Wigger Please is a documentary feature film chronicling the cultural stereotypes of white Americans embracing hip hop culture. Currently in production, the filmmakers are interviewing rappers, actors, artists and writers who have had their political or personal perspectives influenced by their experiences with hip hop or black culture. For information on the project, contact [email protected]
Here are two YouTube clips to start your weekend off right--both from a Nickelodeon show called "Thugaboo." One ends Black History Month with a nice rant from an angry young man. The second shows (among other things) how fun it is to work in a sweatshop. Enjoy.
IOWA CITY - Splintered student groups must try to communicate and collaborate so they can try to change, one student at a time, racist behaviors and beliefs, several University of Iowa students said last night.
The ideas of boycotting downtown bars that use dress codes some students find racist, and organizing student groups to discuss diversity and racism, can be accomplished if students work together, several students said.
"These kinds of things can help," UI junior Jamila Yakubu of Des Moines said.
About 30 UI students and faculty members gathered last night for a discussion about "Black face, Minstrelsy and Hip-Hop Culture: Is There a Connection?" They talked about bar dress codes, the state of race relations on campus, the use of black face and other issues.
The event partly grew out of a controversy last fall when Brothers Bar and Grill in downtown Iowa City admitted white patrons in black face the weekend of Oct. 26-27. Photos of the patrons were posted on the Brothers Web site but were later removed after complaints. The UI Black Student Union in December discussed boycotting bars that impose dress codes some students deem racist.
The dress codes, which prohibit apparel such as flat-billed baseball caps, bandannas and baggy pants, are designed to keep black patrons out of the bars and therefore are fundamentally racist, said Aaron Sachs, a doctoral student in communication studies from Berkeley, Calif. White students dressing in black face for parties has occurred at universities across the country in recent months, and the schools, including the UI, must emphasize sensitivity about racism, Sachs said.
"They can't wait for something to happen and then respond," he said. "They need to take a more active stance."
Vershawn Ashanti Young, a UI assistant professor of rhetoric and African-American studies, said universities and colleges do a disservice to students when they don't educate them about the history behind black face, for example.
When people claim ignorance to defend racist incidents "it's a cop out to keep excusing people for despicable actions," Young said.
Students at the discussion said they should come together not only to address the bar dress code issue, but also for things such as community service and volunteering.
"Students can be very, very powerful," Young said. "It has to be a student coalition that would address some of these issues downtown."
If you've ever protested or witnessed a Klan rally then you've seen this kind of irony firsthand: Frequently skinheads, Nazis, and other fascists will be decked out in LeBron James jerseys, bump Kanye West from their Toyota, or even plagiarize speeches from Louis Farrakhan. In other words, even those that reject black, foreign, or non-Christian ideas and cultures will end up being aligned with them in their actions. However, this shit with "Klansmen for Obama" takes it to a whole 'nother level. It doesn't exist, but seriously? He's not even" black enough" to hate!?
Michael Crowley, The New Republic Published: Wednesday, March 12, 2008
David Duke was on the phone, talking about Barack Obama. Yes, that David Duke: After a query lodged at his website, the infamous ex-Klansman had responded via a mysterious e-mail address--he appeared in my inbox as "info45." (Duke regularly changes address to combat hate mail--the kind he doesn't like, that is.) Duke said he was traveling in Europe, where he often meets with fellow Holocaust deniers, and agreed to discuss the possibility that the United States might soon elect a black president.
Putting it mildly, one would not expect Duke to applaud this development. During Jesse Jackson's 1988 presidential campaign, after all, Duke said Jackson's election "would be the greatest tragedy ever to befall this country." Warning that "the white majority in this country are losing their rights," Duke announced his own counter-candidacy, one whose main purpose seemed to be hounding Jackson.
Yet, far from railing at Obama's rise, Duke seems almost nonchalant about it. Self-described white nationalists like himself, he explained cordially, "don't see much difference in Barack Obama than Hillary Clinton--or, for that matter, John McCain." Sure, Duke considers Obama "a racist individual," citing his Afrocentric Chicago church. But soon the founder of the National Association for the Advancement of White People was critiquing Obama as overhyped and insubstantial in terms you might hear from, say, Clinton strategist Mark Penn. "They say he's for change. What change? He's become almost a cult figure. I don't see any shining light around Obama's head. I don't see any halos," Duke said.
Sure, we may not see David Duke strolling around with The Audacity of Hope under his arm any time soon. But his mild tone is still a curious reaction to what white supremacists have long considered a sign of racial apocalypse. "Does Race Still Matter?" asks the latest issue of US News & World Report, which features Obama on its cover. Undoubtedly, it does. But, thus far, Obama is largely delivering on his promise as a post-racial candidate--and hilariously confounding the worldview of white supremacists at the same time.
After Obama won the Iowa caucuses last month, Mark Potok, a researcher at the Southern Poverty Law Center, decided to survey the latest writings of the major right-wing hate groups he regularly monitors. How would America's vilest race-mongers respond to a black candidate's victory in a white Midwestern state? Again, the response was counterintuitive. "It was extremely weak," Potok says. "You could find people saying nasty words about Obama, but it wasn't red-hot at all."
That has remained the case even as Obama has become the front-runner. On several websites, forums, and online journals that promote the view of white superiority over blacks--the types of outlets that rejoiced over Hurricane Katrina and the destruction of the Lower Ninth Ward--there is precious little discussion of Obama's campaign. The day after Obama's blowout win in Wisconsin, for instance, the home page of the poisonous Vanguard News Network featured stories on Serbian nationalism, home schooling, Holocaust-denial, and Pat Buchanan--yet nothing about Obama. It turns out that, although the white right certainly has no love for Obama, its hatred of him is muted--and directed less at Obama himself than at other nefarious forces behind him.
To be sure, it's no challenge to unearth racist invective about the man. One bilious anti-Obama blog's URL, for instance, seamlessly conjoins his name with the N-word. Elsewhere, Obama is cast as a covert black-power agent. An essay by a David Duke compatriot compares Obama to Malcolm X and likens his slogan of "Si Se Puede!" to chanting "Kill the whites!" There are rumblings about mass slavery reparations (even though, in 2004, Obama said he opposes "just signing checks over to African Americans"). And some even see hints that Obama may be leading a national black uprising. "Are blacks becoming more hostile towards whites?" asked a recent entry at the white supremacist Council of Conservative Citizens website. The author, citing the early February rampage by a black gunman near St. Louis, Missouri, advised that "the success of the Obama campaign might be emboldening blacks to be more aggressive towards white[s] on a national scale." (No word on whether such hostility subsided after Hillary's New Hampshire and Nevada victories.)
Yet, for every instance of loony racist paranoia, one finds a countervailing explanation for why Obama's rise is not a story about black America rising up. White supremacists are less inclined to hate Obama than the white race-traitors who are enabling him. "If you are a white supremacist who is dedicated to a biological understanding of racism that says blacks are inferior, the only way [Obama] could be elected is with the conniving of unseen forces," explains Chip Berlet of Political Research Associates, a Boston-based expert on white supremacists.
Thus, a recent essay by one John Brown on the website of the racialist journal American Renaissance attributes Obama's rise to white liberals in search of an idyllic post-racist society (which of course they will never actually find): "The reality is that white America has more invested in this candidate than does black America." For Brown, Obama's success against Hillary should actually comfort anyone wringing their hands over a White House beholden to black America: "[I]f Clinton wins, she will be more beholden to African Americans than Obama will be if he wins. She will owe them in a way that Obama [never] will."
There's an even bigger culprit in this world than white liberals, however. Naturally, we speak here of the Jews. It turns out that what truly animates the white supremacist contingent these days is not racism but anti-Semitism. The black man is of trifling concern next to the "Zionist Occupation Government," or ZOG, a term that describes puppet regimes of the global Zionist conspiracy. As one commenter on the popular white-power Web forum Stormfront explains it: "The blacks would be a non-factor if it weren't for the ZOG's legislations and skullduggery (civil rights act, hate crime laws, affirmative action, welfare, forced integration, etc etc ...), allied with a compliant media that promotes black worship." Thus, when the Jewish Telegraphic Agency published an anodyne article on Obama's support among American Jews, white-power sites like National Alliance News ("your single source for worldwide pro-White news") quickly pounced. "Barack Obama: The Jewish Connection" came the breathless headline. (Never mind that Obama has had a rockier relationship with the American Jewish community than has Clinton.) "[U]ltimately he's just another Jew puppet," concludes another Stormfront commenter. "I look at his foreign advisers," adds David Duke. "[They're] Israeli supremacists. He's even got Dennis Ross!"
All this contorted rationalization suggests that white supremacists feel compelled to explain away the confounding notion of an immensely gifted and appealing black man. Yet it also reflects the fact that, unlike Jesse Jackson, Obama simply lacks certain cultural signifiers--not to mention an urban-centric policy agenda--that would viscerally threaten racist whites obsessed with maintaining "white rights," ending affirmative action, and cutting off nearly all non-European immigration.
But there may be one more factor at work: hatred overload. It's a testament of sorts to Hillary Clinton that, by virtue of her cartoonish image as a leftist man-hating shrew, she manages to arouse more vitriol among white supremacists than a black man. Meanwhile, white racists absolutely despise John McCain for his support of George W. Bush's immigration reform plan, which they view as a dire threat to America's European-based culture. "I don't think Obama will be any more negative for the United States than Hillary or John McCain," explains Duke. "In fact," he added, "we probably have less preference for a European like a John McCain or a Hillary who has betrayed our interests, our heritage, our rights."
Edward Sebesta, a Dallas-based expert on neo-Confederate groups, says that, in a match-up against Obama, McCain might wind up suffering the brunt of the hatred: "They really hate McCain," he says. "They're suffering from emotional exhaustion. They might not have the energy to be infuriated by two candidates at the same time." Amazingly, some commenters on racist websites are already debating the grim choice between Obama and McCain. Who knows, maybe David Duke can form the oddest MySpace group of all time: Klansmen for Obama. Now that would be post-racial.
A blogger explores the attitudes and foibles of a new minority group.
February 25, 2008
Six weeks ago, 29-year-old Culver City Internet copy writer Christian Lander started a blog, stuffwhitepeoplelike. wordpress.com, on a whim, thinking he'd poke fun at himself and fellow white people. Spending roughly two hours a day writing satirical posts about "stuff white people like," Lander had no idea how much his little inside joke would catch on. In the first week, the site received about 200 hits a day. The next week it jumped to 600, and then 4,000 the next. By last week, he was averaging 300,000 daily hits.
Lander, who arrived in L.A. from Toronto 2 1/2 years ago, came up with the idea for the blog after talking to a Filipino friend about how much they both liked the HBO police drama "The Wire." For some reason he's already forgotten, they both wished that more white people watched the show. Which got him thinking: What exactly do white people like?
By "white people," Lander doesn't actually mean the more than 221 million Americans who check that box on the decennial census. But that's part of the fun. Lander is doing to whites what scores of journalists and politicians do to non-white minorities every day, "essentializing" complex identities -- that is, stripping away all variety and reducing them to their presumed authentic essences.
One irony-deficient reader complained that the blog was less about white people than it was about yuppies. And without knowing it, she was cutting to the heart of the joke. Lander is gently making fun of the many progressive, educated, upper-middle-class whites who think they are beyond ethnicity or collectively shared tastes, styles or outlook. He's essentially reminding them that they too are part of a group.
"I'm writing about the white people who think they're absolutely unique and individual," Lander told me. "I'm calling them out and poking fun of myself. The things I post are all the things I like too!"
And what are those things? Recycling, expensive sandwiches, standing still at concerts, Toyota Priuses, natural medicine, irony, public radio, breakfast places, vegetarianism, organic foods and being an expert on ethnic cultures are just a few.
Lander thinks that most of his readers are actually members of the elite group he's lampooning. Some of the comments on the blog suggest that he's right. "Oh, lord, it only hurts because it's true! Love the blog," one reader who calls herself White Lady wrote. But others are more perplexed. Responding to a blog entry claiming that white people like Sarah Silverman, MC wrote, "I'm white and I HATE Sarah Silverman (and would take Monique ... ANYDAY, so there.") Still another offended and anonymous reader listed a lot of racist stereotypes about blacks, Mexicans, Arabs, Jews and Chinese to even the score.
As unusual as Lander's site is, it is also part of a sociological trend among whites who live in increasingly non-Anglo cities and regions: their transformation into a minority group. Whites used to think of themselves as standard-issue American -- they had the luxury of not having to grapple with the significance of their own racial background; they were "us" and everyone else was "ethnic." Not anymore.
"Demographic shifts have put a new kind of pressure on that category of people who were once just considered the norm," says Mike Hill, author of "After Whiteness: Unmaking an American Majority." "White identity is becoming particularized and minoritized. No longer the normative category, it's becoming one of many identities."
This pressure naturally leads to a greater sense of self-consciousness as the new minority begins to negotiate their relationships with members of other minorities (everyone else).
Still, Lander is less concerned with cross-ethnic and racial relations than he is with how whites treat each other. As a onetime graduate student in the Midwest, he got tired of coastal condescension of the fly-over states and the glib assumption that "red staters are evil and stupid."
"Too many white people don't like to be reminded that they're white. They like to think that white people are those evil corporate right-wingers or the uneducated masses who vote the wrong way. But 'enlightened whites' are white people too and have just as much of a group mentality as they think the red staters have."
Still, Lander doesn't want you to think he's angry or taking himself too seriously. "First and foremost, it's satire; it's funny," he says. "I'm trying to make people laugh."
But he's doing so in a brave new world in which we're all becoming minorities, and nobody's really sure who's going to have the last laugh.
Yesterday morning consumer advocate Ralph Nader announced his candidacy for President on NBC's Meet the Press. Nader illustrated that all three major candidates (Obama, Clinton, and Mccain) share similar beliefs on issues such as single payer health insurance, military budget, and labor law reform and re-iterated that all voters should, "take this opportunity to have a much broader debate on the issues that relate to the American people." He also squashed advanced criticisms of his "spoiler" tag by predicting, "[if] the Democrats can't landslide the Republicans this year, they ought to just wrap up, close down, emerge in a different form."
His announcement came almost four years to the day of a press conference in Washington D.C., where spoke on the issue of reparations for African Americans:
I think a lot of Americans aren't aware that there are corporations today, pursuant to mergers or even actual corporations, that were profiting from slavery, such as the Aetna Corporation, before the Civil War, and there's a payback there. I think if white people had great grandparents who were slaves, they would be very concerned about that. There's got to be justice here. And all John Conyers is asking is a national commission to inquire into it to see what the responsibilities of governments are.
After all, slaves built a good part of the U.S. Capitol. They built a lot of public buildings. And I think the money is not designed to go to individuals; it's designed to amplify the budgets that are now being squeezed to rebuild the lower-income areas in our cities, for example; to expand health care to African American children, to reduce their exposure to sources of deadly asthma and lead poisoning. That is something that we should all discuss.
After all, you know, there were other genocidal or vicious treatments of ethnic minorities that have gotten some justice in recent years. And of course the tragedy of slavery in this country is one of the two worst tragedies in North American history, the other being the genocidal annihilation of the first Native Americans. And we should always remember.
If you look at photos of NAACP leadership from the 1930s, you'll find a wiry, professorial-looking man with blond hair and fair skin at the center of many. This is Walter Francis White who, despite his appearance, was a black man. He used his white looks to infiltrate the Ku Klux Klan and wrote many on-the-scene articles exposing the horrors of lynching.
White is the inspiration behind Incognegro, the graphic novel by literary prose writer Mat Johnson and British artist Warren Pleece.
"Incognegro" is the pseudonym of Zane Pinchback, a Southern-born, Harlem-based reporter who, like White, takes advantage of his appearance — attending lynchings, taking names and addresses under the guise of selling personalized postcards of the event, and writing exposés of the hatred and violence visited upon blacks in the '30s.
The work is dangerous — at the opening of the novel, he barely escapes with his life when a lynch mob figures out he's a spy of some kind and pegs him for a — shall we say, "negro"?
Pinchback, aware of his good fortune at eluding discovery or worse, returns to Harlem determined to give up the undercover work. Besides, he's an ambitious young journalist, chafing under the knowledge that while the "Incognegro" byline is famous, almost nobody knows the work of Zane Pinchback. He wants to write commentary and arts criticism to find out just where his talent might lead.
When Pinchback learns his twin brother has been arrested for murdering a white woman, however, he heads South one last time.
From that point Incognegro becomes a mixture of pulp mystery, Southern gothic, and Jim Crow parable. Pinchback's brother, Alonzo, who looks just like him, but with dark skin, is a moonshiner charged with bashing in the face of a white woman named Michaela Mathers.
Posing as a Klan official, Pinchback interviews Alonzo in jail. Michaela was, in fact, his brother's girlfriend and partner in the illegal whiskey operation. In the best crime fiction tradition, Pinchback must investigate the crime to find the real culprit — and before a mob overwhelms the sheriff's determination to protect his prisoner.
It's a journey that takes Pinchback to the remote still site, into the town's black enclave, and out into the hinterland where a family of mentally unstable hill folk may have information.
Pinchback's best friend, Carl, a dandy-ish tag-along, complicates matters by pretending to be a rich Englishman charming the local white elite, insensible of the risks.
Johnson, an award-winning literary novelist and short-story writer who teaches at the University of Houston, shows a feel for both the seriousness of his subject, and the lurid conventions of the pulp mystery and the graphic novel.
Among the admirable facets of Incognegro is the way Johnson develops substantial characterizations through action. Pinchback's brusque editor is a familiar type, but one with more nuance than Superman's Perry White or Spiderman's J. Jonah Jameson. A local black man Pinchback enlists to help shows the dignity and keen sense of self-preservation required of people living under extreme oppression. Even the hill people, the closest Johnson comes to stereotype, are individually delineated characters.
Perhaps the characters Johnson most impressively captures are the racists. They feel fully justified in their actions, preserving the natural hierarchy of humanity, yet some, at least, know they are motivated by self-interest.
One character, abducting a black man, explains both: "On one side we got God's white people, and all of our spoils of war, such as this very land. And on the other side we got all the mud people, the invaders, who want what's ours."
He adds: "It's understandable. We got the best stuff. Who wouldn't want all that we have? But I'm not going to let you take what's mine. I don't care if it's something I stole, I'd be a fool if I let you have it. That's just common sense."
Likewise, Johnson's understanding of the period — and Pleece's as well — seems thorough and convincing. I detected not a single anachronism.
Incognegro proves once more, if proof is still needed, that the graphic novel equals prose, film and stage in its potential for all kinds of creative expression.
Chauncey Mabe can be reached at [email protected] or 954-356-4710. Visit the blog at Sun-Sentinel.com/offthepage.
A few years back right wing columnist/possible former dude Ann Coulter wrote in an essay that "[t]he closest black woman to most of the liberals accusing [Condi] Rice of being incompetent is [their] maid...[Meanwhile the] entire Bush cabinet [looks] like an Image Awards telecast minus the fisticuffs and gunplay." Nevermind that the ignorant cunt confused "Image Awards" with "Source Awards" this is a prevalent belief for conservative writers and Bush apologists. The idea seems to be that since Bush (and Bush Sr.) appointed Clarence Thomas, Condoleeza Rice, and Colin Powell to positions of power these Presidents are more sympathetic to the needs of African Americans than their previous white (and Democratic) administrations.
It may be entirely possible, however, that the Bushies are genetically predisposed to propping up black folks for back breaking work not fit for man or woman. A kickass article up today at DiversityInc.com shows the history of the Bush family in regards to slavery and lynching. While it may prove that Condi Rice wasn't the first House Negro to serve a Bush, folks like Coulter may use this evidence to say the family has always featured employment and justice programs for Blacks.
Slavery Ties: Bush's Long-Held 'Family Secret'
The Bush family owned about 30 slaves 175 years ago in Maryland, reports Edward Ball, author of Slaves in the Family, on TheRoot.com.
[While visiting Africa will] Bush take the opportunity to talk about his ancestors' ties to slavery? Probably not, writes Ball, considering the matter is a long-held "family secret," according to The Bush Tragedy, a new book by Jacob Weisberg, which barely mentioned the Bush family's longstanding involvement in the slave trade.
But in April 2007, the secrets started to leak out. A historian named Robert Hughes discovered census records that revealed five householders of the Walker family, related to Bush through his father's mother, were slaveholding farmers during the late 18th and early 19th centuries, reports Ball.
Bush has talked about slavery on several occasions, including in a 2003 speech on Gorée Island, from which young West African children were shipped to the United States to be enslaved. At the time, he called slavery "one of the greatest crimes of history."
But Bush didn't mention that his ancestors--up to his father's great-great-great grandparents, who owned two slaves--participated in it. Why?
It's unclear how much Bush's ties to slavery have influenced his family's political dynasty. No records about the slaves they owned survived, and the evidence available provides no indication the Bush family owned slaves after 1838, which is when the Walker family declared bankruptcy and moved to southern Illinois. How'd the family get the money to start over? They most likely sold their slaves at an auction, but as far as the records indicate, the money trails ends there, writes Ball. But the history remains.
The Bush Tragedy quotes a letter from David Walker, one of the later heads of the current Bush family and a self-proclaimed "believer in eugenics and the 'unwritten law' of lynching," published in the St. Louis Republic in 1914. Walker wrote that Blacks were "more insidious than prostitution and 'all the other evils combined,'" reports Ball.
In 1930, President Bush's great-grandfather bought an old cotton plantation in South Carolina for use as a vacation and hunting getaway where the current president's father, George Herbert Walker Bush, would play as a youth, pampered and waited on by "teams of Black cooks, valets and drivers," according to Ball.
While Ball acknowledges that heirs of slave owners are not necessarily responsible for their past, he says they should be accountable for it. That includes President Bush.
But as the Bush political dynasty ends with one of the worst approval ratings in presidential history amid an unsettled immigration melee, disastrous war and tumultuous economy, no one is surprised he's left it off his agenda while touring Africa.
The article below is from the February 18th edition of The Daily Emerald--the student newspaper of the University of Oregon. The author makes an argument that Chris Rock and Dave Chapelle helped pave the way for Barack Obama's presidential run.
Someone has to tell this kid that Head of State wasn't a documentary. Still, this is better than one op-ed writer's recent claim that "history shows us that, besides carrying the baggage of a guaranteed asteroid strike, black heads of state also give terrorists extra motivation to destroy the United States." The Daily Emerald joint is titled "Racial equality via stand-up comedy and kickball."
My first and only experience as a racial minority came during third grade, and lasted about a week.
Don't get me wrong. As you can see by my mug shot floating just inches from your face, my skin is white, and has remained invariably so for my whole life. But for that one week in the third grade something about the way I looked felt different. I spent that week at a public elementary school in Atlanta where, in my class of nearly 30 students, I was one of three who were white. It's obvious that single isolated experience brought me no closer to the "black experience" than any other culturally conflicted white liberal. But in the midst of Black History Month it's interesting for me to remember the way I felt sitting at that desk in Atlanta. I very nearly drowned in 20 foot waves of my own self-consciousness. Was everyone looking at me because I was new? Or was it because I was white?
Now that's not to say we haven't made significant gains in the state of our race relations. After all, who would have thought once upon a time that our generation's two smartest, funniest and most provocative social commentators would be black men? Of course I'm talking about Chris Rock and Dave Chappelle.
Some of you may be wondering why - at a time when an increasing number of people seem prepared to elect the country's first black president - these two comedians are particularly significant. It's because they've helped pave the way. The greatness and importance of their craft comes from how they've pushed racial stereotypes into our face, forcing us to confront them and, therefore, confront our nation's past.
At first they shock us. "Do you know what the good side of crack is?" Chris Rock asks in his HBO standup special Bring the Pain. "If you're up at the right hour, you can get a VCR for $1.50. You can furnish your whole house for $10.95." But once the initial discomfort fades, they offer insights into a world white people like myself can't ever fully identify with.
They are the worst enemy of the likes who would advocate for a colorblind society. They teach us it's OK to see a white person and think, "That is a white person," or to see a black person and think, "That is a black person." It's that white elephant sitting in the dark corner of your head. They simply pull it out from the shadows so that it can be laughed at or ridiculed, then discarded so we can all move forward.
As it turned out, that fear I felt in Atlanta was a product of my imagination. And it didn't even matter because by the time we'd finished playing kickball at lunchtime I was everyone's friend. I was too young then to understand the centuries of history that had fueled my perception of blacks, and how I thought they perceived me. There's a lot to it I still don't understand. I guess the years that followed have taught me no one's closer than anyone else to ending prejudice in our country. But at the very least, putting it out there for us to talk about is a whole lot more effective than simply pretending it doesn't exist.
The bloggers/waste of protoplasm over at Stuff White People Like ("a blog about white people written by white people for other white people that makes fun of white people.") recently ranked Mos Def as #68 on their ramblings:
In the olden days of white culture, people used to look up to Kings and Princes. These were the people that they adored, and every night they wished and hoped that somehow they could wake up and be just like them. But with Royal Families crumbling, that role has been filled by one man: Mos Def.
He is everything that white people dream about: authentic (”he’s from Brooklyn!”), funny (”he was on Chapelle show!”), artistic (have you heard “Black on Both Sides?”), an actor (”he’s in the new Gondry film!”) and not white (”I don’t see race”).
He has done an amazing job of being in big budget movies (The Italian Job) and having one of his songs become a white person wedding staple (Ms. Fat Booty) but still retaining authenticity and credibility.
If you find yourself in a social situation where you are asked to list your favorite actor or artist, you should always say Mos Def. This way you can name someone that everyone has heard of and you don’t look like you are trying to one up anybody. The only possible negative consequence is some white people might think “I wish I had said that first.”
Anyone with a brain can realize that given the treatment Mos gets from the mainstream media, he isn't "loved" by all white people. Their blog entry sort of makes it seem as if there's a bigger "problem" than electing a black man President. They're trying to prevent hip hop kids from putting his face on the $1 bill: