Racism Has Gotten a Facelift

On photos and props.

Racism Has Gotten a Facelift

Yesterday morning, I found myself in Twitter (now known as X) hell the other day.

A woman posted a picture of her relative. I don’t know how real this is, but I am giving this person the benefit of the doubt. 

A gentleman who tried to overthrow the government on January 6th committed suicide in jail. 

For some reason, she chose to show a picture of this man holding a black child who looked like was from an African country. I couldn’t tell if it was photoshopped or AI or not. It wasn’t even a warm embrace. It was like the kid was trying to get away from him. 

I wondered why she chose that particular picture. She could’ve chosen a picture with a group of friends, a college graduation, or even a picture with him side by side to show his humanity. That is what most normal people do. Nope. No loving, heartfelt memories at all.

I guess she needed to show that even though he was an insurrectionist who attempted to overthrow the government, that he wasn’t a racist. Somehow, the whole thing came off as more racist. 

It was a perfect manipulative shield. If you said anything about it, you would come off as a cruel, woke leftist to say something about the person in their grieving moments. Well played - I guess. 

You may be scratching your head at this moment. How can this be anti-black if they have a slightly malnourished, half-naked African child in the picture?

First of all, the poor child’s race was being used to prove a point.

They were being used as a prop.

Who was this kid?

You never knew their name or the relationship he had with the child. There were no other pictures in the post. The more I write about it, the more I am convinced that it was a bot, or someone with something to prove. 

He wasn’t your run-of-the-mill domestic terrorist who threw feces on the Capital wall, carried a small arsenal of weaponry, supported the lynching of our vice president, and threatened to subvert our democracy because of an election you refused to accept the truth about.

He was a nice guy who helped the poor African children.

I scrolled further and saw more posts of Blacks for Trump. At least they didn't use the N-word this time.

The tweet spouted some stats about the growing support of the candidate who has 91 felonies.  I wondered if this person knew that Trump vowed to eliminate all diversity, inclusion, and equity programs. Maybe this person didn’t care that in 5 years he may not be employed anymore.

Maybe he was rich and didn’t care.

Later that day, I went into a room on Clubhouse, the social audio platform, where a black woman was discussing a new documentary. The doc is about how Derek Chauvin - the killer of George Floyd, who choked him out with his knee while casually having a conversation - was railroaded and deserved a new trial. The knee on the neck is an accurate police procedure, which means that Chauvin was acting in his rights as an executor of the law. 

The documentary attempts to show that Floyd didn’t die from Chauvin’s knee - that he would’ve overdosed anyway.

I wondered why they were going so hard on this issue. I did a quick Google search to see who funded this documentary.

The answer was immediate. The Alpha Group - a right-wing advocacy group - produced this documentary. What type of person would defend another person who killed a member of their race with their figuratively bare hands?

The face of racism has changed. To be more specific, it grew to have subgroups. I don’t know all of them, but within the African-American community, a subgroup would be anti-Black. Racism is hatred of one race to another. Anti-Blackness is the hatred between members of the same race.

To add some context, let's say from the 50s and back, if you didn’t like blacks, you could pretend to be bumped into by them on the street and punish them for that offense by lynching them. You got to choose how you wanted to do it. You could either do it in the moment or snatch them away at night.

These days, the strategy is different. The strategy is to get the Blacks to agree with you that they deserve such treatment.

You do this by working simultaneously on several fronts. 

One way is to get the marginalized to agree that targeted policies like affirmative action disenfranchise them even further. You convince them that diversity programs are just as racist and demeaning. If you are going to be fair and equal, you have to be fair across the board. You convince them that other groups benefit the most from those programs anyway so get rid of them all. 

You hire people to spout their talking points. You give almost no data - you use anecdotes and stories. You make up data if you have to and say it with authority. You give ad hominem attacks when questioned.

You remove the context. You negate the fact that historically people of color have been unrepresented in fields all across the workforce. Without context, it's easy to forget the reason for these programs exist in the first place. You don’t point to the data that these programs made a difference.

Without context, these laws don’t make any sense. No one brought up the fact that there was a need for Affirmative Action, the Fair Housing Act, and DEI in the first place. In some schools around the country, you aren’t allowed to talk about America's sullied racial history.

You continue to bombard them with images and stories of the most negative possible human traits. This way, you start to infect their minds until they start believing that this is all they know. You get them tired of talking about the past. The best way to alter the past is to get people to stop talking about it so you can rewrite the history. 

You talk about the positive benefits of slavery. You remove the ability to educate young people about history.

You get them to believe that if you are a bad person, you deserve the harshest punishment possible. If you are a drug addict and don’t comply, you deserve to get choked out. If you are just a regular-regular person and don’t comply, you deserver whatever justice is meted out to you at the moment.

You use backward logic. Talking about racism and pointing to racist activity is an act of racism now. It’s very similar to sports. If I talk about a game, that means that I am playing the game myself. By calling you a football player I, too am a football player. 

Does that make sense to you? If it does, you probably think that I am a racist because of how much I talked about the perils of and the modern-day cultivation of anti-Blackness. Sorry, not sorry.

Read more of Anthony's work here.

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