When a person finds himself in a struggle, he has to do everything he can and then leave the rest up to the Almighty. Case in point, if praying were enough, we’d have world peace by now. That’s my thinking anyway.
But before I type another word, I have to ask, just what am I advocating? Good question. Great question, as a matter of fact. What am I advocating? Note: this comes at the beginning of the post and not at the end.
When it comes to Paula Deen, I’m not a big fan. In fact, I’m an ambivalent viewer one might correctly say. I’ve seen the show. I know her face. She cooks, right? I don’t dislike the woman; then again, I’ve never met her. Now, come to find out, she said the dreaded n-word at one time in her past.
Note to Paula Deen: if you post a list of 500 cultural references from the last five years where someone in pop-culture used the n-word in a song, movie, or casual reference on your website and demand all those people apologize, I’ll personally send you a crisp ten-dollar bill.
That aside, I can’t spell out the the word ni@@er (or is is n!gg!r)? I mean, I’m thinking it to the extent that I’m careful enough not to spell it out, but I can’t spell it out. How utterly idiotic is that? I’m talking about what Paula Deen said, and I can’t even quote her. There is nothing pejorative about any of this, thus far. I’m merely typing out loud, but I can’t type a couple of letters. Jeeze!
Then there’s Rachel Jeantel, star witness in the George Zimmerman case, though her stardom in the case is just about finished. And no, I’m not going into all the Zimmerman-Martin details. Another lost ideal in America is the whole ‘innocent until proven guilty’ meme. I’m not in the jury. Let’s trust the courts, I guess… But Rachel Jeantel doesn’t think, and I quote, “…creepy ass cracker…” is racist. Rather, as I understand her to believe, she thinks such phraseology is a cultural thing.
Ok, don’t worry about all that. Simply observe, I can type 'cracker' in its entirety. I do not have to use 1930’s cartoon cuss-word symbolism for certain letters in the world (consider: @racker, cr#cker, or crac!er). See, I don’t have to type that.
At this point, I’m doing the Wicked Witch of the West just dowsed with water, trying to follow the logic. It’s not there and I’m melting, I’m melting!
Anywho, I love language. I've always enjoyed the power of the individual word and, mind you, the freedom to say whatever. But we’re not there anymore. And I don’t get why some people can say some things and other people can’t say the same things.
It’s like the next time a woman cuts off a man’s penis and the fine ladies on The View decide to have a chuckle over it. Ok, chuckle all you want. I’m tough and can take it. There are days when I wonder do I even have feelings anymore. But, suppose a news story appeared where a man cut off a woman’s clitoris and some men on a ‘men’s show’ decided to have a chuckle over that. What do you think would happen?
Or let’s say some televangelist (I’m even less of a fan of them than I am of Paula Deen, btw) decided to go on a rant about homosexuals and used some not very nice words. But then, Alec Baldwin (oh actors, what can’t they do?!) decides to use similar, not very nice words. Who is going be downwind of that crap storm? See what I’m getting at?
Ugly language aside, we’re in a struggle over some very basic freedoms in this country. Never mind Big Brother (a catchall phrase for a half-dozen federal agencies and another half-dozen corporate giants) monitoring every phone call, every email, every bank transaction, and gps-ing our constant whereabouts).
My vote is this: either everybody has the right to say stupid, offensive words, or nobody does. But this double-standard stuff has got to go. It has to. It will not lead us to the enchanted realm of enlightenment and endearing unicorns.
What am I advocating? Sound familiar? I don’t know. But let me leave you with a little quote from a guy named Voltaire (some French enlightenment dude – whatever’s up with that). He said, “To learn who rules over you, simply find out who you are not allowed to criticize.”
We’re not entirely there, yet. But it draws closer and closer.
Speaking of quotes, there was another guy named Solomon (who I am a big fan of and who I happen to think was like, way totally smarter than Voltaire). He said this: "A prudent man foreseeth the evil, and hideth himself: but the simple pass on, and are punished."