Stan Grant and Other Toxic Tribalists

Stan Grant, flogging a new book and thrashing a dead monarch, has just had an excerpt of his latest exercise in cliche wrangling and incoherent grievance published in the Weekend Australian.  It appeared beneath the ominous headline, “The Queen is Dead, the ABC is nervous … I feel empty”. Such is the presence of systemic racism in Australia, apparently, that Grant remains very much the victim. That he collects a handsome salary for hosting Q&A and has an international publisher, Rupert Murdoch’s HarperCollins, eager to publish every detail of his oppression and torments seems not to have occurred to him. Instead, and not surprisingly, he casts the majority of his lighter-skinned fellow citizens as racist oppressors.

In a stunning admission, which completely contradicts the ABC’s own charter for journalistic objectivity, Grant states:

As journalists, we cling to our objectivity. But that is a lie. Who is objective? What a bloodless idea. There is nothing objective about the way my people—my family—have been treated. And what is objective about this ritual mourning of the White Queen? I am expected to ask questions. To give guests “equal time”*. To make sure all voices are heard. As if truth can be divided and weighed. At other times I can step back, try to be neutral.

At least he’s being honest. It is what Grant has to say about “whiteness”, though, which sounds the alarm. Grant states:

Whiteness is not White people. I have to keep reminding myself of that. It is an organising principle. It is a way of ordering the world. It is an invention. An idea. A curse.

What Grant is referring too here are the underlying tenets of Critical Race Theory. And as many have pointed out, including here, here and here, the social justice movement has morphed into a full-blown religious cult. Dr. Voddie T. Baucham argues in his book, Fault Lines: The Social Justice Movement and Evangelicalism’s Looming Catastrophe (Salem, 2021):

This new cult has created a new lexicon that has served as scaffolding to support what has become an entire body of divinity. In the same manner, this new body of divinity comes complete with its own cosmology (critical race theory); original sin (racism); law (antiracism); gospel (racial reconciliation); martyrs (George Floyd, Breonna Taylor); priests (oppressed minorities); means of atonement (reparations); new birth (wokeness); liturgy (lament); canon (social justice books); theologians (DiAngelo, Kendi, Brown, Crenshaw, MacIntosh, etc.); and catechism (“say their names”).

Baucham’s work is not only one of the most accessible summaries on the subject to date, but also shows that “whiteness” is a whole new cosmology, a way of looking at the world**. Baucham explains how this has taken place by following and retelling Genesis 1’s account of how God created the world.

Day 1: White people created whiteness.

Being white is no longer about a person’s biology but a presumed ideology. Thus, there is a seismic shift from having been created in the image of God — a reality everyone shares — to having been born into a privileged racial group. This obviously destroys any idea of equality between fellow human beings. As Robin DiAngelo and Ozlem Sensoy state in, Is Everyone Really Equal? (New York: 2012):

Although many White people feel that being White has no meaning, this feeling is unique to White people and is a key part of what it means to White; to see one’s race as having no meaning is a privilege only Whites are afforded. To claim to be “just human” and thus outside of race is one of the most powerful and pervasive manifestations of Whiteness.


Day 2: White people created ‘white privilege’

Social justice warriors refer an inherent “white privilege”, which Baucham explains as unearned advantage by virtue of that same whiteness. As Peggy McIntosh — the woman who coined this particular term — explains in her paper, White Privilege: Unpacking the Invisible Knapsack:

I think whites are carefully taught not to recognize white privilege, as males are taught not to recognise male privilege. So, I have begun in an untutored way to ask what it is like to have white privilege. I have come to see white privilege as an invisible package of unearned assets that I can count on cashing in each day, but about which I was “meant” to remain oblivious. White privilege is like an invisible weightless knapsack of special provisions, maps, passports, codebooks, visas, clothes, tools, and blank checks.


Day3: White people created ‘white supremacy’

Arising from white privilege is ‘white supremacy’. This refers not to the systemic exploitation and oppression of people of colour by those of European background but instead to “any belief, behaviour, or system that supports, promotes, or enhances white privilege.”

This is where one needs to be especially careful in perceiving the subtle shift as to what the phrase “white supremacy” actually means. No longer is it about one group of people thinking of themselves as inherently superior to others; rather, it is any advantage that a particular sub-group enjoys simply because of their mutual association.


Day 4: White people created ‘white complicity’

This is the belief that white people, through the practices of whiteness and by benefiting from white privilege, contribute to the maintenance of systemic racial injustice. As such, according to critical race theory, white people must explicitly acknowledge and repudiate the sin of ‘whiteness’. As the SJW founder of Sojourners magazine, Jim Wallis, states:

Confession leads to freedom…. Without confession to the sin of white racism, white supremacy, white privilege, people who call themselves white Christians will never be free—free from the bondage of a lie, a myth, an ideology, and an idol.


Day 5: White people created ‘white equilibrium’

Flowing from the previous point, white people further their guilt by not continually confessing it. This is known as ‘white equilibrium”: the belief system that allegedly allows white people to remain comfortably ignorant. Hence, the only right response is for reparations of some kind. As Latasha Morrison attempts to explain in her influential book, Be the Bridge: Pursuing God’s Heart for Racial Reconciliation (New York, 2019):

In my work as a bridge builder, I’ve seen how, time and time again, conversations about reconciliation stall when the topic of righting the wrongs comes up. Terms such as reparations, affirmative action, white privilege, and Black Lives Matter are nonstarters for so many folks, in part because they disrupt the listener. They remind him or her that making things right costs something, often power, position or money.


Day 6: White people created white fragility.

Finally, there is what is called, ‘white fragility’: the inability and unwillingness of white people to talk about race due to, allegedly, the iron grip that whiteness, white supremacy, white privilege, white complicity, and white equilibrium exert on them (knowingly or unknowingly). But as Baucham rightly states, “White fragility also serves as a kind of Kafka trap. In other words, it is a denial of guilt that is seen as proof of guilt.”

         Claim: You have white privilege and are complicit in white supremacy and racism.

         Response:  That is not true! (fill in rationale here).

         Conclusion:  That is just your white fragility fighting for equilibrium.


Day 7: White people never rest from black activism

Baucham doesn’t refer to a seventh day but it’s logical to conclude that under critical race theory there is never any ultimate rest. This is because, as John McWhorter argues, black activism functions as atonement. Or as Baucham writes, “In case you’re wondering about its soteriology [the doctrine of salvation], there isn’t one. Antiracism offers no salvation—only perpetual penance in an effort to battle an incurable disease.”

In the light of all this, it is interesting how Grant still refers to himself as a ‘Christian’. Although, make no mistake, it is not the same faith Grant describes as “a failed European Christianity”. No, for Grant:

Ours was the crucified Christ; crucified as a political act. Our theology is political. It is a theology of liberation. And it is black.

Grant isn’t stretching the truth — his truth, anyway. This is indeed a completely new religion. What the Apostle Paul would describe as being a “different gospel” (Gal. 1:6-9). The end result, though, is not racial reconciliation but a form of toxic tribalism: a message condemning white people as oppressors and exonerates anyone with an indigenous heritage as being a victim.

* If only

** For those interested, see also Andrew Doyle’s The New Puritans: How the Religion of Social Justice Captured the Western World

22 thoughts on “Stan Grant and Other Toxic Tribalists

  • Blair says:

    My wife is a Torres Strait Islander. I am of British/Irish/Scottish descent.
    Our children both have University degrees, good jobs, families and I think are enjoying a happy and satisfactory life.
    Can they thank my whiteness for that?

  • Daffy says:

    Grant misses the obvious point: the myth of whiteness is an excuse for cultural indolence on the part of those who don’t want to participate in…not a complexion, but a cultural orientation. The cultural orientation starts with the individual as the locus of personal destiny, extends to equality before the law, ‘complexion blindness’ and opportunity created by diligent hard work. Nothing more nothing less.

    Those who don’t want to make the sacrifices and participate in diligent hard work need an out, a means of sucking the life-blood out of a culture that has been a resounding success for all participants but not for those who see life as folding the hands and blaming others for their predicament. That parasitism on success comes care of Marx and his gang of mendacious thugs who imagine the group as the locus of destiny and refuse to look beyond its anonymizing dehumanizing fiction as they seek control of the group. Foucault was right: its only about power. For them.

    Yet, even Stan has taken advantage of what the self-critical and self-renewing Western culture has opened to all; this might look like him culturally appropriating the West and its communications technology, its industrial structure and its education system, but no, it’s the West being open to any who want to enjoy its benefits.

  • RobyH says:

    White people created Australia. Every Australian is privileged to live here. If you build it should you benefit from it – be privileged and have supremacy in it.

    Not for the whites who created Australia – Australia is about equality of citizenship regardless of skin colour. We can’t have a place for racists like Stan. All countries history has good and bad but those that preach historical vengeance should not be banned from any platform/ soap box like the ABC to preach racism.

    • lbloveday says:

      We can’t have a place for racists like Stan….
      … those that preach historical vengeance should not be banned from any platform/ soap box like the ABC to preach racism.
      Seems contradictory to me – “can’t have a place”, but “should not be banned”?

      • RobyH says:

        Bad typo/proof reading. – “should be banned”. I feel justifiably embarrassed now. I should have just said Ban Stan and I would have gotten it right.

  • Doubting Thomas says:

    Predictably, my comment on Grant’s pathetically stupid article, was added to my previous pile of rejects.

    “Grow up, Stan. In the real world, most working class people, regardless of race or ethnicity, need go back no more than a generation or two to find similar or even worse stories of genuine hardship, perhaps only because of their religion. Speaking from your present position, you are relatively better off than all but a tiny single-digit percentage of the population.”

  • IainC says:

    I read the Oz article with rising terror at the depth of his almost 360 degree hatred for the 97% and its culture. I think he managed to use every single historical falsehood and fabricated racial trope in that article.
    I submitted this plea to him in the comments (accepted!)

    Stan, just FYI, the Germans bombed my hometown to rubble 15 years before I was born. I don’t demand reparations every time I land in Frankfurt. My father and his brother in the UK were forcibly taken from their mother in the 30s (standard policy for children of a woman whose husband had died and was mentally unwell and unable to care for them properly). I don’t invent vast conspiracies to explain it.
    As a proud, indigenous Hampshire man, I and my family and relatives just got on with our lives and made our own future, despite having no voice to parliament. The only government assistance my parents ever got was a cheap airfare to Australia, which carried our 2 suitcases of worldly goods (my teddy came later in a tea-chest, after 3 months at sea).
    Perhaps you could spin around and look forward rather than to the distant past. Like love, bitterness also grows when fed constantly. Choose love instead, Stan.

    • Brian Boru says:

      “Like love, bitterness also grows when fed constantly. Choose love instead, Stan.” Well said Iain.
      Your people were (are) “big” people, unfortunately Stan is a “little” person. He has written a grubby article to shock so he can add to the wealth that our colourblind society has granted him.
      He has chosen his path of racism but let us continue to love all equally.

  • Stephen Due says:

    Stan and his brethren are essentially racists denouncing racism, elitists denouncing privilege. Stan has not yet worked out that his position can be questioned. He thinks that if an idea goes down with the ABC hierarchy and the Q&A audience, it needs no further validation. I recall Peter Singer on Q&A defending bestiality (specifically woman and dog). The clincher from this world-famous academic was that he “could see nothing wrong with it”. Brilliant. The other panelists, and the audience, responded dutifully with awed silence. Stan has the same problem. He thinks that his own worldview is the ultimate test of truth. Among pigmies (insert racist trigger warning), an average man (insert sexist trigger warning) will seem to be a giant. Such is the case with Stan. To his followers he looms large. To the rest of us, not so much.

  • rosross says:

    There is nothing objective about the way my people—my family—have been treated, says Stan.

    One presumes he means those with Aboriginal ancestry which in terms of his overall ancestry is minimal and he is mostly Anglo-European. Or is he saying all of his family have been treated badly? He might need to clarify.

    what we do know is that he is a consummate whinger. Duh Stan. You had it so bad you were held back on every count and failed to achieve anywhere at anytime? Oh, hang on, no, he actually did pretty well.

  • Carlos says:

    My ‘rejected’ comment on Stan’s article:

    Stan Grant; A medium media talent, but a first rate chip on his shoulder.

    An ad hominem attack to be sure, but made me feel a little better. What irks me most about Stan (apart from his ridiculous fake tan) is the fact that his indigenous stipend is about 10% (give or take).

    • rosross says:

      Eloquent. Grant was always a mediocre journalist and a reasonable newsreader. That is about it. He was never heavy in the intelligence stakes which no doubt accounts for his irrational views today. So much success for so little talent and so much money and still he whinges.

    • John C says:

      Are you serious in saying that Stan Grant has joined Andrew Peacock and Donald Trump in adding facial colouring? A friend also asserted that this was so, but I couldn’t believe he would do that.

  • Citizen Kane says:

    In the increasingly convoluted world of race politics and identity politics, we are informed by the postmodernists through their critical race theory that race is not an inheritable set of physical traits, Although, ironically enough skin color has been elevated to be politically panoptic. Biological race traits are now denounced as biological essentialism (interesting that immutable biological truths are now a far-right conspiracy). Instead, the new postmodernist ‘truth’ views racial categories as socially constructed, that is, race is not intrinsic to human beings but rather an identity created, often by socially dominant groups, to establish meaning in a social context. That is, self-ascribed cultural affiliation defines race. Of course, this opens the door for such groupings as modern nationality to be confounded with race.

    However, biological racial traits are becoming increasingly and rapidly diluted in a modern interconnected world arguably leading to a more or less mixed single race of humans. Therefore, in order to keep the neo-marxist political division and grievance of race politics alive, the CRT adherents seek ever more confected differences in order to promulgate race and identity politics, including self -identifying race absolutism – cue Stan Grant.

    Yet, no matter which way you cut it, Stan is a failed Aboriginal, which is probably why he is so angry. Even if Stan ascribed to ‘biological essentialism’ his mixed genetic inheritance, with less than 50% Aboriginal inheritance precludes him from being exclusively defined as Aboriginal through the prism of biological traits, while his modern material lifestyle and cultural affiliation with modern Australian western, secular, liberal, free market society far from the culturally defining hunter gatherer existence of Aboriginals ‘on country’ precludes him from any meaningful cultural kinship. The superficial incantation of welcome to country ad nauseum makes an Aboriginal not. By his own measure, his job is white, his education is white, his house is white as is his car, his clothes and just about everything else that constitutes his entire existence. Either the primacy of his ‘Aboriginality’ is appropriated or his modern privileged western lifestyle is appropriated. Which one is it Stan?

  • Peter OBrien says:

    Thank you Mark for a very informative article. My rejected comment was:
    “The only person who cares what colour Stan Grant is, is Stan Grant”.

  • brennan1950 says:

    In light of Stan Grant’s complaints, I recently had a sidewalk conversation with a gentleman outside his lovely and well maintained home.

    As it turned out, he was 80 years old; born in 1942. I am 72 years old.

    We both reflected that the years of our childhood were pretty tough for many, even those fortunate enough to have a small business.

    He remarked that after a game of golf with his friends, discussion centred on what their childhood was like.

    He said the one word that they agreed on was “survival”.

    So to Stan I say, take a teaspoon of concrete princess and suck it up.

  • Brian Boru says:

    Trying as hard as I can, I can’t imagine Stan in a loincloth with a spear and woomera ready to hunt a roo.
    Maybe he is not really an aborigine, just someone riding on a band wagon which pays well.
    This comment,unlike a lot of others here, was not rejected by The Australian. I don’t get the paper.

  • call it out says:

    “Stan, can you continue as a journalist, with due regard for the profession? Perhaps just be an advocate.”

    This was my rejected comment in The Australian.

    Seems pretty mild to me.

    The Oz is in danger, I think.

    • John C says:

      I’ve also found the Oz is getting more and more censorious, and on grounds not easy to discern.

      • John C says:

        I believe The Australian has outsourced comment monitoring to an organisation in New Zealand, if that’s what the country is still called. That could explain the greater censorship, even after PM Adern has departed.

  • Lawriewal says:

    My rejected “comment” on a quote from Grant’s article in the Oz:-

    quote ” No. We will do it, I say, and I will put Black voices front and centre. And Black women. My friend Sisonke Msimang – the South African writer – and the Wiradjuri lawyer Teela Reid agree to be part of the program.” endquote

    Try saying this in public but using a different colour.

  • pmprociv says:

    Critical race theory is no theory, more a miasma of toxic, muddled thinking, a paralytic brew of victimhood, confected outrage and envy (although it does provide lucrative, academic jobs, I suppose). It has all the hallmarks of an extreme religion, rendering logical debate futile – its exponents’ truth being completely impervious to facts. To attribute thinking and behaviour to one particular group based on skin colour, as it does, is an extreme form of racism. And, inexplicably, its proselytization always leads to claims for reparations in the form of money (as opposed to tithing its own followers in the more mainstream forms of religion) – isn’t it well known that money is a white invention? (And I can’t help wondering how today’s Ukrainians would feel about being classed as “privileged white people”?)

    Modern nations are all artificial constructs, whose function and even survival depend critically upon how its citizens view themselves, and cooperate. Just about every one of us has ancestors who suffered injustices, in some cases in extreme forms. Yet, we all have to live in the present, and will have to get on with each other somehow in the future. Should we then all start claiming reparations or, worse still, revenge, for ancestral suffering, which after all can never be erased or ameliorated, but lives there perpetually in the past, our future will be truly bleak. And, as the past expands continuously, so will the quantity of past suffering and injustice. Should we teach our children incessantly about these, ahead of the positives of our world, it will guarantee societal breakdown (not to mention the effects on mental states). Our “multiculturalism” will surely see to that, with growing numbers of mutually incompatible ethnic groups bringing their squabbles to our country, and preaching their versions of truth to their own kind here. This is the basis of “Balkanization”, and we in Australia run a serious risk of going down that path by encouraging every minority group to keep bleating about its ancestral victimhood, to keep rubbing at old wounds that will never heal, instead of being grateful for the opportunities given them in this new, and unique, country.

    What I fail to understand about Stan Grant is how his world view has changed so much over recent years (in parallel with his skin pigmentation: could there be a connection?). Stan, after all, has seen far more of the world than most of us, and should be aware of the dangers of his growing divisive advocacy – for a harmonious society, but even moreso for indigenous people, who will stand at risk of being seen as some new elite, a “chosen race”. This should certainly be the case should the Voice, then Treaty, get up, with their ultimate aims of seeking compensation and rents in perpetuity. In response to a recent article (an extract from his latest book) in The Weekend Australian, I was compelled to write a letter (which, given my track record, is unlikely to be published, so here it is):

    “Whichever way you look at it, Stan Grant’s life and career can only be described as a success story. Has he ever considered sharing his secrets, which surely would be much more helpful and encouraging to youngsters following in his footsteps, instead of wallowing in the past tragedies of his ancestors (“I have wrestled with anger, resentment, betrayal, sadness …”, Apr 22-23)? Many of us have immediate ancestors afflicted with gross injustice, cruelty and misery (I could write a fat book about mine), but harbouring resentment about past, unchangeable tragedies is certainly not going to help anyone deal with the compounding problems of today’s world, demanding we all work together like never before. Just a few pages on, Bernard Salt (“A Fortunate Life”) praises the fortitude and sacrifices of our predecessors, who lived through two world wars, a lethal pandemic and the Great Depression, to create the world that makes our comfortable lives possible. What a contrast.”

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