Monday, May 19, 2014

On Racism

Having lived through every decade since the late thirties. Having spent some time in the south during the "Jim Crow" years. Having witnessed the struggle for equal rights and the trauma of school desegregation I thought that the race situation in the United States was improving. Seven or eight years ago, I thought thing were really in good shape. Not perfect, mind you. But good.

How on God's good green Earth could I have been so naive. And I do apologize to those of the Atheist faith for my use of the word God. So sorry.  I never knew all of the "coded" signals of racism that exist in our society. 

Yesterday I was helping my wife purchase a few things from L.L. Bean. An old and respected company that sells quality goods. And there it was. Right there in front of me. Moccasins. Really? Moccasins? How dare they. That is Native American footwear. Then these people come along and make money selling non-Native American made replicas to the general public. Shameful. 

We looked at some things on the Target website. Do you know that they only list skirts and dresses for women. Blatant sexism. I did not understand creeping sexism until I saw the news story where a bunch of really smart professorial types now tell us that the terms mister or miss attached to the persons name is sexist. Wow!Who knew? I hope this doesn't confuse little kids going into kindergarten who are just sorting things out. Should we eliminate mommy and daddy and just have kids say "parent". I can hear it now, "parent, can we get ice cream?" How adorable.

I did not know until two days ago that camels are racist. The intelligentsia at the University of St. Thomas, who practically no one has ever heard of, have declared camels racist and forced the cancellation of a hump day party planned by a campus organization. And of course the geniuses at UCLA forced the cancellation of a taco party as racist. But somehow Cinco de Mayo was still OK. Confusing.

Trying to cross the river of racism is a dangerous thing. The bridge is rickety and some of those planks that you trusted before seem to have weakened. AG Holder sees new subtle examples of racism. Of course Mister Holder, oops, that was sexist, sees racism at every turn of his head.

So all I can say is, no more Eskimo pies for you.   

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