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Don Imus vs. Rap Music Debate Continued:
by Clyde Hopped
30 Apr 2007
Modified: 08:59:04 PM
Randi Rhodes of Air America is still wrong when she claims that “the” issue (insisting there is only one issue) is no more than white people blaming rap music for words like “ho” when used in the derogatory sense. Don Imus question: “What about rap music?” is a legitimate question—even if “pseudo-liberals” (real liberals consider fairly all relevant points of view before getting judgmental) are quick to dismiss it. In fact dogmatic certitude that there is “one” significant way (my way or the highway) to interpret the debate is itself a red flag.
Don Imus vs. Rap Music Debate Continued:
Randi Rhodes of Air America is still wrong when she claims that “the” issue (insisting there is only one issue) is no more than white people blaming rap music for words like “ho” when used in the derogatory sense.
Yes, yes, and again YES—Don Imus said a racist and sexist statement about the Rutger’s female basketball team. He called them “nappy headed hos”. There is hardly any debate about whether Imus acted in a manner racist, sexist, and with intent to degrade—it is pretty much fair judgment. (However no one really knows with Godlike certainty the ‘motives’ of people when they say what the say—which is why motive makes for good psychological warfare and propaganda).
However by using the Don Imus incident as springboard, Randi Rhodes, on several occasions in the last few weeks, went on a rampage to prove beyond a doubt that the Don Imus’ response: “What about rappers racist and sexist rap music?” is only a form of reverse racism. She adamantly argued that this whole thing about rap music is “just” another “white male” dominated TV industry’s way of blaming blacks for racism against blacks. Period—end of story (according to her and such tunnel vision rigidity).
But the Don Imus question: “What about rap music?” is a legitimate question—even if “pseudo-liberals” (real liberals consider fairly all relevant points of view before getting judgmental) are quick to dismiss it. In fact dogmatic certitude that there is “one” significant way (my way or the highway) to interpret the debate is itself a red flag. (But this is not to insinuate that Randi Rhodes, per se, is generally a pseudo-liberal, because on several issues she willingly explores more points of view—including the radical.)
Note that I do not listen to Randi Rhodes so as to criticize her. I agree with “much” of what she says about a lot of issues. Further I truly admire her courage and intelligence to say what other news people are afraid to say or even learn. But her sanctimonious crap about singularly fingering whitey is . This story is not black and white—we as a society can and should look at other issues (despite the fact that she only purports to).
Nevertheless the point is that there is in fact a double standard in this country between what is considered acceptable behavior between blacks and whites unless whites act black (that can not be explained away by multicultural differences—for example no culture in Africa initiated rap music attitudes—and it has a great deal to do with “attitude”).
And even if Imus’ question to the accusation of racism was an attempt to deflect blame for his personal responsibility and blame—his question is still is a legitimate question—because such a question does not “shift” responsibility of his own attitudes and behavior (or other adults who work broadcast networks).
Rather his question broadens “equally” to related and “equally” relevant questions. (I know some camps like to give lip service to the word “equality” so let us see if the can walk their talk?) Let us explore where it is reasonable to see this incident in a large context?
Nevertheless other apologists for rap musicians in the industry, and in our culture, have made remarks like: “Comparing Don Imus’ language with hip-hop artists’ poetic expression is misguided and inaccurate, and feeds into a mind-set that can be a catalyst for unwarranted, rampant censorship”. This statement by one hip-hop mogul Russell Simons hardly speaks of zero conflict of interest or objective jurisprudence.
For some reason it is hard to believe that poetic expression is not what offends people—nor what has alienated people for years. It is much more reasonable to believe it has to do with the artists’ attitudes and the actual words or insinuations chosen manifest with their music.
Over the years there has been much to offend in this genre of music—and not just those of bluenose prudery. For example we don’t need a rock star like Frank Zappa, whose signatures include grossing people out on stage, be the one to lecture good, little, white, Christians, like Ms. Gore, about artistic expression and philosophical profundity. The omnipresent crudity of hip-hop or rap goes far beyond puritanical sensibilities.
Had hip-hop or rap been initiated by white people it would have been attacked with great intensity and much earlier in process (but criticizing black culture does not come without its counterattacks of racism). Equally the above statement of prevalence for rudeness and crudity is a true opinion as such even if it is equally true that the hip-hop genre has grown to include a variety of style and nuance.
But according to hip-hop activist Kevin Powell (cast member of MTV’s “The Real World” series):
“ ... The mainstream media just happened to get on this topic now is because the people upset about Imus have “shifted” the blame to hip-hop ... Imus didn’t say what he said because of hip-hop, but because he is a racist, plain and simple. Hip-hop didn’t create racism and sexism, so this is really about two different conversations. And one of them is about the power-elite in this country turning a blind eye to their racism. That is what Don Imus represents. ...”
Although the Don Imus story likely started in the mainstream it was fanned by Air America’s Ed Schultz and Randi Rhodes. And the above Powell statements are classic Randi Rhodes—insinuating there is no reasonable reason to look at black attitude and behavior (insinuating this is not a conversation America needs to have).
But even if it can be proved beyond a shadow of a doubt that Imus acted in a racist fashion—many have concurred as much; why is this so called shifting the focus not an equally relevant conversation (if not even more relevant to some)?
Rather it seems that she, like many, who want to hide in a reverse racist camp doesn’t want to have the other conversation. The whole pseudo-liberal retort in essence is—only whitey is racist—only whitey is inappropriate—end of conversation—the 100% blame must always be fingered at whitey. We have to build up boundaries against criticism of anything minority or black. We have to protect rap artists for criticism—it is unfair they be subject to criticism.
Hip-hop may not have created racism or sexism (but is this to imply the white man did?) nevertheless hip-hop sure does a hell of a lot to exploit racism and sexism. But perhaps this is beside the point?
Rhodes went so far as to pedantically lecture her listening audience that the word “ho” as in “nappy headed hos” ultimately is derived from Anglo-Saxon etymology. Does such erudition proves that Waspish Teutons created such a word as “whore” so that it could latter be exploited as a racist slur? According to her headlong sophistry you would think so.
The signification “ho” is black idiom to the “t” Ms. Tolerance (that is hyper-tolerant of any minority form of expression while being intolerant of anything critical from the white male’s point of view). Apparently Randi Rhodes get a double benefit of the doubt because she is female and of Jewish ancestry whereas a wasp male gets two scores against him for his background? (It couldn’t possibly be the case that she might be too close to the issue to be less than objective?)
The conversation Imus broached is a daily reality—that we, as a culture, for whatever reason, tolerate more abusive language and emotional attitude from some minority peoples and especially black people (be it artistic expression or otherwise) than we are ever ready to tolerate, nor should tolerate from white people. How much loud, angry, threatening, and abusive histrionics do people tolerate from white people—but hey if a black youth acts out in loud, angry, threatening and abusive manners (we are more likely to tolerate it and think well he is just black—you can’t expect any better—that is just the way they are—so we will be the so called white flight from the inner city—while they call us white people racists). (But maybe it is a black thing or a minority thing and we middle class, Middle America white people would not understand?)
Reverse racism regarding music goes back for a long time ago—it was the fear to challenge the “attitude” of that black youth and his ghetto blaster walking around and forcing other people to be dominated by his music.
Or do you remember how black youth would walk in the middle of the road in front of your car and then deliberate walk slower as form of confrontation or humiliation? (But that was not racism—no—not at all that was just a black ego thing that needed to express a certain disrespect).
Still when people force other people to listen to their choice of music or noise they engage in a form of aggression. That is they “transgress” on the consciousness of other people.
This is why a lot of people “hate” rap music and are prejudiced against it—and the people that play it—especially loudly. It is because the people who listen to it turn the music up very loud (even if they themselves eventually become hearing disabled). Or they make a public spectacle with their car windows rolled down and force it on other people when parked in various neighborhoods, etc.
It was not just about style and content—it was also about manners and attitude. The attitude of the ghetto blaster was one of: “F*** You” if you don’t like it; and I have no reason to consider your needs; or what are you going to do about it?” (No hostility there mind you—no attitude or behavior problem—no you are angry because your are prejudiced against the man’s color—not that their “attitude just happened to be black)
How often did people blast you with loud soul, or jazz, or gospel music? Hardly never. The “attitude” of dominance was rap—and it was antisocial—both in words and especially in attitude.
Yes it has been a blatant form of disrespect. Still whitey could not quite come to articulate his grievance. Further there was little support if any whites recognized such double standards. Besides, there was always some self-righteous pseudo-liberal ready to point the finger at your face and say—YOU are the one who is out of line—how dare you complain about minority people—you redneck racist creep. Don’t you know you are supposed to be tolerant of people of color—you bland anemic soul! (And get this—if black rap artists themselves are unwilling to discuss accusations of racism, glorification of violence, sexism, etc. –then there will still be others willing to advocate his noble place in our pantheon of artistic persona. There is always one to fight for his “abused” victimhood.
Yet the truth remains that loud noise dominates a person nervous system. You cannot block out loud noise. It is like being psychologically arrested—it is forced on you—as you cannot be in the state of psychological privacy you were. You can no longer think your own thoughts. You can no longer day dream your own daydreams. Loud noise wipes out whatever is spiriting your psychological space—it is a form of aggression—when it is unwanted.
So it is not just the music—it is the attitude—it is the anti-social kid referring to “homey” while divulging a slew of expletives that are seldom delicate—beyond the point of being hackneyed. Such life requires a certain quiet aversion (or a compulsive kind of defense mechanism that loves rap even if it goes against any norms of respect or self-respect. (But no projection or reaction formation here huh?)
It is a lie to say that rap music is not a reflection of black culture—it is very much a reflection of many within such a culture—given the prevalence. No it is not the complete picture of such a culture—as there are many individuals and individuality, etc. But who else spends more time and energy trying to memorize rap songs as a source of identity and supposed pride?
And as importantly there is a personality type that is attracted to such style that we can come to recognize as well—irrespective of color. You can notice a certain hate, aggressiveness or bully henpeck order, a certain anti-social personality that likes loud and offensive noise and behavior—especially if it annoys others. (And another thing to notice is that those most prone to demand their style of loud and aggressive music be played are the least inclined to give fair play to other types and genres of music—but mind you that is not egotism).
Yes there had been this deliberate in your face, f*** you if-you-don’t-like-it mentality. And in longer episodes of forcing noise on others (like through the apartment walls at night) it becomes a form of humiliation. That is if you cannot negotiate respect or find authority to enforce your rights (and how many minority ganstas or wannabes want to negotiate respect with a middle class honky—unless it happens to be female?).
This prison and gang mentality was reflective of a world of hatred and chaos. The attitude thing is not just about rap or hip-hop—it is about what is considered OK in a narrow sense of breadth of being (despite conceits about “poetic” justice—even if it is true that some rap music is sublime and cultured.
What real woman wants to be around a man who is of such character as to need to play tough all the time—or a man who eschews any type of intellectual endeavor—and secretly out of fear—that is fear of being rejected because one is not a copycat of an egocentric machismo? How loveable can that be? How attractive and enchanting does that really get?
There is an attitude of hatred and an attitude of bully in much of this music—but what white man can say: “Some of you blacks, Hispanics or white kids are really acting like jerks—and not because you are black, Hispanic, or white—but because your behavior and your attitudes reek of disrespect. Turn your f. music down please!
Still for years there was nary a peep out of the white community about black attitude and behavior. Rather it was this constant fear that if you criticized black people about anything they would call you racist (and more importantly others would concur with their counter accusation—included those college educated crusaders who went out of there way to castrate the last living white male—that did not kowtow to some form of anarchism that painted all white males as equally of the same brush stroke.
The color card prevented “equal” criticism. Your accusation was inevitably racist. The ordained conclusion was you were judging others by their “color”. It was never their attitude or their behavior. It was always because you did not like their color. Furthermore, at least in their mind, since you were a white WASP you were incapable of any kind of objectivity.
Yet real equality allows you to challenge all people on attitude and behavior (irrespective of color (and might I add gender)). One is not necessarily a heroine just because you are trigger happy to badmouth white men in defense of minorities (how many white women will jump to the cause—but are dam slow to stick up for a white male’s point of view?). Jumping at white male elitism is about as old hat as it gets.
Maybe only all the races can understand is that is it always whites that are to be impugned about racism and discrimination? Apparently it is only white people (especially the men that are psychologically blind to their own shortcomings? Any criticism of minority people or women must always look for the mitigating circumstances. (But no racism here to think whites have zero mitigating circumstances worthy of consideration whereas minority explanations automatically get the benefit of the doubt?).
Don Imus did not need to listen to rap or hip-hop music—rap and hip-hop is blasted at people on a regular basis. Practically every time you move around on the radio dial hip-hop music dominates from radio stations. Every person, save the most isolated, are familiar with the vernacular and the attitude. It is a cultural reality just like Mexican food has become so.
Another conversation that some should have is the reverse racism (seldom discussed) that there is such a prevalence of black rap or hip-hop music in this culture that many in the music industry have actively “discriminated” against white musicians—as well as many artists of other ethnic groups who play other styles of music. In fact some artists have had to change their style to sound like wannabes just to get some attention (and try to make some money). Why is it that Hispanic music from Mexico is less rude until they decide to listen to rap here in America? Black people are not the only people who have something to say or express—nor are they the only race that has some street smart.
Why is it when there exists dozens of genres and styles of music the music industry has promoted this one style against all others—that is a style that has plenty of attitude that reflects a mentality of gangs, expletives, macho authoritarianism, violence, hatred, self-hatred, sexism, criminality, egotism, pimp egotism, ignorance, etc. Why is it that this style is worshipped and pushed on mainstream culture to emulate (via the whole media culture—TV, radio, television, and movie houses). Meanwhile as the Negro culture copycats each other in style—they laugh at whites that are “always” stealing their style?
Never the less several have been equally quick to point out that white teenagers from suburbia who are buying this music—at least partly because it is offensive. True enough, but since when has it been “cool” to be white, male, or suburban—especially as an American? Apparently there is more that meets the eye to this psychology of race imitation and adulation.
Nevertheless this USA is a guilt-manipulated society. Here somebody has to be blamed—and usually it is outside the self or group. For example our Judeo-Christian and legalistic prison culture is biased to blame 100% free will and soul (if you are willing to throw someone in jail or God throws someone in Hell you need to believe the culprit 100% culpable). Meanwhile ego-defensiveness, within this same guilt-tripping society, blames those outside the self-identity or group-identity (and it is not just white people that play this game).
Of late the accepted groups to focus scapegoat status have been white men and blonde bimbos. Take for example the fact that the Randi Rhodes show has recently used the dumb blonde cliché to defend Randi Rhodes “tough” in-your-face talk. She, as well as one of her colleagues at the station, and at least one of her callers, has used the (paraphrased): “How dare blonde bubble heads of corporate media compare Randi Rhodes to the brutal smear politics of the likes of Savage and Limbaugh!”
It would be dishonest rhetoric to place Rhodes in such a camp of demagoguery as Limbaugh or Savage—but is she immune from bias, distortion, sexism or racism? Is she not also capable of dishonest tricks and ego-defensiveness—as anyone else?
Why then in the context of defending herself against accusations, does she, and her staff, and her calling audience, insinuate the corporate blonde airheads are the problem? At least three times such a slur has been used on her show? And some blondes are airheads but it was generalized to women working corporate news.
After all who is it that hired the so-called Barbie doll airhead and whatever personality type her bleach blonde typifies in the news? Is it only corporate blondes who sound corporate cheery and pretty boy? But perhaps those brunettes have so much more gravitas?
Does anyone ever see blonde women at bookstores and libraries? I do. Does anyone see blonde women at the gym? I do. Are we to tacitly assume that because some blonde airheads get hired by bosses at work (I guess because they have “nice” personalities) then it is a fact that blonde women in general are air-heads (but no racism or sexism here?).
What about the reality on the ground that there are Jewish Americans that help run and “own” much of the news and music industry—it is not like some like to insinuate—that it is just white WASP men running the show. But we should think that whatever personality types they hire is indicative of the manikins in the window—but hey you never see other peoples buying those manikin products—do you?
Furthermore how is it that blonde women get the breaks irrespective of their competence level—and what does that say about the inherent power of the feminine. Furthermore is there not something sexist in attacking “feminine” women who are not as aggressive in the intellectual department (or do we really expect that women and men truly be the same and rewarded as such)? We should expect that “all” women were real genii of sagacious and aggressive wit? (And if they are not it is a male conspiracy isn’t it—there is nothing really inherently different about masculine and feminine—it is just that the blonde bimbos rule).
Just so long as we never come to articulate another conversation that there are also blondes who are a little more balanced and a little more androgynous? Nor the conversation that acknowledges that the racism and sexism against blonde women is ever really mean or nasty—no not at all—it is all-good? But there is no racism or sexism on the left?
True enough it is the case that blonde women climb the ladder irrespective of competence—no matter which ethnicity is hiring—but why is that? If the jealous (and it is fair to be jealous) blame the “dumb blonde” rather than the men who gave the attention or job in the first place there is no racism or sexism here huh? Blonde women appear to be easy targets for a culture that is running out of scapegoats (those that have not dyed their hair)?
Still there is a difference between fair and unfair criticism and how broad a conversation should or could expand—but who is so perfect in wisdom to know beyond doubt what is fair and unfair? No one individual—no matter how indignant and self-righteous one thinks one is.
Nor is Rhodes’ explanation that Marilyn Monroe’s pinup song: “Diamonds are a girl’s best friend” should offend white male sensibility just as much as rap music is equally diluted and sophistic crap. Blonde or beautiful women did not go around en masse “blasting” their music day in and out onto other peoples’ psychological space with intent to dominate. Such an argument is not even of milksop quality—it is pathetic—it is as pathetic as Rhodes’ need to grab any and every historic or current example against blacks so as to singularly focus on white racism—rather than capitulate to the simple idea that black artists too are responsible for their choices and attitudes.
But since she broached the subject of Marilyn Monroe’s conceit let us examine the blonde, spoiled girl further—because it should offend. For example despite the fact that many women make as much, or more, money (on average) than men of similar age—few of these women are giving away such money to men (let a lone diamonds as gifts or tokens of affection or attention). Nor are men asking for “professional” women in single adds like women routinely give notice for “professional” men (meaning men with financial resource). Men are still evaluated as “success” objects or other types of object (even if the long term drowning rhetoric over the years has consistently taught us about sexist pig males who “objectified” women).
Now getting back to the question of why is it that white teenagers have come to emulate rap like the wannabes that they are dubbed to be? Has our TV, music, and movie culture had anything to do with “shaping” ideas about what is cool and what is not? How did this simple retort (meaning white teenagers from suburbia can not have enough pride in who they are people that they have to pretend to be who they are not) come to be complex phenomena?
For beginners imagine for a minute being born a white child (especially a male) in the United States—and say in suburbia. Automatically you are blamed for genocide against Native Americans and the stealing their land. Automatically you are blamed for slavery and racism. Automatically you are blamed for taking land from Mexicans. In fact every form or kind of racism, sexism, and exploitation perpetuated throughout the centuries is blamed on you (that is your race, your gender, and your culture). So despite any innocence you might actual have—in the minds of many pseudo-liberals and minorities you are a jerk (and you should be begging for forgiveness the rest of his life—just like our Senators and Congress people are constantly kowtowing to Israeli lobbies for genocide that other people did).
There is this constant guilt being placed on white America and white men in particular—from many ethnicities but especially from some blacks, some women and some Jews (that is keeping the conversation strictly about “white” racism, “male” sexism, and what some scream is “anti-Semitism”—which now includes the restriction of free speech within the world).
For example when the subject is about racism why is it that white people—especially white men are the ones holding the bag? (That is until recently there has been little in the way of serious discussion or intersection about minority racism or female reverse racism or sexism against white men?)
The presumption in the minds of many people is that “white” people are the ones who are the racists. Equally when the topic is sexism—in the minds of many people—it is obviously men who are predominantly sexist. And if you doubt this theory—walk in any college library and check any major newspaper index over the years and decades on such topics and do your own comparative research—you will see almost complete bias.
Furthermore men in general are portrayed by the media as losers—delinquent daddies, drug problems, supremacist, homeless, criminals, sex offenders, dead beats, losers, exploiters, etc. If you are a child brought up in a single parent family how likely are you to esteem male hood or fathers?
Couple this with the fact that many of today’s children are reared without fathers (of any quality). Therefore there are a lot of unruly children (many carrying grudges and resentments) looking for people to blame for their frustrations—across the spectrum of America.
Plus couple this with the fact that America is an anti-intellectual society (and our schools can’t even teach intelligence—only how to memorize and pass tests). Now you have a cocktail for low self-esteem (that will include white naive youth) that will emulate whatever media slicksters portray as cool or masculine (and who gets attention and why).
Over the last decades being white and being male has not been portrayed as cool. White men have been blacklisted as people as somehow less humane, less understanding, and more exploitative than other people.
Concurrently there has existed a “worship” of inner black city hip as cool—irrespective of any true sophistication or form of awareness of diplomacy—it has been blatantly the opposite—black is cool even if it is gutter.
Or since when have well-behaved, and considerate people got the attention they may have deserved? In a dangerous world the ability to be violent is admired. In an insensitive world brutality is given the wink. In an unfair world criminality is esteemed—by the subculture. Out TV movie culture is constantly focusing on the action hero, the glib, the cool style artist, the attractive and nothing about truth and profound understanding—which by nature has ambiguity and ambivalence.
Rap artists have gone out of their way to be “different”. They do NOT identify with whitey. They deliberately create slang and jargon to be incoherent to the norm. They deliberately act rude to show disrespect, etc. Yet they live in a world of self-hatred because they will not encompass norms of tolerance, etc. But this should all be acceptable to the main stream?
Nevertheless a coterie of rainbow coalition has come to invest heavily into the idea that if you are white you are innately more racist than are others; and if you are male you are innately more sexist than women; and if you are goyim you need to be lectured to by Jewish intellectuals who inevitably know more than you about racism—even as they forget to become aware and discuss the Palestinian issues truthfully (blocked out of Israeli and U.S. media) or ignore that some right-wing Jews too helped “create” racist attitudes against Muslims and Arabs (and often deliberately so). No so much easier to focus on how white WASP or Christian white males are the ones who are perpetually debased—so that no other form of racism or sexism is ever newsworthy?
Thus the battle is to keep the white male wasp on the defensive. No we are not going to have the other conversation about respect “from” minorities are we? Divide and conquer and no one is equal to question their Middle East policy. No it is not about shifting the conversation so as to hide an incident—as it is about re-shifting a conversation so as to truly air it.
Rhodes’ attitude that she is merely “revealing” the truth about white racism against blacks (doing a whole history of racism in America) as if that has never been revealed before—is bunk. She used the Imus story to go on several rampages (as long as the finger continued to point to white men). But her long tirade is as hackneyed. It has been done several times before, yet she acts like she has been the first to reveal it—so heroic in declamation. (Nothing but pure objectivity and balance here? In a country with a population of over 300 million you can always find examples of white racism or police brutality?)
Over the decades now our culture has been inundated with complaints about the history of white racism—and yet we get the same old double standard about “white” hypocrisy (“The white elites want to shift the conversation”. Well why did we not have the conversation honestly before—like a long time ago?
“Hypocrisy” means to criticize (-crisy) less (hypo) meaning some things do not (like in never) get criticized. Who is it that is getting criticized less? What TV shows have ever been done on racism against whites—in any form? What attention has ever been called to this matter in schools or the media in any fairness? Perhaps for every form of white police brutality there are up to dozens to 100s of forms of slights against whites? Is this possibly true and if so is this ever to be open to discussion?
Is it not true that pseudo-liberals are creating an atmosphere that makes it more difficult for those offended by loud rap music or rude behavior to be respected if they ask others, for example to turn their music down—our stop talking so loud? Have you ever noticed how some (no matter what kind of a public crowd they are in) think they have some “ethnic” right to talk as loud and abusively as they want—and so seldom in their loudness do they have anything really worth listening to? It is never like some people of color have nothing “but” excess of concern about boundaries or worry about disrespecting others? No this could never be an issue—only if white people are abusive?
As a white male who is not part of the affluent class I am sick of this double standard. When I complain about the neighbor blasting his music into my apartment I want some social and legal support. I want the landlord to feel like he has a case of moral authority to expect respect from people of all races. If I complain about the obnoxiousness on the bus in the poor neighborhood I want to feel I equally have a society that looks at things from all points of view—not just angst against the rich—that they presume to be white.
Why is it that some people are so super-sensitive so as to rail against any possible slur against minorities are equally dismissive of any kind of call for equal attention of racism against a so-called majority? Now rap “artists” (make sure you understand they are in the category of artist—not merely sour grapes like racist whitey all over America) is according to the noble really misunderstood Saints. White middle class Americans just don’t have the multi-cultural sophistication to see how well rounded they really are (even if they are not really out their explaining their vision?). Rather the bourgeois is too blind in intuition (and prejudice) to have a legitimate complaint about anything minority-wise.
Thus with continuous and caustic scrutiny on what white males do wrong (as implicated one way or another as a “class” irrespective that most white men exercise little in the way of power relative to others), the corresponding implication has been to promote the idea that women, and minority peoples, are socially and morally superior (whereas white men are defensive because they really are inferior). Such a constant presumption of a moral high ground has existed within the context of complete disregard for any potential for evaluating minorities on the same principles (or sensitivities) white people are judged.
And a new twist to the current debate is that if a black people call another a nigger it is OK because within “their” culture it has different meaning. So therefore it is OK. And isn’t it ironic that some of us hear these derogatory epithets much more often from some blacks than we do from whites? But hey that is OK—because if a white man uses such a word—there is no question about his motives—it is always the worst. Meanwhile how could any white man comprehend a black man’s motives? There is no shared language or understanding? There is no shared humanity? Why blacks use the term as a sign of endearment (or complex nuance) and whites always as a sign of racist intent (with no nuance). Simple enough?
Or double twist it to a prefabricated: “Whites should be able to say nigger if blacks say it ...” completely negates the question of whether blacks should be so indiscreet about it? Maybe the question is why are they so immune? As if it is always about whites wanting to copycat.
Or should there even be a word that conjures up an attitude of contempt for when some black people act in rude manner. As if the word n-word under a white man’s breath proves he is a bigot and a racist. (And as author I am not saying one way or another—I’m pointing out a double standard in an ideological world that claims to be based on justice and equality).
But even apes and primates engage in social behavior of disapproval and approval sanctions regarding the issue of respect and disrespect within the context of community.
Nevertheless if pseudo-liberals really don’t think some minority people are capable of learning attitudes of respect towards others (and themselves)—or don’t feel that they have any responsibility to be respectful—then by all means—they blame the white man for black choices! And if the question arises then well stir the focus strictly to incidents of white racism.
Because “they” are not going to move from one conversation about Imus (the racism of a single man) to a whole world of slights unless they can finsd a way to blame white elitists Wasps for what blacks express. (No equality here—really?)
Caus seemingly nobody (hardly) tends to dictate to rap artists what attitudes and wording they should exemplify in their musical styles. Rather the idea that the music industry (typified by Russell Simmons) has begrudgingly agreed to ban words like bitch, ho, and nigger (what they call extreme words) from the broadcast “clean” versions suggests they have no masculine power or will to tell puerile punks (or themselves) how to grow up and learn how to change from within. For example rap musicians don’t write songs to or about “women” (they write songs abouts “girls”) because deep down they are still boys.
And whether one financially profits on another does not take away responsibility for one’s attitude or choice of words as an artist or individual. The insinuation that white men are the ones profiteering from “gangsta” rap and therefore should be the ones blamed is equally reverse racism.
If people of all skin color are really equal perhaps they ought show it in behavior—that is to expect that they are capable of learning and exhibiting respect—rather than whining about unwarranted censorship? Maybe they can learn how to introspect and censor themselves without having legal processes interfere? Or is that expecting too much from blacks and pseudo-liberals?
What would happen if the defensive had to stand back and acknowledge that all people are capable of faults and evil—and all people should be asking themselves about their oversights—rather than constantly pointing the finger at “others”. The Don Imus racist remark does “not” negate the prevalence of crap on the airwaves or what emanates from cars or the apartment next door unedited.
In conclusion whoever said: “Music is a reflection of the soul” was right on. And no wonder some black men I know want to hear more jazz, blues, rock and gospel music—I guess it is not as obnoxious when turned up loud?
By Clyde Hopper
This work is in the public domain