Thursday, September 1, 2011

The boy needs to know his place

Mr. President, I simply don't know what it's going to take. These people that you want to govern with - these people you continually comprise with - they are racist fucks and it pisses me off how they treat you and how much you just accept it. There are times when it feels like you have helped set the civil rights movement back decades.

This latest incident, where you asked to speak before a joint session of Congress and the Speaker telling you to reschedule looks on the surface just like botched communications. It is not. It is about showing power and making you look weak. It is about putting the boy in his place. This is how they think of you, and maybe you can't recognize this but I can. You are the President of the United States. You should take shit from no one.

Never in the history of our country has your office been treated with such disrespect. In the past few years my children have learned more euphemisms for the word "nigger" than I ever did - a point that I will get to in a moment. They question the origin of your birth. They call you by a religion that is currently under suspicion. They call your wife fat. They deliberately change their positions when you take one that they actually want. They want you to fail, Mr. President. They are deliberately hurting the country because if one uppity nigger succeeds at this, then we're going to get another one. They are doing everything they can think of to try to make you a one term President - and that way they never have to worry about having a black man running the country again.

Mr. President - you were raised by a loving mother, and by grandparents who obviously cared for you deeply. You were raised in multiple locations, and much of your experience is about multiculturalism and acceptance. You really didn't start to experience mainstream America until your college years and by that point your own experiences were already formed. Allow me to give you a different one - a much more common one.

I'm white. I look it, I act it, it's what I put on the census forms. My wife is white. My children are white. I grew up in a town that could be called redneck but can also be called upscale suburban. I grew up where there were oil fields, agribusiness, and an army base not too far away. During my own childhood the town expanded from a population of 50,000 to 200,000. There are good things about the place, and there are aspects of my childhood that scare the crap out of me. We can talk about book burnings and religious intolerance another time.

Racism was a big part of that life. Having a confederate flag on your truck or home was a fashion statement. The local Klan recruited actively in my high school, looking for new members. They taught kids how to say things to keep the black kids in their place. While my generation mostly rejected this sort of thing there were some who took to it like breathing air.

I learned as a kid to notice when black kids were being singled out. I noticed that one kid was left alone because his father was a local preacher and that could cause trouble, but his cousins were fair game. I noticed that when a black kid was given the lead role in a high school production of Hamlet that the seats in the auditorium were emptier than when that same talented kid played a comedy. I remember a teacher rejecting Romeo and Juliet because that kid was the obvious choice for the lead and she didn't want the trouble.

By the way, I grew up in California - not the Midwest, and not the South. How much worse do you think it was for people living where racism has an entrenched history?

Mr. President, a lot of racists aren't even aware that they are what they are, but they do want you to know your place. They have done a large amount of little things - things like rescheduling meetings you have called, interrupting speeches you have given, calling you names - things never conceived of before. I have seen the ugly face of racism first hand by those who practice and teach it to others, and this is it. They want you to know that you aren't as good as they are, and will do any belittling thing they can think of to keep it that way.

How much more of this can you take? Enduring is not good enough - you aren't in a position to smile and take it. You are the President of the United States of America. You are a man in a position of immense power and they don't like it - and are doing everything they can to make sure that you know your place.

Well, do you know your place? Are you one of the most powerful men on the planet, or are you going to take being put down again and again by people who think they're better than you are? These aren't people you compromise with - these are people you kick in the groin and when they're down you kick them again in the head. You don't compromise with these people; you resist. They aren't going to compromise with you - they want the boy to know his place.

I have filled this little essay with code words that any person of color should recognize as racist. That's intentional. You should be pissed as hell about this. I am and I'm not a person of color.

What is it going to take before you give these people the ass-kicking they deserve? How long before you resist at a level worthy of those who made the gains you have made possible?

I ask because I can't take much more of this.

Cheap shots:

Just how free do you think you are? We present to you the War on Voting.

They should also extend an invite to Jesus, just to see if he shows. I bet he snubs them.

I think that Craigslist is going to need a whole new category.

Maybe they should raffle off a Taser instead - they're supposedly safe.

No, it's bigotry you dumb fuck.

So you're saying that you're going to skip work?

Bush weighs in on Dick. Sometimes they just write themselves.

And because I love you, Smashing Pumpkins