It would be "whitesplainin'" if I went too harsh on Ta-Nehisi Coates: especially since there are people like Darryl Pinckney, Cornell West, and Adolph Reed who do the job much better than I can. I am not sure how Coates would explain how someone like me with a JD from University of Maryland and an LLM from the University of Exeter ended up with the shitty law career I had.
Seriously, I applied for a job that was advertised in the ABA journal for someone with pretty much all my credentials, yet I never had so much as an interview. I found out later that a large law firm had placed the ad. It was something called a job cert ad to try and prove there were no US citizens who had the qualifications the firm's candidate had for an H1B visa.
I threw a spanner in the works of that process.
That is a digression into immigration law though, but the point is that there are more than enough jobs which aren't filled for a lot of reasons. That is despite what one person pointed out: that he, as a US Citizen, taught the people who received the H1B visas. His point was that there was likely to be someone in the US who had the qualifications to do the jobs that the H1Bs were being issued for.
The real issue is that Coates frames everything in terms of race, but that should make him even more aware of the fact the Electoral College was created to preserve slavery: why else would smaller states be afraid of larger states having too much power?
But what has me going is We Were Eight Years in Power: An American Tragedy. Coates neglects two events which could have clued him in to the possibility of a Trump presidency. The first being the 2000 election, where the popular vote loser became president. This was with more shenanigans than happened in 2016 as the disputed Florida election ended up being decided by the US Supreme Court.
Obama's reign was another bellwether event. How could he miss that there was some sort of deal between Obama and Clinton which would result in Clinton being the 2016 Democratic Party nominee? It was obvious that the democrats preferred to lose with Clinton than win with Sanders. And Obama somehow "defeating" Clinton should have gotten Coates' racial radar tingling.
But it wasn't really that Clinton was unpopular since she won the popular vote by one heck of a margin. She lost in the racist Electoral College. But that is something everybody is ignoring: especially Coates. So, while white people are upset about Russians, Coates is hyper-aware of the "racial divide". But do either really exist? Is there another explanation which isn't Russians or race?
One the other hand, Clinton lost to a black man and would have lost to a Jew had the system not been rigged in 2016. If that wasn't a big warning sign that Trump stood a chance: I don't know what would be!
I am not sure what part my ancestors played in Bacon's Rebellion, but I know there were some who were in Virginia at the time. That was the real watershed event where the powers that be learned that using race was good for keeping the people down. Sort of like using fear of immigration to stir up the masses (I would wager the person who got the job I mentioned earlier was a white, European).
Anyway, the divide has always been class in the US, but it was easier to keep the classes down when they looked on another group as somehow inferior.
Anyway, the warning signs were out there, Mr. Coates, you were too busy being distracted by race to see it coming.
The Afro-Pessimist Temptation