In 1915, a man named D. W. Griffith made a movie that – as we like to say these days – excited some controversy. It was titled Birth of a Nation. It was a Civil-War movie – that’s the War Between The States for any Copperheads in the audience – that was mostly about two families, one on each side of the War, and their postwar struggles and relations. However, it also concerned the Ku Klux Klan, which the movie portrayed as “a heroic force.”
It’s possible to view the movie in many ways. However, one thing it wasn’t – and there’s essentially no argument about this – was kind to Negroes, whom it portrayed as “unintelligent and sexually aggressive towards white women.” The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People organized protests against the movie in several cities, and also campaigned (unsuccessfully) to have the movie banned.
Filmmaker D. W. Griffith was incensed at the protests and attempts to ban his film. He deemed them intolerant, which in the strictest of senses, they were: intolerant of his opinions as expressed in his movie. Yet Griffith’s approval of the Klan as a force for the restoration of honest government, and his opinion that blacks could never be integrated into white society as equals, were attitudes shared by many Americans of his time. He was apparently sincere in the beliefs his movie expressed, regardless of their accuracy or lack thereof.
That was 106 years ago. Were D. W. Griffith to look upon America today, in particular the essentially unopposed violence of Black Lives Matter, what would he say?
- “They’re living down to my expectations.”
- “Reverse the races, exchange the hoods for masks, and reissue the movie.”
- “Seven hundred thousand war deaths should have bought more than 106 years of unity.”
- Or most devastating of all, “I told you so.”
Of course, no one can say such things out loud these days. But how many Americans are thinking them?
Whatever your beliefs about the Negro race’s capacities and proclivities, and whatever you think should be done about American Negroes’ social, economic, and political status, you would find it difficult to convince a shopowner whose store has been looted or destroyed, or a motorist whose car windows have been smashed, or a family one of whose members has been maimed or killed by BLM street violence, that the riots ravaging America’s cities will conduce to anyone’s ultimate benefit. Bad feeling between the races is increasing. Neighborhoods are becoming more wary of strangers of the non-dominant race. There’s an edge-of-the-trigger feeling in many nominally “safe” regions: a mounting readiness to “go to the mattresses” at the first sign that racial unrest is coming to town. And of course, the political divide between Left and Right is widening and deepening as the Left promotes and defends the BLM riots.
Would any Gentle Reader care to argue with me about this?
So when I encounter stories such as these:
- Black man beats Asian women with cinderblock
- Another Black-on-Asian women attack.
- Armed BLM militants block Portland streets and attack drivers
- Homicides up 25% in 2020
- Black supremacist colony forms in Colorado
- BLM protesters tell white people dining outside to “get the f— out of New York” & that their white-owned taquerias aren’t welcome.
…and many others like them over the past several months, I find it difficult to accept that Americans’ worst fear should be of “white supremacists,” “climate change,” or a virus with a 99.8% survival rate.
In The Guns of August, Barbara Tuchman’s prize-winning chronicle of the opening of World War I, she describes one chaotic encounter between French and German forces as “a soldiers’ battle:” i.e., one in which there is no line of battle or “no man’s land” separating the two armies. When forces are intermingled in such a fashion, the carnage is at its worst. There’s no “direction of fire” for either side. Friendly-fire casualties are likely to equal those caused by the enemy.
America is currently embroiled in such a conflict. There is no line demarcating the forces, such that it’s possible to say that all those on one side are our friends, and all those on the other side are our foes. We are intermingled with persons who revile us for our convictions. Many of them, if they thought they could get away with it, would do us actual harm. There’s precious little space in which one can relax…for some, not even one’s own home.
Need I say explicitly that this is not a containable situation? That eventually one side or the other will initiate undisguised, nationwide hostilities? Is it not clear that barring an immediate assertion of overwhelming force in defense of law and public order, there will be bloodshed on a scale that will make the Civil War look like a college cafeteria food fight?
Others with whom I’m acquainted are already hunkering down. Two have formed proprietary communities prepared to defend themselves against an incursion by BLM, Antifa, or other hostile forces. The organizer of one has invited me and my family to join…and it was hard, very hard indeed, to decline the invitation. I fear that I’ll regret having done so, though my current circumstances are highly averse to relocation.
These are the early stages of national death. Thanks to the Left’s deliberate exacerbation of racial hostilities and its outright promotion of race-based rioting, E pluribus unum is no longer an accurate description of the American people. (Never mind that most people no longer know what it means.)
There was a half-facetious bumper sticker that was popular a few years back. It read “We Should Have Picked Our Own Cotton.” As there are no time machines handy with which to redress that particular decision, I can only sit here and monitor the progress of the disease, and mourn the passing of what was once the greatest nation in the history of Man.
Have a nice day.