Racism in big O

If you don't know, I moved from the desert world 6 weeks ago; maybe 7. No longer a resident in the confused state of affairs that is Arizona, my significant other and I moved to a land slightly above California. This place is totally different from any other I have lived in; people ride bikes everywhere, or walk, and thousands of people who own cars CHOOSE to ride the city bus daily--just to help out with the environment of the community. This is; a community who cares about being a community. In general, people are friendly here. It's a nice change of pace from...everywhere else in the world. I'm not even going to say anything that could be interpreted as racial (yet).

So I'm reading the paper here; some people actually still read. Our newspaper is good--and there're recycling bins everywhere. It's Sunday, May 22nd, 2005 here; a gorgeous day. At the bottom right side of the City/Region section of the paper is an article about a walk/jog "Event Makes Strides Against Racism"; it's called the 'Race Against Racism'. Sure. Sounds great to me. Especially since our whole country here has given way to the minoroties and special interest groups--perhaps we ALL need to remember to lessen the racial role. So I'M over here thinking (me me me me) that this event will be a good learning experience to help stamp out racism...AND reverse discrimination. As a white male, I am tired of being blamed for every single item that is wrong with the world. But THIS event is going to be fair; it's a race against racism; ALL racism. Right?

Apparently not. Here's your set-up; earlier this year a person named Alicia Soto was insulted by (what she deemed as) a racial slur on a chalkboard at a University of Oregon dining facility. The board had a drawing of a woman with a caption that read: "I'm Juanita Lopez. I eat tacos and burritos." said Soto, a UO journalism major from San Diego. She continues; "Someone thought it was a satirical joke. I found it personally offensive." said Soto, who is Mexican-American. Another lady went on to say that 'whenever somebody sees a Black person on campus, it is just assumed that Black person is here for athletics--not academics.' Ooooooo. YOU just went down the darkest, most racist road possible. So is this now minority cross-racism? Oooooooooooo-kay, let's all move away from these cute women quickly--yeah, and grab a book--try to look smart!...Let's start by digging out the Webster's for a precision definition of "satire". "1: A literary work holding up human vices and follies to ridicule or scorn. 2: Trenchant wit, irony, or sarcasm used to expose and discredit vice or folly."

Are you with us? Should we go back and read all of this again? You know, maybe we missed the big racial slur AGAINST Ms. Soto somewhere. I see the big racial slur the other lady MADE--I just don't see what Soto's all offended about (sometimes I'm slow). I went to college for almost 6 years; riding college buses around (20 years ago) with promotions for The Black Theatrical Outfit, Black Campus Politics, and The Miss Black College Beauty Pageant. I lived through good White teachers getting fired for giving dumb minority athletes the failing grades they deserved. As an articulate White male, frequently over-qualified at employment applied for, I have been passed over by many employers who are trying to meet diversity quotas. I have done MORE than my fair share to promote diversity--whether I like it or not.

So; I don't get it. Perhaps YOU don't know that my favorite food is a burrito (corn tortilla, please). It's #1. And tacos would make my top 10 list, too. I would be HONORED to be connected with some of my favorite foods. Okay. But you and I were not there for this brilliant meeting between higher educated female minds. You and I weren't there for this picture; this satire of Juanita Lopez. Perhaps it was NOT meant as educational (I SEE it as educational; people + food = culture); perhaps it was meant to make fun--and that's wrong. But I don't get it; not THIS picture.

So, Ms. Alicia Soto; Ms. Journalism major from San Diego--please feel free to ONCE AGAIN alert the media the next time you feel personally offended--wait, you will be IN the media soon, won't you? Be sure to print that cute little comment about all Blacks in college being athletes...Here's what I DO get; everybody who is NOT White is a whiner who wants more diversity--so...things get more diverse. And then when there is some education about this said "diversity", the very people we are diversifying FOR become offended by the education itself.

It's weird; no intelligent female or minority ever wants to argue this stuff with me in real time. So I just sit and shake my head. My name is W. C. Davis. I LOVE to eat burritos and soul food. Hey; maybe some White people will get offended. I'll argue with anybody; bring it on.

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