Wednesday, November 04, 2015

White Liberals vs. White Conservatives -- Some Consequences of Fundamental Beliefs

DLL Editor's note -- The notions spelled out in this essay are the distillation of a continuous analysis of my lifelong experience. I know they are not provably "true" ... but they represent my best explanation for the data of my personal experience so far.

A. Paradigms

  • Most White liberals believe, on faith, that all Blacks are inherently equal to all Whites, but that all Blacks are handicapped by historic impediments -- poverty, inferior education, and lack of friends in high places. So most White liberals support affirmative action because racial equality is their norm.
  • Most White conservatives believe, on faith, that most Whites are inherently superior to most Blacks, but judge some Blacks as their equals based on their higher productivity in school and in their subsequent professional careers. Most White conservatives oppose affirmative action because racial equality is their exception. Indeed, White conservatives may impose higher standards on Blacks in order to adjust for the "unearned" benefits of affirmative action.
  • It should be noted that Silicon Valley's corporate elites pride themselves on their liberal positions on parental leave, gay rights, and citizen rights to privacy; but in their day-to-day hiring practices, they are as conservative as the Koch Brothers.

B. Distortions
  • Most White liberals admit that they had bigger head starts than most Blacks. But they also believe that the differences between what they subsequently achieved and what their less successful White peers achieved was due to their own hard work, creativity, and creative use of their connections. Given their belief as Americans that more is always better, they run as fast as they can by working harder, being more creative, and making more creative use of their connections so they can get bigger shares of the pie for themselves and for their families.
  • Now here's where things get interesting. Most White liberals do not hold Blacks personally responsible for their failures, nor do they encourage Blacks to take personal responsibility for their failures. White liberals are always prepared to attribute shortfalls in Black performance to historic factors. So White liberals strive to remove historic handicaps via affirmative action, but thereafter they don't encourage Blacks to run as fast they can. 
  • By contrast, most White conservatives heavily discount the size of the silver spoons that were placed in their mouths at birth. They preach the gospel of "personal responsibility" to one and all -- to themselves and to their Black associates. So they challenge all Blacks to run as fast as they can. Then they reward the fastest Blacks, the ones who thereby proved their "equality", with encouragement and mentorship. They themselves become friends in high places for the "equal" Blacks.

C. Liabilities
  • White liberals can be unreliable allies, but they are rarely physically dangerous. Their treachery is mostly professional. Believing that all Blacks are handicapped, they "know" that Blacks who seem to be equal to themselves must have been given special breaks to get to where they are ... so they really aren't equal equal ... so their achievements should not be taken as seriously. But given their fundamental commitment to equality, most White liberals won't inflict bodily harm on their Black associates.
  • By contrast, their fundamental belief that most Blacks are not equal to most Whites allows most White conservatives to treat most Blacks unequally on a day-to-day basis ... and on occasion to treat some very "unequal" Blacks very unequally ... physically ... and sometimes fatally.

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