Watch the the video of white Nationalists raise their hands in Nazi salutes and yell Heil Trump. Combine this with several foreigners being shot publicly in the US, by assailants shouting go back to your own country, we need a serious conversation about the new reemergence of American bigotry. The old prejudice is now adapting to an on-line world where beliefs, both true and false, find a large audience. Let’s determine what problem we are trying to solve. We wish to avoid organized abuse of minorities, including bloodshed at the hands of the state.
The American bigotry, particularly racism could become a stampede. The conversation between the majority and minorities must become more effective. The conversation amongst people of our own groups must not be limited to the self-satisfying tendency to merely insult bigots. We should refute their beliefs while sharing our experiences of what works. What actually works is important because a new generation may be learning how to tie nooses.
We who oppose injustice are not perfect. Whatever our shortcomings (including traces of bigotry), let’s view any flaws in our group but remember, the bigots don’t have such standards. Let’s set aside smaller differences because in the big picture, the danger makes small differences irrelevant. When we all stand on a sinking ship, let’s not argue over who received the best service from the porters. When escalating persecution and violence is not the problem any more, then we take on the smaller irksome injustices. Remember the countless innocents that suffered and died due to bigotry.
Let’s improve as we confront the regressive reactionary ideas in order to expose weaknesses in how we explain or understand bigotry. United we stand on the strongest ground and its not minority ground or privileged white ground, but the ground of facts: difficult, painful, and stubborn facts. These facts and reasoning from them will suggest new solutions that are adapted to the problem. Sadly, If people agree on a solution and it doesn’t solve the problem, then we’ve wasted our time and, perhaps, the opportunity to solve the problem. Let us hear all that can be said against our views so we can either improve them or expose the flaw in the criticism against us.
Here is one error.
I think its quite understandable the tendency for minorities to object to sympathizing with the issues of white voters. It’s hard to sympathize because working class whites do not, as a rule, concern themselves with minority issues. Regardless of that painful fact let’s remember the problem we want to solve. A rancher needs to know what scares his cows. The rancher does not want the consequences of a stampede with it’s broken fences, trampled calves and cowboys. The rancher’s ability to understand the cows is not for the sake of the cows satisfaction. He knows he can’t stop the stampede once it starts. The rancher’s concern is self-interest and what scares the cows is relevant to that interest.
Remember Germany in the 1930s. With American bigotry we also face base forces, such as fear leading to hostility. White people now have other whites bombarding them with race-based, danger-themed memes on social networks daily and people in power telling them that there is a bogey-man. This bogey-man has a different color of skin, religion, and/or sexuality. It’s not fair. It’s not right. Yet, the fear still exists, people propagate such ideas for their own political gain. If we can’t find a solution, we know where this can end and that end involves nooses and fire.
I see a three pronged approach.
1: Continuously exposing the flaws in racist ideology.
2: Showing racist ideology is contrary to many public facts anyone can admit are true.
3: Let’s develop the rhetorical skills necessary to counter the bigots to those susceptible to the message.
#3 May be the most important and difficult.
If we fail to convince whites at risk to the seduction of American bigotry with valid arguments, then alternatives to rational discussion include disapproval and satire of bigoted ideas and conduct. Disapproval and satire are social forces. We have reason to expect political power in the USA may be complicit with bigotry which limits the political solutions available.
Anyone who sees a flaw in my or any solution should give their reasons. Let’s not miss something beneficial because it’s different from what we already think. Criticism must go back and forth between the races. That is touchy I know, but, if we are viewing facts through flawed thinking, that mistake might defeat the solutions. We must endure the scrutiny of others for the sake of finding a solution. Critical thinkers need to stop being afraid of being called bigots if we scrutinize propositions voiced by minorities. Don’t treat people belonging to a minority as infantile. Don’t Decide they can’t handle criticism. We must face our own vanity to solve the problem. When we soberly consider what horrors minorities are facing, scrutiny from a white person who hopes to find a solution is no danger to them.
The conversation and scrutiny between whites about race needs to be much more profound and daring than it is currently. It is time to teach our children critical thinking skills because this new racist ideology is swimming in unreasonable beliefs and adherents don’t understand how they are being mislead.
The children of racists will receive praise from their parents for racism! Being suspended from school for provoking or fighting with kids of another race will be a badge of honor for bigots. White children must take sides around racists. Let’s make sure that our children understand the issue up to their highest levels of comprehension. The racist pressure in opposition will be enormous.
Self flattering white nationalists deride their opponents. They mislead in order to justify the subjection or destruction of those they view as minorities. They lie to support their side. Facts don’t matter to dogmatic racists, so what is the solution. After all, in the nationalist video linked above, those who disagree are called stupid and not even considered human. This display of American bigotry could be the vanguard of a violent persecution. It could catch fire and spread. The people involved have no intention of scrutinizing the fallacies on which their beliefs rest. That task rests only with opponents.
By Todd Vickers