Shelby Steele talks to Peter Robinson

I just watched this video of Shelby Steele being interviewed by Peter Robinson of the Hoover Institute. If, like me, you’ve not been paying attention to this man, this interview would be a good way to correct that. If you have been paying attention, well, well done you. But for me, even seeing this man talk was a first. Better late than never.

The idea, which Steele talks about a lot, of freedom being a “shock” makes a lot of sense to me. I recall having this shock explained to me by an east European lady who had spent her adult life being unfree, under Soviet Communist domination. Suddenly she was in a Western style supermarket, facing choices she didn’t know how to make. And that was just the toothpaste.

Towards the end of the interview, Robinson asks if there are any more “Uncle Tom” Black people, now talking about Black Americans getting to grips with the freedom they now have rather than continuing to complain ever more implausibly about the lack of it, and Robinson mentions: Shelby Steele, Thomas Sowell, and, er, that’s it. Well, how about, and this is just for starters, Candace Owens?

2 thoughts on “Shelby Steele talks to Peter Robinson”

  1. Okaaay. To my mind, an Uncle Tom is “a black man considered to be excessively obedient or servile to white people.” To call a black person an ‘Uncle Tom’ because he happen’s to agree with a white person is stupid and vicious.

  2. Chuck

    Hence my inverted commas. They were sneer quotes, in this case me sneering at all who use that phrase for real.

    Maybe it’s a British thing, but one of our political techniques is to accept the wording of insults from political enemies, which is, as you say, what people who use the phrase Uncle Tom for real most definitely are, for me as for you. The idea is to take the sting out of such insults and make them impotent.

    Nevertheless, I apologise for the lack of clarity, in such a sensitive matter. I despise this phrase as much as you do, and I am sorry this wasn’t clear.

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