have bad days, even very bad days, as we all do. Example. I woke up
late on a day when I had an 8 am meeting. Most days, I'm up before
6, but this day I just blew it. So I'm in a rush, and the new pair
of pantyhose runs at the touch of my unmanicured nail. Gotta find a
new pair. Go out to my car. No gas. Call an Uber. They're late.
When I get to my appointment, a scant 5 minutes late, I am met by the
assistant of an anal man who says he has to reschedule because I am
too late (5 minutes!) to accommodate. So I decide to get a coffee at
Starbucks and meander to my lunch meeting, a few blocks away. But
when I check my cell, I realize that my lunch meeting is canceled. I
make my way home, frustrated and annoyed. A very bad day.
don’t go buy myself a 9-millimeter gun or drive by a bunch of
places where the white men who have frustrated me are employed. I
don't kill a bunch of people. I don't tell anyone there is some
sexual obsession that drove me to insanity. Instead, I do what I
often do when I am frustrated. I get some ice cream, preferably
butter pecan, and take a small spoon to the big pint. Maybe I have a
unique cognac. Or, I call out for some bbq brisket and fried Brussel
sprouts. Worst case scenario, I sit in front of my fireplace and
shed a few tears for my man, recently departed, who always talked me
out of frustration.
cannot understand why Cherokee County Captain Jay Baker, the
spokesperson for the law enforcement group that captured the depraved
murderer, would describe his actions as "a very bad day."
Of course, he has since apologized and was removed from his
spokesperson duties. And of course, his boss has described his words
as the source of "much debate and anger." I guess Jay
Baker just had “a very bad day”. But not as bad a day as
Delania Ashley Young, 33, Xiaojie Tanm 49, Do you Feng, 44, Paul
Michels, 54, and four others experienced. It was a white boy bad day
that left eight people dead.
rude recounting of a massacre is the essence of white supremacy. You
make it all about you. Eight people are dead, six of the Asian
American women. And you had a bad day!
me tell you about bad days. Vincent Chin, a Chinese American
engineer, ran into some depraved white Chrysler employees on June 22,
1982. They blamed him, and folks like him, for the job cuts that
Chrysler imposed due to Japanese imports (Chinese, Japanese, not the
same thing). Chin was beaten to death, and his murderers got a $3000
fine and 3 years probation. The message – Asian lives don't
matter. Or, more intersectionality,
“other” lives don’t matter.
hate has racial dehumanization as its roots. You can't lynch Black
people unless you think they are something less than human. You
couldn't do that to your mother or brother or sister. You can't
sexualize and shoot Asian American women unless you think they are
less than human. Would you shoot your aunt or cousin to satisfy your
Floyd had a "very bad day" when Derek Chauvin killed him
with a nearly 9-minute knee to the neck. Sandra Bland had a "very
bad day" when a rabid Brian Encina decided to arrest her for
both a minor traffic offense and for her unwillingness to bow down in
front of him. Twelve-year-old Tamir Rice had a very bad day when,
just seconds after sighting him, the much-maligned Timothy Loehmann
(fired from another Ohio police department) executed him. Dylan
Roof, the deranged white man who shot up Emanuel African Episcopal
Church in Carolina church and killed nine people, had such a bad day
that the men who arrested him took him to Burger King to get a
other words, your bad day can result in my murder. Your sexual
dysfunction becomes my problem. Your gross ignorance puts me at risk
because I am a woman – Black, Brown, Asian, Native American.
There is a genderized component to American racism, and this
genderized component makes it okay for an intellectually vacuous law
enforcement official to describe a vicious massacre as “a very
bad day”. Bad for whom?