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Ever since South Korean immigrant Cho Seung-hui gunned down 32 people at Virginia Tech, there has been much comment that the university should have realized just from his two hate-filled and inept plays that the senior English major was a dangerous creep who needed to be taken away.

For a playwrighting class, Cho penned Mr. Brownstone and Richard McBeef (which, despite the Macbethian title, is a Hamlet-knock off about a young hero’s lethal conflict with the new stepfather who murdered his real father).

Richard McBeef includes such sterling dialogue as:

“I hate him. Must kill Dick. Must kill Dick. Dick must die. Kill Dick.”

Many have asked : “How could the English Department not recognize the horrific implications of these works?”

No one who wonders that, however, is familiar with the poetic oeuvreof one of Cho’s own teachers, Virginia Tech’s Distinguished Professor of English and Black Studies, Nikki Giovanni (for her website, click here).

Among the most celebrated figures of the Black Arts Movement of the 1960s and recipient of 21 honorary degrees, Giovanni has published poems strikingly similar to Cho’s plays in both vileness andincompetence. For example:

The True Import of Present Dialog, Black vs. Negro, by Nikki Giovanni

Ni**er Can you kill Can you kill Can a ni**er kill Can a ni**er kill a honkie Can a ni**er kill the Man Can you kill ni**er Huh? Ni**er can you kill Do you know how to draw blood Can you poison Can you stab-a-Jew Can you kill huh? Ni**er Can you kill Can you run a protestant down with your ’68 El Dorado (that’s all they’re good for anyway) Can you kill Can you piss on a blond head Can you cut it off Can you kill A ni**er can die We ain’t got to prove we can die We got to prove we can kill [More]

Ironically, the author of these lines was asked to deliver the closing remarks at Virginia Tech’s convocation memorializing the 32 slaughtered by Cho. For some reason, Giovanni didn’t read The True Import.

The above poem is not an isolated example. Cho’s old professor has had, for example, a Molotov cocktail obsession:

Also a company called Revolution has just issued A special kit for little boys Called Burn Baby I’m told it has full instructions on how to siphon gas And fill a bottle

And, then there’s this:

and it occurred to me maybe i shouldn’t write at all but clean my gun and check my kerosene supply

She switched themes from kill-the-honkies to confessional self-obsession as the market for up-against-the-wall poetry dried up at the end of the 1960s, and now laughs off questions about her Cho-likeearly work.

Still, in 1997 the poetess had “Thug Life” tattooed on her arm to honor slain gangsta rapper Tupac Shakur, who was gunned down in a long-running fatal feud with other rappers. Wikipedia explains, with deadpan irony:

“She has stated that she would ‘rather be with the thugs than the people who are complaining about them.’ She also tours nationwide and frequently speaks out against hate-motivated violence.”

Giovanni also writes prose:


Giovanni, Nikki; $20.00; This book indicts higher education for the inequities it perpetuates, contemplates the legacy of the 60′s, provides a survival guide for black students on predominately white campuses, and denounces Spike Lee while offering her own ideas for a film about Malcolm X. [From a list of "Books On The African American LGB Experience"]

She also has composed bon mots, such as:

A white face goes with a white mind. Occasionally a blackface goes with a white mind. Very seldom a white face will have a black mind.”

And then there’s her insight, “The honkie’s whole sex thing is tied up to land.”

As an anonymous commenter rhetorically asked on my blog:

“I wonder how many times Cho heard the phrase ‘whiteprivilege’ while he was in college?”

(Click here to see how often the term appears in the Virginia Tech website.)

Giovanni is one of those sub-doggerel “poets” who has such Important Things to say that she can’t be bothered to take the time to say them well. As she herself admitted to Brian Lamb on C-SPAN’s Booknotes, “I’m not a very good rhymer.” When she tries, it comes out like Cole Porter gone gaga:

if it’s gum we can chew it I hope it’s love so we can do it

Perhaps her best-known poem is Ego Tripping (there may be a reason why), a slab of Afrocentrist drivel from 1973:

I was born in the Congo. I walked to the Fertile Crescent and built the sphinx. I designed a pyramid so tough that a star that only glows every one hundred years falls into the center giving divine perfect light. I am bad.


Of course, Professor Giovanni, an elderly lady of 63, is not personally a danger to other people, no matter how bloodthirsty some of her poems are.

(What impact she has had over the years on earnest, impressionable young people might be a different question, however.)

Instead, she is a minimally talented self-promoter who has exploited various ideological fads over the decades, such as black radicalism,feminism, and Afrocentrism, to secure herself a comfy sinecure atVirginia Tech and to spend her spare time traveling around to hear herself be praised. Her own website lovingly lists 124 “Awards and Honorsshe has garnered.

Giovanni’s fee for a personal appearance runs from $5,000 to $10,000. That’s pocket lint compared to the $40,000+ demanded by Maya Angelou (who is ensconced down the road from public Virginia Tech at posh private Wake Forest), but it’s a living.

Giovanni [email her] is a small town version of New York City charlatan Al Sharpton, You might think that the ringmaster of the 1987 Tawana Brawley hoax whose racist rhetoric helped incite the Crown Heights pogrom of 1991 and the Freddie’s Fashion Mart mass murder of 1995 might, like Don Imus, have talked himself out of a job by now.

And, yet, Sharpton not only endures, but prospers—elbowing his way back into the spotlights as the moral arbiter at the center of the recent Imus brouhaha.

Being a race hustler apparently means never having to say you’re sorry.

[Steve Sailer [email him] is founder of the Human Biodiversity Institute and movie critic for The American Conservative. His website features his daily blog.]

(Republished from VDare by permission of author or representative)
• Category: Ideology • Tags: Multiculturalism 
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In a lifetime of being boggled by the American press, I don’t believe I’ve ever seen anything as baffling as their rote insistence that the last ten years of war in the Balkans were caused by “dictatorship,” for which the solutions were “democracy” and “multiculturalism.”

Folks, democracy is what caused the mess. Multiculturalism works fine … under a real dictator, like Tito. He had multiethnic Yugoslavia locked down tight, nice and peaceful. But when the inhabitants got more say in their lives, they started killing each other. They wanted democracy. But they knew that to have it, they needed mono-ethnic states.

When the old multiethnic Yugoslavia cracked up, the rest of the world recognized the phony borders that Tito had concocted to minimize the size of the Serbian administrative unit within his empire. This left large numbers of Serbs living outside Serbia, where they were exposed to their historic enemies. The great Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn explained it all in The Times of London in 1997:

The bloody Yugoslav tragedy has unfolded before our eyes (and is it over yet?) To be sure, blame for it lies with the Communist coterie of Josip Broz Tito, which imposed an arbitrary pattern of internal borders upon the country, trampling on ethnic common sense, and even relocating ethnic masses by force. Yet blame lies also with the venerable community of Western leaders, who — with an angelic naiveté — took those false borders seriously, and then hastened at a moment’s notice, in a day or two, to recognize the independence of several breakaway republics whose political formation they apparently found to be advantageous. It was these leaders, then, who nudged Yugoslavia toward many grueling years of civil war; and their position, declared as neutral, was by no means such.

Yugoslavia, with its seven estranged peoples, was told to fall apart as soon as possible. But Bosnia, with its three estranged peoples and vivid memories of Hitlerite Croatians slaughtering up to a million Serbs, had to remain united at all costs – the particular insistence of the United States Government. Who can explain the disparity of such an approach? [ ]

Democracy requires trust – that the other members of your democracy won’t vote to despoil you. That’s utterly lacking in the Balkans, where nobody trusts anybody they aren’t related to. And for good reason. Each and every ethnic group has the blood of its neighbors’ ancestors on its hands.

Democracy also needs a “settled distribution of property.” Britain’s modern parliamentary system dates from the Glorious Revolution of 1688. This permanently confirmed Henry VIII’s theft of the Catholic Church’s properties, thus ending 150 years of turmoil. But everyone in the Balkans is convinced that somebody from another ethnic group stole valuable land from his father or grandfather or great-great-great-grandfather. These suspicions are usually accurate. (Of course, everybody conveniently forgets that the land he lives on was usually stolen from somebody else too.)

Human beings have a remarkable capacity for forgiving the murder, rape, or enslavement of their forefathers. But not the theft of real estate. As the real estate agents tell you, “They ain’t makin’ anymore of it.” And, along with associated grievances, it doesn’t go away.

All this was well understood in the West during the century between the Glorious Revolution and the framing of the American Constitution. But it’s been forgotten since, because we don’t need to worry much about who owns what anymore. You don’t have to worry that your house will be handed back to the descendents of the Indians who used to camp there. Your property is secure because the white race decided to steal the vast majority of the land from the red race, and then not worry about it much anymore.

That’s why our leaders and media couldn’t understand what was clear to the peoples of the Balkans: Tito’s bogus borders left only two alternatives – redraw the borders or ethnically cleanse them.

Instead, we just decided that the Serbs were Evil. So, we had years of carnage in Bosnia until they finally ended up with a de facto three-way partition anyway. Franco Tudjman solved the problem in Croatia by ethnically cleansing all the Serbs. Kosovo was and remains a fiasco.

The good news is that, in the northern Balkans, we now are closer to normal (i.e. ethnically-homogenous) nation-states. Slovenia is a nice little European country. Croatia is calming down now that the Serbs are gone. They’ve at least stopped killing each other in Bosnia now that they have borders of sorts.

But in the southern Balkans, the process of redrawing borders and/or ethnically cleansing populations could go on for years. The Montenegrins are restive under Serbian rule. The Albanians are looking to jerry-rig a greater Albania comprised of the present country of Albania, Kosovo, and parts of Macedonia. There are an enormous number of people in Bosnia who have very good reasons for killing other people in Bosnia as soon as the peacekeepers go home. There are many people in Serbia who will be bitter unto the 7th generation for being ethnically cleansed, with no financial compensation, from Croatia and Kosovo

If the West wanted to intervene in 1991, it should have stepped in, as at the Congress of Berlin in 1885, and redrawn the borders to match the ethnic reality on the ground. Give Serbia those chunks of Croatia and Bosnia where its people lived, but take away southern Kosovo where few Serbians lived. Croatia would get parts of Bosnia, with the Muslims in Bosnia left with a small but homogenous republic.

That still would have left numerous ethnic pockets on the wrong side of the new borders. The West should then have sponsored ethnic cleansing. Sounds harsh? Population exchanges between Greece and Turkey in the early Twenties are what led to three-quarters of a century of peace between those inveterate brawlers.

To make this ethnic cleansing orderly, humane, and not conducive to the permanent bitterness that endangers peace, the rich nations of the West could have poured in $20 billion or so to pay for relocation. Buying out 7,000 Israeli homeowners in the Sinai peacefully and permanently solved that potentially explosive problem when Israel had to hand that peninsula back to Egypt after the Camp David accords. Buyouts would have worked in the Balkans too.

Okay, nothing works truly well in the Balkans. But it’s hard to imagine that it could have proven worse.

[Steve Sailer [email him] is founder of the Human Biodiversity Institute and movie critic for The American Conservative. His website features his daily blog.]

(Republished from VDare by permission of author or representative)
• Category: Ideology • Tags: Multiculturalism 
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The Santa Clara County District Attorney’s Office announced today that a Gilroy used car dealership was fined for failing to provide Spanish language buyer’s guides to its Spanish-speaking customers. The Double R Car Company … has agreed to pay civil penalties and costs of over $6,000 and to begin providing the Spanish language guides to Spanish-speaking customers…

The Federal Trade Commission began requiring buyer’s guides on all used cars in 1984 and also required that sales conducted in Spanish include a Spanish language buyer’s guide.

– BCN, Jul 25, 2000

The 2000 Republican Party Convention may go down in history as the moment when the American Establishment gave up trying to keep the U.S. a linguistically-unified republic. Even Republicans now seem to subscribe to politically-correct through-the-looking-glass semantics: insisting that the American people should all speak English is “divisive;” promoting language diversity somehow “brings us together.”

Bunk. A single language unites a country into a shared “information sphere.” When citizens can understand each other, they are much more likely to identify with them – and sacrifice for them. They can also monitor politics across their society, which can be helpful.

If we have given up trying to enforce English, can we ultimately remain a unified republic? There have been plenty of highly unified multilingual states – Stalin’s Soviet Union, Tito’s Yugoslavia, Suharto’s Indonesia. But none survived democratization intact. Similarly, if less violently, Czechoslovakia split into two separate states in 1993 along linguistic lines.

The track record of the few existing multilingual democracies is not reassuring. Canada and Belgium are highly civilized places. But their politics obsessively revolve around the threat of national dissolution. In Belgium, the need to ethnically-balance the allocation of government goodies and jobs has thoroughly corrupted politics. In Canada, bilingualism has institutionalized touchiness, which increasingly impinges upon free speech in general. (See )

India continues to clank along as kind of a democracy despite countless languages. Yet there is clearly a tremendous hunger within India for a leader who could emotionally unify the country – witness the huge vote totals garnered by ever more improbable members of the Nehru dynasty. To my mind, the best hope of preserving India’s unity would be to promote the Gandhi family above politics by crowning Sonia Gandhi’s popular young daughter as India’s first constitutional monarch since Victoria.

The great exception to this dreary survey is of course Switzerland. There, four languages are spoken in different regions: German, French, Italian, and, in remote mountain valleys, Romansch (hillbilly Latin).

How do the Swiss do it? The sociologist turned sociobiologist Pierre L. van den Berghe studied the issue carefully in his masterful 1981 book on the genetic roots of ethnic conflict, The Ethnic Phenomenon ( ). His observations are 20 years old, but the Swiss tend not to rush into change for the sake of change. I’ll elaborate on his outline, so credit Pierre with the good ideas below, and blame me for the lunkheaded ones.

Van den Berghe’s top line: “Switzerland, in short, is a very special case.”

Switzerland is a rare state that “did not originate either in conquest or in the breakdown of multinational empires.” It grew out of hill tribes banding together for mutual defense.

Van den Berghe notes:

“Switzerland is a confederation of cantons, not of ethnic groups. … The Swiss state gives no formal recognition to ethnicity as a basis of political incorporation, citizenship, legal rights and obligations, land tenure rights, allocation of resources, assignment to school systems — any of the bones of contention in multiethnic states. … The state does not need to be a “consociational democracy” [like Canada or Belgium], because, being so little of a state, there is so little at stake. … Switzerland is a very pleasant country, but it is not much of a state by modern standards. Perhaps it is such a pleasant country because it is not much of a state.”

The Swiss federal government is less important relative to its own lower levels of government than in most other European states. It accounted for only 61% of government spending – despite a large army – compared to 84% in neighboring Austria. Consequently, much of government decision-making is done at the monolingual level.

Cantons tend to be ethnically homogenous — 22 out of the 26 cantons are officially monolingual. In the Sixties, French activists in the Jura Mountains succeeded in winning separate canton status for their part of a predominantly German-speaking canton.

The three main ethnic groups are fairly equal in wealth, so none of the language groups feels they are subsidizing the others. Most of the richest cantons are German-speaking, but so are the two poorest, which are hillbilly cantons in the Alps. The one Italian canton of Ticino is in the middle of the income range.

Although Switzerland is relatively evenly split between Catholics and Protestants, there is little correlation between language and religion (except among Italian-speaking Swiss). For example, the Sailers are Swiss German Catholics, while French-speaking Geneva was the home of Calvinism. This meant, among other things, that Catholic opposition to contraception did not cause one language group to notably outbreed the others. (Political scientist Frank Salter has emphasized the importance of equal population growth rates.) In Kosovo, the Serbs felt they were being overwhelmed by Albanian immigration and higher birthrates. In Switzerland, the ethnic balance has been more stable.

Immigration: If novelist Vladimir Nabokov wanted to live for decades in a hotel in Montreux, he was more than welcome. If the hotel wanted to hire Maltese “guest workers” to deliver the great man’s room service, it could (within limits). But neither Nabokov nor the bellhops could realistically expect to ever participate in Swiss political life.

A fascinating feature of Swiss naturalization policy is that localities can veto applicants for citizenship. For example, the voters of Emmen recently approved the naturalization of eight Italian immigrants, while rejecting 48 other applicants, almost all of them Bosnians. This exercise in democracy caused syndicated columnist Raoul Lowery Contreras to cry out in anguish, “What kind of society would we have in the United States if each individual city in it could decide who was an American citizen? We would have a society like Switzerland.” [ ]

The Horror! The Horror!

Switzerland’s policy of self-sufficient armed neutrality is crucial in two ways. Neutrality has kept Switzerland from ripping itself apart during wars involving France, Germany, and Italy. And the “every man a soldier” principle, complete with most adult men having a small arsenal in their homes, intensifies patriotism. Every citizen feels responsibility for his country.

Switzerland rather resembles, de facto, the future polity Robert A. Heinlein proposed in his cult classic novel Starship Troopers (Ignore the botched movie version.) In Heinlein’s world, the vote is restricted to veterans or civilian service volunteers. Similarly, Switzerland’s Old Boy Networks rest upon personal relationships between old army buddies. Military service is compulsory for young men. Reserve training remains mandatory until late middle age.

Finally, the Swiss tend to have reserved, self-disciplined personalities. In other words, they are not much fun. For example, the national hobby is sharp shooting. They tend to make rational rather than emotional decisions. This does not make the Swiss popular. Hollywood movies treat the Swiss like Nazis. But it does mean their ethnic passions, like all their other passions, are restrained.

Americans constantly confuse Switzerland and Sweden. This is a reasonable mistake. Switzerland’s high average elevation means the climate, and thus the personality of the people, resembles those found in cool North. But while the ethnic homogeneity of Scandinavia makes possible Scandinavia’s naïve, wooly-minded social philosophies, the multi-ethnic Swiss must be hardheaded realists to maintain unity combined with self-rule.

In summary, a multilingual self-governing state can work – but it requires far sterner virtues than America is likely to muster.

[Steve Sailer [email him] is founder of the Human Biodiversity Institute and movie critic for The American Conservative. His website features his daily blog.]

(Republished from VDare by permission of author or representative)
• Category: Ideology • Tags: Multiculturalism, Switzerland 
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Steve Sailer
About Steve Sailer

Steve Sailer is a journalist, movie critic for Taki's Magazine, columnist, and founder of the Human Biodiversity discussion group for top scientists and public intellectuals.

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