Monday, July 15, 2013

I am a White Man. I Have No Intention to Use My License to Kill Black Teenagers With Impunity.

I have a reasonably educated familiarity with rap music.  I know for a fact that no less than 20% of all rap songs are about something other than murdering people.  For those of us Americans of whatever race, class or geographic region who came of age in the 1990's there is nothing about hip-hop culture that has ever been Alien, Other, or menacing.  It has only ever been a routine part of our own culture.  I am reasonably certain that a photograph of my own adolescent self posing shirtless with twenty dollar bills still physically exists somewhere out in the wilds of western Nebraska.

I understand black slang with near-standard level clarity.  Mind you that I take no particular pride in this; as 'their' slang follows perfectly familiar American idioms and I'm reasonably certain that you Mr. Real America are only pretending to not understand it just for the sake of having a laugh at Those People's fantastic gutter language.  

But anyway I've already said too much.  I originally intended this post to be nothing more than the headline.  Something much pithier than what you see here. The white men of my family tried to instill in me a feeling that I was by right of birth a figure of great power and authority; a great defender of damsels and decency against a hostile universe, that we must have the same freedom to employ violence towards that end as the great organs of State power have always had, that the great organs of State power like us have always had.  But It didn't take, and I have no intention to use my license to kill black teenagers with impunity.  That is all. 

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