Sean Hannity Celebrates White Supremacy

FOX News talking head Sean Hannity aired a video clip of Sonia Sotomayor, Supreme Court nominee, wherein she states “I am a product of affirmative action. I am the perfect affirmative action baby.” He introduced the clip by saying:

Apparently being the beneficiary of reverse discrimination is a matter of pride for Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor. Included in some of the materials recently submitted to Congress for the confirmation process is a tape of Judge Sotomayor singing the praises of affirmative action.

The title of this blog post may not be sincere, but it’s not too far off the mark either.  You see, when Hannity takes a complicated issue like race and opportunity, and then reduces it down to a trite form of rhetorical spin by calling it “reverse discrimination,” well, he has to live with the equally rational consequences.  Sean Hannity thinks white people should get opportunities because they are white.  That is “white supremacy” in its practical (and most frequent) application.

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Because that’s what affirmative action sought to do.  It sought to undo what had been a centuries-long policy of affirmative action for “white” folks by trying to identify qualified or potentially qualified people of color and provide for them an opportunity to achieve.  It is vital to note, that opportunity was a mere slice of the government-funded opportunities afforded to “white” people.

Even if we only consider that period in US history from the 1930s to the 1970s–when new programs of “white” affirmative action were instituted and, later, new programs for people of color followed–this case becomes clear.  We can list the government-protected benefits which were both formally and informally denied to nonwhites: Social Security; job training in the Armed Forces; the full use of the GI Bill; unemployment benefits; FHA home loans; government incentives for home ownership; union rights; minimum wage and overtime rights; and the list goes on and on. This doesn’t even substantially include the day-to-day forms of discrimination people of color formally encountered.  This doesn’t include the other systemic forms of marginalization they faced (lack of protected voting rights and the like).

Affirmative action is often seen as a creation of the 1960s or 1970s, but that policy was crafted from the government-sponsored incentives and benefit structures of an earlier part of the century.  Calling it “reverse discrimination” separates it from its historical context and tries to analyze it as only a discrete practice–discrimination in the literal sense.  But it’s a hollow metaphor.  It’s the equivalent of calling a cup of water an ocean.

The failure of affirmative action was not in the Sonia Sotomayors of this world, people who have proven their distinction of being recipients of affirmative action policies.  Its failure isn’t in the way it discriminated against “whites,” a class of people whose status within the benefit structures of US society continues to reign supreme.  It is in the way affirmative action policies turned “racial justice” into “racial representation.”

Even when it opened up the spigot to people of color, it never turned it off for “whites.”  More importantly, it never forced “whites” to even consider why it was they were soaking wet.  Dripping all over the floor, it continued to allow an entire society of people to pretend that they were bone dry and thirsty.

Affirmative action was flawed, yes.  But it sought to address a real problem, one Sean Hannity won’t even acknowledge exists, because it is one that benefits him to this day.

2 thoughts on “Sean Hannity Celebrates White Supremacy

  1. I can understand how the writer feels about whites, as I am cursed with the white flesh; the lack of pigmentation in my skin has been a hindrance to my success all my life. My family immigrated from across the globe; I am a descendant of, Greece, Italy, Ireland, Scotland, English, German, and Cherokee Indian. My parents were never able to receive any preferential treatment from the government because of the persecution that my grandparents had gone through. Upon examination of my my Indian heritage, the Indians were slaughtered by the thousands and nearly hunted to extinction. The Irish despised the Italians because they crossed picket lines to work and provide for their families. I am an amalgamation of ethnic groups who were discriminated against at one point in time during the past hundred years. I feel an internal battle raging inside my flesh, one nationality waging war with the other, and my mind’s eye screaming at the parts that make me whole, I am not white! I am an American with Greek, Italian, Scottish, Irish, English, German, and Indian decendants.
    The ties that have bound America so close together for so many years has been the fact that immigrants who came to the U.S. considered themselves Americans first and foremost. There was months of anticipation waiting for your documents to arrive, a nervous excitement rippling through your veins as your tear open the letter, then a rush of pride flooding your whole body knowing that from hear forth you are an American Citizen. When special interest groups try to promote one race, religion, sex, or sexuality over another it is inevitable that someone is going to feel oppressed by such actions. Soon, we are no longer American of Greek, Italian, Scottish, Irish, English, German, and Indian decent. We will become, Italian American, Mexican America, African American, or Iraqi American. We are becoming fractions of a whole, whom ever said “ Together We Stand, Divied We Fall” could be the wisest words ever spoken.
    It is important to know the past to keep from making the same mistakes of the past. Granted the past ninety years the majority of Supreme Court Justices has been white Males, but you cannot try to make up for the lost time by forcing the oppression of one group for the benefit of the other. If we as a nation continue to live in the past, we will never see our future.

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