Is filmmaker Michael Moore a bigot?
1/16/2003 12:00:00 AM - Larry Elder
America's alleged excessive gun ownership results from an
inordinate, unfair and implicitly racist fear of blacks.
Michael Moore, producer of the anti-gun documentary, "Bowling
For Columbine," so argued in his appearance late last year on The Oprah
Winfrey Show. To Winfrey's in-studio, attentive, predominantly white female
audience, Moore intoned, "What I feel is so sad about this, Oprah, is that
we're at a point where it's almost like a mental illness with us, a
collective mental illness, that we see a black person and we suddenly get
afraid. Those of us who are white, ask yourself, who do you think it is that
might harm you if you walk out of here at night? Is it little freckle-faced
Jimmy? Is that the image that pops into your head? Or is it Hakim, or Jose?
You know, if we're honest, we know the answer to that question." Really.
People who keep guns at home, maintains Moore, do so for fear of
blacks, rather than for self-protection, irrespective of the race of the bad
guy. OK, let's play that game. Let's assume whites do, in fact, fear "black
perpetrated crime" more than "white perpetrated crime." Is that really
irrational, if not racist? Just how often do blacks victimize whites?
Twenty-five percent of young black men possess criminal records,
according to government studies, either in jail, on parole or on probation.
For the most part, murder victims are killed by a member of their same race.
But, although blacks comprise only 12 percent of the population, economist
and columnist Walter Williams writes, "According to U.S. Department of
Justice statistics, blacks commit 54 percent of murders, 42 percent of
forcible rapes, 59 percent of robberies and 38 percent of aggravated
assaults . . . In the case of interracial violent crime, blacks are 50 times
more likely to commit violent crimes against whites than whites against
Williams also notes, "Since 1972, the U.S. Department of Justice
has conducted a National Crime Victimization Survey to determine the
frequency of certain crimes. One category is interracial crimes. Its most
recent publication (1997), 'Criminal Victimization in the U.S.,' reports on
data collected in 1994. In that year, there were about 1,700,000 interracial
crimes, of which 1,276,030 involved whites and blacks. In 90 percent of the
cases, a white was the victim and a black was the perpetrator, while in 10
percent of the cases it was the reverse." For the year 2000, according to
the National Crime Victimization Survey, blacks committed over 1.5 million
violent crimes in 2000, with half of those involving white victims.
Now get this. Incredibly, Moore, in another setting, suggested
people should fear blacks.
The "documentary" maker, late last year, gave a series of talks
in England, where he discussed "Bowling" while offering his views on
America, crime and guns. Columnist Yasmin Alibhai-Brown of The Independent
(UK), wrote, "I took my son to see Michael Moore live at the Roundhouse, in
North London, before Christmas. The U.S. radical and author of the
best-selling book 'Stupid White Men' was (mostly) clever, funny, angry,
sharp, iconoclastic and skeptical about the lies and humbug processed by the
U.S. government and big business . . . What we did not expect was to feel so
enraged at one point that we almost walked out. It was when Moore went into
a rant about how the passengers on the planes on 11 September were
scaredy-cats because they were mostly white. If the passengers had included
black men, he claimed, those killers, with their puny bodies and
unimpressive small knives, would have been crushed by the dudes, who as we
all know take no disrespect from anybody . . . "
Moore, on the one hand, criticizes the Oprah audience for their
alleged unfair and irrational fear of blacks. But then he flips, and
celebrates this alleged perception of black aggressiveness -- wishing more
blacks had been on the Sept. 11 hijacked planes -- and chastises weak-kneed
whites for their passivity successfully exploited by the Sept. 11 hijackers.
Tell that to the widow of Flight 93's Todd Beamer and the other heroic
passengers who stopped that plane from its likely Washington, D.C.,
Not that Moore cares, but it was America's gun-control movement
that sprouted from racist soil. Infamous Chief Justice Roger Taney, of Dred
Scott fame, wrote that if blacks were "entitled to the privileges and
immunities of citizens . . . (i)t would give persons of the (N)egro race,
who were recognized as citizens in any one state of the union, the right . .
. to keep and carry arms wherever they went. And all of this would be done
in the face of the subject race of the same color, both free and slaves, and
inevitably producing discontent and insubordination among them, and
endangering the peace and safety of the state . . . "
Meanwhile, Moore's "Bowling" recently received an award for best
documentary of all time from the International Documentary Association,
despite the film's deceit, half-truths and distortions.
There are lies, damn lies, and the insufferable Michael Moore.