Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Why Do I Even Try?

Johanna of Comics Worth Reading:

I sympathize with your concerns, but your attitude and attack methods aren't appropriate for my blog. This debate won't continue here.

My concerns? My attitude? Well I don't find a need to give the instant benefit of the doubt to a white American male who decides the Jungle Girl tropes need not to be lost for posterity. Revives it. And in doing so slides head first into a pile of aversive racism and spikey, painful, disgusting stereotypes. The link to the conversation is here.

Well, conversation is me terming things politely with a shiny sugar layer. I pointed out the very idea of a Jungle Girl running around in leopard print, far less two, far less two where the blonde is the savior and the black woman is the avenger, is just FILLED with fail in and of itself. And Johanna felt the creators should automatically be given the benefit of the doubt. That I should see what they had to say and how they presented the comic - even though everything they've said so far about the comic, and the images presented and their own comments all influenced my attitude towards them.

Even after I linked her; How To Write About Africa, if she even read it, didn't clue her in that everything the creators had been saying about 'raising awareness' and 'doing a good turn' and 'getting the word out' and 'bringing in the REAL WORLD' and 'all those good charities', alongside images of half naked, painted, black faces in a jungle on the covers - all of that didn't give her a clue.

It's much easier, after all, for her to reach for the tone argument because I won't pull my punches.

Heaven forbid someone white, far less white and female, have a conversation about topics where they feel un-knowledgeable and/or uncomfortable. Also of note? Anger is always an attack - except when it's white women being angry about misogyny, then it's just righteous indignation.

For posterity:
I was hoping to have a discussion about the problems you perceive, but it seems that anyone who doesn't instantly share your anger and agree with your preconceptions is assumed to be the enemy. You should give them the benefit of the doubt because fighting bigotry with more bigotry is no solution.

I sympathize with your concerns, but your attitude and attack methods aren't appropriate for my blog. This debate won't continue here.

My interpretation:
See, now I totally have an excuse not to engage with you, because you're not appealing to my and likely the male creator's needs for white privilege fellatio. You're not spoonfeeding. You're not smiling, shucking and jiving. Clearly I have NO preconceptions about Africa, white men, who can write what stories, or what is really a harmful stereotype, but YOU clearly DO, judging by your ANGER and it's such a shame, because if only you'd swallowed that, I'd have pretended to listen to you and acted as if I would actually do a privilege check and realize how the world could be seen via a different perspective by someone not in my position.

Clearly your taking the time to even respond to me was NOT a signal of your willingness to have discussion no matter your anger and was just yet another opportunity for someone angry and black to ATTACK. Which of course means you're bigoted against white people, because you keep demanding concession of our history of inhumanity.

I am so sympathetic to whatever made you such an angry, horde swirling black person, but I refuse to have you continue to point out how I'm trying to hide behind self maintained ignorance. My discussion space is not for conversations that make me think about my own privilege. Good day.

I think I'm just going to delete the feeds of everyone white and female who is NOT Karen Healey right now. I'll need to double check who I have that might actually be white and male. But seriously, why the hell hold out hope? They're only going to think my refusal to give them a pass means I'm bigoted against white people; REVERSE DISCRIMINATION OMG!