Things Don’t Change

So, the dude who led the mob that beat up that couple in Brentwood got arrested for attacking his wife and father-in-law who were pissed at him for having an affair with his father-in-law’s new wife.

Ha ha ha.

But also, I can totally see racist groups in the 50s falling apart in the same way.

A thing I’m curious about–though not curious enough to really dig into it–is how you can behave these ways and still believe yourself to be “supreme.” Like at what point do they think the moral superiority is going to kick in? Or do they think that carrying on like this is better than whatever “they” do.

There are parts of racism I get–really well, too well. I get the woman at the coffee shop who is looking for a place to sit and who demands a black woman whose cup is almost empty get up and give her that spot. I get how tempting it is to believe that some people just aren’t as smart as other people and it’s genetic and race-based. I get the systemic racism. I get the positive feedback loop it instills in white people which makes itself very hard to even recognize, let alone stop. It’s hard to turn away from pleasure.

And I get the “I hate you” racism. The “let’s go beat up some black kids” or “let’s go scare those Asian kids.” Again, it’s the pleasure of the bully.

But “I’m better than you” is a claim that must, I’d think, be constantly tested. It has to be perpetuated by comparison (which is how systemic racism plays into it). But obviously the comparison must often show you that you’re not all that. None of these white supremacists are as good looking as, say, Idris Elba. If they have a superior social structure, why are they beating each other and fucking around on each other? If they’re so great, why do their lives suck?

How do they look at their own lives and convince themselves that this is the evidence that they are superior? I just do not understand it.

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