Am I the only one who can’t believe Governor Northam of Virginia still hasn’t resigned? With the 24-hour news cycle being what it is today (vs.at best once a day back when I was alive!), it’s easy to forget about things that aren’t right there in our face! But, of course, that’s what the Governor wants us to do—forget, so he can slip through one more time, just like THEY always do. But I refuse to let such disgusting revelations rest.
Despite my having been around for the better part of two centuries, the stupidity of humankind, and most especially white men, never fails to amaze me. Please allow me to address the two issues separately—stupidity first and white men second. Regarding the specific stupidity in question, the obnoxious practice of blackface, they had their start in minstrel shows, which started clear back in the 1830s or so, just before I was born (1838). Those shows denigrated blacks as lesser beings—the ever-popular rationale for white’s condemning them to bondage. Like a lot of things, including use of the N-word, they were considered bad taste and low class by the wellborn and well-bred. As a wealthy son of the Cotton Kingdom it’s inconceivable that I would have attended a minstrel show, let alone appear in blackface myself. I may have been the son of a slaveholder, but I was one high-class dude, if I don’t say so myself. Guys like Virginia’s governor and attorney general not only embraced racism when they appeared in blackface, but demonstrated they were distinctly not high class, despite their education and privileged upbringing. You can take the cracker boy out of the country, but sometimes you can’t take the trash out of the boy.
Which brings me to the second issue, white men. They continually pretend they’re innocent of their obvious abuse of white male privilege, but the jig is up. Although I’ve been dead for over 150 years and watching the human condition from afar, based on my own experience as a white male, and living with such at West Point and as an officer in the Confederate Army, I can say two things with a high degree of confidence: 1) they are so conditioned since birth to think the world is their oyster that they are often incapable of seeing reality clearly; and 2) it’s amazing how little they’ve progressed in 150 years. I take solace in seeing how many women were elected to the United States Congress this past November, and how many women have now declared themselves candidates for President. Hopefully white men will begin to realize that everything in the world—especially women and people of color—isn’t theirs to do with as they please.