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View Diary: Dear Chris Hayes, The Human Face of the Republican Government Shutdown Should Not Be a Black Woman (98 comments)

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  •  You're missing it (7+ / 0-)

    Showing a Black woman (a "double other") as the face of government simply reinforces the belief on the right that government is simply there to give handouts to "others".

    We're all faces of the shutdown, but this goes back to the old trope that government only helps the poor - and for the racist right, "poor" means "lazy black person". Most of us understand how untrue that is, but this will harden the convictions of the far-right that they were correct all along.

    If you're going to show the "faces of the shut-down" show all of us. A wide variety of people. Because the right is too fucking stupid to get it any other way (and probably never will). You have to show something that will make them sit up and say "Wait - it's going to hurt ME?" because they're selfish assholes. They not only won't sympathize with the woman Hayes showed - they'll use her as a talking point. "See? Black people! That's who the government is FOR! Not ME!"

    They're idiots, but hey - that's life.

    "We have only the moral ground we actually inhabit, not the moral ground we claim." - It Really Is That Important

    by Diogenes2008 on Tue Oct 15, 2013 at 02:27:34 PM PDT

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    •  Just too wrong. nt (0+ / 0-)
      •  Okay, then let me put it this way (6+ / 0-)

        It shouldn't be JUST the one Black woman who is the face of the shutdown.

        It should be a variety of faces, including some that the racists or those in the middle can see themselves in.

        Not just one stereotypical "Here, look - a Black person being helped by government" example.

        "We have only the moral ground we actually inhabit, not the moral ground we claim." - It Really Is That Important

        by Diogenes2008 on Tue Oct 15, 2013 at 02:33:42 PM PDT

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        •  I'm struggling here. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          This is confusing and disappointing to me.

          You amay as well be teling black speakers and leaders, Hey, maybe we should be letting white people say these things! This is buying into and accepting racism in a very big self-degrading way. Not in the way that an individul might smartly acknowledge racism and act extra polite around a cop, but in a much larger, more essentaily degrading way.

          I am honestly just lost that a black man is arguing this, and getting a lot of support for it. There is just no place for "A black person shouldn't be the face of this" here - or anywhere.

          •  As I said (4+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            poco, historys mysteries, Kevskos, a2nite

            There's an old stereotype that says government is only there to give handouts to "others" - meaning mainly minorities.

            The old "welfare queen" stereotype. No matter that Food Stamps actually go mostly to White people, or that government workers are just as hard-working as anyone else - too many (and sadly, not JUST on the right) believe the bullshit that says government workers are lazy, or that only Blacks need government assistance.

            When Hayes uses a Black woman (only) as the "face" of government shutdown, it doesn't matter what she actually does, because the right will triumphantly crow "See?? We're right to shut it down! It's only for Black people, and they're lazy!"

            And don't tell me they're not watching Chris Hayes or MSNBC. They will snap up anything that reinforces their position, and spin it to death.

            It should be a range of people who are the "faces" of the shutdown, and he would be better served showing us how it will affect EVERYONE. Because it will.

            I don't think he intended to reinforce the old stereotype, but.... that's how it will be perceived by the right, and that's how they'll use it against us.

            "We have only the moral ground we actually inhabit, not the moral ground we claim." - It Really Is That Important

            by Diogenes2008 on Tue Oct 15, 2013 at 02:48:29 PM PDT

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    •  we can't base what we do on how teabaggers react (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      chicating, Little, poco, Cali Scribe

      I saw a hard working woman, moreover, one in the "national parks/monuments" we keep hearing about.

      I agree Hayes and others should show many faces of the impact of the shutdown but to say he should not show an African American woman worker because the teahadists will freak - news flash - the teahadists will freak regardless. Freaking out is the only thing they know how to do. So Hayes should let them control the narrative? Decide who is an acceptable person?

      I find this offensive - it's like saying we shouldn't talk about rape victims who were drunk, just middle class career women and virtuous wives. Or we shouldn't show leather and drag at Pride Parades, just gay and lesbian professionals and clergy.

      •  This is a woman who is (0+ / 0-)

        playing by the rules -- she has a job, she's raising a family. And because of her employer, she's being punished and demonized. Do people really think the Tea Party would have a change of heart if it was white woman Leslie Adams (name randomly chosen from my name generator on the iPhone) on that screen with the same story? No, the Tea Party contingent would be saying, "See, this wouldn't happen if you'd gotten a real job."

        There's only one rule that I know of, babies -- goddammit, you've got to be kind. -- Kurt Vonnegut

        by Cali Scribe on Tue Oct 15, 2013 at 04:11:34 PM PDT

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