The Distractions of Laws and Flags
...What’s even more puzzling for me is the logic that decides that marriage is a good ‘first step’ when considering the struggles queer people face today. It seems to me that the first step in making change should be about addressing issues that need urgent, immediate fixes: say, for example, people literally being killed. That’s at the least the logic that I think most people would apply to other kinds of ‘change’ they would want to see. If for instance, there are bunch of renovations you want to make in your house, my guess is most people would decide to first fix their leaky plumbing rather than change their wallpaper. The former might be harder and more expensive and not actually that noticeable once it’s done, but it’s something that needs to happen because it threatens the entire house. You need that for the whole thing to work. To potentially over-extend this metaphor, changing the wallpaper first might be great as a noticeable, tangible change, but it becomes less than productive if your shiny new wallpaper makes you forget that your house had a bunch of other problems too.I do, however, want to give a shout-out to the Alabama Governor who just executive-ordered four Confederate flags down. The massacre didn't even happen in his capital city. Meanwhile, Miz Nikki Haley's still talking that "debate" bullshit with her constituents, waitin' on them to reach a three-fifths - sorry - two-thirds consensus.
The lasting effect of Dylann Roof’s terrorist attack on nine African American women and men at Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church now looks likely to be the removal of the Confederate flag from public display. South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley has called on the state legislature to strike the flag from the state’s capitol grounds. Elected leaders elsewhere, as well as major corporations, have all begun to “divest” themselves of symbols of the Confederacy, a century and a half after the Civil War ended.
Their actions are merely diversions. They are addressing the least important cause of Roof’s racist murder spree. Focusing on flags and monuments draws our attention from the hard work that is required to reduce the burden of racism in American society. And the public’s attention span is so very short that I wonder how many people will care after the flag frenzy passes and the nine funerals are over.
I wanna make a bet.
I wanna bet that in forty years, ALL of the idiots who currently say that "racism doesn't exist" and that POCs are "pulling the race card" will inevitably turn to their grandchildren, give a condescending pat on their backs and will say,
"You kids have it easy! Back in MY GENERATION, we elected a Black president, we fought against police brutality, and we restored equality in America! Oh yes, I was RIGHT THERE in the thick of it all, standing with the Blacks and Asians fighting "the man!" Yup, aren't you proud of your grandpa for standing up against racism?!"