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How to respond to racist speech and innuendo?

March 15, 2016

The increasing success of the Trump candidacy, fueled with close to zero self-awareness by the media, brings up this question.

Unfortunately, saying “you’re a racist” to someone will not have the effect you would want, no matter how right you may be. This is especially true when they’re part of a crowd.

Per the link above (not a very serious source, I know), making a distinction between attacking the person, and attacking the un-acceptability of their speech, may be more effective. It may seem like splitting hairs but it might not be. I wonder if there was better stuff written on this.

“Centrist” Democrats who just wish this whole thing would go away need to wake up. The demographics are shifting (influence of the middle class past its peak), and things haven’t turned out as planned/promised during the Clinton years.

Those on the left who want to campaign for social justice need to realize that you’re not going to make it without winning over a good number of independents, and they’re currently about as likely to go for someone like Trump as for someone like Sanders. This means unintentionally insulting right-leaning-independents is a strategic dead end.

Lastly, I think Trump’s very unfortunate game plan to get his supporters excited is a reprise of popular sentiment in the post-9/11/2001 time, when a particularly ugly side of America came out — with official encouragement from politicians and the media!

Given the ease with which the US public is put into this mode of thinking, the odds are stacked in favor of forces preaching division rather than unity. So it’s going to be a delicate act.


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