Commenter Portlander has been following the crackerjack battle of wits in the murder trial of George Zimmerman, and observes, "This whole trial has been a peek at the US's post-racial future ..."
It has not been an edifying experience, which may help explain why Portlander's a Portlander, and why the national prestige press has been losing interest rapidly. They really need Aaron Sorkin to punch up the witnesses' lines.
Portlander has watched the testimony of the prosecution's star Haitian-American ear-witness so you can jump right to the most scintillating repartee:
Alright, you all owe me. Here's the link to the video. Yuk-yuk's start a little after 7:00.
"Creepy white ... [something] ... creepy ass cracker" comes after 8:00. I can't make it out, but I'm told the [something] was "a creepy white assed kill your neighbors cracker." Is "kill your neighbors" a thing? What does that mean?
"Rapist" banter starts closer to 9:20. Lasts about 2 minutes. "[N-word] still following me" comes in at about 13:30.
In general, the prestige press hasn't been terribly interested in the multi-racial lumpenprole world that is evolving in places like Florida and Texas: Idiocracy 500 years early.
It wasn't supposed to happen like this. It all sounds so much more sophisticated in theory. For example, David Brooks yesterday explained the conventional wisdom in the NYT:
A Nation of Mutts
By DAVID BROOKS
Over the past few decades, American society has been transformed in a fit of absence of mind. First, we’ve gone from a low immigrant nation to a high immigrant nation. If you grew up between 1950 and 1985, you grew up at a time when only about 5 percent or 6 percent of American residents were foreign born. Today, roughly 13 percent of American residents are foreign born, and we’re possibly heading to 15 percent. ...
Soon, we will no longer be an outpost of Europe, but a nation of mutts, a nation with hundreds of fluid ethnicities from around the world, intermarrying and intermingling. Americans of European descent are already a minority among 5-year-olds. European-Americans will be a minority over all in 30 years at the latest, and probably sooner.
If enacted, the immigration reform bill would accelerate these trends. It would further increase immigration levels. According to the Census Bureau, roughly 20 million immigrants will come to this country under current law. The Congressional Budget Office expects another 16 million under the new provisions.
It would boost the rise of non-Europeans. Immigration would be more global. Hispanics are now projected to make up 30 percent of the U.S. population by 2050. We would hit that mark sooner with reform.
In other words, immigration reform won’t transform America. It will just speed up the arrival of a New America that is already guaranteed.
If you find yourself in a hole, dig faster.
... Let’s make some educated guesses about what the New America will look like. It will almost certainly be economically dynamic. Immigration boosts economic dynamism, and more immigration would boost it more. There would also be a lot of upward striving. Immigrant groups tend to work harder than native groups. They save more. They start business at higher rates than natives.
Oh, boy ... Notice how diversity is the enemy of making intelligent distinctions. The more diversity, the more things we aren't allowed to think about, such as the distinction in average behavior between legal and illegal immigrants. Starting a business of standing on the street corner selling oranges is not exactly the same as founding Intel.
... we’re seeing high rates of intermarriage. This creates large numbers of hybrid individuals, biracial or triracial people with names like Enrique Cohen-Chan.
This is largely an East Coast fantasy about the future. For my entire life, Los Angeles has had numerous Mexicans, Jews, and Chinese, but I don't recall seeing a name like this. Jews and Mexicans shared the Boyle Heights neighborhood east of downtown L.A. a century ago: not much mixing over the last four generations. The Mexicans are still stuck in Boyle Heights, but the Jews have moved on. The last Jewish individual in Boyle Heights died about a half year ago.
You'll notice that Brooks doesn't actually have an example of anybody prominent with a Mexican-American and Jewish names. (Yes, there are prominent Jews in Mexico City's elite, like historian Enrique Krauze and cinematographer Emmanuel Lubezki, but I'm talking about Mexican-Americans and Jews getting together in Los Angeles. In case you are wondering, comedian Louis CK is relatively Mexico City elite on his half Jewish-half Mexican father's side (his parents met at Harvard).
The new mayor of Los Angeles, Eric Garcetti, claims to be 1/4th Mexican, and he might even be telling the truth. Among other Mannequin-Americans, the Weitz Brothers (American Pie, and sons of fashion designer and race car driver John Weitz) have a Mexican-born grandmother who was a silent movie star in 1920s Hollywood, I'm trying hard to think of some other examples. Overall, there sure aren't many out of Southern California over the last century.
On the whole, this future is exciting. The challenge will be to create a global civilization that is, at the same time, distinctly American. Immigration reform or not, the nation of mutts is coming.It sounds vibrant.