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Honky Cat Biden’s Ugly Truth

Joe Biden on 'The Breakfast Club,' telling African-American voters 'you ain't black' if they don't vote for him

Elderly white man Joe Biden appeared on The Breakfast Club, the No. 1 radio talkshow for America’s black community today. Here is how he signed off:

That has not played well:

Obviously nobody thinks that this gaffe will cause black voters to flip to Trump. But it did bring out an interesting comment from Pulitzer Prize winner Nikole Hannah-Jones, stating that blacks can only think one way politically and be authentically black. She later deleted the tweet, but Mollie Hemingway captured it, and made the correct political point:

So, Biden’s gaffe was meaningful — not that it’s going to move votes to Trump, but because it revealed an ugly truth about how black liberals police opinion among black folks. If you don’t agree with the left, then you’re not only wrong, you’re a race traitor.

If Donald Trump said in a Sean Hannity interview that if you’re white, and can’t figure out why you should vote for him, that you ain’t really white, he would be crucified in the media — and rightly so! When he said last year that Jews who vote Democratic are being disloyal to the tribe, he was justifiably waylaid. But see, we have this double standard. Pulitzer Prize-winner Nikole Hannah-Jones of The New York Times looks like she is affirming this double standard.

Of course she is. This is who the Democrats are. Stacey Abrams herself said so. The failed black Georgia gubernatorial candidate, said in a speech a year ago that identity politics are “who we are” as Democrats, and that the party should openly embrace them to win.Lately Abrams has been in the news, openly campaigning for the No. 2 slot on Biden’s ticket. Maybe you saw the recent worshipful profile of her in the Washington Post Magazine. 

If Biden picks Abrams, there won’t be any pretense any more from the Democrats about identity politics. Biden’s gaffe this morning was more than anything a gaffe in the Michael Kinsley sense: when a politician inadvertently discloses the truth.

Here’s one way that whites are privileged: we can be for Republican candidates, and we can be for Democratic candidates, and though we may be harshly criticized by other white people for our politics, nobody will call us race traitors over it. Andrew Sullivan today has a devastating critique of Trump, and though pro-Trumpers will get their backs up over it, nobody is going to tell him that he ain’t white over it. When you think about that, you realize how courageous men like Clarence Thomas and Thomas Sowell have had to be, all the for the sake of their own political convictions.

Once again, let me say that I don’t think Democrats and liberals have any real idea what demons they are calling up with this stuff. Do they really think America would be a better place if white politicians campaigned for the votes of whites by telling them that their votes are a matter of racial solidarity and loyalty? It never seems to get through the heads of progressives that you cannot sustain one set of standards for white people, and another for non-whites. There are no doubt plenty of white people who vote out of a sense of “this candidate is good for whites,” but we don’t honor that kind of thing. Since the Civil Rights Movement, our official political culture has been one in which we stigmatize appeals to racial solidarity.

Remember this: “I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character”? That’s an ideal worth defending. But do liberals even believe it anymore? They can’t, not if the likely Democratic presidential nominee is telling black people that if they don’t vote for him, they aren’t really black. Look, we have all known that Democrats have worked this double standard to their own advantage for a long time, but as we move into an America in which whites are no longer a majority — as will be the case by 2050 — more whites are going to start voting openly on racial interests, and we’re going to see white politicians campaigning openly on racial identity politics, as the Democrats do today. And on what grounds will liberals condemn them?

I’m not naive about the fact that there has long been a lot of sub rosa white identity stuff going on in Republican circles, just as it has been among racial minorities in Democratic circles. Still, the hypocrisy of the Republicans in these matters is the respect that vice pays to the virtue of the ideal of an America where people are not judged by the color of their skin, but the content of their character. When that ideal goes away for good — and many of us will live to see it — we are going to be a much worse country.

UPDATE: Here’s Nikole Hannah-Jones’s deleted tweet, in case it doesn’t show up in Mollie’s:

UPDATE.2: Reader William Anderson comments:

I will relate the experience my stepdaughter, who is black, had after she went to the Trump inaugural in 2017. When she came back to her office in Sacramento (she worked for the U.S. Bureau of Land Management), she was physically attacked by black Democrats in her office. We are speaking of the physically striking her and coughing in her face.

My stepdaughter has had two kidney transplants, two open-heart-surgeries, and cancer, and her immune system is compromised in the extreme. We live with the fear that she will contract something and will not be able to fight it off. She is on her 16th year with a transplanted kidney that only was supposed to function for about a decade, so we obviously have to be very careful. You can imagine that we take a lot of precautions in the current COVID-19 pandemic.

By coughing in her face, the Democrats in her office were trying to make her ill, ill enough to have died, so what they did really was felonious assault. However, because California is a one-party state (Democrats), we were unable to get anything done to stop the attacks and the outright physical bullying. She ultimately had a breakdown and had to leave the job and has not been employed since. She had to move out of her condo and now lives with us. (Her mother is African-American and I am white.)

What Joe Biden was doing was openly endorsing such attacks. There can be no other explanation or interpretation for what he said. I have no doubt that he would have approved of the criminal attacks on my stepdaughter and probably would have encouraged more of them.

No, not all Democrats are like this, and most of my Democrat friends were horrified at what happened and told me so. However, black Democrats are different in that they have a hatred for Republicans that few people can understand; the only comparison I can make is how white Democrats in the Deep South before the 1970s hated black people. (I was brought up in the South and could not understand how or why whites hated blacks so much, but the hatred, as seemingly irrational as it was, was quite real and visible.) The hatred that black Democrats have for blacks that are Republican or libertarian is off-the-charts and well out of proportion to any racial prejudice that may exist in the Republican Party. The hatred is there, is white-hot, and very real, and my stepdaughter was on the receiving end of the worst of it. Had she become sick and died, her black Democrat office workers would have cheered.

Her mother and I tried to make it stop, but no one in authority would intervene and we finally had to tell our daughter she just needed to quit before they killed her. You can imagine her mother’s reaction to Joe Biden’s declaration saying that my wife and her brothers and their families are not authentic black people. I don’t think she will be voting for Biden this fall.

about the author

Rod Dreher is a senior editor at The American Conservative. He has written and edited for the New York Post, The Dallas Morning News, National Review, the South Florida Sun-Sentinel, the Washington Times, and the Baton Rouge Advocate. Rod’s commentary has been published in The Wall Street Journal, Commentary, the Weekly Standard, Beliefnet, and Real Simple, among other publications, and he has appeared on NPR, ABC News, CNN, Fox News, MSNBC, and the BBC. He lives in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, with his wife Julie and their three children. He has also written four books, The Little Way of Ruthie Leming, Crunchy Cons, How Dante Can Save Your Life, and The Benedict Option.

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