Hate to Be Called a Racist

I once heard someone say that the definition of a Conservative is a Liberal who has been robbed. I do not know whether that is true or not, but it makes me think about a story that I’d heard about.

Mr. Smith is the owner of a local dance studio. He gives dance lessons three evenings per week to children ranging in age from 7 to about 15. He knows the children rather well and also is quite familiar with the parents of the children as he sees them as often as he does their children. Some of the older children have been coming for lessons for a few years now. Mr. Smith was recently disturbed by a story about an incident that occurred at another dance studio on the other side of town.

A person, who was described as a “male Hispanic approximately 25 years of age”, was seen lurking around the dance studio across town with unknown intentions. He had been seen by several of the parents on a few occasions who were concerned about what this unknown male may be up to. One evening, the male was seen taking photographs of the children. Two of the children later reported that this unknown male also exposed more than just his film to the startled youngsters. The parents of all of the children, as well as the owner of that dance studio, were quite concerned about the safety of the children. In addition, the owner of the dance studio was concerned about how this incident of indecent exposure and stalking of his students would affect his business.

Mr. Smith, who considers himself an “open minded, socially conscious” person was shocked by the story. Yes, he was concerned about the safety of his students as well as his business and was worried that this person or someone like him would be stalking around his parking lot too. But he was also shocked about how this male was described as being “Hispanic”. Why does race always have to come into things?

Mr. Smith’s dance studio is located in a small shopping center between a bagel store and a card shop. Further down is an insurance office and a dry cleaner. Due to the fact that his last dance lessons are over at 9 PM, his business is the only one open at that hour. Each night around 9, the parents of each of the children enter the parking lot and wait for their kids to come out of the studio. One night, at around 8:30 PM, Mr. Smith notices a car parked on the far side of the parking lot in front of his building that is occupied by a male Hispanic, approximately 25 years old. Could this be the child stalker?

Mr. Smith is initially embarrassed at himself for stereotyping the person because of his race. He wonders now if “Hispanic” is even a race at all. It seems to Mr. Smith that when he went to school years ago, there were only three races in the world – and none of them were “Hispanic”.  It is interesting, he reflects, how new races were invented since then in order to segregate ourselves more from each other and how science could be employed to delineate whatever genetic or biological differences we have from each other and then wonder why we don’t all live happily together. But wait, that suspicious male “human being” is still outside – possibly in wait for my students to exit the building. 

Mr. Smith dithers for a few minutes as the clock approaches 9PM. Maybe he should call the police. But what is he going to say to them? It is a free country right? This man in the parking lot has every right to go where he pleases, right? Maybe he is going to one of the other businesses in the shopping center. But they are all closed. Maybe he is one of the employees of one of the other stores who is just working late. But Mr. Smith is friendly with the other employees of the other businesses because he has been here for years, this man is not one of them. Maybe it is a parent of one of the children? But Mr. Smith knows all of the parents of all of the children and none of them are Hispanic.

 Mr. Smith is momentarily stunned about his realization that he must in fact be racist if none of his students are Hispanic. Maybe when this is over, he will kick out some white kid to make room for a Hispanic kid to show the world how progressive he is. He further realizes that the shopping center he is in must be owned by a racist because every business there is owned by a white male. How could he never have known this until now? He makes a mental note to petition the landlord to ensure that each business is owned by one White(him of course) and then one of each of the “protected classes” of the day: 1 Black (or African-American), 1 Homosexual, 1 Hispanic, 1 Muslim, 1 Illegal Alien and 1 Female. They will have to build an additional building in the shopping center to have enough to go around but this will sure be a progressive place.

But back to the suspicious man. Mr. Smith tries in vain for a while to concoct a plausible story in his mind that would explain the suspicious man’s presence. He then realizes that it is not up to him to try and rationalize away something that may be a danger to his customers or his business. He is interested in this revelation about how your whole perspective shifts when things directly affect you or the ones you care about.

He decides to call the police. But should he describe the male as being “Hispanic”? What if he is called a racist? Like most Americans who really do not care much at all about what race somebody is, he is more afraid of being accused of racism. Maybe he will leave out the part about the “Hispanic” appearance in giving the police a description. Plus, what if a police officer with a Hispanic sounding name answers the 911 call? He imagines the police officer saying, “What, you think that all Hispanics are child molesters?” Mr. Smith is quite squeamish about offending anyone.

Finally, Mr. Smith decides to just tell the police that there is a suspicious male… wait, he hesitates, does he believe that all males are child molesters? What kind of sexist must he be? Okay, maybe just a “subject” in a run-down looking car… am I saying that all poor people, who may have a run down car, are criminals? Okay, leave out the car part. A “subject” about 25 years… so all 25 year olds are sex maniacs then right? He dials 911 and tells the operator that there is a suspicious person in his parking lot.

“What is this person doing?” the operator asks.
“Just acting suspicious, I think he..er.. this person — may be a child stalker,” Mr. Smith reports.
“What does this ‘person’ look like?”
“I really would rather not say. Can’t you just send a police car down here to investigate and see if they can just look for anything, well suspicious?”

Finally, something clicks and Mr. Smith gives up being evasive. He realizes that this person fits the description of a subject wanted for stalking children at a nearby dance studio. He no longer feels the need to try to feel guilty. He knows how important the description is in establishing his suspicion and reports this to the police.

The police arrive at the parking lot and approach the only 25 year old Hispanic male there. The subject complains to the police that the only reason they picked him out from all the other people in the parking lot was because he was the only Hispanic. After playing that card and expecting an argument from the police, the subject is shocked when the police tell him that he is absolutely correct.

“We did pass by every single other person in this parking lot to go to you, the only Hispanic here. We singled you out solely because of your appearance and your race. You were the only person of interest here and we did in fact let everybody else go home,”explains the officer.

The 25 year old male Hispanic turned out to indeed be the wanted child stalker and he was arrested. The original complainants from the other dance studio positively identified him as the offender and this positive ID was made solely on the appearance of the man in that he looked just like the bad guy.

Mr. Smith through this valuable experience learned an important lesson about perceptions of racism versus reality.

C.R.'s View – You Buy the Next Round.

Sometimes I am convinced that even Supreme Court Justices think that our Founding Fathers, via the U.S. Constitution were really saying that “everything is someone else’s fault.”

A man buys a house and some time later learns that, due to the current market, his house is now worth less than what he owes on his mortgage. He is what they now call “underwater.” He now has a few choices. He can 1) Keep making the payment that he had legally agreed upon for his house. 2) Try to sell his house and take the loss. 3) Walk away from the house and let the bank foreclose – but who cares if he didn’t put that much down on the house to begin with – no great loss! (Thanks U.S. Big Government and the “right” to own a house. ) 4) Wonder why somebody else doesn’t bail him out.

Astonishingly, what we see happen is that these unfortunate home-investors come a-lookin’ for our wallets. (I know, I am evil and greedy – which is another issue —  but really, I’m worried enough about payin’ for my own place, let alone yours, my unfortunate friend and countryman!)

No fair! Someone else should pay. There should be a law forcing rich people to buy me my house. Why are there people who make more than me ‘cuz it’s no fair! The government should make the banks let me have my house for nothing. I know rich people who have houses! How come my neighbor gets to have a house and a new car when I can’t even afford my house! Why don’t politicians give me money to bail me out, what else do we need them for? I’m a hard working guy who well, right now, isn’t hard working because the government hasn’t made me a job yet. I know it’s all Bush’s fault and all but come on Obama, what about my stimulus check? True, the lender had to legally tell me what my monthly payment would be – like I wouldn’t’ a-asked otherwise. He even told me that if I didn’t make the payment that they would take MY house back! These greedy predatory lenders who only care about making money to pay for their own damned houses and pay their own greedy bills! Someone else should make less so that I can have more! This is America!

Look, it is no laughing matter when your house is in danger of being taken. But they don’t take it if you pay for it! How would anyone think it was any other way? I do wish though that whenever I made a bad investment that Big Government would make somebody else pay for me too.

How about  you buy stock in a company that you are hoping is going to make good profits. But the stock goes down instead! No fair. These crooked Wall Street slime! If any stock that we buy ever goes down, the Government makes your neighbor pay your money back. This is the richest country in the world. Why should I ever have to take a loss?

I go to Las Vegas hoping to make it big. Since Big Government hasn’t seen fit to make me a job, my last resort is to go to a resort and bet big. I deserve to have money! But I lose big instead. We need a Gambling Loss Recovery Bill that forces evil successful people to pay me my money back. Plus. it’s not my fault anyway that I was driven to this. Why do resort owners get to have big cars when I had to take a bus to the casino?

Why should I spend money on cable television and internet service. Do you ever see how much those companies make? Hey, send some my way. Why should I have to pay when those guys all have fancy clothes. I have a right in this day and age to have cable TV because what if I want to look for a job? And there’s no reason why my cell phone shouldn’t be free. Those phone companies have been making money for years. When is it my turn?

And do you see how much those doctors and medicine companies make? Until my doctor has to move into an apartment, I see no reason why I should have to pay him. Boo hoo. Now he sees how the rest of us are forced to live. How much money does one man need anyway? These greedy doctors. And those medicine manufacturers. Why should a single pill cost that much when they are so small – what a ripoff! They should be paying me for being a customer and using their stupid product. How come the government doesn’t make it a law saying that they have to give us free medicine, those evil cheapskate greedy medicine snobs. I could wear a stupid lab coat and look in a microscope all day you lazy do-nothings.

The problem people, is NOT that we cannot afford to pay our bills — that has been happening throughout history. The problem is looking outside of ourselves for a solution. Is this the result of a socialist nanny state? Envy and jealousy that somebody else makes more than you do and that you are owed the difference. Where else and when else in history have people expected that their financial burdens are the responsibility of someone else? This attitude has pervaded Big Government as well — who is apparently quite happy to take on the role of bail-out provider for the masses. But with money from where? And from whom?

One can see that the problem originates in Big Government’s vain attempts to continue to try to run and to try to “save” the economy that make the economy further collapse into the abyss. It’s trying to make things “fair” that is messing things up and it is believing that Big Government has that role in the first place that dooms us.

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