Scaling Mt. Everest now attracts the Critical Race Theory crowd

In 1924, George Mallory, a White British man, announced his intention to scale Mt. Everest.  When he was asked why he wanted to do this, his answer was simple: "Because it's there."  He died in the attempt.  Eventually, Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay successfully summitted Mt. Everest in 1953.  (Hillary Clinton, born in 1947, long claimed to have been named in honor of this event.)  Now, though, these adventurers and others like them have been declared racist and colonialist, so a Black mountaineering team is going to rescue Mt. Everest from this terrible racial burden.

It's certainly true that Blacks were not part of the earliest efforts to scale the mountain.  This might have been because their cultures, unlike Western culture, didn't put a premium on doing a difficult, dangerous thing "because it's there."  This might have been because, in the West, Blacks lacked the funds to go on such activities.  And certainly, they lacked the cultural support that Whites had.

As for the Tibetan Sherpas, if you read a bit about the climbs, what you'll notice is that, while the White people who relied upon them respected them greatly, the media didn't.  That's changed for the better.  The arc of history did bend in the direction of respecting those Sherpas who joined the "Great White Explorers" as they engaged in a brave and pointless activity.  Bravo, guys!

Image: Mt. Everest by Philipp Roelli.  CC BY-SA 3.0.

But of course, all of it was horribly racist, and the fact is that the mountain has long drooped just a little bit at the summit from the shame of it all.  Thankfully, an all-Black team of mountain-climbers is prepared to remedy that injustice and give Mt. Everest just that little lift it needs to recover its self-respect and dignity:

A team of nine black climbers is attempting to scale Mount Everest to tackle the mountain's 'intentional lack of access for black people' and mountaineering's 'colonial history'.

The Full Circle Everest Expedition, which climbing leader Fred Campbell described as 'the first all black and brown expedition to the highest place on earth' in an Instagram video, is hoping to change the future of mountaineering.

The group's GoFundMe page, which has raised $154,608 of a $150,000 goal, is a masterpiece of victimhood:

The full circle expedition will make history as the first Black climbing team to attempt to summit the highest mountain on earth. As of 2020, there have been more than 10,000 summits of the mountain. To our knowledge, only 10 Black climbers have stood on the top of Everest. This expedition will permanently change the future of mountaineering on a global scale.


The impact of this expedition will resonate long after its completion and will continue to highlight the importance of representation in the outdoors.


Everest is not the end goal, but just the beginning. Our expedition will reshape the narrative of the outdoors to one that is inclusive and where everyone belongs. Each member of this team has a powerful story to share. Together, we speak to many histories, traditions, and ancestries. We'd love to use this GoFundMe as a way to be in conversation with you. With community behind us we believe that we can create lasting change.

If I understand all this correctly, the group "will reshape the narrative of the outdoors" by being the 11th through 19th Black people to summit the mountain.  It's nice to know that being Number One is no longer such a big deal.  All over America, parents will tell their children, "I'm so proud of you.  You came in 15th place and reshaped the narrative of the 500-meter freestyle."

Yes, I'm being very snarky.  First, as I've probably made clear, I'm not someone who sees the point in doing something insanely dangerous "because it's there."  I'm a mushroom and a couch potato, but I totally approve of people chasing their dreams.  And if this group's dream is to be the 11th through 19th Black people to ascend Mt. Everest, I wish them every bit of luck and great success.

But when it comes to the racial narrative, I'm pretty sure even they know that this is a fundraising narrative and that Mt. Everest really isn't swathed in a miasma of racist shame.

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