Bart, I know that several of the e-mails I've sent have concerned race
or religion, and here I am e-mailing you again about race. I hope you
have a few spare minutes.
I was going to type something when I read your reaction to Who Wants
Be a Millionaire-here it is now.
I'm sure some people don't understand why you put so much energy into
the subject, but it seems clear to me.
In a nutshell, here it is: I can tell that racism is not in your
character, and that you rant because you don't understand it and are
genuinely outraged. How can I tell never having met you? Simple-I pay
attention to what you say instead of how you say it. Every time you
comment on something, you have put your finger on what the real problem
is. Saying all the "correct" things will not get you anywhere near the problem.
What I mean is, you could be like the GOP. They think that because they
made their leadership stop saying "nigger" that means they are tolerant.
I am floored by the people who write you who can't seem to grasp where
your charges of GOP racism come from. They don't hear overt racism so
they assume there is none. When you blow the whistle on the GOP by
pointing out their actions, you're not buying into the scam.
Now, we know that the words were never what has really hurt anyone,
the actions. You noticed that while the GOP was claiming that racism
doesn't exist anymore, they were dismantling affirmative action and
pushing to exclude even legal aliens being eligible for benefits or even
education. You also noticed that when they dismantled the EEOC, they
were waging a race war.
You were aware that they got a particularly nasty 2-fer when they
declared Clarence Thomas the most qualified jurist to replace Thurgood
Marshall. A slap in the face to what Marshall stood for and those of us
who benefitted from his presence on the Court, but also a PR move so
they could say they aren't racist-that all you have to do is work hard
and you can get anywhere. And they hold this idiot up as "proof". Ditto
for president Gump's appointments of Condoleeza Rice, Colin Powell, etc.
The message to most of us who are minority members and also work hard to
be constructive and to be positive influences is that we haven't gotten
anywhere because we're not white or conservative enough. No one in the
media that holds them up as symbols of how inclusive the GOP is ever
makes the point that these people are tokens, pure and simple.
You blow the whistle on Clarence, Walter Williams, Ward Connerly, and
Thomas Sowell (although I do wish you would point out that Sowell is an
economist, but no one seems to actually know what his economic theories
are. The GOP and the press only pay attention to him when they need a
black person to make some position of theirs on race seem reasonable. No
one knows what he thinks about anything but other black people. What the
fuck does he think about economics? If his ideas about economics are any
good, why don't we ever hear them?).
I wish you had seen Robert Byrd on Fox. I believe that what should be
worth talking about is not his "white nigger" comments. Those words were
said in this context: he thinks that the racial problem in this country is a problem
only because many of us insist on keeping on talking about it. This backwards-ass
country-fuck revealed on national television that he's part of the problem.
Not talking about it won't make the problem go away.
I know I drifted off there for a bit, so back to my original point.
I've let you know before about my minority status, but here's a little
more. I grew up in Cheyenne, Wyoming (you're a year or two older than
me, so if you were in Denver as a kid, we were practically neighbors).
Wyoming has about 1/6 of 1 percent minorities, so I was a super minority
there. I did well in school, never got in trouble, was well-liked and respected.
Here is the main point: I grew up around very good-hearted people and
experienced much less overt prejudice than practically every other black
person I've met since. Every now and then though (usually when drinking
was involved-everthing involves drinking in Wyoming. It's the LAW), some
good ole boy would put me in a headlock and "compliment" me telling me I
was "one of the good ones" or "you're so smart we just made you an
honorary white guy".
You get so you can spot that crap before it's out of the other person's
mouth. Bart, if I thought for one second that that kind of bullshit was
behind what you say, you can bet I'd become your A number one biggest
PAIN IN THE ASS. Once again, when you talk about race, you always seem
to get it right. You either are an exceptional observer with a huge
heart, or you're a black guy yourself. (I know you're not. But you've
never put a picture of yourself on your site. And no one has ever seen
you and Wesley Snipes at the same time. Hmmmm.......)
Anyway, just know that I am comfortable having you speak for me. And
when you talk about the state of race in this country, you ARE speaking
for me (although you don't say "eat me" as much as I wish you would, the
way you used to). There are some things we don't seee eye to eye
on-music, TV (I will give you the Sopranos though) and some of the women
I know you pay attention to, but when it comes to politics and race, you
are right there.
I'm not the Angry Black Man and I don't walk around with a huge chip
my shoulder, but I am aware of this crap and thanks for reminding folks
that this tuff should be part of this country's discussion of who we are
and where we are headed. I have no doubt that if you are still around at
the time that Caucasians are no longer the majority in this country,
you'll be laughing your ass off. (Bart, what do you think will happen
when someone realizes both how much of the Army is minorities and that
the government is giving them BIG GUNS and unlimited ammunition?)
This has gone on long enough. I have things to do and I know you do
Just know that I've appreciated being able to share some private
thoughts with you, and have been very happy when I've gotten private
replies. I think you're starting to become aware of it, but you're
becoming important, Bart. I think. That guy in the movie Network who was
mad as hell and wouldn't take it anymore-you're close to being what he
was, only on the internet.
I'm not sucking up-that would serve no purpose. You should know what
critical, cynical bastard I am. I just want you to know that it is great
hearing a friendly Voice In The Wilderness.
I hope things are going well for you, and please keep it up.
Mrs. Bartcop must be a saint to put up with how much time you put into
blowing the whistle on the GOP's fight to keep the world safe from democracy.
Gotta go polish the cat now