Monday, August 15, 2011

Black or White, We're All the Same

White people used to see a lot of black faces on TV complaining about the inequity of our economic system. We didn't pay too much attention to them at the time because we believed what the media and the Republicans were telling us about government entitlements (welfare and food stamps).

We saw all those black faces on our TVs complaining about job discrimination and unfair wages, but we didn't pay too much attention at the time because we weren't black, we weren't discriminated against, we had jobs, and we believed what the Republicans were telling us about minorities - those lazy people who milked the system for government hand-outs.

The white people (being a majority) were the privileged ones in our society (we always got hired first and were paid more), and we were taught that it was the minorities and immigrants who were the lazy thieves, who lived out of our pockets, and who caused us all our unnecessary trouble by filing all those "frivolous" lawsuits.

And "those people" had the god-awful nerve to call us racists too! How dare they!

As the majority of the population, we weren't necessarily racists, but we may have been prejudiced by the media propaganda and the Republican political machinery for reporting their slant on the poor and down-trodden in this country. The Republicans turned us (the whites) against them (everyone else) by having us believe that it was all their fault for not improving their own lot in society.

The Republicans drove the wedge between the middle-class and poor, turning one class against the other - divide and conqueror - always being the strategy to keep the powerful white elitists in control. The white folks believed these powerful people because they were all like them (white), and so therefore, they must have been telling them the truth.

The Republicans made the issue about "people of color", rather than just economic status, because once that hadn't been such a huge issue for white people. When we once thought of unemployment, we though of lazy black winos, because most white people had jobs paying a living wage at that time, and the media and Republicans had us believing their lies.

But recently, over the past several years we've seen the difference between our white masters and all those poor black people. And we realized that it wasn't color that divided us, but our economic status. Poor white people were labeled as "trailer park trash", and I need not say what minorities were accused of being.

But now, during this Great Recession, with millions of white people who previous worked hard all their lives, we see that they too are also being accused of being lazy freeloaders by the elitists, just because they had been laid off from their jobs and were also forced onto the government dole to survive.

And it was the white elitists who also wanted us to think that illegal immigrants took all the jobs that we wanted, because now there are so few jobs for anyone. But in reality, the jobs were outsourced to the Chinese, who might be a minority here, but make up the largest percent of the global population.

And while the ranks of white people have joined the class of poor and share poverty with the minority population, we hear an emerging group of black Republican political leaders preaching what the powerful white elitists have been shoving down our throats for the last 200 years.

So, now that THEY (black GOP politicians) have a good-paying job, have a title, wear a suit, and have a little power, the whole political landscape has changed. It's just like when any poor drunk man in the gutter needs help; or if they belonged to a union for healthcare insurance to provide for his family (like Glenn Beck did with AFTRA). They changed their position on economic inequity after THEY THEMSELVES became wealthy or obtained positions of power and "respect" (whether it be just from honest hard work, or because of incredibly good luck, or both). They now walk among, and brush elbows with, the very people who once cruelly oppressed them and unfairly criticized them for their class in society.

Drunks become conservative talk show hosts. Trailer park trash become rock stars. Lazy black men become NBA's most valuable players. Poor men become rich men. Successful men becomes the haters of failed men.

Now we have a handful of black men on TV accusing millions of white people (and black people) of being lazy and collecting welfare. My, have the tables turned! And in the next 50 years it's predicted that whites will become a minority in this country...Hispanic children in California already dominate the demographics there.

So, maybe those lazy black men (whose ancestors picked cotton 14 hours a day under the hot humid Southern skies) weren't so lazy after all. Maybe they were discriminated against for jobs, and maybe they were FORCED to go on the government dole for their very survival. And maybe that's why a disproportionate group of black and Hispanic men are in prison for engaging in criminal activities - to earn money to live on, because they weren't given the opportunity to wear a suit to work....IF they were ever given a job by the wealthy white elitists.

The white elitists have used race to divide the country for two centuries, providing the best economic opportunities for the whites. And it wasn't until minorities joined labor unions that they overcame the discrepancy in job opportunities and pay. And because people of color make up such a large portion of union membership these days, the Republicans like to literally use the face of the labor unions to disparage those that are represented by the Democrats.

Whites have left the unions over the years, both voluntarily as they moved on to white-collar jobs, or because their jobs were outsourced to China and Mexico. Many whites were forced to take low-paying jobs at McDonald's and became "trailer park trash" when the local factory moved overseas for cheaper labor. Many local communities became ghost towns. Whites took the jobs that only blacks were once relegated to do. Whites were forced to go on the government dole when THEY TOO were discriminated against for age (or for just being presently unemployed). Whites were forced to accept welfare and food stamps because corporate CEOs found ways to increase their executive pay and corporate profits without hiring them.

Whenever I see an old black and white movie on TV (no pun intended) from the 1940s, the whites had all the good jobs, and many dressed glamorously and were rich and drove the fancy cars. The blacks were always the maid or butler. Now Africa-American culture is more intertwined than every before in our media, music, the workplace, and even in our politics. They are now mainstream (except for maybe in Tea Party Country, such as in some small pockets of Kentucky and Georgia) Unlike the 1930's of the Deep South, now when we see a black man on the street wearing a suit, we don't stop and stare. It's "normal".

A young black man in Hollywood could have his shoes shined by an old white man, but it doesn't matter what color they are, the shoe shine "boy" will always pay a higher tax rate than the movie star.

"Those people" (successful African-American men) are just as normal these days as are any lazy unemployed white bum who collects a government hand-out. Michael Steele, Herman Cain, and Allen West all work for the white enlists now; they don't give a damn about ANY poor people. They're just like Glenn Beck, because they themselves aren't therefore, just because THEY survived and prospered, everybody else must be a lazy free-loading bum without any boot straps.

Ironic, how we've come full circle. I just hope that when the Hispanic community out-numbers the whites in 2050, they won't take all the jobs that whites want to do! (sarcasm) But I'll be dead by then, so I won't be around to witness that. And besides, I'm already a lazy white unemployed food stamp bum now anyway. The Republicans made sure of that, and Fox News made sure you knew that.

It's always been a class war being waged by the rich against the poor. And today, the poor are getting hammered good. Whenever I look into a mirror, I don't see a black man or a white man, I just see a poor man.

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