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January 31, 2014

Volokh Conspiracy: Hey, Going By the Actual Data, It Turns Out Conservatives Are More Likely to be Part of a Mixed Race Family

Now, let me clarify on that: The difference is statistically insignificant. 10% of liberals hail from mixed race families, and 11% of conservatives. You can't make anything of that difference (though MSNBC would, were the numbers to run in the opposite direction).

So let's take the percentages as equal. (Except, not really.) Does MSNBC care about the facts, or just spouting off ignorantly with some make-'em-up blogger provocation?

Spoiler Alert: It's the last one.

Not surprisingly, there is no statistically significant left-right political differences in the proportion of adopted or step-families that are in mixed race households. Indeed, among families with step-children or adopted children, 11 percent of conservatives were living in mixed race households compared to 10 percent of liberals living in mixed-race households.

Similarly, 9.4 percent of Republicans living in step- or adopted families were in mixed-race households, compared to only 8.8 percent of Democrats in such families. (Again, this small advantage for Republicans is not large enough to be statistically significant).
If one breaks things down further by both party and political orientation, only 7.7 percent of liberal Democrats and 3.6 percent of moderate Democrats lived in mixed-race adopted or step-households, compared to an insignificantly different 10.6 percent of conservative Republicans.

Volokh also links the rightwing gun nuts at Reason, specifically Matt Welch, who asks the question: Is it not bigoted to constantly claim a deep moral fault among a large swath of people based only upon their race?

Spoiler alert: Yes.

But making broad and essentially pejorative generalizations about giant swaths of non-Democrats is hardly the exclusive domain of the racist-chasers at MSNBC and Salon.com. Journalistic outlets at the highest levels have been making non-jokey versions of the same accusation throughout the Obama presidency, ever since the twin ascension in 2009 of the Tea Party and opposition to the Affordable Care Act.

For an example, check out this passage in New Yorker Editor David Remnick's extraordinarily long and often insightful recent profile of the president.

In the electoral realm, ironically, the country may be more racially divided than it has been in a generation. Obama lost among white voters in 2012 by a margin greater than any victor in American history. The popular opposition to the Administration comes largely from older whites who feel threatened, underemployed, overlooked, and disdained in a globalized economy and in an increasingly diverse country. Obama's drop in the polls in 2013 was especially grave among white voters.

Where's that confounded bridge? Italics mine [bolding mine-- ace], to underscore what one of the nation's most decorated journalists felt zero need to substantiate in a 16,000-word article. Do older white voters really feel more "threatened" and "disdained" by a "globalized economy" and "increasingly diverse country" than other age and ethnic/pigmentation cohorts? I'm sure there's plenty of interesting poll data out there, but Remnick (a 55-year-old white guy, FWIW) doesn't need to cite any: He knows it's true, his readers know it's true, and the only real question is how much you can respectably pin opposition to this twice-elected black president on racism.

Imagine the MSM describing any non-white population as chiefly animated by fear and other insalubrious traits.

Here's how bigotry works: You don't know many (or any) members of a group you have antipathy towards. Because you know nothing about them, you view them as The Other, and, untainted by fact or personal experience, you can imagine them as wholly alien, foreign, and, of course, evil and inhuman.

The left understands this -- they often discuss "Otherizing" a group -- and yet they do not apply this to their own thinking. In their minds, only The Other can be guilty of viewing others as The Other. The left, with all their ignorance, hatred, and stupid crude bigotries, cannot be so guilty.

The left generally exercises their imagination to find new ways of demonizing those who do not like socialism and communism. Every once in a while, their fevered minds come up with some interesting insight into human behavior and psychology (such as the tendency of people to view those unlike them as "The Other").

But because the entire point of this exertion of mind was simply to come up with exciting new ways to demonize one's political opponents, they fail utterly to take the insight seriously and examine their own thinking for defects.

And so the stumble on, crude-minded, without self awareness or self examination, bitter, hateful, and unredeemed.


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posted by Ace at 01:38 PM

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