If ever you needed the perfect example to show how completely disingenuous and silly the left has become about claims of racism, this is it. Race politics truly has become the domain of absolute absurdity.
There was a bit of petty crime by some kids on the New York Subway on March 31st. This is not that big a deal given the size of the city. I'm sure it's quite common in fact. In this particular case 2 girls were harassed and one had her cell phone stolen, then they were hauled off the train by the larger group of girls. Not a super big deal. I went to high school. These sort of things happen. No one was killed or maimed, no eyes were put out. It was just what we used to call (arguably nasty) kids being kids.
NBC news published the following description of the girls issued by police:
- 17, gray sweatpants and a pink shirt
- 17, pink sweatshirt, blue jeans, black T-shirt with white writing
- 17, long blond hair, black bubble jacket, white jeans
- 17, maroon Hollister T-shirt with white writing, blue denim jacket, blond stripes in the back of hair
- 18, red jacket and olive green baseball hat
- 17, heavy set, black T-shirt, gray jeans and a purple scarf
- 17, purple sweatshirt, blue denim jacket, light jeans, white sneakers
- 18, white T-shirt, blue jacket, mesh hat with white writing
The experienced reader of NBC news will note that there is absolutely no description of the girl's race, with the possible exception of the detail that one girl had 'long blond hair'. But it seems to me that anyone actually looking for these dangerous fugitives from justice might be interested in their skin color. It would certainly narrow things down a little don't you think?
Well lo and behold, there is a bit of video (embedded above) of the girls committing the attack. And as virtually everyone must have seen coming given that race was never mentioned in their descriptions, the girls are all black. That isn't a big deal - nor is this crime. Stating in their description that the girls were black would tell you absolutely nothing about black people as a group, only about kids. And I can absolutely assure you that this sort of thing happens to white kids all the time too. I have both seen it happen (or things just like it) and have had them happen to me, and there wasn't a black person within 10 miles of any of those events. So why go to so much trouble to pretend that you don't know these girl's race?
In fact, I now think we should go even further than that. We should have described these girls as being of "apparently West African descent". Are they? I certainly don't know (but since their specific ages were known when the description was released I suspect someone might.) But they do look like it to me. I can tell the difference at a glance between a west African and an Ethiopian and a Somali. Maybe someone else cannot, but they still know that all those countries are in Africa and that's more information than they had from that idiotic news release from NBC.
I am American, but of pure Irish descent on both sides of my family. A great many of my tribe "The Irish" are drunks. They are also very often great singers and musicians, but are as a rule, horrendous cooks. There are many who will object to the negative assertions, but I stand by my view. It is an accurate reflection of my family experience and my considerable exposure to the broader community of "the Irish".
And even though I am a full member of that group whose racial purity can be established back to the late middle ages, I am none the less a very light and occasional drinker, can't carry a tune in a bucket, and am (in all humility) a considerably better than average cook. None of those characterizations which I have asserted apply to my group 'The Irish", actually apply to me. But it would still be meaningful to understanding who I am to tell people I am Irish. It's foolishness to pretend otherwise.
Being a part of a group does not make us slaves to it, even if that group is defined by genetics. It does not prevent us from transcending the bad tendencies of the group or prevent us from making the most of the good ones. My tribe are drunks but that does not make me into one - only I can do that. And I have refused to. My future, and for that matter my present, are my own. The only thing that's fixed and unchanging for me is my past.
But if you buy into the left's vision for black America, then you believe that no one who is black can ever make a future for themselves. You quite literally have to believe that they have no hope. And that is apparently the view that NBC News thinks is valid, or they would know that it's OK to say these girls were black. It doesn't magically transform all black girls into petty criminals, any more than pretending you don't know what color these girls are, will magically make them white.