CNN in Black and White
This post is kind of a departure. If you are a news junky, some of these thoughts may have occurred to you recently.
I am a news junky and have been a fan of Anderson Cooper for years. It is now wonder that I wind down my day with a dose of the silver haired super-reporter. The top stories on Anderson Cooper360 were on race. I cannot remember a news broadcast like this since I was a child and the tension between blacks and whites were at their highest in the history of America. The first story was about the recently incarcerated serial killer that has been on the prowl since March. Since I have set up my news feeds to black news everyday I have been following this since before the mass killing in New England. I wondered as the body count continued, when this would hit the national new and waited for months. Elias Abuelazam was arrested, let go once and on his way out of the country after attacking 17 black men, one Hispanic man and two whites, killing five black men. After all of this there are still talking heads saying this is not racially motivated. It seems that their is a massive amnesia in this country around the history of racial violence terrorism in this country. There is case being adjudicating in South Carolina where a white man killed a black man, that in itself is no big whoop. But he then tied a noose around his neck and dragged him until hewas dismembered. As most people who have been conscious since the 1990’s know that is post-modern way to lynch black person. Based on the very recent history of this country (wasn’t the Jena protests less than two years ago?) why do I wonder how many black men you have to murder these days to be called a racist?
The second story was the outcome of a recreation of the Kenneth and Mamie Doll test that was one of the primary pieces of evidence in Thurgood Marshall’s defense in Brown v. Board of Education. The test has been reliably repeatedly over the decades and correlates good characteristics with white skin and bad ones with darker skin. The test subjects were black children between six and ten. The test is still valid. Young black and mixed raced children still think that it is better to be white than black. It was painful to see these beautiful children express the belief that they were ugly, dumb and undesirable just like their peers sixty years ago.
The last story made my jaw drop. Conservative talk show host Laura Schlesinger let loose a rant that made Tea Party “satirist” Mike Williams look like Martin Luther King. I was aware that she was a hard right social conservative but I was unaware that her racial animus rivaled Beck and Limbaugh. She basically said that a black woman who tired of her white husband’s family racist comments. She proceeded to call her hypersensitive, whine about how can white people can’t say the n-word, that blacks should stop whining now that there is a black President, that blacks are demonizing whites as racist because of black activism, to top it off she said that the woman that she had no sense of humor, should not married outside her race, and cavalierly dropped the n-word at least 15 times. Today she halfheartedly apologized, but if you have ever been on a blog or news site about race in the Obama Age the same ideas come up in different combination during every electronic “conversation about race.” As a first generation civil rights baby and scholar in this area, I think much more about this the average person, but am hoping that these stories along with calls for changes to 1st and 14th Amendments to the Constitution are not the harbinger of some moral panic stirred by fear of future? I think I will go watch the brain numbing goodness of AdultSwim now.