uppity negro

This came out a few days ago, but I forgot to post it at the time.

Draw your attention to panel three, because this is something that has been bothering me for about as long as Barack Obama has been in the national spotlight: the idea that it’s his job to cure America of its racist history, or that the perpetuation of racism is a failing of his.

The patently insincere line that so many conservatives have parroted goes ‘It’s such a shame that America is so divided. I thought Obama was supposed to be a uniter.’

Yes, blame the black man for being black and through his very existence and success inspired hatred in people already geared towards resentment of those ‘uppity Negroes.’ Blaming the victim has always struck me as a passive move, a hand wave to dismiss genuine concerns by pretending the universe is inherently fair and just and we all deserve what fortune deals us.

But this takes it to a whole ‘nother level. Acting as if you don’t understand that of course the success of a black man would invite hostility and violence from the wide swaths of racism still permeating the country goes beyond the self-delusion that no one ever suffers unjustly. This requires conscious, deliberate lying; to others, if not to oneself.

I don’t even know if I have to say this, because it should be so obvious that even someone as thick as Gorrell can intuit it, but here goes:

IT IS NOT THE JOB OF ANY SINGLE BLACK MAN, OR ANY MEMBER OF A MINORITY, TO TEACH WHITE PEOPLE TO STOP BEING RACIST.

It was never Barack Obama’s job to educate white people about shit that should be apparent, and the continued existence of racism in this country is a failure of America (white America, at least), not Obama.

As we go forward we’re going to see tons of discussion about Obama’s legacy. There’s a lot I approve of, a lot I disapprove of, and a lot where I think he failed to act one way or another. But the issue of race and racism in this country was never his burden to carry, and I would say that any ink or breath spent on assessing or grading his performance on it is automatically wasted.

I’m not surprised that Anthony Mackie is playing an uppity negro in that Black or White movie. Literally, people are tired of race, according to him, yet he is in a movie about race.