Sunday, October 19, 2008


What was the first thing you thought about when you read the title of this post? I'm sure I know but I wanted to ask for a reason.

More than likely when you read that word the first thing you think about is how black men were hanged by white plantation owners during the days of slavery. Thing is lynching was also a very common method of execution for pirates.

The reason I bring this up is because I'm helping my local volunteer fire department put on a haunted house next week. One of the guys working it had wanted to put up some skeletons in nooses as part of the decoration. Now I've known this guy for several years and I am certain that since he is big fan of pirates he clearly meant it as executing pirates and not hanging black men. However since most people would not understand what his point was they would just decide that he was being racist we decided not to go with that idea. (And we're in the South to give an idea of just how big the "outrage" would be).

On one hand I'm all for calling people out on their racism but can you call it "calling out racism" if you're just bullying someone into doing or not doing something because people may be likely to take the most negative interpretation of it and run with it?