A must-read: Reappropriate on Michael Richards and the racist fairy

by Carmen Van Kerckhove

kramer racist tirade n-bombIt’s no secret that Reappropriate is one of my favorite blogs. Jenn’s analysis is razor-sharp and she’s also funny as hell.

I urge you to head over to her blog right now and read her latest take on Michael Richards’ apology. Here are some excerpts:

Michael Richards was bitten by the racist fairy.

According to Seinfeld and Richards, who are both “mystified by what happened”, it’s like some Blackface Tinkerbell crawled up Richards’ ass and shot him full of that Strom Thurmond fairydust. Think racist thoughts, and you can make minorities fly — far, far away from you!! After all, Richards is absolutely shocked by what happened (it’s one of those “awful, awful things”, says Seinfeld) – he’s not a racist, he just came down with that racist funk.

I love the use of the passive voice here — racism didn’t just happen. It’s not like when you’re in bed with some girl and the condom just breaks: that’s just one of those “ooops” moments. No… here, racism didn’t just happen! This man did it!! Don’t tell us “what happened”… as if you’re an innocent bystander in some drive-by slurring.

Now, the opening part of Richards’ apology is abso-frickin’-hilarious (and, of course, the audience was laughing). Why? Because it’s like they drugged his ass and threw him in front of a camera! He looked lost!! Look at his eyes, that wide vacant stare! It’s like the Drop Squad picked him up after the Laugh Factory show, beat him to a bloody pulp, and forced him to watch hours and hours of classic African American — no, wait “Afro-American” — films last night. He’s been watching The Color Purple on repeat for eight hours straight, until he broke down into wracking sobs of “did you tell Harpo to beat me?!?”

I don’t think they let him go until they made him watch Roots: The Next Generation — where else do you think he got the term “Afro-American”? You know he just learned it last night! He was like: “I’m a racist! I can’t remember all these names they want to call themselves. Until yesterday, I thought the n-word was alright!”