The snootiness is by design, of course. And you can make fun of it all you want; it's worked. Using many of the same techniques realtors have employed to hawk borderline tenements as unique gateways to the urban experience,
It's ironic. The Obama years were supposed to usher in an era of racial harmony. That didn't happen -- which presumably is why Schultz feels the need to help mend our racial wounds. What has happened, however, is that hordes of college graduates, unable to find jobs suitable to their degrees, have ended up toiling away at places like
It's kind of ingenious. Since sociology majors can't find relevant jobs, Schultz is making the jobs they have relevant to their majors. If this becomes a trend, maybe my dog walkers will start reciting Proust in French on their perambulations.
As a business decision, I find the whole thing bizarre. If I don't have my coffee in the morning, I get a headache that feels like a Hell's Angel is trying to press his meaty thumb through my forehead. This is not the most propitious moment to engage me in a conversation about my "race journey." Worse,
I think part of the problem is that leaders of the
And while it's all too easy to mock the entire enterprise, what really bothers me is the underlying assumption.
Most Americans lament the political polarization of our country. I think the worry is sometimes overblown, but even so, it's a real problem.
One of the reasons it has become such a problem is that we mistake causes for remedies. Schultz joins a long list of prominent people who insist that what this country needs is more conversation about race. And race is just one of the countless issues included in the national conversation shortage.
Among my problems with this relentless hectoring about the need for conversations or "honest dialogue" or "frank talk" is the way in which those calling for such things never actually want a real conversation. They want to speechify and indoctrinate. And, if you actually dare to say anything honest or frank, you can be sure the same people who want to create "safe places" for dialogue will leap at the opportunity to denounce your insensitivity, micro-aggression or alleged racism.
But my biggest problem with it is that I think the last thing this country needs is to make more spaces political. If you want to know why things are so polarized, you could start by noting how much more politicized everything is. When politics invades our homes, schools, workplaces, movies, TV shows, video games, sports and every other part of our culture, is it any wonder that our culture becomes politicized? And when culture is politicized, is it so shocking that politics becomes polarized?
While I think this new