Racism, The Left, and Group Rights
There has been a storm of controversy over a 5 day old exchange between CNN correspondent Soledad O’Brien and Breitbart.com’s Joel Pollack. Joel Pollack appeared on a panel discussion show on CNN to field questions about a 1991 video his company uncovered where Barack Obama who was a law student at the time in which Obama introduced and then embraced Harvard Law School Professor Derrick Bell.
This video is the result of Andrew Breitbart who (before his tragic death earlier this month) announced at a national conference last year that his company had obtained videos that would expose the hard-left ideology of the President. Breitbart felt it was important at the time because he felt the news media did not do a proper investigation of Barack Obama and felt it was necessary to properly scrutinize Obama’s past for anything of a suspicious nature. An example of this is when then President-Elect Obama distanced himself from United Church of Christ minister Jeremiah Wright after it was revealed that Wright (who is the minister of the Congregationalist Church the President attended in Chicago) told his congregation that they should Goddamn America and that the U.S. Government was behind the 9/11 attacks.
During the interview O’Brien became defensive and belittling towards Pollack. He brought to light questionable issues related to Bell’s past including a legal doctrine he culminated known as Critical Race Theory (CRT). When Pollack asked O’Brien to explain CRT she stated:
Critical race theory looks into the intersection of race and politics and the law and as a legal academic who would study this and write about it, [Bell] would advance the theory about what exactly happened when the law was examined in terms of racial politics.
Soledad O’Brien had a Emory University Professor Dorothy Brown on her program the next day to explain what Critical Race Theory is. However, Brown’s explanation did not match what she actually wrote about CRT. Citing a Rightsphere post on the subject, The Daily Caller points out that Brown explains Critical Race Theory in her book Fighting Racism in the Twenty First Century as follows:
Although CRT does not employ a single methodology, it seeks to highlight the ways in which the law is not neutral and objective, but designed to support White supremacy and the subordination of people of color.
When Joel Pollack explained that Critical Race Theory is all about white supremacy that holds that civil rights laws are ineffective, that racial equality is impossible, because the legal and Constitutional in America is white supremacist. Soledad O’Brien cut him down saying: [CRT] has nothing to do with that stuff. However, if you look at the above explanation by Professor Brown and compare it to what Pollack said Pollack’s explanation is ultimately correct.
A 1993 article from The New Republic reveals that Bell’s point of view was very controversial, even for the The New Republic reporter. The reporter observed that Derrick Bell’s bottom line is: if it comforts whites, it’s bad; if it comforts blacks–i.e., Farrakhan–it’s good.
A 1987 interview in The New York Times reveals further how much emphasis Bell used collective guilt in order to make his point:
Even liberal white scholars have to imagine oppression, and have to imagine that they are not oppressors. Black people have stories and experiences that provide the basis not only for their lives but for their scholarship.” Does he then consider it impossible for white scholars to understand and to teach on this issue? ”It’s not that they can’t, but they do face barriers to their ability to explain the reality of racism in America.
Derrick Bell’s overall theory is essentially tearing down the very system that Civil Rights leaders tried to work from within to implement change and (in theory) start over. In other words, scrap Western Civilization because group rights demand it as a matter of justice. Bell’s writings are definitely grounded in Marxism and what he is doing is something complimentary to the efforts of The Frankfurt School which was a Marxist-oriented school of social theory and philosophy founded during the 1930’s in Frankfurt Germany. This school of thought migrated to Columbia University in New York mainly due to Hitler’s rise to power in which most of the participants were Jewish and all were Communists. Rather than focus on philosophy and social theory, however, Bell’s vantage point was legal theory.
I did not like the manner in which Pollack presented himself. The Left and it’s allies in the media try to make those on The Right out to be racists, conspiracy theorists, or sensationalists and that’s what Soledad and some on the discussion panel tried to do. I did not like the tone of Pollack’s voice and his overall presentation was (in my view) weak. On the other hand, his efforts were not fruitless since the interview raised the issue about not only the radicals Obama associated with in his youth but also the idiotic things being taught in colleges and universities thanks to Leftist influence.
If Pollack asserted that the bombshell was not just Obama’s association with Derrick Bell but also how his Critical Race Theory is a group-oriented theory that looks at people in terms of groups rather than individuals I think he would have been able to shut down O’Brien and other leftists who participated in the panel discussion. Group rights is racism in which racism is another form of collectivism. In theory, decisions made based on it is based soley on the group of people in which the race of the group is primarily taken when decisions are made because it is assumed that the group singled out has been wronged in the past. Therefore, special considerations or reparations must be made to compensate for sins of the past.
In reality, group rights pits people of different sexes, races or creeds against each other in order to see which group will hold the reins of power or seek to get what they feel they are entitled to at someone else’s expense. The ultimate end of such conflict is wiping out any semblance of individuality in favor of the needs of the group. In terms of Derrick Bell he was clearly in favor of tearing down white people in order to achieve racial equality for black people even if it meant destroying Western Civilization and the institutions erected around it (in this case the legal system) to do so.
Fortunately, the issue of Critical Race Theory and how O’Brien treated Pollack has gone viral and O’Brien has ended up with egg on her face. There was not much of anything that made the video notable but the fact that Pollack was proven right about CRT despite O’Brien and other panelist’s attempts to smear him, lie about Critical Race Theory and belittle his efforts goes to show not only how the Left has double standards in terms of what constitutes racism but how their tactics really are a way to avoid engagement when it comes to ideas.