Monday, March 02, 2015

american denial

pbs |  Follow the story of Swedish researcher Gunnar Myrdal whose landmark 1944 study, An American Dilemma, probed deep into the United States' racial psyche. The film weaves a narrative that exposes some of the potential underlying causes of racial biases still rooted in America’s systems and institutions today. 

An intellectual social visionary who later won a Nobel Prize in economics, Myrdal first visited the Jim Crow South at the invitation of the Carnegie Corporation in 1938, where he was “shocked to the core by all the evils [he] saw.” With a team of scholars that included black political scientist Ralph Bunche, Myrdal wrote his massive 1,500-page investigation of race, now considered a classic.

An American Dilemma challenged the veracity of the American creed of equality, justice, and liberty for all. It argued that critically implicit in that creed — which Myrdal called America’s “state religion” — was a more shameful conflict: white Americans explained away the lack of opportunity for blacks by labeling them inferior. Myrdal argued that this view justified practices and policies that openly undermined and oppressed the lives of black citizens. Seventy years later, are we still a society living in this state of denial, in an era marked by the election of the nation’s first black president? 

American Denial sheds light on the unconscious political and moral world of modern Americans, using archival footage, newsreels, nightly news reports, and rare southern home movies from the ‘30s and ‘40s, as well as research footage, websites, and YouTube films showing psychological testing of racial attitudes. Exploring “stop-and-frisk” practices, the incarceration crisis, and racially-patterned poverty, the film features a wide array of historians, psychologists, and sociologists who offer expert insight and share their own personal, unsettling stories. The result is a unique and provocative film that challenges our assumptions about who we are and what we really believe.


makheru bradley said...

The Cleveland power structure’s rationalization of overseer Loehmann’s culturally-structured thought/action says in very plain words what Robert McCulloch, the Staten Island grand jury, and the negligence in the prosecution of “felony stalker” George Zimmerman said to us in other ways. Tamir Rice caused his own death by having the audacity to be living while Black in America.

Vic78 said...

I wish the writers at Slate would take a deeper look sometimes. Why couldn't Democrats win when polling favored their positions? Why didn't they run against the shutdown? The GOP isn't going to stop doing what works for them. Democrats are either incompetent or complicit.

As an example, Harold Washington went through the same thing when he was elected. When it was time for reelection he made sure he had a majority. Did Obama take the necessary steps for a majority in Congress? The data tells me he was looking out for #1. So he should enjoy that bed he made for himself.

There's a reason I posted the Lincoln story a while back. Do you really believe a weasel like Roget Ailes would be giving Lincoln a hard time with today's resources at his disposal? Obama knows more about Lincoln than I do. I hope he and his buddies really don't believe that King/Ghandi bullshit.

CNu said...

lol, leaving this spam in place because it pulls this specific article back into the sunlight of topical relevance today.

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Constructive_Feedback said...

My Good Man, CNu:

When the story references "The City Of Cleveland" and their opinion of Tamir's joint liability in his untimely demise: WHO (What Face) is upon THE CITY OF CLEVELAND?

The "Mayor And Police Chief"?
The City Council - Policy Makers For The City?

CNu said...

I'm actually very happy you responded to this one, but both you and Bro. Makheru are waaaaaay off the mark in your responses. It's not a question of the "power structure". This is a text book example of governance by litigation. Basically, the municipal and overseer components have shown themselves incapable of an effective political or procedural response - they phucked up beyond all conceivable recognition and there's no mistaking that fact.

So what's left is a response by the legal department to the plaintiff's (Benjamin Crump's) petition to the court on behalf of Tamir Rice's mother. THAT's what this represents. It represents the complete failure of competent governance and a default to governance via trial attorney in the courts. Rule of law is one helluva messy sausage-maker....,

Constructive_Feedback said...

You get no disagreement from me with your above paragraph.

MY BEEF is with the "Mau Mau Crowd" who seek to pin this upon their list of 'Black Oppression In This 'White Racist' American System" - as the draw to compel the 'Americanized Negro' to invest his hopes for protection into another round of voting, but this time at a higher rung of government.

CNu said...

I cannot identify this "mau mau" crowd, therefore they must be so marginal and so liminal as to not exist for all practical purposes.

Constructive_Feedback said...

Brother Vic78:

Replace the word "Democrat" with "Black People", expand your scrutiny beyond partisan politics, upward to scrutiny of the "American Political System" and then ask yourself: "Is The Black Racial Services Machine INCOMPETENT or COMPLICIT" with this capitalistic political opportunistic scheme as they remain relatively UNDERDEVELOPED yet are still the most loyal investors of their HOPE into such a system.

Constructive_Feedback said...

My Good Man CNu:

Why do you frame this hypothetical as "What if White Right-wing Christians Were The Target Of Attack By An American Political Force?"

From my view the "Secular Progressive Christian Operatives" ARE AN ATTACK upon "Christian Theological Veracity" ALONG WITH their RIGHT-WING POLITICAL COUNTERPARTS.

When you see a news story about "5 Harlem Pastors" who are critics of the "Black Progressive Cleric Al Sharpton" starting a "City-wide Outreach Program"....................for POLITICAL ACTIVISM rather than CHRISTIAN (or even Ecumenical) FELLOWSHIP - is this not a greater molestation of "Christian Faith and Dogma" than what your hypothetical imagines?

(You need to watch "The Preachers Of Detroit" on Oxygen Network to see such a fraudulent scheme exposed.

makheru bradley said...

"governance by litigation" "municipal and overseer components" "response by the legal department" "Rule of law" All of which requires power. Even a “complete failure of competent governance” requires a structure. Denial is a psychological defense mechanism. So is rationalization. Both are fundamental components of the ethos of white supremacy.

“compel the plaintiff to meet his proof burden” Actually you are way off base on this one. Benjamin Crump will never have to prove anything because his lawsuit will never be litigated. Cleveland will settle out of court and pass the burden for their incompetence on to the taxpayers just like other municipalities.

"The Chicago Sun-Times reported earlier this year that the city has payed out nearly half a billion dollars in settlements over the past decade, and spent $84.6 million in fees, settlements, and awards last year. Bloomberg News reported that in 2011, Los Angeles paid out $54 million, while New York paid out a whopping $735 million, although those figures include negligence and other claims unrelated to police abuse. Oakland Police Beat reported in April that the city had paid out $74 million to settle 417 lawsuits since 1990. That’s a little more than $3 million per year. The Denver Post reported in August that the Mile High City paid $13 million over 10 years. The Dallas Morning News reported in May that the city has forked over $6 million since 2011. And last month, Minneapolis Public Radio put that city’s payout at $21 million since 2003." American taxpayers would rather payout millions of dollars, than force their governments to practice justice--the pathology of xenophobia.

What’s interesting as Eric Holder releases his report on Ferguson today, to mitigate the potential outrage for not bringing charges against overseer Wilson, is that Cleveland knew that is way under a DOJ investigation when it failed to thoroughly check the background of overseer Loehmann. The threat of the DOJ had no impact on their behavior.