For a detailed comparison of the conditions of black American slaves compared to English farmworkers (c. 1750 to 1875), see this:
For proof that the American Civil War (1861-1865) was caused by and fought over slavery, not abstract political philosophical disputes about the merits of political centralization versus de-centralization, see this:
For a general analysis of why Islamic theology on average causes more violence and terrorism by its believers compared to adherents of other faiths, see this:
Malcolm X’s Autobiography and the Black Muslims’ Invention of Tradition and Historical Mythology Critically Analyzed from a Christian Perspective
Eric V. Snow
Hate produces more hatred. Oppression inevitably creates the desire of the oppressed to indiscriminately strike back against the oppressors. Hence, during the New World’s actualized slave revolts (not just mere conspiracies), the mentality of the combatants was to kill or be killed. However, forgiveness is ultimately more powerful than vengeance, mercy triumphs over judgment, and the work to restore human relationships is better than severing them still further. In the light of such general truths, “The Autobiography of Malcolm X” needs some careful critical examination. Above all, the central problem with reviewing this work’s analysis of race relations stems from the moral requirement and intellectual honesty to admit the high levels of oppression and chronic mistreatment that black Americans have historical received from the white majority while also exposing this book’s many historical errors and incorrect solutions to arguably the central problem of American political history. So the main purpose of this critical analysis of Malcolm X’s autobiography is expose the Black Muslim movement’s historical mythology, the invention of tradition, the stoking of racial hatred, and the folly of promoting racial separation and strife over racial integration and harmony.
In physics, Newton’s third law of physics states that every action/force produces an equal and opposition reaction. What is true of blind, dumb inanimate matter also often applies to human relations as well. The chronic oppression, hatred, and mistreatment of the white Christian majority inevitably produced the “blowback” anti-white racism of the Black Muslim movement. Although famously after his pilgrimage to Mecca, Malcolm X himself pulled back from indiscriminate anti-white racism, he still spent most of his public career of approximately 12 years fanning the flames of such hatred. A near death bed partial repentance about race relations doesn’t begin to make up for all the damage inflicted in the prior years during which he basically inverted the worldview of the KKK, by substituting “white” for “black” and “black” for “white.” Black racism isn’t morally superior to white racism, although many white liberals and blacks continue to deceive themselves in this regard.
In this context, it’s well worth describing in detail the historical mythology and invention of tradition of the Black Muslim movement, which Malcolm X did so much to promote and popularize. I suspect he may have downplayed in his autobiography some of the odder aspects of Elijah Muhammad (Poole’s) racist theology as he turned towards a more orthodox, non-racist form of Islam near the end of his life. This aberrant theology is hardly a dead letter; Louis Farrakhan still very much upholds it, the man whose rhetoric likely directly led to Malcolm X’s assassination. Many years ago, when I was a grad student in history, my Pakistani roommate and/or his visiting friends objected to Farrakhan’s racist beliefs when he came to MSU to speak because they said Islam isn’t racist. From an orthodox Muslim viewpoint, the American Black Muslim movement’s relationship with Sunni Islam is comparable to the differences of (say) the Mormon Church to traditional Protestantism or Catholicism because it has so many doctrinal deviations from core Muslim beliefs.
Let’s summarize Malcolm X’s own version of Elijah Muhammad’s crackpot racist theology about the origins of the human race’s differences. (See generally “The Autobiography of Malcolm X” as told to Alex Haley, New York: Ballantine Books, 1973, pp. 167-171. This edition is used throughout this essay). After the moon separated from the earth, the first humans were black people who founded the holy city of Mecca. Among these black people were 24 wise scientists. However, one of them created the especially strong black tribe of Shabazz, from which America’s blacks descended. Around 6,600 years ago, an evil black scientist, with a freakishly big head, named Yacub learned how to breed races scientifically. He preached in Mecca, converted many, and caused such trouble that the authorities there exiled him and 59,999 others to the island of Patmos in the Aegean Sea. (This is the island that John said (Rev. 1:9) that he received the visions and words to the book of Revelation).
While in exile, an embittered Yacub decided to get his revenge against others by creating a devilish race of bleached-out white people. He set in motion a plan that lasted generations through the hands of his successors. He had to start with 59,999 black people, but he selectively bred them for lighter skin in a plan that lasted generations. Those who had some trace of brown were allowed to have children, but not those fully black. Babies who were too dark were to be killed at birth. After 200 years, only brown people remained on Patmos, and then only red people remained after 200 more years. After another 200 years, only yellow people remained. Finally, after yet another 200 years, only whites lived on the island of Patmos. These people were blond, blue-eyed savages, living in the nude shamelessly and walking on all fours. After 600 more years, these white people went to the mainland and, after just six months, set the blacks to fighting against each other. They had long been living peacefully together, but the presence of the whites turned a paradise on earth into a hell. So then the blacks of Arabia punished these whites by gathering them together, chaining them up, and leading them to live in exile in the caves of Europe. After 2,000 years, Allah raised up Moses to bring them out of their caves and to civilize them. It was prophesied that the devil white race would rule the world for six thousand years. The first whites to accept what Moses preached to them became the Jews. According to “Yacub’s History,” the incident in which Moses made a serpent for Israel to be healed from a plague from God when they looked at it in faith (Numbers 21:6-9; John 3:14) is preposterously interpreted to mean “that serpent is symbolic of the devil white race Moses lifted up out of the caves of Europe, teaching them civilization” (“Autobiography of Malcolm X,” p. 170).
After the white race had ruled the world for six thousand years, the original black race would give birth to someone “whose wisdom, knowledge, and power would be infinite” (p. 170). Who is this alternative Messiah and God in the flesh? Fard claimed to be “God in person” (“Autobiography,” p. 164). Likewise, “Elijah Muhammad teaches that the greatest and mightiest God who appeared on earth was Master W. D. Fard.” (“Autobiography,” p. 170). In addition, Fard said that he was the Mahdi (Muslim Messiah) and that “black people, God’s children, were Gods themselves” (“Autobiography,” p. 212). Any orthodox Muslim would have found this teaching to be the worst kind of blasphemy, since they are utterly insistent that God is one Person only (Quran, Surah 37:4; 5:72, “Unbelievers [i.e., Christians] are those that say: ‘Allah is the Messiah, the son of Mary. . . . He that worships other gods besides Allah shall be forbidden Paradise and shall be cast into the fire of Hell.” Surah 2:158 (cf. 3:1): “Your God is one God: there is no God but He, the compassionate, the Merciful.” Muslims reject the standard Christian teaching that converted men and women are “sons of God,” Such a text as Surah 3:60 leaves no room for other gods besides Allah: “Abraham was neither Jew nor Christian; but he was sound in the faith, a Muslim; and not of those who add gods to God.” Similarly, Surah 3:143 warns: “We will cast a dread into heart of the infidels because they have joined gods with God without warrant sent down; their abode shall be the Fire; and wretched shall be the mansion of the evil doers.” God has no sons according to the Quran, Surah 10:68: “They say: Allah has taken a son (to Himself). . . . You have no authority for this. Say you against Allah what you know not?” Furthermore, we have this reasoning in Surah 6:101: “How could He [Allah] have a son when He has no consort?” God is never called a “Father” in the Quran either. Orthodox Muslims reject any idea that anyone is a son of God or God.
Fard appeared among some of the original black people who had been brought in as slaves to North America in order for them to understand and learn about the white devil’s true nature at first hand. Fard was said to be half black, half white. In 1931 in Detroit, Michigan, while posing as a seller of silks, he met Elijah Muhammad and taught him for several years before permanently disappearing c. 1934.
[Incidentally, the teachings of the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society, a/k/a Jehovah’s Witnesses, likely directly influenced the doctrines of the earliest Black Muslims, whether it be Fard, Poole, and/or others (https://www.jstor.org/stable/1384578?seq=1) (https://www.thebereancall.org/content/january-1996-q-and-a-1) (https://www.jehovahs-witness.com/topic/67883/judge-rutherford-master-fard-muhammad) Both groups were and are staunchly opposed to the Deity of Christ. They also, at least at the time Malcolm X lived, shared similar views of conditional mortality (often mistakenly called “soul sleep”), which maintains the dead are dead and not alive in heaven, hell, or anywhere else until the time of the resurrection. Elijah Muhammad’s views of the state of the dead didn’t match those of orthodox Muslims. As Malcolm X himself explained (“Autobiography,” p. 228): “But I was to learn later that Mr. Muhammad’s teaching about death and the Muslim funeral service was in drastic contradiction to what Islam taught in the East.”
(Furthermore, as documented here, there are good reasons to believe that Wallace Dodd Fard/Ford was born in the United States and not in Mecca, had a number of aliases, wasn’t black at all but Arabian, abandoned his family, and had a history of petty crime. https://vault.fbi.gov/Wallace%20Fard%20Muhammed/Wallace%20Fard%20Muhammed%20Part%201%20of%207)]
Malcolm X commented: “I was to learn later that Elijah Muhammad’s tales, like this one of ‘Yacub,’ infuriated the Muslims of the East.” (“Autobiography,” p. 171). It would be interesting to know what those “tales” were and how much Malcolm X himself believed in them and preached them publicly for 12 years before turning to embrace a more orthodox Islam. He may well have decided to not include them in his autobiography for this reason despite their (likely) importance to the Nation of Islam and their public preaching in the 1950s and 1960s.
Today’s academic analysis of intersectionality (i.e., that people can be oppressed or mistreated based on different or multiple parts of their identity simultaneously or alternatively) never informed Malcolm X’s views of women. He saw everything that happened, even when it wasn’t fully accurate or correctly qualified, through the prism of the white oppression and mistreatment of blacks in America and elsewhere in the world. However he had absolutely no consciousness of the feminist construct that men, as a class, oppressed and/or mistreated women, as class. He would have found the views of (say) Simone de Beauvoir’s “The Second Sex” (1949), Beatty Friedan’s “The Feminine Mystique” (1963), or Gloria Steinem’s “After Black Power, Women’s Liberation” (1969) to be utterly alien to him. Consider the following demeaning over-generalizations about women in his autobiography, which he would have found simply outrageous had similar stereotypes been aimed against blacks:
When writing about his first girlfriend “Sophia” (one Bea Caragulian, who was white and was married to another man at this point), he described their financial relationship this way (“Autobiography,” p. 138): “Sophia always had given me money. Even when I had hundreds of dollars in my pocket, when she came to Harlem I would take everything she had short of her train fare back to Boston. It seems that some women love to be exploited. When they are not exploited, they exploit the man. . . . . Always, every now and then, I had given her a hard time, just to keep her in line. Every once in a while a woman seems to need, in fact, wants [his emphasis] this, too. But now, I would feel evil and slap her around worse than ever, some of the nights when Shorty was away. She would cry, curse me, and swear that she would never be back. But I knew she wasn’t even thinking about not coming back.”
His friend “Shorty” was too kind to women, in his judgment (“Autobiography,” p. 138): “He had never been able to keep a white woman any length of time, though, because he was too good to them, and, as I have said, any woman, white or black, seems to get bored with that.”
Notice how Islam’s view of women, at least as Malcolm X heard it in the Nation of Islam, reinforced such views (“Autobiography,” p. 230): “Every month, when I went to Chicago, I would find that some [Muslim] sister had written complaining to Mr. [Elijah] Muhammad that I talked so hard against women when I taught our special classes about the different natures of the sexes. Now, Islam has very strict laws and teachings about women, the core of them being that the true nature of a man is to be strong, and a woman’s true nature is to be weak, and while a man must at all times respect his woman, at the same time he needs to understand that he must control her if he expects to get her respect.” Although conservative Christians could agree with a certain amount of this viewpoint (as per such texts as Ephesians 5:22-33; I Peter 3:5-7), it nevertheless seems to be unbalanced. The word “control” is particularly objectionable, since it implies continuous enforcement of obedience in a harsh, even violent, manner. I would be the first one to defend intellectually the idea that men and women have innately different personalities, using such works as George Gilder’s “Men and Marriage,” Steven Goldberg’s “The Inevitability of Patiarchy, and Peter Blitchington’s “Sex Roles and the Christian Family” as evidence. Nevertheless, Malcolm X doesn’t appear to qualify his suspicious negative judgments of women hardly any or bring to bear the idea of self-sacrificing love in this crucial context. The old Medieval concept of chivalry basically maintained that the strong (men, in general) should use their strength to protect the weak (which included women in general) instead of exploiting or attacking them. It’s a fundamental error to focus on making women respectful and obedient within marriage while ignoring the crucial requirement for husbands to be self-sacrificing and loving to their wives.
In part because of his long experiences as a criminal, drug seller, and hustler, Malcolm X developed a deeply suspicious view of other people. Consider in this context this statement (“Autobiography,” p. 396, his italics): “I don’t completely trust anyone . . . not even myself. I have seen too many men destroy themselves.” It wasn’t merely because of his being mistreated by whites in the past he was always suspicious of the motives of even seemingly well-meaning liberal whites, but it was also because of years of living half like an animal in the concrete jungle of New York, being always on the look out for attacks by the police or fellow hustlers and criminals. The same goes for his suspicious view of the mysterious power that women can have over men (“Autobiography,” p. 230): “[At that time] I wouldn’t have considered it possible for me to love any woman. I’d had too much experience that women were only tricky, deceitful, untrustworthy flesh. I had seen too many men ruined, or at least tied down, or in some other way messed up by women. Women talked too much. To tell a woman not to talk too much was like telling Jesse James to not carry a gun, or telling a hen not to cackle. Can you imagine Jesse Jackson without a gun, or a hen that didn’t cackle? . . . Even Samson, the world’s strongest man, was destroyed by the woman who slept in his arms. She was the one whose words hurt him.” He told Alex Haley directly (“Autobiography,” p. 396): “You can never fully trust any woman. . . . I’ve got the only one I ever met whom I would trust seventy-five percent. I’ve told her that. . . . I’ve told her like I tell you I’ve seen too many men destroyed by their wives, or their women.”
Another common weakness that Malcolm X displayed, although he realized his error towards the end of his life, was the mistake of chronically exalting Elijah Muhammad as a religious leader. Many, many people have fallen into this trap over the millennia. Israel committed it when they wanted a king to lead them in battle rather than having the invisible but almighty Jehovah as their king (I Samuel 8:4-5, 19-20). We can see it with people who are guilty of overly admiring athletes, musicians, singers, and actors. The bobby soxers who shrieked Frank Sinatra’s name or the girls and young women who roared during the Beatles early concerts in America are particularly good examples of this phenomenon in our pop culture historically. A political, if fictional, version occurs in Tolstoy’s “War and Peace,” when it describes Rostov’s near adoration of Czar Alexander I. For the real life version, we can see it even in the United States in how much many people have admired Obama and Trump as leaders. More chillingly, the cases of Hitler, Stalin, and Mao come to mind as well, regardless of the perhaps 100 million people or more they collectively killed. The same human weakness appears when people are overly loyal to religious leaders as opposed to God Himself. In this regard, Malcolm X constantly and repeatedly exalted Elijah Muhammad excessively relative to Muhammad or even Allah Himself. True, part of his motive was for a good reason: He wanted, out of humility, to keep people from seeing him as the leader of the Nation of Islam and to demonstrate his loyalty and appreciation for Elijah Muhammad’s teachings that rescued him from the degradation of his life before and during prison. Nevertheless, he constantly exalted Elijah Muhammad’s name and authority in ways that a Christian would hesitate to do concerning anyone than Jesus Himself.
Let’s specifically illustrate this weakness of over-exalting the person of Elijah Muhammad from Malcolm X’s own autobiography. He later on had enough perception and intellectual honesty to admit this error (“Autobiography,” p. 372, his italics): “I guess it would be impossible for anyone ever to realize fully how complete was my belief in Elijah Muhammad. I believed in him not only as a leader in the ordinary human sense, but also I believed in him as a divine leader. I believed he had no human weaknesses or faults, and that, therefore, he could make no mistakes and that he could do no wrong. There on a Holy World hilltop, I realized how very dangerous it is for people to hold any human being in such esteem, especially to consider anyone some sort of ‘divinely guided’ and ‘protected’ person.” Much like what has happened with many a Christian minister and evangelist as well, Malcolm X’s views of Elijah Muhammad were destroyed by the sexual scandals he got involved in, including having a number of children out of wedlock with his secretaries and then being subjected to their paternity lawsuits. (He also had his own private jet plane and eventually could command a motorcade of cars before going to rallies. “Autobiography,” p. 252).
Consider carefully how Malcolm X would ask people to commit themselves to his religion. At the equivalent of the “altar call” to commitment, he routinely said things like this before people would publicly stand up to accept (“Autobiography,” p. 217, his italics): “Will stand who believe what you have heard? . . . How many of you want to follow The Honorable Elijah Muhammad?” (“Autobiography” p. 238, his italics): “Who among you wish to follow The Honorable Elijah Muhammad?” Notice that it isn’t the prophet Muhammad or Allah who is exalted here, but the leader of his unorthodox sect of Islam. They aren’t reciting the Shahada (“testimony”) with belief, which is the traditional way for a convert to accept Islam as his or her faith: “I bear witness that there is no god but God. I bear witness that Muhammad is the messenger of God.” The utter lack of balance here is obvious, especially compared to when a Christian accepts Jesus as his personal Savior. Clearly the Nation of Islam grossly and excessively exalted and over-emphasized Elijah Muhammad (Poole) as its leader.
Malcolm X, spotting a classic error of traditional Christian art, skewers a misrepresentation of Jesus while mistakenly proclaiming that the physical appearance or race of the Savior is important (“Autobiography,” p. 224, his emphasis): “The blond-haired, blond-eyed white man has taught you and me [i.e., black people] to worship a white Jesus, and to shout and and sing and pray to this God that’s his God, the white man’s God.” Of course, as he presumably noticed during his life, a good majority of “white” people don’t have blue eyes nor blond hair, including yours truly. But let’s not dwell excessively on his false over-generalization about the physical appearance of most whites/Caucasians. There are several much deeper errors here, which should now be examined.
First of all, it should be noted that all pictures of Jesus
violate the Second Commandment (Exodus 20:4-5, KJV): "Thou shalt not
make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven
above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the
earth. Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for
I am the Lord thy God am a jealous [i.e., one demanding exclusive devotion]
God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and
fourth generation of them that hate me."
So how should we apply these words as Christians today? What exactly is a "graven image"? The basic purpose of these words is to prohibit people from using or making statues or pictures of the true God or any false God. However, it doesn't prohibit all religious art or all kinds of representational art in general (which is how the Amish misinterpret this commandment). For example, in Exodus 25:19 (RSV), God told Israel to make the ark of the covenant, the most holy object in the temple, with two angels on it: "Make one cherub on the one end, and one cherub on the other end; of one piece with the mercy seat shall you make the cherubim on its two ends." Similarly, in the temple of Jehovah that Solomon had built, angels were included (I Kings 6:29): "He carved all the walls of the house round about with carved figures of cherubim and palm trees and open flowers, in the inner and outer rooms." So God doesn't prohibit religious art in general, including drawing angels.
So what the second commandment intends to prohibit are pictures or statues of any god, including the true God, as confirmed elsewhere by Moses (Deuteronomy 12:2-3): "You shall surely destroy all the places where the nations whom you shall dispossess served their gods, upon the high mountains and upon the hills and under every green tree; You shall tear down their altars, and dash in pieces their pillars, and burn their Asherim with fire; you shall hew down the graven images of their gods, and destroy their name out of that place."
At this point, this analysis leads to a rather controversial conclusion: Does the second commandment prohibit pictures and statues of Jesus? Well, if Jesus is God (as per John 1:1-2, 14; 10:30-33; 20:28; Hebrews 1:8), and the second commandment bans pictures and statues of God, then nobody should be making pictures and statues of Jesus. The early church, before the time of the Roman Emperor Constantine in the 4th century A.D., generally avoided making pictures and statues of Jesus. The Puritans of England in the 17th century, as well as some in the Eastern Orthodox Church in the early Medieval/Byzantine period, also made a point of destroying religious pictures and statues ("iconoclasm") in churches at times. Therefore, people shouldn’t have in mind a specific pictorial representation of Jesus in their minds anyway, blond and blue eyed or not.
Furthermore, others have been aware that Jesus wouldn’t have been blond and blue-eyed anyway. For example, the famous Dutch painter Rembrandt evidently had the presence of mind to use a Jewish Sephardic man as his model for his painting of Jesus, “Head of Christ, drawn from life.”
Second, the physical appearance and ethnicity of Jesus as a (Sephardic) Jew is completely irrelevant spiritually. Ethnicity and race, since the time of Jesus’ death and resurrection, don’t bear on matters of spiritual salvation. Jews/Israelites and Gentiles are all on the same spiritual footing in God’s sight. As Paul proclaimed (Galatians 3:28): "There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus.” Similarly, Paul told the Colossians: “A renewal in which there is no distinction between Greek and Jew, circumcised and uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave and freeman, but Christ is all and in all.” What gave Malcolm X, Elijah Muhammad, and the Black Muslim movement such resentful energy was the failure of white American Christians to following these texts when they discriminated against fellow believers who professed the same Savior that they did. Malcolm X (“Autobiography,” p. 241) quotes with approval from a frequent visitor to the Atlanta mosque about the failures of Christianity as practiced in America concerning matters of race: “’It has been evasive when it was morally bound to be forthright; it separated believers on the basis of color, although it has declared its mission to be a universal brotherhood under Jesus Christ. Christian love is the white man’s love for himself and for his race. For the man who is not white, Islam is the hope for justice and equality in the world we must build tomorrow.’” The inconsistency, hypocrisy, even brutality, of the whites opened the door for such a religious charlatans as Elijah Muhammad and W. Fard to walk through to capture the spiritual hearts of the blacks who joined the Nation of Islam.
But now, we have to ask a serious question: Has Islam historical taught the superiority of the Arab people and language over other believers because Muhammad and the first Muslims were Arabs? Has Islam, through the Quran, the Hadith (purported sayings of Muhammad), and the Sharia law, been an agent of Arab cultural imperialism on people of other nations and ethnicities? In the quote above, the collegian maintains that Islam provides hope for equality and justice for non-whites. Has it really worked out that way in practice in the long term? So famously, Malcolm X made a serious point repeatedly about how well he was treated during his Hajj to Mecca by others who were white by any standard Western or European definition and about the general unity of believers on that occasion. (For example, see his “Autobiography,” pp. 346-347). However, there has long been racism and prejudice among Muslims as well concerning ancestry, ethnicity, and skin color. It appears that Malcolm X was utterly ignorant of this reality, as he was about mainstream Islam in general outside the United States, yet it can be easily documented.
Let’s examine closely the situation of a little known ethnic minority in modern Turkey: Afro-Turks. They are the descendants of slaves imported into what’s now Turkey when it was the Ottoman Empire before the slavery (under European, especially British, pressure) was officially abolished in 1857. In practical terms, it really continued for decades more. An estimated 1.3 million African slaves were imported into the dominions of the Ottoman Empire. At the peak some 15,000 to 18,000 slaves were being taken annually from Africa by the Ottoman slave trade. The overland trip across the Sahara Desert was particularly dangerous; many slaves died en route. They suffered the exact same cultural erasure that the Black Muslims, including Elijah Muhammad and Malcolm X, see slaves suffering when they were imported into Colonial America and other New World locations. (For example, “Autobiography,” p. 258, quoting Elijah Muhammad, his emphasis: “You don’t know nothing about your true culture. You don’t even know your family’s real name. You are wearing a white man’s name!”) They were forcibly converted to Islam, they had their names changed, and they had to put behind themselves all of what they had done in their prior lives in Africa when enduring the new conditions found under Ottoman rule as slaves. Today their descendants face the same kind of problems with racism and discrimination from other Turks that American blacks have often long faced from whites. (For documentation of these points, click on the links below).
However, a much deeper structural flaw at the foundation of Islam stems from the privileged position that Arab Muslims see themselves as having in the Islamic world because Muhammad and the early Muslims were all Arabs and the Quran was written in Arabic. As a result, Islam has been a tool of Arab cultural imperialism under the guise of a religious cover. It would be as if Christians of Jewish descent still controlled culturally and theologically Christianity despite the great majority of believers are of other non-Israelite gentile ethnicities. Furthermore, to press the analogy further, it would be as if everyone who couldn’t read and speak Hebrew would rank as an inferior believer compared to those who could. Without realizing the trap that he was falling into, Malcolm X accepted Arab cultural imperialism unthinkingly when feeling so inferior to other Muslims because he couldn’t pray in Arabic. (See “Autobiography,” p. 335). Well, why should that be intrinsically important if believers can be of any nation, race, or ethnicity? Can’t the all-knowing, almighty loving God understand and accept prayers in any language, so long as they are done sincerely and faithfully? Why should Arabic be any more privileged than Hebrew, Aramaic, and Greek, the original languages of the Bible? It’s a great skill to be able to read these languages since it can give a deeper understanding of Scripture than reading it in translation. However, having such abilities doesn’t make a Christian spiritually superior, morally better, or intrinsically better than other Christians who don’t.
). The Islamic world’s sense of religious superiority, indeed, their ethnocentrism, stemmed from the doctrine of jahiliyah, “the Age of Ignorance,” or period of moral darkness that filled the world before Islam arrived. As Manji explains: “The charade is, Arabs have assumed that the various non-Arab peoples they’ve conquered were also morally ignorant. The conquered have effectively been taught that because the Koran attributes darkness to the pre-Islamic period, all wisdom prior to Muhammad carries the weight of blasphemy and applies to every Muslim, outside of Arabia no less than inside.” She cites V.S. Naipaul as noting that Arab cultural colonization was more successful than Western was while recounting his travels in Iran, Pakistan, Malaysia, and Indonesia: “No colonization had been so thorough as the colonization that had come with the Arab faith. . . . . It was an article of the Arab faith that everything before [it] was wrong, misguided, heretical; there was no room in the heart or mind of these believers for their pre-Mohammedan past.” (as in Irshad Manji, “The Trouble with Islam Today,” p. 141).
People normally only complain about, resist, and/or counterattack the imperialists/conquerors who presently or recently caused problems for them. So therefore the presently oppressed normally ignore history before the current/most recent controversy since they have forgotten about when their ancestors were the conquerors/oppressors in bygone centuries (such as the Turks or Arabs or Chinese during their periods of expansion as empires). Consider in this light V.S. Naipaul’s comment (New York Review of books, January 31, 1991, as quoted in Warraq, “Why I Am Not a Muslim,” p. 198):
I have to stress that I was traveling in the non-Arab Muslim world. Islam began as an Arab religion; it spread as an Arab empire. In Iran, Pakistan, Malaysia, Indonesia—the countries of my itinerary—I was traveling, therefore, among people who had been converted to what was an alien faith. I was traveling among people who had to make a double adjustment—an adjustment to the European empires of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries; and an earlier adjustment to the Arab faith. You might almost say that I was among people who had been doubly colonized, doubly removed from themselves.
doesn’t recognize how fundamentally arbitrary the adoption of one culture over
another can be to unanalytical, average people, which intrinsically makes the
level of alienation less. His
generalization here also doesn’t recognize the historical difference between
the places where Islam initially was spread by the sword (Iran and Pakistan)
and by conversion (Malaysia and Indonesia).
Nevertheless, despite these qualifications, are we willing to condemn
Islam’s earlier conquests with the same passion brought to bear against the West’s
later conquests? Is this time
difference a reasonable basis for objecting to some situations of
conquest/imperialism more than others?
The liberal view has its own key blind spots. One point, a key philosophical one, is whether we regard people as individuals who happen to be members of groups or whether we treat people primarily as members of groups and only secondarily as individuals. Hence, we end up with Affirmative Action/race quotas keeping East Indian and East Asians out of Harvard and Yale, which isn't a collective punishment that they would deserve any more than the Jews of a couple generations ago from the same schools and colleges. Do we punish people for their own sins and treat them as individuals? Or do we punish people automatically and collectively as members of ethnic/racial groups, regardless of their beliefs and/or actions? A color blind society assigns and rewards people by criteria based on merit, job performance, performance on academic tests relevant to success in college, etc. Thomas Sowell, the conservative black economist, has made a point of documenting how varied forms of race quotas from around the world, such as India's attempt to advance the cause of the "Untouchables" has backfired when merit is discarded in favor of assigning so many people "slots" based on unchangeable characteristics (ethnicity, race, gender, etc.) Another key point here, when making the case from a conservative viewpoint about the current state of race relations in 2020, as opposed to the time when Malcolm X wrote, is "the Moynihan thesis." Actually, that was unveiled shortly before he was assassinated by some (black) members of his former sect of Islam, which is deeply ironic considering all the hatred he had poured out upon whites in America for about 12 years before the last few months of his life. The problem is that people may have all sort of opportunities offered to them, but they don't take advantage of them, in part because of what is politely called "family instability" (i.e., divorce and babies born out of wedlock) and its effects on children. The poverty rate of married black couples is much lower than that of black single parent families, which means that racism simply isn't the main explanation of poverty among blacks. Liberals simply have to reckon with the devastating effects on average (note the qualifier, I know there are exceptions) have on children raised in homes with single parents, especially boys. (Girls seem to do much better when raised by homes headed by females compared to males). There's all sorts of social science research available on this point, which was first brought to public attention by Daniel Moynihan's "The Negro Family: A Plan for National Action." At this point in American history, this family instability has been spreading to non-college educated whites. The collapse of stable marriages among a large chunk of the white working class has led to their impoverishment as well, just as it did in a prior generation to blacks. Of course, here the problem that's worth analyzing is the origin of this problem. Both of them have their roots in liberalism, not conservatism. One of them is the welfare state's unintended effects of giving single women who have babies out of wedlock a subsidy for their behavior and they don't see any serious consequences from it when "Uncle Sam" automatically bails them out. The key book documenting this argument is Charles Murray's, "Losing Ground." The other point, which is a spiritual/social/moral one, comes from liberalism's criticism of Biblical standards of sexual morality and the promotion of the bohemian/hippie lifestyle as against the bourgeois viewpoint of prudent/self-restraint. Inevitably, this has practical effects: Divorce destroys family wealth that has been created, illegitimacy keeps it from being created to begin with. Fixing either of these problems I deem to be nearly hopeless in the current state of our culture and politics. Finally, there is the "self-fulfilling" prophecy problem, but not in the usual liberal normal viewpoint about (black) students living up to low expectations of a (white) teacher. That is, if blacks and other minorities are constantly told that white racism is rampant and that they have no chance, they will give up and make themselves poor or poorer than they otherwise would have been. I reminded, in this context, of a man I know, an immigrant from Trinidad, who has become (evidently) a millionaire while working in the IT security business and in real estate despite arriving in America as a teenager with nothing more than what is in his suitcase like the the rest of his family. He now has seven children and is married to a white wife. He didn't get some kind of guaranteed "slot" at a college and then at a big corporation trying to fulfill Affirmative Action quotas, but simply went to work and saw opportunities as an entrepreneur. He didn't believe the left-wing pessimism on racial issues, but took advantage of what opportunities a capitalist society provided him. (He actually hasn't gone to college, but that hasn't held him back). So this psychological issue can't be dismissed, even if it can't be quantified. Constantly focusing on discrimination instead of opportunity for those who do the three things that will keep most people out of poverty regardless of race (i.e., don't have children before you are married, finish high school, and take any job that you can get once you are done with high school) is really ultimately not conductive to helping blacks and other minorities out of poverty. It's necessary to focus on the "culture of poverty" of the poor also, not merely how much residual racism that remains in American society. The crucial, summary point is this: In 1965, the main problem blacks had was their treatment by whites, not their failure to take advantage of the opportunities freely given to them; but now the shoe is on the other foot in the year 2020. Moynihan is much more right now than he was then on average. For the Charles Murray piece that takes the Moynihan thesis and applies it so presciently to the white working class, read this piece here, rewritten some 25 years ago. He has been proven undeniably correct in his predictions. https://www.aei.org/articles/the-coming-white-underclass/
Does Western Civilization actually have a worse record of human rights violations than other civilizations? Or was it the first civilization that made it possible to control and/or eliminate dictatorial leaders and abusive governments in a systematic way? Is Western civilization "objectively superior" to other civilizations/cultures? The recent major fire of the Notre Dame cathedral in Paris has raised issues about the contributions of Western Civilization to humanity in general, since this cathedral was such a symbol and representation of its heritage. The core reality is that Western Civilization is based upon a synthesis of three main strands of culture: 1. Judeo-Christianity. 2. The classical Greek/Roman culture. 3. The Germanic/Nordic people’s culture (i.e., that of the invading barbarians of Rome). The basic principle to consider, although liberals and others short on specific historical knowledge may not be aware of this problem, is the need to use the same moral yardstick consistently concerning the West’s sins and those of other civilizations. Such problems as imperialism, ethnocentrism, slavery, the oppression of women, etc., are basically universal problems of human society since humans have an evil human nature, as Scripture and much practical experience reveal, even if many liberals remain in denial while optimistically claiming that human nature is good, malleable, and perfectible by state action. This opinion piece below does a good job of taking apart many of the standard attacks made by liberals; it’s acutely incisive when it points out that American liberals (here in the spirit of Alexander Hamilton) admire and want to copy Europe and the EU’s way of operating, which is (well) a version of (ahem) Western Civilization.
A comparative standard is needed when morally judging Western imperialism: Either condemn other (local, native) varieties of imperialism just as strongly, passionately, and without any qualification or excuse-making, including that of the Muslims, Aztecs, Incas, Chinese, Mongols, and Zulus. Or relax, and admit, “Well, if we go back far enough in history, we’re all likely about equally guilty, so let’s stop judging either other.” If a white American or Englishman is supposed to feel guilty about America’s or the West’s history, in fairness liberals academics should also ask their Muslim friends: Do you feel guilty about all the evil things done in your nations’ or civilization’s past? And if they say so privately, would they be willing to publicly condemn past Islamic imperialism (and associated sins) in their native language in their nation’s media with the same passion and lack of qualification liberal academics typically denounce the West’s? Or, much like the typical (non-immigrant) Frenchman was proud of Napoleon’s conquests, would these Muslims say they are proud of Arab and Turkish imperialism? Granted the centuries of Islamic invasions of the West before c. 1700, millions of slaves taken by the East African slave traders and Barbary pirates, the oppressive rule of religious minorities on a par with blacks’ conditions under Jim Crow, and the Arabs’ ethnic contempt for those of other nations even when they became Muslims, Muslims are in a very poor position to cast the first stone against West’s treatment of them over past roughly 275 years. Fundamentally, we should react the same way the men with stones did when Christ challenged them to cast the first stone at the woman caught in adultery (John 8:9): “When they heard it, they went away, one by one, beginning with the eldest.” Even when the target of ire is indeed guilty, those making the condemnations are likely equally or more guilty when their nation’s or civilization’s past is examined when using the same value judgments. If everyone's equally guilty, once we go far back enough in history, it’s time to just relax and stop condemning.
Selective outrage based on double standards should be rejected because it has no respect for equality under the law, of the concept of the rule of law among all nations, which needs to have one standard applied to all nations universally. Furthermore, the eighteenth-nineteenth-twentieth century West, had to learn on its own about feeling guilty about mistreating women, conquering other countries, holding slaves, racism, discriminating against religious minorities, etc. By contrast, the Muslim/Arab world can much more easily learn from and copy a (superior) civilization that has found a way to fix its human rights problems. It's hard, then, to say the Arab Muslim world is really "ignorant" in the way the eighteenth-nineteenth century West was, yet who gets condemned far more by the liberal-left academics? Who was/is really "ignorant," and thus semi-excusable? When people have low expectations of others, they tend to live up to those lower standards, much like black students living up to the low expectations of their white teachers by getting low grades ("self-fulfilling prophecies.") It's much like a co-dependent wife enabling her alcoholic husband by constantly cleaning up after him and excusing him rather than confronting him about his problem: This is the general Western left-liberal academic world's mistake with the Islamic world, concerning its historical past and ugly present. Instead they should apply to Muslim nations in principle the same advice William Glasser gives in "Reality Therapy" for individuals: Sure, you had a bad past, but what are you doing to do now to change your present behavior so you have a better future? Their (condescendingly) low expectations about Arabs and/or Muslims ability to operate a democracy and to follow standard present (Western) human rights norms are self-fulfilling prophecies also, and thus discourage reforms in by the "alcoholic" while they spend so much emotional energy, passion, and work in denouncing the past sins of Israel, America, and/or the Western world. Nothing today can be done to have given the vote to women, to give equal opportunity to hiring Irish Catholics, or to have freed the slaves in the the America of 1845; Something can be done concerning allowing women to drive and testify against men in court in Saudi Arabia, give the dhimmi equal rights under the law, and to free the slaves in the Sudan. So which problem should we direct our emotional energies towards condemning: What can't be fixed since it's in the past, or about what can be changed, since it is in the present?
Furthermore, all this Western liberal excuse making for radical Islamic terrorism makes more terrorism occur. Unless the barbarians are clearly condemned as acting like barbarians, they will continue to act like barbarians. If Muslims are deemed to be moral inferiors of the West of whom little is expected of them morally, they will indeed live up to those low expectations. Liberals are well acquainted with self-fulfilling prophecies in a classroom characterized by "soft" racism: When a white teacher expects little of her black students but more of her white ones, both groups tend to live up to those different expectations in their levels of academic achievement. The same dynamic is at work when liberals chronically excuse the sins of Muslims while holding the West to a much higher (double) standard. Likewise, the liberal academics' relationship with Islam is much like the co-dependent wife's with an unreformed alcoholic husband. She keeps cleaning up after him and making excuses for him, regardless of his bad behavior when he has free will and can learn from the superior example of other husbands. Without firmly challenging her drunkard husband's bad behavior, she can only expect it to continue, and not improve. So if Muslims are "victims" of a traditionally backward, undemocratic culture that oppresses women, keeps slaves, oppresses religious minorities, and is intolerant of the public expression of dissent, that should be condemned today with the same level of passion, anger, outrage, wrath, and righteous indignation used about these problems when they characterized the West 200 years ago. Furthermore, condemning the West's bygone sins won't help anyone victimized by them back then; to condemn publicly and routinely the treatment of women, religious minorities, and slaves in Muslim countries today just might help those victims out since they are still alive to benefit should conservative Islam modernize theologically and legally (i.e., change the Sharia). Unlike the West, which had to figure out on its own that these practices were immoral without a superior civilization to copy (which is much, much harder), the Muslim world today can't claim to be "ignorant" of the currently superior example of the West in these areas. All they need do is copy the West, much like Japan did in the 19th century after Comodore Perry showed up, or Turkey did under Mutafa Kemal, which is much, much easier. To point this out isn't racist, but Christian. So then, ironically, could the soft bigotry of low expectations by liberal scholars about the Muslim world's human rights problems actually be racist at least in effect if not in intent?
Let’s briefly zero in on the subject of slavery. It’s important to realize that slavery, serfdom, and other forms of forced labor was basically a universal condition of the human condition and most civilizations in history. The Bible records the existence of slavery in both ancient Israel and in the Roman Empire, which involved whites owning whites in almost all cases. It was a legal institution that had nothing to do with race. Slavery was hardly some kind of unique problem or sin of the West’s. After all, a key reason why the trans-Atlantic slave traders could get slaves was because Africans sold other Africans into slavery; it was an institution that already existed in Africa that the Europeans took full advantage of for their own purposes. Now, when we examine the record of Islam, it is very bad when it comes to human rights, including slavery. They tolerated legal slavery long after Brazil abolished it in 1888, the last major Western country to have it. For example, Saudi Arabia had legal slavery up to 1962. So when Malcolm X visited Saudi Arabia in order to go to Mecca, they had only abolished slavery two years earlier. Oman and Yemen abolished slavery in 1970 and Niger theoretically only abolished it in 2004. The (Christian) West eventually developed a guilty conscience and abolished it. The Arab/Muslim world ended up abolishing slavery only under the pressure of the West, such as when the British under their Raj (colonial rule) in India routinely suppressed slavery, infanticide, and Suttee (the (normally forced) suicide of Hindu widows on their husbands' funeral pyres) wherever their rule effectively reached. The Royal Navy after Wilberforce valiantly worked to end the slave trade and then slavery in the British Empire became one of the most effective forces against slavery in the world. Even much more recently, during the civil war in the Sudan, the Arab Muslim north often enslaved the (darker) people from the Animist/Christian south, which is now independent from Khartoum's control. The Islamic world has a very bad record when it comes to slavery. A reasonable approximation is that the East Africa slave trade, dominated by Arab Muslim slave traders, took at least as many Africans into slavery as the far better known trans-Atlantic trade did. The Muslims are in no moral position to judge the West when it comes to slavery of Africans. They also routinely captured and sold into slavery white Europeans captured by their pirates. (One reasonable estimate was that they captured and sold a million white Europeans). It was one of the key businesses of the Barbary pirates in North Africa that Jefferson chose to fight rather than pay tribute to, like the European powers did. For an exposure of the bad historical human rights record of Islamic civilization, I would suggest reading Robert Spencer's works, such as "Onward Muslim Soldiers" and "Religion of Peace?" We should reject the left's attempts to historically whitewash Islamic civilization's imperialism, intolerance, and human rights abuses. If the West's record is dark, the Islamic world's record is pitch black once one knows something about it in detail. (For more on this subject, click here: https://www.nationalreview.com/2019/09/five-things-they-dont-tell-you-about-slavery/
The West figured out an antidote for its own problems, such as (for example) creating an antislavery movement in the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries. Eventually the West forcibly imposed this cultural value on the more benighted regions of the world, such as in India and East Africa, where slavery had been independently practiced before the Western imperialists arrived. For example, under the British Raj in 1860, the Indian rulers of Patiala, Jhind, and Nabha agreed to outlaw formally female infanticide, sati, and slavery. (Lawrence James, “Raj: The Making and Unmaking of British India,” pp. 326-27). Although the “Christian” transatlantic slave trade swallowed up 10.5 million people, the Islamic slave trade in the Indian Ocean, Red Sea, and Sahara engulfed an estimated 17 million people from the seventh to nineteenth centuries. As Robert Spencer commented, since the Muslim world never developed its own native abolitionist movement, “When the [Islamic] slave trade ended, it was ended not through Muslim efforts but through British military force.” (See “Religion of Peace?: Why Christianity Is and Islam Isn’t,” p. 97). Even in recent years, the Sudan (during its civil war) and Mauritania have openly practiced slavery while many in Niger still flout its ban on the peculiar institution. Islam’s actual historical record, and the present practices of Muslims enslaving black Africans in the southern Sudan, destroy the emotional impetus driving the grievances and mythology of the racist Black American Muslim movement of Malcolm X and Elijah Muhammad.
What is the "elephant in the living room"
concerning the recent protests, riots, and even assassinations of police
officers? What great truth must never be uttered or admitted directly? What is
a leading "thought crime" against our politically correct rulers in
the media, government, and elsewhere? Well, the basic issue is that a very high
percentage of violent crime is committed by blacks, especially young black men,
compared to their percentage of the population. The basic issue is that stating
this obvious truth is deemed offensive, yet it is arguably the greatest
obstacle in improving race relations in America. That is, if the black violent
crime rate suddenly fell to be equal to the levels committed by whites, far
fewer black men would be shot by police, whether mistakenly, justifiably, or on
purely malicious and racist grounds. Furthermore, there's a certain silent but
large number of blacks who suffer from the fear of becoming victims of crime from
their fellow blacks and/or have been victims. They are the types of people, as
mentioned in Heather MacDonald's article below, who want the police to be
around more to be protected.
It's fine to say that the police could be better trained in de-escalating techniques and that it should be easier to fire bad cops. Between civil service protection and/or union protection, it can be very hard to fire bad police officers. Here liberalism's policies in making it hard to fire bad governmental bureaucrats come home to roost when liberals running city governments suddenly face the problem of disciplining bad police officers. Furthermore, there's no denying that in some cases police shootings aren't just errors, as may be in one case in Tulsa , but may be motivated by racism, as was likely in one case covered up in Chicago. However, any careful analysis of the specifics of most of these cases will yield the result that in most cases, the use of deadly force by the police is justified. MacDonald's article, most interestingly, has a very interesting report of a research study which found that black and Latino officers were much more likely to shoot their weapons mistakenly against blacks than white officers.
MacDonald's article here, for which I’ve placed the link below, goes through the basic statistics. For example, in New York City, whites are 33% of the city's population, but commit less than 2% of all shootings, 4% of all robberies, and 5% of all violent crime. By contrast, blacks are 24% of the population, but commit 75% of all shootings, 70% of all robberies, and 66% of all violent crime. Each year nationally around 6000 blacks are murdered, which is a greater number than that of all whites and Hispanics killed each year despite blacks are only 13% of the national population. In Los Angeles, blacks between the ages of 20 and 24 are killed at a rate 20 to 30 times the national average. Who is killing them? It's almost entirely other blacks, not whites, not Latinos, not police officers of any color. Blacks between the ages of 14 and 17 kill at a rate ten times that of whites and Hispanics of the same age combined.
Consider the differences in the numbers of people shot in two nearby neighborhoods in New York City's borough of Brooklyn. The per capita shooting rate in Brownsville is 81 times higher than that of Bay Bridge. As a result, the police aren't "over-policing" mostly black neighborhood of Brownsville or under-serving that of Bay Bridge, which is mostly white and Asian. Instead, they are responding to the calls and needs of victims.
Furthermore, the more aggressive tactics of the police inaugurated by Rudolph Guliani and continued by Michael Bloomberg in New York have saved at least 20,000 minority male lives. The number of murders in New York went from 2,245 in 1990 to 333 in 2014. The main people whose lives were saved were blacks and (secondarily) Latinos. Black Lives obviously mattered to Guiliani, yet most Black Lives Matter activists hate him with a passion. Strong law and order policies will save far more lives than they cost, especially when the demands of "Black Lives Matter" activists will cause the police to "back off" from policing black neighborhoods. It's already been argued that's what's been going on in Baltimore and elsewhere in response to race riots: The murder rate has gone up, in what's been dubbed the "Ferguson Effect." That in turn would mean many more blacks will start dying, and then the police would be condemned as racist for not protecting blacks. So one can see the problem here: The police are condemned as racist for enforcing the law too much and for not enforcing it enough, depending on the circumstances. How can they win?
To look at the killings by the police in context, in 2015, about 50% of all people killed by the police were white (493 deaths) and 26% were black (258 deaths). Furthermore, a great majority of those deaths were justifiable: The police shot people who were threatening them or other people with violent force. Furthermore, about 40% of all cop killers have been black despite blacks are 13% of the population. According to MacDonald's calculations, the chance of a police officer being killed by a black man is 18.5 times higher than the chances of an unarmed black man being killed by a police officer. Unjustifiable shootings are almost a rounding error when we consider that 6000 blacks die each year and 93% of them were killed by other blacks. If there were “Affirmative Action” concerning murders, about 63% of all blacks should be killed by non-Hispanic whites instead. We can see this when even in many of the high profile cases, such as Ferguson, Baltimore, Staten Island, etc., the police officers were exonerated once more evidence was brought in and witnesses (including black ones in the case of Ferguson) said that the police officer(s) in question acted reasonably. This could well happen concerning the Milwaukee and Charlotte cases, in which for some reason, rate riots were triggered by black cops shooting armed black men who didn't obey orders or were otherwise threatening.
When we consider that blacks have a murder rate about 4 times higher than the national average, that rate of deaths at the hands of the police is actually LOWER than would be expected. We don't have race quotas/Affirmative Action in place for violent crime: The relevant percentages to compare are criminals committing crimes, not the general population's racial statistics. So the black community has a challenge: What will they do to reduce the violent crime rate of their own community? Then fewer police officers of whatever race would show up on crime scenes and commit fewer errors (or racist actions) as the case may be.
Of course, we could examine the root causes of why the black crime rate is so much higher than that of whites (or even Latinos). A key factor is the collapse of the black family through rising out-of-wedlock birth rates and the replacement of black fathers with checks from Uncle Sam for financial support. In many inner-city neighborhoods, the out-of-wedlock birthrate exceeds 70%. The white working class family is heading the same way at this time, true, but their breakdown hasn't been as complete among whites as it has been among blacks nor has it lasted as long. (Read Charles Murray's prescient piece, "The Coming White Underclass" for that kind of analysis). https://www.aei.org/articles/the-coming-white-underclass/ For when there are no good male role models in the home, inevitably teenage sons will find maladaptive ways to express their masculinity against their mothers, such as through violence and causing other mayhem with their friends (i.e., gang members). Fathers who are in the home help to maintain order.
Furthermore, fathers in the home also help guide their sons who get into trouble with the law to act the right ways to get lighter punishments. Their children aren't as apt to want to express the values of the street, such as wanting a "rep" and not expressing remorse before judges and prosecutors for what they have done. Inevitably, this non-quantifiable aspect of how people act after being arrested affects the sentences that they receive when they have less parental guidance to tell them how to act when in trouble with the law, especially when mom's advice is already being ignored as it is. The liberal welfare state that replaced fathers in the home and the liberal counter-cultural values that condemn sexual restraint as sexual repression, as found in countless movies, TV programs, and songs, have promoted family instability through divorce and illegitimate births. All the left's philosophical attacks on the truth of the Bible and moral absolutes have had similar practical effects decades and generations later on how average people have less discipline and willingness to maintain their family lives' intact.. So notice that the root causes of the high black crime rate, to the extent when one black man shoots another black man it isn't due to their own free will, lie in liberal polices and beliefs, not conservative ones. Poverty can't be said to the main cause when American blacks have higher incomes than most people in the world who have lower crime rates, especially when other countries are compared with America which are poorer yet less crime ridden.
Another problem which receives little attention, but it's another elephant in the living room of American race relations, is the black on white crime problem. For example, in 2012 blacks committed about 560,6676 violent crimes against whites, but whites committed about 99,403 violent crimes against blacks. (National Crime Victimization Study data). The Bureau of Justice Statistics stopped publishing its own statistics about interracial crime in 2008, which likely wasn't a coincidence with Obama's first term's beginning: Liberals don't like such facts interfering with the "narratives" that they care to push in the media. When considering that blacks are around 13% of the population but whites are around 62%, this is very disproportionate. Theoretically, if we had "Affirmative Action" or race quotas concerning inter-racial crime, it should be that 5 times more crime should be committed against blacks by whites rather than the other way around. This leads to a key thought crime of mine, from a liberal viewpoint: How much of this black on white crime was motivated by black racism? We can't read anyone's hearts, of course, but if we're going to avoid judging about that in this case, the same kind of charity should be exercised when judging and condemning white who commit crimes against blacks, including white police officers.
Of course, this line of analysis leads to another heretical thought crime of mine: If people should be judged strictly by standard criteria and the facts of their own personal cases as they fit the law for criminal justice matters, should not this same principle carry over to college admissions and job placement? That is, the principle behind Affirmative Action/race quotas contradicts the demands of the "Black Lives Matter" movement when it comes to how blacks should be treated by the criminal justice system. According to Affirmative Action/race quotas/racial preferences, people have to be judged and sorted by the race first of all when their grades or qualifications don't match those required by colleges and employers. So I agree that the demands of the Black Lives Matter movement are correct when it comes to equal justice under the law when it comes to arrests, convictions, sentencing, etc. But then, liberals can't turn around and demand that people be judged as worthy of special treatment because of their race, not their qualifications and skills as required by employers or colleges. So therefore, the principle of equal justice under the law for all individuals requires the scrapping of Affirmative Action and race quotas, at least for governmental employers and institutions, such as state colleges.
It’s indeed true that "Black Lives Matter." But then again, "All Lives Matter." It's fine to say the police make mistakes, their methods could be improved, and that bad cops should be fired or even imprisoned, depending on what errors or crimes they have committed. But it's also important for the black community to ask itself as well this question: What could we do to reduce the violent crime rate of our young men? That’s obviously the much bigger problem in terms of deaths. We do have free will before God to act better than we are now.
For my detailed comparison of the conditions of black American slaves compared to English farmworkers (c. 1750 to 1875), see this:
For proof that the American Civil War (1861-1865) was caused by and fought over slavery, not abstract political philosophical disputes about the merits of political centralization versus de-centralization, see this:
For a general analysis of why Islamic theology on average causes more violence and terrorism by its believers compared to adherents of other faiths, see this:
White (Not Hispanic or Latino)
A person having origins in any of the original peoples of Europe, North Africa, or the Middle East.