America Fixates On 500 Assholes Instead Of Healing Its Own Institutional Racism

It was mighty kind of the neo-Nazis to hold a violent demonstration in Charlottesville as the US power establishment’s Russia narrative burns to ashes and the American war machine sets its chess pieces in place. The demonstrations have been saturated in corporate media coverage, which has consistently ignored the growing mountain of evidence that our species is being imperiled by new cold war escalations because of a Russian hack that never happened. Now everyone’s preoccupied with shaking their fists at 500 douchebags in self-righteous indignation instead of asking if they’ve been lied to by their government and the mass media propaganda machine for the last year.

And I mean, I get it. It’s so easy to point and screech condemnation at a group of obvious assholes, so satisfying, so socially rewarding. Your odds of finding someone in your social circle who agrees with you when you say “How about those Nazis, huh? Fuck those guys!” are pretty much 100 percent, and it feels good to be united against a common enemy.

But check out the comments this article receives when I say that an infinitely more effective way to fight racism in America would be to institute financial reparations for the descendents of slaves.

I guarantee you this suggestion will receive lots of angry push-back. This article probably won’t even get many reads because people won’t share and won’t read past the headline. People will say I don’t understand American racial dynamics (I’m writing this as part of an ongoing conversation with my American husband), they’ll say I’ve got no right to talk after suggesting that the anti-establishment left align with white nationalists (I didn’t), but most emphatically they’ll insist that monetary reparations for the descendents of slaves is not the way to heal America’s gaping racial wound.

The excuses are endless as to why the possibility of slavery reparations shouldn’t even be subject to mainstream debate, let alone actually tried. As soon as you suggest that liberals put their money where their mouth is because screaming at Nazis every once in awhile clearly isn’t working, they’re nowhere to be found. America’s mainstream liberals are only here for the virtue signalling merit badges; the possibility of giving black Americans a leg up after their unfathomably vicious history of exploitation and oppression is dismissed. It’s easy to condemn the white supremacists goose-stepping around outside oneself — it’s much more difficult to confront the white supremacy inherent in one’s own socioeconomic status.

This issue gets largely ignored by even people on the far left of the American political conversation, but I’ve yet to hear a convincing argument against it. America has a horrific, blood-soaked past, and the reverberations echoing off the walls of the collective psyche have not gone away. Why not dedicate a percentage of America’s massive public sector to truly fixing the damage caused by slavery, and to the genocide of indigenous tribes while you’re at it? Don’t tell me there’s no money while the US has hundreds of military bases stretching all across the planet, drops bombs every single day on countries most Americans can’t find on a map, and pours billions upon billions of dollars into corporate welfare. There’s money. You just don’t want to divert it toward this specific end.

White liberals don’t oppose reparations because there’s no money for it. They don’t oppose reparations because they don’t believe money can be skillfully applied toward helping the victims of America’s depraved history. They oppose it because they’re worried moving black and indigenous Americans up a peg will result in their being moved down a peg. They’re aware, on some level, that they are still living in a country that is woven out of the fabric of white supremacy, and that they benefit from that setup. And they want it to continue.

So spare me your excitement over the 500 assholes in Charlottesville, you liberals and lefties who are more comfortable looking without than looking within. Spare me your self-righteous tweets and your virtue signalling orgies, and instead turn your efforts toward something that will actually work. What you’re doing is not working. Try something different. There have been many great minds who have argued convincingly that money can be skillfully applied to righting the wrongs of America’s past, and it’s time to start considering their ideas.

In a system where money equals power, a ruling class necessarily emerges which is necessarily incentivized to keep the public poor in order to maintain their rule. Power is relative, so the most revolutionary thing you can possibly do in a corporatist plutocracy like America is try to bring economic justice to the masses. This necessarily includes the descendents of the victims of America’s intrinsically white supremacist history.

Those 500 neo-Nazis aren’t bothered by your self-righteous indignation. They’ll be bothered if you move your country into the exact opposite direction that they are trying to push it into. You want to really stick it to these assholes? Stop feeding them attention and start insisting on reparations.

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I write about the end of illusions.