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Michael Richards (Kramer from “Seinfeld”) went on David Letterman to try to make amends for repeatedly hurling the N-word at African-Americans at a recent stand-up performance.
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By JClarke, December 22, 2006 at 11:56 am Link to this comment
The problem with the “Blacks can be racist, too” thesis is that it wreaks of a blaming the victim, a tactic as old as the racism in this country itself. It’s just another means that whites use to justify their own racism as well as the status quo. It’s up their with so-called reverse racism/discrimination, etc. which are all just attempts to make a mockery of the corrective intents of Civil Rights legislation. When history looks back on this period in Civil Rights, it will view the Racist Denial/Revisionism of the current batch of reverse racism/ black can be racist cryers as equally or more obstructive as the white crowds with baseball bats who stood in afront the schools threatening to defend against integration and their “injustices.”
By G. Burrows, December 4, 2006 at 4:16 pm Link to this comment
It is unfortunate that Black America, I say Black America because it seems that although there is an expressed desire by blacks to be as one equality for all—with whites and other races, there is an inevitable wedge driven between the races here in America by blacks themselves.
For example, the designation African American (rather than just American) . . . .separates the races. Blacks want to be able to have their own Miss Black America contest while participating in the Miss America contest, too. Likewise there are separate clubs/groups in colleges, businesses, and politics but an expectation to participate in clubs that includes whites as well as other races. Many colleges have black year books separate and apart from the regular year books. Mr. Pennix explain to me why you then would be offended if there is a white only club . . .white only year book? Dont get me wrong, Im not advocating such . . . I am, however, advocating that there just be one for everybody.
With regard to the Michael Richards situation . . . I do not believe his negative remarks was intended for all black Americans just the hecklers in the crowd in a unfortunate moment. Does that justify his comments . . .absolutely not. But, blacks want to continue to question his character and wont accept his apology . . . . and continue to whine and complain about it. Is it racial if a white person dislikes a black person because of that individuals character, attitude or behavior? I am absolutely sure that blacks possess the same innate traits as whites and other races . . . such as hate and prejudice so dont get on your pedestal and proclaim that blacks do not. As I stated in my earlier comment . . Ive been a victim on many occasions of racism as a non-black. In fact your responses reeks of prejudice. Your comment about Jews and the Holocaust is a prime example . . you want to be respected as a black but you show no respect for the Jews and the Holocaust. You wrote . . .do you think the NAACP is the same as the KKK? You think the National Black Caucous is the same as the hundred or thousands of White Supremists groups in this country? (I believe you over exaggerated the numbers here). My question to you is . . do you think slavery 150 years ago in this country compares to the Holocaust? How do expect the Jews to be over the Holocaust which occurred in more recent times than slavery 150 years ago . . . when black Americans arent over slavery—every day as a non-black we here in this country are reminded of slavery by blacks in their excuses for crime they commit, those who live in poverty, etc. Many blacks think that all Southerns owned slaves when it fact it was a very small number. Many think the Civil War was all about slavery . . when it fact it wasn’t. In my opinion . . slavery was used by the Union to win the war. And, as a matter of record, many slaves returned to Africa and those with initiative acquired land and made something of themselves. True enough there was inequality but blacks are far better off than they have ever been in this Country’s history. Squashing offensive language will NEVER eliminate prejudice.
You would benefit from going to the website http://www.daveblackonline.com/southern_educators_perpetuate.htm
By tony gonzalez, December 4, 2006 at 7:27 am Link to this comment
Well first of all I by far do not want to be white like mr pennix says but im not this cry baby whiner either. But I do find this double standard stupid. I’ve been called a beaner,spic,and wet-back but i can laugh it off im just saying that if you can dish then take it this goes for all races
By Antwoine Pennix, November 30, 2006 at 1:29 pm Link to this comment
Response to da’beads:
You know as well as I do that anyone can say whatever they want. Do not insult my intelligence. Upon people saying whatever they want they should also expect a postive or negative reaction and be able to deal with either without other people “who did not speak the same thing” trying to apologize for them or justify what was said! What do you know about “Hate Speech”? Do you see black people running around on soap boxes spreading vile filth about the white man or any other group of people? You think the NAACP is the same as the KKK? You think the National Black Caucous is the same as the hundred or thousands of White Supremists groups in this country? Do you think the Urban League is the same as the Ariyan Nation? I doubt that you do. Did you come to the defense of Mel Gibson with what he said about Jews? People tip toe around Jews as if they were still sufferring from the Holocaust. When it comes to a black person or a group of black people bringing to light the darkness of racism people want to sweep it under the rug and pat the perpertrator on the back and give back-handed apologies as if that will make up for things. Sad…...........
By G. Burrows, November 29, 2006 at 5:34 pm Link to this comment
To think that only whites can be prejudice is very naive. My daughter and her fiance were called “crackers” by black customers in a restuarant and the black manager did nothing. I have stood at a jewelry counter at a local department store for 30 minutes and ignored by the black salesperson only to have a black customer walk up to the counter and the salesperson bent over backwards to offer assistance while I stood there and looked on. Today, I heard on the news where two black teenagers killed a white man and indicated they did so because he was white and they didn’t like him. I have noticed on tv commercials that blacks have a superior role to the whites who are in the same commercials. If it were the reverse we would hear cries of “fowl” . . . I think commercials should either be strictly black or stricly white . . . but don’t degrade whites to make blacks feel better.
By Teresa, November 27, 2006 at 11:02 am Link to this comment
An apology is not good enough for me. I truly believe if he would have made the same racial slurs regarding a different ethnic background (Jewish) he would have received the same repercussions as Kanye West. Kanye West was pulled from his contract for saying far less. Kanye’s comment was Bush is prejudice and he does not like black people. They pulled his—s so fast it made his head spin. Anything that Kramer’s face appears on should not be seen in public ever again. The good has to suffer with the bad.
By da'beads, November 27, 2006 at 9:22 am Link to this comment
Antwoine Pennix said:
“You dont mind what he said because you have used those words yourself at some point in time and wish you had the freedom to use it more.”
What America do you live in?! Tim DOES have the ‘freedom’ to say whatever he wants. And you and everyone else has the same freedom to be outraged by whatever he says.
Educate yourself, sir.
By Antwoine Pennix, November 25, 2006 at 5:01 pm Link to this comment
This Post Is for Tim….....I read your blog, and you sir are no better than Michael Richards. If you live in this country and know its history then you should know and understand why this was wrong on every level! Go out on the streets and do what Richards did to black people you do not know and see what happens! He was lucky to get out of there unharmed! White people have very short memories only when it is to their benefit!!! Richards also had some other things to say to the two men that was not caught on video. When the group of Mexicans and Blacks walked in he took notice and said on the microphone,“Here comes the stupid spanish people and the blacks…”. He pulled cash out his pocket and told the two men he could buy them or pay to have them arrested. He told them that when he wakes up in the morning that he will still be rich and they will still be niggers! Those are not jokes sir. Jokes have punchlines, Mr. Richards went into detail about very sensitive things directed at two black men. He pointed them out. Spoke directly to them, not the audience. He admitted himself on Letterman that he went into a rage. That is when the “joking” stopped. For you or anyone else to defend such despicable behaviour is sick. You don’t mind what he said because you have used those words yourself at some point in time and wish you had the freedom to use it more. You can type it in your blog or on the net all you want, but you won’t go outside in a group of strangers where black people are around and do what Richards did, would you?
By Stace, November 24, 2006 at 11:13 pm Link to this comment
Sticks and Stones! With everything that is going on in the world today, hunger,poverty,corrupt politicians in Washington, The illegal war in Iraq, it disgust me that society has chosen to focus on an insignificant comedians ill timed rants in front of a small audience. For crying out loud people if you put as much interest in ending this war instead of someone’s hurt feelings we might beable to save some lives. So tell me how much (in monetary terms is it worth to get your feelings hurt)? My ex-wife once told me that I would never amount to anything because I am white, have blond hair and blue eyes, at the time she was seeing a latin fellow. I was confused by that, but instead of sueing her I just keep my distance from the hate. Priorites people, priorities!!!
By Tim, November 23, 2006 at 2:26 pm Link to this comment
It isnt a ‘racist tirade’. It is an act, in a comedy club, that happens to use words that people are uncomfortable with. Full argument at my blog.
By Antwoine Pennix, November 23, 2006 at 2:05 pm Link to this comment
This is the rest of an earlier post ending in continued…...........
Until we learn to live together, we will all surely perish as together. The laws of this land protect the rich. Police harass and brutilize rather than serve and protect. An old white man killed 10 people and wound over 50 in one day. Those who died ranged in age from 7 months to 75+, and he got no jail time…....because he is old and frail????? His ass should be in jail!!!! Every day black people are reminded what it means to be black in America. Richards told us nothing new. He is at least 50 himself. I am sure he remembers how it was 50 years ago, but for black people we remember how it was and has been every since slaves were brought to this country, and the white man does everything in his power to make sure we never forget it either.
By Antwoine Pennix, November 23, 2006 at 2:03 pm Link to this comment
I have watched the video a few times. I have read articles comparing this to Borat and Carlos Mencia. Some have tried to label it “shock comedy”. A few people have called for the hecklers themselves to be held accountable for heckling. Mr. Tony Gonzales whose comment#39328 comes to the defense of the white man. With his last name I can only assume he is Mexican or Hispanic….not white, but probably wants to be. Because every minority and foreinger that comes into this country knows where the power lies…..with The White Man, as Mr. Richards put it so eloquently.
From what I understand Richards was already deep into his routine by 20-30 minutes…..and no one laughed at anything he had to say. A black man in the audience told him he was not funny. The man did not attack Richards by using racial slurs or even throwing things at the stage…which used to happen to comiedians that sucked. It is appaling to here the things he said and how clear he said them with no fear as if he knew that there were people in the audience that agreed with him on some level, but were glad that it was not them on stage saying it, but a high power celebrity!!!
Seinfeld is a good friend. He did what any true friend would do by trying to help Richards, but it wasn’t very smart for him to do. He should have talked to Richards after the Late show apperance and let Richards straighten out this mess on his own. I did not see anyone coming to the aid of Mel Gibson after his little rant. That is in part because no matter how much anti-semitic rhetoric you throw around…..IT IS STILL NOT AS POWERFUL OR HARMFUL AS USING THE WORD NIGGER!!!! It is amazing there was no riot that night or any physical altercations between Richards or anyone else. I can assure you that those “black” guys there used every once of self-control they had to just get up and leave, instead of rushing the stage and beating the shit out of Richards!!!! But they did not, they got up and left and gave Richards a piece of their mind in plain english, not slang or “ebonics” as some crackhead would label black terminology. Those “black” guys were sitting in the upper level because you can see Richards look up, point directly to the balcony and start ranting. Those balcony seats are not cheap. What “thug” do you know that would pay for VIP seating just to go see a washed-up has been from TV?
I am not surprised by any of this. I am not shocked. I am not blown away by the audacity of this “white man” to have said those things. Just because racism and prejudice run below the surface in this country does not mean it does not rear its ugly head every where else. The first election of George Bush and the second election should not have come down to Ohio and Florida. They should have just called them all niggers and closed the doors rather than take there votes and then throw them away. The institutions of this country have racial and prejudice applications all “blacks”. Richards said himself that you think a cop is going to arrest me for calling a black man a nigger???? Sad…..Hurricane Katrina exposed the US’s poverty and there indifference to an area dominated population wise by “blacks”. There were many white people that suffered from the hurricane, but if they lived in the mid-west were there are little or no “black” people they would have had help in a matter of hours….not days, or weeks, months…and still waiting to this day. Our cities are segregated. Our schools are segregated. Our communities are segregated. The workforce is segregated. Continued…..
By Bluestocking, November 22, 2006 at 8:22 pm Link to this comment
I view Michael Richards’ apology in exactly the same way that I view Mel Gibson’s apology…
NOT GOOD ENOUGH.
In my opinion, before either Gibson or Richards can render a truly sincere apology, they need to deal with the attitudes underlying the remarks they made. Apologizing for the incident is not automatically equivalent to apologizing for the sentiments. In my experience, the words don’t come out of the mouth—even in anger—unless they’ve already been in the head and/or in the heart for awhile. As a rule, I don’t believe that people ever say anything that they don’t at least on some level mean—even if they can’t admit it to themselves. It’s said that a drunken man’s words are a sober man’s thoughts—alcohol often lowers people’s inhibitions to the point at which they say things they aren’t brave enough (or stupid enough) to say when they’re sober.
Nobody has said whether or not Richards was high or drunk that night, but one thing is obvious—he forgot the cardinal rule of stand-up, which is DON’T LET THE AUDIENCE GET UNDER YOUR SKIN. If you really can’t handle hecklers or audience members who aren’t paying attention, DON’T DO STAND-UP, because it’s the kiss of death.
And while we’re on the subject…am I the only one who thought that Richards looked unbelievably stiff and wooden while he was delivering that apology? This from a man who wasn’t even facing a live audience, but piped his apology in via remote! Some people have suggested that he looked shaken and uncomfortable, but I didn’t see it that way—I saw someone who seemed emotionally numb to the proceedings and who was apologizing more for the sake of appearances than for genuine repentence.
By RogerRoth, November 22, 2006 at 8:07 pm Link to this comment
Jerry must be pissed. This is definitely going to affect his future income. I’m going to start a foundation, non-profit, of course, to aid all these asshole entertainer Hollywood-types who can’t keep their mouths shut out in the real world, and jeopardize their ability to get work. Let’s see, I think I’ll call it Assist The Hollywood Asshole Foundation. Send your contributions to me and I’ll see that they get the help they so richly deserve.
By philly, November 22, 2006 at 3:49 pm Link to this comment
George (#39230) you said it very well.
Chaseme I feel your comment is not far from Kramer’s rant. If “most” white Americans felt that way would there have been any progression on the issue over the last 50 years at all?
By tony gonzalez, November 22, 2006 at 3:41 pm Link to this comment
It’s funny that when a black person does the same thing to white people nobody says nothing but when a white man does it’s all over the news
By George Khoury, November 22, 2006 at 7:29 am Link to this comment
Essentially Richards represents the vast majority of people of any ethnicity that still carry within them a silent racism. A racism thats perpetuated by institutions, media, people, families, etc. Its a deeply embedded racism that needs much more generational surgery to remove. Its a racism that no one wants to believe they retain, but for the most part, you do, unconsciously, and most inconveniently consciously at times.
By Chaseme, November 22, 2006 at 5:02 am Link to this comment
What an idiot! What a fool! What a racist! What a true American! Now this is white american in it purist form. Thank you Michael Richards for showing us how most white americans feel about black people, especially black men.
The “oh, my god” comment came from a small minority who understands were are all human, we are all people.Those who continued to laugh…eh, they are probably in positions to decide who gets hired into the company they work for.
Notice how some people started to leave, not because they were offended, they simply were afraid. Richards used the boogie man sound effects “oooh! ooh!” which supported their beliefs that black men are freightening.
This is nothing new, this is real america. For those who do not live there, if you want to become american, simply adopt the “n-word” in your vocabulary and you are in.
By Bukko in Australia, November 21, 2006 at 10:41 pm Link to this comment
Wow—I’ve seen behavious like that caused by alcohol, cocaine and mental illness. I don’t know if any of that applies to Michael Richards. Cheers to the people who had the gumption to speak up and walk out!
By Chris, November 21, 2006 at 8:39 pm Link to this comment
This was very very sad to watch. I can’t believe he would do that.
By Sharon Ash, November 21, 2006 at 3:18 pm Link to this comment
Kramer, Kramer, Kramer. Dude, next time you want to hurt yourself, consider closing your penis in the car door. That swelling will go down in time. But this fit you threw is going to haunt you for a very long time. Our life is colored by the choices we make. Color Kramer unemployed.
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