Friday, March 01, 2013

Text and Subtext or I'm Too Touchy

It is March 1, 2013.  I thought I'd be relieved that Black History Month was over because pound for pound it has been one of the most difficult BHM that I have experienced in a while.

It has been a month of people behaving badly. Grinding to the last nerve kinda bad. Not enough to wish for divine intervention. But close. And I have been hurt, angered, raged up and resigned to the stupid as normal. You can't hold on to each and every bit of idiocy roiling down the road.

There are time when you need to speak up and fight back. But when you do expect to hear something like "I am to blame for being too sensitive."

What ticked me off this week?

The Bloomberg BusinessWeek cover on a new wave of speculative housing boom. The cover seems to show that Latinos and African Americans are being excessively happy at the money grab regarding housing.

Bloomberg Businessweek Cover February 25 - March 3, 2013
There is that old (false) meme that it was the fault of the sub-prime buyers that caused the crash. Not the corporations that sold debt paper from firm to firm. Not the feeding frenzy that had radio and television commercials on every station begging people to buy a home, no money down. Not the Ponsi activities of Bernie Madoff and other corporate con artists.

Yes, I hear you #10,384 in the comments. "It was a Latino dude that drew the picture so how could it be racist?" 

Because the actual article has nothing to do with the cover. Because the images used are stereotypical exaggerations of people of color going ding dong crazy because they have cash. And you know how we get cash, right?

It is another reminder that neo-post racists society is alive, well and prospering. What was the brief that the artist got? What does he believe about the housing crisis or is this a bad attempt to tell up happy days are here again?

Or are we invoking Greed is Good for another run around the block?

Some days I can ignore the goofy.  Like when they painted that 16-year old white model in bronze make-up and called her an African Queen. That has happened before; the fashion would really has a hard time with people of color.

Read a bit of the Black Voices Huntington Post comments. The effort to devalue legitimate objections to the paint job could be heartbreaking if you let it. I wouldn't read more than 10 of them cuz it is crazy making stuff.

There are other days I have to think about how far we've come and how to be vigilant when a justice of the Supreme Court thinks that my right to vote is a racial entitlement. This is an excerpt from Justice Scalia:

The problem here, however, is suggested by the comment I made earlier, that the initial enactment of this legislation in a -- in a time when the need for it was so much more abundantly clear was -- in the Senate, there -- it was double-digits against it. And that was only a 5-year term.
Then, it is reenacted 5 years later, again for a 5-year term. Double-digits against it in the Senate. Then it was reenacted for 7 years. Single digits against it. Then enacted for 25 years, 8 Senate votes against it. And this last enactment, not a single vote in the Senate against it. And the House is pretty much the same.
Now, I don't think that's attributable to the fact that it is so much clearer now that we need this. I think it is attributable, very likely attributable, to a phenomenon that is called perpetuation of racial entitlement. It's been written about. Whenever a society adopts racial entitlements, it is very difficult to get out of them through the normal political processes.
I don't want to be accused of taking the quote out of content. There is an office SCOTUS Transcript of the Section 5 Pre-Clearance Obligation.

Sniff, as if voters suppression didn't happen in the last few elections.

You do have to have not only a thick skin but also a discerning eye for what is being presented. There is intent, there is malfeasance and there evil.

There are also people that make mistakes. Laps of judgement. Ignorance.

There are days when you can't tell the difference.

February 2013 was like that for me.

So yeah, I'm a bit prickly.

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