Context is King: How the Left Talks About Demographic Change
Gregory Hood is fond of saying, “Politics is about who, not what.” Nothing confirms this more than how leftist media write about demographic change. If whites object to being displaced, it’s not even happening, and even if it is, whites are paranoid. When demographic change brings leftist victories or when it displaces leftist pets, it’s real and significant.
In March, The Guardian published this headline, “White nationalist hate groups have grown 55% in Trump era, report finds.” The subtitle was “Southern Poverty Law Center warns of growing movement driven by ‘fear of demographic change’” — implying that such fears are silly and unfounded.
But in a 2017 essay called “‘Nothing is ours anymore’: Kurds forced out of Afrin after Turkish assault,” The Guardian found similar fears for Kurds living in Syria serious and worrisome:
There is definitely a demographic change, a lot of Kurds have been forcibly displaced on the count that they’re with the PKK when in fact they weren’t. There are barely any Kurds left in Afrin, no one is helping us go back.
Another Afrin local, Shiyar Khalil, 32, said: “When the Kurds try to get back to their house they have to jump through hoops. You cannot deny a demographic change, Kurds are not able to go back. Women are veiled, bars are closed; it’s a deliberate erasing of Kurdish culture.
Salon is just as inconsistent. After Barack Obama’s reelection in 2012, it published an article called “The final defeat of backlash politics.” This is from its opening paragraph:
A new, increasingly liberal electorate has ratified the results of the New Deal and the Civil Rights Revolution. Republican conservatives will still be able to win victories, but their hopes of overturning the outcomes of the 1930s and the 1960s have been doomed by cultural and demographic change.
But a 2017 article from the same website suggests that if Trump supporters take change seriously, they are falling for a “a false narrative of white victimhood“:
[President Trump’s white supporters] feel they are living through rapid demographic change that will leave them as a minority of the population.
Note how the first Salon quote uses the word “doomed” to describe the impact of demographic change, while the second uses “feel” to make the worries of whites sound subjective and perhaps irrational.
The leftist magazine The Nation is no better. A 2019 essay called “The ‘Great Replacement’ Is a Genocidal Playbook” (“The Great Replacement” is shorthand for mass population change at the expense of whites) puts scare quotes around the phrase to reinforce the idea that it’s a myth:
When The Nation approves of what’s happening it understands that demographics are destiny. This is from “As California Goes . . . “:
Demographically, what California was a generation ago, America is now; what California is, America is likely to become. The Golden State, for all its reputed liberalism and its rapid Hispanicization, may not be so different from the rest of the nation, just a generation or two ahead of it.
There doesn’t seem to be one leftist outlet that doesn’t follow this double standard. Jacobin opposes demographic change in Israel and Syria:
Elsewhere this has initiated full-blown attempts at “Judaization.” After 1967, the Israeli government became concerned about the lack of Jews living in the north and south of the state and so planned to increase the population in those areas. Such a demographic change necessitated the confiscation of Palestinian land for the building of Jewish settlements. — No, Israel Is Not a Democracy, Ilan Pappe, May 2017
Those who stayed in Afrin [Syria] fared little better. . . .The new occupiers themselves imposed demographic change and extended “Turkification” policies from Turkey’s Kurdish southeast into northern Syria. — Ignoring Afrin, Gokcan Aydogan, et al, September 2018
But Jacobin would never write about the “full-blown ‘Hispanicization’ of California public schools.”
The Daily Beast, whose tech reporter Will Sommer specializes in mocking the Right, published the following claim about a “great replacement” with no caveats:
The depopulation of Palestine was no accident. The Zionist movement sought to create a Jewish state in a territory where Jews were a minority. On the eve of the Nakba, Jews constituted 30 percent of the population and owned 7 percent of the land. Within months, they forged a state on 78 percent of the territory where they flipped the demographic ratio from 30:70 Jews to Arabs to 90:10. To think such dramatic demographic change happens by accident—only coincidently suiting decades old Zionist aims—is dangerous naiveté. Such things happen only by design. — Nakba Denials Must Be Condemned, Yousef Munayyer, July 13, 2017
The Left understands demographic change; it just doesn’t want whites to notice it’s happening.
Six years ago, a “purple” Georgia was a pipe dream. Now, in a year when Republicans have the national advantage, it’s a possibility. The pace of demographic change is so fast that, soon enough, Democrats like [Stacey] Abrams won’t have to work to change the electorate—it will have happened on its own.
Paul Kersey was not the author. It was a black liberal named Jamelle Bouie, writing for Slate. Mr. Bouie has since been hired by the New York Times and Paul Kersey has been attacked by it. That’s because Mr. Bouie is happy to see these changes, and Mr. Kersey isn’t.