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Samizdata quote of the day

Have I got this right?

BLM are in no way responsible for the stabbings in Reading as it happened two hours after their “protest” ended.

But somehow all of us white people are still responsible for slavery 200 years after it was ended.

Is that about the gist of it?

Mick.Lert

65 comments to Samizdata quote of the day

  • Paul Marks

    And Black Lives Matter (BLM) is not responsible for the murder of DAVID DORN and others, even though this Marxist movement organised the rioting and looting in which these people were murdered – murdered by BLM Social Justice Looters.

    BLM has had one very good effect – it has shown which Corporations, private organisations, and “Conservative” politicians are no good.

    If any person or body corporate supports “Black Lives Matter”, note the capital letters, then they are no good – there is no excuse, none, for anyone not to know that this is a violent Marxist movement, fanatically dedicated to the extermination of the West.

    The Black Lives Matter website is public, and the Marxist record of the two ladies who founded the movement is open to all to see.

    Anyone who supports it is either evil or a coward – supporting the crocodile hoping it will eat them last.

  • thefat tomato

    I honestly thought the Reading stabbing was a pseudo-religious/fanatic/theocratic one.
    David DORN issue is more directly linked as P.M mentions IMHO.
    Agree with P.M.

  • Have I got this right?

    Almost, but not quite.

    BLM are in no way responsible for the stabbings in Reading as it happened two hours after their “protest” ended.

    Correct, but insufficiently acquitting of BLM. It’s racist to say “All Lives Matter”. Have you any evidence any of the stabbing victims were black? If not, there is nothing for BLM to be in no way responsible for.

    But somehow all of us white people are still responsible for slavery 200 years after it was ended.

    Not quite. All and only white people are still responsible for slavery a century or two after white people forced white people and black people and other non-pallid people to end it.

  • APL

    Niall Kilmartin: “white people are still responsible for slavery a century or two after white people forced white people and black people and other non-pallid people to end it.”

    Point of order.

    The British people forced other white people and black people and Arabs* to end it.

    *I don’t know what Asians did or did not do, with regard to slavery. The Indian cast system has some of the characteristics of slavery if you happen to be at the bottom of the caste hierarchy.

    Then Moslems of the sub continent, need any more be said?

    Then Moslems of Libya, need any more be said?

    ‘Black Lives Matter’ don’t seem to care at all about actual slavery being practised, today, in an actual slaving country. How odd.

  • The Libyan nutcase was gonna go pop with or without the BLM infecting us all with their woke bullshit violence and hatred. Therefore the BLM is not a root cause, but a contributory factor.

    Why didn’t the cops have the Libyan nutcase sectioned the day before the attack instead of just taking him home.

    Going further back up the chain of events, why wasn’t he deported back to Libya when he came out of prison? Yeah I know the Home Office bullshit about “not safe to return, yada yada”. He clearly wasn’t safe to be on the streets of the UK either.

    I know whose safety I am more concerned about and it isn’t the Libyan nutcase.

  • Rob

    The BBC writes a long piece about the victims of the Reading terrorist, but declines to even mention, let alone speculate about motive, on the fact they were all gay men:

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-berkshire-53135466

    How odd

  • It’s almost as if the scripture, ideology, practices and beliefs of the Religion of Peace and those that followed it had a pathological hatred of homosexuality.

    Surely, not. Say it ain’t so.

    🙄

  • John Galt and thefat tomato, I think the point of the OP quote is not to take any position on whether the BLM march was related to the stabbings but to show that BLM’s defence is hypocritical.

  • @Niall – Yes. I’ve been able to read for a while now.

    My point was not in relation to the hypocrisy related point (which is fair enough and humorous on the point), but really to traverse the chains of cause/effect within the reality of “Clown World” to address who WAS at fault.

    But there I go, making a serious point about something which was mostly about the humour value.

    Maybe I should square the circle and move in with Paul Marks. The Sage of Kettering could probably do with some company of late…

  • neonsnake

    Surely, not. Say it ain’t so.

    Apparently the perp was Christian, and acting within Christian beliefs re. homosexuality

    *Shrug*

  • I think a lot of commenters here (but not all) have really missed the point that I think is being made.

    The actual motivation of the murderer is as relevant to BLM as being white in 2020 is to slavery circa 1820. But if we are going to impute causal links…

  • APL

    neonsnake: “Apparently the perp was Christian …”

    I’ve poked around the internet, but only come up with one article that claims Khairi Saadallah was a Christian.

    Furthermore, it is mentioned in such a tangential manner. I rather think Simon Jenkins threw it in there, just to see if it would ‘stick’.

    What Jenkins goes to great lengths to tell us is that Saadallah was never on MI5s 3000 long watchlist, he definitely didn’t shout Islamic slogans ( why would he if he was a Christian? ) but he was a nutter with psychotic episodes. Well, errm yea.

    Which got worse after going to prison for a minor offence – sotto voce – apparently he attacked the trial judge during a previous verdict. ( What an outrage being sent to prison ).

    By the way, British prisons are notorious recruiting grounds for ‘Religion of peace’ terrorists. So, it might not have been his psychotic episodes that got worse in prison. – Just sayin’.

    And according to Jenkins, who is a columnist at the Guardian, so he’d definitely have the contacts. Saadallah, was most definitely not affiliated to any ‘terror’ network or activity. He’s just stabbed three people in a park, and was up to stab as many more as he could, but that doesn’t count. So, Jenkins’ is ‘on the ball’, yet again.

    neonsnake: ” and acting within Christian beliefs re. homosexuality”

    You’ll be able to quote the Christian doctrine that says; ‘kill them where ever you find them’, then?

  • neonsnake

    as being white in 2020 is to slavery circa 1820.

    Sure. The idea is that white people were compensated for loss of property (property meaning y’know, black people) back in the mid-to-late 1800s.

    We, being libertarians, are a bit queasy about actual humans being “property”, so we’re not good with this.

    We’re also very aware that the state compensating the owners of such *cough* property is problematic at best, that we’ve set them up at an unfair advantage, what with paying huge sums of money per slave, and so on.

    So when someone says that a stabbing two hours after a BLM march has no correlation to slavery, we agree. It obviously isn’t.

    And we laugh at him, because he’s obviously a twat.

  • neonsnake

    You’ll be able to quote the Christian doctrine that says; ‘kill them where ever you find them’, then?

    lol

    “The vice of the Sodomites is an unparalleled enormity. It departs from the natural passion and desire, planted into nature by God, according to which the male has a passionate desire for the female. Sodomy craves what is entirely contrary to nature. Whence comes this perversion? Without a doubt it comes from the devil. After a man has once turned aside from the fear of God, the devil puts such great pressure upon his nature that he extinguishes the fire of natural desire and stirs up another, which is contrary to nature”

  • APL

    neonsnake: “The vice of the Sodomites is an unparalleled enormity. It departs from the natural passion and desire, planted into nature by God, according to which the male has a passionate desire for the female. Sodomy craves what is entirely contrary to nature. Whence comes this perversion? Without a doubt it comes from the devil. After a man has once turned aside from the fear of God, the devil puts such great pressure upon his nature that he extinguishes the fire of natural desire and stirs up another, which is contrary to nature”

    Would you provide the source, and the rest of the quote that says, therefore ‘kill them where ever you find them’, please?

    By the way, I found another paper, The Times that made reference to Khairi Saadallah’s Christian conversion.

  • We, being libertarians, are a bit queasy about actual humans being “property”, so we’re not good with this.

    ‘We’ are only not good with this is ‘we’ have not thought this through very carefully & are instead posturing in 2020.

    The alternative to compensating (buying off would be a better term) the politically well connected slave owners in order to make it politically possible to abolish slavery, is… not making it politically possible, and thus not abolishing slavery.

    Personally I think it was well worth every penny to actually make it happen.

  • Robert

    “But somehow all of us white people are still responsible for slavery 200 years after it was ended.”
    Who has said this? Is this what BLM think?

    I’ve done a small amount of googling, but I didn’t find anything to show that they do.
    Does anyone have any evidence that BLM think all white people are responsible for slavery?

  • neonsnake

    ‘We’ are only not good with this is ‘we’ have not thought this through very carefully & are instead posturing in 2020.

    I’m sure. It’s very utilitarian, and assumes that was the only choice possible.

    It’s like saying, look, I didn’t actually traffic little boys and girls, myself, but that was the done thing at the time, as much as I disagree with it now, so we should compensate those who did so, otherwise we’d lose money doing so, and they had a right to expect to make money by doing so.

    And it ignores the fact that by “buying off” those responsible, we gave them an advantage, which is what BLM wants us to recognise. That advantage is granted by the state, upheld by the state. For an anti-state libertarian to side with the state against people who were treated as property…that’s questionable at best.

  • I’m sure. It’s very utilitarian, and assumes that was the only choice possible.

    I suppose an end to Parliamentary democracy and civil war were an option. Not convinced the good guys would have won if they made the choice “end parliamentary system if it won’t end slavery without paying the fuckers off and force an end to slavery at bayonet point”… I suspect most would have just focused on the “end parliamentary system” bit & picked their side accordingly.

    And it ignores the fact that by “buying off” those responsible, we gave them an advantage, which is what BLM wants us to recognise.

    Screw BLM. Moreover it was an ‘advantage’ granted by the UK taxpayer who wanted to end slavery. BLM do not give a fuck about what they paid, of course. They do not give a flying fuck about the politics of the 19th century or its aftermath, every word that comes out of their mouths is about pursuing a Marxist agenda in 2020 in the UK that is a non-starter at the ballot box.

    For an anti-state libertarian to side with the state against people who were treated as property…that’s questionable at best.

    Sorry but you are an idiot if you think that is what my position means. Short of using magic to end slavery, what was done was the cost of actually ending slavery as a practical matter, here in the real world. The USA/CSA sorted the issue out differently. But just as is the case today, the political realities were very different depending on which side of the Atlantic you were on.

  • neonsnake

    Does anyone have any evidence that BLM think all white people are responsible for slavery?

    Nope. That’s the fiction that the “All Lives Matter” types want you to think.

    BLM is simple, it’s the same as when someone does a run for, say, prostate cancer. No-one comes at them saying “Well, howsabout breast cancer, amirite??”, because that would be really rude.

    BLM are not saying that all lives do NOT matter, they’re just saying that right now, they want to talk about black lives, because they believe that black lives do not matter as much. It’s not different from me doing a run for prostate cancer, which my dad died of, and rightfully getting a bit annoyed if anyone was to ask me why I wasn’t running for breast cancer.

    This ain’t new news. That argument has been going around for years. Anyone still going with All Lives Matter…it’s a bit much now.

  • bobby b

    Think of the money paid to slaveowners to free their slaves not as reward, but as ransom.

    Would you have paid a ransom to free those people? England did. Says good things about England, in my mind.

  • neonsnake

    granted by the UK taxpayer who wanted to end slavery

    No, Perry, it was forced upon the UK taxpayer, because we were at a economical disadvantage vs France. We advocated for the end of the *trade* of slaves, because we already had enough slaves, but we were worried about France having more slaves than us, so we pushed for the end of the *trade*, not for the abolition of slavery itself, for many years.

    It was an economic decision, not a moral one.

    As for BLM’s “Marxist agenda”, there’s not a libertarian alive that is worth their salt that isn’t looking at our current “actually existing capitalism” and saying “uh, that’s not working, that’s bullshit held up by the state”.

    That’s not Marxism. That’s a libertarian position.

  • APL

    neonsnake: “it’s the same as when someone does a run for, say, prostate cancer. No-one comes at them saying “Well, howsabout breast cancer ”

    Not such a good contrast. For years, we’ve all known about female afflictions, breast cancer, cervical cancer, endometriosis, battered women refuges yada yada yada. It’s only the last decade perhaps, that people have also started agitating for testicular cancer, prostate cancer? Eventually, people did come at them saying ‘howsabout’ some of those conditions that afflict only men?

    But that simply reflects the greater value society puts on females.

  • neonsnake

    Think of the money paid to slaveowners to free their slaves not as reward, but as ransom.

    Think of the slaveowners as sex traffickers.

    Still comfortable paying that ransom? Or would you go in, guns blazing?

    😉

  • neonsnake

    But that simply reflects the greater value society puts on females.

    Bollocks. Also, anyone that uses the word “females” is probably an incel.

  • APL

    neonsnake: “Also, anyone that uses the word “females” is probably an incel.”

    You should dismiss from your mind the thought that I care anything for what you think of me.

    Now, we’ve got that out of the way. I had to look up the ‘modern’, that is to say Marxist, usage of ‘female’.

    And here we seem to have it, ‘female’ as an insult. The term ‘female’ is now synonymous with ‘bitch’. Personally, if I want to insult a woman, I’ll use ‘bitch’ every time.

    I suppose this is one of the manifest benefits of ‘Rap’ ‘culture’.

  • It was an economic decision, not a moral one.

    You must be joking. The vast volumes of anti-slavery rhetoric and tireless political organising that drove this in 19th century Britain says otherwise. It was overwhelming a morally driven Christian movement, tempered with a pragmatic grasp of what needed to happen to actually make it work.

    That’s not Marxism. That’s a libertarian position.

    If you think the BLM folk want to replace the current highly imperfect (ok, kinda ghastly) system of over-regulated markets & pumped up monetary systems with something freer and better, sorry mate but what parallel universe did you blow in from? BLM in the UK is a textbook identitarian movement. Yes, happy to oppose racism, done that for decades. And if that was all BLM was about in UK, I’d be sending them money like I do so many other causes, rather than telling them to fuck off.

  • neonsnake

    You must be joking.

    Nope. That’s just facts.

    If you think the BLM folk want to replace the current highly imperfect (ok, kinda ghastly) system of over-regulated markets & pumped up monetary systems with something freer and better, sorry mate but what parallel universe did you blow in from?

    One where people are aware that our current system is not just imperfect, but is indeed ghastly, mate, but aren’t yet aware that it’s the actual state it’s fucking itself that is holding them back. Because that’s not an obvious, nor easy, conclusion to come to and takes an enormous amount of work to get to.

    In the meantime, I will listen to them, and note that the state is complicit, and attempt to bring them over to a freer market (not “actually existing capitalism”) way of thinking, while acknowledging that their battling several decades (At least!) of systemic state sponsored racism that has held them back.

    The “BLM folk” are, like anyone else, not a homogeneous mass. I know plenty who are social democrats, conversely I know plenty who are full-on libertarian or anarchists. The idea that BLM is “a textbook identitarian” movement is reductionist, and takes agency away from those who don’t fit into that little box. It’s too broad-brush.

  • Nope. That’s just facts.

    No, it is an opinion about history, nothing more. Just like mine, an opinion. Mine is better supported though 😉

    In the meantime, I will listen to them, and note that the state is complicit, and attempt to bring them over to a freer market (not “actually existing capitalism”) way of thinking, while acknowledging that their battling several decades (At least!) of systemic state sponsored racism that has held them back.

    The way I see it, you are absolutely a ‘useful idiot’ (in the original technical Soviet sense of the term) because far from “bring them over to a freer market way of thinking”, they are using you, rather than you using them. Just like all the well meaning bourgeois lefties who don’t know Groucho from Karl, kneeling as they add support to this anti-integrationist Year Zero movement. Of course you doubtless see me similarly, given I prefer not to have the current system swept away by such people.

  • APL

    neosnake: “Bollocks”.

    Even in 1625 when it came to ransoming captive British citizens we had, or rather the Barbary Slavers had, put a price on a human being. £30 per man, but [quote] women were more saleable, and a woman’s freedom would cost more than a man [unquote].

    Now £30 1625 pounds is about £7,409 2019 pounds according to the Bank of England inflation calculator.

    So a tidy sum, but you’d pay more if you wanted your wife back.

  • neonsnake

    Mine is better supported though

    Pitt, a good disciple of Adam Smith, approached Wilberforce first-most because he realised that San Domingo was about to be a problem for the British, that by selling slaves from the British colonies to the French, we were cutting our nose off to spite our face, because San Domingo (with slave-labour) would have sewn up the European market, at the expense of the West Indies and (I think) India itself.

    Not to say, note, that there weren’t people who abhorred slavery for moral reasons (of course there were, that’s recorded history, and a reason to disdain the “by the standards of their time” lot), and Wilberforce appealed to them. But it was economics, first and foremost, that kick-started the abolition of trade.

    Of course you doubtless see me similarly

    I really don’t know. You’re not only clearly not racist, I’ve watched you come down very hard on racists. There’s no sarcasm there, I genuinely mean that.

    On the other hand…and this post is an example…you appear to give short-shrift to people who *feel* racially abused (eg. BLM) and are willing to write off their lived experiences.

    Robert’s point above is perfectly correct – whilst I’m sure one can find some extremists amongst BLM (and I can find numerous examples of white supremacy to counter that), the overall message is NOT that all white people are responsible for slavery, it’s that right now, black people are feeling that their lives don’t matter as much as others. They’re not saying that their lives matter more, just that they want them to matter period.

    The “all lives matter” lot have had years now of people pointing out that when a person starts a conversation about how “X” has affected them, that to jump in with “how about Y, though that has no bearing on you, huh, you obviously don’t care about Y?!!!????!!one!!!!” is missing the point, and is, frankly, rude, dismissive and is “whataboutery” of the highest order. At this point, it’s a bit much.

    You see me as “useful idiot”? If you like, and that’s your prerogative but I’m not even attempting to “use” them, I’m not going to weaponise another cause for my own gain. I prefer to sit and listen and try to understand and learn.

  • Nullius in Verba

    “the overall message is NOT that all white people are responsible for slavery, it’s that right now, black people are feeling that their lives don’t matter as much as others. They’re not saying that their lives matter more, just that they want them to matter period.”

    There are two separate groups, and you’re confusing them. There’s the BLM movement, whose message IS that whites are responsible for all slavery, and there are black people. They’re constantly doing this, the authoritarians. They pick some group that the public has new sympathy for, and they justify their demands for power in the name of defending them.

    You can sympathise with the tribulations of women without being fooled by man-hating radical feminists, who do indeed hold men responsible for the sins of the distant past. You can sympathise with the poor without supporting Communist revolutionaries who do indeed hold the rich today responsible for the Dark Satanic Mills. You can sympathise with poor workers in Germany in 1930 without agreeing with those who used that to hold the Jews responsible. Today, whites have replaced the Jews, but nothing has changed about their basic method.

    I sympathise with black people, as I sympathise with many others. But that’s not what BLM are about. Or they’d be a lot more concerned about black people being killed by other black people. The reason they hate it when people respond “All lives matter” is that their entire point is that they DON’T. When they say “Black lives matter”, what they really mean is “White lives don’t matter.” Whites are guilty, whites are the bullies, whites are responsible for all society’s sins, and so they should be humbled and subjugated, and BLM believers must be given the power to do so, and anyone who doesn’t agree with them, who resists their grab for power over society, must therefore be a racist who is only doing so because they hate black people, further justifying their actions.

    That’s what Perry means by “Useful Idiot”. It was Lenin’s name for people in the West who supported Stalinist Communism in the name of their genuine sympathy for the minimum-wage workers of the world. We support the workers. That doesn’t mean we can’t oppose Stalin. Don’t confuse the sympathy group for the people using them as cover.

  • APL

    neonsnake: “you appear to give short-shrift to people who *feel* racially abused (eg. BLM) and are willing to write off their lived experiences.”

    So you ‘feel’ racially disadvantaged. Well sunshine, I am actually economically disadvantaged, it’s not about ‘feels’ here buddy. George Soros has much more money than I do, and as a result his life is materially more comfortable than mine. He also, reputedly consorted with actual real life Nazis, who knows? That may have formed the foundation of his fortune.

    NiV: “There’s the BLM movement, whose message IS that whites are responsible for all slavery”

    Then the movement is ignorant or malevolent. If you want to point the finger at Slavers, there is actual Slavery being perpetrated in the Maghreb today. Are BLM on the streets of Tripoli? NFW, Sherlock. BLM is not an attack on Slavery, it’s an attack on the society that abolished slavery.

    NiV: “That doesn’t mean we can’t oppose Stalin.”

    How many of them did?

  • neonsnake (June 26, 2020 at 8:50 pm), there is a problem with your “economics, not morals” claim about the abolition of slavery (over and above its historical illiteracy, that is). Your hammer is dangerously over-large for your purpose.

    Starting in the late 1700s, slavery, which had been almost universal throughout world history, was made rare by the prolonged and vigorous campaign of a specific culture. Suppose you could fool me (as you have yourself) into disrespecting the moral claims of that movement. Well, you’ve certainly given me a huge hammer with which to smash BLM to bits. If the politics of freeing slaves were not a moral cause but the pursuit of economic advantage, how much more is the demand for reparations to their distant descendants a mere economically-motivated shakedown. Yesterday, I needed a moral argument against reparations-for-slavery claims. Today, I need merely consult my economic interest in not paying anyone for any claimed-to-be-moral claim.

    Regrettably, even for BLM, I feel the need to analyse the silliness of their useful idiots’ ostensible reasons as well as the deeper evil of their leaders’ real reasons. I do this for several reasons of my own, one being that your too-convenient hammer could smash a lot more than just BLM to bits.

  • APL

    This would be hilarious if it wasn’t so tragic.

    Sky News censors former Met police Chief Superintendent.

    “There is a real lot of misinformation going on about police officers killing black people in custody. Last year sixteen people died for various reasons in police custody, generally drug overdoses’, of those sixteen, only one was black. Last year Police shot three people dead, only one of those were black. There is a real narrative that is going on here, I think is driven by the people within the Black Lives movement, who want to destabilise and disrupt society …”

    Bolton: “We’re going to have to leave it there …”

  • neonsnake

    When they say “Black lives matter”, what they really mean is “White lives don’t matter.”

    I’m…disappointed. You’re normally better than that. “Black Lives Matter” is a pithy slogan, because the people crying it or shouting it believe that, to white people, black lives do not matter. There’s no implication that white lives do not matter, it means that from their perspective (black people’s), they believe that black lives do not matter to white people – whether directly, or abstractly (that’s quite important, but a subject maybe for another day?)

    Or they’d be a lot more concerned about black people being killed by other black people

    Not sure how to put this without sounding like I’m having a pop at you, so I’ll just have to say it, and trust that you know that I respect almost everything that you say, and that I believe that you’re a very decent person.

    So look, responding to “Black Lives Matter”, which is specifically about state brutality against black people – not just the obvious police brutality, but the cumulative effect of years of red-lining, etc, etc, stop-and-search, and all the other myriad of ways in which black people are disadvantaged – by switching the conversation to “black on black crime”, is deflection, and an attempt to derail the conversation. I don’t think you’re doing it deliberately, because I know you well enough to think that you wouldn’t do so.

    Couple of side points:

    Black on black crime is just…crime. Same as white on white crime, or latinx on latinx. Most crime takes place within a reasonably local area, so it’s inevitable that most crime committed by black people will affect other black people. Same with whites, and everyone else. The important difference is that so-called “black on black” crime is not racially motivated (black people aren’t killing each other because of the colour of their skin), whereas a significant amount of white-on-black, or especially state-on-black is (directly or abstractly).

    If you control for economic factors, then…unsurprisingly for you and me…guess what? Black on black crime in poverty stricken areas is no higher than white on white crime in similarly poverty stricken areas. Why? Because we both know that poverty drives crime (not the other way around), and unfortunately, many black neighbourhoods are poor – due to decisions made (in good faith or bad faith? Again, for another day) by the state.

    Secondly, the idea that black communities are not concerned about their own crime rates is not borne out; they have significantly better social cohesion than white communities.

    But beyond that, the more important thing is that to respond to BLM with “but what about black on black on crime?” is to miss the point, and to try to deflect the conversation. The conversation that BLM are trying to have is that Black Lives Matter less than other lives to people who aren’t black. Of course “all lives matter” – they never said otherwise* – but that’s not the current conversation.

    Again, it’s no different from me focusing, for now, on a specific type of cancer, or illness. If I started a fundraiser for prostate cancer, or for M.E., and someone came spanking in with “Well, what about all other diseases??? Huh?” we’d give them pretty short shrift. Indeed, we’d consider it pretty crappy behaviour.

    That’s what Perry means by “Useful Idiot”. It was Lenin’s name for people in the West who supported Stalinist Communism in the name of their genuine sympathy for the minimum-wage workers of the world.

    I know what it means, I just have the opposite view on who are the “useful idiots”.

    You guys think it’s me and my lot, that we’re being played.

    I think that the “All Lives Matter” lot are being played.

    (In general, that can be applied to anyone who is reflexively and automatically anti-PC, anti-Woke, anti-whatever, without actually examining the cause)

    *I don’t care about the tiny amount of people who are saying otherwise. They’re outliers, and bad actors do not detract from an overall movement.

  • Nullius in Verba

    “Not sure how to put this without sounding like I’m having a pop at you, so I’ll just have to say it, and trust that you know that I respect almost everything that you say, and that I believe that you’re a very decent person.”

    Don’t worry about it. I don’t take offence easily, and am always happy to entertain controversial viewpoints that differ from my own for an interesting debate. Likewise, please don’t assume that I don’t respect you, either. Yours is a common argument. It’s useful arguing about it, in an environment where neither of us is going to get cancelled for saying the wrong thing, because it gives an opportunity to construct and test the arguments for each competing position.

    ““Black Lives Matter” is a pithy slogan, because the people crying it or shouting it believe that, to white people, black lives do not matter. There’s no implication that white lives do not matter, it means that from their perspective (black people’s), they believe that black lives do not matter to white people – whether directly, or abstractly (that’s quite important, but a subject maybe for another day?)”

    The slogan itself doesn’t contain the implication – it’s deduced from their reaction to any statement that agrees with the slogan but not the hidden intention. “All lives matter” works just as well, to convey the message you describe above, shows sympathy, unity, and support for all the other non-black oppressed groups in society, puts the emphasis on a world without racial categories such as we seek, emphasises the positive message of us all standing together rather than the negative message of us standing on opposite sides of a line, and doesn’t put anyone’s nose out of joint. But BLM absolutely do their nut if anyone dares to respond with “All lives matter”. Because the intent is to stir up racial conflict and racial hatred – on both sides – and “All lives matter” fails to achieve that purpose.

    “So look, responding to “Black Lives Matter”, which is specifically about state brutality against black people – not just the obvious police brutality, but the cumulative effect of years of red-lining, etc, etc, stop-and-search, and all the other myriad of ways in which black people are disadvantaged – by switching the conversation to “black on black crime”, is deflection, and an attempt to derail the conversation.”

    First – most of those problems are nothing to do with them being black. They’re to do with being poor, and therefore more likely to default on debts, turn to crime, join gangs, and drop out of education.

    And secondly, if it’s black lives that matter, it ought to make no difference to the intensity with which you campaign whether the ones killing them are black or white, whether they’re the state or ordinary criminals. You simply look at who is killing them, identify the biggest groups and biggest problems, and address those problems. If you want to save black lives, you would achieve far more by dealing with the gangs, who commit the bulk of the murders, than you would by getting rid of the police, who fight the gangs. But again, the reaction to mentioning this is revealing of a different agenda. They’re not interested in talking about gangs. They’re not interested in talking about murders committed by blacks, even if those are the majority of the black lives being lost. All the campaigns are built around white-on-black and white-cop-on-black killings, because those are the ones that stoke the race war.

    It’s the same way that vegetarians say they’re against eating meat because of the cruelty to animals, but we observe their reaction when you ask them about all the carnivores in nature. Lions and tigers and wolves and foxes, and polar bears ripping up baby seals and so on. ‘We’re all against fox hunting, but how do you get the foxes to stop doing it?’ sort of thing. No, they don’t care about that. They have no interest in preventing that. They’re only interested in stopping people doing it. From which you can conclude that it’s not animal lives that matter to them, but power over other people.

    “The important difference is that so-called “black on black” crime is not racially motivated (black people aren’t killing each other because of the colour of their skin), whereas a significant amount of white-on-black, or especially state-on-black is (directly or abstractly).”

    What on Earth gives you that idea? Not all ‘black’ people are the same ‘race’, and there are considerable historical antagonisms between them. And why would you think white-on-black is any different? You’re killing someone because they’re members of a different gang on your turf, or because they’re robbing your shop, or because they’ve got fifty grand’s worth of drugs in their car, or because they’re resisting arrest and you’re scared you’re about to get seriously injured, or because they raped your sister. There are a million reasons why people kill other people. Why do you assume that when white people do it, it’s because of race?

    That sounds pretty racist, to me.

    “The conversation that BLM are trying to have is that Black Lives Matter less than other lives to people who aren’t black.”

    Yes, and the reply we want to give is “That’s not true.” There are lots of people who are *not* racist, care about everyone’s lives equally, don’t think race is relevant, and don’t see any evidence that the problems black people face are because of racism by whites. The problems are to do with poverty, and crime, and culture, and they’re as much caused by the way poor people behave as by everyone else’s reaction to them. The poor of every other race have the same sort of problems, and get the same sort of reaction. And as people who dislike racism, it is extremely annoying to be told that you are racist because you’re white and all whites are racist.

    But you can’t say that.

    And it’s impossible to have a ‘conversation’ about it if there are things you’re not allowed to say.

  • neonsnake

    support for all the other non-black oppressed groups in society,

    *nods*

    As we should; however, in the context of a specific conversation about state-sponsored treatment, specifically of black people, is that appropriate?

    In any individual conversation, we can’t cover all eventualities, and nor should we, right? If I think about fundraising, I’m going to do it for prostate cancer (I didn’t pull that from thin air, I lost my father to prostate cancer), or M.E. (the second of my “vulnerables”), since they’re personal to me, and I have skin in the game. I do Movember, and all that, and if I run for charity, I do it for M.E.

    I’m sure that you, and anyone else reading, have your own personal causes that are important to you. If you wanted to talk about, and raise awareness of “cause X”, I wouldn’t dream of interrupting you with “But, All *causes* Matter, NiV!”, I would see that as the height of rudeness, and also as dismissive of the specific conversation that you’re attempting to have at the time.

    That’s how I see “All Lives Matter”

    if it’s black lives that matter, it ought to make no difference to the intensity with which you campaign whether the ones killing them are black or white

    I agree, but that’s a different conversation. That conversation is happening, but it’s not the same conversation as BLM. BLM is particularly about how Black Lives appear to Matter less than white lives. I believe, and have observed, that they are interested in talking internally about gangs, about internal crimes, but that’s happening and not being reported on. But again, it’s a deflection from the current conversation.

    The conversation that “they” are trying to have, but we are not letting them have, is that “black people are killed by white people at almost double the rate that white people are”, and shutting them down is not helpful.

    Why do you assume that when white people do it, it’s because of race?

    That sounds pretty racist, to me.

    Against white people, I assume?

    Well, because within living memory, we’ve had segregation, in the States. There are people alive today who attended segregated schools. You ever seen Hidden Figures? I have a lady-friend in the States who was part of the same programme, had to do the whole running to the black people’s bathrooms whenever she needed to pee. She’s in her sixties, she’s not old.

    In the UK, “No Blacks, No Dogs, No Irish” is not an ancient thing. It’s slightly out of *my* living memory, but only by a few years. I don’t know exactly where you’re from, but as someone on the cusp of East London, I remember the 80’s well, the P*ki-bashing and the C**n-bashing. It’s better, sure, but it hasn’t gone away. And until it’s gone away, it’s worth fighting.

    don’t think race is relevant, and don’t see any evidence that the problems black people face are because of racism by whites.

    I think race is relevant. It’s not enough to be “non-racist”, to not see colour. I believe we should be actively anti-racist. Anything else is denying the issues that non-white people face.

    And as people who dislike racism, it is extremely annoying to be told that you are racist because you’re white and all whites are racist.

    I understand. It’s frustrating, and it makes people feel like they can’t do anything right. But, in the overwhelming majority of cases, that’s not what’s happening. I get that it might feel like that, but…:

    the reply we want to give is “That’s not true.”

    …that’s because that reply is not hugely helpful, unless it’s prefaced with “why do you feel like that?”

    In the UK, you’re more likely to be stopped-and- searched if you’re not white by a factor of 9-1, yes?

    So, “that’s not true”, is not the immediate best response, no?

    Stats are funny things. I’ve pulled one immediate stat. Someone else, motivated to show that there’s no such thing as racism in the UK, will undoubtedly pull another (*winks*), and we can bat them back and forth until the cows come home. They don’t really matter, in a sense, which is why I focused on “feels” upthread, counter-intuitively.

    And it’s impossible to have a ‘conversation’ about it if there are things you’re not allowed to say.

    *pours wine and lights cig*

    Drink? Smoke? (guess not)

    *nods*

    NiV, what’s the name of the actual black person, who has said “Black Lives Matter”, who you have engaged in good faith, who has told you that?

    Do they exist?

    Again, not having a pop…just work with me here.

  • I’m … disappointed. You’re normally better than that. (neonsnake, June 29, 2020 at 4:30 pm)

    And if reply I thought you were better than that – better than to pretend to reinterpret the blatantly racist act of objecting to ‘All Lives Matter’ into anything but what it is? Do you think such a reply is an argument, neonsnake? People are not ‘better than that’ for agreeing with you, or worse than that for being able to see a racist power agenda for what it is, regardless of whether it calls itself anti-racism. It’s a very BLM tactic – to say people are bad if they disagree.

    you appear to give short-shrift to people who *feel* racially abused (eg. BLM)

    BLM in the US is 5/6ths white and they trend to trust-fund babies. I care about people who have been abused, not about people who feel abused. Today’s world is full of people playing the victim label; what society rewards, it gets more of.

    within living memory, we’ve had segregation, in the States. (neonsnake, June 29, 2020 at 7:24 pm)

    Within living memory we’ve had the holocaust, courtesy of a guy who said German Lives Mattered and got angry if you said All Lives Mattered (it would have implied Jewish ones did). Do you think that is an argument, neonsnake?

    It’s not enough to be “non-racist”, to not see colour. I believe we should be actively anti-racist.

    BLM believes that we should be actively racist, but call it anti-racism. (You’re managing to sound like you agree.)

    that reply [“That’s not true”] is not hugely helpful, unless it’s prefaced with “why do you feel like that?”

    Please feel free to preface any reply with a request for why we feel “That’s true/That’s not true” is central to almost any discourse.

    Finally, Nullius’ comments in this thread have been very apt and well written – allowing my earlier reply (Niall Kilmartin (Stirling), June 27, 2020 at 8:55 am) to discuss another issue. If “That’s not true” is insufficient, consider the practical point I mentioned.

  • Nullius in Verba

    “In any individual conversation, we can’t cover all eventualities, and nor should we, right? If I think about fundraising, I’m going to do it for prostate cancer”

    Yes. I remember when they first started talking about prostate cancer, and that’s exactly how it happened. Up to then, it was “breast cancer” this and “cervical cancer” that, and all sorts of charities that addressed women-specific complaints, but few addressing male-specific complaints.

    According to some, “Per capita health spending for females was $8,315 in 2012, approximately 23 percent more than for males, $6,788” and

    “On the basis of these criteria the report finds that in almost every category there is more female-focused NIH funding than male-focused NIH spending with the totals more than two to one in favor of females ($4.5 billion to $1.5 billion). Now personally I don’t regard this as a terrible “bias” as most spending ($25.7 billion) is for human beings and I don’t see any special reason why spending on women and men should be equal. It does show, however, that the common wisdom is incorrect. The Boston University Today piece I linked to earlier, for example, motivated its claim of bias in funding with the story of a female doctor who died of lung cancer. The NIH data, however, show a large difference in favor of women–$180 million of NIH lung cancer funding was focused on women while just $318 thousand was focused on men ($135 million wasn’t gender focused).”

    All this, despite women living longer on average than men. So they set up the prostate cancer charity, and built the marketing around this being a charity specifically for men. It was constructed precisely as a “But what about…” argument.

    “I’m sure that you, and anyone else reading, have your own personal causes that are important to you. If you wanted to talk about, and raise awareness of “cause X”, I wouldn’t dream of interrupting you with “But, All *causes* Matter, NiV!”, I would see that as the height of rudeness, and also as dismissive of the specific conversation that you’re attempting to have at the time.”

    And if your cause really is “black lives matter” we’re quite happy to talk about that, because gang wars are the biggest threat to black lives, and fixing the problems of gangs and crime and absent fathers and educational expectations would do a huge amount to improve lives for young black kids.

    But if you can’t accept any ‘conversation’ in which we disagree with your assumptions and preconceptions, where the choices are to either agree with a false narrative (as we see it) or be condemned as ‘racist’ and told to shut up, it’s not going to go well.

    “The conversation that “they” are trying to have, but we are not letting them have, is that “black people are killed by white people at almost double the rate that white people are”, and shutting them down is not helpful.”

    OK, let’s have that conversation. The question is “Why?” Is it because “White people are racist” or “White people don’t care about black lives”? Or could it be completely unrelated to race – that black people are poorer, poorer people get involved in crime at a higher rate, and criminals tend to shoot one another more often?

    It’s not the only possibility. But there is this *assumption* wired in to the conversation from the start that it is racism and white privilege and any other answer or discussion is unacceptable.

    “Well, because within living memory, we’ve had segregation, in the States.”

    Yes. Society used to be racist. (This is not something specific to whites, either. Most societies were racist. Consider the Tutsi and Hutu in Rwanda.) But society changed its mind, concluded that was wrong, and most of us are not any more. We fixed that problem. If we were still racist, the argument wouldn’t work. People would say “You’re racist!” and we’d reply “Of course! And rightly so!” It’s only because we condemn racism so widely, and ostracise its few remaining adherents, that the charge of racism works. You won that war years ago.

    But to an army, the war is never over. Having won all the battles, new battles must be invented to carry on the struggle.

    “In the UK, “No Blacks, No Dogs, No Irish” is not an ancient thing. It’s slightly out of *my* living memory, but only by a few years.”

    Good example! What are the dogs and Irish doing in there, if this is about racism?

    Answer – it was never actually about race or nationality. It was about landlords concerned about damage to their property. Rent your property out to a dog-owner, and you’ll likely find your nice property chewed up and crapped on and coated in dog hair. It was about poverty, and the cultural norms of looking after the property and interests of others. As the norms change, so do the signs. Race was simply a convenient and easily identifiable label for something more complex and less easy to perceive at a glance.

    And this is the point. Because it’s not actually about race, it’s something that’s fixable. But so long as you insist it is about race and racism and can accept no other answer, hold no other discussion, we can never actually solve the problem. You can’t ever change your race. And you never think to change what you can change, because you’re so fixated on race as the one-and-only root of the problem that the possibility never enters your head.

    “It’s not enough to be “non-racist”, to not see colour. I believe we should be actively anti-racist. Anything else is denying the issues that non-white people face.”

    Then you’ll never solve the issues, because you’re misidentfying the problem.

    The problem is that humanity is hardwired to be tribal. It divided the world into “us” and “them”, each with their separate norms and cultural assumptions, and is driven to enforce its own norms on “them”. It will seize on any arbitrary signal of membership as “one of us” or “one of them”. It can be hair colour, or eye colour, or shape of nose, or language, or accent, or slang, or the way you pronounce “shibboleth”, the clothes you wear, the way you style your hair, your religion (with its signs and symbols of membership), your uniform, your tattoos, your sex/gender, your hobbies, your profession, which football team you support, your political party or ideology, or your blood group (Yes! That’s a thing!), the list is endless. The fundamental problem is prejudice and tribalism generally.

    Everyone suffers from it, to a greater or lesser extent. We all face the same issues. We’re all in this fight together. Everyone is a minority along some dividing line. And every now and then, the oppressors and the oppressed along some line switch sides, and nothing changes. If you instead divide the world into “racists” and “anti-racists”, you’re just picking another dividing line, perpetuating the same horrible system in another guise. You’ve got to be anti-anti. You’ve got to consider the whole human race as “us”.

    “I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character.” It’s bad enough that BLM have forgotten the first half of that sentence, and still bring race into it. But worse, we are constantly forgetting the second half of that iconic sentence.

  • neonsnake

    And if reply I thought you were better tha-

    Then I will note that I’m not really interested.

    I’m interested in NiV’s response, not yours.

  • neonsnake

    We’re all in this fight together. Everyone is a minority along some dividing line. And every now and then, the oppressors and the oppressed along some line switch sides, and nothing changes

    Oh, so close! Good effort!

    Everyone suffers from it, to a greater or lesser extent. We all face the same issues

    Not quite the same issues.

    “I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character.”

    Worth a check on what else he said!

  • I’m interested in NiV’s response, not yours.(neonsnake, June 29, 2020 at 9:25 pm)

    Well, that’s OK by me. NiV’s comments in this thread have impressed me. As regards comments that engage you specifically, I see myself as merely making side-points in this thread, NiV having covered the central issues rather well.

    How NiV feels about being left to carry on the discussion alone (since, if you cannot endure my comments, I don’t see you engaging those of many others here, were they to bother 🙂 ) is for NiV to say, but what you ask is no bother to me. Probably I won’t, but should I comment on anything else of yours here (e.g. for the interest of analysing it), please feel free to ignore it.

    See you in another thread perhaps.

  • neonsnake

    As regards comments that engage you specifically

    Rude and dismissive, wasn’t it?

    You were trying to engage, and I spoke over you, cut you off, and told you I wasn’t interested in what you were trying to say.

    Do you see? That’s my point – that’s what happens when someone is trying to have a specific conversation, in the case of BLM specifically about white on black racism, and people speak over it with ALM.

    (apologies for doing it so brutally 😉 )

  • “All Lives Matter” is the only rational approach to discussing racism, always has been, always will be. It’s also irrelevant to discussing BLM, which is only about racism to the extent it is about tactically conflating a package of other political goodies with discussing racism.

    Insanely, it has got to the point where anyone describing themselves as “anti-racist” rather than just “not racist” can often be written off as probably Marxist, usually collectivist & always obsessed with race. And that is why I fucking hate BLM with growing passion, for they are devaluing something golden.

  • Nullius in Verba

    “Do you see? That’s my point – that’s what happens when someone is trying to have a specific conversation, in the case of BLM specifically about white on black racism, and people speak over it with ALM.”

    I saw it the other way round. A conversation involves two points of view, each being allowed to express its own opinion, each listening to the other. A monologue involves only one opinion being allowed, the other is told to shut up, as their opinion is invalid, disrespectful of the valid opinion, not to be tolerated in polite society, and punishable by loss of your job, business, reputation, etc.

    BLM want a ‘conversation’ in which only their opinion may be expressed, and for other opinions and points of view to remain silent. And that’s how your response to Niall came across, too.

    For BLM to wrongly believe all their woes are all due to white racism is a tragedy for black people, as it gets in the way of their progress, but it’s not actually something I object to. (At least, not on libertarian grounds.) They’re entitled to their opinion, and to express it, as we should be entitled to argue with it and correct it. The thing that makes BLM such a concern for liberty is their effectiveness at silencing any other opinion.

    It’s an old tactic we have seen many times before. Totalitarians don’t arrive and demand power over what other people are allowed to say and think in their own names. People would just ignore them. Why should we give them control over society? They instead find a worthy cause, and demand the power to police speech for the sake of protecting downtrodden minority X. And then if you oppose them, you’re portrayed as an oppressor of X, a nasty bigot, a ‘hater’, an ‘X-ist’.

    And gradually the emphasis shifts from freeing group X to fighting and suppressing the X-ists.

    Both sides make the same confusion. People angry at being told what they’re allowed to say and think unfairly take it out on group X, who they see as the instigators of this creeping totalitarianism. And bystanders sympathetic to group X see this huge fight over liberty going on, and come down on the side of the totalitarians because they think they’re identical with the oppressed. People in the West seriously supported Stalin’s empire because they believed the Communists were on the side of the workers, the poor, the downtrodden, and so anyone who opposed Stalin was standing up for the Capitalist Exploiters and thus an Enemy of the Common People.

    You can’t say you support freedom and justice for everyone, poor and rich alike. That would be to ‘disrespect’ and ‘erase’ the workers’ Class Struggle. To support the poor requires that you hate the rich.

    It would never have worked if we in the West didn’t have sympathy for the workers. But you can’t stop people being oppressed unjustly by becoming an oppressor yourself.

    “How NiV feels about being left to carry on the discussion alone […] is for NiV to say, but what you ask is no bother to me.”

    I never let that sort of thing stop me commenting! The way I look at it – If you have something to say and want to comment, comment. If you don’t, don’t. Even if the participants in the debate are not interested in listening, other readers here may be.

    We will not be silenced.

  • neonsnake

    Insanely, it has got to the point where anyone describing themselves as “anti-racist” rather than just “not racist” can often be written off as probably Marxist, usually collectivist & always obsessed with race.

    I know what you mean, I think. I understand that; there’s certainly an element of truth to it (although Marx was, if I understand correctly, no shining light when it comes to race-relations). There’s this weird, but understandable dichotomy where people think that the only alternative to “actually existing capitalism” is full-throated state socialism. The reason I say it’s understandable is that a majority of people (I think, anyway, and can only hope to be wrong) can only see change coming from more government intervention. People seem to think that there’s only those two options; people who believe that *less* state intervention will help matters are, I think, few and far between.

    And it’s really difficult to reach those people, if it looks like you’re not listening.

    (NiV, this is sort of addressed to you as well)

    BLM is a huge, messy, grass-roots movement. It’s not cohesive, and some of its messages are at odds with each other. Some of the messages are downright troubling. But that’s something that’s always going to happen in a decentralised movement.

    In 2016, when BLM first got going (I think I have my timeline correct), a response of “All Lives Matter” was perhaps understandable.

    In 2020, I find it less so. That rallying cry – “Black Lives Matter!” – has been co-opted by black people (and others) all over the world, and now means, in real terms no more than what it says. The overwhelming majority of people saying it believe that Black Lives should Matter as much as White Lives (not more so!), and yet they feel that they don’t matter. They’ve watched the video of George Floyd being murdered, and they’ve linked it with all the other instances of black men and women being killed by the state, and they’re angry. I don’t blame them.

    I believe that saying “All Lives Matter” is a silencing technique, in itself, designed to silence black voices.

    You believe the opposite. Ok. I don’t think that’s a position that is reconcilable. There’s been four years of people explaining why it’s such a bad take in the context of the conversation, and yet people are still going “but what about black on black violence?” like they haven’t been having that exact conversation (re. poverty) for years.

    It’s very frustrating.

  • Nullius in Verba

    “The overwhelming majority of people saying it believe that Black Lives should Matter as much as White Lives (not more so!), and yet they feel that they don’t matter.”

    Yes, and that’s *exactly* what the “All lives matter” statement says, and is about. It’s wrong for the lives of *any* group to be less valued. We certainly don’t intend to exclude or ignore blacks from that. But it’s not *exclusively* about blacks, either.

    “They’ve watched the video of George Floyd being murdered, and they’ve linked it with all the other instances of black men and women being killed by the state, and they’re angry. I don’t blame them.”

    We don’t know yet that George Floyd was murdered. (It would be racist to assume that it was murder and motivated by racism just because the officer in question was white and Floyd was black.) But I agree that that’s what they *believe* they saw, and I can see why that would make people angry. For that matter, there are a hell of a lot of other things going on in black lives that make *me* angry on their behalf, some of them the same things they’re concerned about, but in particular the way their chances of integrating and becoming prosperous in Western society are being systematically sabotaged by this far-left exploitation of their cause in this culture war. But I don’t particularly expect the world to agree with me, and I certainly don’t *demand* it, as some of them do.

    As I say, I try to be careful to distinguish the black communities in America, with who I have considerable sympathy, from the divisive, authoritarian movements like BLM that are using them as cover for seizing control of society. We need to unite, not fight. That’s what “All lives matter” is about.

    “I believe that saying “All Lives Matter” is a silencing technique, in itself, designed to silence black voices.”

    It’s not meant to silence *black* voices. It’s meant to oppose only the *authoritarian* voices trying to reproduce the revolutionary dynamic of Class Struggle and the Cultural Revolution in a new setting.

  • Fraser Orr

    FWIW, I do not like the “all lives matter” trope. That is plainly true but “black lives matter” means “black lives have not been treated equally and they should.” I know lots of kids at these demos and that is what they mean. To me a far better strategy is to say:

    * Black lives matter: and so it is about time we released the stranglehold the teachers unions have on the schools so that poor black parents have options in education.
    * Black lives matter: and so we desperately need to change the culture where it is considered acceptable for fathers to abandon their children, leaving mothers and child is inevitable penury.
    * Black lives matter: and so the massacre that is killing poor black boys by other black boys by the thousand needs to be a top priority of the police.
    * Black lives matter: and since that vast majority of black people are decent, law abiding citizens, they desperately need a police force to protect them, their businesses and their opportunities. So we need to fund the police better and train them better, and provide more police protection to the poor black communities.
    * Black lives matter: and so shutting down the economy to make it impossible for them to go to school, work in a job, buy the groceries and supplies they need must stop immediately.
    * Black lives matter: and so killing the economy and crushing the large companies with excess taxes destroys their job opportunities and leaves all poor people, and especially poor urban black people in the dreadful state of dependency on the government, something that no decent person wants for themselves or their kids.
    * Black lives matter: and so opening the borders to cheap foreign labor to throw the unfortunately larger proportion of poor black people in low skill jobs out on the scrap heap is a terrible policy.
    * Black lives matter: and so the narrative about black kids and the police desperately needs to change. The narrative that makes black boys think that if they are arrested they need to violently resist because they believe politically created myths about the police and systemic racism. We need the culture to be “don’t sass the cops, don’t resist arrest, correct any injustices after arrest with your state provided lawyer.”

    And I could list about a hundred others. Which is to say we should acknowledge the reality of the problems that the black community suffers and honestly put forward real ideas about how to make it better.

  • I never let that sort of thing stop me commenting! The way I look at it – If you have something to say and want to comment, comment. If you don’t, don’t. Even if the participants in the debate are not interested in listening, other readers here may be. (Nullius in Verba, June 30, 2020 at 10:55 am)

    +1 to the above as general points (and thanks for the encouragement to stay in the thread), but this far down this thread I find myself becoming more interested in whether all black voices matter, never mind my white one? It appears Person of colour dares not sign name wasn’t taken seriously. Let’s see how a black man who does give his name fares: What woke whites get wrong about blacks’ priorities. His conclusion:

    woke whites would do more good by doing nothing

    (and even more good, his whole sentence implies, by becoming more open-minded).

  • bobby b

    The insanity here is that Trump may well lose this November, due in part to the Black Lives Matter movement, but he will probably have a greater portion of the black vote than any Republican candidate before him.

  • In 2020, I find it less so. That rallying cry – “Black Lives Matter!” – has been co-opted by black people (and others) all over the world, and now means, in real terms no more than what it says.

    No, it is a great deal more than what it says. It is an exercise not of simplicity and directness of meaning but of conflation. What you see is absolutely not what you get (you get a whole lot more).

    A movement that tears down historical monuments in Britain is not about Black Lives Mattering in Britain. It is about fighting a culture war aimed at the very foundations, one based not a British identity (which is eminently sharable & customisable) but on demanding acceptance of (not just tolerance of) segmented politically ranked identities. Identitarianism, the currently in-vogue manifestation of accursed Frankfurt School.

    Sorry old chap, but the ultimate quintessential non-identitarian statement is “All Lives Matter”. If that is racist then the word “racist” is meaningless (which increasingly it is). Attacking the language is a huge part of the same enterprise. So, I am all for pushing back & I feel no need whatsoever to be nice about it. BLM wants to radicalise people. It worked, I am radicalised. I am willing to consider things I would never have done even five years ago.

  • Fraser Orr

    @Perry de Havilland (London)
    Sorry old chap, but the ultimate quintessential non-identitarian statement is “All Lives Matter”.

    I agree with your other sentiments but I really do disagree with you on this. It is certainly true that “all lives matter”, but language is, and always has been about context. I used to frequent a bar in Glasgow. On the wall was a sign that said “No Dogs Allowed”. Now it always struck me as odd that there was also no sign saying “No giraffes allowed”. Why? Well simply because to say “no dogs allowed” has a context — namely that in the past people had brought dogs and it had been an issue. You only say “no dogs allowed” when dogs entering the bar is an issue that needs to be addressed. Giraffes, not so much.

    So to say “black lives matter” is to say that is it necessary to assert that black lives matter because there have been issues with black lives not mattering. It by no means suggests that other lives don’t matter, just that black lives mattering is an issue that needs to be addressed. And to counter a call of “black lives matter” with “all lives matter” is to suggest that black lives mattering is not an especially significant issue.

    So I certainly understand why people object to the phrase. Out of context it is perfectly reasonable and correct, but as a retort to “black lives matter” it is to say “hey, there isn’t a special problem with black lives not mattering.” Which frankly, isn’t true, not here in the US.

    Of course that doesn’t mean I agree at all with BLM the organization. Black lives matter is a slogan for a completely unrelated agenda. However, I live near Chicago where 18 black people including a 20 month old baby were massacred this past weekend. Those black lives certainly matter, and in the inner cities there definitely is a problem with a casual disregard for the value of black lives that I think it is certainly necessary to remind people that “black lives matter”.

    My view is that decent people should reclaim this phrase and turn it to use as a tool to talk about the real causes of the dreadful conditions of the inner city black and Hispanic communities. And, in a comment above, I suggest a few specific examples.

  • bobby b

    They could have defused this entire argument had they added one word – “black lives matter too.”

    Which is really what they meant, but that longer phrase has a milder, more feminine taste to it, and the BLM movement wasn’t looking for mild or passive.

    Plus, “BLMT” starts to sound like a sandwich.

    (ETA: Uh, y’all over there do have BLT sandwiches, right?)

  • Hugh

    Just bacon,here.
    BLT can be found too,but that’s cultural appropriation.

  • My view is that decent people should reclaim this phrase

    If that was the way the process worked, ‘liberal’ would not still mean ‘someone who is profoundly illiberal’ but would have been reclaimed by, well, people who are actually liberal.

  • They could have defused this entire argument had they added one word – “black lives matter too.”

    This isn’t an argument in the sense of being a discussion about different opinions, it is more akin to an argument in the sense of knife fight (usually without the knives at this stage but not always). One side doesn’t want the argument defused. In some ways continuous highly destructive argument (‘struggle’) is the objective and not just a process on the way to getting somewhere. Read Mao’s “Little Red Book” for assorted examples of the process.

  • neonsnake

    FWIW, I do not like the “all lives matter” trope. That is plainly true but “black lives matter” means “black lives have not been treated equally and they should.” I know lots of kids at these demos and that is what they mean. To me a far better strategy is to say:

    Thanks Fraser. To answer your “FWIW” – a lot, to me.

    They could have defused this entire argument had they added one word – “black lives matter too.”

    Agreed, and I think you’re right to see that it softens the slogan.

    (We do indeed have BLT for the heathens that would diffuse the simple joy of a bacon sarnie by adding lettuce. Tomato I can forgive, if that’s how you swing)

  • neonsnake

    but would have been reclaimed by, well, people who are actually liberal.

    I assume you mean in the Locke/Paine/Smith/Mill/Blackstone etc sense?

    I don’t think there’s been a concerted effort, has there?

    I mean, if you want to give it a go, I’m all for it.

  • Fraser Orr

    @Perry de Havilland (London)
    If that was the way the process worked, ‘liberal’ would not still mean ‘someone who is profoundly illiberal’ but would have been reclaimed by, well, people who are actually liberal.

    Maybe, liberal is a very old word, and words are not their etymology, they are the attached baggage. Words have been reclaimed successfully. For example, “queer” used to be a slur, now it is proudly embraced. But “Black Lives Matter” is sufficiently new that it can be recaptured.

    If I were the President’s media person one option I would consider is a series of advertisements on TV:

    Screen showing text “Black Lives Matter”
    Fade to images of chaotic public schools, fade to images of hard working black kids sitting in a charter school.
    “Black lives matter enough we need to give black parents the right to chose the school their kids go to. It is an outrage that black people have their opportunities crushed by local school boards destroying the opportunity education provides them. Let’s give our kids the freedom and opportunity that education provides because black lives matter”

    Next Advert:

    Screen showing text “Black Lives Matter”
    Fade to image of woman crying as she is released by Trump’s criminal justice reform.
    “Under the 1994 Crime bill Joe Biden locked up a million black people for minor crimes. Black lives matter and President Trump has worked hard to right this terrible wrong. This woman …whatever her name is… was freed from a life sentence for a minor drug offence to get her life back. Why? Because black lives, especially this life, matter”

    Next Advert:

    Screen showing “Black Lives Matter”
    Fade to image of chaos in Chicago, with the names of the murdered scrolling by.
    “In the inner cities there is a war going on. Our local governments from Chicago to Baltimore to Los Angeles have allowed a careless disregard for the lives of innocent black people, including children as young as 20 months. Our local governments have done a disgraceful job. Our police are not perfect, they make some terrible mistakes. But, for the law abiding citizens of these cities they are the last line of defense from the drug gangs, the thugs and the chaos. President Trump has proposed a police bill that will correct some of the injustices in the police, and will help them fix this dreadful problem. The democrats? They have blocked this bill, and they run these cities. Please help President Trump to address this terrible issue, because “Black Lives Matter”.

    And so forth. He could make a dozen adverts like this. It would be extremely powerful, it would offer no basis to claim hate speech, and it would drive black lives matter and the crazy left absolutely nuts.

  • neonsnake

    Identitarianism, the currently in-vogue manifestation of accursed Frankfurt School.

    I guess you mean Identity Politics?

    (I associate Identitarianism with this bunch of charmers)

    Fraser, re. putting more police into black communities.

    This is only a musing, so feel free to pick at it:

    What if individual police are *not* racist? It’s a reasonably well-known stat that you’re 80% more likely to be killed in the US by the police if you’re black vs being white. But that’s just a number, it doesn’t say much if you’re not willing to dig into it.

    So, what if we treat the police like a milder version of ED-209 from Robocop. Ostensibly non-biased, but, uh, a tad glitchy and prone to occasionally killing the people it’s meant to be protecting and serving.

    Further, lets say that’s because of glitches in its programming (or training). When you routinely carry guns and are not trained in de-escalation techniques, I’d speculate that this could be termed “glitches in programming”.

    If we know that ED-209 routinely glitches 0.05% of the time, maybe the higher rate of deaths amongst the black community can be attributed to increased deployment of, uh, ED-209 (I’m stretching the metaphor, I know). But maybe deploying faulty machines into vulnerable communities is not the right approach.

    (Imagine if 0.05% of double-parking soccer mums/moms were being routinely killed by cops…)

    Maybe putting more police into black communities is the wrong thing, and instead, more resources should go on your other suggestions eg. education, decriminalisation of minor drug use, and so on. I wonder if that would have a bigger effect.

    (as well as having a much better PR, which is much more important than people think)

    Just thoughts.

  • Fraser Orr

    @neonsnake
    Maybe putting more police into black communities is the wrong thing, and instead, more resources should go on your other suggestions eg. education, decriminalisation of minor drug use, and so on. I wonder if that would have a bigger effect.

    There were 18 black people massacred in Chicago last weekend including a 20 month old baby. The weekend before I don’t remember the number but it was higher, and the death toll included a 3 year old boy and and 10 year old girl. It might surprise anyone who watches the news that none of these people were killed by rogue cops. Chicago needs much more engagement by the police, but the police are quite understandably very disengaged. Some have argued “let the animals kill each other in the zoo”, but that is wrong. 99% of the people who live there are decent, honest people trying to live their lives. They deserve to be protected from that tiny minority who are killing their babies.

    So, sure, education is a the long term solution. But the police need to be protected so that they can go in there and stanch the bleeding. However, don’t expect that from the horrendous Lori Lightfoot (the mayor of Chicago.)

  • neonsnake

    Some have argued “let the animals kill each other in the zoo”, but that is wrong. 99% of the people who live there are decent, honest people trying to live their lives. They deserve to be protected from that tiny minority who are killing their babies.

    Understood, and makes complete sense. Cheers for the response.

    Over here, and I know you used to live in the UK, “defund the police” doesn’t have the same teeth, at least to me. Rightly or wrongly, I believe that largely, our police here operate on Peelian principles (or Vimes-ian principles, for those that know, which are of course, the same thing). Exceptions will, no doubt, abound, and our police are certainly not exempt from criticism.

    I’m trying to get my head, in an honest way, round the differences. Someone (actually, thinking about it, was it you?) noted that the police are the sharp of the end of the stick that the government threaten us with, so “defund the police” strikes a chord. I’ve always struggled with “ACAB”, but then…I’m not likely to be targeted so I’m wary.

  • Nullius in Verba

    “Maybe putting more police into black communities is the wrong thing, and instead, more resources should go on your other suggestions eg. education, decriminalisation of minor drug use, and so on. I wonder if that would have a bigger effect.”

    This is from a police report regarding an experience of people living in the black community.

    Affiant met with Aracely Henriquez, Complainant#1, and Angel Negrete, Complainant #2, who are both credible and reliable persons, who advised him that on August 9th 2007, they, along with Amanda Negrete (1 yoa), were all inside their residence at 8710 Glenhouse Court when they heard a knock on the front door. As Complainant Henriquez looked out the front window, she observed a black male dressed in a blue uniform who told her he was with the water department. As complainant Henriquez opened the door, she immediately realised that this person was not with the water department and attempted to close the door. However, this male held the door open and prevented her from doing so. At this time, a black Ford Explorer pulled up in front of the Complainants’ residence and five other black males exited this vehicle and proceeded to the front door. The largest of these suspects forced his way into the residence, placed a pistol against the complainant’s abdomen, and forced her into the living room area of the residence. This large suspect then proceeded to search the residence while another armed suspect guarded the complainant, who was struck in the head and side areas by this second armed suspect with his pistol after she screamed for help. As the suspects looked through the residence, they demanded to know where the drugs and money were and Complaint Henriquez advised them that there were no such things in the residence. The suspects then took some jewelry along with the complainant’s cell phone before they fled the scene in the black Ford Explorer.

    You say: “When you routinely carry guns and are not trained in de-escalation techniques, I’d speculate that this could be termed “glitches in programming”. Does beating an unarmed woman in the head with a pistol count as a ‘de-escalation technique’? How about pushing a gun into her abdomen and forcing your way into her house? Would you feel uncomfortable describing the behaviour of the assailants as “glitched programming” knowing that they happened to be black? Or does it make no difference to you, and you’ll judge all people purely on the content of their character, not the colour of their skin?

    When I say I support people in the black community, I mainly mean I support people like Aracely and Angel and her 1 year old daughter. The issue is rather more complicated when it comes to supporting those who robbed her at gunpoint. Certainly, I think there is much we can do better that would make them less inclined to turn to crime. I think such measures are far better than ever-harsher punishments and jail sentences, which do nothing to help them live better lives.

    You once told me a story about an incident on a train where you thought someone was about to threaten your girlfriend. What would you have done to men who threatened and thumped your girlfriend the way Aracely was? (Assuming you was in a position to do so.) Would you argue that defunding the police so that the guys carrying out the assaults were not at greater risk of being injured was a positive move? Do you feel your own ‘de-escalation technique’ worked better than the police’s?

    You tend to get more violent incidents – both between citizens and between police and citizen – in areas of high crime, and black communities tend to have higher crime because of the associations with poverty, single parenthood, ‘gangsta’ culture, and so on. A lot of the tribulations of black communities are because they suffer as victims of those same high crime levels, and indeed often join gangs themselves primarily as a defence against it. And much of the remaining fear and prejudice against black people is likewise associated with the high crime levels and social misbehaviour far more than it is with skin colour per se.

    It seems to me therefore that the best thing you could do to help black communities is to reduce crime. Mainly for the sake of people like Aracely, but also for all the young black boys’ lives wasted caught in the trap of crime and punishment. While I don’t believe the police and criminal justice system have been particularly effective, defunding the police entirely and doing nothing else to address the crime does not seem to me the most obvious route to achieving that.

    “I’m trying to get my head, in an honest way, round the differences.”

    Yes, it’s difficult. One of the problems is that of taking sides, and then fitting the people on each side into stereotypes rather than seeing them all as morally complex individuals. The ‘bad guys’ have their good side. The ‘good guys’ have their flaws and fallibility. That’s why I think judging people on the content of their character is a much better way to think about it. The guy on the train, the guys breaking into Aracely’s house, they no doubt have their own stories, their own reasons for why they turned out the way they are. Fixing the world is always more difficult than it looks at first glance.

  • neonsnake

    You once told me a story about an incident on a train where you thought someone was about to threaten your girlfriend.

    I didn’t feel so, they were.

    Doesn’t matter. You win. Well done.

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