Written and Illustrated by Koriander Bullard
As I type this, I am reading through the umpteenth article about disgraced ex-NAACP chairwoman Rachel Dolezal, who as you may have had drilled into your skull via social media, is a 100% White woman who still publicly identifies herself as “Black” despite:
1. A DNA test showing she is 100% White.
2. Her 100% White parents publicly chastening her.
3. Having admitted to not being Black and to wearing a more publicly pleasing version of blackface.
I am seething, watching this green eyed, German and Czech creature with caked on tanning makeup, try and convince the world that she “has it rough” because she identifies as a race she has never been.
And I am reading the comments White people are leaving, and at this point, I don’t know whether to laugh or grit my teeth. They not only support her decision to parade in the streets, screaming “look at me look at me I’m BLACK” but I just read a comment that just about made this worse.
“It’s no different from when a man wants to be a woman, what’s the dif?”
Excuse me? Buddy, there is a big “dif” right here.
See, when a man wants to become a woman, (or vice-versa) it’s because he feels he was born the wrong gender. So be saves his money, pays for life altering surgery, life altering gene therapy, and slowly but surely, becomes a woman. It is a long, emotional, painful process, in which he will see who really cares about him and who loves him enough to accept him as a “her” post-process. It’s expensive, not just fiscally, but on a personal level, but he does it with passion and conviction, without sacrificing his roots. Even if he is rejected, he will still be able to tell you who his parents are, and he will not ever lie to your face about his family, even if they do not accept his new life.
What Rachel Dolezal is doing tantamount to parody.
Unlike a transgender person, Rachel Dolezal is not doing this publicity stunt out of passion, despite her claims. She doesn’t feel like African American is her “spirit race” she is doing this deliberately to see how much attention and sympathy she can garner by rejecting her race.
She rejects her family, rejects her bloodline, and prances around in Blackface, trying to make you emote for her. Joining the NAACP was more about seeing how much she could get over the public and less about the fight for equality. This is evident by how little she actually fought for, and how much extra public relations work she left behind.
Furthermore, people like Rachel Dolezal are nothing but a headache and a sincere hindrance to people who are either mixed race or light skinned.
I am known as a “Quadroon”. That’s an old word that means I am one quarter Black. As such, my skin changes from near-Caucasian to a deep gold depending on my health.
Thanks to people like Rachel Dolezal, I now have to carry around photos of my mother and grandfather to prove to people I’m not yet another “crazy Rachel Dolezal” and I really am mixed race.
I have adult strangers calling me “wannabe” because of Rachel Dolezal.
White people wear fake chains around me, blare rap music, eat pork and claim they are “more Black” than I will “ever be” and then expect me to accept them as “the new Black” and cry for their fake struggles. As they tweet disparaging comments on their iPhones about how “stupid” #BlackLivesMatter is and how “all Blacks” are hoodlums who deserve death.
I have strangers name calling me online, pretending I don’t have the right to be angry over Rachel Dolezal, trying to convince me that this White woman in blackface is having a “rough” life in her designer clothes and crocodile tears.
Blacks now don’t know how to look at a light skinned “sista” anymore. I’ve seen Blacks look at mixed race babies cock-eyed, not knowing if they can trust this child’s ethnicity because of Rachel Dolezal.
And nobody trusts the NAACP anymore, because someone was foolish enough to elect Rachel Dolezal to a leadership status at a critical time where we needed someone who had more than their own interests at heart. We have conditions in this country ripe for a race war, and yet here we are, allowing a Rachel Dolezal to run around in brown makeup and make everything about herself.
Listen, we’ve all seen when White people try to “act Black” and we’ve all had our favorites. White rappers have been off and on the music charts for more than two decades now, and it’s great to see a White person embrace Black culture.
But there has to be a healthy limit, and Rachel Dolezal takes a pole vault leap right over it.
When Michael Jackson, Sammy Sosa and Lil’ Kim decided to start “whitening up” their features, using everything from blonde hair dye and bright contacts to flat out skin bleaching, Whites called it out. Let’s be fair. It was whiteface/whitewashing and it was wrong. It was a slap in the face to each celebrity’s original genetic makeup, it was not done out of passion, it was used for publicity and it was disgraceful, borderline racism.
When the movie White Chicks came out in 2004, it was wrong. It was a movie basically making whiteface look like an “acceptable” thing, and it was racist. There is no justifying it.
So imagine my red hot anger, seeing people suddenly try to make up lousy excuses for Rachel Dolezal, after years of us finally getting rid of the notion that blackface is “just a fun hobby” and years after making it crystal clear that pretending to be another race with makeup is ethically and morally wrong. Granted, we still have a whitewashing issue in Hollywood, but with the loud backlash against whitewashing films in recent years, you might think that some people would get it by now.
Of course, I give humanity too much credit.
Rachel Dolezal, I doubt very highly you are reading this, seeing as how most people I call out like to label those of us with a legitimate concern as “haters” but as an actually Black descendant American citizen with a soon to be renewed membership in the NAACP, I hope that if for nothing else that you, and people like you, can understand why we are angry with you.
Of course you won’t, but it is still a free country, so I can hope if I want to.
Koriander Bullard is an author, cartoonist and human rights advocate. Keep up with her on Facebook!
Written and Illustrated by Koriander Bullard
They say everything comes back eventually, and it seems like no more true is there a case to prove this than the new-age revival of the Yuppie.
What is a Yuppie? Well according to 1980's folklore, the term “Yuppie” is short for "young upwardly-mobile professional" and generally depicts a person between the ages of 18 and 29 who will insist that he or she is socially aware, motivated and holds a deep consideration for the well being of the community, but in reality is self-absorbed, self-entitled, pushy, aggressive and despite being involved with his or her network of people on a 24/7 basis, has all of the social skills of a mouse about to be smacked with a broom. They will insist that they have liberal intentions, and yet their attitude becomes more oppressive and conservative the longer it goes unchecked. They typically enjoy being the bully, but when push comes to shove or they are simply asked to behave like adults, they will play the victim card, insist that they are the true victims for being told to stop harassing people, and they will sulk and demand you cater to their whims lest they stage a public display of intolerance. They insist that they believe in equality, will act very effeminately if they are male, and yet their attitudes towards the opposite race or gender come across as obnoxious at best and derogatory at worst. And all the while, they demand that you brush off their arrogance as a “joke” despite the lack of laughter.
We now live in a day and age in which everything needs to be about the Millennial Yuppie, the Hipster and the mostly Caucasian children of the 80's Yuppie puppies who came up in an era in which cartoons were censored, childhood was sanitized, bullies were mollycoddled, victims were demonized, and listening to hard music was considered more of a threat to society than shooting up a school, the latter of which earns you a pat on the back for being a “misunderstood and troubled kid” unless you are non-White, in which you are the devil in the flesh. These unpunished children were denied art and music in school, and thus have learned that their only outlet for expression is by hate-tweeting in retaliation of anything and everything they see fit, starting with topics that do not and never have pertained to them. Failure to devote equal attention and consideration to the #MillennialYuppie will result in Twitter backlash.
As an example, let's look at the #BlackLivesMatter issue, which since 2013 has been and still is an activist movement, originating in the African-American community, that campaigns against violence toward black people. BLM regularly organizes protests around the deaths of black people in killings by law enforcement officers, and broader issues of racial profiling, police brutality, and racial inequality in the United States criminal justice system.
In layman’s terms, we’re sick of seeing Black youth killed by racial profiling police officers, especially in cases where the decedent was not even breaking the law or otherwise posing a realistic threat to the murdering officer.
Before you start, I am not talking about cases in which the decedent was a 17 to 24 year old “thug”, I’m referencing cases such as seven year old Aiyana Jones, who in 2010 was killed in a raid initiated by police, in which an officer used not only a gun, but a grenade against the girl in a case of mistaken identity. In case you’re curious, they thought the seven year old child in pajamas was a 32 year old balding man named Chauncey Owens. The offending officers would be acquitted. In the six years since this child was laid to rest, countless hundreds of underage Black youths have been slain or brutalized by police in one racial profiling case after another, while their White counterparts are not only more likely to get a fair trial, many are more likely to go free.
The issue is that we live in a society in which it is safer to be a Caucasian, male rapist than it is to be a seven year old Black girl in her pj’s.
The entire #BlackLivesMatter protests have been about equality. Not stripping Whites of their rights, but just calling for basic decency and for an end to racial profiling. That’s all. No more and no less.
But tell that to White, Millennial Yuppies.
“What about MEEEEE???” Cries a 20-something on Tumblr with a hideous scarf and plaid overshirt in muted barf tones. “How dare you say I don’t matter, you’re wrong, I’M the one being put down, not YOOOOUUUU!! #WhiteLivesMatter #MyLifeMatters!!”
“#AllLivesMatter not just yours, you’re being selfish, monkeys!” Pouts another Millennial in a bootleg Doctor Who shirt from some pop t-shirt start-up. “Nobody can EVER take you seriously because you’re not saying I matter!”
“Everybody is being bullied, not just YOU!” Demands yet another Millennial in yet another bootlegged shirt, this time of The Little Mermaid’s Ariel wearing glasses and sporting “Daddy issue” tattoos. Her duck face pose is only highlighted by her machine-knit “naturally made” beanie, matching Allan Sherman glasses and poorly streaked black and brown hair, also in a faux-natural look.
“It’s not about you, your life doesn’t matter. #NoLivesMatter because it’s ironic!” Says a fake comedian on Twitter, who also has the phrase “choose death” on his profile splash page while his profile pic is of the lad pulling a Pixar mom smile, where the entirety of the smile is held on one side of the face, stretching the left cheek over the right.
Rather than show remorse for the pile of bodies racial profiling has given us, these Millennials miss the point. Just as their parents did before them, they twist and turn the hash-tag into a “poor me” situation and force themselves into the story as the “true” victims.
Now for the real irony. Just as the Yuppies once did in the 1980’s, these Millennials proclaim in every interview and study that they are concerned about the environment and about our society. They want to see us all become more aware of our surroundings and more compassionate.
And yet just like the Yuppies, these Millennials do the opposite of their actions.
They cry about pollution, while sipping their “back 2 nature” kale smoothies from plastic bottles.
They whine about injustice, while calling anybody fighting actual social injustice “SJWs” or “Social Justice Warriors” while mocking them and trying to decide who gets to be called a real or fake feminist.
What scares me is how much like the Yuppies these cretins really are.
Because I saw what the Yuppies did.
Once upon a time, the first-gen Yuppies elected Ronald Reagan as president. Never mind that he made it clear he was going to undo the good work Jimmy Carter had tried to start during his short term in office. Never mind the fact that this man was senile, in the throws of Alzheimer’s and was a virtual puppet controlled on live television (look it up) by bankers and would spend his eight years in office putting into place the credit policies that have contributed to a consistent economic downturn and alarming unemployment rate, and let’s also ignore that his “Trickle Down” theory led to the stock market crash of 1987.
He was on TV. And TV is never wrong.
Let me be clear. The Yuppies elected into office a mad man who once threatened to (again, Google it) go to war with another country…. Over nutmeg… because he felt nutmeg in cookies is the reason why we even bother to have Christmas. No nutmeg? No Santa or baby Jesus. I’m not even making this up.
If the 2016 election is any indication, then congratulations. We are now right back where we were in the 1980’s. Only now, we don’t just have shallow, self-centered Yuppies to worry about, many of whom will be joining AARP for the first time this year. Oh no.
We have Millennials that eyeballed Donald Trump with the same curiosity their parents once eyed Ronald Reagan with. Eyeballing women’s rights and #BlackLivesMatter with the same disdain as their parents did, after surviving a childhood highlighted by Roe v. Wade and Loving v. The State of Virginia.
In the 80’s, we feared a world dominated by the Yuppies. But I doubt we were prepared for their more aggressive, more destructive and yet more cowardly and spineless offspring.
And yet, no more bitter an enemy will you see than that of the Yuppie to it’s children.
Years of helicopter parenting, the removal of music and art from school, the censoring of cartoons, music and video games, along with the refusal to punish, has led to the Millennials resenting their parents and the parents throwing up their hands in anguish.
Irony dear children, is not seen in your depiction of Ariel wearing glasses and gritting her teeth in a half-photoshopped meme, but in the fact that the parental units who you so loathingly refer to on DeviantArt, (the same people by the way letting you live with them as you approach age thirty) have actually become your greatest role models.
And why not? You behave exactly like them, right down to the thrift-store hand-me-downs and withering vinyl records you cling to as you protest another #BlackLivesMatter protest.
And no greater a threat is there to American society than the Millennial Yuppie.
At least until their children log in.
Koriander Bullard is an author, cartoonist and human rights advocate. Keep up with her on Facebook!