IDENTITY POLITICS AGAIN

Justin Schwartz jschwart at freenet.columbus.oh.us
Wed Apr 19 14:21:56 MDT 1995


Jones-Bhandari suggests there is general support on the white left for
Farrakhan and other misleaders of the Black community (like who? Al
Sharpton and Fulani come to mind on the "left" and maybe the Urban League
on the right). I am not aware of such support. The Nation, the
quintessential white lefty publication, regularly runs
articles--generally, and in my view appropriately, by Black
intellectuals--criticizing and exposing these figures. Z Magazine, several
step;s to the left of The Nation, likewise, if (I speak
impressionistically) less frequently. I have sseem sim,ilar critiques in
The Progressive and In These Times, which I don't read often. I have never
seen a defense of Farrakhan, Sharplton, Fulani, or indeed Vernon Jordan,
Marion Barry, Coleman Young, Tom Bradley, or ASndrew Young in their pages.
So I think J-B is misguided.

I think that white leftists have a certain reluctance, which I think is
quite justified, to attempt to settle the affairs of African-Am,erican
movements for them and I think it verges on the insulting (of Blacks) to
say that Blacks cannot shake themselves free of such mislaeders without
white guidance. But perhaps that's not what J-B means. Anyway, this
reluctance has not translated into supported, cynaical or otherwise, for
Farrakhan, et. al. Btw, I think that corrupt Black Democxrats like Barry
and Young are far more dangerous than Farrakhan, who is a bother but
unlike the B;lack Judenrat (there I go again, sounding Maoist) does not
exercise actual power.

--Justin Schwartz




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