You know when you just hear something and it puts a cloud over your day
I was grabbing a snack on my break. There was a gathering of older folks, probably 70+ having coffee and donuts while I was in line for my bagel and coffee. They were talking about Obama and corrupt Chicago politics…all stuff I agreed with. Someone mentioned Oprah being connected to Obama and one of the men said, “her fat a** should be on a plantation.” Yes. He said that. My heart sank. I was about to confront him and my timid side kicked in and I thought maybe I had misheard him. Nobody else seemed to react. It was noisy and crowded in there. I am just at a loss that people can speak these words, can think these thoughts. I live in Connecticut too… on the coast, not far outside NYC where people tend to be very progressive. I have not encountered many racist attitudes (though I know they exist). It was just such a harsh thing to hear. I mean, of all people I really dislike Oprah and I feel that her exposing people to New Age teachings is just a tragedy…but to make such a statement about her based on race…I am disgusted. I am back at my desk now…regretting that I didn’t pull that man aside and ask if I heard him correctly. May God change the hate in his heart and replace it for love all his people. Sigh, I just had to post this…maybe just as a reminder to myself how hateful we can be to our own brothers and sisters.
You know when you just hear something and it puts a cloud over your day
That’s disgusting. Rasicm just makes me sick.
I am so sorry you heard such blatant racism. It’s a plague that hurts all of us, Black and white and brown. We’re all the lesser for it. You are right to be upset.
I to, am sorry you had to hear that. It’s definately one of those things that will put you off for the rest of the day. I can totally understand wishing you had said something, but if it makes you feel any better, ther probably isn’t a whole lot you could’ve said that would’ve changed his racist feelings. Not much outside of the hand of God can heal such a blatantly racist heart.
Thanks guys… I mean just dissecting what he said, it’s like…so you really want to see another human being enslaved?! Really? Ugh. I guess I haven’t realized how lucky I have been to be exposed to very little racism in my life. Probably based on where I live and the type of people I surround myself with. I was thinking, wow some people probably over hear stuff like this all the time. How do you deal with it? My husband visited his brother in Arkansas and he said it is so widespread down there…his brother even hung a confederate flag in his dorm room (he is not Catholic and went to a “Christian” college). His brother is not an intellectual history buff and he is a CT native…so its not like he was doing it in some scholarly way.
Ugh, I dunno, my feathers are just so ruffled today.
I agree that racism it utterly disgusting. It’s never okay to judge someone based on the color of their skin, or to treat them differently.
While I don’t in any way want to condone or excuse what he said (People need to be held accountable for their words), it’s not uncommon for people who are utterly frustrated and angry by something someone was consistently done that they feel is truly dispicable, it’s not uncommon to turn to the most hateful insults and things you can think of to heap on that individual.
Basically, I sincerely doubt he was racist, approved of slavery, or anything. He was probably just so absolutely frustrated by this woman, that he wanted to throw as many insults at her as he could.
We should pray for him, because he does need to love people he may disagree with. And not throw such horrible insults at people.
Whitacre-Girl I totally agree with you…we so often speak out of frustration. I am sure he is not a wicked man, but the devil usually catches us in a moment of weakness and makes us spew hate. It was just the way he said plantation…it conjured up such an image and it made me so infuriated.
I too, did not grow up in a racist household and whenever I hear someone say something derogatory based on race, it makes me so angry…I think also it is generational to an extent…I know my grandparents time, racism was rampant b/c it was before all the antisegregation laws were enacted…so racism was just “accepted”…Luckily, my grandparents were not racist at all so it never was passed down to us…Racism is really ignorance…
I don’t blame you in the slightest. My dad often makes comments like this about Oprah and Obama when he is very frustrated, but I know he is in no way racist (and was even belittled because he wasn’t a racist when he was a child in the south). He just has his moments of weakness, and I have to bear with him when it happens.
You know I was just about to climb up on my high horse and say that I grew up in a house of Italian immigrants and Europeans have a totally different out look on race and then I remembered something - my MIL, who was also raised in Italy once stated to my husband that my family was trash because we are from Southern Italy (just outside of Rome) and she is from Northern Italy and therefore better. Now, if you saw me you would see that I am very pale and have blue eyes, as is the rest of my family…yet there is apparently a race-related bias in Italy (the more Southern you are…the closer to Africa perhaps?) I had never heard my mom mention this until my MIL made the nasty statement. So I guess every society has its ignorance…must be a flaw from the fall. We can get so far away from love so fast, all of us.
So here is something to ponder… if those people are holding the same attitudes you hold in other areas… could they be wrong there as well?
I’m not saying Chicago politicians aren’t often corrupt but there are a lot things floating around about our President that are being started by these same people with little or no factual basis. Just like their racism, they don’t question it, they just believe it.
I am sorry you heard that today, I had a similar experience recently. My family and I were out having pizza and this other couple stopped by and said Hi because they had 3 sons older than ours and were making comments on how they had considered 4 as well. They seemed pretty nice and sat a few tables away.
While eating I heard one of the older sons mention something about the President in a positive light when the father when ballistic… and I quote “Obama is trying to turn this nation into a socialist nation, he is a socialist, a communist fascist. What makes us strong is our freedom and he is trying to take that away… there is a reason we won the war and he wants to turn is into the USSR… do you want to live in France?”
There so many errors in this statement I also got up and said something. First of all you can’t be a socialist communist fascist. Fascism is a rightwing ideology, a commie fascist are 2 contradicting terms. Some people note that the Nazi were “socialists” but that is just how the name was translated, they killed all the socialist and communists because they were fascist… anyway it completely ruined my night to have met someone so nice to hear such ignorance come out of their mouth… and how he got from the USSR to France I don’t know… but obviously he didn’t understand anything about what he was saying and yet teaching that ignorance to his son, just like the ignornant racist you heard today probably taught it to his…
I have to tell you that I am up on politics and I feel that Obama is bad news. His record on life is really all I needed to see to know that he is not a man who values life or liberty. Abortion rights and civil rights go hand and hand…I suggest some reading by the awesome Alveda King or Father Groechel who was a strong ally of civil rights movement. Also, I have seen first hand the way Oprah pushes her New Age garbage on housewives and mothers to spread to thier families…and you will never get me to be a fan of hers. That said, I would give my life to make sure nobody EVER tried to put them or another human being on a “plantation” as this man had stated.
I really do follow through with all that I hear and like I said…Obama is not my cup of tea. I do not get swept up in progpaganda beause there is enough truth to cause alarm. For instance, I recently got a forward from a family member about a new bill that all guns had to be itemized on tax returns…I looked into it and saw it was a recycled urban legend- though it was presented in the forward very convincingly. I even looked up NRA documents to verify it was not true and then sent out a correction to the person who sent me the forward and told them its best not to create hysteria and just to focus on the real fears we should have.
First, I agree that the comments made about Oprah were wrong. As much as I can’t tolerate the women, I would rather ignore her, and encourage others to do the same.
Second, to Joe, … I assume that with your apparent knowledge of what it takes to be socialist, fascist, etc you are not in favor of much (if not all) of what Obama is trying to do. So I hope you encouraged that family to read a bit more, and look into what Obama and his ilk are doing. That won’t be easy with the lack of transparency.
If we stick to the facts, and are civil… well, Obama will be out in 2012, and many many in congress and the senate will be out in 2010.
From your lips to God’s ear…I pray!!:gopray2:
The Confederate flag is not a racist flag. Many brave Christians died under its banner in defense of their homeland and their families. Robert E. Lee himself was known as a devout Christian… When I was a child my father used to tell me: “The farther South you go, the more Confederate flags you see, the more Christian folks there tend to be.”
While I don’t think it was right to make a racist comment that she should be on a plantation, I really don’t think that the rest of her life on a farm or other place of hard labor would make up for how she’s mislead people into kooky things.
EDIT: It has NOTHING to do with her skin color…there’s a good number of people deserving of hard labor who run the gamut of race and ethnicity.
This kind of stuff is not going to end until people stop giving in to their cowardice. You may not have changed his mind, but you would have shown an example of moral courage in the defense of right and the chastisement of evil had you spoken out.
You didn’t think you misheard him. You knew exactly what you heard. This was the rationalization you used to justify backing down. At least be honest with yourself and with us.
You should be regretting your lack of action. But pulling him aside would have been useless. You should have loudly and publicly embarrassed them. As in, when you heard what was said, you get right near their table and cry out loudly, “Did I just hear you say that Oprah’s fat a** should be on a plantation? Do people really still think that way in the year 2009? Seriously?”
And before you try to tell me that I wouldn’t do that, I did just that in my workplace. An old man who worked with me told me a long story about how his uncle got screwed over in some business deal, and said that whoever had “Jewed” his uncle. I looked right at him in shock, and said, loud enough for everyone on crew to hear, “Did you really just say that? Don’t you realize how prejudiced that is? I can’t believe anyone still talks that way in the 21st Century!” I can tell you he never uttered that kind of disgusting sentiment at work again!
Speak Up, I really admire you because I have struggled my whole life with being really timid. I have to say, though, I understand your frustration with the rest of us, but I do think you have to be patient with us. I know that patience & silence like ours can allow hate to fester, but sometimes people are caught off guard & don’t know how to react when something happens.
You were pretty harsh with MercyMia when you know very little about her or her life circumstances. She mentioned she hasn’t been exposed to this kind of vitriole before. Next time she will probably be more prepared. Maybe her parents always stressed you should never cause a scene or speak up to elderly people. Maybe she is wired differently than you.
I do understand your frustration, but we all have different fears, weaknesses, strengths & gifts. I am truly thankful for yours, & that you use them in such admirable ways. Please pray for me & people who are truly timid like me (I’m not saying MercyMia is necessarily as timid as I am). I think of St. Peter denying Christ often. I practice speaking up & pray about it a lot. I pray that I don’t fail when it’s really important & I’m able to do what is right.
I think a few hard years’ labor would do Oprah Winfrey a world of good. Nothing wrong with what the man said in my opinion, it doesn’t appear to have been a racist remark.
Funny how in our politically correct modern world any suspicion or hint of “prejudice” or “stereotyping” results in massive outcry. I never seem to hear any outrage about the millions of babies aborted worldwide each year, however. Don’t play into the media’s game, this is the same “victim card” the homosexual lobby uses to advance its own twisted agenda.
*Hi Mia We’re all works in progress. :o You saw that today, and it’s so sad that people still think this way. I am not sure we can ever change people, but we can build people up to a better way of thinking.
Here is today’s reflection from www.wau.org…if you scroll halfway down the page, it reminds me of your situation today. *