Saturday, July 6, 2013

White Privilege and Pink Unicorns

Yesterday, I got a particularly ugly and stupid anonymous comment on my blog.  Anonymous because--well, because that's how small, stupid people do it.  They take their courage from being unknown.  No need to be polite or thoughtful or reasonable when no one can pin the "duh" on you.  Anyway, one of the gems this dullwit actually sprayed?   

"You hate GOD so much you don't believe in him."

Okay, take a moment to chew on that.  Really roll it around, poke at it.  And then ask yourself, "Do I hate Santa Claus?"  Seriously, ask yourself if you hate the things you don't believe exist.  Do you hate unicorns?  Blue Fairies?  Crumple-horned Snorkacks?  Odin?  Kind hearted, intelligent, humanitarian, critically-thinking Tea Party members?


Just so.  I don't "hate" any deity because I don't see any evidence for the existence of any deity.  I "hate God" like I hate gnomes, dragons, and pink unicorns.  

Hope that clears things up.


Came across this video yesterday.  Yes, I've been aware of the wildly different standards for years, but this really does bring it home in a whole new way.  I know that, when a cop sees me, he sees a fat, middle-aged housewife who might cry if he gives her a ticket.  Were I black?

He'd almost certainly "see" something entirely different, even though, most likely, I'd be the very same thing--a fat, middle-aged housewife who might cry if she gets a ticket.  

Ask yourself this:  is it okay for us to "have" a country where blacks (and likely Hispanics, too) have to teach their children how to avoid being shot by police for no reason other than their race?  I'm already a "perpetual low level of panic" parent.  Can you imagine what a mess I'd be if I knew my son's very skin color could be enough to tip a cop over into deadly force territory?  I'd never let him leave the house.


Had a disappointing (but not surprising) moment yesterday.  A "friend" posted a link from a wowserly "woo" site (Natural News).  Being me, I mentioned the site's unreliability, but said I'd check out the link.  

She deleted my comment, and posted a "P.S." stating that she wouldn't have posted the link if she didn't consider the site "valid."

Okay, we won't even get into the whole "just because an idea captures your fancy doesn't make the BLOG cited as 'evidence' reliable or the information therein accurate" thing.  We won't even lament the educational climate that churns out an advanced degree with no real critical thinking skills to go with it.  No, what I'm looking at here is the lack of respect from this woman.  When I delete a "friend's" comment (something I almost never do), I send a private note letting them know why because that's what you do.  It's called "politeness."  It's about having a care for your friends' feelings.

I met this woman through my husband.  She's part of the "arts" crowd.  When she first met me, she was fascinated, asked all sorts of questions about my ex-husbands, my childhood, etc.  It got to where I couldn't sign onto the computer without her immediately leaping at me with IMs.  I finally had to go stealth during part of the day just so I could get some work done. And then, one day, she asked if I would come to her place so she could interview me for a radio show.  So I could talk about my family, my marriages, etc.

And I refused.  Kindly, but firmly.  I'm not about to go on NPR tearing my ex-husbands apart.  The second because he doesn't deserve it (yeah, he screwed up, he got wonky, but he's not a bad man), and the first because I don't ever want to be on his radar again.  I don't want to broadcast ugly family stories when my family is still alive to be hurt by them.  It's one thing to blog an anecdote, it's another to lay a family bare to a wide audience.  And that?

Was the end of her interest in me.  Her tone went cold, the IMs stopped, and the distance yawned between us.  And that was okay, because, as time passed, I felt more and more that she was, at her core, an incredibly self-absorbed creature who demands a lot of the people around her, requires them to live up to her IDEA of them.  That perception has been confirmed by a few others who know her far better than I.

I did try to improve things.  When she contacted me (three different times!) to repair or alter photographs for her, I did so without complaint, even rushing to meet her deadlines.  I went so far as to buy frames for two of the pictures and gift them to her.  Understand, these pictures were incredibly difficult to work with--we're talking painstaking restoration in two and, in one, colorization. This work took, for all three, hundreds of hours.  That is not an exaggeration.  Cloning, color sampling, tweaking opacity, merging, establishing layers, etc.  The carpal tunnel issues were breathtaking.  I did this, I admit, because I hoped to improve the friendship.  Because I thought that, by doing something kind, something nice, she might forgive me for not making her famous on NPR.

Sadly, it didn't work.  I've never felt she really likes me, have always felt that I'm the PIA wife of the guy she thinks is a whole lot more entertaining and worth her time.  

When I mentioned this to my husband yesterday, he said, "Dude, I've never felt she likes anyone."  We reminisced about dinner-party rudenesses toward people who didn't please her, a general air of dissatisfaction with anyone and anything that wasn't precisely as she desired.

I didn't respond to her deletion of my post or her follow-up post script because we share friends--people I DO like, people who . . . sorry, PERSON who really likes her a LOT.  So I've been sitting on it, trying to decide what to do.  And what I've decided?

I've relegated her to "acquaintances" on my friends list, which means her stupid woo BS doesn't come across my feed and my stuff only shows on hers if I select "friends including acquaintances." I did adjust things so her new photos come across--they're usually harmless, and I can say, "Oooh, pretty."  

Not sure what I'm going to do the next time she asks me to dedicate hours to fix up a photo.  


Our boy got his "wings" today at the RC airfield.  Only three training sessions and he's now approved for solo use of the field.  I guess the flight simulator programs paid off, huh?  He's supremely happy, and I'm happy for him.  Also, his end-of-year test results came back today:  Math and Reading, 99th percentile, Language Mechanics 95th percentile. 

It'll certainly do.

Now here, have something awful:

Oh, and in case you hadn't noticed, once again Blogger has hijacked my formatting, and resists all attempts to fix it.  Getting pretty tired of this.

1 comment:

  1. I really think that LeVar Burton's story is an important one. A lot of people probably think that he's exaggerating or being overly cautious, because in the words of Paula Deen, he's "not like that, he's a professional person" and cops wouldn't find him threatening. He's the Reading Rainbow host! But to just as many Americans, he's Kunta Kinte, and should just "go back to Africa" right? It's the story he was born to tell.