For the past eleven years, I’ve had the opportunity to travel to the EU, as well as the UK, to visit friends, grandchildren, in-laws, nieces, nephews, and a first cousin, a retired medical Doctor, who resides in Switzerland, along with his Swiss-born spouse. My wife, a native-born German national also has many life-long friends throughout the EU. During my travels, I have met and have been able to interact with many people. These interactions have been for the most part very cordial; and I seldom discussed my politics during these overseas visits.
However, I believe, it was five years ago while vacationing with my wife and grandkids in Ghent, Belgium, that I was forced to render an opinion concerning race relationships in the United States.
It was on the occasion of coming back from a morning run, that I became lost in the old part of Ghent. As luck would have it, I found myself in the University district outside a bakery, where I was enticed by the smell of freshly baked croissants. As I was sitting outside the bakery enjoying my breakfast, a man and a woman, who, I learned through the course of our conversation, were lecturers at the University of Ghent. They noticed my University of Notre Dame cap and struck up a conversation with me. Apparently, the woman professor attended Notre Dame some years earlier, and I told her, that I had worked at the University twenty-four years ago. Anyway, among the topics, they seemed most interested in, was the perceived epidemic of police shootings of black men in America. They were particularly interested in how I was dealing with the situation as a black man. To tell you the truth, my first thought was, Hells-bells! I’m not particularly oppressed by anyone.
However, as I thought about it, and being a Black Conservative American, (emphasis on American), I gave them my take. I simply stated, that the greatest threat to black men in America on an everyday basis, was not the police, but other black men. I asserted that Blacks are only 13% of the United States population, but are responsible for 52% of all homicides and over 80% of all black murders. In some urban areas, were black make-up 35% of the population, blacks commit nearly 75% of all murders. I also added that in 2015 alone, nearly 6000 blacks were killed by their criminal brethren.
Of course, this wasn’t the answer they expected. Having had similar conversations over the years with various European friends and in-laws, I usually get the same polite, you-must-be-crazy-look from them. Without fail, the discussion is quickly aborted, followed by an obligatory change of topic, or how is your croissant?
But there you go! Many people in the EU believe the nonsense emanating from well-placed YouTube videos showing police malfeasance. These videos and new stories are happily looped over and over again. They are sustained by the same blacks-are-being-indiscriminately-murdered-by-the-police fable conspicuously dispensed by ABC, NBC, CBS, CNN, ESPN, NPR, PBS, MSNBC, the AP, Reuters, Der Spiegel, French Press, and the BBC, just to name a few. It gives credence to the adage, that a lie gets halfway around the world before the truth has a chance to get its pants on.
Unlike so many Americans, who I have met in my travels to Europe, the UK, and other places such as Ecuador, Peru, or Central America, there is a tendency among Progressive Liberals, (mostly Democrats), to bash, disparage or otherwise talk down American society. With a great amount of hesitancy, I have been forced into the role of the ugly American, because I actually like our nation, regardless of the shortcomings, that all countries have.
And unlike former President, Barrack Hussein Obama, I will never apologize nor denigrate the United States. Which is one of the many reasons, I never voted for him. Obama, like many of his 1980s college-educated cohorts, were the evangelists and true believers of critical race and gender theory. It is a way of thinking or a life-canon,[i] that stuffs the complexities of history, political science, and socio-economics into bottles labeled race, gender, and class. Over the last four decades, too many of our college-educated, who now serve as our journalists, politicians, clergy, professional athletes, Hollywood types, and yes, even among our military, have drunk deeply from this well of cultural nihilism. It is a type of cultural suicide, sold to the country and Western societies on the installment plan.
It is one of the most frustrating and mentally draining aspects of Progressive Liberalism. They have poisoned or distorted the news, both here and in Europe. The Democratic Party and its mainstream media, either from carelessness or calculated journalistic malpractice have made it practically impossible for the average citizen to get a true picture of what is happening on a variety of pivotal social, health (e.g., COVID-19) and political issues. Democrats, and unfortunately far too many lawn-chair Republicans, will play politics, over the safety of this nation.[ii]
Thirty years ago, I still clung to the belief that this toxic misinformation on the part of the media and the political class was not deliberate. Today, I give no such quarter.[iii]