What Eric Holder Doesn’t Want to Talk About

eric-holder-600x350Remember when Attorney General Eric Holder called Americans a “nation of cowards” who put “certain subjects . . . off limits”? Holder, of course, was referring to “subjects” that in fact we do nothing else but talk about non-stop – the refusal of whites to admit the persistence of white racism and its responsibility for all the ills afflicting the black underclass. To quote Paul Krugman for this received wisdom, “Race is the Rosetta Stone that makes sense of many otherwise incomprehensible aspects of U.S. politics.”

Yet Holder was unwittingly accurate, for there is a subject the mainstream culture and political discourse never touches: what Harlem Renaissance novelist Claude McKay called the “yellow complex.” This is the psychological condition of light-skinned blacks that was explored in novels of the 1920s like McKay’s Home to Harlem and Wallace Thurman’s The Blacker the Berry.  Back then, the mulatto or light-complexioned black, especially the well educated, lived in a social and psychological limbo, excluded by racism from the white world, and forced by segregation to live among darker blacks whom they often despised and looked down on. Yet darker blacks themselves experienced conflicting emotions, at once attracted to and resentful of the light-skinned who scorned them.

Thurman’s Emma Lou is a sympathetic portrait of this complex from the perspective of a woman whose mother is a mulatto, but who inherited her father’s black skin: “Emma Lou had been born in a semi-white world, totally surrounded by an all-white one, and those few dark elements that had forced their way in had either been shooed away or else greeted with derisive laughter.” When she matriculates at an exclusive Negro college, she despises Hazel, another dark-skinned girl who attempts to befriend her, as “just a vulgar little n***** from down South.” Emma Lou “was determined to become associated only with those people who really mattered, northerners like herself or superior southerners, if there were any, who were different from whites only in so far as skin color was concerned.” What she discovers, however, is that most of the light-skinned students to whom she is attracted despise her as much as she despises Hazel.

A creation of racism and segregation, the psychology explored in this persistent theme of classic black literature was supposedly transcended by the “black is beautiful” movement of the 1960s. In black identity politics the poles of value were reversed: the snobbish mulattoes or blacks who lived by so-called “white” values were attacked for “acting white,” and authentic black identity comprised everything that separated blacks from the white majority, whether complexion, accent, or especially political ideology, morality, and virtue. Blacks of any shade who adopted proper English, social decorum, or traditional virtues were scorned as “Uncle Toms” and “race traitors.” Though millions of American blacks rejected much of this ideology, it reshaped public discourse and popular culture, and created today’s racial orthodoxy.

Partly because of the understandable commitment to racial solidarity among the majority of blacks who just want to live their lives and get ahead like everybody else, publicly the melodrama of white racism has overshadowed all the other complexities of black American life. Yet those issues still exist, and no doubt are still alive among black people who are loath to break ranks in front of white people. The presidency of Barack Obama, however, has exposed how detrimental to our collective political life and race relations has been the refusal honestly to confront these issues, mostly by empowering a race industry that benefits the black elite and middle class, even as it worsens the plight of the black underclass.

Obama’s public career reflects some dimensions of the “yellow complex” that persist today. At the beginning of his political rise there was briefly some talk that he wasn’t “black” enough. After all, he was raised by whites in Hawaii, one of the whitest states, where he attended an exclusive prep school before moving on to exclusive, white-dominated universities. Joe Biden let the cat out of the bag when he said in 2007 that Obama was “the first mainstream African-American who is articulate and bright and clean and a nice-looking guy.” A year later Harry Reid was amazed that Obama was “light-skinned” and had “no Negro dialect unless he wanted to have one.” In other words, not “black.” Jesse Jackson also revealed this tension in the black community when he responded to candidate Obama’s “moral lectures” to blacks by saying, “I wanna cut his nuts out” for “talking down to black people.” Perhaps Jackson heard the snobbery of Emma Lou in Obama’s scolding. But the media and race-industry quickly snuffed out these modern evocations of the “yellow complex,” with Biden, Reid, and Jackson all issuing groveling apologies. Ever since then, Obama’s public persona is of an authentic “black man,” that is, a victim of white racism (“If I had a son, he’d look like Trayvon”) fighting to improve the lives of his struggling “brothers” and “sisters.”

Yet is it just a coincidence that Obama has been surrounded by so many lighter-skinned blacks who, like himself, come from middle or upper class backgrounds? There’s Jeremiah Wright, Obama’s trusted counselor until he had to be thrown under the bus when his racist sermons were exposed. His father was a Baptist minister, his mother a high school teacher and a vice-principal. Obama’s senior advisor and closest confidante is Valerie Jarrett. Her father is a pathologist and geneticist, and she spent her early life in Iran and London. She is a Stanford graduate with a J.D. from Michigan law school. Eric Holder’s father and maternal grandmother were immigrants from Barbados. His father was a real-estate broker. He graduated from Columbia University with a B.A. and J.D. Susan Rice’s father was a Cornell University economics professor and the second black governor of the Federal Reserve, and her mother is a fellow at the Brookings Institute. Her grandparents emigrated from Jamaica. Rice is a Stanford and Oxford graduate. In other words, all of them are untypical of the lives of ordinary black Americans whose ancestors were slaves or lived under legal segregation.

All of this should be irrelevant, and would be if Martin Luther King’s dream that blacks be judged by character rather than color had been realized. But the racial orthodoxy created by identity politics assumes a Jim Crow one-drop rule that bestows on every black in America – no matter how privileged, no matter if their parents and ancestors, like Obama’s, never suffered through American slavery and legal segregation – the mantle of victim of racism, which qualifies them to be spokesmen and less threatening proxies for millions of other black Americans who lack their advantages. By this ahistorical and incoherent racialist calculus, the child of a Kentucky coal miner or a Dust Bowl migrant has more social capital by virtue of a genetically endowed “white skin privilege” than a half-white Harvard-trained lawyer. The immense advantages bestowed by parents with college degrees and non-ghetto zip codes are invisible. Many middle and upper class blacks enjoy what David Horowitz and John Perazzo call “black skin privilege,” even as in the sixth year of Obama’s presidency millions of their underclass fellows remain mired in unemployment, dependence, crime, addiction, and broken homes.

The “yellow complex” is just one of the necessary topics of the adult conversation about race in America we should be having. Of course, after the Civil Rights movement, affirmative action programs, and the expansion of the black middle class, complexion has not been as important as socio-economic class, education, and especially politics. But it still is a factor, and one necessary to address if we want a dialogue on race that, rather than trading in crude simplifications of “black” and “white” identity, instead acknowledges those nuances and complexities that liberals claim to love so much. But don’t hold your breath waiting for those “embarrassing” subjects, as Holder called them, to go public. Too many people get too many economic and political benefits from keeping things just as they are, no matter how many generations of black Americans have to be sacrificed.

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  • Lanna

    What he doesn’t want to talk about is his failure to be a real attorney general for the people….too many scandals and too many lies, too much race baiting, and too much hatred for white people…never getting to the bottom of issues that are his responsibility in fairness! The President never would have been elected if White people hadn’t voted for him….the racists weren’t on the White side, the racists are on the Black side now that they are getting free stuff paid for by White, hard working taxpayers…

    • callahan connor

      The one thing most I remember most about the MLK, Jr. speeches is “not by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character.”

      And in this aspect, every single person mentioned in this article is seriously lacking, no matter who or what their parents or grand parents were or are, and no matter where they went to school.

      Since when does an attorney general be found in contempt of Congress and still have a job?! It’s unprecedented, and I don’t mean that in a good way! And Ms. Susan “It was a Youtube video” Rice is no better.

      Honor does not grow out of some Ivy League education, does not seep into one’s being by osmosis or by just being around others who have it. It does not grow on trees like coconuts that can be cracked open and consumed, either.

      Some people complain that people do not respect the president. The problem is not lack of respect from either side. As with the GM ignition switch issue, it is a lack of honor on BOTH sides and all around us that is the problem. Even Bush 43 had respect for the Office of the Presidency, yet this trait seems to be lacking all around the current administration.

      General Patreaus, as bad an example as he is, had it right when it came to how to lead. When he did wrong and was found having fallen short, he resigned and left the organization he led to allow for someone with the proper respect and capability to continue the job, and the organization was better for it. If only Eric Holder would follow that example then this nation, and possibly others who rely on the United States, would be better for it. We all know that our neighbors to the south would be better off, as they would not have ended up with so many guns on their city streets taking out so many innocent bystanders while Attorney General Eric “contempt of Congress” Holder refuses to even answer for his misdeeds.

      I offer an example of honor and the difference it makes on society by pointing to the Fukushima disaster after the earthquake and tsunami in Japan. Nobody ran around looting and rioting in the aftermath. Nobody ran around beating people up and doing harm to anyone in the immediate aftermath of those terrible tragedies in Japan. But all it takes for contrast is to look at what happened during the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina to understand the difference between the society with honor and the one who has lost it. In the Hurricane Katrina aftermath in some cases it was the law enforcement officers of NOLA, the very ones who were supposed to protect and serve, who went out seeking to loot the city’s citizens and cause disruption and destruction.

      When the leaders of a nation have no honor, those who follow such leaders have no examples of it to follow in society, causing the eventual downfall of the entirety of that society.

    • MrUniteUs1

      Will you give Holder a thumbs up for the terrorist convictions.
      I live in state where most of the populations is neither Black or White.
      My advice is lose the racial tribalism. You would be surprised who get’s the most free stuff. What you do you think about Romney getting a billion tax dollars for the Salt City Olympics? How about millions in tax dollars in farmer subsidies, some Congressmen receive.

  • PDK

    Eric the mulatto negro. Eric “My people” Holder. Who are his “People”?

    Wherever in the white man’s higher culture of civilization
    the lowly negro invades, destruction, ruination and stagnation must ensue as
    his particular negro nature, gleaned from his own gene pool, has failed to
    endow him with the qualities or traits that are a prerequisite necessity for
    either the creation of, or the maintenance of, the aforementioned white man’s
    higher culture of civilization.

    The lowly negro is born of a more r selective gene pool.
    That is the gene pool his sub-species of human evolved with. The more r
    selective gene pool has favored quantity of numbers produced over quality of
    IQed cerebrum produced.

    The lowly negro can no more change his behavior than wash
    the melanin from his skin.

    Because the negro has bared witness to the white man’s
    higher culture of civilization he wants in. The negro covets the cornucopia of
    all things produced by the white mans higher culture of civilization, which
    raises the quality of life so much higher than the lowly negro’s, low culture
    of the primitive savage.

    However though the negro wants in, he does not fit in.

    The negro here in America, one of the lands of the white
    man’s higher culture of civilization, senses out a duel objective. One for
    himself in the short run of a single lifespan by pilfering and parasitizing
    from the white man’s culture. The other, a more long term goal of pilfering
    from the white gene pool so his posterity leapfrogs up the evolutionary ladder.

    This is good for the negro, but horrible for whites.

    Because the negro will not leave us, we must leave him.
    Because the negro will follow us we must block his path.

    A new White Homeland is the ticket to our white destination.

    We must eventually outlaw the negro and his champion and
    enabler, the white liberal apostate.

    The world continues to turn, our sand falls through the hour
    glass, and our posterity hangs in the balance.

    Shall we non-liberal, non-apostate whites embrace our

    For our posterity.

    From the Sanctuary, @ http://the-pdk.blogspot.com/
    I’m PDK: Thank you.

    • PAthena

      This is ridiculous. Have you ever heard of Frederick Douglass, the great abolitionist? Or of Booker T. Washington? Or of George Washington Carver? Or of Martin Luther King, Jr.? Or of Thurgood Marshall, or of Clarence Thomas? Or of Thomas Sowell?

      • American1969

        Don’t forget Dr. Ben Carson, Armstong Williams, Larry Elder, Walter E. Williams, Charles Payne.

    • http://www.facebook.com/aemoreira81 aemoreira81

      Except for one gigantic problem: IQ is not static. A study that came out in the early 2010s pretty much blows up all earlier thinking. that idea…showing that IQ is determined almost completely by nurture…in two critical time periods: 0-5 (already known beforehand), and 13-19; IQ can rise and fall by as much as 30 points in either time period. Yes, that lowly negro can change his behavior if raised a certain way or given the proper tools (which includes a culture of motivation. Someone may be born with an IQ of 80, but if given the right tools, attention, and motivation, in those two years, it can rise to as high as 140.


      As for the rest of your post, it goes up against basic human rights of freedom of movement on merit.

      • TL2014

        1) test scores can significantly fluctuate even from day to day, based on many factors (eg testee fatigue) – with or without correlation with imaging.

        2) the article on BBC doesn’t mention any potentially relevant information about study subjects (eg, years of schooling). I am unable to access anything but the abstract of the Nature article, so maybe there is more information in the methodology section on that?

        3) we don’t have another follow-up in later adulthood. Perhaps there would have been a reversion? We don’t know.

        4) hundreds and hundreds of adoption studies, imperfect as they may be, reach similar conclusions about the overwhelming importance of genetics and underwhelming role of environment in shaping adult life outcomes such as education, mental health, and crime. Sadly, before this topic became taboo in decent academic circles, there also emerged a consensus about the standard deviation – Americans of sub-Saharan descent collectively displaying a lower average IQ than whites. Have all these studies been disproven? I don’t think so.

        • MrUniteUs1

          “eg testee fatigue)” Is that anything like testicle fatigue.
          Note there’s more variance in IQ among family members, Then among the so called races.

  • @ManeCoon51

    I’ll never forget hearing Eric Holder making this comment: “White people haven’t suffered enough.” This is what drives this man. He was a militant at an early age and has never changed his mind.

    • nimbii

      Holder, et al, want us in slave collars, at least for a while….

      • Bandido

        I wager ten quatnues on the newcomers.

    • Doobee

      I don’t doubt you, but tell us please when and where Holder made that remark. Links?

      I’m also not so sure that Holder always held these racialist views. His confirmation as AG seems to me to have awakened a chilling narcissism and an astonishing arrogance.

      • truebearing

        it was always there. He never had the power to prove it before.

      • Brucew56

        It was widely discussed that his remarks on February 26, 2011, is the date Holder’s comments were interpreted to say that racial violence against whites does not equal racial violence against, in his words, “my people”. He is a racist in an office that is supposed to be blind to color.

      • nimbii

        I think Holder’s claim to fame was taking over some university administrative offices and eventually making them into a minority center.

    • truebearing

      Then at least half of Holder wants and deserves some suffering.

  • The Facts

    It sure takes a lot of words to issue the slur that Eric Holder has a yellow complex. Are the additional words in the article designed to give the slur the weight of academic integrity? What a bad genre. The one slur, all of six words, the rest of the article trying to make it seem as if the slur is drawn from literature. What a shameful use of an academic position.

    • Gee

      Your posts are a waste of electrons.
      You never have anything to say and prove your racism and ignorance with everything you post

      • The Facts

        Sorry what? You’re a race today? When will you ever make up your mind?

        • Doobee

          Gee is a race today?

          I’m speechless.

        • UCSPanther

          You have to be high on drugs, because there is no way anyone can be as stupid as you are.

      • JoeS

        WAH Wah Wah Wah Wah Wah Wah……..PUTTT PUUTT PuTT…..

    • Doobee

      “It sure takes a lot of words to issue the slur that Eric Holder has a yellow complex.”

      “The slur”? The “yellow complex” is not a slur. It’s an opinion or a theory, maybe, but not a slur. A slur is one word, not a phrase or a paragraph or a long essay. The n-word is a slur. “Redneck” is a slur. “Gook” is a slur.

  • PAthena

    (1) See James Weldon Johnson’s Autobiography of an Ex-Colored Man.

    (2) Note that Eric Holder’s father and maternal grandmother were immigrants from Barbados. The parents of Susan Rice emigrated from Jamaica.
    Thomas Sowell has written that Negroes from the Caribbean islands have done much better than those from the U.S.

  • Christopher Riddle

    “Birds Of A Feather”??

  • John Davidson

    If you want to know how a sociopath operates, study Holder’s behavior.

  • Davros11

    We deserve this, we allowed a foreigner to run for president and allowed democrats and race hustlers to pin the “white guilt” on America. We deserve this people. Until we start punching people who cry race, in the face this will just keep on going

    • edlancey

      Definitely. If you let your country be run by third-worlders, you’ll end up with a third-world country.

  • edlancey

    As a non-American I say “you did it to yourselves”.

    It’s all been downhill for the USA since civil rights and the 1965 immigration act.

    We’re near the endgame.

    • Doobee

      If Obama and Holder have anything to say about it, you’re right.

  • djaymick

    So, the Democrats say whatever they feel about any minority group (remember Joe Biden mocking Indian people with his mock accent), quietly apologize and then turn around and call everyone else racist.
    If we are to have a real discussion/debate on the issue, let’s bring up all the thing that the Democrats have said and got away with and why do they have the right to condemn others.

  • Josh Randall

    Eric Withholder is a disgrace to his office, the nation and the human race.

  • Maynard

    Obama and Holder are the worst kind of racists, they use the power of their office to get their way. However, as I see it, the race situation in the US has deteriorated to the 1960s level under Obama. This should not be, but it is.

    • MrUniteUs1

      Its the first Black syndrome. Many whites went bonkers when Jackie Robinson entered the Major Leagues. Hank Aaron conducted himself with class and dignity throughout his baseball, but was bombarded with hate mail, calls, and death threats the year broke Babe Ruth’s home run record. President Kennedy chose a Black Test pilot to become an astronaut. He faced a lot of racism was droppped from the program the day after President Kennedy was assassinated. Similar stories can be told about the first woman, or first Jew.

      • Jonah9

        I wondered why HA became so racially motivated after he retired… thats sick… He was no Babe Ruth but was a modern hero for young WHITE baseball players like me who grew up color-blind after WWII

        • MrUniteUs1

          Yep Hank was very hurt and disappointed.
          Note: I don’t see anything wrong with my skin tone or anyone elses, so I have no need to be color blind. In fact I think it would boring if everyone had the same skin, hair, and eye color.

      • Habbgun

        Nonsense. Jackie Robinson wasn’t a noble experiment by Branch Rickey who was notable for treating players badly. A black man was marketable and white ballplayers wanted to play with them because they knew that a better brand of baseball meant better salaries. Jackie was the first openly black ballplayer but blacks in America got through by going to South America and picking up hispanic names. The truth is a lot more nuanced. Baseball likes to give itself a nobility it doesn’t always have. Just look at steroids.

        The truth is whites in America have been more open than most groups. In Europe you could be a resident for hundreds of years but still an outsider. Yet we look at Europe as progressive and America as background …..hmmmm…do you think racial makeup motivates that point of view. I do.

        This idea of an elite challenging the ignorant peasants is wrong. The peasants are usually more tolerant than the elites. It makes for a nice story of heroism and moral superiority by those with thicker wallets but it is plain not true.

        Racial advancement is a two way street and Holder, et. al. are thieves and a hostile element. Let’s just be honest. This isn’t opening up to let in Jackie Robinson a talented ballplayer. We got corrupt slobs and that is the reality.

        • MrUniteUs1

          Whites are individuals. Some are open others are closed minded and filled with hate. Fooliish to deny the hatred expressed by many whites toward. Jackie Robinson..

          Read about the Mayor that agreed with the murderer hat shot up the Jewish centers in Kansas City.

          • Habbgun

            You are missing the issue. Maybe purposely? You go to a ballpark or you play on the field. There are 60,000 people there and you know you are going to get some people who are not the best example of the public.

            What racebaiters like Holder and Obama do is peer into the crowd, find the dirtbags, celebrate them as being the true representatives of those who voluntarily paid good money just to enjoy the team. Why? because guys like Holder are just like a ballplayer working with corrupt gamblers to throw a ballgame and then cry racism when he gets caught at it. Jackie Robinson stole home. Holder and Obama steal your home.

            By the way open minded doesn’t mean closed to reality. It doesn’t mean cheering on the corrupt just because you can turn it into a fairy tale story.

  • American1969

    I find the subject of racism within the black community itself interesting. I’ve heard that subject discussed on a Montel Williams program at one time. The subject was intriguing because it’s not something you would have thought about.
    If the blacks can’t even figure it out among themselves, they have no business complaining about perceived white racism. And to claim that because someone is Caucasian that they are automatically racist is a racist statement in and of itself.
    Eric Holder and Barack Obama have used race as a tool to silence critics and opposition. That is a fact, as demonstrated by Holder’s whining. But it’s been true throughout all of Obama’s presidency. Perhaps both the president and the AG should look in a mirror and do a little soul searching.
    I’ve said it before also: If the country were as racist as they claim it is, neither one would hold the positions they do or enjoy the success they’ve had.

    • MrUniteUs1

      And to claim that because someone is Caucasian or Black that they are automatically racist is a racist statement in and of itself

      • American1969

        I was responding to the fact that Holder and others at DOJ basically have commented that whites are automatically racist and that they can’t be victims of Hate Crimes. That came straight from the Civil Rights Division.

        • MrUniteUs1

          Do you honestly believe that or just emotionally need to believe that about Holder and others at the DOJ. If so then why? DOJ stats show white Victims of hate crimes every year. Two recent cases the beating of a driver that hit a 10 year, and the murders at the Jewish centers in Kansas. Oh yes there are cases of White on White hate crimes. Of course students of European history knows. The Nazi Holocaust was hate crime. Now we have Neo Nazi groups in America. The Nazis killed more Americans than anyone.

        • kikorikid

          It came straight from Diversity/Multicultural
          ideology. It is the ideology of the “Tyranny of
          the minority” we live under.

  • MrUniteUs1

    Hmm last time a looked Michelle Obama had a drop or two.

  • MrUniteUs1

    Republicans just voted down mine safety legislation, and voted to cut money for treatment of Black lung disease.

    • Ace

      We hate miners and revel in their misery.

  • rottenrollin

    Here’s one of several people minimum in the Obama administration who needs to be wearing bracelets.

  • MrUniteUs1

    Sephardim, Ashkenazim, and Ultra-Orthodox Racism in Israel

    The Israeli media this week is all abuzz about the Ultra-Orthodox community protesting the sentencing of parents who refused a court order to integrate a religious school where Sephardi and Ashkenazi students were separated.

    The situation in the West Bank settlement of Immanuel exposes the deeply complex ethno-religious relations between European Jews and Middle Eastern Jews in Israel. Middle Eastern Jews have for many decades lived as stigmatized citizens of Israel; their traditional Arabic culture and form of Jewish religiosity frequently objects of scorn and prejudice.


    • Habbgun

      Please don’t lecture me about Orthodox Jews. Sephardim, Ashkenazim get along just fine. We count in each other Minyanim do business, etc. Whatever Huffpo does is a crock.Its all about cheap narrative. The Hassidic Rabbi I had loved Sephardic customs.

      Is there anything more racist than Occupy? Does every lowlife junkie have important things to say because he looks like he came from Europe? Do you believe any other group would get that privilege. That is the Eurosupremacist left. Socialism would be a dead philosophy now if it didn’t have the Euro-racial superiority angle in its favor.

  • Libslayer

    “Too many people get too many economic and political benefits from keeping things just as they are, no matter how many generations of black Americans have to be sacrificed.”

    Sums up the so-called civil rights movement pretty well.

  • MrUniteUs1

    White man says to the Black man. “You people are taking all the jobs”
    Black man says to the White man. “What?! You people have all the jobs”
    Asian man says, “Next customer”

  • Steve

    Another thing he doesn’t want to talk about are the documents from the Holy Land Foundation trial

  • winstons

    Black hate of whites, taught by the DEMS and in the Black churches, keeps them voting 99% for the DEMS. It’s a stunning success of the race baiting policies of the Progressive/Fascists.

  • American1969

    If a white AG did or said the things Eric Holder has done, the Left would be apoplectic over it! But when it’s Holder or Obama….Meh.
    The fact of the matter is that Eric Holder has made no secret of his contempt for whites. Why is he allowed to get away with that in his position?

    • MrUniteUs1

      Holder has said a lot things over the years. Mostly non race related. He has been working with Caucasians throughout his career and continues today. What exactly did Holder say that’s got you upset?

      What do you think about the mayor that said he “kind of agreed” with the murderer that shot up the Jewish centers in Kansas

      • American1969

        My main objection is that there is a double standard. If it’s okay for one side to make racial comments, then everyone else is entitled to do the same without repercussions. The rules are either the same for all, or no one has to follow them.
        As for this idiot of a mayor, I hope his constituents see this and remove his butt immediately! What tool!

  • johnnywoods

    That was a home-run hit right over the center field fence.

  • swatter

    Holder is a schreeching white hater and hates the white in him like obama does.