Chauncey DeVega has a provocative piece up at Salon on why he called Herman Cain’s CPAC speech a minstrel show.
[T]here’s no shortage of black conservatives who make a living among the pundit classes as human parrots for the right –popular for their novelty and unwilling to offer sustained critiques of policies that may, in fact, be deleterious to communities of color and the common good.
In my original essay, I referred to Cain and other black conservatives as “race minstrels” and “mascots” for the white conservative imagination. I stand by this observation. Whenever Cain and others have an opportunity to engage in “real talk” among their ideological compatriots — to make a public, critical intervention against the racial hostility that drives contemporary American conservatism — they instead stand mute or enable this hostility. When the opportunity to slap down the notion that black people with whom Republicans disagree are “brainwashed” or (in a disgusting abuse of the shared history and legacy of chattel slavery) “on the plantation,” the Herman Cains of the world encourage this lie as one more way of signaling that that they are actually the “authentic” voices of Black America.
I would argue that, while this is correct, it’s an example of how conservatism operates that is only extreme because of the centrality of race in American politics. ADL head Abe Foxman pulls his punches on Glenn Beck’s anti-Semitism because he sees Fox as conservative allies; Charles Lane, who sees anti-Semitism in nearly every statement a liberal has ever made about Israel, openly celebrates Beck for the same reason. Similarly, the Catholic church hierarchy keeps its mouth shut about the death penalty, endless wars, and the demonization of the poor; I suspect that if Glenn Beck ever gets on a tear against “evil Papists” (if he hasn’t already), they won’t squawk much about that either.
I realize these aren’t quite the same, because Abe Foxman and Joe Ratzinger don’t speak at CPAC, but there’s something about conservative love for Chris Christie that’s not so different from the reaction to Cain:
A left-wing friend of mine jokes that conservatives are “the party of affect”: meaning that conservatives tend to care much more how a politician speaks than what a candidate says. Christie almost perfectly exemplifies this rule. If he were a soft-spoken, conciliatory Northeastern budget-balancer, he’d be dismissed as a Bill Weld/Mike Castle RINO. But instead, he’s an-in-your-face confrontationalist. So he can favor handgun control and still be the Coulter choice for president. Just so long as he’s rude about it.
Conservatives like having a fat guy who looks and talks like one of the “Sopranos” as one of their own, even if he’s not that far right on many issues. And he’s happy to be claimed, even though he doesn’t agree with the real nutters on many issues.
Commitment to the People’s Glorious Conservative Revolution takes precedence over any kind of loyalty to your own ethnic or socioeconomic group and over your precise positions on many issues too. When John Galt returns and establishes gulch-on-earth, all will be as one, the black, the white, the Christian, the non-Christian, even those who favor gun control, as long as they hold the one true faith of conservatism.
Update. “Loyalty to your ethnic group” may not be the right way of phrasing it. But I’ll say what I said in the comments. I do think people should remember where they came from. I don’t think my Irish aunts and uncles should be helping the same fuckheads who called their grandfathers micks fuck over some new group of immigrants, either. I don’t.
And for profit tooth fairies
People are “supposed to be” loyal to their own ethnic group or to their socioeconomic group? Really? Really?
And black people are not “supposed to be” conservative? Really?
I don’t think that conservative “thought” is much of an answer to anything, but damn, you are digging a hell of a hole for yourself here.
I can also see where Chauncey DeVega is coming from, but his defense of his remarks is as weak as Limbaugh’s phony protestations when he engages in nasty race baiting.
Well, this DeVega person got the celebrated Moore Award at Sully’s joint for the “minstrel” quip. And that’s the only thing that matters.
It’s even shallower than this, though. All you need to do is to say that you are a Republican or a conservative, no matter what you espouse or how you vote. As long as you state you hold that faith, whether or not you do, and in the case of politicians as long as you make it through the primary, you are one of the ‘in.’
joe from Lowell
No. No, Doug, not even close.
The dirty little secret of modern conservatives is that they just don’t care all that much about what the government does. They have two basic policy positions, if you want to call them that: They want lower taxes, and they want to piss off liberals. Christie succeeds on both counts, so he’s a conservative hero.
c u n d gulag
“Secaucus Fats” reminds me of NY Jets coach Rex Ryan, another big mouth I can’t stand.
Conservatives LOVE hypocrites!
And who could be more hypocritical than a rich fat fuck lecturing other people about tightening their belts?
You first, “Fats!”
Maybe NJ’s fiscal mess could be ended by a “Twinkie Tax.”
I think “Secaucus Fats” could put the whole state into a surplus single-handed – the double-fisted way he probably stuffs those things into his mouth.
I saw Matt Welch was very, very upset about the status of race relations because of what one black man said about another. Yes, the same Matt Welch who spent months “teasing out” the opinions of teabaggers and found no racism.
I’m curious- can you imagine a situation in which an all black publication would bemoan the status of race relations because a white guy called another why guy a cracker?
omg, this post opens so many cans of worms the flame wars aren’t even gonna know where to START…..
What the hell — lemme throw in an observation about Chris Christie being fat.
@joe from Lowell:
1. No the Catholic church does not keep its mouth shut on the other issues.
but 2. Only on abortion are the Catholic Bishops running to get to a microphone to support anti-abortion legislation.
Remember how loudly the Catholic church spoke out IN FAVOR of health reform? Yeah, me neither. But they did, and I know only because I was listening carefully.
Did they quote Matthew 6 and threaten to excommunicate politicians who voted against care for others? Nope.
@joe from Lowell: Heh, debatable. Doug should have cited abuse and torture of children instead.
If Christie ran for president, you would see a lot of flip-flopping around on any moderate positions he might have had, just like Mitt Romney has had to do. Conservatives may love him now, but that’s based on a few youtubes of him chewing out teachers and journalists.
And I agree with Joe, the Catholic Church is vocal about the death penalty and war, though not nearly as much as it is about its two favorite subjects: gays and abortions.
Villago Delenda Est
They also want revenge on brown people for things that other brown people have done. “Brown” being a relative thing, of course…it encompasses many non “our tribe” qualities, like monotheism that doesn’t have a three part godhead, for example.
The “party of affect,” indeed. This harks back to your recent post about moral arguments vs. pragmatism.
This disturbing trend has echoed across the culture for the last few decades, as well. Intense feeling, which usually takes the form of either self-righteous individualistic proclamations (see every TV ad that uses a series of people addressing the camera with “I will” statements) or wish-and-make-it-so positivity (see “The Secret,” Gospel of Success Christians, etc.) is celebrated at every turn.
The Oprah genre of talk show (and the reality shows that borrowed the sensationalist and confidence-porn aspects of those shows) epitomize this. I’ve often thought that, provided it is delivered in sufficiently self-righteous tone and language, a guest on one of these shows could reap approving applause for any statement, regardless of its content: “I may be a kitten-torturing puppy-molester, but I’m damn good at it, and no one’s gonna tell me I ain’t!” (Applause and “woohs!”)
This might seem OT, but whether I’ve expressed it clearly or not, I do think there’s a connection.
People are supposed to be loyal to their own self-interest. If you’ve got a black guy running around embracing the merits of segregation and denigrating the NAACP, he’s a sell-out. He bought himself an escape from the hardship of his peers at their expense.
Harold Cain isn’t getting kicked out of the nice restaurant. His kids aren’t too poor to attend the state university. He gets a privileged seat. But he can’t extend those benefits to anybody else. All he can do is play the huckster by tricking his neighbors out of their share. He’s rewarded for conning his own ethnic or socioeconomic group out of the benefits offered under the status quo.
Why this is worse than conning a different ethnic or socioeconomic group out of their own benefits and privileges, I can’t really say. But it’s definitely considered a mortal sin in the modern age.
“conservatism” doesn’t mean what it used to mean. There are real conservative black people, but almost all of them vote democratic because they are smart enough to know the republican party is neither conservative, nor committed to anything more virtuous, than grabbing as much cash as they can carry. And grifters come in all colors.
Back to Dennis G’s excellent post last night. The current “conservative” movement, is nothing more than a cacophony of random bullshit emanating from the bowels of primitive primal man. Not unlike the bedroom scene from Poltergeist. And the water carriers are as always, moronic white people standing in front of a mirror giving themselves The Bronx Salute.
I can hardly stand to turn on the computer and read about it all.
Someone remind me, didn’t Christie barely survive his primary because he was deemed too moderate by a lot of Republicans?
@joe from Lowell: C’mon, joe, you can admit it. You’re really Chris Matthews, aren’t you?
OK, I’ll give you a chance. Please give an example of one issue where any bishop in the US, in the last 10 years, made a statement of party or candidate preference based on any other issue than abortion. Just one.
Dude, even the health care thing was about money for Catholic hospitals. And I dunno, maybe you remember a guy named Joe Stupak and his friends in certain bishop’s residences?
Are you that gullible?
Yes, I do think people should remember where they came from. I don’t think my Irish aunts and uncles should be helping the same fuckheads who called their grandfathers micks fuck over some new group of immigrant, either. I don’t.
DeVega got a “Moore Award” nomination for that post.
For your false equivalency of the day, here’s the Malkin Award nom:
The Right and the Left are Equally shrill, donchaknow?
@DougJ®: This. A thousand times this. That’s where I come from. And on my mom’s side, all those German Catholics who didn’t want to fight in wars under Prussian generals using Krups artillery – they should remember where military-industrial complexes and national exceptionalism really lead.
And don’t get me started on all those sons and daughters of eastern european jews who are out-and-out neocon fascists.
Immoral and amnesiac doesn’t begin to describe it.
If you know your history
then you know where you’re coming from….
@joe from Lowell:
They don’t emphasize it much. I don’t have it handy but there was a piece by a Jesuit I linked a while ago about how stunned he was that some recent Bishop election (or whatever the call it) was all about abortion and teh ghey, and not at all about the worst recession in 70 years.
We should note right wing apoplexy over the comments about Cain as an example of Democratic or liberal racism because of the loaded words.
Note also that those suffering fits of apoplexy casually and often refer to many African-American leaders as poverty pimps, race hustlers, thugs, gangsters and slaves of the liberal plantation.
None of those characterizations are race loaded or racist though.
Well, it wasn’t a statement of party or candidate preference, but the DC dioceses did helpfully threaten to stop partnering with the city on charitable enterprises and then stripped all spousal benefits from its employment compensation because DC had the temerity to let teh gay homo fairy fag sodomites get married.
But, I’m, um, guessing that wasn’t the kind of example you were asking for. :)
I have to confess, I had to google that. Great song.
Villago Delenda Est
The problem is being clear about what that self-interest actually is.
There’s short term self-interest, for immediate gratification, and long term self-interest, which seems so far away and distant.
Perpetuating a civilization where life is not brutal and short doesn’t seem to appeal to a lot of Americans today, because they’re so busy lusting after the big screen HD TV set.
This is where modern “conservatism” goes off the rails. Adjusting policy (which may result in some short term pain for the haves) to foster long term social stability doesn’t seem to appeal to them much. By saying “I’ve got mine, fuck you!”, they’re merely inviting the next logical step, which is a tumbrel ride. Not very long term thinking, there. If you forestall peaceful change, you’re going to get violent revolution, and no one has control over that, as the French discovered in the late 18th century.
But this is pointless, as they’ve apparently embraced a philosophy that will, if followed through, revert us all back to feudalism. Just because they missed the lesson in kindergarten about sharing, or were too busy shouting “mine, mine, MINE!” to let it sink in.
Seriously, what does an ad hominem attack like this have to do with anything?
I guess this is my issue with Cain…does he ever talk about how the conservative policies can help the black community? Because he talks a lot about supporting the Gold Standard and the Fair tax and every other precious snowflake policy Republicans hold dear. You know, a bunch of shit that does dick-all to help the working-class and poor in America. The two classes where a disproportionate amount of black Americans happen to reside.
I guess I’ll take Cain seriously, as opposed to the GOP’s “black friend” when he proposes conservative solutions to issues like redlining mortgages and pervasive poverty that would, you know, WORK. Until then, he is a damned puppet.
Fuck’n-A right, DougJ! I do not understand how Irish Catholics can make common cause with the decendants of people who treated Irish Catholics like vermin. I really think that the history of the United States can be distilled to WASPs trying to play off different minorities against each other, because the WASPs tend to be at the top of the power pyramid.
Jim, Foolish Literalist
@DougJ®: I think you have to make a distinction between the American bishops’ conference, which is essentially an anti-abortion lobby that occasionally pays lip service to other issues and individual activists, priests, nuns and lay people. I have little use for Crazy Joe Ratz and I think JP-2 was vastly overrated, but they have both spoken up against the Iraq War, torture, etc. That said, any number of my Catholic relatives (even some younger ones) and my parents’ Catholic friends are right there with the Bishops and Sean Hannity.
You know, people like to wax poetic about “the big screen HD TV set” a lot these days. I’d like to point out that I can get a ridiculously large TV for under a grand.
People are “lusting” over their mortgage payments and their health insurance premiums and their student loans and their energy bills. TVs are about the only modern convenience that has dropped in price in the last decade.
So before you go defaming somebody – liberal or conservative – over “lusting” for anything, please try to keep in mind what really gives an American a woody. Even the average Beck-tard isn’t so financially secure that plasma tvs are his only waking thought.
The politics are all well and good, but I want to compliment DougJ on this post’s title. “New Christie minstrels.” Heh. It’s like you wrote that title first and someone set up events so you could use it!
My favorite black conservative was former Congressman JC Watts. Watts would grin and tap dance to whatever the conservatives wanted him to, thinking that it would pay off for him down the road. Whenever conservatives needed a black face they would haul out Watts to speak for them. When George W Bush ran for his 2nd term, Watts decided to help with campaign and did not run for another term as congressman. When Bush won, it was assumed that Watts would be named to the cabinet. Wait a minute black boy! Nobody said you would get a job! Months later Watts complained about being used by Bush and the GOP. This is the typical whine of black conservatives (See Condoleeza Rice and Colin Powell) after the conservatives are done using them. Conservatives are only interested in the status quo. They want maintain there wealthy life styles, get reelected, get money from big corporations to run their campaigns and to keep the little people in their place.
@Jim, Foolish Literalist:
I’m not sure why you have to make a distinction when it’s just as likely that they’re running a good cop/bad cop game. The pope off in Rome denounces the stuff that the Church doesn’t like but can live with, so they can say that the Church did speak out against these things, while the American bishops, with the real power and presence to influence voters, only concern themselves with the stuff they really care about, i.e., abortion and teh gays.
I’ve tried to stop talking about things like dumb Americans lusting after HD tvs, recently, though I’m sure I haven’t stopped completely. I tried to stop using phrases like “white trash” and “trailer trash” unironically too. I worry that at some level, it’s the same as talking about strapping young bucks.
Conservatives are about making the rich richer, and enriching themselves. You don’t see them trying to lower taxes for middle income people, do you?
They also like bullies, preferably loud, in your face bullies like Christie (see O’Reilly, Coulter, Breitbart, et al.).
The people who support him have no idea what his take on the issues is, as Mark S. said above, they jumped on the Christie bandwagon after that You Tube surfaced of him getting all up in the face of some guy asking about taxes or something. Christie wasn’t even in New Jersey, he was helping Meg Whitman raise money in California.
No one talks about Christie not dropping the tolls ($1.25 billion that was raised to help pay for the now defunct tunnel), or the fact that he actually supports gun control and that even though he calls himself pro-life and defunded Planned Parenthood in NJ to the tune of $7 million, that’s not a big vote getter in a blue state like Jersey. Plus he’s huffed and puffed about the unions, but in reality, nothing has happened yet. And people are still mad about the trip to Disney World during the first Snowpocalypse.
I read the DeVega and the Christie pieces one after another and it just clicked.
Republican gays fit this paradigm too. I mean seriously, wtf?
For this reason, I always feel a tiny bit sadder when some wingnut spouting racist/exclusivist/eliminationist shit in the press has an Italian surname. Doesn’t anyone have any grasp of family history anymore?
I know this doesn’t get the Catholic Church off the hook but the Bishop of Milwaukee came out in support of the public employees union
Villago Delenda Est
Um, nice head fake, Zinfab. By “nice” I of course mean “obvious” and “pathetic”.
You focus like a laser on the big screen TV and ignore everything else.
Mortgage payments (on a house that is valued less now than it was when the mortgage was taken out, but no cram down for you, because the banks can’t show a loss!) and health “insurance” premiums that are no guarantee that you’ll get the care you need when, FSM forbid, you need it, because you failed to plan your traffic accident in advance with your health “insurance” parasite are indeed concerns…but people aren’t able to connect the dots that are swarming around their heads because they’re actively trained not to. Instead they look for someone else to blame…preferably poor, Mexican, Black, “other”, and people like Beck and Palin are only too happy to point them in that direction, and personally profit oh by the bye.
I probably stand corrected on what I said about the Catholic Church hierarchy. Next time I bring this up — I think I do have a point about the Church hierarchy — I’ll try to get my ducks in a row first.
Christie has also had a history of sketchy behavior during his time as a federal prosecutor. This tends to be glossed over.
Amanda in the South Bay
*sighs* I hate that we have to declare our Catholic bonafides in order to be able to speak about the CC, (former Byzantine Catholic here).
Its like, even here in the SF Bay Area, yeah, of course you can find individual parishes here and there that are open to openly LGBT people, but such parishes exist at the mercy of the archbishop. Its the same with liberal parish priests, etc-all it takes is for the bishop to replace the priest with a more conservative one, then its all abortion and teh gay all the fucking time.
Come on now-I’m pretty sure that for most people, when you mention the Catholic Church and political activism, the first thing you think of is abortion, followed by the evils of teh gay and those pesky transsexuals. Dorothy Day is long dead, and all those liberation theology types from the 80s aren’t getting any younger either.
Liberal clergy are the exception to an organization that is merely a proxy for the modern conservative movement.
There are actually a lot of reasons why black folks might want to be conservatives, cultural or economic (c.f. Malcolm X on both grounds). But black conservatives are disproportionately present (in both directions: false impressions are created that significant numbers of black folks are conservative, and that the conservative movement is racially diverse) on Hardball-type shows, and there can be no other reason for this other than to deflect charges of racism from the conservative movement.
So it’s a problem, and DeVega’s remarks are perfectly appropriate, and you don’t have to believe that black conservatives are cynical or deluded to conclude thusly.
Paul in KY
@General Stuck: I’m with you here, General. So much depressing shit going on.
Nice post title. Have you heard about the gospel group that only performs one week out of every month? They’re called the New Christie Menstruals.
Paul in KY
@Hazel Stone: Gives me a laugh. I can do with a few laughs, nowadays.
I’d say it has to do with the preceding quote about the “party of affect.” It expands on the idea, saying that Christie fits an overall role, not only in tone but also in appearance, and appearing to fit the role is what matters.
I hold your people personally responsible for Carl Paladino.
Not ad hominem! I think that they like his weight, it adds to the “Sopranos” thing, that is all.
EDIT: Cris said this better.
OT: NYT story on government calculating the value of a life clearly had bearing on moral vs. pragmatic arguments. You want to answer a moral question–How many lives is too many? But you have to fit it awkwardly into a pragmatic model.
“Remembering where you came from” is not the same thing as declaring ethnic loyalty or socioeconomic solidarity uber alles.
Seems to me that calls to ethnic loyalty in part gave rise to the Draft Riots during the Civil War where new Irish immigrants to America turned on blacks.
On the other hand, there are wonderfully inspiring examples of people using an understanding of the history of the oppression of their particular group but going beyond it to fight oppression of others beside their own group.
For example, when he traveled in Ireland, Frederick Douglass met and was inspired by Daniel O’Connell, who noted that he would return donations for Irish liberation if they came from Southern slave owners, declaring that he would “never purchase the freedom of Ireland with the price of slaves.”
In short, an appeal to ethnic or economic roots is no guarantee of an ethical stance in the world. Again, here is Douglass on aspects of Irish nationalism after the death of O’Connell:
Again, I see where you are trying to go, but you are stumbling badly in getting there.
I’m not asking for an ethical stance.
Ethical stance or ethical action. Same difference. Otherwise, there isn’t much point in remembering where you came from if it doesn’t lead you anywhere worth going to.
DougJ isn’t Andrew Sullivan’s correspondent’s friend, but the first thing I thought of when I saw “the party of affect” was Paul Hackett–and Jim Webb, to some degree. Alan Grayson is too easy. That really was the things he said, too.
I am going to get into a lot of trouble, but in “Master of the Senate” someone was quoted as how it was miraculous that “someone as gentle as John Stennis could go up against an Irish brawler like Joe McCarthy”. No, I am not getting into trouble for not admitting that John Stennis was a segregationist. Chris Christie can be an “Irish brawler” and this stereotype is accepted. Bill Kristol can pretend to be a Jewish intellectual and this stereotype is accepted. But your average Fox viewer doesn’t know that there is a real black conservative tradition and that a real black conservative might not have all their talking points down. Glenn Loury in the end decided to remember where he came from rather than be too smart for these people.
The Google is your friend: From Outside The Beltway, no less, Christie endorses “border security, enforcement of existing laws and a ‘clear’ path to legalization for immigrants” Refuses to endorse an Arizona-type law
Yeah, HD LCD tvs are approaching commodity pricing. Kinda hard to lust after something you can easily find stacked in quantity on sale in aisle 3 at Target or KMart.
Now what this dumb American is lusting after is HD projection TV. Saw the Super Bowl at a coworkers house with the game projected onto a huge wall sized screen coupled to a high end sound system. Amazing how sharp the picture was. I am in lust.
More on topic…
Yeah, I’ve see that among the Rs in my little world including those in my family. But it’s getting strained for the thinking ones as wingnutters 2.0, the nutters among nutters, the teabaggers claim they’re the true standard bearers for conservatism as they define it.
John freaking Podhoretz can pretend to be a Jewish intellectual and this stereotype is accepted! How quickly they forget!
Meh. I listened to Herman Caine’s speech. I was bored, but what struck me was how silly it was. How devoid of any actual facts. How eminently republican. Add to that the way how he confirms bigotry and I had to shake my head. New stepinfechit. It was minstrelry. It gives the republican party the chance to say, “we’re inclusive, see, we let the black guy in!” I know blacks who are more conservative than me and they hate the RNC with a passion.
In a further attempt to lend comment some coherence, Karl Rove understood that if something was done about immigration Republicans could compete for the Hispanic vote–appeal to Hispanics as strivers with some very social conservative beliefs. He understood that Republicans could make ethnicity and ethnic loyalty work for them. But Karl Rove would have been happy to get 20% of the black vote.
I agree with this.
And no, it’s not about “loyalty to your ethnic group.” It’s not even about “self-interest,” as someone else further down said. It’s about self-respect. Specifically, having enough of it not to inflict the kind of harm on other people that’s historically been or would’ve been inflicted on you.
Or as the Bible would put it, “You shall not wrong a stranger or oppress him, for you were strangers in the land of Egypt.”
I do. They’ve got theirs, so fuck the rest of the world. It’s not incomprehensible, but it’s still disgusting.
I don’t agree entirely. I think the history can be distilled to the power elites playing the WASPs (the middle and working class majority of them) against the “outsiders,” based on the principle that no one’ll notice you stealing the cash drawer if you do it in the middle of a bar brawl.
Today, you replace “WASP” with “white Judeo-Christian,” and same basic principle.
The Christian Right loves Israel. Jews, they’re not so sure about.
Parallel 5ths (Jewish Steel)
This dumb American lusts after high end headphones. I think most ethnic animus could be alleviated by giving everyone a pair of Grado 125s.
@Amanda in the South Bay:
Quite a few of them never got any older, either, thanks to Rome abandoning them to their fates when the Central American right-wing juntas went after them, because they were a little too close to soshulism (or, as the early Christians called it, Christianity).
ETA: Stupid moderation…
@John PM: I think a lot of it is people learning all the wrong lessons from history, and determining that one’s only options in life are to be a hammer or a nail, so by God they’re going to be a hammer.
@fasteddie9318: Touche, and boy don’t that just prove the point.
Pulling the ladder up behind you isn’t an uncommon human reaction to finally reaching the “top”. Especially when our national mythology invariably considers anyone who’s reached the “top” to have gotten there purely by digging their own fingers into the rock to gain handholds.
Yep. It actually takes a clarity of moral vision to see beyond your own group’s history, good and bad, and to be a champion for human rights.
Again, quoting Frederick Douglass on his visit to Ireland:
@Amanda in the South Bay: This. It makes me sad.
@GregB: Ugh. This too. I mean, what is with these guys?
@kth: I think blacks in general (or at least black voters) do tend toward cultural conservatism, probably reflecting the role that churches play in driving the politics in those communities. Blacks have been integral in defeating gay marriage initiatives in California, as a result denying civil rights to a different ‘out’ group (as the Irish did to blacks in previous generations). A fairly recent post on Balloon Juice featured some polling results regarding the belief in evolution among Republicans, Independents, and Democrats, with the front pager bemoaning the surprisingly high belief in creationism among otherwise ‘enlightened’ Democrats. I can’t seem to find any polling data reporting on evolution vs creationism among races, but I’d be surprised if blacks weren’t disproportionately represented in the anti-evolution group, paralleling their anti-gay sentiment.
Despite that, blacks (unlike too many white voters) have shown the ability to walk and chew gum at the same time by putting those cultural issues on a back burner and looking out for their economic well being by voting as a bloc for Democrats. Al Sharpton (I think) said it best when he remarked that a black person voting for a Republican would be like a chicken voting for Colonel Sanders.
It also seems like conservatives also have the fragilest masculinities that need constant reassurance and “proof”. By which I mean, they need their candidates to be “real men” who “talk like real men” and who make a good show of emulating masculine role models of the past (just look to W playing cowboy and fighter pilot, but also the general need for “mob boss” candidates, “good ol’ boy” stereotypes from the South, and so on).
They need everything to be a cultural proof that the conservatives are real men who vote for real men who are defending real man issues often framed as resisting the cock-shrinking powers of “pussyfied liberals” and all their womanly obsessions with “issues” and “suffering” and of course the environment, women’s rights, gay rights, and being conscious of -isms and the suffering of other groups rather than trying to conquer and dominate groups with “MAN-ness”.
I wonder how many social issues could be saved if we could just get these insecure fucks comfortable with their own male selves without feeling they needed to prove themselves by making everyone else suffer and electing whoever makes their gonads tingle in insecure lust.
This is too broad to be meaningful. Black people in New York City are as culturally conservative (whatever that means) as blacks in a small town in Alabama?
This is a canard that really needs to be laid to rest. Here’s an old Huffington Post blog on the issue:
Sixty one percent of people age 65 and older voted for Prop 8.
And since I live in Southern California, I know that the ballot proposition was deliberately confusing and the outreach to black and Latino communities late and haphazard.
But the main point is that people need to stop scapegoating blacks on this issue with remnants of false and misleading analysis.
@Brachiator: That would be the reason I wrote “integral in” as opposed to “primarily responsible for”. It wasn’t my intent to scapegoat, but to illustrate the conservatism of the black electorate (even in places like LA and San Francisco, not small towns in Alabama) on divisive social issues. And despite that, most still manage to see through the bullshit and vote their financial self interest, unlike many white people occupying the same economic strata.
Also, 70% (black vote for Prop 8) > 61% > 53% > 49%.