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"Persecuted Like Me"
Somebody please explain the difference between bigotry and cold-blooded double murder to the LA Times op-ed columnist, Erin Aubry Kaplan, who says she's "not equating racist invective with charges of double homicide," yet feels O.J. Simpson's "justice" was more satisfying than Michael Richards'.

I'm not quite sure why I ended up reading this, because you really never need to read more than one of Aubry Kaplan's columns because they all pretty much say the exact same thing -- "Black people have it hard, and it's whitey's fault" -- the letters and punctuation just get arranged differently.

Oops, I guess my black friends (among them, a syndicated columnist and author and a fashion designer who sells in the USA and Japan) never got the memo about how downtrodden they're supposed to be. They're just as successful as my white friends, but according to Erin Aubry Kaplan, they should be trudging around feeing persecuted (not to mention, working as security guards). And come to think of it, with what must be a salaried slot on the LA Times Op-Ed page, how persecuted, exactly, is the African-American Ms. Aubry Kaplan? The truth is, available cash, and in turn, social class, divides people and opportunity much more than race. But, then, who'd give you a job saying that over, and over, and over again?

Sure, there's discrimination in the world, but black people don't have a monopoly on being hated or kept down. In fact, we Heebs had and have our share, and then some. I'm actually a post-Jewish atheist these days, but try telling that to the people who think you're a kike. Luckily, Jews don't let the hardships get in the way of owning the banks and the media...oh, sorry, that's what the Jew haters told me about Jews when I was growing up. Hey! No fair! I'm short one bank, 13 newspapers, and 6 TV stations!

What was shocking to me were the black people who wanted O.J. Simpson to get a pass on murder simply because he was black. Aubry Kaplan, of course, saw it in a most racist way -- racist because special treatment for blacks is just as racist as shitty treatment for blacks. In Aubry Kaplan's words on the O.J. Simpson verdict:

I do feel, however, that the decision was a rare instance of equal treatment, if not justice.

That's not something you hear a lot of from other groups. I didn't hear mobs of Jews cheering for Abramoff to get off, for example. In fact, my experience, just in my family, was that my parents felt ashamed whenever somebody with a Jewish-sounding name was in the headlines for something criminal.

For Erin Aubry Kaplan, it's all black and white:

Of course, the O.J. indignation is driven in large part by racial indignation: the idea that a black man may have killed a white woman and gotten away with it.

Uh, no. In my case at least, it's the fact that he murdered two people and got away with it. The fact that Nicole Simpson married him in the first place diminished her in my eyes -- and not because he's black, but because he's an illiterate moron with money and position. I didn't think of her as white; I thought of her as an unfortunate golddigger.

On a side note, luckily, I don't date illiterate morons, no matter how much cash and fame they throw around, or, who knows, I might've ended up like Nicole Simpson and Ron Goldman. I met O.J. Simpson in the early 90s, in New York, when I did a series of short films for the Glamour Magazine Woman Of The Year Awards. (What was he doing there, scouting a kill?)

For some reason, Simpson made a beeline for me, and asked me for my card, which I stupidly gave him, even though I had no idea who he was. Then he spoke a few sentences, and I discovered that his IQ barely skimmed my shins. Luckily, I was living on Christopher Street with Marlowe, one of my Advice Lady partners at the time, so when Simpson called, we put her bird Otto on the phone. Otto sounded just like us, but all he did on the phone is say, "Guten Tag!" over and over and over. Too bad we never could teach him to say "Auf wiedersehen" and "And good riddance!" But, Simpson got the message and stopped leaving messages.

For a smarter take on the Michael Richards incident, read Michael Shermer's column on racism, also in the LA Times. According to Schermer (and to studies I've read), We're all racists...evolution made us that way.

The truth is, whether it comes out as one race against the other, or blonds versus redheads, or some other group vs. group situation, we all evolved to be what could be called "tribal." I read one study a few months back (for my column on "the Asian Fetish") that showed that blacks and whites both fear each other, except when they've dated interracially. That's why I always feel good when I see mixed-race babies. The sooner everyone looks the color of a latte, the harder it will be to hate each other over race. Then again, we may all be dead before that happens, thanks to all the people who hate us because we don't share their religious beliefs.

Posted by aalkon at November 27, 2006 1:36 PM

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I didn't follow the "Trial of the Century" as I had it pegged as a media non-event. When the shouting had died down I found a fellow had spent millions fighting the state without payback.
Guilty or innocent, I found it hard to believe that justice was the result of the proceedings.

"We're all racists". Think about what that means in terms of people communicating on the web. There should be a positive benefit in intellectual linkups that wouldn't happen any other way. Certainly I have contacts online that are wildly improbable in any other context.

Posted by: opit at November 27, 2006 6:12 AM

Here’s Erin writing on Claude A. Allen, the black former White House staffer after he was arrested on felony charges:

“…. Was he testing the limits of a power he wasn’t sure he had, but needed? Was he fatally overconfident — fatal indeed for a black man — that his position shielded him from the consequences of crime, or at least the consequences of petty theft? After a career of always conducting himself appropriately, as his mentor Clarence Thomas reportedly advised, did he finally crack under the pressure?”

And a blog commenter with some common sense:

“Uh…no….he was engaging in what we commonly call… STEALING!!!!!!! Is that so hard to understand?”

Posted by: Lena at November 27, 2006 6:25 AM

She's the racial version of the 9/11 conspiracy theorists.

Posted by: Amy Alkon at November 27, 2006 6:35 AM

LYT says she's a stone fox.

Posted by: Crid at November 27, 2006 6:50 AM

Posted by: Amy Alkon at November 27, 2006 7:06 AM

Boyfriend's right.

Posted by: Crid at November 27, 2006 10:50 AM

Girlfriend's not impressed.

Posted by: Lena at November 27, 2006 11:43 AM

What I like about the current OJ fuss is it gives us all another chance to "disrespect the jury."

Posted by: Cathy Seipp at November 27, 2006 11:46 AM

She looked better than that in person.

And I think she left the Weekly for the Times at exactly the right moment. I can't imagine Lacey would be much of a fan.

My favorite column of hers was one where she went on a cruise ship and was shocked to discover that many of the people on board were Republicans.

Posted by: LYT at November 27, 2006 11:42 PM

Well, a lucky thing for her she doesn't have to get by on her logic!

Posted by: Amy Alkon at November 28, 2006 12:07 AM

The first time I was ever face-to-face with anything like this attitude was in the second grade. I was in the restroom with a few friends between classes and there was a horrible smell from where some idiot had, chimpanzee-style, actually flung poop on the wall. You could see it up there! Yuk!

I commented on the stink and another friend concurred, and we were talking about the poop on the wall, when our third friend (black) solemnly said, "I know why y'all are saying that."


"Because of me."

The ridiculousness of this statement floored me. There was poo on the wall!!!!! Visible to all. The smell was palpable. Yet no amount of argument would convince this little girl that we weren't talking about her. It was only much, much later that I found out she thought we were making a racial slur-- the thought never even entered my head. I just thought she was being weird!

Now I just think it's profoundly sad that she was brainwashed into seeing racism in her friends at age seven. If that attitude kept up, I imagine her life would be really hard.

Posted by: Melissa at November 28, 2006 6:44 AM

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