In the name of humor, Nick Cannon dressed up in whiteface to promote his new album. He says that his character is supposed to be funny. I beg to differ.
Photo via Instagram
Welcome to the White People Party Music 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.
–I get a lot of shit for not "calling out black people for being racist." There's some notion that I'm biased and slant my coverage of racial issues toward an Afrocentric perspective. Well, thanks to Nick Cannon, I can finally try to reverse that stigma. I got that "reverse-racism hook-up" from my boy. In order to promote his idiotically titled new album, White People Party Music, Nick created a character called "Connor Smallnut" on Instagram this week. You see, Connor's white. Not only is he white, but he's also an over-the-top caricature of a white person. You've seen White Chicks, but are you ready for... White Dude?
Nick Cannon's really trying to shock the world, though he should realize that it's shocking enough to know that someone paid him to make music again. You already surprised me, man! Stop surprising me so much! I have a heart condition (and I also hate you)!
Shitty stereotype-based caricatures are almost always atrocious. Hardly anyone laughs at Mickey Rooney dressing up like a Chinese person in Breakfast at Tiffany's, mostly because it's not funny or clever. It's just a dude in a pair of fake teeth switching out L's for R's. I could do that (and I would at birthday parties if you paid me enough), and no one would think it's good, because it's not.
Nick responded to the criticism by saying he's just joking and he was inspired by Robert Downey Jr. in Tropic Thunder. Of course, Robert Downey Jr.'s character in Tropic Thunder was an explicitly mocking parody of the exact thing Nick Cannon did. Let's just say the one thing about this story that I'm not shocked about is that Nick Cannon doesn't understantd a joke. RACIST
–Last week, I mentioned ABC Family's highly questionable drama pilot titled Alice in Arabia. The show was to depict an American girl's adventures as a captive in Saudi Arabia. The script leaked online, and Arab advocacy groups lost their shit. This week, ABC Family wisely put the show to bed. The gave it some milk, a cookie, fluffed it's pillow, then smothered the show with the exact same pillow. 2
Photo via Flickr User Keith Allison
–Daniel Snyder, owner of the Washington "Redskins," has remained resolute in his disinterest in the protests of Native groups regarding the rather odious nickname his football team uses. He repeatedly restates his claim that he will never change the name of the team to anything that isn't horrible racist. Instead of just listening to the pleas of Native Americans, he's decided to throw some money at the problem by establishing a charity called the "Washington Redskins Original Americans Foundation."
From Daniel Snyder's letter announcing the new foundation:
The mission of the Original Americans Foundation is to provide meaningful and measurable resources that provide genuine opportunities for Tribal communities. With open arms and determined minds, we will work as partners to begin to tackle the troubling realities facing so many tribes across our country. Our efforts will address the urgent challenges plaguing Indian country based on what Tribal leaders tell us they need most. We may have created this new organization, but the direction of the Foundation is truly theirs.
I absolutely can't fault the Redskins' organization for trying to reach out to the Native American community. It's a step in the right direction, and yet I can't help being cynical about this specific gesture. The very people Daniel Snyder is trying to suck up to are the ones he's pissing off by resolutely standing by the Redskins name. At least he's trying, though. 3
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