Andy opens his essay with this sentence: ‘If there’s one core assumption shared by the two tribes of our culture, it is that America will soon be a “majority-minority” nation.’ The relevant question is glaringly obvious, who are these ‘two tribes’? It’s a trope to frame his speculation on ‘race’. He should be the last person to express any speculation on race, given his publication of an excerpt of The Bell Curve, in the New Republic in 1994 : that caused not just a rebellion within the staff but created a controversy that still resonates in the present.
This is pure speculation, does Andy ‘think’ that his history of animus toward black people, has been forgotten. Andy’s expression of that animus can be found in his relentless attacks on Black Lives Matter in his regular columns in New York Magazine.
This particular essay should graner the reader’s attention, in that he recognizes what black people face, although not fully emancipated for Andy’s need to engage in hectoring rhetoric, awash in self-congratulatory moralizing. This essay from December 4, 2020 demonstrates his ‘evolution’ on the question?
Headline: Do All Black Lives Matter? Or Just Some?
Sub-headline: On the soaring toll of civilian violence against African-American
Andy’s source, indeed inspiration, is:
One is Richard Alba, Professor of Sociology at the Graduate Center of the City University of New York. His new book, “The Great Demographic Illusion,” examines and, I have to say, largely detonates, the majority-minority myth. He does this simply by pointing out how the Census Bureau actually defines “non-white”.
The final paragraph of Andy’s polemic, presents himself as the mean, between two political extremes. Barack Obama of ‘Simpson–Bowles‘, the ever-expanding American Empire, and the extravagant bribery program of the murderous Zionist State, as the exemplars of a ‘mainstream multiracial future‘. Can all this be connected?
Demographics will continue to evolve and shape-shift whatever our understanding of them. But our understanding matters — because it shapes our emotions, our identities, and the policy choices we make. It’s way past time, it seems to me, to leave behind the race fixation of far right and far left, and to move back to a more fluid, multiracial, multicultural American identity that is not the same as the uglier, whiter past, and not some kind of anti-white triumphalism either. I’m referring to the kind of mainstream multiracial future that our first truly biracial president, Barack Obama, once hoped for, and represented. Maybe a little more distance from Trump and a little more understanding of how race in this country is deeply complicated can help.
Andy has an intellectual/political propensity for attaching himself to a single book, like ‘The Bell Curve’ and ‘The Great Demographic Illusion’, and treating it ‘as if’ it were descriptive of an ineluctable historical singularity. The ‘two tribe’ frame is a phenomenon of self-serving political transients! Wedded to this is the fact that Andy is part of a toxic Christian Moralist Tradition, that never fails to remind ‘we lesser beings’, that we are in need of their Leadership. Its as if Kant’s ‘self-emancipation from tutelage’ had never been written, or even thought!
Why is it so hard for Conservatives, and fellow travelers, to come to terms with Rush Limbaugh? Coward, bully, buffoon,bigot and King of AM Radio. He produced a multitude of equally noxious clones. Limbaugh became the unspoken Leader of the Republican Party, after the defeat of John McCain. Here is just a portion of Andy’s Limbaugh comment. Its last paragraph almost lapses into insight.
He was as personally kind and generous, we are told, as he was publicly shameless. And it’s important to see the man as a complicated whole. But what he did to conservatism was ultimately to facilitate its demise as a functional governing philosophy; and what he did to the country was intensify its cynicism and tribalism. Few did so much to popularize conservative values; and few did more, in the end, to discredit them.
P.S. Don’t forget that Limbaugh sent his maid to buy his Oxycontin.