I follow an excellent curated list of reporters. Thrown in as the token conservative is Salena Zito. Zito's claim to fame is that she called Pennsylvania and thus the nation as going for Trump early, and she was right. She has positioned herself as the voice of Forgotten Non-Urban America. (This reached hilarious levels when she toured "non-urban America" and counted in, not only a commuter suburb of Gary, Indiana, but people who actually commuted to Gary
Today, Salena retweets a 1994 post in which she explained it all to us
, race edition. (Save for nausea before clicking.)
Briefly, the essay says that a black family moved into her white neighborhood in 1969. I'll let her explain it.
Race in Pittsburgh, as in many industrial cities, was volatile in 1969. Society was changing rapidly for whites and blacks and, as with most change, some people reacted with fear, others with anger, and many with no brains at all.
In typically horrible timing, government-enforced integration coincided with Lyndon Johnson's “Great Society,” which bulldozed iconic ethnic neighborhoods — tearing apart lifelong experiences, communities and ways of life — in favor of public housing.
It was supposed to compensate for past injustices but it merely punished one community to make amends to another.
No mention that the "iconic ethnic neighborhoods" included black neighborhoods, of course, or the neighborhoods -- almost certainly including Zito's -- whose sale contracts forbade the owner to sell to a black person. No, that neighborhood just mysteriously grew up all-white.
Thanks to my parents, the Chatmans weren't considered “black people.” They were just new neighbors, and we did what we always did when someone new moved onto the block — baked chocolate-chip cookies and delivered those to their home.
Three months later — after spending our days jumping rope, playing tag and all of the other things that 9-year-old girls do — a brick shattered the Chatmans' front window; another smashed their car's windshield, and the perpetrators, a couple of teenage boys, tried to burn a cross on the lawn.
“Your dad chased those young teens ... he caught all of them, single-handedly, and held them for the police,” Carnisa recalled. “I remember him telling them how ashamed he was of them.”
And everything was okay then! And Carnisa, her black friend, repaid her by saving her from a black riot in high school! And therefore:
So the solution to our nation's racial discourse should be handled by us individually, one person at a time — and not by exploiting bad deeds done by both sides that only further the hatred.
Note that it never occurs to Zito that Carnisa had to go to school with the brothers and sisters and friends of those boys who burned a cross. Or that there were other people who put their resentment of "tearing apart lifelong experiences" into words and action. No. Zito made friends with Carnisa and they're still close friends and that's what everybody should do! And nobody (among Zito's friends) considered the Chatmans black, so that made everything better!
You won't read an essay that better encapsulates the belief that individual virtue is better than collective action. With a triple scoop of white privilege.
e: Chaser. Mother Jones finally does what nobody else is doing and interviews rural black voters
Turner’s mom, who cleans houses in town for a living, went to work a couple of days after [the election], and her employer, an older white woman, brought up the results of the recent election. The two had talked politics before—Turner’s mom is a Democrat, and her employer is a Republican. “Well, you might as well come and live with me now,” the employer said. “You gonna be mine eventually."