“ On our arrival in Egypt in 1916, our men, hungry and tired, entered the YMCA at Gabbary Camp to the strains of ‘Rule Britannia’. Imagine our surprise when we were confronted by a number of British soldiers and the question asked: ‘Who gave you niggers authority to sing that! Clear out of this building-only British soldiers admitted here.’
“ There comes a point in chess where the truth is more important than the principle. I think a lot of players are guided by principle… two bishops are good; rook on an open file; doubled pawns are bad; don’t leave your king in the center. I think that a big difference between Grandmasters and lower-rated players is that those principles are only guidelines… they’re not the truth. They may help you GET to the truth, but a lot of times they may stand in your way of understanding the truth. Grandmasters are much more comfortable with exceptions to the rule and able to FIND more exceptions to the rule. So that with a Grandmaster, it won’t seem shocking because he breaks a principle… but the Grandmaster isn’t sweating the principle. They’re sweating to finding [sic] what the best continuation is… the most accurate one.
“ Intellectually, it is not just a question of what Michelle Alexander does or does not know here, on the whole. She cites a lot of some scholars (or “people”) and kinds of work. What she doesn’t seem to know may be a great deal, but what she doesn’t want to know and what she doesn’t want her audience to know is much greater. Original insight or info is in reality scarce in The New Jim Crow. Its hides from consumer view other work, “activists” and scholars more insightful and more radical or fearless. For anyone who could read across a range of relatively recent writings alone, like Elaine Brown’s The Condemnation of Little B: New Age Racism in America (2003); Katheryn K. Russell’s The Color of Crime (1998); Colin Dayan’s Story of the Cruel and Unusual (2004); Mumia Abu-Jamal or Dhoruba Bin Wahad’s contributions to Still Black, Still Strong: Survivors of the War against Black Revolutionaries (1993), just for example; beyond Angela Y. Davis’s much-touted if ill-conceived Are Prisons Obsolete? (2003), all of which are meticulously ignored by Alexander with current radical “activism” and all of the Black and non-Black radical movements of the 1960s and ’70s, there is literally next to nothing to be learned from The New Jim Crow. “This book is not for everyone,” indeed. Yet a lot of this “everyone” has been buying and supporting it, none the wiser, without raising adequate questions from the perspective of “everyone,” whose lives surely depend on raising questions under this cultural, political economic order of things. Michelle Alexander’s The New Jim Crow is not for “everyone” because from cover to cover “everyone” except advocates of white and middle-class liberalism – in the imperial context of U.S. settler nationalism – are placed totally and completely beyond the pale. The soundtrack of Richard Wright’s old protest, White Man, Listen! (1957), a virtual parody half a century ago, scratches pitifully in the background.
— Greg Thomas - WHY SOME LIKE THE NEW JIM CROW SO MUCH: Michelle Alexander is unlike “Some Radical Group[s]” who must be “Crazy” & “Absurd”