Take off those shades please, they’re blinding

Okay kids, it’s time for the Friday Fry-up!

1. All together now:  BLACKFACE IS NEVER OKAY.  Never.  Seriously, are we all aware of this now?  Yes?  Either way, let’s just say it one more time, for those folks sitting way up in the cheap seats – Blackface?  Not okay.  EVER.

As for all of the Raffi Torres apologists out there, listen up: it doesn’t matter that you have black friends.  It doesn’t matter that you love Jay-Z.  It doesn’t matter that you’ve travelled to Africa or read Toni Morrison or that Dwyane Wade once dressed up as a white dude.  All of these excuses amount to jack squat.

And it sure as heck doesn’t matter if any of this applies to Mr. Torres.

Especially when you factor in that 1) he plays for a hockey team based in Arizona, a state home to some of the most hostile immigration laws in the United States, and where racial profiling is backed by both government and law enforcement officials and 2) that the NHL has a brutal history when it comes to the treatment of its minority players (see: Emery, Ray; Simmonds, Wayne; Subban, PK; etc.) so making a racial statement (whether intended or not) that shames, mocks and marginalizes a portion of society only reinforces the deep-rooted racism and overt distrust of the non-Canandian “good ol’ boy” that for many, has come to define the NHL (see: Cherry, Don).

Apologizing for his actions just shows how oblivious people are to their own privilege.  And trying to equate Ray Whitney dressing up as a toy soldier (hawhaw so offensive to GREEN people!!11!) to Torres’ costume reveals not only their ignorance, but also that people (many, many of them) are capable of telling really, really shitty “jokes”.

Well, these “jokes” are about as funny and/or witty as the crap, and totally unrealistic materialization of ten thousand spoons (when all you need knife), is ironic.  In short, IT SHOWS THAT PEOPLE DON’T KNOW WHAT THEY’RE TALKING ABOUT and that as of now, their privileges have been revoked.  Seriously, all of them.

All of their privileges are belong to me.

2. As for you, Mr.  John Crosbie, Mr. “Holy smoke, this swearing-in is stuffier than a Moroccan footstool, it’s a dang good thing that I am a comedy king!!!” – your jokes are also neither witty nor funny.  They too are ignorant, marginalizing and racist – three things that don’t really scream “gut busting laughter.”  So really, your “jokes” are just sentences.  Ignorant, marginalizing, racist sentences.

And I’ll tell ya, “knock knock ignorant, marginalizing, racist sentence” doesn’t have quite the same ring to it as orange you glad I didn’t say banana. 


3. Last on the docket are these creepy, and super white-washed Air Canada ads.  They are the next generation of a campaign that advertised travel between Vancouver and China, using only white models.  I really wish I had some photos of those posters to better illustrate my point.  Every time I looked at one I just wanted to yell out: “Did one single person working on this project ever stop and look at who predominantly flies between Canada and China?”

Either way, for a company that is essentially “Canada’s Airline” it would be nice to see a bit more diversity.  Or else I’ll be stuck screaming, “Did one single person working on this project ever stop and look at who is currently living and flying around Canada?  Is this why the mouth breathers still think blackface and racist jokes are okay?”

HELLO?  Anyone?

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Vanessa Woznow

Writer, runner, ranter, reader. I write about all things.

One thought on “Take off those shades please, they’re blinding”

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