Elizabeth Wright (1937–2011) lived a life of self-imposed isolation and obscurity. For those who appreciate her writings, however, she is fondly remembered as one of the most remarkable conservative commentators of her generation. An African-American, and a libertarian and individualist, she nevertheless had a deep understanding of—and “tough love” for—Founding-stock Anglo-Americans. Her greatest insights were, indeed, those of an outsider—one who was out-of-step with the prevailing Zeitgeist and could thus view the White race (as well as her own) with critical objectivity.
For more than two decades, Elizabeth was Editor of Issues and Views, both in its newsletter and online manifestations. This article was originally published in September 2010 at Alternative Right, in response to Glenn Beck’s “Restore Honor” rally that had just been held on the Washington, DC, Mall. The piece is a critique of “Tea Party conservatism,” which was reaching its culmination at the time (and has since faded). But the essay bursts through this context by virtue of Elizabeth’s devastating insights into the psychology of White Americans. The “Tea Party” phenomenon, in her reading, was not simply a reaction to the 2008 stock-market crash or the election of Barack Obama; it was yet one more episode in an ongoing process, in which Europeans gleefully dispossess themselves through their participation in the reigning civic religion.
~Richard B. Spencer
Now that the dust has settled on that overhyped, fevered Glenn Beck rally, what have we learned? Is it clearer than ever that no sober knight will come riding in to bring the enlightenment that some of us thought the Tea Partiers might have offered? It appears that the expectations surrounding those initial enigmatic stirrings, which made one almost believe that the furor was about more than just anger over political issues, have been extinguished. Was it all just a momentary aberration?
As it turns out, White conservatives don’t want to take the lead in preserving what remains of this country’s now tenuous White, Anglo-Euro culture. To take on such a responsibility would make them even more vulnerable to the racial bullets and daggers they have been ducking for years.
If Beck’s rally taught us anything, it’s that nothing has changed in the White middle-class mindset and that fear of the “racist” label continues to rule as strongly as ever. We’ve now learned for certain that such Whites are determined never to put the name to their fear and anxiety. If anything, they are fighting all the harder to bury even deeper the visceral knowledge of what is going on in this country and the inevitable future that is on its way. Christopher Hitchens’s assessment of the August 28 mass meeting is correct, when he claims that Beck’s tepid event was “a call to sink to the knees rather than rise from them.” (If Hitchens, of all people, gets it, who could miss it?)
Even as other groups gradually dispossess them in the country whose political system was constructed by their forebears, conservative Whites persist in their obstinate assertion that their apparent discontent is “not about race.” What hogwash. Of course it’s about race and culture. Why shouldn’t it be? No matter how assiduously they deny it, resentment is growing over the ever-looming fact that this country, due to swiftly altering demographics, will no longer be the product of those Founders. And reality informs us that the ruling law, that is, the Constitution (or what’s left of it), soon will be openly renounced by competing populations that never have had even the remotest historical connection to the notions set forth by those Englishmen.
No one has to look far abroad to see what is on the horizon. In their guts these conservatives know what’s coming, as their unnamed enemies pick up the pace in the drive to usurp political power. What were mere hints just two decades ago have grown into loud trumpet blasts. And along comes Glenn Beck who offers these perceptive, yet reluctant conservatives a way to feel better about things. According to his prescription, all they have to do is Believe and Pray.
After watching that half-baked celebration of Martin Luther King Jr., and the determined laundering of his well-documented leftist convictions, how could one not conclude, like Ross Douthat, that “Beck’s “Restoring Honor” was like an Obama rally through the looking glass,” that these conservatives wished to be “cosmopolitan and young-at-heart, multicultural and hip”? Nobody wants to be known as “square,” whatever squareness entails at any given time. Remember how conservatives used to laugh at and rail at political correctness? Now, they’re the ones who don’t want to be depicted as “incorrect.”
My observations of these Whites lead me to agree with Paul Gottfried, who astutely argues, “Whites would desert the GOP in droves unless their party continues to make an effort to be PC.” And further, he claims, many Republicans would not vote for a party that was “not marching in lockstep with the media in expressing horror over America’s evil racist, sexist, and homophobic past.”
Whites of all political stripes, no matter which political label they give themselves, have been sold on the unique wickedness of America’s past racism that surely had to be the most grievous sin ever committed by mankind. Hence, the Glenn Beck carnival of repentance.
Beck picked up on this peculiar self-flagellation, and his soap opera rally was customized to meet the needs of this constituency. It seems that the unconstitutional Brown v. Board of Education court decision, the deceptive Civil Rights Act, forced busing (which tore apart whole school districts around the country), a national holiday for a Black preacher, and endless, ever-evolving new perks and goodies to benefit Black elites, have not quite made the grade of cleansing those past sins.
And so, to prove that they possess no resentment over the decades of social strife that has plagued our society, in August, the good conservatives took to D.C., where they engaged in a ceremony to worship a 19th-century President, who could come up with no better solution to his nation’s problems than a war that brought about the slaughter of hundreds of thousands of his fellow countrymen, and a Black man who specialized in emotional oratory.
One has to wonder who these people are who will march on Washington to “restore” the country’s “honor,” as the rally’s theme boasted, yet are in the forefront of supporting some of the most dishonorable acts engaged in by their country’s interchangeable governments. Just what is special about the moral convictions of these advocates, who fervently sermonize on such issues as patriotism, war, family life, religion, the nature of government ad nauseam?
On the subject of race, as we’ve seen, conservatives are savvy on this score and have learned that one way to deflect the scurrilous charge of racism is to celebrate the icons and infinite memorabilia of the civil rights movement, while keeping a contingent of Black people on hand to be prominently displayed at public events. Who said these savvy Whites couldn’t be condescending?
On the other hand, Whites are given little choice in this matter since, at the mere hint of the formation of any kind of all-White entity, Black and liberal elites will come charging in. Even if such an organization is inadvertently all-White, it must first be accused of loathsome, racist motives, so that it can be monitored. No matter how benign the group’s objectives, if White men are its creators, then it must be put under surveillance and ultimately neutralized.
When the new group’s leaders relent, we find a quid pro quo in place—the intruding Blacks get the benefits of prominent positions and other perks, while the Whites now have cover from any other such intrusions and accusations. We saw this game successfully played against the Promise Keepers and, now again, very blatantly applied to the Tea Parties.
The Whites who resent the blackmail flee, while the rest remain comfortably ensconced, adapting to the politically correct reality of the times. Whites, it would seem, must not be left to their own devices. Before taking back the country, is it possible that they will first take back the right to organize among themselves?
But don’t feel too sorry, too soon for these conservatives, who greatly influence the country’s political direction through the national leaders and ethos they inflict on our society.
Take a look at how they feel about big government that they rail against so vehemently. It’s fine as long as it’s out there doing what government should be doing—that means making war. War making, you see, in the mind of the conservative patriot, shows how tough we are. And although we’re not supposed to care what the rest of the world thinks of us, it’s imperative to earn the world’s fearful regard when it comes to our toughness. It matters not who rules in DC, or how many of our young soldiers needlessly die in worthless battles, as long as the message is sent abroad that we’re the biggest, baddest country on earth. We’re the USA! USA! USA!
Conservatives are dedicated to one of their favorite little war slogans, which is designed to justify why our troops are “over there.” When Pat Buchanan or Ron Paul comes along and reverses this little ditty, explaining that the terrorists are “over here” only because we’re “over there,” he gets drummed out of the corps, for “pacifism.” Woe to even the most faithful conservative, if he appears to diss the USA’s abominable wars of choice.
When Iran’s President Ahmadinejad is quoted making negative remarks about the leadership of the United States, primarily due to this country’s toadying relationship with Israel, that’s reason enough to urge the U.S. military to bomb and kill millions of innocent Iranians. Don’t say nasty things about the USA or its Middle East client state, OR WE’LL KILL YOU!
Is this the mentality that worried Founder John Jay, who did not see leaders as being trustworthy initiators of war? In The Federalist Papers, he claimed that some leaders will make war even “when their nations are to get nothing by it,” and spoke of leaders harboring motives such as “personal ambition, thirst for military glory and revenge for personal affronts.” Jay warned about a nation putting itself in situations that “invite hostility or insult,” that could lead to “pretended” causes of war. And he was not impressed by the superiority of so-called republics as opposed to monarchies, believing that republics were just as “addicted” to war as monarchies. “Are not the former administered by men as well as the latter?” he asked.
But what did he know? Obviously, not as much as our sanctimonious conservatives, who cheer as 19-year-olds are sent off to prove their mettle, while offering opportunities for these stay-at-home warriors to engage in “support the troops” grandstanding. For all their noisemaking about restoring the Constitution, it is easy to suspect that these impostors look upon the Founders and their document as quaint and outdated as do most liberals.
And who isn’t impressed with how well these conservatives have taught us about family and commitment? What outstanding models they have given us. At the moment they are apoplectic over maintaining marriage for opposite sexes only, yet these are the people whose foremost political philosopher, Newt Gingrich, just married his fourth wife, making a mockery of that institution. (Will the fifth be the charm?) By the way, this mountebank of “family values” was the fourth husband of his previous wife No. 3. (How many broken vows does that make?) Could homosexuals, who claim to be “married,” dilute the significance of marriage any more than this?
Chosen as Leader of the conservative camp by acclamation, this Talking Hero is looked upon as the fount of wisdom to those who seek to teach the rest of us how to think and behave.
These deluded crusaders, in striving to exonerate their other leader by acclamation, Sarah Palin, from the charge of irresponsible parenting, could only shrug and come up with a pithy, new catchphrase: “Life happens.” As if we didn’t know that. With the advent of Palin, American youth are once again blessed with yet another fine conservative role model.
And what about immigration? Can we really expect to see these conservatives carry through on their stances against illegal immigration? Don’t count on it. Is there any chance that today’s conservative reformers will take the next step in calling for a moratorium on all immigration, the “legal” kind as well? Is there among some of them, at least, a sense of urgency to stem the tide of endless, unchecked floods from abroad? But then again, is it likely that people who worship at the pedestal of Martin Luther King would understand the meaning of such terms as “cultural suicide” or “death of the West,” or care about the transformation that is taking place around them?
Libya’s late leader Muammar Gaddafi used to laugh at the foolish Europeans, who have encouraged the immigration of millions of Third World aliens, and offers Europe’s leaders a financial deal to keep more of the mob out of that continent, are American conservatives taking notes?
As literally tens of thousands of African refugees in boats try to reach Italy, the Libyan navy has been instrumental in keeping them out, thanks to an agreement with the Italian government. “We don’t know,” the bemused Gaddafi is quoted as saying, “if Europe will remain an advanced and united continent or if it will be destroyed, as happened with the barbarian invasions.” And then he comes right out and says it: your continent is turning into Africa.
Why should Europe turn into Africa? Why should Europeans want to live in a negrified Europe? Or an Arabized Europe? Why?
The good White conservatives in the U.S., although possessing an instinctive understanding of such questions, would be terrified to entertain such thoughts publicly, or even privately. Better to take one’s lead from the huckster Glenn Beck and play it safe, than to express the anxiety to which they dare not put words.
As one Dutchman observes, “This isn’t Holland anymore,” nor is it France or England or Germany. And soon it won’t be America anymore. In one country after another, clueless Europeans have already begun the process of dispossessing themselves via politics, as immigrants eagerly run for political office, thereby amassing power and influence over the native residents.
Is there something in Europe’s water that compels the Whites to submit to this updated form of conquest? Who are voting Black immigrants into political office in Sweden? The native Whites. Who just voted an African into office in Russia? The native Whites. At what point do Whites take responsibility for their ongoing demise or, as Paul Gottfried puts it, for going “soft in the head?”
It is true that, in order to achieve the quasi-religious goals at the heart of the multiculturalists’ vision for America, heavy doses of brainwashing have been perpetrated on the public via school systems and throughout the media. The major targets have been youth and, most especially, White youth, as they have had their opinions and beliefs pummeled in “multicultural workshops,” and “sensitivity training” sessions. No one can deny that this 30- to 40-year campaign of re- education has been successful.
A recent caller to a New York overnight radio show is almost a stereotype of the proud, de-racinated White man. The de-racinated Zero. He described growing up in Missouri, in the midst of what sounded like a predominantly Anglo population. Years later, when he visited New York City, he claims that this was his first encounter with assertively ethnic people. There he discovered Greek sections of town, Italian sections, Chinese, etc.
It seems that this did not rest well with him, since he was used to calling himself simply “American,” and could not comprehend any reason to expand his ethnic identification with a hyphen. The Zero Man always resents the use of hyphens. Not for him that Greek-American, Italian-American, Polish-American stuff. He’s just a plain, old “American,” disaffiliated from any specific cultural lineage and expecting everyone else to disaffiliate themselves as well.
This caller sounded as if he would be uncomfortable if described as an “Anglo-American” or “British-American.” Mr. Zero probably would be uncomfortable, but why should a Chinese-American attempt to erase his Chinese ancestry to accommodate the deracinated notion of what constitutes an “American?”
The Founders did not seem to think of themselves as Zeros, yet misleading hype continues the fiction that this country was formed in a vacuum by people who shared no heritage. If this were so, why did John Jay thank Providence for giving this country to “one united people,” who were “descended from the same ancestors?” Who establishes anything, that is expected to take root, with someone else’s progeny in mind?
Western countries are now being inundated with populations of foreigners who actively discourse on who they are, and they’re not going to let you forget it. As masses of Muslims bring their distinctive customs, laws and disciplines to Christian countries, and push the envelope to acquire even more privileges, Westerners are waking up to the folly of having thrown open their borders to an alien civilization. At one time, Europeans understood from past experience what was at stake, as they protected themselves, for centuries, from further encroachment by Muslims, and their American cousins instinctively understood that there were limits to “assimilation.”
But that was yesterday. Today, Muslims learned that, this time around, there was no need to attempt a siege of Paris with guns or swords. Instead, they are able to hold hostage entire streets in that city, while they perform their Friday prayers in public. It’s a sort of in-your-face dare to the foolish Frenchman. The authorities must defer to this illegal activity, or risk the kind of chaos for which Muslims in France are already well known. Not only will there be no banning of the burka, there will be no imposition of unwanted rules, as Muslims let the French government know just who’s boss.
“We have been in darkness for a long time,” intoned Glenn Beck the night before his big rally. “We have been standing in spiritual darkness for decades.” Yes, one could say that, but not for the reasons you cite, Mr. Beck.
Maybe that darkness will be lifted when Whites finally extricate themselves from decades of witless but safe obsessions like cheerleading for obscene wars, dancing to the demands of civil rights hustlers, acting as self-appointed watch-keepers over who is deemed a true “patriot,” presuming to be able to read the mind and intentions of God, and intruding into the birthing predilections of strangers.
At some point these misguided conservatives must turn their attention away from delusions and focus on the explicit needs of their own race, instead of fearing to deal with the unspeakable—that is, diminishing as a group into minority numbers—60 percent, 40 percent, 20 percent. It will certainly mean stepping into a more dangerous zone (and Whites do like to play it safe), but there’s not much time left to muster the courage, if they truly want to preserve (or, more accurately, rescue) the core of that which the Founders set out to establish.
If these Whites ever get their priorities straight, who knows what they might accomplish? Perhaps they might begin by ceasing to expend so much energy on admonishing others for opting not to have children and, instead, begin a crusade among their own people to raise the birth rates of Whites. Wouldn’t it be remarkable if there were a reversal of what now appears to be the inevitable?
Such an appeal to procreation could not be based on those ugly harangues about “sin” and “murder,” in which conservatives love to indulge, but on a sense of pride and a concern for the future custodianship of this country. Of course, White reproductive rates might never be able to outstrip those of the Muslims and other Third Worlders, but a sound, restrictive immigration policy would go a long way towards evening up the demographics. If they fail to turn their focus to such realities, just who do these conservatives think are most likely to work at preserving the foundational institutions of the country they supposedly yearn to “take back?”
At his rally, Beck told over a quarter of a million hopeful Whites that the emergence of the Tea Parties and similar entities of discontented citizens is evidence of “the beginning of the Great Awakening in America.” Would that were so.