On Race and Satire

Whenever my grandfather reads one of my blogs, the first thing out of his mouth 9/10 is: “But why do you curse so much?” He thinks that it makes me look quite unprofessional, and claims that it is unnecessary. Now being that he is from a totally different generation I understand that reading a 20 somethings blog is probably not only confusing but slightly painful. He grew up in a world where students took penmanship classes, men and women actually courted each other, the man has told me his has been drunk a grand total of ONCE in his life. Which I could say as well…back in my Freshman year of high school. For the most part of love the snark of the internet. I love the tone that our generation has. We are a funny bunch, dealing with a boatload of societal crap, and taking to blogs to get it all out. Sometimes however the internet can make me want to kick basically everything in sight. People often use sarcasm or irony as a free pass to say things that are actually not at all funny. They use their privilege to comically comment on conversations that go on in different corners of society as if they were invited to those conversations.

Last week we were all presented with the XOJane piece on the white woman who just COULD NOT with the black woman in her yoga class. In case you missed it

This week we have this web gem. Which I think is someones attempt to be ha-larious. But see the thing is. It isn’t. First off Thought Catalogue isn’t The Onion; which is known to be satire. And for those confused to what the definition of satire is this is it: “the use of humor, irony, exaggeration, or ridicule to expose and criticize people’s stupidity or vices, particularly in the context of contemporary politics and other topical issues.” When done correctly AND IN THE RIGHT SPACE satire is the cats mother fucking pajamas. Satire can often be used as an excellent tool to make people realize how asinine a particular new story or line of thought actually is. Satire has proven to be extremely effective and popular online. I would say about half of the articles I read have some form of satirical tone. Our generation loves them some good ol satire. 

But here’s the thing: Not all journalism has to be funny. There is still a place for serious blogging. Thought Catalogue, while allowing some pretty dull, vain, and typical millennial dribble is not a site built on satire. So when someone takes it upon themselves to write an article such as the one above one begins to question whether or not the entire internet is just trolling OR if people, hiding behind the veil of satire are actually being racist as fuck. 

Every Black History month a section of our country takes to the media to say some really truly inconceivably ass backwards shit about why Black History month either shouldn’t exist OR why White History month should exist as well. Now I don’t have the time or the energy to thoroughly get into why White People are basically THE LAST demographic in our country who need an actual on the calendar month to be openly celebrated. All one has to do is look at who runs this country to understand that white people do not need anther pedestal to stand upon. The problem with articles such as these, is that white people have gotten to the point where they do not know what to do with their privilege. They can’t assert it the way that they used to; they are no longer slave owners, the civil rights movement wiped out Jim Crow and segregation, oh and we have a black president. Now I am in no way saying that ALL white people are racist. That would be a a horrible sentence to write, as it is not true. But young white kids looking for I don’t know, support? Acceptance? A voice? Are taking to the internet to say some really backwards things. And they are doing it by hiding behind satire. 

Men in our society are not taught not to rape. In sex ed their is no point in time where the teacher devotes a lesson to why rape is a horrible crime. Instead women and girls are taught how to not get raped. They are told the best ways to avoid getting assaulted. The people who are responsible for the crimes, are not held accountable. They are men, and they are privileged. How often are rape victims put on trial for telling the truth? How often do entire Universities and towns support rapists while degrading the woman or girl who was assaulted? 

White people are taught about slavery in school in books penned by white authors. They attend college classes, where some are fortunate enough to learn that white privilege is a very real thing. They then enter the real world and see first hand that society still does bend for them in ways that it does not for minorities. In the LGBT community white people often talk about how black people are missing from their parties and events yet still go through with naming them “Queer” and giving parties titles that fetishize or isolate minorities. They then sit back and complain that their parties are too white. They then go on the internet and write pieces about how sorry they feel for black women in yoga classes. They jokingly write about White History Month. White people have gotten to the point where they are so privileged that they can learn about their privilege and then complain about it and then do nothing to fix it because they actually do not have any plans to make things any better for minorities.

Sites like Thought Catalogue and XO Jane will continue to publish these pieces, because their audience is mainly white. Black voices will come up in the comment sections, but they are drowned out by the fact the authors are white and privileged. If you are going to be racist, be a fucking racist. If you are going to be a journalist who sticks up for minorities and talks about the very real race problems in our country, do that. But if you are just looking for laughs, kindly do not do so at the expense of a race of people who have had to be the butt of not only your jokes, but the end of your whips for far too long. 

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