Color-blindness & Journalistic Objectivity
This is a ‘repost’ inspired by recent exchanges on the subject and question of ‘colorblindness’.
This post is about whether being “colorblind” can, or should, be equated with objectivity….
This post is not about whether Nicole Wallace is a racist…
‘Journalistic colorblindness’ is a key element in the normalization of reporting on Trump and Trumpism and his followers and supporters.
“What’s phony about colorblindness is that it involves consciousness of discrimination in only one direction.”
—-Koshersalaami in a comment on a recent post by Bitey.
The French philosopher, Descartes, once wrote:
Cogito ergo sum, : I think, therefore I am.”
In my salad days, when I heard, during a discussion or debate, someone quote Descartes, attempting to flex and brandish his /her ‘intellectual’ muscle, I would add: ut sunt, sic etiam quid. I would only recite the translation when asked, which occurred invariably:
“As you are, so also am I”
Thus, I would weaponize my often superior knowledge and rhetorical skills in the cause of self-defense.
In most cases, the silent sound of stunned disbelief and shocked incredulity was quite gratifying.
Today, when I ‘push back’ against overt racism or a subtle or nuanced exercise in ‘ white privilege’ or a manifestation of latent racism in a comment or post the sound of silence in reaction or response is as gratifying as it ever was…
Under such circumstances, It is quite often that I am labeled a ” bully”, a “reverse racist” the “black know-it-all” and an “elitist” amongst other disrespectful and insulting ,vile and obscene epithets, appellations, and invectives…
It really doesn’t take much to get some white people to stop hiding behind cute sounding screen names and misappropriated avatars to become disjointed enough to attempt to drop the ‘n’ word along with an f-bomb or two….
Here are a few of the names I can recall from the OS Snark Tank:
Also Known As
Theodora L’Engle Knight
The amount and degree of psycho- babble and pseudo intellectual bullshit that these folks would exchange amongst themselves re black people, the black experience, race, racism, and racists was staggering, almost beyond belief and comprehension.
When I complained and protested the lack of adherence to scholarly or academic rules of discourse And engagement, I was told to ‘do my own research’ ..
And then one of them reminded me that this, after all, was “social media”.
Nicole Wallace, a white MSNBC anchor and commentator viewed the scenario of one the memorial services held for George Floyd, in speaking of his family as they were being escorted to their places, quite casually asked:
“Where does the strength, courage, dignity,and grace come from?”
I reflexively hollered:
“ut sunt, sic etiam quid!!!”
I instantly realized that the so-called ‘progressive’ commentator had blown a huge opportunity to bring the message home to the millions of viewers who were looking on at that time….
She and her on air colleagues blew it because they are no less racist than any other so- called ‘non-racist’ white people that I might encounter on the street or on the internet…
The problem is that MSNBC isn’t social media. It is the premier cable news voice of progressive perspective, spin, and slant in this country….
I can guarantee you that few, if any, caught the subtle hint and unintended manifestation of racism and ‘white privilege’…
In other words their so-called ‘colorblindness’ destroyed their capacity for objectivity.
The fact that the racism in the comment may have been unintended doesn’t make it any less racist.
There are those who would accuse me of being a racist for catching and commenting about it….
But then, no one mentions or talks about the young woman who video- recorded the murder of George Floyd either….
The commentator missed the moment and opportunity of her lifetime to inject and interject the salient reason and purpose of broadcasting such proceedings and goings on because, in that moment, she was being ‘colorblind’ instead of being objective.
While observing the posture and behavior of the bereaved Floyd family, she blithely asked:
“Where does the strength, courage, dignity, and grace come from?”
A ‘colorblind’ journalist would ask such a question. An objective journalist wouldn’t feel the need raise the issue…
The only real and correct response to such an inane and racist inquiry is:
“It comes from our humanity!”
No translation required….