Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Racism in Wrestling

There is a letter on the Observer page talking about a double standard when it comes to racism. It's basically asking for a response. Dave I don't think will. And while it references me specifically, I just don't feel like writing out a longer response to run on the website. But I will give my thoughts briefly here. And it's this: not all discrimination is created the same. Some forms of discrimination are a lot more real, and create a lot more harm than other forms of discrimination. And we should rightfully be more sensitive about the discrimination that creates more harm. Anti-Irish discrimination was once very prevalent. Now, it's not a view that many people in this country hold. Thus, it's okay to make fun of it or play off of it. Likewise, if there were a group of people that legitimately felt that blue eyed people are bad and should be removed from society, that would be bad. But given that belief is not held by any group of people, it's not something we need to be terribly concerned about. Whites are the majority in this country. There is no danger that angles portraying them negatively are going to lead to any demonstrable harm. But angles portraying historically demonized minorities can exacerbate that discrimination and lead to real harm. And it's thus perfectly rational to be more concerned about the portrayal of some forms of discrimination than others.

4 Comments:

Anonymous Phil said...

My opinion is that no angle on a wrestling program, or any other form of entertainment, can be established to have a direct causal link to real-life discrimination. Consequently, there is no legal nor moral basis for outrage directed at a clearly fictitious display, no matter how outrageous. I'm not speaking to the quality of the angle in question here, most angles in wrestling history involving race have had little to no entertainment value, only the morals behind it.

7:18 PM  
Anonymous ty smith said...

Wow.. that dude's upset. I always get a kick out of Meltzer posting stuff like that, he doesn't sweep shit under the rug.

8:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey Todd and everyone take a listen to this podcast my friend did

http://timw14.podomatic.com/entry/2006-11-30T22_32_07-08_00

- James A

3:33 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

That was a surprisingly weak response, Todd. No offense, but you are a college student. That means you have yet to experience the pressure of earning a living and supporting a family. You don't know this, but many, many white men are being discriminated against in the work place, especially out here in Silicon Valley. Minorities and women who are far less qualified leapfrog over white men for career promotions and advancement, and maybe one day you will see that yourself. But your comments prove my point, that it's ok to make fun of white men but not other races. And your excuse is that it's because it's not harmful to society? How in the Hell do you know how harmful this is? Why don't you ask how harmful it is to white men out here? Why don't you ask the parents of the students shot at all these school shootings by white kids? These white kids feel left out because of all the programs and entitlements given to women and minorities. Their response is to shoot and kill, but apparently that doesn't qualify as harmful to you. Graduate college and live life in the real world, and you will see what I mean. If you noticed, the people who responded to that letter on the Observer site were either college kids or minorities. White men may not statistically be the minority, but they are the silent majority and are absolutely discriminated against in the work place. Maybe not in Alabama, but out here in the Bay Area, it's so obvious you'd have to be blind or ignorant not to see it.

I read in an interview once that you said Democrats care more about people that Republicans do. As a Democrat, you seem to care a lot about people when they get discriminated against... except white men.

I love Meltzer's work, but the guy hasn't held a day job in 20 years. He also wouldn't have experienced discrimination first hand. Neither would many younger wrestling fans who make up the internet wrestling community. But trust me, discrimination isn't just against minorities anymore.

5:31 AM  

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