CHRISTMAS VACATION: CONFESSIONS OF A CONFUSED DOUCHE
SECTION TWO: CINCINNATI, OHIO
Chapter VIII: Racism and Politics
In yet another recent survey that was never conducted and I simply fabricated the results based on my own conclusions because I frequently consider myself to be the most important person on Earth in regards to a variety issues, results indicated that single men enjoy visitations with their mothers more than any other group of people. Staying with one’s mom provides a sense of comfort, cleanliness, and household complacency that is often disregarded in a single man’s personal environment. Not to mention, the food was not purchased from the frozen aisle and there is an overall abstinence of wild behavior. A single man can often enjoy various luxuries at his mother’s house that has not been present at his own home in years; such as modernized appliances, garbage disposals, can openers, and actual dishes made out of glass. No person would ever dare compare the sanitary cleanliness of mom’s bathroom to that of an outdoor filling station.
Not only do I get to lavish myself in the ultimate grand scale of luxuries, such as eating utensils that have been properly cleaned with actual dish soap and toilet paper significantly softer than both Clear Value brand and the wad that was swiped from City Market because we had run out, I have been blessed with the fact that our family does not engage in heated arguments. What makes this even more miraculous is the fact that we are not in full agreement on a multitude of topics. My family members are all Republicans and I am an extreme left-wing Anarchic-Communist. Surprisingly, we agree on a lot more issues than one might expect. However, we refrain from discussing issues that we know for a fact will cause a major disagreement; should it come up, we acknowledge ahead of time that we know the other will not agree.
That said, I feel that we have a mutual unwritten obligation to eschew controversial topics. Occasionally, all parties will slip and commit moderate infractions, but they are quickly subdued before they become quarrelsome. Therefore, should a family member mention something that I do not agree with, I will simply ignore it; or make some joking retort in good humor. And, they do the same to me.
However, I had a major agitation with something that I felt violated our pact and felt it needed to be addressed. Eventually, their use of racial slurs perturbed me. People were saying “nigger” and “faggot” in the most derogatory sense. For the most part, I tried to ignore it, although I found it disrespectful because they had to have known my stance on this issue. My brother is extremely religious and they are careful to watch their language and not say certain things around him. As an Anarchic-Communist, equality is one of my primary objectives; just as Faith is to Tim; just as reducing wasteful government spending is to the fiscally conservative.
I’ve ignored this the whole time and maybe they just didn’t know. But, my mom lived in the same neighborhood I grew up in and showed no symptoms of being a racist back then…it wasn’t until she moved to philistine Clermont County and impressionably considered boorish buffoons a viable source of social influence. Finally, I had to say something when she inquired about my old friend Rovanious who is now dead.
They were discussing the importance of a class system and because most people simply refuse to work and should be paid less… especially them damn niggers.
Not one single aspect of this conversation did I even remotely agree with and was gradually getting irritated having to listen to this nonsense. These two are highly intelligent in an assortment of topics and I wondered how on Earth they could willingly and seriously support the most extreme example of imprudence. Finally, as I was attempting to ignore the whole situation, my mom insisted on bringing me into the conversation and asked, “Like who was that one nigger guy you worked with in the mailroom at the VA?”
“Mom!” That triggered the turbulence button and I just looked at her scornfully dumbfounded because she just had the nerve to ask me a question in which those who know me best would dare never utter in my presence. It was completely disrespectful not just because of my devout anti-racism stance that I hold, but also because it was my personal friend in reference. Therefore, I had to assertively address the situation; even though I would rather not have to confront anything, ever, in my entire life… I just wanted to use the fancy ice dispenser.
“OK, I have a question,” I was trying to be nice for this was family, it was their house, and we only get to visit but once a year… and I took a deep breath and smiled, “when Tim comes to town are you going to discuss all the contradictions within the Bible and how there’s never been any proof that God even exists?”
They looked at me as if I was crazy and seemed prepared to defend those allegations about the Bible when I just stated, “you know I have a lot black friends right? I have a lot gay friends; I have friends from all over. So, seriously…” I didn’t feel I had the right to declare that they were forbidden to use certain words, so just left it at that.
“I told you it bothered him,” Bill told my mom.
“Let’s just change the subject,” I said trying to keep peace, and immediately did so without even concluding what exactly happened to Rovanious, my so-called nigger friend, and did my best to put it out of my mind.
Again, it’s the fact that they are extremely intelligent in many regards that disturbed me most. It made me wonder what circumstances led them to this belief system. Then it occurred to me that there are not many black people present in this neighborhood; and they do watch an excessive amount of TV. This is an easy fix. I desperately wanted them to simply go grocery shopping at my personal favorite Kroger in Cincinnati… in Brentwood Plaza. I wanted them to take their car in for an oil change at a repair shop in white neighborhood and pay attention to how many other unneeded procedures the employees try to scam them out of; then next time go to a black neighborhood and monitor how many of these are done without question and without charge… and sit in the reception area while waiting and simply listen to the pleasant conversation taking place among the other patrons.
The bottom line is that they simply do not know anybody besides white people. All they know about other cultures is what they’ve seen on TV. I would like to have informed them of the reality of the nature. And if she was going to question why there are such a high percentage incarcerated for committing crimes, I would have advised her to look no further than her next chat session of Facebook and consider the source of the sentencing.
I hate saying this, because I know that most Republicans are not racist, but racist comments have plagued the Republican Party. No matter how properly structured their tax allotment is, no matter how brilliant their concept is for saving zillions of tax payer dollars, their entire ideology becomes null and void due to a lack of understanding of people outside their immediate heritage. That is a sad thing, yet a correctable problem, and one in which the whole world would benefit… including the currently ignorant persecutor.
Or, they might be expecting that all people should be exactly the same. They should dress in a proper manner, talk in a proper manner, and behave like model white folks. No! Nobody should be like anybody else. People should strive for individuality and honor each other’s differences.
Later, we went downstairs to watch a movie, Bill referred to somebody as “black” then asked if was allowed to say “black.” He also concluded that he was allowed to say whatever he wanted in his own house. I just shrugged, I don’t care what you say, but I was talking to mom… and I looked my mom in the eye, “I think that when you ask me about one of my friends, somebody who, mind you, went to my grandmother—your mother’s funeral, that you should speak of this person in a more courteous manner. All you have to do is say ‘sorry, that was pretty sketchy of me’ and all is forgiven.”
Jen's mom simply responded, with her Northern Wisconsin accent, "ah geez Jen."
Index: Chapter List
Chapter 8 Soundtrack Listing:1. Danielle Dax
"Evil Honky Stomp" 4:28
Jesus Egg That Wept
2. Sly & The Family Stone
"Don't Call Me Nigger, Whitey" 5:59
3. Gil Scott-Heron
"The Revolution Will Not Be Televised" 3:02
Pieces Of A Man
4. Public Enemy
"Fight the Power" 4:43
Fear of a Black Planet
5. The White Stripes
"Why Can't You Be Nicer to Me?" 3:22
6. Marvin Gaye
"Inner City Blues (Make Me Wanna Holler)" 5:28
What's Going On
7. Curtis Mayfield
"Stare and Stare" 6:15
8. Stevie Wonder
"Living for the City" 7:25
9. Suicidal Tendencies
"Join The Army" 3:37
Join The Army
"Opiate the Masses" 7:24
All Sections Written, Designed, and Music Compiled by Tony J. Neal
Top Image by Karl Marx; shared from Always Question Authority
Middle Image negating common misconceptions by What Black Men Think Bottom image: Martin Luther King, shared from The Possibility Practice.