Monday, July 26, 2010

Not Going Along for the Ride

Andy McCarthy at NRO declines to jump on the bandwagon of folks proclaiming Shirley Sherrod to be a "wonderful person" who was maliciously maligned as a racist by those nasty right-wingers at After having been fired by the Obama administration and condemned by the NAACP for ostensibly racist comments in a speech excerpted at Andrew Breitbart's website, it turns out that her most troubling comments were apparently taken out of context.

So now the conventional wisdom is that Sherrod was really transcending race in her speech and that she has suffered terribly because she was misrepresented by Breitbart. Whether Breitbart did this deliberately I don't know, but McCarthy points out that whatever she was doing in her speech, she wasn't trying to transcend race. Rather, intentionally or not, she was actually stoking the fires of racial animosity, at least when she spoke about the rise of slavery in the U.S.

Here's what she said:

So that's when they made black people servants for life. That's when they put laws in place forbidding them [i.e., blacks and whites] to marry each other. That's when they created the racism that we know of today. They did it to keep us divided. And they - It started working so well, they said, "Gosh, looks like we've come upon something here that could last generations." And here we are, over 400 years later, and it's still working.

What we have to do is get that out of our heads. There is no difference between us. The only difference is that the folks with money want to stay in power and whether it's healthcare or whatever it is, they'll do what they need to do to keep that power, you know. [Applause] It's always about money, ya'll. [Applause and murmurs of agreement.] You know. I haven't seen such a mean-spirited people as I've seen lately over this issue of health care. [Mumurs of agreement.] Some of the racism we thought was buried - [someone in the audience says, "It surfaced!"] Didn't it surface? Now, we endured eight years of the Bushes and we didn't do the stuff these Republicans are doing because you have a black president. [Applause]

I wanted to give you that little history, especially the young people, I want you to know they created it, you know, not just for us, but we got the brunt of it because they needed to elevate whites just a little higher than us to make them think they were so much better. Then they would never work with us, you know, to try to change the situation that they were all in.

So, in Ms Sherrod's world opposition to Obama and opposition to health care is all about power and hatred toward blacks. That incendiary sentiment is not the sort of thing likely to bring blacks and whites together, I don't imagine.

In any case, it's the same tired old tune from the left, just sung by a different vocalist. Unable to engage the opposition on the level of ideas they keep reverting to their traditionally reliable trump card. They're like a football coach who keeps calling the same play in the same situation because once upon a time it worked pretty well. It's why the liberal "journalists" on Journolist suggested that Republicans be deliberately smeared as racists without any regard for the veracity of the claim.

The play used to work, it used to instill fear in the opposition, but now everyone has pretty much caught on to the ruse, it's become predictable, and it's more and more being seen as a sign of intellectual inanition among those who resort to it and an occasion for mirth and derision among those it is intended to intimidate.


Fundamentalist Narcissism

Elizabeth Scalia writes that while liberals wring their hands at the prospect of Christian fundamentalists establishing a theocracy or, via the Tea party, resorting to political violence, there are secular religions among us that are at least as radical and fundamentalist as any member of the Westboro Baptist Church. Environmentalism and the pro-choice feminist left are two examples she cites.

Mrs. Scalia elaborates:

And these secularist religions have their violent radicals, too. The Earth Liberation Front, a little irony-challenged, has burned Hummers in an attempt to save the Earth from air pollution and deadly carbon. And some abortion-stalwarts say they'll give up their lives to insure the right of every woman to procure violent death within her own womb. Antonia Senior of in the Times of London, who - to her immense credit - is utterly honest about what abortion is and does, visits the Tower of London; after pondering martyrdom, Senior identifies what she will not die for (dolphins, England) and writes:

"I could think of one cause I would stake my life on: a woman's right to be educated, to have a life beyond the home and to be allowed by law and custom to order her own life as she chooses. And that includes complete control over her own fertility."

"Any other conclusion is a convenient lie that we on the pro-choice side of the debate tell ourselves to make us feel better about the action of taking a life. That little seahorse shape floating in a willing womb is a growing miracle of life. In a resentful womb it is not a life, but a foetus - and thus killable."

"As ever, when an issue we thought was black and white becomes more nuanced, the answer lies in choosing the lesser evil. The nearly 200,000 aborted babies in the UK each year are the lesser evil, no matter how you define life, or death, for that matter. If you are willing to die for a cause, you must be prepared to kill for it, too."

After quoting these startling words, Scalia notes:

That last line should resonate profoundly with horrified anti-religionists everywhere, if they are consistent. I wonder if Rosie O'Donnell or David Lettermen would find it troubling, what even secularists will do, in the name of their fundamentalism.

There's no better illustration, perhaps, of our devolution into a culture of narcissism, egoism and death than the adamantine demand that the right to sacrifice one's offspring on the altar of personal autonomy be preserved.