A “Substitution Test” is when you substitute another person or object for the person or object central to the argument, keep the argument itself the same, and then see if the argument remains logical or acceptable. If the substitute makes the argument unacceptable, then it is hypocritical to accept the original argument.
Obama’s preachers preach several inflammatory statements against the US and against white people. Fine. They certainly are entitled to their opinions, and to call the USA the “US of KKKA,” etc., if they want to. And Obama certainly is free to distance himself – or not – from this kind of statement. It’s a free country (actually not as free as we used to be before Baby Boomer came to power, but I digress).
But do the substitution.
Imagine if McCain went to a church pastored by David Duke. And imagine Duke, as pastor, preaching the exact same level of hate, but with Black America as the target rather than White America. And imagine McCain having been a member of that “church” for over 20 years, raising his children there, donating thousands of dollars to them.
Gee – do you think the media might have a problem with that? Do you think that problem might show up on more than one internet news channel – – like be plastered across the front pages of the NY Times, the LA Times and Economist magazine?
Do you think McCain might distance himself from that rhetoric?
Did Geraldine get tossed off the bus?
Don’t you think it just a bit, oh, I don’t know… paternalistic and racist to hold African-Americans to a lower standard of social intercourse than we hold white Americans?
If we are going to treat each other as equals – a requirement of a just society – we need to stigmatize unequal treatment — in a colorblind manner.
One cannot rail against White “hate speech,” and yet let Black “hate speech” go ignored. That is not equal treatment.
It is racism.