Tuesday, September 08, 2015

[iudbahsl] Elucidation of America via your reaction to Hollaback

The Hollaback video, originally intended to document the amount of street harassment women encounter, unintentionally illustrated, through the sympathetic anger elicited in many of its viewers, two aspects of American culture that are otherwise difficult to explain.

With no white harassers in the video, it illustrates the true state of race relations in America.  The hate exists at a very personal level, reflected in the how the anger is elicited around the very personal issue of courtship.  This state of race relations explains other racial tensions and injustices.  For example, the anger directed at those harassers, "those people", becomes a wish for, or at least a "I don't mind" or "I don't care" attitude, towards "those people" being destroyed.  Such an attitude becomes a political force that explains how democratic communities can raise and support police forces to inflict brutality on "those people", and generally stand idly by watching the violence happen to them.

(I worry that unless this underlying social conflict is resolved, police brutality will not stop.  Reforming police departments alone may not work.)

The video also helps explain America's gun culture.  If you had to walk through such streets encountering such harassment, would you feel safer with a gun?  If, for some reason, you had no choice but to walk alone through such streets, (and that street, in more than half the scenes in the video as was later identified, is 125th Street in Harlem) would you consider owning a gun?  How would you feel about legislation forbidding you from owning a gun to defend yourself from "those people" on such streets?

No comments :