I wish I’d found this old post back when the Gates drama was happening.
I want to try to remember it because sometimes when people say, “would this [bad thing] have happened to a white person,” I think, “well, yeah, probably.” Sometimes; not all the time.
This is from Why Oh Why, which isn’t really much worth visiting anymore, but used to be quite a looker in her day….
—BEGIN OLD POST!!!!!—
Thereâ€™s so much to say about this story, but itâ€™s all so obvious that I almost donâ€™t want to say it. Almost.
Basically, this little girl tells the California Education Secretary that her name (Isis) means â€œEgyptian Goddess.â€ I imagine that sheâ€™s wrong, but what the hell.
So HE says, â€œIt means stupid dirty girl.â€ Which is actually kind of hilarious. In fact, I could see saying something like that to my niece, but maybe not THOSE words exactly. And itâ€™s my niece, not some random little girl. And Iâ€™m not the secretary of education.
She repeated her claim, and he said, â€œHey, thatâ€™s nifty.â€ ALSO kind of hilarious, but still, you wouldnâ€™t expect it from someone in his position. No one says â€œniftyâ€ without irony these days.
Now thereâ€™s this big furor about how he should be fired, because he must not be the right guy for this particular job. Maybe he should. I donâ€™t know.
Here are the wonderful things. I can say â€œwonderfulâ€ without irony:
1. The mom says this: â€œObviously it hurt her feelings, but she didnâ€™t take it personally. She knew he was wrong and she let it go. Iâ€™m not going to sue them for therapy bills.â€ [She also said, “I got the impression that she didn’t think he was very bright.”]
I love this woman. He may not be the man for the job, but the damage that he did to the girl is pretty minimal.
2. Democratic state Assemblyman Mervyn Dymally scheduled a protest by civil rights organizations, saying: â€œa little African-American girl. Would he have done that to a white girl?â€
Except that she IS white. HA HA HA HA HA HA! Like, a little blond girl who the KKK would embrace with open arms if her name werenâ€™t Isis.
Now that Dymallyâ€™s office has figured out the race, they cancelled the protest and said: â€œRace is not a factor in this issue. It is time for us to move on.â€
But if the girl were black, then the ASSUMPTION was that race was a factor. The first thing to do if he says something wrong to a black girl is to call him a racist and demonstrate.
I still do enjoy the news some days.
First, just so you know I got the point, that seems to be the situation now. If a white man yells “you lie” to a black man, that white man must be a racist. Nothing negative from a white to a black can be anything other than rampant racism. It’s the only explanation.
Now for my tangents (I’m a math nerd). The story was funny enough that I had to go look it up. Riordan claims that he was just teasing the girl, which makes it very slightly less bizarre for him to have said than if he meant it. In a position like his, he should have known to be very careful of odd jokes. Also, with a surname like D’Luciano, do you really think the Klan would accept her? That’s worse than O’Mally! Nobody with an apostrophe in their name is welcome in the Dunce Cap Parade.
I think he was joking around, sure. But not in a way that’s appropriate.
So she has two strikes against her for the Klan. Poor thing.
Agreed on both counts. I, sadly, only have two counts myself: being primarily Irish and having grown up Catholic. I’d like to take the time and effort to accumulate more counts, but the Klan just isn’t worth it. Illinois Nazis, on the other hand…