There’s one thing about writing about racism today. There will never be a shortage of material. It seems there will always be someone, somewhere, who will eventually say something racist. Everyday people say racist things. Famous people say racist things. The difference is, the famous have more to lose than the rest of us–or do they? Because their racist rants oftentimes find their way into mainstream and social media, we find out about it sooner or later. The rest of us can say our racist comments in the privacy of our homes and among our friends. Remember when Hulk Hogan became the newest celebrity to add his name to the racist rant hall of fame? I liked the character Hulk Hogan. So, it saddened me to learn about his racist rant. If you remember, Hulk Hogan apparently got upset with his daughter after finding out she was dating a Black man. He then went on an “N” word rant, which was taped. The taping was 8 years prior but brought back to life and made public. From the news account, I remember listening to it and from a reporter who grew up loving Hulk Hogan, it was bad. The WWE (World Wrestling Entertainment) cut all ties with Hulk Hogan. I mean the WWE excommunicated him to the land of nonexistence. To his credit Hulk Hogan apologized profusely. But what else was he going to do?
Is the WWE’s punishment going to undo, un-hurt or fix any problems in the Black community? Is the WWE’s punishment going to help teach society not to say or do such racist things? The answer is no. Like I’ve said to you several times before, racism is an on-purpose act that must be undone, on-purpose. I think the WWE should have given Hulk Hogan a chance to undo his racist rant, by sending him to (in this case) a Black school or youth center and let him tell the kids and their parents why he’s sorry for what he said. I think WWE and Hulk Hogan should have gone into their pockets and fix a problem in a poor Black school district. I think the WWE and Hulk Hogan should have started an after-school tutoring program to help Black kids do better in their school. This would have been an anti-racist act. This would have started the process of un-doing racism. If Hulk Hogan had made racist comments about Mexican people, Asian people, Native Indian people, or women, then what I’m talking about would apply to those communities. The same goes for any other race or group of people that have been offended by racist and hateful acts or comments perpetrated by wealthy people or organizations.
My point is, apologies aren’t enough. With all the racist rants and acts that are going on in this country, nothing is being done to undo racism. Firing people who make racist, sexist or any other hateful comments, doesn’t do anything for those communities or people hurt by the comments. An anti-racism approach needs to be taken. These communities need to demand more than apologies. Firing people who make racist comments does not educate or re-educate anyone. If society stays uneducated, racism will continue; Headline: “Racist person fired! End of Racism!”–probably not.