Monday, September 28, 2015

"The Hard Untruths of Ta-Nehisi Coates"

"A bestselling polemic riven with hatred thrills the liberal elite"
Coates’s great stylistic innovation is to render his inner turmoil thrillingly visceral by repeatedly, even obsessively, referring to America’s alleged determination to attack and cage “my body” or “the black body” in general, even when the topic is such abstract calculations as how mortgage lenders figure credit ratings. “How do I live free in this black body?” Coates asks. A better question would be, why does he imprison himself with fear? In a country the size of ours, a one-in-a-million event can be expected to happen 320 times. Coates behaves as if such headline-making events are the norm. A routine traffic stop that ends without incident (a cop pulled over Coates, checked his license, and sent him on his way) becomes memoir-worthy solely because of what’s going on in his head. “I sat there in terror. . . . I had read reports of these officers choking mechanics, shooting construction workers, slamming suspects through the glass doors of shopping malls.” Coates is, of course, like the rest of us, far more likely to die in a motor-vehicle accident than at the hands of police, but an all-consuming fear of cars is not going to get you anointed America’s deepest thinker...
Ordinary journalistic standards don’t apply to Coates. His aggrandizement is the predictable outcome when a self-flagellating elite class, having spent 30 years propagating notions of group rights and group guilt while dismissing individual agency, concludes that victim classes should be encouraged to bear witness to “my truth,” the better to advance an extreme vision. New York magazine detected no irony in titling its recent cover story “The Hard Truths of Ta-Nehisi Coates.” Coates is both an effect and a cause of the cultural leadership’s resistance to the precise and the rigorous, the rational and the logical. The book won’t be questioned by the cultural mandarins—can’t be questioned, can’t be treated as anything less authoritative than holy writ—because they share Coates’s feelings, and that is the only reality that matters. (read the whole thing)

18 comments:

Trooper York said...

Mindless Black Lives Matter!

Synova said...

This is a really excellent description of Coates. Perhaps he believes he'll lose himself entirely if he gives up the fear and hate he learned as a child. Certainly I've noticed that he seems unmoved by the fact that he has personal stature and power.

Lem said...

Perhaps he believes he'll lose himself entirely if he gives up the fear and hate he learned as a child.

I could understand that if, as in the Hollywood version of the fairy tale Maleficent, Coates wings had been cut off by the evil white men.

Thomas Sowell writes...

“Clearly, the ability to score ideological points against American society or Western civilization, or to induce guilt and thereby extract benefits from the white population today, are greatly enhanced by making enslavement appear to be a peculiarly American, or a peculiarly white, crime.” Sowell, 2005, 111.

Things could have turned out worse for Coates. He could have been born a Jew in Nazi Germany.

Lem said...

Coates’s great stylistic innovation is to render his inner turmoil thrillingly visceral...

It's as if Coates wants to tell us “Put your finger here; see my hands. Reach out your hand and put it into my side. Stop doubting and believe.”

What's so innovative about it?

Then again maybe, i shouldn't comment, i haven't read it.

rcocean said...

I find TNC so incredibly dumb its hard to take him seriously. Anyone who would buy his book and 'Thrill' to his incoherent ramblings is a lost cause to begin with.

Remember all the white libeals who thrilled to Eldrige Cleaver's "Soul on Ice" or who had "Malcom X" posters on their dorm wall? Its seems like the same crowd.

ricpic said...

While this professional black fantasizes about being harmed by the poeleece - which is his right - does he entertain any fears of being threatened and actually assaulted by his fellow blacks? Because it's no fantasy at all that blacks constitute the greatest physical threat to other blacks, by far.

Synova said...

Read the link. It's an excellent deconstruction of Coates.

Lem said...

I think the "thrill" may also refer to a sort of inside joke for elite liberals.

The joke of the boy who cries racism wolf all the time... to their delight.

Because the cries are that of someone crying for acceptance, someone who cannot accept that he is accepted. Which is unfortunate for Coates. For there is harsher prison than the prison of your own making.

And for thrilling them the elite gives Coates participation trophies, if only to incite out of him one more racism wolf cry.

Or is it racist to even think that?

Lem said...

Then again maybe, i shouldn't comment, i haven't read it.

I'm talking about the book.

Can Of Cheese for Hunter said...

excellent.

Coates has the keys to his cage of fear and victim-hood.

Lem said...

Ci ci

Amartel said...

Coastes is a useless self-involved hack who can neither write or think well so he falls back on insipid tropes and worn-out ideologies and tries, unsuccessfully, to breathe new life into them. He's not even a good hack. His success is due only the fact that our nation is populated by so many other useless self-involved hacks with time on their hands and a virulently stupid ideology to uphold for their greater good.

ndspinelli said...

The bastard son of Jim Coates did not fall far from the tree. I saw his old man, Jim Coates, pitch for the Yankees back in the 60's. The kid writes like his old man pitched. Shitty. The mom is a flight attendant Jim porked in a jet bathroom.

Trooper York said...

Read what Jim Bouton had to say about Coates. It is pretty funny.

Lem said...

Not quite guys...

Coates was born in Baltimore, Maryland, to father William Paul "Paul" Coates, a Vietnam War veteran, former Black Panther,

No baseball anywhere.

William said...

The more black people feel threatened and damaged by criminals in their own community, the more they distrust whites and the police. That's just the way the dynamics work. I'm pretty sure all those people in refugee camps in the Middle East think that their plight is somehow the fault of Israel and the United States.

ndspinelli said...

It was a joke, Trooper got it.

ndspinelli said...

If the shitbirds last name was LaMabe or DeLock I would have made a shitty Red Sox reliever reference. But, his name is Coates, so it was a Yankee ham n' egger.