January 02, 2016
Kevin D Williamson on Obama’s vanities:
In a pre-vacation interview with NPR, the president argued that (as the New York Times decodes the message) “some of the scorn directed at him personally stems from the fact that he is the first African American to hold the White House.” I.e, “It’s because I’m black, isn’t it?” This is kind of clever, in a way. The president says that much of the unhappiness with his administration is “pretty specific to me, and who I am and my background,” which is slippery in that by saying it’s about him, he’s really saying it’s about his critics, and their bigotry and prejudice. “It’s not me, it’s you.”
Heather Mac Donald on crime, policing, and the “Ferguson effect”:
The media and many politicians decry as racist pedestrian stops and broken-windows policing — the proven method of stopping major crimes by going after minor ones. Under such conditions, it isn’t just understandable that the police would back off; it is also presumably what the activists and the media critics would want. The puzzle is why the activists are now so intent on denying that such de-policing is occurring and that it is affecting crime.
Theodore Dalrymple on pretentious outrage:
Outrage supposedly felt on behalf of others is extremely gratifying for more than one reason. It has the appearance of selflessness, and everyone likes to feel that he is selfless. It confers moral respectability on the desire to hate or despise something or somebody, a desire never far from the human heart. It provides him who feels it the possibility of transcendent purpose, if he decides to work toward the elimination of the supposed cause of his outrage. And it may even give him a reasonably lucrative career, if he becomes a professional campaigner or politician: For there is nothing like stirring up resentment for the creation of a political clientele. Anti-racism is a perfect cause for those with free-floating outrage because it puts them automatically on the side of the angels without any need personally to sacrifice anything. You have only to accuse others of it to feel virtuous yourself.
And via Ace, a student recounts how he “de-converted” from the mentally dismal crab-bucket world of the “social justice warrior”:
I realised it wasn’t going to get better. I was in a university class about feminism, overrun with SJWs, and they had worse arguments than I’d seen online. There was no smarter next level to feminism that I was just too stupid to see. That was it. I was at the top and our arguments still sucked.
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