It's not a double standard if you believe they are really different

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The latest outrage on the USian intertubes is this sighDavid Brooks (warning, eats NYT token) column about marijuana decriminalization, with the overall reaction being, apparently, incredulous confusion about his shameless hypocrisy.

But, speaking as a Vala who thereby has very few vices myself, I find it neither confusing nor hypocritical. The subtext to me is really obvious and stems from the complex of race/IQ obsessions that lie barely concealed under the surface of the USAmerican right-wing (and to be fair, in other developed countries). In this worldview, there are clearly some people for whom it is socially productive and important to give them a rich palette of formative experiences, good and bad, and to give them a long leash so that they can become future sighDavid Brookses and write columns for the NYT. These are the high-IQ, forward-thinking people, usually white and/or Asian, but not too Asian.

Folks of low general intelligence, on the other hand, are imputed to value only short-term gratification, and therefore short-term, very precipitous consequences are necessary to barely restrain their base impulses, which under “natural” conditions would lead to a real-life enactment of Escape from New York, but without Kurt Russell. Don’t shoot the messenger: that punitive “justice” systems produce more criminality is hardly a reason to reject the aesthetic beauty of the argument and its ipso facto necessary implementation.

sighDavid Brooks is telling us that laws are written for these people, and that the lenience required for the high-IQ classes can be implemented through the justice system. What we perceive as discrimination is the natural and salutary function of the system — leaving the future sighDavid Brookses of the world to amass the experiences necessary for their dutiful dirigence of society, while imposing the necessary control systems on those populations who lack that inherent forward-thinking wisdom.

This thinking underlies very many right-wing pathologies. For example, the rejection of both abortion and birth control has these underpinnings: that the system will be implemented to give upper-class women a discreet way out of their dilemmas, with a meaningful lesson learned by all. But the morally-incontinent poor, including (especially?) the unwanted child, will learn the lesson the only way they know how: through real suffering.

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This page contains a single entry by Mandos published on January 4, 2014 4:58 PM.

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