Recent Xpress commentary is an embarrassment

Felicia Dickson's misguided, rambling commentary on the "N-word" so clearly displayed her near-complete ignorance of racial relations, the laws of our land and normal human behavior that I felt it my duty to admonish her if not educate her [“Just Say No,” Feb. 15 Xpress]. I'm fully embarrassed on behalf of the Xpress that this tripe was printed. Did you really just let someone act as an authority on race, given that her strongest credential is having once danced with a black guy, called him a [racial epithet], then apologized? Oh wait, now she even has a black friend. How very cliché.

She indicated that she was lucky she didn't have a physical altercation after her racial slur. No verbal insult legally justifies a physically violent reaction, ever. Ever hear the one about sticks and stones? I'll go further and state that you can't hurt someone's feelings about something in which they don't already lack confidence. Try to make fun of me for being gay, or of mixed race — you might get an eye-roll and a smirk out of me, because I'm not ashamed of myself and my background.

Then in all caps "RACISM IS A WHITE ISSUE." Are you serious? I'm aware that the liberal media would lead (like a sheep) to believe that, but have you ever heard blacks talk freely about Mexicans? Mexicans talk about Puerto Ricans? Any study of the international relations among Asians and Middle Easterners? How about the Rwandan genocide?

The writer shows hubris combined with ignorance — as sickly counterproductive as a neo-Nazi. But, she is allowed to express in speech and writing whatever thoughts she wishes, even if they are vehemently racist. It's kind of a Bill of Rights thing. It helps the rest of us sort out whose ideas should be ignored.

In a peaceful society, it is sadly necessary to police and sometimes punish people’s actions. It's another thing entirely to control and censor thoughts and words, especially when they're offensive.

— Sidney Nemms
Asheville

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2 thoughts on “Recent Xpress commentary is an embarrassment

  1. mat catastrophe

    There is a very real and very important difference between “racism” and the prejudice detailed by Mr. Nemms.

    Racism is, in fact, a white issue. It’s a holdover from the racial justification for the way in which Europe dominated the world from around 1500 to 1900. There isn’t any comparable example of Asian or African behavior or attitudes in the same vein.

    Unfortunately, most of what people talk about when they talk about “racism” is simply prejudice or, in the case of some cases, tribalism. Racism implies and requires that there be an imbalance of power between the two groups of people in question and anyone who cannot see the historic imbalance of power between “whites” and “non-whites” should adjust their blinders.

    • bill smith

      People say “Racism” when they mean Bigotry.

      It`s very difficult to try to explain to the average American the deeply-embedded power structures that allow whites to benefit from Racism, and how it differs radically from simple prejudice and bigotry. Popular culture has successfully blurred the two, essentially masking the real definition of Racism. It`s a losing battle.

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