Liberals treat dogs like people, Conservatives treat people like dogs

Wednesday, December 6

It is not a term of endearment

I was watching Clerks 2 this weekend, and a funny political issue came up. Randal drops a 'porchmonkey' bomb on a black couple. You can imagine it doesn't go well, as he explains his grandmother used it as a 'term of endearment'. After a few minutes, Randal concedes "come to think of it, maybe she was a racist".

This is funny because it is true, and seems to have a glorious history in politics. See, I come from Arizona... the land of super bad governors. Before felon Fife Symington was around, we had Evan Mecham. Even Mecham was famous for being a racist... and almost unfairly.

I say unfairly because he was bagged as a racist for putting MLK day to a vote. Frankly, that was the prudent thing to do... and he was simply the first to do it. It went to popular vote and got voted down. Not because people didn't want an MLK day, but because crafty racists split the vote creating two issues. So, while some 70% of Arizonans wanted an MLK day, neither ballot initiative got more than 50%. This was a very very big deal. Arizona lost conventions and was threatened to have the Super Bowl pulled if they didn't pull an MLK day out of a hat.

This is why I say unfairly, now let's get to the racist part.

See, it came to light that Mecham was fond of the term 'pickaninny'. Surely, you know this as a diminutive for blacks. Mecham claimed it was a term of endearment used by his grandmother, and in no way reflected any kind of racism. Don't worry, we impeached his ass. It was for something else, but we got him.

Fast forward a few years to my new home in Colorado. As a reader, you may know I have taken issue with the leadership of Colorado University at Boulder. Here was the best part. It was found out that leadership at the school had called rape victim Katie _______ a 'cunt'. Classy, huh? The best part comes after this, though. Instead of censuring this behavior, the delightful and criminally incompetent University president Betsy Hoffman said the C word was used as a 'term of endearment in Chaucer's time'. Really? So was slavery, genius. Anyhow, thank god, she got fired.

What have we learned? Nuttin! Just this fall presidential hopeful, racist, and sister beater George Allen called a man of Indian descent 'macaca'. In brief, he called the dark skinned guy a monkey, stopping his press conference to point the guy out. Sadly, that guy almost won the election.

I guess what I am thinking is that Kevin Smith is known for the best and most racy dialogue in all of modern film. Yet, his 'porchmonkey' is hardly as offensive as what our leaders are saying.

Last thought. I work with a dude who liked to use the term 'zipperhead'. Not knowing what it meant, he said it was diminutive slang for Asians. I did some research, and that does not appear to be the case. Still, I told him if he runs for office not to use the term. Whatever 'zipperhead' means, it is surely not a term of endearment to anyone.

I wrote this a few hours ago, and have been thinking about it. Allow me to close with this. Anytime you have to qualify a comment with the words 'it is a term of endearment', it probably isn't.


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