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Wednesday, February 11, 2009

What is post-racial America?

Source: A view from the Right

The notion that the election of Barack Obama to the presidency will inaugurate a "post-racial" America, an America that has gone "beyond race" as Obama has put it, has been widely accepted, even by many conservatives. I'm not sure that anyone has ever explained what this post-racial condition of America would actually look like.

Presumably a post-racial, beyond-race America will be one in which no one thinks about race any more, an America in which we all just see each other as individuals. This is most puzzling, since I was not aware that Obama has called for the elimination of the vast system of race-conscious preferences for blacks and other nonwhite groups that is institutionalized at every level of our society. Currently, blacks and Hispanics are admitted to selective universities with grades and SATs for which virtually all white and Asian applicants are automatically rejected. Blacks and Hispanics are admitted to graduate schools with grades and test scores for which virtually all white and Asian applicants are automatically rejected. In the 2003 Grutter v. Bollinger decision (see my article on it), the Supreme Court said that racial preferences for nonwhites were justified and mandated by the U.S. Constitution.

In every area of American life, from academic achievement to fire department examinations to grade school discipline to incarceration rates to bank loans and mortgages, blacks do much worse than whites, and their lack of success is seen as a moral stain on society calling forth ever renewed efforts to "close the racial gap." One of the most written-about gaps is that black high school seniors are on average four years behind whites in reading abilities. But what such a huge differential indicates is not that blacks simply "lag behind whites," a genial image that suggests a footrace in which the blacks cross the finish line just a little bit behind the whites; what it indicates is that the blacks are not even in the same event as the whites. And this is why, in every institution, parallel tracks for blacks have been set up where they are evaluated by much lower standards than those applied to whites. At the same time, to prevent whites from reacting against this massive racial favoritism for blacks, whites are required to attend "diversity sensitivity" sessions where they are told that they harbor conscious or unconscious racial stereotypes about blacks which are somehow responsible for the blacks being behind and which the whites must extricate from their psyches.

Will the elevation of Barack Obama to the presidency change any of this?

Of course not.

The post-racial America of which Obama's champions speak does not mean the end of racial preferences for nonwhites. It does not mean the end of constant accusations of white racism. It does not mean the end of the systematic cover-up of blacks' lower abilities, and of the fact that these lower abilities, not white racism, are the reason blacks are behind. It does not mean the end of the systematic cover up of the true facts of black-on-white crime. It does not mean the end of mandatory sensitivity training for whites. It does not mean the end of the belief that there is a moral cloud over America's entire history up until the civil rights movement--or, in the event Obama is elected, up until the election of Barack Obama.

If post-racial America does not mean the removal of these pro-nonwhite, anti-white policies and beliefs, what does it mean?

It means a post-white America, an America transformed by the symbolic removal of whiteness as the country's explicit or implicit historic and majority identity.

This is the consummation of which Obama's supporters dream.

In Obama's post-racial America, all the anti-white policies and attitudes, from affirmative action to open borders for Hispanics to the multicultural rewriting of history to endless compaigns against "white racial privilege," will remain in place. What will change is that whites will not protest these anti-white policies any more, will not mutter under their breath about them any more, will not even think about muttering under their breath about them any more. Instead, they will unreservedly embrace them, in the joy of racial unity and harmony.

Post-racial America is an America in which whites, as whites, go silent forever.

Source: A View From the Right

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