Is Rex Huppke the Sleaziest Writer in the USA, Today?

A journalist attacks Ron DeSantis, racism, and white people.

By David Marshall Published on May 25, 2023

Rex Huppke is a leftist humor columnist for USA Today. Either that, or he is the sleaziest writer in the USA, today. More accurately, he’s both.

That might sound grandiose, given the present state of journalism. But consider Huppke’s recent slime-fest of a hit piece in USA Today, “Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis does the white thing by banning DEI funding at universities.”

Get that? The “white” thing (emphasis added), meaning the vile, narrow-minded, despicable thing.

To double down on the slur (whether by Huppke or the USA Today editors), the article was subtitled, “The new law protects students who don’t want to be told things they don’t want to hear from potentially hearing things they don’t want to learn. Definitely the white move.”

So European-Americans are willfully ignorant bigots. Vileness defines us. How’s that for an in-your-face racist slur? But that’s OK, because America’s most-read newspaper is only sliming white people. And since we’re the source of everything bad in the world and nothing good, we deserve it.

Would any paper in America dare take such shots at Asians, Blacks, Hispanics, or Jews? It would fold the following day, if its premises weren’t burnt to the ground.

One Kind of Racism is Acceptable to the Left

The headline reflects Huppke’s go-to rhetorical gambit seen in the article itself. As bigoted as Huppke appears to be, he is also terminally obtuse (the two often going together):

Ron DeSantis, Florida’s governor, did the white thing Monday, signing a bill that pulls all state funding from the diversity, equity and inclusion programs at the state’s public universities. For people who have never once had to worry about or value diversity, equity or inclusion, this was definitely the white move.

The fact is, European-Americans are far UNDER-represented at top American universities these days. For instance, excluding internationals, only 38% of Harvard undergraduates are non-Hispanic white, in a state where two-thirds of citizens belong to that demographic, and a nation at 58%. If top universities recruited purely on the basis of “equity,” they would have to accept far more European-American kids than they do.

Further, we know Huppke wouldn’t dare say, “This was definitely the Asian move?” Only one kind of racism is acceptable on the Left.

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But many forms of stupidity are celebrated.

The present generation, Huppke notes, “are more racially and ethnically diverse than any previous generation.” He adds, adding his racist tag-line at the end, “That means those youths are bound to be opposed to diversity, equity and inclusion, white?”

Huppke has not, perhaps, read Ibram Kendi, who makes it clear that by “equity” in effect he means discriminating against Fred, who earns higher SAT scores, on behalf of Jerry, who earns lower scores, because Fred has the wrong skin tone, white? — and keep on doing that until all races are equal in outcome. (Except on the basketball court, or anywhere else where artificial favoritism would help white or Asian kids.)

But more likely, reading his taunts against “whites,” Huppke is just playing dumb: he knows perfectly well that the policies he favors mean actively discriminating against young people who own the wrong tone of leather.

Battling Bigotry in Florida

Whether he is as ignorant of Woke policies as he pretends, Huppke is not afraid to pound the table — and spray rhetorical Gerber’s baby food onto the pages of a national newspaper:

Academic officials will now have to make sure no sneaky, inclusion-loving professors claim ‘systemic racism, sexism and privilege’ exist, because claiming such things exist forces folks like DeSantis to stick their fingers in their ears and shout, ‘NEENER, NEENER, NEENER, NEENER!!!’

In fact, to anyone who reads the bills DeSantis and the Florida legislature have been passing, it is clear they are designed precisely to prevent systemic racism and privilege based on skin color or other secondary characteristics. They thus ban the following teachings, often taught in DEI training courses (as if Huppke didn’t know!):

Members of one race, color, sex, or national origin are morally superior to members of another race, color, sex, or national origin … An individual’s moral character or status as either privileged or oppressed is necessarily determined by his or her race, color, sex, or national origin.

That’s the sort of bigotry DeSantis is battling. USA Today may find “Neener, Neener” an adequate response. I say, “We haven’t had a president named ‘Ron’ for a while, and it sounds like we need another one now.”

Trampling True Diversity Into the Dust

Then Huppke plays his trump card, at which, as the Chinese say, “the water falls and the rocks show themselves.” He writes sarcastically of “troublesome DEI programs that might force a straight, white, male student to sense that other people matter,” because of course white males are all bigots, in Huppke’s thinking. He then names dozens of companies, from Amazon to Western Union, which emphasize DEI, along with “pretty much every company. Everywhere.” So because DeSantis has banned DEI, Florida students will be waiting in bread lines and corporations will refuse to hire them.

Note the irony, and crudity, of Huppke’s shot across the bow. He touts diversity, but the most important diversity — variety of opinion, of ways of conceptualizing the university and society — the intellectual diversity that made little Greece a creative superpower, and that caused Medieval Europe and modern America to flourish — in the fine tradition of Pol Pot, the Grand Inquisitor, and Kim Il Sung, Huppke wishes to trample true diversity into the dust.

Every company, everywhere, must conform to his anti-white dogmas. And every student must repeat his racist catechism, or be out on the street!

That is the modern notion of “diversity” and “inclusion”: accept hatred of European-Americans and dismissal of western civilization, or we will ruin your life. Because Diversity means everyone must think the same. And Inclusion means we will hire no one who disagrees with us. Love is Hate, and War is Peace.

Oh the Irony

I find this especially ironic. I “celebrated diversity” long before heavy-handed nags like Huppke began to poison the concept. Sinfully white, male, and heterosexual though I be, I befriended Muslim, Indian, Chinese, Japanese, and Malaysian foreign students, took them hiking, brought them home for meals, took them on tours of the Olympic Peninsula and of Southwest China, and even married one (though that might not have been out of sheer altruism!). I worked to liberate tribal girls in Taiwan who had been forced into prostitution.

And now Huppke comes along and tells me my “straight white male” mind makes me inherently racist (Irony, if thou wert a dragon!). We deplorable white males need sanctimonious neo-Marxist DIE proselytizers to teach us “to sense that other people matter!”

In fact, I did take a Marxist Philosophy class in college, but it was from the Bible, not Marx, that I learned one should care for people across lines of gender, race, culture, and class. And not just me. Studies show, for instance, that almost all Americans now approve, for instance, of inter-racial marriage.

USA Today has become so yesterday. The editors are trying to drag us back to the “bad old days” when American media could get away with publishing the most shameless racism as if it were what all decent people agree upon.

Pardon me if I use a little theological language in response. (Or perhaps Huppke will interpret this as “white-wing propaganda.”)

To h*** with racial bigotry of all kinds, both the KKK kind, and the Woke kind. For it is from h***that this tendency to judge people by superficial characteristics arises. Why would America wish to return to the boiling fires of injustice from which we so recently escaped?


David Marshall, an educator and writer, has a doctoral degree in Christian thought and Chinese tradition. His most recent book is The Case for Aslan: Evidence for Jesus in the Land of Narnia. 

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