Thursday, December 19, 2002

Just got a Christmas card from my cousins Sean, Meaghan and Torin. Enclosed was a list of "three of life's lessons learned this year that [they] would like to share with those we love":

Torin: "Baseball doesn't hurt nearly as badly when you try to catch with your eyes open."

Sean: "The walls may appear solid, but people can still hear what you say about them when they're outside of your cubicle."

Meaghan: "Grandma REALLY DOES have a good reason for telling us not to play on the stairs."

Lessons to live by.

7:08 PM

Well, that totally sucked. I really hate instructors who write up these finals that are ten times harder than the stuff you've been doing as homework. I worked up to the last second, and I still didn't get it done, and let's face it, I'm the best student in the class by far.
11:06 AM

The thing that gets me about Trent Lott is that he doesn't even understand how facile the remark "I am not a racist" is.

You can't magically become "not a racist" just by saying it is so, or by wishing it is so. To become even *sort of* not a racist takes a lot of work. You have to think, read, listen, talk, ask, work and work hard. You have to be willing to educate yourself and others, but also to let other people educate you. You have to be willing to listen to yourself and catch yourself and find out that you're far from perfect even though you've been working hard. You have to be willing to change. No matter how much progress you make, there's a lot more that needs to happen to make you a little closer to being "not a racist." It takes constant vigilance, and even then, you'll find yourself thinking or saying something you just wish you hadn't. Every day you have to start over, and start over willingly, or it doesn't get you anywhere.

Every single one of us lives within a social framework riven through with racism, and every day we need to reassess it and see what can be done about it. Who influences what we think? How do we pass on that influence? What's the television telling us, the radio, the magazine at the doctor's office? What kind of jokes do we tell our friends? Do we laugh even though we know we really shouldn't ought to? Do we notice who makes us nervous in an elevator and why? Do we notice who we make eye contact with on the street and who we pretend not to see?

That Trent Lott even expects me to believe that he isn't a racist shows me what an idiot he is even more clearly than his remarks in praise of Dixiecrat politics. He obviously slept through all the courses requiring any sort of critical thinking in college, and he should probably lose his position in Congress just because he's an intellectual embarrassment.

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