It’s been about a year since the Black Lives Matter “race hysteria” took off, says Lionel Shriver in The Times, but what has the movement achieved? Corporations require employees to take “demonstrably ineffective” unconscious bias training. Newspapers devote “glowing spreads” to top black chefs, black architects and black artists. The majority of Booker prize nominees in 2020 were “of colour”, 16 of the 24 nominees for acting gongs at the Baftas weren’t white, and Joe Biden boasts about his 55% non-white cabinet.
“Sorry, but all this gesturing nonsense profits real live black people exactly how?” True, the BLM movement has its beneficiaries, but these are mostly educated black professionals who were already doing well. Actors, models, architects and writers – those most able to ride the wave of fashionable enthusiasm for everything black – probably grew up “middle-class-to-affluent”. But the black poor in London or LA have not managed to get on the cover of Vogue, and in many respects their lives have got worse. BLM-inspired police cuts in New York are allowing murder rates to soar in the very black neighbourhoods the movement “feigns to protect”. Schoolchildren are being force-fed critical race theory, which argues that societies are irredeemably unfair and that non-white kids shouldn’t bother because their futures are doomed. After nearly a year of “shouty placard-waving, finger-pointing and mayhem”, I can’t see how the black people whose lives were “genuinely crap” are any better off.