When I hear any of these statements, it immediately sets my teeth on edge. Why? Because I know what is to follow is usually something with which I do not agree. For example, I was reading this wonderful TNC post on how difficult labor was for Kenyatta, his lifetime partner (and mother of their son). The whole thing is powerful and moving, especially his last paragraph:
Every day women choose to do the hard labor of a difficult pregnancy. Its (sic) courageous work, which inspires in me a degree of admiration exceeded only by my horror at the notion of the state turning that courage, that hard labor, into a mandate. Women die at performing that labor in smaller numbers as we advance, but they die all the same. Men do not. This is a privilege.
The discussion was, for the most part, thoughtful, engaging, and respectful. As is my wont, I came late to the thread and spent a good amount of time getting caught up. I found myself nodding in some places, yelling in others, and then I was hit with this comment:
Being able to have a child without incurring the risks is a privilege in many ways. Yet ask any woman and they will tell you the privilege is theirs (sic, and bolded by me for emphasis). Despite the risks, pregnancy is a gift.
After a little back and forth, she (and it’s a she. I admit I thought it was a he at first until she explained her reasoning a bit more):
I agree with the sentiments below, and I’m not suggesting every pregnancy is a gift. What I meant–what I should have said–is the ability to carry a child and give birth is a privilege and a gift. That’s it.
Others engaged with her before I got there, but I had to add my two cents because that’s how I roll. I said I didn’t consider it a gift and neither did the woman who commented before me, so that was two women (more added on later) who didn’t consider it a gift. The OP went on to explain her point of view and how, because of her difficulties, it was impossible for her to not see the ability to give birth as a gift.
I empathized. Her experience was horrible. However, as I pointed out, two women had explicitly said they didn’t feel the same way. In fact, we all want to return the gift to Babies R’ Us–Oh, HELL NO! My point was that just because SHE couldn’t fathom it not being a gift, it didn’t mean that her own personal experience was universally true. I even allowed that many if not most women would probably agree with her–just not all. (Click to learn more about women)
Aside from that fact that it is utterly ridiculous that whoever squeezed out this turd thinks diet soda has to be called “MAX” or “EXXXTREME” lest guys feel too “gay” drinking it, this ad is lazy, stupid, and ultimately offensive. I get that companies market to black people, so fine: I don’t care about the angry black harpy stereotype about black women, or the “my woman thinks i can’t do anything right” stereotype about black men (all men, really). It was the “black man’s carnal lust for the white girl” stereotype that carried this commercial from stupid to downright offensive. I mean, would it have been so hard to pick a girl of any other race?
This gives me teh laughter and teh sads, simultaneously.
So you know how you’re going home for Thanksgiving and you’re so excited to eat Turkey until you hurl, and then go back and eat some more? But there’s a lingering sense of anxiety, yeah? You’re wondering whether the TSA agent assigned to feel you up is going to be hot or not.
Ladies, I know that you plan to wear your most disgusting Thanksgiving travel-wear, in the hopes that the guy who looks like the Elephant Man will keep his dirty paws offer your hot bod.
The incident began when I arrived early for a breakfast meeting with a program officer from one of the major foundations that supports the nonprofit I run. We were in town for the Online News Association’s annual convention and wanted to catch up.
After looking around the lobby, I settled on a seat at a table where I could watch the elevators.
Right in front of me was an older white guy wearing a T-shirt with the word “eracism” emblazoned on the back. Given that the tenor of our national conversation these days has me increasingly fearful about where this country is heading, I was touched to see him making such a strong statement and got up to tell him so.
He was in town for the rally, and we discussed that and the general mood in the nation. When the conversation ran its course, I turned to return to my seat.
That’s when the general manager stopped me and asked if I was a guest at the hotel. I explained I was not but was there for a business meeting with a guest. “Ma’am, you’ll have to leave the hotel,” he said, leading me through the lobby and toward the doors.
I thought he had misunderstood, so I repeated that I was in fact there at the invitation of a hotel guest. “Ma’am, you’ll have to leave the hotel,” he repeated. Slowly, I began to realize that this was no case of “mistaken identity.”
The general manager apparently had deemed me so undesirable that he did not think I was fit to sit in the lobby of his Hampton Inn.Continue reading →
ZOMG!!!11one I’ve been, like, waiting for this day for my whole life!1
Oh Scotty. Why'd you have to go and blow your head off? Was it so David could skip a year and graduate with the rest of the gang?
Today is 90210 Day, y’all!! Old folks who remember the real 90210 are rejoicing (actually, no they’re not) and the young folks who are watching the bullshit spin-off are rejoicing (actually, they probably aren’t either.)
Oh, 90210. How I heart thee. I admit it. I’m not even ashamed of it, so just hush your mouth. I started watching the show in 1990 when it first aired. I was a sophomore in high school. I watched that show through high school, through college, through my two years working as a paralegal, and through two years of law school when finally, the show went off the air. It’s safe to say that I’ve seen every episode more than once. I own season 1. (Oh, shut up already. You know you do too.)
When I started watching it, I was growing up in a blissfully post-racial household. My mom was white, you see (still is), but she was more Carol Walsh than Jackie Taylor. She didn’t have a cocaine addiction, nor did she ruin my fashion show after getting drunk and coked out. Sometimes I wished my mom was more Jackie Taylor; I wanted a car, but there was no way I was getting one, much less that cute boxy BMW red convertible 3-series that Kelly drove. (Dagnabbit, I wanted that car. One of those cars actually lives in my neighborhood now. Every time I walk past it I think, “Man, you would have been so hot twenty years ago!” And then I flip it off.)
But no way. Not me. I took the bus, yo. My mom had a Toyota Tercel. I won’t talk about the time that I crashed the Tercel into a telephone pole after I took the car without my parents’ permission. I was trying to go hang out with my friend Meg at the pool hall! Gosh! I’ll do what I want! Anyway, let’s not bring up old shit. This is new shit. (Sorry about that, mom.)
Oh look at me. Off on one of my tangents again. What’s the point, is what you’re wondering right about now.
Well, it never really occurred to me back then how ridiculously white the show was. I was 16 and was just trying to figure out how to buy beer without a driver’s license. I wasn’t really thinking about racial politics. At the time, all shows were ridiculously white, except for The Cosby Show and A Different World. That’s just the way it was. I didn’t have cable, so I don’t know if there was some stuff going on over on the BET channel at the time. And Tyler Perry had not yet begun to wreak his inhumane madness on the UnderPaid Negros channel.2
Besides, black people didn’t live in Beverly Hills. They lived in the City of Compton with Snoop Dogg and them. Bow wow wow yippie yo yippie ki yay motherfuckers.
These days, I will occasionally catch reruns on Soapnet, and I’ll feel a sense of nostalgia. I watched that show from age 16 to age 26. I remember watching the series finale from my bedroom in Charlottesville as I packed up to drive to LA for my summer associate job. (For you non-lawyers, think summer internship with less work and more booze and free dinners.) I was a full grown adult by that point!3
But man alive! That show was white as hell. There were a couple “black” storylines that immediately come to mind (considering that I’m practically an expert in 90210-ology) and I did a little of teh googling to get some more deets:
1) James the Basketball Player — In this very special episode, Brandon learns about affirmative action for black kids who are just tryin’ to get their motherfuckin’ basketball scholahship!4 There are at least 5 whole black people in this episode; all of them are on the basketball team, all of them hang out together, and Steve Sanders thinks they’re “suckers!” Little does he know that they are not “suckers,” but rather “sucka-free.” Brandon, being the crack reporter that he is, tries to get to the bottom of things. Turns out, West Beverly imports a bunch of black folk from Hoodsville, just so the b-ball team can get a leg up. Of course these lazy Negroes don’t go to class! They don’t have to! Because they play the basketballs! And the basketball championships make the white people happy! Yaaaaaay!!!
2) The Robinsons Move In, the Robinsons Move Out – Mr. and Mrs. Robinson (here’s to you!) made their fortune in popcorn (if I remember correctly) and moved to Beverly Hills. That’s how black folks do. They get rich (or die tryin’!). They start spendin’! The Robinsons had a son and a daughter. Ronny was a little nerdy kid who became photographer for the West Beverly Blaze. Vivica Fox (pre-jacked-up-face) played Charice, a hot negress, whose ass Brandon immediately set about trying to tap, much to the chagrin of the Robinsons and the Walshes. Brandon was all “Whatever, man! You don’t understand my struggle!” Charice was all, “Boy, you bettah stay away from me!” In the end, though, she couldn’t resist the charms of Brandon’s angular hair. He introduced her to the gang (at the Peach Pit, of course), and they were very accepting–they thought all the miscegnatin’ was hip… very hip. Kind of like when whatshis face on season 1 of Mad Men was dating that black chick because he was oh so bohemian. Except Mad Men is set in the 1950s and 90210 is set in 1990. But whatever; white peoples is crazy:
And now this jackass calls gays “lacy-drawered, limp-wristed people” in an attempt to make a cogent argument regarding the repeal of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell. Hey buddy? Just set yourself on fire. Just do it now. You may be one of the dumbest people alive, and we’re living in a world where Sarah Palin has been annointed a Saint on the cover of Newsweek. So when I say you’re dumb, I mean you’re, like, hella dumb:
According to this clip from KYMA Channel 11, Krieger used a Memorial Day speech to criticize congressional plans to repeal “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell” — and, while he was at it, to insult gays as “lacy-drawered, limp-wristed people.”
Unbelievably, Krieger subsequently defended his remarks to reporter Nick Cilletti, explaining, “It came from my heart.” Cause, you know, sincerity makes bigotry completely forgivable.
In the brief clip, Krieger speaks from behind a lectern at a local cemetery. Apparently referring to military veterans, he says, “And I cannot believe that a bunch of lacy-drawered, limp-wristed people … could do what those men have done in the past.”
Oddly, Krieger seems to believe his gratuitous insult puts him right up there with Washington and Lincoln — not that he’s the one making the comparison, mind you.
“I am reluctant to compare myself to George Washington or Abraham Lincoln,” Mayor Krieger tells the reporter modestly, “but I did get some feedback on what I said, and I don’t believe I said anything different from what they would have said.”
First of all, we need solid strong men to fight those battles and not pacifists? Have you been to a gay gym lately? These dudes would tear your head off with their index finger:
If he's not gay, I don't know what is.
I don’t even have any response to this, aside from “head splodey.” This shit is simply bananas. And illogical. There are already gay people in the military! It’s just that they aren’t allowed to be openly gay. “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell” isn’t “Don’t Be Gay.” It’s “If you’re gay, we don’t want to hear shit about it.”
In fact, there have been gay people in the military SINCE THE BEGINNING OF TIME. Remember Alexander the Great? Totally gay. The Greeks? This is Spartaaaaaaa!!?? Achilles? Gay, gay and super gay.
Look, it takes a lot to offend me. Like, a lot. And so, the fact that I just filled out my census, and in order to answer the question “What is your race?” I checked a box that said “Black, African Am., or Negro” doesn’t offend me.
But it does make me wonder who the hell is runnin’ shit over at the Census Bureau. I mean, this is 2010, right? There’s a black dude sitting in the White House?
Because I cannot for the life of me figure out why the hell the Census Bureau is still using the term “Negro.” Yeah, I know there’s a United Negro College Fund. But that shit was founded back when we were called “Negroes.”
He explained why the Census Bureau chose to keep the word “Negro” on the forms: “The intent of every word on the race and ethnicity questions is to be as inclusive as possible so that all of us could see a word here that rings a bell for us … it was not to be offensive and again I apologize on that. My speculation is that in 2020 that word will disappear and there are gonna be other words that are gonna change.”
Groves also said that the Census Bureau had done research about what terms people used to identify their own racial classification. In a large portion of the study, Groves said, people chose or wrote “Negro” as their race, which prompted the Bureau to continue to use word on the 2000 census. Still, Groves acknowledged that the research was outdated.
You’re goddamn right the research is outdated. Who the hell says Negro anymore? Nobody, that’s who.
“Every year the liberal Dems and the rhino Republicans turned up the temperature ever so slightly. It seemed after a while we’d all be boiled to death in a cauldron of the nanny state. And then, something really odd happened, mostly because I think that we do not have a civics literacy test before people can vote in this country. [ wild applause and laughter] People who could not even spell the word ‘vote,’ or say it in English [more hootin' and hollerin'], put a committed socialist idealogue in the White House, name is Barack Hussein Obama.”
Tancredo went on to say,
“The revolution has come. It was led by the cult of multiculturalism aided by leftist liberals all over who don’t have the same ideas about America as we do.”
Later, in response to questions from the Daily Beast, Tancredo said:
“I don’t want anybody to be refused the right to vote if, maybe, they have to mark [the ballot] with an X. I do think they should have to know something about how the government works.”
First of all, I doubt some rule mandating that only informed citizens be permitted to vote would give Republicans or Tea Partiers a straight shot to the White House. I’m by no means suggesting that all right wingers are dummies. But it can’t be denied that many of the crazies who attended the town hall meetings last summer–screaming about Obama is a socialist Nazi who wants to pull the plug on your grandma–are some of the most uninformed idiots in all the land. While I certainly believe that there are dumbasses on the left side of the spectrum as well, considering that the the keynote speaker for the Convention, Sarah Palin the Wolf Huntress herself ran for Vice-President without even knowing what the hell the Vice-President does, Tancredo ought to be careful what he wishes for.
The salient point, however, is that the call for literacy tests is racism. Plain and simple. Yeah…. something really weird happened… a black man was elected president! Why? Because we didn’t make all the brown folks… all the “multicultural” folks take a civics literacy before voting his black ass into office.
That’s the subtext, isn’t it? Is there any other way to read his comments? Especially considering that literacy tests were widely used to deny black people the vote during the Jim Crow era?
***[Author's Note: When I write something, I really ought to press "publish." I wrote this fully 4 days ago. So... um... yeah.]