Friday, March 22, 2019

The last refuge of the moron

Dear H,

Brittney Cooper
Brittney Cooper, author of the smash hit Eloquent Rage: a Black Feminist Discovers Her Superpower, wanted to be a professor and she got it.  This is the basis of her complaint on NBC.

Somebody told her, years ago, that the only person she could control was herself, and beyond this that if she didn't smoke crack, or get knocked up, or shoot her neighbors, or steal sneakers, or blow her money on gold chains and spinning rims, and made good choices in general, she would "make it."  And she did make the right choices -- to become a professor.  Now she has tenure and can say stupid things and nobody can fire her.  What she deeply regrets is not having children.  Who's to blame for all this?  Her wild success implies that it's her.  Who does she blame?  White neoliberals and their "perverse form of a social gospel."

Monday, March 18, 2019

The dream and the gift

Dear M,

I had a dream about a man, sharply dressed in a suit and tie, hair slicked back and sitting at a long table.  He was thin and middle-aged, maybe 50, with graying hair and a weathered but handsome face.  He looked like Jordan B. Peterson.  The room was dark, and lit only by a single lamp hanging from the ceiling; and at the other end of the table sat three men -- also sharply dressed, papers on the table, hair parted to perfection, and evidently holding a trial.  The thin man waited until they spoke.

Friday, March 8, 2019

In defense of Rep. Ilhan Omar

Dear M,

The great question facing every American Muslim is which foot do I shoot myself in?  You have to pick a political party at some point, and on the one hand you have the party that invades all your brothers and sisters, comes up with things like waterboarding and the PATRIOT Act, hates to see hijabs, blew up the Middle East, and is now refusing your refugees.  On the other hand you have open arms and a rotten soul.  Hollywood and the music industry in all their filth.  The gay lobby.  Feminism.  Fans of Lady Gaga and enablers of junkies.  They'll draft laws against hate speech and blasphemy but they'll tell your boys they can change genders.  On the one hand you have someone you respect who doesn't love you.  On the other someone who loves you but you just can't bring yourself to respect.

Thursday, March 7, 2019

Muslim Women's Day

Dear T-

I don't know exactly what we're supposed to do for Muslim Women's Day, but my guess is that we give them what Mohammed did. This means their testimony is worth only half a man's; that we may beat them if they speak out too loudly; that their husbands get off lightly for cheating; that the women get far worse for it; that we force all the ladies into hijabs, and that if any woman is happily married, we allow three other women to share her husband with her. Is this for or against them? It's difficult to say; but it's what they want, and we don't want to be accused of hating Muslims, so we do it -- gladly.

Tuesday, March 5, 2019

Two Romans

Dear H,

Augustine tells the story of a general named Regulus.  This Roman went to war against Carthage and ended up fighting valiantly; but when he lost a battle he was surrounded by the enemy and captured.  As a prisoner he was given an option.  He was let go on the pretense that he'd go to Rome, use his weight in the Senate to negotiate a prisoner exchange, and when he'd negotiated the prisoner exchange he could go back to his old life with his family.  If he failed, Carthage made him promise he'd return to them as a prisoner.