A Racist Uncle is my name for a person so racist that even most White Americans will see it and condemn it.
- Paula Deen
- Don Sterling
- Dan Snyder
- Dr Laura Schlessinger
- Alexandra Wallace
- David Duke
But not, say:
- George W. Bush
- George Zimmerman
- Stephen Colbert
- Rush Limbaugh
- Bill O’Reilly
Most Whites seem to think that racism is an all or nothing thing. Calling them “racist” is like calling them a Completely Terrible Person. There seems to be no degrees of racism.
Therefore they think only extreme racists are racist. Which means most White people are not racist at all!
Yet most Whites are racist - and deep down they seem to know it.
It would account for why they come down so swift and so hard on people like Paula Deen or Don Sterling – way before Blacks can get up a proper protest. It is like they are acting from a guilty conscience or something.
Racist Uncles allow them to think racism is there and never here. For some Whites, stuff like the Klan or the South or the 1950s or Fox News functions as a kind of Racist Uncle. “I am not like them. I am not racist.”
That is why people like Madonna, Stephen Colbert or President Bush can never be Racist Uncles. For most Whites, seeing them as racist would mean seeing themselves as racist. That is a step too far. So they get a pass. Madonna for using the N-word. Bush for Katrina. Colbert for anti-Asian humour. Whites rush to their defence, make excuses, play dumb.
When Stephen Colbert made a joke about Dan Snyder hanging onto a racial slur for the name of his football team, it was a Racist Uncle joke where Snyder plays the Racist Uncle. To turn the tables and make Colbert the Racist Uncle, as Suey Park tried to do in #CancelColbert, would defeat the purpose of the joke. In fact, it would defeat the purpose of the show as an extended Racist Uncle joke about Fox News, one that allows White liberals to think, “I am not like them. I am not racist.”
Racist Aunts and Uncles are nearly always brought down by what they say, not what they do.
Don Sterling, for example, can unfairly kick out Blacks from his apartment buildings all he likes – and still remain an owner in good standing in a largely Black basketball league. But let him be heard saying something racist to his girlfriend and – BLAMO!!! – suddenly the league cannot go on with him as an owner. He has to go. Suddenly.
Because to Whites seeming racist is way worse than being racist.
George W. Bush said his worst moment as president came not when people died after Hurricane Katrina because of how he mishandled things, but when Kanye West called him a racist because of how he mishandled things.