Crossposted from AngryBlackBitch.com.
We are not living in a post-racial political era.
We are not living in a post-gender era.
We sure as shit are not living in a post-bullshit equality for all, let freedom ring and the masses have our bread and eat it too era.
What we are living in…and some of us are suffering through…is the mess that results from decades of avoiding the issues of race, class and gender by embracing the school of tolerance rather than engaging in the hard work of social justice.
I am not a fan of the school of tolerance. It gives birth to the delusion that any one political candidate experiencing public support as she or he runs for president of the United States is somehow an indicator that American society has transcended a damn thing.
That interpretation of the 2008 race to the Democratic nomination has been debunked by the very election cycle currently being hailed as transcendent. How the hell can any pundit fix their face to ponder a post-racial America when Democrats beat Republicans in the rush to bait based on race?
How can anyone seriously discuss a post–gender America when I’ve yet to witness a political analysis of Senator Clinton’s campaign by the mainstream media that doesn’t trip over the fact that she is a woman?
Let’s keep this shit real Jeff Foxworthy style (wink).
If anyone running for public office needs to swiftly debunk claims that she or he is a Muslim…we are not post-racial.
When pundits gleefully wallow in the stankification of sexism to the extent that an on-air public apology is required…we are not post-gender.
When President Bush’s challenge to the nation to stop casually tossing out lynching threats and engaging in noose humor doesn’t even hold for a week before a moron with a microphone gets his lynch threat on in reference to the wife of a serving United States Senator and candidate for the Democratic nomination for President (Lawd, have mercy) and no one thinks for one second he’ll lose his pulpit, apologize or even grasp what he just said and how bloody inappropriate not to mention dangerous it was to say ...oh hell no, we are not living in a post-racial era.
And when political pundits verbally fumble like novices getting past first base and spend more time analyzing that ‘emotional moment’ in New Hampshire than what the heck differentiates one candidate from the other beyond their gender and race…well, we’ve come a long way baby but we still have a long way to go.
What is lost in the mix is that fact that we also have a precious opportunity to confront these issues.
Parents and teachers have the opportunity to discuss gender and sexism with some pretty good examples of how that shit is used. Put this mess out in the open and in context so that our youth can learn from it rather than continue to repeat it.
Family and friends have the opportunity to discuss race and the need to respect religious diversity. Get real about that and discuss why a picture can incite fear which will feed a bigotry that holds all of us back. Get real about why some conservatives are discussing the issues while others are speaking about Obama on the radio in some strange version of black talk (ooooh, how original…not) and drooling over the opportunity to fully give in to their insecurity-based hatred.
When we the people get post-bullshit and debate the issues facing us all, free of the corruption of bigotry and the inhibitions of fear, then we can investigate whether America is post-ig'nant.
Enlightenment isn’t something we can speak into reality anymore than bigotry is something we can simply declare to be history.