Racism - From The Outside - An Analysis


Can a white person comment on Racism ? Can a Christian have a valid view on Islamophobia or AntiSemitism ? Can a man write about Mysogyny ?

I've always thought : Yes.

Have we the life experience to do so ? No.

But can we empathise ? Yes, of course, if we have a soul.

This was brought home to me recently from a strange, right-out-of-left-field source : Lee Boucher, of CinemaWins. How strange, how surreal, that a simple movie review should produce such an inciteful damn-nailed-it stream-of-consciousness commentary on the issue of racism.

CinemaWins (as opposed to CinemaSins) if you didn't know, is a YouTube channel which reviews films, with the spot-on analysis and commentary coming from a deep knowledge of film-making techniques.

Recently, they reviewed Jordan Peele's 'Get Out', the superb (I thought) 2017 film starring British actor Daniel Kaluuya, which starts as a psychological drama, ends as a psychological horror, but is throughout a tale of everyday casual, even liberal, racism. It was a huge success, costing a mere $5m to make, while (so far) grossing $250m in sales.

The sub-text through the film is from a black perspective, the reviewer Lee Boucher is white - and this is how he addresses that issue, in an honest manner :
I, a non-black person, more specifically a white man, an unqualified to truly understand the emotional impact and subtle statements about system racism in 'Get Out'.

I still say dumb things, there's a chance I'll say something about this film that's racist or sexist or classist, my goal is to always be learning.

And I know, some of those things aren't intended as insults at all, but if it offends or makes the receiver uncomfortable, it doesn't matter what the intention was. No-one wants to be defined by one thing, whether it's being skinny, smooth, tall, gay, black. When we reduce people to one or a few characteristics they hear all the time, we remove their humanity.

'Ignorance' is the tidiest, cleanest little wrap-it-in-a-bow way to describe treating someone differently because of something they can't change about themselves.

This movie does a great job of illustrating why people get upset over things that seem inconsequential or banal to us [whites]. It's never just THAT one thing, THIS one time. It's everything. It's death by a thousand cuts, which is why that one ignorant joke matters. And why we need to correct it.

Some people are just jerks regardless of skin colour, some things are just coincidence, some just ignorance. But that doesn't mean we should ignore the result of that.

A lot of this casual racism is defined as micro-aggressions. I just call it crappy stuff we all need to stop doing. If you lack a filter, learn one.

Systemic racism affects people, to this day. And is impossible to deny. Slaves built the White House. A black President getting voted in doesn't change that fact.

This isn't about victimhood, it's about a huge dirty stain on America, as well as the rest of the world, that no one really knows how to begin to fix. But until fairly recently, we were barely trying.

I've said this 1,000,000 times before : It's easy to ignore things that don't affect you. I doubt any of you self-identify as racists and probably aren't 'classic racists', whatever that means.

I get that no one likes being preached at and told you're wrong about something.

If you're tired of hearing about it - imagine how tired people are of living it.
Damn near pretty much nailed it.

I highly recommend you watch the review video in full. It's only 14 minutes. Go on.

No comments