Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Blast from the Past: Hate Breeds Hate

Rather than repeat myself, why not copy-paste something I wrote a year and a half ago?

It's time to rehabilitate tone policing.

I've been hesitating to publish this particular train of thought for a while, but I think it really does need to be said: Allowing certain favored classes of people to stomp all over even minimal standards of civility - even if some of their grievances are legitimate - is profoundly damaging to our solidarity as a nation. Not only that, such double standards actually retard social progress.

What do groups like Black Lives Matter - or its on-campus equivalents - think they will actually accomplish by behaving like boors? Seriously: I really want to know how screaming slogans at students who are trying to study or demanding that innocent sorority sisters abandon their fundraiser for St. Jude will actually convince anyone that these protesters' motives are pure. What's the logic here? Does fostering a climate of fear actually change hearts and minds?

No. Instead, you are hardening racist sentiments. When you ludicrously insist that a man's last name is actually a racially-charged insult, you confirm every aspiring neo-Nazi eugenicist's belief that African Americans are dysgenic imbeciles. When you gin up fake hate crimes to back your ideology, you provide proof for every Grand Wizard's judgment that you are all habitual liars and criminals. Even worse, in filling the air with cries of phony outrage, you effectively muzzle anyone with a real complaint, as even the well-meaning are inadvertently being trained to approach claims of racism with skepticism. "The Boy Who Cried Wolf" is not just a fable; it is an accurate reflection of human nature.

Speaking of human nature, here's another scientifically-backed truth: People are led by their guts. To borrow Jonathan Haidt's analogy, our rational mind is a tiny rider sitting on the back of a huge, lumbering elephant of instincts and prejudices -- and more often than not, the elephant decides and the rider rationalizes after the fact. Why? According to the evolutionist, it profited Paleolithic man to shoot first and ask questions later; people who didn't distrust outsiders or who weren't hypersensitive to threat didn't live long enough to procreate. According to the Catholic, meanwhile, the intended harmony between our biological and rational selves was broken by original sin; thus, as St. Paul writes in Romans, man often finds himself practicing the evil he does not wish to practice. For the purposes of our discussion here, it doesn't really matter who has it right; both explanatory frameworks are accounting for the same observable reality.

And how does this reality apply when it comes to our raging campus activists? Jeb Bush correctly observed in last night's debate that you can't bully yourself into the presidency; likewise, you can't bully yourself into a racially just utopia because bullying repels the elephant. Mobbing people and belligerently shouting at them puts their unconscious minds on high alert -- and a mind on high alert is a mind that cannot listen. When you are disgusting and offensive, it might make your fellow travelers feel better, but for everyone else, you're merely pushing the "circle the wagons!" button and, in some cases, driving people to hucksters like Donald Trump -- who, by the way, represents the flip side of the Black Lives Matter coin. Want to neutralize Trump's populist appeal? Try turning down the volume and being less hateful.

Okay, so: Why am I reposting this today? Take a quick look at the news. A pack of baseball-bat-wielding feral kids is terrorizing students and faculty at a northwestern liberal arts college. An entertainer is now pretending she's a courageous dissident for mock-beheading our sitting president. A leftwing Youtuber is being harassed by other leftwingers for daring to give anti-feminists the time of day. Overall, the despicable and, in some cases, criminal conduct I highlighted above is still ongoing. Do leftists not realize how angry people are getting? Do they really want a hot civil war -- or eight years of Trump? Because if they don't stop pushing, one of those two scenarios will come to pass. 

1 comment:

  1. I'll believe Black Lives Matter when they stop killing each other and aborting their babies.