Sunday, June 21, 2020

Uncomfortable Questions and People Who Think Differently

A friend of mine in the US was required by his employer to attend a session about racism. He was given the graphic shown here:



It's a very well-crafted piece, especially for the many of us who are in denial that we are in any way racist and/or don't appreciate the struggles that black people face (which is most of us in the frum community). And it's an excellent model for any area in which one needs to undergo personal growth. You start by identifying the problem - and acknowledge that there could be problems of which you are unaware and uncomfortable acknowledging. Then you engage in a process of learning, in which you still acknowledge that you have much to learn, and listen to people who look and think very differently from you (note to frum right-wing readers: Candace Owens does not count). Finally, you reach a position where you in a place to actually make a difference - while still acknowledging that there is still room for growth.

But I wonder: To what extent do people who favor such training, actually implement this?

Consider some of the lines here: "I seek out questions that make me uncomfortable..." And I was particularly struck by the line at the bottom of the circle: "I surround myself with others who think & look differently from me." Is this really something that the general society of people campaigning for racial equality are doing?

There's a great website called Medium.com, which is a platform for fascinating articles on a wide range of topics. Two recent articles came to my attention, both of which were shocking - albeit in very different ways.

One article is bluntly titled, "Yes My Dear, All White People Are Racist." The (black) author was emphatic that she was being 100% literal. Every single white person is racist. And she added that white people who claim not to be racist are the most dangerous of all, because they are in denial of their inherent racism.

(A hyperlink in her first use of the term shows that she is using a very specific and unconventional definition of racism, in which it refers to "the systemic subordination of members of targeted racial groups who have relatively little social power in the United States (Blacks, Latino/as, Native Americans, and Asians), by the members of the agent racial group who have relatively more social power (Whites)." But this is hardly the definition that is used in everyday conversation - and even with this definition, it's a far cry to claim that every single white person is part of this systemic subordination.)

Okay, so this is a pretty extreme article. But Medium seeks to "welcome thoughtful and civil discussion from a broad spectrum of viewpoints." And I am happy to read things from people who think very differently from me.

So then we get to the second article at Medium, which is also from a person of color - a professor at Berkeley, writing an open letter to his colleagues. He writes in alarm about the lack of diversity of opinion when it comes to analyzing racial problems. Here's an extract: 
"I could not find a single instance of substantial counter-argument or alternative narrative to explain the under-representation of black individuals in academia or their over-representation in the criminal justice system. The explanation provided in your documentation, to the near exclusion of all others, is univariate: the problems of the black community are caused by whites, or, when whites are not physically present, by the infiltration of white supremacy and white systemic racism into American brains, souls, and institutions.
Many cogent objections to this thesis have been raised by sober voices, including from within the black community itself, such as Thomas Sowell and Wilfred Reilly. These people are not racists or ‘Uncle Toms’. They are intelligent scholars who reject a narrative that strips black people of agency and systematically externalizes the problems of the black community onto outsiders. Their view is entirely absent from the departmental and UCB-wide communiques."
Now, it may indeed be the case that the problems of the black community actually are solely caused by whites and by the infiltration of white supremacy and white systemic racism into American brains, souls, and institutions. Other explanations may indeed be incorrect. However, surely that is something that should be discussed and argued about, not taken as an unquestionable fact with which one must not even acknowledge the existence of other views.

Meanwhile, Berkeley confirmed the basic point of the letter by condemning it: "it goes against our values as a department and our commitment to equity and inclusion." Apparently, "inclusion," even for an academic institution, does not mean including questions that challenge a particular narrative, even to refute them. Whatever happened to the value of "seeking out questions that make one feel uncomfortable" and "surrounding oneself with others who think differently"?

Well, at least this letter was published on Medium, who "welcome thoughtful and civil discussion from a broad spectrum of viewpoints," right? Not so fast. Medium has flagged the article for being in potential violation of its rules and has blocked all comments on it. An article declaring that every single white person is racist is within the spectrum; an article complaining about the narrowness of discourse is not.

Of course, it's not just Medium that is guilty of such things. There's an excellent article by Matt Taibi - an award-winning journalist who wrote a book called "I Can't Breathe" about systemic racism in America and police brutality towards blacks, back in 2014. Taibi writes about how the news media is destroying itself by "replacing traditional liberal beliefs about tolerance, free inquiry, and even racial harmony with ideas so toxic and unattractive that they eschew debate, moving straight to shaming, threats, and intimidation."

One striking example of this is with the New York Times, which ran an op-ed by Senator Tom Cotton advocating for a military show of force to dissuade riots. The NYT did not only apologize for running the op-ed; the editor had to resign. As my friend Rabbi Scott Kahn commented, "The problem lies in the increasingly narrow range of what is considered acceptable. When printing a United States Senator’s words, ill-advised and offensive as they may be, is cause for losing your job and massive institutional self-flagellation, we can be sure that we’ve taken a wrong turn." And remember, this is a newspaper which had no problem printing an op-ed by Mahmoud Abbas, which entirely distorted the history of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict!

And it's not just with regard to racial issues that this problem appears. J.K. Rowling is currently in a firestorm about comments that she made which were seen as anti-trans. It involves issues such as whether women have the right to want bathrooms which exclude trans, which in turn relates to the question of what it takes for a person to legally identify as trans; is it enough for them to merely "self-identify" as a female, or is more required? Now, in order to address such issues, obviously it's very important to study the extent to which people who profess to be trans are really serious about it, the extent of rates of de-transition, and so on. But it seems that there is a serious dearth of such studies, because such studies simply won't be done. And the reason is that nobody dares fund or carry out a study which runs the risk of falling afoul of the socially acceptable narrative.

The willingness to ask uncomfortable questions, and to listen to people who think differently, is not just important for people with suspected racist beliefs. It's important for everyone.


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192 comments:

  1. The editor at the Times resigned not because they printed the op-ed. He resigned because they printed the op-ed without his even having reviewed it to make a decision on whether or not to publish it, and then issued a false statement that it had been reviewed.

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    Replies
    1. Uh-uh. Right. And the Mayor of NYC isn't anti-Semitic, and Black Lives Matter is merely interested in helping African Americans achieve equality.

      Your problem, Yesoshua, is not merely that you've drank the koolaid, its that you're willing to contort yourself to believe anything, rather than accept what's in front of your face. You should study the history of Jewish communists, and learn how they engaged in the same type of self-delusion right up until they were rounded up for Siberia and execution.

      Delete
    2. Yes, de blasio who closed a playground for Jewish children because of coronavirus but allows these rioter thugs to utterly destroy NYC is just plain anti-Semitic.

      Delete
    3. The mayor of NYC is not anti-Semitic. No mayor ever has kowtowed as much to charedi political leadership.

      I have been calling out Black Lives Matter since about 2014.

      But regarding the NYT, what is inaccurate about Yehoshua's comment? It was one more of a long series of NYT failures.

      Delete
  2. "One article is bluntly titled, "Yes My Dear, All White People Are Racist." The (black) author was emphatic that she was being 100% literal. Every single white person is racist. And she added that white people who claim not to be racist are the most dangerous of all, because they are in denial of their inherent racism."

    That you are shocked by this only reflects your ignorance of the topics at hand, Rabbi (no offense). The basic premises in her medium article you cite here are straight from the "Critical Race Theory" dogma that has invaded, enraptured, and overtaken American academia as the dominant approach to the exclusion of all other viewpoints, and even the utter rejection of all opposing views as "unclean" so to speak. It is forbidden to argue, as it is a form of racism to disagree with this. (See how that trick works? Anything I don't like and wish to be silenced, I can accuse of being motivated by conscious or unconscious racism - Just like all white people possess. And if you aren't white and you disagree, then you are simply "White-Adjacent" and also to be dismissed. Essentially you have adopted "white supremacy" by arguing with me).
    That is what produces the state of affairs cited by the anonymous Berkeley professor.

    But critical race theory is not based on scientific research, objective analysis, honest exploration and discussion, nor debate. It is based primarily on things like: projection, hostility, emotional resentment, racism (against non-blacks, and arguably against blacks too), assumption, conspiracy theory.

    Look at the best seller "White Fragility" for a handy guide to this belief set and its absolutely nonsensical nature. This book and all its assertions are completely baseless, often times merely the result of anecdotal stories/experiences from the author. It deserves nothing but derision and laughter. Yet it is paraded as a learning tool for white people!

    This set of ideas is ludicrous and deserving of nothing but ridicule. An optimist would argue that the average person, once availing himself of its sources and freeing himself from ignorance of these topics as displayed in your blogpost Rabbi (Again, no offense intended), will instantly recognize it as absurd gibberish, and it will lose its authority in the ongoing "debate" (which is not a debate but an enforced axiomatic agenda which essentially outlaws disagreement).
    In fact, some prominent liberal thinkers and opponents of critical theory assert this specifically.

    But I have my doubts. Because Academia was powerless to stop this trend. Evergreen State was a trial balloon and now we are seeing it has spread widely across many universities, and we are enjoying currently the invasion of common society and discourse too.

    And if you haven't read about Evergreen State, do us all a favor and inform yourself before the next blogpost about your imaginations on race relations in America.

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    Replies
    1. I am completing my 25th year as an academic and I have never heard of "Critical Race Theory".

      By calling every white person racist, one fails to distinguish between Doug Jones and David Duke.

      Delete
  3. But I wonder: To what extent do people who favor such training, actually implement this?
    ===============================
    As with just about any "training" in corporateland (e.g. diversity, effective writing.....) the answer will be dependent on whether this is a one and done event or something that becomes ingrained in the corporate culture (through management, peer review, water cooler conversations....) Just as Eliyahu Hanavi found out after his showdown with the neviei habaal - even one time miracles don't change most people (I Kings 18:20-39).. Change is often a slog - as the Lovin Spoonful almost said
    "And then you know you'd better make up your mind to change.
    And pick up on one and leave the other behind.
    It's not often easy and not often kind.
    Did you ever have to make up your mind to change?"
    KT

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  4. Jonathan Rosenblum wrote a very similar article in Mishpacha this week.

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  5. Welcome to the club! I sense that you're obtaining an understanding of just what we've been up against in the US during the last decades--the threat from the Left, who want to move the Overton Window to the point where any idea that is not Leftist is condemned in the vilest terms.

    I hope you see now why many of us are very sensitive to criticism of Trump, even when he deserves it. At this point in history, he and his voters are pretty much what stand between us and Leftism. They have academia, education, the media, and entertainment. All we have is the presidency and the Senate.

    Andy

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    1. You're very sensitive to criticism of Trump, even when he deserves it, in order to fight against the dangers of a leftism that refuses to accept criticism even when it deserves it?

      Opposite sides of the same coin, you are.

      I'll sign up for any political philosophy that has a modicum of intellectual integrity and self-analysis. Sadly, they no longer exist.

      Delete
    2. In the immortal (almost) words of Tonto: "What you mean we, Kemosabe?"
      KT

      Delete
    3. Yerushalmi-

      I DO accept criticism of Trump, as do many of his voters. The "sensitive" part is the knowing that if, in the aggregate, the criticism is effective enough, AND if it does not include the context of what would happen if the Left takes over, we will lose the presidency and Senate as well to Leftists. And if G-d forbid that happens, the attitudes that RDNS wrote of in his post will become Government policy.

      KT- in the immortal words of Archie Andrews: "Huh?" "We" means Trump supporters who are aware of the danger from the Left (not sure why that was unclear)

      Andy

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    4. Do you what Rightism brought us?

      A party who openly wanted people to die for the stock market, a President who openly asks despotic power for election help, a President who openly praises Nazi fans, and who uses obvious Nazi symbolism in ads, and who spends more time tweeting than being worried about constructively dealing with national problems.

      And a whole "religious" overclass who supports all this.

      Organized religion in this country has been an utter, complete, abysmal failure for the last 10+ years.

      Delete
    5. @Andy
      If the criticism had been effective enough, and if Trump's supporters had been more willing to listen to it instead of being "sensitive" to it, he might have been removed from office for his corruption - and then we would have had a far more competent President Pence running the coronavirus response. A man who, among other things, does not believe that we should stop testing for the virus under the belief that if you don't look for it it doesn't exist.

      Do you deny that Pence would have done a far better job managing the crisis? Would not his reelection chances therefore be far better than Trump's?

      Delete
    6. Unknown--please, keep on commenting!

      Everyone else--please read his/her comment carefully; this is a great example of what we're up against. As Dennis Prager says, some people in all groups lie sometimes; but truth is not even a value to a Leftist.

      Hard to find even one thing in that comment that is true.

      (Republicans wanted people to die for the stock market?? I mean, which word would be a suitable response---bizaare? Preposterous? Despicable?)

      Andy

      Delete
    7. Andy: "And if G-d forbid that happens, the attitudes that RDNS wrote of in his post will become Government policy." Of course, the last time "the LEFT" took over the Presidency and the Senate they passed Obamacare and nothing else. Not even remotely like what you predict. In fact the most friendly LGBT changes have been aided by the likes of Kennedy, Roberts and Gorsuch, judges not put in by "the LEFT." I understand why Limbaugh, Hannity, Levin, Prager et al spout this fearmongering nonsense, because they get paid to do so. What's your excuse?

      Delete
    8. @Andy

      Yes, Andy, Republicans, Rightists, including, funded by, and supported by the most conservative RELIGIOUS communities in the US, *openly* and *unapologetically* held protests AGAINST common sense C19 mitigation. Some protests were actually ARMED, to complain about responsible Governors like mine, that shut down the state economies until the virus spread was mitigated enough to reopen, but still with not enough PPE supplies, testing, or contact tracing.

      They called them DICTATORS and FASCISTS and COMMUNISTS while these Governors literally protected THOUSANDS of people from death, permanent lung damage, or hospitalization.

      The current President, Trump, just yesterday in Tulsa, OK, *openly* bragged, on film, about keeping the number of test kits low to make "his" numbers look better.

      This is OBJECTIVE REALITY, which you do not get to argue with, by shouting Praeger's name.

      The entire US conservative religious community, all of it, either dropped the ball as the nation's priesthood by debating whether or not life saving medical mitigation was "godly", if they didn't openly act as chaos agents defying mitigation at all, shouting down responsible government, and drowning out the religious community that paid attention to science.

      It was a massive failure by the "pro-life", "choose life" communities that are the very people that are supposed to support people in unfortunate circumstances, not participate in sacrificing lives for some imagined affront to patriotism.

      Delete
    9. @Andy
      "truth is not even a value to a Leftist"

      Is truth a value to Donald Trump?

      Delete
    10. If all Obama had tried to inflict on us was Obamacare, dayyeinu, that is reason enough to fear his type of candidate. No, most of us could not keep our doctors or our insurance, unless we decided to forego insurance altogether and pay out of pocket. No, it did not lower costs, costs skyrocketed for many/ most. And as is predictable for socialism whenever it's tried, it produced shortages; there were some places in which people could not get coverage at all, because Obamacare rules made selling insurance unprofitable in these places.

      Then, of course, there are the judges whom him and his party appointed, who brought us gay marriage, biological men allowed to use women's bathrooms, and Christian (coming soon, Orthodox Jewish) bakers targeted by the government for not servicing gay weddings; Obama's final non-vote that gave Palestinians UN rights to lands that should have been part of a negotiation; and, probably worst of all, the Iran "peace" deal which gave Iran billions of dollars to further fund international terror, and eventually, atom bombs(!), with provisions to block Israel from taking action against the reactors....

      Do I need to go on? All facts, no fear-mongering. That is my "excuse".

      Andy

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    11. FACT: Obamacare controlled debt.
      FACT: If you lost your health provider it was JUNK insurance and did not fit the ACA standards.
      FACT: The worst shortages in PPE and testing during C19 were a direct result, DIRECT result, of the President you...YOU!! defend so fanatically.

      It's INCREDIBLE, baffling, nauseating, that the religious communities, particular the Orthodox communities, in the United States balk at *any* attempt at all to make our FOR PROFIT health care system more humane...and use lies and half-truths to perpetuate people racking up irredeemable debt.

      A lot of these same people actively worked for YEARS against ANY health care reform at all, then had the absolute gall to make Aliyah and now benefit from the same exact national "communist" health care they actively worked AGAINST everyone else using!!

      Also: I personally know one of those "biological men that use men's bathrooms" and by far I'd trust her in there with me then a Trump fan who absolutely needs to bring a rocket launcher to Subway (actually happened!) or a Trump fan who knowingly and gleefully endangers my family by reckless behavior, potentially transmitting a potentially deadly illness because of malignant selfishness.

      Delete
    12. Andy - I think as well as the travesty of universal provision of healthcare to all Americans, which 55% of your countrymen think would be actually a good thing to have* you missed Hilary's emails.

      *(https://www.kff.org/health-reform/poll-finding/kff-health-tracking-poll-february-2020/?utm_campaign=KFF-2020-polling-surveys&utm_source=hs_email&utm_medium=email&utm_content=83679892&_hsenc=p2ANqtz-9YTENF5p3GPNGF9jtSH2TmsFd_-9_EGvmQh1KAFa8_j3zsS0AURUYJ4Oal2j8HiJ3TvMICNbQaBZylTY6t1F7Q86s2Jg&_hsmi=83679892)

      Delete
    13. To Andy: Not a word in defense of what you actually said, just garbled foxnews/talk radio buzz words. Try to reach for an independent thought. Who knows? You might even enjoy it.

      Delete
    14. @Unknown, Whether you like him or not, Trump probably single-handedly saved hundreds of thousands of American lives when he stopped trade with China in early January. If you are glad that coronavirus rates were greatly minimized, thank a Republican who put Trump in office. Those are the facts.

      Delete
    15. Joe Biden isn't much of a leftist. A huge part of the Sanders bloc isn't supporting him, including most of Sanders' campaign team. But the Trump cult now calls Joe Manchin and Mitt Romney leftists simply because they aren't part of the cult.

      Also, Biden is a religious Catholic. He will be the second Catholic President and the first one who actually practices in his personal life what the Church teaches.

      Delete
    16. "Hard to find even one thing in that comment that is true."

      Hard to find even one thing in that comment that is false.

      "Republicans wanted people to die for the stock market?"

      Donald Trump basically said that:

      https://twitter.com/Acyn/status/1257778106804269057

      Delete

    17. "The entire US conservative religious community, all of it, either dropped the ball as the nation's priesthood by debating whether or not life saving medical mitigation was "godly", if they didn't openly act as chaos agents defying mitigation at all, shouting down responsible government, and drowning out the religious community that paid attention to science."

      Sorry, but that just isn't true. The overwhelming majority of orthodox rabbis supported the shutdowns. The Novominsker Rebbe z’tz’l strongly supported shutting down shuls because of COVID-19 before he himself lost his life to the disease. And he was the head of Agudath Israel. Every rabbi at YU I have seen make a statement on this matter has supported the shutdown in the strongest possible terms. In my mostly MO community we are only beginning to start minyans and many are outdoors. You look at the COVID-19 map in NYC and you don't see higher mortality in frum neighborhoods.

      Most evangelical Christians of all stripes and the entire Catholic Church followed the lockdown, too. Highly publicized anecdotes of religious leaders who broke the shutdown do not change that. It is politicians who insisted on reopening way too early who are the problem, not the religious leaders. (#1 among these is Donald Trump, the least religious President since at least Richard Nixon.)

      Delete

    18. "Is truth a value to Donald Trump?"

      No US politician in history has lied as often or as brazenly. The lies come so fast and so frequently that fact checkers cannot keep up.

      "If all Obama had tried to inflict on us was Obamacare, dayyeinu, that is reason enough to fear his type of candidate."

      You clearly do not understand Obamacare. First, it isn't socialism to require people to get private health insurance. Unless you think that Friedrich Hayek and Milton Friedman were socialists. (Both called for the government to require just that.) There were two problems with Obamacare: (1) It required that states work competently and efficiently to administer it; New York was almost the only one that really did a good job with it (premiums dropped 60% the first year) and most states actively sabotaged it. The other problem was that the Supreme Court sabotaged the Medicaid expansion; this is a huge problem but not Obama's fault.

      "most of us could not keep our doctors or our insurance"

      You could always keep your doctor, unless your doctor decided he/she didn't want to keep you. Obamacare polices did not kick doctors out if they were willing to accept the reimbursement rates the insurer offered. Doctors and hospitals had been dropping insurance plans for years before and still do -- including employer based plans. Here in NY, though, everyone has a choice of individual plans and all the plans have a wide choice of providers and hospitals -- just not all of them.

      The only way to please people like you who don't understand the insurance market would be to require that all insurance cover everything in all people by all providers. That would bankrupt the health system. This is actually one of the flaws in the Sanders Medicare For All plan. Cost controls are needed and one of the cost controls is dropping doctors and hospitals who charge too much.

      Delete
    19. "the Iran "peace" deal which gave Iran billions of dollars to further fund international terror, and eventually, atom bombs"

      Two falsehoods here: First, the money was Iran's and it was eventually going to get it all anyway. Second, the Iran deal PREVENTED Iran from getting nuclear weapons -- until Trump killed the deal. Thanks to Trump, Iran has both the money and the nuclear material for a bomb -- and maybe already a bomb.

      Delete
    20. "The worst shortages in PPE and testing during C19 were a direct result, DIRECT result, of the President you...YOU!! defend so fanatically."

      This is unfortunately true, both for PPE and testing. And he admitted that regarding testing just yesterday. At every step, Trump did the wrong thing on COVID-19.

      Delete
    21. This comment has been removed by the author.

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    22. Whether you like him or not, Trump probably single-handedly saved hundreds of thousands of American lives when he stopped trade with China in early January.

      This is an outright false statement.

      Trump limited *some* travel from China. He did not ban it in its entirety, and he certainly didn't "stop trade" (which wouldn't have done anything against a virus that is carried by people).

      Trump's handling of the pandemic has been disastrous, from his failure to suspend the CDC's testing regulations, to his refusal to have the federal government serve as a backup for state procurement of medical equipment, to his transformation of briefings into a circus of celebration about himself, to his active refusal to encourage mask-wearing, to the way he actively encouraged his supporters to oppose protective measures by turning it into a culture war issue, to his belief that testing is bad because he thinks if you don't know about a case it doesn't exist, to the way he would encourage lockdowns with one tweet and shout "LIBERATE MICHIGAN" in another on the same day.

      Every single president in history would have done a better job. Obama. Bush. Clinton. Bush. Reagan. Even William Henry Harrison and James Buchanan would have done a better job. You can't possibly look at the previous paragraph and claim that he did things right!

      Delete
    23. @ charlie

      Unfortunately there is documented proof by a nursing assisstant that it was weeks into the first stage of the disease and Agudath dragged its feet, implying that religion cures all illness and there was no need to follow medical recommendations.

      Delete
    24. Fact checks:

      Cases of COVID-19 (or better known as the Chinese virus) were greatly minimized because of Trump. For example, Trump's decision to shut down trade between China and the United States in late January was imperative to preventing more cases of coronavirus from reaching the US. You were saying that other presidents would have done a better job. Actually, Trump closed trade months earlier than other presidents might have done, if ever. Bernie Sanders, for one, once said that he would keep open borders even during a pandemic. And William Henry Harrison? Really? That man was a racist and killed more Indians during the War of 1812 than any other, and you complain about Trump? In fact, Harrison, not Trump, is the worst president: https://www.theguardian.com/world/richard-adams-blog/2011/apr/04/william-henry-harrison-worst-president

      I will add that Trump's decision to terminate relations and to terminate giving money to WHO (World Health Organization) is also a plus. For one, Tedros is a puppet for China. He's a communist from Ethiopia and China pays him a hefty salary. So he willingly lied when he said in late January that COVID was not contacted via human-to-human. He's a spokesperson for China. For example, when a journalist called him for an interview he ignored her questions before proceeding to hang up. Even more importantly, WHO banned Taiwan from joining its organization. Its disgusting.

      So yes, Trump saved hundreds of thousands of American lives when he placed the restrictive ban to travel from China on Jan 31. But despite this, you will never hear about it in the media. The media will also never tell you that more Americans die from the common flu.

      Regarding tests, Trump called testing a “double-edged sword.” For example, 25 million people have been tested. We probably tested 20 million more than the average tests performed in other countries. In fact, we've probably done far more testings than all of Europe combined. But when you do testing to that extent, you're going to inflate the numbers. This is why the vast majority of testings are quite unnecessary. For example, a ten-year-old gets tested. He has the sniffles. He’ll recover in about fifteen minutes, but to the medical team that’s a case! The simple fact is that the United States has done far more testings than other nations.

      Delete
    25. Charlie--

      Not sure where to start as far as your comments on Obamacare. Yes, of course doctors had a choice, and many chose to drop coverage because Obamacare rules didn't allow them to make a profit. Thus, many people could not afford to keep their doctors. It was Obamacare that caused this.

      But your Iran deal comments are the most troubling: yes, Iranians should eventually get their assets unfrozen, AS SOON AS THEY GET A NEW GOVERNMENT THAT RENOUNCES THE MURDER OF AMERICANS, JEWS, AND FELLOW MOSLEMS, otherwise known as international terrorism. That you would think it's ok to give them their money before this, thus funding more murder of Americans, Jews, and Moslems, is just mind-boggling. Did you really mean to write that? Was that a mistake?

      Andy

      Delete
    26. @Turk Hill:

      You keep saying he "shut down trade". Are you saying no goods traveled from China to the US after late January? That's complete nonsense. Movement of goods has nothing whatsoever to do with the virus; if he had shut down trade that would've been an exceedingly stupid action that would have destroyed economic activity for no benefit! The virus is carried in people, not boxes.

      What Trump did was shut down travel.... but not completely. See https://factcheck.thedispatch.com/p/did-president-trump-ban-travel-to; even as late as April there was still movement of people between the two countries.

      I make no moral judgments about what William Henry Harrison did before he was president. I was only claiming that he'd have done a better job handling the pandemic than Trump.

      I don't disagree with you on the World Health Organization. But that has nothing whatsoever to do with Trump's failings.

      What you're saying about testing is completely insane. First of all, "having the sniffles" is not a symptom of coronavirus. Second, it is a good thing to know if a ten-year-old has the virus and recovers in "fifteen minutes". That's important information that helps us determine who is and is not at risk. It helps us track how the virus jumps from person to person - who infected the ten-year-old and who the ten-yer-old will infect in turn. Where the virus is prevalent and where it isn't. What places need to be locked down and what places don't.

      You are prizing ignorance over knowledge, keeping the numbers "looking good" over having the facts at your disposal. Why the heck would you want to do that? What benefit is there to not knowing where the virus is?!

      Delete
    27. @Turk Hill

      The "China travel ban" from late January wasn't a total ban. It only applied to tourists and temporary visa holders. US Citizens and permanent residents, and their families, were still allowed to go back and forth between the USA and China.

      Taiwan is not a full member of the WHO for the same reason it's not a full member of the UN -- competing claims over who represents "China" as an entity. This has been going on since the Nixon presidency.

      The absolute number of tests one country performs is completely meaningless. Rather, the principle in epidemiology is that you aim to test enough people such that about 5% of tests come back positive. If the % positive is higher than this, you're likely not testing enough people, and thus don't have a good handle on the extent of the disease in the community. If it is lower, you're probably over-testing.

      "Inflating the numbers" is a meaningless statement unless you think there is fraud in testing. A child with a common cold will not test positive for SARS-CoV-2 unless he is actually infected with SARS-CoV-2.
      You can check this page for more info: https://coronavirus.jhu.edu/testing/testing-positivity

      The death toll from COVID-19 is higher than recent flu seasons. It would have been far, far higher without all the measures put in place to slow its spread. Comparisons of the flu with COVID-19 are disingenuous, since the COVID-19 is deadlier, more easily transmitted, causes more severe injury in those who recover, is more prone to pre-symptomatic transmission, and has no vaccine at present.

      Delete
    28. To Yerushalmi

      It's not about "looking good." It's about the facts. The fact is that we’ve done 21 million more testings than Germany and other countries. And when you do more tests you get more cases. Somebody coughs and they think that's a symptom when in reality it's just a common cold. Tho despite Trump's call to minimize testings, Fauci wants to do more testing.

      As far as testings keeping track of where the virus is or who is infected, what do you think of de Blasio's failure in handling the COVID testings? He basically said that tracers are not to ask people who've been tested positive whether they had participated in the protest or not.

      PS If you agree with me about WHO then you are acknowledging one thing Trump did right. See, he's not so bad after all.

      Delete
    29. And when you do more tests you get more cases.

      No. When you do more tests you reveal more cases. You have the same number of cases that you would have had anyway, only now you know where they are and can deal with the problem.

      Somebody coughs and they think that's a symptom when in reality it's just a common cold.

      That's why you test! If somebody coughs and thinks it's a symptom, and it's actually not the coronavirus but rather just a common cold, how the heck can you find out which one it is without testing them?! This is exactly why Trump is such an idiot!

      As far as testings keeping track of where the virus is or who is infected, what do you think of de Blasio's failure in handling the COVID testings? He basically said that tracers are not to ask people who've been tested positive whether they had participated in the protest or not.

      And I consider that horrifying too. De Blasio has completely mishandled this entire crisis too. So did Cuomo with his nursing-home order. The existing of other complete morons does not absolve Trump of being one as well.

      Delete
    30. @ Turk Hill: I've been rereading your comments, and it sounds like you think "testing for COVID-19" just means looking for people who have symptoms, and if you do more testing you find cases that don't exist. That’s not how testing works.

      SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, is a physical object. You can literally see a SARS-CoV-2 virion with a powerful-enough microscope.

      Common colds are also viruses, as are the measles, the flu, and many other diseases. But even diseases that cause the same symptoms (and look the same in a microscope) aren't the exact same thing. Just as every human has unique DNA, every virus has unique RNA. When you test for COVID-19, you are looking for a unique RNA sequence belonging to SARS-CoV-2, one that is not present in any other virus or disease in the world.

      You detect RNA through PCR (Polymerase Chain Reaction), a proven method that has been in use for 40 years:
      1) Identify the RNA sequence that you want to look for. Convert that to its equivalent in DNA.
      2) Manufacture "primers" for that sequence. A primer is a molecule that attaches to a unique DNA sequence. It will never attach to the DNA of other living things.
      3) Put a cotton swab deep inside the nose or throat of the patient. Swish it around so it picks up bits of every virus and bacteria that might be in there.
      4) Use reverse transcriptase to convert the RNA on that swab into DNA.
      5) Take the primer that you manufactured in step 2, and the DNA you made in step 4. Put these in a container along with a lot of free-floating nucleotides (the basic building blocks of DNA) and another molecule called “DNA polymerase”.
      6) Do this in a cycle:
      Phase I: Heat the container to almost boiling. Any DNA in the container will split down the middle.
      Phase II: Cool the container back down. The primer will immediately attach to the nearest half-DNA that matches it. Then the DNA polymerase attaches to the primer, and grabs some of the free-floating nucleotides in the area to "build" a replacement half for the DNA, making it whole again.
      Once the DNA is rebuilt, the primer and the DNA polymerase disconnect and look for other half-DNA strands that match the sequence. They continue until all the matching pieces of half-DNA have had their missing halves reconstituted.
      7) Repeat the two phases of step 6 many times. Each cycle doubles the amount of whole DNA that matches the sequence you're looking for.
      Example: You start with 5 DNA strands.
      In Phase I, they split into 10 half-strands. In Phase II, each half-strand gets its missing half rebuilt, so now you have 10 whole DNA strands.
      Do Phase I again and they split into 20 half-strands. Do Phase II again and each half-strand gets its missing half rebuilt, so now you have 20 whole strands.
      Do Phase I again to get 40 half-strands. Do Phase II again to get 40 whole strands.

      Do it right and you can get billions of copies in mere hours. But remember: The primer won't bind to the common cold, to human DNA, or to other viruses or bacteria. If it is built to bind to SARS-CoV-2, it only binds to SARS-CoV-2. Nothing else can get duplicated.

      You then use electrophoresis to separate all the DNA in the container by weight. DNA belonging to bacteria, humans, other viruses, etc., are of all different sizes. But the DNA that got duplicated is all the same size, and there’s so much of it that it is visible to the naked eye. So all you need to do is look for a big thick line of DNA. If it's there, the patient has COVID. If not, he doesn't. End of story.

      The test can sometimes miss a COVID patient, if the swab happened not to pick up any virus particles. But false positives - where the test claims you have the disease but you really don't - are virtually impossible.

      So when you say that testing "inflates the numbers", that's simply untrue. There is no value in deliberately not finding out who has COVID-19. Trump's attitude is unjustifiable.

      Delete
  6. Thank you anonymous. America seems to be in a death spiral. The same story exists here in Israel where the loony left have control of the courts police and media. One of the things the recent government crisis exposed was just how crooked these people are. And they continue to open their mouths and spew out revolting stuff, totally convinced that they are the elite and the only ones entitled to an opinion.
    And I have no doubt these blacks are racists, far more racist than the whites they are yelling at. If black lives really mattered they would make a fuss about the blacks killed by other blacks. a far greater number that the blacks killed by whites.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Blacks who kill Blacks are swiftly processed tbrough the justice system.

      Police who act as judge, jury and executioner and then literally make videos for people with minority death fetishes are not brought to justice at all or go right back into the system at a desk job with full pay after lots of pearl-clutching and hand-wringing.

      White terrorists that shoot up movie theaters, churches, synogoues and even other police officers are driven to a fast food chain for a free meal before being processed as delicately as possible.

      That's the difference.

      Delete
    2. Skeptic Good point. BLM only complains when whites kill blacks. But on average more blacks kill blacks than whites and you never hear about them. In fact, they are so many shootings in these black communities that either the police refuse to enter or the news does not cover. If black lives mattered so much, why aren't they rioting over the 7,000 black-on-black deaths last year, compared to 2 police shootings where the black suspect was wrongly killed.

      Delete
    3. "Blacks who kill Blacks are swiftly processed tbrough the justice system."

      Not if BLM and Antifa get what they're asking for.

      Delete
    4. One of the many things for which I have called out BLM is their refusal to comment on the deaths of minority police officers who lose their lives trying to save the lives of others, such as this officer who lived near me. (I did not know her.)

      https://www.theatlantic.com/news/archive/2017/07/the-murder-of-miosotis-familia/532707/

      Delete
    5. That's because they don't really believe that Black Lives Matter. It's Black DEATHS Matter, so long as those deaths are caused, directly or indirectly, by whites, especially the police.

      Delete
    6. @Unknown - you are delusional. For example do you know that cops kill more whites than blacks by far. That blacks kill whites in disproportion numbers.And No, cops do not act as 'judge, jury and executioner'. Many of the comments I am reading from the left and BLM types are scary crazy and false. Arguably, it is almost as if their rantings and beliefs are a disproof to Rabbi Gottleib version of Kuzari argument ! Tell a lie often enough, loud enough, with big enough threats and it becomes truth for the masses. How sad.

      Delete
    7. @ student

      The Right has completely made up this "Antifa" thing in order to have Trump's base direct their intense hate somewhere and provide a nice easy label fir the opposition.

      It's a windmill in La Mancha. It's a fake enemy. There is no "Antifa" leadership, and there's no deep state "Antifa" pulling the levers behind the political world.

      The comments on here prove that most of the top echelon of the religious world has floated away into the stratosphere of imagined enemies around every street corner and has completely lost its ability to deal with objective reality.

      Delete
    8. @Unknown, Actually, Antifa is a domestic terrorist organization. They openly condone violence. For example, during the Minneapolis riots, a photo was taken of a black man sitting next to a pile of bricks. Why were there bricks just lying there and who put them there and for what? Obviously, those bricks were meant to be used to break windows. In short, Antifa fights fascism with fascism.

      Winston Churchill put it best: "The fascists of the future will call themselves anti-fascists."

      Delete
    9. Unknown, I don't care if you believe antifa is organized and has a leadership or if it's a totally disjointed group with allegiance from many completely coincidental members throughout the country that just magically comes together in major cities at the site of unrest and planned events. That is totally irrelevant so believe to your heart's desire whatever you want. It doesn't in any way change the point I made or the content of my argument.

      Either way, anyone with allegiance to that brand (whether there is some puppet master/leadership or completely disorganized as you imagine it) has extremely bad intentions. It is a group using anarchy to promote their fascism in the guise of anti-fascism, and they are doing so in lockstep with the BLM movement, both of which are fueling violent riots with the goal of establishing police-free society (or one with completely neutered police force) where violent crimes will go unpunished and unchecked. Their goal is to dismantle the police and then the justice system, both of which they claim are mere tools of systemic oppression (and racism).

      I do not accept their generous export of Chicago to my locale. I prefer we do not spread that phenomenon around the country.
      And I don't care if you pretend they don't exist so you can talk about how smart you are - Because they do exist. You are asking me to put my hands over my ears, close my eyes and scream "I can't hear you" to pretend I don't see what's going on around us. Not gonna happen.

      Delete
    10. If you think there is no Antifa leadership (or no Antifa at all??), it is you who is delusional.

      Someone is directing those fascists in masks to beat people up; it is not spontaneous, it is well planned and organized.

      Andy

      Delete
    11. @ Turk

      --"a photo was taken of a black man sitting next to a pile of bricks. Why were there bricks just lying there and who put them there and for what?"--

      There is video evidence of bricks being put there by police to frame protesters.

      5 of 6 people arrested for damaging property are white provocateurs that were NOT intending to protest.

      Shooters and other rabble have been clearly IDed by the FBI as nationalists.

      Every response here and Breitbart talking point you give on this thread is exactly what Proud Boys and 88ers would LOVE to put out there.

      People that give aid to such irrational hate, and credence to chaos agents, and shamelessly repeat false nationalist talking points perpetuate it all, no matter how frum they pretend to be.

      Delete
    12. @Unknown

      "People that give aid to such irrational hate, and credence to chaos agents, and shamelessly repeat false nationalist talking points perpetuate it all, no matter how frum they pretend to be."

      Actually, it's the lefties that are anti-Semitic. de Blasio, Alexander Cortez, Ilhan Omar are anti-semites, just to name a few. Take, for instance, de Blasio when he shut down a Jewish playground because he's anti-Semitic.

      Surprising as it may sound, Socialist is actually in the name Nazi. The Nazis were leftists. Fascism is leftism. You can't make this stuff up!

      Delete
    13. @ Turk

      Stop using children for pity points. NO CHILD could enjoy normal activities for at least two months. NO CHILD had a normal life for at least two months.

      Protesters were not children who are too young to comprehend science, and also in no way your kind of objective-reality- ignoring people. The overwhelming majority were wearing masks, and even going to the point of taping hand sanitizer to nearby utility poles for each other.

      Bold of you to keep crying about a kids' park while just a few pixels down, you loathe the idea of keeping C19 testing available and low cost to make sure those kids' families stay healthy.

      What a malignantly cancerous worldview.

      You have entire battalions of imagined enemies inside your head like "Antifa". They're objectively not real.

      And also, Turk, I can play this name game too. Republicans are an extension of Chinese authoritarianism because the full name of the current Chinese empire is the "People's Republic of China". It's the same name! Oh no! So obviously Republicans want all businesses to be State owned.

      (Nonetheless, our POTUS's Jewish daughter STILL has great exclusive patent deals on her profitable Chinese manufactured products, while her father pretends to bluster and deflect from his own derelict of duty over C19... and also tremendously profits off servitude/despotic-owned labor forces).

      Delete
    14. Unkown: The white kids participating in the riots probably aren't really political, but they most likely identify with BLM, and they are part of the problem, hijaking a legitimate idea (stamping out subconscious, institutionalized racism) and making extreme and dangerous. Not saying that blacks need help to riot, but that's what "antifa" is, isn't it? White people sticking their noses into thing?

      (And while I do not support framing innocents, probably the cops are desperate to stop the violence without fighting everyone, and if a little subterfuge can lower public opinion about the rioters, then maybe that's a strategy with some merit.)

      Um, Turk, I will have to disagree with you on how to classify Nazism. Yes, the word Socialism was in the name, but that was to fool people at the time, when Socialism was the Next Big Thing. The actual style of government was very much Not Marxist. On the other hand (or maybe actually the same hand!), Stalin's Communism was not very truly Marxist either, coming to resemble a fascist dictatorship also. So names that people call themselves might not matter, and cruelty and totalitarian dictatorships can arise from both sides of the spectrum.

      Delete
    15. @ Yerushalmi

      --"White people sticking their noses into thing?"--

      White people HAVE to "stick their nose in" because we have almost exclusively white/Anglicized forums exactly like this one where people are literally arguing hate concepts like "Black people are genetically inferior", where Black people cannot defend themselves brcause they don't frequent the same places!

      I live in an extremely Catholic, conservative, Republican area and work for a Jewish family owned business.

      There are people here who would not eat food prepared by a Black chef. There are employers who would constructively harass Indian workers to the point that they made their job *impossible* to perform. The family members that are close to the family that owns the business I work for are anti-Semitic!

      These white WASP/Devoted Catholic people make NO difference between one "those people" and another "those people". Like the chart in the article says, YES you have to surround yourself with people who are not like you, or you get my area.

      Delete
    16. @ Yerushalmi

      --"White people sticking their noses into thing?"--


      I didn't write that. You mean @ Yosef R.

      Delete
    17. Yes, apologies, Yeru, I meant @Yosef

      Delete
  7. R' Natan, I would suggest paying even closer attention to the graphic, which you seem to see in a relatively favorable light.

    In that same "Growth" section, along with the relatively understandable "I surround myself with others who look and think differently" (though, really, "surround"? One would think that "I listen to..." is a worthy enough goal, and more practical in terms of both demographic reality and human nature), there are such nuggets as "I promote & advocate for policies & LEADERS that are Anti-Racist" (emphasis mine, but the capitalization is in the original), and also "I yield positions of power to those otherwise marginalized".

    It is clear that to this graphic the ultimate goal of Anti-Racism (as it Capitalizes consistently) is purely political - allowing specific leaders, already anointed as Anti-Racist, to take power (possibly to the exclusion of anyone else).

    The idea of countering prejudicial racism, along with any other form of intellectual bias, is highly in keeping with a Rationalist approach to life. However, being swept up in revolutionary political rhetoric, especially one that seems ever so subtly to be actually promoting reverse racism, is emphatically not.

    ReplyDelete
  8. I personally know a trans person who has had debilitating body dysphoria since toddlerhood, as many trans people experience...which puts them on the path to transitioning in the first place.

    Doing a study on de-transitioning will not lend anything to the conversation except to give hate groups even more ammo to prevent people from living authentically.

    Giving conservative hate groups (the same exact hate groups that are racist, white supremacists AND anti-Semitic! because you CANNOT separate hate from itself) more right-based "studies" to try an erase authenticity does nothing but take away from spending resources on more constructive means of bridgong social differences.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Putting aside your arguments just for a moment: do you understand that if your fellow Leftists/ Progressives knew that you were even thinking, let alone using, the term "dysphoria", they would condemn you in the most vile terms?

      Even if I agreed with your basic philosophy, I would still want the other side to have freedom of speech.

      Because eventually, you will run afoul of the Left; you will adopt just ONE politically incorrect position, and not be sufficiently quiet about it; and they will (rhetorically) come to crucify you too. They will publicly call you every vile name imaginable, and maybe some new ones that they will invent just for people like you.

      Andy

      Delete
    2. Stop pretending my political orientation doesn't account for differences of opinion, because it does. I already backed the "incorrect" Lefty candidate for two cycles now, but guess what? People vote and we deal with what the majority deems appropriate.

      The US Right/Conservatives don't suppress speech, but by allowing some of the most self-centered and Mammon-worshipping among us rule in the most archaic, draconian manner possible, you want to erase entire lives.

      Delete
    3. Unknown--

      Thank you for your comments---they were a real-life demonstration of what the Left is about.

      I'll let the readers decide which one of us is closer to a "Rationalist" and "Judaism" perspective, and which one of us is closer to an alien non-Torah philosophy that has led to disaster every time it was tried in the real world (thus making it anti-rationalist to try it yet again.)

      Andy

      Delete
    4. Love arguments between Unknown and Anonymous

      Delete
    5. (lol Ben :D I wish my Google email account handle would at least show up in my username but it doesn't)


      Anoymous, your arguments are absoutely ridiculous and again, not grounded in factual reality.

      The blog is about "Rationalist" RISHONIM, not a secular philosophical topic that WE, the users, ascribe to.

      You can call me alien and non-Torah if you want but when supposed the religious priesthood openly supports someone who makes destitution Federally illegal, gleefully bragged about massive negligent manslaughter of his own country, and yet brazenly attempts to set himself up as a god may H' decide among us.

      Delete
  9. I can objectively state that we live in the middle of an incivility pandemic.

    We all as private citizens have a responsibility to police hate. It's not something the state can do well, and in fact in the US the state is enjoined from participating in this. It's everyone's responsibility to prevent race warriors dominating civic discourse, and linking to this article further energises extremists ("look what the commie racist leftards are like!") on both sides, insofar as the extreme right and left are actually distinguishable (the only meaningful distinction seems to be the colours on the flag. A neo-Nazi group in the UK took inspiration from IS, for example.) .

    These voices should be left to shriek their hate on their own kooky websites.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. "...we live in the middle of an incivility pandemic." AGREED. Any counter to the left and BLM BS is silenced by threats, people losing jobs etc: I think we are living within an idiocy and ignorant pandemic.

      Delete
    2. @ Alter

      That response is probably appropriate because the US conservative religious community is obsessed with disappearing entire lives whose quest for authenticity doesn't affect another's life, even if they are "blessed" enough to fit neatly within classic conservative, heteronormative religious sex/gender roles.

      Delete
  10. Candace Owens does not count
    haleluyah! it about time someone put that black woman in her place
    who does she think she is, telling white left wing liberals like us, what her experiences are?
    give me farrakhan any day, now there's a real black

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Indeed, I noticed that too, I'm sure everyone did. Disgusting, is it not? How ironic that RNS, who styles himself a "rationalist", is so incapable of critical thinking. Leave aside the hopeless contradictory and hypocritical statements he's made re blacks (who pose no threat to him in Israel) and charedim (who do.) But how on Earth does he lecture anyone on "racism", at the same time as he attempts to dictate which blacks "count" and which don't? It would be unbelievable if it wasn't so typical.

      Delete
    2. Almost missed the sarcasm. Thanks, I needed a good laugh!

      Andy

      Delete
    3. Candace Owens does not count!? I thought you wanted to listen to people who "look and think differently." Does being intelligent count, too? Let me guess, Morgan Freeman also does not counts when it comes to IQs, since IQ is "fake news." In reality, anything objecting to it is pseudo-science. The Left likes to play cherry-picking with their views and science.

      Delete
    4. i dont think it is disgusting, i think it uncharaceristic
      unfortunatley, he seems to have fallen for the narrative of BLM, which is fairly transparent as baloney
      you don't need a PHD to see that all the demos worldwide, the fawning , pathetic, brow beating by white middle class liberals , is just that.
      BLM reminds me of the Palestinians - arab lives matter only when they're taken by non arabs, otherwise they don't.
      when blacks call each other the n word, it's cool
      when blacks kill, rape and rob other blacks, it's unnoticed
      i don't think many ordinary people fall for their nonsense though

      Delete
    5. We can do an end-run around Candace Owens, and pick up other conservative black voices along the way, such as Thomas Sowell (whom Owens greatly admires and who is mentioned in this article), Wilfred Reilly (also mentioned), John McWhorter, Tommy Sotomayor, Larry Elder, Derrick Green, Brandon Tatum, Jason Riley, Joshua Philips, Burgess Owens, Walter E. Williams, David Webb, Joel Patrick, the Hodge twins (mostly for entertainment), and oh, lets add a gay black man just for fun: Rob Smith.

      Delete
    6. holzari, the examples you bring of black dissenting voices are all a sham
      i wouldnt be surprised if they are all actually white, and have blacked up for years, whilst being funded by George Soros/Mossad/Shaldon Adelson etc etc

      Delete
    7. mike: "I wouldn't be surprised if they are all actually white" -- I suppose you could search up their videos on youtube and judge for yourself. HAHA! (Hmmm, maybe you were being sarcastic?)

      Delete
  11. Who wrote this silly graph anyway? "I education myself about race and structural racism?" What language is that?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That's Zoomer talk. They "passed" through school with a participation trophy.

      Delete
  12. Will all these people screaming "racism" ever speak of the volumes of racism and bigotry within the black community against Jews and White people? The soo called claimed racism in the Torah Jewish community at best would extend to looking down upon blacks (at worst), while in their community a large percentage are actual racists and support real racists like Jesse Jackson, Farrakan and others. Yes Farrakan that said that "Hitler was a great man", called Jews devils and called for another holocaust against Jews and also White people. Why is being Black and supporting these ookay? THAT is the REAL racism and not what some people might or might not think privately or amoung their family and friends.

    Ssvi

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, and I will add that BLM supports HAMAS. A few days ago I saw a black person post on twitter that blacks should be angry with the Jews instead of whites. This anti-Semitic was only restricted on twitter, not banned. So for all those who support BLM, remember that BLM is anti-Israel and Pro-Palestinian.

      Lastly, my cousin saw an ad that said: "no lives matter until black lives matter." This is not only disgusting but racist and evil. ALL LIVES MATTER. Period. And I support Mike Pence who chanted this and refused to say BLM three times.

      Delete
    2. I have met a lot of black people in NYC and I have yet to meet an actual Farrakhan supporter. Most are evangelical Christian philo-Semites.

      Delete
    3. @ Turk

      I have NEVER met a "Farrakhan" Black person. Your baseless hatred of people who just don't look like you is pretty obvious.

      Delete
    4. @Unknown

      "baseless hatred"... Um, Candace Owens is black. Morgan Freeman. Tim Scott. Shall I continue?

      The term "racist," by definition, is unnecessary hatred towards a group of people for no particular or justifiable reason. In order to successfully be a racist, you MUST hate ALL black people, there are no exceptions. But I do not hate all black people. That is obvious. In fact, I only dislike stupid people in general, of all races and ethnicity. So your mischaracterizations of me are plainly wrong.

      Delete
    5. The presence of prejudice and bigotry within the black community does not change the need to examine ourselves. "Oh yeah? But they do it worse!" has rarely ever been considered a good response to an accusation.

      Delete
    6. Candace Owens made a good point when she said that more whites are killed by police than blacks. Now you will say that blacks only make up 14 percent of the population. However, half of the black race are in jails. This explains why cops are more paranoid about blacks.

      Her words, not mine.

      Delete
  13. Everyone exercises censorship. I've been repeatedly censored on this blog, probably mostly for the better in terms of curating the contents, but occasionally arbitrarily. I'm in favor of qualified freedom of speech, and the harms which seem to come to society from repressing hate speech seem less to me than the harms which come to society from any unintended and concomitant silencing of awkward heretics who have a valid point. Just do the best job you can in good faith.

    We should obviously be as precise as possible in defining hate speech, but Milo Yiannopoulis banned from twitter? Cry me a river.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. All leftists are in favor of "qualified free speech" - free for me, not for thee.

      Delete
    2. I literally stated that censorship of me was "probably mostly for the better in terms of curating the contents." There has been a Ben Shapiro slogan error and my strong advice is to LISTEN PROPERLY TO WHAT OTHER PEOPLE SAY.

      Delete
    3. I've tried posting responses to Hat multiple times and they were either censored or never approved by this blog. I dislike censorship, and I think it is better to have free speech than to oppressed it. Look at Germany. In Germany, it is illegal to be a holocaust denier. Guess where all the holocaust deniers live? Germany!

      You can't make this stuff up.

      Delete
    4. There are times where censorship is appropriate. Were Peter Duesberg invited to give a talk on AIDS at my institution I would lead the attempts to get him banned. Millions have died as the result of his junk science.

      And I bet that nobody here who screams "free speech" would welcome a Reform Rabbi to give a regular shiur in their yeshiva on the topic of how the concept of the Oral Torah is a scam.

      Delete
    5. I fully support censoring two prideful boring men arguing over who gets top spot on the lamppost. What a waste of kilobytes. I'd rather watch paint dry.

      Delete
  14. Here is one uncomfortable question that I think you are uncomfortable discussing. Is the Jewish nation the Chosen People? Yes, because the Torah says so.

    Of-course the Torah does not condone ill treatment to anyone based on color, but the Torah does say we are the chosen ones.

    It may be an uncomfortable for Jews who ape the ways of others, but its simply the reality.

    Nobody may dismiss what is openly stated. We are the chosen nation because G-d said so.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. What are you getting at?
      The very notion of a ''chosen people'' in terms of racial relationships has only ever be used by antisemites wishing to return the racist accusations against jews.
      But in the Torah and Chazal, it's abundantly clear there's nothing racial about this choice. G-d created all humans equal but only the jews accepted the Torah, thus becoming the chosen people who keep His mitzvos.

      Delete
    2. ---"Is the Jewish nation the Chosen People? Yes, because the Torah says so."---

      Yes, absolutely.

      And that means that, should you drop the ball in the priesthood role, you get slapped down twice as hard by the Master of the Universe.

      Delete
    3. G-d choose Abraham, who was not Jewish. Moses was not Jewish until Sinai. Jews are a nation but Jews came from non-Jews. Everyone at Sinai, before Sinai, was not Jewish.

      Also, anyone could convert.

      Another approach is to compare it to a relationship. You choose a mate but you do not hate nor dislike other people of sex. I mean to say that when you choose a wife you choose her among the multitude of women but it does not mean that you hate all other women. Similarly, HaShem chooses the Jews but this does not imply that G-d hates or even dislikes non-Jews. the opposite is true. Even a non-Jew can reach the heights of holiness as the Holy of Holies, metaphorically (Rambam).

      Delete
    4. The essay titles "Yes My Dear, All White People Are Racist" is in itself racist. This is an absurd thing to say and is a damnable lie.

      Delete
    5. Yes we are chosen but that is responsibility not right. And the concept of race is completely absent from the Torah. The classifications are Jews and non-Jews.

      Delete
    6. I can tell you reasonably confidently that most of the frum doctors and nurses who are working in hospitals in Shabbos aren't asking people if they are Jewish before taking blood. They aren't doing it with their left hand either. When you are in that situation you know perfectly well what the right thing to do is, what Hashema really wants from you. You can cry about it on Yom Kippur if you prefer.

      Delete
  15. Actually, it's true every white is a racist. Every black is, too, as much as every human being. We don't trust strangers, it's an innate mechanism which protects us from harm, we view the world in terms of ''us'' and ''them'' and the more different people are from us, the more we exclude them.
    The goal of antiracism should not be to eradicate every tiny bit of racism, but to build a society which no longer systemically favors one ''race'' over the other. Keeping this in mind would stop them from having immaterialistic expectations from their allies, such as ''yielding their positions of power'', or ''surround oneself'' with diversity. Never going to happen on a society-wide level!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. There was once a very strange/scary Letter to the Editor in - of all things - Parents magazine. In it, the parent told how her son came home saying that he got into an argument with his black classmate and wanted to say the n-word but didn't. And the mom/letter-writer sat him down and had a whole talking to and everything - I don't recall if she used the word "punish" but clearly was upset with him (there was another story she was comparing it negatively to).

      My reaction to this was HOLY COW, LADY! Your child told you how he practiced self-control and did NOT say the first thing that popped into his head and you nearly punish him for it??

      When I calmed down, I was better able to articulate: we cannot eliminate ideas and speech. We do not live in an Orwellian world where there is no n-word and "hate" applies to Brussels sprouts and splinters and nothing else. We need to be aware of things if only to recognize them in ourselves and in others.

      To work off what Jew Well says: the goal is not eradicate every tiny bit of racism. We are all tribal. We all fear - or at least mildly distrust - the Other (or at the VERY least, prefer Our Own over The Other). Our goal is to create a System that is color-blind. The boy should have been praised for being aware that that word would been too hurtful for that conversation and had his behavior reinforced - sure, always room for more conversation, but imagine how awesome it would be as a positive ("you did great, and here is more") and not negative ("you did bad, do this instead")?

      (And the obvious disclaimers: yes, this requires work on both sides, particularly on those who prefer to be thugs and gang members.)

      Delete
    2. Expecting to be treated equally when applying for a job is not a immaterial expectation. It's very concrete, entirely achievable, and common sense.

      Delete
    3. @ The Hat
      I fully agree.
      But as I understand it this graphic suggests people should surrender their own positions of power to other people who couldn't get them because of prejudice. That is simply not humanly possible.

      Delete
    4. Innate racism is a function of evolutionary biology. If white parents adopt and raise a black child, the child's amygdalah will fire when looking at black faces, just like a white child raised by white parents.

      The only way to fix this is for people to communicate and form relationships with other races. Over time, this tampers the amygdalah and greatly minimizes biological rascism. This is why programs where people are forced to work together and communicate work. We've known this forever, but now neuroscience shows WHY it works. If we fail to acknowledge the scientific truth that racism is fundamentally biological, we will never solve the problem.

      Delete
  16. RNS, I think we should all learn from BLM. Even if we don't agree with them. We are all prejudiced in some form. this would include me as a haredi person against MO and it would also include you/ your website against Haredim.
    Bashing each other is counter productive and too brush everyone with the same brush is borderline racism/bigotry. Lets at least try to become better people. The fact that some extremist/idiot spits at a girl doesn't mean it is something I have to feel bad about it more than you do. Lets judge each individual on his own merits.

    ReplyDelete
  17. For the record, studies suggest that forced Cultural Sensitivity Training' don't work and may actually cause opposite feelings and attitudes (backfiring).

    The original sociologists that came up with it backtracked and don't support it since the data shows opposite and negative effect.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. What does work is organized scenarios that foster relationship building.

      Delete
  18. I am one of the small minority of Jews who is absolutely certain that some of my ancestors were slaveowners. I have direct ancestors who fought for the Confederacy (and other direct ancestors who fought for the Union). The slaveowning ancestors didn't do badly after the war because they weren't plantation owners; one of my great grandparents owned a clothing factory. That factory building would later become the first location for the segregation academy that was set up to avoid integrating schools in the 1960s. This in the city where both my mother and her mother were born. (Incredibly I have never visited that city.) I personally am old enough to have attended a segregated elementary school in a county that ignored the Brown vs. Board decision for over a decade. The black school was physically a wreck and I understand that the quality of education was pretty low, too. I don't know how being stuck in such a low quality educational environment for my early years would have affected me; I never had any black classmates until grade six. So I have personally benefited from past racism. (Oh, that segregation academy now accepts all races, as does every other one in the state. Progress.)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. @Charlie Hall - Few people realize there were Jews in the South. "I am one of the small minority of Jews who is absolutely certain that some of my ancestors were slaveowners." Also slavery was ( and probably still is) widely practiced by blacks in Africa and by Arabs and both participated in the slave capture and trade. Slavery is not prohibited by Torah.

      Delete
    2. @Alter Cocker Jewish Atheist: ''Slavery is not prohibited by Torah''. The kind of slavery the Torah doesn't prohibit has very little in common with the barbaric objectification of people that was practiced in modern history.
      The latter originates in roman law of property, which gives all rights and very little obligations to owners, even for human property (usus fructus et abusus). It was abandoned by christianity (followed by islam) at the end of antiquity and through the middle-ages (but survived locally in a lot of places) and revived when theologians decided blacks and indians have no soul and are subhumans.
      Even the egyptian slavery of the jews was more tender.

      Delete
    3. ACJA, Actually, it is more like servitude. In any case, Maimonides writs that you should treat your slaves well, even non-Jewish. Lastly, Rambam felt, like the laws of sacrifices, that the laws of slavery were a concession only for the past. The practice should end whenever people become more sophisticated. Viewing it this way cannot possibly justify slavery 150 years ago, let alone today.

      Delete
    4. @JEWWELL, TURK HILL. The Torah condones slavery of various types. You are both White Washing (pardon the pun) the Torah. Study with an open mind and not with preconceived notions of the Torah. BTW - Rambam was apologetic for Judaism and was wrong on many points; discussed in some detail at my blog. Many Rabbis did not agree with him.

      Delete
    5. ACJA: A careful reading of the Torah shows that it demands to be updated. Thus for example, G-d “allowed” the laws of slavery because every ancient society practiced this. However, given all the restrictions, it is clear that the Torah hoped that people will one day, when more sophisticated, stop the practice.

      I have to disagree. In Rambam’s day science and religion were considered one and the same so there were no reason to be apologetic. It is true that many rabbis then, and even today, disagree with much of what he wrote, but this was because they did not understand his philosophy. I agree with almost everything the Rambam wrote because he was ahead of his time. True, he was wrong on some points, but he is generally correct. In fact, he was perhaps the greatest Jewish philosopher of the Middle Ages.

      Delete
    6. @Alter Cocker Jewish Atheist: The Torah condones practices which didn't exist in biblical times?
      Proof required.
      @Turk Hill: it's easy nowadays to condemn all types of slavery, but no society would have stood in ancient times without some degree of servitude. The current western way of life needs around 400 slave-equivalents of power per person everyday in order to sustain itself.

      Delete
    7. @Jew Well: I agree that slavery was the norm is ancient society and it would have been unthinkable not to condone the practice. You are correct to mention the benefits of slavery in ancient cultures. For example, to build mass complicated irrigation systems required slaves. Even farming required the backs of slaves. In fact, most things we would call food today would have been unrecognizable a few hundred years ago. Our modern foods are generically modified. For example, most farmlands in ancient times would had resembled weeds. Not to mention that most crops did not grow for all the toil and effort. Most people have no idea how hard farming was or how much we relied on farmers, ie slaves.

      But farming and substance is no longer an issue. Fast forward thousands of years to the Industrial revolution. Birth of factories changed the game. Today we have machinery to replace people. Modern farms are now run by automnious vehicles and drones, not people. Almost every farm is automated.

      So it would have made sense to own slaves in the past. But today with modern technology, the institution of slavery is no longer necessary. The Torah knew this.

      Delete
    8. @Jew Well: I agree that slavery was the norm is ancient society and it would have been unthinkable not to condone the practice. You are correct to mention the benefits of slavery in ancient cultures. For example, to build mass complicated irrigation systems required slaves. Even farming required the backs of slaves. In fact, most things we would call food today would have been unrecognizable a few hundred years ago. Our modern foods are genetically modified. For example, most farmlands in ancient times would had resembled weeds. Not to mention that most crops did not grow for all the toil and effort. Most people have no idea how hard farming was or how much we relied on farmers, ie slaves.

      But farming and substance is no longer an issue. Fast forward thousands of years to the Industrial revolution. Birth of factories changed the game. Today we have machinery to replace people. Modern farms are now run by automnious vehicles and drones, not people. Almost every farm is automated.

      So it would have made sense to own slaves in the past. But today with modern technology, the institution of slavery is no longer necessary. The Torah knew this.

      Delete
    9. @Turk Hill: Right, right, that's basically what I wrote.
      But then you must agree with my point, which was that this has nothing to do with different levels of sophistication, it's the material world which has evolved and, while ethically we can only rejoice our own society can offer so much liberty and equality to its members, let's not judge past systems as ''unsophisticated'' too fast.
      I personnally have always found the Rambam's theory of the Torah only allowing, or even requiring, certain customs because they were socially accepted at the time, to be rather weak. I'm not saying I reject it completely, but I won't jump on occasions where it isn't necessary in order to use it.

      Delete
  19. The issue of underrepresentation of some (not all) minorities in academia is actually quite complicated. I wrote a long comment about it but realized that there is no way to do it justice in a mere comment.

    ReplyDelete
  20. You discredit Candace Owens on absolutely no basis. Why should I read another word. You’re the one who sounds like a bigot.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Candace Owens does not count as someone who thinks differently from you. She thinks exactly the same as you.

      Delete
    2. That's stupid and racist of you. Your assuming that to support blacks one has to support those who are criminals and scream of racism and social justice and not good Black individuals like Candice Owen's?
      Are blacks to resort to criminality and that's when you support them? What nonsense.
      Her opinions matter More than the opinions of Black and White criminals and those leftists who support them.
      Ssvi

      Delete
    3. As a stauch "LEFTIST", "LEFTISTS" DO NOT support Candace Owens. Period. They don't.

      She flat out calls Ben Carson and Justice Thomas ""real men""


      This is from her own Twitter feed from 16th June:

      “How did #BlackLivesMatter
      become about LGBTQ when blacks really really aren’t about that?...we’re conservative. We don’t support abortion. We’re not about feminism... I’M NOT VOTING FOR JOE BIDEN”

      She is NOT a "LEFTIST".

      Stop making actual people who acknowledge truth and facts into windmills in La Mancha.

      Delete
    4. But Candace Owens looks and thinks differently from RNS.

      Delete
    5. This isn't complicated. Candace Owens is not sufficient to hearing an other perspective if you are conservative. However, I have a problem with the premise of RDNS's point. It seems obvious to me that conservatives are inundated with the ideas of people on the left. Almost every institution, from academia to mainstream media, is firmly left wing. The right wing should listen to both sides, and they do. The same cannot be said for the left.

      --Yeshivish

      Delete
    6. Unknown, you seem to enjoy screaming at apparitions because no one here claimed Candace Owens is a leftist. Not sure why anyone would, but they clearly didn't here.

      Delete
    7. @ student

      Unfortunately I can't edit or delete anything here so you're stuck reading it.

      Delete
  21. If someone is spitting at a girl, are you not to some degree responsible, for being part if a culture that can produces extremists like that? Surely you have a duty to attempt to evolve people's thinking, even just a small attempt? In a sense you are already doing this by acknowledging our inherent bigotry, but why not speak out about that kind of intolerance? And I mean actually speak out, not a comment buried deep at the end of a blog. 'The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing'

    ReplyDelete
  22. Here we go, a bunch of frum Jews criticising others for not being open minded. You can't make this stuff up.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Wait, what's your point?
      -that frum Jews are inherently open-minded and therefore we should not be criticized about not being so?
      -that frum Jews are so closed-minded that if they instruct others to BE open-minded, it sounds hypocritical?

      bc if the first, then you are wrong, and if the second, you are still wrong, but at least a little bit funny.

      What's wrong with recognizing a wrong in our own community and trying to repair it. Why are people so sensitive about criticism that every such comment is an existential attack? There are individuals - gasp - within the frum world, some more open minded than others, and this is an issue that is problem in some segments of the group, to varying degrees.

      You can't make this stuff up.

      Delete
    2. I was pondering the irony of some of the biggest dogmatists (frum Jewry) on the face of the Earth attacking other dogmatists for being close minded.
      If I understand your comment correctly, we are largely in agreement (Yosef R)

      Delete
  23. "Now, it may indeed be the case that the problems of the black community actually are solely caused by whites and by the infiltration of white supremacy and white systemic racism into American brains, souls, and institutions. Other explanations may indeed be incorrect."

    Rabbi Slifkin, if you could write such a thing, then you are being extremely anti-rationalist. There is not even the slightest doubt that black people are the primary cause of their own problems in America.

    Your comments have become quite irrational and disconnected from reality lately.

    How could you posit such a thing?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Well, obviously I wrote that before "Shmuel" stated that I was wrong.

      Delete
    2. Dude, did you even read the post? Joking aside, RNS was setting up a thought experiment. "Now it may be" was the opening, with the purpose of saying EVEN IF THAT WAS THE CASE, we should STILL discuss the possibilities raised by the article that says essentially the things that YOU YOURSELF claim! RNS' whole point OF THE WHOLE POST is that voices who say that blacks should take responsibility are shouted down for not toeing the line with the narrative.

      Ahem. Sorry for the shouting.

      Anyway, my own take is that obviously, blacks' starting point as a subgroup within society is the fault of whites (slavery, discrimination, etc), but to wallow in that for 160 years (since the Civil War) or even for 50 years (since MLK) is a huge lack of taking responsibility and self actualization. The only analogy I have is immigrants: Jews, Asians, Irish, others were marginalized for a generation, and then their kids took off and joined WASP society. Is it different for blacks? Sure. Did some make it? Yes of course. But as a subgroup, it's a major chisaron among blacks themselves that they perpetuate their own problems.

      Delete
    3. @ Yosef

      "Assimilation is killing more Jewery than the Holocaust!"

      "Why can't those black people just assimilate like we did?"

      You can't have it both ways, Joe

      Delete
    4. Wiser heads than I have pointed out the difference between assimilation and acculturation. But anyway, there are plenty of observant Jews who go to higher education, contribute to society, and live in more affluent areas. Even chareidi insular subcommunities recognize that living in tenements at subsistence living is not ideal (although there are communities that stay in the same place so as not to let the "old" community/shuls/school die - see Washington Heights (in the 1990's), Pelham Parkway, Lower East Side).

      On top of that, someone could make the frum argument that sure, we need to maintain our Jewishness, but everyone else very much should assimilate into the larger general Western culture. I think there are risks there, but if you split religion from geographic/country-of-origin culture, one can be a little safer...

      Delete
    5. @ yosef


      So there are no Black people that go to higher education?

      No Black people that "conyribute to society"?

      No affluent Black people?


      Racists, nationalists and anti-Semitics don't ever separate religion/race from geography or culture. In fact they seek out connections in order to stomp out their imagined "lesser" humans.

      I see a horrific underestimation of white nationalist hatred here and an unfortunate focus on what they *could* do compared to what they *are* doing in objective reality.

      The POTUS literally is trying to get *all* immigration banned, legal or not, to fulfill his 1940s "America First" slogan.

      It's baffling in a post 1940 world but it's probably a result of being a bit too comfortable in exile.

      Delete
    6. Holy cow, Unknown, way to go with the nuance.

      Duh, there are plenty of black people who are in higher education and are affluent etc. But there is no doubt that among the black communities that are not affluent there is a whole counterculture to avoid "acting white" that has elements that glorify gangmembers and does not socially have consequences for fathering children and leaving the mother. These are the people that need to better acculturate into mainstream, law-abiding, education-approving society. (And yes, of the richer ones, many of course DO try to raise their kids to despise gang culture, but some kids are pulled into it anyway out of peer pressure or out of the "cool" factor.)

      Do these things exist in poor white communities too? Yup, of course. But for every redneck "we don't need no book-learnin'" out there, there are parents who push their kids to be better than they are.

      No, sorry, I don't have statistics. But you know what, there are no redneck riots when a cop kills a white guy. There are "Sovereign Citizens" and white supremacists, but fortunately, nobody riots on their behalf. We don't have to make the argument that they are wrong because society already knows that they are. (And yes, they are wrong.) This is kinda because crazy white people of this sort tend to be Rightward leaning and the media leans the other way, so society is educated to laugh at these people. But when the perpetrators of insanity and those who have Things That They Need To Work On are Left-leaning, then it's Vorboten to even suggest that any fault is theirs.

      Delete
    7. @ Yosef

      "Glorifies gangs"....Okay. So, do you realize what white culture glorifies?

      White collar crime that steals labor and money from the masses to award itself for nothing but having more money than everyone else.

      White culture glorifies a POTUS who has five kids by three different women (women who he abused and has a prenup with the third), ignores his youngest son's existence, openly stated that people should die for the stock market, has over 4000+ pending lawsuits, paid a prostitute/sex worker for an adulterous affair while his third wife was pregnant with their child, and openly brags about sickening and killing his own people.

      And THIS is the guy the upper echelons of the US religious community thinks is an upstanding guy who defends Israeli/Jewish/Evangelical values.

      He went to the Kotel once...wow, whadda mensch!

      Every culture has its stupid golden calf and we white people have our own, too. They ALL need to be smashed into Gehinnom.

      Delete
  24. "Anti-racism" has suppressed all rational thinking.

    ReplyDelete
  25. The reason for black over representation in the criminal justice system, and many fields of athletics and their under repesentation in the academeia, medicine, engineering etc is HBD is different genetics, not culture. Culture comes from genetics, not the ither way around. The presentation doesn't offer this 'uncomfortable' option as a choice. Without the understanding of HBD, systemic racism is the only explanation left. Blacks are genetically different and are unfit for a modern technological society. They are a problem and a burden wherever they live. It's not their fault - it's their genes. One would think that if a Siberian tiger and an African tiger are different and cannot survive in each other's environment, it should be obvious that the black and the white races are not identical and cannot have an identical outcome. Each one has an advantage in the environment in which it had evolved. Why this isn't something obvious on this blog that preaches evolution is a mystery to me. Everything in life has an evolutionary explanation as offering a survival advantage. Morality, emotions, physical characteristics, intelligence and even belief in a superior being is hard wired in us by evolution because it offers a survival advantage. This is very simple.

    Marx called religion an 'opiate for the masses'. Quite right - it gives strength and motivation and a survival advantage. But the main thing is that it's genetic! Incidentally, blacks are the most religious demographic and that is genetic as well.

    Study HBD and be enlightened, mates

    Yakov.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. *Citation needed

      Delete
    2. Wow.

      What racist thing could HBD stand for?
      Human Blood Derivatives?
      Hamites Began Deluvially?
      Heaven-sent By Design?
      Hellishly Be Darned?
      Hominid Baseline Definitions?
      Horses Beat Donkeys?

      Oh, and by the way, as far as I know... there are not many tigers in Africa. Were you trying to compare different types of animals that live in different climates, like polar bears and black bears, for example? Those are different species, not races.

      And even if we were to allow that race really really does play a role in intelligence, an even playing field does not exist to truly test this. So we don't even know. So this flat-out negative portrayal is indeed the very thing that people are fighting against.

      And yeah, culture is huge. White people can be raised in cultures of stupidity or backwardness also. And to say that blacks do not fit in a technological society - to pick that qualifier specifically - is hilarious, given the sheer amount of technology that they own and operate. And have you never ever seen a heist movie with a team of people? 9 times out of 10 the tech guy is black! (I reference Die Hard for starters.)

      Delete
    3. Just Google HBD and זיל גמר. This isn't the forum for an expanded discussion. All the information is out there.

      Also, I've been censored often here, not sure if this is a forum for a proper discussion of any subject for someone like myself. As has been noted by many this blog is on a downward spiral.

      Yakov.

      Delete
    4. So I Zilled and Gemored HBD on the Google so you don't have to.

      1) HBD from Urban Dictionary. Apparently it means Happy Birthday. I didn't know that.
      2) HBD chooses Leeds for seventh UK office. That was a property developer.
      3) Google Images for HBD, seemingly birthday themed.
      4) Wiktionary: Homozygous by descent? Sounds suitably racist, but actually to do with the genetic effects of incest. Not sure that's what you meant, but you never know?
      5) Henry Boot Developments, trading as HBD. Property developers, and no obvious links to the Great Replacement Conspiracy.
      6) Birthday videos on youtube. twee, but not obviously racist.
      7) Apparently a medical abbreviation "has been drinking"?!
      8) and 9) Pintrest Happy birthday memes. Haven't the Jews suffered enough?
      10) The Hive Dollar. A cryptocurrency. The plot thickens.

      Delete
    5. What a fascinating comment.

      Generally HBD (which used to be called "race realism") is not really an "understanding" but an attempt to justify plain old bigotry and give it an acceptable veneer -- just as anti-Semites hide behind "anti-Zionism".

      HBD is basically the 21st-century version of phrenology.

      "Culture comes from genetics, not the other way around."

      That misses the part of the story where genetics comes from culture. Read The Secrets Of Our Success by Joseph Henrich if you are comfortable reading texts in this area by non-frum, non-racialist writers.

      I'll let your other comments stand as they are.

      Delete
    6. Environmental driven epigenetics - including culture - drives the vast majority of genetic expression. The genes are merely a recipe on paper, but epigenetics is the baker. Apparently, you have not studied this subject.

      Delete
    7. @ANOn. Yakov - Your claim 'different genetics, not culture' is very much a minority view among biologists and anthropologists. Environment and culture are probably the main causes of the 'differences' not genetics. I have worked for really good bosses that were black and way smarter than many of the whites around them, had black professors, studied some great art and science textbooks written by blacks (most I still own and treasure),had talented black healthcare providers and met some gifted black students.... So those experiences gave me a different perspective. On the other hand I have also had a few negative encounters with blacks. BTW - BLM, the media and their acolytes spout so many lies and BS that it is beyond belief anybody could believe it.

      Delete
    8. @Yosef R. Check out Hogan's Heroes - Kinch. May have been second in charge after Hogan. Also Star Trek's Uhura.

      Delete
    9. If we accept evolution there is no reason to to think that it is even possible for population separated by tens of thousands of years to have evolved identically. This is idea is plain absurd. Cultural environment doesn't change one's genes and IQ. IQ is a bell curve and every 6th negro is more intelligent then an average white. The black professors are on the right side if the curve and they exist, just that their numbers are proportionally less. All HBD says is that there us a biological basis for racial differences. Sure it's a minority opinion because it has been silenced and persecuted by the society. Again, there is only two possible explanations to the European superiority - HBD or systemic racism.

      Incidentally, similar differences exist among various Jewish ethnicities and for the same reason. This is why complaints about discrimination of the 'mizrachim' Jews are with us 70 years after the establishment of the state and are apparent in the Israeli society.

      Yakov.

      Delete
    10. OK OK - after multiple explanations about Happy Birthday and Has Been Drinking, I found Human BioDiversity. Which sounds nice, but says that People Are Different. OK, so Asians are shorter, Africans might have longer legs and therefore run faster, Caucasians might be better swimmers due to different proportions (see Michael Phelps vs Michael Jordan). But those are trends, based on physical characteristics. And Caucasians can still run pretty fast. To say that intelligence has a huge disparity between races is akin to saying that no Caucasians can run quickly at all. So, like many theories that might be basically true, it is carried to an extreme conclusion to prove someone's bigoted agenda.

      Delete
    11. and ACJA: Hogan's heroes is way before my time. I know of Colonel Klink, and was therefore able to laugh when he appeared on The Simpsons. As far as Uhura, I wouldn't call her the techie of the show. Nebich, she didn't get to do much and would have left the show had MLK not asked her to stay (until the reboot when Zoe Saldana was given a bizarre romance with Spock...) If you want a black techie on Trek, I'd go for Geordi.

      Delete
    12. @Joe Q & BreadFromTheLand: As one of my biology teachers used to put it: human traits are 100% genetical, and 100% environmental.

      Delete
    13. HBD in this contexts stands for "Human Biodiversity", basically the new moniker for the scientific racism of the 1930s and 40s. Its main proponent is the white-nationalist writer Steve Sailer.

      Delete
    14. "If we accept evolution there is no reason to to think that it is even possible for population separated by tens of thousands of years to have evolved identically."

      But: and please correct me if you have any evidence to the contray: there never was a period where for > 50 generations, African and European genes didn't mix. H Sapiens is only about 5,000 - 10,000 generations old.

      Delete
    15. @ Yakov

      "If we accept evolution there is no reason to to think that it is even possible for population separated by tens of thousands of years to have evolved identically. This is idea is plain absurd. Cultural environment doesn't change one's genes and IQ."

      Your statements are incorrect. Read the book by Joseph Henrich that I recommended above for a large number of counter-examples.

      Delete
    16. There are two kinds of people in the world: those who divide the world into two kinds of people and those who don't.

      Anyone who claims that there are "only x possibilities" is clearly not open minded enough. European superiority (first of all, what do we mean by "superiority," but let's just say scientific and technological dominance) could stem from a whole bunch of things. They could include the large empires that helped to coordinate trade, similarly the great wars that bounced across the continent, the Christian religion being supportive of learning and knowledge, and all this being possible because of the geography. OTOH, Africa, being jungle and desert, never allowed large empires to grow. China and India did not have the same political upheavals and/or international cross-pollination of ideas (yes, there were empires and wars but only with themselves).

      Technological dominance then leads to cultural dominance, through winning wars and having more popular TV. So claiming superiority based on cultural dominance that arose out of technologically being there first simply by happenstance, luck, and Providence is, at the very least, disingenuous.

      Delete
    17. Human evolution dlis happening as we speak and diesnt require tens of thousands of years. Russians, Germans, Italians, Spaniards and Jews, among many other nations, have distinct ethnicities. Anyway, this isn't an HBD blog and I'm not an expert so I'm going to rest my case. The scientific research by elite scientist is out there and stands on it's own merit regardless of the censorship. 'Bell Curve' encapsulates it all.

      Meanwhile just today a new advancement in scientific research which is expected to go against the PC ideology has provoked an expected outrage.

      https://www.wired.com/story/algorithm-predicts-criminality-based-face-sparks-furor/

      Mates, I'm done with this subject.

      Yakov.

      Delete
    18. @Yosef R

      That's all from the 'Patriarchy' dummy.

      Judaism/Christianity, Enlightenment, Renaissance art, western scientific method, mathematics/physics/engineering/medicin it's all from the big bad patriarchy.

      That's critical theory for you.

      Were we perfect? No. Have we made mistakes? Sure. But society keeps progressing. They want to paint the past in all black, and tear it all down, its memory and current structure.
      Dismaying.


      Delete
    19. It is accepted today that genes effect environment, and environment effect genes. It's an interplay between the two. Nature and nurture are intertwined. Our Epigenetics get turned on and off depending on our cultural environments. So it's complicated.


      To add to that confusion, Carl Jung posited that each society has its culture grounded deep in its biology (genes?) for its archetypical mythological ethos.

      So yeah, genes matter, IQ matters, culture matters, greater society's sense of what's right and wrong, what it understands is better or worse for itself, matters too.

      Not all cultures want the same thing for themselves. The problem is that now everyone sees the Western culture as "patriarchy".... This will take a while to get rid of, me thinks.

      Delete
    20. Yakov/Anonymous: I understand that you are done, which is fine as you haven't really said anything new. I don't consider people from Russia and people from France and people from Australia different species. Immigrants to a new country within 2-3 generations follow the practices and preferences of the new country unless they have a large community to fall back on and hide in. So this is not evolution, this is culture.

      Modern evolution responds to different stimuli than past eras given the technological world in which we live. Glasses, hearing aids, and modern medicine have eliminated classic physical evolutionary stresses. Charity helps those who would have been left behind socially (and therefore ultimately might have died with fewer children). I'm sure we have different stresses today.

      Delete
    21. @Yosef R Uhura is depicted as a capable bridge officer and readily manned the helm, navigation and science stations on the bridge when the need arose. Chief Communications officer. Translator and communications officer who specializes in linguistics, cryptography, and philology. Pretty techie if you ask me.

      Delete
    22. What's most interesting about Uhura was that she was one of the first Black characters, if not actually the first on TV, not depicted as a servant or a slave.

      Nichols wanted to quit but was encouraged to stay by Dr. ML King.

      Delete
    23. @unknown see my comment at 8:11 am
      Before you make up lies about me such as calling me racist. Also read many of my other comments on RNS prior posts related to riots. ACJA

      Delete
  26. For all those who support BLM, there were 102 shootings black-on-black in Chicago last weekend. Where are the riots for the 102 deaths? Oh, that's right. BLM only matters when white people kill blacks.

    In a word, BLM only matters when you want them to matter, and usually its criminals. As it turns out, BLM is racist even towards black people!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. BLM is either grossly ignorant of data and facts, or are dishonest. I lean towards the latter. They were founded on a lie and now perpetuate lies. The great tragedy is they are are causing terrible harm to the black people, a people which I have a soft spot for. There are many blacks speaking out against BLM and their acolytes, but they are ignored by the media. At first I did not believe the term 'fake media' was true. But I have been closely following how TV shows and the mass media distort Trump comments, Trump's accomplishments, distort reports on riots (even support them), unfair reporting on Israel, and on and on. TV and mass media in the USA is both bogus and dangerous.

      Delete
    2. Trump's only accomplishment is allowing the Senate Majority Leader to stack the national courts with far right Dominionist judges.

      "But I have been closely following how TV shows and the mass media distort Trump comments"

      How do you distort words he said himself? Does film not exist?

      He doubled down just in the past day or so about slowing test kits to make "his" C19 numbers look better. He literally sickened, if not outright negligently allowed people yo die, for numbers when he told his fellow crook Bibi about the virus as early as last **November!**

      He said we were going to go from 15 cases to zero, and ~120,000 deaths later, here we are.

      He openly praised Henry Ford and declared he had "great bloodlines". That comment alone should have guaranteed the frum community replace his whole admin in the next election.

      His Jewish daughter and son-in-law have NEVER said a word against all this once.

      Racists, nationalists, 88ers, Proud Boys, anti LGBT, and anti-Semites are *all* the same people. If you seperated yourself from their talking points you'd clearly be dealing with reality again.

      Delete
    3. "Racists, nationalists, 88ers, Proud Boys, anti LGBT, and anti-Semites are *all* the same people."

      Are you referring to Conservatives?

      Delete
    4. @Unknown

      Why do you dislike Bibi so much? Frankly, I don't know what will happen w/out Trump and Bibi.

      Surprising as it may sound, Socialism is actually in the name Nazi. The Nazis were leftists. Fascism is leftism. You can't make this stuff up!

      Delete
    5. @ACJA

      Yes, I agree. BLM is out to run the country, maybe even destroy it. And the media does support or entice violence and riots. Especially CNN and MSNCB. Sadly, most of the media is 'Fake News,' and the left does distort Trumps' accomplishments. They turn a blind eye to the fact that Trump has done more for the black community than any president in the last fifty years. Meanwhile, the Democrats don't do anything for them because they are guaranteed their vote. But Trump needs the black vote so he helps improve black communities. Now, for the first time, black unemployment rates are at an all-time low.

      BLM is perpetuating lies. They say that cops are mercilessly targeting blacks. But the reality is that more whites are killed by police. However, more blacks are killed by blacks. Just this past weekend, 102 black-on-black shootings took place. Yet the media is silent. Why? Because they don't really care about them. Their interest is only self-serving. According to BLM, black lives don't matter. They ONLY matter when white people, preferably police, kill blacks. Its a joke.

      Delete
    6. @ Turk

      --"Now, for the first time, black unemployment rates are at an all-time low."--


      THERE ARE 45,000,000 (45 million!) UNEMPLOYED PEOPLE IN THE US RIGHT NOW.

      At this point I refuse to believe you know/value *anything* about Torah/Tanach when you post thus stuff that is so antithecal to objective reality it's pretty much Trump white nationalist fan fiction!

      Delete
    7. @Turk Hill "But Trump needs the black vote so he helps improve black communities." Actually, it is very possible (and I suspect) he really cares about the plight of the blacks and would want to help them regardless of votes.

      Delete
    8. @ Alter

      He called Kaepernick an SOB for peaceful protest, called African nations ----hole countries (obviously I can't even repeat his language on this forum), and is calling for a one year prison sentence for flag burning (which is inarguably covered in the First Amendment in *objective reality*).

      He has a consistent 3% poll approval rate in the Black community.

      He praised a Nazi lover in Michigan.

      Stop making up entire worlds in your head and please deal with reality.

      Delete
    9. ACJA: Yes, I agree. Trump does cares about blacks.

      Unknown: No offense but I think you’re being manipulated by left-wing media. You might be taking things out of context.

      Delete
    10. @Unknown can you provide links to those alleged Trumps comments - I would like to read them my self. Please no links to fake news, but actual footage of Trumps words in full and not clipped out of context. I do not know that he did so, but EVEN if Trump praised a Nazi lover that does not mean Trump is a racist. Maybe he did not know that person was a Nazi lover; maybe the Nazi said something that was accurate or an opinion that Trump agreed with. Not sure what a Nazi lover is and what he loved about the Nazis. Not sure if the poll is reliable , but even if he has a consistent 3% poll approval rate in the Black community it does not at all mean Trump does not care about the black plight or is a racist. Perhaps the blacks are being duped just like many other people are being duped by fake news. Perhaps the blacks prefer a democrat. Does anybody have more than a 3% approval rate amongst the blacks ? I really do not know the reason, but you have no rational basis to take it as evidence against Trump for being a racist or not caring about the black plight. Some (maybe most) African nations are in terrible condition. Flag Burning is a red herring and has nothing to do with racism or black plight. Kaepernick - skimmed something on the net about Trump and kneeling during National Anthem - that has nothing to do with racism. Fake news is desperate and so they cherry pick stuff out of context and make mountains out nothingness. Please do your homework and do not trust the mass media in the USA which is well known to be biased on many issues.

      Delete
    11. @Unknown - Please do NOT INFER I AM a Trump or Republican voter or that in general I support Trump or the Republicans. I disagree with many of his and the Republican positions. But fake news focuses on bogus Trump accusations while they should be writing about real issues not made up nonsense about the police are racist, Trump collusion with Russia, that cops are executing blacks. Fake news supports, defends,abets mob riots, mob rule and criminal actions. What a sorry state America's media and politicians have become.

      Delete
    12. @ Alter

      EVERYTHING the opposition does is "fake". That's a prime 1940's talking point.

      I sincerely believe your insistence on everything I can give you on video will be dismissed either by "Radical Left" or "cherry picking" talking points.

      Everything is "fake news" except the exegeses of Trump's admin of his own words because when he talks about ----hole countries and brags about assaulting women or allowing a virus to kill and sicken people he NEVER really means that.

      I refuse to waste my time providing proof that is literally a five second search engine few clicks away. In Trump's own words. On video.

      Once you've consumed enough conservative Fox and Friends/Breitbart/Federalist Trump fanfiction it gets to a point you can be shown a video of the man repeatedly doubling down on slowing C19 testing and bragging about negligent manslaughter of his own country and you'll praise his C19 response anyway.

      There is a new issue here in the US that he was given intel months ago that Russia was targetting US soldiers abroad for bounty and this complete national security failure was again complicit by derelict of duty.

      And his calf worshippers will yet explain successfully to his base about his unwavering love of RULE OF LAW and of military honor.

      Delete
    13. @ Alter:

      Very relevant to Jewish people everywhere:

      POTUS this morning (6/28) just retweeted this video... one of his wealthy retired supporters shouting "WHITE POWER!", and then Trump went golfing.

      https://mobile.twitter.com/kohenari/status/1277215712453570561


      https://mobile.twitter.com/GungaDon1/status/1277258911918276608

      There was zero apology and POTUS claims "he didn't hear it". White Power guy is literally the first man in the video.

      Eventually if you don't deal with what this Admin is you're going to be scratching your head how "Never Again" in fact happened again.

      Delete
    14. @Unknown Maybe Trump is telling the truth, since when you age your hearing usually gets poorer. I am unable to to view the video nor it's context - do you have another link. BTW - If the Blacks can say black power, why cant Asians say Yellow power or the Native American Indians Red Power and the white's White power ?

      Delete
    15. @Unknown I think I responded to your initial points, but then you jumped to yet more points. Sorry, you will have to do some critical thinking on your own. However, people like you keep blaming Trump for every death from Covid. It is a tough call on how to react to Covid and I happen to think Trump and the USA is doing a pretty good job, perhaps too cautious overall. Recall I am in a high risk group. People themselves have to take precautions like self protection and not expect the country to shut down. For example do not engage in mass protests and riots which fake news and many politicians defended. If you keep 6 ft away and don't touch face your risk is minimal - is that to hard to do ? It is important people can go to work, even if the risk of Covid deaths increase. Did you know Floyd incident probably would not have occurred if the shut down did not occur. YOU CANT LIVE IN A BUBBLE.

      Delete
    16. @Unknown "There is a new issue here in the US that he was given intel months ago that Russia was targetting US soldiers abroad for bounty and this complete national security failure was again complicit by derelict of duty." I am not privy to USA intel but off the cuff the story sounds like anti Russia propaganda and anti Trump BS. I would like to see some confirmation and besides even if true I have no Idea what the USA's response has been. Nor would you know since this sort of stuff is probably top secret.

      Delete
    17. @Unknown "I refuse to waste my time providing proof that is literally a five second search engine few clicks away. In Trump's own words. On video." OK, so you cant substantiate your claims that Trump is anti black. I think Trump is a New Yorker who has lived thru the BS that is NY and is sick of it like most New Yorkers. I do not think he is a racist or anti black. He is anti violent scum savage barbarian criminals who intimidate, destroy property, loot, rob, rape, maim, and murder. I think he also dislikes those people who defend that scum.

      Delete
    18. @ Alter

      Trump openly bragged, multiple times, in objective reality, about slowing down test kits... therefore, in total derelict of duty, bragged about sickening and killing his own people.



      If the frum community wants this guy "because ISRAEL!" then....hey...the frum community can have him.


      The non-frum and even secular Jewish worlds understand better and that's just utterly sad that, once again, the highest on the totem pole can't see the forest for the trees.

      Delete
    19. @Unknown I am not sure why you harp on covid. Did you bother to read my comments on covid to you ? You seem to have not read them so I will repeat it for you. People like you keep blaming Trump for every death from Covid. It is a tough call on how to react to Covid and I happen to think Trump and the USA is doing a pretty good job, perhaps too cautious overall. Recall I am in a high risk group. People themselves have to take precautions like self protection and not expect the country to shut down. For example do not engage in mass protests and riots which fake news and many politicians defended. If you keep 6 ft away and don't touch face your risk is minimal - is that to hard to do ? It is important people can go to work, even if the risk of Covid deaths increase. Did you know Floyd incident probably would not have occurred if the shut down did not occur. YOU CANT LIVE IN A BUBBLE. YOU WROTE "Trump openly bragged, multiple times, in objective reality, about slowing down test kits... therefore, in total derelict of duty, bragged about sickening and killing his own people." Are you so delusional that you think Trump wants to sicken and kill his own people. You have once again fell for fake news and lies hook line and sinker. Do not be a dupe.

      Delete
  27. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Contact_hypothesis is worth a read for fans of science and peaceful societies.

    ReplyDelete
  28. It's good that racism is being brought to the fore, but that chart makes a lot of assumptions . . . it looks too much like instructions mapped out by the Thought Police.

    ReplyDelete
  29. "It's a very well-crafted piece, especially for the many of us who are in denial that we are in any way racist and/or don't appreciate the struggles that black people face (which is most of us in the frum community)."

    Sorry, Rabbi, but if that's really what you think and this isn't some satirical piece, you're stunningly ignorant.

    I'd also like to point out the irony of someone who seemingly is opposed to racism making a ludicrously blanket judgement about the lives of millions of people "the struggles that black people face".

    Perhaps you've been too sheltered in your life, and now believe the narrative that police are hunting black men down for sport, and that there is a massive conspiracy of systemic racism.

    If you genuinely believe what you wrote, I suggest you educate yourself on the issue, and perhaps spend some time in a minority-majority city in America.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Like Ferguson Police Department, where the majority black citizens of the locale wereawere treated as the major revenue source for the majority white civic administration, where promotion was linked to using fines, and where 10 percent increases in levels of fines were requested by heads of finance because the local court had increased its own fees / share of the proceeds of crime (Investigation of the Ferguson Police Department - Department of Justice).

      Delete
  30. Just a recap of the past 24 hours in the US:

    1. Trump knew Putin was hunting our soldiers.
    2. Putin successfully killed our soldiers.
    3. The Admin. knowingly sold faulty anti-body testing kits.
    4. COVID-19 had its largest ever single day cases.
    5. Trump tweeted a "white power" video.

    Also, the "pro life"/"choose life" Vice President praised a governor with "compassionate leadership" who is doing next to nothing to contain this virus in objective reality.

    Might want to rethink the "pro life"/"choose life" party label on US conservative Right.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. ”1. Trump knew Putin was hunting our soldiers.
      2. Putin successfully killed our soldiers.”

      Like hacking the election, there is no evidence. Actually, Putin just wrote an excellent essay called The National interest. All of the intellectual elite/political minds are reading it now. You can find it for free on google and in English.

      Delete
    2. @ Alter

      Thank you but I'm not interested in the philosophical ramblings of despots who are idolized by derelicts of duty who gleefully support killing people in their own country.

      Delete
    3. @ Turk

      Russian bounty hunting intel from months ago was verified by Britain and Australia.

      This, once again, is you arguing with objective reality, not me, a blog commenter.

      So Trump either:

      1. Ignored intel (total derelict)
      2. was not told about it (why? He said he "hires the best people"?)

      Delete

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