So Megan is catching heat for claiming that Zimbabwe was likely better off under Ian Smtih than Robert Mugabe. She sees Smith as the lesser of two very evil evils. I don't know how much I disagree--mainly because I'm not equipped with the details of it all, but I do think I have a bead on what gets people's hackles up, that being a sense that there's something behind the need to compare the two. As I said, on facts she may be right, but it's a hallow right--we're talking about comparing the thuggish Mugabe, to the terrorist Ian Smith. I'm not saying that for any dramatic effect, or lefty hyperbole--these cats were literally terrorists who were responsible for the largest outbreak of anthrax (at least at that point) in history.
To the extent that blaming Mugabe's craven thuggery on colonialism or some such is fallacious and beside the point, I'd contend the same about a Rhodesia/Zimbabwe comparison. Mugabe may well be worse, but I think people are seeing in the comparison (rightly or wrongly) a tradition wherein white pundits revel in blacks doing what humans do to each other--exploit, kill, torture, main--and then using that as an excuse to expunge themselves, This is the "black people kill more of each other than the Klan ever did" argument, or the "colonialism was great and the blacks screwed it all up" case,
That said, I really don't believe Megan meant it that way, but I think folks are connecting other dots, and for that reasons, I'm not shocked that the comments went somewhere she really wasn't heading. People are nasty on the net.
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