POLITICS

IS RACISM WORSE THAN VIOLENCE?

June 4, 2020

By JIM BILLINGS

When a murderer heads to death row or life in prison, no one doubts the criminal earned their sentence --- at least if one has faith in the verdict. Even if someone disagrees in the death penalty as a punishment, life sentences certainly fall into an acceptable category of punitive measures for most Americans when it comes to murder.  Murder sits in a special category of evil and rightfully so. However, despite the perverse nature of the crime of murder, other offenses lead to similar punishments. These crimes do not result in the legal force of  a jury's decisions but a collective shaming that crescendos in the obliteration of livelihoods and life work.

One might refer to these tactics as McCarthyist. But that would be an insult to Senator McCarthy who himself derived his unhinged actions from slightly more honourable intentions. Indeed, by the 1990s after the fall of the Soviet Union, the Venona Papers revealed many of those McCarthy accused of treason and espionage to be guilty or complicit in their treachery. In fact, the entire McCarthy operation may be understood as a counterattack on Communist agents who vanquished right wing personalities from Hollywood and the media in the 1920s and 1930s, though in a most diffused and independent manner. After all, in the mind of an altruistic Communist crusader in Hollywood, why wouldn't anyone be for helping the poor? McCarthy's tactics, merely manifested as a water-downed version of those influential but closeted American Communists employed in the hey-day of the movement in America. In either case, the ends did not justify the means. Lives were uprooted and destroyed for minutia (with some exceptions).

 

The American tradition of limited government not only sought to place checks on the central government's power, but also decentralize power as a whole. It was in fact the British East India Company that facilitated the Empire's expansion, a semi-private entity. The very spirit of this devolutionary model added to the political debates and movements witnessed throughout American history, including the anti-Trust Laws passed under President Theodore Roosevelt. Any power, private or public, that consolidates in a malignantly centralized form lends to the destruction of individualism and the dignity of mankind, whether the centralized power derives its consent from a cultural or political collective is irrelevant.

 

William F. Buckley once stated that, "A democracy can itself be as tyrannical as a dictatorship, since it is the extent, not the source, of government power that impinges on freedom." That statement reflects truth in both governmental power and private power. No Republican in office today, whether a fringe actor or not, agrees with the idea of cartel as a positive and healthy economic organ.

And yet, that is precisely what exists as the present authority over discourse in this country: a truly unconscious network of control based in false altruism and greed. While these may appear to be opposite positions, emissaries of the former unknowingly aid and abet agents of the latter. Chairman Mao established a fool proof process to determine members of the Party and those who were counter-revolutionaries: invoking certain buzzwords or "magic words" served as markers. Those in the Party spoke certain vernacular as a sort of code that qualified them as acceptable. Those who did not, were punished accordingly by collective means. Although the government acted as the ultimate executor in regards to these matters, the collective inaugurated the process as a catalyst.

Today in America, events reminiscent of this system occur on a regular basis. When a professor, student or average citizen makes a comment outside the window of acceptable discourse, the person endures a shaming of mammoth proportions until they not only lose their reputation, but also their livelihoods. In this system, no redemption is possible. Without a place to work or income, the person might as well be dead --- no different than a death row inmate. Obviously the authorities who comprise the ranks of media, academia and the corporate world view certain non-violent sins tantamount to murder or related crimes. They will never outright admit this but infer this by their perverted inquisition.

 

The recent story of Amy Cooper, as ignorant as her actions were, proves this theory correct. Just last year, a young man who experienced the Parkland Shooting resigned his post at a Conservative organization and lost his admission to Harvard from comments he made as a minor on a private platform. The all consuming power of cancelation extends beyond racial issues and into the realm of alleged sexism as well. Even left-wing Chris Matthews retired from his post early at MSNBC to appease the masses and their outrage. The mob mentality of cancel culture devastates the lives of countless good people, all flawed like every single one of us. Perhaps the decline of Christianity and the domination of secularism is responsible for this lack of forgiveness. Regardless of the origin of this phenomenon, one must ask when the cannibalism and witch-hunts will end? The origins of these practices emanate from the pages of history: "The duty of the newspaper is to comfort the afflicted, and to afflict the comfortable." This served as the John 3:16 for all newsmen in the early twentieth century. The echo of this phrase ripples down to those in positions of influence today. Sir Wilmott Lewis of the Edmonton Journal originally coined the maxim but the spirit of the rule lives on in the writings of most in the business of journalism to the present - or rather Yellow Journalism." 

Two types of journalists exist to pacify the needs of this rule: the greedy and the bleeding-hearts. Though mass shootings and white on black violence account for an infinitesimal portion of crime, each receive an incredibly disproportionate amount of coverage when compared to murders in towns like Chicago or opioid deaths. In the case of true believers, these stories simply represent an opportunity --- a means to accomplish an ideological end. On the other hand, most on the corporate side of journalism tend to enjoy this coverage. By "afflicting the comforted" they bask in the rays of an exponentially increasing audience size: the greater the audience, the greater the profits.

 

Certainly not every journalist fits this mold. But the sensationalism of journalism and the disingenuous nature of coverage on most media outlests leads to one conclusions: that fraudulence, hypocricy and manipulation run the industry. It is their world now. But in the mean time, each of us can serve as counter-revolutionaries againsts the Maoists running American media today.

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