and party like it's fucking 1991. ($1 to the first to spot the phrase "politically correct,"* and a kick in the 'nads to the genius using it) Or 1881, really. Kevin at Slant Truth sums it up: "Not Again?" Yep, you guessed it: yet another so-sharp-you'll-cut-yourself (it's like Lenny Bruce and Mark Twain and Voltaire all rolled into one, I'm telling you) defier of stuffy convention broke out the blackface. Apparently said Revolutionary Satirist did not read ebogjohnson's handy guide as to when and whether this would be apropos...
eh. I can't be bothered, actually. Go read Kevin and then some of the other folks talking about this (Kai, Sunrunner, ebogjohnson, Prometheus 6, Wampum, Sly Civilian, probably others by now. I'm fairly certain that whatever else, they'll be a lot smarter and funnier than the actual doof-in-threadbare-"rebel"-clothing they're fisking.
*edit! just clicked over to the non-apology "apology;" it's already there! the genius is the author of the image himself! yay! I get a dollar! as for the kick in the 'nads, the gods of karma and i have discussed it and decided he is owed one spiritually speaking at least; personally, i take a raincheck on delivery.
edit the twoth, addendum:
The Unapolegetic Mexican speculates in comments over at Zuky,
I think he wanted to be the One Who Could Do It Right or something. Or maybe show he independent he is. Beholden to NO STIFLING FROM PC FUCKERS!
and I responded,
yeah, i think you're probably right. which frankly leaves me less impressed than ever. Look, you stupid arrogant fucks: it's bad enough that you've apparently internalized the right-wing message that "apologies are a sign of weakness!!", now you, what, just -have- to turn around and put the beans up your nose, just to show NO ONE CAN TELL YOU WHAT TO DO. what are you, four? for fuck's sake.
i'd never read him before, of course, which makes this much easier for me. Hi, Billmon! Nice to meet you! According to some other people you've written some good shit in the past; pity my first impression of you is this, innit? I meant pity for me, obviously; clearly you are above such concerns.
seriously, wasn't there a bit in ebogjohnson's 'chart about "are you funny?" 'course, Billmon's white excuse me-NOT-liberal, so he wouldn't have made it that far anyway, but still. Lenny Bruce, he's not, you know?
I mean, when Bruce did his -throw-every-racist-term-in-the-book- out at the audience and then wound up with the conclusion that using the words meant losing their power; well, maybe he was right and maybe he wasn't; point is, AT the time it was still shocking to nice liberal audiences. that was, what, 1960 or so? In the interim, we have had: Richard Pryor, Eddie Murphy, Margaret Cho, Chris Rock, Living Color, Dave Chapelle; and on the white side, in rapidly descending order: Tom Lehrer, George Carlin, South Park, Sarah Silverman...Howard Stern, Sam Kinison, Andrew Dice Clay, Rush Limbaugh, Ann Coulter, all of Fox News. This entire administration. How is this shit shocking or even remotely surprising, never mind funny, never mind -biting political commentary-? It isn't. It is SO OLD. and SO TIRESOME.
Bruce's piss-take of "The Defiant Ones;" THAT'S funny, even now; anyway, -I- think so, even on paper; and i haven't even seen the bloody original.
WHITE (pensively) I never thought of it that way. Maybe if everyone in the world knew that "yet" had only three letters it would be a different world, Randy. If they knew that "yet" had only three letters and "knish" had five letters, it would be a world of three letter and five-lettuh "yet-knishes." (Passionately) You'd like to say it, wouldnya, Randy?
RANDY: (whispers) Yeah.
WHITE: -Say- it, buddy.
RANDY: (Pause. This means so much to him. Finally...) Yet-knish!
WHITE: Lemme say it withya. Say it togethuh.
BOTH: "Yet-knish, yet-knish!" (begin to sing it in the tune of a hymn)
WHITE: Kugel. Say it, Randy: Kugel.
WHITE: Goddam, you say that good, Randy. Yet-knish-kugel.
RANDY: Yet, yet-knish-kugel.
WHITE: (screaming) Jus yell it out, Randy! Say it, Randy!
RANDY: (screaming) Yet-knish-kugel!
WHITE: (screams) GODDAMN IT MAKES YA FEEL CLEAN, DON'T IT? Boy, Randy, think of jus runnin round the whole world, and yelling that. We just run over to Rooshia, then tell all them Eyetalians about it and just scream at evvryone and jus run over there and yell, "Yet-knish-kugel, Mr. Krushchev! Boy, they'd really know it then, wouldn't they, buddy? An then, Randy, it won't mattuh, it won't mattuh any more even if you are colored and I'm Jewish, and even if Fritz is Japanese, and Wong is Greek, because then, Randy, we're all gonna stick togethuh--and beat up the Polacks!
--from The Essential Lenny Bruce
""How to Relax Colored People At Parties"" (ca. 1960), that's funny and on point, especially for the era. (now it'd be retitled, and some of the popcult references would be updated, but actually...i wonder, you know, things have -really- changed).
Or, Bruce, here, quoted mid-routine, waxing meta and reflective:
"I think that a comic that satirizes--it depends where your sense of humor lies--but the general picture of a sick comic is an individual that satirizes handicaps, unfortunates. Joe E. Brown said that he wished that he could be that kind of a mean, you know, comic, but he just can't do that, he's just -corpus christi,- and he doesn't like sick humor.
I don't think he was referring to me, cause I don't do any, you know, deformity jokes in my act at all.
But I think that the comedy they had -before-, actually did cruel comedy. There was the Jew comic, they used to call them; the Wop comic, they used to say; they used to do the blackface, real stereotype Uncle Tom with the curls and the fright wig. They did what they called the German comic, which satirized and made fun of ethnic groups, the way they spoke, and their racial characteristics, which you don't find too much today. I think the comedy of today has more of a liberal viewpoint."
plus ca change, eh?
Bottom line: the reason crap like blackface is offensive isn't because it's so very shocking and bold. It's offensive because we've all seen and heard this shit a million billion times. First as painful real-life-sock-in-the-gut, and then as ever-drearier exercises for some other snotty little white reactionary whoops i mean liberal no wait excuse me i mean PROGRESSIVE, NO, WAIT!, i mean so advanced beyond all these categories anyway, so HIP-I-can't-see-over-my-own-pelvis, to exercise his spavined attempt at wit. The real sin here is laziness. Lazy "humor." Lazy writing. Lazy thinking. if these people spent one quarter of the energy they later spend trying to defend their egos ("I AM NOT A RACIST MIDDLEBROW TWERP! I AM A RADICAL REVOLUTIONARY WITH BIG BRASS BALLS AND A HEART OF MOLTEN GLOP!") that they did "creating" whatever it was in the first place, we probably wouldn't be having this problem.
and then, of course, the inevitable thrashes and blow-ups, assuming anyone's even noticed you of course; because, hello, you kick someone in the shin in a crowded room and of course it's gonna turn into a full-out brawl, that's how it works. It's easy. It's tiresome. But of course we have to go through it all again, every last little bit, because for SOME PEOPLE it's just too fucking EXCITING to have these fights, you know: see! I am, i AM shocking! i AM saying something Important! I have Created a Controversy!! Look at all these people yelling at Me! Hot damn!
It is depressing. I think it must be sort of like the transaction that happens with the dog, you know:
"Hey, look what I did! I crapped on the carpet! Pretty cool, huh? NO ONE'S ever thought of doing that! It's ART, I tell you, my own creation; and it's ALL MINE MINE MINE MY MARK MY TERRITORY MINE MINE MINE. If you yell at me in the next five seconds i might still make the connection and be ashamed (for five more seconds). Whoops, too late! --Oh! Shiny toy! --OH! She's SHOUTING at me! She's SHOUTING and WAVING HER ARMS!! I know what THAT means!! She wants to PLAY!! WOOF!! More shouties!!! Bark more?! BARK MORE!!! OKAY! OKAY!!!...."
...until, fed up beyond exasperation, someone finally brings out the rolled-up newspaper, and he whines and slinks off...until the next time.
good times, really.
...edit the hopefully last: meanwhile, not very far away, a Miss Behaving Badly has unearthed another source of "edginess:" "Phat Rags: Funny and Sexist T-Shirts." In so many words. go there for the breakdown.
i know, i'm shocked, shocked, too. sexism? on a crappy T-shirt? and they actually think this shit is funny? my preconceptions! my preconceptions!!