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In Dissent, Number One Hundred and Twenty-Seven
by Brian S. Wise
1 August 2003Root Out Racism

“Racist” is an accusation levied when those doing the accusing are intellectually incapable of engaging the accused in rational debate on a given issue.

Every once in awhile someone will write and ask how one is supposed to know when he has made it as a columnist.  In recent history I have responded by saying: Success is measured in proportion to one’s dream.  In other words, the closer someone comes to fulfilling his own goals, the closer he has come to “making it.”  But in the last week I have come to expand that definition to include a new racial standard, that no conservative can truly call himself a success until he has been called a racist, by at least 30 percent of his readership, in response to his expressed view on a certain topic.
Conservatives are used to being called racists, of course, because they are less likely than any segment of the population to take quiet solace in White Guilt, and because they are most likely to call out a nitwit of color.  (I speak mainly of Premier Race Hustling Poverty Pimp Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton, but any nitwit of color will do.)  It is instructive to know that “Racist” is an accusation levied when those doing the accusing are intellectually incapable of engaging the accused in rational debate on a given issue.  The hope that springs from “You are a racist” is that there will, after that point, no longer exist a need for debate, as so many people will wilt from the accusation.  Racism is an awful thing, and it invokes certain images no one wants their name attached to; here and there you are outing legitimate racists by throwing the term around, but everyone else is being smeared.
And so it was that last Friday, in relation to the Kobe Bryant matter, I attempted to explain why someone in Bryant’s position would consider another woman, given that Mrs. Bryant is so attractive.  There could be dozens of reasons, but four of what seemed most obvious to me given his circumstance were listed as: Because new fatherhood can create in some men a certain wanderlust; because it is common for men to grow tired of having sex with the same woman all the time; because the new prospect was quick and without commitment attached; and because, even though Mrs. Bryant is a beautiful woman, she is neither “19, blonde or white,” the exact words used.  These, I concluded, combined with an athletic culture that suggests gifted young athletes can and should have whatever they want, can go a long way in explaining at least the admitted adultery.
Reaction was immediate, torrential and tangential.  Those who did not agree (there were some who did) suggested I would do the exact same thing as Bryant – that is, have sex with an attractive 19-year-old girl of another race, presumably a black girl – given a similar opportunity, an equally large percentage outright saying I was a racist for even considering the accuser’s skin color in relation to Bryant’s.
Briefly to the first point.  Of course I want to have sex with attractive 19-year-old black girls … and because I am not a married man, I am free to do so with as many as would choose me in return.  One of the many differences between myself and Kobe Bryant is I long ago decided no vagina is worth my dignity, and that is the philosophy under which I have lived my personal life.  No, I will unfortunately not be having sex with any 19-year-old black girls anytime soon, but I will also never be charged with assault, something else that distinguishes me from Bryant, as I manage to control myself on a daily basis.
Now to the racial question.  Since when is it the case that young black athletes do not, as a matter of fact, have a certain preference for young, blonde, white girls?  Moreover, when did it become a fact that young, blonde, white girls were not the overall first preference of this society as a whole?  (Have you seen a television commercial lately?  Or a majority of prime time shows?  Or a majority of magazine covers? )  Since when is someone a racist who points out the obvious, something that anyone who has ever attended a public high school or has known young black athletes (I have done both) has seen with their own eyes?  The stark answer is that the person is not racist, unless he is a conservative, in which case the racism is seen by some as inherent.  It is itself a certain discrimination, but never mind.

Brian Wise is the lead columnist for IntellectualConservative.com

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