If there was one lesson that every European – and not just Jewish ones – had learned from the first half of the 20th century, it was “never again”.
Never has that slogan sounded more hollow than on Saturday, when a white nationalist parade drew 60,000 people, mostly men, to Warsaw to march through the streets with most banners proclaiming “We want God” but others demanding a “White Poland”, “A holocaust for Muslims”, and “a brotherhood of white nations” – as if that had worked out after 1918. Of course, the breakdown of international order between the wars was blamed by the far right on Jews, whereas the threat now is supposed to be Muslims.
…Self-conscious Nazis are still a very small part of this movement. We are not seeing a straightforward return to the 1930s. But the slogans shouted today still wake disturbing echoes from 80 years ago. What we have once more is a growing cohort of men who know that the economy has no dignified use for them, and who feel this insult to their own personal self-worth is also an insult to the nation, the religion, or even the race, that they are proud to belong to. Their reaction brings shame on all three. These are dangerous emotions. When we watch these marches, we should remember the delirious enthusiasm that greeted the outbreak of the war whose ghastly end four years later we still commemorate. The hard-won common sense of each generation is easily forgotten by the children to whom it is offered as a gift. The only counter to this kind of twisted idealism is an idealism of progress and decency which can carry an equivalent meaning and urgency, but values all people for themselves, not for their race or creed.
The bolded section clearly implies that the Polish nationalist march brought shame on Poland, Christianity (or just Catholicism?) and the white race. Artfully, they avoid saying this directly.
Let’s assume that the conduct of some or all of the Polish nationalists on this march was objectively shameful. Of course I don’t agree with that, but let’s pretend. How then does this shame transfer from them to their entire religion and race? Can you imagine the Guardian saying that objectionable conduct from a bunch of negroes or Muslims somehow brought shame on their entire religion or race?
But how can the Poles have brought shame on the white race, anyway, if the white race doesn’t exist? I thought it was just a social construct.
This, apparently, is one of the hidden rules of contemporary public discourse. The white race is only allowed to exist when it’s being blamed for something.