Vocabulary Malfunctions

I was unaware of Laura Schlessinger's existence until just recently, when she surfaced in the news in connection with a recent edition of her radio show. It seems an Afro-American caller, seeking advise with her mixed marriage, was offended because she had to hear Schlessinger use the word 'nigger' while the latter commented on the language often found in Afro-American television shows. Of course, the incident is being tediously reported as a "racist outburst," and Schlessinger, who is product of a mixed Jewish/Italian marriage, has since apologised for using the vocable, claiming to have felt mortified by what she now views as an erroneously articulated point of philosophy. Having listened to the audio, however, I find the apology (as I usually do with these types of incident) both amusing and contemnible. During the offending segment Schlessinger is undoubtedly arrogant and obnoxious, showing a proclivity, more appropriate for an opinionated comedian than for a marriage advisor, to interrupt abrasively and talk over her caller. But the points she makes are true.

Firstly, Afro-Americans are indeed over-sensitive and they have indeed been agitated by a smattering of race hate organisations. Everyone with sense knows this. And, certainly, the Afro-American with the chip on the shoulder, ready to take offence and detonate with aggrieved racial rhetoric at the slightest perceived infraction has become a subject of mockery, indeed a cliché, on this side of the Atlantic. (Having said this, Afro-Caribbean and other dark-skinned citizens here are rapidly learning from their North American muses.)

And secondly, Whites in the United States are indeed so non-racist generally, that they, like the Whites in the rest of the Western world, are prepared to act against their own best interests in order to prove their own virtue (mostly to themselves) and satisfy their own abstract conceptions of justice: Schlessinger mentions their having elected a Black man for president -- a Black man, by the way (although she does not say this), with a Muslim father, possibly not even born within the United States’ jurisdiction, who for 20 years sat in the pews of a church predicated on anti-White racial hatred, listening to bizarre anti-White diatribes, which he condoned and approved, offering even generous financial patronage; Schlessinger mentions the election of a Black president, not needing perhaps also to mention White support over the past half century for innumerable anti-racist initiatives, programmes, policies, and legislation -- or the fact that today, when a White person commits even a minor social infraction (by, for example, using a disfavoured vocable), the ensuing White condemnation and apologies take apocalyptic proportions, often evincing a pathological self-hatred.

A sane person in Schlessinger's place (it seems too much to ask in her particular case) would have apologised for a lack of manners, but otherwise iterated the above points even more forcefully, attacking the race hate agitators without quarter, and demanding the opprobrium of the citizenry as well as the immediate cessation of government support for the minority race hate organisations.

The Schlessinger incident reminds me of the 2006 "Niggergate" involving another entertainer, Michael Richards, of Seinfield fame. As will be remembered, Richards, frustrated by uncouth and obstreperous Afro-Americans during a stand-up comedy routine at The Laugh Factory, exploded with a fiery tirade, which included liberal use of the forbidden term, "nigger." Richards subsequently crawled into a hole and wished the Earth would swallow him up, and even telephoned Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson (!), to beg them on his knees for forgiveness. Suppressed frustration, heated for decades in the pressure cooker of political correctness, ruptured its containment and blew out with a piercing hiss, until the relief in pressure permitted the fissure to be sealed.

Such incidents highlight that even politically correct citizens are internally stressed by their own political correctness. As time passes, and ill-conceived historical redresses morph into calculated excesses, the stress might eventually prove unendurable for some, and cause not just occasional vocabulary malfunctions but permanent defections. Even so, I am convinced that most ordinary politically correct Whites will sooner endure any humiliation rather than risk being ostracised, and will only abandon their negative identity when faced with a counter-cultural bandwagon speeding towards them and about to run them over.   

Tomislav Sunic has in recent years made an important observation about former Communists in Eastern Europe: once Communism came crashing down, almost overnight the Communists "recycled" themselves as free-market capitalists. Sunic has suggested that we are likely to see an analogous phenomenon in the West at some future point: when the system of multiculturalism and political correctness finally implodes, its former supporters will likely recycle themselves as its most vehement opponents, and will probably emphatically assert that they never believed in it in the first place.