Stephanie Phillips

Stephanie Phillips is a London-based freelance journalist and content writer, specialising in music, race and feminism.

John Derbyshire, The National Review and the Conservative Movement

Orginally posted at Black Feminists UK

Recently a columnist for the American conservative magazine The National Review decided to write a column titled ‘TheTalk: Nonblack Version’ about some advice that he gives to his kiddies.

John Derbyshire littered his 1,500 word piece with such gems as “Stay out of heavily black neighbourhoods”, “Before voting for a black politician, scrutinise his / her character much more carefully than you would a white” and “Do not attend events likely to draw a lot of blacks”.

He also stated that some black people “go to great lengths to inconvenience or harm [white people] and that the “mean intelligence of blacks is much lower than for whites”.

If you want to read the whole piece in its original, warped glory then head over to Taki’s Magazine, which is run right-wing socialite Taki Theodoracopulos who has himself had a bit of the dabble with the old racist remark.

Although the column was not published in The National Review and the editors can take no responsibility for Derbyshire’s actions they took the decision today to fire him calling his column “outlandish, nasty and indefensible”.

Of the incident The National Review’s editor, Rich Lowry, said: “His latest provocation, in a webzine, lurches from the politically incorrect to the nasty and indefensible. We never would have published it, but the main reason that people noticed it is that it is by a National Review writer. Derb is effectively using our name to get more oxygen for views with which we’d never associate ourselves otherwise. So there has to be a parting of the ways.”

Now I’m not going to sit here and write a thousand words about why Derbyshire is a self-important, miseducated racist who uses random news stories and events and shapes them around whatever vile dialogue he wishes to spit out. I’m sure you are all intelligent people and you can figure out why Derbyshire might be a bit of a knob. I can’t stop thinking about the National Review’s response.

They fired him because of the media storm created around the article because, as everyone knows, it kills careers and reputations (well only for a few months) to be labelled as a racist and the magazine didn’t want to be linked to that. So, I can understand why, even though the offending article was written for another publication, they still had to take a strong stance. What I don’t understand is their utter surprise and shock at the fact that a man who once described himself as a racist and a homophobe, who said that women should not have the right to vote and that their attractiveness peaks at around 15-20 years old would at some point put all of those views to paper with devastating results.

Any good editor knows what his staff are like, how they work and what their weaknesses are. Lowry would have to be an incompetent fool to not know Derbyshire’s views and he would have known it could all blow up at some point.

So why did Lowry, and Taki’s Magazine, pander to Derbyshire and employ him. Well, it could have been for many reasons. It could be that they knew if he toned it down and played the whole ‘I’m just telling it like it is’ then he would appeal to the majority of American conservatives who believe Obama just looks a bit dodgy and rely on gut instinct rather actual intelligence. It could also be the case that the magazine as a whole shares the same or similar views as Derbyshire. That would not be too big of a leap. The whole conservative movement in America right now is built around politicians, writers and news anchors making quasi-homophobic, quasi-racist and quasi-sexist statements that most people can see for what they are but others believe to be statements of absolute truth. Its almost as if all these white conservatives feel like they’ve somehow been repressed for years and years by minority groups and now they’re getting their revenge. They feel they are the minority, we are the threat and they deserve to keep us down so they dedicate all of their culture to biased, poorly reported stories that confirm their narrative.

There are a lot of conservative writers that could have tripped over the invisible racism line that goes from banter and ‘telling it like it is’ to vile, disgusting hate speech. Derbyshire was just the one that had his mask ripped off him today, but there are thousands more like him, brainwashing the masses with hate speech. The National Review has just taken down one man to save the machine. They know what they’re doing.

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This entry was posted on April 29, 2012 by in Article, Race and tagged , , , , .
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