The Monday Morning Teaser

The announcement that the Cleveland Indians will become the Cleveland Guardians next season may not be the most significant thing that happened this week, but it struck me as a good opening to explain what systemic racism is and what anti-racists want.

People who hate the change are saying all the usual stuff: cancel culture, erasing history, they want us to feel guilty about everything, and so on. But the point is simple: There is no necessary connection between rooting for Cleveland’s baseball team and insulting Native Americans, but things have worked out that way because of decisions that got made more than a century ago. Nobody currently alive is responsible for that decision, but the injustice got embedded in an institution, with the result that people end up participating in it today even if they bear no malice. That’s what it means for the problem to be systemic.

Anti-racists don’t care whether or not Indians fans feel guilty; fan guilt doesn’t help them. They also aren’t troubled by your happy memories of famous players and pleasant days at the ballpark with family and friends. Continue to cherish them if you want. What anti-racists want — and what they’re getting from the name change — is for the ongoing harm to stop. That’s all.

So: Going forward, rooting for Cleveland’s baseball team won’t involve dissing Native Americans. Yay, Cleveland!

That post is more-or-less done, so it should be out shortly. The weekly summary will discuss the 1-6 investigating committee, the continuing Covid surge, the sham Kavanaugh investigation, Tom Barrick’s arrest, and a few other things. It should be out around noon.

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Comments

  • Susan Borden  On July 26, 2021 at 9:20 am

    Just quickly…. The investigating committee has 2 Rs and “Barrick” spelled “Barrack.” and thank you for your unwavering commitment to writing my best weekly read.

  • Meg LeSchack  On July 26, 2021 at 12:19 pm

    A great succinct explanation of systemic racism.

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