5.15.2013

"I love them and I can't help it"

Brown people, we need to talk.

So this morning, I'm reading Racialicious and a guest contributor shares an anonymous letter they got (yes, I know...red flag right there) in which the writer asks for advice in dealing with a racist white friend. And in their letter, the writer states the following:
I’m afraid of correcting her because I don’t want to hurt her feelings, and afraid that she’ll see me as “one of those POC”* and hate me. I’ve tried to get her to read your steampunk blog (which I love and thank for its existence!), but she is…weird about it. I know that at this point our friendship is suspect, but she is someone I love dearly and I can’t help it. And I’ve put so much effort into this project, I don’t want to give up now. Is it at the point where I should let her be, or is there something I can do to approach this topic? Thank you so much, sorry for the length. Have a good day!
In my response to the OP, I noted that that letter reminded me of this letter which Essence magazine received a while back, in which an alleged black woman complained her white husband called her slurs in bed:
Every time we try having sex again, the slurs fly. Our sex life is pretty much over right now because I pretend to be asleep every time my sexy, handsome man wants to be with me. I feel completely turned off. I love my husband deeply so please don’t tell me to leave him because that’s not what I want to do.
Anyone else see what I'm seeing?

The letter to Essence was quickly touted a trolling letter (We are Respectable Negroes breaks it down), and the similarities in the wording (not the scenarios, mind you) tend to make me raise an eyebrow.

Fishy Item #1

Whenever a blog opens itself up to all-comers in terms of questions and comments, that blog is rolling out the red carpet for the trolls.  Like or it not, this is a major variable which has to be considered at all times.

And when certain questions or comments come through which just scream "troll", it's very tempting to highlight them for various reasons, whether for education or amusement or what have you.  Over At the Bar, I myself have been known to post "fan letters" for laughs.

So I guess the first fishy thing which sticks out to me is whether or not the writer with a the racist white friend is a troll or not.  And I ask this because....

Fishy Item #2

Both women writing in talk about how much they love alleged racist in their life.  Writer 1 says she loves her friend dearly and "can't help it."  Writer 2 insists she loves her husband deeply and doesn't want to leave him.  Both writers are basically stating, "I've come to you for advice, but don't give me the possibly most important advice of all."

Well, now.  Ain't that convenient.

Let me be clear: I'm not saying it's "easy" to cut certain people out of your life.  That's not what I'm saying.  I myself have cut several people out of my life for various reasons and it was extremely difficult at times.  So no, it's not easy.

But "easy" is not the topic here; necessary is.  Modern Western thinking focuses on what's easy and convenient, thereby derailing the focus on what actually needs to be done.

And the Fishiest Item of All

If you know your "loved" one is racist (towards you), and you don't like what they say/do...why are you putting up with it?  Why are you giving them the privilege to mistreat you and then complaining about that privilege?

It's not like they're your boss, or a parent, or a sibling...this is someone you've specifically chosen to be with of your own free will.  The first time they fucked up, they should've been put in check.  The second time would've been a sign to cut them loose.

But here you are, asking strangers for advice on how to put up with them.

*raises eyebrow*

And that's assuming you're not a couple of trolls.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
*Um...just exactly who are "those" POC?  What was THAT supposed to mean?

13 comments:

  1. These might very well be troll-vomit, but there are just SOOOOO many Uncle Ruckuses (Ruckii?) out there, and it is sad/disgusting/disturbing to see what they'll do for affirmation from 'God'. They know shit stinks, but they've convinced themselves it's really roses (or at least it's not from 'those POC').

    And I'm pissed that their existence keeps me from dismissing these anonymous letters outright. >_<

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Respectfully, I believe these people exist too but not necessarily that they would be seeking advice on having their problems solved. They know the people they're with very well and problems like they're describing don't appear overnight.

      But to be fair, I've had friends seek advice in regard to problematic relationships, do nothing or the exact opposite, then come back for more of the same. I won't rule out the possibility they're just looking for someone to commiserate with or just listen, even if it is anonymously on an internet blog.

      Delete
    2. I vote troll on these, and were I the OP getting this bullshit in my inbox, it would never see the light of day. I would delete and move on.

      We lie in the beds we make. So even if these ARE women of color asking for advice, I couldn't care less. They've made their decision. Keeping their racist white friend/lover appears to be their #1 priority - above self-worth, above being treated as an equal - and they're just going to have to deal with consequences of such a priority.

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    3. Seriously. And I also say that your racist friend/boyfriend/girlfriend/husband/wife was saying that stuff from the beginning and you were probably thrilled that you were the special snowflake POC that they elevated to special status.

      So if your husband lets his family call you racial slurs, or call you them himself, or if your friend insists on being racist towards you, that is a choice you made. You can have romantic and platonic interracial relationships that are NOT based upon racism and abuse, but you have to screen people carefully before letting them into your life.

      Delete
    4. At least Uncle Ruckus does not lie to himself about what he is.

      Delete
  2. Our sex life is pretty much over right now because I pretend to be asleep every time my sexy, handsome man wants to be with me.

    Seriously? *rolls eyes* Troll.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Found this article that is similar to the discussion here:

    http://muslimbushido.blogspot.co.uk/2013/05/vetting-should-be-more-than-buzzword_16.html

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you for this. EXCELLENT example.

      Delete
    2. Wow. Read the entire article and the transition of the WM troll from an eager "learner" to a wannabe "teacher" was a shame. If as if the OP foreshadowed what the troll would do even after setting boundaries that were slowly crossed. Hopefully it won't become a trend because it is ridiculous behavior.

      Concerning Ankh's post. I want to say troll also for both articles. I get some folks wanting validation but at the cost of self-respect? The offensive party is always set up to be a good person that just makes dumb mistakes. Understandable but a good friend or whatever CARES enough to see how their actions is hurting someone else rather than making the offended party into the bad guy. Something is just off with the relationship dynamics and the apprehension at the writers expressing their real feelings. Seems a bit weird.

      Delete
  4. On them..that's the only thing I have to say, if the people on there are true.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Two guesses about the Essence letter, and both are predicated on the likelihood of it being a fake:

    1. Essence was outright pranked
    2. It was written by some miserable, self-loathing Tyler Perry stan out to prove a point about professional black women.

    Something about the details, particularly those that reference the LW’s ivy league status and the affluent background of her husband, seem…suspiciously extraneous? Like, what does that fact that you went to Yale and your husband’s family summers in Cape Cod have to do with you being married to a racist with NPD?

    There is an entire cottage industry, of which Tyler Perry is the undisputed profit leader (although certainly not the only player—cough, cough Steve Harvey and his imitators, pastors of various US mega-churches), predicated on the notion that professional black women are emotionally damaged, desperate, selfish, insufficiently feminine, and superficial/materialistic (for deigning to only date men of equal accomplishment). And lest the black professional women get too big for her proverbial britches, she must be taken down a peg at regular intervals. To me, this letter is a hit piece aimed black women. That an otherwise smart, savvy black woman comes across as a desperatem moron is the point. It’s as if the LW is trying to underscore that no matter how successful you think you’ve become, no matter what rarified environments you’ve managed to penetrate, no matter how well you think you may have married (I think the LW made the JFK Jr sounding husband white because it’s about as unsubtle as one could possibly get ), black women of a certain demographic are really nothing but self-loathing, desperate basket cases. In other words, black women are so fucked in the head that they’d rather marry (rich!) white racists than give the UPS brotha a chance.

    Sorry, I can’t believe it. It just reads too much like a preview of a Perry flick.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You know...do I believe it was a troll letter? Hell yes.

      But I also believe the staff at Essence knew; they just played dumb to get more site hits.

      Delete
    2. These days, I wouldn't put anything past the staff at Essence. Constance C.R. White tried to us, after all. So that may very well be another possibility.

      Delete

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