Conflict, Cooperation, Consensus: America in Black and White

Many will tell you that to be consciously White is to be racist: quite a few will even drop the “consciously” part.  Tattooed skinheads stomping random people of color, Klansmen burning crosses, toothless rednecks spitting out obscenities as they proclaim their “White Pride:” we all know the stereotypes.  And, to be fair, there’s some truth to the myth. Many alt.righters will happily proclaim their contempt for “dindus”, “kebabs” and other “shitskins”to all who will listen.  Is the SPLC right: is hatred and violence an inevitable outcome of declaring oneself pro-White? 

Though it’s easy to focus on horror stories like Kosovo and Rwanda, most countries contain disparate groups within their borders. Flemish and French populations have long resided together in Belgium;  Anglophones and Francophones share Canada; Portuguese, Chinese, African, South Asian, and English settlers join indigenous Indians to make Guyana the “Land of Six Peoples.”  Coexistence may be more difficult than slapping a bumper sticker on your Prius, but it is possible, and generally preferable to the atrocities which come with any civil war.

Whatever we may think of Black Lives Matter , it may behoove us to consider their grievances. Even the most ardent white lace-wearing 88/14 tattooed White Power skinhead should be nervous about a militarized police force that can beat, torture and murder civilians with impunity.  In all the yammering about “privilege” many miss an important point: unlike rights, privileges can be taken away at any time.  Standing with Black Lives Matter against injustices — or, at the very least, applauding them for standing up for their people — does nothing to hurt White America and may save us a great deal of trouble down the line.  (And “down the line” may be sooner than we think, given the tide of violence and anti-“Nazi” hysteria sweeping the country.  The cops who can kill a Black man for selling cigarettes can just as easily kill a White man for some ginned-up charge should it become politically expedient).

While much contemporary anti-immigration rhetoric focuses on crime, we should also consider immigration’s economic impact.  The benefits of immigration accrue to immigrants and to business owners.  Its costs are paid largely by the working poor. Illegal immigration suppresses wages and takes scarce jobs. By some estimates an average high school dropout would earn $25 more a week if there were no illegal immigrants in the American work force — no small sum for someone earning minimum wage.  Black Americans have no more to gain from open borders than White Americans, and a good deal more to lose.

Interior, Notre Dame de Paris

The cathedrals which dot the European landscape provided gainful employment for generations of hungry villagers. They helped re-establish a middle class in a society still reeling from the Western Roman Empire’s fall. Today American laborers of all races, colors and creeds could be put to work rebuilding our nation’s crumbling infrastructure and producing monuments that will last for millennia.  While  I have been and remain critical of Marxism, Karl correctly noted that working people share many interests no matter what cultural barriers divide them.  Just wages for hard work, safe workplace conditions (or adequate compensation for unavoidable risks), opportunities for advancement — these are issues which transcend racial boundaries and points upon which well-meaning people of any race or ethnicity can find common ground.

And if that doesn’t convince you of the value of peace, perhaps you should consider the cost of war.  Andrew Anglin’s friends at the Daily Stormer have become (in)famous for their rallying cry, “Gas the Kikes, Race War Now.” A quick look at contemporary American demographics reveals that over 33% of our population identifies as “Black,” “Latino” or “Multiracial”. Reinventing the United States as a “White Nation” would require the slaughter or involuntary relocation of over 100 million people, none of whom are likely to cooperate. Even if we put aside the ethical concerns — and we shouldn’t! —  we have to acknowledge that this would involve serious logistical concerns and a great deal of bloodshed on all sides.

That being said, I’m also aware that quite a few Americans (Black and White) think we are already in a race war.  Relations between Black Americans and law enforcement are tense and show little sign of improving: in 2015 young Black men were nine times more likely than other Americans to be killed by police.  There have also been a growing number of random Black on White attacks and targeted attacks on police. Our inner cities have come to resemble the West Bank and Gaza.  Should current trends continue it is not hard to envision a future where American police regularly face IEDs and suicide attacks — or a suburban and exurban America where unofficial (or even official) “sundown laws” are enforced with nooses.  I do not believe this future inevitable, but neither do I think it unlikely. It is my hope that people of good will can come together to prevent this: it is my firm belief that “identity politics” and the currently fashionable Frankfurt School approach will only make things worse.


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