In my Taki’s Magazine column last week, “Last Men Standing: Charles Murray vs. Ibram X. Kendi,” I wrote:
Today, after 55 years of vast spending to eliminate the race gap on tests, the optimistic centrist education reformers of the “All We Have To Do Is Implement My Favorite Panacea” school are finally out of fashion, leaving Ibram X. Kendi and Charles Murray as the last men standing. One or the other must be right: either Murray (blacks, unfortunately, have problems because they tend to be less smart and more violent) or Kendi (any disparities demonstrate that whites are evil and therefore must pay).
From The Atlantic this week:
The postracial idea is the most sophisticated racist idea ever produced.
By Ibram X. Kendi
JUNE 22, 2021
About the author: Ibram X. Kendi is a contributing writer at The Atlantic and the Andrew W. Mellon Professor in the Humanities and the director of the Boston University Center for Antiracist Research. He is the author of several books, including the National Book Award–winning Stamped From the Beginning: The Definitive History of Racist Ideas in America and How to Be an Antiracist .
… The cause of racial inequity is either racist policy or racial hierarchy. The racial problem is the result of bad policies or bad people. … Either Black and Latino people are the least likely to be vaccinated against COVID-19 because there’s something wrong with them—or the inequity stems from racist policy. Either Black girls are six times as likely to be expelled from school as white girls because they misbehave more—or the inequity is caused by racist policy. To believe in racial hierarchy, to say that something is wrong with a racial group, is to express racist ideas.
Then Dr. Kendi expresses his deep frustration that not everybody believes him and his fellow Professors of Intersectology.
Our multiracial, multidisciplinary, multisectoral guild remains as indistinct on the streets of the U.S. as my favorite restaurant was 13 years ago. We don’t have a name. We don’t hold up signs displaying our expertise. To the American people, our expertise simultaneously exists and doesn’t. It exists when people believe us. It doesn’t exist when people don’t believe us. Our remedies and reparations for racism are rejected when they go “too far.”
We are The Experts, dammit:
Because everyone, apparently, is an authority on damn near everything. I can tell an astrophysicist that she is wrong about the existence of extrasolar planets, and she can tell me that I am wrong about the existence of racism. Humility is dead. Expertise is losing out to the world of make-believe, where everyone knows it all, where the climate isn’t changing, where vaccines aren’t saving lives, where teaching our kids the truth is harmful, where anti-poverty programs aren’t better crime fighters than cops, where assault rifles aren’t used to commit mass murder, where Nikole Hannah-Jones doesn’t deserve tenure, where the 2020 election wasn’t legitimate, and where the original postracial project didn’t produce the infernal Trump presidency.
To use W. E. B. Du Bois’s words, “lies agreed upon” are king. Ignorance preyed upon is king. Patriotism as racism is king. The conspiracy theory is king.