Thursday, August 9, 2007

Sociological Tut-Tutting

Christopher Hitchens enumerates the many crimes emanating from Your Black Muslim Bakery in Oakland and wonders why the police have been loath to act against these cretins until it became too late to save the life of Chauncey Bailey.

Now, again, I am just asking, but what if this racket had been named the White Christian or Aryan Nations Cookie Parlor? (Motto and mission statement: "Don't F*** With Us.") I think that Oakland's mayor, Ron Dellums-who I was startled to find was still alive-would have joined a picket line around the store (as would I). The same would doubtless have been true of Rep. Barbara Lee, in whose district the YBMB was situated. But instead, in its role as a "community business," the YBMB enjoyed warm support and endorsement from both the mayor and the congresswoman. And the guns for past and future slayings were inside the store.

If this isn't softness on crime, then the term is meaningless....If I had stood outside that hideous bakery with a sign saying "Black Muslims Are Racists and Fanatics," I think the cops would have turned up in a flat second and taken me into custody. I might well have been charged with a hate crime. As I have written before and am sure I will write again: This has to stop, and it has to stop right now, before sharia baking comes to a place near you.

Of course he's right. Crimes committed by blacks, especially when committed against other blacks and especially if the perpetrators are Muslim, are simply not treated with the same urgency as crimes committed by whites. It's as if the authorities, so burdened by what Shelby Steele calls white guilt, think it's indicative of racial bigotry to treat black crime seriously.

It's not just the police. The media is even worse. On those exceedingly rare occasions when a black person is assaulted or murdered by a white person the media wring their hands for weeks and months about the residual and endemic stain of racism that pervades the land, but on the almost daily occasions when blacks assault whites, the race of those involved is scarcely even mentioned.

Here in our fair city we've had a recent illustration of this phenomenon. In 1969, York, like a lot of other cities in the sixties, suffered a series of race riots. At the height of the disturbances a black woman was shot by a white teenaged sniper and killed. It was a tragedy for which the city has been flagellating itself for forty years, and all sorts of racial lessons have been drawn from it.

However, a year ago a young black man with a shotgun walked up to a pregnant white woman in the parking lot of a food market and, because he wanted to kill some "white devil," unloaded the gun at her head. Miraculously, the woman survived, but the racial implications of this horrific crime have been completely ignored by the media. It's as if black on white crime has no racial significance, but white on black crime, to the extent that it exists, is filled with it.

Gangs of black youths roam our city's streets preying on white victims, but one has to read between the lines to learn the race of those involved. Recently, in broad daylight a retired former superintendent of one of our local school districts was savagely beaten by three black "youths" in the rest room at a public park during a festival, but the media, while deploring the incident, thought the racial aspects too unimportant to mention. One may be assured, though, that if a group of white thugs had beaten a black superintendent we'd be facing another forty years of racial soul-searching here in York.

Whites, especially white liberals, are so burdened by their fear of being seen as "insensitive" that they cannot bring themselves to point out that the kind of virulent racism that really harms people is alive and well in our cities, and resides almost entirely in the black community. Intimidated by race hustlers like Al Sharpton and paralyzed by belief in their own guilt, their denunciations of violent black crime are usually limited to feeble expressions of sociological tut-tutting.

Thanks to Steve Martin for the link to Hitchens' column.


Synonym for <i>Bigotry</i>

All the Democratic candidates for president except Joe Biden made the pilgrimmage last weekend to the YearlyKos conference in order to have their progressive bona fides reauthorized. Senator Durbin, who is not running for president, couldn't make it so he sent instead an obsequious video message (which has since been pulled from YouTube) praising the people who write for the DailyKos and their "progressive" influence on the Democratic party.

So what's the problem? The DailyKos is the biggest blog in the country, several dozen people write for it, and politicians need to score points with their audience. Why not attend?

Suppose, however, Republican candidates went to a conference sponsored by a right-wing blogger whose writers, readership, commenters included a large number of racial bigots. How would the media respond to the willingness of the Republicans to associate themselves with such people? I expect that the folks over at MSNBC and elsewhere in liberaldom would go nuts, as they should.

But then why are these folks silent about the Democrats going to the YearlyKos conference? The staff and reasership at The DailyKos aren't racial bigots but an uncomfortably high percentage of them appear to be anti-semitic bigots. This piece from the Washington Times fills in the details.

So the question this raises is why do Clinton, Obama, and Edwards fawn over these people? Why do the media let them get away with it? Is "Progressive" being turned into a synonym for "anti-semitic"?



The militant anti-theists are coming OUT, or at least they want to. Here's part of the rationale for their OUT campaign:

Atheists along with millions of others are tired of being bullied by those who would force their own religious agenda down the throats of our children and our respective governments. We need to KEEP OUT the supernatural from our moral principles and public policies.

Well. I think the atheists' concern that theists will interject "the supernatural" into their moral principles is a little misplaced. The better point to make is that the concept of non-subjective, non-arbitrary moral principles is incomprehensible if atheism is true. There is nothing more metaphysically odd than an atheist talking about morality.

And then there's this from Richard Dawkins' introduction:

Moreover, even if the religious have the numbers, we have the arguments, we have history on our side, and we are walking with a new spring in our step - you can hear the gentle patter of our feet on every side.

Actually, notwithstanding his springing step and pattering feet Dr. Dawkins is quite mistaken. Atheism certainly does not have the best arguments nor does it have history on its side (the communists used to say this very thing and look where they are today). In fact, there are no good arguments for Dawkins' brand of atheism at all. Dawkins holds to what we might call "hard atheism," the view which asserts that there is no God (as opposed to soft atheism or what is fashionably called agnosticism). There are, as far as I know, no good arguments in defense of hard atheism, nor does Dawkins himself offer any. He simply rants against religion and tries to show that because the classical arguments for God's existence are not proofs therefore they're not good arguments, as if he thinks an argument has to be a proof to be compelling.

Dawkins adds the reassurance that "Atheists are just people with a different interpretation of cosmic origins, nothing to be alarmed about."

Nothing to be alarmed about? Such a statement can only arise from the pen of a man who has not thought through the logical implications of his atheism. As we've argued elsewhere (See here for example), if there is no God there is plenty to worry about, not least of which are people who assure us that God's non-existence doesn't change much about our view of morality, human worth, human dignity, and human rights.