Whiteness in 21st century America has an endgame, and it is this: to divest itself from the shame of its power, while working to revive the fear it needs in which to thrive. And there is work being done, work done by panels of respectable-seeming men and women on cable news networks dismissing the red MAGA hat as innocuous, work done by politicians who continue to openly lie about the danger immigrants pose to Americans while choosing to ignore that almost all violent extremist crime is committed by right-wing terrorists, by the refusal to acknowledge that bigotry is alive and well, perpetrated by racists and homophobes targeting people like Smollett, criminals who have no qualms in sharing what motivates them. Hate needs to sign its work. That's how hate persists.Mr Rivera was venting the day after the story first made the news, and, as that news was the kind of story that made a lot of people comfortable with their prejudices, it's understandable that he wrote what he wrote.
The assault of Jussie Smollett is not an isolated incident. Americans who do not fit the white, straight, male, or Christian mold of the ruling class are being targeted with concerning regularity, in synagogues and churches and nightclubs. The perpetrators are not all white, but they are cultivated in a culture built to reward the narrow slice of Americans that have lives that mirror those of the powerful and largely disregard the misfortune of those who do not.
His editors at GQ, however, offered a curious justification for leaving the column for all to see.
Editor's Note, 2/22: In the original version of this piece, published January 29, before allegations that actor Jussie Smollett had perpetrated a hoax, GQ made two errors in editorial judgment. We failed to clearly present the post as an opinion piece. And we regret applying unfounded political motivations to then-breaking news with the original headline: "The Racist, Homophobic Attack on Jussie Smollett Is Far-Right America's Endgame." We have altered the headline, but have otherwise left the original post unaltered.Instead of sliming only "far-right" America, the editors fret about all of America. Presumably they'll next issue a call for "dialogue" which any Normal understands as simply an opportunity for Morale Conditioners to hector and deplorable-shame.
Update, 2/21: Jussie Smollett was arrested this morning on charges of falsifying a police report.
Update, 2/20: This story is fast-moving and we're keeping an eye on the news as it develops. Read a complete timeline of events here.
It's not going to work. Normals are wise to the scam. Wilfred Reilly even wrote a book about the scam.
Doing research for a book, Hate Crime Hoax I was able to easily put together a data set of 409 confirmed hate hoaxes. An overlapping but substantially different list of 348 hoaxes exists at fakehatecrimes.org, and researcher Laird Wilcox put together another list of at least 300 in his still-contemporary book Crying Wolf. To put these numbers in context, a little over 7,000 hate crimes were reported by the FBI in 2017 and perhaps 8-10% of these are widely reported enough to catch the eye of a national researcher.That is, there are still people behaving badly, and the fix is straightforward. But a straightforward fix does not guarantee work, or the opportunity to preen and posture while working, to the diversity hustlers.
[T]he motivations of many hoaxers are honorable if misguided. In college campus hate hoax cases (Kean College, U-Chicago), the individuals responsible almost invariably say that they staged incidents to call attention to real incidents of racist violence on campus. Certainly, the media giants that leap to publicize hate crime stories later revealed to be fakes, and the organizations that line up to defend their “victims” — the Southern Poverty Law Center, Black Lives Matter, CAIR — think that they are providing a public service by fighting bigotry.Those organizations might be making people with already tight priors comfortable with their prejudices, but every time they uncritically accept a too-gaudy-to-be-true story, they're simply antagonizing people who might otherwise be disposed to be helpful.