Patterico's Pontifications


Coleman Hughes on Colorblindness

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 8:29 am

Coleman Hughes is a 24-year-old phenom. He’s part of what I consider to be a vanguard of black thinkers who reject race consciousness and advocate for colorblindness — people like Kmele Foster, John McWhorter, Glenn Loury, and Thomas Chatterton Williams. The five of them did what I thought at the time was possibly the best podcast I had ever heard (see here, with the equally great Part I here), talking about race and “anti-racism” from different perspectives, but from the shared (and rare) core assumption that we should all strive for a world where we don’t treat people differently based on the color of their skin. (Radical, I know!) Since listening to that podcast, I have followed each of these men more closely and have become more familiar with their different ways of thinking and expression, and I have to say I am the most impressed with the youngest. Listening to (or reading) Hughes, you get an impression similar to that you get when you read a book by Thomas Sowell: that you are in the presence of someone ten times smarter than you, but that you’re grateful for the opportunity because you know you are going to learn something. I think I would have felt the same about 24-year-old Thomas Sowell, had I encountered him at that age, but it’s more daunting to have that experience when someone is that young.

Last night as I drifted off to sleep I listened to Hughes give a talk on colorblindness. I fell asleep when the talk concluded after 30 minutes and missed the Q&A, which remains as a treat for me today, but the 30-minute basic talk at the beginning of this audio is just fantastic and is wholly worth your time.

Hughes begins by talking about what colorblindness is not; namely, a literal blindness to race where we don’t “see” color. Of course we see color, and racism will almost certainly always be with us. What we are striving for, he explains, is a world where we don’t treat people differently because of the color of their skin. We will see race, and then ignore it in our dealings with people. He goes on to discuss some common objections, offer some defenses, and discusses Critical Race Theory — making that impenetrable morass of words comprehensible to the layman. It’s a tour de force, delivered in his typical calm and rational style that appeals to me a lot.

I’m a contributor to Hughes and you can become one too, at his Web site. He is a great man and is destined for greater things.

10 Killed in Boulder, Colorado Shooting [UPDATED]

Filed under: General — Dana @ 5:59 am

[guest post by Dana]

Another horrific mass shooting has taken place less than a week after a gunman killed 8 people in the Atlanta area:

A gunman killed 10 people at a King Soopers in Boulder on Monday afternoon, the latest in a grim litany of mass shootings in Colorado — this one including among its victims a police officer who was first to respond to reports of shots fired at the grocery store.

The suspect was taken into custody, but there were few answers in the following hours. Officials said it would take days to investigate the large crime scene and to notify families that their loved ones had been killed.

The workers and shoppers who survived the violent scene in the Front Range college town fled the store any way they could — if they couldn’t, they took shelter inside — as the shots echoed.

“It seemed like all of us had imagined we’d be in a situation like this at some point in our lives,” 57-year-old James Bentz said.

Only one of the deceased has been publicly identified. He leaves behind 7 children:

Boulder police Chief Maris Herold identified the deceased officer at a news conference Monday night as 51-year-old Eric Talley, who had been with the department since 2010 and was first on the scene of the shooting.

The names of the other victims will not be released until family members are notified.

Also, although a suspect is in custody, we don’t know his identity or what motivated him to go on the shooting rampage.

And there was this sobering thought by a shopper who was in the store at the time of the shooting:

“Boulder feels like a bubble, and the bubble burst,” Borowski said. “This feels like the safest spot in America, and I just nearly got killed for getting a soda and a bag of chips.”
He added: “It doesn’t feel like there’s anywhere safe anymore.”

Prayers for the families of the victims at this horrible time.


UPDATE by JVW: National Review has more details, including the names of the shooter and the victims:

Police have identified 21-year-old Ahmad Al-Issa as the suspect in the grocery store mass shooting in Boulder, Colo., that left ten people dead on Monday.

[. . . ]

Police identified victims between the ages of 20 and 65, including Boulder Police Officer Eric Talley, 51; Denny Strong, 20; Neven Stanisic, 23; Rikki Olds, 25; Tralona Bartkowika, 49; Suzanne Fountain, 59; Teri Leiker, 51; Kevin Mahoney, 61; Lynn Murray, 62; and Jody Waters, 65.

Al-Issa has been charged with ten counts of murder.

Law enforcement officials did not reveal a possible motive for the shooting and investigators believe there were no other suspects involved.

[. . .]

The suspect’s brother, Ali Aliwi Al-Issa, reportedly told The Daily Beast that his brother is “very anti-social” and paranoid.

“When he was having lunch with my sister in a restaurant, he said, ‘People are in the parking lot, they are looking for me.’ She went out, and there was no one. We didn’t know what was going on in his head,” Al-Issa reportedly told the outlet, adding that he believes his brother is mentally ill.

A Facebook page that appeared to belong to Al-Issa showed that his family had immigrated to the U.S. from Syria. The page featured quotes from the prophet Muhammad as well as posts about mixed martial arts.

Boulder sounds like an unusual place for Syrian refugees to end up. Perhaps one or more of the family members was studying at CU. And yet again we have the tale of family members who have ample reason to suspect one of their own is mentally ill, yet don’t do anything to remove weapons from the home (presuming they knew about the rifle, of course).


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