[Marxism] What Kind of Card is Race?
cbrown at michiganlegal.org
Tue Apr 25 17:06:33 MDT 2006
The Absurdity (and Consistency) of White Denial
What Kind of Card is Race?
By TIM WISE
Since the O.J. trial, it seems as though almost any allegation of racism has
been met with the same dismissive reply from the bulk of whites in the U.S.
CB: Typically very fine essay by Tim Wise - I'd say denial of racism became
the signal characteristic of the new form of racism with the rise of
Reaganism. Denial of racism characterizes Reaganite racism. Emblematically,
Reagan kicked off his campaign in Phildalephia, Mississippi, but , wink,
wink, it wasn't a racist message.
Before the successes of the Civil Rights movement, in the eras of
segregation and slavery, most whites openly declared and acted as if Black
people and other people of color were inferior to whites , and so held that
racism was appropriate. A main victory of the Civil Rights movement was to
make it socially inappropriate for whites to be openly racist. Very much a
major step forward for America, a radical reform.
However, there came about a counter-reform. The new racism crystalized
especially as denial that racism still existed at all - in other words,
claiming that the Civil Rights Movement of the 50's and 60's was more
successful at eradicating racism than it really was. This New Racism is a
core principle of Reaganism and its all around counter-reform program. It's
first Lemmas are the doctrines of "Color Blindness" and "Reverse Racism",
the idea that Black people's reverse "racism" against white people is now
just as important or more a problem than actual racism. By this doctrine,
the U.S. Supreme Court and the legal powers have nearly abolished
affirmative action as socalled reverse discrimination, starting with the
actions like the _Bakke_ case that outlawed quotas, right on up to this
year's ballot initiative in Michigan to make affirmative action
The issue is confused by Black people who are anti-Black racists such as
Ward Connerly, Clarence Thomas , and the many Black conservatives and
opportunists who carry the ball for racism. It is also confused by increases
in Black people on television and in movies and other celebrities, and some
increases in the portion of middle income Black people, as well as the
aforementioned actual gains against segregation and discrimination.
The OJ Simpson trial was astonishingly effective in brain"washing" (lodging)
this new style of racism into the heads of millions of white people. The
Hollywood capitalists were successful in making it into a maxiseries (
really more, as, incredibly, it dominated the news for months; I still can't
believe they made a domestic, private tragedy into a fake national morality
play) and basically persuading lots of white people that it was an anecdote
with great typicality, demonstrating that Black people's claims of racism
are typically crying wolf. Tim Wise articulates this fairly well in his
article. However, obviously, it was not just the OJ Simpson saga, as the
Supreme Court was well on its way to establishing the new racism with Bakke
in the late 70's.
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