Monday, February 11, 2019

Back when I was not yet "woke"

There has been a lot of backlash with Virginia Governor Northam for wearing a "black face" on a yearbook picture and/or during a dance contest dressed as Michael Jackson with black face when he was in school.  I know now that it is very inappropriate to wear back face as a costume or for any kind of cultural appropriation like wearing a Mexican sombrero with mexican outfit.  But I must admit that back in the 80s and 90s when I was much younger, I was not "woke" yet to know better.  I have skirted at the idea of dressing up as a native American indian with feather on my head or as a Japanese Geisha with painted white face.  I am not American Indian or Japanese so it would have been racist of me to do so.   It seems that it was not a big deal back then.  Or perhaps I was just ignorant then.  So how is being ignorant equate to being a racist?  Shouldn't racism be judge based on willful malicious acts rather than acts out of ignorance?  I am very conflicted on this matter especially as it relates to Governor Northam's past transgression.  Is he truly racist or just did some stupid thing back when he did not know any better?

No comments: