Tuesday, November 26, 2013


"I'm black, and I’m dressed all black cause it's good to be black. Black is the new white."
-Jaime Foxx

A while back I posted a quote attribued to Voltaire.  It might be, but nobody can find a source for it linking the quote to him.  Either way, its a good one, and it goes like this:
"To find out who rules over you, simply find out who you are not allowed to criticize."
Now, that's a pretty true statement about life and who's really in charge.  Sometimes someone can be really in power but not have the office or the official position of it, simply by being the one everyone obeys and cannot question.
Its a good quote, but the converse is true. If you want to know who is truly oppressed and ruled over, find out who you are allowed to criticize and attack without consequence.  The ones who are ruled and dominated in a society are the ones who have no recourse and cannot fight back.  A society which ignores slights, attacks, and criticism of a group is one which considers that group to not only be powerless but irrelevant and beneath them.
Now consider a few events with me.  Paula Deen was being sued by someone for harassment and intimidation, and in court the exchange went like this:
Jackson lawyer: "Miss Deen, have you told racial jokes?"

Deen: "No, not racial."

Jackson lawyer: "Have you ever used the 'N word' yourself?"

Deen: "Yes, of course."

Deen testified that she probably used the racial slur when talking to her husband about "when a black man burst into the bank that I was working at and put a gun to my head."

"I didn't feel real favorable towards him," she said, referring to the robber.

Jackson lawyer: "Have you used it since then?"

Deen: "I'm sure I have, but it's been a very long time."

Deen said she couldn't remember other contexts in which she used the slur, but "maybe in repeating something that was said to me."

"But that's just not a word that we use as time has gone on," she said. "Things have changed since the '60s in the South. And my children and my brother object to that word being used in any cruel or mean behavior."
Now, for that moment of candor, Paula Deen lost her cooking show on the Food Network, lost her sponsorships, and has become a byword of mockery and derision.  She is held up as an example of the bigotry of southerners and treated with contempt for something she said probably happened over forty years ago.
By comparison, consider this quote by Oprah Winfrey:
“As long as there are people who still — there’s a whole generation – I say this, you know, I said this, you know, for apartheid South Africa, I said this for my own, you know, community in the south — there are still generations of people, older people, who were born and bred and marinated in it, in that prejudice and racism, and they just have to die.”
Now she's not coming out and wishing death on people but she's basically calling for old white people to die because they're totally racist and will never stop until then.
Oprah Winfrey got a Presidential Medal of Freedom last week, not condemnation or outrage.  Look at the difference at MSNBC where Martin Bashir wished someone would defecate in Sarah Palin's mouth, and he said he was sorry, but has his job.  Meanwhile, Alec Baldwin called someone a "fag" and got fired for it.  Bashir's statement was read off a teleprompter which means it was not only known but agreed to by the producer and all the people working on his show.
That quote at the top, Jaime Foxx gets on Saturday Night Live and says "I kill all the white people in the movie. How great is that? And how black is that?" and the crowd goes wild cheering.  Just imagine the response of an audience if a white guy stood up and crowed about how he killed all the black people in a movie then said how white is that?
You can criticize some groups, but not others.  The ones you can question, attack, criticize, or condemn are the ones who are subordinate and dominated by the ones you cannot.  And the groups involved in this modern society are the exactly opposite of what we're told by social engineers, academics, and popular culture.
We'll be told by them until the sun burns out that blacks are forever the oppressed minority crushed by constant racism.  No amount of power or societal change will ever be enough. We'll always be told that homosexuals are a terribly oppressed minority despite their relative wealth, power, comfort, and control of extremely powerful and rich sectors such as entertainment.  No matter what, this will never change.
And the white man will always be the oppressor and the dominant one in power even though they aren't any longer.  New York City being white puts you in a minority.  Los Angeles, the same.  Its not just Detroit any more.  Straight white males are possibly the only minority group in America that's totally open game without any restrictions.
You know what the problem with this is, right?  Its not the identities of the groups, its that anyone is treated unjustly.  It was wrong when blacks were powerless and could be attacked with little to no consequence.  It was wrong when you could mock women without any real negative impact.  And its wrong now that you can attack white people and Christians without the slightest consequence.
No matter how bad things were before, that doesn't justify turning the tables and making things bad for other groups.  Bad is just bad, no matter who it is.


Anonymous said...

Well said!

mushroom said...


Anonymous said...

It strikes me you should read Ta Nahesi Coates' recent essay about race and context. For some reason the link won't past here but it's easily findable, first published in the New York Times. You may find it enlightening as you appear to be confused as to why some behaviors are seen one way in one context and another way in another.

Christopher R Taylor said...

Part of the pathology that makes up this effect is always finding an excuse as to why its okay for each group to be treated the way they are.

Anonymous said...

Part of any serious attempt to understand and critique culture is to try to grasp the other person's point of view. If, say, a large number of people find one person's actions acceptable and another's reprehensible, and you don't see a difference, then you might examine the views of someone who has thought a lot about such issues. It's why I read your blog. You put a lot of thought into your own context and what you perceive as its hardships. You might offer others the same courtesy, particularly if you find yourself taking a stance - "Oprah has called for the death of old white people" - that (you must know) is a position not shared by most people, to put it mildly.

Christopher R Taylor said...

Thank you for ably illustrating my main point: culture shifts, and what it condemns and condones changes from era to era. What was once unacceptable is now embraced, and vice versa.

And that tells you who's in control of a culture and who is the one being controlled.

So thanks again.

Anonymous said...

Jamie Foxx lifts a joke from Blazing Saddles, a movie released nearly forty years ago, and that proves a current culture shift?
For a writer you remain stunningly incurious, but I suppose that's what makes you entertaining.

Christopher R Taylor said...

I don't know what version of Blazing Saddles you watched but none carry that line in any part. Perhaps you might want to do more of that research you desire me to.