When you flip on the light and nothing happens
We thought we had heard the last of Keith Thompson, who you may remember is trying to carve out a living as a “former” liberal turned dancing-monkey for conservatives to quote. Now I know that I said that I wouldn’t waste anymore bandwidth on him, but that statement is no longer operational since that’s all the rage these days. It seems that Keith has found his level and who knew he would need a bathysphere to reach it? Welcome to Human Events Keith! Home of David Horowitz, Ann Coulter, and other writers I can’t name since they all seem to skitter away under the floorboards whenever someone enters the room and turns on the light.
To refresh your memory, Keith gives subtle hints that not only did he come to conservatism late, but he’s also bringing up the rear in the Angry White Male sweepstakes which is founded on the basis that if it weren’t for feminism, America would be a better place and, oh yeah, Keith’s wife wouldn’t have left him and there wouldn’t have been that brutal and emasculating custody fight. (If I’m wrong about this, Keith can always email me and I’ll post a correction, but I’ll want a corroborating email from the former Mrs. Keith).
His latest entry might get him a covetted spot over at Donklepuffnstuff, but I wouldn’t bet the farm on it unless he changes his name to Logicus Maximus or Flexibulus Philosophus cuz that’s how you get taken seriously over there. Of course, there are other reasons to not be taken seriously also:
Fairly early I concluded that conservative thought per se was reactionary. I also decided that â€œliberalismâ€ and â€œthe Leftâ€ (synonymous in my adolescent mind) represented genuine progressive thinking suited to the complexities of a modern world. Students of critical thinking will recognize this as binary logic. (If a light switch is not on, the only alternative is off. If conservatives are bad, liberals must be good.)
Okay. So he’s not big on the logic or electricty thing. We then find out that lil Keith was quite the political thinker at age ten:
In the summer of 1963, while playing with a schoolmate in his backyard on a Saturday afternoon, my friendâ€™s father called us into the house to watch something important on television. This was a first. Since when did parents think two 10-year-old boys should be inside watching TV rather than playing outside on a hot August day? We spent the next hour in my friendâ€™s living room watching an Atlanta minister speak to a sea of people in Washington, D.C.
At the time I knew only that Martin Luther King Jr. was controversial, and black. By the time he had declared, â€œI have a dream,â€ I understood how those two facts were related. I also knew why so many people considered him a dangerous man. My dad always let his sons know bigotry grew from weak and contemptible minds, yet we couldnâ€™t deny the cruel legacy of prejudice in our town.
My friendâ€™s home was always a welcoming place of ideas and conversation and high spirits. On August 28, 1963, it was more: a refuge where I didnâ€™t have to try to rationalize or refuse the moral force of Kingâ€™s words. Everybody sitting in front of the TV agreed this man spoke truth. His decency was obvious, his call for equal protection undeniably right. I had never experienced such an inspired presence.
Walking home that evening, I was struck by a concept that seemed beyond me: For the first time, I realized that the thoughts and opinions running through my mind at any given moment wereâ€¦mine. I was responsible for where my ideas might lead and whatever choices I might make, whether in the town of my birth or the world at large. Iâ€™d gone to my friendâ€™s house as a person; I returned home an individual. The shift was exhilarating and not a little scary.
Which made him either Jem or Scout, I’m not sure which, but his dad was definitely played by Gregory Peck.
…and so lil Keith threw himself into politics:
After discovering others around town with similar views, I became an overnight activist: helping organize voter registration campaigns in poor neighborhoods where people had given up hope; writing letters to the editor supporting civil rights, defending civil liberties, citing connections between poverty and crime. My credo became Bobby Kennedyâ€™s 1966 â€œDay of Affirmationâ€ speech in Cape Town, especially this passage: â€œAt the heart of that Western freedom and democracy is the belief that the individual man, the child of God, is the touchstone of value, and all society, groups, the state, exist for his benefit. Therefore, the enlargement of liberty for individual human beings must be the supreme goal and the abiding practice of any Western society.â€
…and I think it was perfectly lovely of him to share his credo with Bobby Kennedy. But then something happened (dum dum DUM):
The first glimmers of trouble in political paradise came a decade after Kennedyâ€™s tragic death. Thatâ€™s when the civil rights establishment began a fateful shift from Kingâ€™s commitment to equal opportunity for individuals toward enforced equal outcomes for groups. At the time I convinced myself that the shift was one of degree, not of kind. In a nutshell, I rationalized: â€œTrue, group preferences patronize their intended beneficiaries and discriminate on the basis of color. But itâ€™s just a temporary way to balance the historic scales. The proponents mean wellâ€¦and donâ€™t forget the racism of your hometown.â€
My doubts grew louder as womenâ€™s groups likewise began insisting that any gender â€œdisparitiesâ€ could only be considered prima facie evidence of culpable bias, regardless of other factors. Supreme Court legislator Harry Blackmun extended this argument with his 1978 Supreme Court ruling that enforcement of the Equal Protection clause required a new round of state-sanctioned discrimination. In a sentence Orwell would have appreciated, Blackmun proclaimed: â€œIn order to treat some persons equally, we must treat them differently.â€
This would have been when Keith’s wife told him that she wanted to work outside the home and have a fulfilling career and he could make his own goddam sandwich and he discovered that his childhood dream of a just world filled with happy negroes and pearl-bedecked June Cleaver-ish wives was just that…a dream.
After that, 9/11 changed everything and it was safe to come out of the closet as a sexist/racist/Angry White Male and hang out with David Horowitz and Ann Coulter…if only she would get her skinny ass back in the kitchen and make him a damn sandwich.
..and who hasn’t had that dream?