The Corner

Affirm the Stereotype or Be Stereotypical!

From a reader:

It would be refreshing if the National Review took the occasion of Jesse Helms’ death to reflect on American conservatism’s historical complicity with racism, rather than to make jokes about fringe left definitions of racism.  All I have seen on the Corner are breathless eulogizations of Jesse Helms.  If you really wanted Americans outside of your base to take people like Ward Connerly seriously, you would call a spade a spade, and denounce Jesse Helms’ racist legacy as a stain on conservatism.

Me: I have no problem with reflecting on conservatism and race. But I find these sorts of finger-wags tiresome. The gist seems to be: “Agree with my unfair stereotype of conservatism or be guilty of conforming to my unfair stereotype of conservatism.” If conservatives are the racists he suggests they are, why aren’t NRO writers celebrating Helms’ alleged racism rather than denying it? Maybe folks around here don’t think the liberal line is true (in whole or in part)? And as such, throwing Helms under the bus to appease the fingerwaggers would be nothing more than an act of cowardice.

If the reader could break out of the Corner and read some of the pieces we have posted on the homepage, he might at least contemplate that Helms’ career is more complicated than the mean-spirited and agenda driven mainstream media obits have suggested. 

As for longer and broader considerations of conservatism and race, I can’t recommend more highly Bill Voegeli’s piece in the new CRB.

Most Popular

Elections

Stick a Fork in O’Rourke

If, as I wrote last week here, Joe Biden may save the Democratic party from a horrible debacle at the polls next year, Beto O’Rourke may be doing the whole process a good turn now. Biden, despite his efforts to masquerade as the vanguard of what is now called progressivism, is politically sane and, if ... Read More
Elections

In Defense of the Electoral College

Senator Elizabeth Warren has joined a growing chorus within the Democratic party in calling for the abolition of the Electoral College. Speaking at a forum in Mississippi on Monday night, Warren said that she hoped to ensure that “every vote matters” and proposed that “the way we can make that happen is ... Read More
Education

Ivy-League Schools Wither

A  number of liberal bastions are daily being hammered — especially the elite university and Silicon Valley. A Yale and a Stanford, or Facebook and Google, assume — for the most part rightly — that each is so loudly progressive that the public, federal and state regulators, and politicians would of ... Read More
National Security & Defense

In Defense of the Iraq War

Today is the 16th anniversary of the invasion of Iraq, and Twitter is alive with condemnations of the conflict -- countered by precious few defenses. Yet I believed the Iraq War was just and proper in 2003, and I still believe that today. When Donald Trump condemned the war during the 2015 primary campaign and ... Read More