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Thursday, June 20, 2019

Pinkerite's statement against all forms of race essentialism

Pinkerite follows a good number of progressive Twitter accounts, but unfortunately some of them believe that although it is unacceptable to make race-based claims about human beings, in most cases, they believe it is OK to make them about "whites."

Pinkerite believes that it is unacceptable to make race-based claims about individuals regardless of which "race" they are.

So, for example Pinkerite opposes a highly profitable business run by Robin DiAngelo, which insists that all white people are racists. DiAngelo considers both herself and Donald Trump to be racists. She does recognize a "continuum" - you can either be a conscious racist, or an unconscious one.

Regardless of political views or actions, there is no way any individual so labeled "white" by DiAngelo can demonstrate they are not racist.

DiAngelo not only considers white Americans to be racists due to the influence of the centuries-long slave system and its aftermath: she considers all white people racist. She demonstrates this in her recent book when she rejected a woman's defense against automatic racism because she did not grow up in the North American race system. DiAngelo made it clear that this did not matter. To be white is to be racist, according to DiAngeloism.

Many white people, especially liberals, one of DiAngelo's primary targets, consider racism to be both evil and stupid, and many, like Pinkerite, believe that race itself should be understood as a social convention invented by European colonizers to justify exploitation of non-Europeans. It is not a biological reality, interchangeable with "ethnicity" or "ancestry" or "lineage" in spite of claims and careless use of terminologies by people such as Steven Pinker.

DiAngelo believes it is perfectly just to declare any individual white person to be racist and if they push back against what they consider an unfair accusation of evil and stupidity, they are then declared an exemplar of "white fragility." In this way DiAngelo and her followers never have to support their claims, because to even question DiAngelo's claims is evidence of "white fragility" which renders one's opinions a sign of pathology.

This is a rather ingenious tactic by DiAngelo, whose profitable career benefits from compliant media people who justifiably fear that asking DiAngelo hard questions will result in a "white fragility" scarlet letter.

But you don't even have to push back to be declared an example of "white fragility."

The term "white fragility" is defined as "a state in which even a minimum amount of racial stress becomes intolerable, triggering a range of defensive moves. These moves include the outward display of emotions such as anger, fear, and guilt, and behaviors such as argumentation, silence, and leaving the stress-inducing situation."

DiAngelo uses the neutral-sounding term "racial stress" but what that means, in practice, is that an individual is accused of racism.

Please note, the white fragility response to the accusation of racism is signaled by "argumentation" and "silence" and withdrawal. There is no response of the accused that is acceptable to the cult of DiAngelo. To be accused of racism is to be proven a racist in DiAngeloism. Even displaying the emotion of guilt is considered a sign of white fragility.

It's understandable that many assume DiAngelo's good faith because she claims to represent an important and worthy cause, the opposition to race-based injustice. But pathologizing white "race" does not counter racist beliefs - rather it feeds into race-based essentialism.

Thomas Chatterton Williams said it best:
This, more than anything, is what is so unsettling about Mr. Coates’s recent writing and the tenor of the leftist “woke” discourse he epitomizes. Though it is not at all morally equivalent, it is nonetheless in sync with the toxic premises of white supremacism. Both sides eagerly reduce people to abstract color categories, all the while feeding off of and legitimizing each other, while those of us searching for gray areas and common ground get devoured twice. Both sides mystify racial identity, interpreting it as something fixed, determinative and almost supernatural. For Mr. Coates, whiteness is a “talisman,” an “amulet” of “eldritch energies” that explains all injustice; for the abysmal early-20th-century Italian fascist and racist icon Julius Evola, it was a “meta-biological force,” a collective mind-spirit that justifies all inequality. In either case, whites are preordained to walk that special path. It is a dangerous vision of life we should refuse no matter who is doing the conjuring.
Williams has both European and recent African ancestry and there is no place for "mixed-race" people in the essentialist systems of a Robin DiAngelo or a Julius Evola.

It is interesting to note that both the race science proponents and "white fragility" proponents are doing their best to make race a more rigid and more essential component of human identity at a time when humans of all "races" are socializing and having babies more than at probably any other time in human history.

Pinkerite disagrees with DiAngeloism that the way to fight racism is to double-down on essentialist thinking by accusing individuals of stupidity and evil based solely on their "race."

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