This morning I took part in a discussion about a 2.12 Wall Street Journal article titled “How Equality Lost to ‘Equity.’” The subhead reads “Civil-rights advocates abandon the old ideal for the new term, which ‘has no meaning‘ and promises no progress but makes it easy to impute bigotry, says Shelby Steele.”

Steele quote: “[The current meaning of the term] equity has no meaning, but it’s one that gives blacks power and leverage in American life. We can throw it around at any time, and wherever it lands, it carries this stigma that’ somebody’s a bigot.’ Its message is that there’s inequality that needs to be addressed, to be paid off. So if you hear me using the word ‘equity,’ I’m shaking you down.”

Here are some passages from the discussion that touched upon the Oscar race, and upon John McWhorter‘s “The Elect“:

Friendo #1: “The key concept is that ‘equity’ prioritizes equality of outcome over equality of opportunity.

“That’s where Martin Luther King Jr. would have reared up in protest against it. And where any sensible moral person today — e.g. the tiny fraction of those of us in media who actually resist woke mobthink — would stand up against it. Equality of opportunity should be the goal. Not outcome — that’s the social-cultural analogue of giving every kid a trophy.

“Applied to the Oscars, it’s especially ludicrous. Sure, you can have an Oscar slate where half the people are POCs, making up for past sins, etc., and we can all sing ‘Kumbaya’ and pat ourselves on the back when half the winners are black. But if that’s what you do, it’s such a contrivance, and you’re so cheapening what the awards are, that you’ve made it all mean next to nothing. ‘Look, Chadwick Boseman, Viola Davis and Delroy Lindo all won awards at the African-American Oscars! Hurray!! We woke white people really are something, aren’t we?!’

Friendo #2: ” The new enlightened white person religion [is about] atoning for past sins. I have a very privileged friend who lives in Ojai…married, rich, never had to work a day in her life. She’s now on a mission to explain white supremacy to all of her friends who ‘don’t get it.’ What does that do — it redeems and excuses her from accusations. I can’t wait until it all comes crashing down.”

Friendo #1: “If only it were driven by white guilt! The white liberals who Tom Wolfe mocked definitively half a century ago in ‘Radical Chic’ — Leonard Bernstein throwing his posh party for the Black Panthers, etc. — were driven, to a degree, by white guilt.

“The woke mob today is driven by white narcissism. By white vanity. Guilt would be too good for them. They’re adopted virtue-signaling as a lifestyle and as a cult. And as John McWhorter has brilliantly explained, these vanity rituals are so dependent upon reducing black people to a stupid masochistic permanent-victim status that, in fact, there’s no difference at all between white woke-ism and white supremacy.

White woke-ism is white supremacy. It’s a pure expression — and celebration — of privilege. And that’s all it is. It’s not doing black people any favors. Because that’s not what it’s for. It’s for feeding the upper-middle-class white American narcissistic beast.”

“I think McWhorter wants to end this being a tribal thing. I think he sees himself as a venerable liberal spokesman, with decades of progressive cred (and he’s black, for Chrissake), who could speak directly to liberals on this topic. Who could reach the 97% of liberals who aren’t woke.

“The trouble is that other three percent — the woke fucktards — control media, publishing, and the entertainment industry. They control the royal megaphones.

“I know McWhorter understands all this. It’s part of what his book is about. He has no delusions. But what he’s facing is (no pun intended) a blackout. Total ostracization and crucifixion by the Woke Cult. And if he takes his message to right-wing media, he’ll just be seen as…another stooge of right-wing media. That’s how the new tribalism works.”