The list of things you can’t dispute on college campuses or within liberal orthodoxy generally include global warming, anything having to do with innate differences between the sexes (and sexual identity generally), and of course race. Except perhaps the ice is cracking on this last one.
We read The Nation magazine so that you don’t have to, and the latest issue features an article on how, 60 years after the Brown decision, schools in wealthier southern neighborhoods are re-segregating. It amounts to the “new secession” according to The Nation:
A new secessionist movement, anchored in the South, provides yet another reminder that “separate” still means “unequal” when it comes to the racial dynamics of the nation’s public schools. . .
Nowadays, it may be tax dollars, benefits of economic growth, or power on school boards that secessionists would prefer not to share. Perhaps secessionists don’t want to be associated with a lower-status school district that posts lackluster test scores. Even if we assume non-racial motivations, secessionism could still undermine the hard-won racial diversity lingering in some schools.
So queue up the outrage in the comments section, right? Lo and behold, the comment thread on this article—from Nation readers, keep in mind—shows an extraordinary impatience with liberal racial correctness, and some astounding candor. Samples:
I attended Malcolm X Elementary School in Berkeley, CA in the early ’70s. I’m white, and the school was 50% black. My mother, being a good liberal of the times, enrolled me in a special program that was 90% black. My experiences showed me the following:
1. Blacks are incredibly hard on other blacks, vicious in some cases. And I’m specifically referring to black adults treatment of black children. Being a kind, meek, intelligent black child in a black neighborhood must be a terrifying experience if you don’t have anyone to watch over you. I’d wager many are destroyed psychologically by the experience.
2. As a white person in a black community, you have basically two positions available to you on the social fabric: non-entity or target. If you keep your mouth shut and keep a low profile, you’ll be lucky and just be a non-entity. Imagine that. That was my *best* option socially. But at least my mother got to feel like a good liberal. . .
As an adult, I don’t wish blacks bad things, but I sure don’t want to live in their neighborhoods either, which is a feeling I bet I have in common with a lot of black people too. 25 years was enough, and, as an adult, the best moment of my life was to move into a neighborhood where I didn’t have to worry about my car being stolen or vandalized or people randomly hassling me on the street because I was white. Enough is enough. Call me a racist if it gives you a morally superior boost, but I know you haven’t walked the walk. It’s all theory to most of you clowns.
Blowback? No; here’s the first response:
I witnessed a similar response from a woman I knew in Atlanta. She and her husband were similar to your parents: Stanford liberals. When they moved to Atlanta with their two daughters, they continually proclaimed their belief in public education and that their daughters would attend public schools. But after a couple of years attending Atlanta public schools, their daughters were moved into private schools. I never knew the precise reasons for the move, and when I asked, the woman became very defensive and evasive. I don’t criticize the right of this woman and her husband to do what they felt was best for their children, but they had no idea of the destructive effects of their ideas and actions.
“Being a kind, meek, intelligent black child in a black neighborhood must be a terrifying experience if you don’t have anyone to watch over you.” ++++++++++++++++++ You don’t know the half of it. Fortunately for me the horror was mitigated somewhat because:
1. My family is from Ghana and the apartment building we lived at had a lot of immigrants from all over so immediate vicinity was an oasis.
2. I went to Catholic school up through 6th grade until I transferred to the public junior high.This would prove to be a negative at junior high but as far as my overall future it was a life saver. I’m a big believer in Catholic and charter schools as a result even if all they do is skim the good Black kids.
3. The African-American kids at my junior high were vicious, I can’t think of any other word to describe it. Of course there were good ones but they were a distinct minority and they caught more hell than I did because they actually lived in the projects.
Basically if you are a smart Black kid and don’t have a popular older sibling that can fight, a family rep for being in the streets or aren’t athletic. Your life in a mostly Black school setting will be hell.
I had a similar experience to yours. I attended a majority black Middle/High School in the late 1970s/early 80s in Philadelphia. My parents were social democrats and (still) clueless. I saw the fighting you speak of: even the black girls fought each other. Although I did have a few black acquaintances, a low-profile was definitely the way to go because I was attacked several times. Eventually I moved to the suburbs and the fear was gone.
There comes a point and time when African-Americans need to take a hard look at their culture. White folks aren’t the only ones avoiding African-American neighborhoods and schools. New immigrants of all backgrounds do as well if they can afford to.
Also African-American kids have been in the news for beating up:
1. Asians in Philly
2. Haitians in New Jersey & Miami
3. Somalis in Minneapolis
4. Hispanics all across the country.
If this kind of conversation is going on among Nation readers. I can only imagine that Katrina van den Huevel’s head must be exploding (while she sees her kids off to private school).
UPDATE: Behold the power of Power Line: It appears The Nation has scrubbed the politically incorrect comments we highlighted here. So much for a “conversation” about race like Eric Holder is always demanding we have.