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I’ve just finished reading a lengthy article on the ethno-nationalist website American Renaissance (Jared Taylor’s organisation) entitled ‘What I don’t like about Blacks’. It was written by a Black intellectual named Zora Wheatley and is presented as a polite and self-deprecating rebuke to Jared Taylor’s (uncharacteristically diplomatic) essay the prior month – “What I like about Black People”.
Here are three defining paragraphs from Wheatley’s article:
“The discontent you feel with yourself and blackness as a whole can be crushing. You discover that aside from the tall African tales of Alex Haley, Underground Railroad figures, and peanut proprietors, there’s not much there (in terms of Black historical achievements). And on top of that, these historical footnotes arise from a new world that is leaps and bounds beyond the stone-age existence in which your ancestors were found. As (Black academic James) Baldwin put it, ‘It is quite possible to say that the price a Negro pays for becoming articulate is to find himself, at length, with nothing to be articulate about.’….
“Mr. Taylor finds the way blacks speak English entertaining, and I would agree in part, though most modern black English is so dumb and vulgar that I wouldn’t be surprised if clicks and grunts will be making a comeback….
“One of the things that I don’t like about blacks (is) their tendency to lay claim to the building and resulting greatness of the West. Picking cotton, tilling soil, and whipping up sweet potato pies were helpful and important in their own way, but were nothing like the establishment of private property rights or the implementation of Enlightenment-era ideals in the New World, which guided the nation for generations. It would be akin to a Native American claiming that, because his ancestors shared corn and turkey with early European settlers one fine November day, they are as important as the descendants of those white settlers who would fight the British and build the America in which we live today.”
Though I admire greatly the intellectual detachment and personal bravery it must have taken to say these things about her own ethnic group, I must disagree with Ms Wheatley’s argument entirely.
It is sadly accurate that most Black contributions to history were enabled by contact with Europeans (and their technology), and that before this, Black history was a long and largely blank expanse of time. But since that great encounter with Europe, and the subsequent incorporation of Black people into European culture, Black accomplishments have been multitudinous and often dazzling.
Perhaps the reason racists feel comfortable in denying these achievements is because they are not various and widespread but concentrated in a few particular areas, compact and neat enough to kick under the nearest cupboard and pretend not to have seen them. One can then focus on the map of absences – the absence of a Black Darwin, Brunel, Newton or Shakespeare etc…
But this is incredibly unfair and intellectually dishonest. Every racial group and culture has a speciality – something they do better than anything else. Austrians are better at composing music than they are at writing. English people are better at writing than they are at painting etc… A speciality should never be considered a limitation.
And what are the Black specialities? Well, the obvious starting point is music. Since the abolition of slavery, there has appeared no musical discipline that cannot be traced back to Black innovation. Rock n’ Roll, Jazz, Soul, Blues, Southern Folk, Disco, Hip-Hop, Swing – all of these are Black inventions, and very influential ones at that. They have changed our tastes, fashions and social norms, sometimes for the better, sometimes for the worse. They have all been cheerily received by other races, understood and celebrated by all the varieties of mankind.
In the connected field of entertainment, Black people have also proven sublimely capable. Through their extroversion and wit, African-Americans have conquered the fields of comedy, film and presentation. Every facet of modern Western humour is informed by Black sensibilities. Their urban parlance has penetrated deeply into our vocabulary and can never be excised from it.
And in Sport, Black athleticism inspires the mind and spirit, dazzling, humiliating and surpassing our view of human capability. Through their determination, Blacks have even conquered sporting disciplines for which they have no natural advantage, like golf and tennis. And whatever sports the future may withhold, Black people will surely eventually dominate these too.
I write this in part to clarify my earlier posts about Black demography. We in Europe reserve the right to maintain a cultural balance favourable to our traditions, but this does not (or need not) imply a dislike of Africans themselves. Despite the contemporary plagues of violence and anti-aspirational politics afflicting the Black community, the fact remains that over the last two centuries, this great and gifted race has scaled the peaks of the Western world. Let that never be forgotten.