Recently received a forwarded e-mail from a relative (step-brother-in-law):
“Here’s you can have fun Snoping if you have time to kill. Makes you feel kinda sorry for the one white guy though.”
The e-mail started with: “”Let’s see here. I need to shower, shave, eat some oatmeal, put on my new Obama T-shirt, grab my 9mm and hold up a convenience store.”
After that was a series of photos; the photos won’t reproduce here, but description is enough: It was a series of mug shots, all but one of black men, all wearing Obama T-shirts and allegedly convenience store robbers. The comment that followed the photos was:
Just think about this for a second: Did you ever see anyone arrested wearing a Bush T-shirt, or for you older guys, an Eisenhower, Gerald Ford, Ronald Reagan, or even Nixon, or Bob Dole shirt. There MUST be a message here, but I can’t quite grasp it. Maybe you can help me out here…. And don’t forget ….. [photo of button “November 2nd: Take Out the Trash Day”
So I just had to respond, and felt this response needed to be public:
Yeah, Republicans don’t bother with convenience stores, they just rob people through higher bank fees, insurance fraud, stock market scams, religious tax exemptions, etc. all while wearing suits and ties. But of course it’s far easier to be racist and point at “those people” (and the “one white guy”)than to recognize the people who are doing you the most harm are likely those “nice white folks” running your church, those so-called “pillars of the community.” But hey, it’s okay because they’re white, dressed nice, and smile while they shaft you.
I don’t need Snopes to recognize a sorry attempt to shift the blame. Tell me, how many of the guys who made the decision to lay off workers at your last few jobs looked like these guys? And how many were living in expensive homes in golf course communities? How many of those responsible for the mortgage industry collapse or the oil spill or the stock market collapse have mug shots like these?
Convenience store robbers are easy to catch, it takes intelligence to catch real crooks, and sadly there are far too few intelligent people going into law enforcement.
Okay, a quick note on law enforcement: I certainly wasn’t implying that the field is devoid of intelligent people, but the reality is that even those who are quickly learn the system is one that rewards based on easy-to-quantify results like catching convenience store robbers, not lengthy investigations that result in one banker – often a fall guy since the system is the problem – getting caught. The laws are also set up to protect those engaged in highly unethical yet still technically legal practices – like a bank that loans money it knows can never be repaid on a property its officers (or shadow corporations working for them) want to acquire. The rank-and file officer, or even most of the administration, is not to blame for laws which make theft legal if done with paper instead of a gun.
Let me also note that this is far from the first e-mail I’ve received from conservative acquaintances that is more than just hinting at racism, and implying that President Obama would approve of criminals or those who abuse the government aid system because of their shared racial connection. So anyone who thinks that racism isn’t behind much, if not most, of the right-wing anger in our country needs to start looking a little closer. We haven’t evolved nearly as far as people like to think in this area, and as I predicted nearly twenty years ago the political correctness wave has done nothing but remove the rattles from the snakes, they are still just as venomous and even more dangerous now that they are hidden from view. The reason we managed to elect a black president is a population shift and a poor choice for vice-president, not any great strides against bigotry by our population.