hard to say by what exactly. But something has to come forward to suggest an alternative to what definitely looks like a failed or failing Liberalism. This is not just in America mind you.

      You do see, I hope, that what can demand order immediately is a government/military show of force? You do notice that this is sort of *in the wings*? (Social chaos demands it). But that is what happens in a late-phase of democracy . . . as it moves toward tyranny.

      This is really a big deal. And this is why everyone senses the intensity and importance — the magnitude — of the changes that are now well upon us.

      Thank Heavens my kitchen is completely in order and I did get those new Staub cast iron pots!

      • Aliza,
        I don’t believe Liberalism and Progressivism are the same. Or, at least they once meant very different things. By definition Liberalism requires a Laissez Faire approach to governance. Progressivism requires much more central management as it takes on the responsibility to determining and prioritizing social needs. The reason Progressivism fails miserably at identifying and correcting problems is that people are so diverse there can be no one size solution to fit all situations. When people try to solve their problems themselves, prior progressive legislation own rules often blocks them from doing something legally because, as I believe, Progressives see human beings as selfish and brutish who require constant regulation to be protected from others. Because of this no one is ever satisfied. Progressivism requires massive bureaucracies and virtually unlimited resources to keep its constituents docile. Consider what would happen if the Federal government was barred legally or in the markets from obtaining any more credit.

        Conversely classic Liberalism believes people are capable of managing their own affairs without a great deal of governmental interference. This is not to say that Liberalism has no social compact; indeed it does. Our country was built on Liberalism. That does not mean that Liberalism is the be all and end all of political philosophy. Liberalism allowed slavery to flourish, Liberalism allowed monopolies and trusts to form at the expense of the many.

        I should point out that the concept of being a Conservative is also bastardized. Conservative is derived from the word conserve which means to save that which is good and provides for utility later thus making it valuable. That which is of no further use, or has no significant future value can be discarded or retooled into something that has future value. I see the modern conservative position as one that seeks to ensure that ideas, policies, resources, that advance society as a whole should be kept and protected from exhaustion. The current progressive political policies toward BLM and other groups who seek to condemn one segment in order for those groups to benefit is a negative sum game where all people wind up worse off. Even environmental policy where “conservation” groups wage war Conservatives are portrayed as those wanting dirty air and water. This is hardly the case, Conservatives are the ones willing to take measures to ensure the long run value of the entire resource. Oil spilled all over the ground cannot be sold and costly to clean up so to assume that shortcuts will taken building a pipeline to raise profits is a joke. Progressives don’t want an activity they deem offensive to take place at all. In your face demands do little to engender a willingness to come to a common ground. In my opinion, where Conservatism fails is when it relies entirely on subjective unprovable values as the foundation for some of its policies, such as gay marriage.

        To be a true Constitutional Conservative you have to allow others to enjoy all the freedoms you enjoy. For example, people have a right to unimpeded freedom to practice the religion of their choice. This means that one religion cannot hold sway over legislation affecting all persons. This goes both ways. Just as Catholics or other denominations would have no right to demand the outlawing of birth control pills and other devices Catholics and others should not be compelled to provide them to employees directly or indirectly.

        I am torn on the public accommodations civil rights laws. I would agree that any person seeking to buy from me should have that right but I should also have the right to decline a particular service requested if it violates my core beliefs. Government bars persons from buying certain products and services from anyone. A voter under 21 cannot buy cigarettes, whiskey, or a handgun yet I am not allowed to decide to withhold a service at my own detriment as it also denies me the revenue from that sale and can boost the sales of my competition. Theoretically, public accommodations laws may actually eliminate market niches for some products that create opportunities for the minority entrepreneur. Such theoretical opportunities are also easily appropriated by bigots seeking a rationalization. Nonetheless, public accommodations laws are frequently being used as a legal cudgel to press an issue at the expense of another citizen when the plaintiff has many other opportunities to have his needs met.

        As you can see, my brand of Conservatism allows for change when that change advances all of society. I also believe we should not discard ideas and concepts that have worked to advance society positively for eons simply to accommodate a relatively small group where the net social benefit is unknown , potentially insignificant, or potentially highly negative. Such issues need to be tested in the laboratories of the states. Only there can we begin to assess the costs and benefits of such changes and compare it to similar states that did not entertain such policies. Without such comparisons we have no way to evaluate whether such policies are good for all.


        If we are looking for an official creed we have already have one

        The official creed of the United States:

        The American’s Creed, by William Tyler Page (derived from the words of Thomas Jefferson)

        I believe in the United States of America as a government of the people, by the people, for the people; whose just powers are derived from the consent of the governed, a democracy in a republic, a sovereign Nation of many sovereign States; a perfect union, one and inseparable; established upon those principles of freedom, equality, justice, and humanity for which American patriots sacrificed their lives and fortunes.
        I therefore believe it is my duty to my country to love it, to support its Constitution, to obey its laws, to respect its flag, and to defend it against all enemies.

        –Written 1917, accepted by the United States House of Representatives on April 3, 1918.

        In the 1950’s, Dean Alfange, a person espousing Progressive ideals penned the following:
        An American’s Creed or My Creed

        “I do not choose to be a common man. It is my right to be uncommon. I seek to develop whatever talents God gave me—not security. I do not wish to be a kept citizen, humbled and dulled by having the state look after me. I want to take the calculated risk; to dream and to build, to fail and to succeed. I refuse to barter incentive for a dole. I prefer the challenges of life to the guaranteed existence; the thrill of fulfillment to the stale calm of utopia. I will not trade freedom for beneficence nor my dignity for a handout. I will never cower before any earthly master nor bend to any threat. It is my heritage to stand erect, proud and unafraid; to think and act myself, enjoy the benefit of my creations and to face the world boldly and say – ‘This, with God’s help, I have done.’ All this is what it means to be an American.”

        The irony is that his creed is politically opposite of some of what he advocated. He believed that the New Deal programs were treated badly by the SCOTUS. Alfange wanted the court to adopt a more progressive attitude towards the policies. Alfange believed “programs should not be evaluated solely on their legality, but on their possible moral and economic effects, as well as public perception at the time”.

        As a person who is closer to a Conservative than a Libertarian I can support both of the above because conceptually both allow me to be the master of my own destiny.

        • Thanks for your interesting post.

          I don’t believe Liberalism and Progressivism are the same.

          But perhaps you would agree that Progressivism requires Liberalism? In any case the Progressivism of our present is an evolution of, or a mutation of, a more conventional liberalism. I use the term Hyper-Liberalism to indicate an aberration.

          I do not have times to respond very much right now but the Jeffersonian credo came from a Jeffersonian age. Pre-industrial, pre-everything. It is obvious to me that it cannot and does not apply to the modern State nor to the conditions of today. Everything has become so much more complex that, to quote Yeats, ‘the centre cannot hold’.

          “I believe in the United States of America as a government of the people, by the people, for the people”.

          This is so flatly absurd and obviously untrue that one has to stop there and linger over it. In our modernity there are countless machinations (as I refer to them) to get around this. Both Edward Bernays and Walter Lippmann explain, openly and forthrightly, that men’s ideas & opinions must be controlled and channeled. All the mechanisms for hijacking real involvement in real decision-making are in no sense in the people’s hands.

          And the distortions of Liberalism in Hyper-Liberalism point to a State that had long ago — long ago! — been subverted by a range of other powers.

          So, a whole new description of The Present really needs to be defined. But who will do it? Who can do it?

          I see the advantage, if you will, of a sound liberalism as it was — as you say — ‘classically defined’. I also see it as eventuating in the ‘liberal rot’ that is effectively destroying the soul. ‘Liberalism rots of the soul’ is a phrase that captures a certain truth.

          How this comes about needs to be closely examined.

    • I’ve been a libertarian most of my life. Then this became a conservative opinion:

      I believe in freedom of speech – and that means I may not like what you have to say, but I will not interfere with your ability to say it. I ask that you reciprocate.

      I’ve always believed the same. I’ve not wanted to pick sides, I don’t fit the left / right majority. But the left is forcing me, when they abandoned freedom of speech.

      Yet another post worthy of COTD.

  5. Would anyone choose to have Emily Mullin or Sara Somervoid be part of their law firm if they fold so easily?

    I would not want them defending my interests if they so so willingly surrender their own.

    • Maybe you have to sign a diversity pledge before getting hired. Many organizations used to begin meetings with the pledge of allegiance. It wouldn’t surprise me if soon you’ll have to make a pledge of allegiance to diversity:

      I pledge allegiance
      to the diversity of the races
      the faiths and genders,
      as many as the stars in the sky
      and the sands of the shores
      And to the eradication of
      racism and white supremacy
      an complete equality for all.

  6. The term ‘racist’ and everything connected with it is a possession of a devious and radical Left. I would go further and say that it is one of the most vile yet powerful tools of Marxist praxis. As Jonathan Bowden pointed out, I forgot who he quoted, it is a *magic word*. Say it, use it, and your opponent collapses right in front of you. It puts him so very immediately on the defensive — because the accusation hooks him in a very devious way and in a part of his own self where he has doubts and uncertainty — and in this way the term is an ideal one for coercive social and inter-personal manipulation.

    If you have to defend yourself, you are immediately placed on their turf.

    Now let us turn to the term itself. But let us do so not from a defensive posture. Let us first say “Race Is Real, Race Matters”. Did your earth shake? Is your house still standing? Have violent ripples moved through your entire being and caused cracks to appear in your face? Are you down on your knees crying to God for forgiveness? Do you feel inclined to beat up yourself and then wash away your sin somehow? If you have any guilt & self-doubt this shows how devious is the term and those who use it.

    You have been tricked, manipulated, coerced and duped for generations now. The entire connotation that stands behind the word ‘racist’ has got you tied up in knots. It is a term of the most outrageous power for you and it is used against you by enemies.

    Race Is Real & Race Matters.

    But that is not in any sense all that matters. And one’s *race* is not really, or not exclusively, what has importance. What makes us us, and what has made the Occident the Occident, and what has made *whiteness* their enemy and what they have set their will on destroying — what is there and what this means needs to be understood, not denied. It is a process of discovery combined with gaining mental freedom and objectivity. Yet *you* most certainly do deny it. You deny yourself to the degree that you cannot honor and value yourself at all levels but certainly that of your physical heritage. You have no way to think positively about your self, about what your ancestors have bequeathed to you (your physical structure among many different things).

    The idea-structures that support modern ideological conception are Hyper-Liberal. That is to say, perversions of Liberalism.

    You have been mind f**cked. Literally, they have gotten into your mind, they have installed strings & cords and all they need to do is touch those strings and like a marionette … you dance to their tune. Or you sit down and shut up. Or you wallow in guilt & shame.

    As I have written lately we live in a perverse extension of Liberalism. We live now in a twisted & twisting Hyper-Liberalism where the State has become — in any case is becoming — a tyrannical manipulating power. The ideology that operates in this Hyper Liberal atmosphere wishes to turn you — you and all people — into manipulatable cogs. This State, and this ideological environment, is defining you in specific ways and it does this to render you a *better subject* to it and to its designs. And I suggest here, though the entire issue is complex, that this term ‘racist’ is a tool used within these collusive processes between those who handle and mold social ideologies in the academy but certainly within the management ideology of the State, within the corporate and business ideological world, and also (and very very strongly) within the culture-molding world of Hollywood.

    I guess I would refer to the Culture Machine.

    OK, with that said, I give you till 12 Noon today to get yourselves out from under this coercive control and I want you to set yourself the task of a) thinking freely and independently and b) being able to speak eloquently about the coercive social forces that have you in their grip. I want you to “name names” as well.

  7. This is related to what Yascha Mounk wrote.


    These cases do not negate the good that can, and hopefully will, come from America’s newfound determination to root out racial injustice. Given the gravity of police misconduct in this country, there is little doubt in my mind that the overall thrust of the changes set in motion by the protests over the murder of George Floyd is highly positive. Nevertheless, it would be a big mistake—especially for those who deeply care about social justice—to dismiss the fate of people such as Cafferty, Shor, and Wadi as a minor detail or a necessary price for progress.

    First, these incidents damage the lives of innocent people without achieving any noble purpose.

    Second, such injustices are liable to provoke a political backlash. If a lot of Americans come to feel that those who supposedly oppose racism are willing to punish the innocent to look good in the public’s eyes, they could well grow cynical about the enterprise as a whole.

    Third, those of us who want to build a better society should defend the innocent because movements willing to sacrifice justice in the pursuit of noble goals have, again and again, built societies characterized by pervasive injustice.

    One of the core tenets of liberal democracy is that people should not be punished for accusations against them that are unsubstantiated, for actions that are perfectly reasonable, or for offenses that were committed by others. No matter how worthy the cause they invoke, you should not trust anyone who seeks to abandon these fundamental principles.

    Emphasis added

    • You know, in 2004 it looked like John Kerry had a shot at dethroning George W. Bush. People were saying as late as October it looked like GWB was toast. Then a video hit the airwaves and the much less sophisticated internet of Osama bin Laden in mullah’s robes speaking against the then president and mocking his handling of the 9/11 crisis, in language not too different than that used by famously liberal and obnoxious filmmaker Michael Moore in his propaganda film “Fahrenheit 9/11.” Moore promptly jumped on the net and crowed something to the effect of bin Laden must have had a bootleg copy of the film in his cave (can’t find the exact quote right this moment).

      At that moment, it seems like the fence-sitters and the Republicans unhappy with GWB pulled up and said “wait a minute here, just whose side is this guy on? Do I want to vote for a party whose advocates are talking like the sworn enemy of this country?” The rest is history. The left had overreached and been too clever for itself by half.

      At this point it looks like Kenosha and Ted Wheeler’s letter to the president may have been a bridge too far. This wasn’t some big liberal city, this was everytown America. Everyone in this country knows now that Black Lives Matter could show up to trash their town and will show up to trash it if there is a police-involved shooting. Everyone’s also seen the attitude of the Democratic Party toward dealing with this, which is to pretend nothing happened, but if it did, it was the president’s fault, so keep those Federal stormtroopers away, nothing to see here. Nancy Pelosi’s tone-deaf visit to the hair salon, caught on tape, might be the last straw for a lot of other folks, who’ve been hearing her preach about wear the mask and social distance and obey the rules for what you can and can’t do for months, and now are seeing her flout all this. Everyone now knows that the leader of the Democratic Party is all about double standards and believes that laws and rules are for the little people. Is this the party we want to vote for, whose leaders will treat us ordinary folks like serfs and throw us to the wolves? I don’t think so.

      • The riots alone, would not have been enough (although they would increase election turnout from Republican-leaning constituencies in relation to Democratic-leaning constituencies).

        It started when the federal c ouirthouse in Portland came under attack, and President Trump sent federal agents to reinforce security there.

        Pretty non-cvontyroversial, right?

        But then Ted Wheeler started this meme of Trump sending federal troopas to invade Portland.

        Jeff Merkely chimed in.

        By sending in this kind of occupying force, Donald Trump has inflamed the situation, not helped it. The Trump/Barr occupiers should get out of Oregon.

        This was followed by Nancy Pelosi.

        Unidentified stormtroopers. Unmarked cars. Kidnapping protesters and causing severe injuries in response to graffiti.

        These are not the actions of a democratic republic.

        @DHSgov’s actions in Portland undermine its mission.

        Trump & his stormtroopers must be stopped.

        The media perpetuated this narrative.

        There were some criticisms. Jonatghan Turley tweeted.

        There is a disconnect in some of the coverage over allegations that the federal government is pulling protesters off the street into unmarked vehicles. The ACLU lawsuit does not address that practice as much as protecting journalists and observers. https://aclu-or.org/sites/default/files/field_documents/woodstock_portland_aclu_or_06282020.pdf
        Profile photo, opens profile page on Twitter in a new tab
        Jonathan Turley
        As a legal matter, Portland cannot force the federal officers out of Portland or prevent arrests for federal offenses. This is the other side of federalism. The federal government has jurisdiction in the protection of federal buildings and the arrest of suspects in federal crimes

        Eric Weinstein chimed in.

        Can someone please explain to me how this works? We are willing to spend all credibility to defend what can be INSTANTLY invalidated. Who came up with this policy, why does it exist, and how is anyone able to maintain it without deviating from the script?

        Chad Wolf fired back at Nancy Pelosi.

        “One, it’s disgusting, two it’s an assault on every federal or civilian or state and local law enforcement officer who has taken an oath to protect their communities, to protect, in our case, federal facilities, to do their jobs and I think it’s very very dangerous,” Wolf said on Fox News’ “America’s Newsroom.”

        Of course, we can see the words of Joe Biden himself.

        Rather than acknowledging the violence and destruction in that city — which have carried on for 54 nights — Biden slammed federal officers, claiming they were “brutally attacking peaceful protesters” in service of President Donald Trump’s “political interests.” His statement did not even mention the firing of mortars at police officers and at the federal courthouse or the brief “autonomous zone” that emerged in Portland earlier this month.

        “We have a president who is determined to sow chaos and division. To make matters worse instead of better,” Biden began

        . “We all remember the appalling scenes in front of the White House, when peaceful protestors were gassed to make way for a Trump photo op. Now Homeland Security agents — without a clearly defined mandate or authority — are ranging far from federal property, stripped of badges and insignia and identifying markings, to detain people.”

        “They are brutally attacking peaceful protestors, including a U.S. Navy veteran,” the Democrat insisted.

        So reinforcing security at a federal courthouse stokes the fires of division?

        Detailed link here.


        As Weinstein noted, it jarring that the Democratic leadership and their media lackeys ran with this meme, which could be INSTANTLY invalidated.

        Finally, while this Portland Federal Courthouse Ethics Train Wreck was going on, Jack did not blog about it.

        I was honesty surprised, as it was so OOC for him.

  8. Why are these people vowing to become better racists and gatekeepers of white supremacy? This seems ominous to me. Perhaps I am reading those wrong, but all the other possibilities seem too stupid to be likely.

  9. I’ve always been amazed by the absolute glee people take in joining “a movement.” I was mystified by the British and American women who put on veils and flew off to the middle east to marry Islamic terrorists, have their children and live in squalor. What makes people want to deny every aspect of their being to join something else? Now, we’re seeing a wave of Rachel Dolzels. Weird.

    • People have a need to feel that they belong to something. Perhaps the biggest failure of our own leadership until recently was that they were never given a reason to feel that they were an American but instead simply a vote to be counted on.

      • Sure Chris, people need company, but why are so many so desperate about it that they align themselves with such nonsense? That can’t be a failure of the political class. It is deeper in the psyche. I think.

        • They have been told their entire life that their culture is evil and inherently racist. That they are evil and inherently racist for being part of it. If you have been told that your entire life, won’t you want to be something, anything else?

          • Don’t these people have any sort of natural skepticism? I was brought up devoutly Irish Roman Catholic before Vatican II. Do you think I believed everything I was told, Michael. Hell no. Isn’t there a natural, “Now wait just a darned minute, can that really be true” gene?

            • Eh, from my social media feeds at the moment, I’m wondering if I missed the meeting in undergrad where everyone had that gene excised. I sure was spacey enough sometimes.

              Seriously though, as Chris M. said, people need to feel like they have a bigger purpose. You can debate if the causes now are lack of objective values, increasingly secular worldviews, career trajectories post-Recession, or Chris’ point, being counted as votes and not as Americans, but when people have nothing constructive to work for, they’ll get into stupid, bad things to fill the void.

              A more individual take, and maybe not a can of worms I want to open — those women may see those Islamic terrorists as more romantic and driven than the men they can find in their own countries. It’s dangerously easy to idealize someone in an online relationship like that. Lessons learned from all the 90 Day Fiance I watched during lockdown.

      • Chris writes: “People have a need to feel that they belong to something. Perhaps the biggest failure of our own leadership until recently was that they were never given a reason to feel that they were an American but instead simply a vote to be counted on.”

        Let me try and go a bit further with this. People have a need to feel that they are connected personally and also metaphysically to meaning and to currents in life and in living that mean something, that have relevance in a larger frame-work of existence-understood.

        This, in my view, turns back on a critique of Liberalism and Hyper-Liberalism. You actually stand within that Liberalism. Your paragraph indicates this. In a sense you have agreed with the liberal State that all the people living in it are not connected, in a meaningful way, to genuine life-currents. That is, they are not fulfilled. They live quasi-lives and pseudo-connection. This is really part-and-parcel of a critical description of the Liberal State.

        Not only are people ‘simply a vote to be counted on’ they actually have no real value as persons in the present order. They only have relevance to the degree that they are useful to *the economy* or can be otherwise channeled to some function or purpose . . . that is not really their own. Or in any case not *close to their heart*.

        I think that if I read you right you are saying that up till now *leadership* had not given to people a sufficient sense of belonging to something. But there you seem to indicate that a romantic relationship to America or Americanism is sufficient. It really isn’t. That is a really shallow and even a hollow identification to have. This is part of the problem as I understand it.

        The sense of ‘belonging’ is presented in a fake-relatedness in some presentation, expertly but too smoothly crafted, that appears at half-time. I am reminded of many of the (very powerful and expertly produced) scenes in the first part of Born on the Fourth of July with the parades and the flag-waving crowds. It is quite likely that then at that time that mood of relationship was substantial — and perhaps fulfilling and enough. But what destroyed it? In the following decades what force came to act against it?

        To have that conversation is to talk about so many different things, and also *forbidden things*, that it never takes place. Semi-conversations do take place though. Partial.

        This particular crisis has many many levels of meaning. But it is a crisis. My suggestion is that it will not simply be *resolved* from one moment to the next.

  10. When do we all end up in Chinese-style re-education camps? This is totally insane. And how does about 15% of the US population take over the media, our institutions, our collective guilt from 150 years ago. I blame the media. Absent a forum, they would be nothing except internal terrorists.

    • What is it about the word “minority” that people don’t understand?

      Black kids make up four percent of the student body of my college. How is it they get to dictate what the college does and what the college president says?

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