About a year and a half ago, as part of a project for a course I was taking, I did some research on the history of the relationship between blacks and the Republican party (and the decline, thereof). There were a lot of things that saddened me in what I discovered. For example, black support did not swift abruptly or decidedly during the Great Depression (Pres. Eisenhower could still poll in the high 30’s in the 56′ election) and it wasn’t until the disastrously conservative Barry Goldwater that the black vote was really lost). The divorce of Black America and the GOP has made both sides poorer, both intellectually and financially.
What I found more disturbing, though, was venomous treatment of those blacks who remained or joined the GOP. I could not believe when I saw terms like “house negro” and “Uncle Tom” applied to black conservatives in peer-reviewed, scholarly articles. I grew up around white racists, who used the term “nigger-lover” to refer to whites who, they thought, cozied up to blacks and black causes. That’s what the treatment of black conservatives by progressives reminds me of.
I bring this up because of this article: http://www.campusreform.org/?ID=6864, in which a U Penn professor refers to Ben Carson as a “coon.” I’m not even sure where to go with that. If any–any–right wing leaning pundit, writer, or politician had said that Hillary Clinton or Bernie Sanders was a “race-traitor” or “nigger-lover” because of her/his beliefs, they wouldn’t be there anymore. A few years ago, when John Derbyshire wrote a very honest, very heartfelt, yet still racist article about his fear of blacks in general, he was ostracized by conservative flagship NRO. The recent racist undertones in, especially, Donald Trump’s campaign have been the subject of intense criticism on the right.
The left has nothing like this. The left are thugs. Whether it’s the treatment of women like Bristol or Sarah Palin, S.E. Cupp, or Michelle Bachman, or the treatment of black conservatives like Carson, Cain, or Tom Sowell, the left has no real punishment, penance, or controls in place for its side. If a conservative professor had called Michelle Obama a racial or sexist slur, he’d be gone, from his job, from any position of influence, from the mainstream conservative world. When a liberal professor does the same, they’re still there.
The left desperately needs its “Atticus Finch Moment.” The reference is to the climax of To Kill a Mockingbird, when, after Tom Robinson stands up, shows his destroyed left arm, with which he had purportedly committed the crime, the jury still convicts him. That’s the moment when the reader is supposed to see that the system is rigged, that half of it is not participating in good faith, and that just saying the word “justice” or “trial by jury” is not the same as actually producing justice.
As I write this, the presumptive nominee for the Democrats is a woman who led the attacks to defend her husband when he was accused of rape and sexual harassment. Hillary Clinton’s party is the “we are against the war on women” party, but, like, she actively tried to silence people claiming to be victims of actual violence against women. Because they criticized a man of the left, apparently they have forfeited their rights to protection, similar to how black conservatives have forfeited their right not to be called racial slurs.
It doesn’t stop there. Hollywood liberals rail against gun violence while glorifying it to make a buck. Musicians routinely utter the foulest recriminations against women and gays, and are given a pass for it. Planned Parenthood kills more blacks every day than the KKK did in a year in it’s heyday. The Right sees this, and is justifiably dumbstruck at the disconnect shown by both supporters
Because in large part, the right polices itself against this (except, sadly, in the case of immigration, although the Trumps and Coulters of the conservative world are short for it, I think). Republicans who say dumb things like “legitimate rape” disappear. The whiff of racism is enough for a conservative to be jettisoned from the movement.
But the left does not get it. Because, fundamentally, the left does not care about people, it cares about intentions. Sure, it cares about feeling like it’s “helping people” but not actually helping people. If a law or policy is well-intentioned but, in fact, does harm to the people it’s supposed to protect, the left gives it a pass. If widespread access to contraceptives and abortion is “supposed” to help women, it doesn’t matter, that, in effect, widespread access to contraceptives and abortion have destroyed marriage in the American Underclass. If the Affordable Care Act is supposed to help “the poor,” it doesn’t matter that it destroys jobs, either directly or in forcing businesses to cut the hours of part time workers. If focusing on moving children into college is supposed to be good for them, it doesn’t matter that most kids who go to college a) won’t graduate and b) be burdened by the debt they incur being there.
And if “progressivism” is good for people, then no slander, slur, or insult is verboten to use against it’s opponents.