Photo via Flickr User Peter Hutchins
Welcome to another edition of This Week in Racism. I’ll be ranking news stories on a scale of one to RACIST, with “one” being the least racist and “RACIST” being the most racist.
–Kanye West, wealthy black man and alleged "God," has taken up the fight for racial equality in the only way he knows how: screaming about TMZ in the middle of a concert people paid actual money to see.
In the middle of a performance at New Jersey's Prudential Center on Saturday night, Kanye said that the media tries to make him look like a "maniac or an animal," because we're afraid of interracial relationships. His absurd all-caps Twitter account, predilection for stoking controversy, and deeply self-righteous attitude probably have nothing to do with that, right?
I will give Kanye credit for pointing out America's lingering discomfort with mixed race coupling. Last year's infamous multiracial Cheerios commercial exposed how many Americans feel about the joining of two people with different skin tones. They just plain don't like it.
Kim Kardashian has been having sex with black guys for quite a while now though. You could say it's her most lucrative skill. She's pretty good at it and does it with regularity, verve, gusto, and panache. Most people hear Kim is having sex with a black man and ask where they can buy the DVD. We know she does it. We also know Kanye dates white girls. No one is surprised when this shit happens.
I'm not quite sure that the bleeding-heart, super-PC media elite are the ones that are after Kanye and Kim. The bigots he should be worried about are the people he's beating up and paying $250,000 to placate. The media just wants Kanye West to continue doing wacky shit so that they (excuse me, "we") can continue profiting from how much traffic is generated by his antics. Here's to hoping Kanye breaks something, punches someone, gets a swastika tattoo (for his art, of course), converts to Scientology, or reveals he's a Martian. Daddy needs a new pair of shoes! 5
–Last Saturday, a Florida jury convicted licensed gun owner Michael Dunn of three counts of attempted murder for using his legally obtained firearm to shoot at a car full of black teens because he thought he saw someone pulling a gun on him. That someone, Jordan Davis, died as a result of Dunn's fear. He was charged with Davis's murder, but the jury was unable to reach a verdict on that count. On a vote of 9-3, the jury threw up their hands and went on their merry way.
For those who don't know how this whole mess started, Michael Dunn approached the car with the victims inside and asked them to turn down their music while both parties were parked at a gas station in Jacksonville, Florida. They refused and proceeded to engage in an argument. Dunn testified that Davis threatened him with violence, then flashed the top four inches of a shotgun. This caused Dunn to take his gun out of his car's glove compartment and shoot at the car. Davis's car pulled out to escape the gunfire, but Dunn opened his door to continue shooting. Davis was struck in the legs, lung, and aorta. Dunn fled the scene and did not turn himself in to authorities. No weapons were found in Davis's vehicle.
I don't know about you, but I'm pretty fucking scared. There are some parts of the United States where vehemently disagreeing with someone could mean I might get shot. If I get shot, that person might not be convicted of my murder. Michael Dunn faces up to 75 years in prison for the three counts of attempted murder, but justice that allows Dunn to avoid a deserved murder conviction is flawed justice. At the center of all of this is Florida's stand-your-ground law and embattled District Attorney Angela B. Corey, the woman who failed to convict George Zimmerman of an eerily similar crime. I interviewed Corey about Florida's gun laws last fall, and she doesn't see a need to repeal stand-your-ground, regardless of the message that it sends to the citizens of her state. Corey is going to attempt to retry Dunn, but good luck getting a clean, orderly trial now.
Whether or not you believe that Michael Dunn was guilty of murder, it should disturb any logical person to see yet another case of an unarmed teenager dying because someone got scared. I truly am terrified of the prospect of pissing off the wrong person and getting capped. Should I start carrying a gun? If I do, how soon until I turn into the very person I'm afraid of?
Dunn was quoted in a prison phone call the police secretly recorded, saying, "I got attacked, and I fought back because I didn't want to be a victim, and now I'm in trouble. I refused to be a victim, and now I'm incarcerated." Who isn't a victim these days? In Florida, you're encouraged to stand your ground and protect yourself from threats both real and perceived, but with more latitude to use deadly force comes more reason to be afraid. Black people will start carrying guns more often to make sure they don't end up the next Trayvon Martin or Jordan Davis. How does that sound to white America? Not great, I'm sure. When does this cycle of escalation and overreaction end? Not any time soon and not without more dead bodies, I'm sure. RACIST
The Most Racist Tweets of the Week: