Central Park Karen proves that Racism does not exist
On the question of race …
A good intentioned lady asked me whether in the wake of the George Floyd killing, it was a good idea — necessary even, to teach black children, especially young black boys, about racism so they are not naïve to it — so they are aware of it and better prepared for it.
My reply? Absolutely not!
Why would you teach anyone about something that does not even exist?
Don’t get me wrong there is certainly a perception of ‘racism’, there is definitely ‘something’ out there. It’s the imaginary tiger outside. There is no tiger but if you say there is long enough and convincingly enough, people start to believe it and get scared. The fear is real even if the tiger isn’t.
What I mean is that the important second element of ‘Racism’ is often absent, the first element is treating someone badly because of the colour of their skin, that happens often and is a bad thing. But that makes you an asshole not a racist. You see there is a second element to ‘Racism’, the one often missing, and the one that determines if an act is actually racist or not and that is the genuinely held belief that you treat a person badly because your own race is ‘superior’.
The point I’m making is easily dismissed. I am literally splitting definitions as well as hairs after all, but this last point is significant and makes all the difference. It is the difference between seeing the real issue and dismissing it out of hand.
So what is the real issue? The real issue is a social, economic and political system founded on the need for an oppressed underclass — what you might call ‘Systemic racism’ or Slavery.
That’s right Slavery. Because it was not, as many people seem to think, ‘abolished’ ‘in 1865 (in the USA), it merely morphed and took on new forms. It moved on to a new sophistication.
Of all the well publicised racial incidents of the last few weeks — the Ahmaud Aubery killing, George Floyd’s death — the ‘Central park Karen’ incident is possibly the most revealing.
Amy Cooper, the original Central park Karen, is out walking her dog, a black man approaches her and asks her to put her dog on the lead. It is a restricted area of central park and the dog is disturbing the wildlife
The man gives Amy’s dog treats. Amy responds to his request (or his demands) to restrain her dog by informing him she will call the police and tell them ‘ an African American man’ is attacking her. She then attempts to simulate fear in an emergency call to the police. Such is the state of race relations in America today.
Fortunately the exchange was captured on the camera phone of the black man, Chris Cooper, and shows clearly that Amy Cooper was not in ‘genuine’ fear.
Ironically, it is this video evidence that actually vindicates Amy Cooper.
You see a real racist would actually ‘believe’ she was being attacked simply because Chris Cooper is black.
Amy Cooper said it herself, she is not a ‘ Racist’. She is a terrible actress though.
What is most interesting about the central park incident is that in Amy Cooper’s clumsy execution of her ‘white privilege’ we have confirmation of the existence of that most elusive of white whales.
Systemic Racism. She knows it’s there, Black people know it’s there but until now it was pretty hard to see it.
Institutional racism is very hard to prove. Systemic racism, state organised racism is even harder. Many people will acknowledge isolated incidents of racism but will be quick to point out that this does not mean the entire system is racist.
What I am saying is that it takes an entire ‘System’ to enslave a people.
America was founded on slavery and is sustained by slavery.
America grew rich on slavery, fought wars because of Slavery.
A system built up over centuries based on the need for a social, economic and political underclass does not simply disappear overnight. It is naïve to think it is a thing of the past.
A little about Slavery
Slavery starts and ends in the mind.
It is not an easy thing to enslave a people. It requires a great deal of organisation. An entire System underpinned by civil and statutory laws . It requires social, and political will. It has to make economic sense.
What makes it extra hard is that you have to somehow get buy-in from all parties. You have to convince an entire class of people that they are better off being slaves, or having slaves or allowing others to have slaves.
Brute force is not always the answer. It is counter intuitive because hurting the slave means hurting yourself — at least a little.
Say you ‘buy’ a slave at cost, and in order to get the slave to do what you want, you flog this slave to death. Well then guess what? Now you have no slave and you are out of pocket.
The original slave owners realised this quite early on. Imagine the quandary they were in, they had acquired these fellow human beings at some cost and now must inflict pain even unto death in order for them to submit and remain compliant.
Eventually some evil but enterprising slaver came to discover a tool more effective than the cane or the whip. FEAR.
Fear is what keeps a person enslaved. Fear is what keeps them in the same patterns. It was Fear that Amy Cooper was seeking to ‘weaponise’ against the black man in central park. Not her fear but his. His fear of the system she knew exists to oppress him.
It is for this purpose that the myth of Racism was invented and is perpetuated.
That is after all what ‘Racism’ is, fear. The fear of ‘other’, the fear of what is not familiar. The Fear of being victimised. This is true for white people and black.
lets call this fear, Slavery by Stick.
The truth about the lie
People of all races, colour, and creeds are the same. There have been numerous projects and studies both ways — and depending on your viewpoint you could probably make a case for whatever you want to believe.
It is my belief that only a very few nut-jobs exist today who genuinely hold the view of racial divergence much less superiority. Far too few to matter.
The point of this article is that even the early Slavers themselves didn’t believe their own racist assertions of superiority.
What we call Racism was only ever touted as justification for slavery.
Before the moral high-ground shifted, it was entirely justifiable to enslave a man on the basis he was little more than an animal. So the idea that whites were more civilised and superior to blacks was the moral justification for slavery.
You see historically ‘slavery’ was never really about racism. People of the same race often enslaved themselves.
Europeans have enslaved other Europeans, Africans other Africans.
Inherent superiority was never touted as the reason. There was no need.
The whole idea of racial superiority only arose as a way of justifying Trans –Atlantic slavery. Purveyors of the trade in human beings cited racial superiority as a way of combating any moral objections. They said, these black skinned people are not like you or I, they have no feelings. They are savage and uncivilised. Little more than beasts. In this way they were able to achieve their end. But this was never the real reason.
The reason, the real reason for Trans-Atlantic slavery, is pragmatic and simple economics. Cheap labour, to create vast wealth. The wealth of a nation. It is upon this labour that America as we know it today was founded. It is on this truth it came into being.
And the system that made it happen has never been dismantled. It exists even today all that has changed is its form, the way it looks and works.
Once you realise this and hold unto this, everything else falls into place.
Stick, Stones and Carrots
Propagating the myth of racism serves a number of purposes.
The first, to justify the trade in humans, we have spoken of already.
The second purpose is that the myth creates an atmosphere of fear and distrust that maintains the underclass in its position. Incidentally nowadays the utility of the underclass of blacks in America serves less an economic and more political function. What I mean is that since industrialisation, cheap labour is no longer needed as much. But although their direct labour is no longer needed, blacks still have political utility. Their votes are important come election time and ‘fighting’ racism is always a reliable ticket. In the same way that accusing the other side of being racist rarely goes amiss in getting that black vote.
Since the need for very cheap labour has lessened and the System no longer has much need for them, this class of blacks are often consigned to their own section of town and are largely ignored. The system does not invest in them and force is freely used to oppress them. Many are encouraged into dependence on drugs, crime or welfare. America’s jails are filled with this type of the black underclass.
It is important to point out that many other blacks in America are thriving, and form part of a large and successful middle class. With many you would even describe as ‘elites’.
This is not surprising. The ‘System’ evolved beyond just sticks and fear. It has become a sophisticated system of punishment and rewards. Sticks and carrots.
Before emancipation there was Manumission where slave owners could voluntarily free their own slaves, this was usually included in the slave owner’s Will when he no longer had need of the slave. But some slaves could also buy their own freedom.
This device, ‘incentive’, is genius because a man or woman would much rather be a slave to ‘Hope’ than ‘Fear’. To achieve this future hope or expectation a slave will work loyally and diligently giving no trouble until that hope is realised.
Many manumission slaves went on to become very successful and some were even accepted into the common society or the ruling classes. A few even went on to acquire slaves of their own.
You see that is the terrible sting in the tail of manumission. It does not come cheap. It requires that you denounce the underclass and swear allegiance to the ruling class you are joining. Often times a final act of obsequious loyalty is required to show submission to the System
I’m speaking figuratively of course. It’s not like they make you wear a dress or anything.
Let’s call this slavery by ‘carrot.’
Divide to conquer, fight the fright
Possibly an unexpected but welcome (for the slavers) side effect of the methods the System uses is to sow disunity within the underclasses.
You see individuals and groups within the oppressed blacks respond differently to the System’s methods.
Black people do not have a uniform response to the system. Confronted by fear some run to preserve their lives, others, the angry blacks, become fatalistic , they gear up for war, to confront the system and die.
Others still grow to understand the system and decide to work within the system towards their own manumission.
They achieve freedom by becoming part of the system. The same system of oppression that holds down their fellow black people.
These different responses to impulse are a catalyst for a lot of mistrust amongst blacks. The divisions that ensue have become a significant part of black culture. Each individual response gives rise to an epitaph that distinguishes a faction.
Blacks are forever calling themselves ‘Brothers’, ‘Uncle Toms’, ‘Thugs’, ‘Sell outs’, ‘Snitches’.
The recent twitter spat between popular black comedians Mike Epps and Aries Spears illustrates this point quite well.
Mike Epps in response to the Central Park Karen reports tweeted, “we got to run away from these racists” — Amy cooper was trying to scare, hurt or kill her victim by police (death by Cop)
Aries spears responded to this with derision saying black people need to “take a stand and fight against the racists”.
Don’t run. Stand your ground.
On a whole different spectrum Billionaire rapper Jay–Z called up the Governor of Minnesota to demand justice for George Floyd.
Different responses different factions, clear divisions.
Incidentally the fact Amy Cooper was trying to use the ‘stick’ on Chris Cooper clearly shows her newness to the game. I mean the guy is clearly a ‘carrot’ kinda guy. He was Bird watching in central park! That’s as middle class as it gets!
America’s current race problems are a legacy of the slave system upon which the country was founded. They are not about Racism.
Ask yourself why nothing has changed? From the declaration of independence in 1776 with the famous phrase — “we hold this truth to be self evident, all men are created equal”, to the emancipation proclamation of 1865, to the civil rights movements of the 1950s and 60s.
Race and inequality have remained stubborn issues because that is how the System is designed. With classes of people occupying different places because of skin colour.
The early slave owners realised that it is ‘fear’ that keeps a man in his place. It is fear that oppresses a people. So you have to build a system that stokes the fear, raises the target audience to a state of almost constant hysteria, because there is no logic in hysteria. If you talk about the ‘tiger’ enough if you tell stories, if you raise the pitch to a fever, no one will even stop to ask, is there really a tiger? How do you get a tiger in the middle of central park? No the fear becomes it’s own thing, a convenient excuse for every failure, the imaginary snowball that destroys every windmill*.
It was the need to create this fear that birthed ‘Racism’. Racism or rather the idea of racism is merely a tool to achieve the desired fear.
You see what is true is that there is no ‘other’ race. We are all just human.
Why do some whites mistreat blacks? Because they can. Because the system lets them — at least to a point.
The way the idea of ‘Racism’ is exploited points to the general understanding of its usefulness. Certainly the media is complicit in the spread of the fear, they pick the stories they wish to publicise, they stoke the flames, they are charged with keeping things at a fever pitch.
They get these ‘other’ people so fever pitched and angry they become incoherent. They rebel and sell themselves out, so protests become riots because you cannot protest something that isn’t there. You cannot fight something you cannot see.
Certainly some people white and black believe the ‘tiger’ of racism is real. They are scared, “get the ‘tiger’ out” they say. “Eliminate it”. “Fight it”. They go out looking for the tiger finding evidence of it everywhere and by so doing stoke the flames of the very thing they hope to extinguish.
The reason this is so is that the system, the racist system is actually not concerned with racism. Racism is just a foil, it is the smoke, individual cases are the mirror. What the system promotes, what it is concerned with and based upon, is slavery pure and simple.
What we are talking about is a clever bit of deception, the old diversion trick. Focus on the corn and you will miss the entire cornfield.
Root and branch
Systems are cold, impersonal and relentless. To dismantle a system you do not need passion or anger or rioting.
You need concentrated and organised determination. The target must remain the System and you must reform this bit by bit. Root and branch.
By all means go after the state agents in the spotlight. Go after the McMichaels who shot Ahmaud Arbery a black man out jogging. Go after Derek Chauvin and all the agents of state that had a hand in the death of George Floyd. But also follow the trail right to the root of the tree.
Remember it’s the System that needs to change and that can only happen from within.
Protesters, Black lives matter, Antifa , they say “stand with us” , “call out racism”, “fight”!
Fight what? Call out ‘individuals’ and leave the system alone?
Become paranoid and see racism everywhere and then act on the chip on your shoulder, be angry, paranoid, frustrated. Burn cars, destroy businesses, stoke the fear that white skinned people — who were never racist in the first place — feel in the presence of your anger.
Your righteous, riotous anger and the evident, subsequent violence.
The whites feel guilty and the blacks are paranoid. A dangerous mix.
There will be more racist incidents real or imagined because that is what the System is designed to do. Individuals change but the system remains.
Consider this; Derek Chauvin the officer being scapegoated for killing George Floyd had been cited for misconduct 18 times. He has only ever been mildly admonished once. Another officer involved in the same incident Tou Thao is the subject of 6 complaints including at least one relating to excessive force.
They were both still on active duty — enabled, allowed, even encouraged to keep being the sticks of an oppressive system.
Why were they still police officers? Why did the Minnesota Police department internal affairs not take decisive action on their previous citations?
Why focus on the Officers alone? What of the department heads who enabled them? What of Medaria Arradondo the police chief who should have been overseeing the departments, and who is ultimately responsible for the actions of his officers, what about Betsy Hodges the former Mayor who appointed him. What about the current Mayor Jacob Frey who could have fired him?
What about ‘You’ who elected the Mayor?
How about Ahmaud Arbery? His killers were not even arrested for over two months!
Go after Glynn County Police department who say they were advised not to make an arrest. Go after the Brunswick District Attorneys Office who deny this, Go after Jackie Johnson the District Attorney who recused herself, go after George Barnhill the circuit DA who was appointed and did in fact advise the police not to make an arrest, and then recused himself rather than do his duty.
Go after the Attorney General Chris Carr who had oversight of the District Attorneys and ought to have called in the FBI sooner.
There has to be a movement to pursue real change. The focus has to be not on Race but on the System that exploits race.
Follow the line relentlessly right to the end. Search for the truth about all things. Break the System.
[*] reference from Animal farm by George Orwell