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I saw this picture on Twitter this morning (HT to Goldie Taylor who Re-Tweeted it) and it was so shocking that I immediately thought it had to be a fake.  Unfortunately, I don't think it is.

I sent the picture to my best friend who is not political at all and who usually replies with a witty and humorous response whenever I send him various things I find on the internet.  His one word response to this picture: "Racists"

I figured that this picture would go viral and would be all over the internet, Twitter, Daily Kos etc. but since it hasn't I figure I would share it here because I'm still thinking about it 8 hours later. The fact that this hasn't spread, like I thought for sure it would, tells me that other people who've seen this don't find it as surprising as I do.

I really don't have much to add, as this picture really is worth a thousand words, other then to provide a little background as to source of the photo.

I asked people to think about their experiences, questions, hopes, dreams, laments or observations about race and identity. Then, I asked that they take those thoughts and distill them to just one sentence that had only six words. People took the cards with them and mulled over the assignment. I hoped that a few might send them back to me via email or through the U.S. Postal Service.  I tried to be realistic, set low expectations and then held my breath. Well, much to my surprise an awful lot of people took the bait.

Dozens of those little postcards started arriving in the mail every week and bit by bit, more and more of those little six-word “essays” piled up in my inbox from all over the country, and then amazingly from all over the world.  I’ve heard from people in Australia, Afghanistan, London, Chile, Belgium, South Korea and Abu Dhabi.

The submissions are thoughtful, funny, heartbreaking, brave, teeming with anger and shimmering with hope. Some will with make you smile. Others might make you squirm. And there are a few that might make you wonder why they deserve a place on the website’s Race Card Wall.
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Comment Preferences

  •  I learned today that White Privledge means (23+ / 0-)

    never having to ask a store clerk to unlock your preferred Just for Men© Brush-In Color Gel.

  •  At the risk of getting falmed... (6+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    doc2, secret38b, ladybug53, crose, VClib, Vetwife

    <puts on fire-retardant undies>

    Do we know why those packages are being locked up? Do only black men use that product? What if it's the preferred color treatment for goth kids who want the blackest possible hair and they're shoplifting it?

    It could be racist. It could also be something completely benign. Has anyone contacted the store and asked why they did this?

    Spite is the ranch dressing Republicans slather on their salad of racism

    by ontheleftcoast on Tue Jul 30, 2013 at 04:09:46 PM PDT

    •  We don't even know if this is real. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      It was a submission to a website. There is no store named, or address, or date, or anything else to identify it as real. So either it is just a stunt intended to spur discussion, or there is really a shelf that looks like this somewhere. Until and unless we know that it is real, and that the locking was based on racism, it is premature for anyone to get upset about it.

    •  I try to see all sides & I debated posting on this (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      From what I can tell, the color in question is 'Jet black' and Just for Men only puts a picture of a black man on that particular color.  The rest use white models.

      Regardless of who the management is attempting to deter, the optics of locking only that one color is terrible and the decision to do so is at best completely insensitive.

      •  What I object to is the assumption of racism (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        cap76, eru, freerad

        But if I'm honest about it I'm objecting to myself being called a racist. Not because I put that lockbox on that product but because I probably would've done something similar and had no clue that it was an issue.

        That's another aspect of privilege, not that as a white man I don't have to ask for the lockbox to be removed but I wouldn't have to think about the impact of putting it on the box in the first place. I looked at it purely as an economic choice, "Problem: product is being stolen by someone. Solution: lock up that product" That's the beginning and end of the thought process. Not one nanosecond of time was spent on "Would anyone mind that it would look like we're targeting black men if we did that?"

        Thanks for posting this article. I hope something positive can come from this, that people can be kicked in their mental behinds and look at the social aspects of our actions.

        Spite is the ranch dressing Republicans slather on their salad of racism

        by ontheleftcoast on Tue Jul 30, 2013 at 04:48:16 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I think you hit it on the head (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          ontheleftcoast, mint julep

          The intentions of whomever decided to put that security device up might have been completely pure.  The customer who would purchase that product, however, can't be feeling all that great that he has to ask a store employee to unlock only his specific color.  Regardless of the situation, the feeling of being singled out sucks even in small doses so it must really feel horrible if it is a daily experience.

  •  As a Black woman (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    ontheleftcoast, cap76, mint julep

    I'm going to admit that it took me a minute to figure out what was going on, and the first thing that I thought when I realized that the box with the black guy on it, was it's a deterrent from being stolen..... Maybe something is wrong with me, cause I didn't see any racism there.... Now, I will have all kinds of thoughts, that I would NOT normally have.... This makes me sad....

    May today be greater than yesterday, and tomorrow be greater than both! Go Ravens!

    by secret38b on Tue Jul 30, 2013 at 04:43:18 PM PDT

    •  One more thing (0+ / 0-)

      If it's real, at least they didn't cheapen the price....

      May today be greater than yesterday, and tomorrow be greater than both! Go Ravens!

      by secret38b on Tue Jul 30, 2013 at 04:45:11 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  As a white male I don't know what that is like (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      mint julep

      to have to face additional scrutiny because of my race.  

      One thing I have learned from the Zimmerman Trial and it's aftermath,  is that life experience can radically alter ones perception of the same event.  I don't necessarily agree with my friend who called the people responsible for the additional security racists because like you point out this might have been a completely by the numbers decision by some pencil pusher.  I am starting to appreciate though how the person who has to ask that clerk to unlock his hair coloring gel feels having been singled out probably for the umpteenth time that day.

      •  I'm guessing they would buy it somewhere else. (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        cap76, Vetwife

        If that picture is real I'm thinking if I were a black man and saw that there is no chance I'd make that purchase there.
        I might feel singled out for the umpteenth time but I'd have some choice on this one.
        I'd let them know.

        I am a white woman but I can't see how any store manager could not see how insulting that looks. Maybe they don't care, don't mind losing customers, figure they'll gain more racist customers, like the statement it makes.
        If it is real.

  •  I had to look for a sec to get it (0+ / 0-)

    but sometimes racism is very subtle.  Whatever the reason, unless fake..the entire hair color section should be locked.  Assuming it is real.
    I am hoping it was the color was being stolen but then again the manager needs to be contacted....a sick joke by a racist stock person could also be a possibility.  whatever, in these times, singling out a color for any reaso is not acceptable...people are not sure who is stirring a racist theme or not.  

    We the People have to make a difference and the Change.....Just do it ! Be part of helping us build a veteran community online. United Veterans of America

    by Vetwife on Wed Jul 31, 2013 at 05:54:35 AM PDT

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