Debating the woke crowd
To explore the mindset of the current left and, to be honest, to poke holes in intellectual bubbles they created for themselves, I became a member of several progressive groups. Among them, there was Libertarians vs. Anarchists. They position themselves as a debating group that is open to various views. The other day, I noted their great enthusiasm regarding the toppling of Washington's and Jefferson's monuments. Never mind the legacy of the Declaration and the republic these men were responsible for — the most advanced liberty system ever available at that time and a long time after; after all, they had been damned slaveholders, hadn't they? In fulfillment of their righteous indignation, I suggested that they go to Chattanooga, Tenn., to smash a statue of John Ross (1790–1866), the principal chief of the Cherokee Indians prominent in Jacksonian America's politics and a slaveholder who owned more that 100 black slaves. Unlike Jefferson, who was ambivalent about the institution of slavery, we know that Ross along with the rest of the rich Cherokee never thought about freeing his slaves, although he was a Freemason and considered himself a good Christian. Moreover, he took along that "human cargo" with him on the "Trail of Tears" (1838) to Oklahoma after white settlers seized Cherokee lands in Georgia and Tennessee and forced Ross's people to the west. To be fair, we do know that under the influence of his Quaker wife, Ross treated his human property "nicely." Lewis Ross, his brother, expecting that there would be a high demand for slaves in the new Indian territory in Oklahoma, purchased 500 more men and women on the eve of the "Trail of Tears."
I need to give credit to the members of the group. They did tolerate me for a while when, responding to the worldwide hype over the "holy Floyd" case, I confronted them by describing an identical (and more vicious) case that happened in Texas in 2016: Tony Timpa, a white, erratically behaving schizophrenic, was suffocated to death by white and a Hispanic police officers in exactly the same manner as George Floyd. I posed the following question for the members of the group: why was not Timpa blessed with a golden coffin? Why did not we have for him weeping crowds and thousands of woke pilgrims streaming to the murder site-turned-shrine to be healed, blessed, and saved? Where were kneeling police officers to wash the feet of Timpa's close and distant relatives? And, finally, why did not we see in 2016 mass pogroms, lootings, and burning that, I guess, we now routinely expect on such occasions?
The anarchists and socialist libertarians at first did try to debate me on this case. Yet, quickly their patience was exhausted. As soon as I posted the picture of the John Ross statue and invited them to topple this object whose very existence should be offensive to the proud descendants of slaves, they silently and completely removed me from the group along with that and all my previous postings. That was how I failed in my "dirty" attempt to penalize the long gone slaveholder who happened to belong to the "noble" race and spoiled the nice progressive feast that was directed against the long-gone slaveholders of the "evil" race.
Andre Van Doren, Ph.D. is a humanities scholar who writes for Notes of Liberty. You can reach him at email@example.com.