Distortion is Just Another Kind of Lying
By Betty Fokker on August 23, 2013
I have many pet peeves. Hell, I have a ranch of them and run a good 150,000 head of peeves on the back 40 acres of my mind. My rants do not come my jolly outlook on life, and tolerance for fools. They are fed with the blood of peeves.
That metaphor is starting to get away from me.
Where was I? Oh yes – a pet peeve. I hate it when people are misquoted, taken out of context, edited, or twisted for any reason and for any cause. I hates it forever. It is never justified, no matter how desperate you are to push your agenda or how pure that agenda seems or how much you think someone was asking to have it done to them.
There is currently a shitstorm raining down on a Colorado state senator, Republican Vicki Marble. Crap is cascading over her head because she said something racist. She was talking about poverty and health, and being a GOP politician she ignored systemic problems in favor of blaming people for their “own” misfortune and poverty. She said:
“When you look at life expectancy, there are problems in the black race … Sickle-cell anemia is something that comes up. Diabetes is something that's prevalent in the genetic makeup, and you just can't help it. Although I've got to say, I've never had better barbecue and better chicken and ate better in my life than when you go down South and you, I mean, I love it. Everybody loves it."
Yep. That’s racist. It links black ethnicity (or “race”) with self-induced poverty (no other reason for poverty!) and bad health via sickle-cell anemia and their diet of BBQ and chicken. It is symptomatic of a profound ignorance of race relations, economic structures, and culture … as well as the cluelessness of privilege. She clearly didn’t REALIZE she had said something wrong because there was no reason for HER – as a wealthy white woman – to understand how bitterly many people resent the ‘black people loves their fried chicken’ trope. Suggesting blacks are poor because they like “chicken” will set off alarm bells for many black people because they know it is linked to the “lazy/shiftless” bullshit. Bullshit that is used to justify the perpetuating cycle of discrimination against blacks by implying the discrimination is rationally based, to boot.
Marbles was probably taken aback when Rep. Rhonda Fields, “who is black, called Marble out in committee. "You mentioned what we eat — I was highly offended by your remarks," Fields said. "I will not engage in a dialogue where you are using these stereotypical references about African-Americans and chicken and food. I will not tolerate that. This is not what this committee is all about. ... What we are trying to do is come up with meaningful solutions. This is not about eating chicken."
Now, I think all smart people will agree that Marbles was being racist without malicious intent. This is the most prevalent racism in America; the racism of the so-called “color blind” society. Racist ideologies and stereotypes are so ingrained that a lot of people don’t even UNDERSTAND how racist they are.
Well, rather than discuss this, the media is making the exact same damn mistake Marbles made – they are ignoring the large systemic issue in favor of holding an individual accountable for the problem. The real issue is that she didn’t know why what she said was so bad. But that’s not what everyone is talking about. Worse, the well-meaning left is exaggerating/twisting her remarks for shocking headlines. Examples of manipulated headlines declaring that Marbles said black people be fat/poor because fried chicken can be seen here and here and here and here and here.
Dammit, she never said jack about FRIED chicken. Stop making stuff up, irresponsible media twatwaffles! WTF? Are you competing with Faux News?
If what she actually said was racist ‘enough’ (and it was) then why are people distorting what she said? Because they don’t trust that white Americans will see the “mild” truth as bad ‘enough’. Why won’t white Americans get it? Because of the systemic racism no one is talking about, that’s why! And thus is goes on and on and on and on …
Imma need to go scream.
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