Racist tales and a discussion

by Paul Eisen
In response to this posting a reader and friend sent me the following:
From years ago I recall David Duke in connection with the KKK. I cannot tolerate racism, and because of that I have long had a visceral dislike of him. I still don’t trust him. But, like Paul, I couldn’t see anything in this video that hasn’t been corroborated elsewhere. To disagree with the video’s claims I would have to disagree with just about everything else I know about this whole mess. Maybe Duke’s views on race have changed, or maybe I didn’t really understand them in the first place.

Obviously I’ve heard this before and usually I just ignore it in the same way as I ignore it when people call Holocaust revisionists ‘Nazis’. But my friend’s message was gentle and thoughtful, raising important concerns but always leaving room for development of thinking and a change of mind – so I started thinking about it.

First, a lot of people feel that way about Dr. Duke but still, I wonder if it isn’t, like so much in our world, not quite as it’s portrayed. And that must go for the KKK in the seventies which, I’ve always imagined, was a far cry from its previous incarnation in, say, the twenties meaning, to put it bluntly, the organisation was  moving away from overt hatred and violence.
But even hatred and violence, as much as they repel me, need to be looked at. In my younger, more activist days I often used to attend large Palestinian solidarity demonstrations. There, amongst the usual collection of old lefties, Christians, tired pundits and gate-keeping Jews would always be a sprinkling of young, militant Islamic kids wearing martyr-bomber headbands and yelling some pretty stirring slogans.
Of course, all the Jews went crazy. “Tut, tut” they said, “Violence. Oh dear” and of course, all the old lefties and Christians dutifully followed suit.
The same happened to me when I first visited Ingrid Rimland’s Zundelsite and noted the nationalistic German symbols and Jewish stereotypes. “Tut, tut,” I said to myself, “Anti-Semitism. Oh dear.” (In fact, I think I even had the effrontery to write to Ingrid and offer her some advice on the matter – we Jews just cannot resist a bit of gate-keeping).
But the truth is, the oppressed will resist any way they can and you cannot tell them how to do it – especially if you’re a member of the tribe doing the oppressing.
But back to David Duke. I can well understand how a young man could join an organisation that in his later years he may not wish to join. (Here I must make it clear that I am NOT saying that the modern KKK is an organisation that no-one should join and If Dr Duke did want to join it, but didn’t perhaps for strategic reasons, I’d be intrigued to know why and I’d admire his constancy) and anyway, how many Jews and others, once enthusiastic Zionist ethnic-cleansers now grace the platforms of solidarity meetings? And how many now very acceptable leftists are strongly allied to organisations and ideologies that have probably caused more death and misery than any others?
But anyway, David Duke has never disavowed his past and, for that, I do admire him greatly.
That leaves David Duke as he is now. I’ve read him, listened to him and briefly spoken to him and I see and hear an intelligent, articulate and seemingly peaceful opponent of an abusive Jewish power and an eloquent spokesperson for what he sees as his beleagured ethnic group. He also has piles of guts.

Leaving aside for a moment what Dr. Duke is or isn’t, what should we do when someone bad does something good? The Holocaust establishment loves to inhibit all enquiry into the Holocaust narrative by saying that the revisionists are all right-wing or, Germans or, even worse, Nazis (gasp).
My view has always been to welcome them and pretty much ignore the ‘bad’ things they may do elsewhere. For example, if Ariel Sharon wants to remember Deir Yassin (for the right reasons) as far as I’m concerned he’s very welcome.
Generally, free speech is free speech and, for me, pretty well an absolute. Oh, I know there are exceptions, but I’ve hardly ever come across any, and the onus is absolutely on the would-be censor to prove his/her case – and to a very high level of proof. As far as this blog is concerned, I’d like to post any articulate, coherent voice that says something interesting. That goes for Nazis, racists, Zionists, peaceniks, Jews, Christians, Muslims, anti-Semites, philo-Semites, gays, straights, homophobes, sexists, feminists – you name it.
Finally, what is meant by this ‘racism’ that is so intolerable to everyone? Is to be conscious of your own ethnicity racist? Is it racist to react when you see your ethnic group seemingly threatened. Surely, the only real racism is believing (and acting) as if your group was inherently superior to others in every way.
I don’t think David Duke feels like that – but we Jews certainly do.
Racist Tales
A Confession and a Family Story
First the confession. Some time ago I was traveling on the London Underground. Opposite me was a black woman. Having lived in innerLondon all my life, and out of choice, always amongst every kind of ethnicity, the presence of a black woman on the tube really means nothing to me at all.
But this black woman was like no black woman I had ever seen. I don’t know where she was from, AfricaI suppose, but her ethnicity was one that I had never before come across – her features were completely and utterly unfamiliar to me.
Her colour was a blue-black of an intensity and depth I had never before encountered and her facial bone structure was of no type that I had ever seen before. And when I looked at her eyes they were to me expressionless and impenetrable. At that moment I could not and did not have any idea what she might be thinking or feeling. If I had spoken to her she might have answered me in clear and understandable English (the only language I understand) and I would have learned so much about her and I am also sure that had she smiled or expressed anger or sorrow I would have at once seen all her humanity. But she did none of these things and I tell you, at that moment, sitting alone on that tube train with this woman – a stranger to me in every way – I could not for the life of me see her as human in quite the way that I see myself as human.
Did I seriously doubt this woman’s humanity? Of course I did not. Did I see her as less than me? I don’t think so. Did I wish her any harm? God forbid. Am I a racist? You decide.
Now the family story: My wife had an elderly relative who lived in the Lancashire town of Rochdale. Her name was Auntie Eva. I had never met Auntie Eva until, some years ago myself, my wife and our children journeyed up north to visit Auntie Eva. She was just delightful – a clever, funny, unassuming sparrow of a woman who, now widowed, lived quietly and alone in the same little two-up-two-down in the same tiny little cobbled street in which she had lived devotedly for years with her husband.
Auntie Eva loved her little house and she loved her little street which was now filled, without exception, with Bangladeshis. The people were Bangladeshi, the language was Bangladeshi , the food was Bangladeshi, the shops were Bangladeshi – Auntie Eva was the only Englishwoman in a thriving and lively Bangladeshi community – in a sense Auntie Eva was a stranger in her own home. I don’t know if Auntie Eva minded but whether she did or she didn’t, she seemed to view her neighbours in exactly the same spirit with which she viewed the rest of the world and her place in it – with gentle but chirpy contentment.
At lunch, suddenly during our conversation Auntie Eva referred to her neighbours as ‘the Pakis’ (In the UK a well-known abusive word for Pakistanis). Well, I looked at my wife and my wife looked at me and we both looked at both our children and both our children looked at both of us – and we all shifted uncomfortably and tried to focus. But Auntie Eva carried on referring to her Bangladeshi neighbours as ‘the Pakis’ and she continued to do this easily and naturally with the same quiet grace with which she made all her utterances, and with not a breath of malice. Was Auntie Eva a racist?
Some time later, we again made the journey to Rochdale and again because of Auntie Eva – but this time it was to attend her funeral. As the small funeral cortege drew up outside the tiny little terraced house to take Auntie Eva to her final resting place, all of Auntie Eva’s Bangladeshi neighbours came out of their houses – the men, the women and the children – to accompany Auntie Eva to her final resting place. The simple truth was that Auntie Eva loved the Pakis and the Pakis loved Auntie Eva.
Was Auntie Eva a racist? You decide.
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