We need to think. This is what's missing from us, energetically speaking...
We can't out-fight them, but we can out-think them. -
John Trudell

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Why no one not even the Klan seems to want to be called racist.

“He called me a racist.”

“Well, what he said, “George Bush doesn’t care about black people.”

“That’s — “he’s a racist.” And I didn’t appreciate it then. I don’t appreciate it now. It’s one thing to say, “I don’t appreciate the way he’s handled his business.” It’s another thing to say, “This man’s a racist.” I resent it, it’s not true, and it was one of the most disgusting moments in my Presidency.”

Whenever Rush Limbaugh or the like are called out directly for being racist or fueling racism with their comments they always respond in the same way, they deny they are racist and then often accuse their accusers of being the ones who are racist.  They treat the naming of racism as the ultimate crime as when George W. Bush who was president during 9/11, Katrina and the invasions of two countries calls the moment when Kanye West named his lack of response to Katrina as not caring about Black people one of the most disgusting of his presidency.

I think it has less to do with the idea that no white person wants to be called racist in 2014 and more to do with racism itself.  Yes in 2014 there are a lot of white people that balk at the idea of being called on their racism or being labeled as racist.  This is for the most part white people that truly do not want to be racist and may not have the tools or the ability yet to confront their own learned racist behavior.  But the folks that I writing about here and their followers don’t shy away from inflammatory comments about race.  So why do they constantly deny the label racist and act as if the very accusation is itself the worst possible of actions?

It is not because these folks are merely uninformed or making a thoughtless comment or assumption, these folks are true white supremacist and they know what they are saying and why.  White supremacists actually believe (or are willing to align themselves with the belief for their own benefit) that white people are some how genetically superior just for being born white and that it is white people that are under attack.  Furthermore the white supremacist believes it is not the history and reality of white supremacy that has caused the bulk of suffering for people of color it is their own savagery and inferiority that has brought it about.  Or as equally prevalent the idea that people of color have not suffered at all from racism and merely play the race card and sit back while the money and power roll in. 

“You’re dealing with people who are professional race baiters, who make a very good living off this kind of thing. They make more money off of race than any slave trader ever. It’s time groups like the NAACP went to the trash heap of history where they belong with all the other vile racist groups that emerged in our history.”  - Mark Williams president of Tea Party Express

One of the most insidious parts of this is to deny that you are racist and then accuse your accusers of being racist.  This plays directly into the white supremacist ideology that white people, the so called “white race” are under direct attack by people of color and that it is actually white people that suffer at the hands of racism. 

It is part of the white supremacist belief system that when people of color (and to a lesser extent race traitor whites) name your racism they are merely crying out against the true and the natural order of things.  Of course you ridicule their audacious attempts at naming for themselves what is happening.   Naming is power.  You can study the history of our country from colonization and slavery through the attempted genocide of Native Americans, forced relocation and boarding schools, lynchings, segregation, denial of voting rights, internment of Japanese Americans during world war two, the on going attack against recent immigrants, the war on drugs and prison industrial complex and the death squad mentality of so many police departments towards communities of color.   You will see again and again how necessary it has always been for white supremacy to deny people the ability to name what is happening to them.  

This brings to mind the term gaslighting which is defined in Wikipedia as a form of mental abuse in which false information is presented with the intent of making victims doubt their own memory, perception, and sanity. Instances may range simply from the denial by an abuser that previous abusive incidents ever occurred, up to the staging of bizarre events by the abuser with the intention of disorienting the victim. The term owes its origin to the play/film Gas Light that show a woman purposely driven mad by her husband. 

In these cases of racist gaslighting it’s not really about getting people to admit their racism.  That is a waste of time and actually a fight most of these folks want to have especially folks like Rush Limbaugh and Glenn Beck who profit from their white supremacy.  It is really about supporting the people who have the courage and clarity especially in a public venue to name white supremacy when they see it.  Because as we witness time and again folks that name this behavior especially People of Color, are often met with incredible backlash.  

Race is a very complex subject but white men and women who are pursuing a white supremacist agenda in this country will always deny they are being racist because that is part of the very agenda of white supremacy; to deny, ridicule and dismiss anyone who attempts to name their behavior and to name an intricate part of our national history for what it is.  So keep naming, resisting and staying clear about the agenda of those who play this game.