“It was their whiteness.”


‘Is My Little Library Contributing to the Gentrification of My Black Neighborhood’


The New York Times has — since its inception, I would imagine — been regarded as the exemplar of responsible, objective journalism.

Of course, this pertains to news, but there must also be a high standard when it comes to the editorial/opinion pages.

How did this racist “guest essay” get published? Or, I should say, what is it doing there?

Let’s forget for a moment the anti-white racism. What about the value of this op-ed as an opinion piece, as a piece of writing?

I am sure the Times gets loads of op-ed submissions, and that it is not easy to get published there. This piece is a very weak, jerry-built screed — built on pernicious premises:

A library is not so much a marker of wealth and whiteness as it is an affirmation of community. …

… I saw a young white couple stopped at the library. Instantly, I was flooded with emotions — astonishment, and then resentment, and then astonishment at my resentment. It all converged into a silent scream in my head of, Get off my lawn!

What I resented was not this specific couple. It was their whiteness. …

It raises “issues” that should not be issues.

It is an insult to the Times‘s readers.


Roger W. Smith

   December 2021

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