Ricochet is the best place on the internet to discuss the issues of the day, either through commenting on posts or writing your own for our active and dynamic community in a fully moderated environment. In addition, the Ricochet Audio Network offers over 50 original podcasts with new episodes released every day.
The Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr., led an organized movement against an obvious injustice, using eloquent, simple arguments which were based on sources that few questioned (the Bible and the Constitution), while denouncing violence and emphasizing honesty and integrity. Many argued with him for a while but, eventually, America agreed with him and passed the Civil Rights Act of 1964. By passing this law, white America agreed that the way they had treated blacks was wrong and such abuses would no longer be tolerated. The transformation in American society since then has been remarkable. I was born in 1968 and in my 51 years, I have never seen what Rev. King or his contemporaries would call racism against blacks. I’m sure it happens, but it has become extremely rare. Not only are racist acts illegal but they have also become unacceptable behavior for white people in our society, even in private. As they should be.
The Black Lives Matter (BLM) protests which have been sweeping the country over the past month are ostensibly focused on race. But the similarities to Rev. King’s movement end there. BLM is leading a chaotic and unpredictable movement against subtle concepts that are difficult to specifically define, such as micro-aggressions and white privilege. Their arguments are highly variable, unclear, poorly stated, and do not appear to be based on any set ideology or legal framework. They do not denounce violence and frequently seem to actually encourage it. White Americans are desperately competing with one another to prove they’re less racist than the next guy but they can’t meet the demands of BLM, because they’re not sure what they are, exactly, on any given day. There is, however, one consistent message pushed by BLM and their supporters, and it terrifies me:
They tolerate absolutely no debate or discussion. Blacks who question BLM in any way, no matter how small, are branded “Uncle Toms.” Whites who do so are called racists.
A quick aside: If a white person is called a racist, by anyone, just that accusation (regardless of its merit) can destroy that white person’s life. S/he can lose friends, their job, and their place in society with little to no hope of ever recovering from such destruction. That truth suggests that BLM’s claims of widespread systemic white racism against blacks are apparently not anywhere near correct. But, whatever.
My point is that the BLM movement tolerates no dissent. Even from dead people. They destroy statues and attempt to rewrite history, like Muslim extremists and other tyrants all over the world. If a comedian once made a joke they found offensive, that comedian should not be permitted to make jokes about anything else, even years later. Works of art that don’t share their worldview should be destroyed, rather than carefully considered. If a police officer in Minnesota is suspected to be a racist, then police departments across the country should be shut down. The intolerance of the BLM movement and its supporters is breathtaking.
Intolerance of others is always dangerous. This is the genius of our Constitution. Our Founding Fathers recognized that we would often disagree, and used federalism, three branches of government, a nation of laws and not of men, and various other techniques to allow a diverse group of individuals to co-exist peacefully.
But this particular brand of intolerance – the one pushed so hard by BLM and their supporters, I find particularly concerning. And that is because I can think of only two possible reasons for it. Perhaps you can think of others but these are the only ones that come to my mind:
- BLM does not permit anyone to argue with their ideology or goals, because no one (including BLM) knows what they are. They understand that any effort to debate their point will quickly show that they don’t have one, and they don’t want to look stupid. I don’t think this is the case but I suppose it’s possible. But I hope this is it because the only other possibility I can think of is…
- Their true underlying goals are nefarious and extremely unpopular. They are simply Marxists using their current source of leverage (in this case, racial tensions) to get what they’ve wanted all along – to destroy America. Or, as President Obama put it, “…a fundamental transformation of America.” Make America into something completely different than what it has always been. They despise democracy and capitalism, and seek to transform America into some sort of socialist state with more central control and fewer individual liberties. They denounce racism because they know that most Americans don’t want racism. But they can’t admit that their ultimate goal is Marxism, because they also know that most Americans don’t want that either.
What do you think? Am I overlooking something?
Why are BLM and their supporters so extreme in their intolerance? Rev. King went out of his way to find areas of agreement with American whites. He based his entire movement on the Constitution and the Bible, and he eloquently explained that all black people wanted was the right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. He relentlessly emphasized his hope to have blacks join American society. BLM appears to seek further separation between blacks and American society.
This seems odd. Any minority movement tends to attempt to broaden its appeal, form coalitions when possible, and build support in order to achieve their goals.
That is clearly not what BLM is doing. Why?
Rather than encouraging people to agree with them, they make it harder and harder for people to agree with them. They say that it is no longer good enough to not be a racist — you must be “anti-racist.” I’m not quite sure what that means, but I suspect it means agreeing with whatever BLM says is important this afternoon. And stay tuned for changes tomorrow morning.
Why are the demands of this minority movement so vague, and yet so draconian? It doesn’t make any sense.
I can think of only two possible reasons. And I think one of them is wrong.
And I really hope I’m wrong about the other one. Because if that one is true, if BLM really is nothing more than a camouflaged Marxist revolution, we may have a very serious problem here. A problem that could lead to a very, very, very messy conflict.
What do you think?Published in