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OPINION

‘Equity’ Is Not Equality – It’s Revenge

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AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster, File

One of the best dramas I’ve seen in a lifetime of TV is one I’m watching now called Sasmos, a series launched in 2021 on Alpha TV, a Greek free-to-air channel based in Kifissia, a suburb of Athens.

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I don’t speak Greek.  There are no English captions.  But thanks to my Greek-speaking better half, Tess, whose parents emigrated from Crete in the Ellis Island days, I can’t stop watching Sasmos.

Set in a mountainous village of Crete, the story focuses on two families – the Vroulakis and the Stamatakis – who are entangled in a 20-year blood feud that, if not stopped, threatens to spill into a new generation.  Getting to sasmos, or reconciliation, is the whole point of the story.  

The plot gets interesting after Argyro Vroulaki meets Asteris Stamatakis in a Berlin airport on her way back to Crete from Australia.  Everything clicks.  They fall in love, and it’s all very real.  

The two have no clue they are from the same village in Crete.  Argyro doesn’t know that Asteris is the youngest son of Vassilis Stamatakis, the man who murdered her father.  And Asteris doesn’t know that Argyro is the niece of Pavlos Vroulakis, the man who arranged to kill his father as revenge for the murder of hers.  

It was the “not knowing” that made love possible.  But it is the incessant regurgitating of tragic family history, kept fresh by an older generation, that keeps old hatreds pouring into new generations.  

But once they knew everything, it was too late for hate.  Easy passion congealed into a love that was far deeper than the old hatreds.  Argyro and Asteris could’ve been the perfect excuse for the two families to change the narrative, but the volcanic pressures of the old vendetta force them to love in secret.

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It’s heart-wrenching to watch two otherwise good families slogging through the muck of deep historic hatreds as they ebb and flow toward reconciliation. 

It’s crystal clear that Argyro and Asteris belong together, free of the tit-for-tat sins of their elders.  But the older generation, clinging to hatred, just can’t let go.  The tiniest slight gives them an excuse to bumble into a state of family war.

“How can you love the son of the man who killed your father?!” guilts the older generation who confuses raw hatred with honoring the dead.  Since reconciliation means forgetting, for them, hatred and revenge is mistaken for love and justice.  Prisoned inside that “love,” they are the villains of reconciliation – of sasmos.  

This strain of stubborn hatred is the same stuff that kept blood feuds hot between the Hatfields and the McCoys for nearly three decades.  It blinded the Hutus of Rwanda into butchering 800,000 innocent Tutsis in 1994.   It’s why Arab hatred of Israel seethes as fresh today as it did in the 1940s.  And it’s the same combustible stuff that Democrats, activists, and global technocrats use to drench the public discourse with an old history that inflames black anger toward whites.

“Innocent men, women and children hung by a noose from trees,” said Joe Biden last week at a White House screening of a new film about Emmett Till. “… bodies burned, drowned, castrated, lynched for simply being black – nothing more.  With white crowds, white families gathered to celebrate the spectacle, taking pictures of the bodies and mailing them as postcards.  Hard to believe that’s what was done. There’s some people still want to do that.”

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Still?  Who, Joe?  Not a single soul, of course.  “Some people” are ghosts.  

There’s so little white racism today that Biden and his ilk are reduced to jerry-rigging tragic history to grossly distorted current events to create menacing white racist devils that do not exist: “white privilege,” “systemic racism,” and “white supremacy.”

It’s so infuriating because “some people still want to do that” is a hideous lie that digs into long-healed racial wounds.  A new generation of Americans is being drenched with this stuff, for no good reason, in the name of achieving racial “equity.”

Biden just cemented the war against white racist ghosts in a sweeping new Executive Order on Further Advancing Racial Equity and Support for Underserved Communities Through the Federal Government.  It even includes a clause that embeds diversity, equity and inclusion into “Government-Wide Processes” using artificial intelligence.   

Yet the fight for so-called racial equity has nothing to do with real justice.  Stripped of distortions and theatrics, equity is fueled by the same primitive stuff that drives all blood feuds: tribalism, hatred, revenge, and violence.  

Wicked politicians use the sins of older generations to get and keep power while angry blacks, clinging to old hatreds, seethe for revenge.  Biden’s new diktat, in effect, institutionalized a vendetta.  

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But this is the strangest vendetta in history because it’s completely one-sided.  Blacks who were never harmed by slavery take shots at a new generation of whites who had nothing to do with it.  Worse, despite awful consequences, the government dares them to shoot back.  “Be sitting ducks … or else.” 

And it’s happening years after we witnessed the ultimate symbol of racial reconciliation – the election of Barack Obama.  Twice.  That election would’ve been impossible without countless whites risking their lives and fortunes over two centuries to reconcile America to its “all men are created equal” ideal.

In fact, today, some whites have bent so far backward that they agree that milk, math, meritocracy, and “master” bedrooms are rooted in racism; or that five black cops, beating a black man to death, in a majority black city, with a black police chief, is white supremacy, anti-black racism, and self-hatred.

This stuff is Greek to me.  But there’s a way to stop this insanity.

For several episodes of Sasmos, Argyro comes to hate Asteris, the man she so deeply fell in love with, after he killed her brother, Petros.  Petros, a hot-headed young man who carries the Vroulakis hatred, disapproves of Asteris.  In a confrontation with Asteris, Petros pulls out a gun, shoots in the air, shoots at Asteris’ car, and shoots wildly at his feet.  Asteris, tired of being a sitting duck, attempts to take the gun away, which accidently fires, killing him.  The death of Petros opened a fresh chapter in the vendetta.

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“We told you so” the elder Vroulakis told Argyro.  

But in recent episodes, knowing everything, Argyro found a way to love Asteris as deeply as before by forgiving him.  Forgiving was the only version of “not knowing” that made love possible again.  

That’s exactly what angry blacks, clinging to Joy Reid-like hatred, need to do in 2023: forgive.

Just let go. 

It’s what the late Professor Walter Williams did, long before issuing his 2007 “Proclamation of Amnesty and Pardon Granted to All Persons of European Descent,” which also addressed the other villain of America’s race conundrum: white guilt.

“I, Walter E. Williams,” it read, “do declare full and general amnesty and pardon to all persons of European ancestry, for both their own grievances, and those of their forebears, against my people.

“Therefore, from this day forward, Americans of European ancestry can stand straight and proud knowing they are without guilt and thus obliged not to act like damn fools in their relationships with Americans of African ancestry.”

When angry black liberals let go of past hatreds and guilt-stricken whites stop acting “like damn fools,” it will become crystal clear that all this equity stuff is a fake vendetta, instigated by slithery politicians and activists, against menacing white ghosts.  

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