The quote appeared in an article written in 2009 about the unconscious ways that race influences our thinking and our actions. The article opens with a discussion of the infamous New York Post cartoon of a policeman saying, after shooting a monkey who lay on the ground bleeding, “Now they will have to find someone else to write the stimulus bill.”
The Post’s Editor-in-Chief, Col Allan, defended the cartoon, claiming it had nothing to do with race. Of course, plenty of black folks, including the Reverend Al Sharpton, claimed that was bunk (or words to that effect). So in this article, author Jon Hanson asks, “But why couldn’t … both be right? Why, in other words, would Mr. Allan conclude that a parody of a violent chimpanzee cannot also reflect and encourage troubling racial associations?” He goes on to say, “What some people may not be aware of is the disturbingly robust implicit associations of African Americans to monkeys, chimps, and apes.”
Enter the quote by Erberhardt, who apparently was needed to set a few things straight.
|What am I missing? When I searched my art database for images associated with |
the word "President," this picture came up. A few times.
A few weeks ago I wrote about white privilege, an aspect of which is generally not having to give a damn about race relations, because the concerns of the minority groups don’t have much effect on your life if you're white. However, if I’m black, and my landlord is white, and my boss is white, and my child’s teacher is white, and our welfare (no freakin’ pun intended, and don’t even go there) is dependent on them, then I’ll most likely spend a lifetime concerned with the ways of white folks. (Now that was a pun. Do yourself a favor and check out the Langston Hughes’ classic.) And this is also why women are always reading stuff to learn about men, and men aren’t reading much of anything to learn about us, but that’s a rant for another day.
Unfortunately, I don’t have any solutions to this vexing state of affairs, only a raised awareness and a determination to be seen as human whatever the cost. And for now, that’s good enough.