Tag: perceptions

Race Relations are Improving, not Worsening

 

Imagine my shock when I read Jason Riley’s op-ed in the WSJ today that stated in spite of all the condemnations against whitepeople in this country coming from Critical Race Theory, including white supremacy, white fragility, increased enmity between the races and violence against blacks by law enforcement, the data overwhelmingly supports the opposite: the relationships among the races have actually been improving for many years in our country. As many of us have suspected, we have been held hostage to a propaganda machine intended to destroy the fabric of our nation, originating from and emerging from the universities.

Mr. Riley referred in his piece to the report from the Manhattan Institute entitled “The Social Construction of Race Relations in the United States,” by Eric Kaufmann. The report relies on several surveys and sources for data collection, some of them constructed by widely known organizations and some of them created by Mr. Kaufmann. I was especially taken with some of the conclusions that were reached:

  • For example, “eight in 10 African-American survey respondents believe that young black men are more likely to be shot to death by the police than to die in a traffic accident; one in 10 disagrees. Among a highly educated sample of liberal whites, more than six in 10 agreed. In reality, considerably more young African-American men die in car accidents than are shot to death by police.”
  • Black Biden voters more than black Trump voters see themselves as victims of racism.
  • People’s perceptions have been formed to a great extent by the media, which has its own Leftist agenda. When people hear and read certain information enough times, perceptions become reality. So if they hear about “systemic racism” repeatedly in all the many avenues for communicating this ideological information, it becomes true for them.
  • Social media has been a powerful force in forming people’s opinions about the prevalence of racism in this country.

The greatest surprise for me was that rather than depending on perceptions of people about race relations, the report is steeped in data from several sources that come up with similar results. We already knew that the CRT was formed by opinions, misperceptions, misrepresentations, and outright contrivances, but where was the data to provide factual, historic reasons to counter these arguments?

Perception is Reality

 

We were at a small, intimate dinner, and that evening turned out to have a profound impact on me. For the first time, I was meeting a woman whom I’d heard about named Peggy Bassett, who had become a minister at the age of 50. She was adored by her community, and when I met her, she was a victim of ALS. Although she could still eat with us, she was in a reclining wheelchair. Yet her face glowed with serenity and joy. When one of the other guests asked her just before dinner how she was doing, she replied with some effort, “I’m just fine in here.”

I’m just fine in here.

The Color of Time

 

Time has innumerable facets that go beyond the human construct it provides for us to manage our lives. I’ve always had difficulty holding onto my understanding of ideas such as “space-time” or “light-years” but here on earth, time has always had a mysterious and intriguing quality.

Our thoughts are guided by many aspects of time. I often say to myself that I don’t have enough time. Or that it takes too much time to accomplish something. Or that time seems to pass so slowly, or that it races by at warp speed.

Time weaves through some of our days like a close friend; at other times, it seems to darken our days like our worst enemy. We can’t count on time, because it marches along relentlessly, regardless of our needs or desires for it. It answers to its own drummer, consistent and predictable, and we do our best to manage it, but somehow it streams independent of our expectations. We think we have enough time to do something, and time runs out. Or we wish for a reasonable amount of time for decisions to be made, trying to be patient and reasonable. But our hopes for time in our life, and the hopes and actions of others, often decide whether time will cooperate with us or defy us. It is impossible to predict or control time precisely, no matter how we try, because others often have the last word about time’s passing.

Winning Ugly

 

Let’s get superficial here at Ricochet and talk about looks. This is a tw0-part essay.

Coming into the 2020 season, 19,960 people had played at least one game in the major leagues. Among those 19,960 were all sorts, tall guys and short guys, guys as fast as greased lightning and guys slower than molasses, smart cookies and dummies, honest men and crooks, handsome devils, and those who were a little less fortunate in the looks department. Among that latter group was Don Mossi.

Mossi was a pitcher and pretty good one. He pitched 12 years in the majors as both a reliever and a starter and he was good in each role. He pitched in the majors from 1954 to 1965 and posted a career 101-80 won-loss record, a 3.43 ERA and 50 saves in 460 games and 1548 innings pitched. In his best individual season (1959) the left-handed Mossi went 17-9 and he was also a part of the best pitching staff of the 1950s as a rookie– the 1954 Cleveland Indians – the Indians that year won the AL pennant with a 111-43 won-lost record, one of the best regular-season records of all time, powered by a pitching staff which included Hall of Famers Bob Feller, Bob Lemon, Early Wynn, and Hal Newhouser. Mossi held his own with a 6-1, 1.94 ERA, 7 save performance.