The Unz Review:ㅤLynching Porn, by Jane Weir

the-unz-review:ㅤlynching-porn,-by-jane-weir

15-09-22 04:20:00,

Lynching stories hold a central place in the history of American race politics. They are a genre of folklore, somewhere between “urban legends†and tales of wartime atrocities. When we see references to Emmett Till, or Ahmaud Arbery, or George Floyd, or Willie McGee[1] as “lynching victims,†it’s easy to dismiss the hyperbole as just one more tiresome invocation of victim culture.

But there is a deeper significance here. Stories of extreme cruelty meted out to a black victim — torture, immolation, mutilation — have been the main driver behind American race politics of the past century. “Justice,†“equality,†“civil rights†— those goals are merely the noble-sounding face of black activism, a movement that will never be satisfied (there’s never enough justice; never enough equality). What the movement is really all about — what it’s always been about — is anger and destructiveness, fueled by a never-ending, self-perpetuating cycle of Lynching Porn.

In calling it “porn,†I don’t mean to imply that there’s an erotic component to lynching stories. Rather, I’m comparing it to such things as “snuff films†and “torture porn.†As you’ll see, the resemblance is striking. Another analogy: From a financial angle, pornography was the main driver of the World Wide Web 20 years ago and probably is even now. (Here’s an informative BBC business story about it from 2019.) Meanwhile, even a cursory survey of the past 160 years finds Lynching Porn as the main fuel for race politics and civil rights agitation.

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