Thursday, October 12, 2017

Free Speech For Nazis

On Twitter, I recently started following an NPR guy who specializes in racial issues. By specializes, I mean he is utterly obsessed with der Volk. In this case, his Volk. Reading his Twitter feed is a trip through the looking glass. Everything makes sense locally, but when referenced against wider reality, it's almost all deliberate distortions.

Recently he mentioned by retweet that "Detroit is 80% Black. And 33% of the city’s 230,000+ jobs are held by Black Detroiters" and linked to the Detroit Free Press article from which the statistic came.

I followed the article link and then read its predecessor. At the NPR dude's local level, it looks like whoever is doing the hiring is racist. However, there are no demographics given on the people doing the hiring, so it's impossible to verify the implicit charge of racism. Furthermore, in the article is this tidbit.
Why those jobs, those company relocations or expansions, haven't resulted in more widespread employment for Detroiters -- it's complicated. Twenty-two percent of Detroiters lack a high school diploma; 33% have a high school diploma or a GED. Just 7% have an associate's degree, and 13% have bachelor's degree or higher, according to the Detroit Future City report.

Companies hired to build the new hockey arena say they can't find sufficient Detroit residents with experience in the skilled trades to meet city-mandated hiring quotas for the project's construction.
As there are no direct quotes from the employers it's hard to figure out what's happening. After all, it's not the applicants decision process that's being questioned here, it's the employers'.

Following the link to the previous story in the series, you get this tidbit.
Contractors building Little Caesars Arena have paid some $2.9 million to workforce training funds as required by being unable to find enough Detroit residents to work on the mammoth construction project.
That directly contradicts the implications of the tweet and therein lies the problem. The facts appear to be these: black Detroiters lack skills, work needs to be done, the employers hire as many Detroiters as they can and then pay fines to provide training for the unskilled. It's kind of hard to find racism in all of that. It sounds pretty benign to me.

Mein Kampf is a racial screed of epic proportions. It's filled with generalizations without data, cherry-picked anecdotes and opinion masquerading as fact. The more I read the NPR dude's Twitter feed, the more parallels I see. The only thing lacking is international ambitions. Mr. NPR doesn't seem to have a goal outside of getting his audience worked up with racial paranoia.

And this is why we need to let the Nazis have their rallies. If we don't, NPR may find itself without a platform from which they can howl at the rest of us.

I think this is an NPR board meeting. I could be wrong.

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