Alpine Summit

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

Black. White. Stupid.

LaShawn Barber wrote a great piece on the FX show "Black.White." She actually watched the whole thing, which is more than I could do. Since it's a TV show, all we know is what the editors decided to put into the final cuts of each episode. It's just as likely these people didn't experience any racist situations for 99% of their tenure in this makeup; however, what we see is only going to be the stuff that follows with the assumption of the editors in a Michael Moore fashion. You can see this is clearly evident that the people making the show have their own preconceptions of race in how they "trained" the participants. Things like "You have to learn to talk black," or "this is the black handshake," are riddled throughout the show. Apparently speaking with correct grammar is "white."

The point of the show was evident. The white family, on the defensive the whole time, was supposed to experience “racist” America as blacks. They were obviously tense and very careful about what they said, which resulted in lines like this from Carmen: “I love black. Visually and heart-wise, there’s a warmth.”

Whatever that means.

That's a good point. I'm so sick of being defensive about race all the time. If I'm white, and somehow wrong a black person (no matter what the situation) or don't apologize for slave traders in the 18th century, it's racist! Blacks in this country have become so hyper-sensitive to racism (because there isn't any real racism to speak of anymore) that things like how people try to avoid looking at blacks is "racist."

In another so-called racist encounter, Brian (no make-up) and Bruno (in blackface) were walking down the street and passed a group of whites. Brian asked Bruno if he noticed how the people avoided looking at them. Bruno didn’t notice. The two men clearly have different outlooks on life. The overly sensitive Brian has been conditioned to see signs of prejudice everywhere, real or perceived, and the optimistic Bruno hasn’t. “I’m trying to enlighten you to the fact that you’ve got to approach life in a certain way and not expect you’re being mistreated because you’re black,” said Bruno.

I think this all goes to prove a further point that civil rights leaders have done their job so well, that they have utterly convinced an entire group of people that they are victims by birthright.