Friday, November 16, 2007

OMG! Racists in Ann Arbor! I am like so...

The title screams: Racism lives in Ann Arbor! But a more acurate title might be "Drunkenness lives at U of M!"
Late Saturday night, I was walking up to the ATM on Church Street and South University Avenue, when a SUV full of drunk men yelled at me, "Fuck you, Afghanistan bitch!" I kept walking, ignoring this eloquent comment. They targeted me because I was wearing my keffiyeh, a checkered Palestine solidarity scarf, which is not in any way related to Afghanistan. I'm white and Jewish, yet I still experienced anti-Muslim racism.
Aside from the absurdity of expecting drunk racists to understand the difference between a keffiyeh and a hijab (well, maybe in Ann Arbor we should expect this), I think it's a bit racist on the author's part to expect people to be able to identify her as Jewish on sight, in the dark, from a moving vehicle. As someone with Jewish ancestors, I find the author's implicit assumption that Jews can be recognized this way to be offensive.
Farther in, we get the author's suggestions.
Beyond changes on campus, we must establish truth and reconciliation commissions, modeled after South Africa's post-apartheid resolution process - a process that is now being applied across America in communities that are no longer willing to sweep ongoing injustices under the carpet. Without addressing past wrongs, power dynamics will continue to be asymmetric, and the racial hierarchy will remain unchanged.
[The author] is an Ann Arbor-raised, Detroit-based emcee and activist.
I guess calling herself an "activist" sounds better than saying that she doesn't care about any particular cause, she just enjoys complaining about things and protesting.
Don't forget to read the comments, most of them clearly had more thought put into them than did the article.
By wearing a keffiyeh, it makes a statement that you sympathize with Palestinian terrorism. The keffiyeh serves no religious function and is ONLY used to make a political statement.

So let me see, you're a white, Jewish, hip-hop "artist" who sympathizes with Palestinian terrorism. Question 1: Where can I get your CD? That should be, um, interesting.

OK, you certainly don't deserve to be shouted at or have stuff thrown at you. I'm willing to give you the benefit of the doubt and assume your values are confused due to your age and lack of knowledge. But your ignorance makes me sick and your "Jewishness" is clearly out of birth and not based on your values. So don't go holding that out as a shield.

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