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Samizdata, derived from Samizdat /n. - a system of clandestine publication of banned literature in the USSR [Russ.,= self-publishing house]

I could not have said it better myself

(Nor, indeed, have I ever yet said it as well.)

as a law professor I try to see all sides of public and legal issues, and in my teaching and writing to present the best case for each contesting view in any dispute. Critical race theory, as actually practised in many classrooms in California and across the country, seems to me to defy any hope of defending or justifying it. Its mix of half-truths and sheer falsehoods, its stereotyping and scapegoating of entire races of people, its relentlessly divisive setting of one group against another, its visceral hostility to reasoned debate, freedom of thought, and freedom of expression, and its well-documented tendency to proceed by stealth, all evoke the practices of authoritarian and even totalitarian regimes.

Those who read instapundit will already have encountered Maimon Schwarzschild’s evidence to the Orange County Board of Education, but I’m happy to give further visibility to “what oft was thought but ne’er so well expressed”. We’ve often said what we think about CRT here, but I don’t recall a paragraph that covers all the bases, touching each concisely and clearly, as well as the above. (If you do, by all means link to it in the comments – it might be good to gather several effective summaries in one place.)

The name Schwarzschild (like the name Maimon) is not that common. I wonder if Maimon is related to Karl Schwarzschild, the first man to solve Einstein’s equations. Karl computed the solution for a simple (non-rotating, uncharged) spherical mass (today, it’s famous as the basic black hole solution – ‘the Schwarzschild solution’ – but Chandrasekhar computed ‘the Chandrasekhar limit’ in the same year, to pass the time on a ship travelling from India to Britain, so Karl did not yet know a black hole was even theoretically possible). Karl did this work while serving in the Germany army, less than a year before his death during WWI. As to why Karl’s (surviving) descendants and collaterals are now to be found in the United States, not Germany, well Maimon also testified that:

My own family had personal experience of some of the totalitarian regimes in 20th century Europe, and some of the tropes and techniques of ethnic studies and critical race theory, as now practised in many US classrooms, have chilling parallels in the techniques of ideological indoctrination in the schoolrooms of those regimes.

The sacrifice of Jewish fathers like Karl for the fatherland in WWI proved a weak reed indeed for their children in WWII.

Having ancestors who fought against slavery won’t protect anyone from charges of ‘toxic whiteness’ either, any more than family experience of past racial hatred will protect Maimon from woke hatred today.

10 comments to I could not have said it better myself

  • The Pedant-General

    It’s a cracking piece.
    Will it do any good though? 🙁

  • @Niall – Maimon is the son of Professor Steven S. Schwarzschild (1924–1989) and not directly related to either of the physicists Karl or Martin Schwarzschild.

  • Thanks for info, John Galt (July 29, 2021 at 3:54 pm). As Steven and Karl Schwarzschild were both born in Frankfurt’s Jewish community, it may well be that Stephen and Maimon were collaterals of Karl and his son Martin, but, as you say, there appears to be no direct relationship between them.

    (Both Stephen and Martin left Germany in the later 1930s, for reasons I need not mention.)

  • John Lewis

    Niall,

    As Ilhan Omar would have said “they left Germany because some people did something”.

  • Ferox

    Having ancestors who fought against slavery won’t protect anyone from charges of ‘toxic whiteness’ either

    When you make arguments like “I’m not racist, my ancestors did X good thing/suffered X bad thing” you buy into the fascist Left’s game. Having ancestors who fought against slavery is no more relevant to your standing as a racist/bad person than having ancestors who were slaveholders.

    Everybody has slavers and slaves, murderers and murder victims, scoundrels and heroes in their lineage someplace. We all should be judged by the things we do in our own lives, not what our ancestors have done – for good or ill.

  • Ferox (July 29, 2021 at 8:58 pm), my point was the racism of how the argument is enforced. To the woke, your race* decides whether they count or ignore anything your ancestors suffered or achieved. As you say, it is likely everyone has slaves and slavers in their far-back-enough past. Because the ‘reparations’ argument is worthless anyway, one may say it is made no more worthless by the fact that, statistically, the average person the woke say is owed them has slavers in their more recent past than the average person the woke say owes them. But the racism of woke practice can be noted.

    * nominally it is your race; actually of course, your usefulness to their power project decides

  • staghounds

    Ferox is right.

    This crazy irredentist wokeness only makes sense if you believe that every black person is the same, every woman is the same, every white person is the same, every trans person is the same, and so forth.

    It starts and ends with the proposition that these things- what appearance your parents’ DNA gave you and whom you like to f*ck- are at the same time the most important things about you and the only things about you that your neighbours see.

    The hell with that Nazi stuff.

  • Johnathan Pearce

    Niall, thanks for sharing this. The quotation beautifully sums up CRT and the cancer that it is.

  • Jacob

    And besides, as some Black Lady said (don’t remember who) – those slave holders and slave traders did the current generation of black descendants of slaves a HUGE favor: otherwise they (the descendants) would still live now in some hell-hole in Africa.

  • Paul Marks

    Critical Race Theory, and “Critical Theory” generally, is from Frankfurt School Marxism. It was designed with the conscious aim of promoting hatred and destroying the West.

    At least the matter is out in the open and the battle lines, for and against Western Civilisation, are clearly drawn.

    The Democrats have chosen to side with the Marxists – so, in practice, there is no longer any real distinction between them.

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