Sometimes I really believe that most people are divided by simple semantic misunderstandings.
When certain terms were created and popularized, the originators didn’t take into account the reduced mental capacities among the lowest common denominator, who take everything – including all of what they glean from Fox News - very literally.
For example, when “white privilege” is discussed, there are a lot of white people (many of whom are financially compromised) who somehow think that we (non-white people) believe that each and every white person has been endowed with a windfall of cash and resources that creates their privilege and makes their lives simple and easy.
Obviously there are a lot of white people who are financially disadvantaged. However, overcoming bias due to their skin color is not one of the things that makes their lives hard. It’s the privilege of receiving the benefit of the doubt, and the lack of preconceived notions and equal treatment. It’s being 10 steps ahead of an equally educated and qualified, yet darker person. My joke is that if you’re white and you’re not having fun, the problem is you. I’m not really joking, though, if you’re searching for your white privilege, look within, because it was yours to lose.
Next, let’s tackle the most politically charged misconstrued term — “Black lives matter.” So, let’s take a step back to reintroduce that reduced mental capacity that I discussed a few paragraphs ago. To people who aren’t critical thinkers, it might seem that we’re saying that, because Black lives matter, nobody else’s life matters. This is also the viewpoint of a person who believes that if s/he wins, others must lose — which goes against the very point of the BLM movement.
To be clear, the spirit of Black Lives Matter is inclusive, rather than exclusive. When the constitution was written, it stated that all men are created equal, which clearly didn’t apply to Black men, who were only considered to be 3/5 of a person at the time. So, it’s not a case of only Black Lives Matter. We just want a seat at the table with those who have always mattered. And until Black Lives Matter, there will never be true equality.
The people who vigorously (and often violently) espouse “All Lives Matters” are, in reality, trying to solidify their own (groundless) superior positions, and haven’t studied society (or anything else) long enough to realize that a) there’s enough room for everyone, and b) if OUR rights are being so egregiously violated, it’s only a matter of time before they’re coming for yours.
Let’s keep going, and introduce another concept that seems to create endless discussions and, again, a LOT of misunderstanding. When we talk about “defunding the police,” the literals (not to be confused with liberals) think that the goal is to remove every single dollar used to pay the police force. As if THAT makes any sense.
No, Karen, and bless your heart.
In reality, “defunding the police” is the process of reallocating a portion of the police budget to entities who are educationally equipped to de-escalate situations that would better benefit from mental health, youth services or community support professionals, rather than a weapon-crazy police force who would sooner kill an unarmed mentally ill citizen who’s just different, or simply having a moment, rather than apply a sense of humanity and actually try to create a good outcome.
It’s not that anyone believes that ALL police officers are bad and/or corrupt because there are quite a few good ones, and they are appreciated. It’s just that, by-and-large, the average officer behaves out of fear rather than concern.
Also? If we eliminate the millions of dollars spent settling police brutality cases, there would be plenty of available money to engage other assistance without disturbing existing police salaries. Just a thought.
I’m also finding that the literals — especially the ones who don’t have any people of color in their lives — seem to have a foundational belief that racism doesn’t exist (irrespective of all evidence) which means they feign confusion about why BLM is necessary, to begin with. Never mind that they’re always the very ones being caught on video, hatefully spewing the N-word as if their very existences rely on it. I was actually having a heated debate on my very own Facebook wall a few months ago with someone who purported to be oblivious to the depths of racism, and five minutes later talked about their experience with “the blacks.” When I stopped laughing long enough to resume typing, I suggested that perhaps this person should defer to someone who looks like me, since I’m the one with the first-hand experiences (translation: “Bitch, please.”)
And while I’m choking on irony, let’s finally discuss how the people who believe in All Lives Matters, and probably giving MORE money to the police, and who think that there is neither racism nor white privilege SOMEHOW feel that wearing a mask is a violation of their human rights.
Ummmm . . . . WHAT?
A year ago, nobody could have convinced me that a large percentage of US citizens would actually be rebelling against rudimentary hygiene habits which could reduce a deadly pandemic. Under a normal administration, a germ shield and basic handwashing principles wouldn’t be politicized, yet here we are. What’s next? Rebellion against scrubbing asses and feet?
Has anyone noticed, though, how karma has been stepping in? Lots of incidents of people who have been vocal about how the virus is a hoax have been afflicted. I’m sitting back with a socially distanced bowl of popcorn to see how this plays out.