Skip to comments.Are we dealing with racial mysticism here? (Vanity)
Posted on 04/12/2012 2:37:52 PM PDT by Zionist Conspirator
During the latter part of the nineteenth century a coalition of moralists and social reformers sincerely thought that giving political power to women would eliminate all traditional social evils. After all, men had always ruled, and women were supposedly inherently more moral and more religious than men. Maybe this would fix everything. Thus the push for women's suffrage. And when it was all over, women were just like the men.
I am going to suggest something absolutely outrageous. But it's been knocking around in my mind for a while, and I hope that the example of women's suffrage will show that such a thing may not be unprecedented.
When I was in high school I fell in love with the American folklore anthologies of B.A. Botkin . . . especially the "Negro" folklore (as it was then called). It was the most American (and the most Southern) thing in the world, and an absolute delight to explore. What a wonderful people!
Now I think we all know that Marx's "proletariat" (which meant simply the working classes) has long since been dropped by what we conventionally call "the left" and replaced with the allegedly inherently revolutionary "people of color." This is a radical development which I don't think has been yet adequately appreciated. Unlike economic condition, race/ethnicity is genetic. The jettisoning of the abstract international working class and their replacement by certain chosen ethnic groups is simply not Marxism, despite the continued use of Marxist terminology by the left and the tendency of the right to refer to this as "cultural Marxism." But "cultural Marxism" is not Marxism at all. It is something very different.
Furthermore, I note that my once beloved American Blacks for some bizarre reason have been chosen by the left as the absolute top of the hierarchy of "oppression"--and hence of redemptive world mission. Despite the fact that until about fifty years ago American Blacks were simply rednecks with melanin, despite the fact that they have lived here for four hundred years, despite the fact that their language is Southern American English, they have been anointed by the Left as the most alien, the most "other," the most oppressed people in existence. In conflicts with groups who actually are "other" and even who speak a foreign language the liberals always support Blacks as being somehow more "other" even than actual foreigners. The people one old book described as "the least alien yet most alienated" ethnic group in the population has been made into the absolutely most alien and hostile group in the country.
Furthermore, the status of being "oppressed" has now been detached from circumstances and turned into an almost metaphysical thing. As I understand Derrick Bell's philosophy, Blacks are inherently, metaphysically oppressed. They are oppressed even when they aren't oppressed. Even if they had never been kidnaped or bought and brought to America as slaves they would still be "oppressed." Being "oppressed" is a permanent condition with no connection to anything that has ever happened or that could conceivably happen. The universe has somehow chosen this people to be the ultimate victims of "oppression." But while the right usually focuses on the victimology aspect of this ideology, the pertinent fact is that the whole point of being "victims" bestows on them some cosmic mission of redemption. In other words, they become "the chosen people."
One thing Marx was right about is that ideology is often simply a justification of self-interest. If I want so-and-so, something within me compels me to believe that (coincidentally) getting exactly what I want will serve some vast noble purpose. In the past, white racists excused every atrocity with the excuse that they were protecting "western civilization." Every time drunken whites wanted to "have a little fun" bashing some people in the head or just shooting off firecrackers to scare Blacks, they were actually engaged in the noble, world-saving act of upholding "western civilization."
Now the same thing is happening again. It isn't the opposite thing . . . it is exactly the same. The fact that the roles are now reversed do not make what is happening the least bit "different" from what used to happen.
Now instead of "upholding western civilization," the great ideological justification of doing just what the person wanted to do anyway is the "forward march of history" according to the Hegelian dialectic. If some homeboy wants to bash a cracker for Trayvon, mug somebody, or even slap some white person in the face, it is no longer a selfish desire. Instead "justice" will be served as the universe ratchets forward another notch on the way to the utopia at "the end of history." Sometimes I wonder if the contemporary "left" believes that every single action of every Black American is somehow mystically redemptive. I mean, they sometimes do act as if they believe that every time an "African-American" takes a dump the universe experiences an orgasm. You know, that's really convenient . . . when the entire universe just happens to hinge on your getting whatever it is you happen to want at the moment.
In my opinion, the "class warfare" angle many conservatives harp on simply isn't that relevant. To what is conventionally called "the left," poor whites (especially poor rural Southern whites) are the ultimate enemy . . . not rich Wall Street Bankers. In fact, they seem to regard every dump taken by a redneck as an evil obstruction to historical fulfillment.
So let's begin putting some of this together. A little over a century ago, women were regarded as free of "original sin" and all that was necessary to abolish age-old evils was to give them the franchise. Now it is "people of color" who are immaculately conceived, yet within the hierarchy of this world historical "mission" the apex isn't any foreign group, but the most American, most Southern, and formerly least alien population group in the whole country.
Why should a non-alien population group be regarded as more "other" and more alienated than immigrants from foreign countries who speak foreign languages? Could it be (and here is this crazy idea that just won't go away) that for some reason there are certain people out there who actually seem to believe that darkness of skin pigmentation is some sort of metaphysical mark of righteousness? Is this why the darker native group outranks the lighter-skinned foreigner?
Is this why the left has abandoned poor whites (especially in the rural South) and branded them the Ultimate Evil?
If this is so . . . and I admit it is crazy as all get-out . . . then "the left" is no longer really "left" at all. We are dealing with something else altogether, and calling it "the left" is merely a convention. We are dealing with an ideology that insists that each group's and each person's place along the spectrum of good-to-evil is genetically determined. And the whole idea of "good" or "evil" is something that inheres in one's chromosomes.
Now, in my defense, let me point out that we have FReepers who believe global elites are in league with "Lucifer." Could not global elites have simply hit upon another idea similar to the old moralist/reformist idea that women would save the world? It is certainly theoretically possible. But why? Why would darkness of skin pigmentation become such a central ideological feature? Could it be something so simple and so childish as a belief that all the old associations of "black" with evil and "white" with good might be (like the former participation of only males in the political process) the cause of the world's problems?
As for "people of color" themselves, I believe what we are seeing here is the natural result of an inferiority complex. While that may sound ridiculous at first, I recall to the reader that in nineteenth century Europe two new nations were created among the more ancient nations there who became very aggressive in colonialism in order to "catch up" with nations who had been doing it for centuries. Despite the bluster of those two nations, they had in fact deep seated inferiority complexes. Those two nations were Italy and Germany. (One might also attribute Japan's rapid mondernization and military adventurism after the Meiji Restoration to a similar cause.) I once read a book on Mussolini that made an interesting statement: that the world has yet to learn to deal with people who have been long made to feel inferior when they get the means to assert themselves.
Before closing this speculation, I must admit that not everything in it makes sense. The most jarring example is religion. If "the left" has replaced actual poverty and oppression with skin color as the agent of world redemption, how to explain the fact that its ministers (whether white liberals or those of the "people of color" themselves) seem to be classical eighteenth century European rationalists who have rejected everything supernatural and super-rational? Eighteenth century European rationalism doesn't seem at all natural to "people of color." Yet all the religius spokesmen for these groups might as well change their names to Voltaire. This is something my theory cannot explain.
Still, I am grasping for an answer as to why our liberal news media are agitating, not the poor or downtrodden regardless of ethnicity, but rather the least alien "minority" ethnic group in America as their ultimate agents of "social change." Outside of some vaguely defined racial mysticism, this simply doesn't make any sense.
Does it involve the Magic Negro?
Apparently they're all magic.
And their mojo is more potent than that of Mexicans, Asians, and even little green men from outer space, apparently.
Don’t know if you’re still around, but here’s a ping for your interest.
I hate you. You sneaked in at night, plucked my brain and articulated my own ideas as I never could!
I'm familiar with the "noble savage," but that doesn't explain why the darker skinned non-indigenous (but native-born) American Blacks have come to outrank lighter skinned non-native outgroups in the liberal hierarchy.
The magic negro can't steal another election without getting his biggest fans energized. The Muslim terrorist prefers to have race riots this summer but he might have to settle for less if whitey doesn't play along.
When the Marxists realized that the economic conditions of their precious "working class" were improving and that the revolution [which Marx had never predicted and was only dreamed up by his followers] wasn't going to happen, they had to shift gears. Instead of the capitalists vs. the workers, they adopted a more generic powerless vs. the powerful story line.
In this context, any group which could be claimed to be less successful than another (blacks, women, minorities in general, children, Muslims, etc.) could be lionized as a victim.
You're right. It isn't Marxism. It's what some call "vulgar Marxism" or "folk Marxism." It's actually "desperation Marxism" and it's working all too well for my taste.
I think that noble savage is where it all starts and then it goes into sacred mysticism. Rodney King, O.J., Trayvon, Michael Vick have all been treated like noble savages, forgiven their tresspasses like we forgive those who just don’t know, children and cretins, unlike, say, the enemy of the people, who as far as we know hasn’t hurt a fly, David Duke, and who’ll never be forgiven (for what, I’m not sure, are you?)
Because the less intelligent a populace is, the more easily they can be led.
Its an established fact that, on average, blacks have a lower IQ than whites just like whites have a lower IQ average than Asians.
Liberals don't want people to think.... they just want them to follow.
BTW, the news media relies on sponsors, and sponsors do regulate what is broadcast.
I’m actually writing my mini thesis on a similar phenomenon. People tend to take anything they consider “certain enough”(or maybe just convinient) as some sort of a priori intuition, as valid and universal as math and logic. People then have an unshakeable beleif in this intuition that no amount of evidence can shake(if not look at you like there was something intellectually or morally wrong with you for not recognizing something so “obvious”). So if a liberal suddenly feels like blacks are eternal victims of oppression, no matter how much you tell them about crime rates, black on black murder rates, single mothers, academic performance, etc, it will always be false or racism because they just took that blacks are good as some sort of ontological necessity.
Unfortunately, since these intuitions do not have the validity math and logic have thanks to experience, we end up with people feverishly clinging to unproven beleifs. And ultimately, since this intuition is based on nothing prejudice, or emotions, or whatever reason, it will come and go as the person fancies or has a sensation of certainty. So while rednecks in the Jim Crow era could do no harm because it was just a necessary logical truth that they always fought for western civilization simply because democrats depended on them politically, now it is an ontological necessity that blacks cannot do any harm, that it is just obvious that anything negative said about any of them is fraud and fabrication, simply because the democrats need them politically.
This also handily explain the trope “A conservative is a liberal mugged by reality”. A liberal holds his a priori ethical and political beleifs until he is emotionally uninclined to beleive them out faith, because he got smacked in the face with what he’s experienced.
Close, but only half a cigar.
The relevant issue is not really skin color, though that is a reasonable surrogate. As can be seen by Zimmerman’s demonization.
The real issue is (to steal a meme developed by the also recently demonized John Derbyshire) the Designated Victim Group (DVG) versus the Designated Oppressor Group (DOG).
DVGs include blacks, hispanics, Native Americans, gays, women, immigrants and anybody else not seen as part of “the establishment.” DOGs are of course those who are seen as part of “the establishment,” or guilty of supporting it. Rich people, white people, straight white men, southern whites, conservatives, Republicans.
One can obviously switch from one category to another, and which one will be assigned to depends on circumstances. Thus Zimmerman would in other context be hispanic rather than white.
Also the whitest guy around can become an honorary DVG simply by turning on and denouncing other DVGs. To maintain this status he has to constantly get louder and louder in his denunciation, or he will slip back into being a DOG.
There is a poorly defined but implicitly understood ranking of DVGs. In any conflict between two DVGs, one will be demoted to a DOG. Thus, Sarah Palin, a woman, was a DOG when debating Joe Biden, a stereotypical straight white guy.
The root issue is one of being for or against Western civilization. DOGs are, or are supposed to be, against it. Those DVGs who support it are demoted to DOG status and are hated worse than those born into the DOG group. Clarence Thomas, Margaret Thatcher, Sarah Palin, Col. West, Thomas Sowell, etc.
The driving force is one of hating our civilization. Any person or group known or believed to be opposed to it is on “their side.” Thus the alliances with the Islamists.
Since support for traditional Marxism was never much more than an after the fact rationale for their pre-existing emotional disdain for western civ, when it fell apart they just dropped it and picked up another: environmentalism, gay rights, feminism, black liberation, etc. One rationale is just as good as another. Also, if they achieve their goals for one cause, they would just switch to another. They will never be satisfied till western civ crashes down.
What interests me is where this hated and disdain for the civilization that has objectively brought greater freedom and prosperity to far more people than any other comes from.
It has been pointed out many times that Marxism is a Christian heresy. Complete with (among other parallels) a primeval Garden, original sin, a suffering Redeemer and a future Paradise.
The Redeemer in Marxism is of course the proletariat. Since the proletariat rejected Marxism and anyway mostly doesn’t really exist anymore in the sense Marx used the term, the search has been on for a replacement Redeemer. Women, blacks, gays, transgenders (of all groups!), people on welfare, “indigenous peoples,” etc., etc.
Marx based his moral appeal on the fact (according to him) that the proletariat, the only truly economically productive group, supported all other groups by their labor, which was stolen from them. Not a completely irrational position.
The problem for the post-Marxists is that most of their replacement Messianic groups are a net economic drain on society. IOW, these groups are exploiting society economically, not the other way around.
I get an enormous kick out of those claiming blacks are being economically exploited, when there is an enormous net transfer of wealth from whites to blacks each year in this country. Not that this ever seems to bother the post-Marxists, logic and internal consistency not being their strong points.
Very interesting. I am not too familiar with the Nation of Islam teachings, but if I not mistaken, “Minister” Farrakhan espouses that white people are only a sinister deviant form of black people, brought about by an evil scientist in the distant past.
In other words, according to him, yes, dark skin pigmentation is a sort of mystical, wonderful, uncontaminated state.
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