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Friday, January 3, 2014

Where's the (white) outrage?



OK, so I have to get this off my chest about the whole duck Dynasty thing in light of these photos that came out of the cast before they got all hicked out. What's with wearing white in beach photos anyway?

The thing that gets me isn't the homophobic and racist statements made by Phil Robertson. It's not that the show is a complete and utter sham. It's not even that these guys were squeaky clean country clubbers. What bothers me is the utter lack of outrage from white people about the portrayal of other white people. Doesn't it piss off people who actually ARE like that when they see a bunch of phonies grow out their beards and basically slip into a backwoods, good-old-boy costume? It's really no different than all the racist costumes minorities get all bent out of shape over.

But maybe I'm missing something. Maybe the lack of outrage is due to the fact that white people just aren't offended by this kind of exploitative portrayal of fellow white people. Maybe this explains why so many white people don't see the big deal about racist costumes and stereotypical minority portrayals. So does this mean that we minorities need to chill out and let geisha costumes roll off our backs? Or are white people slow to realize that they are being made fun of?

4 comments:

  1. As a member of the dominant culture, it doesn't bother me at all. I can see, however, how folks get upset about the racial costuming and stereotypes and things like that with their own culture and I tend to agree with them about that.

    But for white folk like me, it could be just that we're not being judged or kicked or put down in other aspects of our lives so it doesn't get to us. If a person faces racism in everyday life, then when people CHOOSE to be racist (halloween costumes, for instance), it is quite a bit more insulting.

    As a scandinavian/irish american, though, I am not profiled or stereotyped every day so when folks are lampooning the culture as white folks who are hillbillies, it doesn't trip my outrage meter.

    Fat, stupid, sitcom dads though, they piss me right off...

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  2. Also, I don't mean to be insulting by pointing out that I'm part of the dominant culture (I just realized that's how that first sentence kind of reads), I'm just pointing out the fact. I don't mean to be rude or anything!

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  3. No insult taken! I can also tell by your profile pic that you're good humored about your Asgardian ancestors. It's kind of like cancer jokes. Sometimes people who haven't been touched somehow by cancer either directly or via a friend or family member find no problem laughing at a cancer joke. Whereas someone who has suffered won't find it funny and might even become offended. And this is a point of view that changes over time.

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  4. I agree with Froyd. As a white female from Wisconsin (Northern European heritage), I don't feel like that portrayal of being "hickish" should upset me because I'm not like that. I know people who are like that, and they like the show because they feel a connection. I guess I just don't like "reality tv" in general because it's mostly staged and faked anyway. I think all cultures and ethnicities have a lot of variability, but I think the variability of Whites is expressed much more clearly in media, so it's easy to dissociate and not take it personally. I feel like racial and ethnic minorities are often portrayed in stereotypes that make it seem like all members of those groups are the same. It's definitely not fair or right, but that's my perception of what's going on.

    As Froyd is upset by sitcom dads, I'm more upset about commercials targeting women (because apparently only women eat yogurt and have digestive problems, according to Activia).

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