In today’s “Anything to Stay Relevant” news, Jesse Lee Peterson is once again yapping off at the mouth and blaming Black ‘racists’ for Starbucks’ failed “#RaceTogether” campaign. The world’s number one self-hating Black man even directed his hate towards a well-known Twitter user because of her outspokenness against the campaign.
“When Black liberals say they want to have a ‘conversation’ about race, what they really mean is they want to continue blaming whitey for past racism and perceived ‘white privilege,’” Peterson wrote.
Peterson said that Black ‘racists’ hated on the campaign “to squelch white people’s conversations, thereby creating frustration and anger in whites. Then they point out how racist whites still are…as a pretext to further control them and take more of their stuff.”
“Starbucks wants to encourage more discussions on race — great!” he said. “Let’s really have those conversations! We can start by discussing how angry Blacks have set race relations back 150 years!”
“White Americans have examined themselves and, for the most part, they have dropped the racism in their hearts and have overcome,” Peterson continued. “They’ve moved beyond judging people based on color and are gauging character instead. Instances of whites attacking blacks are so rare that Blacks have to manufacture them. But black-on-white violence is commonplace, though well-hidden by the media and Black ‘leaders.’”
He ended his rant by saying that Black Americans will “never be satisfied no matter how much white America appeases them” and urging them to “go within to seek the solution to what ails them.”
In Peterson’s post, he used attorney @ReignofApril’s tweet as an example:
— April (@ReignOfApril) March 17, 2015
I take issue with Mr. Peterson’s characterization of my comments as both angry and representative of the African-American community as a whole. I am not angry at all, although I’m aware that this “angry Black woman” trope is trotted out all too often by those who are unable to engage in civil debate. On the contrary, I appreciate the effort Starbucks is attempting to make to further discussions about racism. However, while the intent may have been good, I believe the execution was poor. There were better ways to address this issue, and I would welcome the opportunity to speak with Starbucks executives about them. In addition, I speak for me, not an entire community or race as a whole. This is obvious since, while both Mr. Peterson and I are Black, we hold distinctly divergent views.
Calling me and others “Black racists” is a misnomer because racism is built upon systemic and structural inequality and discrimination. So while people of color can be bigoted or discriminatory, they cannot be racist. However, I wouldn’t expect Mr. Peterson to understand this since he believes Black people use the term “whitey,” as indicated in his screed.
It’s also unclear to me what “stuff” Mr. Peterson thinks Black people would be taking from whites, since not even free coffee was mentioned as part of the #RaceTogether initiative. Perhaps he meant welfare or another government program unfairly associated with people of color, but that would be wrong as well, since it is well documented that it is white people who make up the majority of the welfare rolls.
Most importantly, I believe it’s important that one not blame the victim, which is what it appears Mr. Peterson is doing. He states that it is Blacks who have set race relations back 150 years, as opposed to the reality of the daily injustice that Blacks and other people of color face daily merely for existing. Mr. Peterson states that white America has “dropped the racism in their hearts;” the DOJ report on Ferguson and countless examples around the country reflect otherwise. I’d be happy to have a #RaceTogether conversation with Mr. Peterson at the Starbucks of his choosing. We could begin with why he thanked God and white people for slavery.
Lastly, I’m not interested in squelching any conversation about race. However, I believe there is a time and a place for everything. As was reflected in my tweet, the time it takes for a barista to make my drink is not enough to truly discuss the racial divide in this country with the nuance that is required. Further, I do not believe that a barista with just a few months of “racial sensitivity” training is the best qualified to facilitate this discussion.
Maybe Peterson could learn something from the above comment, but then again, I doubt he’s able to listen to anyone’s opinion but his own.
Image Credits: Jesse Lee Peterson/Melanie Rubin