This week, the Chronicle of Higher Education published State of Conflict: How a Tiny Protest at the U. of Nebraska Turned Into a Proxy War for the Future of Campus Politics. In short, a 19-year-old sophomore was yelled at and harassed by a university... graduate student? Teaching assistant? (She's 46 years old, which is a little old for a grad student... but that is what the article said, so let's roll with it.)
Among other ad hominems, the "46-year-old graduate student in the English department" called the student "neo-fascist Becky." (Like, four times. For an English student/teacher, she sure doesn't explore the richness of the English language much.)
Let's just stop right there for a moment.
If you think racism is a bad thing -- as I do -- then don't call me Becky. And if you think it's cool to call me Becky, then I'm sure you won't mind if I call you Taisha. Or maybe LaKeisha. Your pick.
Oh, wait. That bothers you? Hm...
I know it's popular to say there is no such thing as "reverse racism" -- and, to an extent, I suppose I agree. There is no "reverse racism." There is only racism. And racism is truly color blind.
Anyone can be racist against anyone, regardless of your real or perceived "oppression."
It's fun to pretend that racist behaviors are okay when your group does them... but that's holding yourself to an insultingly low standard, and it reflects badly on your cause. And, your know, your own morals and values. For example:
I Changed "Men" to "Muslims" in an Everyday Feminism Post, and Here's What Happened:
Dear Well-Meaning Muslims Who Believe Themselves to Be Safe, Thereby Legitimizing the “Not All Muslims” Argument,
Doesn't that person sound like a racist asshole?
I Changed "Men" to "Black People" in an Everyday Feminism Post, and Here's What Happened:
4. The Depth of Work to Be Done Is Avoided By Most black people
So bad, right?
But that's exactly what you sound like when you call someone "Becky," or say #YesAllMen -- no matter how much wordy, jargon-y overjustification you throw behind it.
So if you think people shouldn't be judged by the color of their skin, let your actions and words be consistent with that attitude. And unless you're cool with me calling you LaKeisha, don't call me Becky.