Charles M. Blow | On Race: The Moral High Ground – The New York Times


An excerpt:

“Instead of reducing me, their racism reduces them. That is the ironic, poetic justice of it.

Of course, one only has to think about it for a moment to find the enormous hole in the logic that racism morally weakens the object of the sickness rather than the possessor of the sickness.

Although it doesn’t hurt my feelings, it does enrage me when racists are granted power in society to allow their idiocy to have a negative impact on other people, whether that be culturally, psychologically and spiritually, or materially and physically.

It enrages me when ignorance is elevated and empowered, when historical truth is eschewed, when current realities are denied.

But this moral rage is separate and apart from emotional distress, the former being active and energetic while the latter is passive and plaintive.

In this context, Roseanne Barr’s recent racist tweets, including one suggesting that the Obama-era White House official Valerie Jarrett was the offspring of apes, were not emotionally injurious, but were rage-inducing.

Did Trump apologize to the Central Park Five for calling for their executions?

Did he apologize to Barack Obama for leading the charge on the racist birther lie?

Did he apologize for calling Mexican immigrants rapists and murderers?

Did he apologize to the Muslim community for saying that Islam hates us?

Did he apologize to African countries or Haiti and El Salvador for describing them with an expletive?

Did he apologize to Colin Kaepernick and other protesting N.F.L. players for calling them sons of bitches?

No, no, no, no, no, no.

Donald Trump, White House racist, Nazi sympathizer, alt-right hero, receiver of laurels from the former Ku Klux Klan Grand Wizard David Duke, is the absolute last person who should be demanding an apology in this Roseanne controversy.

Barr and Trump are morally and intellectually compromised by their racial contempt. It enrages me that they have the power to influence the culture and, in Trump’s case, to actually craft toxic policy.

Against that, I will fight always because policies produce real injuries, but I will never allow the racist to believe that his words alone have the power to inflict those injuries. That, to me, is laughable.

 

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