Race and the Tea Parties
Why engage the tea partiers' ideas when you can just call them white?


Dennis Prager

Opponents of the popular expression of conservative opposition to big government — the tea-party movement — regularly note that tea partiers are overwhelmingly white. This is intended to disqualify the tea parties from serious moral consideration.

But there are two other facts that are far more troubling:

The first is the observation itself. The fact that the Left believes that the preponderance of whites among tea partiers invalidates the tea-party movement tells us much more about the Left than it does about the tea partiers.

It confirms that the Left really does see the world through the prism of race, gender, and class, rather than through the moral prism of right and wrong.

One of the more dangerous features of the Left has been its replacement of moral categories of right and wrong and good and evil with three other categories: black and white (race), male and female (gender), and rich and poor (class).

Therefore the Left pays attention to the skin color — and gender (not just “whites” but “white males”) — of the tea partiers rather than to their ideas.

One would hope that all people would assess ideas by their moral rightness or wrongness, not by the race, gender, or class of those who hold them. But in the world of the Left, people are taught not to assess ideas but to identify the race, class, and gender of those who espouse those ideas. This helps explain the widespread use of ad hominem attacks by the Left: Rather than argue against their opponents’ ideas, the Left usually dismisses those making an argument with which it disagrees as “racist,” “intolerant,” “bigoted,” “sexist,” ”homophobic,” “xenophobic,” and/or “homophobic.”

You’re against race-based affirmative action? No need to argue the issue — you’re a racist. You’re a tea partier against ever expanding government? No need to argue the issue — you’re a racist.

As a leftist rule of thumb — once again rendering intellectual debate unnecessary and impossible — white is wrong and bad and non-white is right and good; male is wrong and bad and female is right and good; and the rich are wrong and bad and the poor right and good. For the record, there is one additional division on the Left — strong and weak — to which the same rule applies: The strong are wrong and bad and the weak are right and good. That is a major reason for leftist support of the Palestinians against the Israelis, for example.