When people like Ben Stein and Alex Jones say that Barack Obama is a racist president, I have to wonder if they actually know what racism means. Or, to put it another way, if they and I are defining racism in the same way.
Because I don’t actually see what they are talking about. It’s not that we disagree. Of course we disagree. I am a liberal and they are rabid right wingers. It’s that I have no idea what they are talking about. Has Barack Obama told police officers they should start shooting white people? Has he accidentally lost approximately 40,000 new voter registration applications and change of address forms, from predominantly black neighborhoods? Has he put a big sign on the White House lawn that says “Black House now, Bitches.” No, he has not.
They go nuts and say Michelle Obama said something racist, when it was a mild joke before black people, from a black person, and about black people. ( She said first, go out and vote. You can eat some fried chicken later.”) See, if a white candidate had said “Go out and vote first. Then you can stop and celebrate at the Olive Garden on your way home,” I don’t think there would be any problem.
So, I’ve got three handy guidelines as to when somebody’s being racist or not.
1) You are allowed to make jokes about your own race.
2) You are not allowed to make jokes about other people’s races. This is what being politically correct is all about and, as far as that goes, I’m a big advocate of political correctness. Even though I sometimes call people retards, especially if they are Republican or something. That may be insensitive and horrible, but it is not racist, because there are white retards and black retards, and lots of little brown and yellow retards.
3) There is a difference between a bit of friendly banter and vicious racist comments. Have you seen 40 Year Old Virgin? It was seriously funny, laugh out loud till you’re crying type funny. But there were a lot of racist jokes. Which were also seriously funny, btw. But that’s where the line is. If you are making, or laughing at, more racist jokes than that
4 ) Actions speak louder than words. If you don’t act like a racist, you get a bit of extra credit the next time you say something stupid.
In short, Alex Jones and Ben Stein can fuck off.