Month: January 2010

Congrats Obama! Matthews forgot you were black.

…we should all be so lucky!

While speaking about President Obama’s State of the Union Address, pundit Chris Matthews said that he forgot Obama was black because there was no “ethnicity” or “tribalism” in his speech.

It is a slippery slope from admitting to being of color to clicking like a Zimbabwean tribesman, which is why The Oreo Experience suggests removing all vestiges of ethnicity from speech. 

Because Obama was so eloquent, Matthews was able to only dedicate half of this 2 and some odd-minute soundbite to the way the President sounded (and not what he actually said) instead of having to spend the entire 180 seconds trying to read through awkward slang. 

Thank you, Mr. Obama. Though you are not truly an Oreo, you are certainly an inspiration. 

And Mr. Matthews, if I leave you a voicemail, will you pay me the same compliment? I could talk about politics, or the delightful peach tartin I just put in the oven. 

And

Entendres, Double

A quick google search of the name of my own blog turns up the fact that “The Oreo Experience” is also a sex position.

In case the imagery didn’t immediately click in, the term describes two men of color experiencing one anglo woman. 

This is obviously upsetting…Two men of color in such close proximity–very un-Oreo! Not an Oreo experience at all. 

It also brings up a philosophical conundrum in the mind of male Oreos. Regular black guys love white women. So a male Oreo really should date a lady of color to as not to seem to be an RBP. But lady Oreos like myself really can’t date men of color or we become RBP. 

What’s an Oreo to do when it comes to dates? 

My suggestion for the gentlemen is not to jeopardize the hard work of ladies like myself and therefore, to make sure that your chosen light-skinned date is especially so. Brunettes will do, but a redhead would be great. Bonus points for a

When it comes to dating, you are either in or you are out. Choose wisely so that you say in the game.

 

 Scandinavian–especially if you can work a few words of Norwegian or Flemish into the conversation. 

Or to be gay. Your average RBP and the Friends of Dorothy don’t tend to commune. Except, of course, when they’re getting their hair did.

The new “some of my best friends are black”

Sometimes, though they will be impressed with the progress you are making as an Oreo, non-colors will be confused. They’ll look at your burning pile of Ella Fitzgerald records and say something “Do you really need to try so hard to hide? I mean, c’mon, we have a black President.”

The phrase “We have a black President,” seems to be the new “C’mon, some of my best friends are black.”

People will use the phrase to justify anything from encouraging you to accept their present of Jay-Z tickets to being fairly openly racist.

Variations of this phrase include,

  • “…so what if diversity levels at companies are down, things are clearly different, we have a black President now.”
  • “…so what if Harry Reid said what he said, the guy in charge of making him apologize is our black President.”
  • “…who cares that the word “negro” will be on the Census, it obviously doesn’t mean anything bad, we have a black President.”

It may be tempting to point to statics that show that having a black President has done little so far to change the demographics of the inner city working poor or improve the conditions at under funded schools. But doing so will cause you to be seen as an RBP, so stuff it or be ready to be considered the affirmative action slip up.

The better choice is to run a polishing rag over your Young Republicans pin and say “you’re right. Things are different now.”

And be on the look out for other variations on this theme.

  • You may hear something like: “C’mon LL Cool J’s on NCIS.”

Usually said in response to: A sigh or lament at the fact that most criminals on police procedurals who kill with some sort of complicated and almost understandable emotion are white; and most killers who simply boast of blowing some kid, businessman or prostitute away with no remorse or sense of self-control are of color.

Proper Oreo Response: You’re right. And I do love Cool James.

  • You may hear something like: “C’mon, you have Roots.”

Usually said in response to: A lament at the fact that film canon about the Holocaust consists of well made movies that show all kinds of emotion, storytelling and filmmaking prowess while movies made about America’s holocaust, slavery, are relegated to maudlin TV movies and show slaves falling in love with their horrifically abusive masters while ignoring stories about how male slaves were regularly castrated sans sedatives, how lots of what we know about gynecology today came from living experiments on female slaves or that the American slave trade was kept going for 50 years after international slave trading was outlawed by slave owners who kept female slaves like breeding cows.

Proper Oreo Response. You’re right. Who doesn’t love Lamar? 

  • You May Hear Something Like: “C’mon, they’re the heroes, they have to win big.”

Usually Said in Response To: Walking out of Avatar and thinking, “isn’t this Dance with Wolves or The Last Samurai just with aliens and a bazillion dollars of special effects instead of minorities. I’m not saying it’s a white guilt allegory, but maybe.”

Proper Oreo Response: You’re Right. Learning one of the most complicated linguistic systems ever known (DWW/AVA), mastering an art in a few months that people have literally spent their whole lives perfecting (AVA/TLS) and being the white love savior for a poor indentured native girl (DWW/AVA) is more than reasonable.

Learn these conversations and soon you may hear something like “You do play squash, right? You should join my league, we meet on Saturday.”

Proper Oreo Response: I’ll be there with bells on.

TC - Keeping it Real

Help For Haiti

Don’t think that it hasn’t been tempting to Oreo up current events.

On one hand, giving to charity is a wonderfully ruling class thing to do. Nothing reminds you that you don’t have to deal with a certain group of people than writing a check to an organization who will give you praise and a tax write off for your efforts.

But giving to ethnic organizations in league with other of colors, well, that makes you a pretty typical RBP, yes?

The post was going to read something like that.

But the more I listened to report after reporting coming in–and especially after the aftershocks today, the more I not only didn’t want to go quite so far over the line, but the more I wanted to make sure that everyone who can, did help out.

Some links are here. I chose Clinton’s campaign. And I encourage you to choose whatever suits you.

And don’t worry, the snark and cynicism will return later in the week.

“Racism Nearly Over,” Fox News says!

Are they right?

In an article published on foxnews.com, the confusingly named Juan Williams chided major newspapers for not publishing startling findings from the Pew Research Center for People and the Press that said that whites and blacks are existing in a blissful state of grey and that both camps feel that issues surrounding race are about to vanish.

Let’s take a look at some of his finer points:

JW writes:

“The poll by the respected Pew Research Center for the People and the Press found that 70 percent of white Americans and 60 percent of black Americans “believe values held by blacks and white have become more similar in the past decade.”

I agree. Sure, blacks and white do have the same values. Like I’m sure both sides value say, not murder and not being poor and finding love when they least expect it. Most people have similar values to other people. This doesn’t mean, however that they have similar ways of or equal access to pursuing those values.

For example, I value feeding my soul as well as my belly by having a relaxing, long lunch. So does my boss. We both can’t be out of the office for an extended period of time. Guess who wins.

JW continues:

“The poll also found that 65 percent of whites and 56 percent of blacks believe the gap between standards of living for the two races has narrowed over the last ten years. Even as incomes between the races have slightly widened during those ten years there is the feeling among both races that the level of comfort – living standard – is increasingly similar.”

Here, Williams admits that the gap has gotten bigger, but is happy that we’ve all been duped to believe otherwise.

And take a look at this gem…carefully:

“And in what I think is the most amazing finding of the new poll 52 percent of blacks said that black people who are not getting ahead today are “responsible for their own situation.” Only one-third of black Americans said racism is keeping down the black poor.

Fifteen years polls found the exact opposite with most black people pointing to racism as the major impediment to black people rising up the ladder of social and economic opportunity in the U.S.”

JW asserts that it’s a good thing that fewer blacks feel that racism is making life harder for them. That people are “responsible for their own situation.” This, just after he wrote that the economic gap between blacks and whites is widening. 

The inference that has to be drawn from these two statements is that the gap is widening because of something that blacks are doing wrong. Because if racism or historically disenfranchising systems aren’t the problem, then it has to be blacks themselves.

See why I’m trying to hard to escape my ethnicity!

But wait, there’s more!

JW says:

“But there is something else going on here. Since the intense years of civil rights activism in the 1950s and 1960s the rates of high school graduation, income and home ownership have all been climbing for black Americans. But despite those decades of change polls did not find any sudden rise in optimism among black people to match what this latest Pew poll has uncovered.

I think I know why.

Black Americans and especially black civil rights leaders did not want to acknowledge the progress being made on the race relations front. Blacks feared that white America — in the form of government, foundations, churches and educational institutions — might point to any admission of racial progress as evidence that there was no more work to be done to heal the damage done to contemporary American life by racism.”

I heart that he makes this grand and sweeping assertion without any quote or research to back up such a theory.

So is racism about to meet an untimely end? Based on recent films, Golden Globe winners and meetings I’ve had, likely not. But that issue is eclipsed by the best thing about this article and this writer…he’s of color. Were this article written by a non color Foxer, I’d be nonplussed, but it looks like JW is one of us. So I welcome his castigation of the working poor and un-backed up theories with open arms! Welcome aboard Juan.

But we are going to have to change that first name. We can talk about it over ‘tinis. See you at the club, Trevor!

We got another one!

MLK Day Oreo Awards – The Creamies Take on The Golden Globes

On this Martin Luther King Jr., Day, The Oreo Experience would like to take a minute to thank a hero of the black community for showing us just how far we can come…if we have the right (read: the white) support.

And thus, a Creamy goes to the Hollywood Foreign Press for the Golden Globe they gave Sandra Bullock last night for her performance in The Blind Side. Breakout work by an unknown, but raw and heartfelt new talent Gabourey Sidibe, be damned (or for that matter, the ever-regal Helen Mirren, too). We need more white people to the rescue.

A follow up Creamy goes to the Hollywood Foreign Press for giving Mo’Nique a Golden Globe for her performance as a horribly abusive ghetto mom, and thus reminding us how terrible it is to be of color. They could have awarded Morgan Freeman for playing Nelson Mandela or Chiwetel Ejiofor for playing a smart and clever and thoughtful villain.

But, when they keep things consistent and reward of colors for portraying their worst and the ruling class for portraying their best, it really helps keep us Oreo hopefuls motivated. Thanks, HFPA. And by all means, don’t feel the need to cut your speech, our orchestra won’t play you off for a while.

PS…did you notice? Four of color nominees total (including all other categories if you’re curious, but not counting Penelope Cruz). Three of those four playing something/someone negative or frightening and/or unwelcome in your average saddlery. See, sucks to be an RPB.