Opinion | Do not assume that Ilya Shapiro’s tweet ‘Lesser Black Woman’ was racist

In the same way, “less black woman” can easily be read as meaning that there is something about being a black woman who is automatically smaller. We read such expressions in this way, especially when there is an incentive, rooted in negative stereotypes, to connect the two things. Note, however, that if someone had tweeted that a man was divorced and then married a “richer black woman”, we would not read the adjective “richer” as an insult and would simply think of a woman who is both rich and sort.

I think Shapiro thought that one, Biden would choose a black woman and two, because Srinivasan – in his opinion – is the “best” of the judges that a Democratic president would consider nominating, any other potential nominee, including any of the Black women on the president’s shortlist would be less qualified than Srinivasan. I do not think Shapiro meant to say that a black woman would be less qualified because she is a black woman.

I may seem to bend backwards here, but I honestly am not. The question is: if Shapiro had wanted to say that black women are inherently smaller, would he actually have written it so the whole world could see it? This would, after all, paint him as not just uncomfortable, but as a severely socially debilitated person. Given how carefully monitored so much of our language is these days, why should he deliberately write a line that essentially says that black women are inferior and somehow lacking that this would likely bring his new jobs at risk and pulling a wave of social accusation?

Assuming that the Shapiro bald, publicly argues, manifests the tendency to assume evil in those with whom we disagree, a means of dehumanizing people perceived as being on the other side of an insurmountable divide. I find the idea that he writes “less black woman” in the sense of “black women are less” psychologically unlikely. Shapiro is apparently intelligent; to write “less” and think of it as a general judgment would be foolish.

Shapiro went instead. He formulated something unartful. He has apologized for that (though another tweet he sent Wednesday seemed somewhat less remorseful), and is still being re-evaluated by his new employer.

Which brings us to the second reason why he should not be suspended. A few years ago, Georgetown professor C. Christine Fair tweeted that some of those defending the then judge, now Judge Brett Kavanaugh against accusations of past sexual misconduct, were a “chorus of eligible white men justifying the arrogance of a serial rapist. right “, and that” All of them deserve miserable deaths while feminists laugh while taking their last gasp. Bonus: we castrate their corpses and feed them to pigs? Yes. “

Georgetown responded with a statement that read in part: “The views expressed by faculty members in their private capacities are their own and not the views of the University. Our policy does not prohibit speech based on the person presenting ideas or the content of those ideas, even when those ideas may be difficult, controversial, or offensive. ” Fair remained in his job.

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