The further to the left or the right you move, the more your lens on life distorts.

Tuesday, June 23, 2020

#JOG

There is a persistent theme that pervades the culture of social justice warriors—their obsession with words and gestures, often to the exclusion of meaningful results. They use words and/or gestures to indicate how socially conscious they are—TV spots when they're a celebrity, op-eds when they have connections into the progressive media (e.g., NYT or WaPo), large protests with lots of signs and chanting, tweets, Facebook memes and sometimes vandalism or worse—words and gestures—continually reminding everyone how important it is to virtue signal. There's only one problem: words and gestures don't reduce crime; words and gestures don't help people pull themselves out of poverty; words and gestures don't provide better education or repair a broken family.

SJWs also use words and gestures to shut down debate. Once a SJW accuses someone of being a "white supremacist" or dismisses a cogent argument because the speaker has "white privilege" or is "mansplaining" when debating a woman, meaningful communication ends. And that's exactly what SJWs want.

Sportswriter Jason Whitlock comments on the growing trend among certain celebrity athletes to follow the lead of SJWs and use words and gestures as their cudgel when actions and results would be far more helpful to the people they purport to care about. He writes:
Here’s what LeBron James, Colin Kaepernick, Megan Rapinoe and all the social justice reformers can do to legitimize their national-anthem kneeling, ‘I Can’t Breathe’ T-shirts and virtue-signaling tweets:

Demand Nike, Adidas, Under Armour, etc., bring a significant portion of their manufacturing jobs back to the United States.

I don’t trust athletes and celebrities to fix the criminal justice system, community policing or other problems well outside their area of expertise ...

We’re making a mistake allowing athletes and celebrity influencers to set the agenda for the kind of reform and change we want to see in America. Professional athletes and Hollywood elites answer directly to their corporate overlords. They’ve lived inside an elitist bubble since they were teenagers and they don’t care to know what they don’t know. 
Celebrity athletes have amazing skills and because of those skills, they have been pampered and idolized throughout their careers. They sometimes translate their treatment by fans and corporate sponsors into the notion that their words and gestures can effect change. Nope, but it is possible that their actions just might. The problem is that their actions MUST coincide with the interests of their 8 or 9-figure sponsorships. Whitlock doesn't pull his punches when he discusses the new breed of SJW-athlete:
LeBron James’ primary employer is Nike, not the NBA. LeBron’s shoe contract is worth more than $1 billion. Every calculated move LeBron makes related to social justice reform — from the Ahmaud Arbery tweets to the Equality T-shirts to the school his foundation partially funds to his decision to remain silent on the Hong Kong protesters — is made with Nike in mind.

What’s good for the NBA, the NFL, Major League Baseball and the great mass of people is an afterthought. 

Racial unrest in America leading into this presidential election cycle is good for Nike and great for Nike’s primary business market, China. Nike and China are aligned in their dislike of President Trump and his America First mantra.

Trump’s mantra is a call for U.S.-based companies to return manufacturing jobs to America. Nike and China preferred President Obama’s globalist agenda and the Trans-Pacific (Trade) Partnership Obama promoted at Nike’s headquarters in May 2015. 
Actions and more importantly, results, matter a whole lot more that politically correct gestures. Moving jobs back into the USA benefits minority communities with better jobs, better wages, and a better outlook on the future. That would help the African American community (among many others) immensely, but its anathema for the grievance crowd. By reducing dependency and dampening claims of victimhood, people of color would benefit along with the country as a whole. Whitlock has coined the hashtag "Jobs Over Gestures, #JOG."

So the next time you hear a leftist commentator or Democrat politician praise the likes of Colin Kapernick for his "bravery" in standing up to "the system," ask yourself how many jobs Kapernick created directly in his community. Ask what he had done (not said) to create an economy where wage growth within his community rose to historic highs. The answer is—not much. Now ask the same thing about the current president. Trump's words often suck, but the economic results he achieved pre-COVID-19 for minority communities is worthy of an MVP.

UPDATE:
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When spokespeople for the Black Lives Matter movement speak, SJWs genuflect. 

"America is "systemically racist" they state. 
"The police murder black people wantonly," they cry. 
"We must remove any vestige of racist history," they proclaim.
"Defund the police," they demand.

And when opposing voices ask why BLM generally ignores the extreme and continuing black on black violence that occurs within the African American community, they roll their eyes in anger. 

"Questions like that," they respond condescendingly, " are asked only by 'white supremacists' who want to change the subject. Our focus is on police violence."

Roger Simon asks the questions anyway. After relating the latest frightening statistics (he chooses Chicago, NYC, and Minneapolis as examples) along with stories of the deaths of innocent black men, women, and far too many children, he writes:
Where was Black Lives Matter? Nowhere to be found, since the cops didn’t do any of it. BLM doesn’t seem to care about violence done to blacks if the police are not involved, even though black on black is by many multiples more lethal and more common, resulting in exponentially more black casualties.

BLM’s primary interest appears to be smashing the state, creating revolution with their pals in Antifa in order to take power themselves.

But there is another, perhaps more psychologically potent, reason BLM doesn’t want to deal with black on black violence, other than finding some preposterous way to connect the police when it doesn’t exist.

To do this they would have to raise a question that could be truly embarrassing and elicit shame: Just why haven’t black people been able to improve their own neighborhoods in such places as Chicago, Minneapolis, Baltimore, St. Louis and Los Angeles?

Why are they in such a miserable state after all this time? Why are so many people still killing each other? Is it all the white man’s fault?
Of course, BLM and their SJW cohorts would say, "Yes!" But we all know that's simply untrue. It's yet another gesture designed to lay blame without the responsibility to provide actual solutions (and no, demands to "eliminate racism" are not the solution to inner city violence).

So again we return to the emptiness of gestures. In this case, those gestures are loaded with emotion, but they're gestures nonetheless. Maybe the white and black leftists who want to tear down our existing system and replace it with a socialist Utopia might be better able to convince the rest of us of the rightness of their 'revolution' by actually solving some hard problems first. Maybe a good idea would be to start in their own communities and reduce black on black violence. They could use the hashtag #LOG — you know, "Lives Over Gestures."