Andrew Sullivan calls me a “…classic example of the arrogant liberal. He supports affirmative action and believes that individuals in 2003 bear a direct responsibility for those people who enacted slavery and made life a living hell for many black Americans in decades and centuries past.” But he’s wrong. On this issue the arguments that convince me are not liberal but conservative ones–Burkean ones, to be exact.
A liberal sees society as a result of a social contract implicitly made between all of us alive today: we agree to live by rules and laws that we then have a chance to rethink, remake, and reform. It’s important that this social contract be fair to us. From this perspective, the questions “Why should recent Korean immigrants bear any responsibility for repairing the damage left by the marks of slavery and Jim Crow?” and “Why should African-Americans find their own capabilities and potential accomplishments still limited by the marks of slavery and Jim Crow?” are both very good ones. (Somehow Andrew Sullivan only asks the first, and never thinks to ask the second. But thinking about why would take us far afield.)…
*Andrew Northrup-suggested ediut.
Read the entire article. Brad discusses some very important aspects of being a citizen in a republic, what is required and what is expected. Great reading.