That's Racist! (Racists Don't Care)

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Beebo Brink

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Mrs. Beebo and I had an emotionally fraught discussion yesterday. She came back from running an errand, angry and upset, after seeing an incredibly racist decal plastered on the back of a pickup truck in the Lowe's parking lot. She feels strongly that this sort of overt, in-your-face racism needs to be confronted, and I agree with her, but the question is how to do so effectively and constructively.

My wife had wanted to confront the driver and tell him how offensive that decal was, but the truck was gone by the time she finished shopping (for which I was actually relieved). I pointed out that he's already quite aware that it's offensive -- after all, that's the POINT of it. Best case scenario is that being told that it's offensive will probably make his day for having offended some "librul" (bonus points that it's a elderly dyke who is offended). Worst case scenario is that the driver reacts violently to her.

But, as she so rightly stated, NOT saying anything is no longer acceptable either.

We're stumped as to how to deal with this in an ethical way. We live in a deeply red state that went overwhelmingly for Trump and a populace that takes everyday racism in stride (when not actively applauding it). Any gesture of defiance is unlikely to garner much support, or so we assume, and it's that assumption that itself is repressive. On the other hand, what gesture do you make? How do you meaningfully fight back? I can easily envision how to speak up in the middle of a conversation with someone, but not how to deal with the in-your-face offensive public speech of a decal.

Mrs. Beebo has a temper and (unlike me) is not the least bit apprehensive about confrontation. I can easily see her berating some absolute stranger for being an offensive racist, just as I can easily imagine him beating the shit out of her (she's a 5'2" 70-year-old woman with massive health problems). Is it cowardly to worry about safety? Does a brave stand accomplish anything?

We're really grappling with the nitty gritty of response. Any thoughts?
 

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Mrs. Beebo and I had an emotionally fraught discussion yesterday. She came back from running an errand, angry and upset, after seeing an incredibly racist decal plastered on the back of a pickup truck in the Lowe's parking lot. She feels strongly that this sort of overt, in-your-face racism needs to be confronted, and I agree with her, but the question is how to do so effectively and constructively.

My wife had wanted to confront the driver and tell him how offensive that decal was, but the truck was gone by the time she finished shopping (for which I was actually relieved). I pointed out that he's already quite aware that it's offensive -- after all, that's the POINT of it. Best case scenario is that being told that it's offensive will probably make his day for having offended some "librul" (bonus points that it's a elderly dyke who is offended). Worst case scenario is that the driver reacts violently to her.

But, as she so rightly stated, NOT saying anything is no longer acceptable either.

We're stumped as to how to deal with this in an ethical way. We live in a deeply red state that went overwhelmingly for Trump and a populace that takes everyday racism in stride (when not actively applauding it). Any gesture of defiance is unlikely to garner much support, or so we assume, and it's that assumption that itself is repressive. On the other hand, what gesture do you make? How do you meaningfully fight back? I can easily envision how to speak up in the middle of a conversation with someone, but not how to deal with the in-your-face offensive public speech of a decal.

Mrs. Beebo has a temper and (unlike me) is not the least bit apprehensive about confrontation. I can easily see her berating some absolute stranger for being an offensive racist, just as I can easily imagine him beating the shit out of her (she's a 5'2" 70-year-old woman with massive health problems). Is it cowardly to worry about safety? Does a brave stand accomplish anything?

We're really grappling with the nitty gritty of response. Any thoughts?
I've been grappling with this for a while, or I should say we, since my spouse has been pulled left over the years by me.
 
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NyteWytch

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We're really grappling with the nitty gritty of response. Any thoughts?
While I agree about the need to stand up...I'm of the school of thought that her safety is paramount. Unfortunately with these types, it seems no discourse or even a heartfelt explanation would make a difference but could very well end up in violence.

I wish I knew of a good option as my area keeps getting trumpier by the day. I too struggle with being too opinionated while being small statured. Luckily so far most just laugh in my face after calling me a librul snowflake bitch but I am responding less now as it really seems worthless.

I do feel like society needs to stand up to these types but I have yet to see it make an impact that is positive. 😔
 

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The only power we really have in situations like that is to make sure to vote, and bring all your blue friends with you. Anything else could well result in violence.

Speaking of violence, it's probably not a bad idea to get a CCW and conceal carry when you live in such clearly troglodytic places. Most conservatives would never expect a "librul" to be armed, so you'd have the element of surprise if things really do go south.
 
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Grey Mars

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The only power we really have in situations like that is to make sure to vote, and bring all your blue friends with you. Anything else could well result in violence.

Speaking of violence, it's probably not a bad to get a CCW and conceal carry when you live in such clearly troglodytic places. Most conservatives would never expect a "librul" to be armed, so you'd have the element of surprise if things really do go south.
And a little extra point, if things HAVE gone so far south as to need to pull out said conceal carry, you don't dick around. You don't shoot to wound. You don't try fancy speeches. You fire center mass. Then you keep firing center mass till you feel safe. These people have a long head start in dehumanizing you and thinking about all the wonderfully violent things they'll do to you if they have an excuse.

If this sounds excessive, remember that you are not one of these Rambo cos-players. If things have become bad enough you are carrying a deadly weapon, then you USE that deadly weapon in the situation it was created for.

You also get training, and practice. Violence is a last resort. If however it's come to that point, you make sure it's done properly and decisively.
 

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If I took nothing else away from my pistol training class, taught by a retired sergeant, he taught us one extremely valuable thing (among lots of other valuable tidbits). "Whatever it takes", meaning you do whatever is necessary to survive.

It's well worth the experience. So would taking a low impact defensive martial arts class. Maybe something like Tai Chi.

A 2015 systematic review found that tai chi could be performed by those with chronic medical conditions such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, heart failure, and osteoarthritis without negative effects, and found favorable effects on functional exercise capacity .[37]
The pistol training class helped me to build more confidence in my ability to keep myself from harm and protect others. If I could afford the Tai Chi classes I'd do it.
 

GoblinCampFollower

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Mrs. Beebo and I had an emotionally fraught discussion yesterday. She came back from running an errand, angry and upset, after seeing an incredibly racist decal plastered on the back of a pickup truck in the Lowe's parking lot. She feels strongly that this sort of overt, in-your-face racism needs to be confronted, and I agree with her, but the question is how to do so effectively and constructively.

My wife had wanted to confront the driver and tell him how offensive that decal was, but the truck was gone by the time she finished shopping (for which I was actually relieved). I pointed out that he's already quite aware that it's offensive -- after all, that's the POINT of it. Best case scenario is that being told that it's offensive will probably make his day for having offended some "librul" (bonus points that it's a elderly dyke who is offended). Worst case scenario is that the driver reacts violently to her.

But, as she so rightly stated, NOT saying anything is no longer acceptable either.

We're stumped as to how to deal with this in an ethical way. We live in a deeply red state that went overwhelmingly for Trump and a populace that takes everyday racism in stride (when not actively applauding it). Any gesture of defiance is unlikely to garner much support, or so we assume, and it's that assumption that itself is repressive. On the other hand, what gesture do you make? How do you meaningfully fight back? I can easily envision how to speak up in the middle of a conversation with someone, but not how to deal with the in-your-face offensive public speech of a decal.

Mrs. Beebo has a temper and (unlike me) is not the least bit apprehensive about confrontation. I can easily see her berating some absolute stranger for being an offensive racist, just as I can easily imagine him beating the shit out of her (she's a 5'2" 70-year-old woman with massive health problems). Is it cowardly to worry about safety? Does a brave stand accomplish anything?

We're really grappling with the nitty gritty of response. Any thoughts?
A lot of racists that I've met are weirdly oblivious to how racist they are, even when saying something clearly racist... many are quite surprised when it gets them in trouble.

But assuming this person is an overt, self-aware racist, I think the best way to confront them is often mockery... they WANT to offend you, but not to be laughed at...

That said, I agree that it's just not worth it for you or your wife to do this in person. Too much of a gamble. But you could consider leaving a note on their windshield or posting a picture to this sub: r/InfowarriorRides