Rotherham and Charlottesville

I’m with Streetwise Professor here:

The battle over the monuments is not really about the monuments. It’s not even really about the legacy of the Civil War. It is about the left’s vision of what America was, is, and will be. Here’s the most important thing to remember. The hard-core left that is the driving force behind extirpating the icons of the Confederacy does not see it, or the Old South, as an exception, a deviation from an otherwise laudable and righteous history: they see it as just one manifestation of the fundamental evil of America, evil that is writ on every page of history from 1607 on down. In this worldview, the United States has been, from even before its formal beginning, characterized by racism, sexism, and oppressive capitalism. It is not something that is basically good, but which has fallen short of achieving its lofty ideals: it is something that is fundamentally rotten, and which must be transformed by any means necessary.

There is an argument to be had regarding the future of Confederate monuments and statues, but nobody wants that. The people calling for the removal of the monuments have no idea who Lee was and are probably incapable of understanding the complexities of the Civil War. The Confederate statues are simply the latest in an ever-expanding list of political demands issued by an unelected mob which, for now, appears to have the run of the place. Rest assured, if every Confederate monument was taken down and melted into scrap this evening, the mob would be on the streets demanding something else by lunchtime Saturday.

One doesn’t have to like General Lee, the Confederacy, or slavery to realise that clamping down on this poisonous and dangerous movement ought to be a priority for ordinary Americans. Unfortunately, they don’t seem to want to, perhaps believing the mob can be appeased, or contained, or kept away from them and their families. Realistically speaking, they may be right: most people’s lives go on unaffected by the mob, and choosing to ignore it rather than risk serious escalation isn’t completely ridiculous. But they may be wrong, and when it is their door being burned down it will be too late.

One of the most shameful events in British recent history is the Rotherham child abuse scandal. What makes it doubly shameful is that it fell to the odious, far-right leader Nick Griffin to raise stink about it – which cost him a night in the cells for his efforts. Everybody else stayed silent while teenage girls were being systematically abused with the authorities covering it up. This is bad enough in itself, but if the sole voice trying to raise the alarm is a neo-Nazi, then the country has deep problems indeed. My point is that it should never have been left to Nick Griffin to bring the plight of the Rotherham teenagers to public attention, ordinary people should have been doing that and they didn’t.

So lets go back to Charlottesville. Why did it fall to a bunch of neo-Nazis to defend the Confederate monuments from a mob bent on destroying American society? Where was everyone else? Sure, I know their motivations for protecting the statue were far from pure, and pretty damned disgusting. But that’s what everyone said about Nick Griffin: he’s only highlighting teenage girls being gang-raped because of the race of the perpetrators. Sorry, but so what? We should ignore the outrage because the one person trying to do something about it has impure motives? As far as cop-outs go, that’s a Saturn V.

Perhaps those who elected Donald Trump thought they’d done their bit in November to stop the systematic destruction of America’s history and institutions and didn’t need to do any more. Hopefully after Charlottesville they’ll now understand what is at stake and not leave the defence of what underpins their society to a gaggle of neo-Nazis chanting racist slogans. If they can’t or won’t, or start mincing their words in order to maintain their social status with those who hate them as Mitt Romney and others did yesterday, we should conclude it doesn’t mean that much to them. If that’s the case, then the mob will deserve their victory.


7 thoughts on “Rotherham and Charlottesville

  1. When you want to defeat a political movement you try to divide it. For years now being thought of as racist was toxic both socially and professionally so it was effective to label your opponent as such. The overuse of this insult has reduced it’s effectiveness and most people I meet now yawn. People remember that Bush was Hitler and even Reagan was Hitler so they were immune to Trump is Hitler. However in this instance there are real live Nazis dressed up with swastikas and guns. That’s why it has been picked up by the progressives.
    During and immediately after the election Trump was called a Fascist but it had no effect whatsoever and may in fact have improved his standing. That initial attempt to throw mud failed and they moved onto Russia which is also failing. It’s too soon to determine whether this attempt to label Trump will succeed. Personally I know that whilst I have sympathy for people falsely labelled racist and instinctively want to find out more, I will not line up with the KKK. I suspect many will feel the same.
    Compare the Google memo with this event. If I was Bush I would have been all over the former. This event is not the one to fight over.

  2. We are in a war and these events are the first engagements. The two sides in this consist of ordinary people who largely don’t want trouble (though would like to preserve what we have built with careful regard to mistakes of the past) and opposing them is a gaggle of kids who champion various ideologies, very few of which would even begin to allow them to do what they are doing were they in charge, and have no real aim other than ‘change.’

    As jamming your fingers in a spinning bike wheel constitutes a change you wish you had never experienced, there have to be serious questions about what the aim is of these yoofs behind black masks. And for that matter, what the aim is of those whose women are kept behind black masks, too.

    As I say, early probings of opposing defences, testing the best tactics. In Rotherham, the One True Ideology found it could get away with screwing young white girls and no one would say anything. Thus emboldened, they can move on (though apparently judging by various reports they still like screwing young white girls. Not gonna give that up, mate).

    In Charlottesville there has been a successful foray into knocking over statues, and the call has already gone out for those slave-owning bastards like Washington to have his removed. It will be interesting when they get round to dynamiting Mount Rushmore.

    So what do these factions have on their side that the ordinary, quiet and ‘let’s not change things too quickly’ don’t have on theirs?

    The media.

    For all its faults and errors, the media — and that very much includes social media now — is firmly with the rabble. It provides unquestioning support to the troops engaged in smashing what exists and valuable ammunition in manufacturing enthusiastic slogans. While the likes of the BBC, Channel 4, most of the US TV stations and above all twitter and goolag and fecesbook do what they do then the yoof will be encouraged to press on with increasing ferocity. Still no aims, but passion doesn’t need it.

    I doubt if Charlottesville will be a decisive battle — Rotherham wasn’t — but it’s hard to say how this war will turn out.

  3. if the sole voice trying to raise the alarm is a neo-Nazi, then the country has deep problems indeed

    I find it greatly ironic that the theme behind V for Vendetta was “it is possible for things to get so bad that a madman with a knife is preferable to a policeman with a gun”.

    Eventually a charismatic strongman is going to emerge from the alt-right and we’re actually going to see Weimar Germany all over again. And just like Weimar Germany, tons of normal people who don’t agree with the philosophy are going to follow him because he’s the only one actually standing up for their interests.

  4. In a society where there are more property holders that those who don’t hold property, Friekorps will always overcome Spartacists….

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