Friday, November 09, 2007
WARNING: THIS POST USES THE TERMS ‘DUMB’, ‘STUPID’, AND ‘POOR’ IN THE MANNER TYPICAL OF THE SUBJECT AND RELATED DISCUSSIONS OVER THE PAST WEEK.
So what’s to make of Dog – Duane Chapman, aka Dog: The Bounty Hunter. He got himself and A&E in one heck-a-spot with his very dumb use of the n-word, to say the least. Now for the record, I am not a Dog-hater. In fact, I grew up with poor white folks in Dog’s hometown of Denver and he and I are not that far apart in age.
I cannot say whether Dog deserves to be ‘put down’, so to speak. On one hand, I can live without his crude hypocrisy, but I understand it, the same way I understand Al Sharpton getting his hair straightened once a week, so as to look ‘good’ while hunting guilt-ridden white folks. I accept the window Dog gives on a whole group of people that are invisible in America – poor white people. With all the complaining that goes on, poor whites are largely left out of the picture. Why? Because to place their plight beside blacks completely screws-up the two opposing pictures people typically attempt to draw – that poor dumb blacks are, by virtue of race, either responsible or not responsible for what ails the group and this country.
Now it is one thing to infer, as did Dr. James Watson, that this country’s 40 million blacks are dumb compared to its 200 million whites, but quite another to say that there are 32 million whites with IQ’s below 85, or dumber than the average black. Damn! That’s right folks, 32 million! And remember, these poor dumb white folks have absolutely no excuse for their plight. They are not the ancestors of squatters in Africa. They were not stolen slaves, forbidden from education. They were not even red-lined out of housing in Detroit, or Cleveland. They are just dumb folks with no plausible excuse, except their own randomly inherited way-below average intelligence.
I say that if we are going to consider a Dr. Watson-esque foray into genetics, race and intelligence, then we should lay all the cards out on the table. Talking about relative stupidity and its impact on the future is okay by me, but lets include the 32 million Duane ‘Dog’ Chapman’s too. They deserve to be included in whatever labeling we do, and solutions we identify. Do they not bleed?
As I see it, bringing poor white folks out of the self-segregated shadows will place a completely new spin on acting white discussions of the black ‘problem’. It will stop a lot of the confusion and trickery. Associations and behaviors that are too conveniently considered black will show themselves to be white, as well. Perhaps then we can get on to what is acting ‘right’, where the emphasis is on teaching ourselves about advancing behavior, regardless of skin-color or ethnic origin.
Maybe Dog, and his big dumb mouth, did poor dumb white and black folks everywhere a favor. He made them a little less invisible and ignorable for the moment. Just maybe…
James C. Collier
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