On 4 August FSJL posted the comments below in response to my blog post on July 30th entitled "Nervous (in one case) notes". I publish them (very lightly edited, first paragraph omitted) here with thanks, and of course, his permission, since they seem as good a lead in as any to my promised reflections on the remarks of conservative Catholic bishops cited in last week Friday's front page article in the New York Times. Anyone interested in his complete comments need only go to my post of July 30th.
North American racism has traditionally been deeply associated with Christianity, and relied on the Bible for justification. No surprise there, the Bible, after all, endorsed slavery and commanded slaves to obey their masters. In the aftermath of slavery in the United States, organisations which emerged to sustain white supremacy did so in the context of the prevailing ideological system, which was Christian.
Thus, every Klan Klavern in the US had a chaplain called a Kludd, who would lead the sheetheads in prayer. This was a requirement of the Klan Klonstitution. That's what it was klalled, er, called. The heartland of the Klan in its heyday was not where it was founded, down here in Georgia, but Indiana, by the way.
There have, not at all by the bye, been a couple of studies on the role of Klan women in promoting the cause of women and raising issues germane to (white) women back in the 1920s.
More germane to the link you cite. I've seen this argument for the past fifteen years or so. It's a reflection of a deep-seated fear by a significant segment of white working class and middle class and middle class men as they face competition for opportunities that had in previous decades been reserved only for them. That's seen as the fault of threatening women/Jews/blacks/Asians/Latinos who are taking away jobs/manhood. The solution is to go back to the good old days when [white] men had everything their own way [or so they thought].
As my father once said, "I'm not going to talk about 'the good old days' -- dem was neva good".