November 3, 2007

The Secret Lives of White People?

Dog the Bounty Hunter really stepped into the poo pile on this one. In a taped phone tirade during a conversation with his son, Dog tells him in no uncertain terms that he has to break off his relationship with a black woman he's been dating because they use the word "Nigger" and its too big a risk to their livelihoods to chance being caught doing so. To make it even more odd, he also tells him that other people would not understand their meaning when they say nigger, that its not meant to be pejorative, but they mean it some.......other kind of way...I guess.

And so began another of these increasingly prosaic and silly mini dramas of a white person caught out engaging in racially inappropriate behavior and going into full blown redemption seeking behavior (kind of like drug seeking). Its a pathetic spectacle to watch Dog do it and I think I'm equally disgusted with how gleefully willing the culture is to humor this nonsense, indeed to facilitate it.

He runs, crying, to Jim Storey, to Rev. Al, hangs out with Roy Innis and anyone else who is looking for an opportunity to be part of one of these sad little plays. As though they have any real consequence or meaning anyway. My take:

On Dog: Is he a racist? We all have our prejudices. I think most black people assume that most white people have a level of prejudice when it comes to black people, and that it would come as no surprise to them to hear the average white person they actually know express some viewpoint they would not otherwise say in mixed company because it would be considered a prejudiced sort of statement (indeed there are plenty of people who just go there and call you a racist). Sounds like Dog and his family have been calling black people niggers for a long time, since by his own statements to his son, its a commonplace thing to hear around his household. At the same time, I'm sure he has black friends, his minister is black (wonder how much the guy actually attends/participates in church life) and blah, blah, blah. He claims he says nigger around his black friends and that its always been cool. So is he a racist? Yeah, I guess so. Not the rabid lynch'em, castrate'em, kill'em kind, but that sort of everyday, practical I live my life smiling and talking in black people's faces but inside and in private I don't really respect them type. To me, the tape reveals that about him and that generally he is sort of a low class, undercultured sort of caveman. No self respecting black person I know will sit around sharing the word nigger with a white person and in my opinion no decent white person or one with any cultural sense gets comfortable with using the word nigger in casual conversation, whether the black people around them seem to accept it or not. And Dog has been that kind of private disrespecter of black people for so long, that he can casually use that word (which I guarantee that he rarely if ever uses to describe anyone but a black person) and think that it doesn't really mean anything or say anything about him, that he's not really prejudiced. Its an interesting form of denial, because at the same time, he is totally cognizant of the fact that if other people knew or heard this conduct, that it could mean the loss of his show, impact his finances and the whole deal. So he does know that there is something wrong with it, but figures he's okay as long as he is a private low life type. Interesting.

On the Son: Dog seems to be a bit of a low life, and I think like father like son. Tucker the son had been sent to prison at the age of 18 and served four years of a 20 year sentence for armed robbery before being released on parole. So he has questionable character out the box. He's a grown man, he's got a girlfriend and his Dad, out of concern that she is a bad influence and might lead him to violate his parole, advises him to dump her. So what does Tucker do? He tapes his Dad making all these funky remarks and then SELLS the tape to the Enquirer. All because his Dad doesn't like his girlfriend. He's over 18, he's grown and I don't think his Dad is taking care of him, so he could do what he damn well pleases. He could ignore his Dad, just stop talking to him or any number of things. But what does he do? Effectively destroys his Dads show and wacks his livelihood by SELLING the tape to screw his Dad over. Definitely a low life. You don't sell out your blood like that. Not over a girlfriend, over some chick you aren't married to, aren't engaged to, have no real commitment to and I'll be SHOCKED if in a year, he and this girl are still together. For her, he threw his Dad under the bus just because the guy is the private little racist he's always been. So he's a low life.

On the Girl: Dog was concerned about the girl and her character, what kind of woman she was and maybe he was right. Cuz, I don't believe for a minute that Tucker got the brilliant idea to sell his Dad out to the Enquirer like that on his own. He had inspiration and guidance and I think she was it. A theory only further solidified by the fact that she is now pursuing a lawsuit against the Dog for slandering her. This is the same sort of wack, silliness as the lawsuit by the brothers in the club after Kramer's racial meltdown, claiming they were "made afraid and emotionally damaged". Whatever. So since she is offended, she advises and supports her boyfriend to sell his father and other family down the river. She had every right to be offended, but what they have done was a low class sort of way to handle it.

On Dog's Redemption Tour: This is what really disgusts me about these episodes. It is a pathetic spectacle to watch this guy run around trying to find the magical media forgiveness formula to save his TV show and his self respect from any black person that will hold out to him the hope of absolution. I find it despicable that Roy Innis should rush to his defense, or that Sharpton entertain a conversation with him as though either of them have the power to convey absolution for all black people. All of this attention paid as though this pathetic family dysfunction meltdown was even important enough to have such a conversation. As though it is significant enough for such self appointed race champions to get involved with in the first instance. The shallowness of it all is evident in Sharpton's lack of interest in it. Clearly his calculation is that Dog is not a high profile enough racial offender to saddle up on and ride into the media spotlight. Dog runs around from program to media outlet, making his pleas for forgiveness and confessing the shame and regret of the caught (its not sincere, he was never this reflective in all the years he was casually saying nigger this and nigger that) crying and begging, and the culture happily piles on to watch him embarrass himself with this insipid groveling. It demeans him and it demeans the people who give it an audience and a forum.