theotherbaldwin: (Default)
About 3 weeks ago, on a message board full of all sorts of intelligent people, a post by someone by someone who I thought really knew better asked for a response. I posted it there, and I'm reproducing his post and my rebuttal here. The post was titled "Am I racist?". It apparently is some kind of stupid e-maill forward that "dares" you to pass it on. I'm doing so only to rebut it. Original post in blockqoutes, my responses in bold.

Someone finally said it. How many are actually paying attention to this? There are African Americans, Mexican Americans, Asian Americans, Arab Americans, Native Americans, etc. And then there are just Americans.

Look, I can randomly list things, too! Watch: There are salad shooters, garlic presses, crockpots, spatulas, microwave ovens, and ice cream makers. And then there's just stuff in your kitchen.

You pass me on the street and sneer in my direction. You Call me "White boy," "Cracker," "Honkey," "Whitey," "Caveman" ... and that's OK.
But when I call you, Nigger, Kike, Towel head, Sand-nigger, camel Jockey, Beaner, Gook, or Chink ... you call me a racist.

I wonder who this nebulous "you" is. I mean, if it was addressed to an entire, generalized race... or to a single person of one race who is supposed to be a stand-in for all members of a race, that would be, well, racist.

As for the long list of racial epithets... if you address another person like, you ARE a racist. The same goes for the epithets directed to a white person above (though I've personally only encountered the term "White Boy" once in my entire life). To characterize another person in terms that are largely considered hurtful or odious or profanity is to invoke the language of racism. To deliberately use racist language is to be racist.
You say that whites commit a lot of violence against you, so why are the ghettos the most dangerous places to live?
I haven't heard anything about whites committing "a lot of violence" against you-- I'm guessing the "you" here is referring to minorities or other people who aren't  white-- nor do I have any idea who's saying this, nor where you're getting your sources from, Strawy McStrawman.  And just in front of that strawman is a smoke screen for the larger fact that ghettos can be dangerous places to live, and race doesn't have a damned thing to do with it. There are white ghettos. There are black ghettos. There are Hispanic ghettos.

Thing ghettos all have in common isn't skin color, it's BEING POOR. However, it's obvious that when you see the word "ghetto", you think of race, and not being poor. Doesn't that bother you, just a little bit?


You have the United Negro College Fund. You have Martin Luther King Day. You have Black History Month. You have Cesar Chavez Day. You have Yom Hashoah You have Ma'uled Al-Nabi You have the NAACP. You have BET. If we had WET (White Entertainment Television) ... we'd be racists.
Hol-ee crap.

I'm not even sure where to begin here.

The reason there is not a United White College Fundis because white kids looking to go to college have not been denied access in the way that black kids were. Just in case you had trouble navigating the United Negro College Fund's web page (you do name-drop the organization, after all), here is a history of their founding. Aside from helping to balance this inequity today, the UNF is also a key player in keeping these colleges solvent. Just as scholarships based on economic factors help people that have systematically denied access to college ( i.e., poor people), so too has the UNF done the same for black youth.

Black History Month -- tossing that in your litany of "OMG MINORITIES R TEH OPRESSORS!!1!" shows that you don't know how or why it was established. Black History Month grew from Negro History Week in 1926-- African American Carter G. Woodson founded it to counter misinformation and it's been used over the decades as a way to promote understanding and racial harmony.

Why does that bother you so much?

February is also American History Month, Snack Foods Month, Library Lovers Month and Grapefruit Month.

I don't see you foaming at the mouth about Revolutionary War re-enacters, Twinkie-eaters, bibliophiles or getting grapefruit juice in your eye.

If we had a White Pride Day ... you would call us racists. If we had White History Month ... we'd be racists.
If we had any organization for only whites to "advance" OUR lives ... we'd be racists.
Hey, there were white pride days! They were called "KKK rallies". White pride via that orginization was so gosh-darned strong that Southern whites, thoughtt southern blacks didn't deserve to the right vote (despite the fact that the law guaranteed them this right), and murdered civil rights workers in the name of white pride (see the wikipedia entry ).

Hey, if you use The Google you'll see that white pride marches are alive and well.

We have a Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, a Black Chamber of Commerce, and then we just have the plain Chamber of Commerce. Wonder who pays for that?
Chamber of Commerces are paid for by the dues paid by its members.

If we had a college fund that only gave white students scholarships you know we'd be racists. There are over 60 openly proclaimed Black Colleges in the US, yet if there were "White colleges" THAT would be a racist college. In the Million Man March, you believed that you were marching for your race and rights. If we marched for our race and rights, you would call us racists.
You are proud to be black, brown, yellow and orange, and you're not afraid to announce it. But when we announce our white pride you call us racists.
I already covered the history and purpose of the UNF above. I still don't see how a private foundation working to help achieve parity in college admissions would be so horrible. Or racist.

On the Million Man March... if you go to the official website and read you'll find they march aimed to demonstrate: "... the willingness of Black men to atone to God for our shortcomings as men, husbands and fathers; it demonstrated our willingness to reconcile differences at home, school, church, organizations and in the society in general; it demonstrated our willingness to accept responsibility to change our behavior and to strive to make our communities a more decent place to live."

Emphasis in italics is mine.

And there's nothing wrong with being proud of who you are, or where you came from. If you're really all hot and bothered with the fact that so-called white pride parades and the like are looked at as nakedly racist, take it up with the KKK or the Aryan Nation.


You rob us, carjack us, and shoot at us. But, when a white police officer shoots a black gang member or beats up a black drug-dealer running from the law and posing a threat to society ... you call him a racist.
I am proud. But, you call me a racist. Why is it that only whites can be racists?
Ok, Strawy Mc Strawman, now you're blanketing an entire minority group as thugs and criminals. You're being called a racist being you're talking like a racist. Racism isn't exclusively white-- it's never been, and none of the organizations you cite have said they were.
There is nothing improper about this e-mail. Let's see which of you are proud enough to send it on.
Bull. There are many things wrong with the email you posted-- from the logic with holes so large you could drive a Mack truck through SIDEWAYS to the "I'm not a racist, nosiree" tone that it adopts while simultaneously advocating racist and seperatist points of view.

You getting the vapors that, aiie! there are scholarships for black students and LOOKOUT, HERE COMES BLACK HISTORY MONTH are laughable at best, and defining minorities as those who "...
rob us, carjack us, and shoot at us" is disgusting.

So, writer of this email, are you racist?

YES.

DUH.


UPDATE: Matthew Grimm of Matthew Grimm & The Red Smear has a rebuttal of his own. Warning, language makes it NSFW.

UPDATE THE SECOND: Reggie, aka [profile] ravenblood , has his own rebuttal to this email/post.

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theotherbaldwin

May 2009

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