Look, people, it’s not rocket science.

Just as we humans know that dogs come in different shapes and sizes and colours, dogs know that humans come in different shapes and sizes and colours. But they don’t think to sort us in terms of the latter. To do that they’d have to know something about our history: for example that others of our own species are our most dangerous predators, that we hunt (and are hunted ourselves) in packs, that packs evolve into tribes, that just as birds of a feather flock together, so sometimes do humans of the same colour, and so on.

Packs compete for territory. Sometimes they share it. But even when they do, they still compete for that territory’s resources. To that end it sometimes pays – well, at least for the uber-pack – to have an under-pack, preferably one the members of which can’t dissimulate. Now what do you suppose we could use to that end? I know. How ‘bout colour?!

If you’re a member of the uber-pack and you like this arrangement – and let’s face it, who wouldn’t? – you’re (what some people call) a ‘racist’. If you’re a member of the under-pack, you wouldn’t necessarily be an anti-racist, because you might just want to see the two packs switch places. And if so, once again, who could blame you?!

Of course by this measure, most of us are racists. I know I am. But I’m not as racist as those closer to the bottom of the uber-pack. This is because, situated as I am closer to the top of the uber-pack, competition for resources isn’t as intense for me as it is for those further down. In fact I can afford to be, and so I am, hardly racist at all.

Let’s call people of my ilk non-racists, by which, as just noted, is meant that race just isn’t an issue for me. Think of my non-racism as isomorphic to my indifference to other people’s sexual orientation. I’m not homophobic or trans-phobic or any other phobic, but not because I’m sympathetic with the difficulties these people face, but because, well, as an out-of-the-closet heterosexual, quite frankly my dear, I don’t have to give a damn, and so I don’t.

This indifference is important. As a non-racist I have no quarrel with racists. Each to his own, say I. But the anti-racist is another creature entirely. She doesn’t deny anything I’ve just said. But unlike the non-racist, she thinks there’s something morally despicable about racism.

I’m sure she has her reasons, though I doubt she could articulate them. But that’s beside the point. What matters is that she’s in high moral dudgeon about it. She’s a self-appointed moral authority. And she takes it upon herself to advertise those credentials like some Stasi officer in full interrogation mode. She is, in a word, unpleasant.

Unpleasant people are just that. They’re unpleasant to be around. I’m against them. And that’s what makes me an anti-anti-racist.

Anti-anti-racists are not, on that account alone, racists. In fact anti-anti-racism as such has nothing to do with race. For that matter, I’m not sure anti-racism does either.

Categories: Editorials, Everything You Wanted to Know About What's Going On in the World But Were Afraid to Ask

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