6th Blog Post: Response to “Dear White People” & Thursday’s Class Discussion

Race isn’t exactly an issue you could say I’m well versed in. My mentality of my race…identifies more with the thoughts of Louis C.K., “I’m a white man…you can’t even hurt my feelings!” Oh no, he called me a cracker. Reminds me of times were we owned land and people.

Bottom-line is: in the arena of race-relations I am really not one to raise my voice about these things.

I’m appalled at what I see going on in this country. It’s disgusting to know at the University of Missouri, that there is a person or group of white people, that would smear feces on the wall in the name of white supremacy, Adolf Hitler and the Aryan Nation. That is what they believe, and sadly we all share the same Earth. We all come from the same place. We are the mass collection of atoms and molecules stuck together through one energy. I don’t exactly know what to call it…I’m sure scientists do… despite being completely different, and despite my resentment and hatred for those types of people we are all brothers and sisters in humanity.

And I don’t believe this is human nature either…if we were all barbarians living off the land, hunting and gathering in caves before civilization, even if there was race or not – is it possible that the cavemen and women could hate one another based on the color of their skin?

Hatred is real. Hatred is inside all of us. We are all capable of hating one another. For a lot of us, hatred comes and goes. For others, hated is a cage. The cage is built up in many different forms. Your environment, your childhood (nature and nurture), life experiences, peer pressure, societal pressure, or an inner-voice that never stop whispering in your ear, “Cunt. Nigger. Chink. Bitch. Fuck, fuck, fuck, fuck, FUCK!”

I’m sorry for the language but all of you, ALL OF YOU, have used this language at some point in your life. It’s not the word that matters (even though the word does matter), it’s the hatred that produces it.

Last week, we watched Dear White People. It’s third time I’ve seen the film – I quite like it. Over-exaggeration is one of the first rules to comedy. Some of the interpersonal reactions between characters seemed a little much. I reviewed the film for my internship at the Jamestown Gazette, you can find a more in-depth analysis here: http://jamestowngazette.com/dear-white-people/

As much about the movie i would like to have my word about class last Thursday. An older classmate came forward and had the courage to speak his mind. He had the courage to come forward with his thoughts and feelings about racism, and yes I do say courage, because he came forward with a dissenting opinion in an American Studies class in a Liberal Arts College classroom… how many of you would speak up, knowing that your opinion would be immediately scrutinized? I would say, very few of you, probably none of you.

But he did it.

I’m not saying racism doesn’t exist, but racism exists because hatred exists.

In response to that student, many of you came forward with your respectful rebuttals to his claim. There was one story that really hit me, because I’ve never experience this particular brand of hatred, “I’m a white man…you can’t even hurt my feelings…” Near the end of this student’s story, about being discriminated against for solely being homosexual, someone from the back of the room (it does not matter whom…) commented, “but racism and sexism doesn’t exist, right?”

So sarcastic… another Louis C.K. special comes to mind – Hilarious. You want to know what I saw? I saw the entire classroom break out LAUGHING. Laughing in unison at the opinions and ideas of this man. Nearly all of you OR ALL OF YOU, basking in your goodness: above the ideas, above this man who had the gall to say something you didn’t agree with.

You may not agree with his thoughts, you may feel is out of touch with the issue, but damn it – NONE OF YOU ARE ANY BETTER THAN HE IS! None of you!

That shows lack of respect, that shows an unwillingness to listen to another Person. Where does that get us? It doesn’t bring anyone closer together, it creates that rift. That rift that disbands us from the matter and the miracle that holds us together. That rift that leads to one person looking at another from a pedestal. That rift that leads to – hatred.

I wasn’t laughing that day. I was incredibly disappointed; And I too, am no better than every single one of you! I’m not preaching from a pedestal here. I just wish you all could’ve seen our class through my eyes that day…

I hate.

I hate everyday.

It could be meaningless hate, like the hate that Bills fans have for Tom Brady. It could be the hate I feel for others: the words they use, the things they do. It could be self-hatred; something that right now, I know all too much about. That’s what my fight is against now…

Racism exists because hate exists. It existed in the ’60s, it exists NOW. We all can agree on that.

I believe we all owe this man an apology. We’re all brothers and sisters at our core. What prevents that from being a reality can only be hatred. If there was no hatred, what kind of world would we live in?

Did the cavemen hate?

What if they didn’t.

Have we evolved, or have we become the barbarians?

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3 thoughts on “6th Blog Post: Response to “Dear White People” & Thursday’s Class Discussion

  1. This was a very interesting response to read. I found myself agreeing with most of what you had written in regard to keeping your mouth shut when the topic comes up, it was easy to relate to. I think you did a great job of explaining why u think we act the way we do in situations where we are not most comfortable in. I myself was a little unsettled at the way class discussion went on Thursday. I do think everyone is entitled to their own opinion and no one should be laughed at for doing so. With that being said, I could really tell how strongly you feel about the subject matter and i respect your way of writing about it. Interesting read.

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  2. I really like how you are discussing this, especially the part about what happened in the classroom. I think laughter was a heavy response to his statements because we are experiencing a dichotomy (whether it has to do with generation gap or something else I don’t know): where either racism doesn’t affect you and doesn’t appear in your day to day life, which often leads to believing there isn’t any at all; or being versed enough in the subject matter, whether directly affecting you or not, that the notion of racism not existing seems ludicrous. I think that a lot of discourse needs to try on focus on bridging the gap between the two, because you can yell at a man about racism all you want, but at the end of the day you won’t be changing his mind or opening up new ways of looking at things at all.

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  3. Thanks for this Jared. That all was definitely unsettling. I think in general people are incredibly stressed lately, and it comes out in all kinds of unexpected ways. Do please consider to think and write as you do, and I hope you continue to polish your writing, because your voice is very important and you have a passion and precision with your words.

    It would have been good for you to spend a bit more time here discussing the movie though.

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