Oh idiotic memes! Bumper sticker fun times.

Meme reads: “Being white doesn’t make you a racist & being black doesn’t make you a slave. Being an idiot however comes in both colors.”

I love it when white men share these kinds of memes. The ones that sooth their aching insecurities. I wanna feel persecuted, too, complex!

Let me help out with what it should read:

“Most of us are unintentionally racist.”

“Being white doesn’t make you a racist; being racist makes you a racist.
Being black doesn’t make you a slave, because slavery was supposedly eradicated in the United States in 1865.

“Being black subjects you to a large percentage more possibility that you’ll experience racism from many colors of skin (because: see re-written sentence one), not just white people. Racism is highest among those who lack empathy or self-awareness. Period. And ironically, those who post memes like this are likely hiding behind a need to express their bigotries and are dumbfounded to be pointed out to them that this meme, in and of itself, indicates racism.

It’s okay to admit that there were 200-ish years of human chattel ownership in this country + another 90-ish years of inequality + a lingering presence of overt racism towards people of color by the white people, and an increase of activity from white supremacists including, but not limited to the KKK.

In sum, and to repeat, Being white doesn’t make you a racist. Being racist makes you a racist.

Also, I was thinking about this post the other night. I wrote that when the Republican Party formed in the 1850s, they were comprised primarily of northern protestants who opposed slavery. What I left out was that Democrats at the time were southerners and the majority who supported slavery (which was — if you’re brain dead — a largely southern institution).

I have a best friend who openly admits his grandfather was a racist confederate with a penchant for saying some awful bigoted things. The Democrats were also known as the Dixiecrats. Yes, the meme is correct … the democrats founded the KKK because they LOVED expressing their supremacy over the both skin color and over gender.

As the 1900s progressed, the Republican’s agenda drifted into the south where it remains in its largest form today. Abraham Lincoln was a republican. There’s no bones or question. But he was a northerner, from the state I immigrated to after college. I say immigrated, because the souther states and culture are a vast difference from that of Chicago. In a place where church culture trumps art and science, I felt much more at home where people stopped asking, “Where do you go to church?” as a general how-dee-do question.

Make no mistake: on the surface: Republicans formed and abolished slavery. Democrats desperately wanted to keep slaves and wanted to guard that right so badly, they fought the north over it. After the civil war was lost, and Democrats were forced to free their slaves (which I’m sure went over without a hitch), Africans were freed in name only to not be enslaved. It did not give them freedom or equality that their white brothers and sisters enjoyed for another 90+ years (some argue as of today).

Those are the facts.

The facts continued that the people in the south continue to fly their confederate flags. They continue to ache for the old days. They continue to bemoan big government whilst benefitting from its social services, socialistic infrastructure and socialistic medical advances.

So when we say that the values and principals of the Republican Party went south, we mean it figuratively and literally.

Or like I wrote in that post, sure, take responsibility for freeing the slaves and gifting black people with a slice of freedom.

But then let’s be honest with ourselves, JFK didn’t get shot because he was fighting for the rights to keep two sets of water fountains, bathrooms, and “colored” folks out of the front of the bus or at the counter at Woolworth’s.” The democrats didn’t just want to abolish segregation, they wanted equal rights of landownership and voting rights. It’s what we still fight for today.

So yes, I’m associate with the party of slavery. I come from the south. So maybe it’s in my blood. I also associate with a party that wants fair and equal treatment of those in poverty to those who revel in lavish lifestyle and the only difference between the two types of people are where they were born, to whom, and the tools and opportunities in their toolboxes to rise out or stay put.

Lazy minorities are less likely to piss me off over lazy entitled bigots sitting in posh offices with beautiful views who shoot off emails as their main source of income. While people like my wife’s mother worked three jobs to support her two kids. Those are the people I side with in terms of who we should be heaping tax breaks and un-earned riches.

The rich don’t need my help. That’s a talking point that has somehow overwrought the Republican community with disservice and misapproriated attention.

We should all fight for the ones without.

So if that means saying, “Republicans ended slavery and Democrats wanted it.” So be it. And if you think Republicans are the ones who are fighting for people of color, I’d love for someone to set my brain straight. Because no matter how many times old man Trump claims he did more for blacks than any other human (and Abraham Lincoln, MLK, JFK, RFK are in the running), I’ll keep telling you you’re full of shit.

The evidence is glaring, y’all. My community is diverse and you can see, without trying, how disparate we are between races.

It’s time to stop fighting over certain details and admit we all have an obligation to our brothers and sisters to make the world a better place. Charged language and memes are divisive. If you’re insecure about being called a racist, check in with yourself and wonder why you carry that insecurity.

And before you press share on something that helps you lick your wounds, consider that the thing your sharing simply amplifies the character of racism rather than eliminates it.

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