An experience I had in 2008 was prophetic. When some people who were supposed to be my friends discovered that I was not voting for Obama, they joined voices to call me a racist. I didn’t know it then, but their behavior was the wave of the future. We have two new examples of what has become commonplace—irresponsible calling out of racism by the mainstream media and the political Left. First is the case of David Webb being accused of white privilege. The second concerns a group of admirable young white men falsely accused of racism against Native Americans.
The David Webb case would be funny if it were not revealing of the witch hunts being conducted by our stalwart progressive journalists in the media. On a radio talk show, CNN “legal analyst” Areva Martin, who is black, disagreed with the conservative ideas expressed by show host David Webb. As Webb later pointed out, instead of dealing with the substance of his opinions, Martin immediately defaulted to the white privilege argument. When she accused Webb of having white privilege, he responded in a way Martin never expected.
Webb: “How do I have the privilege of white privilege?
Martin: “David, by virtue of being a white male you have white privilege.”
Webb: “I hate to break it to you, but you should’ve been better prepped. I’m black.”
Talk about having egg on your face! If I were Ms. Martin, I would find a deserted island and hide out under a rock. Oddly, she doesn’t appear to be fazed by the incident at all. To Martin’s way of looking at it, calling someone a racist is her prerogative. The Left supports her. In the 1950s, the worst thing you say about someone was, “You’re a communist!” Today it is, “You’re a racist!” Ironically, white privilege is a racist attack on white people.
Wall Street Journal editorial board member Jason Riley, who is also black, understands the purpose of the white privilege argument. Riley has accused civil rights leaders of being more interested in “blaming the problems of blacks on white racism” than getting to the real causes. Political commentator Bill O’Reilly agrees that acceptance of the white privilege argument is encouraging blacks not to take personal responsibility. When you realize that unwillingness to accept personal responsibility is already a cancer in black America, blaming white people only
compounds an existing problem. Even white Americans are falling for the white privilege scam, says O’Reilly. They are “making excuses for bad behavior,” he says, and “enabling the chaos” in places like Chicago.
Because they depend on the black vote, the Democrats won’t do anything—such as telling the truth—that might offend the African-American community. Instead, the myth of white privilege is being used to brainwash a generation of Americans. Schools across the country are carrying out a racial inquisition where white students are subjected to tests that force them to admit to their so-called white privilege. White students as young as six are taught that they are born racist and should feel guilty that any success they achieve is unearned. Many colleges are forcing white freshmen to take indoctrination courses designed to make them feel badly about their skin color, reports Scott Greer in No Campus for White Men. Greer describes these classes as demonstrating “an outright hatred for white people, especially white men.”
Ms. Martin’s rush to judgment about David Webb’s skin color is standard issue for left-leaning journalists. But wait. Webb’s experience pales in comparison to the ordeal imposed by the media on Nick Sandmann and other teenage boys from a Catholic high school in Kentucky. As reported by the media, the boys assaulted Nathan Phillips, a 64-year-old “Native American” and Vietnam veteran. The media accused them of racism. So did a battalion of politicians, celebrities, and your Aunt Minnie. Everybody rushed to get on the bandwagon. Sandmann not only assaulted Phillips, it was reported, he continued to “smirk” at the poor elderly gentleman. “It was ugly, what these kids were involved in,’’ Phillips said. “It was racism. It was hatred. It was scary.’’ Everyone agreed that such behavior by privileged white youths must be condemned. Sandmann and his parents have received death threats. The Catholic Diocese of Covington, Kentucky, issued an apology and promised to take “appropriate action, up to and including expulsion.” The boys were a disgraceful example of white racism at work, end of discussion.
Fortunately for Sandmann and his buddies, it was not the end of the discussion. Mr. Sandmann composed an articulate defense in which he describes himself as the victim and Phillips as the aggressor. And guess what? Several videos have surfaced that completely confirm Sandmann’s statement. The episode was apparently set in motion because the boys were wearing Make America Great Again hats. Their sartorial choice offended many who were present and evidently sparked insults and the aggressive behavior of Mr. Phillips, who has lied about the whole affair. Thank
goodness for the videos. Without the videos, a great lie would have been accepted and the lives of the boys would have been ruined.
Here is what really happened: As the boys were minding their own business during a visit to Washington, DC, they were confronted—perhaps assaulted is the correct word—by Phillips, who got right up in Sandmann’s face while beating a drum and chanting something unintelligible. Phillips’ Native American companions said the boys “stole our land” and told the boys to “go back to Europe.” A group of nearby black men called the boys “racists,” “bigots,” “white crackers,” and “incest kids.” Sandmann, unaware of what was happening, stood his ground but kept his mouth shut. His forbearance should have elicited praise. Instead, he and the other boys were accused of racism. Phillips, his co-protestors, and the group of black men were guilty of Trump Derangement Syndrome. It had nothing to do with racism. It was all about the red hats.
Sandmann exercised more restraint and maturity than I would have in similar circumstances. “I believed that by remaining motionless and calm, I was helping to diffuse the situation,’’ Sandmann said. “I realized everyone had cameras and that perhaps a group of adults was trying to provoke a group of teenagers into a larger conflict.’’ Sounds like a great kid, someone to be proud of. He is owed an apology from all who rushed to judgment, including the media, Mr. Phillips, and Sandmann’s own diocese. But don’t hold your breath. Even with all the evidence to the contrary, many are still calling Sandmann a racist. That’s how it is these days. Get used to it.
Ed Brodow is a political commentator, negotiation expert, and author of seven
books including his latest, Tyranny of the Minority: How the Left is Destroying