I don’t know whether the author of this column published today in the LA Times wrote the headline but it reads, “Larry Elder is the Black face of white supremacy. You’ve been warned.” In any case, the headline is based on a direct quote contained in the story. So let’s jump to that:
“He is a danger, a clear and present danger,” said Melina Abdullah, cofounder of Black Lives Matter Los Angeles…
Abdullah of Black Lives Matter: “Anytime you put a Black face on white supremacy, which is what Larry Elder is, there are people who will utilize that as an opportunity to deny white supremacy. They say, ‘How could this be white supremacy? This is a Black man.’ But everything that he’s pushing, everything that he stands for, he is advancing white supremacy.”
I guess you could say it’s really BLM of Los Angeles that is calling Elder the black face of white supremacy but it’s pretty clear the author agrees with that:
Like a lot of Black people…I’ve learned that it’s often best just to ignore people like Elder. People who are — as my dad used to say — skin folk, but not necessarily kin folk…
Indeed, his candidacy feels personal. Like an insult to Blackness.
It’s not just what the author says herself that conveys the message. The whole last third of the column is just quotes from a series of black progressives about what a disaster Elder would be for the state. The piece concludes with one state Senator saying, “I’m not interested in going back to Jim Crow because I want to have a Black person as governor.”
Is Elder looking to bring back Jim Crow? If so I must have missed that plank in his campaign platform.
This entire column is really a bunch of black people on the left to far left arguing that Elder not only isn’t really black but is a kind of puppet. I guess it must feel satisfying to play those kinds of racial games because I see people on the left do it all the time, but it’s not really any kind of argument. In fact, the whole column avoids making any arguments. It assumes (probably correctly) that LA Times readers already agree about all of the specifics. So you get stuff like this:
Elder scoffs at the many efforts to reform the criminal justice system and to root out racial bias in policing by requiring more transparency and accountability from officers. Instead, he keeps trotting out statistics that purport to show that Black people are particularly prone to murdering one another.
“Do we still have the phenomenon where a young Black man is eight times more likely to be killed by another young Black man than a young white man?” he told the Republicans in Orange County. ‘If the answer to those series of questions is yes, I submit to you that systemic racism is not the problem.”
Elder mocks critical race theory, though I’m not sure he understands what it actually is. That doesn’t bode well for ethnic studies in California.
Are Elder’s statistics about the murder rate wrong? You may have noticed the author doesn’t actually say that. Does Elder know what Critical Race Theory is? Does the author know? Again, there’s no real effort to prove him wrong or provide any facts, insinuations are good enough for author Erika D. Smith.
Elder noted the column earlier today on Twitter. I think this about sums it up.
In today’s LA Times.
You’ve got to be real scared and desperate to play the race card against the brother from South Central. pic.twitter.com/pqZIujKxPD
— Larry Elder (@larryelder) August 20, 2021