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Thursday, December 10, 2009

Are You a Racial Fetishist?

Recently, Rush Limbaugh-- who I actually consider to be quite knowledgable in all matters concerning race-- spoke of the state of the "Black frame of mind." He said that Black folks, particularly Black men, are in a bad place. He said that Black folks felt as if things in America would change instantly because of the election of Barrack Obama, and since nothing has changed, they've turned on Obama. Really? He also said that Tiger Wood's preference in women would contribute to the over-all bad feelings.

Believe it or not, I'm going to give Rush Limbaugh some credit here. He has been one of the few in the main stream media to bring up the racial aspect of this story. Granted, he kind of stumble his way through actually saying it out loud, but he did. The Associated Press ran a story called "Tiger’s Troubles Widen His Distance From Blacks", making a claim that he is distancing himself from being black, and his preference for white women is proof. Tiger's never really labeled himself as 'black' anyway; he says "Cablinasian". Fair enough, even though that annoyed most black folks, who've always considered him 'black'...until now. Now they've embraced "Cablinasian" as the perfect label. But I digress...let's get back to Tiger's racial fetish...

Does Tiger Woods have a thing for White women? I think that's the obvious thing to think. I say that because there is more than one pattern here to examine. There is race, but then there are the occupations of these women. All of them are either waitresses, escorts, porn stars, or star-f*ckers. Not necessarily the top shelf, there. Nothing against them personally, I'm sure they're perfectly nice girls...although they can't be that nice-- they've been having affairs with a married man (and I'm SURE they knew he was married). As for their profession(s), one would have to ask if these are white female-dominated profession(s). Are these women who usually hang out around golfers? Most golfers are White, so are only White women interested in "entertaining" them? Or does Tiger Woods just have a thing for White women? Or does he have a thing for White working-class women (his wife is a nanny, afterall...)?

As a black man, I look back at my dating history, and I see a lot of racial variety. I've dated White, Black, Latin, and Asian women. And when I've really thought about it, the one thing that I can say that they've all had in common is that they all wore glasses. Every last one of them. Some wore contacts mostly, but they always had a pair of glasses. And when I had to peg myself down with a certain "fetish", I would have to say that I have a thing for nerdy girls. I love, LOVE smart, witty, bookish women. Women that aren't afraid of cars, or computers, or books, or the arts...that's what I like. Now, when I was in grade school, I was one of a few Black kids in a predominately white school. From elementary school, through high school, and even in some of college, I generally had a hard time dating Black girls because they always ALWAYS thought I was "too soft" or "not Black enough". I was a nerd, not a thug. But, there were other girls of other races that DID like me; White, Asian, I had a choice to make. I was either going to hold out and hope upon hope that one of these Black girls would try to get to know the real me...or, I was going to date whoever I wanted to date, and everyone else can kiss my ass. I chose the later. As I got older and out in the world a bit more, it was easier to meet Black women...but that's a difficult thing to have to deal with early in your adolesence. You're already a ball of insecurity, and then to add unnecessary and idiot short-sighted stereotypes to everything...not fun!

Interracial dating seems to always only deal with Black and White. But there's a lot more than that going on. I've had many conversations with Asian women who constantly annoyed with being stereotyped and fetishized, predominately by White men. But, if you've ever walked around New York City, you see White men and Asian women all the time. There are White men that will ONLY date Asian women. Some Asian women like that, but many do not.

I've seen Indian guys with White girls. Black women with Asian men. Latin women and Indian men. Asian men with Black men. Black men and White men. White men with Black women. Black men with Indian women. Maybe it's because I've lived in New York City for so long. Whatever it is, I'm not as hung up on race as a lot of people then to be. We are obsessed with race in America, yet we never want to talk about it. People hate the passive-aggressive racial behavior, but cannot talk about it without getting upset or angry. White men and Black women get upset when White women date Black men. East and South Asians don't like their children dating Whites or Blacks. And Jews can't be bothered with anybody.

So I think interracial dating is a great thing. Beyond all the animosity and jealousy and hatred, maybe if we just kept loving and screwing each other, maybe we'll eventually get passed all that. In that respect, is a fetish a bad thing? Are you really a racist if you 'like' another race? Well, again, I think racial issues are often vehicles for more serious psychological problems. Or just intellectual laziness, or emotional stupidity. But if you have a fetish, or 'a thing' for another race, you should know that people who are worth having in your life don't really want to be known as accessories. Eventually, the novelty will wear thin.

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