The Other McCain

"One should either write ruthlessly what one believes to be the truth, or else shut up." — Arthur Koestler

‘All White People Are Racists … Y’all Are Born into a Life to Not Be Human’

Posted on | September 10, 2020 | Comments Off on ‘All White People Are Racists … Y’all Are Born into a Life to Not Be Human’


James Lindsay said, “This is Critical Race Theory in a single image.” The past few days, there has been renewed attention to Ashleigh Shackelford’s presentation at 2017 Netroots Nation, in which she said:

“All white people are racists. So, I put this up because I really want any white person in the room to know up front that this is what we’re dealing with. That it’s not going to be this coddling of white tears. And we’re not going to discuss, “oh, maybe some of us are going to work it out.” No, you’re always going to be racist, actually. So even when you’re on your path to trying to figure out how to be a better human being, I believe that white people are born into not being human [laughs]. Like people of color and black folks being dehumanized, that actually everyone is dehumanized [unintelligible] off white supremacy, that y’all are born into a life to not be human. And that’s what y’all are taught to do, be demons [laughs]. So in this particular way, white people are all racists, so I just want y’all to know that up front.”

What inspired so much attention to Ms. Shackelford’s 2017 remarks was President Trump’s executive order banning Critical Race Theory (CRT) from federal agencies, after a report last week about CRT being used in mandatory “diversity” training programs at the FBI and other agencies. However, Ashleigh Shackelford (who now identifies as “nonbinary” and wants to be called “Hunter”) is someone who has been on my radar a while. She was the subject of my post last September (“Fat, Black, Queer and ANGRY!”) in which I quoted her Teen Vogue article:

For me, fat is a way of saying “f*ck you.” . . .
How fat is weaponized, and the reclamation of the word, goes beyond size. Fat stigma is also tied to anti-blackness, in that being black is the abundance that white supremacy seeks to shrink. . . .
My definition of fat is Black AF, multidimensional, and futuristic. Fat means I exist. Fat means taking up space and demanding more. Fat means black. Fat means f*ck you. Fat means human. Fat means creating a world full of possibility without shame. Fat means saying f*ck you.

To put it quite bluntly, Ashleigh Shackelford is crazy.

Her “argument” is actually an incoherent assemblage of word salad, and the fact that Teen Vogue (a property of Condé Nast) would see fit to publish this lunatic gibberish tells you all you need to know about the kind of people in charge of “prestige” publications these days.


Ms. Shackelford has also written for “Wear Your Voice” (“an intersectional feminist publication”), with such headlines as “Lee Daniels’ Star is the Niggafication of the White American Dream” and “Angry Black Bitch: The Punishment for Being Too Real.” She has also written articles for Everyday Feminism: “Dating While Fat: 5 Questions I Ask Before Committing to a Partner,” “Why I’m Non-Binary, But Don’t Use ‘They/Them’ Pronouns,” and “6 ‘Anti-Racist’ Buzzwords That Don’t Actually Change White Supremacy.” As might be expected, Ms. Shackelford was active on Tumblr from 2013-2017 (Tumblr is now more or less a zombie platform). Similarly, Ms. Shackelford once had a personal site called BlackFatFemme, but apparently let the domain registration lapse, so that the URL is now just generic dating advice. She is now most active on Instagram. Her occasional writing (e.g., “Nice Guys Kill to Stay Nice: On the Weaponizing of Kindness and Why ‘Perfect Abusers’ Don’t Exist”) now appears mainly at Medium.

Well, what shall we say about this person? We can observe that Ms. Shackelford’s “nonbinary” status is just an identity politics delusion. She is unmistakably female and, other than renaming herself “Hunter,” has done nothing at all in terms of “transition.” But don’t misgender her:

The danger in maintaining the gender binary is that it’s not just misgendering that happens to folks who identify outside of the binary, it’s the repetitive death of your existence. Every time I experience erasure, I die a little. And when you’re already seen as dead, as nonexistent, as make-believe, it’s an overkill that keeps you passively numb while you’re aggressively bleeding out. The world constantly requires me to over-explain what I am to make them feel comfortable and/or to maintain the daily routine of anti-Black violence. Being non-binary not only means inviting people into a narrative of trans humanity, but also requesting that they recalibrate the violence that they’ve been indoctrinated by. Non-binary people are birthing new language, shifting grammars, transcending anti-Black normativity, creating plurality from binaries, and cultivating life beyond the carcerality of the gender binary.

Do you see the word-salad aspect of this? Fancy words borrowed from feminist scholarship are jammed together to create the appearance of academic discourse, so that if you complain that this makes no sense at all — we have been “indoctrinated” by violence? being “non-binary” is “transcending anti-Black normativity”? — you’re supposed to feel ashamed of your intelectual inferiority. If you were smart, like Ashleigh Shackelford, you would understanding what she’s saying.


What is most remarkable about Ms. Shackleford’s career, such as it is, is that white people tolerate her ranting madness. As someone on Twitter remarked about her Netroots Nation presentation: “Theres a room full of white people and nobody stood up and walked out. Nobody protested.”

White people are so intimidated by fear of being accused of racism that they will indulge deranged lunatics screaming hate in their faces.



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