I was listening to Glenn Beck on the radio last week. He was bemoaning the fact that this country has race problems, that we are supposed to be a colorblind society, and that we are supposed to be judging each other on the content of people’s character. Then he
whined asked how things have gotten to this point, why race relations were so strained. I laughed at his cluelessness and turned off my radio.
Ronald Reagan signed Martin Luther King Jr. into our American tradition on November 2, 1983. And so now he shares a status with Christopher Columbus and George Washington. And yet, the Left hates what Regan has done with MLK. Why? Because Regan cherry-picked a line from one of King’s speeches to portray him as an advocate for a colorblind society:
I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character.
The Left does not like the idea of a colorblind society. They want blacks to be black, Hispanics to be Hispanic, Asians to be Asian, and whites to be devils. The only ones to be held to the seemingly-impossible standard of racial colorblindness are white conservatives like Glenn Beck, who will parrot this Regan-era, token idea to their detriment.
To the Left, supporting a colorblind society means opposing the interests of civil rights and debasing the aims of black civil rights activists. The Left explains that putting everyone on a level playing field defangs MLK and destroys his legacy. In fact, treating everyone in this universal style is actually regarded as “colorblind racism.”
Per The Left: A Universal, Colorblind Society Is A Desert
The Left in this country wants it both ways: they don’t want to have blacks judged by the color of their skin. Yet these same people do not want blacks to have their ethnicity ignored. In one breath, they will complain about how blacks are isolated as “the other” when it comes to receiving special attention. In another breath, they demand that preferential treatment due to blackness continue.
“[P]rograms that are overtly race-conscious come with a serious downside. They have a segregative effect. Things like school busing and affirmative action, by herding all the black people in through the black people pipeline, serve to overemphasize the otherness of blacks, further distancing them from the white majority by insisting on treating them differently.” – Tanker Colby, “Politicians have abused Martin Luther King Jr’s dream”
For leftwing academics such as this, whites are required to do a series of mental gymnastics. First, we are supposed to be racially conscious of the different ethnicities we encounter. After that, we are to then become racially neutral in our actions, or in other words, we resume ignoring the elephant in the room. Whites must become “racially neutral,” and shed their own in-group preferences.
This is only required of the whites. It’s no wonder that virtue-signalers like Glenn Beck are so confused. Whites may be happy to throw away their “white card,” but it is clear that the Left does not want blacks to burn their “black card.” This is the position the Left maintains today, and it is what MLK would have supported if he were alive.
Leftist academics, such as Proffesor Ronald Turner, resent the myth built up around King. Again, they despise the idea that “judged by the content of their character” is used to promote universalism. The following is from Turner ‘s article, titled The Dangers of Misappropriation: Misusing Martin Luther King, Jr.’s Legacy to Prove the Colorblind Thesis:
This statement has been wrenched out of the social and political context in which King lived and died and has been misappropriated by some proponents of colorblindness who erroneously argue that “if colorblindness was good enough for Martin Luther King. . .then it ought to be good enough for a society that still aspires to the movement’s goals of equality and fair treatment.” This incorrect and ahistorical perversion of King’s statement distorts his actual views and legacy, and illustrates the dangers of the misuse of “acontextual snippets.”
Putting blacks on a level playing field with whites is a bad and dangerous thing, according to Turner. In fact, according to this academic, a colorblind society isn’t even a moral position, but for Turner, colorblindness is somehow only a policy-based decision. If colorblindness means that it’s wrong to discriminate against blacks, then it’s also wrong to discriminate in their favor.
Another academic, Professor Donna Murch would agree with Turner. She also argues against MLK’s supposed colorblindness, arguing that it is the enemies of affirmative action who continue this myth, and that “only direct intervention by a strong federal government could counteract the historical disparities wrought by the overlapping forces of race and class, forces that were unlikely to disappear.” The government must intervene…but for how long? Indefinitely? Or does the intervention only last until Black Power attains a status that finally overcomes the social order?
Old wounds must be kept alive and fresh to perpetuate an entitlement welfare lifestyle. Their position has nothing to do with equality and certainly nothing to do with equity. The Left wants to keep Affirmative Action, and they continue to demand reparations for all blacks for the slavery of their ancestors.
For the Left, the content of a man’s character means nothing. It all boils down to your ancestral DNA. If you are black, you are encouraged to spurn universalism, embrace your in-group preferences, and demand what you can from whites as you crush them beneath a mountain of white guilt. Concern for whites be damned, for Turner, colorblindness is the “rallying cry of conservatives who seek to protect white males from racial oppression.” And ultimately, society is left thinking that those conservative white males deserve no protection from racial oppression in their direction.
In a 1986 press conference, President Reagan stated his desires for American society:
We want a colorblind society. The ideal will be when we have achieved the moment when no one–or when nothing is done to or for anyone because of race, differences, or religion, or ethnic origin; and it’s done not because of those things, but in spite of them.
This naive hope of our president is the same civic nationalist principle of the Catholic Church. Universalism–a heavenly state of society in which “there is neither Jew nor Greek”–is the Christian goal we should be aiming for. With great difficulty, the righteous state of universalism is a state we’ve been trying to attain since Christ. Yet it appears that this is a far-fetched and unobtainable goal, even for Catholics who fall into the politically correct trap of White Guilt. And certainly, the Left will have none of this universalism. They will be happy to stand back and watch the Right fall on their own swords, as conservatives continue this song and dance of reaching for equality.
The brutal truth is that the Left is only interested in Black Power. In their eyes, white conservatives are guilty of trying to implement a colorblind regime. Our universalism is an attempt to subordinate blacks to white hegemony. The Left argues that blacks don’t want to be colorless, raceless Americans. They enjoy their hyphenated status. So, when whites try to claim that Martin Luther King Jr. stood for a colorblind society, they are guilty of “laissez-faire racism.”
The Left does not believe in equality. If only they would admit it. Since Ronald Reagan, many on the Right have had the goal to treat everyone equally without reference to context, situation, history or culture. The Left hates this. “Conversations” between the Right and Left are too volatile to reach a point of understanding this. Furthermore, a great number of white people on the Left and Right infantilize blacks, regarding them as incapable of holding these kinds of discussions.
To add injury to insult, white, Leftist, Berkeley PhDs are allowed to tell us that “we must cleave our understanding of King from notions of colorblindness.” However, if we turn that around and have people on the Right agree with Martin Luther King Jr., and these same right-wingers say they also want to not be colorblind in regards to their own whiteness, then they are deemed to be racists and white supremacists.
If a train of black people hold parades, cars, floats, and marching bands celebrating their blackness and their hero Marin Luther King Jr–who did not like colorblindness–then, that is just fine. They are vindicated by a government holiday created to help bridge black and white Americans. However, if the Right tries to hold a rally to unite one another and celebrate the Caucasian population of the United States…well, then, they are a gaggle of racists and bigots who deserve to have their gathering sabotaged by the local government. What happened in Charlottesville, Virginia last August was an atrocity in the public eye. But the marches of black pride in the streets on Martin Luther King Jr. Day will be a celebration.
All peoples of color are allowed to celebrate their race and ethnicity. You whites must practice colorblindness. This universalism of whites is not for blacks, and if blacks try to adopt a colorblind mindset, then they are labeled as oreos and Uncle Toms, among other things. And if Whites dare to abandon this cage of colorblindness proscribed for them since the Reagan era–if they dare to acknowledge their ethnicity in any positive way–then they will suffer the physical consequences from the government, from the media, from the Left, and from the cowardly politically correct “moderates” who cower in fear and indirectly serve the Left.