The dying words of John C. Calhoun have always stuck with me, and not in a good way. On his deathbed in 1850, the former vice president and ardent advocate of slavery and states’ rights reportedly lamented, “The South! The poor South!”
On one hand, given that the South eventually lost its struggle to maintain its identity and institutions in the face of federal hegemony, such a sentiment is easily mocked. This is especially true these days which have witnessed an alarming uptick in anti-white fervor among non-whites. One can arguably trace this fervor back to the day the last standing Confederate army surrendered to Union forces on the outskirts of Durham, North Carolina, 1865.
Calhoun’s dying words have also haunted me because they demonstrate what a burden it is to care about things far greater than yourself. Most people don’t do that. Most look out for number one, and, if they are at all ethical, their families and friends as well. Whether this greater thing in question is under threat, as Calhoun’s South was in 1850, also contributes to the burden. It’s easy for Black Lives Matter people to crow about how much they care about black people because these days, black people are truly coddled . . . by the government, the university system, the media, and other institutions. There is little risk attaching yourself to the BLM movement, and as long as a black person graduates high school, avoids drugs, and does not have illegitimate children, then his chances of success are far greater than in any other place in the world, perhaps greater than any time history.
But subsuming yourself into a greater thing which is under threat — whether a cause, an institution, a nation, or race — is something else entirely. Remember the German soldier who was digging his own grave in Saving Private Ryan? “Fuck Hitler,” he said, as if that would save him. One would imagine he would have completely turned coat if it meant saving the skin under it. At some point, a person may be forced to choose between his life and that very thing he has pledged his life to. Contemplating such a thing, or even keeping it in the back of your mind, weighs on you. Like I said, it is a burden. And it’s even more so when you have a family, children and a career.
Case in point: I came across two conservative friends of mine arguing with a liberal friend about Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton. While their topics of contention were not trivial, they also were not essential to the question of whether Trump or Hillary should become the next American president. The conservatives kept bringing up Benghazi and Hillary’s email scandal, and the liberal kept reminding them of Trump’s boorishness and questionable business practices. I endured as much of this as I could before bringing up the real reason why Trump has caught on with so many Americans: his opposition to Mexican and Muslim immigration. Many Americans feel that their country is slipping away from them, and only through nationalistic policies like the ones Trump promotes can we even begin to get our country back. I then defended my position with statistics on crime and terrorism as well as providing a brief historical perspective.
Right away, I knew I had committed a serious faux pas. My conservative friends said nothing and waited for the liberal to fire back, which he did predictably: he attacked me and not my arguments. He basically dismissed my argument by calling it (and, by extension, me) racist. Further, the two conservatives couldn’t really be bothered to really defend me even though I knew they agreed with me. The best one of them could do was point out how many Mexican or Muslim immigrants fail to assimilate. The safe, non-racist assumption here was that if these non-white immigrants were to assimilate, then everything would be fine.
I knew that everything would not be fine, but didn’t have the heart to alienate everyone in the room. I said nothing and extricated myself from the conversation, fairly certain I would never speak with my liberal friend ever again. But the question was why did these so-called conservatives fail to get my back. We pretty much agree on everything, including immigration. It would make sense if they did, but they didn’t.
I arrived at an answer the next day: Trump’s policies, when taken to their extreme, could very well lead to White Nationalism, and at this time the burden of identifying with White Nationalism would be too heavy for them. These were successful guys with families and careers. Outing themselves as White Nationalists could potentially jeopardize both of these. They would rather identify with safer entities, such as their employers, churches, universities, or sports teams. They would rather keep what they have than risk everything on an ideal which may or may not ever be realized. From a selfish standpoint, it was a shrewd move.
What they don’t realize however is that White Nationalism is dangerous today not so much because our power elites are anti-nationalist but because they are anti-white. Such people are not opposed to Korean nationalism or Arab nationalism. But White Nationalism? That’s a sin. Unfortunately, people like my liberal ex-friend are the ones with the power to dictate what is acceptable and unacceptable in public discourse. If you exceed these confines publicly, you will pay a price, you and your family.
Knowing this comprises the burden. Knowing that you can relinquish this burden at any point makes it only heavier. None of it is forced upon us. We choose to burden ourselves not simply because we see through the lies and hypocrisy of people like my ex-friend, but also because we see the ultimate results of the policies they wish to pursue: the subjugation of whites as racial minorities in their own nations. This may not be provable as of yet, but can still see it. We know it is coming.
So, like John Calhoun and his beloved South, we take up the burden and identify today with the one movement that can potentially prevent such a barbaric outcome: White Nationalism. It takes a person of rare emotional stamina not to crumble under such weight. It also takes a person of rare charisma to be able to attract others when his cause is being threatened. If White Nationalism takes a hit, for instance, if the Southern Policy Law Center makes another successful attack on one of our leading lights, then we all take a hit. And it hurts. Every. Single. Time.
Many on the Alt Right understand this quite well. Perhaps that’s why so many of us are so young? They either don’t have a career and family yet and so have less to lose, or they have chosen to make the Alt Right their career. While both are good for the cause, we should all realize that we are still pretty far from achieving our goals. That will only happen when men like my two conservative friends realize that the burden of not joining us will be as great or greater than that of joining us.
Once upon a time the expression “white man’s burden” helped justify the white man’s quest for global empire and dominance. These days it refers to nothing less than his quest for survival.