Clarence Thomas Is Also Race Conscious

Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas gave a speech this week at Florida’s Palm Beach Atlantic University and, as Chris Moody reports at Yahoo News, complained that “we are probably today more race and difference-conscious than I was in the 1960s when I went to school.... Everybody is sensitive.” Citing his own experiences, Thomas added, “the worst I have been treated was by northern liberal elites.... The worst things that have been done to me, the worst things that have been said about me, by northern liberal elites, not by the people of Savannah, Georgia.”

Credit: C-SpanCredit: C-SpanIt’s not the first time Thomas has said something controversial about race and it won’t be the last. But his comments do highlight a significant fact about the conservative justice. His complaints about “race and difference-conscious[ness]” notwithstanding, Clarence Thomas is himself extremely race conscious.

Take a look at Thomas’ speeches and writings, and you’ll find them steeped in African American history and tradition. His statement about “northern liberal elites,” for instance, echoes Malcom X’s famous observation in his Autobiography that unlike the "honest" Southern white, who "bares his teeth to the black man," the "Northern white man, he grins with his teeth, and his mouth has always been full of tricks and lies.” As Thomas told Reason back in 1987, “I've been very partial to Malcolm X, particularly his self-help teachings. I have virtually all of the recorded speeches of Malcolm X.”

That emphasis on race frequently discomfits Thomas’ liberal opponents since it challenges the standard narrative equating the advance of racial equality with the triumph of progressive politics. Jeffrey Toobin of The New Yorker, for example, once criticized Thomas for finding “a racial angle on a broad array of issues, including those which appear to be scarcely related to traditional civil rights, like campaign finance or gun control.”

Given the fact that America’s earliest gun control laws were put in place to keep blacks unarmed, and that the 14th Amendment was drafted in 1866 in part to prevent the former Confederate states from disarming the freedmen, it turns out to be Toobin whose views are “scarcely related” to the topic at hand, not Thomas.

As for the point about race and campaign finance, Thomas also has history on his side.

In recent years, Thomas has taken issue with the post-Citizens United valorization of the Tillman Act of 1907, a pioneering campaign finance regulation sponsored by Democratic Sen. Benjamin “Pitchfork” Tillman of South Carolina. As Thomas likes to point out, Tillman made an early name for himself as the leader of a Klan-like terror group that killed and menaced black Americans. “Tillman’s contributions to campaign finance law have been discussed in our recent cases on that subject,” Thomas wrote, referring to Justice John Paul Stevens' dissent in Citizens United. “His contributions to the culture of terrorism that grew in [the post-war South] had an even more dramatic and tragic effect.” Indeed, Thomas later told an audience at Stetson University, “Go back and read why Tillman introduced that legislation...as I hear the story he was concerned that the corporations, Republican corporations, were favorable toward blacks, and he felt that there was a need to regulate them.”

Despite his comments earlier this week, Clarence Thomas has repeatedly shown that he too understands the need for race consciousness in American politics.

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  • Notorious G.K.C.||

    Black people can only be race-conscious if they're progressive. If they're conservative, they should shut up about how progressives have used government power to mess with blacks.

  • Notorious G.K.C.||

    If Justice Thomas believes (correctly) that the standard progressive narrative about race is an inversion of the truth, he should say so. Particularly since the proj-gressives are denouncing Thomas as a miscegenating race traitor. Fight back.

  • Pulseguy||

    Didn't he just do exactly what you are advising him to do?

  • ||

    Race consciousness is not exactly the same as grievance mongering, and there's probably too much of both. In all reality, the relation of campaign finance laws or firearms restrictions historically to racism doesn't have fuck all to do with their inherent constitutionality or morality, and it shouldn't be a consideration in adjudicating the laws in and of themselves. You're better off working from first principles than historical racial grievances.

  • Notorious G.K.C.||

    It's jiu-jitsu (sp?) - using prog tactics against the progs themselves. Make them sputter in indignation - "Unfair - *we're* the ones who are supposed to cry racism against *other* people!"

  • ||

    I don't generally go out for the whole "you gotta join 'em to beat 'em" schtick. In fairness to Thomas though, I don't think racial historical analysis is the determining factor in a lot of his decisions, but its presence is more to provide context or commentary on his opinions. I think he's by far the most libertarian justice on the court (to the extent there is such a thing as a libertarian justice).

  • Notorious G.K.C.||

    I certainly don't think its the reason for most of his decisions, but turning the tables on the progs adds some spice.

  • R C Dean||

    I don't generally go out for the whole "you gotta join 'em to beat 'em" schtick.

    My standard ROE in most conflict situations is that I won't start a race to the bottom, but if the other side wants to find out who can be the most nasty, vicious, cold-blooded bastard, I'm happy to oblige.

  • R C Dean||

    I don't generally go out for the whole "you gotta join 'em to beat 'em" schtick.

    My standard ROE in most conflict situations is that I won't start a race to the bottom, but if the other side wants to find out who can be the most nasty, vicious, cold-blooded bastard, I'm happy to oblige.

  • Lyle||

    You're evidence of Libertarians needing to understand and do politics better.

  • waffles||

    *Your

    /killaz

  • Killaz||

    The correct Killazation be 'you is'.

  • plusafdotcom||

    no, stet. 'You're' is correct, but only if you read the entire sentence and don't assume that every time someone says 'you're', they meant 'your.'

    It's not 'your evidence of...' it's really "you ARE evidence of..."

    English... lost language in America.

  • R C Dean||

    I liked it better the first way.

  • Homple||

    He was viciously and unfairly attacked in his Senate confirmation hearing because of his race, albeit not because he was black but because he was the wrong kind of black. He got first hand experience of how His Betters expect people of his skin color to think and what happens to those who think otherwise.

    One would think that such experience would leave him a bit race conscious.

  • MJGreen||

    “the worst I have been treated was by northern liberal elites.... The worst things that have been done to me, the worst things that have been said about me, by northern liberal elites, not by the people of Savannah, Georgia.”

    There's a new documentary coming out about Anita Hill. I did some work with it briefly. The (old, white) office proggie saw what I was working on and his first response was, "Oh, Uncle Thomas."

    The shit northeastern liberals say about black conservatives is appalling. I know I can find real, violent racists in the south if I look for them, but so far the most racist people I've met are white progressives. Well, inside the US, anyway. The racism you see in East Asia and the Pacific is a whole other thing.

  • Loki||

    The shit northeastern liberals say about black conservatives is appalling.

    I'll just leave this here. And this.

  • Loki||

    And who can forget this?

  • Mongo||

    Nice links, Loki!

    I've always loved Oliphant.

  • Tony||

    And I'll raise you ten million chain emails and every single comments board linked to by Drudge or any other mainstream rightwing outfit on the Internet since Jan. 20, 2009. Maybe you don't appreciate the absolute pervasiveness of racism on the right because reason censors them.

  • kbolino||

    I have yet to scratch under the surface of a racist and find anything other than a my-kind-only socialist.

    So if racism is "absolutely pervasive" on the right, why is it censored and so heavily denounced here? We can't be "on the right" and not be racist, right?

  • Tony||

    The reason I comment here is because I practically can't go anywhere else to debate my political opponents without facing a wall of ugly racist filth. The right in this country is fucked beyond anything that most people admit to.

  • datcv||

    You hate racist homophobic social conservatives so you go and argue against the non-racist, non-homophobic libertarians instead!

    Totally rational.

  • Tony||

    Why is it not? The racists are absolutely impenetrable. They're complete morons. In the vast sea of idiot conservatives there is a tiny island of slightly-less-idiotic libertarians, with whom I enjoy debating, even if they are pretty much just as impervious to reason.

  • Pulseguy||

    Looking forward to you debating, Tony. When will it begin? Because up until now you have been writing illogical platitudes.

  • plusafdotcom||

    Try suggesting that big-government isn't the ONLY solution to ALL problems with a liberal some time...

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    Do you think calling a black person an 'uncle tom' is necessarily or per se racist?

  • R C Dean||

    Yep, for most current values of racism, anyway. Its a race-based, derogatory label.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    So if a black person (or any person for that matter) felt that a person supported people or policies that were generally oppressive of others of the same group, what could they call them?

  • R C Dean||

    Umm, a person who supports oppressive policies? A racist, perhaps? To be inflammatory, a race traitor? Those are all race-neutral, rather than race-based, derogatory labels?

  • LarryA||

    Same with "oreo."

  • Cliché Bandit||

    Why are they calling Danny Glover a supreme Court Justice? Does he have a new movie coming out?

  • The Last American Hero||

    No, he's too old for this shit.

  • Zombie Jimbo||

    Can you tweet that comment and the photo above to Glover? He'd have a stroke.

  • CE||

    I'm pretty sure that's a picture of Samuel Jackson.

  • The Last American Hero||

    Oh hell no.

  • Agammamon||

    Motherfucker.

  • sarcasmic||

    What?

  • seguin||

    Say "What" again, motherfucker!

  • Juice||

    Don't you mean Lawrence Fishburne?

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    Given the fact that America’s earliest gun control laws were put in place to keep blacks unarmed...

    Shhhh. We don't talk about this.

    ...he was concerned that the corporations... were favorable toward blacks, and he felt that there was a need to regulate them.

    And we definitely don't talk about this.

  • sarcasmic||

    Don't mention that minimum wage legislation was originally put in place to price Southern blacks out of the labor market. Especially since minimum wage is now intended to lift poor blacks out of poverty.

  • ||

    You certainly can't mention that alcohol prohibition was supported by many progressives of that era as a way to protect women and save the working class from vices that lead to their exploitation.

  • Killaz||

    That particular bit of racism was not unique to the region, in fact, had most of its traction where unions predominated.

  • seguin||

    I was just reading about a neat exception to the general white unions vs. cheaper black labor the other day.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Norris_Wright_Cuney

    Just an interesting historical. Also interesting was the "Galveston Free State" period - prohibition basically didn't exist on the island, and gambling and many other vices were de facto legal.

  • Killaz||

    You failed to mention the man's epic 'stache. That is an interesting slice of history.

  • seguin||

    I needed to leave a little frosting on the cake for you.

  • ~Knarf Yenrab~||

    But that was back in the day when people were vaguely economically literate and were capable of intuiting that minimum wages eliminate potential contracts rather than altering their terms.

    Now we have the modern masters of macro to set us straight.

  • Killaz||

    It's the reason Reagan, though his policies didn't reflect it as much as we would have liked, had such good sound judgement in economics. He got his degree in the field at a competent college before the revolt against the logic of micro that started with Fischer and went deeply off the rails with Keynes had much of an effect on the profession.

  • ~Knarf Yenrab~||

    I bash Reagan as much as anyone born to a horde of Republicans might dare, but I'd give a year's salary for a Reagan/Volcker combo in 2017.

    At this point, presidential politics is a matter of looking for the tallest dwarf or the least damaging tornado.

  • Invisible Finger||

    Don't mention that minimum wage legislation was originally put in place to price Southern blacks out of the labor market.

    That's not true.

    It was to keep Northern blacks out of the labor market, too.

  • Michael S. Langston||

    It was to keep Northern blacks out of the labor market, too.

    Yep, and more so in the north than the south.

    When that failed, the northerner's turned to unions.

  • Gilbert Martin||

    Don't forget the racist origins of the Davis-Bacon Act either.

  • Pulseguy||

    Gun laws are always put in place to prevent law-abiding people from having guns. This causes them to rely more on authorities. Which is what it is all about.

  • Notorious G.K.C.||

    I don't know Tillman's motivation, but if he'd sponsored a *repeal* of campaign finance laws we know what the progs would be saying.

  • ||

    "He'd totally be a Republican today!"

  • Sigivald||

    Jeffrey Toobin of The New Yorker, for example, once criticized Thomas for finding “a racial angle on a broad array of issues, including those which appear to be scarcely related to traditional civil rights, like campaign finance or gun control.”

    I guess Toobin never heard of the Deacons of Defense.

    Hell, I guess he never heard of Malcolm X.

    Gun rights are self-defense rights.

    Self defense is the first and foremost civil right.

    And gun control in America is historically just a way to keep the black man down.

  • sarcasmic||

    The modern progressive sees no distinction between self defense and vigilante justice.

  • ~Knarf Yenrab~||

    How could Toobin have no clue that gun control and race are not just related, but often strictly related (as in Chicago and Reagan's California)? Hard to tell when the living-in-a-bubble progs are being disingenuous and when they're legitimately ignorant.

  • Notorious G.K.C.||

    I'll go with ignorant. Toobin seems to have a reality filter by which certain inconvenient information never makes it into his consciousness.

  • Tony||

    Black Codes were not the first time in the history of earth that arms control was considered good policy, and it's not relevant to modern discussions of arms control since that is not the motivation. Everybody agrees and the constitution requires that black and white people are treated the same under the law with respect to their legal access to guns. The question is how much access that should be.

  • FYTW||

    it's not relevant to modern discussions of arms control since that is not the motivation

    The motivation is cultural bigotry rather than racial bigotry. It's a distinction without a difference.

  • Tony||

    The motivation is reducing gun violence.

  • sarcasmic||

    Gun violence? What does that mean? Violent guns? My guns aren't violent.

  • Paul.||

    The motivation is reducing gun violence

    Great Success! Guns and concealed carry abound in our fine nation, and gun violence continues to drop!

  • Invisible Finger||

    The motivation is reducing gun violence.

    And the antidote to reducing gun violence is reducing the number of illegal activities that result in gun violence because they cannot be redressed in the justice system.

    Your good intentions don't mean jack shit if your methods require the brains of an ice cube.

  • FYTW||

    Wrong. Gun control is always and everywhere about control, not guns.

  • Pulseguy||

    There are 300,000,000 guns out there already made, with enough ammo to kill the world's population many times over.

    How does taking legal guns from law abiding people stop gun violence? The people that use guns violently and criminally will still have access to literally 100s of millions of guns.

    Mexico allows no guns to be owned privately. So, 5 cartel members with guns can control an entire town, armed as it is with baseball bats and pitchforks. That couldn't happen in Texas, for example.

    I was in India and a gang of nasty, brutish monkeys walked through a small town. They intimidated people, they grabbed vendor's products and destroyed them. It was incredible. It was like being in a Montana town when a biker gang rode in on a Friday night. My buddy said, "Do you have a monkey problem in Canada?" No, Krishna, I said. And, if we did, we would have it for about 5 minutes. "How is that?". We would kill them, I said. He was shocked we would do something so barbaric. In the meantime a monkey bite is so toxic it kills poor people in India. It is nearly as bad as a snake bite it is so dirty and germy. In Mexico 5 bad guys can ruin an entire town. In India 5 bad monkeys can. Both cases are because the townspeople have no weapons to defend themselves with.

  • Michael S. Langston||

    The motivation is reducing gun violence.

    Which I assume means you're cool with voter ID laws, right?

    I mean screw the historical significance of poll taxes - that's irrelevant today.

    The motivation on others is only reducing voter fraud.

    Right Tony?

    Or is this another case where logical consistency is meaningless when it comes to great ideas you have?

  • Tony||

    And did you just say that rural gun-toters are suffering just like blacks did in the late 19th century?

  • sarcasmic||

    Obviously that's exactly what he's saying! I mean, rural gun-toters are in chains! Literally! Chains!

    You should try pretending to be honest sometime. It would be interesting to watch.

  • Paul.||

    No, that's not what he said, not even what he implied.

    He was speaking generically about racial bigotry vs. cultural bigotry. He made no reference to a period within American history, or a particular act of bigotry.

    For instance, the guy who wrote What's the Matter With Kansas is a cultural bigot.

  • Tony||

    Presumably so is Clarence Thomas for his generalization of Northeasterners.

  • Contrarian P||

    What generalization?

  • kbolino||

    He was quite a bit more specific in who he chose to condemn, so good job on libeling him.

  • tarran||

    It's impossible for Tony to libel anyone; he has repeatedly demonstrated an unbelievable degree of cluelessness about science, history, economics, legal theory and cultural issues to the point that his credibility is nonexistent.

    For a libel to exist, it has to convince people.

  • Paul.||

    I considered his remarks to be a statement of how he was treated and where it generally came from.

  • Tony||

    Of course you do. Because he agrees with you about taxes.

  • Michael S. Langston||

    Of course you do. Because he agrees with you about taxes.

    Projection, thy name is...

    Tony - not that you care or will read, or if you do, you will not learn, but unlike you - other people on this comment board actually attempt to live based upon principles.

    As such - they don't have a hard time disliking people who agree with them on most things, but are unprincipled.

    Additionally, they don't have a hard time respecting someone who sticks to their principles, even if they don't agree with them.

    It's only people such as yourself, you much prefer principals over principles who like or dislike is meaningful.

    Only you come here and say "but he means well".

    That's a consequence of having zero integrity, less logical consistency, and sticking to your principals.

  • Tony||

    Principles are way overrated. Every religious nutso suicide bomber is more "principled" than you.

  • Pulseguy||

    He said his experience is he has been treated worse by Liberal Northeasterners. He didn't say all were that way, and he didn't even mention Northeasterners in general, I don't recall. I think he said it was Liberal NEers.

  • R C Dean||

    not relevant to modern discussions of arms control

    Why is it that the supposed racist roots of non-proggy ideas are always relevant, no matter how ancient, but the racist roots of proggy ideas are never relevant?

  • Tony||

    Try again in adult English.

  • Tman||

    Sorry, we don't speak stupid.

  • R C Dean||

    Try again in adult English.

    OK.

    Why is it that the racist roots of non-proggy ideas are always relevant, no matter how ancient, but the racist roots of proggy ideas are never relevant?

  • Tony||

    What's a proggy?

  • sarcasmic||

    That would be principled. Proggys don't believe in principles. Only principals.

  • ||

    "The question is how much access that should be."

    No, its not. How much is spelled out very clearly in the Second amendment.

  • Tony||

    Oh really?

  • kbolino||

    The second half of the wording is clearly normative and does not admit any ambiguity: "the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed".

    So either the first half of the wording—"A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State"—is normative and thus the amendment is self-contradictory, or else it is informative, in which case it does not change the legal effect of the amendment.

    Apply Occam's Razor, and the latter interpretation is the only one that applies.

  • sarcasmic||

    Tony don't do Occam's Razor. Tony do the opposite.

    You see, simple explanations are for simple minds.

    The more complicated the explanation, the more likely it is true.

    If it is so complicated that Tony doesn't understand, but some expert with the correct politics does, then it must be true.

    Because experts and smart people and stuff.

  • Tony||

    But it sure doesn't say anything about where to draw the line on which types of arms are permitted, does it?

    The 2nd amendment cannot plausibly be interpreted to require a total lack of regulation of all weapons. Therefore, regulations are permitted. Since it doesn't specify at all on this subject, then Suthenboy's claim is in error.

  • kbolino||

    The 2nd amendment cannot plausibly be interpreted to require a total lack of regulation of all weapons.

    Based on what axiom?

  • Tony||

    Based on the historical fact that arms, including all manner of gun, have been regulated by government and were, if anything, more regulated the closer in time you get to when the amendment was written. Also based on the obvious practical reality that you can't have people trading in nukes. We have nukes. There is a line. The text does not indicate where that line is drawn.

  • ace_m82||

    Ahem, "shall not be infringed". There's your line.

    To assert that "shall not be infringed" means "shall be infringed somewhere" is the height of Orwellian double-speak.

  • Tony||

    That is not the phrase whose meaning people dispute.

  • Pulseguy||

    Tony's right in this case. I think we should all give up our hopes of owning our own personal nuclear arsenal. Because if my next door neighbor violates our property line I want to nuke him. Or, if a burglar enters my house and is armed and threatens my children what reasonable person wouldn't nuke him if he could? Because I would definitely take out a $30 million second mortgage on my house in order to buy a couple.
    Tony...where is the reasonable line you think should not be crossed? No one is arguing for neighborhood nukes.

  • Pulseguy||

    Governments everywhere regulate and control. This does not mean their regulation and control is specifically good anywhere. They fact it is always done does not create any sort of reasonableness to it.

    It appears all religions try to control one's sexuality. Does the fact all religions, that is those who claim to be moral arbiters, control their followers sexuality make one's sexuality therefore a reasonable part of a public moral code. Because it has always been done that way?

    Your nuke argument is absurd, btw. Taking an argument to an absurd conclusion just invalidates the rest of your argument.

    "I think the Constitution allows me to own a gun." Oh, so what, you want to own a nuke? "Not really. Just a gun to protect my family, if need be. Having a nuke won't protect my family." Yeah, so I'm going to go out and buy a nuke. What do you think of that?

  • Tony||

    It is a reductio ad absurdum but that doesn't invalidate the argument, it confirms it: there is a line to be drawn somewhere. People are trying to pretend that the 2A is clear and pristine and unambiguous, but that's obviously not the case. And wait around--there are people here who defend the right to own WMD, either because they interpret the 2A as a right to armed rebellion against the government (thus necessitating our possessing all of the types of weapons it does), or because they think the magic market fairy will make this right untenable in practice.

  • Tony||

    How does the first half being normative make it self-contradictory? It does seem pretty clear to me. The right to keep and bear arms (the context of this phrase is martial, not personal) exists so that states can defend themselves from invaders. That's the point of the amendment, whatever bastardization it has undergone by the gun lobby and its puppets in government.

    If the amendment meant what you want it to mean, the first half of the sentence would be completely unnecessary.

  • kbolino||

    Statement A: X may be infringed
    Statement B: X may not be infringed

    A is the negation of B

    Logic 101

  • Tony||

    Who said what may be infringed? Let me restate: it doesn't even matter if the first half of the sentence is normative; the fact that it exists at all puts limitations on the second half.

  • Pulseguy||

    No it doesn't. The first statement is a reason why people have the right to own weapons. It doesn't say this is the only reason they are allowing it. Nor, does it say this is the only reason that said weapons should be used. It makes two statements. The first gives a reason, the second lays out the right. There is nothing prohibitive about the first statement, and nothing prohibitive about the second statement.

    In any event, even if the first reason is the reason why they wrote the second statement, and they envisioned no other reason, the second statement exists.

    It would be unreasonable to think the first statement somehow impinges on the right given in the second statement, since it is nowhere even hinted at.

  • sarcasmic||

    Nuh uh! It says "militia!" The militia is the National Guard! So the 2A authorizes the arming of the National Guard! Don't you know anything?

  • Paul.||

    “the worst I have been treated was by northern liberal elites.... The worst things that have been done to me, the worst things that have been said about me, by northern liberal elites, not by the people of Savannah, Georgia.”

    This is neither surprising, nor is it news.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    Well, Thomas himself plays the race card quite a bit. If a liberal had used all that 'high tech lynching' analogies for a confirmation fight most of the right-leaners here would (rightly) be howling about race baiting.

  • R C Dean||

    Well, Thomas himself plays the race card quite a bit.

    "Quite a bit"? That implies a consistent, ongoing pattern of race-baiting, which I haven't noticed.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    Well, in his recent autobiography he linked the opposition to his confirmation to "the age-old blunt instrument of accusing a black man of sexual misconduct.”

  • R C Dean||

    So, twice, he described a single incident in the same terms.

    Still not getting to "quite a bit."

  • Pulseguy||

    A reasonable surmising on his part.

  • Tman||

    There was this stupid facebook argument I got in to with a proggie the other day over gun control and I laid down this quote to see if he could figure out who said it-


    "No man can be truly free whose liberty is dependent upon the thought, feeling and action of others and who has himself no means in his own hand for guarding, protecting, defending and maintaining that liberty"

    He started rambling about it being from the NRA or some white slave landowner.

    It's Frederick Douglass.

    He still didn't shut up.

  • Killaz||

    If guns are a phallic symbol used for compensation as the banners claim, what does that make them? Fundamentalist prudes who want to keep people from masturbating?

  • datcv||

    Whenever they encounter a thought they don't like they attack the source's credibility. Reason magazine? Ugh totally conservative! I don't trust anything they right. CATO foundation? Ugh, right wing ultraconservative thinktank. Can't be trusted! Clarence Thomas? Ugh he's such an uncle tom!

    The vast majority of these progtards have almost no ability to engage their system 2 thought processes. Everything is a quick judgement that validates all prior thoughts.

  • ||

    When I was college, I had to take this sociology class that discussed race and other social issues. The things I heard liberals say about blacks were incredibly astounding. It was paternalistic, degrading, and downright insulting. A lot of them felt that blacks folks were at a huge disadvantage (that is somewhat accurate if you were raised in the inner city)and thus they needed the government to coddle them to success. I've always argued that government if anything else went beyond it's boundaries and turned many poor blacks into wards of the state and created a culture of apathy and dependency using perverse incentives. A lot of them would retort that I didn't know anything about the Civil Rights Movement (you know despite my grandparents being involved in Mississippi)and damned near called me an Uncle Tom.

    One day I just had enough and told them a story about how my grandfather (on my Mom's side) who was illiterate and came from a broken home during Jim Crow was able to buy a house while clothing and feeding his 14 children. He now is retired and basically goes to the bank to pick up his money from retirement, drinks, and watch the younger generation. They had no words.

    While I think many Progressives perhaps mean some good, I think a lot them get so outside of themselves that they actually believe that treating black people like fragile china who needs the guiding hands of the benevolent government will help them catch up to whites.

  • ~Knarf Yenrab~||

    Of the hundreds of progressives I've known, virtually all of them meant well. Few were sociopaths, criminals, or even Clinton-sized narcissists who would do anything to get ahead--they legitimately wanted to help people. That desire to do good resulted in two things: a prejudice toward direct action and brute force to solve the problem (ala the Great Society) and an unbearable air of moral superiority over anyone who differed from them.

    It is unthinkable for such persons that someone could support charitable, pro-capital solutions to poverty without being a corporate shill, and they treat market advocates as such because most (if not all) don't really understand what the invisible hand is or what we mean when we condemn the state's tendency to convert capital wealth into consumables. That's where you get the nasty double standard that you see on college campuses where non-collectivists are often not just the object of ridicule, but are openly harassed. It's easy to justify nasty behavior when you're convinced that the other side is populated by psychopaths.

    It's the last part that transforms well-meaning progs into arrogant villains, and we'd do well to hammer away on the fact that good intentions and moral certitude are the least of all the virtues a human being can possess.

  • Pulseguy||

    Of the 100s of progressives I have known to a man, and it is different for the lefty women than the lefty men, in my experience, they all consider themselves weak. Each one is sort of a coward in usually two or three ways; emotionally, physically, or otherwise.

    They crave a benevolent big guy to protect them, because they are frightened. They have made boogie men of those who stand up for themselves, those who break out on their own, and those who are willing to stand up and be counted.

    The women are just idiots.

  • GamerFromJump||

    Progressivism requires sociopathy. The fact that they aren't Dexter-style self-aware sociopaths doesn't mean they aren't sociopaths (given that progressivism mandates the erasure of individuals).

  • lap83||

    " It was paternalistic, degrading, and downright insulting.
    I knew a (white liberal) girl a few years ago who majored in African American studies. She used to say "I LOVE black people" like someone would say "I LOVE cheesecake" and she would collect token black friends like trinkets. It was embarrassing.

  • lap83||

    * " missed the end quote.

  • lap83||

    I see no problem with "race-consciousness" per se. The problem is with race-hustlers, or people whose careers are based on stoking racial outrage. Clarence Thomas isn't one of them.

  • Alan Vanneman||

    Until 1967, when the Supreme Court issued its ruling in Loving v. Virginia, it was illegal for blacks and whites to marry in 16 southern and border states, including, of course, Thomas' home state of Georgia. Thomas, of course, is married to a white woman. Maybe some folks in the South were just a wee bit more "race conscious" than Thomas remembers.

  • ||

    Sitting a classroom full of Progressive made me really think about my political beliefs and the Democratic party. In 2004 when Bush and Kerry ran, this white girl from one of the clubs I belonged to asked me who I was voting for. I was at the time a Democrat but I didn't want to vote for Kerry because he was an awful candidate and I didn't want to vote for Bush because of the Iraq War. The girl looked at me and actually said that I should vote for Kerry because I owe it to the Dems for making me free and have rights.

  • Christophe||

    That's awful. That kind of comment would really test my adherence to the NAP.

    Obligatory (in the same vein):
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZvdOfOB6vts

  • Michael S. Langston||

    The girl looked at me and actually said that I should vote for Kerry because I owe it to the Dems for making me free and have rights.

    lol - did you ask her, "How so? Through all the veterans of foreign wars?"

    But yeah, it's two thousand whatever now.. and we use newspeak, so taking away rights consistently over decades is now considered increasing your freedoms.

  • seguin||

    So, not only was she a complete #%#$% she was also historically ignorant.

    Shocker.

  • plusafdotcom||

    That's cool.. when I first saw the report of Thomas' quote on TV last night, it struck me that JUST MAYBE the tide of hyper-PC-reactions to EVERYTHING might be turning. I cheered.

  • GLK||

    Clarence knows of what he speaks. And if the Liberals aren't stopped the hate he experienced will pale in comparison to what will permeate the lives of every single man, woman and child that behaves in deference to whatever edict they feel is for the greater good. Even of it means your destruction. Pretty obvious it's happening already which is why I suppose Mr. Thomas feels the need to speak up.

  • Diogenes||

    Thomas is a perpetual whiner, reveling in his alleged victim's status.

    He countenanced sexual harassment and compared accountability about it to "lynching."

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