I’ve always been of the opinion that the best thing about the internet is that it can connect you to people you would never have had the chance to meet otherwise. Unfortunately, the worst thing about the internet is that it can connect you to people you might never have wanted to meet in the first place. A further caveat I need to add to my thinking here is that it also gives opportunity for groups of people, who would otherwise silently fester in the fringe of their own obscurity, an outlet by which to promote and recruit for their ideas. Trailing in that online tradition of appealing to edgy opportunism, mixed in with out-group paranoid hysteria, development of an in-group lexicon, and add a good sprinkle of desperation for online celebrity (propelled forward by a base of fans hiding behind the unrestrained security of online anonymity). Finish it off with a dose of victimhood mentality about being an aggrieved, unheard sector of society, and you have the key ingredients of an Identity Movement.
The alt-right is one such Identity Movement in the news lately. It’s hard to tell whether the white
supremacist nationalist “identitarian” movement is really winning over any hearts, or if its vocal presence and relentless social media self-promotion is just giving that impression. Either way, these brand of racists are no longer content with posting anonymously on message boards like Stormfront [no, I’m not linking to it; you can google it if you’re that curious], and are confident they can gain a mass appeal among America’s white majority. One of the main reasons why I’m doubtful of the alt-right’s claim to be gaining mainstream traction is the fact that despite being a movement focused on race, whose primary objectives deal entirely with the promotion (though they would undoubtedly call it protection) of white people and white identity–well to the point of wanting race to be the determining metric of citizenship in a proposed ethnostate–it’s main proponents (and their online followers) will whine incessantly if you so much as dare actually pin the dreaded “racist” label on them. (It has to be a social progress of a sort when even racists consider being a racist a bad thing, and I’m one to take any progress I can get.)
Deflection, conflation, and obfuscation are common tactics of argumentation and self-defense among the alt-right when it comes to fending off the (accurate) racism charge leveled against them. Usually something along the lines of:
“The leftists/liberals are the real racists! All they do is talk about racism, and always at the expense of white people. The alt-right is just a reaction to the left’s/liberal’s anti-white racism. The Left’s anti-racism is just a code word for anti-white.”
Okay, I’ll bite. For the sake of argument, let’s grant the premise entirely. Let’s grant that the current political Left has a prevalence of anti-white racism at the core of its ideology. Now, how does the Left being racist against whites (a scenario wherein racism is a bad thing within the stated premise), justify an equally racist pro-white reaction against it (wherein now racism is stealthily flipped as a desirable response)? Surely, if the initial racism from the Left (as the alt-right identifies it) is a bad thing, then racism as a counter to it would be equally bad, as it would make you simply an inverted copy of that which you are opposing to begin with.
What the alt-right misses (be it intentionally or unintentionally) is that rather than succumb to a false dichotomy in which one must choose a side between racist leftists and the racist alt-right, it is possible to denounce both sides as racists, and oppose them both simultaneously (as the vast majority of people living in the Western world already do). Just like I can oppose a crime committed against a person, without having to condone the wronged person’s subsequent retaliation if he or she decides to even the score by committing an unlawful act in revenge.
It simply amazes me how people involved in this argument (including those attempting to argue against the alt-right) fail to point out how saying that other people (people you ideologically oppose) engage in racism, doesn’t nullify or justify one’s own racism. After all, the KKK and the Nation of Islam are both ideologically just as racist as each other, regardless that the stated goals of their racism contrast one another. To repeat, simply pointing to racist practices of other groups (practices that you wish to emulate, by the way) doesn’t make your racism more justified, or less racist.
I’ll state it even clearer for alt-right supporters: whenever you find leftists/liberals saying we should get rid of whites on the basis of them being white (by whatever active/passive/Marxist/post-modernist/cultural/political means or influence you wish to identify it as) it is racist. When the alt-right says we should get rid of non-whites on the basis of them being non-white (by wanting to create an ethnostate where citizenship is to be determined based on race, which will inevitably deprive current non-white citizens of their citizenship status based strictly on the criteria that they are not white) it is racist. And I can–and I will–call them both as such, and point out the myopia of calling out one side’s racism while mimicking the same line of thinking from the other end of the spectrum.
Alt-right spokespersons are very quick to eschew the racism charge against their ideology by saying that they (and people like them) are essentially just in favor of preserving white identity as a unique and distinct concept, just as all other races ought to be respected in their desires to preserve their own unique identities. When stated in such terms, it can sound rather benign. But the reality is that every time people who are sympathetic to the alt-right start to map out their end goal (i.e. the creation of a white ethnostate, wherein citizenship rights are to be primarily based on the merits of a person’s race) of just what this sort of ideology entails if it was actually implemented, the outcome is always, by necessity, indefensible on every civic and (I would argue) moral ground.
Once again, deflection and obfuscation are the means by which people within movements like the alt-right communicate. So whenever challenged on the indefensible violations of human rights that would inevitably follow were their proposition for a white ethnostate put into practice, their go-to retort is to insist that nothing about their goal of creating a white ethnostate is inherently violent, in and of itself, against non-whites who happen to already reside in the carved out area; insisting that sufficient compensation to these non-whites to simply be relocated out of the white ethnostate would be a peaceful alternative to the transition. I’m tempted to point out how these are the same people who mock the political Left for being unrealistic utopianists for advocating for a classless society, all while sincerely putting forward the expectation that a group of native-born citizens will peacefully relinquish their citizenship rights (and all the protections and privileges it guarantees them) as long you give them enough cash to make it worth their while. However, I’ll be charitable once more, and for the sake of argument grant even this (absurd) premise well beyond any reasonable sense that it deserves.
So let’s say the alt-right accomplishes its goal, and a white ethnostate is established. Let’s say that within this ethnostate there is a moderately-sized metropolitan city of 150,000 people, whose non-white population now needs to be relocated. For the sake of being generous, let’s also say that the percentage of that non-white population is as low as 10% of the whole, leaving us with only a meager 15,000 individuals that now need to be removed. And since I’m in such a generous mood, let me put the total percentage out of this already small group of individuals who will actively reject any attempts to be removed from their place of birth (regardless of the monetary compensation offered to them to do so) at a measly 1%. That’s 150 individuals. 150 native-born, law-abiding, multi-generational citizens, whose legal status and citizenship rights will now have to be forcefully revoked, who will have to be forcefully evicted from their country of birth, not on the merits of any wrongs that they have individually committed, but based strictly on the metric of having been born as the wrong race. This is the reality of what the alt-right is advocating for, if one follows their proposition to its logical conclusion.
So why is this point not being hammered every single time someone like Richard Spencer gives an interview? And then continuously followed up on when he gives an evasive non-answer that fails to acknowledge the violent ethnic cleansing campaign that will undoubtedly have to happen to fulfill this alt-right talking point? How can you let these same people babble on about being stalwarts for the cause of individual freedoms and liberties, while advocating for the implementation of policies that seeks to deprive people of the greatest guarantor they have for safeguarding their individual liberties: their citizenship rights–rights most of them have a privilege to by virtue of their births, regardless of their race.
The reason I’m writing this post isn’t because I’m worried the alt-right will actually achieve its stated goal. I’m fully aware that all of this is a fantasy scenario. A racist, fascistic wet-dream of a fantasy, but a fantasy nonetheless. The logistics of it are not only impractical, the morality of it are intolerable even among the population they are trying to appeal to, i.e. conservative-leaning whites. I’d even go so far as to say that the proposition of creating an ethnostate, where being white will be the primary criteria considered for citizenship, is furthermore not just ahistorical, but outright anti-historical.
The reason I say this rests on the fact that even during America’s most openly pro-white eras–where slavery was an acceptable labor practice and open discrimination against non-whites was not only tolerated, but often encouraged–even at such a time, where the proclamation that the United States was a de facto “white country” would not have raised the slightest eyebrow among the population at large, even at that time, citizenship still was not and could not be based on the merit of race alone, as evident by the existence of non-white freemen that lived and worked in various sectors of American society, and were still considered American citizens. Despite the widespread (socially acceptable) discrimination that existed against them, and despite the fact that there were a multitude of legally binding social obstacles that prevented them from enjoying their full citizenship rights on equal terms with the white American populace, the one fundamental right they could not be deprived of was their status as a citizen of the country. They were still American, and were identified as such by the highest courts of the land.
Perhaps there will be alt-right supporters who read a post like this and say, “Yes, well I don’t care what you say, I’m still in favor of a white ethnostate.” Rest assured that my goal in writing this prolonged screed on your screen isn’t to convince you to give up your views. It’s simply to get you to be honest with yourself and acknowledge that when you say you’re fine with a white ethnostate, you are by definition saying you’re fine with revoking the citizenship rights of nonwhites, even if they are native-born and law-abiding members of society. And you further support this policy, even if it means using force against whatever percentage of these now racially undesirables refusing to give in and surrender their rights to the nation they were born under–essentially endorsing a policy of ethnic cleansing in the region you wish to carve out only for yourself, and people you wish to racially identify with. Furthermore, it would go a long way to your credit if you could do so under your real name, if these are the convictions you honestly hold. Because if you do it solely behind the safety of an online pseudonym, where no one can tell if you’re being sincere or trolling for the “lulz”, you can’t turn around and expect anyone to be willing to waste their time and energy engaging in argument with an opponent whose honesty cannot be reasonably deduced.
Moreover, the real reason I bothered writing this post comes down to the fact that those of us who look at the alt-right and see the absurdity of what they are saying need to stop with the near-apologetic way we talk about these people. Yes, the alt-right is fascist by virtue of the very goals they outline, and the means they are willing to resort to accomplish them. Don’t allow yourself to get derailed arguing about free speech and free expression by a group that’s literally talking about wanting to strip away the citizenship rights of people on account of them having been born the wrong race. How can you say you support free expression, when you don’t even support basic rights of citizenship? By definition, you cannot subscribe to this view, and still maintain to be an advocate for either individual rights, or any sort of enlightened values. The only word for this line of thinking is authoritarian. And pointing a finger at what the authoritarian, anti-white leftist/progressive “cucks” are doing, doesn’t negate the fact that while the ideological goal may be different, your the intent and ideological methodology is identical.
Because authoritarianism, by any other name, from any other side, still smells just as rotten. And the alt-right was rotten at its core from its very inception.