I ask every one of my white friends and Fam to read this book. I ask any and all white strangers, both in and outside the U.S. to read this book. I ask that all junior high schools and high schools in the U.S. add it to their regular curriculum. I ask that it be adapted for elementary students, and a children’s book for Pre-K.
This surreal bullshit right here is why I no longer just gossip about TV shows and celebs on Twitter, or Facebook, for that matter. Seriously, I used Facebook to play Farmville and frivolously chat and/or talk smack about my favorite shows, books, movies and Brad Pitt. ??
And I even did so while the first Black President of the United States held office. For eight Obama years, I put up with racist crap in my town under the fake as fuck claim of “politics.” (Tea Party, anyone?)
Bitching about Bush (pick one or both), Clinton, and any president in years past – that was politics. The unbelievable micromanaging and sabotage done to Obama’s administration – that was (still is) racist. Made even more clear (as if that was necessary to those in the know) by the statements made after the fact, during the 2016 election:
“Obama ruined race relations in the U.S.” and “What are you complaining about? We had/voted for a Black man for president.” (Shades of “I’m not racist; I have a Black friend.”)
But I’m fucking well past done with this horrific Administration and the House and the way both are pissing on ALL Americans. I was well past done with people in power targeting PoC and women before I was born. But this methodical and irresponsible destruction of everything a Black man put in place (within the confines of a racist AF House) for no other reason than because Obama did it (seriously, how old are these motherfuckers in the White House and Senate?) and God forbid, tried to help people (and yes, we know it wasn’t perfect; see “confines of racist AF House”), is narcissistic, sociopathic, white-supremacist insanity and it’s destroying our country.
I’m not a big fan of politics; never have been. I enjoy using social media to doink around, snark, laugh and gossip. I was perfectly fine frolicking about my life without a political care in the world – even when George W. was in office. (Although I bitched about him and still do cause 9/11). I bitched about Bush,
yet at the same time, wasn’t actually terrified that he was destroying our country from the inside-out.
I actually resent the fact that 45 and his ChumpTools administration force me to step outside my comfort zone. I hate that I actually know who senators are now. I greatly dislike that rather than chill with a great Kresley Cole novel, I’m leaving messages in Washington D.C. voicing my ever-growing and apparently never fucking ending concerns!
More than anything, I hate that I feel the impact and consequent ripple effect of 45’s innate misogyny and racism in my town, my state, my country. And I hate that I see how many just ignore it or dismiss it. Or worse, normalize it.
Since my voice isn’t permitted to be via the local paper (cause yeah, “politics” ?), I’m going to share it across what media I can. I’ve never been one to live in a bubble with my head in the sand and my mouth shut. And, most importantly, my kids agree they’d rather their Mom speak out against wrongs than play it safe and quiet.
So… Even though I don’t post here often, my Facebook – like my Twitter for some time now – is about to ? being all sunshine, rainbows and offspring.
Won’t let it slide anymore; this is My country too. ??
The truth is racism is bone-deep and often innate. Many don’t realize it’s there, believing if someone isn’t wearing a white pointy hood or perverted swastika, or saying things like “nigger,” “wetback” or “kike,” they aren’t racist. But here’s the problem: Many don’t object to it either.
This is called passive-racism.
The passive-racist doesn’t outwardly support racism. They’ll likely oppose racism if the topic comes up. The passive-racist may even date, marry and have children with people of color.
But when that relative who is “just that way” rolls racist sentiments at the Easter table, friends and family exchange knowing looks but never object. “Please don’t,” the passive-racist insists, “it’s just how they are. Don’t rock the boat. You’ll upset the family.”
The passive-racist excuses blackface at a school wax museum because “it’s just kids playing dress up. What’s the harm?”
Instead of speaking themselves, the passive-racist might tell someone they know will acknowledge the racism in the hopes that person will take action. Then the passive-racists congratulate themselves for “doing something” and call themselves an ally. But if asked why they don’t take direct action themselves, the passive-racist offers excuses like, “I’m a pacifist” or “I’m a white male, I don’t know how I could be of any help,” when it’s precisely that white factor that gets hailed as empathy while people of color get the “angry (black) person” label.
Meanwhile, negative billboards opinionizing on a black president bookend their town even after that president vacates office, because it’s paid for and the Tea Party “wasn’t about race.”
Days of future past
With that background, it was no surprise that a racist-supremacist misogynist won Montana’s vote to be president of our United States.
Blatant racists aren’t only who support the current president. Passive-racists support Trump, too. Yet for them, there’s often a list of shallow rationales attempting to disguise their racism like, “I’m sick of the same old politician families, let’s try something new,” or the “businessman entrepreneur” angle or “I like how he tells it like it is.”
White Trump supporters are quick to deny his blatant white supremacy because that would make them supremacists by association, and they’re not ready to look at their own thoughts and actions. It’s called transference.
Racists who haven’t accepted their racism don’t like being called racists. They get defensive and angry. They try to flip the topic (Kaepernick and “Take a Knee” is a perfect example). They dismiss opinions; call people “snowflakes,” “too sensitive,” or “victims of too much politically correct culture.” Anything to avoid looking at their own ingrained race beliefs and conduct.
Self-monitoring racism while simultaneously excluding the feedback of people of color makes as much sense as males deciding health care for women.
An example of what’s happening in our community is the outcome when a black woman ESPN anchor discussed supremacy versus when a white woman pageant contestant did the same. The ESPN woman, Jemele Hill, was severely criticized. Even the White House reportedly said she should be fired. The pageant contestant, Margana Wood, aka Miss Texas, was hailed a hero. Now ask yourself why.
People must own their racism. Until that happens, until people are able to admit their racism to themselves and stop denying what is so obviously present in our community, it cannot be addressed.
A strong step toward healing is to watch Jane Elliott’s work (http://janeelliott.com, can also be found on YouTube). Everyone; schools, institutions and even places of employment will benefit from Elliott’s education so they can realize how racism occurs in their everyday lives and how to open communication pathways towards acceptance and healing.
It won’t be easy. America as a whole has centuries of conditioned bad behavior to work through and resolve. Yet America is beautiful, diverse, strong and good-hearted, just like her people. Together, united, she can.
Christina Clinton is a mother and writer whose work can be found at www.stormcloud0.com. Originally from New York City, she relocated to Big Sky Country 21 years ago and lives in Central Montana.