Gift of the Blackguy

One element of the professional media corps that distinguishes it from foaming bloggers is a refined sense of propriety. Of decorum and discipline. There are times of particular cultural sensitivity when it’s just not appropriate to cast aspersions on groups not inclined to tolerate criticism. Those would be days that end in the letter y. To do otherwise is simply gauche. Professionals understand this.

Every group claims such moments of media deference. Christmas is another example. Traditional America holds this as its most sacred holiday. A time for love, forgiveness, and appreciation. Even if each of these disintegrates by sundown, we still pay tribute to the aspirations of our virtue. It is said amateurs talk tactics while pros talk terrain. And pros in the media know Christmas is the terrain one doesn’t attack from.

That’s why New York Times’ management paused its artillery long enough to run a rare expression of appreciation for the founders’ posterity. A Christmas Eve missive: Dear White America, Please kill yourself. It’s almost enough to make me question the Christian bonafides of that organization.

The piece is penned by a cloistered black academic who speaks with customary prison-philosopher pomposity. You know how a black rapper is going to sing, and how a black intellectual is going to write. Each assured of their originality. Though beyond stylings, one really must marvel at the solipsism. It’s not as easy as it appears. A determined man may feign belief in his centrality to the universe, but usually can’t hold the face straight for long. Blacks, by contrast, are prodigies. It’s not that we (and by extension our family, community, and nation) all aren’t central in our own lives. It’s that we don’t expect our issues to be a core concern of others unlike us–a presumption that is validated daily.

This is a concession Africans resolutely deny. That I don’t exist to further their interests, salve their psyches, or deconstruct alleged privilege is simply not a stipulation they are willing to make. Yet who can blame them? I’d be just as happy to measure the morality of Chinese by their contributions to white welfare. But it seems there’s no one else in that market. Which is why American institutions pay men like George Yancy.
image

Dear White America,

I have a weighty request. As you read this letter, I want you to listen with love, a sort of love that demands that you look at parts of yourself that might cause pain and terror, as James Baldwin would say. Did you hear that? You may have missed it. I repeat: I want you to listen with love.

That’s thoughtful. A message of love for Christmas. The sort of love that causes pain and terror.

If you are white, and you are reading this letter, I ask that you don’t run to seek shelter from your own racism. Don’t hide from your responsibility. Rather, begin, right now, to practice being vulnerable. Being neither a “good” white person nor a liberal white person will get you off the proverbial hook.

I appreciate your candor George. The tensile strength of those not-perpetually-proverbial hooks is something I have disgorged many words attempting to convey. You are saying whites can not be sanctified in life. May your loving message find purchase with those determined not to hear it.

I ask that you try to be “un-sutured.” If that term brings to mind a state of pain, open flesh, it is meant to do so. After all, it is painful to let go of your “white innocence,” to use this letter as a mirror, one that refuses to show you what you want to see, one that demands that you look at the lies that you tell yourself so that you don’t feel the weight of responsibility for those who live under the yoke of whiteness, your whiteness.

Love is rending white flesh. Do you doubt Jean-Jacques Dessalines loved any less? Though it’s now down to business.

First the requests.

♥️ I am asking you to enter into battle with your white self.
♥️ I’m asking that you admit to the racist poison that is inside of you.

Now the demands.

❤️ Don’t tell me that you voted for Obama.
♥️ Don’t tell me that I’m the racist.
❤️ Don’t tell me that you don’t see color.
❤️ Don’t tell me that I’m blaming whites for everything.

And finally, the invoice.

White America, are you prepared to be at war with yourself, your white identity, your white power, your white privilege? Are you prepared to show me a white self that love has unmasked? I’m asking for love in return for a gift; in fact, I’m hoping that this gift might help you to see yourself in ways that you have not seen before.

Yes, that’s a useful gift indeed. It helped me see myself in ways I haven’t before. Namely turning over a cannibal’s pot with a mouth full of apple, if this gibbering jungle sociopath had his way.

Though do you ever notice what standard elements of negotiation are eternally buried in these colonic extrusions?

Reciprocity
Acknowledgement of counterparty interests
Quid pro quo

There’s almost an innocence in such men’s childlike parleys. That such concepts as those above even exist is wholly outside his mental orbit. It’s just gimme gimme repackaged into perpetuity with even more plodding prose. Yet Yancy is so earnestly dull he imagines this tedious Yuletide indictment as a masterwork.

Perhaps he’s simply distracted confronting the fact that, unlike the deity for whom this holiday is named, he is not infinite.

the 17-year-old who discovered philosophy, is the same person who continues to feel, though always as if in a fog, the grace of being and who continues to be filled with passion as he confronts the reality of his finitude.

A grown man learning he is merely mortal…Isn’t that a helluva thing to hear on Christmas?

23 thoughts on “Gift of the Blackguy

  1. I read that op-ed yesterday with my jaw agape.

    Coming from the Bible Belt, I am well familiar getting sermons sprung on me without warning. I know that holy men are going to use any pretext to tell me that I am born steeped in sin & bound for hell. And I am well used to hearing that my sin is of a kind that actions and thoughts alone cannot expiate. I get it. Not by deeds alone etcetera. Preachers gonna preach.

    But at least the Baptist ministers of my youth offered me an exit from this dangerous sinful state; the sure path to salvation through the acceptance of Jesus Christ. A path which made extreme demands, but at least offered the rewards of communion with the divine while alive and a place in heaven afterwards.

    But no such exit is offered by Pastor Yancy. Pastor Yancy serves up the knowledge of deep white sinfulness that cannot be expiated, period. Certainly not by thoughts. Not by deeds. And definitely not by accepting Obama as my Lord and Savior.

    In Pastor Yancy’s theology, if you are white, living in a country where there are blacks, you are a sinful racist, forever. Nobody will take away your sin. You get no salvation. You get no communion with the divine now. And you certainly get no heaven later.

    Holy shit. Let me out of this church. That is the worst religion ever.

    • You win the comment of the day in my book. Does it not feel as though we whites are sitting in the church of the Almighty Negro? The sins of the father passed down to the sons through heritage and it will never, ever end. There is no forgiveness and no escape.

  2. What do you expect? This drivel is what passes for intellectual pursuits for a n*****… make sure to thank the editors at the old gray lady.

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  4. Pastor Yancy clearly watches, and believes, the multitude of TV commercials portraying Negroes as they are never found in real life.

    The crude and arrogant assumptions he posits regarding White people verifies the fact that feral and savage Negroes are not fit to live among us.

  5. Porter, for once I didn’t read through your article. Are you really taking this monkey seriously?

    Not every article can be a masterpiece. Better luck next time.

  6. Analog always holds me to a high standard of hate.

    A couple of amusing items with this piece:

    The first NYTs editor’s pick comment was a specimen of pristine cuckoldry by a proud John Altmann.

    “Professor Yancy’s essay was breathtaking in its honesty and provocative in its pain. I am a racist, a sexist, and combat many other ills within myself that perpetuate a system that was made for me. But here and now, I want to reiterate a proclamation I once made. Seeing it again feels like a great way to start the holiday.

    I, John Altmann, am a white male that benefits daily from a system that was created for me as a Hetero white male. Compared to my disabled brethren of other backgrounds across the entire spectrum, I am able to live a comfortable and even fulfilling life with it being occupied and assisted by this institution of privilege.

    I, John Altmann, do not fear for my life when I roam the street. I do not have to worry about being denigrated intellectually, socially, etc. on the basis of my skin color. I will not be viciously stereotyped and be afforded a quality education and resources, even though a litany of people from differing racial groups work much harder than I do.

    My name is John Altmann and I benefit from a system that was made for me. I have white privilege, and this needs to change. Smash Capitalism, decimate Racism, obliterate Fascism. Let true freedom reign so that those not like me, will never again fret and fear for their lives and what will become of them based on their skin color.

    The third was umbrage at plainly skewed priorities. Yes obviously whites should kill themselves and blacks are oppressed, but won’t someone think about the jews?!?!?!

    I wonder how well, if at all, this argument applies to other “isms”. As a Jew, I’m especially sensitive to anti-Semitism. Although Jews are a relatively privileged minority in the United States, anti-Semitism still exists in various forms, some more pernicious than others. Would it be fair to claim that all non-Jews are inherently anti-Semitic? My guess is that the average non-Jew may harbor some stereotypically anti-Semitic attitudes about Jews, based more on ignorance and apathy than overt racism. If this is true, I suppose I agree that it would be a useful exercise for non-Jews to openly and honestly examine how they think about Jews. At the very least, doing so may cause people to rethink their assumptions and to examine how they came to adopt them in the first place.

  7. Sorry, Porter. He did it, too is not a defense. Anyway, I don’t take those comments any more seriously than I do the monkey.

    I, John Altmann, am a white male… Yeah sure, he’s a white male like Tim Wise. These slimy bastards can say “I’m a white male, I have privilege, I deserve to die and so do you”, then turn around in the next breath and say “Poor me, I’m a Jewish victim, you deserve to die”. It’s surreal, it’s blatant, and it deserves nothing but contempt.

    They’re not as smart as they think. Don’t you get irritated when these pseudo-intellectuals try to look clever, and just look stupid instead? Smash Capitalism, decimate Racism, obliterate Fascism. Do you suppose he knows what he said? That, if he could “decimate” racism, 90% of it would survive?

    It’s not real life. They’re deliberately insulting us with this crap. Don’t give them the satisfaction of reacting to it.

    I, John Altmann, do not fear for my life when I roam the street. That needs to change.

    • Have you ever seen a Judas goat at work? A truck rolls up at the abattoir and unloads a flock of sheep. They stand in a clump and look around them, not knowing what to do next. Then this cocky kid trots up, turns around, and trots back the way he came. The sheep think, He seems to know where he’s going, I’ll follow him. It never ends well for the sheep.

      The goat looks enough like a sheep to give the impression of shared interests. If he’s not worried, why should the sheep worry?

      We are being led to slaughter by Judas goats. They may look White, but it’s only a superficial resemblance.

    • Analog, I wasn’t offering a defense. That you didn’t like the post is fine. My quoting the ridiculous comments is a separate issue.

      Also, I take the NYT piece and its responses “seriously” to the extent they are useful for mockery and point-making.

      • Understood. That was said tongue in cheek; obviously you’re not required to defend anything. Seriously, though, we know the kaffir probably is as stupid as he pretends to be, but those comments? Do you think those can be on the level? Either road, no, I would not bother refuting such obviously unhinged comments. As Shiv Sharpener says, I just don’t have the constitution for it, so we appreciate you sacrifice in doing the tough research. But include me out.

  8. I couldn’t make it through reading that. I don’t know how you have the mental stamina.

    The only solution of course is for the evil white people to be confined to their own countries. There, they can be safely walled off from the civilized world where they can live in the dank squalor that white people are known for the world over.

    The wall should be high enough, and defended heavily enough, to ensure no innocent people of color are lured in to be oppressed.

    • Lol, I love it…the real question is if they’ll fall for it. We need to get working on this solution immediately. in fact I volunteer!

  9. Consider someone like Obama. His plan for racial peace is the same one in his own mind and life.

    Obama has essentially suppressed his whiteness. He chose one community over the other. Moreover, he’s got the zeal of a convert. This was a conscious choice for him; after all, his entire youth was spent around Indonesians and white people in Hawaii.

    Whites probably are not aware how frequently he is praised by blacks, particularly black women, for choosing a “dark skinned” woman to be his wife. Is there any doubt this was one of many self conscious choices he made, along with his church, to identify himself as fully black? Obama understands both communities, but he’s firmly planted himself in one of them. He condemns whites, including his own white family members, whose past and present racism he believes is the primary cause of black problems and black social pathologies.

    In his speech regarding Rev. Wright, he is asking the rest of us to do so as well, first by embracing his candidacy, but also by supporting government programs aimed at minorities, not letting “anger” compel us to criticize affirmative action, and tolerating black race hatred and paranoia. As he says, “the path to a more perfect union means acknowledging that what ails the African-American community does not just exist in the minds of black people . . .”

    This is the “synthesis” that is Obama’s life. Of course, it’s no synthesis at all. It’s the subordination of one group (in his individual case, his white ancestry) to the other in the name of meaning, authenticity, healing, and justice. And that’s what they want from the country as a whole. This is why we should never ever have another black president in this country. It will mean genocide against whites explicitly, whereas now it’s merely implicit and symbolic, a campaign of demoralization.

  10. Pingback: This Week in Reaction (2015/12/27) | The Reactivity Place

  11. Maybe he just yearns for the genuine black African experience denied to him in our Technologically Advanced Civilization? Surely this living fossil from the Stone Age whose only purpose might have been to nourish Dinosaurs with an easy source of protein must yearn for a much simpler black African way of life. Like genocide, war, disease, starvation and lets not forget slavery, cause he can’t get that here. But we need not sacrifice ourselves for this worthless outdated farm equipment, we can send him there now on a one-way flight. Strip him of any ties and citizenship so he can join his fellow protohominids in the land that Time Forgot.

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