Writing in the Atlanta Journal Constitution, Cynthia Tucker connects the dots between the Arizona immigration showdown, the Ground Zero Mosque debate, opposition to birthright citizenship, Glenn Beck’s “Restoring Honor” rally, and the growing perception in America that Barack Obama is a Muslim.
White people are afraid of their impending minority status.
Changing racial demographics have created a season of “civic craziness.” It has provoked a “backlash against the browning of America” which is now “blowing” at “gale force.”
A broad economic recovery is needed to “drain the vicious energy from the backlash.” Economic prosperity will “restore faith” in the American Dream. Right now that “faith is fading” and Muslims are the “easiest targets.”
That’s not far off the mark.
First, there is an Implicit White Nationalist movement that is deformed in various ways by the reigning taboos of our society. The people involved in this movement yearn to return the more innocent days of White America while dodging uncomfortable questions about race.
Implicit White Nationalists are like nostalgic goldfish who demand to preserve their environment while failing to acknowledge the existence of an aquarium. They are animated by the same impulses as Explicit White Nationalists, but would never publicly admit it for fear of losing their respectability.
Second, the Implicit White Nationalist movement is fueled by the symbolism of a negro alien in the White House and the economic dislocation that has followed in the wake of his election. If the economy started booming again, as it did under Bill Clinton in the 1990s, “nativist sentiment” would undoubtedly subside, and would decline further still under a reassuring White president.
Third, Muslims and illegal aliens are soft targets, and White people can get away with attacking them in the mainstream without having to suffer much in the way of consequences. As Tucker points out, the number of illegal aliens coming to America has declined, but the perception that illegal immigration is a problem has grown.
White America has undeniably grown more sensitive about questions of identity. The terrible economy, a non-White president, changing demographics, and challenges to their cultural identity have all contributed to this insolent attitude.
This is also the exact opposite of the analysis that prevails in White Nationalist circles.
From the vantagepoint of the Far Left, White America is moving away from them in a reactionary direction. From the perspective of the Far Right, White America is still so far away from the radical position that it appears nothing has changed.
The mainstream Left has been discredited. Barack Obama’s coalition has collapsed and the Democrats will likely lose the House in November. The mainstream Right has been under attack from insurgent Tea Party candidates.
A growing mass of energized, angry White people have shifted the political spectrum. From a pro-White perspective, this is a good thing.
People who are mad as hell, politically engaged, feel like outsiders, and who are searching for answers to America’s national decline are already traveling down the road to radicalism.
The real question is this: are the existing radicals willing to build bridges to their peers, or will the purists continue to burn them?