Category Archives: Uncategorized

Cancel Culture Blames At-Will Employment

When it first came on my radar, it was via a twit by Slate’s Mark Joseph Stern.

It’s amazing that passionate foes of “cancel culture” who don’t want people to get fired for stupid or arbitrary reasons have managed to conceal their deep opposition to at-will employment for so long. Welcome to the fight for just cause employment protections, everybody!

It struck me as a non-sequitur, the usual snark intended to shift focus away from the vicious mob they adore to the cause they despise. I wouldn’t have used the word “amazing,” but “incredible,” as it’s not believable that anyone would so flagrantly conflate cause and effect for their own purposes and expect anyone outside of their echo chamber not to see the irrationality. Continue reading

Lowery’s Reckoning: Black News and Honest Brokers

Remember the sitcom Sanford and Son? There was a scene that I’ll never forget, where the son, Lamont, played by Demond Wilson, told a white guy, “I read Life Magazine. How come you don’t read Ebony?” I knew the answer, of course, but it nonetheless struck a chord. We, meaning ordinary white people of general good will, have neither an understanding nor much of a concern about what our fellow citizens, who happen to have black skin, are thinking and feeling. It’s not so much that we are antagonistic toward the idea of knowing, but that we just don’t care enough to do so.

Since then, the idea has morphed into the concept of whiteness being normalized, which it was and is because it represents the perspective of the majority. Black people constitute 13% of Americans, and like it or not, they are not the majority. But does that mean they aren’t of sufficient worth to be part of the whole, to have their world seen by the majority? Continue reading

Tyranny Of The Minority

There’s a concept embodied in the Equal Protection Clause, of particular importance at this time in our history, that limits democracy. We do not, we cannot, allow a tyranny of the majority. Even if enough people vote for it, the Constitution still does not allow us to impose a burden on a protected class. It’s undemocratic in the sense that the majority has spoken, but even majorities have limits.

But if the majority can’t do as it pleases when it comes to burdening, to harming a protected class, what if the tyrant is the minority? Continue reading

Short Take: The Karen Chronicles

As usual, Cathy Young makes the case that the viral “Karen” videos are often seized upon to prove something they don’t; that the entitled “Karens” are racist when because, in brief clips devoid of context, it’s a white woman against a person of color, and that’s quite enough to make Karen a racist.

A Twitter video clip that has been retweeted over 85,000 times shows a woman cowering, whimpering and shrieking in terror while a man taunts and berates her, apparently for cutting him off in traffic and flipping him the bird. And the man, who filmed the video and put it online, is meant to be the good guy.

Continue reading

Cops Lie; So Does Everyone Else

My witnesses were there, ready, sitting on a bench in the hallway. We had them. The police had gone to the wrong address, a different address than was called in by the 911 caller, and that’s where they found the drugs and guns. They were fully prepped and raring to go, which is far more difficult than most people realize. Witnesses don’t want to testify for the defense. It’s like begging to make enemies of the cops, and in Washington Heights, nobody wanted to bring more attention to themselves from the 34 precinct.

The case was before Justice Charles Tejada, who was wearing the same tie as I was. He made a joke about it when he took the bench that morning. It was cute, but neither of us was too happy about it. Nonetheless, the suppression hearing got underway and the prosecution called its first witness, the arresting officer. He took the stand and . . . admitted that they went to the wrong house, a house that was on a street by the same name but ended in “terrace” rather than “road.” And just like that, it was over. Continue reading

America, The Minefield

Berny Belvedere created this site, this place, to publish differing views of a wide variety of subjects and issues. It’s called Arc Digital. There are some wonderful writers, wonderful posts there. There are also some truly stupid posts, not so much because Berny says to himself, “hey, let’s post something dumb today,” but because he tries to include such varying points of view that some putative recognized proponents of a particular view can’t muster a cogent argument.

I mean, it may well reflect the best possible argument for a position, but the position is irrational and hence the effort to argue is incomprehensible. You either feel it or not, but you can’t explain it because it makes no sense. Continue reading

Seaton: I’m A Motivational Speaker!

It has come to your humble humorist’s attention people are charging obscene hourly fees to lecture wokescolds everywhere on “white privilege.”

This is absolute bullshit. Charging someone $12,000 for two hours of white guilt absolution is highway robbery. I’ll do it for eight grand.

After all, if that money’s hypothetically going to a white woman as per the link, who better to lead the teeming masses towards enlightenment than I, a privileged white male oppressor who literally represents the patriarchy? By virtue of my birth and lot in life, I figure I’ve got the inside track on what White Privilege is really like. Continue reading

The Creep of Disparate Impact

One of the least understood concepts in law is disparate impact, and Dahlia Lithwick understands it no better than your average sophomore.

It is high time now for “too much justice.” Overturning Washington v. Davis would move the country significantly closer to racial equality. Such a reevaluation need not topple the entire legal system overnight.

High time, indeed. Washington v. Davis was a very curious decision, seeking to invalidate “Test 21” to become a District of Columbia police officer because black test takers disproportionately failed the test because it was “culturally slanted to favor whites.” At the time of the case, one of the core attacks was the validity of tests as a gauge of performance, and there was significant reason to believe that Test 21, although not created for any invidious purpose, had no particular validity in determining who would make a good cop. Continue reading

The Bravery of the In Crowd

Princeton professor ofF jurisprudence Robert George does a thought experiment with his students. It’s a good one, and he posted it on the twitters.

1/ I sometimes ask students what their position on slavery would have been had they been white and living in the South before abolition. Guess what? They all would have been abolitionists! They all would have bravely spoken out against slavery, and worked tirelessly against it.

2/ Of course, this is nonsense. Only the tiniest fraction of them, or of any of us, would have spoken up against slavery or lifted a finger to free the slaves. Most of them—and us—would have gone along. Many would have supported the slave system and happily benefited from it. Continue reading