Thursday, June 25, 2015

A Missive to the Most Anglo of Saxons

Dear straight white Christian-raised male,

Between the Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube, I can tell that this year is especially rough for you. I have seen taped rants, essays, and treatises from so many people just in the last few weeks, and I can tell that you are frustrated and angry.

There’s a trend in popular culture to cast and depict your originally white male heroes as women or people of colour. This seems to be so enraging to you, to see fictional characters who will have no real effect on your life be shown in a different light. It is as if Lawrence Olivier wore blackface to play Othello, or if Angelina Jolie was cast to play Mariane Pearl, an Afro-Sino-Cuban woman who actually exists.

You have no idea how to respond to Caitlyn Jenner’s transformation from Bruce. It must be so difficult for you to see an Olympian who you likely forgot about transition into a body and mind state that will ultimately make her happy and cause absolutely no consequence to you. How will you cope with this?

Just this month, you found out that your precious Alexander Hamilton may no longer be on the $10 in place of a woman. You poor things. The Founding Father who was felled in a duel will now be again felled by a person with ladybits, a push set forth because of all those pesky feminists, wanting women to be seen more prominently in society, just because they are 50% of society.

Then it was brought to your attention that it is offensive for a government office that claims to be working for all citizens and residents to fly the flag of a dead country that advocated owning other humans as a means to gain economic wealth and prosperity. It only took was 5,000+ murders and lynchings, plus the 9 that happened last week for you to realize that. Sure, the only reason that the flags were raised at those current government offices were to protest the fact that the federal government was starting to recognize that every citizen should be treated equally under the law. But you’re getting serious feels because “it’s just some fabric” and “there are more important issues”.

Why are all these things coming up at once? It is as if it is cool to be accepting and respectful of people different from you. I’ve heard you claim that it is all show and just a passing trend and sensation. It could not possibly be that these marginalized groups have been talking about this for years, taking to the streets at times, for hundreds of years, and people are just now paying attention in this century. There are books and speeches and manifestos promoting gender and racial and sexual equality that date back to when it was illegal to publish such literature, but it seems that the 20th and 21st century is when things actually started to change.


And for that, I am sorry. I truly am. I am sorry that your zero state has been put into question. I am sorry that you were too oblivious of the fact that there are other humans on the planet who have been offended by your zero state and have been screaming at the top of their lungs about it, but you were too busy dismissing their pleas for reason and respect. I am sorry that you can no longer casually say racist, Anti-non-Christian, sexist, homophobic things anymore without someone calling you out on it. Your life is so hard now, having to respect people. This is happening all of a sudden, and I am sure it is difficult for you. I will make an appointment to cry a river for you.

Love,
Me

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Dylan McDermott Owes Us an Explanation

Speak for your people!
In light of the Charleston, SC church shooting yesterday, I am calling on Dylan McDermott to make a statement on behalf of all Dylans and all white people, condemning this heinous act of violence. Mr. McDermott, you need to represent your entire race, and your first name. You may have no relation or knowledge that this Dylann Roof ever existed until now, but this murderer of nine innocent black people in this church that was an epicenter for the fight for black freedom and civil rights is unconscionable. It is as if he was doing a victory lynching!

Dylann Roof is a known white supremacist. He has many ties in the white power movement. Sure, some say he was a “lone wolf”, but that is just whitesplaining for “known terrorist”. Roof is a terrorist, and though he was caught and will hopefully face justice, we need to crack down on ALL people of his ilk! We need to monitor on all white people named Dylan! Limit their movements. Flag them for extra screening at airports. Make sure they cannot practice their day-to-day routines. Check to make sure they are LEGIT Dylans. Sure, you can claim that they are mostly peace loving people, but look at what is on the news right now! A white guy named DYLANN killed nine people, and when he did it, he claimed it was because they were raping his women and taking over his country! How do I know that other white Dylans don’t feel this way! Perhaps we should round them all up and ship them back to Wales.

The name “Dylan” means “great tide”. Great tides have destroyed coastal cities for years. And I am to believe that these white Dylans are people of peace??? I don’t think so. I am afraid to walk out of my door, for my neighbour is a Dylan. What is he taking out of his mailbox at 6 in the afternoon? It looks like a Men’s Health magazine, but it could be anthrax. I’ll never know. Where is he going from 7am to 5pm every weekday? is there a meeting that his terrorist buddies hold to plot more violence?

Dylan McDermott, you need to come clean. Where is your birth certificate? Were you even born in the US? Why haven’t you dissociated yourself with this white Dylan yet? How do we know you’re not a Welsh terrorist? I’m afraid for my life to look up pictures of you now!

This boy loved racist ass flags.
I realize that Nicki Haley already gave a tearful speech regarding these killings, but doesn’t get you off the hook, Mr. McDermott. First of all, since this was obviously a terrorist crime against brown people, another brown person can’t dissociate a white Dylan from society and denounce the actions of this Dylann Roof with the amount of apologetic rigor that you can. Secondly, this particular brown person is the governor of a state that still flies a confederate flag on its capitol! The confederate flag is not only the American swastika, it is literally the flag of a rogue nation that sought to be not part of the United States. Now it is a symbol that racists and bigots use to show that they are against the social progress of the last 150 years. Not all who fly it are bigots, and many say that we need to preserve it “for history’s sake”, but I don’t see too many synagogues in Europe preserving and flying the Nazi emblem so that they can remember it “for history’s sake”. The best way to observe such a history is by teaching it in history class. In light of the flag, and that it is flying over the capitol of the first state to secede from the Union, Ms. Haley’s comments fall a little bit flat. I bring up all this flag fiasco, because Dylann Roof apparently has an affinity for the flags of institutionally racist regimes. Why else would he patch his jacket with the old flags of South Africa and then-Rhodesia?

Dylann Roof explicitly said he planned to kill people, and he had the means to do it. The public needs to know if that is the intention of all Dylans, Mr. McDermott. What so your teachings implore you to do in the name of Wales and all Dylans? Are your loyalties with the public or just your cadre of Dylans? Speak up, and show that you are part of society, and not another Dylan white supremacist terrorist, like Dylann Roof! Your apology for his actions will be appreciated.

Saturday, June 13, 2015

When 'Soul Man' Was Real and Not Funny UPDATED

This film was up for a reboot anyway.
In 1986, a movie called Soul Man depicted C. Thomas Howell as Marcus Watson, a white college student who got a perm and bronzed his skin in order to earn a scholarship for African Americans to go to Harvard. Hilarity ensued...maybe. I was 8 when I saw it, so it could have been a cinematic abortion. My 8-year old judgement cannot be trusted. As we all know, children are idiots. I still believed that a fat old white man annually came down my chimney and gave me presents based on arduous scrutiny of my behaviour. You know how stupid I was? WE NEVER HAD A CHIMNEY!
Well, Soul Man just played out in real life: Rachel Dolezal, head of the Spokane Washington NAACP, was just outed as being white, by her parents, no less. This sounds like the plot of a reboot, and why not a Rule 63 version? Sadly, it is nowhere near as funny, not even to my 8-year old self. It brings up frustration and anger for so many reasons, and not from the usual sources.
There is a cadre of seemingly sociology experts even though they are currently doing extensive studying in their parents’ basements in between stints at 7-11, who bring out the who “race is a social construct, and being mad at Dolezal means you’re a perpetrator of it”. That is a very nice sentiment that is also a load of socially constructed bullshit. Yes, race as we know it is a social construct. It was put in place to justify dehumanizing others, from Middle Eastern natives and  Africans and indigenous North and South Americans to Italians and Greeks and Irish and Italians. You know what else is a social construct? Marriage. Property ownership. City, province, and country border designations. Society is a social construct.

The fact is that with many social constructs, race has not gone away, and likely will not any time soon. If I am stopped by a policeman who says that he is responding to a call of a black man looking suspect in the neighbourhood, I can’t say, “Well, that can’t be me, because your perception of my blackness is a social construct”, and expect to not get locked up at best. Talk to the families of the few hundred unarmed black people who have been killed in the last few years about how their offspring, siblings, and parents were victims of the “social construct”, and see how much traction you get with them. Justice is a social construct as well, and they don’t have that. People who harp incessantly on the “social construct” of race and racism are oddly in the same camp as the #AllLivesMatter camp, who are “I’m-not-racist-but...” racists. You’re all just whitesplaining, and you’re not helping.
I'd like to think this is how she was found out.
Some think that the outrage is ONLY because she was imitating black as a race. Had she done this to another race, there would be no ripples in the water, because for some reason, African American is the Yale of complaining about unjust things that happen to us, no matter what. Tell that to Emma Watson and yutz who cast her to portray an Asian/native Hawaiian, when her skin is so porcelain, it is nearly certain that she had to sleep in a coffin during the day while shooting on location to prevent bursting into flames. People of all ethnicities are somewhat offended when they see someone not of their ethnicity portraying real historical figures who were definitely NOT white. I would expect just as much pushback of Samuel L. Jackson playing King Henry VIII in a biopic as there was when Christian Bale portrayed BatMoses. Keep in mind, fictional characters are free territory, so calm down nerds. Your griping about a black Spider-Man are still unwarranted. If DC makes a white Steel tomorrow, the world won't implode.
Another annoying group of individuals is the one who conflates this case of “transraciality” with transsexuality. It shows how badly we need to do better with teaching science and sexuality in our schools, and how mind-numbingly ignorant some people are. Rachel Dolezal wasn’t born thinking she was missing an ethnicity, or that she always should have been black. She took on the persona of what she thinks a black person is and ran with it. Ask any transperson, and they will acknowledge that something felt off or wrong about them. Transexuality, like homosexuality and bisexuality is more a physiological state than merely an emotional state. The only thing physiological that Rachel Dolezal shares with African Americans is that she is human…I guess now she gets to share the “joy” of her every move being overly scrutinized.

Dolezal during her Howard years
Here is the most annoying thing about Ms. Dolezal’s shenanigans: SHE NEVER HAD TO LIE. She was white when she went to Howard University, an historically black university. She was white when she married her black husband. She was white when she took family photos with her ethnically diverse family. No one batted an eye. She was accepted as a pretty decent person. Why lie when joining and leading the NAACP? It’s the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, and that includes if your color is pasty super-light beige. NAACP does NOT have an exclusionary policy when it comes to membership or leadership. It’s not the black KKK. It was founded by both black and white people, and there are chapters that were lead by people who are not black. Before The Internet lost its mind over this story, you could actually google the term “White NAACP Chapter Presidents” and get a few hits. ethnic identity is not, and will never be, a criterion for membership or leadership in the NAACP, contrary to what talking heads say. Half of the NAACP national president is white, for crying out loud!

Even though the NAACP stood by her and Dolezal resigned from her post, hopefully this will blow over soon. Is Rachel Dolezal just another Iggy Azalea or Vanilla Ice, though? She DEFINITELY appropriated an entire culture that was not originally hers, and she doesn't seem too apologetic or contrite about it, so you be the judge. The saddest part about this debacle is that now Spokane, WA now has no black people.


For future reference, though, people, no one has a problem with a person revering a American black culture. Go to an HBCU. Focus your studies on African American history and African cultures. Be the most educated white person on black history in your town. Focus your service activities on empowering underprivileged traditionally black communities. Enjoy some of our fashion and music. Hell, marry a black guy or woman or something. We will likely still respect you. Just DON’T LIE. 



UPDATE: 

Well, a few things came to the surface in the last few days since I first penned this. It seems Ms. Dolezal sued Howard University for racial discrimination in 2002. Obviously, she identified as white back then, or else there would be no impetous for suing a historically black college or university for discrimination. The court didn’t think she had a case, as the judge threw it out and made her pay Howard university’s $2,000 court fees. She also received a few pieces of hate mail...from herself.  She must have been black at that point. She claimed to have received hate mail and a noose in her PO box, but it was not sent through the US Post Office. The only way it could have gotten there was via someone with a key to her mailbox. Racist bigots don’t use the Post Office! Everyone know their favourite mail delivery is window/brick interface, stuffed in molotov cocktail, or ignited lowercase “T” on the lawn! Had she claimed to receive anthrax or ricin through the mail, she would have been more believable. Right wing nutjobs LOVE sending powder.

She also went on The Today Show and claimed she felt she was black since she was 5 years old. I guess she had a little bit of a “white spell” at Howard when she sued them, then.She also questioned the validity of her parents claiming that they were her real parents. beside the fact that they (used to) look like her, there is a large cache of photographic evidence that shows that they are definitely her blood.

The amount of cultural appropriation that Rachel Dolezal has done would make Iggy Azalea say, “That’s a bit too far, mate”, or “That shit ain’t trill, cuz”, depending on what day you see her. It was all unnecessary. She could have done everything she wanted to do without concocting such an elaborate ruse. She’s not Jane Goodall; she can appreciate, emulate, and support a culture and community WITHOUT making an entirely new persona and Pretending to BE a part of that community. This whole mess has completely derailed anything she may have achieved and any progress she was making on newer projects. I hope it was worth it to her.

Seriously, though, how the hell did she get her curls so TIGHT!? I know black women who spend $1,000s to get their hair UNcurly, but she mastered getting her hair as tight as lamb’s wool after a heavy rain! Maybe this was all a ruse to push hair care products...




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