Friday, February 27, 2009

Clint Eastwood: Race Based Jokes Are Funny

Here we go again with another stunning display of white privilege from an elite Hollywood star.  In an interview with Der Spiegel Clint Eastwood was quoted as saying the following:

'People have lost their sense of humour.”

'In former times we constantly made jokes about different races.

'You can only tell them today with one hand over your mouth otherwise you will be insulted as a racist.

'I find that ridiculous. In those earlier days every friendly clique had a "Sam the Jew" or "Jose the Mexican" - but we didn't think anything of it or have a racist
thought.

'It was normal that we made jokes based on our nationality or ethnicity. That was never a problem.

''I don't want to be politically correct. We're all spending too much time and energy trying to be politically correct about everything.'

image Of course he didn’t have a problem with it, whiteness has always been the group in power and therefore free from race based attack.  Simply because the world has changed enough that some now have the courage  and the ability to speak out against racism does not mean that former racist commentary was ever well accepted.  It has always hurt on some level to be considered an other.

What Clint Eastwood wants is the right to mock peoples lives and experiences without censure or social discipline.  Wrapping it in comedy is meant to make it seem like it is harmless but in truth, reducing someone's humanity is never funny. 

How dare we uppity POC not take a joke…Now people have to whisper their racism; what the hell good is whiteness anyway, if it does not allow people to exist with undeserved privilege?  Whiteness is supposed to be able to mock and demean at will.  If undeserved privilege  is taken away then they will be just like the majority of people on the planet.  Imagine a world where everyone was truly equal and respected, noooooo we cannot possibly have that.

Some will say that Eastwood represents a dying breed, however his attitudes can readily be found amongst a cross section of society.   Privilege is a rock upon which many continually stumble and yet they refuse to recognize it.  You will just have to excuse me if I refuse to feel pity because some people are offended that they cannot spread their hatred freely anymore.  They have been fond of  telling us that we are too sensitive for years, so I guess now its your turn.  Put your big pants on Clint and suck it up.  You don’t deserve to exist with anymore rights or freedoms than any other person.

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