As part of the Providence Journal‘s effort to drum up racial discord in Rhode Island — perhaps to prepare the field for Democrats in the upcoming election year — G. Wayne Miller gave a big chunk of prime space to Mark Santow to talk about the privileges he’s had as a white man. The article was front page above the fold in the Sunday edition on September 6 (Sunday being by far the biggest circulation day), with Santow’s image smirking from the paper across Rhode Island and his home town of Providence — where he’s on the school board.
Why should Santow, who is white, deserve such high-profile treatment in a series about race in Rhode Island? Because he’s a far-left progressive/liberal who’s happy to diminish the accomplishments of people with light skin color by proclaiming that “white privilege” is really to credit.
There’s no doubt this is true of Santow, himself. He grew up in Greenwich, Connecticut, which currently has an average household income of $212,090, according to the U.S. Census’s American Community Survey.
Not only was he raised in a privileged area, he appears to have been extraordinarily lucky, as a kid: “He was not subjected to hurtful humor or insults.” Most of us probably can’t even imagine that.
At this point in his charmed life, Santow is chairman of the History Department at the University of Massachusetts-Dartmouth, where he collected a salary of $92,774 in 2014. His Twitter handle (I’m not making this up) is AlinskyLives.
Another professor at a local public institution of higher education had quite a different experience, growing up white in America, which he had to turn to the commentary pages of the same newspaper in order to share (bottom of page B10, yesterday; no picture). David Carlin, a former Senate majority leader in Rhode Island and sociology and philosophy professor at the Community College of Rhode Island (2014 pay, $76,033) grew up in Pawtucket, which currently has an average household income of $51,718, without hot water, with parents who had to sell their used car to pay a sibling’s medical bills.
For his part, Carlin attributes differences in outcomes for lower-income blacks to “an appallingly dysfunctional subculture that is pervasive among the black lower class.”
Send in the journalists!
Freelance journalist and adjunct lecturer at the Rhode Island School of Design Philip Eil — formerly news editor for the defunct Providence Phoenix — took to Facebook to declare his “alarm” not only that the Providence Journal would publish the expression of such beliefs, but also that Carlin would be permitted to teach at a college, and a public one, at that. Given that he doesn’t seem to worry that Santow would indoctrinate his students as his hero would explicitly instruct, one can conclude that Eil is mainly worried that Carlin might bring a contrary message to his students.
Commenters on Eil’s post are besides themselves, with many one-sentence exclamations containing profanity. Mark Santow himself makes an appearance, expressing wishes that Carlin would read the Projo’s Race in Rhode Island series (apparently having missed the fact that Carlin was responding to something in that very series).
The comments from the journalists are most telling, though. Providence Journal reporter Linda Borg chimes in to draw a distinction between the commentary pages and the rest of the paper. Mark Schieldrop, the editor of the local Patch sites, expresses the belief that “newspapers need to get rid of editorial pages and boards.” That way, you see, nobody would have any opportunity to express opinions within their pages unless they’ve gone through the journalists’ liberal filters.
The best comment, though, comes from WPRO reporter Steve Klamkin, who writes:
Out to “eradicate” a “subculture”? Sounds vaguely familiar, where have I heard this before?
His insinuation, clearly, is that Carlin is calling for a sort of genocide, which is not only absurd, but also profoundly illustrative of the mindset that permeates American liberalism and, therefore, American journalism. Underlying Klamkin’s comment is the assumption that changing people’s subculture is tantamount to making those people disappear. But if we consider Carlin’s conclusions as if they might be true — as if it might be the fact that increased prominence of broken families, glorification of crime, normalization of drug use, and devaluation of education and hard work might be holding families back — then how could anybody of good will not want to eradicate those influences?
None of these journalists leaves room for the possibility that a professor of sociology and philosophy might have more than a superficial understanding of race in America, and all of them give the impression — by what they ignore, assume, or reject — that they are more interested in preserving the dysfunctions than helping the people.
Mark Santow’s motivation is easy to imagine. Racial division provides his livelihood and advances his ideology. By the suffering of others, he ensures his own wealth and the dominance of his peers over society. (Sound familiar, Mr. Klamkin?)
What’s the journalists’ excuse?