…and when Paula awoke; she looked around and in a quavery voice she said to her little dog, “Toto. I don’t think we’re on the plantation anymore”.
No Paula and there won’t be any young, black stable boys with lanterns to light your path at night and you can’t ask the first black man you see to fetch you a Mint Julep. This ain’t “Tara” and you are certainly no Scarlett O’Hara.
These days if you want your cotton picked, I guess you buy a machine or pick it your damned self. Actually; cotton hasn’t been king for a long time now and your privilege of calling anybody N—— was revoked morally in 1865 if not before. Before that I would have called you just stupid. After that; Racist.
The sad thing is Ms. Paula Dean; That I understand you. I can even identify with you to a point.
I too grew up among those to whom racism was…like the air that they breathed. They never thought of themselves as racist. Just white.
Most natural thing in the world for a white man to hate a black man or visa versa.
But I grew up. When I was a child, I spoke as a child and I acted as a child.
When I became an adult, I saw that what I thought was natural, was divisive.
What I had learned was “The way it is” turned out to be the way it was designed to be; to the detriment of an entire race (actually several races) of people. My own included because racism destroys the hated; and the haters; but far more surly the haters.
But I know that when this first becomes visible (not clear) to you; you see it but you don’t really understand all the implications of what you are seeing.
So; you get people who say, “I’m no racist” but make racist jokes and continue to proliferate the stereotypes.
Been there Paula. But I grew up.
Could be you would even be surprised to hear yourself described as racist. I notice you keep insisting that your family aren’t bad people; just after admitting it is as natural as whipping your slaves to use the word N——.
That’s how we think before we grow up. We don’t want to be bad or thought of as bad or racist but we aren’t ready to do the work it takes to make that true. And it is work. Don’t let anyone tell you that you will change overnight. As with studying the Bible; the light gets brighter as we continue in the right path.
First you see no harm in the jokes.
Then you realize that some people are hurt by them. (that’s not good)
Then you come to understand that those “just jokes” are perpetuating racism but they are so much a part of the world around you; you don’t know how to stop even though you think it would be best.
You can spend a lot of time at this level of behavior. I did. Many do. At some point though; you realize that no one is really laughing anymore. Mostly; racist and ethnic humor is for the purpose of seeming racist. Of racist apes showing their hairy white asses.
At some point; you realize that there is nothing funny in degrading another person. Black; White; Christian; Moslem; Jew.
There are a lot of funny things about America. There are a lot of things that are funny because of a specific tradition or speech pattern or manner of dress of the multiplicity of races and nationalities and dialects and regional differences of the people of America but there is nothing that is funny if it hurts someone’s feelings or erodes their sense of belonging.
Humor comes from Love and Respect. Never hate. When it comes from hate and disrespect; it’s called Derision.
So Paula, I don’t know if I have read you correctly or if you are really just another card-carrying hater trying to protect her lucrative income but if you can; I say; grow up Paula.
It’s not your repulsive, grease dripping food that we can’t take. That’s a choice you have a right to make.
Humiliating and degrading people based on their ethnicity; that’s not a choice you have the right to make.
While we’re at it; look people in the eyes Paula; even if they are black. Try it and you will find more familiar there than unfamiliar.
Ask a black man how he feels about his new daughter Paula.
Ask him how it feels when you are denied something because of your skin color or more to the point; ask how it feels to be denied something because the person distributing it won’t look you in the eyes; would rather avoid you than get to know you; refuses to see the person you are; would rather accept the stereotype; won’t stand up for what he knows is right; is godamned lazy to make the effort to evaluate you for who you are and how you love rather than the amount of Melanin in your skin.
Fuck it Paula. Just get real or get the fuck out of here.