Welcome to another edition of This Week in Racism. I’ll be ranking news stories on a scale of 1 to RACIST, with “1” being the least racist and “RACIST” being the most racist.
-There's no question that Holland's got talent. What's surprising is that the small European nation's biggest talent is telling shitty racist jokes. Cornelis Heuckeroth, who goes by the clever stage name, "Gordon", got himself into a spot of bother when he unleashed a series of zingers at the expense of a Chinese contestant named Xiao Wang. Wang belted out a memorable rendition of Verdi's "La donna e mobile" from Rigoletto that wowed the live audience, but before he could start singing, he had to submit to a dressing down from his Dutch overlords.
Gordon asked Wang, "Which [Verdi] number are you singing? Number 39 with rice?" He also snuck in that old favourite where Chinese people say "suplise" instead of "surprise". And – hold on to your sides for they are about to split – he revealed that Wang's performance was the "best Chinese I've had in weeks, and it's not a takeaway." Following the performance, the judges feigned surprise that a nerdy Chinese guy with glasses could sing, and the lone American judge informed the Dutch judges that you're "really not supposed to say things like that to people." Gordon's response was a thoughtful, well-reasoned utterance of the word, "What?"
Holland's Got Talent, just like it's American incarnation, seems to be a revolving-door freak show where most of the pleasure is derived from watching rich people shamelessly mock eccentrics. I know what you're saying, that's sounds great. The contestants go onto these shows willingly, hoping for their moment of glory in front of millions of viewers. Everyone is aware of what their roles are in this modern-day pantomime. That said, if you are going to make fun of someone for being different, at least be clever. This Gordon fellow could at least try saying something fresh about the Chinese, like how they are the most populous nation on the planet, and could lay waste to the nation of Holland with a collective 1.3 billion farts in their general direction, never mind their massive economic and military influence. Try harder next time, guys. RACIST
-Last week, we brought to your attention the Chappelle's Show-esque comic irony of Craig Cobb, the North Dakota white supremacist who found out he's 14 percent black. Poor Craig found out just how tough it can be to live in America as a black man when residents of Leith, North Dakota thought it wise to remind him that their town is for whites only. An unidentified individual spray-painted "BACK IN BLACK" on Cobb's home. Assistant State's Attorney Todd Schwarz clarified that the alleged perpetrator is "not an AC/DC fan," leading me to believe this was a racially motivated crime. Cobb took to the streets to "patrol" his town following the potential hate crime, and was arrested for his efforts. No word on if the NAACP plans to come to Cobb's defense, but I can say that I #standwithcobb. Stay strong, soul brother! RACIST
-The official Armani Instagram got actress Alfre Woodard confused with actor Idris Elba. Some people say this is racist, and that Armani is implying that all black people look alike. I say, if you throw a beard on Alfre Woodard, I'd get confused too. 4
-Elisabeth Hasselbeck, the television personality who recently completed the "Devil's Trifecta" of starring in a dumb reality show, co-hosting a daytime talk show and working for Fox News, offered a rebuke to Oprah Winfrey's recent assertion that much of the criticism levelled at Barack Obama is racist. On an episode of Fox & Friends, Hasselbeck said,“throwing around racist accusations, calling someone a racist certainly for disagreeing when they are indeed not, would undermine racism when it does occur.”
The Survivor All-Star almost, kind of has a point. Accusing someone of racism is often the easiest path to discrediting a contrary opinion, primarily because it cannot be proven empirically. There's no racism test that people can pass or fail. This column is only one man's opinion on the week's events, not the final word on what is racist. The best we can do is quote former Supreme Court Justice Potter Stewart, who, when asked to define pornography said, "I know it when I see it." Using accusations of racism as a rhetorical device does undermine society's attempts to curb bigotry, because, as Hasselbeck pointed out, it cheapens the discourse. That doesn't mean that Americans should feel afraid to speak up on the topic. The only way to get a handle on what racism is, and how to combat it fully, is to continue the dialogue.
Are some criticisms of Barack Obama racially motivated? Certainly. Does that mean he should not be criticised? Of course not. After his supporters fought long and hard to save Obamacare, the online marketplace rollout has been disasterous. In a democracy, it's the responsibility of the people to say, "you fucked up." He fucked up, but not because he's black. 2
The Most Racist Tweets of the Week:
Pumpkin spiced nigger
— seth :] (@sethHashtagAF) November 22, 2013
A nigger walks into a bar with a parrot. Barkeep says "whered you get that thing?" Parrot replies "Africa. Their all over the damn place!"
— Chet Walken (@Walken4GOP) November 21, 2013
I said to the barman, that chink just standing ere, he 1 a those kamikaze geezers? Why Ray because hes chinese? No he just nicked my pint!
— Ray Carlin Winston (@ThaFackinDaddy) November 20, 2013
Stupid beaner girls at McDonalds are so loud and annoying
— Frost (@kadertot_5) November 17, 2013
— Griselda Blanco (@wetX2) November 22, 2013
I want to call this weather a nigger and drag it behind a truck.
— THE DEVIL (@NOIRFANCY) November 20, 2013
Last Week in Racism: A White Supremacist Discovered He's Part Black on a Talk Show