Lily White Liberals In Chicago

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Rahm Emanuel is really clearing out the undesirables.  First he declared Chicago to be a “Trump free zone”. Isn’t it great to know that while sipping your pumpkin latte, you won’t have to run into one of those deplorables?  

But there’s something else that could spoil your day. Part of being a lily white liberal is liking oppressed minorities from a distance.  You wouldn’t actually want to step out of your comfort zone and mix with regular black folk, now would you? Sure, one or two is fine, if they’re like Carlton Banks!  

Well Rahm Emanuel has a solution!  Gentrification! It’s an oldie but a goodie!  The Gubernatorial candidate Chris Kennedy called him out!  As reported by the Chicago Tribune:

“I believe that black people are being pushed out of Chicago intentionally by a strategy that involves disinvestment in communities being implemented by the city administration, and I believe Rahm Emanuel is the head of the city administration and therefore needs to be held responsible for those outcomes,” Kennedy said during a news conference about gun violence in North Lawndale.

“This is involuntary. That we’re cutting off funding for schools, cutting off funding for police, allowing people to be forced to live in food deserts, closing hospitals, closing access to mental health facilities. What choice do people have but to move, to leave?” Kennedy added. “And I think that’s part of a strategic gentrification plan being implemented by the city of Chicago to push people of color out of the city. The city is becoming smaller, and as it becomes smaller, it’s become whiter.”

Predictably, Emanuel responded by comparing Kennedy to Trump.  That’s what establishment Democrats do when real progressives call them out as the lily white corporatists that they are.  But maybe that’s not such a bad comparison! After all, Trump seems more comfortable hanging out with Kanye West than the average politician or journalist of any color.  

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Meanwhile, blacks in Chicago, the vast majority of whom are peaceful, law abiding citizens, are asking for Trump’s help. La Shawn K. Ford, a Democratic State Representative, said:

We have to make sure that President Trump recognizes that not everyone believes that Chicago is a Trump free zone.  If he’s serious about helping the people in Chicago, especially on the west side of Chicago, I accept his help.

Who can blame him?  Rahm Emanuel sees crime and poverty, and his solution is to gentrify them out!  Why shouldn’t Rep. Ford turn to Trump for help? Trump isn’t perfect, but he’s shown a willingness to talk to black leaders and discuss how to address what afflicts them.  There’s much that Trump doesn’t understand, and in many ways, Trump is privileged. But at least he’s making a genuine effort, which is more than I can say for the lily white liberals.

Read Also:

Lily White Liberals At Yale And Beyond

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How The Left Brought Me To Trump

Trump with Steel workers

I didn’t leave the left, the left left me

 

Though I’m conservative in some ways, I never fit in with the right.  I have compassion for the poor, I care about the environment, I loathe militarism abroad and have no problem calling the US a “global bully” when it’s acting like one.  Aside from that, I have a genuine concern for the well being of working people and disdain for corporatists who exploit them. You won’t typically hear me refer to the rich as “the job creators”.  Doesn’t that make me some kind of socialist?

(I hope I haven’t lost my Trumpian readers yet.  Stick with me, my dear deplorables. It’ll be worth it, bigly!)

In the early Bush era, I was an undergrad in Florida, still learning about the world and forming my political views.  One day I saw an episode of the Oprah Winfrey Show that really opened my eyes. She discussed the horrible working conditions of children in sweatshops in India.  They would work 12 hours a day in the textile mills, making inexpensive clothing and other cloth for export. Being crouched over in the same position all day, every day for so many years caused many of them to grow up deformed, even going blind.  Someone in the audience dared to ask the question that needed to be asked – do we bear some blame for that, as we buy those goods in our stores? Yes, she dared to “blame America”.

From that moment on, I became very outspoken against child labor in particular, but also the exploitation of cheap labor anywhere in the third world (ahem, I mean “developing world”).

Throughout the Bush era, I became ever more disgusted with the American right, and the Republican Party.  It was the party of endless wars overseas. It was the party that considered itself the “savior of the world”, even having the audacity to suggest that the countries invaded should be grateful for American intervention!  And on top of that, while mainstream Democrats like John Kerry had at least some compassion for working people (even if apathetic on his ability to do anything about it), Republicans called those in need “lazy” while sending more jobs overseas.  As Bush continued his foreign military adventurism, our military weapons were more and more imported from China, all while our government borrowed money – from China!  This was the Republican Party that became the source of all evil in the world to me.  It was the Republican Party that had to be defeated at any cost.

(Still with me, my dear deplorables?)

The “Messiah”

In 2008, hope came.  Hope, that this evil legacy would change.  Yes, you know who I’m talking about. We were going to bring our troops home from Iraq.  We were going to put the money we were blowing in Iraq towards infrastructure at home. No longer would America “police the world”.  Now America would clean up its own backyard.

Obama is a great speaker.  As the economy plunged into the Great Recession, he filled so many of us with hope.  In my hometown of Jacksonville Florida, there was a growing progressive voice on the radio.  Led by a local former State Representative, Andy Johnson, progressive talk finally had a place on the airwaves!  In addition to his local program, he played nationally syndicated talk radio programs also. My favorite was usually Ed Schultz (May his memory be everlasting)  

Schultz had the kind of passion, and in-your-face style of early Rush Limbaugh.  He wasn’t politically correct, and didn’t have a smug bone in his body. He was an advocate for working Americans.  While the sweatshop issue had been in the back of my mind, as I was more concerned with the state of our country, Ed Schultz brought it back to the forefront.  More like Ross Perot than Oprah Winfrey, Schultz spoke of how outsourcing affected US. He spoke of the bad trade deals made over the decades, and the erosion of America’s manufacturing sector.  When it came to PC issues like gay marriage, abortion, he was on the left. Sure, why not?  Not my business.  That was pretty much his attitude.  But this wasn’t his focus. He brought my attention to efforts to revive American manufacturing, including a website called madeinusaforever.com.  

So, if Ed Schultz, a nationally syndicated progressive radio host, and later MSNBC host, is all about American jobs, then FOX must be all about sending our jobs to China, right?  After all, in 2009, Obama passed a tire tariff on China (still grateful to Obama for that one by the way). “CPAC” was very critical of Obama for this. I started calling them CCPAC, as in “Chinese Communist Party Action Committee”.  

(My dear deplorables, thank you for your patience.  You’ll like this next part!)

But wait!  It wasn’t long after that I heard the owner of madeinusaforever.com being interviewed on Fox and Friends!  Say what?!  Yes indeed!  Maybe the right isn’t all evil after all.  And not long after that, I was exposed to political Trump for the first time.  It was on Ed Schultz’s radio show!

What do Ed Schultz and Donald Trump have in common?

Ed Schultz was pleasantly surprised to hear long shot 2012 Republican candidate Donald Trump talking about – tariffs!  Tariffs?! From a post-Reagan Republican?! Yes! Tariffs!

On his radio show, Schultz actually said he might support Trump.  Sure, he’s a Republican, and probably wants to cut taxes on the wealthy, but tariffs!  Tariffs! Glorious, glorious, tariffs!

Then I heard Trump was a birther.  Uggg!

(Sorry Trumpians, we’ll have to agree to disagree on that one.)

The False Messiah

All while this was happening, I was becoming increasingly disappointed in Obama.  I admit. My hopes were way too high in 2008! But still, he could have at least tried to keep some of his most important campaign promises.  Well, at least we got that tire tariff, and he wasn’t starting any new illegal wars, right?

Then Libya.

After a few years of struggling to fix our economy, and dragging our feet as we slowly withdrew from Iraq, Obama made the biggest foreign policy mistake of his entire Presidency.  He was supposed to be a man of peace! What happened? Hillary Rodham Clinton! That’s what happened!

I underestimated just how damaging Obama’s air-strikes would be.  But they were enough to topple the only stable government in Libya, and create a power vacuum to be filled by terrorists and slave traders.  

As the Gen. Election of 2012 was between Obama and Romney, and Romney just looked like Bush-lite to me, I held my nose and voted for Obama.  But not with the same enthusiasm as I did in 2008. I wasn’t excited this time; not much hope for change. But the status quo of the Obama era was preferable to the status quo that came before.

Coming around to Trump

It’s like a cheesy romance movie.  Ya know the kind where the girl first finds the guy obnoxious, thinks she’d never date him in a million years.  But then she gets used to all his quirks, and finds some things about him she likes? By the end, she’s in love?

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Thinking back to the birther years, I remember Obama mocking Trump.  He played the “live birth” video, which was actually a clip from the Lion King.  I was ROFL! I even bought the coffee mug of Obama’s Birth Certificate with “Made in USA” on the other side.  Buy American, right Trump?

Though many things about Trump are nothing short of sickening to me, he was the only candidate boldly talking about changing America’s unsustainable trade practices.  I loved THAT about Trump, and not much else. The only other candidate who even came close on that issue was Bernie Sanders. Neither Trump nor Sanders were my first choice, but as Sanders seemed to have the best chance in the primaries, he got my vote.  

But there she was, Her Royal Clintonness.  Her husband had sold us out to China, sold us out to Mexico, wrecked what was left of Yugoslavia and handed Kosovo over to a bunch of Al Qaeda linked terrorists.  But Hillary isn’t her husband, right? Not quite, but close enough. I already discussed Libya above, and lets not forget that Hillary also supported the invasion of Iraq in 2003, and of course, the invasion of Kosovo during her husband’s administration.

But she’s a woman!  And we’ve never had a woman president.  And she’s all for LGBT issues! And she’s pro-choice!  And she’s sensitive to the struggles of ethnic minorities!

Gimme a break!  First, I’ll happily vote for a woman who deserves to be President.  Let our first woman president be someone we can be proud of. On LGBT issues, Her Royal Clintonness goes whichever way the wind blows.  She was against gay marriage until it was cool.  Trump, by contrast, was actually bold enough to promote LGBT rights in the Republican primaries!  Where it’s not so cool. Pro-choice? Well I’m pro-life, so piss off with that! As for ethnic minorities, Hillary Clinton was a very outspoken supporter of her husband’s crime bill in 1994.  Following that, we’re in a situation now where 1 in 3 black males will be arrested in their life times if nothing changes.  Trump is far from perfect I realize, but I’ll not be lectured to on racial inequality by Hillary Clinton or any of her supporters!

Trump Got Better

Many years before, I was pleasantly surprised when the Tea Party, that would re-invent the American conservative movement, actually seemed to go a bit to the left of Obama when it came to militarism abroad.  Please understand that I respect our soldiers who enlist to put their lives on the line for our country. I respect them so much that I loathe politicians who would put them in harm’s way for any other purpose.  Libya was no threat to us. The government of Libya was violently suppressing a violent revolution against it. It’s what governments do. But I actually heard people in the Tea Party criticizing Obama for intervening, including talk radio personality Michael Savage.  Also, as principled advocates of smaller government, they wanted to reduce wasteful military spending and get our military to focus on national defense. I figured Rand Paul was the only barer of these sentiments in the Republican Primary.

But in the debates, despite all of Trump’s history of boisterous, provocative talk, he showed himself to be cautious, and even humble, on American foreign policy.  He had no problem criticizing Hillary Clinton for her reckless interventions.  Shortly after winning, when the Democrats started their neo-McCarthyite witch-hunt, Trump even dared to rhetorically ask “You think our country is so innocent?”  WOW! Is Trump “blaming America”? I love this guy!

Let me be clear about what it means to love your country.  Love is hard. Love can even be cruel. Love is not, however, enabling.  Enabling is easy. If you see someone hurting themselves, it’s easy to pat them on the back and tell them it’s OK to keep doing what they’re doing.  It takes love to grab them by the shoulders and say, “Stop doing this to yourself.” That’s how I feel about America when I see us engaged in these reckless, foreign wars that topple stable governments and empower terrorists.  The enablers might say that I “hate America”. But no, this is true love.

In 2000, I liked that Bush advocated for a more “humble foreign policy.”  Then he betrayed us. In 2008, I like that Obama ran on getting us out of Iraq.  And then, Libya. In 2016, I was proud to see a President who was ready to use our military the way it’s meant to be used – to fight those who would attack us, ISIS, Al Qaeda, etc.  Not to police the world. Not to cooperate with “the global community.” No. To protect America’s interests.

The Final Straw

Trump isn’t perfect.  I hear he’s engaged in some military action in Syria, and I wish he weren’t.  But at least he had the sense to hold off until ISIS was reduced to feebility.  And it doesn’t look like he’s trying to topple the government. But on the Korean front, he’s working towards peace! President Moon of South Korea, whom I’ve come to greatly respect, even said Trump should get a Nobel Prize!  The American people also largely support the North Korean summit, even though Trump remains highly controversial.

But in case you thought Rachel Maddow had even a shred of integrity left, here’s the sad truth.  The same Rachel Maddow that once welcomed the Tea Party’s calls for cutting wasteful military spending; is the same Rachel Maddow that now chastises Trump for the North Korean summit, and even accuses him of doing it to help Russia!  What?! Red bating and warmongering from “progressive” Rachel Maddow?

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The “Democrats” Today

I once saw the Democratic Party as the party of the people.  They were the ones who would fight for American jobs, resist the warmongers, regulate the big banks, protect their environment.  I would put up with all the PC stuff, because it was worth it to vote “in my own best interests”, right? Now, can Democrats even pretend to be the party of working Americans anymore?  In 2004, John Kerry criticized Bush for outsourcing and promised to end tax incentives to companies that send our jobs overseas. Now, Democrats are more likely than Republicans to embrace “free trade”!  WTF?!!!!!

The treatment of Bernie Sanders and his supporters only furthered revealed the truth.  For no other reason than Sanders’s gender, he and his supporters were accused of being “sexist” and called “berniebros” as a pejorative.  The first time I heard the term “berniebro”, I liked the sound of it. But in today’s PCed Democratic Party, masculinity is “toxic”, so nobody wants to be a “bro”.*

Today’s Democratic Party is a corporate sponsored circus of political correctness, allied with neoliberal imperialism!  As long as they got gay marriage, they don’t care what happens to the rest of us. They don’t care about poor Appalachian whites, they don’t care about struggling African Americans, they don’t care about Latinos unless they’re illegal immigrants, and even then only care about how much they can exploit them!  But they raise lots of money from Goldman Sachs to pursue their social agendas! I really don’t care one way or the other if gays marry, or what bathroom and trans-person uses, but I’m not about to sell out America’s working class over it. But the Democrats have!

#EvenTrump

I’m so fed up with those pumpkin latte sipping elitists, that I’ll even vote for Trump.  Trump may be rude, crude, and sometimes lewd, but at least he cares about the working class.  And don’t tell me he doesn’t! He’s slapping tariffs on China faster than Bill Clinton can zip up his pants!  Much as I love Kyle Kulinski, a principled liberal unafflicted by Trump Derangement Syndrome, I don’t think he gives Trump enough credit.  I’m glad to see someone on the left criticizing Trump for being still too interventionist on foreign policy. I admit I’ve gone soft on Trump for this.  But Kulinski doesn’t give Trump credit for the tariffs. The Young Turks, once harsh critics of bad trade deals, is actually echoing CNN and warning about the “trade war” that Trump is supposedly starting!  

This is the American left today.  A handful of principled Jimmy Dore and Kyle Kulinski types on the outskirts, and a large mainstream of TDS afflicted corporatists who only care about you if you are useful to the sexual revolution and wear a vagina hat!  Respectable, two-parent households, just need to check their privilege, right?! Well, I’ll take all my light-beige skinned, happily married, church attending privilege to the polls and vote for Trump, despite that “R” next to his name, and Americans of every skin tone with similar values and welcome aboard the #trumptrain !

Note(s):

*For those hoping to use this article as “proof” that “berniebros” cost Clinton the election, the facts are not on your side.  I’m one of the few.  94% of Sanders voters went Clinton in the Gen. Election, compared to over 30% of Kasich voters going Clinton instead of Trump, 11% of Rubio to Clinton, and 7% of Cruz to Clinton.

Smug Liberalism – I Get It

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I often tell self-identified liberals to look in the mirror.  I loathe hypocrisy, and therefore, I must hold myself to the same standards.  It’s easy for the well-educated, socially awkward educator to get smug.  We listen to people rant about stuff of which they clearly have a poor understanding, and intellectually, we know how to respond.  But you know how it goes.  They rant, they change subjects, they often respond rudely to a politely presented counter point, they ad hominem.  This is how many an average “smug liberal” feels.  They then box themselves off, and console themselves in the knowledge that they are intellectually the superiors of those “deplorables.”

Oh how easy it is for me to scoff at the “smug liberals” and console myself in the knowledge – “Liberals, you’re not as smart as you think” – as the title of a recent NYT oped proclaimed.  I, too, can easily fall into the mind-trap of smug.

The Echo Chamber

I find myself in an echo chamber of “deplorables” recently, but they aren’t Trump voters.  These are self-identified “liberals”.  One is a professor, one a real estate sales person, and several others.  You get the idea.  Middle class white people who probably all voted for Clinton in 2016.  I think they all know that a heretic (me) is among them.  Some of them are really nice about it.  One even had a little talk about my teaching position at the college, and just American government in general.  One has silenced me at least once on social media for expressing a dissenting opinion on his wall.  Some of them seem to take a special pleasure in taking a jab or two at Trump, or stereotyping Republicans in general, without ever asking what I think of the particular topic, and then, of course, quickly changing the topic before I respond.  So, some of them are polite, at least one of them reasonably intelligent (maybe more), but some of rather rude and narrow-minded.

Regarding the rude and narrow-minded, the positions they present are so laughably bad that I’m reminded of the Winston Churchill quote:

The best argument against democracy is a five-minute conversation with the average voter.

Get this!  Apparently when a white man has power over a white woman, it’s called “white privilege”, or even “white supremacy”!  Yes, that’s right!  You didn’t think white women were actually white, did you?

Also, a gay white man is not really white, because gays are a minority.  If you fall into any “marginalized group”, apparently your skin color changes, and you stop being white.

I say the above because I’m thinking of two clearly gay men who have skin at least as white as mine, who seem to enjoy denouncing white privilege.  One of them takes special pleasure simultaneously in deriding his “red neck” relatives who live in trailers.  They have light colored skin, they’re heterosexual, so I guess they need to check their privilege, right?  Their trailer dwelling, scrapping to survive privilege.

Do I belong here?

I could go on, but I’m not writing this to mock these people.  But rather to understand development of smug.  As I sit among them, I can’t help it.  I feel really, really smug, while simultaneously befuddled.

The last time I felt anywhere close to this way was about mid-Obama era.  When my wife and I were dating, a Sat. late morning, we were at an Arby’s for a late breakfast, early lunch.  For context, know that I had not yet had coffee, and I’m one of those people whom you really don’t want to talk to before I’ve had coffee.  So she recognized a colleague, and this colleague was with her father.  Her father got under my skin very quickly.  He started questioning/interrogating me about everything from my religious beliefs to politics.  I’ll spare you the religious part in this post.  But know that I was not with it without my coffee, and it was Sat, and I was really not in the mood.  But that just made him more aggressive.  What finally did it was when Obama came up.*  He said, “I know I’m not supposed to hate people, but I just can’t help when I see that man in the White House.”  “Why’s that?” I asked.  “We’ve never had such an unconstitutional President before!”  So I thought I’d switch on my caffeine deprived brain as much as I could, and engage him.  “What about Obama is so unconstitutional?”  “We’ve never had a Muslim President before!”  I’d had enough.  My face I imagine turned crimson, and I just stormed off.  I waited by the door for my wife as she said her goodbyes to her friend.  The layers of stupidity in that last statement!

I was smug and befuddled then, and I’m smug and befuddled now.  I imagine the very people who make me smug today, would have felt very smug towards that man so many years ago.  I probably would have felt find among these same people at that time, and happily joined them in ridiculing the average Republican voter.  But today, in 2018, I don’t seem to belong, and a few of them seem to want to make me feel out of place.

So How Do I Respond?

I’m inspired by a wonderful man, Daryl Davis.  If you haven’t heard of him, he’s an incredibly brave and compassionate black man who went right among the KKK!  He wanted to understand how they can hate someone they’ve never met, simply by the color of their skin.  But he didn’t go among them to judge them, nor did he go with hatred in his heart towards them.  It seems that even as they hated his skin color, he had compassion for them.  It’s hard to have compassion for people who hate you, but somehow, he had it!  Over time, he got through to them, and without ever asking them, they chose to leave the Klan, one by one.  It’s amazing what love can do!

But I’m only human.  I’m not super human like Daryl Davis.  Like my frenemies of the echo chamber, I too, need my comfort zone.  My comfort zone will never be an echo chamber.  I’m a social scientist, not just as an educator, but at heart.  I may be socially awkward, but I love to study socialization.  As Sheldon Cooper once said of social experimentation, “It’s one of the few forms of social interaction I don’t find repellant.”

The Study

Here’s what I know so far.  Some of them are very kind, and very willingness to recognize that well intended human beings can disagree with each other on major issues.  Some of them would rather not listen to a differing point of view, and are quick to categorize others with tribal labels, and all of the assumed positions on different issues associated with those labels.  What I don’t know is if they view the other (me) as less than human, or as “evil”, or maybe they engage a kind of cognitive dissonance where the other can be wicked on politics, and in other ways a good person.  I also wonder if, in time, they are willing to consider that maybe a person who voted for Trump isn’t as terrible as they think, and might have some views on some issues that might surprise them, or if they will instead default to partisan labels and the “us or them” mentality.

As a social scientist, I shouldn’t expect a set of results.  “Science” that assumes the result, and seeks that result is tainted.  I’m not even sure of my methodology yet.  I may be as an anthropologist, just among them, observing.  I may try some things, ask some questions, maybe even have the audacity to express dissenting opinions, and see how they react.  Maybe all of the above at different times.

And so, it begins.  #operationmilos

 

Note(s):

* For those of you who don’t know, I was an Obama supporter, though I have my disagreements with him on some issues, as I am with Trump now

 

Further reading on “Smug Liberalism”:

The smug style in American liberalism is kind of a neo-classic, written two years ago as Trump was on the rise.  Many, many more articles have followed echoing these sentiments.

The Myth of the smug liberal as a counter-argument to the above.  It’s anecdotal, but gives an interesting perspective of a liberal who knows all about scrapping by and resents being called “smug” and out of touch with the “common man”.

Lily White Liberals At Yale And Beyond

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At Yale, a black student falling asleep in the common room is apparently cause for alarm.  Some might be shocked that such a thing would happen at a “progressive” Ivy League institution, especially Yale!  But this incident is just another example of the kind of white-liberal hypocrisy I’ve seen among the academic elites, and I’m sure they can be found among the privileged whites everywhere.

As reported by GMA and many other outlets, Lolade Siyonbola, a black female Yale student, fell asleep in a common room of her dorm while working on a paper.  Having been a grad student at LSE myself, I can tell you this is not unusual at all.  I can remember around term paper time at UNF also seeing a student passed out on a bench, or a couch on campus.

Lily White Liberalism

It’s nothing new.  Looking briefly into history, I get that term “Lily White” from the old Republicans.  They were happy to be the party of Lincoln; the party that “freed the slaves.”  But that didn’t mean they had to mix with “the negro”.  The Lily White Republicans were those who wanted to keep blacks at the bottom of the Republican Party establishment.  The old liberal Republicans loved to stand in judgement of the white south, for all the backwards and bluntly racist ways of our ancestors.  But they always kept blacks at arm’s length, and had no problem engaging in more subtle forms of discrimination than was practiced in the Jim Crow south.

The Lily White Liberal of today is more likely to be a Democrat.  They speak progressivism and denounce the “racism” of the anti-PCers, especially in the south, with one side of their split tongues.  They’ll denounce “white privilege” while they themselves are far more privileged than most of the whites they condemn.  In their position of power and prestige, they have the privilege of being able to decide what is “racist”, what is “offensive”, etc.  From the highest echelons of academia, they can even invent new sexual orientations and gender identities.

But while they speak of diversity, they won’t touch the average black American with a 10 foot pole.  These people have thin skin.  Is it any surprise that the same delicate little white snowflakes who can’t handle a little dissenting opinions, likewise can’t stand to be around people who look so different from them?  The snowflake who called the police on sleeping Lolade Siyonbola; she actually called 9-1-1!

Salt-of-the-Earth Americans Have Racial Tensions Too

I can’t speak for the whole country, but here in the South, we’ve come a long way since Jim Crow.  The best way to describe race relations today is that we are over racism on the surface, but so much of it is still deeply embedded in our habits.  The tensions are there.  The average white person in the south wants peace and integration with our black neighbors.  We see each other at work, at restaurants, ball games, sometimes even at church.  We get along well on the surface.  But beneath it all, it’s our black brothers and sisters who live in fear that being in the wrong place, at the wrong time, with the wrong cop, might just be their death.  Beyond that, there’s just the everyday prejudices people have.

Let’s keep it real.  It’s too easy for the average black male to be perceived as a “thug”.  Sure, they can dress really nice one day and make people more comfortable.  But it’s harder for them to relax in public outside of historically segregated areas.  I don’t say this as a “that’s how it should be”.  I think it’s terrible!  But we don’t change things by not acknowledging them in the first place.

Lily Whites Thrive On This

Yale is already denouncing the aforementioned incident with Lolade Siyonbola, and will likely follow with yet more political correctness, more condescension, and more non-solutions.  Meanwhile, in the far more moderate, far less politically charged University of North Florida; life goes on.  Nobody thinks anything of the black girl who nodded off in the computer room cramming for exams or whatever.  Nobody thinks anything of the red neck with the little Confederate Battle Flag sticker on his back pack.  But Lily Whites won’t stand for that.

The very same kinds of people who called the police on Lolade Siyonbola will be the first to denounce that little Confederate Battle Flag sticker.  They’ll denounce it faster than the young black law student who plans to work for the NAACP!  In fact, they’ll make sure that young black law student is within ear shot when they denounce it, but they’ll politely decline said black law student’s invitation to have lunch together later.

These are whites in the tradition of Andrew Turnbull, the British planter who settled in Florida, but was appalled at African slavery.  He wasn’t appalled because of any compassion for the Africans.  No.  He was appalled at how whites and blacks mixes so much where slavery was practiced.  He was appalled at the mixed race children who were produced under such a system.  So, he decided to bring indentured servants to Florida (St Augustine area) from the Mediterranean.  He didn’t care for them either, but abhorred their olive skin tones far less than the black skin tones of African slaves.  Turnbull made a raw deal with people largely from Menorca*, but treated them worse than slaves.  Many of them died under the appalling labor conditions, and those that survived had to demand and force Turnbull to live up to his end of the agreement when their indentured servitude was up.

Andrew Turnbull was the original Lily White Liberal, and now they are many, and they thrive on racial tension as much today as they did in colonial times.

 

Note(s):

*If you ever make it to St. Augustine, I hope you’ll get to experience some of the culinary influence of the Menorcans.  There are still many residents today of strong Menorcan heritage, and they’ve really enriched the local cuisine.  Mmmm, Menorcan stew…