Excellent essay. You’re asking the “why”, and I’d like to propose an answer, if I may.

In my opinion, the White parenting is not the “why”, but the “how”. The “why” is the fear of the other, and how that fear was manipulated for political power.

I believe that what you’re seeing in so many Whites today — their apparent anger and their belief that such anger and violence is approved by their peers — is a direct result of a confluence of three major factors.

The first factor was the rise of the Religious Right. The 1964 GOP presidential candidate Barry Goldwater saw this coming:

“Mark my word, if and when these preachers get control of the [Republican] party, and they’re sure trying to do so, it’s going to be a terrible damn problem. Frankly, these people frighten me. Politics and governing demand compromise. But these Christians believe they are acting in the name of God, so they can’t and won’t compromise. I know, I’ve tried to deal with them.”

The second factor was Nixon’s “Southern Strategy”. Here’s the pertinent quote from Nixon’s political strategist Kevin Phillips:

From now on, the Republicans are never going to get more than 10 to 20 percent of the Negro vote and they don’t need any more than that… but Republicans would be shortsighted if they weakened enforcement of the Voting Rights Act. The more Negroes who register as Democrats in the South, the sooner the Negrophobe whites will quit the Democrats and become Republicans. That’s where the votes are. Without that prodding from the blacks, the whites will backslide into their old comfortable arrangement with the local Democrats.

It should be noted that the GOP knows how damaging this quote is, because both Candace Owens and Dinesh D’Souza have tried to claim that Nixon’s Southern Strategy was a myth.

The third factor was the media in the form of the rise of right-wing talk radio and televangelists, soon followed by Fox News.

The Right was convinced by preachers that it was a sin to compromise with (or even listen to) liberals, followed by the eager acceptance by the GOP of southern White racists into the party (who soon became the strongest base of the GOP), and right-wing talk radio, Fox News, and the internet informed racist Whites across the nation that they were not alone.

Thus the White racists were convinced that God and ‘Murica was on their side, and that it was God’s will that anything the liberals wanted was to be opposed (’cause Satan, y’know). This grew to include not just abortion, but welfare, social security, climate change, gun control…and equal rights. To the Right, if liberals supported it, it must be not just wrong, but evil.

The White racist parents accepted this…and so that’s what their children learned in their homes. That’s how I was raised and what I learned in the home.

Then when the news came out in August 2008 that America would be majority-minority in a few decades, followed that November by the election of the first Black man to reside in the White House, the right wing went crazy. In 2006, the GOP in Congress had voted almost in lockstep to reauthorize the Voting Rights Act, but in 2013, they all cheered as one when the conservative-led SCOTUS gutted that same law.

As the parents, so the children. Acorns rarely fall far from the tree (I’m an exception, thank goodness).

What’s the solution? The discussion of White parenting is important, even crucial to our current society…but that’s not the solution. Here’s the thing to remember: the White Right thinks it’s at war, and has a wartime mentality. In war, one doesn’t care how one wins, as long as one wins e.g. Trump. They know he’s stupid beyond words, but as long as he’s working what they think is God’s will, they’ll support him. That’s why even now he has an 80%+ approval rating among Republicans.

There’s a precept of war that a country is not conquered until the populace accepts that it is beaten. The White Right has to be beaten, and beaten decisively…and even if Trump is soundly beaten in 2020, the White Right won’t accept defeat. I believe that will only happen a couple decades after America becomes majority-minority, when most Whites finally get the memo that America is not now and never will be again a White nation. I believe that’s when we’ll finally see the death spiral of white supremacy as a major force in American politics…and in American homes.

I sincerely hope that we all live to see that day.

Written by

Retired Navy. Inveterate contrarian. If I haven’t done it, I’ve usually done something close.

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