I have shackled my arms to the wall, and despite a violent desire to join in the fun, I will leave the responses to the offensive “satirical” idiocy above, by some woke “Afro-Latino engineer, writer, and occasional Bruno Mars impersonator” named Carlos Greaves, to you. In the process, consider the degree of indoctrination, ethical confusion, and rationalization poisoning necessary for someone to 1) write this garbage, 2) think it’s worthy of publication except as evidence or societal rot, or 3) read it and think, “By George! What a humorous and perceptive take!”
If you are one of the latter, please post a comment and explain your thinking. Really. I beg of you. I’ll unshackle myself for that.
[Addendum, typed with my nose:If there was any lingering hesitation on my part that I need to add “Walk a mile in his/her shoes” to the Ethics Alarms Rationalization List, this obliterated it.]
1. “And I would have gotten away with it too, if it wasn’t for those meddling courts!” Here’s another one of those damn courts requiring the government to follow the law. In the opinion here, Superior Court Judge Anne-Christine Massullo overturned the San Francisco Unified School District’s decision to remove the 1936 mural by Victor Arnautoff, titled “Life of Washington” from a local high school. (There were slaves pictured. Can’t have that!)
The board was required by law to conduct an environmental and historical review for removing the mural, but just chose to follow the demands of indignant students, despite a process being required by the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA).
“The Board and SFUSD failed in their primary duty to follow the requirements of the law,” Massullo wrote in her decision. “California, as a matter of long-standing public policy, places enormous value on its environmental and historical resources and the People are entitled to expect public officials to give more than lip-service to the laws designed to protect those resources.”
This reminded me of the recent irresponsible Times op-ed by Jamelle Bouie, who has a long rap sheet at Ethics Alarms. Bouie thinks the U.S. Supreme Court needs to be minimized and restrained, because of its nasty habit of interfering with democracy and the will of the public by making the government follow the law, like, say, the U.S. Constitution.
2. Wait, isn’t this systemic racism? And ageism? Classism? Ludditeism? QR codes, those bar codes you can have scanned off a cell phone, have emerged as a nearly unavoidable tech fixture thanks to the pandemic hysteria. Restaurants have adopted them, retailers like CVS and Foot Locker have added them to checkout registers, and they are turning up in retail packaging, direct mail, billboards, sporting events and TV advertisements. They also are a threat to privacy and online security. QR codes can store digital information like when, where and how often a scan occurs, and might open an app or a website that then tracks people’s personal information. But that’s an issue for another day.
I was prevented twice from being able to get a ticket to a baseball game because the Washington Nationals, forced by the D.C. government in its Wuhan panic mode, were required to only have non-paper, contact-less tickets. That meant I had to use my cell phone. I choose not to use cell phones when I’m not traveling. Moreover, how can the same people who decry the requirement of a photo ID as racist mandate systems that require smart phones, which are a whole lot more expensive that any ID? How about poor people? Seniors on a fixed budget? Seniors who can’t get the hang of apps and frankly resent having to do so?
I felt that the feminist hypocrisy allowing Simone Biles to bail on her team when it depended on her as its star and foundation was enough; for once in 20121, the racial angle wasn’t necessary to get into. Am I convinced that if Mary Lou Retton had similarly withdrawn from the Olympics competition because she felt like she had “the weight of the world” on her shoulders she would have also been given a big group hug, near unanimous sympathy and “the King’s Pass”? Yes, I do.
That’s a tweet that has been going around social media, as fatuous tweets often do.
My questions in response:
Why only black people? I try to smile at all people I encounter. Yesterday I waved at a black neighbor I have never met while walking Spuds—but not because he was black. He waved back.
Solidarity with what? The reason you smile at strangers is to express solidarity with the community, the nation, the human race. If my smile is supposed to mean “I believe you are an oppressed victim of this rotten racist nation and white people like me, and I’m with you, bro!” then to hell with it.
If you smile only at the blacks in a crowd, what are you saying to everyone else? Isn’t that pandering? Isn’t that insulting and condescending to the black being grinned at?
What if the response to your smile is a snub? How should you take that? [Relevant: this post.]
Well, I can write about the great issues of the day here or universal ethics principles, and attract crickets, but when a spoiled superstar female gymnast chokes on the Olympics stage, THAT attracts the most comments in a 24 hour period that Ethics Alarms has seen in months.
Actually, there is more of ethical significance to the Simone Biles Affair than is immediately apparent. The main issue, I think, may be the hypocrisy of feminists and sports journalists who rush to rationalize conduct by a young woman that no male athlete of any note would ever get away with. There are also profound issues of character, duties to one’s team, the ethics of sport and the the narcissism that celebrity creates. There are also some issues that I expect to emerge down the metaphorical road. For example, I haven’t yet encountered anyone arguing that criticism of Biles’ choke is racist, but given the response in Japan to Naoimi Osaka’s shocking loss in tennis, I expect that is coming. I also have written in my head the Ethics Alarms post responding to any post-Olympics product endorsement deals that come Biles’ way.
I have now read many articles, almost all of them from pundits who for five years heaped the most abusive rhetoric on the previous President of the United States that any POTUS has had to endure, that Donald Trump should join President Biden, or Barack Obama, or even George W. Bush for a national, joint appeal to the vaccinated to do the right thing for their nation, swallow their fears, and get their shots. Writes one Trump-detesting letter writer to the Times this morning (well, the odds are high that anyone who writes to the Times is Trump-detesting”) who imagines an Obama-Trump Kumbaya PSA spot where a smiling Trump sits next to Barack and says, “We hardly agree on anything , but we do agree on one thing: You should get the Covid vaccine now!” “It just takes two grown men to do it!” the saddened patriot concludes.
Sure, in a vacuum, this fantasy seems reasonable. In reality, it can never happen, and I find myself gravitating to an unethical position that says that if Democrats like Biden and Obama, or Bush, really want Trump to join with them on anything but especially this, they should have to pay a large, painful and probably unpalatable price.
Believe it or not, a former Obama official has authored a book, “Unsettled,” that raises many of the weaknesses, fudges and media-silenced discrepancies in the official climate change narrative. His name is Steven Koonin, and of course he is being savaged by reviewers and scientist alike. You won’t see him interviewed on CNN or on any climate change panels on the major networks. Fox News might put him on, but that will just prove that he’s one of the bad guys. That’s how it works.
Yet Koonin’s book appears to be more than reasonable.
The book is an expansion of a controversial opinion piece for the Wall Street Journal he wrote a few years ago headlined “Climate science is not settled”. I missed it, and of course the mainstream media didn’t want to talk about it. Despite what progressives, Democratic policy-makers and your Facebook friends will tell you (and what most of the public believes thanks to careful disinformation or reporting by journalists who got Cs in high school Science class, climate science is not settled. Koonin is bothered by the same feature that Ethics Alarms has commented on many times: scientists can’t accurately predict what the future climate shifts will be.
“In the biggest upset for the United States at the Tokyo Games, Simone Biles withdrew from the gymnastics team competition after it had started on Tuesday, handing Russia’s squad a path to the gold medal and ending American domination of the event for more than a decade. Biles, Team U.S.A.’s star, said she pulled out of the event because she wasn’t in the right place mentally to perform the difficult and often dangerous skills she is known for, after feeling so much pressure to be successful. She had been struggling with the stress of being the greatest gymnast in history, she said, and outside expectations were just too hard to combat. It is not clear whether she will compete in her individual events.“
I have been following sports, and especially team sports, since I was 12-years-old. I cannot imagine any male athlete withdrawing from his team during a crucial series or before a pivotal game because he “wasn’t in the right place” mentally, or because he was feeling “pressure to be successful.” Any male athlete behaving like this would be universally condemned by the sportswriting establishment, team members and fans, and rightfully so. But The Boston Glob’s Tara Sullivan this morning provided another jaw-dropping article headlined, “Bravo to Simone Biles for taking care of herself when she needs it most.”
When she needed it most? The entire concept of a team, be it in sports or in any other pursuit, is to sacrifice one’s own desires and comfort when the team needs it most. In the 1996 Summer Olympics, female gymnast Kerri Strug sucked it up and preserved her team’s medal by performing a vault despite a seriously injured ankle. This was hailed as the epitome of sportsmanship and athletic courage. Now Biles quits her team because, as she wrote on Instagram before her decision, “I truly do feel like I have the weight of the world on my shoulders at times.” Indeed, every star and superstar on any team seeking the distinction of a championship facing top competition feels the weight on his or her shoulders. Only Biles not only decided that this was ample justification to abandon her team mates, but is being praised for it. Astounding. Astounding. I keep thinking about how I would react as stage director to the leading actor in a stage production who came to me on opening night and said, “I just can’t go on. The pressure is too much!”
A few quick notes on “the College Pledge” are in order. It is the work of something called Dallas Justice Now which claims to be “a member-driven project of activists, researchers, and local leaders dedicated to making our city more just.” Yesterday the rumor was rampant that its threatening “pledge” demanding that white Dallas parents agree not to let their children apply for admission to elite institutions so black and brown kids could have an open field to obtain an Ivy League degree was a conservative “false flag” operation. This does not appear to be the case, and the increasingly unhinged Far Left, which is now just “the Left,” hardly needs any assistance in appearing menacing and racist.
The version of the pledge that I posted yesterday was not the full document, which included the implied threat that those who did not sign would be outed and ostracized, and the miserable device of introducing a false dichotomy: “Will you take the college pledge?” can be answered only with “I am a racist hypocrite.” and “I agree.” That’s rather funny, since the whole exercise is an example of anti-white racist hypocrisy.
I have searched, and apparently no mainstream national media news source finds this attempt to intimidate white Americans in the Dallas area newsworthy.
The vast majority of wealth is *multi-generational*. Yes, America is replete with the starry examples of rags-to-riches stories, but even those are generally isolated exceptions. For the rest of those who have significant wealth, it is mostly because the generation before them made tiny sacrifices in their lives that they didn’t have to make. Those sacrifices were essentially investments in and for their children that paid off in dividends worth VASTLY more than the sacrifice.
1. I have some ethics observations on this thing that was sent out to white parents in the Highland Park area of Texas by a Black Lives Matter-affiliated group:
Here they are:
As long as white individuals hesitate to push back on BLM’s outrageous assertions and demands, the group will continue to grow more audacious and arrogant
The logic of this demand can only make sense to someone who has no concept of right, wrong, and fairness. “We want you to handicap your own children in order to clear the way for our children, who can’t compete and who shouldn’t have to work especially hard to overcome obstacles that you and your children are not responsible for placing in their path.”
The screed is an excellent example of how the concept of equal opportunity has been warped into “equity,” meaning not just equality of results, which life never guarantees, but punitive measures to ensure advantages of favored groups over those that are disfavored, aka whites and males.
The extension of the argument in the letter would require athletes fortunate to have advantages of strength, speed, and skill to pledge not to compete against those not so “privileged” as to be born with these advantages, and job applicants of superior talent, intelligence and character to refuse to place themselves in a position where they would be chosen for a job over less fortunate job-seekers.