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OPINION

White Man Down: Frustration is Not Racism

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AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez, File

About Scott Adams, the white male creator of the (once) popular "Dilbert" comic strip, The Washington Post wrote: "On his Feb. 22 episode of 'Real Coffee With Scott Adams,' the creator of the comic strip 'Dilbert' decided to riff on a much-criticized Rasmussen poll and promote a type of segregation. He declared that Black Americans are part of a 'hate group' and urged White people to 'get the hell away from Black people.'"

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National Public Radio condemned Adams' "racist rant." His distributor dropped him after several outlets, including the Los Angeles Times and The Washington Post, stopped carrying the strip. Adams later said his comments were "hyperbole," but the damage was done.

About the "much criticized" Rasmussen Poll, it asked American adults the following question: "Do you agree or disagree with this statement: 'It's OK to be white.'" Eighty-one percent of white of American adults strongly or somewhat agree, 7% strongly or somewhat disagreed and 13% responded, "not sure." As for blacks, 53% strongly or somewhat agree, 26% strongly or somewhat disagree and 21% of blacks responded, "not sure."

In interpreting the poll, Adams confusingly said, "If nearly half of all Blacks are not okay with white people...that's a hate group." Twenty-six percent of blacks strongly or somewhat disagreeing is not "nearly half." Also, Adams made no comment on the nearly 20% of whites who either strongly or somewhat disagree or are not sure whether "it's OK to be white." Presumably, Adams would not want them as neighbors either.

Adams said a lot of things in his "racist tirade," including that he tried to be supportive of blacks, but felt his efforts were not appreciated: "So I think it makes no sense whatsoever, as a white citizen of America, to try to help Black citizens anymore. It doesn't make sense. There's no longer a rational impulse. And so, I'm going to back off from being helpful to Black America, because it doesn't seem like it pays off. Like I've been doing it all my life and the only outcome is I get called a racist." He also said he is kindred spirits with those who believe in hard work and merit.

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Do you really think Adams, a former Bernie Sanders supporter, is the only white person who feels this sense of frustration? After all, we have had affirmative action or race-based preferences now for over 50 years. And some black students want separate dorms and graduation ceremonies. How is that different from what Adams said?

Nearly every major city from New York to Los Angeles has or has had a black mayor, with many having or having had black police chiefs. Yet, when a black suspect was mistreated recently in Memphis, the black mayor of Los Angeles suggested the cops would have reacted differently had the suspect not been black. Never mind the cops and the Memphis police chief are black.

In Baltimore in 2015, black suspect Freddie Gray died in police custody. The mayor was black; the number one and number two in charge of the police department were black; three of the six officers charged were black; the police department is majority minority; City Council is all Democrat, majority black; the state attorney who brought the charges was black; the judge before whom two of the officers tried their case, and who found them not guilty, was black; and U.S. attorney, Loretta Lynch, was black, as was then-President Barack Obama. Yet despite all these black players and decision-makers, the Department of Justice announced a civil rights investigation.

At a time when anti-black racism has never been less of a factor, most blacks demand reparations, properly described as payments from those who were never slaveowners to be given to those who were never slaves. Schools promote concepts like critical race theory that characterize whites as oppressors and blacks as victims. Some blacks complain about "microaggressions." If in response to "Black Lives Matter," a white person says, "All Lives Matter," all hell breaks loose.

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Is it really surprising that some whites, like Adams, are now saying, "Check, please!"? He just said it out loud. Frustration is not racism.

Larry Elder is a bestselling author and nationally syndicated radio talk-show host. To find out more about Larry Elder, or become an "Elderado," visit www.LarryElder.com. Follow Larry on Twitter @larryelder. To read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate webpage at www.creators.com.


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