Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Elliot Rodger: Victim Of Racism

I am an invisible man. No, I am not a spook like those who haunted Edgar Allen Poe; nor am I one of your Hollywood-movie ectoplasms. I am a man of substance, of flesh and bone, fiber and liquids – and I might even be said to possess a mind. I am invisible, understand, simply because people refuse to see me. Like the bodiless heads you see sometimes in circus sideshows, it is as though I have been surrounded by mirrors of hard, distorting glass. When they approach me they see only my surroundings, themselves, or figments of their imagination – indeed, everything, and anything except me. - Invisible Man Ralph Ellison

The manifesto attributed to Elliot Rodger contains the word “invisible” 22 times. The Isla Vista massacre has been widely reported, and Rodger’s digital fingerprints – videos and postings – have been dissected, redacted, and politicized. Feeble victims sob for gun control and again fail to loosen the grip of my cold dead hand. The most prominent talking point from this tragedy being that Rodger was a mentally disturbed misogynist. White-dominated media outlets have framed the murder of 2 White Women and 4 males (of which 3 were Asian) as a “hate crime” against Women. In death as in life, the perception of Elliot Rodger remains distorted; Whites refuse to accurately view and interpret these events.

This is not an exoneration of Rodger’s alleged crimes, but a commitment to truth - and a special duty to accurately understand any events that involve the loss of life.

One of the single most important questions when dealing with people on a planet dominated by Racism (White Supremacy) is: What is the racial classification of the person(s)?

As my fourth grade year approached its end, my little nine-year-old self had another revelation about how the world works. I realized that there were hierarchies, that some people were better than others. Of course I was subconsciously aware of this in the past, but it was at this time of my life – at nine years old – that I started to give it a lot of thought and importance.
I started to see this at school. At school, there were always the “cool kids” who seemed to be more admirable than everyone else. The peaceful and innocent environment of childhood where everyone had an equal footing was all over. The time of fair play was at its end. Life is a competition and a struggle, and I was slowly starting to realize it.
When I became aware of this common social structure at my school, I also started to examine myself and compare myself to these “cool kids”. I realized, with some horror, that I wasn’t “cool” at all. I had a dorky hairstyle, I wore plain and uncool clothing, and I was shy and unpopular. I was always described as the shy boy in the past, but I never really thought my shyness would affect me in a negative way, until this point.
This revelation about the world, and about myself, really decreased my self-esteem. On top of this was the feeling that I was different because I am of mixed race. I am half White, half Asian, and this made me different from the normal fully-white kids that I was trying to fit in with.
I envied the cool kids, and I wanted to be one of them. My first act was to ask my parents to allow me to bleach my hair blonde. I always envied and admired blonde-haired people, they always seemed so much more beautiful.
This is the most essential piece of Rodger’s 137-page diatribe. There’s no reason to doubt the veracity of his childhood epiphany because there are too many examples of non-white children grasping that the world thinks less of everyone not White. This common and devastating realization galvanized scores of Birmingham black children to confront Bull Connor. Conversely, this very same awareness has led millions of melanated children to avoid the sun, chemically mutilate their dark skin with bleaching concoctions, and a myriad of other behaviors reflecting impaled self-worth.

White people did not accept Elliot Rodger as White. Many reports have processed Rodger as the latest illustration of White male pathology – the brotherhood of Norway Terrorist Anders Breivik, Sandy Hook Terrorist Adam Lanza, and White Supremacist Frazier Glenn Miller. Rodger’s mental illness is self-evident, but there’s nothing to verify his membership in the ultimate criminal organization - the White Race.

The Southern Poverty Law Center and other outlets latched on to Rodger’s denigratory remarks about blacks and Asians:
Full Asian men are disgustingly ugly and white girls would never go for you. You’re just butthurt that you were born as an asian piece of shit, so you lash out by linking these fake pictures. You even admit that you wish you were half white. You’ll never be half-white and you’ll never fulfill your dream of marrying a white woman. I suggest you jump off a bridge.
Non-white self-hate is a primary result of White Supremacy. Countless Victims of Racism believe (hope) that by imbibing Racist concepts, performing Racist culture, rebuffing all representations of non-white people, they will be received as White. Most often, this ends in tragic repudiation.

Take Leo Felton - non-white male with one White parent, one black parent. After spending time in prison, he attempts to “pass” as White, facilitates a neo-Nazi reading group, and eventually plans to ignite a “race war.” But...
The media broke the news that Felton had one black parent and one white one. It was a delicious story for the Boston papers -- the biracial race terrorist -- but Felton's racial unmasking was his worst nightmare come true. The week the story broke, he tried to commit suicide by slicing his own jugular vein.

Like Felton, Rodger’s father [Peter Roger] is White. His mother [Li Chin] is non-white. He consistently self-identifies as “half-white,” “half-asian,” “Eurasian,” and “mixed-race”. For Rodger, Felton and most non-white people the idea of white culture [becomes] symbolic. Blue eyes, blond hair, and paleness represent our desires, deficiencies and denied dreams.

It’s been my life struggle to get a beautiful, white girl.
-       Elliot Rodger

The #YesAllWomen campaign has sited this slaying as another illustration of patriarchal violence that degrades, objectifies, and all too frequently butchers women.  Unjust and indefensible male-abuse of females is a serious problem. But to depict Rodger as an embittered sexist, driven to murder when his male entitlement to female subjugation was denied, misconstrues what produced the May 23rd tragedy. Rodger was obsessed and irate with a small segment of women. White women. Blond White women to be specific. This is a rare occasion when the White feminist crusade should follow their usual modus operandi and ignore non-white females; this is strictly about White women.

Out of the blackest part of my soul, across the zebra striping of my mind, surges this desire to be suddenly white. I wish to be acknowledged not as black but as white. Now who but a white woman can do this for me? By loving me she proves that I am worthy of white love. I am loved like a white man. I am a white man. Her love takes me onto the noble road that leads to total realization.... I marry white culture, white beauty, white whiteness. When my restless hands caress those white breasts, they grasp white civilization and dignity and make them mine.
Franz Fanon
Black Skin, White Mask

Rodger craved acknowledgement and validation from White women and White men and was consistently denied. Dexter Thomas, Jr.’s marvelous analysis calls attention to the emphasis Rodger placed on being spurned by White males.  Rodger recounts a bevy of anecdotes where White males exclude and deny him access to White male bonding, White masculinity. Being discarded by White males and White females is the dominant theme of his manifesto, an essential source of his self-hate and contempt for all non-white people, and the core of the trauma that spurred him to mass murder.

Television and movies were our biggest teachers. Asian men, particularly, were either small, ineffective or they were evil. And those messages were deeply, deeply embedded in me for many years. – Alex Tizon

Rodger identified as “half-asian” but felt the undiluted intensity of Racist propaganda. The System of White Supremacy necessitates that non-white people feel inadequate, insufficient. Rodger groped to be recognized and loved by Whites. Disallowed, he succumbed to the Racist disfigurement that he was niggardly, impotent, and in a self-fulfilling manner, dangerous. Rodger’s final hours reveal his value of Asian (non-white) life; 4 of the 7 people killed were Asian males (he committed suicide).

His father, Peter Rodger, is the most important symbol of White masculinity in Rodger’s life; the tropes of approval, dismissal, and "invisibility" dominate Rodger’s commentary on his paternal relationship.
My father thought that all was well with me. How could he be so blind? He was so caught up in his failing work that he didn’t care about how my life was turning out. I cursed him for it. My father never made any effort to prepare me for facing such a cruel world. He never taught me how to attract girls. He never warned me that if I didn’t attract girls at an early age, my life would fall into a miserable pit of despair! Again... How could he be so blind?
Rodger’s manifesto suggests a distance between he and his White father, that Peter Rodger had less time for his non-white son and even restricted Elliot’s access to his residence. This is significant and not surprising. Although many Whites promote “interracial relationships” as a harbinger of Racism’s conquest, these Tragic Arrangements typically reveal the depths of White commitment to Racism. Minister Malcolm X opined on “bi-racial” children: If you notice the White man always rejects children of mixed marriage. When you become of mixed blood, you’re never White. You’re always non-white.

Racists are fond of mocking black males as incapable, lackadaisical fathers. This tends to be a redundant refrain when addressing black problems – which are all a result of Racism/White people. The spotlight rarely shifts to the negligent, nonexistent White daddies who produce offspring with non-white females. From raping enslavers, to South Carolina Senator Strom Thurmond, to the staggering number of Amerasians abandoned during the conflicts in Vietnam and Korea, White males’ embarrassing – perhaps criminal – record of deserting their “mixed-raced” babies is undeniable, global.

This has an enormous and non-constructive impact on the child. These youngsters frequently exhibit all the typical indicators of father-hunger; in addition, they have the onerous burden of understanding their ambiguous racial status – which can often include the sort of isolation Elliot Rodger recorded.

Rodger’s White father could have helped him develop a healthy concept of manhood and identity by speaking to him about Racism. White parents’ dedication to White Supremacy is evidenced by their standard silence on Racism with their “mixed-race” offspring. White Supremacy warped Elliot Rodger’s assessment of himself and the world. Perhaps if his parents, therapists, or life coaches offered Rodger candid conversation on Racism, Isla Vista may have enjoyed a May 23rd without carnage.
Peter Rodger could have simply talked to his son about his Hollywood career. The elder Rodger was an assistant director for the 2012 nuclear hit The Hunger Games. A global audience celebrated a film where children slaughter children for entertainment. Like Elliot Rodger, hordes ogled pale star Jennifer Lawrence and her portrayal of Katniss Everdeen. Lawrence’s character was on the verge of being killed until Rue (Amandla Stenberg, non-white female) saved her White life. But a sizable chunk of White viewers focused on one thing… Stenberg is not White.
Never mind that Stenberg – like Elliot Rodger – has one White parent. She’s not White, and for many Whites, this ruined the film. Stenberg was branded a nigger, and some Whites publicly celebrated her non-white character’s death.
This would have resonated with Elliot Rodger for a myriad of reasons. It’s unlikely that Peter Rodger was ignorant of the Racist controversy targeting Stenberg. This tacky episode could have been used as a teachable moment to explain the depths of Racism, the pattern of White rejection and persecution of non-white people. It seems unlikely this happened.

Predictably, Whites do not honestly address their ongoing Racist behavior and how their pathologies disrupt the lives and conduct of non-white people globally. Elliot Rodger like Seung-Hui Cho, Assata Shakur, and Christopher Dorner are stripped of context. They’re debunked by titles that remove their humanity and reduce them to loony brutes undeserving of life. White Supremacy is methodically engineered insanity. It is a final act of Racist vulgarity to traumatize humans to madness and then feign ignorance about what caused such “craziness.”

Whites gaze unobstructed from the privileged penthouse, boast of their pursuit of all-seeing, supreme surveillance - satellite images, behind-the-scenes and closed-circuit footage of Saturn, Jennifer Lawrence's backstage blunders, and the last seconds of those killed in Isla Vista. But counterfeit blindness when asked to see Racism - themselves.