May 26, 2010

I'm going to try this again

And if you don't understand this time that's too bad.

Now, lately I've had a little storm in a tea cup regarding my post on how I thought Draw Mohammed Day was kinda racist akshually. That post got around and naturally the peanut gallery showed up to shockingly, failingly try to defend themselves. Granted, so far it's only about 17 or so comments but that was quite enough.

So, I haven't been fair to, naysayers. I didn't defend myself very well either, only because I didn't write that post for them. Or anyone in particular. I wrote it for my main blog audience which usually consists of anti-racist folks that generally know what I'm talking about, and if they had wanted to challenge me on those views that's fine too. Like any rational person, I don't mind challenging nor do I mind being challenged. I don't particularly care if you agree with my stance, we can even agree to disagree if that's what you like, but I expect to be able to talk and be heard.

In the past day or so since I wrote that post, I've been potentially called racist, told I need to get over my white guilt, focus on other things, presumably discredited because my blog has a quirky title, and some other strange things. I'm not un-used to this because those are just typical defensive mechanisms.

But anyway, that's all beside the point. I said, I hadn't really been fair had I? I didn't expect such a little post to get that response...and yet it was the exact response I figured it would be. I even wrote a follow up post that I'm guessing no one read and I'm going to do this one now just to clear up anything that's on your precious minds, assuming you can even still comment here.

Are you ready? Here we go!

I know not every single Muslim in the world is a person of color or otherwise non-white. Like I said, I misspoke rashly, and I apologized for it. Moving on from that, I still found the day racist because I find Islam and Islamophobia indelibly tied to issues of race. It's tied to xenophobia. This is in my mind because on my blog I take time out to discuss Islam and how, even though I don't agree with it, I find it disturbing how many anti-Muslim policies (see: France, Belgium) are tied to oppression and basically getting rid of the scary brown violent terrorist people. So forgive me if I find it a little weird when Western countries start participating in a day violating a law of Islam.

I found the day a lot of things too OTHER THAN RACIST but no one bothered to ask me about that. I found it, mainly, unhelpful to any particular cause, kind of immature, and kind of disgusting to my slightly pacifist heart. I also understand that not everyone who participated in this little exercise necessarily white. Fine, I got that. Didn't change a lot (there's something called horizontal oppression and internalized oppression that keeps me from feeling bad).

I understood, way beforehand, that this little fun day wasn't exactly an attack on a particular race, or at least it wasn't intended to be. Now, let me tell you something about myself--when it comes to things like this, I don't really care much about intentions. I'm sure you intended to have this grande day where you bask in your freedom of speech and (or away from) religion and yay slaughtering sacred cows. I just think it backfired. I think while you're trying to fight religious oppression--and being an atheist living in Tennessee of all states, I totally understand this--you don't help anyone else. I think I used the phrase of "further oppression" but that isn't quite right. You just don't help. You don't make a change. You challenged Islam by drawing a blasphemous picture, you slaughtered some sacred cows, but you also just ran over someone's toes.

Now if you're still sitting there squirming in your seat fervently insisting this was not racist and I'm the one with the race problem, I'd ask you to think again. Think of why you're writhing around so much trying to get away from what I plainly pointed out. You try to discredit me weakly, call my opinions stupid, bash my posts without understanding the context I'm writing in, fine, but just understand you're doing nothing but proving my point.

And that, ladies and gentlemen, is why I don't bother in race conversations anymore because they usually turn out to this. The burden of proof is on me (somehow) but when I prove myself, the proof is swept aside and another argument must be made over, and over, and over, and who am I trying to appease, some White Person From Town who is too wrapped up in their privilege to understand? And I'M the one with the racial hang ups?

So, now you're at the bottom of this post and wondering when you get to have your say (again assuming you can still comment). Before you do, prove you read this post and somewhere in your comment write "2+2=5 in xandsania" and you can have your say. Fail to do this and I start handing out bans like Halloween candy.

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