Daytime adventures in Dickson County.
I’ll warn you before you read this that, as usual, I am just straight up out of f–ks about your white people feelings at this point.
I just had an experience that is so infuriating I have a hard time even believing that it’s real. Except that, sadly, it’s typical. Sitting at the red light by the gas department and in the lane to turn going towards Mathis drive, I look over and in the far lane heading towards Sonic is a… oh, I’d say, a 1987 Chevrolet pickup which was once probably a burnt orange color and now just rust, and flying from it proudly was a confederate flag. And draped across the middle of the flag was a picture of an AR-15 with the words “come and take it.” Now that’s not really surprising, in fact it’s pretty typical. Actually the only thing that would have been more typical is if she would have had a “don’t tread on me” flag flying from the other. Sigh. Because I think we can all agree, you’ll never see a truck in town with the Confederate flag or “don’t tread on me” flag flying off the side of a pickup truck whose owner looks like they even know something as simple as that the number of Constitutional Amendments.
And as I’m shaking my head, the disgust hits me at that not only is this a gun, it’s not just a hunting rifle or handgun, no of course not, it’s a AR-15 — it’s a high-powered killing machine. It’s a f-ck you to all the victims of Sandy Hook or San Bernardino, or the mass shootings that happen every other week in this country. In fact, the only exception that I can think of is Dylann Roof who killed a 9 people with a single handgun. Which begs the question, if you can kill 9 people with a single handgun,
what the f-ck do you need weapons of war for for simple home or personal defense? If you can’t get it done with the weapon that Dylann Roof used to slaughter 9 people, then maybe you ought to go about it in some other route . Like a Rottweiler or Louisville Slugger, hoss. Because I don’t believe attempting to hit a moving human target is really your best choice, ace.
Not only was she flying a flag as a f-ck you to all the victims of mass shootings, she was sending a message, as are most multi round ammunition lovers, that says I care more about the ability to replace my penis or my penis envy with owning a killing machine and some high-powered ammunition than I care about the number of victims a psycho can kill before the police get there.
And about the time I’m shaking my head in disgust at her display of so-called southern pride which is really just bigotry, ignorance and racism, she looks over at me shaking my head and she looks maybe all of 19, and I continued, letting her see my contempt, and expressed that it was a disgusting display of ignorance, and even more disgusting was that she was probably too dumb to even know how ashamed she should be of herself. As usual, the words “come and take it” are always tempting. If it weren’t for my belief that you have a right to express yourself even if you’re expressing yourself as an a-shole, I seriously considered it. In response she just revved her truck engine which was clearly missing a muffler and took off going back home towards to Hickman County.
And I kid you not — as this happens to me all the time, there’s always a dark-skinned witness to white ridiculousness — as I’m turning my attention back to the light, in the lane between us — we all had our windows down and you could clearly see the person next to you — was an elderly black man. He looked close to 80. He had on a shiny new Braves hat with a huge tomahawk right on the front. It was still so dark blue it looks like he had bought it probably no earlier than spring training. He threw his hand up in my direction and nodded at me. I waved hi and shook my head so as to say I’m sorry you had to see that. He had been oblivious or had intentionally ignored it, of course, because black people are better than that — they’ve had to be. Black people in the South, particularly those of his generation, have had to endure this. Had to endure open displays of racism. Had to live with nauseatingly offensive flags in their face, and they don’t always respond to racist generalizations the way I respond. They just shake their head with sadness at another dumbass redneck, because if they responded at every attempt to cheerlead inequality, it would be a full-time job. Black people who have endured racism for decades are not always as openly combative because they had to become accustomed to it. But mostly because many lived during a time when they could do nothing about it. I find that fact even more disgusting than her flag. I found it more shocking that the elderly man at the red light didn’t seem to notice or respond to the emblem of the people that went to war to keep owning his ancestors and of the symbols of those who fought so hard to maintain segregation, and of the clothed mark of racism flying right in his face. It made me hurt for him that he’s had to live with that — even after we know better. Sickened at the fact that me, white girl, has to get angry in this country for something to be done about it. That’s the only progress we’ve ever made — when white people have gotten mad.
That’s why the flag came down in South Carolina. Because it was white people in the State House who had a black colleague killed, and suddenly they cared. For decades black people in South Carolina had to drive by that symbol of hatred and think about their fathers, their mothers, their siblings, their cousins, their ancestors who had been beaten, lynched, sold, murdered, told to get on the back of the bus, and killed for looking a white man in the eye. And every one of them that ever attempted to keep them oppressed flew that flag proudly as a symbol of their cause. And when white people finally suffered, when white people finally had pain, it was removed. I appreciate Nikki Haley’s removal of it, but I wonder if they — the victims of the Charleston Massacre — had just been random African Americans citizens and not a friend and colleague of the South Carolina state house, would they have responded the same? Would they have responded with matched outrage and shame for the flag of the states that went to war to protect slavery flying over their state capitol? Or would they have been inclined to keep the same position that they always have? It took a personal loss and personal pain for them to be able to put themselves in the shoes of a black person. And while I’ll always be grateful for the removal of it, the fact that that had to happen angers me. I can’t even get a cup of coffee without seeing the official jersey of team slavery trotted everywhere in town.
How the f–k do you think black people feel?
I refuse to stop getting pissed off about it or getting in fights at the red light with people who are always the kind of coward who just drives away (probably to go buy their ignorant selves a “don’t tread on me” flag to stick on the other side).
But my question is this: why are white people — and I’m not talking to you white people who are irrationally warped and incapable of interpreting history the way it actually happened, I’m talking about reasonable, sane thinking white people — not angry too? I will defend that woman’s right to fly her flag even though it disgusts me on her personal property because in the United States of America that’s what we do here, but I will also defend my right to tell her that she looks like a dim-witted dumb f-ck whose grandparents might have been close cousins. Now, she has the right to fly hers just like I have the right to use my anger to rile up outrage and ask other white people why we aren’t using examples like her as a reason why, along with the actual cause and historically accurate recounting of the racist intention behind and associated with that flag, to make sure that state houses and school houses and public property that belongs to the government are protected from everyday eye assaults from kids of the Confederacy, so that black people like that sweet man at the red light don’t have to have their grandchildren’s children grow up in situations, time and time again, where they have to become immune to disgusting displays of oppression, slavery and racism.
I think every clear thinking, God loving, rational white person should make that their cause.
If white people in this country had had to endure the state-sponsored oppression that black people have had to endure for decades, we would have burned the damn country to the ground long ago. Look at the white people now! Hell, not only did we go to war with the rest of the nation — we fought a war among ourselves — when they tried to take our slaves, but we’re trying to elect Donald Trump because we’re mad that we can no longer shoot a black man and get away with it! You’re mad because our Camino-eating fat white asses don’t want to work as hard as a Mexican at lower wage trabajo and we scream that they’re “taking our jobs”, when reality is they’re just doing the jobs that we think we’re too damned good for. You’re willing to set the country ablaze and elect a bigoted, ignorant bastard like Donald Trump just because he can hand-hold our racism and coddle our ignorance.
It’s time we actually start following God’s word and treating our neighbor, loving our neighbor, the way that we would love ourselves. And as such, start saying that that black man at the red light that represents me, deserves to have kids’ kids that do not go to school, do not go to the state capitols, do not suffer under state flags bearing the emblem of those who have fought so hard to keep him from having equal rights in the greatest nation on Earth.
I am not making nice about this anymore and I have been working my butt off on my book, titled, “Jesus was not a white man, and stop telling me you have black friends” and when it comes out, y’all can all kiss my little off-white ass.
In fact, when I die, why don’t you just bury me in the black graveyard that way I can look right out at Sonic and, in death, continue to tell you “the south’s gonna rise again!” rednecks that hell yes, black people, brown people, Mexicans, gay people, Muslims, Buddhist, Hindi, immigrants (documented and otherwise), tribal member so deep in Africa I don’t even know what they worship — all of them, every one of them, are every bit as good, as equal in the eyes of the Lord, as my little southern white ass. This is 2016 and the world’s information and the history of your own nation is available in your back pocket in the form of a tool called Google: use it. Then, maybe you would understand how ridiculous you look when you fly ” it’s my history” flags without even comprehending what that history actually is.