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America ain’t racist

America ain’t racist

Once again, we have entered Black History Month – and as is my tradition, I am launching the oft sought national dialogue on race with a reminder that America is NOT a racist nation or culture.  This does not mean that racism – or the last vestige of institutional racism – does not exist.  It is just that it does not define the culture.  Here is my commentary from September 2017 – and as true today as ever.

Upon reading the headline on my commentary today, the political left and no small portion of the minority community will be expressing an emphatic, “WHAT?”  It runs counter to much conventional wisdom.  Conventional wisdom is not always correct, however.  Racism may have been more ingrained in the American culture in days of yore, but it has virtually vanished in terms of any day-to-day impact for the vast majority of Americans of all backgrounds.

But wait!  I did not say that the residual of centuries of racism does not exist.  It is not totally eradicated, for sure.  The remnants of institutional racism do exist, and it is a serious problem.    We might look at racism like we see bank robbery.  Bank robbery occurs in America, but it does not make us a nation of bank robbers.

Of course, just the belief in pandemic racism impacts us politically, socially and culturally.  Widely held misconceptions have the same influence on our actions as do actual facts.  But, to complete our journey to the post racial society dreamt of by Martin Luther King we must understand the true nature and scope of racism.  Yes, we do need that much called for “dialogue on race.”  But it must be more than “White people are racists and what can we do about it?”  I see three forms of racism in America – personal racism, counter racism racism and institutional racism.

Personal racism is the feeling a person holds in their heart.  This can range from a virulent belief in white superiority to a more apathetic discomfort about people who are different.  Personal racism is not the most serious form unless it manifests itself in racist actions – from violence in the streets to not hiring a minority person.  Today, we have laws to address that.  Personal racism has ebbed and will continue to ebb through education, assimilation, the rise of new generations AND the defeat of the remnants of institutional racism.

Despite the political rhetoric, personal racism is very rare.  To make the point, allow me to lift a passage from my hopefully soon-to-be-published book on racism in America.

“If we take a fresh look at America, we might just discover that we are not a nation of racists after all, but rather the victims of racial baiting by politicians and the mainstream media.  We should keep in mind that billions of times every day … yes, billions … black and white Americans smile and nod to each other as we pass on the streets.  We serve each other in restaurants and stores.  We work side-by-side in factories and offices.  We do favors for each other.  We come to each other’s aid. We cheer alongside each other on both sides of every sports arena.  We play on the same teams.  We chat on social media.  We die alongside each other in battle.   We became lifelong friends. We adopt each other.  We fall in love and marry each other. We laugh together at the same movies, and we weep together at shared tragedies.”

Again, that is billions of times every day, and we see this every day all around us.  There was that news report about a black police officer who was killed coming to the aid of a white comrade who was also killed.  There was a recent report of an emotional reunion between a white citizen who saved the life of a black mother and her twin daughters during Hurricane Katrina.  Such reports are not rare or exceptional.  They are ubiquitous.  For every act of racial violence or hostility, there are innumerable acts of kindness and assistance – every day.

My life was impacted by such a simple kindness.  I again draw upon my manuscript.

“One of my early after school jobs was to retrieve shopping carts from the parking lot of the local Jewel Food Store.  One dark snowy winter evening, I noticed a woman on the far end of the parking lot struggling with three large brown paper bags of groceries.  I assumed she was carrying them because of the difficulty of pushing the shopping cart through the deepening snow.  I then observed a middle age black woman rushing toward her.  I expected the worst.  Was she going to attack the white woman?  Was she going to steal the groceries?  Was she a purse snatcher?  Instead, the black woman helped hold two of the stuffed grocery bags as the white woman dug around in her purse for the trunk key.  After depositing the bags in the trunk and slamming down the lid, I could see how thankful and appreciate the white woman was and how dismissive was the black woman of what appeared to be thankful compliments.

Suddenly my belief in the permanent hostility between whites and blacks was seriously challenged.  The black woman’s kindness had opened a new gateway of thinking about race relations.  I have often thought about that black woman and how she would never know how she guided my thinking and the course of my life.  Almost 60 years later, the image of that good deed remains vivid in my mind. “

In times of tragedy, and Hurricane Harvey is just the latest example, we hear the press and politicians talking about how people come together, “putting aside their differences.”  They express this as some sort of exception to what they infer to be more normal times.  These interracial acts of cooperation, however, are not the exception.  They are inherent in the diverse American culture.  It is there all the time.  We supposedly “come together” because we are never that far apart.   Yes, we come from different backgrounds and have different opinions, but we largely embrace the American culture of e pluribus unum.  We are by far good people.

The second form of racism is reactive.  It is fashionable among the academic community to proffer the argument that minority individuals cannot be racist.  Calling out black racism is often described as racist. This is a one-sided absurdity that defies all logic, common sense and fairness.  Of course, there are racist black people on the fringe of the greater community.  When I hear any black person say that all whites are racist, I hear the voice of racism.  It is as ignorant a statement as saying that all black people are lazy, all Italians are Mafia and all Scotts are parsimonious.  Once you cast an entire group with a common negative trait, you are speaking from an “ism” of one form or another.  Such stereotyping is the currency of race baiters from David Duke to Al Sharpton.

Like personal white racism, personal black racism needs to be addressed by education, assimilation, the rise of new generations AND the defeat of institutional racism.  And like white racism, it is only virulent if it generates violence or prejudicial actions.

The last and most serious form of racism is institutional racism.  In the first 175 years of our republic, during the eras of slavery and southern Democrat segregation, de jure racism was codified in our culture by national and local laws.  Alongside the de jure racism of the south, however, America saw the development of de facto racism in our major cities – and it is found there to this day.  Because it was not based on the law, it was able to survive every measure of civil rights progress since the Civil War – including constitutional amendments, laws, court orders and popular movements.  It did not endure on its own merits or even due to a foundation of grassroots racism.  It endured because it was and is beneficial to both black and white politicians who draw their power, prestige and profit from it.  In many ways, urban racism is the last vestige of America’s emergence from the pandemic institutional racism of our national inception.

It also brings us face-to-face with the real source of racism in America today.  The false narrative of pandemic cultural racism is really a political smoke screen to conceal the people who protect and carry out institutional racism.  As was de jure racism in the past, de facto racism — waning as it may be — is the operational characteristic of the Democratic Party.  Because of the power of these city political machines, urban de facto racism is tolerated at all levels of the Party structure in the same way that the national Democratic Party tolerated southern segregation for so many years.

It is the reason that virtually all the anger and frustration that boils over in minority communities in the form of demonstrations and riots is experienced in cities long controlled by the Democratic Party.  In fact, it is almost impossible to find minority uprisings in communities governed by Republicans.

These iconic urban segregated communities have many of the same features of slavery and southern segregation.  They are segregated pockets of impoverishment were citizens are denied their basic constitutional rights of education, equal justice under the law, access to career level jobs (and too often no jobs at all), social mobility, decent housing, personal safety and a well maintained infrastructure.  

This de facto racism permeates every department of city government.  It is seen in failure to enforce building and safety codes against crony slumlords who illegally subdivide unsafe tenements.  It is seen in the crumbling parks and infrastructure.  It is seen in the unending depression level unemployment.   It is seen on the bloody streets of the inner city.  It is seen in the segregated school systems which provide separate and unequal education that is the foundation of the inner city’s racially imposed poverty.   In a very real sense, the inalienable and constitutional civil rights articulated above have been supplanted by the singular faux civil right of generational welfare dependency. 

Urban institutional racism is not just the product of an all-white power structure.  It can be found among black public officials who are cronies or benefactors of the system – also drawing from it their own power, prestige and profit.  That is why cities such as Baltimore, with a long history of black leadership, suffer the same racial and economic segregation and oppression as the ghettoes of Chicago, New York and Los Angeles.  It is not a far stretch to compare many of the black leaders to the house slaves or the black slave owners of the early 1800s – gaming the racist system for personal advantage.  

It is difficult to imagine more widely held and pernicious false narratives as the assertion of pandemic American racism and Democratic Party civil rights advocacy.   If we are to have a serious and meaningful dialogue on race – and we most certainly should — it is essential that we understand what it is, where it comes from AND who is responsible.  To do that, we must look outside the box of false narratives for a much broader dialogue of discovery.

So, there ‘tis.

About The Author

Larry Horist

So,there‘tis… The opinions, perspectives and analyses of Larry Horist Larry Horist is a businessman, conservative writer and political strategist with an extensive background in economics and public policy. Clients of his consulting firm have included such conservative icons as Steve Forbes and Milton Friedman. He has served as a consultant to the Nixon White House and travelled the country as a spokesman for President Reagan’s economic reforms. He has testified as an expert witness before numerous legislative bodies, including the U. S. Congress. Horist has lectured and taught courses at numerous colleges and universities, including Harvard, Northwestern, DePaul universities, Hope College and his alma mater, Knox College. He has been a guest on hundreds of public affairs talk shows, and hosted his own program, “Chicago In Sight,” on WIND radio. Horist was a one-time candidate for mayor of Chicago and served as Executive Director of the City Club of Chicago, where he led a successful two-year campaign to save the historic Chicago Theatre from the wrecking ball. An award-winning debater, his insightful and sometimes controversial commentaries appear frequently on the editorial pages of newspapers across the nation. He is praised by readers for his style, substance and sense of humor. According to one reader, Horist is the “new Charles Krauthammer.” He is actively semi-retired in Boca Raton, Florida where he devotes his time to writing. So, there ‘tis is Horist’s signature sign off.

34 Comments

  1. Harold blankenship

    History? We should remind ourselves that blacks in Africa helped capture and enslave other blacks. Fast forward. Now some think that we owe them a living. We know the history. I’m tired of hearing about it. I never added to black “history”. If we take into account the crime statistics we would have 3 black history months a year. Or more

  2. FRANK STETSON

    ” We should remind ourselves that blacks in Africa helped capture and enslave other blacks.”

    “We should remind ourselves that whites in Germany gased millions of Jews, even took the gold from their teeth, used their skin to make lampshades.>

    “We should remind ourselves that asians in Cambodia marched close to 2 million into the killing fields.”

    I can go on, but you get the drift. Humans suck, especially autocratic rulers who want to be didtator, even for a day.

    It still should not be used, except by fools, as an excuse for discriminaiton and racism.

    • Luke mann

      So true Frank. The native Americans can tell the stories too. I know about some of my forefathers and what they experienced.

      • Dan tyree

        So the blacks ain’t the only ones who suffered bad things. But we as a country have made things right. On the subject of reparations, if someone can truthfully produce a living person white or black who had any part of slavery and/or bought, sold or held slaves in captivity during the slave days when it was legal in America I will donate to the cause. I would even cash in my retirement and donate my recently paid off house and property to a black family And I have enough land to build several houses for them. Any takers? Come on. Just one person who participated in slavery before the 1860’s American civil war that’s still alive and kicking. That been said, reparations is a stupid vote buying gimmick and a round about way to buy votes. But on second thought only democrats should pay reparations. They were the slave owners with some exceptions. And they were the founders of the kkk and Jim Crow. Senator Robert Byrd was the darling of the party. The truth is that many more people of color have done better for rejecting the liberal agenda. And of course by not hanging on Al sharpton. He’s no Martin Luther king jr. he’s just a stupid race baiter who sees a klansman behind every tree

      • larry Horist

        Luke Mann … What Frank says is not true. Modern Americans are not racist although we have hopefully the last vestige of institutional racism, But you are absolutely correct to recall the oppression against Native Americans in the past. Institutional racism is used to this day by the Bureau of Indian Affairs — as they called it. The reservation system … Wounded Knee and the Trail of Tears are notable examples. In my personal and professional career I have been deeply involved with Native American issues. Some of my closest friends were native American leaders … I even cherish awards I received for working on behalf of Native Americans. As you raise the subject, I should do a commentary on .the plight of Native Americans. But… I think it is a mistake to take the past — and even examples of residual institutional racism — and apply it to the public in general. In all my activities, I have found very few people who harbor any racist attitudes. I think it is important to recognize the cancer of racism where it exists, but not to misapply it to the people.

        • FRANK STETSON

          Horist: everything I said is true.

          What I did not say was America was racist.

          Unlike your memorable “bidenism,” “Modern Americans are not racist although we have hopefully the last vestige of institutional racism.” bwhaaaaaaaat? Not racist, but vestige of racism?

          Hold that thoght though, you may have a chance later :>)

          • larry Horist

            Frank Stetson …. Why do I have to explain the subtle points to you? Geez! Yes, the American people and the general culture is NOT racist. Quite tolerant, in fact. But there still exists the vestige of the old de facto racism in some places. It is not pandemic, but isolate — most to the big cities controlled by one-party Democrat regimes in which million of Black folks are segregated and impoverished. Maintaining that reality has been the means by which Democrats retain political control. That does not mean that Democrat voters are racists. It is something that occurs in the political leadership. The enable the racism of the institutions they control — police, housing, zoning, schools, infrastructure, commercial investment, I would be curious to know how YOU think segregation persists .. as does poor education for Blacks … high unemployment … rampant crime. Is it the “system” or are you among those who think it is just the nature of Black people? Love to hear your explanation … if not top down racism.

          • FRANK STETSON

            ” Why do I have to explain the subtle points to you? Geez” That’s a good one, whattttya gonna ask next, for me to read your mind? Just imagine the “Horist-isms comming back if I suggested the meaning of a Larry subtlty….

            Fact is we both agree America is less racist today, I just add it’s still everywhere. Like Covid, not a pandemic, but still killing too many. Damaging more.

            We both agree systemic racism is a cancer, a silent killer. You conclude it’s cities under Democratic control. I say it’s everywhere, under every party. You say it’s about power and control. I will add it’s often with the best intentions that turned out wrong, or went sideways, often with unintended outcomes.

            In my conclusion, it will take a lot of work to fix; I am not even sure we have identified the top priorities. In your conclusion, all we need to do is vote Republican. Hardly an answer I say. Won’t work I say.

            IOW — are the crudest, stereotypical answer —– I just want to throw money and it and you want to lock them all up.

            How’s that buddy? At the end here, I added some expert opinion on the topic.

            In all honesty, I think we agree, except I still see overt racism as an issue, and being low numbers, has a similar EFFECT on the national pysche, especially blacks, that mass murder has on the rest of us. It’s bad ie. We both arrre systemic racism is the bigger issue, but we differ as to location and cause. Make sure you discover all the subleties here :>)

      • FRANK STETSON

        Count me in Luke. I apparently, stupidly, left them out, I am unwoke and unworthy. And I grew up in Iriquois lands, hand listened to the Death Drums of the Seneca’s, and should have known better. I am so sorry to be so dumb. . SO………

        “We should remind ourselves that New Americans in America killed over 4.5 million Native Americans in America who founded America and then we took that too.

        Thanks for the comment Mr. Mann.

    • Joe Gilbertson

      Frank, The context of those statements is in response to the liberal, socialist goal of paying “reparations” i.e. taking money away from modern day white folks who had nothing to do with slavery and giving it to modern day blacks who were never slaves. By that logic, if you go back far enough into history almost everybody should get reparations from everyone else, because, yes, there have always been humans who have “sucked”. But the logic of “reparations” really isn’t logic, it is the old lawyers’ practice of looking around to see who has the deepest pockets – and in fact is not about punishing the responsible or compensating the victims.

      Nobody is trying to use it as an excuse for racism, that is all made up by your side.

      And in case you don’t know this, there are more slaves in the world today than there were in 1800’s.

      • FRANK STETSON

        Joe, good to hear from you. Interesting reply in that Horist never mentions reparations, nor do I. I find it a bit silly in that some may advocate it, most “liberals” don’t think it possible or practical. According to polling, 68% of Americans don’t approve of reparations, got to be some liberals in that big a number…. For Democrats, that’s a 49/48 split for not wanting them with either Republicans or White demographics heavily leaning to no reparations. Pew research.

        As far as more slavery in the world, you are right that according to today’s definition there are more. However, the definition changed to include exploitative practices like forced labor, forced marriage and human trafficking. Forced labor is the biggest component, 56%, where people may not be physical captive but can’t survive if they leave. Domestics in wealthy countries like ours are a huge component for example. It’s well over half of the total followed by forced marriage at 44%, mostly in Asia, the pacific and Africa. Human trafficking is the smallest component and yet, perhaps the most brutal. So there tis it, it’s horrible, it is slavery, but it’s different than slavery in the past, in America, created by Democrats, but a different party then. Some silly thoughts, musings:
        America is not a racist nation but yet racism is everywhere.

        It’s mostly systemic, much less overt, but the violent acts of overt racism tend to exact a huge toll on the psyche, Blacks need to be nervous all the time; whites just in the city…. Just in case. Even if the statistics say a reasonable risk.

        Can you name a county that has never seen racism? (that could be a maybe, but probably not).

        My own country, in the mountains of NW NJ, has a history with the KKK, go figure, one town apparently hosted a group for a while.

        Can you name a black that has never felt the sting of discrimination and racism?

        Can you name a place for that black to live without any racism?

        Horist notes that systemic racism is still amongst us, like a cancerous silent killer. That’s where we all participate, knowing or unknowing.

        My personal metric, and feel free to make fun of me from here to the end of this, it is pretty silly. My personal metric for answering the question, does racism exist in America is: Imagine you are a nice, happy, smiley, well-dressed, black in a top-of-the-line Mercedes convertible sportscar driving coast to coast, top down. Do you think you will make it without incident, without words being said? Close, but not yet in America. Now you are white and no problem even if you are sporting mirrored sunglasses and drive through East St. Louis. IMO.

        On the good side, I do agree we are not a overtly racist country, we even have laws that punish heavily if you act out with racist intent. But you Republicans should be honest: that’s a fucking low bar to set for equal rights. Like, look at us, we don’t lynch folk anymore. Don’t let those Capitol gallows harken you to days o past…. No, systemic racism is the thing now, and IMO, it’s prevalaent, pernicious, and present ACROSS the land. IMO, assimilation can help. And it has. If we arre all one, then they can’t do it to us. Whoever “they” are does not exist so how could they.

        IMO, I have been massively impressed with what I see as improvements in assimilation in my lifetime and it’s part education, less segregation, emancipation, expectation, etc. But IMO, the driving force: television. TV is the greatest assimilation device ever invented. Better than movies for access alone. This is just my opinion, no facts per se. In my youth, the 60’s, black urban-talk was everywhere, English seemed fleeting, even under attack. We got our first TV around 1960. Exponential TV growth was 1950-70 so 60 is a good starting point for tv assimilation. I wondered: how can folks assimilate it they don’t speak the language? Worse yet, they seem to speak in code, a safety mechanism from the times of living with master. I trusted that the homogenizing TV would solve the problem and indeed, I think it helped. Good teacher TV is. Initially blacks on TV were stereotypes, goofy, stupid, funny talking. Even the urban talk was exaggerated, dumbed down. Funny character actors in a John Wayne movie or loud-mouthed maids for some white family in a sitcom. Sydney Portier changed that, he was way cool, but too angry, proud, I believe the racist term is uppity. He began his rise in 1950 but hit his stride in the 60’s. But too angry to be the perfect role model. AT least for whites. Will Smith changed it all, just a Beverly Hills nerd turned action hero, it’s like color does not exist, he’s so nice, so cool, so assimilated. And next thing you know, Obama is President. I contend that without Will Smith, there would be no Obama. Will was friendly. Normal. Smart. Assimilated. But the point of total inflection for me was the St. Louis Riots in 2014, Ferguson. They’re interviewing people on the street, not affluent, well-educated people, urban talkers, and damned if they did not sound like you and me and better than most Southern Rednecks. Assimilation had occurred at the poverty level. It made me happy because these folks could easily talk themselves into a good job.

        I know, anecdotal, dates are wrong, no statistics, whatever, but 1865 to 2014, — that’s 60 years or two or three generations. It took my Irish and Slavic sides about one or two generations. My wife is half-first generation and totally assimilated. Makes sense to me: my immigrants had some education, some money. Most slaves had neither. My wife’s mother’s family came before the Mayflower, her father from Genoa —- she had a fast track.

        I know it’s a weird way to think, but assimilation goes a long way to protect against discrimination. Look how we demand that Latinos speak English, to the point of some trying to make the language the law. My ancestors could easily hide amongst the majority. We were Irish, Slavic, Italian, but looked just like most people here. My grandmother came over at age 5. Her parents sounded foreign, she did not. We started in the coal mines, the steel mills, but within a generation, blended in to find better jobs. Blacks — well, face it, they stick out in a crowd of white guys, harder to hide by blending in; between that and coming from nothing, with no education, assimilation is a harder row to hoe than what my ancestors faced.

        That’s my silly two cents, but makes more sense than pointing fingers over reparations which will never happen, or suggesting that blacks enslaved blacks and therefore US slavery was OK. No one should believe that piece of stupidity.

        • larry Horist

          Frank Stetson … FYI, I have written about reparations in past commentaries. Perhaps time to do another.. Yes there is institutional racism that segregates and oppresses millions of Black Americans. It is an institutional system iconic to the major Democrat-run cities that creates power, prestige and profits for those who oversee it. However.. I may be more about that than race since the segregation and oppression flourishes under Black mayors — as we have seen in New York, Chicago, Baltimore, Los Angeles, etc. etc. etc It cannot be said that Black enslave Blacks in the traditional sense,. That ended with the Black plantation slave owners in the south with the Civil War. But it can be said that Black leaders oppress Black citizens in the cities. BUT … there is very little racism to be found among the general public in our day-to-day life. The narrative to the contrary is political and promulgated for power, prestige and profit by the fringe — including white supremacist and neo-Nazis on one side and BLM. Those on the left — such as Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton — have more influence in promoting the false claim of pandemic racism largely because most PEOPLE Black and White– are not racists. You mention the historic prejudice against the Irish, Italians, Poles, Chinese, Mexicans, Vietnamese, etc. did not last. Folks were able to integrate and assimilate. Not so easy for Blacks, who were brought here as slaves and considered to be a lessor form of human. Although FDR, Wilson and folks like Margaret Sanger also thought Asian were an inferior breed. Bottom line, most Americans are not racists — racism does not define todays American culture. Quite the contrary. The false narrative is a bigger problem than racism. Not that we do not have to deal with what and where oppression of Black folks still exists.

  3. Meech Miller

    The only racists in America today are the Blacks! They scream racism for everything – a black kid is arrested for anything, and they scream racism, if they don’t get a job, they scream racism – If they get fired from a job such, as the head of Harvard last month who was not fired for racism but for lying on her resumes and other things. they scream racism! If a black person is pulled over by police, they claim it’s because he was black!

    I am sick and tired of this racism and then they have the guts to say the whites are racists! They want reparations for something that happened hundreds of years ago, and you can bet they never even knew those ancestors- well then give reparations for everyone who ever got slighted in history! NO one wants reparations or screams racism at everything, but the black population and they need to face this as well as the media who caves into their protests and gives them space on the news.

    • larry Horist

      Meech Miller. I have spend an a lot of time in the Black communities and I can say with certainty that most Black folks — like most white folks, or Hispanic folks, or Asian folks or Native American folks — are NOT racists. Although there can be some racist people in all of those groups. Progressive argue that there is no such thing as Black racism. That is nonsense. We just have to stop defining ourselves and others by the few bad apples. Most Blacks I know do not give a damn about reparation’s. That is the politicians pandering and creating tribal conflicts that do
      not exist.

  4. Darren

    Every comment here has some Truth to it. Things are better today than they were 100 years ago. Better than that of 50 years ag, better than that of 20 years ago.
    Now in steps Liberalism, lets tear down Statues, lets rewrite history books, lets forget about the path NEEDED to create America!
    This is a nice looking frosting on a different Cake. Without History and the reminders of history, HUMANS will repeat history.
    Not 1 comment here is from someone under 40 years of age I would bet.
    For that reason we all agree how the older day of America Sucks, and today is a much better place to live than that of a Racist past.
    Problem is this generation of Humans under 10 years of age are being set to REPEAT history as all reminders of the past are being erased.
    Lets tear down statues, lets rewrite history, lets forget EVERYTHING discussed here by Larry. The demise of human rights will back into the hands of Racisms past and is moving forward. Who is promoting this.
    Democrat’s! Republicans get NO award either. Both in the past have been racist. If it was the history of Republicans, it now belongs to the Democrat’s.
    The past is being started again right now as the Teaching Liberal fools think they are doing a NICE THING. Fools want to forget, a wise person forgives but never forgets!
    The younger generation is made up of fools!

    • Mike f

      Spoken like a true old man-the younger generation has been composed of fools for ever. You were a fool per the generation that preceded you. Some of us can look at times and see how they change-others get stuck in their own world. Shall we guess which group you fall into?

      • Darren

        So Mike, how many statues are you in favor of destroying, or rewriting history.
        Yes the rewriting may not matter as they do NOT teach history anymore!
        I assume you are under 40 years of age.
        If not, go back to clown college.

        • Mike f

          Darren-There is a place for everything-we should not be worshipping any confederate soldiers. Statues, if we have any, should be relegated to museums where the full details of their history can be explained. Concerns about founding fathers due to the fact that they owned slaves is a bit over the top, but those are facts that should be taught in schools so that the people being educated understand the full context of that era. (And no, I am not under 40, but my thinking has been able to evolve with the times-I actually voted Republican in my 20’s and 30’s, but then I realized they had become the party of stupid…)

          • larry Horist

            Mike f … We seem to agree. I do not believe the confederate statues, flags and symbols should be displayed in places of honor on the commons. I think they can be displayed in museums were the context can be history, not honor. Not sure if you know, but the movement to remove them was started by Republican administrations. in the south. But I am not in favor of including the Founders and others in that process. Democrats honor Andrew Jackson with annual dinners and his name all over America. He was arguably the worst white racist President who killed Native Americans, forced the Trail of Tears march and personally enjoyed beating his slaves. Democrats gather at the Woodrow Wilson center in D.C. — another white supremacist who segregated the military and the Executive Branch. FDR is widely honored despite his white supremacy, his antisemitism, and his racist New Deal programs. So, where do you draw the line?

    • larry Horist

      Darren … Can you give examples of GOP racism in the past. I have researched the subject for my book, but I have not found it.

  5. FRANK STETSON

    Darren, you mean teach history like DeSantis in Florida adding the benefits of slavery to his school curriculum? *https://www.nbcnews.com/news/us-news/new-florida-standards-teach-black-people-benefited-slavery-taught-usef-rcna95418* How many history books have been banned for discussing rainbows? We know who is changing, banning, and burning round here.

    As far as the statues, they are rebels, terrorists, supporters of slavery, take them all down. And the flag. In my youth, I admired the rebel spirit, the plucky underdog with military skills to almost pull it off. We were wrong Darren, they tried to destroy the nation, take it apart, over slavery. We were wrong Darren. Take em down. It’s not history to keep them, it’s heresy.

  6. FRANK STETSON

    IMO, Horist’s belief that systemic racism only exists in urban areas that are 100% controlled by Democrats is just not true.

    Saying all systemic racism is caused by Democrats, applied only by and to Democrats, and not in any areas controlled by Republicans is ludicrous and impossible on its own merits. Horist caring so much about what Democrats do to Democrats is laudatory. Topping it off with a claim that Democrats are the cause of slavery which is true, not only leaves out that most white supremacists today vote Trump, but also that’s the Democratic party of the 1860’s is just not the same Democratic Party as today, that is a lie, and just seals the deal on this silly theory. Should be a pager turner. Heck, you can see it on this site with who uses the n-word, or derivations thereof, and who does not. Horist feels the n-word is free speech that is proper here: he’s a Republican fyi.

    Basically, what Horist believes is that clusters of Blacks in the cities, which are mostly, but not totally controlled by Democrats, is where systemic racism exists and somehow, once out of the Democratic controlled cities, that the laws change, the programs change, attitudes change, and there are not clusters of minorities facing systemic racism. Bullshit. He’s pitching his politics when the problem is systemic racism under all of America, both sides of the aisle, and similar laws, programs, and systemic racism are found in blue and red demographic regions.

    For example, one of the things Horist’s home state is well known for, beyond being flat, is a lack of mass transit. Florida rates 7thin population and about 20th in mass transit with around 10% using it in Miami and no other cities listed. NJ has five cities noted for mass transit with some showing 47% ridership. This governmental “choice” in Florida is Republican systemic racism against the poor, which are often minorities, who use mass transit to find better jobs in Democratic States. Just saying. Horist, examples are everywhere.

    Now, in Florida you have workers that need to be close to work, no mass transit system. Work is poisoning the area nearby, workers forced to live nearby get poisoned. Florida has a lot of systemic racism in many of the same old forms: *https://floridaphoenix.com/2023/07/20/environmental-racism-is-rampant-in-florida-but-dont-mention-it/*

    But not picking on Florida, it’s like that in so many places in America. We were just not woke to it. Wake up Horist, you have a good idea, you are woke, but in your zealous aim to destroy Democrats, you miss the target and need to wake just a bit more. IMO. Not reading your mind. Just my opinion. Not a fact of how you feel, just my opinion. Calm down, it’s just my opinion.

    I believe Horist has a great insight here, focusing on systemic racism and away from the white supremacy sort of thing found often in Red States. He is right that overt acts of racism are trending down, does not directly affect many. I contend it massively affects the national psyche. I do think that a good black beat down always turns more heads and affects the national psyche more, especially for blacks, I agree it’s the lesser evil now. Sort of like the difference tween regular gun death and mass murder. My goodness, we shoot each other all the time and who cares, but a good mass murder, that’s a real head turner affecting the national psyche a lot, although at this point, less every day. Horist’s approach is a very woke approach, but labelling it Democrat only, city only, etc. is shortsighted. It’s national, we all take part; you don’t even have to be in office, in power. Until Horist sees himself in all of this, he cannot see the truth.

    • FRANK STETSON

      Sorry Horist, I have a piece with expert opinon, a lot of research that you have been trying to uncover, agreement, disagreement, and a real suprise at the state level.

      But it is blocked, it is banned. Extreme free speech apparenlty has technical issues.

      If you get someone to allow the post, I will post the post. Otherwise, this free speech has been banned.

    • larry Horist

      Frank Stetson…. You first sentence is not true. Again .. you make a false statement about my opinion or belief as the imaginary straw may you choose to debate. I also noted that you and Tom made references to the fact that the points I made in this commentary go back a lot of years. This is BLACK HISTORY MONTH. The subject of this commentary is BLACK HISTORY. I particularly deal with widely held misconceptions about that BLACK HISTORY. Your criticism is irrelevant because you are off the subject or trapped by your own obsessive contrarianism … or failed reading comprehension. One commentary is not an big picture of racism in America. You Tom and Mike are operating out of an unfortunate combination of arrogance and ignorance — proving that a LITTLE knowledge makes for small minded people.

      And with regard to your obsessive hatred Florida, look at the big picture. Republicans win big. The highest Republican registration in the nation — that includes a lot of independent and Democrat converts. Florida has the greatest number of citizens moving from other states — mostly red states. We have no income tax — which draws a lot of relators. In a recent poll, more than 85 percent of Floridians like the schools system. Florida is among the most integrated population in America. — with 50 percent of the population being people-of-color. By way of comparison, You New Jersey has a shrinking population since around 2010. People provide the best evidence.

      • FRANK STETSON

        The pugnacious prick is at it again…… If this guy could ever argue the issues, discuss the rebuttals, stay on point, if would be a miracle.

        Hoirst says: “Frank Stetson…. You first sentence is not true. Again .. you make a false statement about my opinion or belief as the imaginary straw may you choose to debate.” I have no clue what he is squawking about. The first sentence I looked at was good as gold, all statements truth.

        He complains thatTom and my complain that his use of an incredibly long history to describe the current Democratic party is inaccurate due to lack of association. Like Southern Democrats which we attempt to show him have little connection to Northern Democrats or the modern Democratic Party. Horist likes to generalize about our perceived shortcomings as if merger makes his taunts grow stronger. He says nothing about our specific facts, but complains in general about our brazen use of history to disprove his historical, sometimes hysterical, reading of history in ordery to spin. He has no comments on those facts except to say the concept is wrong.

        Heck, I caught him in a major lie about sponsorship of the civil rights bill and he can not respond to the specifics. Nada. He’s got nothing to say on the specifics.

        He concludes: “Your criticism is irrelevant because you are off the subject or trapped by your own obsessive contrarianism … or failed reading comprehension.” Wow, what an old douce bag. In other words, he dismisses our facts in total not because they are inaccurate — he does not prove that — but because we are inferior human failures. To which he claims: “You Tom and Mike are operating out of an unfortunate combination of arrogance and ignorance — proving that a LITTLE knowledge makes for small minded people.” Certainly, that must mean that the facts we presented MUST be wrong.

        When you can’t argue the facts, you go after the person. This is who Horist is, not Republicans, not Conservatives, this is what Horist does.

        Lastly, he says: “And with regard to your obsessive hatred Florida, look at the big picture. Republicans win big.”

        Actually Horist, facts provide the best evidence, people — not so much so. For the record, I only use Florida as an example since it is your backyard. And again, you talk about many things, many I have applauded in the past for FL, on your posts even, but again, you offered no disagreement to the facts on Florida that I presented in rebuttal to your claims. Guess they were spot on, or you once again ignored them to speak of other things. You did not counter any of those facts.

        And, like I said, Horist is only interested in one thing, “Republicans win big.” And, for Horist, that means everyone else must lose.

        • larry Horist

          Little Frankie Stetson…. You just cannot let go of your unhinged obsession. First of all, most of what you write is projection. Change the name “Horist” to “Stetson” and the response gains a lot more credibility. I go a particular boot out of you using
          the childish “pugnacious prick” insult. Kind of hypocritical for a guy who keeps calling for civil discourse. And you claim that you caught me in a lie is … in fact … a lie. You give new meaning to the words “tedious” and “boring.” You already won the gold for the word “ignorant”. Consider this my response to the seven attacks you made on me in the past 4 and a half hours this morning. You really do not have a life … do you?

  7. FRANK STETSON

    do the experts say. This is a group of folks collaborating together: *https://www.healthaffairs.org/doi/10.1377/hlthaff.2021.01394*

    “Racism is not always conscious, intentional, or explicit—often it is systemic and structural. Systemic and structural racism are forms of racism that are pervasively and deeply embedded in and throughout systems, laws, written or unwritten policies, entrenched practices, and established beliefs and attitudes that produce, condone, and perpetuate widespread unfair treatment of people of color. They reflect both ongoing and historical injustices. Although systemic racism and structural racism are often used interchangeably, they have somewhat different emphases.

    Systemicracism emphasizes the involvement of whole systems, and often all systems—for example, political, legal, economic, health care, school, and criminal justice systems—including the structures that uphold the systems.

    Structuralracism emphasizes the role of the structures (laws, policies, institutional practices, and entrenched norms) that are the systems’ scaffolding. Because systemic racism includes structural racism, for brevity we often use systemic racism to refer to both; at times we use both for emphasis. Institutional racism is sometimes used as a synonym for systemic or structural racism, as it captures the involvement of institutional systems and structures in race-based discrimination and oppression; it may also refer specifically to racism within a particular institution.”

    How can that definition ever be applied as Horist has? It’s omnipresent, not political spectrum. You would have to say there’s a dividing line between Democratic and Republican controlled regions of the country. In Horists paradigm, if Blacks just left the city, they could leave systemic racism behind. Not bloody likely. You would also have to conclude that Blacks are incredibly stupid to stay in the cities if all they had to do was move to Republicanville.

    The authors give examples: “Political disenfranchisement and disempowerment through voter suppression and gerrymandering are an important historical and contemporary manifestation of systemic racism.” Like that has never happened in Red regions of the country. It just happened in a racist fashion in Horist’s home state of Florida. ” A Florida redistricting plan pushed by Gov. Ron DeSantis violates the state constitution, a state judge ruled Saturday.” *https://www.npr.org/2023/09/02/1197452442/desantis-florida-redistricting-map-gerrymandering-unconstitutional* I got a million of these.

    “Because of segregation, African American and Latino people are more likely than White people with similar household incomes to live in neighborhoods with concentrated disadvantage, whose adverse health effects have repeatedly been demonstrated, yet most health and medical studies do not include variables representing neighborhood conditions.” As if there is no segregation or concentrated areas of minorities in Red regions. “Florida Communities Order Racial Segregation at Beaches” “Judge Choate expressly recognized that the city was legally authorized to continue practicing segregation and recommended that the commission segregate portions of the beach by race.” This was in 1956, Delray Beach where crosses were burned as a reminder. Yes, FL was Democratic, but the beach was hardly a city. And I bring it up because Catherine Strong, a NYC transplant, Democrat, changed it all for the better. It’s people, people, not politics in much of this. But today, the following map show segregation in Florida, a Republican State, with much of it right outside Horist’s front door. *https://www.flhealthcharts.gov/ChartsDashboards/rdPage.aspx?rdReport=NonVitalIndRateOnly.Dataviewer&cid=9777* As to the causes, well, it must be the Republicans, he said, sarcastically, subtlety. Segregation exists everywhere, Mr. Horist, all shades of politics.

    “Widespread discriminatory public and private lending policies and practices are another salient instance of systemic racism and have created major obstacles to home ownership and wealth for people of color” as if this stops at the city’s edge and lending agencies curtail these practices in Red areas.

  8. FRANK STETSON

    “Predatory financial services disproportionately target communities of color, adding to the obstacles to their accumulating wealth.” It’s called redlining — not blue-lining :>), but do you think it stops at the city’s edge? Some headlines: “United States Alleges Florida Law Firm Discriminated Against Hispanic Homeowners With A Predatory Loan Modification And Foreclosure Rescue Services Team.” “Wells Fargo Bank sued for race discrimination in mortgage lending practices.” It’s national, but starts in Florida. When it comes to money schemes, Florida rules.

    “Environmental injustice is systemic racism with direct health consequences. Racially segregated communities have often experienced the damaging health effects of environmental injustice. Examples include well-documented patterns of selectively locating coal-fired power plants and hazardous waste disposal in or near communities of color, with adverse effects on the population’s health.” There’s an area north of Miami where this exact thing happened. Democrats?

    Criminal Justice System: I am not quoting this one, I am sure it’s pretty evident that the poor get the wrong end of the stick from the legal system across the entire country. But only recently: “’Hostile to Black Americans’: Breaking down 5 laws NAACP named in Florida travel advisory.”

  9. FRANK STETSON

    I hope Horist and others find the authors an interesting read in that these guys are looking at it as a health issue. But clearly the examples are not just found in Democratic cities. All you have to do is pick a topic, targer a Republican stronghold, and you can find it ez pz.
    The stories first line says it all: “Racism is not always conscious, intentional, or explicit—often it is systemic and structural.” That’s a hard one to fix. But we have to do better, all parties, all regions, all of America. Only when we no longer need to identify someone as black or white, except for police identification purposes, will we have succeeded. Otherwise, we just need to have sex with each other so we can have one color, under God, forever. I think we are better than that.

  10. FRANK STETSON

    In closing, a magazine that can’t be mentioned noted the States, by racism. And the top ten racist states: WI (b), MN (b), IOWA (r) IL (b) , MICH (b), CT (b), NB (r), NJ (b), OH (r), and PA (b). FL is 33rd. The best places: HI (b), NM (b), TX (r), WY (r), MT (r), ID (r), AZ (b), WV, (r) Alaska (r), KY (r), and TN (r). FL is still 33rd. (citation banned) I don’t know the exact criteria here, a lot of economic factors, but it points out 1) racism exists in many states, red and blue. It is where you expect (IL, CT, etc) and isn’t where you most expect it (TN, KY, TX). Hopefully that will inspire Horist to get off the blame game and onto the shame game, shame on all of us. Thank you Horist, for being woke to this and spreading your awakening.

    • larry Horist

      Frank Stetson … I think your obsession is getting worse — border on hysteria. LOL. Between 8 and 10 am you have had 8 responses to my writings. I know how much time it takes me to write and you write many times more than me. I honestly cannot see where you have a life other than PBP. And you still complain about censorship?

      And if you knew ANYTHING about institutional racism, you would know it is a feature of cities ,,, not states. That established by EVERY statistic. The question is who CONTROLS the police that have been racists? Who CONTROLS the schools that fail to education millions of Blacks? Who controls the housing? Who controls the lack economic development (jobs) in the ghettoes. The overwhelming number of Blacks living in segregated and oppressed communities are governed over for generations by city administrations. And who controls them? Democrat political machines. There are only two dots and you are incapable of connecting them.

      I write about REAL racism. Not the narrative of those who want to cast the American people as racists for their own political and monetary benefits. Their method is to interpret and yell “RACISM” where it does not exist. They promote the narrative, not the reality. If those are your sources, then you are just a dupe.

      • FRANK STETSON

        Hoirst: Nope. I think I have shown many examples of systemic racism outside of the city. Frankly, it is everywhere in America.. You have not shown any evidence against that.

        I have provided experts who claim the same thing.

        Like I said: print the book. They will rip you a new one.

  11. FRANK STETSON

    For some reason, the last citation seems to be the one that is blocked. Of course it’s the last one…….

  12. AC

    Anecdotal evidence is insufficient proof of the existence of racism or the non existence of racism. Individual, institutional, judicial, penal, educational, and any other of society’s supposedly democratically managed organizations exhibit systemic bias against nonwhite persons.
    Broad generalizations made as proof of or rationale for stating condemnatory accusations is flawed. Theorizing based on an unsubstantiated fact set is invalid on its face.
    Larry, what do you call someone who publishes current event news stories in a non-objective and highly politicalized perspective?
    Although, that which is published happens to be purely personal opinion based, therefore it is merely conjecture, uncertified, and fodder made for debate style argumentation. But. It’s never ever wrong, propagandistic narrow minded, and contextless.
    However, since not only is one’s “personal” opinion, it’s personally perceived as true and incontrovertible fact. No additional presentation of factual evidence as proof of errors made.
    Those who see things differently, MSNBC, CMN, or some other so called liberal MSM are by you condemned as being biased and dishonest.
    You would pass judgement and berate anyone else who disagrees with your opinion..
    Objectivity, critical analysis, cogency, and discernment are the high road less taken when the primary objective is political axe grinding while eyeing the opposition (enemy).
    Ain’t that the right’s MO. Constantly complaining about their cup being half empty..
    Why is it that Republicans think adversarial and confrontational is the smart and effective approach. It’s worked so well for them. Just ape Donald and they’re winners.

    this case as true fact,
    first personal and

    M

  1. Frank I can’t understand what’s wrong with MAGA. You idiots on the left are satanic bastards out to destroy patriots.…

  2. Don’t tell me nout proof. I’m too Young to need proof. I don’t need no stinkin proof. We all know…