Monday, March 07, 2016

A Racist Waste of Air

Today I'm ranting. Normally, I'd let it go because it's looking like Bernie doesn't stand a snowball's chance in Hell of getting the Democratic nomination, but he hit my sweet spot. So... rant mode on, and if you don't want to hear it, how about playing a few Disney games instead?

This bullshit appeared on the FoxNews Facebook page, but no worries, wielders of FoxNews ad hominems, it's an accurate quote from Bernie. It's not out of context.

Here's a fact for you, followed by some personal anecdotes:

FACT: Poor doesn't know what color you are.

My father was a drug addict. As he was being treated for an overdose, my mother fled with three children (my sister had already moved out) from Charleston to Columbia, SC. She got a job at the Shakespeare factory wrapping the little metal eyes onto fishing poles. We lived in a house shared by three other families, euphemistically called an apartment. There were days when we had onion soup because the only thing we had in the house was an onion. "Cereal" was the name we had for toast in milk. Plenty of the Black kids I went to school with were as ignorant of what it was to be poor as Bernie. That's not their fault, and it's not their problem. But the fact of life is this: whether you're poor is determined by two things alone:
  1. how much money you have or can net, and 
  2. how much that will buy.

FACT: Poor doesn't know what color you are, and there are ghettos filled with White people.

My first duty station in the United States Air Force was at Andrews AFB, Maryland. I was a married Airman First Class working at the Presidential/VIP radio station, and the only housing I could afford was in a DC ghetto. Two immediate neighbors died from violent crimes during the time I lived there, and my car was burgled. My neighbors were White and Black and Asian and Hispanic and probably a few ethnicities I couldn't put a name to because the subject never came up. I later moved into a trailer on the base. My wife left me with an infant son when I was stationed in England, and I fed myself for a week at a time on rice and $5 worth of irregular chicken parts I bought from the chicken wholesaler. This was because half my gross paycheck went to pay a babysitter since I was on 12-hour shifts and the base childcare center at RAF Upper Heyford wasn't. I had an entertainment budget: it was $10/month, and with it I bought one book per month from the Stars and Stripes bookstore. Because she did not want a disruption in her pay, my babysitter quit and moved without notice. I arrived one day to find her packing, and I left on a hardship discharge after I was forced to be late to work as a result and we couldn't come to terms on working hours.

I want you to mull that over. The military is often the last resort of people who couldn't find a job elsewhere, and I was too fucking poor to stay in. 

FACT: Poor doesn't know what color you are, and ghettos are filled with people of every color, and that doesn't just happen in cities.

When I left the Air Force in 1989, I moved to Union, SC... one of the poorest cities in what was not an affluent State. In 1990 I lived in a tarpaper mill house adjacent to a trailer park in a mixed-race neighborhood, and I made about $800 a month. While living there I came down with tonsilitis. The stuff is absolutely debilitating if untreated, and remember, I had to take care of my son, who was about 4 years old at the time. With no money, no insurance, and my apparent "White privilege" doing exactly bupkis to get me all that Free White People Care that ignorant jackasses bray about, my solution was to go to the pet shop and pick up as many packs of tetracycline and erythromycin as I could and self-medicate.

I'm not poor now because despite debilitating poverty, I never got caught in a cycle of government dependency. I'm not poor now because I admire people who get up and do something about their condition rather than blame others for it, and aspired to be like them. And to get to that point, I stayed poor for years, because even when you start a business from its bootstraps, "faking it 'til you make it", you discover that you (the 'boss') are the last person to get paid... after the taxman, the utility company, your suppliers, your employees, and the bloody gas station, as well as any loans you managed to take out... despite which some ignorant taxpayer-teat-sucking-do-nothing-career-politician-communist-wannabe is going to tell you that as a small business owner you're a rich bastard cheating the employees who, at minimum wage, take home more than you do. I'm not poor now because when competing with people who had far more than I did, I priced myself as a bargain so as to gain skills and the trust of those who hired me. That gained me recommendations and increased my worth. I'm not poor now because I'm worth more to clients and employers than I once was. But I spent six years after the Air Force taking home below-minimum wage, even when I worked for myself, so that I didn't have to stay poor.

And even then, I'm only a couple of paychecks away from chicken bog rice. And I've been lucky. I've managed to stay dry, even when I had to skip a few payments. I've taken in people who had no other place to stay... because I was blessed with a roof and a couch. I've had friends who've gone from having a great job, to losing it, to eviction and homelessness. And the Senator from Vermont chooses to believe that such a person can't know what it's like to be poor though they can't afford a razor or a clean shirt for an interview!

FACT: Poor doesn't know what color you are, and it takes an ignorant, privileged racist to say it does.

The candidates were asked, "What racial blind spots do you have?" Bernie Sanders' racial blind spot is that he flatly does not know that poverty can affect anyone. He does not know that anyone can be poor. He's 74 years old, and after all that time and opportunity to observe the world he lives in, he still believes that you have to be Black to be poor, and is secure enough with that stupid fairy tale that he passed up an opportunity to actually meet a Black person or two prior to the South Carolina primary rather than running off to Texas to talk to ten thousand White people in his rush to capture his 33% of their all-important vote. If he had met a few he might learn that people are people and that you can't identify the ones in poverty by their tan lines.

And that worthless, ignorant sack of wasted air tells me *I* don't know about being poor. I have a few anatomical impossibilities to suggest for him. 

To say that purely because of the color of your skin, and no other factor, you cannot know what it is to be poor is as good a demonstration of racism as any ever displayed. If you want to try it without racism for a change, you might start with looking at the situation of each individual as a person without the prejudicial bias of race. You can't get rid of institutional racism by being one who propagates it, and here Bernie has no credibility.

Bernie Sanders is an ignorant racist putz, and I don't mind pointing it out. Between this and his economic ignorance, as far as I'm concerned he can have a vote, a recommendation or the time of day when he runs for office in Hell.

Rant over. Here's what gets me. Sanders has what amounts to nothing of the Black vote already, because he's got no credibility. Not only does he miss the fact that Whites can be poor, but he misses the fact that not all Blacks are; and that racism isn't dependent upon your economic class. Sanders always answers a question about racism with a sermon on the poor vs. billionaires. He doesn't seem to notice that a Black person with a job can be discriminated against just the same. And if I were Black, that's what this rant would be about.

So having whiffed the Black vote, the major source of natural support for his Leftist giveaway policies -- poor Whites -- are being told that they can't even know what it's like to be poor. Nobody's that disconnected from Reality. Sanders has got to be trying to throw this election, or he's really that stupid, and I'm not sure which it is. His remaining support is from left-wing hipsters and artists. Very nice, compassionate people, but he couldn't win a race for dogcatcher with that alone.

This might be my last Sanders post. If he's not even going to try he's not worth the effort.

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