Author and linguist John McWhorter took questions from the ladies of The View on Tuesday about his new book, Woke Racism, which outlines how the anti-racist practices of the progressive left are both akin to a religion and have been a complete disaster for black America.
New York Times contributor Jane Coaston, who is temporarily filling the vacancy left by Meghan McCain, asked McWhorter about his views on the Capitol riot of Jan. 6. That riot, which happened as a Trump rally at Washington, DC's ellipse drew to a close, has resulted in the arrest of more than 600 individuals, most of whom have been held and charged for the crime of trespassing.
"So in the book," Coaston asks, "you devote about three paragraphs to what took place on January 6, and you claim that those people don't have real power. And I think that we're in this interesting moment in which they do and the people you're writing about do."
"Isn't it possible," she continued, "that they and the DEI practitioners both have power? Because the moms who were trying to get books banned from— about Ruby Bridges— banned from schools and the people who are concerned that read learning about Martin Luther King damages their children, they've got power just as much as a Columbia professor does this as much as I do."
"There are people," McWhorter responded, "who are trying to turn upside down our intellectual, artistic, moral and judicial culture. To a large extent, and Jane I know you know this because we've talked about it, to a large extent they're succeeding, are there other bad things happening in the country? Yeah.
"But if I see the institutions that I'm familiar with, and that is, for example, academia, the judicial system, what we think of as morality, what we think of as culpability and the arts. I think those things is at least a little bit important. If I see those things being turned upside down by a really frightening ideology, then I have to speak out and I don't know if I can measure whose Holocaust is bigger in these cases, but the only question would be why I wouldn't call out what's going on on the left," he said.
"But she's saying they have power, do you agree?" Another contributor jumped in.
"Frankly, I think that I see the same kind of power in basically our whole thinking culture. Now, if you have a kind of person who is also making noise at school board meetings and having certain things done, frankly, every day in my inbox, it doesn't have to be in my inbox—you can open up the metaphorical newspaper every day and seeing people from the left with a similar kind of power, determining how children are being taught. I can't not speak up about that."
Co-host Whoopi Goldberg jumped in, bringing up the US Congress. "I mean, when you look at that, when you hear the stuff they're saying, what's your take on that? Because, you know, at some point someone's going to have to admit there is an issue with race in the country. We have come to terms with that. Part of the problem is that too many pockets say 'Well, that's not really what's going on,' when it is!" she said to applause.
"What are the what are the terms, like you say, America has to come to terms with?" McWhorter asked. "I don't know what that would mean. Now, I'm not sure if we have that long to wait."
"Well, we do," Goldberg said. "We have to because we can't seem to get waiting for that there are issues in banking, in living quarters in how we are dealt with just as people that really are signaling you know, 'you're not playing equal. You're not my you're not equal to me.' And to because we always say 'Well, listen, maybe that's not what they meant' but what what happens when it is what they mean?"
"Sure, but this is the thing," McWhorter said. "We are here taught that until America understands all of those imbalances are real. I don't like any of that stuff, either. And we keep talking about it. Until that's gone, we can only get one foot in the door. We're the first group of human beings in the history of our whole species, 3,000 years, where the idea is that until everybody has this great understanding, we are stanched and we can only get so far."
In his book Woke Racism, McWhorter, who refers to the progressive leftist ideologues who push anti-racism as the "Elect," said that they are trying to change society. One of the things that he says the Elect are using to change society is the narrative surrounding the Jan. 6 riot at the Capitol.
He posits that "The Capitol mob are changing nothing. Seeing their awfulness from so close up felt like a change, but that was in us, not them. Novelty in our perception is a change within us as individuals; it is different from those we newly perceive actually penetrating institutions. That they tried to threaten democracy is less important than that their attempt failed. The Elect are resonant successes in comparison, despite that their sense of self-definition as speaking truth to power prevents them from acknowledging it directly."