Takimag Classic

Can’t We All Just Get Post-Racial?

October 29, 2012

Don’t blame black pundits—who make a living by being black and talking about their blackness and how hard it is to be black—for stoking racial tension. Don’t blame the ones who see no irony of accusing Romney of “playing the race card” while their own words appear under a banner that says “East Central Florida’s Black Voice.” Don’t blame those who talk about “the childishness of some whites” or that Romney, by not even mentioning race, was somehow contributing to “the niggerization” of Obama.

Don’t blame white pundits who talk about “coded speech” and “dog whistles,” those who blame everything on “racial hatred” and urge a default editorial strategy of “call them racists.”

Don’t blame a media that never shuts the hell up about race, whether it involves the “Colorectal Cancer Racial Gap,” how racism may cause weight gain, or whether your baby is a racist. Don’t blame a media that works in cahoots with law enforcement to foster the impression that no matter how savage, deliberate, or merciless a black-on-white attack is—even if the perpetrators taunted their victims with racial epithets during the assault—it hardly ever seems to be labeled anything beyond a “possible” hate crime.

And we’ll jolt your nipples with cables attached to a car battery if you’re foolhardy enough to wonder if it might partially be Obama’s fault that after four years in office, Americans are a bit more “racist” instead of full-blown post-racial. Don’t blame him for being the candidate who made a point of his race in 2008, all under the slippery guise of predicting his opponent would make a point of his race. Don’t blame him for beseeching Hispanics to help him “punish our enemies.” Don’t blame him for dishonoring his white mother and the white grandparents who raised him for the fact that he described himself as exclusively “black” on his Census form. Don’t blame him for selecting an Attorney General who is absurdly biased in racial matters. Don’t blame him for presuming the white cop was at fault in the arrest of Henry Louis Gates. And don’t blame him for exploiting a racially charged killing by saying that if he “had a son, he’d look like Trayvon.”

And don’t for a second think that perhaps many well-meaning whites are finally growing a little defensive after realizing that trying hard not to be “racist” is the most thankless job of all. Brush from your consciousness any suggestion that no matter how open-minded and compassionate you try to be, it never seems to be enough. Don’t dare contemplate that many Americans have reached Peak Guilt and will start refusing to fit any more guilt into their already guilt-addled bodies. Don’t think about the idea that tribalism may be a natural instinct and that trying to go “post-racial” is as absurd as trying to go “post-sexual.” If you entertain such notions for even a second, it’s obvious that you’re prejudiced. And now we have tests that can prove it.


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