White robes, white skin, white guilt.

If you have been following my blog, you should know who Jim Goad is. He’s the speak my mind, damn the torpedoes consequences writer of books, with a column on Takimag.com. Funny, ultimately the polar opposite of political correctness….my kind of guy. Some of the following points are from his book, Whiteness: The Original Sin. Since the “war against whiteness” is perpetuated primarily by white Perfectionist progressives, and only secondarily by black racial grievance hustlers like Ta-Nehisi Coates and Al Sharpton, I really endeavor to understand the former. The latter are easy to understand—they make their living from promoting racial grievance. But the white folks? Jim Goad reminds his readers, “nonwhite cultures don’t tolerate traitors within their ranks to nearly the degree that supposedly ethnocentric whites do. Imagine a black person being able to make a career out of campaigning against black pride. Nonwhite cultures—to their credit—tend to view such individuals as sellouts, punks, and snitches.

Jim’s diagnosis for the white grievance mongers is Passover Syndrome, so-named because in the book of Genesis, the final plague on Egypt for not letting the Hebrew people (who were slaves, by the way), was death of the firstborn. The angel of death “passed over” the Hebrew households. The Hebrews painted lambs’ blood on their doorways to notify the angel of death to pass over them. What drives this syndrome is the delusion that collective historical ethnic guilt is a real thing. Passover Syndrome’s sufferers tend to believe that all whites, by dint of skin color alone, are indelibly stained with guilt for kazillions of historical atrocities and that their debt to nonwhites won’t be repaid until the very concept of ‘whiteness’ ceases to exist—if not white people themselves.It’s a blood atonement in reverse. In the case of the Hebrews, blood saved them and condemned their slavemasters. In the case of Passover syndrome, racial grievance hustlers want the shedding of blood—metaphorically, though among the more rabid, literally—of innocent whites to atone for their own feelings. Ultimately, it’s more than that. I will show that the real hostility is towards Jesus Christ himself.

Back to Jim Goad.”What’s most curious about this syndrome is the delusion that by merely acknowledging this imagined historical debt, they are able to somehow transfer it onto other whites—the ‘unenlightened’ ones who don’t acknowledge it—without having to make any sacrifices or installment payments of their own. A consistent feature of Passover Syndrome is an eagerness to offer up a whole other group of whites as sacrificial collateral for their own perceived debt. It’s fundamentally irrational and unethical to believe that one can atone for one’s guilt, real or imagined, by transferring it onto a family member, yet this delusion is surprisingly strong among those afflicted. The history of the white race is in many respects synonymous with the long history of enslavement, and if blacks have a copyright on the word ‘slave,’ someone should tell that to the Slavic people, who for generations were targets of Viking slave raids and from whom the word “slave” is derived.By the way, a significant economic reason for the Viking slave raids was to sell white slaves to the Muslims for the really big $$.

Indeed, guilt projection is one of Passover Syndrome’s most consistent features. Although the malady almost solely attacks Caucasians in high-income brackets, sufferers tend to blame lower-class ‘rednecks’ and ‘white trash’ for slavery and its after effects. A common delusion among Passover Syndrome sufferers is that they represent the cusp of some bold revolutionary cultural vanguard rather than modern mainstream society itself. They seduce themselves into thinking they are rebels against an oppressively racist society, yet there is nothing dangerous or career-threatening in anything they say. In truth, to disagree with what they say is to court ostracism, assault, and possible legal action.Maybe they do have a lot in common with non white grievance hustlers. Unremitting hostility towards a people solely based on skin color is the polar opposite of how the true church of Jesus Christ reshaped identity.

My contention is this: The philosophical foundation of the “war on whiteness”, which is one of the battles against the gospel of Jesus Christ, is Critical Theory. The 6 premises of Critical Theory are (thanks to Neil Shenvi):

Premise 1: “Our individual identity, who we are as individuals, is inseparable from our group identity, of which there are only oppressors and the oppressed. Our individual identity depends on whether we are part of a dominant, oppressor group or a subordinate, oppressed group with respect to a given identity marker like race, class, gender, physical ability, or age. Premise 2: “Oppressor groups subjugate oppressed groups through the exercise of hegemonic power.”  Hegemonic power is the ability to impose your group’s values, expectations, and norms on the rest of society.  Premise 3: “Our fundamental moral duty is freeing groups from oppression.” It’s very rare for proponents of critical theory to explicitly affirm or promote moral duties like honesty, kindness, patience, chastity, marital fidelity, or self-control. Premise 4: “‘Lived experience’ is more important than objective evidence in understanding oppression.” The idea that objectivity is best reached only through rational thought is a specifically Western and masculine way of thinking vs. Story. Narrative. Personal testimony. Premise 5: “Oppressor groups hide their oppression under the guise of objectivity.” The claim being made is that there are no completely neutral observers who present us with totally objective ‘facts.’ Instead, oppressor groups ‘claim’ that their observations are neutral, but this claim is only a strategy to cloak their will to dominate. ‘Hegemonic power.’ Premise 6: “Individuals at the intersection of different oppressed groups experience oppression in a unique way.” Here’s a quote from the authors of an influential book on critical race theory: “Imagine a black woman [who may be] a single working mother… She experiences, potentially, not only multiple forms of oppression but ones unique to her and to others like her.”

Jesus Christ promised to make people new creatures; he broke down dividing walls of hostility; he transformed how his followers saw themselves and treated “the other.” Primary identity in Christ changed all earthly and secondary identities—marital, ethnic, and economic. Christians became a nation within a nation, a universal commonwealth that spanned the known world, crossing traditional cultural barriers. Their primary loyalty was to the Lord, and then to fellow believers, not nation or race or tribe or party or class. Christians created a new kind of church, which established a different kind of family, the Universal church. God was true Father; they were all brothers and sisters. The early church grew, as described in the Book of Acts (of the apostles). The Christian movement was therefore both radically global and local at the same time. Christians were known as the people who cared for the “least of these,” challenging Rome’s patronage system and culture of honor and shame. They lived this faith out with enough consistency and success to attract Rome’s attention, which is why Rome identified the Christian movement as the Third Way. Rome’s various responses—fascination, confusion, suspicion, opposition, persecution—underscored how unique the movement was.

But gradually the caring for souls eroded in the face of the continual dripping of material prosperity. Even those who declared themselves Christians often allowed themselves to be seduced into defending their vested interests, which included oppressing others. Slavery was one example, but MARK THIS: Only when slavery of Africans, aided and abetted by other Africans, occurred in freedom-loving “white” Britain and America, did slavery become a historical outrage; yet all races were enslaved by the more powerful through history. Muslims enslaved, and still do, far more people, especially whites, than anyone. Even in 2019, black Africans enslave other black Africans. WHERE IS THE OUTRAGE? The “war on whiteness” is NOT about slavery. If it were, those waging it would be publicly condemning slavery around the world. No, this business about American slavery, particularly the 1.5% of the white population who owned slaves, is a business: The business of profiting from grievance, abetted by the freedom we have in this country to write about and condemn our slavery, while ignoring it overseas.

Ultimately, however, the real “war on whiteness” is a war on the race that spread the gospel of Jesus Christ, ever since Paul turned west instead of east (see previous post). If the universal church had continued to live the gospel, caring for “the least of these” there would be no ammunition for critical theory. Two millennia ago, Jesus Christ—his incarnation, life, death, resurrection, and ascension—set in motion a movement that turned the world upside down. He is the same Lord today. It can happen again. “After this I looked, and behold, a great multitude that no one could number, from every nation, from all tribes and peoples and languages, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, clothed in white robes, with palm branches in their hands, and crying out with a loud voice, ‘Salvation belongs to our God who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb’!”Revelation 7:9-10.

Left and right, or east and west?

St. Paul the apostle did not write the book of Acts, but he was the most prominent figure in it, because he was appointed by Jesus Christ to spread the gospel to the gentiles of the known world. “And they went through the region of Phrygia and Galatia, having been forbidden by the Holy Spirit to speak the word in Asia. And when they had come up to Mysia, they attempted to go into Bithynia, but the Spirit of Jesus did not allow them. So, passing by Mysia, they went down to Troas. And a vision appeared to Paul in the night: a man of Macedonia was standing there, urging him and saying, “Come over to Macedonia and help us.” And when Paul had seen the vision, immediately we sought to go on into Macedonia, concluding that God had called us to preach the gospel to them.” Acts 16:6-10. Spread the gospel he did.

To me, the main significance of the Acts 16 quote is the two separate sentences crediting the intervention of God in directing Paul and the missionaries west, to Greece and Rome-the two main influences of “Western civilization”-instead of east, to the orient, or south, to the rest of Africa. The Roman Empire, heavily influenced by Greek culture, expanded to most of the known world, exporting their language and principles of governing, building roads, while persecuting this new “cult” of Christianity and battling fiercely independent tribes in their expansion. The Barbarians were, for the Romans, those people living outside the boundaries of the Empire: Visigoths, Ostrogoths, Vandals, Franks, Huns and others. They had in common being pastoral, tribal people, masters of great herds of cattle, possessing no cities and not given to agriculture. The Empire sometimes attracted them, for the easier, more secure living within its frontiers, sometimes warring with them.

The powerful and ruthless Roman Empire did not last, but the gospel did. By 774, Christianity was the dominant religion of Europe, having first been legitimized and spread under Roman rule. 17 of the 27 books of the New Testament are letters to other believers, mostly the churches of Greece and Rome. If I translate the spread of the gospel to current, postmodern dogma, it took root first in white cultures, and was initially spread to Asia and Africa by contact with the Roman Empire. My question, perhaps unanswerable, is “why did God direct the first missionaries west rather than east or south?” If I may be so bold—and I may, since this is my blog—I will attempt to answer my own question and in so doing, explain the root of hostility to “whiteness”.

By the time the United States Constitution was ratified, our nation and Western Europe, primarily Britain and Germany, were the “standard bearers” of Protestant Christianity. Spain, Portugal, France and Italy were the “standard bearers” of Roman Catholicism. The pilgrims who sailed here and established Plymouth Bay colony–the “spiritual progenitors” of the United States, were English Protestants highly influenced by the Protestant Reformation, and the theology of John Calvin, who wanted to purify the Anglican Church (state Church of England) from Roman Catholicism. The Bible contains a number of passages exhorting expansion of the gospel, in both the Old and New Testaments. Two are representative: So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them. And God blessed them. And God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth and subdue it, and have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over every living thing that moves on the earth.” Genesis 1:27-28. Jesus came and said to them, All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.” Matthew 28:18-20.

In the next post I will explore this idea that God had Paul turn west rather than east or south because of the expansionist and industrious nature of the people of the west and north: Present day Europe. If that is true, then the hostility that self hating whites towards what they call “whiteness” is really hostility to the God of the Bible.