High life

I’ve been back one week and the good old US of A has never seemed more depressing

13 November 2021

9:00 AM

13 November 2021

9:00 AM

New York

Don’t let anyone tell you the Bagel is worse off than Kabul, where three people were recently shot dead by Islamist gunmen for playing music at a wedding. No siree, people over here are shot every day and night but not for playing music at a wedding. Give New York credit where it’s due. The city is a bloody horror if you’re living way uptown, way downtown, or in the Bronx, with the rest of Gotham experiencing a level of street crime not seen in a decade. Robberies and felonious assaults are up 15 per cent in a year and gun arrests by a whopping 20 per cent. In the subway violent crime per ride is twice as high as in 2019. The rich continue to leave, taking their tax revenue with them south, the huddled masses arrive with outstretched palms expecting social justice. Street crime is rampant, Times Square is no longer a tourist trap because of the risk of getting killed. Yet the media continue to write and report on the evils of… Donald Trump.

After the George Floyd killing the mainstream media covered BLM in expected flattering terms — in spite of the lies they were telling about American cops. If you want the truth, then in a normal year like 2019 there were 1,004 people killed by the police — and as you’d expect, most were armed or otherwise dangerous. African-Americans were about a quarter of those killed by cops — which is a figure that has been pretty flat since 2015 (and is lower than what the crime figures would suggest). An inquiry into the Philadelphia Police Department six years ago found that white police officers were actually less likely than black officers to shoot unarmed black suspects. So how can the cops be portrayed as armed white supremacists?

True statistics aside, American society’s institutions such as universities, media, entertainment and big tech continue to spread the view that oppressors rule the nation and that slavery defines American history. Never has America been more ferociously divided, with movies and TV series showing white men as villains and pundits on TV presenting a nation ruled by white supremacists. Much of the media went slightly hysterical after a so-called conservative won the governorship in Virginia. All the poor victor did was to go against the indoctrination of children in the fine arts of racial hatred, pornography and gender neutrality. Virginia parents rejected critical race theory that tells black children that white children are inherently suspect. Listening to some of the pundits decrying the Virginia election of a moderate, a visitor from Mars would think an heir to Hitler or Stalin had just carried the state.

What actually won Virginia for the Republicans was the simple argument that parents have rights over what their children are being taught. This right involves all of us, in the UK, in Italy and Austria, where my grandchildren are going or will go to school, and in America. A headline in the Washington Post, owned by that great looker Jeff Bezos, said it all: ‘Parents claim they have the right to shape their kids’ school curriculum. They don’t.’ So who does? Think of it. Had Britain lost the war back in the 1940s, a similar edict would have been issued by you-know-who.

So the Democratic Party is insisting that parents should have no rights when it comes to what their children are taught in taxpayer-funded schools. Where is Orwell now that we need him most? Well, the bad guys didn’t win this one, but it’s not going to stop them in future. The baddies insist that schools that do not teach that whites are oppressors and blacks are victims are racist, cheered on by CNN and the rest of the usual suspects. I’ve been back one week and the good old US of A has never seemed more depressing.

As I write, at least eight people died and hundreds were injured in a crush at a concert in Texas. The rapper Travis Scott, who has pleaded guilty twice previously to reckless conduct charges, is being sued by some survivors of the tragedy.

Is this the future of American culture, already a contradiction in terms, or is it progressivism, as some call the chaos? In a country as large and diverse as America, there has to be some benign neglect of other people’s ways, but because of the internet, it is now becoming totally unacceptable. How can history be taught when it’s said that Robert E. Lee was a traitor, while others like myself describe him as one of the greatest Americans? How can a serious debate take place at a university when professors insist that white men dominate, hence any debate is unfair and racist. Social media did not create this mentality but it exacerbates it at every turn. The situation is too depressing for words, so soon I’ll be off to Texas for a meeting with some great Texan oilmen and conservatives. I can’t wait.

Got something to add? Join the discussion and comment below.

You might disagree with half of it, but you’ll enjoy reading all of it. Try your first 10 weeks for just $10

Show comments