Our current moment is often described as a “racial reckoning.” In reality, what this often means is that a narrative about Black victimization has gone mainstream. We hear endlessly about systemic racism, white supremacy, the black/white income gap, and police brutality. So powerful an ideology has this narrative become that those of us who pose a credible counter-narrative—black anti-woke writers, for example—frequently find our words being misconstrued in an effort to stanch their impact.
This doesn’t happen to everyone who opposes the Critical Social Justice narrative of black victimization. White dissenters are simply called “racist” while many black dissenters are considered tragic victims of internalized racism. But things get ugly when woke Critical Social Justice proponents encounter a certain kind of black person who does not align with their preferred victim narrative and instead emphasizes his or her own individuality or self-regard. Such people present a threat to the woke narrative, since that narrative insists that all black people are victims of white supremacy, meaning anyone who insists on their individuality and their own power proves the falsity of that victim narrative; if the woke narrative were true, such people should not be able to exist.
Which means that when we claim to exist, antiracist woke warriors need to erase us, using a logical fallacy I call “erase and replace.” Erase and replace is a combination of the strawman and ad hominem logical fallacies. The move involves taking the argument someone is making and substituting it for one that fits more neatly into the woke victim narrative by specifically targeting the character of the challenger—since it is, in part, their character that is the greatest challenge.
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