Thursday, July 16, 2020

McWhorter: The Dehumanizing Condescention Of Robin DiAngelo's *White Fragility*

This is so devastating that I actually felt a little bit sorry for DiAngelo at one or two points.
And before I forget: good on The Atlantic for printing it.
A progressive friend of mine often points out that The Atlantic does print some stuff like this, whereas it's a whole lot less common for conservative publications/sites to print stuff so critical of their sacred cattle.
OTOH: I wonder how The Atlantic would have reacted if an unknown white author had submitted something like this...but without the parts about dehumanizing / infantilizing blacks? That is: just the objections about the book's falsehoods and stupidities about whites? Because progressives basically only accept arguments about harm to nonwhites, of course.
But never mind--when you come across something this devastating to something that deserves devastation, I think it's ok to just let yourself revel in it...even if some questions of principle still nag.
One last point, though--a point that I harp on because it's important: the problems McWhorter identifies are only to some extent really problems with DiAngelo's book. Mostly, they're problems with progressivism. DiAngelo isn't making this stuff up--she's largely just reporting on and applying the teachings of the Church of Progressitarianism. These are dogmata that precede her and extend far beyond her. She got rich off of those tales, but she didn't spin them. DiAngelo's book is a long, mean-spirited racist shaggy dog story about whites because progressivism is, mostly, a long, mean-spirited, racist, shaggy dog story about whites (and men, and straights, and so on). DiAngelo just refines the thing so that its repulsive, irrationalist, antiliberal, racist nature is clarified into a simple sketch. Even if it's a caricature (but it isn't), it tells you something about the genuine article. 
So don't direct your ire and ridicule entirely at DiAngelo--she's just the messenger. It's the cult of Progressitarianism that's the culprit and the problem.*

*I was glad to see McWhorter point out that the thing is a cult.


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