By: Sey Elemo, Columnist
We see your closeted racism and it’s not cute.
You thought you had us…but you don’t.
I guess I should preface this by saying that I’m currently watching “Flavor of Love 2” and Krazy, a white girl who wears cornrows, just called Bootz, one of the resident confrontationists “ghetto trash,” because she called her out on her lies in front of the whole house.
I am highly irritated.
I shouldn’t have to define the terms “ghetto” or “thug,” because all of you already know what they mean, right? We all know that ghettos were slums that the Jewish people were relegated to live in during the early phases of the Holocaust.
We all know that “thug” means a violent ruffian, right? Wrong. Instead people use the words to demean black people, especially those that partake in hip hop culture. We, the people of the movement are on to you (racists and those that claim not to be… but we still know that you are) who spit insults like “gangst[er/a]” “ghetto” and “thug” when you really want to say, what? The n-word.
BOOM! I said it. You’ve been caught. You can pretend as though that’s not what you mean but if it isn’t, what’s the premise behind labeling someone one of those terms?
What does that mean to you? Oh, alright.
The most recent and relevant example I can think of is the characterization of Cam Newton, the quarterback of the Carolina Panthers, on social media.
Cam Newton is a dabbin’, southern proverb-spitting, #CareFreeBlackBoy from Atlanta. He dabs (a dance associated with Atlanta trap music, popularized by Migos) when he makes a great play. He organizes a Thanksgiving fundraiser that feeds hundreds of kids. He ties his super bowl towel around his head as though he’s a member of Dipset.
We love him for this.
However, every Sunday without fail, people take to Twitter to spin this narrative of Cam Newton’s “classlessness,” and “arrogance” for what?
Celebrating in the end zone? He’s CERTAINLY not the first to do so. When Tom Brady celebrates a play he’s having good-natured fun. When Carson Palmer literally tells fans to “suck it,” barely anyone says anything, but when Cam dabs (HONESTLY, WHY ARE Y’ALL SO MAD ABOUT THE DAB… IT’S FUN) it’s the end of the world.
Why isn’t Johnny Manziel, a known drug abuser and woman beater, referred to as a thug? Oh right, because you all really only assign the title of thug to black players (see Richard Sherman circa 2014).
An angry Twitter user by the name of @siegel_katie called Cam a thug for wearing a hoodie (a very fly one if I might add) and team beanie to his ESPN interview. Black Twitter did in fact handle her promptly.
But do we seriously have to address the criminalization of hoodies… Again?!
At the end of the day, I strongly believe that racist white people are bothered by Cam Newton’s confidence in himself and his abilities. They’d rather him be a humble negro, and he’s not going like that. As gathered from his insistence that if people don’t want him to dab “they shouldn’t let him score,” he has no intention of dialing back any part of himself to appease them.
And he shouldn’t.
Dear Whiteness, next time you part your lips to call a black person, their mannerisms or the music they listen to “ghetto,” think about what you’re saying… and then don’t say it.
Yours in Blackness,
A Ratchet Revolutionary