Hmmmmm. Where do I begin? How do I phrase this? How can I dilute this so I can evade accusations of 'ist' labels a, b, or c?
I know what I want to write but I have been struggling to finish this post.
Lack of content? No.
Lack of ideas? No.
Can't spell? No.
Well, what then?
Hmmmmm. Still struggling.
Oh, geez, spit it out.
This post is about black people in America. They are radically different to the black people I know who live in Ireland. There is a subculture here known as 'ghetto culture'. It is made up predominantly of black people. It's a very unusual cultural phenomenon defined by bling, jeans-that-hang-too-low, those cars that are too close to the ground, speakers in said cars banging out crappy 'yo-yo-mo-fo' tunes, lots of kids to different fathers, milking the state, welfare checks/cheques, food stamps, and other zany delights.
OMG I CAN'T BELIEVE YOU JUST SAID THAT. RACIST.
People don't like to talk about these things. They like to live in la-la land and pretend they don't exist.
No. Wait. Hear me out.
HOW DARE YOU. SLAVERY. SEGREGATION. CIVIL RIGHTS. RACIST.
Let me finish what I was going to say please.
You haven't even given me a chance to explain.
I'm just going to ignore you from now on. I'm hoping readers are more open to what I have to say. It isn't racist. I see a lot of people throw this word around. It's either because they have a severe lack of imagination or were perhaps dropped on the head as a baby. Who knows?
Here are some definitions of racism for those who don't seem to know what it is:
'The belief that all members of each race possess characteristics or abilities specific to that race, especially so as to distinguish it as inferior or superior to another race or races.'
'Prejudice, discrimination, or antagonism direct against someone of a different race based on the belief that one's own race is superior.'
All you have to do is consider these definitions then apply them to this post and see what the outcome is. Let me just point out that what I said above is a CULTURAL phenomenon and not a RACIAL one. This is because America is a different culture to Ireland. The difference, I believe, is this:
Black Irish citizens don't generally come from America.
Stay with me:
Ghetto culture is an aspect of black culture IN AMERICA. The 'members' are born and bred IN AMERICA. Therefore, it's a cultural, not a racial, phenomenon.
There are white people who identify with ghetto culture (Eminem, anyone?)
Unfortunately, you are always going to get people like this or this. There's just no satisfying their unrelenting desire to create chaos. They relish circular logic. In their overly intellectual minds, someone who denies being a racist is by definition a racist because they undermine the visibility of racism or some such rubbish. On the other hand, if you admit to silly notions like white privilege you're deemed racist for admitting it. These are the same kinds of people who ponder stupid questions in their spare time.
If a tree falls in a forest and no one is around to hear it, does it make a sound?
How do I know the colour I see as red is really the colour red?
It's no surprise, then, that they will poke holes in anything sensible, like a genuinely-not-racist-person saying things like 'I'm not racist'.
Apparently the only thing a white person can do is acknowledge their subconscious racism that is buried so deep they don't even know about it. Even their subconscious is oblivious to it. Maybe there's a subconscious below the radar of the subconscious. Or something. Sigh.
Look, I can only speak for myself here. I judge people on whether they're nice or not nice; it's quite simple really. What you look like or how you dress doesn't matter. Who would I be to judge? I often spend all day in my pyjamas with no makeup and tangled hair.
Hey. Don't judge me. You're a low-maintenance-person-ist!
The best anyone can hope for is to show your friends (who are your friends because they're nice and not because they have a different skin colour) that you like them because they're funny, kind, and so on. Luckily, the black people I know are of strong mind and character and see the ridiculousness of an uber-politically-correct society the way that I do. It's actually political correctness that creates and intensifies division. If everyone could just be open and ask 'why do you look that way' or 'why do you eat that weird food', difference would be understood and no longer an issue.
Instead, everyone stays silent and suppresses their (genuine, innocent) curiosity about people who are different because they are afraid people will think they're label a, b, or c.
Ah, the lengths we go to in order to maintain our people-pleasing appearance.
There's some sort of crazy agenda behind all the general insanity going on. It's probably got something to do with money...
Because, after all, the only colour the powers-that-be REALLY care about is the colour green.
I heard that on 'Castle' and stole it. I'm such a plagiarist.
Soooooo...there you have it.
It's OK to be curious.
Well, this kind of ended in a deflated-anti-climax-kind-of-thing. That's what happens to my writing when I'm worried about the subject matter.
Ah...to live a life without fear, without limitations.
Free speech? B/S.
All text and images © 2016, Gillian Rixey, All Rights Reserved.