“You can’t talk about wealth and inequality, you can’t talk about education, you can’t talk about massive unemployment and under employment and you can’t talk about drones being dropped on people in other parts of the world without talking about white supremacy and its ways in which it operates. It doesn’t have to be overt. The president is right about that.

But too many black people are niggerized. I would say the first black president has become the first niggerized black president…. afraid and scared and intimidated when it comes to putting a spotlight on white supremacy and fighting against white supremacy.

… Thank God for Ferguson. Thank God for the young folk of all colors. Thank God for Staten Island and fighting there. Thank God in Baltimore, now the precious folk in Charleston.”

– Cornel West, Professor of Philosophy, Union Theological Seminary and highly visible spokesman equating white supremacy and racism with most of the social evils of this world.

In the days when words had a fairly specific meaning we would have concluded that Cornel West is saying that racist supremacist ideologies of caucasians were directly responsible for our social, moral, spiritual and emotional ills.

Of course, anyone espousing such supremacist views are nowadays dismissed as kooky, but, according to Cornel, this white racist ideology of supremacism is now operating subliminally having been incorporated and institutionalized throughout history, in Western language and behavior. We are surrounded and suffused by institutional evil.

This sounds vaguely reasonable and fits in with the utterly modern fad of talking in circles: postmodernism and posthumanism. Narrative and history is dead; the only reason to study these is to identify and then reject the tenets of their source, the enlightenment. Unfortunately, like all revolutionary movements, there is rarely a clear idea of what the future will bring. Destruction of the present order (of injustice, inequality, oppression, exploitation or immorality) is the one unifying goal, what to do after will be figured out later.

Cornel West’s attempt at being politically relevant highlights the problem. The personal insights of one man, no matter how deeply felt, are just that – even if religiously inspired. One man’s opinion, by necessity, will be profoundly incomplete and, therefore, inevitably flawed. Invoking white racism ignores the fact that racism is universal. The real ‘problem’ is the perception of ‘white’ power, but that seems to be waning as democracy haltingly spreads around the globe. Victimhood is a far more interesting political story.

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