I disagree with several major points of Jonah Goldberg’s recent commentary, “How rigid anti-racism amounts to ‘moral bullying’” (June 21). Mr. Goldberg stated that Ibram X. Kendi’s assertion that the opposite of racism is anti-racism equals, in a moral sense, the “totalitarian” idea that if you’re not with me you’re against me.
First, Mr. Goldberg wrote that unless one has authoritative knowledge of and solutions for a problem, one cannot make the assertion that Mr. Kendi does. Mr. Kendi does have authoritative knowledge of the problem and possible solutions for racism. He earned a doctorate in African American Studies from Temple University. He has been an assistant professor at State University of New York at Oneonta, at University of Albany-SUNY, at University of Florida, a visiting scholar at Brown University, a full professor at American University and at Boston University, and a fellow at the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study at Harvard. He was written six books, numerous academic papers and publications.
Second, the columnist asserts that in times of crisis, it is permissible to use the argument, “If you’re not with me, you’re against me” — implying this is not a time of crisis. Since the murder of George Floyd and too many other Black persons at the hands of police officers, many would assert that racism is a crisis in our country.
Third, Mr. Goldberg came close to making a false equivalence between Mr. Kendi’s statements about anti-racism with Marxism. In appearing to conflate these two approaches, although he backed away from this a little, Mr. Goldberg attempted to plant a connection between anti-racism and Marxism in the reader’s mind. In my opinion, this manipulative journalism.
Judith S. Ulrich, Glen Arm
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