Tucker Carlson recently got canceled, at least to the extent that someone at his level can. A few weeks ago, one of his private text messages from January 7, 2021 “re-surfaced”—meaning that an opponent spent a great deal of time and lucre digging it up—in which the former television host described the multi-person jumping of a black-clad Antifa fighter by the Proud Boys or some similar group as “not how white men fight.” In our race-panicked era, this message was reportedly at least
Professor Reilly, it's thinking like this and the courage to say it that give me hope for our future.
A commonsensical essay that seems "daring" in an America gone mad.
"The sheer width of the Cancel Shroud is so all-encompassing that relatively innocuous acts are regularly deemed serious enough to upend someone’s life."
As an attorney, I'm a big free speech fan. Everything about this goes against the very creed of liberty. I recall once years ago, using the "N" word in the following fashion: my uncle often made racist comments or jokes against black people, and I found it crude and offensive, but he would just laugh me off. So one day in front of my grandmother (his mother-in-law, in front of whom he would never dream of speaking that way) I had an opportunity to say something to the effect of "Yeah Don, we sure wouldn't want the "N"s around, would we?" She pricked up her ears in shock; he turned beet red in shame. I was a white person using the word for the specific purpose of undermining white supremacy, but this cancel culture makes no such exception. Talk about chilling.... I also remember a white sheriff asking me two decades ago, when I was a criminal defense attorney: "What word can a black man call a white man and go to jail?" Which is to say, the distinction is patently racist.... A criminal punishment meted out (or not) solely based on skin color -- and also without regard to INTENT. Scary times. Great piece!
Reverse racism is just as bad as the original. If certain word are insensitive, they’re insensitive no matter the immutable characteristics of the mouth uttering them - but more importantly, WORDS ARE NOT VIOLENCE. Period.
True story about Prof Skip Gates: I met him once, when I was an undergrad, in front of my dorm, he was an older gentleman and having a hard time with something and I helped him out. He was very kind and thankful and politely chatted with me afterwards. Then, not in a mean way, but more like a serious question, as soon as he heard my name (last name similar to his), he asks something like, “I wonder if your great grandparents owned my great grandparents?”
Now I’m a first generation immigrant, the child of Jews who survived the Holocaust, so no, my ancestors didn’t run a plantation. But I’ve never forgotten that interaction. Imagine how sour/bitter/twisted a worldview you have to have to make every single interaction about racism. He met a young man on the street, they had a friendly exchange, and his mind goes immediately to race. It honestly makes me pity him!
Anyway, unlike Gates and the others you mention in your excellent post, I try to judge people by their souls, not their skins. But if crazy race obsession helps fatally destroy our corrupt institutions, hey, silver lining! So here’s the case for DEI from a person who doesn’t think race matters:
This article is "spot on" and deserves much wider circulation. Love to see this as an op-ed in the NYT.
Selectively quoting someone (i.e., Carlson) out of context used to be confined (in my childhood 70 years ago) to selecting passages from an otherwise damming play review for posting on the theatre marquee. Just another indicator of how low our media has sunk...
Very thoughtful piece—tough philosophical and practical issues to navigate thoroughly without some degree of rationality, and rationality, like curiosity, are in short supply when judging and canceling eliminates freedom of thought and speech.
As always, so right.
Its surely a great irony that two generations ago, African Americans were attacked in broad daylight, endured actual racism, got through it all, fought wars for the US, bought houses, went to school, made friends with whites and others, and became middle class.
Then, as the vast majority of white people rejected racist attitudes, in the 80s and 90s my generation began complaining stridently about 'structural issues/supposed historical causation/white supremacy.' That generation nonetheless mostly elevated themselves, along with all the other groups of color and poor whites, who had their own histories/struggles.
Now, since the 2000s, a generation with more safety, more material comfort, more support and less racism to find anywhere, constantly yells 'racist'- if one merely uses the words white or black; they call you racist, even if you are an ACLU liberal- should you complain about a black person in the street on Nextdoor / Facebook, simply because you described the persons appearance. They claim there is no way up, ever: all of history is somehow just the (@5% of the Atlantic Slave Trade) African American slave trade; life in the US is forever stuck in a world of white supremacy; and all white people are 'this or that,' essentialized, sinners, stamped for ever by Lord Kendi in the mansion of race huckstership.
Its all inverted. That inversion is the epitome of privilege. There is certainly white privilege, but there are many other privileges, and they are being abused in the DEI/Social Justice/'Woke' realm, daily. I worry about the consequences.
I might also add that a male code of honor around violence would actually be a good thing for everyone. It's of course not good at all that he couched it in racial terms but it's also undoubtedly true that a male code of honor around violence is mostly about culture, not law, and so it would not be surprising to learn that different cultural groups have different standards.
So briefly described and so well said to illuminate the truth behind so much audacious pretense seeping into the culture from the standard bearers of media. Thank you, Dr. Reilly.
How about not reverse-race-baiting with comments such as the one about Kendi and Hannah-Jones? What purpose does it serve, other than fomenting some sort of “mmmhhhmmm, see?” response.
The double standard is not a double standard, get it? I will never get as offended as you do.
Try not getting offended - it’s a privilege, no color implied. Then you’ll have the same privilege as I do. Hold your head up, exist on your merits, and you’ll have the same privilege as I do. Don’t have any merits? Then why are you even speaking? Go back to your tick tack app and crick crack pipe, just not living off the dole, and stay fenced into your neck of the woods where your shrapnel won’t hit my kin.
Problem is, this message, no matter what form it takes, will always fall on deaf ears, because (a) we’re in an echo chamber here, talking amongst ourselves; (b) the ears we need to reach aren’t hearing it; (c) if they hear it, it’s drowned out by other distractions; (d) they don’t understand the value proposition.
Let me say it shorter: people need therapy. Mostly to acquire some basic coping skills. Then maybe they’ll be able to cope with life in a way that doesn’t backslide them into the bad habits leading to an existence that perpetuates anti-intellectual snake oil salesmen such as Kendi.
It’s likely they would think differently today? Are you serious?
For America to foster a true marketplace of ideas, we really need to firmly assert the fundamental power of the 1st Amendment and turn down the volume on hypersensitivity.
Disagreement is necessary and inevitable, but we need to let people talk and write freely.
The extremes define the limits, but we need to keep in mind that sometimes the extremes become mainstream eventually ( gay marriage, legalization of marijuana.)
So glad someone said it. Yes. We need 1 standard for all and kick the ridiculous double standard of the pervasive "n" word and uni-directional ability to level racial slurs towards whites. When I say that this culture war has been divisive, I mean it truly. I have been cautious around blacks and not free in engaging with people regardless of their colour once these double standards became the status quo. I hired a black gal once after all this racial hype started up and that person became the biggest PITA of my career. Any conversations or meetings required extra work to prepare so I could assign work without being accused of micro-aggressions or giving her work which in her view impacted her status negatively, according to our HR department. I had to drag out records to show that my assignment of work had not changed from previous incumbents. It was a massive turn off for hiring. So not sure how this whole thing helps anyone.
You have to consider the context. Carlson is hardly some innocent victim of a double standard. Carlson willfully lies and poisons the culture. He pushes group identity from the right and is at least sympathetic to the illiberalism of the right.