Posted on May 1, 1996

O Tempora, O Mores! (May, 1996)

American Renaissance, May 1996

Racism in the Ranks

Last December, two white soldiers at Fort Bragg were arrested for killing two blacks in nearby Fayetteville, N.C. One of the soldiers had a Nazi flag and “neo-Nazi” literature in his room, so the incident has provoked a huge, self-righteous hunt for “bigotry” in uniform. The army has issued reports claiming that very few of its boys are members of “extremist” organizations, and says it discharges any who are “active” participants. Now it is considering banning even “passive” participation — simple receipt of literature — even though cooler heads have pointed out that this might violate one of the cherished freedoms the armed forces are supposed to defend.

Meanwhile, race-killings of a different color somehow do not attract attention. On March 5, a Marine Corps sergeant and native of Guam walked into the office of Lt. Col. Daniel Kidd at Camp Pendleton and shot him dead. He also shot Lt. Col. Thomas Heffner and then stopped off to explain his actions to a group of astonished Marines:

I just shot the XO [executive officer] and CO [commanding officer]. I did it for the brotherhood and the brown side. This is only the beginning. We have a hit list. The brothers have been wronged and others are in the pen and more will die unless they are released.

This incident has barely made it into the newspapers, much less prompted an all-out hunt for racists. In the mean time, sources at Fort Bragg suggest that the two “Nazi” soldiers did not kill the two blacks for racial reasons but because of an old-fashioned drug swindle. The blacks reportedly sold them marijuana cut with oregano, but this, too, has somehow failed to become much of a news story. (Samuel Francis, Racism of a More Murderous Hue, Tribune Media Services, March 19, 1996. Tony Perry, Prosecutor Offers Scenario in Marine Officer’s Slaying, Los Angeles Times, March 8, 1996.)

Sanity in the Fifth Circuit

The U.S. 5th Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled that the University of Texas must ignore race when admitting students. The case is a victory for Cheryl Hopwood, a 32-year-old white woman who applied to the University of Texas Law School in 1992. She was rejected, despite scores and grades that were better than all but one of the 41 blacks and all but three of the 55 Hispanics who were admitted.

In 1994, a U.S. district court held only nominally in her favor, granting one dollar in damages. Just before the trial, the law school promised to rejig its racial preferences to keep them constitutional, and the court considered this an acceptable solution.

The new ruling limits preferences strictly to corrections of the university’s own acts of discrimination (does this mean that other rejected whites can reapply and get preferential treatment?) and completely forbids preferences to promote “diversity.” Moreover, the court threatened Texas officials with punitive damages if they continue to give unjustified preferences to non-whites.

Although technically this ruling applies only in the 5th circuit — Texas, Louisiana, and Mississippi — the decision will have a national effect because it is so unambiguous. So far, Supreme Court rulings have discouraged fixed quotas but permitted schools to use race as one of several admissions criteria. The result at University of Texas Law School was typical: All blacks and 90 percent of Hispanics whose records showed achievement at a certain level were admitted; only six percent of white applicants at that level were admitted.

The Supreme Court is likely to rule soon on racial preferences in college admissions. There is a good chance it will support the 5th circuit. (David Savage, U.S. Court Bars Race as Admissions Factor, Los Angeles Times, March 20, 1996, p. A1. David Tell, Diversity Strikes Out, The Weekly Standard, April 2, 1996, p. 9.)

Milk Money

When the California milk industry launched a quirky “Got Milk?” campaign, consumption rose among all groups except Hispanics. The ads do not quite work in Spanish because the phrase “Got Milk?” translates roughly into “Are you lactating?” (Leon E. Wynter, Group Finds Right Recipe For Milk Ads in Spanish, Wall Street Journal, March 6, 1996.)

Word Wars

California State University at Chico recently advertised for “dynamic” applicants for teaching positions. Zaida Giraldo, the school’s affirmative action director complained that the word was associated with white men and not with women or non-whites. The school promptly started advertising for “excellent” teachers. (Courtney Leatherman, Advertisement Spurs Debate Over ‘Dynamic’ Professors, Chronicle of Higher Education, Jan. 5, 1996, p. A17.)

Training the Legal Mind

High school students are taking part in a national mock trial competition, that will culminate in national finals to be held in Pittsburgh in May. The fictional case on which youngsters are to hone their brains involves the murder of a black by white supremacists. The killers have already been convicted on criminal charges, and the students conduct a civil trial in which the head of the “White American Supremacist Party” is accused of inspiring the murder even though he was never even near the crime scene. The case is modeled on the actual trial of Tom Metzger of the White Aryan Resistance, who lost a $12 million civil suit brought on behalf of the family of an Ethiopian man killed by some of Mr. Metzger’s alleged followers. (Frank Zoretich, No Mockery of Justice, it’s Just a Mock Trial, Albuquerque Journal, March 24, 1996, p. A6.)

African Justice

In March, South African villagers near Kruger National Park “necklaced” a baboon. A crowd of about 150 caught the animal, soaked it with gasoline, and set a burning tire around its neck. The baboon was a local resident’s pet but the villagers were convinced it was a witch in disguise. (South Africa ‘Necklace’ Kills Pet Baboon, New York Times, March 18, 1996, p. A2.)

What the Church Hath Joined Together . . .

Two years ago, the United Methodist Church appointed a black preacher, Percy Reeves, to a majority-white congregation in Charlotte, N.C. This was to be a model of full integration for the entire denomination. Instead, the church now rocks to gospel music, people shout “amen” from the pews, and the Nordic-looking portraits of the disciples have come down. During Black History Month, Malcolm X and Jesse Jackson take their places.

Somehow, very few whites attend any more. One of the survivors, Mary Ann Ogle, explains: “When you mesh two cultures — races — it’s a difficult thing to do. More difficult than you can imagine.” (Integration Goes Awry in Charlotte, News and Observer (Raleigh), March 26, 1996.)

Whites Can Be Useful

Over the past fifteen years the white population of Matteson, Illinois has dwindled from 84 to 47 percent. The tax base is shrinking and property values are threatened. To keep the town from getting any blacker, the interracial village council has launched a $65,000 advertising campaign to persuade whites to live in Matteson. One black resident, Rosemary Lomax, who supports the campaign, says, “it’s not about making Matteson lily white. It’s about keeping property values up.” Another black opposes spending the money. “They’ll come back because there really is no place for them to run any more,” he explains. (Don Terry, In White Flight’s Wake, a Town Tries to Keep Its Balance, New York Times, March 11, 1996, p. A12.)

Peddling Juice

O.J. Simpson is angry at major networks for refusing to carry ads for a $30 video which, he claims, proves he is innocent. He says that Marcia Clark, Denise Brown, Christopher Darden, and Faye Resnick have made money selling their versions of the trial, and that the media are preventing him from getting his fair share. Indeed, even Geraldo Rivera and The National Enquirer have rejected the ads as beneath their standards. So far, only Black Entertainment Television is willing to promote Mr. Simpson’s “alibi video.” (Abiola Sinclair, O.J. Simpson complains, ‘They’re getting over on me,’ New York Amsterdam News, Feb. 10, 1996, p.4.)

German Fakery

A 1994 German television documentary showed a group of Germans wearing KKK robes and burning a cross. The producer, Michael Born, now confesses that he got a group of friends to stage the event because he knew the footage would sell. The truth came out when German police mounted a search for the wicked klansmen. (Terrence Petty, German Documentary Producer Faces Charges, Charlotte Observer, Feb. 15, 1996, p. 20A.)

Meanwhile, the Allensbach Institute, Germany’s oldest and best-known opinion polling firm has admitted that it deliberately underpredicted support for the pro-German, anti-immigrant Republican Party. The institute predicted that the party would win only 4.5 percent of the vote in the March 24 elections to the Baden-Württemberg state assembly — just under the minimum five percent required for actual representation. An Allensbach spokesman said the institute did not want to create a band-wagon effect by issuing a more accurate prediction. The party, led at the national level by a former Waffen-SS officer, actually won 9.1 percent of the vote. (Tom Heneghan, Pollsters Slammed for Hushing up German Far-Right, Reuter, April 1, 1996.)

Splendid Diversity

Many third-world immigrants run up huge long-distance phone bills and then stiff the telephone company. They are eventually cut off from service, and the large number of immigrants accounts for why New York City has more households without telephones — 12 percent — than any other American city.

Entrepreneurs have set up storefront telephone businesses where customers pay in advance before they call overseas. Now, a small company called Microtel Communications is installing home telephones that operate on the same principle. For $23 a month, bad credit risks can make local calls, dial 911, and take calls from anywhere. For long distance, however, they must pay cash in advance at a company store. Long-distance service cuts off when the money runs out. The company is doing a brisk business under the slogan, “Todos Califican,” or “everybody qualifies.” (Randy Kennedy, Innovative Telephone Service is Aimed at Immigrants in New York, New York Times, March 18, 1996, p. B12.)

Race and Crime

State and federal prisons hold convicts serving sentences of a year or more. Locally operated jails hold people awaiting trail or serving sentences of a year or less. On June 30, 1985, there were 1,104,074 men and women in prison and some 500,000 in jail. This total of approximately 1,600,000 Americans behind bars was a new record. The prison population increased by 89,707 during the preceding 12 months, which was also a record. Between 1980 and 1994, the total number of people in prison and local jails nearly tripled — from 501,886 to 1,483,410.

In 1995, black men were 7.9 times more likely to be in prison that white men, and black women were 7.3 times more likely than white women. Almost seven percent of all black men were in prison compared to less than one percent of white men. In the ten years from 1984 to 1994, the percentage of black men in prison doubled from 3.3 percent to 6.6 percent. The figure for white men also doubled from 0.4 percent to 0.8 percent. However, the Justice Department’s “white” figures include most Hispanics, so black-white disparities are greater than reported.

Race explains much a considerable part of the differences in incarceration rates from state to state. The states with the largest numbers of prisoners per 100,000 population — Texas (659), Louisiana (573), Oklahoma (536), South Carolina (510) — have large minority populations. States with the lowest incarceration rates — North Dakota (90), Minnesota (103), Maine (112), West Virginia (134), Vermont (135) — have few minorities. (Department of Justice Press Release, State and Federal Prisons Report Record Growth During Last 12 Months, Dec. 3, 1995.)

Prejudice and Profit

Though Manhattan’s George Washington High School is running out of books and supplies, it has found the money (after laying off 18 teaching assistants) to combat racism. It has hired the Efficacy Institute to spread the word that low educational achievement by blacks is caused by racist teachers. The seminars cost $10,000 for every 40 people. George Washington High has scheduled 5 seminars for the year, and the New York public school system is considering city-wide implementation. (Lawrence Goodman, Crew: Hire Race Expert, New York Post, Jan. 23, 1996. A costly ‘learning’ experience, New York Post, Feb. 1, 1996.)

Charity Disparity

Many black charities report that the growing numbers of middle-class blacks are increasingly unwilling to make donations. A 1989 study revealed that one third of black households earning between $30,000 and $50,000 donated nothing to charity whereas only one sixth of similar white households donated nothing. Last year, the nation’s top black school, Howard University, received donations from only 4 percent of alumni. By comparison, 28 percent of Vanderbilt University’s alumni contributed — though Vanderbilt made a much greater effort to raise money.

One black fundraiser says it is easier to raise money from whites than from blacks because whites feel guilty. Another black fundraiser accuses black professionals of hypocrisy because they denounce white racism but ignore the needs of poor blacks.

Often, when blacks do give money, it is only to black institutions. One graduate of Hampton University and M.I.T. gives only to Hampton. “My assumption is that whites will take care of white institutions,” he says. A black dentist explains that she gives money to the American Heart Association because “blacks suffer from heart disease at a greater rate than whites.” (Jonathan Kaufman, Black Charities Say Growing Middle Class Isn’t Giving Enough, Wall Street Journal, January 29, 1996, p. A1.)