Shame on Kristen Clarke for Hiding Her Racism Behind her Race
This essay should not be misinterpreted. It presents a snapshot of events from many years ago. The meaning of these past occurrences are for the reader to decide. Moreover, I have no idea if Clarke still holds fast to the worldview expressed in these paragraphs. People change.
Furthermore, I do not mean to imply that Kristen Clarke is a bad person. Too often, the press tends to judge a person's character in terms of their subjective POV on racial issues. Malcolm X was a racist. He taught a racist religion (theology of the white devil). He taught a racist interpretation of history. He engaged in racial demagoguery. Yet, by most accounts, Malcolm X was a person of good and strong character.
Kristen Clarke is clearly a qualified candidate, but I believe her views on 'race' are deeply misguided. My primary objection to her nomination is that she tends to view the problem of crime and violence in urban majority black neighborhoods as a product of 'white racism', but this is a cop-out by a black spokesperson of her stature. In my opinion, this is an inappropriate view for someone being nominated to an important position of leadership in the US Justice Department.
Shame on Kristen Clarke for Hiding Her Racism Behind her Race
Imagine the following scenario.
A white Harvard Student leader brings a white racist and Holocaust denier to campus. He’s a mixture of David Irving, the infamous British historian and convicted anti-Semite, and David Duke. This white racist intellectual is known for such works as The Jewish Onslaught and Race First. Twenty years later, President Biden nominates this same white Harvard alumna to lead the Civil Rights Division of the Justice Department. Suddenly, news of her promotion of this white ‘Jew hater’ is revealed to the press.
Just ask yourself one question: would the Washington Post, New York Magazine, and the Forward publish articles that supported her nomination? Would thesy excuse her actions as a student leader at Harvard as ‘college high-jinx’, as they are with Kristen Clarke, a black woman? Would they call it a smear campaign?
The answer is no, of course. They would denounce her, and that would be the end of it. Her nomination would be quickly withdrawn. Instead, these liberal voices, including Jewish voices, are defending her because of her race. She’s even got a Rabbi in her corner. In some ways, their argument reminds me of Bill Clinton’s defense for smoking Marijuana in college: he didn’t inhale.
Let me tell you, Kristen Clarke definitely inhaled as far as Tony Martin’s anti-Jewish propaganda is concerned.
This is not wholly abnormal for the liberal-leaning press in this country. They tend to practice a kind of Affirmative Action in their assessment of racial bigotry. One standard for black public figures, and another more rigorous standard for white people. A white person in Kristen Clarke’s shoes would be summarily dismissed & rebuked, even by the liberals, and rightly so. But Clarke’s a prominent black woman, a so-called ‘Civil Rights Leader’, and so she gets special treatment from the liberal media when it comes to issues of race.
These lame apologies for clear indications of racism & anti-semitism are deeply misguided. They attempt to depict this nomination process as a poor innocent black girl being smeared by so-called ‘white racist conservative media’, with Tucker Carlson as the boogeyman. They spin things as if ‘racist white conservatives’ are attempting to deny Clarke a ‘seat at the table’ because of her race. But the truth is the opposite.
In this particular case, Tucker Carlson has it more right than the Rabbi. In this specific instance, it is so-called ‘conservative media’ who are presenting the more accurate ‘race narrative’, and the ‘liberal voices’ who are misrepresenting it, and protecting a racial bigot in the process, just to advance their short term political goals. The liberals are wrong on this one.
The only ‘racial conspiracies’ in this scenario are the ones floating around in Kristen Clarke’s head, including anti-Jewish conspiracy theories. Kristen Clarke is in fact hiding behind her race. She and these writers are using her race as an excuse for a history of racially bigoted and anti-semitic statements and policies, while in a position of student leadership at Harvard. Be confident that when Clarke brought Tony Martin to campus, her decision was based on the fact that she thought he had an important message for black Harvard students. Martin’s message about white people and Jews in particular, resonated with Clarke.
And what was Tony Martin’s message?
Let’s take a quick look at the book he published just before being invited to speak at Harvard by Kristen Clarke, The Jewish Onslaught. Be certain that despite what Jennifer Rubin might write, no one ‘invites themselves’ to Harvard, not even the notorious Jew-hater, Tony Martin. If that were true, every hack writer and intellectual would be knocking on Harvard’s door. You have to be invited by someone with the authority to do so. Someone like the BSA president, Kristen Clarke. The March 1995 issue of the Journal of American History, begins its review of Martin’s book in the following manner:
This is not a work of scholarship. It is not likely to convince skeptical readers . It is a scurrilous
polemic ‘written in the heat of battle’ by an embattled historian - a self- described ‘intended victim’ of ‘purveyors of intolerance’.
In 1993, Wellesley College historian Tony Martin… assigned ‘The Secret Relationship between Blacks and Jews’, published in 1991 by the Historical Research Department of the Nation of Islam, as a reading for his survey course on African-American history . Martin's assignment of the book led Jewish students to monitor his class and prompted sharp criticisms from Jewish groups and others at Wellesley.
Tony Martin taught a book in his Afro-American history survey class published by the Nation of Islam (NOI) called the Secret Relationship between Blacks and Jews, in order to ‘illuminate’ his black students about what he considered to be the ‘true relationhip’ between blacks and Jews in this country. He thought this work of NOI anti-Jewish propaganda had an important message for his black students.
The Secret Relationship between Blacks and Jews was described by legendary black Harvard scholar Henry Louis Gates in a 1992 New York Times opinion piece as ‘one of the most sophisticated instances of hate literature yet compiled’ in black America. He speaks of this in the context of an article addressing what he called the new black anti-Semitism, of which Secret had become the new ‘Bible’ in Gates’ estimation:
While anti-Semitism is generally on the wane in this country, it has been on the rise among black Americans. A recent survey finds not only that blacks are twice as likely as whites to hold anti-Semitic views but -- significantly -- that it is among the younger and more educated blacks that anti-Semitism is most pronounced.
What Gates describes is not simply an ignorant racial bigotry against Jews that might arise among the undereducated and under-informed black American masses, but instead a sophisticated intellectual movement led by educated black elites. This was the environment in the mid 1990s at black Harvard. The majority of the black students wanted nothing to do with such rubbish, but those who assumed leadership roles, like Kristen Clarke, were disproportionately enamored with nutty racial conspiracy theories, including anti-Jewish conspiracy theories. These folks were steeped in the teachings of not only Malcolm X and Stokely Carmichael, but also Elijah Muhammad.
If Kristen Clarke was a more positive influence on black-Jewish relations at Harvard College than her immediate predecessors, it’s only because her immediate predecessors were so awful. The BSA president before her was literally a follower of the teachings of the NOI. He and his friends used to debate the ‘inner truth’ of Elijah Muhammad’s nutty racial theogony, concerning the ‘evil mad scientist Yacub’, who allegedly breed white people from black people in a laboratory, some five thousand years ago. You can read more about this nutty racial conspiracy theory, which is central to Elijah Muhammad’s theology, in the Autobiography of Malcolm X, where it is chronicled in detail.
What’s important to understand is that these were the kinds of debates that the BSA leadership were having at Harvard at the time that Kristen Clarke invited Tony Martin to campus. This was part of the black Harvard culture and institutions. It’s also important to understand that this worldview did not reflect the opinions of the majority of black Harvard students. Instead, a kind of racist activist political vanguard had taken control of Harvard’s ‘black institutions’, like the BSA, in order to promote a racialist and racially divisive agenda. People like Kristen Clarke.
The only people who really benefited from this agenda were the racist black student leaders themselves, because they got all the student headlines. This was good self-promotion. They were clever. Clarke was clever. Inviting Martin gave Clarke ‘street cred’ with the black racialist activist cohort at Harvard. I have no doubt she was nudged by the even more hardcore black racialists on Harvard’s campus to bring Martin to speak, because of his promotion of NOI teachings.
Martin’s The Jewish Onslaught is all about an alleged ‘Jewish conspiracy’ waged against Martin to deny blacks ‘the truth’ about their history. He tries to portray himself as a victim of Jewish anti-black racism & intolerance, for actively promoting NOI anti-Jewish propaganda in his classes at Wellesley College. In fact, he calls out Henry Louis Gates’ 1992 NYT article about the rise of black anti-Semitism in the book, describing Gates as ‘African America’s most notorious Judaeophile’. That’s right, Tony Martin calls Henry Louis Gates a ‘Jew-lover’ with contempt.
If this all sounds familiar, it’s because it reflects the claims that Kristen Clarke’s defenders are making today. They are claiming that she is being targeted in some racist anti-black ‘Jewish conspiracy’ against Clarke, when in fact those accusing her of racism & anti-Semitism are the ones speaking the truth. Just like Martin’s critics. If you would not defend Martin, then do not defend Clarke, because the two situations have effectively the same dynamic. Do not be fooled.
Looking back on things, Kristen Clarke, like many of the black Harvard racial activists, possessed tremendous ‘racial paranoia’. She was always saying things like: “They’re so obsessed with us.” Meaning that white Harvard students were obsessed with the black students. But in my opinion, Clarke was delusional when it came to matters of race. It was black students like Clarke who were obsessed with white people.
She was obsessed and paranoid about what white people thought of her, of black people. Frankly, she was overly concerned about what white people thought about black people, and this paranoia was stoked and molded by the racial conspiracy theories she imbibed reading books like: The Secret Relationship between Blacks and Jews, The Jewish Onslaught, Message to the Blackman (Elijah Muhammad), and The Autobiography of Malcolm X. These books, taken as gospel by too many of the black Harvard racial activists, are filled with pernicious and nutty racial conspiracy theories, which I believe affects the thinking of so-called black leaders like Kristen Clarke today.
I remember one instance vividly, when I encountered Kristen Clarke in Harvard Yard, in the court, in front of the great Widener Library. I had just purchased a biography of Malcolm X at one of the many wonderful used book shops populating Harvard Square at that time. The book happened to be written by Peter Goldman. I chose it because another black student at Harvard recommended it, whose opinion I valued. He advised me not to dismiss the book just because the author was white, and that he thought it a better treatment of its subject than much of the scholarship by black authors.
I was excited, and showed Clarke the cover of the book, simply out of a desire to share my enthusiasm. I knew she was interested in ‘black history’ and Malcolm X. She took one look at the name on the cover, ‘Peter Goldman’, and then she flew into a rage. She began an anti-Jewish rant which culminated in a statement that I will never forget:
Jews are trying to steal black history.
This shocked me. I was literally speechless. Moreover, I was offended. While I am not Jewish, my father was. My grandmother was Jewish and a Zionist, even before it was fashionable. She was an active and committed member of the Zionist movement before the State of Israel was even founded. Most of my Jewish family in Europe, whether in the Ukraine or Romania, were murdered during World War II. A fact my Jewish family, especially my father, never let me forget.
When Kristen Clarke invited Tony Martin to speak at Harvard, she did so because his work resonated with her. She brought Martin to Harvard’s campus for the same reason that Martin himself taught NOI anti-Jewish propaganda in his Wellesley classroom:
She thought Tony Martin had an important ‘Message to
the Blackman’, to quote Elijah Muhammad.
Aristarchus Patrinos (Il Trovatore);
April 2, 2021; < 2000 words