If you’ve followed my coverage of the culture wars over the past several years, you may know that my gateway drug and north star wrapped up in one were the conversations between economist Glenn Loury and linguist John McWhorter on The Glenn Show on Bloggingheads.tv. For more than a decade, the two have been having regular video conversations about culture and politics, especially matters of race. In that time, McWhorter has published best-selling books, continues to teach at Columbia University, and now writes a newsletter for the New York Times. Loury, for his part, has remained at his prestigious position as a professor of social sciences and economics at Brown University. He also has a successful Substack.
Part of the magic of their conversations is the way they don’t let their elite bona fides get in the way of their true thoughts. (Case in point: Loury’s glorious Ibram X. Kendi rant on the November 4, 2022, episode.)
At the end of the December 10 episode, which had included a lengthy discussion about black anti-Semitism, Loury and McWhorter reflected on the highly fraught nature of that topic. Loury remarked that it was “almost as bad as talking about the transgender issue, which John refuses to do on camera for fear of ruination.”
McWhorter, smiling and shaking his head, said only this: “I have a mortgage. I have small children. Uh-uh.”
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