22 April, 2016

a few thoughts on liberal smugness | Fredrik deBoer

a few thoughts on liberal smugness | Fredrik deBoer: "Jamelle Bouie noted on Twitter that Democrats lost the white working class in large measure because of civil rights and racism. That’s true, and important to point out; it’s an essential historical addendum. But there’s a few essential points. First, “white working class” is a vast and shaggy designation that pulls in huge numbers of people who share very little in common, a very large number of whom are not motivated by racial animus. Which doesn’t undermine Bouie’s important and correct historical point, but should lead us to use caution here. Second, I sometimes see an argument play out concerning these issues: we shouldn’t worry about the white working class because Democrats lost them thanks to racism, so therefore they don’t a) deserve our help and b) deserve to be in our coalition. Which, I think, is just an attitude that makes no sense in democracy. In democracy, your job is always to convince those who you disagree with. That’s true even if you have profound moral problems with them. This is especially true here because, despite how often people in progressive media reflexively talk about a “majority minority” country, white people in America continue to enjoy huge numerical superiority and even greater political and economic influence. Simply to say “arrivederci” to this huge group isn’t politically sensible, even setting aside our moral responsibility to improve the lives of everyone in our country."

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