Politics has become exhausting to me of late. It is quite difficult to summon the energy required to care overmuch about it these days. Everywhere I look, it’s the same story. When Leftism has the reins of power, they push through plenty of their agenda. When Rightism has the reins, Leftism manages to stonewall, delay, throw up procedural roadblocks, etc… preventing much, if any, claw back.
David Hines is fond of explaining that Leftists are just better at this game. They hustle more, they organize better, they are more ruthless and practiced in the Machiavellian arts. Frankly, it’s all true. Rightist intellectuals – for what utility the term might have – tend to be antisocial to some degree. It’s probably related to our preferences toward individualism. It is difficult, if not impossible, to muster our full strength the same way Leftists do.
And so the Overton Window slides ever-further leftward, and there’s very little any of us can do to stop it. Sometimes, with Herculean effort, we can slow it down for a time, but that is all.
Leftism has won. It won a long time ago. It won before I was born.
Much of the frustration we see from Leftists directed toward Trump is probably because they thought the final demographic victory had come, and even our ability to slow them down was a thing of the past. All that remained, they thought, was the mop up action. Our final bastions, like the Second Amendment (and the First) would be surrendered.
Trump summoned some hidden reserve of Rightist strength for a final defense. American Rightists, and the President himself, are now under political siege, having decided against surrender. Assault after assault has been made against the walls. Tunnels have been dug underneath them to soften them. Quisling traitors from within the gates have been propositioned and tempted into action. It has been relentless. Yet so far that final siege continues on. For how long is anybody’s guess.
Can a repeat of the 2016 miracle happen again? I don’t know. Can Trump stave off impeachment? Can the hung Congress be held another term? Your guess is as good as mine.
But Leftist victory is still assured in the end, eventually. Why? Because our actions are almost always defensive in nature. This means that whatever territory they gain becomes a permanent gain for them. Until recent years, even defensive action was deemed too hasty. Better to voluntarily surrender things to the Left at a relatively slow, but consistent pace. David Hines is right about that much, at least. If Rightist tactics do not change, if they cannot organize, they will fall, no matter how well-manned the walls are against the enemy.
Give the Leftists credit for their unceasing dedication to their cause. When one avenue of attack fails, they immediately seize upon another, and another, and another. They never stop. They are political terminators and we are the collective John Connors. Of course, Girrrrrrlpower Hollywood made sure to kill him, too, in their latest craptastic sequel.
This won’t continue forever, of course. Leftist regimes eventually move too far to the Left (see: Venezuela) and collapse of their own internal contradictions (see: USSR). But does that do any of our generation any good? Does it even do any good for our kids? It will probably be a struggle for generations. And there is no guarantee we will ever claw back to freedom again, though one hopes.
I’m sorry to be such a pessimist, but I don’t see the United States lasting much longer. And I don’t see Rightists winning back their country, not even through bloodshed, for despite all the talk of the boogaloo, and the many arms we possess, we lost the Culture Wars, badly. In any armed conflict, we will be the bad guys. The moral high ground is theirs. Most Rightists know this at some level, that’s why there has been no boogaloo, no one willing to fire the first shot, or light that powder keg like an Austrian Archduke.
That doesn’t mean I think this is hopeless, mind you. I just don’t see any political way to fix this mess, and I don’t see any violent way to do it either. Which means we probably have to wait out the inevitable Leftist collapse; keep something of our views and way of life intact (and arms buried) for the time when the Leftists grow overconfident, when they begin their inevitable infighting and self-cannibalization, when their economic system falls apart like a house of cards.
Maybe then a boogaloo would work. Or maybe then a boogaloo wouldn’t even be necessary (though perhaps some helicopters would be).
Or maybe we just need to get off this rock and colonize space. Leftist lunacy is ultimately incompatible with the natural world, despite their obsession with environmentalism. Sooner or later reality must intrude on their little fantasies, and only our vast wealth and technological sophistication enables them to be so damned wasteful. Ancient tyrants could only marvel at the amazing levels of wastefulness we have been able to sustain.
Waste of that sort is fatal on the frontier. Even the Puritans had to give up their pseudo-Communist fantasies when presented with life on the frontier. Learn or die, those are the only two options. It may very well be that freedom can ultimately only sustain itself on the frontier, where the punishment for totalitarian, utopian ideas is death.
But that is all speculation. For now, exhausted as I am of all this, I suppose I must go back to the walls and do my part to slow the Leftist advance. Damnit, friends… there’s a shitpot lot of them out there.
When the Roman Empire splintered and shattered, the modern West was born. This was a point on which another student of Byzantine history and I agreed. Where did the West originate? The Greek agorae? The Roman legions? Or the Christian monasteries?
It’s a bit of a trick question, because all contributed to the formation of our civilization. Yet the monasteries were the last critical component. It was the Church, for better or worse, that nourished the West after Rome was gone. Even in Byzantium, where the Roman state continued in some form, the Church was increasingly the light that held eastern Christians together as Islam slowly consumed its share of the Roman world. Observe the Divine Liturgy sometime and tell me that, even today, the Orthodox Christians do not mourn the loss of the old Byzantine world.
Speak to college students today, and many will tell you that the “Dark Ages” were a time of burning scientists at the stake, inquisitors conducting witch hunts, and, of course, the Crusades. Islam was the great, prosperous bastion of learning while Europe slumbered in ignorance. That such twisted history is taught in public schools and universities is beyond travesty, it’s profoundly anti-civilizational.
As the West loses touch with its faith, it loses an essential component of its collective soul, so to speak.
I’m no exception. I’m an example of this. My historical studies kept leading me to God. Events in my life, people I met and interacted with. They always led to God and to the Church. I don’t think this was an accident.
The same student of Byzantine history who asked which of the three contributed most to the West had another observation: there is a crisis of meaning in the West that people try to medicate away. Maybe we could just call it Nihilism, but it’s a little more than that, I think. From my DJ booth, I’ve seen a lot of drugs, sex, and hedonistic behavior. On occasion I have asked some folks why they do what they do. In aggregate, the reasons boil down to a sort of cosmic boredom: if there’s no meaning in anything, why not drink, get stoned into high orbit, and dive into an orgy party? There’s a certain logic to it.
Let’s not kid ourselves. People have been getting drunk, stoned, and being sexually depraved throughout human history. This, by itself, is not new. The Bible itself speaks of such times. Notice, however, the common theme in such examples: there is no faith in God. Instead, the faith is replaced with an inferior thing. A golden calf, mass sexual depravity, etc… These idols stand in for God, but very poorly. There’s a link here. I can speak to it personally.
Humans are wired to desire a higher purpose and meaning to their lives. Maybe it’s just instinct, just genetics making us seek out something that doesn’t exist because, somehow, this is advantageous from an evolutionary perspective. Maybe God-seekers are more likely to, in the grand scheme of things, survive and pass on their genes. From the amount of fucking the golden calf worshipers do, though, I doubt this. At best, you are looking at an r/K selection bias.
Or maybe this is all real. Maybe God does exist. And when you attempt to replace the divine with some human creation, it leads to a soul-sucking barrenness, something that you have to medicate away with drugs, booze, and hedonism. And you keep throwing things into that great hole in your life, and nothing ever fills it. Nothing makes the emptiness go away but God.
In either case, as God fades from the West, the cultural malaise spreads. I’m about as certain as I can be that there is a link. I can’t prove it to you in concrete terms. I’m the kind of man who speculates on things and looks for connections. I am a poor purveyor of proofs. But look around you and see if you spot the same sickness. Maybe you’ll agree with me.
Faith in God kept us going long enough to get back on our feet from a civilizational perspective. Far from being the cartoon witch-burning villains, the monasteries of the middle ages were preservers of what came before. Much of what remains of the ancient world is because of their efforts. Maybe the answer to the soul sickness we see today is the same as it was when the Roman edifice came toppling down: God. That choice cannot be worse than a golden calf or a crack pipe.
I’ve made my choice, and I’ve chosen God. As Nassim Nicholas Taleb often says, I have skin in the game now. I have chosen to enter the Catholic Church.
Long ago, I spent a year and change working retail. The economy was in a downturn at the time, and I took whatever work I could score. It’s not something I’ve thought about often, except that the other day it popped into my head how similar the “customer is always right” philosophy is to a feature of Leftist politics.
You see, Leftists see racism/sexism/bigotry/whatever in everything, even where it does not exist, even in cases like Jussie Smollett where it is blatantly made up out of whole cloth. There is a functional similarity to angry retail customers.
Consider the following example: I worked in the shoe area of a department store. The store had a policy where shoes would not be accepted for return if they were clearly worn, unless the shoes were defective in some manner (which was handled via a different procedure than regular returns). The sign stating this policy was clearly posted on the register, and workers were instructed to remind the customer of this policy upon sale.
It happened often enough that someone would try to return shoes that were clearly worn (they’d have dirt on the soles, or stains, etc…), and demand a refund. Some would still be dripping mud, when the customer made the absurd claim that they hadn’t been worn. Invariably, they would get angry upon being denied the return. Such customers would claim that I wasn’t doing my job, or I was a bad person (and please, could they complain about me to a manager), or offer increasingly improbable stories – and variations of the same story – explaining how the signs of wear weren’t really evidence of the shoe being worn.
Some would threaten to have me fired, others would yell at the assistant manager, and then the store manager, and insinuate claims of discrimination (oh, you won’t take the shoes back because I’m black, is that it?). This isn’t unique to the shoe department at an old department store, though. Anyone who has worked retail will have long lists of situations like these.
Another example was when the store management tried to push store credit card applications. Cashiers were required to ask the customer if they wished to save 10% on their purchase by opening a credit card with the store. Now, this was one area where I disagreed with store policy. I hated trying to push credit, and some customers would get hostile if either denied the credit account (and thus the promised 10% discount), or when I asked for their Social Security number. I fully understand that. I wouldn’t want to give out my social to some random person at a department store either. BUT this was how it worked. I had no choice in the matter. I had to ask, or I would lose my job.
Angry customers would then say that they wanted to get me fired, especially if the system sent back a denial.
The latter example is similar to how many Leftists claim that a system of oppression is in place that discriminates against X people, and that if you’re white and you aren’t actively trying to dismantle this system, you’re a bad person. Well, even if it exists, what do you want me to do about it? Am I supposed to, as in the credit example, lose my job because you’re pissed about something someone else did? I have no control here.
In the nasty return example, I was often unsure if the customer really believed their bullshit stories – that they had convinced themselves they hadn’t actually worn the shoes, or believed their child when he swore he never wore them – or if they were actively trying to screw the store over for free shoes. It is often that way with angry Leftists. Do they really believe a white guy wearing dreadlocks is racial discrimination? Or are they just exceptionally gullible? Did they convince themselves of this belief?
The saying “the customer is always right” is a load of crap. Leftist claims of oppression are likewise. Look, we all see the dirt on the soles here. We see the Jussies of the world oppressing themselves. We see the people irrationally freaking out over some white girl wearing a kimono to an art exhibit. None of this is real. It’s all either an act, or some kind of very special stupidity.
The only question is, are the Leftists just weapons-grade morons, or are they actively trying to screw us? At some point, it no longer matters. No, you moron, if you went trudging through the mud in your shoes, you can’t just bring them back. How did you ever think this was going to work?
The tactics are the same. They’ll call your manager and complain about you and try to get you fired for having the wrong opinions. Leftists have this vindictive mentality that mirrors those of spurned, angry customers. Oh, you didn’t risk your livelihood to please their whims? You bigot, you! They’ll scream and yell at you, and make a nuisance of themselves in public. They’ll rant and rave about getting you fired. They will gleefully see you ruined over something you didn’t do, and don’t have any control over in the first place. Even if you submit to them, they’ll still hate you and see you as the enemy. It’s very bizarre seeing entitled people whining about your entitlement.
And then you get incidents like the GameStop transgender, where we have a literal merger of an Angry Customer and the Entitled Leftist into some kind of Uber-Asshole, created in a laboratory and assembled from the parts of lesser assholes:
The Gamestop employee no doubt had a difficult decision to make when addressing this person: is he really a would-be she, or a he merely dressing slightly feminine? Who the Hell knows anymore? But woe be to the cashier who guesses wrong.
This, of course, becomes moral ammunition in whatever transaction is going on here. “Give me my fucking money back.” Is the he-she genuinely angry because of a pronoun, or is this all some kind of scam to get some kind of treatment?
Or, worse, did he-she get up on the wrong side of the bed and just want to get somebody fired from his job?
Angry customers are fascinating in how fast they go from not even noticing you exist – you’re just a wage-earner, after all, and entirely beneath notice – to having a personal desire to ruin your life over the most trivial of things, most often things you don’t even have control over. I can’t go back in time and change the policy of early America on slavery in the South. What the Hell does that have to do with me, personally? And what do you want me to do now? Do you want me to quit my job and give it to a “person of color?” Do you want my house, my car, my money? What?
It’s like when you say to an angry customer that you’re sorry, and while you didn’t come up with the policy, you work here and have to abide by it. The angry customer might say ‘well if you don’t like the policy, why do you work here?’ Because I need to eat, jackass.
There is this bizarre notion that corporations and employees must have some kind of singular political belief – a Leftist one, naturally. Companies owned by admitted Rightists have to deal with this bullshit all the time. Chick-fil-a had those protests some time back because one of the owners wasn’t a big fan of gay marriage. So what? For one, what does that have to do with serving chicken? And secondly, there was no evidence the owner’s personal beliefs had anything to do with store policies. Chick-fil-a did not ask if you were gay during a job interview.
But, it’s the end of the world if a Rightist might actually own a business. Worse, I suppose, would be to be a Rightist employee. If you make the wrong joke at the wrong time, in the wrong social media space, you could have an angry mob calling your employer and getting you fired for a bad tweet.
The hostility is so much like the angry customer it’s hard to not see the connection. Except to say in this case, companies are firing people upon the demand of people are are not even customers. What is this, the theoretically possible future customer is always right?
When the economy picked back up again, I was glad to get out of that retail job. I do have a level of sympathy for people who deal with that attitude on a daily basis. But with the expansion of Leftist politics into every aspect of life, including your personal life, your job, and your business, pretty soon everybody will be dealing with something like the angry customer, screaming at you and blaming you for things that are objectively not your doing.
Soon, everybody will learn what working retail is like. And I tell you, it will suck.
The other day, I was talking with a good friend about hypersensitivity to racism, and other forms of discrimination. And just last weekend I had a similar conversation with my father-in-law while we were driving back from a funeral. Those events, combined with reading this piece of drivel, which appeared on my wall this afternoon, inspired this post.
Drew Habersang, the author of that screed, had a rather long story to tell about what was, in essence, a friend of his using an ethnic slur (I’m sure you can guess the one from the title) in his presence. Note the slur in question wasn’t directed at him, or about him, or, in fact, directed at much of anything in particular. It was used as a stand-in for a generic curse along the lines of “fucking shit” or “damnit asshole” during a tabletop game. If you’ve ever played a particularly rousing game of Monopoly, you’ve probably heard worse.
Now, before I tear this apart, let’s discuss an old tradition in my household, to which my close friends can attest: smoking cigars, drinking whiskey, and making tasteless jokes on my front porch. This wasn’t consciously started, except to say that my wife generally loathes the smell of cigars and has banished them to the front porch. So when I have friends over, I invariably go to smoke a cigar, and hand out stogies to anyone else who wants one. Soon, all the men are on the front porch while the women do… well, whatever women do during small social gatherings. I presume it is something intensely boring. But whatever.
Now, a bottle of whiskey is a prerequisite for cigar-smoking, in this blogger’s opinion. So that enters the mix, also. When you mix smoking, drinking, and several dudes bullshitting about random topics, you are sure to get something roughly similar on your front porch, I imagine. We insult one another in jest, and the insults are almost always ethnic and/or religious in nature. One friend of mine is of Irish ancestry, so the drunkard jokes write themselves. I have some Armenian in me, and so comparisons to Kim Kardashian’s rather… large assets are common. Certainly the jokes about cheapness abound, too. But no demographic group is spared the treatment. You will hear Polack jokes, Asian jokes, French jokes… and so on.
Well, except for one. For many such gatherings, there are two groups that are off limits: blacks and Jews. As it so happens, I have many Jewish friends. A great many, actually. So in my circles, Jewish jokes are generally permissible in the spirit of things – for they will rag on my ancestry with equal gusto. But those are still somewhat touchy in a way say, Italian jokes generally are not. Black jokes, of course, remain completely off limits. And judging from the reaction of Drew, the author of the aforementioned drivel, it is well that they remain off limits. This has all the hallmarks of a powder keg waiting to explode.
So why is this? Francis opined on it a few days ago. And full disclaimer (for again, this is a touchy subject, and I’m sure my readers can feel this almost instinctively), Francis is married to a Jewish woman and is a vociferous and frequent opponent of anti-Semitism. So let the hairs on your back settle back down, if you please. If they did go up, though, file that away for later in this post. You’ll need the observation.
There is a hypersensitivity at work here. A heightened and overactive threat-detection mechanism, perhaps. Whatever the mechanics of the thing, it is understandable. Jews did indeed suffer mightily in history, and are watchful for a future pogrom. Blacks did indeed suffer slavery and segregation.
And yet, this hypersensitivity is absolute and complete social poison.
Read that again, please. This is a poison pill. When you read Drew’s piece, you will notice how everything is colored through the lens of racism. He literally cannot see anything without suspecting secret racism behind it. And, furthermore, I have no doubt his friends are fully cognizant of this. They, not wishing to anger him or appear racist themselves (who does?), almost assuredly feel a constant social pressure to micromanage their words, gestures, and behavior around their friend. This, in turn, makes interacting with him less pleasant. This becomes self-reinforcing. Drew detects his friends act different about him, which fuels an assumption that the difference is due to racism, which in turn is detected by the friends, who now act even more different in an effort to avoid this very thing.
Everybody gets caught in a spiral of stupidity that no one can escape from.
All until somebody, in the heat of the moment, not thinking, breaks out a slur. Whether driven by bad luck, too much to drink, or some other mechanism, the micromanagement of offense is broken. And not even knowing how to handle this, the relationship of the man and his friends entirely breaks down, requiring him to write a letter to his friend, and considering abandoning the friendship altogether.
See how this works? Drew, like many American blacks, has a wall between him and the rest of us. Piercing that wall takes extra effort. He may even be entirely justified in how he arrived at the notion that the wall was necessary, just as a Jewish person is quite justified in worrying about pogroms and other such things, given the course of history.
However justified, though, the hypersensitivity works against healing and normalization of relations. It poisons relationships.
One thing I’ve noticed in the offensive front porch cigar conversations is that, despite a prolific use of extremely offensive things, everybody is closer together! There is no stepping on eggshells. My Jewish friend can call me a fat-assed Armenian, I can reply with a joke about cheapness, then I can turn around and say to my Irish friend, “damnit, we’re out of whiskey, who invited the Irishman?” Everybody laughs, has another round of drinks, and talks about some other thing. There is no micromanagement of behavior, no walking on eggshells.
If an SJW stuck a microphone on my front porch, he would die of apoplexy.
I don’t know how we solve this problem, or if it even can be solved. The story my father-in-law told me goes something like this. A dwarf he knew was working with a black woman, and the black woman called the dwarf a ‘midget’. The dwarf was angry at this, and the black woman was confused. She asked what she should call him, what the correct term was. Was it dwarf? Little person? And she asked why midget was so offensive to him in the first place.
The dwarf explained that calling him a midget would be like calling her a nigger. She immediately blew up at him. How dare he call her that! He explained that he did NOT call her that. He merely explained that the word ‘midget’ offended him in the same way. But like the incident in Drew’s screed, the context of the word didn’t matter. It didn’t matter that it wasn’t directed at her, that it was a mere explanation, that no offense was intended toward her. The word was uttered. The genie could not be put back in the bottle.
But it was likewise for the dwarf who was offended by her use of ‘midget’ when she intended no offense by it.
It is similar for some Jews finding out that the Pope Emeritus had said something that someone else had interpreted as anti-Semitic (it turns out it wasn’t anti-Semitic at all). No offense was intended, and it was pretty clear that was the case, but that did not matter. It felt wrong. The fact is, words are a mechanism for communication. You cannot divorce the word from the intent of the speaker, because the word is a mechanism for conveying intent.
I started to think if I suffered this condition myself. And truth is, I probably do. When the aforementioned Irish friend makes an Armenian joke, or an English joke, I laugh. But would I laugh as much if a Turk made that joke? Fortunately that’s a rare enough event that this has never been put to the test yet, but I hope I could take it. Still, how many such tripwires are in all of us? It would be best if we disarmed them, instead of erecting new ones as is the modern fashion.
I started thinking about how this goes in relation to the new darling of The New York Times: Sarah Jeong, and her tweets about white people. What’s the difference between her saying these things and my friends and I making fun of one another? Intent.Sarah doesn’t like white people, she makes it clear that it is her intention to insult them. She means it as an insult, not an off-color joke. Yet various media outlets have come to her defense to excuse her behavior. Ironically, the headline of that article is about not coming to her defense, and yet the author does so with gusto. The excuse given is that she was imitating someone else’s behavior. Again, what was the intent?
If Sarah was on my front porch, smoking a cigar, and made a Polack joke, it’d be funny. Read her tweets, though. Is there an undercurrent of good humor here, or an excuse made for bad intent?
We’re all becoming hypersensitive to matters of race, religion, etc… we have created minefields in our society, such that we have long divorced intent from perceived offense. Americans are looking for ways to be offended, or at least enough of us are. Once offended, one is granted a license to act as Sarah did (presuming one has the correct ethnicity, religion, or what have you), trash people with bad intent and get away with it. Many people covet this license greatly. They are permitted to be deliberately insulting assholes, and get treated as heroes for acting so.
I don’t know that Drew is this way. Actually, if anything, I sense a little bit of hope for him. I don’t know why precisely, but I get a vague sense that he is at least generally aware of how his hypersensitivity is coloring his viewpoint. It doesn’t change his behavior any, but realization is worth something, at least. Sarah Jeong, of course, is entirely unrepentant. She quite likes using her ‘I get to hate white men’ license to great effect.
However, the hypersensitivity is not just present in the traditionally “oppressed” classes (really, no one is oppressed in a First-world country, but whatever). It is also present in those of us who try to tiptoe around offense minefields. My friends and I are probably never closer together than when we’re saying things that would horrify SJWs. I think, once upon a time, Americans kind of bonded this way. Even, paradoxically, with historical immigrant groups. Italians and Irish, Polish and Jewish, etc… I suspect the ribbing went this way with all of them, and served to blend the new group with the old, eventually. It diffused actual inter-ethnic tensions, which are a matter of historical record. People used to loathe Irishman. Now nobody gives a shit. Why is that? It was actually an integration mechanism; a way to break down tribal barriers and meld into one people.
If you’ve ever seen the movie Gran Torino, you may have some idea of what I mean by this.
Yes, I know, for many groups it will be difficult to let go of the hypersensitivity, to let it rest. But before you write it off as impossible, remember Eva Mozes Kor, a Holocaust survivor who was experimented upon, who nonetheless was able to forgive one of her captors, shake his hand, and put the matter to rest. If that can be done… what excuse does a man like Drew really have? How can Sarah act as she does when she has suffered comparatively little?
Christianity is centered around forgiveness, and beyond the spiritual reasons for why this is good, there’s a practical one too: it can break down this wall of hypersensitivity to perceived offense, this lurking notion that harm is still intended, when it is not.
As a corollary, it may also expose the genuinely hateful people for who they really are. Deprived of her Marxist license to hate, Sarah Jeong would be outed as the disgusting individual she really is. And there are many more like her who, likewise, would be seen as such.
And then you too can enjoy a rousing discussion of bad jokes on your own front porch, fueled by cigars, whiskey, or whatever vices float your boat. And maybe then, men like Drew can actually enjoy being around their friends.
It’s probably all wishful thinking. The market for racism has never been better. The advantages the license to hate confers upon its wielder are tremendous. But if we don’t put a stop to this behavior, it will tear our country apart, and then we’re all pretty much screwed.
Self-loathing white people are some of the most disturbing people to have ever drawn breath. Drama queens might be the best way to describe them, for they obsess endlessly about things they haven’t done, they elevate petty problems to the world stage and bury major ones behind a veneer of political correctness. A white kid wearing dreadlocks is the end of the world. But recognizing that ISIS lobs gay people off of buildings for amusement is probably racism (even though, paradoxically, Islam is not a race). Sanctimony is their religion, Social Justice their crusade, and endless self-hatred their spiritual diet.
Here’s a window into the insane mind of one of these cretins: White People Have No Culture. And it cries out in the darkness of colossal ignorance for a proper fisking. Let us begin our descent past an event horizon of stupidity, a singularity of dedicated ignorance…
I traveled to Standing Rock in November of 2016 with my friend, hauling over 5000 dollars worth of winter tents, clothing, food, and gear. My full time job allowed me to stay barely a week, and my ego, mixed with a hefty dose of white savior mentality, convinced me that my training as an EMT, and my lifetime of experience with direct action and social justice, would make me useful. Fast forward 5 days, and I was crying in the driver’s seat of my car, while my amazing friend listened quietly as I grieved for something I didn’t know I had ever lost.
First of all, our intrepid SJW makes sure to inform us that she was once possessed of the white savior mentality but, apparently, no longer possesses it. She is reformed, made more pure through the enlightenment of social justice, presumably. And then, after taking a vacation from her job, spends her time crying about it. This is Social Justice compressed into the most simplistic and yet still-accurate analogy I can think of: it is distilled, purified, bad-feels. If you want to have a bad time, if you want to feel like shit and cry after taking a vacation, by all means, have yourself a helping of Social Justice.
Standing Rock is an incredible place. An indigenous led prayer ceremony, populated by resistance movements from every corner of the globe, many of them bound to each other by shared and distinct traditions of dance, song, storytelling, and way of being in the physical world. Like any indigenous and overwhelmingly powerful place, white people had decided to take it. White people, like me, were arriving to SR in droves, some of us even dressed like it was Burning Man, forcing our way to seats right next to the sacred fire, putting our pasty faces too close to elders and demanding that they teach us their culture, clumsily mimicking centuries old dance traditions, jostling for position in the lines for free food, taking up so much space that the medicine tent had to be guarded 24/7, and young Dakota men were placing themselves in front of elders to protect them from the onslaught of questions and poking and consumption an demands for emotional labor and reliving centuries of trauma. By the time we arrived, SR elder organizers had begun holding twice a day orientations, where each of these things was addressed, and indigenous folks were demanding that white people stop colonizing their space. Yes, colonizing their space.
Fun fact: I didn’t colonize their space. Neither, I suspect, did any of my readers. I don’t stay up late at night worrying about the rituals of others, or figuring out ways to justify crashing their party. Social Justice Warriors do this all the time. They’ll push aside the very people they claim to cherish in an effort to seek out media attention, or some such thing. Look, if you want to go to some sacred event, and the practitioners are okay with you doing it, by all means, have a good time. It’s not my barrel of monkeys, mind you, but you do you. But here’s a hint… if you feel like crying in your car and writing articles about how people like you suck after you attend the event, you did not have a good time. So maybe, I dunno… do something else next time you get a week off from work? And here’s a bonus: you won’t be colonizing their space. I mean, I hardly even know what that means – SJW parlance is a strange and foreign language – but you can’t do it if you don’t go, I presume.
“White people have no culture.”
This is partially true. It is also untrue. This statement is a form of denial, and also a source of grief.
White people do have culture. Our culture is that of colonization. Of genocide. Of taking. Of envy and of fear. The majority of white people can name no more than two generations back in their families. The majority of white people barely know where their grandparents were from, much less who their ancestors were.
Okay, cupcake, I’m going to stop you right there. I can name generations of my family going back to the 12th century. I know where my family came from, what they were about, and have some idea of the kinds of people they were. My father’s family descends from the British Raleigh family (yes, that Raleigh family), and has been lurking around the Virginia area since the 1600s, living on the old land grants all the way until the time of the Civil War. We’re distantly related to Thomas Jefferson, and the Randolph family as well. We were tied in to many of the First Families of Virginia. My mother’s family traces back to Armenia, where they escaped the genocide and fled to America. I still have my great-grandfather’s naturalization certificate and some of his effects. I know that my great-grandmother came from the Trebizond area, and probably had some Greek in her, too. My great-grandfather, on the other hand, came from a family that lived in Cilician Armenia since Byzantine times. Of course, no Armenians live there anymore – all who stayed were exterminated. There are many other family stories I could share, but this post would get extremely long. In the South, most of us take special pride in our family trees, though. It is, dare I say, a cultural thing.
So speak for yourself. That your family is so dysfunctional you have no connection to your roots doesn’t mean it is that way for all of us, or even most of us.
The majority of white people have no traditions, and the ones we have, are rooted in consumption and the superficial application of organized religion, both of which are steeped in histories of violence. Christmas is about a severed tree dropping dead needles on heaps of plastic crap, grinding the gears of our capitalist economy, a formerly pagan ritual that has been bastardized and twisted into a stressful display of wealth and excess. Easter is about disposable plastic balls full of processed sugar, many of which are left for years to mar the sterilized landscapes and rigidly decorated city parks and backyards. Valentine’s Day was created exclusively by the greeting card industry to make you spend money on disappointing gifts and unhealthy treats for your unsatisfied monogamous partner. Independence Day is a too long period of time where daily explosions and worshipping of war trigger people and animals with PTSD, and create an alarming amount of pollution, maimed limbs, and death. Thanksgiving? Don’t even start.
Let’s analyze a few of these points. Christmas, they say, incorporates elements of pagan beliefs. There is some truth to this. As Christianity swept the late Roman Empire, people who converted often kept some of their preexisting traditions, where those traditions did not conflict with Christian belief. The same happened when Christianity spread to the Germanic peoples and the Slavic peoples. So this wasn’t a case of white people having no traditions, it was a case of white people practicing cultural syncretism, deciding to keep some preexisting traditions when they converted to Christianity.
The author then complains about superficial consumerism invading these holidays. This is true, to a point. There are those people who have forgotten the cultural origins of these things, Easter in particular. But again, the author is assuming it is this way for white people in general, and not merely this way for her.My friend Francis is quite a sincere Catholic, I am sure if you told him that Easter was about sugar and plastic eggs, he would be quite confused by the idea.
I’m not even going to go into Independence Day as a worshiping of war, maimed limbs, and death. The idea that fireworks ought to be banned has been discussed to death elsewhere. The author definitely exaggerates her points for dramatic effect, though.
The closest thing white people have to culture is our disturbingly fanatical obsession with sports, which we use to justify things like property destruction, vitriolic hatred for people we don’t know, and even accidental deaths. These are the same things that we justify with our constant military assault on developing and impoverished communities, at home and abroad.
Lolwut? What does enjoying sports have to do with property destruction, or vitriolic hatred for people we don’t know? The author then tries to make this a military issue? She’s delusional, or on some very interesting drugs.
Which brings me to my main point: The culture of white people is the culture of death. It is a culture of endless war, desensitization to human suffering, and the upholding of a brutal individualism fueled by greed. It is a deep, dark hole of grief and of loss. We don’t even know what we lost. We don’t know our ancestors. We don’t have stories of creation and hope and family; only stories of destruction and genocide. Our coming of age ceremony is a school shooting. Our song is a ballad about rockets and explosions. Our elders die alone surrounded by their stories of family members who no longer visit them. Our cities were built by the blood of slaves, on top of the graves of native people.
For a moment, I almost felt sorry for the author. While I generally feel quite secure in the knowledge of where I come from, who I am, and the history and culture of my ancestors, she clearly does not feel this. I could discuss this topic for hours. Today’s modern urbanite “cosmopolitans” have only the most superficial understanding of culture and history. The author knows that her knowledge of “indigenous” culture and history is woefully lacking, but she doesn’t stop to consider the possibility that her understanding of European cultures and history is similarly lacking. Imagine standing beneath the Hagia Sophia and saying “white people have no culture.” Imagine walking into the Pantheon in Rome and suggesting that white people have no understanding of their history.
Some years ago, I took a trip to Europe with my wife. We visited some friends in Cologne, and then explored much of the surrounding area, including Aachen, where I took a tour of the Palatine Chapel – Charlemagne’s old church, partially decorated in Byzantine style. There is a throne there with stones sourced from Jerusalem, it is said, and upon which many of the Holy Roman Emperors sat. That evening, we headed back to Cologne and found ourselves stopping for a quick bite to eat. By the bathrooms in this restaurant there was some ancient Roman ruin, a stone which had once marked the center of their coliseum, upon which the cleaning lady had set all of her cleaning supplies. This was strange to American sensibilities. People walked by it without noticing, the cleaning lady couldn’t have cared less that it existed. But over there, many things are thousands of years old.
I’ve often noted that the “cosmopolitans” who claim to love all cultures are really more like cultural tourists. And in a moment of guilt, they look in the mirror and realize how much they don’t understand – but the admission is brief and fleeting. It is an SJW crying in her car, blaming everyone who looks like her – perhaps thinking that she can push off some of the weight of her guilty feelings by diffusing it across “white people” instead of just herself.
And remember, too, that “white people” implies unity where none exists. There is no unified “white people” culture, to which all adhere. Spaniards practice something different than English, who are different than Icelanders, and so on. If the author is looking for a white monoculture, she is bound to be disappointed. That is a fool’s quest to begin with.
“Violence pervades this culture. Americans not only engage in violence, they are entertained by it. Killing takes place in America more often than the Sun rises, currently at an average of 87 times each day. Going to war in Afghanistan is less dangerous than living in Chicago.
At this point, I feel I should point out that Chicago is run by Leftist cosmopolitans. Her people, not mine. If there is a culture encouraging violence of this sort, it comes from the Left.
Romans went to the Coliseum to watch people being killed. In major cities, Americans just look out their windows. Baseball, once America’s national game, a benign, soporific sport, has been replaced by football which is so violent it destroys the brains of those who play it. Violent films, euphemized as action flicks, dominate our motion picture theatres and television sets. Our children play killing video games.”
Baseball hasn’t been replaced. What kind of crack is this guy smoking? It is possible for someone to like baseball and football. Or, in my case, to have little affection for either sport (I prefer racing and hockey, personally – yes, the latter is heresy for a Southerner, but the former is well-respected enough). Also, while football does indeed lead to many injuries, the players are generously paid for the risks they take. How many people would take that money in exchange for a risk of personal injury? Violent movies are usually produced by Leftist Hollywood, and video games aren’t real. The idea that there is a connection between real-life violence and video games has been dunked more times than I can count.
We do not get to achieve enlightenment; we lost that privilege centuries ago. We buried it in graves on land upon which we were strangers. This loss is real, palpable, and painful. There is a profound level of fear inherent in white people and the way we desperately grasp that which is not ours. This hole cannot be filled by our self delusion, and it represents generations of isolation and grief. It is our own generational trauma that we carry with us and pass on to our children. It hurts, and we do not know how to assuage that pain.
There wouldn’t be a national trauma if these people would shut up. Also, if she feels he is living on stolen land, then she should leave. I’d be happy to pay for a ticket to somewhere else – anywhere else, really – provided it was one way.
So we take. We take the traditions, costumes, dances, songs, and agency of marginalized groups after we have decimated their populations and destroyed their homes, and we polish these items so the suffering cannot be seen. We take their words out of context, and we use them to make money and to fake solidarity. We take their circles and stories and we wash them with our whiteness, and we struggle to fit them into our bloody box. We take their lands, their trails, their mountains, their rocks, and we climb and walk on them, snatching frenzied glimpses of what we want to call connection, enlightenment, transcendence, and wondering why they slip through our grasp. So instead, we get high on endorphins and call that “good enough.”
The rocks, the mountains, the trails… these things have exchanged hands since men first set foot… anywhere, really. My grandfather used to speak of Mt. Ararat. This is sort of like the national symbol of Armenia. And it lies just over the border in Turkey. The Greeks lament the loss of Constantinople to this very day. The world is full of places that once belonged to one people, and now belong to another. Put another way, we all live on conquered land. So why is America uniquely singled out for this offense? Even among the indigenous peoples, this was true. Before the white man came, they fought wars, conquered, and took lands from one another. We can say this is wrong, that it’s a part of human nature that pretty much sucks ass. It doesn’t change anything. It doesn’t rewrite the firmware in the human brain that leads to this sort of thing. Above all, why is America singled out for this – and the actions of all others whitewashed away (pardon the pun)?
I imagine most SJWs would lament the Spanish Reconquista. Christians taking land from Muslims, they’d say, and damn those barbaric and evil Christians for doing that to the poor enlightened Muslims. Ah, but the Muslims took the land from the Christians seven centuries prior. So who has rights to it, in the social justice world? In their world, the rights are owned by whomever can best deploy Weaponized Empathy. Bombs, guns, swords, and bows… these have been replaced with weaponized guilt, at least for the time being. I imagine sooner or later, the guns and swords will make their appearances. SJWs are not ending conquest, colonization, and such things. They are encouraging more of it. They feel miserable, and seek out someone to put them out of their misery.
And I guess that wouldn’t bother me… if it wasn’t for the fact that we were living with them as neighbors.
We want to learn something about ourselves that we lost, and so we keep taking the tokens and lives of other communities. But that one doesn’t fit, so, you know…on to the next.
The cycle needs to stop. It is the responsibility of white people to face our history and to fight the culture we have created. Stop hiding behind the stories and tokens of other people, and be accountable for the brutal ways we have consolidated our power and privilege. Stop pretending like you can hike or climb or meditate your way out of this power dynamic. You are not enlightened. Let’s stop with the excuses. You are powerful, and it is time to own that and to use it to fight back against the culture of death and violence that has left us spiritually and morally bankrupt. Call out the bullshit when you see it, in yourself and in others. Stop colonizing the lives and land and stories of others. Stop perpetuating the culture of death, and instead fight for the living.
“You are powerful…” Yeah, no. Power these days is possessed by whomever shouts “I’m offended” the loudest. That may be changing, slowly, but the effort to climb that mountain is extraordinary. If you’re a straight white Christian male (or even a couple of those things) you are the devil. You must walk on eggshells every minute of every day. You never know where the next accusation of racism, sexism, Nazism, or some other such thing will come from. You don’t know if the accusation will cost you your job, your friends, your family. You can’t jump, you can’t dance, you’re square, you’re probably a loser (look at every TV commercial with a white man in it), and, like this SJW says, you are violent, evil, and have no culture. Everything bad in the world is your fault. Every political conversation is about how you suck. And if you do get past all this and achieve something anyway, you’re told that you had life on the easiest setting, and so should get no credit for any of it. Indeed, you should feel bad and give it all up for a ‘person of color.’
In the face of all this, I can kind of understand why some folks crack and wind up crying in the car, conflicted and self-loathing. Why they pen turds like this one. They hear this shit every day, and through sheer repetition, come to believe in it. They don’t have the anchor of family and history to keep them from being blown about, ideologically. The author herself admits this. Her mistake is believing that we are all like her, or that even most of us are. She conflates her personal shortcomings with societal shortcomings, her own superficial understanding of history with our understanding of the same. She believes that because she, personally, has no culture that none of us do.
To describe my own culture would take too much of my time. But if some SJW stumbles upon this post and wants to know where to begin, I recommend starting here:
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness…
Today, I intend to be very plain with my readers. I tire of beating around the bush. And to be frank, that is what I have been doing for quite some time, though this was not my intention.
You see, I have fallen victim to describing in detail the symptoms, and how they might best be treated, with too little regard for the disease itself. This is a common affliction during the twilight of the West. Left and Right alike know that the West is dying; that it is deeply ill. The Right proposes to treat the symptoms, the Left prescribes euthanasia. For them, death is the only cure to any disease.
My ancestor is reputed to have said, when given the opportunity to inspect the ax that was to behead him, “this is sharp medicine; but it is a sure cure for all diseases.” Perhaps the Left has taken this too literally, or perhaps theirs is a cult that worships death. We can only speculate.
Our first instinct as men, when accused of a crime, is to plead our innocence and to offer our proofs. With an impartial jury, this may work if the proofs are good. If the accuser is malicious, however, and merely intends harm regardless of innocence, the pleas will please him. The proofs will be laughed at. He will feel powerful, presented with your own weakness.
Right now, as I type this, debates are raging across social media, and many of them are loaded with accusations of moral violation. These do not even contain the pretense of an impartial jury, as a legal violation might, but the consequences can be just as dire. Your job, your business, your possessions, your relationships, and reputation are all on the line. Are you, perhaps, a racist? Do you hate the poor? Do you stand on a cliff ready to push granny to her doom?
Plead your innocence and your accuser will laugh. Fail to plead, and your guilt is established. It is a Catch-22, a Kafkatrap. The mind recoils from resultant feelings of guilt and shame. This weapon is the most powerful one in the enemy’s arsenal. We have survived by ignoring it, hiding from it, or dismissing it, depending on one’s inclination. Facing the guilt and shame head-on is a daunting task only a few are truly capable of.
How did it come to this? Why is the weapon so effective?
Deep down, many people in the West feel guilty. We live comfortable lives, we have plentiful wealth. Few in the history of man have possessed such plenty. I cannot speak for everyone, but at least for myself, there are times I look at what I have and think that I do not deserve it. Greater minds than I have done things for civilization that I could only dream of doing, and possessed far less.
Our problems are often laughable. Listen to any conversation where people are complaining about this and that. The complaints are small-minded. Perhaps someone is having trouble with love or sex, another complains that his car has broken down, or perhaps his toilet will not work. Another complains of crushing debt from his state-of-the-art smartphone, sitting in his brand-new vehicle. The Internet is slow today, or the air-conditioning unit has broken down again.
With the exception of love and sex, perpetual problems for the race of man, these are not problems in any historical sense of the word, not even for many of the poorest among us. Such things are small, and deep down most of us know that. Problems we face are preferable to the problems of our ancestors, for whom food was difficult to obtain, work was brutal, and life short and filled with pain.
For a time, the West prided itself in having banished many of the ills of our forebears. Indeed, we even traveled to the moon! Some wished, perhaps, to spread our plenty to the rest of the world. We could export our ways, our culture, and our way of thinking to others, so that they might enjoy the same rich rewards.
That did not last long. Before long, Marxist subversion had wormed its way into media, entertainment, and education. Fabian Socialism was the method of subverting the West, for revolutionary Socialism had already failed. For a time, this was probably a deliberate instrument of the Soviets. We won the Cold War in an economic sense, and probably in a military sense as well, though nuclear weapons assured that this was never put to the final test. In a sociological sense, both sides lost, though for us the loss was worse. If the Soviet Union was the head of the Marxist animal, it was lopped off effectively. Like the Hydra, however, the body did not die, and new heads eventually sprang from the seeming-corpse.
Many theories exist for where the weapon was first forged, and by whom. Saul Alinsky is frequently cited, as is the Frankfurt school. The Gramscian Long March may also have contributed. On this matter, let smarter men than I speculate and theorize. The weapon exists, and its effectiveness cannot be denied.
Concepts of Socialism go at least as far back as Aristophanes, yet the method of civilizational guilt as a means of forcing it upon the citizenry is unique and relatively new. Further, it exists only in the West. Chinese do not worry about colonizing Africa, nor do Mohammedans moralize about the Christians and Jews they have subjugated and enslaved. Conquest is rarely regretted on a moral level by anyone but a Westerner. For most, it is a matter of some pride.
When reading the works of Western ancients, this sort of civilizational self-loathing is conspicuously absent. Guilt, where it exists, tends to be personal, or spun as a vendetta of sorts. It is difficult to imagine the Romans, for instance, worrying overmuch about the opinions of the Gauls. So even in the West, this is new.
Why do Westerners hate themselves so? There is no other explanation that fits. The West, at a meta level, feels that it does not deserve what it has, and now questions whether or not it should even continue to exist at all. Survival, most powerful of all human instincts, has been completely subverted, and now inverted.
This is the disease. Rightists will endlessly prattle on that they are not guilty for slavery, or for various wars, conquests, and other events in world history, because they were not alive, nor would countenance such actions if they were. This treats only the symptoms. The disease continues. Deep down, even many Rightists feel the guilt and the shame, and Leftists continue to exploit them. I know this, for the weapon once worked on me, and I see it continually deployed against my fellows.
Something very deep has rooted itself in the West, a civilization-killing disease of the mind, for which no amount of charity, submission, or moralizing is sufficient to extirpate. At no point may a Westerner regard his moral duty as satisfied. No amount of charity is sufficient, no flood of government programs, nor burden of taxation or public penitence will extinguish the disease. Indeed, these only worsen the symptoms.
If the disease is to be named, I can think of no other more suitable than Civilizational Self-Loathing. Pride in the West’s accomplishments was reduced to guilt for the West’s success. And now the guilt has mutated into self-hate. Ceaselessly, we are bombarded with declarations of how evil we are, how our ancestors did terrible wrongs, and how we are responsible for righting the wrongs, for paying a weregild with the death of our own evil civilization. Anything less is a moral evil, we are told. Give up America. Give up existence. Crawl into a hole and die, and give up everything you own, and even then you are still guilty and hateful.
Such bombardment has continued since I was a child. And I suspect even the strongest among us are worn down at some level by it. Once, when speaking with my friend Sarah Hoyt, she explained that Marxist morality, such that it is, has infected all of us to some degree. Even those who display few or no symptoms are often carriers of the disease.
If there is any hope, it is that like any virus, a vaccination might be possible. I am no stranger to people using guilt as an emotional weapon against me. It has occurred for most of my life in greater or lesser fashion due to many personal experiences I have little desire to discuss. As I look back, I am thankful for this at some level. I do not possess the strength of character that some do, but I was vaccinated somewhat against the disease, and that has helped.
Perhaps the next generation will be better inoculated against the disease. The distinct schadenfreude of Donald Trump’s victory of 2016 demonstrates that a wave of “don’t give a fuck,” as we might put it in vulgar terms, has swept the country.
Is it enough to treat the disease, and not merely the symptoms? I cannot say, but I can hope. One thing we can all do, however, is to stop looking back at our history in shame. For every great tragedy in history, there is wondrous discovery. For each moral failing, there is bright accomplishment. We must appreciate the good, and remember the bad so as not to repeat it, and let neither be used as a weapon against us, to make us hate ourselves, or where we came from. America has no reason to feel shame for her history. For if any have tried earnestly to be a just and moral people, though at times failing as all humans do, it is us. And those doing the criticizing have records far worse. If anyone should feel shame and guilt, it is they.
For America, shame? No. Pride, perhaps. But never shame.