September 03, 2012

Such resentments have fed upon their own entrails for so long that they linger to this day. Savannah is where racial discrimination is allegedly so rampant, attorneys specialize in filing lawsuits on behalf of the aggrieved. The city now features a monument with an inscription by Maya Angelou about how slaves were forced during the Middle Passage to wallow in one another’s “urine and excrement””€”a foolproof way to foster racial healing if ever there was one. It’s where some people predicted race riots if Georgia went through with its execution of Savannah’s convicted cop-killer Troy Davis last year. (Davis was executed, but there were no overt riots, only worldwide protests and widespread political pouting.) Earlier this year the city dealt with what appears to be yet another high-school hate-crime hoax involving an imaginary noose. And Savannah’s plump-as-a-pig diabetic celebrity TV chef Paula Deen was recently sued for allegedly using the phrase “bunch of little niggers.”

Savannah’s City Council, which has recently tilted 5-4 in favor of blacks, reportedly squabbles endlessly along racial lines, egged on by a black mayor who has said things such as “it’s our turn” and that he wants a city manager who “looks like me.” A local reporter calls Savannah “A diverse and divided city.”

But isn’t diversity a strength? Isn’t it supposed to unite rather than divide? Not if you trace the word’s history. According to an online etymology dictionary, the word “diversity” has traditionally meant “disagreement,” being “turned different ways,” and “being contrary to what is agreeable or right.” The word only started acquiring a specifically positive sheen around 1992″€”coincidentally around the same time that Savannah’s population became majority-black. Savannah’s mayor now boasts that “majority rule” is “the American way.”

But don’t expect America’s mass media to publicize such triumphalist, race-rooted, turnabout-is-fair-play power-jockeying. And don’t expect them to give equal time to racially motivated black-on-white assaults anytime soon. They’re too busy hearing imaginary white-racist dog whistles everywhere.

Although America’s media mavens created a massively divisive racial issue out of a fatal shooting that involved a perpetrator who wasn’t exactly white and who apparently was not motivated by racial animosity, they hardly made a peep about the white Buffalo teenager bludgeoned with a brick in 2009 by a group of black males ostensibly because he was dating a black girl. Although the victim in that case claims he was repeatedly racially taunted in the days leading up to a beating that left him slurring his words, the case was not tried as a hate crime. Meanwhile, across the state, a white Brooklyn man was recently charged with a hate crime after allegedly uttering racial slurs and using a fork to stab a black man who was dining with two white women.

How long will the obvious double standard persist? Exactly as long as everyone keeps their mouths shut for fear of being called bad names. And if you”€™d rather risk being knocked unconscious than being called a bad name, it’s hard to feel any sympathy for you.

UPDATE: Police video released on Tuesday suggests that Quade may have been involved in a fight instead of being blindsided in an attack.

Angry man image courtesy of Shutterstock


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