Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Can black people find common ground with klansmen?

Another question, for the consideration and commentary of those of you reading this. Once again, I keep this open-ended and simple, and I await your responses.

5 comments:

Syllabus said...

I'm curious about where you're going with this.

Can they? That's more up to the Klansmen then to the black people, IMO. It's a two-way street, and one which I don't think that the Klansmen would particularly be inclined to embark upon.

Crude said...

Alright. I'm going to be a little pedantic here, so hopefully you or someone else can put up with that for a little.

You say it's more up to the klansmen than black people, and you don't think the klansmen would be up for it in any event.

Why? Why do you come to these conclusions? Explain a little more.

Syllabus said...

You say it's more up to the klansmen than black people, and you don't think the klansmen would be up for it in any event.

Why? Why do you come to these conclusions? Explain a little more.


OK, I'll expand on that.

I think, based on stuff I've read about some events which took place between the KKK and Civil Rights-era black people (though, of course, there have been significant changes since then, and the reaction would not necessarily be the same today) where the blacks involved reached out more-or-less charitably to the people who were harassing them. The KKK, as one would perhaps expect, didn't exactly respond.

Now, I certainly think that something along those lines would be far less likely to happen today, due in no small part to the fact that, where there once was MLK, there are now people like Al Sharpton - that is, the people who are looked to as, I dunno, African-American role models or whatever have a very different message and tone nowadays than what they had in the 60s.

But, that being said, I can imagine, all other things being equal, a black person trying to engage a klansman. I have trouble imagining the reverse, because the KKK is, in large part, about hating black people, whereas black people aren't necessarily all about hating klansmen (though I have no doubt they're not terribly fond of them). I don't think it's necessary for a black person to hate a klansman; I do think the reverse is more likely to be true. So I can more readily imagine the seeking of common ground coming from a black person than from a klansman - which may simply say more about my imagination than about either group. But hopefully that's a little bit clearer.

Crude said...

Actually, regarding the KKK and blacks, this happened recently.

Now, here's the thing. Is it possible for there to be common ground between a black man and a klansman? Superficially, it seems possible. They're both human, they both want to be safe. They may both want to live in a city without litter, without crime.

But it seems like what's needed is respect. If one side hates the other - it doesn't matter what side - then you can't get anywhere. The problem with the klan (certainly as they were historically, and how we perceive them) is they're pretty damn hell-bent on... well, if not extermination, then isolation. They want blacks gone, they want people to DISLIKE blacks. They want blacks to be pariahs who are not tolerated, but are forced to leave - if not be eliminated. At least that's the perception.

In that vein, hypothetical common ground doesn't matter. It doesn't matter if both of them believe in God and love their children and, etc, etc, so long as that desire for extermination and zero-tolerance remains.

Sound fair? Am I tripping up?

BenYachov said...

No you can't have common ground between blacks and the KKK just as Christians wither liberal or conservative can't have common ground with Satanists.