The episode prompted Reihan Salam, who is of Bangladeshi ancestry, to write a column in The Atlantic about the prevalence of anti-white sentiment in the social circles he moves in. He writes:
What I want to do, though, is look beyond the particulars of Jeong’s remarks to better understand why anti-white rhetoric is, in some communities, so commonplace as to be banal.
He believes that some of the white bashing is due to "intra-white status jockeying":
The people I’ve heard archly denounce whites have for the most part been upwardly-mobile people who’ve proven pretty adept at navigating elite, predominantly white spaces. A lot of them have been whites who pride themselves on their diverse social circles and their enlightened views, and who indulge in their own half-ironic white-bashing to underscore that it is their achieved identity as intelligent, worldly people that counts most, not their ascribed identity as being of recognizably European descent.
I think there is some truth to this observation that social status signalling is at play. I work alongside middle-class white women who get a little excited at times when there is an opportunity to denounce white men. These are women who marry or date white men, who have white sons and who are most comfortable in a middle-class white milieu. So, in their case at least, it is not driven by personal hatred, but by some sort of status signalling (which is obvious at times, as when they contrast their own views with that of some distant, and less "enlightened," white relative).
Note that Reihan Salam connects this attitude to an underlying liberal idea, namely that our identity is not supposed to be ascribed (given to us), but self-determined (individually achieved). In other words, the liberal elite is finding ways to signal their rejection of a given (white) identity, including a sense of pride or status derived from the achievements of whites as a group, in favour of what they believe they have achieved on their own.
(This brings to mind the emphasis placed by Jordan Peterson on the idea that there should be no pride or status found within a group identity and that only a pride in individual achievement is to be permitted. He shares this view with the liberal elite. I would urge him to consider the benefit to society if the elite derived a sense of pride and status from both their own achievements and that of the larger tradition they belong to. The elite would then have a more positive regard for their own tradition and a greater sense of sharing a common fate with their compatriots.)
Reihan Salam goes on to consider why upwardly-mobile Asians might be drawn to anti-white speech. This part of his column is, in my opinion, a tour de force. He begins by observing that anti-white rhetoric can help Asian Americans advance in their careers as it draws the support of liberal whites in the elite:
But many of the white-bashers of my acquaintance have been highly-educated and affluent Asian American professionals. So why do they do it? What work is this usually (though not always) gentle and irony-steeped white-bashing actually performing?
...In some instances, white-bashing can actually serve as a means of ascent, especially for Asian Americans. Embracing the culture of upper-white self-flagellation can spur avowedly enlightened whites to eagerly cheer on their Asian American comrades who show (abstract, faceless, numberless) lower-white people what for.
He explains in some detail how an Asian American who aspires to become an elite insider needs to "crack the code" of liberal-think on "racial justice" issues. He also explains how anti-white rhetoric helps to ease the "burden of representativeness" for elite Asian Americans. What he means is that there is a tension in being part of a privileged elite whilst standing in for a supposedly disadvantaged minority group:
Because you are present in elite spaces, your authenticity will often be called into question. So white-bashing becomes a form of assuaging internal and external doubts, affirming that despite ascending into the elite, you are not entirely of it.
It's an intelligent attempt to analyse the purposes served by anti-white speech and it's worth carefully reading through the original article.
A note to Melbourne readers. If you are sympathetic to the ideas of this website, please visit the site of the Melbourne Traditionalists. It's important that traditionalists don't remain isolated from each other; our group provides a great opportunity for traditionalists to meet up and connect. Details at the website.