Modern-day tribalism, as Virginia’s governor-elect Glenn Youngkin argued in his election campaign, is no way forward for America. At the very same time Washington is experiencing a new ‘Sputnik moment’, with the testing of China’s hypersonic missiles and the launch of anti-satellite weapons, pushing back against a radical ideology that is dividing and destroying America is a matter of the greatest urgency – for the United States itself and for the free world.
Youngkin’s political triumph was meaningful because he ran as a full-blooded opponent of the teaching of critical race theory in Virginian schools. He abandoned the usual Republicans-In-Name-Only (RINO) routine in a blue state and went straight for the jugular. This was Youngkin on the eve of the election: ‘There’s no place for critical race theory in our school system, and why, on day one, I’m going to ban it’.
He further added: ‘[Critical race theory] teaches children to see everything through a lens of race and then to divide them into buckets and have children [who] are called privileged and others [who] are victims’.
Youngkin’s outspokenness went to the heart of the problem. What, exactly, is the point of the next generation of poly-ethnic Americans, including blacks, working to defend their nation against the challenge of Xi Jinping’s China if America’s DNA – to borrow from Barack Obama – is characterised by racism. The question schoolchildren must address is whether the essential nature of the country is whiteness or democracy. If it is the former, then the PRC, which really is a racialist state, will have won a great victory on the way to becoming the dominant power on the planet by 2049, the 100th anniversary of the CCP’s victory in China’s civil war.
During the first Cold War, the Soviet Union made much out of the segregation that occurred in regional parts of the United States in the 1950s. For liberals, at least, the passing of the Civil Rights Act in 1964 went a long way to proving that in the land of Lincoln, it was liberty and not racism that prevailed. The two conflicting views on that achievement were epitomised by Malcolm X and Martin Luther King. Critical race theory, along with the Black Lives Matter ideology, owes almost everything to the former and almost nothing to the latter.
Born Malcolm Little in 1925, Malcolm X had reasons to be bitter about white folk. His parents, Earl and Louise, were threatened by Ku Klux Klan types before they moved north, only to be hounded there by the white racist group known as the Black Legion. The Little’s home was quite likely fire-bombed by that group of anti-Black fanatics. Louise, before being committed to psychiatric care for more than two decades, believed the Black Legion was responsible for the death of her husband in questionable circumstances.
Young Malcolm found himself in one foster home after another. Despite possessing a brilliant intellect, he was persuaded by a white racist teacher that he could not expect to succeed as a professional in post-war America. Malcolm, instead of finding his place in the American Dream, became a petty criminal and served time in jail. It was a train wreck of a life – until Malcolm Little metamorphosed into Malcolm X, charismatic spokesman for Elijah Muhammad’s black supremacist Nation of Islam.
We can hardly be surprised that an embittered and indoctrinated Malcolm X responded to the assassination of President John F. Kennedy by mouthing off about ‘chickens coming home to roost’. We are not shocked to find that he spouted toxic anti-white hate slogans such as ‘the demise of the white race is imminent’ and ‘the white people are devils’. But it hardly rates as strategy for the advancement of ordinary African Americans. Malcolm X derided Martin Luther King as a ‘chump’ and a ‘stooge’. Nevertheless, MLK’s plea that we judge others not by ‘the colour of their skin but by the content of their character’ is infinitely superior in both an ethical and pragmatic sense to anything Malcolm X ever preached.
After a visit to Mecca, and observing blond, blue-eyed whites accepted as Muslims, Malcolm X had second thoughts about the Elijah Muhammad’s mantra that ‘the soul is in the melanin’. He decided he was no longer an anti-white racist but an ‘ethno-nationalist’ who simply wanted to live in his own segregated blacks-only state. The apartheid regime in South Africa should have built a statue to him. Malcolm X’s greatest legacy was to curse America with the self-defeating lie that bigotry can be defeated by introducing ever new forms of bigotry. Critical race theory, then, is little more than the tribalist psychodrama of Malcolm X dressed up in the false garb of academic respectability.
It’s a tragedy that Malcolm X Day has gained traction in America. And that Black Lives Matter, along with Antifa and other ‘civil rights’ groups, was given a free pass by progressive politicians to burn down urban precincts in the summer of 2020.
In a similar vein, the indefatigable Lama Abu-Odeh, writing in Quillette magazine, argues that liberal academics – there are almost no conservative ones! – remain silent about the obvious irrationality of the anti-white and anti-West racialism of critical race theory for fear of being publicly shamed by their more radical colleagues. There has, according to Abu-Odeh, been a ‘coup’ in the halls of America’s academia.
So how does America – and Australia no less – survive PC madness and the insanity of online social justice warriors? It elects to office conservatives – genuine conservatives – who exist outside the reach of the progressive herd and cannot be ‘publicly shamed’. Glenn Youngkin is an obvious case in point. But so is Winsome Sears, elected the same day to the position of lieutenant governor, the first woman of colour to do so in Virginia’s 400-year legislative history.
Sears is no fan of critical race theory. She is a straight-talking conservative, a former marine who believes not in the American nightmare of Malcolm X but in the American dream of MLK: ‘In case you haven’t noticed, I am Black and I have been Black all my life. But that is not what [my election] is about’. Maybe America is still in with a chance.
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