Friday, October 16, 2009

still ask that old camouflaging question, "but what about the children?"

Update: video of Keith Bardwell being interviewed added below


Yesterday's news from Louisiana -- about the denial of a marriage license to an interracial couple -- reminds me of a scenario that I've encountered several times in real life, and also many times in movies and TV shows (but I can't remember any particular example of the latter -- can you?).

A black and white couple want to get married, but the parents and others object. Especially the white parents. But of course, they won't admit to the racism that's motivating their objection. Maybe not even to themselves.

So instead of saying something like, "I just don't want you marrying someone who's black," they often say instead, "But, but . . . what about the children? They'll have so much trouble, feeling, you know, accepted and all."

I'm guessing that by now, most readers of this blog have already heard about Keith Bardwell, justice of the peace for Tangipahoa Parish's 8th Ward, in Louisiania. Bardwell is entrusted by the people of his parish with the official task of issuing marriage licenses; when Beth Humphrey (who's white) and Terence McKay (who's black) approached him for one, he refused. And, of course, like just about every other white person these days who commits an act of blatant racism, Bardwell said he's not a racist -- he has higher concerns in mind:

I'm not a racist. I do ceremonies for black couples right here in my house. My main concern is for the children.

Bardwell has thought about these things, you see -- long. And hard. (And deep. Repeatedly, in and out, in and out -- I hope you catch the um, thrust, of what I think he's also thinking about.)

Bardwell said he asks everyone who calls about marriage if they are a mixed race couple. If they are, he does not marry them, he said.

Bardwell said he has discussed the topic with blacks and whites, along with witnessing some interracial marriages. He came to the conclusion that most of black society does not readily accept offspring of such relationships, and neither does white society, he said.

"There is a problem with both groups accepting a child from such a marriage," Bardwell said. "I think those children suffer and I won't help put them through it."


Well, how thoroughly magnanimous of you, Justice Bardwell. Not to mention, intrusively paternalistic.

Speaking of Bardwell's house, which I'm sure is just overrun with joyous hordes of black and white children carousing together, he also had this to say:

I have piles and piles of black friends. They come to my home, I marry them, they use my bathroom. I treat them just like everyone else.

Ah yes, black friends too, piles of them. Right there, in his bathroom!

Bardwell's incredibly retrograde actions, and his obviously diversionary concern for the children, have already lit up the Internet -- seems like every blog and news site I read is excited about it. My favorite response so far comes from blackgirlinmaine:

[All] the news accounts I have read about Bardwell state that he is not a racist, hell he even lets Negroes use his toilet. Nice to know should I ever darken his doorstep with a hot case of the runs, he will let a sista use his can . . . mighty nice of him. I wonder if I could drink from his cups too?

Mighty white of him too, I'd say.

And to think that Bardwell could express such doubts about the future acceptance of the children produced by interracial unions right when the preeminent counterexample, President Barack Obama, was addressing a town hall meeting in the same state, Louisiana. Oh, the sad, bitter ironies wrought by blinkered white oblivion!

I think it's easy enough to mock and dismiss Bardwell's Jim Crow-era sentiments (and actions -- he says he's turned away other interracial couples as well), as those of a mere, isolated individual. But then, as I wrote above, isn't his camouflaging concern for the children of such unions -- a concern that probably masks his more genuine distaste for what happens in the private lives of such couples, and for the supposed dangers of "race-mixing" -- aren't all those "concerns" still fairly common? Maybe the ongoing familiarity of Bardwell's diversionary attention to hypothetical children is one reason his actions still strike a collective nerve.

Anyway, I think someone should sit Keith Bardwell down in front of a TV and watch an old movie with him. In fact, I'm pretty tempted to watch it again myself, and to make it my weekend movie rec. Here's a brief review of that movie by Jonathan Kim, posted at YouTube right after Obama's inauguration:




[For anyone who can't watch the review, here's the movie you should watch. My thanks to the many swpd readers who sent me alarmed and aghast emails about this racist travesty.]

UPDATE: Keith Bardwell explains himself, and adds that he doesn't "see what the problem is," now that the couple in question has married with someone else's help:

71 comments:

  1. Is what he is doing even legal in this day and age in the US??

    And does it not occur to him that maybe the kids have a tough time because of people like himself?...oh, what am I saying...of course it doesn't. duh.

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  2. I can't believe this is something that happened in 2009. I had to rub my eyes. He's talking about this like someone bred a poodle with an alligator. Like blacks and whites having children together is this newfangled concept. Frankly, I can think of other children who actually need someone to care "this much" about them (homeless, neglected, etc.)

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  3. As a multiracial child (I tend not to use the term "biracial" because colloquially it tends to only connote children of white and black parents, when I am not), I'd like to tell Judge Bartwell that yeah, while life can be confusing sometimes, the detriments of having to struggle with that are far outweighed by, you know, BEING ALIVE.

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  4. I would love to take a huge shit on his doorstep.

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  5. I always wonder about a man who comes from Louisiana, who has a strong history of race mixing, through the system of placage as well as creole culture, is now all the sudden concerned about the children. They weren't concerned in the 1700s, he shouldn't be now.

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  6. I was one of the readers that forwarded an article. The article on cnn.com didn't include the quotes about letting his "piles and piles" of black friends use his bathroom. I'm disgusted, but sadly, not surprised. He is an extreme example of common attitudes. To paraphrase Chuck D, he's straight out racist, simple and plain.

    On the day of President Obama's inaguration a White person told me that the only reason he'd "gone so far" was because of his mother and that she wasn't attending the ceremony because she wasn't a "publicity hog" like "those other ones". (I assume he was referring to President Obama's black in-laws). I relate that tale because I think it's an example of the tendency of some white folk to think "mixed" children are doomed from the start and that if the somehow, by some miracle manage to have any modicum of success, it's due to their white ancestry.

    I hope I didn't too far off topic

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  7. I also want to note, I am in an interracial marriage and I have been with the same white guy for 10 years. His mother has been married three times, all to white men. I have a white friend on her 3rd marriage, and the 1st two were to white men, so I don't know how race affects divorce rates.

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  8. That story kind of blew my mind. Bardwell should lose his job.

    It seems clear that Bardwell's opinion is rooted in the idea that white people and black people are very separate, and very different, to the point where there is no common culture to which a mixed child could belong. Honestly, I think that's a very widespread view, even among those who would never say mixed couples shouldn't get married. Among whites, I mean - I don't know about anyone else.

    I think when he says he's not racist, he means to say that he considers whites and blacks separate but equal. Which could, theoretically speaking, be true, though I see no reason to take him at his word. And even if he does see whites and blacks as equal, the "separate" part is still really racist, given that we're all Americans.

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  9. Stephanie --
    I hope your friend learned at some point that Obama's mother wasn't there because she's dead. Unfortunate they didn't know ahead of time since Obama talked about her long battle with cancer AND insurance companies as one example of why we desperately need health reform. Lord that was an ignorant thing for your friend to say (which I know you know, I just needed to get it out).

    I don't have anything of substance to add, except that I'm not surprised and no one else should be either. It used to be that while I knew racism existed (obviously I know, as a black woman) I was a bit taken aback when people would freely express racist ideals as if that was ok and/or acceptable; but in this oh so great post-racial society we live in, I'm not even surprised by that anymore.

    I hope he resigns or is fired, but I won't be surprised if he still has a job in 6 months and this story is but a "previous entry" on many blogs.

    Excuse my nauseating skepticism -- I'm just over the ridiculosity (yes, I made that up) these days.

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  10. Interracial marriage was illegal in Alabama until the 2000, and it was the last state to do so

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  11. My favorite part is still:

    "In my heart, I feel the children will later suffer."

    He has a heart?
    --

    @ fromthetropics:

    Nope, not legal. The 1967 Supreme Court case Loving v. Virginia ruled *unanimously* that race-based restrictions on marriage are unconstitutional.

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  12. We can all feel good about seeing this poor sap's obvious racism, but what is interesting to me is that he's not being coy when he says he's not racist. He really believes it. And so do the tea baggers who say their vitriol has no racial basis, and so do the people in the previous posting who say they object to sagging because it just makes them sick, not because of any racial issues. And for all of them, the image of themselves as fair-minded people probably isn't even dented by others pointing out what seems so obvious.

    That's the power of racism. It's not the screaming Klan types who carry it on from generation to generation; it's just plain folks who are sure they haven't a racist bone in their bodies. As long as we hang on to the false dichotomy of "those racists" and "us non-racists" we won't see how racism has infected all of us, and how we all perpetuate it to various degrees by playing along in a racist culture.

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  13. If only President Obama's parents had someone like this guy looking out for them! He wouldn't be in all the trouble he is now!

    /snerk

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  14. Well this all but confirms the ideology behind racism and white supremacy. He's worried about WHITE GENETIC SURVIVAL.

    Everyone knows the black community absolutely accepts mixed race children as simply black - which is a habit formed during slavery, for obvious and taboo reasons.

    This is much deeper than just " oh he's just a jim-crow bigot".

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  15. We can all feel good about seeing this poor sap's obvious racism, but what is interesting to me is that he's not being coy when he says he's not racist. He really believes it. And so do the tea baggers who say their vitriol has no racial basis, and so do the people in the previous posting who say they object to sagging because it just makes them sick, not because of any racial issues.

    The bolded statement is exactly the kind of thing that gets my blood boiling. Sounds like this person assumes they know each and every person and their motives for not liking something. I dislike these kind of blanket accusations. *grr*

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  16. piles and piles o' black friends, huh? I bet that if pressured for the name of ONE individual who helps to make up these "piles"...he would be unable to do it.

    I'm agreeing with some of the other posters here: he IS the problem that the "mixed race" kiddies will have to contend with in their lifetimes.

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  17. This hits particularly close to home.

    I want to know what Bardwell's concerns for the children of interracial marriages are. Is he some expert in the field? Does he have experience? No to both. Loving v. Virginia already established over 40 years ago that race-based restrictions on marriage are unconstitutional and illegal. By refusing to perform this service, which is part of his job duty, he is effectively thumbing his nose at the the Supreme Court's unanimous decision in Loving v. Virginia. He is intentionally and purposefully denying these people their basic civil rights. That's fascism. The man should be disbarred and should not be allowed to practice law if he is going to do so discriminately. And this country is worried about Sotomayor? We question a minority female judge as to how she will rule according to her experiences yet here is a white male judge ruling according to his inexperiences. How many other judges in this country are ruling or denying rights to people based on their own personal prejudices?

    Note: If you start of a sentence with "I'm not a racist.", chances are you are going to follow that statement with something that is racist. And you are most likely a racist. And claiming you have "a black friend" or even "piles and piles of black friends" is not some Get Out Of Jail Free card. ... Read More

    And interracial marriages do not last long? For Christs' sake, the very couple that brought down miscegenation laws, Richard and Mildred Loving were both faithfully committed to each other until their untimely deaths.

    But yeah...those poor kids of interracial marriages. They could, oh I don't know...grow up to be President of the United States.

    http://www.geocities.com/robbi01/barack-obama.jpg

    On a side note, is it me or does Obama have a Picture Pages head?

    And Bardwell, here's my son Émile. The offspring of a white man and a black woman. You can't tell me this kid who always has a smile on his face, is not going to grow up to be more well adjusted and accepting of diversity than you. It's a brave new world my friend. I think it's about time you left it. You're a relic of a much simpler time and a stunted mentality. Retire with what little dignity you have left.

    http://lh6.ggpht.com/_M9uxxOmAn1M/StZF9VGuxzI/AAAAAAAABlk/P4cIziiW3nQ/s512/emilecdc.jpg

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  18. You know who else used this excuse? Hitler. He likened Jews and gentiles marrying to cats and dogs marrying.

    I literally gasped when I read the part about him letting black people use his bathroom. Really? Really?!!!?!!

    My long-term boyfriend and I decided that we don't want kids. He's Latino and I'm white.Reading this gave me the sudden urge to rush home and procreate.

    Which reminds me, does Judge Bartwell know how babies are made? Apparently, he believes that the stork brings them to married couples. Does he excitedly wait up for Santa Claus every December 24, but can never quite make it cause he's a SUCH a sleepyhead?

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  19. I would of had more respect for this man if he had been honest and said, that he doesn't believe in interacial marriage. At least that way he would be telling the truth.

    I am a member of a bi-racial family. We all turned out just fine. We were accepted by people during a time when the nation was feeling the friction and fire of exploding race relations.

    What I learned growing up about people's perceptions of bi-racial people has been very helpful over the course of my lifetime. There are some people that will accept another person based on how they are on the inside. There are also people who will reject you because of what they see on the outside.

    We learned to handle ourselves in different cultures. We also learned that once people had the opportunity to know us as individuals-they either accepted or rejected us just like all people tend to do.

    This poor soul needs to be schooled on the ethnic history of his home state. I think that he would find that there was a whole lot of race mixing going on. Long before he was even seeded into his mother's womb.

    While he tried to justify his lack of racist tendencies-he really sounded more like the good ol' boys back in the day. We like our colored people-blah, blah, blah, blah.

    The couple should file a lawsuit against him. He should also be taken to task for hindering them from taking their wedding vows.

    This type of nonsense has got to be stopped.

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  20. This reminds me a little about a British registrar who refused to conduct same-sex civil partnerships. I think there are more parallels here with how society treats those in relationships it considers to be non-standard.

    I wrote about this at http://christhum.wordpress.com/2009/10/16/you-cannot-argue-your-way-out-of-being-racist/.

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  21. This type of thinking is par for the course. This man is just vocalizing what most whites think. The difference is that most whites, while making this "What about the children" statement, do-not state their reasons in public. They will say it to friends, family and other whites. They will rarely say this to blacks unless the topic is broached and the black person agrees with them. This man, in his public capacity as a Justice of the Peace, refused this couple a marriage license. When pressed he stated his reasons which are in fact unlawful as interracial marriages are legal. It has nothing to do with future progeny, otherwise they would refuse marriage licenses to 80% of the populace on one pretext or another. It is a part of his official duties, dispensation of licenses, officiating at civil marriages etc. Therefore he shouldn't have made these public statements when queried. He should have just issued them a license and kept his beliefs to himself, he cannot act on his personal beliefs. He can only act within the confines of his duties. The thoughts behind these statements are prevalent in American society, this man just chose to vocalize them and therein lies the controversy. Of course whites are going to publicly respond with outrage after all, they are not 'racist' only amongst their friends, family etc. Stuff white people do on a regular basis indeed.

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  22. The Horrible Keith Bardwell.

    Hey Dan, Emile is so handsome & I love that smile.

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  23. A.Smith, I work in a hospital setting. Patients and employees had gathered around televisions in waiting areas to watch the inauguration. I was watching along with everyone else when a patient standing near me made the remarks about President Obama's mother. He appeared to be in the same age group as the Justice of the Peace about whom this article was written.

    I calmly explained to him that his mother had passed several years ago after battling cancer. He insisted that she was alive. He had a younger woman with her (I assume she was his daughter) and she, too, insisted that his mother was alive. I'll never forget the look on her face when I said that I was sure she wasn't. It was a combination of pity, confusion, and shock, like, "This poor stupid black girl doesn't know what she's talking about. And she dares to say it out loud. What a shame."

    I'm sorry for going off topic a bit, but I wanted to answer you and to also say that it's amazing how strongly some white people will hold onto ideas or information that are simply and completely wrong.

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  24. What's the matter...is the guy afraid one of the kids might grow up to be PRESIDENT some day?

    LOL...wish that were my original thought, but I heard it earlier today.

    This guy doesn't even deserve our time. But there are many people just like him out there. I can't tell you how many times I've heard people say, regarding an interracial couple, "I just hope they don't have children". I kinda thought that was past us now, but I guess not.

    Pine

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  25. His bathroom. I just boggle.

    People I know keep telling me he isn't racist. Apparently because he "cares about the children," so therefore he isn't racist because his motivations are good? Super-condescending and actually not his business, but for the children? I don't understand it.

    But it's a great illustrate of how it's become impossible to criticize any but the most extreme racist behaviors without people immediately going "la la la not racist la la." Actually, I'm not sure we're allowed to call anything racist unchallenged.

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  26. This is off-topic, but what do you think of experimental theater groups like The Wooster Group using blackface as a central theme of their performances? http://artsbeat.blogs.nytimes.com/2009/10/16/the-wooster-groups-emperor-jones-on-dvd/

    I actually saw this in person three years ago, and there was no hint of criticism in the performance, it was completely sincere. Given that, I wouldn't say that Elizabeth LeCompte is a Klan member, but the fact that it was problematic is rarely discussed with any real intensity.

    Here's a clip from the performance!
    http://www.thewoostergroup.org/twg/dvd_clips/EJclip.html

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  27. People are denied marriage licenses on the basis of gender every day and that doesn't make the news. But race is different you say? People can't choose their race you say? Well, guess what!? People can't choose their gender or who they're attracted to either.

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  28. left out, what's people not being able to choose their gender got to do with the price of rice? And the the jury's still out on whether or not people can choose their sexuality. I don't see why people in interacial relationships should be compared to gay people. If Interacial relationships couldn't actually produce children people like Bardwell wouldn't have an issue with them.

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  29. I'm not surprised that the justice of the peace feels the way he does. The only surprise is that he said it out loud (most people hide their racists beliefs).

    If you look at dating patterns, most people choose to date "their own kind" which is usually defined as same "race" (and often the same religion, same class and so on). These beliefs are often subconscious but are very obvious to even the casual observer. Just look at the advertisements placed in online dating services you'll see that desire to date "within the race" is still very strong.

    I personally believe that "my own kind" is other human beings who have the same beliefs and values that I do. The superficial categories that are lumped into "race" tell me almost nothing about a potential romantic partner. Race has no genetic basis and it a completely social construct. Society has the power to deconstruct this myth if it wants to but white privilege is fighting tooth and nail to keep the myth of race intact.

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  30. What a swell guy. So much caring for the welfare of children - let's give him an award.

    I'm wondering about all these black friends he allegedly has - what do they think about this?

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  31. Eurasian Sensation -- His black friends probably don't know they're supposed to be his black friends. :)

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  32. I did not see any other way to message you, so here goes...

    According to Harry Connick, Jr. during his appearance on Australia TV's "Hey, Hey, It's Saturday," White people (Americans at least) "spend so much time trying to make Black people not look like fools."

    Add that one, because it is right up your alley.

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  33. Thanks Todd, though I'm not sure what you're saying about Connick's poorly worded sentence. Also, this comment thread over here is a better place for your comment than this one.

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  34. Keisha Washington-Taylor, Esq.October 18, 2009 at 2:21 PM

    As a Black woman I commend the judge's decision to deny this couple marriage. Interracial marriages, let alone dating and the offspring that could result, are one the greatest challenges we face in society. While it is no surprise that the mainstream media is denouncing this man's decision, instead of being branded a racist he should be commended for taking a stand against a very disturbing social ill. Unfortunately we live in a country of distressing paradoxes. White people are villified for speaking, or even thinking, against miscegenation and Black people are mum about the subject in public because we are supposed to play the role of the tolerant, accepting type. Only Whites can be opposed to miscegenation, not Blacks. Unless this double standard becomes as extinct as the original image of Aunt Jemima, we will continue to have to suppress our feelings about such a topic. Miscegenation is wrong and only destroys diversity, not maintains it.

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  35. Um, the *greatest* challenges? Priority check much.

    "the offspring that could result"

    Oh, you mean, like...GASP!...people?

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  36. Blacks can oppose it too Keisha, and those that do can subsequently be lumped into the same bigoted, primitive-minded group of mouth-breathers as Bardwell.

    I can show you some video circa 1942 of a world dictator who also believed in miscegenation but it might be difficult to understand because the narration is in German.

    Ever see a special from Dr. Henry Louis Gates in regards to DNA tests? To make a long story short, you yourself are most likely a product of miscegenation somewhere in your ancestry. Which makes your opposition to it actually quite hilarious and would essentially mean that for you to truly be against miscegenation, you would need to commit suicide. Every breath you take is in direct contrast to your archaic mentality.

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  37. Keisha... if that's your real name...

    You can be against interracial relationships, just like, as Dan pointed out, many other people of all races are. Black folks aren't mum; I've run into quite a FEW black folks who do not support interracial relationships -- now whether or not we have been forced to be the "more accepting" race is up for debate, but whether we are "more" accepting than other races or not, we're surely not "completely" accepting.

    The problem comes in, not with Mr. Bardwell's opposition to miscegenation (why do we still use this word? Oh, I know, for the very reason it was first created -- to make interracial relationships sound like a disease or some very bad problem) but rather that he allows his personal beliefs to affect his job and thus other people.

    This is America. Believe as you wish; however your beliefs shouldn't stop people from marrying, from living, from breathing, from having jobs, from enjoying the finer things in life because all Americans deserve those things.

    I've tired of worrying about other people's racist/homophobic/anti-(enter subgroup here) feelings and emotions. My concern, and what I worry about, is how those ridiculous beliefs begin to infringe on my right to do as I please with my own life.

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  38. Keisha Washington-Taylor, Esq.October 18, 2009 at 9:24 PM

    I'm not surprised by the rebuttals my post has warranted. With regards to the poster who said that my particular lineage could very well be comprised of a certain degree of miscegenation, then you can say the same thing about Whites as well. It is a well known fact that there were Whites who intermarried and procreated with American Indians, for example.

    People who shudder at the thought of somebody opposing interracial relations and say the tired old memes like "I can't believe someone can say that in 2009" are just playing the "I'm so offended" game. Get over it. There is such a thing as the First Amendment.

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  39. Just a question, isn't this entire blog (and the anti-racist movement in general) guilty of the stereotyping they so adamantly oppose?

    Such as statements like this:

    "A black and white couple want to get married, but the parents and others object. Especially the white parents. But of course, they won't admit to the racism that's motivating their objection."

    "And, of course, like just about every other white person these days who commits an act of blatant racism, Bardwell said he's not a racist"

    "white people in general seem to hate sagging"

    "I'm including it here because it illustrates a white-wing -- I mean right-wing -- meme these days"

    "Why do white people so often prefer black music when it's performed by white people?"

    I could keep going. Basically every post is about what "white people do". But imagine if instead of white people do this and white people do that, it was about what blacks and Hispanics do.

    You seem so opposed to categorizing group behavior ("but of course black women aren't more aggressive, it's just your imagination"), but this entire website is about categorizing the behaviors of a race (i.e. whites).

    And correct if I'm wrong, but there doesn't seem to be any data whatsoever backing up your claims. Basically, it amounts to an intellectual vacumn of your own experiences.

    So it's apparently bad to say blacks are violent, despite the homocide rate of high black areas being astronomical and the violent crime rate for black men being as high (10% of black men are in prison or some crazy number like that), even though it's backed by numbers. Or to repeat the "black women are unmarried and on welfare" stereotype despite 70& of black children being born out of marriage and an extremely disproportionate amount of women on welfare are black.

    But to make those characterizations are racist. But this entire site, with absolutely no empirical evidence to back up your claims and only daily, anecdotal musings seeming to constitute the evidence, isn't racist against whites? The generalizations here are acceptable, but the ones about blacks and Hispanics, where actual data is concerned such as the astronomically high dropout rate and crime rate of 2nd generation Hispanic immigrants, is not?

    I don't see the distinction.

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  40. Keisha - Yes you can say the same things about whites! That's the irony of it all! Historically speaking, Europeans weren't some big happy family based on skin color. They spent centuries killing each other. Europe's been arguably the bloodiest battleground in the history of the world. Myself speaking, I'm French/Italian/German/Russian. Up until the concept of the white "race" and the lumping of all white people in with each other, Germans and Russians never got along and a Russian might forbid his son to marry a German just as some whites would forbid their sons to marry blacks. Need I say more?

    OneSTDV - Your post is rife with inaccuracies.

    First off, please know that Macon, the author of this blog, is white.

    Now to address your simplistic post:

    Just a question, isn't this entire blog (and the anti-racist movement in general) guilty of the stereotyping they so adamantly oppose?

    No. Fail. If you seriously have to ask that question, you have a lot of learning to do. I would highly recommend actually reading some books. Preferably ones that have more words than pictures. To start off, try "White Like Me" by Tim Wise.

    "A black and white couple want to get married, but the parents and others object. Especially the white parents. But of course, they won't admit to the racism that's motivating their objection."

    There's nothing controversial about this except for how true it is.

    "And, of course, like just about every other white person these days who commits an act of blatant racism, Bardwell said he's not a racist"

    Unless you've been living under a rock, you would also know this is true. From Bardwell, to the Cambridge Cop who harassed Henry Louis Gates, to the Pennsylvania Swim Club that took the money of and then denied entry to a group of black children. All of the acted on racist motivation and all of them were too chickenshit to admit it. Let's be honest here, most white folks are completely spineless and chickenshit when it comes to race. That's why Eric Holder was correct when he said this nation is too scared to have an honest discussion on race.

    "white people in general seem to hate sagging"

    Another true statement.

    "I'm including it here because it illustrates a white-wing -- I mean right-wing -- meme these days"

    Another true statement. Again, were you living under a rock this past year? Did you not see the Republican National Convention and just about every televised Republican event? Well I did and one thing I didn't see at any of those events, were people of color. Like Bill Maher said, "Not all Republicans are racist, but if you're racist, you're probably a Republican."

    "Why do white people so often prefer black music when it's performed by white people?"

    I could keep going. Basically every post is about what "white people do". But imagine if instead of white people do this and white people do that, it was about what blacks and Hispanics do.

    You seem so opposed to categorizing group behavior ("but of course black women aren't more aggressive, it's just your imagination"), but this entire website is about categorizing the behaviors of a race (i.e. whites).

    So are you suggesting that "black women are more aggressive"? In comparison to what? That's a racist suggestion. How many black women do you know? None? One? Two?

    And correct if I'm wrong, but there doesn't seem to be any data whatsoever backing up your claims. Basically, it amounts to an intellectual vacumn of your own experiences.

    You are incredibly naive and for some reason, you're taking on the role of "Defender of the White People". Why? What's wrong?

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  41. So it's apparently bad to say blacks are violent, despite the homocide rate of high black areas being astronomical and the violent crime rate for black men being as high (10% of black men are in prison or some crazy number like that), even though it's backed by numbers. Or to repeat the "black women are unmarried and on welfare" stereotype despite 70& of black children being born out of marriage and an extremely disproportionate amount of women on welfare are black.

    To drop a little Tim Wise, and since you like data so much:

    If blacks commit 1 million violent crimes a year (the rough total for the most recent year on record according to the U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics, Criminal Victimization in the United States, 2004, Statistical Tables, Tables 40, 42, 46 and 48.), this means that even if we assumed each crime had a unique perpetrator (in other words, if there were no multiple offenders), the maximum percentage of blacks who were violent criminals, as a share of all blacks, would be 3.3%. Meaning that at least 96.7% will not commit a violent crime this year, let alone against a white person, let alone against a white stranger, let alone against YOU.

    So, if the 3.3% of blacks who will commit a violent crime in a given year, somehow prove that blacks are dangerous and to be avoided, then why don’t the 96.7% who WON’T commit such a crime, equally prove that blacks are non-violent and perfectly safe to be around? After all, why should the acts of a maximum of 1 million people, be seen as a better indicator of what the group is like, than the non-acts of the other 29 million or so?

    So your suggestion that blacks are violent? Pfffft. Wrong. You fail again. Miserably this time.

    It's funny how you will demand data and statistics from others, but you fail to employ them in your own argument: "10% of black men are in prison or some crazy number like that)"

    Yeah, that's some real academic research there, pal. Just how full of shit are you, really?

    And here's an article for you. Despite ignorant people like you believing a stereotype, it's WHITES, not blacks, who collect the most welfare dollars.

    You fail again.

    But to make those characterizations are racist. But this entire site, with absolutely no empirical evidence to back up your claims and only daily, anecdotal musings seeming to constitute the evidence, isn't racist against whites? The generalizations here are acceptable, but the ones about blacks and Hispanics, where actual data is concerned such as the astronomically high dropout rate and crime rate of 2nd generation Hispanic immigrants, is not?

    Why do you insist on asking everyone for data to support their arguments but you haven't yet provided any data to support yours?

    Gonna have to call it man: You're completely full of shit. Please read a book. You're dumbing down this entire site.

    I feel like I'm teaching Racism 101 here. This is rudimentary stuff that honestly, you should already have a grasp of if you're going to participate in this forum.

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  42. This must have given a lot of satisfaction to segregationists who want to make their attitudes seem harmless. "Oh, we don't hate on others, we just want to keep things separate, because it's best for everybody." It must be a coincidence that the most segregated states are the poorest, most violent and with the lowest education levels.

    Keisha, if you don't like IR marriage... marry a Black man, have Black kids, no one's stopping you, do whatever makes you happy. Not supporting the right of others to do the same does not make you a supporter of the Black family, it just makes you a bigot. Don't you think it's worth more if a Black man marries you when he actually has all the other choices and he picks you?

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  43. I'm not surprised by the rebuttals my post has warranted...People who shudder at the thought of somebody opposing interracial relations and say the tired old memes like "I can't believe someone can say that in 2009" are just playing the "I'm so offended" game. Get over it. There is such a thing as the First Amendment.

    "My post has warranted..."

    Warranted? Good word. Your post *deserved* those replies. You referred to the lives, to the personhood, of "the offspring that could" result, as a game.

    Say what you want. This is the Internet, after all. I can only hope your assertion that interracial marriage is the "greatest challenge we face" was simply rhetorical exaggeration.

    Lest you (or anyone who shares your opinion) think this is a case of me being offended because I am white and thus it is the "proper" attitude: quite frankly, your attitude reminds me of that of (usually white, btw) separatist radical feminists. I don't have much patience for them either. Denying humanity is denying humanity.

    That is disastrous.

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  44. Incidentally, @ Dan:

    "Gonna have to call it man: You're completely full of shit. Please read a book."

    Beautifully stated; I burst out laughing. Love it!

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  45. Can this guy really get away with this in this day and age??

    My mixed race son is happily accepted everywhere - luckily we do not live in Louisiana in this bozo's parish!!!

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  46. This was briefly mentioned by one commenter, but I'd like to mention it again in its own post.

    Just because people aren't married doesn't mean they can't have children!!
    Saying it's for the children is absolutely a lie in this instance because of that reason.

    This has nothing to do with children. You can't prevent mixed-raced children by preventing their parents from marrying; all you can do is prevent their parents from marrying. (Which destroys the concept of family for a lot of people.)

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  47. In the update video, he says he would also recuse himself if a couple showed up intoxicated or on drugs. Wow...

    And I'm sorry, but his claim that he's known loads of biracial people who claim that they are not accepted ... I call bullshit. People of color wouldn't be hanging with that guy, let alone confiding in him their experiences as a PoC.

    He's an old bigot in power making shit up to justify enforcing his own opinions.

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  48. Elsariel quoted me:

    and so do the people in the previous posting who say they object to sagging because it just makes them sick, not because of any racial issues.

    --and wrote:

    "The bolded statement is exactly the kind of thing that gets my blood boiling. Sounds like this person assumes they know each and every person and their motives for not liking something. I dislike these kind of blanket accusations. *grr*"

    Turns out, I said that these people assert their non-racism because they did assert their non-racism, not because I think I can read their minds. The point is that they won't even entertain the possibility that their opinions are shaped by racism.

    Did you even stop to think that it boils your blood because of what I was pointing out--that you, too, buy into the idea that you can be free of racism, or that racism represents some kind of moral defect, and is therefore something you would never look for Much less see) in yourself? I'm not saying that's definitely what you believe; I'm just surmising that you do to make a point.

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  49. bloglogger,

    Maybe I was reading your post wrong, but it sure seemed like you were assuming that people who posted about not liking saggy pants were akin to those who say they're not being racist when they really are.

    It's frustrating to be told that you're being racist by not liking the saggy pants fashion just because some people of color choose to dress that way. It seems to imply that the opposite should be true. I should like the fashion because otherwise, I'm being racist.

    My blood was boiling because sometimes, a tomato is just a tomato. I don't like the fashion of saggy pants. Period. I know that, as a white person, I'm not free of racism. I benefit from it unintentionally and, until recently, unknowingly. However, sometimes, it really isn't about race.

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  50. "'It's kind of hard to apologize for something that you really and truly feel down in your heart you haven't done wrong,' Keith Bardwell told CNN affiliate WAFB on Saturday.'"

    Oh, well. As long as he really and truly feels DEEP DOWN IN HIS HEART that he's correct! We all feel so much better now. Especially those of us in mixed-race marriages. Oh, if only I'd had Keith Bardwell around in 2003 to think of my (as of then) hypothetical children. See, it's not racism as long as it's FOR THE CHILDREN.

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  51. People are denied marriage licenses on the basis of gender every day and that doesn't make the news. But race is different you say? People can't choose their race you say? Well, guess what!? People can't choose their gender or who they're attracted to either.

    I'm all for same sex marriage, but remember Loving v. Virginia made it legal for people of two different races to marry. If gay marriage was legal and Bardwell did the same thing, I am sure people would be outraged.

    For a law to be on record over 40 years and completely disregarded based upon this man's feelings is outrageous don't you think?

    Interracial marriages, let alone dating and the offspring that could result, are one the greatest challenges we face in society.

    ------------

    Keisha,

    You are about 400 years too late with your concern. If you have any slave ancestry here in America, more than likely you are about 20% mixed with "other".

    Being in an interracial relationship, I know black people aren't mum on their opposition.

    -------------

    So it's apparently bad to say blacks are violent, despite the homocide rate of high black areas being astronomical and the violent crime rate for black men being as high (10% of black men are in prison or some crazy number like that), even though it's backed by numbers.

    Because 10% of black men are in prison, they are proof blacks are more violent in general, even though 90% aren't in prison.

    Or to repeat the "black women are unmarried and on welfare" stereotype despite 70& of black children being born out of marriage and an extremely disproportionate amount of women on welfare are black.

    I always wondered about that.I'm black, my mom is black, and my dad is black. Guess what, my mom and dad are married!!! I've also never been on welfare as a child or adult, and neither have my parents. The biggest benefactor of welfare based upon numbers is single mother white women.

    You empirical evidence is skewed and biased, which makes it irrational and irrelevant.

    I guess now I should be out mugging some innocent white person so I can be part of the jail stat or prove how violent I am.

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  52. Jane, if that's what it's all comes down to, do you suggest that infertile people be banned from marrying? Or would that kind of discrimination be wrong? What about people who just don't want kids?

    I rest my case.

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  53. I knew this girl (who is white) who was dating this Latino guy and they were talking about getting married. One day she for some reason just Googled "LAPD's most wanted" and then suddenly broke it all off. It was weird. He wasn't a gangbanger or anything, although he had a couple of relatives who were. I emailed Tim Wise about it for advice, but I haven't heard back from him yet.

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  54. Why would you ask Tim for advice? He's an expert on white privilege and racism. Not determining whether or not anyone's Latino boyfriend is wanted in Los Angeles county.

    Why not just ask that girl why she broke it off? That seems like the logical thing to do.

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  55. Hi Dan,

    I've been trying to adapt the debating techniques you used to trounce OneSTDV above on some other sites I frequent. That was so awesome; you really made him check his white privilege!

    My problem is, it doesn't seem to work so well for me on other sites. Perhaps I'm not doing it right. After quoting a compelling bit of their argument, how do I know when to state "Fail", or "You Fail" vs say calling them full of shit or telling them to read a book? I suspect I have them all mixed up and this has ruined the effect.

    Also, probably because I'm not using this correctly, those I'm arguing with have brought up some really vexing points. In response to my "read a book" witticism, one person pointed out that if the book was so good, I should be able to form a coherent argument based on what I had learned. Obviously this jerk was some kind of redneck who didn't know his place, so I pulled out the "Epic Fail!" smack-down. But it didn't seem to phase him. In fact, the other people on the forum seemed to think such a comment was rather childish.

    Could it be that they are all secret Neanderthal Nazis? You hear a lot about these guys, but I didn't realize they are everywhere.

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  56. It may be the posters on the other places you frequent are either smarter or dumber than OneSDTV and as such, different tactics need to be employed.

    For instance, when making your daily visit to the NAMBLA site, when haters come and toss up statements like, "Aren't all men who love boys just creepy sociopathic pedophiles with sex issues?", you can use "FAIL" on them because they generalized. Surely they don't know you. If they did, they would know that you weren't very creepy at all but rather could pass for their next door neighbor. So they failed in their attempt to engage in a productive discussion by leading with an unfounded and very shallow statement. Much like OneSDTV did.

    I'll use an example of your participation at StormFront to illustrate when to suggest that the person you are responding to reads a book. Let's say you're textually masturbating one of your fellow StormFront residents, you know, congratulating each other on just how white they are and reassuring each other that even though they have several moles on their ass, they are not indicative of some phenomenon where they will spread and turn the entire body brown. And along comes some leftist commie socialist posting about how it's silly to celebrate white pride in America and that most of the members of StormFront, genetically speaking, are about as mixed up as the local stray mutt that just shit on their lawn, and how whites are like all other groups of people - a couple of winners, a whole lot of losers - you could denounce their whole argument by referring them to your beloved copy of The Bell Curve and suggesting that they "read a book!"

    Oh yeah, and if someone ever comes to either of those sites you frequent and tries to drop a post on you like you just did me, that's when it's proper to use "Epic Fail".

    Hope that helps, bubba! I recommend printing this short guide out and posting it on the wall above your monitor.

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  57. Thanks Dan!

    At first I was really confused because you referenced sites I'm not familiar with. Then after reading your advice a few times I realized you were instructing me by example. Genius! Sorry if I'm being a bit slow, but I think what you are cleverly suggesting is that I call people I disagree with homosexuals, pedophiles, etc. You are truly a wise man! I've always fallen into the trap of being one dimensional and calling people homophobic.

    I'll have to try this. I hope I do it right because for some reason arguments that work on this blog don't seem to work elsewhere. I think we need a massive education campaign teaching the unwashed masses how to recognize the codewords which indicate that we just won an argument with them.

    I also like the "bubba" suggestion especially because it denotes that I'm superior to them without having to expend energy thinking of a counter argument. Those mouth breathing, wife beating, trailer park living differently abled (sorry, I can't bring myself to call them retards) really need to be put in their place by those of us who are morally and intellectually superior!

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  58. Two more quick questions Dan (I hope you don't mind, I clearly need your help)

    1) Can I use the "You must be a homosexual/child molester" argument against women as well as men? Is it ok to say a woman who disagrees with me is a "bull dyke child molester", for example? Or is this going too far and committing heterosexual privilege? All of this makes me somewhat squeamish. I agree that it is terribly witty, but I still can't shake the feeling that it lowers me in front of others to say such things.

    2) When making fun of their race, should I only do this if they are white? I really like your bon mot referring to a white person I might disagree with as "genetically speaking, are about as mixed up as the local stray mutt that just shit on their lawn". But I don't want to accidentally assume white privilege by saying this to someone who is Jewish or a POC. What if I don't know they are a POC before I make the statement? That would really suck! How does one atone for such a thing?

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  59. I can definitely see how all this might confuse you Dalrock but you've taken the right step by coming here for advice. Unfortunately if this little bit has already confused you, asking more questions might just set you up for more disappointment and frustration at your inability to comprehend. I would highly recommend spending lots of time reading before participating. You might even find that a lot of your questions have already been answered! If you've fallen into the trap of calling people that disagree with you homophobic I can't help you there man as I don't have much experience in adopting that tactic. Seems a bit childish.

    I do agree with you that we need a massive education campaign but not for the reasons you suggest. In my opinion, your suggestion is quite shortsighted and avast waste of resources. If this massive education campaign were used relating to topics Macon posts, well then arguments would never ensue because the ignoramuses would be on the same page as those in the know!

    I don't agree with your last paragraph though. It's rather primitive and crude. Bubba was used in the same context as pal, buddy, dude. I think maybe you're reading too much into it and applying some offensive context to it. I can appreciate and empathize with whatever psychological issues would drive you to do such a thing but I assure you, your objection is quite misplaced. But if it really gets to you that much, I can promise not to use the word bubba again. :)

    I'm not sure about your first question as, again, I don't have experience using a "you must be a molester/homosexual" argument. Unless of course you are suggesting that our conversation is an "argument" and that my reference to your perusal of the NAMBLA site, which you then quite astutely suggested was a site that I really used thus rendering my initial observation null and void! So perhaps you might want to self-reflect and ask yourself the very question you posed to me. That was super clever by the way. If I might ask, what higher learning institution did you attend? I absolutely HAVE to enroll my children there.

    I'm not sure I understand your second question. The majority of white folks whether they agree with you or not, are in fact mixed up. I guess a white person who has been deluding themselves by thinking they are 100% German or 100% Swedish might find such a concept offensive but that says nothing about the truthfulness of it. I look like a typical Aryan yet I am a Euro-mutt with French, Italian, German, Austrian, and even Russian in me. I would also recommend not making fun of someone based on their race. Not very nice Dalrock!

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  60. Seriously? Who would call someone a "bull dyke child molester" because they disagreed with them? How would that be an appropriate response in any way?

    Methinks Dalrock is taking you for a spin, Dan.... I don't buy his sincerity.

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  61. I know Elsariel. Just playing with him in return. :)

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  62. Oh! Okay, then. Have at it. (^_^)

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  63. @Elsariel
    Seriously? Who would call someone a "bull dyke child molester" because they disagreed with them? How would that be an appropriate response in any way?

    Well put.

    @Dan
    For instance, when making your daily visit to the NAMBLA site, when haters come and toss up statements like, "Aren't all men who love boys just creepy sociopathic pedophiles with sex issues?", you can use "FAIL" on them...

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  64. @Elsariel
    Because 10% of black men are in prison, they are proof blacks are more violent in general, even though 90% aren't in prison.

    There are obvious problems with saying X group is more violent, etc, than Y group. For example, I don't have the stats handy but I think we would both agree that men are in general more violent than women. So lets say just for the sake of argument that men are 10x more likely to commit a violent crime than women. Simply stating the fact/stats doesn't make one a bigot. The problem comes with how easily such information tends to be misused. So if you tell me that men are more violent than women (in general), I'm fine with that. If you tell me that therefore I as a man am more violent than you are (as a woman), that is unfounded.

    Furthermore, what makes the issue more sensitive is our basic human psychology. When you (as a woman) tell me that men are more violent than men, at an emotional level I'm likely to process that as you accusing me of being violent. As humans I'm afraid we can't escape this initial reaction, so we need to always be cognizant of how what we say is likely to be processed.

    But OneSTDV's point was something bigger I think. Going back to the initial stat about rates of violence in the black community. Stating the facts shouldn't in and of itself be problematic. After all, as you point out that still leaves 90% of blacks who are not only innocent, but also the greatest victims of the violent 10%. What would be a problem is an attempt to shame all blacks for the actions of a small minority. Returning to the male/female analogy, this would be like shaming all men for violence against women.

    It simply isn't fair to blame/shame someone for the acts of someone else in a group they happen to belong to. We can only be responsible for our own actions as individuals. Any attempt to marginalize, judge or shame, someone because of their race, gender, etc and not because of their own actions or qualities is wrong and bigoted.

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  65. Um, Dalrock, I think you have the wrong person. I didn't say that quote.

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  66. Thanks Elsariel! You are correct. The quote I was responding to is in fact from Siditty. I'm not sure how I managed to mix that up!

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  67. Great update, he resigned! http://www.cnn.com/2009/US/11/03/louisiana.interracial.marriage/index.html

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  68. This is why I hate democrats/liberals....etc. If someone doesn't have the EXACT same opinion as you, you call them a racist. Dumbass people. Isn't it also funny how blacks aren't racist, only white people are....???!!!!!

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  69. Okay, so you're expressing hate for groups of people whom you say ridicule those who don't have the same opinion as them, by calling them dumbasses and ridiculing them because they don't have the same opinion as you.

    Congrats Misty. You're a parody of yourself.

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