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Clarissa's Blog

An academic's opinions on feminism, politics, literature, philosophy, teaching, academia, and a lot more.

P.S. To the Future of Liberalism

And one more thing. After a series of crushing defeats at every level that culminated in the terrible loss in November, one would think a political movement would do some soul-searching, conduct some analysis of what it’s doing wrong to repel one constituency after another. 

Maybe I’m looking in the wrong places, but I’m not seeing anything of the kind. I’m seeing endless self-congratulation on one’s profound moral superiority that would be more appropriate to a movement that has actually won something. As they say in Russia, “If he’s so smart, then why is he so dead?”

For instance, has anybody seen a long, nuanced piece anywhere analyzing why such a stunning number of Hispanics went for Trump? Why women went for Trump? Why African Americans didn’t show up for the Democrats as actively as they could? Why Bernie failed to connect with his #1 target group, the white working class? Why voters bought the association between Hillary and pedophilia so easily a week before the election and dropped her from a 10-point lead to a loss? Why Obama sat on the Russian evidence, tanking Hillary’s chances, only to trot it in her face as a sort of mockery when it was of no use whatsoever? 

Has anybody seen anybody asking the question of why the progressive agenda is being repelled so actively on the local, regional and now national level in favor of horrible, incompetent people who suck? I mean, you’ve got to be doing something really bad to be discarded time and time and time again in favor of the Brownbacks, the Rauners, the Ryans, the Trumps, and all the ungodly bunch of them. I don’t know these answers. But I want to look for them and I want to do it as part of a movement that will finally end putting on a spectacle of offended dignity and moral outrage and GET. THE FUCK. TO WORK.

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60 thoughts on “P.S. To the Future of Liberalism

  1. Shakti on said:

    The lazy answer to (some) of your questions:
    The best lack all conviction, while the worst
    Are full of passionate intensity.
    ¯_(ツ)_/¯

    For instance, has anybody seen a long, nuanced piece anywhere…
    No. Because “long and nuanced “are out of style like “adult” or “stoic”. You should really be asking where are the clickbait listicles determining the reasons for all of your questions.

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    • I went to the bookstore yesterday and browsed through the magazine section. All of the magazines I usually buy – The Atlantic, Harper’s, Mother Jones – are completely empty of content. There is nothing but inane moaning about Trump. So I didn’t buy anything, took out my phone, and read American Conservative instead. It’s impossible even for me to believe because I detest even the word “conservative.” But that’s what I’ve been reduced to.

      Seriously, if somebody knows of any magazine or website which is like a progressive version of American Conservative, I’d be very grateful for the recommendation.

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  2. I have some answers, but you won’t agree with (and/or like) most of them:

    “has anybody seen a long, nuanced piece anywhere analyzing why such a stunning number of Hispanics went for Trump?”

    Dreaming of a caudillo, Latinos aren’t over that yet (I think maybe Spaniards are)

    “Why women went for Trump?”

    Weomen trust men more than women (in positions of authority)

    “Why African Americans didn’t show up for the Democrats as actively as they could?”

    They loved Bill, never understood what he saw in Hillary (there’s the carpetbagger aspect too – US blacks have never much like northern white liberals and that’s what she seems like to them).

    “Why Bernie failed to connect with his #1 target group, the white working class?”

    Caused he called himself a socialist. If you’re worried about job creation electing a socialist is a crazy thing to do.

    “Why voters bought the association between Hillary and pedophilia so easily a week before the election and dropped her from a 10-point lead to a loss?”

    I thought that was an internet thing only. But…. her campaign manager absolutely seems like the type that could be involved in that. Creepy beyond belief. There’s a lot of smoke there (including Bill’s… excesses) so people could imagine a fire.

    “Why Obama sat on the Russian evidence, tanking Hillary’s chances, only to trot it in her face as a sort of mockery when it was of no use whatsoever?”

    He never liked her Northern white liberal ass and was determined to be as little help as possible (I thought at that the time he was damning her with feigned praise a lot of the time). He seemed supremely unbothered by the idea of turning over the WH to the republicans.

    “why the progressive agenda is being repelled so actively on the local, regional and now national level in favor of horrible, incompetent people who suck?”

    Cause they’re so obsessed with marginal issues that most people either don’t care about or are repelled by (obsessing about weird pronouns and transgender bathrooms and weaponized identity politics and caring more about illegal aliens than citizens).

    “GET. THE FUCK. TO WORK.”

    Most liberals are more into moral posturing than working.

    nb. I don’t necessarily agree with the content of those answers but I think that’s what people were thinking and/or motivated by.

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    • “Cause they’re so obsessed with marginal issues that most people either don’t care about or are repelled by (obsessing about weird pronouns and transgender bathrooms and weaponized identity politics and caring more about illegal aliens than citizens).”

      • Exactly. Dozens of people overdose in a single town in a single day while liberal bloggers, Facebookers and journalists go on and on about some outlandish crap nobody on the planet can possibly care about. I’m begging the people I know to share the article I linked yesterday about Rauner but not a single person does it. Instead, they paper their Facebook with ridiculous stories about immigrants stopped on the border about whom they suddenly decided to care. So somebody wasn’t allowed to come to the US from Canada to visit a fucking spa. Big whoop. We have people without healthcare here, hello! But nobody cares about that nearly as much as they do about the rich idiot and her dumb spa visit.

      This makes me so angry.

      These people say they care about race? Bollocks. My university can’t help kids from the East St. Louis area like we have for years. We can’t give scholarships to our black students. We have to eliminate services that help black students stay in school. But is that being discussed? No. It’s all about how “white feminists” are not intersectional enough and are mortally wounding “black feminists.” Fuck them all, I say. Rich, spoiled freakazoids.

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    • adrianaurelien on said:

      With Bernie, his message of “free college for everyone!” also really didn’t appeal to blue coat workers who want to keep their current jobs, not go to college. Why would a factory worker want to pay for somebody else (who very well may be better off than him) to go to college his tax dollars?

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      • adrianaurelien on said:

        *collar

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      • “didn’t appeal to blue collar workers”

        Yes. It’s very hard for some of us to accept that not everyone has a lot of intellectual curiosity.

        More and more the economy is stratifying along smarter/less smart lines. Previously the less academically inclined (with some kind of worth ethic) could have pretty good lives. That’s over.

        Intelligence and intellect (two separate things I think) are not equally distributed among individuals and those in the bottom two thirds of either are finding it harder to have lives that aren’t so unbearable that drugging themselves to death doesn’t seem like a viable alternative.

        What drives me crazy is when very intelligent people refuse to admit that they have a huge advantage. Denying differences in intelligence does nothing to help that bottom two thirds (soon to be bottom four fifths) of the population.

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        • One thing I have found in the US is that it’s a big no-no to discuss intelligence. There is only hard work and nothing else in regards to intellectual pursuits, and you’re not supposed to hint that some people are bright and others not so much; that bright people are able to learn nearly anything faster and with much less effort than those who are less so; that for many people and many types of college-level pursuits no amount of hard work will be enough.

          People have no problem recognizing the importance of talent/aptitude in sports and even arts (most of them, anyway), but in intellectual pursuits it very poor form to speak of differences in talent/aptitude.

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          • To be honest, I never noticed the effects of intelligence. I see many bright students who struggle because they won’t apply themselves and many patient plodders who succeed because they keep to it.

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            • Dreidel on said:

              “To be honest, I never noticed the effects of intelligence.”

              Well, you see the results of those effects everday, whether you’re aware of them or not.

              It may not be fair, but brains and I.Q. do make a difference.

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            • Evelina Anville on said:

              “To be honest, I never noticed the effects of intelligence. I see many bright students who struggle because they won’t apply themselves and many patient plodders who succeed because they keep to it.”

              As a fellow educator, I completely agree.

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            • It doesn’t have to be a “brilliant but lazy” vs “dim-witted but hard-working” dichotomy. There are many people who are both intelligent and hard-working. But I definitely see a spectrum of intelligence (or perhaps it’s just the talent for my specific field) in the courses I teach, and especially in office hours. The bright kids get new concepts very quickly and can easily extrapolate from one example to a whole class of related ones. The kids who are not quite as bright need things explained several different ways until we find one that clicks, and need to go through many more specific examples with assistance until they start seeing common patterns and are able to generalize themselves. All of these kids are above average intelligence, mind you. But those who are highly intelligent can take 5 courses per semester and get excellent grades in all of them just by coming to class and doing a reasonable amount of work outside of class, because they easily understand and adopt new concepts; therefore, they are also able to have social lives, work part-time, etc. Those for whom just getting the concepts takes a lot more effort will still be able to get good grades, but the amount of work needed to do that might be punishing, and it affects the rest of their lives. If they have stamina, they will go far, but otherwise there will be limits to what they can achieve.

              I am not saying this is the issue just of IQ. Sometimes, it’s the specific talent that’s there or not there, so a person might not be applying their efforts in the sphere where these efforts would bear fruit. I had a friend in freshman and sophomore year of college, who eventually switched from physics to foreign languages and journalism. She was multilingulal since birth, fluent in four or five languages, and always wrote as a hobby. She said that, when she studied physics, every A was a tremendous amount of work for her, while everything that had to do with writing, languages, and literature was nearly effortless. I think she did the right thing switching, for that’s clearly where her aptitude lay.

              You can see intelligent vs not-quite-as-intelligent people everywhere, in every walk of life: retail jobs, customer service, HR, any corporation… It’s the people who get how things work quickly, all the service workers who easily understand what your problem is and how to best help you, all the ultra-competent managers and shift supervisors, all those who are able to innovate in their jobs whatever the jobs are…

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  3. Shakti on said:

    For instance, has anybody seen a long, nuanced piece anywhere analyzing why such a stunning number of Hispanics went for Trump?

    Cubans in this country, who mostly read as white, have always heavily favored the Republicans for their stance on Cuba and don’t feel the anti-immigrant rhetoric. I mean, “Welcome to America, you get a green card within a year” was quite generous. That’s even faster than a green card marriage. It’s not a coincidence that the two Hispanic Republican candidates were both Cuban. Also most of this is about “Mexicans” and “Muslims” and Cubans are decidedly not either, thank you very much. Part of it it is pride and part of it is a survival mechanism. :/

    “Why women went for Trump?”

    Weomen trust men more than women (in positions of authority)

    You mean white women. Or any women at all. Otherwise
    exit poll data doesn’t support that assertion, in which women means “all women who cast a vote.” For example, in this Oprah panel interview, not all of the white women supported Trump but every woman who supported Trump was white.

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    • “You mean white women”

      I mean those who voted for Trump (who were mostly white).

      Non-white feminists have made it completely clear that they dislike white feminists as much as the patriarchy. When was the last time you heard the terms ‘white’ and ‘feminists’ used together in anything but an accusing/scornful manner.

      That’s not how elections are won.

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      • “When was the last time you heard the terms ‘white’ and ‘feminists’ used together in anything but an accusing/scornful manner.”

        • Right. When that happens, I end the conversation right there. I can’t imagine anybody but the Melissa McEwan types not doing the same.

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      • Shakti on said:

        “You mean white women”

        I mean those who voted for Trump (who were mostly white).

        Non-white feminists have made it completely clear that they dislike white feminists as much as the patriarchy. When was the last time you heard the terms ‘white’ and ‘feminists’ used together in anything but an accusing/scornful manner.

        That’s not how elections are won.

        You’re conflating white women with white feminists. Most women aren’t feminist and most white women aren’t feminist either, either by claiming a label “I’m a feminist!” or by their actions. They just aren’t.

        Again, if you look at the poll exit data, overall “all women” didn’t go in the majority for Trump. If you look at subsets of women broken down by income, race and gender, you see different patterns.

        Another thing to consider:

        What factors for example, caused <a href=”http://brilliantmaps.com/did-not-vote/’>more people (the map is interesting, if perhaps dated) to not vote than vote, for any candidate?
        And apparently most people who didn’t vote said they didn’t regret it.

        Voting registration rules and the lines of districts are determined by the states, not the federal government. Turnout for statewide elections is even more abysmal than national presidential elections. One of my reps, for example, had no opponents.

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    • Everybody I know who was born in Mexico – and that’s quite a few people given my profession – every single person voted for Trump. So it’s not just Cubans.

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      • “Everybody I know who was born in Mexico – every single person voted for Trump”

        I think my “dreaming of a caudillo” explanation holds up pretty well.

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        • I’m sure that’s a big part of it. Also, have you tried calling a Mexican “a person of color”? Please don’t or there might be bodily harm involved.

          There is also the reason I discuss in my next post (voiced to me by a student from Mexico).

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          • “have you tried calling a Mexican “a person of color”?”

            I’ve had some very close Mexican friends and it would never occur to me in a million years to call any of them (including those who were activistas indígenas) “persons of color” however that is in Spanish (persona de color? sounds just about as awful as it does in English)

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            • I had a colleague who tried to force her Hispanic students into the “Latinx” or at least the “Latino, -a” model. There was a veritable rebellion. The students were very angry.

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            • Shakti on said:

              PoC sounds clunky because it is a political term made up in a committee (long quote at link) to facilitate coalition building, to be used instead of “non-white.”
              In practice I’ve seen it further distinguished with NBPoC.

              Whee, euphemisms!

              “Since you get lumped in with all these people for negative reasons, let’s come up with terms that lump you in with all the other people you get lumped in with to resist this negative lumping!”

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              • It’s simply not a good idea to suggest to Hispanic people that they are not white. Even when they are very clearly not white.

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      • Well, I know people born in Honduras who refused to vote Clinton because of Obama-Clinton involvement in the Honduras coup.

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  4. What if Trump is actually put up there by a conscious consensus of the political elites and the end game is defaulting on the US state debt? (Got that idea from a discussion with some Trump supporters.) Why would one need a combination of increased military spending and withdrawal from foreign involvements? (I mean why would one need that for reasons other than a combination of populism and satisfying military-industrial lobby.) Or if this is too extreme – think of any other reform that would be highly unpopular, drastically more unpopular than whatever he does now…
    If defaulting (or whatever else it may be) will not work as intended – he will become a convenient scapegoat and everybody will suddenly remember that he is a clown, including the Breitbart News. I am not sure any more if it is Russian slang or Estonian, but what if Trump is just a “tankist”?

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    • “If defaulting (or whatever else it may be) will not work as intended – he will become a convenient scapegoat and everybody will suddenly remember that he is a clown, including the Breitbart News.”

      I think it might well be something like this. Not to conduct a default but to dismantle the nation-state. Although the former can easily be a consequence of the latter.

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  5. \ It’s simply not a good idea to suggest to Hispanic people that they are not white.

    Wanted to ask whether American Jews are seen as PoC too. What if they have black hair and a Jewish nose like my late grandmother? Would she have been classified as PoC, while I – as white?

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    • No, of course not. Jews are white, which means evil, suspect and oppressive. 😆😆😆

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      • “Jews are white, which means evil, suspect and oppressive ”

        Jews are chameleons. They’re white to those who dislike white people and non-white to people that don’t like non-white people. There’s probably a pattern there…. what could it be?

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        • Bernie Sanders was too white (I obviously don’t mean his skin color) to appeal to African American voters. But he couldn’t get any white working class voters either.

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  6. Dreidel on said:

    Yep. White = evil racist oppressors
    People of color = all the oppressed people in the world (everybody who isn’t white)

    The only time I see Hispanics called “people of color” is when the writer wants to label them as an “oppressed” group — such as articles critical of America’s “racist” immigration policies toward Mexico.

    The ONLY time I ever saw the term “white Hispanic” was when it was used repeatedly to refer to George Zimmerman, so readers would understand that a *white” man killed a black teenager.

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  7. has anybody seen a long, nuanced piece anywhere analyzing why such a stunning number of Hispanics went for Trump? Why women went for Trump? Why African Americans didn’t show up for the Democrats as actively as they could?

    Far be it from me, a deplorable Trump supporter, to suggest that “identity politics” may not work as well as it once did. It seems to have worked pretty well for LBJ, so why not for his successors?

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    • Identity politics doesn’t work for long because identities can be endlessly fragmented into ever tinier groups. Until there is nothing but individuals with nothing but anger towards each other.

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      • “Until there is nothing but individuals with nothing but anger towards each other.”

        Or perhaps — as you suggest in the third paragraph of your article — racially and otherwise diverse groups, some large, with common goals might form? People with different racial, ethnic and gender identify managed to do that in supporting President Trump.

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        • “Or perhaps — as you suggest in the third paragraph of your article — racially and otherwise diverse groups, some large, with common goals might form?”

          • Only if they find a common goal outside of themselves, a shared point of reference that is not the self.

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          • The appear to have done just that in supporting Trump.

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            • “Supporting Trump” is yet again about a single individual. And I’m talking about the need to look outside of individuals. When a single person is invested with messianic hopes, that person is bound to disappoint. The “Messiah is coming!” is in no way better than “the Messiah is not coming!”

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  8. paranoid on said:

    The best pieces that I’ve seen haven’t been long pieces but have been series of discussions I’ve seen and heard in scattered Tweets and blogs. It also isn’t complete, because it doesn’t deal with the sexism that Hillary Clinton faced and how Trump’s “Make America Great Again,” so we could return to an idyllic past when men were men and women were doted on by loving providers. For all the times I heard, “American is ready for a woman president, just not that woman,” I wanted to scream, “How saintly and qualified does she have to be to be the right woman?!” Even with its incompleteness, the explanation covers a lot.

    There are two longish pieces that get at some of the ideas…
    From Tressie McMillan Cottom: https://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2016/12/obamas-faith-in-white-america/510503/
    From Doug Muder, not specifically about the election, but about maintaining white supremacy https://weeklysift.com/2014/08/11/not-a-tea-party-a-confederate-party/

    Here’s my take from what I’ve read…
    The United States was founded on white supremacy, with the exact word for “white” and definition of “white” morphing over time, but with a basic meaning that the rights described in the Constitution are meant for citizens who are worthy of them, the whites. “Those people” (the nonwhites) are not worthy. Whiteness gives tangible benefits in how you are treated and intangible benefits in a feeling of superiority to “those people.”

    When looked at that way, U.S. history can be looked at as an ongoing struggle of different groups of people to be recognized as full citizens. The most successful way to become a worthy citizen, if you’re one of “those people,” be it Irish or Italian in 1910, Japanese in 1950, gay in 2000 or Latino in today, is to become white, that is, for you to assert your whiteness and for white people decide that your group is worthy. For most groups, the best way to do that has been to take as many of the norms and values of white people as you can and, at least in public, do them more than the average white.

    African Americans, however, tried that route for the first half of the 20th century but still were never quite white enough. The Civil Rights Movement changed some of the law, to the same effect as reconstruction did after the Civil War – short-term gains largely were dissolved under the forces of whites who wanted to keep their benefits or to make sure there always was someone in the role of “those people” that they could be superior to. Barack Obama’ election was a glimmer of hope that maybe this time things would change. His presidency, as a standard middle-of-the-road Democrat, who was obstructed at every turn, made it clear that no bleach would be strong enough to make them white. Why bother going to the polls, when Obama did so little and could do so little? What reason was there to believe that Hillary Clinton or Bernie Sanders would do anything more?

    The 2016 election was a clear choice between asserting your whiteness by voting for Trump or asserting something both short of whiteness and short of solidarity with “those people”. It isn’t all that inspiring.

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    • Do you realize that after the words “the United States was founded on white supremacy” the absolute majority of people in this country and anywhere in the world stop listening to anything you say? This is not a rhetorical question. I honestly, sincerely want to know: do people who speak this language not know this or do they not care? I have no doubt that this is said with the best possible intentions but are people not aware how this sounds to others and how definitively it kills any possibility of them having a political impact?

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      • I agree that “the United States was founded on white supremacy”, but I also stop listening after hearing this. It’s kind of inconsistent of me, isn’t it?

        The weird pronouns like “hir” have the same impact.

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      • paranoid on said:

        I’m trying to understand what happened, for myself, not to convince anyone else. Skip that paragraph, and tell me what’s wrong with the argument.

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        • What’s wrong is that it’s reductive. “Racism and sexism” do not apply to anybody I know who voted for Trump. It would be convenient if it did but it doesn’t.

          I think people tend to want to have something bigger than themselves to care about and definitely bigger than a list of grievances over things they didn’t cause. Nationalism is such a thing in the absence of anything else. In terms of a political strategy, nobody will follow a party or a leader that ask you to feel bad about yourself.

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          • Shakti on said:

            I think a lot of people have surface reasons they sincerely believe with all of their hearts and I think a lot of people lie to themselves about their motivations or what informs their decisions, in whole or in part. I want to believe the surface reasons people offer. It’s much more palatable to me. The problem though, is that if you just address the surface reasons and don’t get at the underlying ones, you’ll get no real change in behavior and be totally shocked when people do something contrary to their surface reasons. Or at least, that’s what I tell myself.

            How do you reason with someone who is not interested in reason? How do you find that bit of reality you both share?

            I’m sure a lot of liberals lie to themselves about their motivations when they proclaim “the real reason” or the “best explanation” for an event. It’s been very interesting to see how all of these hot takes track with everyone’s self interests.

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            • As I said, I know people who voted for Trump. Some very enthusiastically, some very much less so. These are people I know and like or I wouldn’t associate with them, seeing how I’m very reluctant to hang out with human beings altogether. I wish I could dismiss this as racism and sexism. I wish. But I can’t because I know it’s not about that. Again, I know these people. And it’s not about that.

              We’ll keep losing them and many others if we can’t get past the “white supremacy at work” explanation. People I’m talking about – half of them are not even white. Things are more complicated than that, they just are.

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          • paranoid on said:

            What do you mean by “do not apply”? I know plenty of people who don’t think in those terms, but then when I ask them why they don’t support the Democrats, it comes down to a handful things: visceral dislike of a particular candidate, wanting to maintain policies that provide financial advantages to them personally, wanting a world where women are mothers, or wanting to protect themselves from some group of people who they find threatening.

            Even though they don’t think in terms of racism or sexism, they think in terms of building or maintaining a system that benefits people like them and protects them from what they fear. That some of their fears come from cultural messages about who or what is to be disliked or feared and that the system is rigged in a particular way is the racism and sexism that they wittingly or unwittingly reinforce.

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            • “Even though they don’t think in terms of racism or sexism, they think in terms of building or maintaining a system that benefits people like them and protects them from what they fear. That some of their fears come from cultural messages about who or what is to be disliked or feared and that the system is rigged in a particular way is the racism and sexism that they wittingly or unwittingly reinforce.”

              • I thought we were talking about the people I know. 🙂 🙂 (Emphasis on the I.)

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          • I know lots of people who are openly racist and sexist and also classist and voted for Trump. And even if you vote for him for another reason, you have to be OK with a certain amount of racism and sexism to vote for him. But the jingoistic nationalism was an even bigger draw, and if you need that to “feel good about yourself” (and you vote for that reason), and if you are so fragile that mentioning any flaws in US policies makes you “feel bad about yourself”, well then I just really am not sure what to say.

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            • All Trump did was list flaws in US policies. This was his major issue.

              As for sexism, I didn’t listen to his speech in Congress, but isn’t it true that he said not a word about abortion, gays, “unwed mothers” or any other issue of the sexist nature that Republicans love to recite?

              Singling out Trump as especially sexist among Republicans doesn’t sound right to me. He doesn’t seem to care about sexual morality, abortion or contraception at all.

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              • As for racism, he speaks about African Americans in very clumsy and uncomfortable ways. But what racist policies did he introduce?

                Let’s criticize him for what he actually is doing. “He’s racist and sexist” already failed to defeat him in an election.

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              • Hmmm, maybe you are onto something here

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  9. “It’s simply not a good idea to suggest to Hispanic people that they are not white. Even when they are very clearly not white.”

    Racial identification is a super delicate issue in Latin America for lots of historical reasons (a fact you know but some readers might not).

    The only Latinos* I’ve known who willfully identified as non-white were invariably considered to be white in the US.

    *apart from a few who were very proud of their indigenous heritage, but on the other hand, indigenous isn’t necessarily mutually exclusive with white… Latino thinking about race just doesn’t fit into US models….

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    • “The only Latinos* I’ve known who willfully identified as non-white were invariably considered to be white in the US.”

      • Oh yes, lily-white academics who are grandchildren of German and Russian immigrants in Latin America are all very proud of their Aztec roots. It often gets too ridiculous for words when they start ranting about their non-whiteness and referring to “the whites” in the third person.

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      • “German and Russian immigrants in Latin America are all very proud of their Aztec roots”

        I was thinking of one person in particular (who I mostly really liked, a lot of fun to talk to). She had pale pinkish skin and long, very straight light brown hair and a Russian last name.
        She kept insisting, however, that she was Black because she was from Puerto Rico (though actually she was born in the southern cone and then her parents moved to PR when she was a child).

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  10. Dreidel on said:

    Speaking of “Mexican” versus “white”…

    In the mid-170s when I was a staff psychaitrist at a state psychiatric hospital in Southern California, I was surprised to learn that the hospital records used “Mexican” as a racial identity. Patients of Hispanic ethnicity (and there were a lot of them) were listed as “Mexican” rather than “white”on many of the records, even though very few of those Hispanic patients were dark-skinned.

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    • It takes one whole lecture hour to explain to students that “Latino” is not a race.

      Liked by 1 person

    • “I was surprised to learn that the hospital records used “Mexican” as a racial identity.”

      Back when I worked in a university bureaucracy I was suprised to see that many/most students from India chose the category American Indian (still in use there instead of ‘native american’).

      I asked my boss (cause it seemed wrong) and they said it didn’t matter. If they weren’t citizens then their racial self-identification wasn’t used for anything within the system and if they were citizens then they couldn’t enter that category into the system. Not sure if that’s still the case.

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  11. Dreidel on said:

    (I’m posting this at the bottom of the page so WordPress doesn’t squeeze my comment too thin to display well.)

    “All Trump did was list flaws in US policies…He doesn’t seem to care about sexual morality, abortion or contraception at all…Let’s criticize him for what he actually is doing. ‘He’s racist and sexist’ already failed to defeat him in an election.”

    Ah, Clarissa, finally, some intelligent commentary about Trump on a liberal blog!

    If you don’t like Trump’s conservative policies (and he IS already creating conservative polices through his appointments and executive orders), then the Democrats need to do two things: Speak out against those policies rather than attack Trump’s personality, and at least articulate and propose counter-policies, even if they lack the legislative clout to carry them out.

    The progressive belief that Trump is a hopeless buffoon who will self-destruct on his own, if the Democrats just keep shouting “Resist! Impeach!” for the next four years, is music to certain conservative ears (like mine).

    No President ever carries out all of his campaign promises. (Remember “You can keep your own doctor, and your premiums won’t go up”?) All Trump has to do to get re-elected is convince enough voters to give him another electoral college majority in 2020, while his opposition does nothing but scream and whine.

    Note to Democrats: “Keep up the good work.”

    Like

    • Yes, the Democrats need to come up with answers to the most pressing issues the country faces. For the moment, it looks like they have chosen not to do that and hide behind the fantasy of “we didn’t really lose, we just lost the electoral college and that doesn’t count, and few people showed up for Trump’s inauguration so he has no mandate.” It’s beyond self-defeating.

      Here in Illinois, by the way, I’m seeing zero efforts to unseat Rauner in 2018. I’m sure they’ll start waking up eventually but it might be too late.

      Like

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