Monday, January 11, 2010

Hell that mean's he's blacker than me too...

Its almost funny when people get into listing the things that make them more of a ______ than some other _______. Or in this case more of a _______ than an actual ______ when the blank if filled with "black person". Yes Rod Blagojevich made the comment that he is blacker than President Obama.

I suppose it was an effort to build up at least some of the massive amount of political street cred he has been hemorrhaging since he was removed from office upon being brought up on corruption charges that include an alleged attempt to give away the Illinois Senate seat that was vacated when Barack Obama won the 2008 presidential election in exchange for future political favors. But whatever the reason for the remark was he fucked up.

Blagojevich brought up his upbringing as proof of his blackness.
"I'm blacker than Barack Obama. I shined shoes. I grew up in a five-room apartment. My father had a little laundromat in a black community not far from where we lived," Blagojevich said. "I saw it all growing up."

Okay if this is the list of criteria that certifies one's blackness then I'm sure I'm not the only that comes up short. I've never shined shoes. I did not grow up in a five room apartment. My dad did not run a laundromat in a black community. And I most certainly have not seen it all.

But I'll bet I can think of at least a few things he has not gone through to "verify" his blackness.

Had white people "joke" about him being a thief.

Made eye contact (mostly white) women in a parking and then their quicken daytime.

Gotten in an elevator with (mostly white) women and see them inch over while clutching their purses.

Having a bit of seriousness in his voice about not wanting to be alone at work if the security alarm goes off and police get dispatched.

Going into stores to have employees follow him around the whole time.

Wonder if he would become one of those "1 in 3 black men ages 18-25 that are in prison or have been in prison".

Being told to "Go back to Africa!" or told that the Atlantic Slave trade should be restarted.

But enough of that because even those things are not criteria for calculating someone's blackness. What I am trying to say is that it is pretty damn disrespectful to try to relate to a group of people just because you might have some things in common with that group as if those things are the standard. He could have simply said he's not had an easy life and then listed those things. But maybe because he was hoping to get sympathy by associating with a marginalized group, was trying to jab at Obama, or whatever he decided to go the extra mile and call himself black.

I mean its not like I can say that since I care about my nails, don't like horror movies, and can cook pretty damn good I can say I'm more woman than Hilary Clinton right?


elementary_watson said...

Ah, but women *do* like horror movies (i.e., horror movies have an even higher percentage of female viewers than rom-coms, aka "chick flicks" (those are designed with couples in mind). Don't know the exact place where I read that, though.

womanistmusings said...

What he said was disgusting and his failure to acknowledge his privilege is so typical of White male elites. He did issue a weak apology later but the damage is already done. Funny how White ppl only want to appropriate our experiences when it is convenient.

Danny said...

Hear hear!