Friday, August 29, 2008

We All Know You Want to Say "Watermelon"...

Racism is a silly thing.

Is it possible for something such as racism to completely disappear? I'd like to think so, but sometimes I don't know. It seems that maybe as a culture, we're moving closer towards a more politically correct perspective of the world, but as we add to the list of "racist things you can't say" it seems like the list of "racist things you can say without being called a racist" is growing.

For example, I was simultaneously shocked and disappointed to discover that Obama chose Joe Biden as his running mate. I still remember the controversy that occurred (a year ago? Has this campaign been happening for that long? Jesus christ.) when Biden called Obama "articulate".

On its surface, that's a compliment, right? Hell, everyone wants to be articulate. Except the problem is that when it comes to politics, being articulate is something that doesn't need to be said. Of course he's articulate; that's his goddamn job. It would be just as weird if Biden said, "Of course Stephen King is a brilliant writer. He owns a computer doesn't he?" Or how about if Biden said that Obama is a good man because he dresses himself in the morning?

Being called "articulate" is something that I can't picture happening to a non-black candidate. I just can't. It's too redundant.

But I guess that's not what I'm getting at here. What I'm really after today is to bitch about this article that I found.

Now I know that this guy is some pissant writer whose greatest achievement will probably be pissing me off (and Media Matters,) but it does not escape my focus that this is something that many people in America probably think. They can't make your typical racist comments about African-Americans (of which I'm sure everyone is far too familar with) so they sidestep the whole thing by attacking "a culture, not a color" and it makes me sick.

Just say it. Say you're a racist and save me the effort of reading your asinine drivel. I'm angry, yes, but I'm more in shock that people can get away with saying these things. How did we let this happen as a country where alarm bells don't sound when people say these things? Shouldn't we be on alert for language like this? Does the citizenry not realize how damaging it is to all people everywhere when you can get away with saying hateful things like this? I wish I had the answers to these questions.

[And, if I may add a "PS" to this post, did everyone forget when the country wondered if Obama was "black enough" or when we asked if he was just "pretending to be white"? What a sorry state of affairs we have landed ourselves in.]
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