Yeah, I’ve bought into the program, but not totally. Let me count the ways I might not be fully accepted into the Kumbayah Blue Village.
I don’t believe in reparations for slavery. People who were never slaves should not have any claim on those who never owned slaves. Does the relatively prosperous and dominant white community owe anything to the relatively impoverished and oppressed peoples of color? Absolutely! But reparations should not be based on race. Richer people need to pay relatively more in taxes that need to be distributed liberally as services to poorer ones. Race should not have anything to do with it.
For much the same reason, I’m opposed to affirmative action, as well.
I might as well tell you I can’t stand rap music, or hip-hop, or whatever the politically correct term for it is these days. I love rock, and I can tolerate jazz, I am crazy about the blues (especially when played by Englishmen, the American Negro and the British working class have much in common). I enjoy MoTown, R&B, Soul and even Gospel. I recognize the contributions black artists have made to American popular music, but you must remember I was brought up listening to the contributions of Cuban blacks to the music of THAT country. Cuba has always been recognized as a source of creative and sophisticated music, thanks to its fusion of African and European themes. OTOH, black-influenced music in Cuba doesn’t sound anything like black-influenced American Music. Don’t get me wrong, they are both excellent. But they are very different.
BTW, there is now a hip-hop version of Spanish Music, Reggaeton. It sucks a big one too.
While we are on the subject of race, I’m tired of hearing about black “culture”. There is no such thing as black culture. When the slaves were brought over from Africa, they were already representatives of many different cultures, with diverse languages, religions, customs, and political and tribal traditions. Before they even crossed the ocean they were probably a very hetero group of strangers from multiple origins. After their enslavement, their masters did everything they could to further erase all evidence of their former cultural heritage, and replace it with a bastardized version of European culture in the New World. It was cultural genocide, implemented for sheer economic reasons. Wearing Dashikis, learning Bantu or braiding your hair doesn’t make you African. A logical concomitant to this is that college majors and university chairs in “Afro-American studies” are just plain stupid. No, I’m not saying Critical Race Theory is bad or wrong, but that it should be viewed and discussed from a political, economic, social, historical and cultural perspective–not a racial one. Through no fault of their own, their original African cultures were systematically obliterated. And even those cultures have evolved today, they would not be recognizable even by their inheritors. They cannot be reconstructed with a well-meaning but non-existent nostalgia. You’ve probably guessed by now I don’t celebrate Kwanzaa.
How about that other great American original sin, guns? Well, I will be the first to confess I love guns. I admire their craftsmanship, mechanical elegance and ingenuity, but mostly, I love the way they can kill at a distance. It is the power of the gods; point, fire and someone far away crumples to the ground in agony. Like most people, I am not a naturally violent person, in fact, I am a physical coward. I am terrified of fighting and violence. I enjoy the feeling of security and invulnerability that I have knowing the thunderbolt of Zeus is in my pocket, or on my bedstand at night. But I know why I like guns, I understand the origin and result of that feeling as well as its contradictions and inconsistencies. But I’m ashamed of it. I don’t try to cover it up with phony constitutional or patriotic excuses. Its just my own natural cowardice expressing itself as it normally does in my culture. Guns need to be outlawed, the killing will not stop until they are all taken away. But in the meantime, I want one of my own. Perhaps there is a compromise solution: Allow every household to own one firearm, but make it illegal to carry one in a public place. And enforce it ruthlessly. We certainly have a right to defend our homes, but we have no right to threaten anyone elses.
And then there’s capitalism. I have no problems with capitalism. It can provide a lot of wealth in a hurry, and that is good. It may not be very good at distributing it equitably, but maybe that’s the inevitable price we have to pay for that wealth. And its a price worth paying–within reason. Lately, the wealth has been increasing, but its benefits have more and more been going to fewer and fewer. Something is definitely wrong.
The problems with capitalism can be solved without dismantling it outright, proper regulation of business, encouragement of trade unions, and a legislative system protected from influence by the wealthy will solve most of those problems. Capitalism is, to a certain extent, self-regulating, although one has to constantly be wary of collusion, price-fixing, monopoly, and corruption. But capitalism has its virtues, too. People will take enormous risks to get rich, and this desperation gives rise to efficiency, innovation and creativity. The fools and dreamers are soon weeded out. Capitalism can also organize itself in a variety of social forms, personal and collective, from the individual lone entrepreneur to the giant multinational corporation. And that gives the individual worker some kind of choice in how he or she participates in the economic system. That is true economic freedom and diversity. No, I’ll vote to keep capitalism. But it needs to be monitored and controlled by a free electorate and their representatives; businessmen simply cannot be trusted to govern themselves. As for Business Administration courses and departments at the university level, I feel the same way about them as I do about Black Studies: they are shameless self-congratulation, ideological apologetics and intellectual masturbation.
Don’t get me wrong. I’ve got nothing against gay people. I can even say I have a gay friend, although that sounds so contrived I hesitate to say it out loud. Besides, he’s not my friend because he’s gay, we just happen to both be sailors.
But I am really concerned about this sudden need by liberals to champion gay causes, even remotely gay causes, such as cross-dressing and drag recitals to pre-schoolers. I’m a great fan of the late Barry Humphries and Ru Paul, too, but kids need not be deliberately exposed to these jarring anachronisms.
Now if people want to marry folks of the same sex, I’m all right with that. If people want to change their sex, using medical or psychological tools, I’m fine with that too. But I don’t see why suddenly open-minded people should suddenly be defending the right of trans athletes to compete in sports where their masculine bulk gives them an advantage over their feminine opponents.
I understand why conservatives are so hostile to gays, but I also see the reason why. At the risk of going Psych 101 on you, its because they are troubled by their own sexuality. Or maybe they just need someone to hate; Mexicans, Arabs, blacks and Jews are no longer fair game.
I may add to this list later, but I’m still not over my flu.