The Pseudoscience Attack on the South
By Gail Jarvis
March 1, 2018
The term “science” is applied rather loosely today. In some cases what we call science might be more appropriately labeled pseudoscience. The field of sociology comes to mind. It is more politically correct that scientifically objective, and you would be hard put to find a sociologist who doesn’t hold Leftist political views.
Sociological theories, questionable to begin with, are being further reinterpreted to justify Leftist socio/political agendas. In the early 1800s, sociology was created to analyze and improve societies. But scholars have never agreed whether sociology is a science or simply an ideology. Its founders didn’t even agree on sociological interpretations.
Two of sociology’s founders, Herbert Spencer and Karl Marx, held diametricaly opposed views. Spencer believed the state shouldn’t tinker with society because society was self-correcting, whereas Marx insisted the state needed to regulate society because the poor were being exploited by the rich. Contemporary sociologists tend to follow Marx’s state-controlled approach whereas society would be better served if they followed Spencer’s laissez-faire strategy.
Around the 1920s, sociology began to grab the public’s attention and, for the most part, the public was taken in by it. But sociologists had become too eager to disparage traditions, insisting on their elimination. Some scholars began to recognize the harmful effects that implementing sociological theories could have on society. Southern Agrarian Donald Davidson was not only a poet and literary critic, but also an insightful arbiter of social trends. In the early 20th century, Davidson characterized the activities of sociologists this way: “Wherever they went on their missions of social justice, they carried with them a legend of the future, more dangerously abstract than the legend of the past.”
Davidson’s critique of sociology is as relevant today as when he voiced it. Sociologists disparage customs that have developed over the years, and demand that they be “modernized.” Yet the ideologies they propose to bring society “up-to-date” are often counterproductive. Sociologists tend to think that cultures should be “standardized” which involves minimizing or eliminating regional differences. – Southern heritage is considered a particularly negative regional difference which is at variance with the goal of implementing a “uniform” culture.
The sociological gibberish being put forth today is not much different from Sigmund Freud’s phony psychoanalysis in which he claimed he could interpret his patients’ subconscious minds; which, of course, he could not. Not surprisingly, his interpretations always fit one of his fanciful psychosexual complexes. Like Freud, sociologists maintain they can find hidden meanings that conflict with the reasons given by Americans for celebrating their heritage. The hidden meanings always fit one of their trendy sociological disorders: Racism, Homophobia, Sexism, Transphobia, Islamophobia, Xenophobia, and, the current favorite, White Supremacy.
Sagacious sociologists have determined that Confederate memorials do not celebrate heritage but “subconsciously” express hate. An example is Dr. Jasmine Harris, an assistant professor of sociology at Pennsylvania’s Ursinus College. Her scholastic expertise includes “race, class, and gender, and the intersectionality of those identities, particularly as they pertain to minority experiences.” According to Dr. Harris, Confederate monuments are not about heritage, but rather “the statues are a superficial way to talk about white supremacist culture without actually saying white supremacist culture.”
Ms. Harris’s racist rationale for Southern memorials is blithely accepted by Liberals who believe an assistant professor of sociology in Pennsylvania knows better than local Georgia residents why they have a Confederate monument in their town square.
Another sociology professor has attained celebrityhood with his anti-Southern diatribes. James Loewen claims that textbook history is influenced by racism and needs to be “de-Confederatized.” Even an insinuation that the antebellum South might have had redeeming qualities goes against the agenda promoted by Loewen and the Left. Loewen’s textbook attacks got media’s attention and gained him televised appearances that enhanced his status. His versions of history are ideally suited for television audiences. Like PBS and The History Channel, Loewen avoids complexity and explains history simplistically, with as few variables as possible. Loewen’s sociological history is what we might call “tabloid science.“
Mr. Loewen also has concerns about the history test given to immigrants who want to become U.S. citizens. The question he objects to asks, “Name one problem that led to the Civil War.” It then gives three acceptable answers: “slavery, economic reasons, and states’ rights.” Loewen adamantly claims that the answer is obviously “slavery” and insists that the other two choices shouldn’t have been listed. Offering ‘economic reasons and states rights’ as choices gives the impression that something in addition to slavery might have played a role in the conflict between North and South. This conflicts with the version approved by elites.
House minority leader Nancy Pelosi has called for the removal of all Confederate statues in the U.S. Capitol. She claims:“The Confederate statues in the halls of Congress have always been reprehensible.” That’s not true. No complaints were made against these statues until political correctness came into vogue. And criticisms of the statues still only come from those on the Left. It is highly unlikely that Nancy Pelosi has ever read a history book, but she just assumes that anti-Southern rhetoric is currently a winning political strategy. Her Confederacy criticisms are on the same level as the anti-Southern humor offered by shallow TV entertainers. Their knowledge of history is as weak as Pelosi’s, limited to the currently sanctioned narrative.
Those demanding the removal of Confederate statues want the public to believe they represent a grassroots effort. But much of the funding for their removal endeavors can be traced to radical Left-wing sources. Also, opinion polls indicate that the majority of Americans believe Confederate monuments represent heritage and should be left alone. Social Justice Warriors are now demanding the removal of memorials honoring our Founding Fathers and other presidents. Some examples illustrate how dangerous their cultural cleansing is becoming.
A CNN commentator insists that George Washington, Thomas Jefferson and Robert E. Lee statues “all need to come down” because of they went along with the slavery views of their time. A Chicago pastor petitioned the City Council to remove President Andrew Jackson’s name from a city park because he owned slaves.
A student at Wisconsin’s James Madison Memorial High School reasons that, as her school is named after a slave-owning president, it creates a hostile environment for black students, while the Buffalo, New York NAACP wants reminders of President Millard Fillmore ended because he signed the Fugitive Slave Act.
Protesters at New York City’s American Museum of Natural History incredibly demanded the removal of the equestrian statue of President Theodore Roosevelt because his guide appears to be an “oppressed” black man. The University of Texas removed it’s 80 year-old statue of President Woodrow Wilson from the campus presumably because he acquiesced with his generation’s racial opinions. Finally, the senior editor of Brooklyn’s Vice News demands that Mount Rushmore must be destroyed because the presidents depicted symbolize a time of slavery and racism.
The increasingly exaggerated malevolent consequences of White Supremacy voiced by TV celebrities and pseudoscientists has created disrespect for American heritage. This disrespect has already caused serious damage to our nation’s culture. Demands for heritage memorial removals must be brought under control while it is still possible to do so.
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