It seems that we are moving back toward a very sad period of reverse racism and reverse ethnism in recent months. It is a trend that dismays me. We should not be polarizing these issues further; instead, we need to be bringing people closer together on these issues. Some people, though, cannot walk by a box of dry tinder an not throw a match into it. Were I nearer these people, I would politely request that they shut the hell up.
First, there is Ruben Navarrette Jr., who is a “commentator” on CNN. He has been irking me for quite some time. As far as Ruben can see, and he cannot see far, if it has a Latino connection, it is good, period. From his writing on CNN, one would never know that any Latino has ever been less than saintly. Our ex-Attorney General, a black eye to Latinos everywhere, was the apple of Ruben’s eye for a long time. Ruben has been very quiet of late. I remember that he was also much less than objective about the immigration issue, column after column.
Now Whoopi Goldberg, whom I used to enjoy and respect, has let her newfound fame as a “commentator” go to both her head and her mouth. She has decided that since Michael Vick is black, he is blameless. It is society that has made him what he is. Bullshit, Whoopi. It is the gangster culture that the media has imposed upon black culture that has affected Michael Vick, along with a distinct lack of a backbone or any ethics to speak of. You, Whoopi, of all people, should know that a person does not have to go along with the common crowd. You didn’t used to. Now, I guess you have changed your affiliation to the Apologist Party.
Life is tough for poor people, regardless of race or nationality. My father grew up in the Depression with no father and a dying mother. He managed to become a fine, ethical man. I was brought up poor, as well, and so far I have not stooped as low as either Alberto or Michael. Blaming it on their disadvantaged youth is copping out, especially given their highly-advantaged present. The fact of the matter is that neither of them had the backbone to do the right thing. They were, in a word, weak.
I’m tired of people blaming their own failings on society or their parents. Hell, I had a workaholic father, an alcoholic mother, and grew up in a Midwest ghetto. Somehow, I managed to transcend all that and turn out all right. To be absolutely blunt, I thought my way through it, got over it, and went on with my life.
Both Whoopi and Ruben need to stop being apologists for the few bad apples in their chosen racial / ethnic groups. That’s the easy way out, just like Michael and Alberto took the easy way out. Instead, Whoopi, Ruben, and everybody else needs to work on putting some backbone into that majority of their minority constituents that have not yet screwed up. They need make them understand ethics, to teach them the right and wrong of their possible paths. Quit being lazy and just apologizing after the fact. Start doing some good by teaching the right moves before the fact.
Just face the fact that Michael and Alberto are just two more people who simply refused to take responsibility for their own lives, and get on with it.