Racism at Six

 

The boy touched everything within his reach. The cash register, the combs, the hair brushes, the hair sprays, a blow dryer and the bowl of Christmas candies. Since he was behind the counter, I assumed that he was the son of the salon owner. The space behind the counter was cramped with both the child and the beautician getting in each other’s way.

The beautician said nothing to the child as she made change of my twenty-dollar bill while silently suffering the child’s body blocks, and hand thrusts. She was blushing. She seemed embarrassed. She smiled at the boy, and at me while reaching over his body to hand me my change.

I had just had my monthly haircut. While getting my haircut, the woman told me that she recently immigrated from Russia. Her English was limited. Perhaps that was why she said nothing to the child. Clearly she was not of Cossack descent, or she would had closed the register on the boy’s puffy little fingers, as he reached for the dollar bills. I was poised to make a corrective comment to the child, when a woman emerged from a near-by cubicle.

“Joshua, what are you doing?”, she said, while gently primping her newly blown coiffure.

“Oh nothin”, he replied, as he grabbed another handful of M & M’s and mashed them into his dark chocolate cavern called a mouth.

The woman was attractively dressed. Her leather jacket had a mink collar. She wore designer jeans, Nike sneakers, and a grey Tenafly Athletic Department sweatshirt. Her nails were new and artfully designed, although needing pruning. Her hair was painfully teased, and her nose was surgically bobbed. As she approached the candy cane kid, he declared,

“I don’t like dark hair. Your hair is dark.”

“Yes”, she said, with seeming indifference to his comment.

“But mom, your hair is too dark, I don’t like it.”
I wondered if he would get some punitive action.

“Joshua, my hair is dark brown. It is always dark. “  She didn’t show the slightest bit of annoyance.
“Mom, only Chinese and the Koreans have dark hair. I don’t like it.” His voice was firm and strident. In the best of all parental worlds he would have gone through a wall. The wall was untouched.

The mother turned toward him, although she appeared to look through him toward the mirror on the wall behind her son. Perhaps she was assessing the hair color, and its possible ethnic roots. She then looked at the cashier, and then at her walled, her money, the change, and casually she walked to the door of the salon. Following behind, her son pleased, “but mom, only the Chinese and the Koreans have dark hair.”

He looked to be six years old.

White Rules

In the Blue and Red corner we have Latinos and Asian Americans and in the White corner we have WHITE Americans. In the opinion page of the November 20, 2014, Professor Zoltan L. Hajnal offered, “The democrats immigration problem”. Mr. Hajna’s basic theme was that President Obama’s proposed immigration changes would offer little electoral support for the Democratic party in subsequent elections.  How come? WHITE, WHITE,…. Mr. Hajnal is obsessed with the word WHITE.

The United States of America has many WHITES. The United States of America has lots of native born workers, that is WHITE workers. Mr. Hajnal suggests that due to the overwhelming numbers of WHITES in America, Democrats will gain little advantage gathering potential votes from Latinos and Asian Americans. Does that WHITE advantage bode well for Republicans?  That may be an electoral outcome, but of greater significance is that Mr. Hajnal has identified the malignancy that tortures our nation.

Mr. Hajnal, a political science professor, offers an analysis of voter dispositions, and in doing so, he highlights the constancy of the racial, and ethnic bigotry that exists as a national low-grade fever that in some unpredictable time frame erupts into febrile convulsions. WHITE used to describe a human is a clinical symptom of cultural illness.  WHITE as a description of a human is not only meaningless, but in fact ignores the actual properties of WHITE. WHITE is a color. WHITE carries every color of the spectrum. WHITE transmits all colors. WHITE is the blending of all colors. Does Hajnal’s WHITE American include all colors? Is that what he means by WHITE? It is time that we rid our descriptive vocabulary of humans as being WHITE, unless by that one means persons of all colors.

So What’s New?

I’ll tell you what’s new. The shoulder carry cam recorder. The renewed, and advanced police dash board camera. The enhanced sound technology in each camera. And most importantly is the requirement that all active, on patrol police officers must be wearing their camera (turned to on). Dash board cameras must be activated.

What else is new? Videos of police car chases, horrendous car crashes, traffic stops, police wrestling offenders, offenders running down highways and into the woods, 3 or more police officers attempting to subdue an offender, several officers standing around watching the tussle, and so on. At times the video is accompanied by a sound track of grunts, heavy breathing, police demanding cooperation, victim gasping for breath, cries of innocence, etc.

In sum the television audience can now view a real ‘crime’ scene while enjoying a Subway sandwich, or washing the dishes. Cameras have always been able to capture the beauty of cherry blossoms in D.C. Now we can have a live second feature of death and dying in D.C.

What is my point? My focus is not the new, but the old. Old, as in biblically old. Old as in the dna of mankind. Bigotry, and racism! Racism trumps all technology. Racism trumps all verbal expressions of brotherhood, good-will, compassion, empathy, etc. Now that we see it, hear it, and before it didn’t exist? Now we are witnesses to the event, or almost witnesses to the event. Maybe we missed the scene prior to the captured event. Maybe the camera was off, and then on, or on and then off. Maybe the video was accidentally erased, or blurry. Maybe the voice heard was not who we think it was, or maybe, just maybe everything about the data is messed up.

Once again, my point is that technology is not a cure for the overriding existence of systemic racism in our nation. Racism that generates ignorance, ill-will, fear and all too often gun shots.

HATE CRIME VS. DOMESTIC TERRORISM

The alleged gunman Dylann Roof shot 9 persons to death, and wounded several others. Dylann and the others were participating in a religious study group located in a church in Charleston, South Carolina.

Before I go any further, I must offer my praise to the apparent good-will, and Christian fellowship offered by the Black parishioners in that group. These are persons that deserve our admiration and respect. Truly innocent in their acceptance of Dylann while he sat with the group for one hour, and only then did he begin to murder the Blacks, while spouting cruel racist claims.

How bizarre to share communion with the devil? How vicious was the mindset of Dylann, as he listened to their conversation and readings. Dylann has since the arrest stated that he had second thoughts about killing the Blacks, but he needed to do it. He just had to do it – these Blacks rape white women, and these Blacks take away our country –“You have to go.” Was the motive hate, terrorism inclinations or perhaps a brain tumor. A brain tumor that finally overcame morality and fear of punishment.

Perhaps not a brain tumor, but rather years of parental training to hate Blacks. How we hope that he was mentally deranged – just plain nuts! “A monster.” If a tumor, who are we to blame. The “tumor” made me do it! If familial training then we must immediately arrest his parents as accomplices to the crime, and perhaps (G-D forbid) the Grandparents, teachers, neighbors, and other South Carolina citizens.

A possible 21 Century culprit is the mass media, particularly the Internet. The Internet that allows every type of bigotry to prosper. The Internet presents substantial content to generate distain for any race, ethnicity, religion and sexual orientation. But, how does the Internet information produce a 21 year old, unemployed, gun toting white man, and bible reading participant in a famous church in Charleston, South Carolina.

Who knows, and who cares? What! Who cares? The entire nation cares, starting with our Black President, and ending with you. All that caring. All that concern. To what end? Least we forget (I am certain that my readers have not forgotten) Ferguson, Tamir Rice (age 12), CameroTillman (age 14) and on and on. We are drowning in killing, maiming with no respite!

Now public commentators, and political persons all hail the need for forgiveness, reconciliation, understanding, “coming together”, disallow hate and revenge, even a call for a national dialogue. Multiple suggestions for Blacks and Whites to come together and speak to one another. That Blacks and Whites need to speak to one another suggests that such communication could produce a clarity of views, expression of needs and an appreciation of the differences.

The very suggestion that Blacks and Whites need to talk together reveals a total misunderstanding of the problem. Blacks do not need to dialogue with racist Whites. Blacks do not need to converse with Whites who systemically carry a sense of superiority. Blacks are not the problem in America. Native Indians were not the problem for White pilgrims, nor western settlers. Jews in Europe could talk their heads off with the superior race of German Arians, before they were sent to take a shower. A massive, caring gathering at St. John’s the Devine, or Mt. McKinley, or the Hill at Calvary will not help.

Thousands of small town hall meetings can be organized, but make certain that you require alternate seating, i.e. white – black – white – black, etc.etc. More importantly, make certain that there is plenty of coffee and donuts, and more than one bathroom. At the meeting I would disallow any conversation. Just sit next to one another for 18 minutes, have your snack and leave. Set the next meeting for the following week, and once again, no conversing, just sitting next to one another for 36 minutes. Count how many persons return, and were they white or black.

What’s It All About Alfie…

Sequester: To segregate, to set apart…

So when the Congress voted to sequester some money, they actually set aside dollars, for guns, for TSA and for other things. When the news first spoke of the Sequester I didn’t know the meaning of the word. I wondered why they used the term Sequester.  It seemed rather pompous.  Who knew what the term meant? Was I the only citizen out of 350 million that didn’t know the word? Did all others know the word, and not I?

Just prior to writing this evening I went to Webster to find the definition. How many other persons looked for, or asked for a definition of Sequester. It’s like when Rachel Maddow says ‘redound’ in one of her public service ads. What the hell is she talking about? My bell rings every time she says ‘redound’, and I think am I the only listener who finds the word awkward, and archaic.  Rachel, why not just say, ‘to give to me’, as in my folks gave me their home.

And furthermore, what is wrong or right about immigration? What is the problem? Why is it an issue? Throughout my life I believed that immigration was a good thing – actually a natural thing for people to do. People loved to immigrate to the United States.  If you loved in a village in Russia, and you got bored you immigrated. Tired of eating potato in Ireland, you backed an old suitcase and immigrated.

For most it was quite an adventure, and fraught with hardship, but they did it anyway. Foreign born were thrilled to float on by the Statue of Liberty, and they thanked their God that they arrived safely. My neighborhood was full of immigrants, or at least the children of immigrants. To be an immigrant suggested courage, industry and the ability to speak a foreign language.

Aside from some left over Indians, the rest of the nation were immigrants. Well maybe the Pilgrims were not immigrants, but there were none in my neighborhood. Eleven million illegal, mostly Latin immigrants and the nation is aghast. Well not the entire nation, but at least a bunch.

Real immigrants like Jewish, Irish, Italian, German, and Dutch, had an Ellis Island. A not so modest proposal: Round up all of the illegal Latins and bus them to Ellis Island. Delouse them, check their teeth, and even change their names if their name is hard to pronounce and be done with the problem. One caveat! Do not round them up at the same time, because who will be left to pick the lettuce in Yuma, Arizona, or wash the pots and pans at Le Cirque, or clean the toilets at Kennedy Airport.

Now for the mentally ill who are killing Americans, or intend to kill Americans, or might be inclined to kill Americans. As a clinical psychologist of 46 years, I have consulted with several thousand patients, and not one of them fits the bill as an assassin. Perhaps one might turn sour, but as of April 26, 2016, not one of those thousands should be denied their Second Amendment rights.

It is relatively easy to identify a mentally ill killer. Wait until he or she (rare if ever a she) gets a gun, or a bomb or multiples of both, and kills one or more persons without a visible motive. There you’ve got them. That person is most likely mentally ill or at least mean spirited. Maybe you will discover a motive and whether you do or not – they are very disturbed and not to be trusted with a gun or a bomb.

I am only one of thousands of psychologists, and psychiatrists, and as such some amongst us might be  able to pinpoint a potential killer, that is a mentally ill killer. But with privacy laws, and possible law suits, one must be careful not to pinpoint wrongly. A diagnostic classification of bi-polar disorder, schizophrenic, manic-depressive, sociopath, or aggressive personality may be the guideline for Second Amendment denial.

Using such a screening would require the professional, or perhaps the insurance company to reveal the identity of the potential killer, and we could then refuse them the right to bear arms, or bombs. One of the benefits of scanning the nation for potential mentally ill killers is that it gets almost hysterical, unanimous support from both ‘sides of the aisle.’ With such support our mentally ill will now be given more treatment services, more grants for the study of mental illness, and more drugs.

The mass murders have little saving grace, but for the current frenzy to open the treasury, find the mentally ill and cure them, or if necessary lock them up. The reason I suggest to lock some of them up is that as has been repeated over and over again, if someone wants to get a gun or a bomb they can get one. It is pretty easy. That applies to the mentally ill, as well as to the Mafia.

It is just not easy being a Black President!!!

I have never been in favor of grading children in Physical Ed. I am in favor of Physical Ed or just gym in my day, but no more grades. The physical requirements, and athletic skills that would earn an A, are only available to Jocks.

Could you earn an A for just attending on time, with sneakers, proper attire and civil behavior? Perhaps a B if you are consistently wearing pants, or jeans, but all else is acceptable. If it were possible to teach a child how to hit better, or shoot a jump shot, or run faster, or do 50 perfect push-ups or at least 6 chin –ups, then I say go for it. But Phys. Ed doesn’t do that. There is little or no teaching of athletic skills in the typical gym class.

Why not begin every school day with 30 minutes of calisthenics, or maybe just 15 minutes. That is the exercise portion of the school curriculum. If a child chooses to go to the gym to play a sport, or learn to shoot a bow and arrow, that is their choice.

But what about the Phys. Ed teacher – what are they to do? Nowadays the Phys.Ed teacher is trained in the curriculum of Sex Education, and that class should be required of all students, except for the student who is too embarrassed, or already promiscuous. No, all kidding aside, I am in favor of teaching students about their anatomy, sexuality, STD’s, safe sex, sexual abuse and even abstinence ( at least for awhile). For most students their primary schooling regarding their sexual needs and behavior takes place in their bedroom and bathroom. Advance training typically occurs at a party, or in a car, or in someone else’s bedroom or bathroom.