Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Ku Klux Kramer Flashback: The Bruno Defense

From the unpublished archives: This is an extended review of the series Black. White, a reality show where two families tried to experience what life is like as "the other" race.

Meet Bruno.

Bruno is one of the main characters in the series Black.White.
and he represents the quintessential intellectual race snob. He is a smart, liberally-educated guy, that also likes to hang with the fellas while drinking the King of Beers. His is the jersey that reads "RATIONALIST" on the back. It's an inside joke, and you better smile, or he'll be forced to explain it to you.

Like your average NFL offensive coordinator, Bruno is viewing the plays of his life detached, through a window up high. He seeks perspective over participation. For him race is a construct; a fast and talented defense that can be decoded and controlled if given enough data and attempts. Racism is a gameplan, you can scheme against it. And while Bruno comes across as a first ballot shoo-in for reality television's Hall of Legendary Assholes, at some point you have to back off because there is a well of good spirit underneath his mouth's electric performance as a geyser of bullshit. The Bruno-it-alls rationale comes from a belief in one of our most cherished assumptions: that before race, gender and hipsterdom, we are all human.

The Michael Richards Maelstrom flushed a lot of Brunos out from the soil. As one TAN reader, let's call him "Bruno," eloquently put it in response to the extreme Richards backlash,
Isnt this a case of REVERSE racism? Arent we all equal? Shouldnt we be? Why are we carrying the cross of dead men? All that were living during the time of slavery have died right.....and werent we all born in a free nation? Why not bury this crippling legacy. Its over.
Easier said than done.

To answer some of the questions: Maybe, no, yes, because dead men smell good and crosses are stylish, yes, maybe.

Ok. Now that's settled.

I think this information age, where everyone knows everything, and thinks at a rate of 11,000 kbps, makes it easy to forget how irrational life is. Like memories in Eternal Sunshine, some questions/issues have an emotional core, and they can't be reduced into a solveable yes-no equation. If you have a wife or girlfriend you should read this paragraph again.

When confronted with a blatant demonstration of racism, Bruno-it-alls are faced with a vexing problem. How can people possibly possess such hate for another person, just by virtue of their skin color? It doesn't compute. Racism is irrational, and so Bruknows seek out reasons that allow it to compute.

(to be continued ...)

1 comment:

  1. This post is Hot Hot Hot. Seriously. Even though I can't stand the phrase "reverse racism", and I'm a little surprised that you validated it in your "maybe, no, yes..." response. There is no such thing as "reverse" racism -- this exchange implies that racism is specific to the black/white binary (which seems to be a pretty common interpretation). See, racism is free and open for and against ALL races -- it's an equal-opportunity tool-of-oppression!


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