25
Mar
09

Au Revoir, Thordaddy

…or perhaps, given his use of a Norse god in his name, I should go all “Viking” and say: Vel fara, Thordaddy.

In any case, if you’ve hear any muffled swearing or rapping at the virtual door, that might be Thordaddy, who most recent communiques are currently languishing in my spam queue. Congratulations, Thordaddy! You’ve done what several other irritating and objectionable people couldn’t do in the 13 months since I started this blog: Inspire me to ban someone from my comment area. (If you haven’t experienced Thordaddy yet, you can in the post and comments here.)

However, I did promise to answer his questions to me, and I will, in this post (he added some more in his spam-queued post, and I’ll even answer those). I’ll even acknowledge some of his comments in his unposted comment.

But first, a few words on why I will no longer suffer him here. It’s not because of ideological differences. It’s not because he has won any arguments with me. It’s simply because he’s fucking annoying. Of course, as he noted in his latest comment, I engaged HIM. True. I even invited him over here, mostly because I didn’t want to clutter Big Man’s Raving Black Lunatic blog with our arguments. But I did expect a discussion, not continued and repetitive ranting.

For example, he keeps telling me that to suggest that most or all white people have racist attitudes of some sort is me trying to force an “odious ideology” on folks. When I clarified that I simply want people, especially those with more advantages, to examine their attitudes and behaviors to identify those that might be unfair and to work to treat people equitably and properly, he continued to insist it was an odious ideology. This kind of repetition, much less such a blatant disregard for what he should consider fundamental Christian tenets (self examination, honesty and fairness), is quite irritating.

Not to mention that fact that any time anyone mentioned the myriad studies that show how racism continues to affects blacks and other minorities, he had no response. Nor did he on the couple occasions I asked him to hip me to some studies that indicate Affirmative Action has hurt white folks or that show racism is just some bygone thing. I guess all those conservative think tanks were too busy sucking at the teat of Wall Street liars to find any proof that blacks have nothing to complain about anymore.

Also, there is his impatience. I told him I’d answer his questions as soon as I could. I even posted a couple days ago that my presence at this blog would be diminshed for a couple days because of work. Yet, he insists that I am “intellectually weak” and “objectionable” because I can’t take 5 minutes to answer his questions. Sure, I could answer those questions in 5 minutes if I answered them true/false like he wanted, but I’m not stupid enough to answer them that way simply just so he can get five new openings to accuse me at length of narrow-mindedness or oppressiveness.

Then the fact that in one of his latest messages, he not only showed continued lack of patience but repeated the five questions that I already told him twice I’d answer. Like I’m some idiot who can’t scroll up to find the questions he asked previously.

If I want to experience repetition, stubbornness, impatience and a refusal to listen, I have a three-year-old for that. And she at least shows some kind of loving streak and can acknowledge when she is wrong or at least maybe a little off the right track. Of course, if any of you think I was unfair in banning Thordaddy, by all means let me know.

Thordaddy’s Questions & My Answers

Deacon Blue,

True or False

ALL white people are guilty of racism?
ALL black people have suffered from racism?
If one is guilty of white racism, ALL of white society shares part of the blame?
If Deacon Blue is guilty of racism then Deacon Blue’s half-white children are guilty of racism?
Racist actors are less cognizant of reality than the victims of their racism?

ALL white people are guilty of racism?

All people, regardless of race, have been guilty of some kind of racism. If there are people aside from Jesus who have never done a racist thing or held a racist thought, they are truly few and far between.

The issue, vis-a-vis black people and white people (and yes, I know there are many other races besides blacks that suffer racism, but I’d argue that African Americans and Native Americans have borne the brunt of racism and oppression in the United States) is not whether both sides are guilty of racism.

As a white person, I can go weeks, months or years without ever being subjected to any noticeable kind of racism toward me. The number of whites who go out and experience racism toward themselves on a frequent basis in this nation is vanishingly small. The last time I was treated to racism was 10 years ago or more, when some of my wife’s more distant relatives made their displeasure at my presence during a family event all too clear.

On the other hand, my wife can easily be treated to racism on a weekly and sometimes daily basis. And multiple times a day at that. Blacks get the pleasure of going out into a mostly white world knowing that at any point they can be a target, and they often are, and also knowing that if they react forcibly to such things, they will be seen as the troublemaker in many cases.

ALL black people have suffered from racism?

I don’t know about all, but I’d say the vast majority of them. Racism is part of the fabric of our society. Blacks more often get passed over by whites in jobs even when the black person is more qualified, blacks still get housing discrimination, and they get harsher criminal sentences than whites (even whites at the lowest end of the socioeconomic scale). Thordaddy himself, calling himself a “lover of freedom” has defended the idea that whites give special privileges to other whites over any other race, claiming that it’s only natural and logical.

If one is guilty of white racism, ALL of white society shares part of the blame?

No, I don’t hold people guilty for the sins of others. However, when one is shown the insidious ways in which racism crops up and does nothing about it, at least on a personal basis, that person is guilty of helping to perpetuate racism. And when an overwhelmingly white society collectively turns a blind eye to its continued mistreatment of any race, yes, we all share part of the blame. If you aren’t trying to be part of the solution, by at least being a better person and treating people according to their personalities, skills, etc. (and not their skin color), then you are part of the problem.

If Deacon Blue is guilty of racism then Deacon Blue’s half-white children are guilty of racism?

My children will be guilty of whatever race-related issues they will be guilty of, independent of me. Maybe my daughter will have issues with Puerto Ricans or Vietnamese or something. Maybe my son will come to hate Samoans. They may not be balls-out racists, but I’m sure both of them have issues with someone over some stereotype now or will in the future.

Racist actors are less cognizant of reality than the victims of their racism?

Whites have privilege compared to other races, especially blacks. They don’t get as much flak, they get more opportunities, they get less harassment. Not being the target of a racist societal structure, it’s easy not to see what goes on. Or care for that matter. Humans are remarkably adept at turning a blind eye to the problems of the “other.” Just ask all those Wall Street fat cats who care nothing for the hard-working people of all races whose lives they destroyed. When one doesn’t get as much shit, one doesn’t want to acknowledge that others unfairly get shit and perhaps one should do something about it.

Bonus Questions from Thordaddy

What was the black Mrs. Blue doing when she decided to not only marry, but have children with a white man who has conceded a racist past?

As usual, missing the point entirely. When I mentioned my own part in perpetuating racism, I never said I had a “racist” past. I illustrated the same things that most white people do regularly without even thinking about it: Excluding blacks, ignoring blacks, becoming more protective of their wallets and purses when blacks are near, etc. I never claimed to be perfect and I never claimed to be a full-out racist. When I met Mrs. Blue, I was already associating with other blacks besides her on a personal and substantive level. I didn’t just suddenly thrust myself into the black world. So I had already shed my most annoying preconceptions and subconscious bad behaviors before I ever asked her out.

Generally-speaking, black women are the LEAST likely to date outside their race. Does this mean that your minority of minority relationships is based on mutual racism?

This is convoluted to the point of stupidity, and not even deserving of me trying to decipher it.

If the black Mrs. Blue does what most black women refuse to do (date white men and then have children with them), is she really just masking her racism?

Mrs. Blue has issues with whites at times. Not often, but it happens. Usually in response to some kind of ignorance perpetuated toward her. But marrying me had to do with something called love, not with masking racism. My wife is proud to be black, wishes the world were a better place for all races, and doesn’t need to mask anything. She’s honest. Sometimes, she has her own flashes of racist behavior. She’s human. All I expect of her is what I expect of anyone, including myself. Try to be better and try not to let race cloud our perceptions and our actions.

Oh, and  a P.S. here. Thordaddy also asked me more than once if I advocate the government enforcing my “odious ideology” of trying to be more aware and inclusive. Does he meant do I want my government to prosecute racial hate crimes? Yes. Does he mean do I want the government to keep watch on racial trends and abuses since companies and individuals cannot be trusted to do so on their own (as history has shown time and again)? Yes.

But that doesn’t mean I expect everyone to think the same. Nor do I expect racists to ever disappear. If a person wants to be racist, that is his or her right. Just be honest about it. I also don’t advocate the suspension of free speech, as long as it isn’t inciting violent actions or causing overt oppression.

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3 Responses to “Au Revoir, Thordaddy”


  1. 1 thewordofme
    March 26, 2009 at 4:34 pm

    Amen, brother Blue!!

  2. March 28, 2009 at 10:53 pm

    Well, Deke, I have to say your responses to Thordaddy’s questions are astute. (Okay, I don’t HAVE to, but I want to, because they are.) It’s good to see someone who gets it. I don’t blame you for dumping him, but I do feel sorry for him, because his blindness and unwillingness to reflect on his own opinions weakens him and makes him ineffectual (as well as just plain wrong and ignorant).

    I’ve certainly had my moments. And I don’t know any black American who hasn’t suffered racism, nor do I know any white American who hasn’t had some part in perpetrating it, in some way – often just through well-meaning ignorance. Doesn’t mean those people don’t exist, obviously, but they’re damn rare.

    Good post, anyway. Blessings to you.

  3. 3 Deacon Blue
    March 29, 2009 at 12:02 am

    By the way, let me just say…not only to TWOM and Seda but to anyone else who may post here…this is one of those rare times I’m not going to respond to people’s comments directly on a post. Anyone is welcome to post their thought and comments here, but because I’m pretty much closing the Thordaddy chapter of my life as completely as possible, I’ll refrain from any direct responses to folks here, since that might tempt me to start bringing up lingering irritations, elaborations of points, or other things that might cause me to give the guy more of my attention or energy.
    😉


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Deacon Blue is the blogging persona of editor and writer Jeffrey Bouley. The opinions of Jeff himself on this blog, and those expressed as Deacon Blue, in NO WAY should be construed as the opinions of anyone with whom he has worked, currently works, or will work with in the future. They are personal opinions and views, and are sometimes, frankly, expressed in more outrageous terms than I truly feel most days.

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