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More Shit White People Need To Stop Doing

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Memo to my fellow crackers: PLEASE JUST STOP IT.

I have to assume that the recent rash of white people calling the cops on black people for no fucking reason whatsoever is one of those things that’s been going on for decades, and I didn’t know about it because one, I’m white, and two, despite fourteen-plus years of paying attention to stupid people and racists on the Internet, I still somehow wonder who the fuck would do something like it?

In just the past few weeks, we’ve learned that the cops can be called on black people for waiting a few minutes for their friend to arrive at Starbucks, napping in your dorm’s common area, using charcoal, wearing a suit in a Waffle House, and not waving to neighbors when you leave an Airbnb and they nosily and racistly try to see what the darkies are up to. The resulting interactions with police have ranged from around half an hour of investigation and inquiry to being choked against a wall and thrown to the ground.

First, the police are there to solve actual crimes. Not things you think might be indicative of a potential crime, because that’s how you define “dark skin”. Second, even racists have to realize that every interaction between a person of color and the police might be fatal. You may see that as a bonus feature rather than a problem that needs solving, but we can agree on the facts of it nonetheless. And I realize you put the value of a life of color at even less than 3/5 of the value of a white life, but even so, do the math on whether or not someone should die over this. Should someone die over a barbecue? Over not smiling? Over eating in a restaurant? No? Then put your fucking cell phone away.

As with many things, I blame Trump and 9/11. I mean, obviously, first, I blame racism, but hear me out. The post-9/11 world brought us “if you see something, say something”, which told us all to report even the most minor of suspicions, and our completely fair, impartial law enforcement infrastructure would show up, evaluate the situation, and deal with any real dangers, sending innocent people home with a smile and a fruit basket. This worked great, as every Sikh who’s flown on a plane in the last 17 years can tell you.

And, of course, the Trump presidency has emboldened everyone. Oh, sorry, everyone not in Congress. But everyone else. Including racists both hardcore and casual, to let their swastika flag fly. And when you don’t have a swastika flag because you’re too scared to search Etsy for one at work, you just apply the terrorism protocol to literally everything around you. If you see something brown, say something, clown.

The good news is that social media is bringing these things to light. The bad news is, since social media is involved, there’s something else I have to tell white people to stop doing. Stop telling us you’re waiting for all the facts before you pass judgment. That’s a lie. And if it’s a lie you’re also telling yourself, let me explain.

You’re not waiting for more facts. You’re hoping for them. You need them. The more facts you’re waiting for are the ones that would make the white people right and the brown people wrong. They’re the ones that would prove to you that you’ve succeeded because of your inherent worth, not because the wold makes things easier for you. If those facts never appear, you won’t come back and agree that yes, this is racism. You’ll just assume those facts are still out there somewhere and move on to telling us about all the other incidents you’re waiting for all the facts on.

Oh, and while I’m here, stop asking what happened before the video started. You know what happened before the video started? Nothing worth pulling out anyone’s cell phone and taking a video of, that’s why there’s no video of it. And we all know how low the bar is for something not worth recording on a cell phone camera these days. You know the answer to your question in your heart, and it upsets your worldview, so you keep asking it. Fuck off.

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