Monday, June 29, 2020

Racism in the World of Dogs and Hunting

"Karen" breaks the law and calls the cops on a black birder.

We have a problem.

The dog world and the hunting world are disproportionately racist.

This is not an accident, nor is it universal.... but YES there is not a *normal* distribution of racism within these two communities.

There it is.

If you haven’t seen it, then you are *really* not paying attention.

And if you have not been paying attention, you’ve got a race problem.

Racism, of course, is boiled into the bones of the dog show world, where sniffing pretensions built on lies, selection for coat color, and “purity of blood” is code for the kind of backwater sister-fucking that has been the staple of southern jokes since the beginning.

It’s not an accident that Leon F. Whitney — the AKC-celebrated veterinarian and dog writer — was not only the head of the American Eugenics Society, but the author of a book advocating the forced sterilization of 10 million Americans; a book praised by Adolph Hitler.

It’s not an accident that the idea of gas chambers was lifted wholecloth from the world of dogs.

Hunting, of course, skews rural, and since law enforcement has always been racist, and rural law enforcement has tended to skew towards the KKK, it’s not too surprising that racial minorities are under-represented whether it’s in deer camp, upland bird hunting, or duck hunting in the Chesapeake.

Suppress black, Hispanic, Asian, Native American, and immigrants by making them uncomfortable in bait shops, at ringside, or in forest and field, and you automatically increase not only the percentage of racists, but you increase the general tolerance for racism in the world of dogs and hunting.

Racism is — far and away — a white person’s disease. It is a sickness that white people must fix by themselves.

Job One is admitting racism is the pandemic that has boiled through this country for 400 years. It has cost jobs, crippled advancement, shut people out of schools, closed businesses, bankrupted good people, criminalized minor infractions, and lead to routine state-sanctioned murder. It has done this to millions of people for hundreds of years.

Let’s admit that right from the start.

And let’s admit that not only has the world of dogs and hunting not been an exception, it has been on the smellier end of the stick more often than not.

It doesn’t help that the dog show and hunting worlds were never young and have been rapidly aging for several decades.

The aged are not just more conservative and less well-educated; they are also, as a group, far more racist. It’s not an accident that the literature and rhetoric of the NRA sounds as if it was written by your most paranoid white-supremacist adjacent uncle. Has the NRA ever decried the killing of a law-abiding gun-owning black man by the police? Have they ever spoken up against the gun-toting white supremacists that shoot up schools, churches, and dance halls? No, and never.

What to do?

It’s not enough to simply say “I’m not racist” and then whistle past the graveyard. If you’re not actively challenging “dog whistle” racism that takes the form of salutes to the confederacy, a heritage of hate, and deep dive excuse-making for police-on-citizen violence, you are part of the problem.

If you think an attack on racism is an attack on your country, you are part of the problem.

If you think saying “Black Lives Matter” is an attack on white people, you are part of the problem.

And, to be clear, the problem is racism.

If you are infected, please quarantine yourself until you get your broken ass fixed.

2 comments:

PBurns said...

I'm looking forward to the first person to post who will say (an I paraphrase): "I have never posted before, but even MENTIONING racism has triggered me so badly I just want to say I am NOT a racist and how dare you suggest it, and not all us US are racists, and what about THEM who are up to NO DAMN GOOD, and racism comes from the other side too."

And there it is.... from some place like Plano, Texas, or Buttwash, Michigan.

kelley said...

Thank you for posting this, and all the other things you have in the past weeks. Sometimes it is the single ray of hope in my day...we live in an,er, buttwash kind of place and...well. Thank you.