Thursday, November 17, 2016

False Accusations of Racism: "Make America Great Again"

   Trump's a sketchy, questionable character, and no mistake. But on the other side, we've got liberals and the PC left crying wolf virtually non-stop. That's racist is the go-to "argument" (n.b.: not an actual argument) across much of the left now, and has been for awhile. (Engage no-true-Scotsman module in 3, 2, 1...) of course I think this is less pronounced among actual centrist liberals, and more pronounced among PCs and "progressives"...but you know me...
   One dumb anti-Trump argument went like this: "Make America Great Again" means (or: CAN ONLY MEAN) Go back to Jim Crow. Jesus Christ that's stupid. I mean, that's 100% pure-D stupid. In addition to being stupid, it's exactly the kind of stupid that Trump and his supporters are reacting against. So it's intrinsically stupid, and it's consequentially stupid. That's a very bad combination of stupids, for you folks out there at home keeping score. 
   I'm not complaining about people wondering whether MAGA as intended to be racist. I'm not even complaining about those who, after careful thought, concluded that it was. I'm complaining about the people who spoke as if there were no other option.
   This nonsense is a result of this kind of method: hmmm....I can think of one really bad and uncharitable interpretation of x....SO THAT'S WHAT X HAS TO MEAN. Jesus, cut it the hell out. You guys are making the right look like a paragon of reason by comparison. 
   (I've seen a bunch of this crap, but don't feel like looking for it now. Here's a related dumb thing that mentions Derrida, so I'll link to this for some two-for-one ridicule. Everything sucks. Everything is dumb. I hate everything. Blah blah blah.)
   "Make America Great Again," as I've complained in the past, is boilerplate BS political nostalgia. It doesn't mean anything in particular, and doesn't point back to any time in particular. It gestures vaguely at an idea of an ideal past rather like "progressivism" tends to gesture vaguely at the idea of an idealized future. It's a conservative thing, not a racist thing.
   This isn't a difficult point to see, and if you don't see it, you're part of the damn problem. Continually bending over backwards in an effort to pretend that everything conservatives do is driven by racism is insane. It is completely out of touch with reality. And if you--like so many folk on the leftier-left--don't care about things like sanity and reality, then maybe you care that this insanity got us Trump. I think you should care a lot about the latter, but a lot more about the former. But obviously I can't make you care about shit.
   I never, ever, ever let myself make the following argument. I don't do it because I'm against counterproductivity arguments in general, and I've violated that enough for one post. Also, I'm against such arguments in this context because folks on the left seem unwilling to accept anything but this kind of argument. They seem unwilling to accept that false accusations are inherently bad. So I refuse to play that game. But: your non-stop geyser of unjustified accusations of racism is making things worse. Racism-wise. Racism is a bad. And one thing you're doing by spewing false accusations is pissing people off and devaluing justified accusations. So: even if you don't care that you're making serious, unjustified, and false accusations against your fellow man...well, you see where I'm going with this.

Don't pay any attention to me. 
I've been pissed off at the world for a week now, and that ain't going away anytime soon.  
Naw screw it you probably ought to listen to me.

3 Comments:

Blogger Aa said...

What made America great in the first place? Seriously, why has no one asked Trump this (at least as far as I can determine)? This is the crux of it, and will determine whether Make America Great Again is racist.

8:24 PM  
Blogger Pete Mack said...

I dunno. The clips of Trump talking about the "good old days" of law enforcement and bystanders beating up protestors seem like a pretty direct reference to the 50s and 60s. I don't know how else to take it.

8:38 PM  
Blogger Winston Smith said...

Aa,
There's no determinate thing that made America great before. It's a slogan. It's not a serious proposition. Or so I say. Trump doesn't have an answer. He's never really thought about it.

P-Mack,
Police have beaten up protesters for a *lot* of reasons. I honestly don't see how you can pick out one type of incident out of innumerable types of incidents. I think you're doing exactly what I'm complaining out: picking out an unfavorable case for Trump and thinking that it's the only possibility. People have been beaten up by cops for being in unions, for protesting the Vietnam war, for demanding their pensions...and a whole lotta non-black people have had their asses kicked by cops.

9:53 PM  

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