The article opens with eight bad old racial or ethnic slurs that no polite person uses these days and goes on to ask why, if those words make us cringe, “redneck” is any less cringeworthy.Why, indeed? RTWT.
Well … this voice mail claimed to be from a Chicago cop — the real deal (he went out of his way to note), not some poseur running around merely playing SWAT guy. He said he was African-American and a long-time faithful reader of the magazine.
AND, he said, that article was the most offensive thing he’d ever read. And he was going to throw the entire magazine into a garbage can. And he was never, ever again in his entire life going to read one word in S.W.A.T. Not ever.
“Why?” you might ask?
She goes on to make an important distinction.
Prejudice, we all have. It’s an emotional reaction. An assumption or a set of assumptions that may be based on experience or inexperience. That group of guys standing outside the pool hall looks dangerous to us. Even though we’ve never tried them, we’re sure we’re going to hate artichokes. We dislike frilly pink things. We think Japanese people are going to be “different than us.” Guns are scary.
Bigotry is prejudice that won’t yield to reason. Bigotry is blindness. In fact, bigotry is choosing blindness over sight. Bigotry is … well, it’s when all rednecks, or all blacks or all whatever are guilty of the actions of a few. Bigotry is when guns are not only scary, but evil. Bigotry is when you not only believe in global warming or the war on terror, but you think that anybody who disagrees with you should be locked up for treason. Bigotry is when you’re an atheist who thinks all Christians are benighted idiots. And bigotry is when you’re a Christian who smugly “knows” that your God will send every one of those atheists screaming into hell while you sit up in heaven, smiling.
Good stuff. I'm glad to see her blogging again.