Race and Politics, Currently: All fringes and no center

Race and Politics, Currently: All fringes and no center. By David Cole.

Even regarding immigration, [Tucker Carlson] routinely evades race, repeatedly claiming that his opposition to open borders has nothing to do with the quality of the entrants but rather their political affiliation (“Democrats are importing new Democrats!”) and “lack of space” in the U.S. (in January he declared that even if all new immigrants were Nobel Prize winners, we still wouldn’t have room for them).

I’m focusing on Carlson because of his high profile, but this is a problem with the right in general. Most rightists with a national soapbox bend over backwards to remove race from every contentious issue.

“America has no racial problems! Just banksters and racist Democrats trying to divide us!”

What remains unsaid, because it is just too politically incorrect:

In 2016, Trump’s greatest effrontery to Con Inc. was that he dared to acknowledge that nonwhite nations were sending screwed-up migrants. You’re not supposed to admit that!

Worse still, you’re not supposed to win after admitting that. Be like Rich Lowry instead, who explained last week that there are in fact two “great replacement theories”: the “anti-Semitic” one that involves race (Americans foolishly worried that importing Third Worlders might turn America into a Third World nation), and the respectable one that involves party affiliation (Americans wisely worried that immigration might bring in more Democrats!).

Because we all know that when white Americans are house-hunting, they’re never concerned with things like whether a neighborhood is 90% Honduran immigrant and the school district 90% Spanish-speaking. No, they look for how many Democrats live nearby!

Of course these issues are racial. Crime, immigration, the dumbing down of education, the abandonment of merit in hiring, are all racial issues.

The left has gifted the right with these issues that score well with the core (if increasingly neglected) GOP base of blue-collar whites. Yet rightists feel like they can’t use the gift. They’re scared to.

Sometimes that fear is nonsensical. Like the fear that if you broach race, leftists will call you a Nazi. Well, the left’s gonna do that anyway. None of Tucker’s artful sidestepping has ever made a difference to his critics.

But sometimes the fear is understandable. The Tucker types who come close to broaching race — they dip their foot in the pool, then run away giggling “tee hee hee” like a schoolgirl — do so in part to avoid alienating the right-leaning whites who become uncomfortable when things get too racial. Yes, these whites probably take race into account in their private lives. But they likely don’t boast about it, and they may shy away from politicians or pundits who force them to confront the role of race in key political controversies.

That’s why the left does race more effectively than the right. Today’s leftists have been raised to be vocally and unapologetically racial; to be openly hostile to “whiteness.” But moderate and conservative-leaning whites generally don’t embrace hostility toward blacks. They don’t seek racial discord, so when it’s thrust upon them, they tend to gravitate toward solutions that are grounded in nonracial rhetoric. …


On the other hand, 2016 Trump flirted with race unsentimentality, and he won swing states.

It’s a delicate balancing act, to be sure.

Complicating matters, and I say this as someone with decades of experience on the rightist fringe, the people on the far right who gleefully and aggressively embrace racial hostility are downright scary. It’s not a constituency a wise man pursues. Endless, constant social engineering, telling whites that the worst, most evil thing they can be is antiblack, has engendered a situation in which unstable, antisocial, “transgressive” whites are drawn to racially inflammatory rhetoric. Yet while antiwhite race-haters on the left can find mainstream outlets for their aggression, their antiblack rightist counterparts can’t. So they sit and seethe, sometimes popping off violently, becoming just the monsters the SPLC needs. …

The rational center, like on so many issues, is ignored and silenced by an implicit conspiracy of the fringes to hog the limelight:

The people I’d describe as the right’s “rational racial center” (men who neither run from the issue nor approach it like trolls), Sailer, Peter Brimelow, and Jared Taylor (all of whom thoroughly eschew sentimentality), have almost no platform as it is, and eventually they’ll be completely silenced, slandered, and aged out of existence. …

What happens when that center collapses? You’ll be left with the two extremes: troll hunters and trolls, both sides in it for the joy of the game, with no desire to explain or address anything.

Issues like crime, the border, affirmative action, and CRT are electoral winners. But navigating those issues while kinda acknowledging the racial aspects but kinda rejecting them as well is such a minefield, such a maze, the right often fails to profit politically as much as it should.

Maybe Tuck’s one-toe-in-the-pool coy-little-schoolgirl disingenuousness is the best the right can do at the moment.