If Elie Mystal didn’t exist, we’d invent him. I wonder if we did. In appearance, elocution, and legal reasoning, he’s the perfect straw man. Cable news takes him seriously. He can’t stop himself from blurting out what he really thinks about the Constitution, whites, and the so-called rule of law. His crude approach is refreshing. He clears away the hypocrisy that keeps the failed American experiment stumbling along.
Many whites believe our individualist, universalistic, analytic worldview is shared by other peoples. It’s not. Racial identity is not important to many whites, but it’s fundamental to people of other races. Many whites believe in colorblindness and the promise (if not the reality) of an American civic identity. National Review even tried a compromise: reject Confederates but honor the Founders. Not surprisingly, progressives and non-whites don’t see why George Washington gets a pass.
Much of American Renaissance’s work is showing progressive hypocrisy on race. However, hypocrisy and denial of history are what keep diverse societies together. Ernest Renan argued that a nation is not based purely on race or language, but is a “daily referendum,” dependent both on aspirational myths and historical “forgetting” of atrocities. Even the reasonably homogenous France of his time couldn’t have held together if people were still fighting over the St. Bartholomew’s Day Massacre. If your interest is peace or unity, you don’t endlessly incite rage. We should suspect the motives of those who do. Of course, if we don’t necessarily want a polity to hold together, our opponents’ actions may serve our cause.
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