Some ‘splainin’ to do

By: sonofabeach96

Dec 09 2015

Category: Uncategorized


In this day and age of judging others superficially, feeling disrespect from every avenue, and generally taking sides against one another, I wonder:  Is this just a current phenomenon or is it simply part of the human condition?  Is it nature or nurture that makes us so intolerant of anyone who’s different, unconventional, or insults our sensabilities?  Do we automatically look at someone and preconceive a notion about them based on some piece of our DNA, or are we taught how to be overly in love with ourselves?  To the point that we believe our race, or religion, or genetic background makes us somehow better than those that don’t share the same characteristics?

It got me thinking about me, and how I may be perceived simply based on my looks or skin color or where I’m from.  I’m a southerner, raised in Kentucky, spending copious amounts of time in South Carolina and Louisiana, and the Southeast US in general.  I’m white.  This doesn’t mean I condone racism, or am a bigot myself.  It doesn’t mean I’m a Confederate flag-waver.  Just because I speak with a drawl doesn’t mean I’m slow or uneducated.  I look pretty mild-mannered, like I could work in a CPA office.  Truth is, I hate suits and ties, would rather be water-boarded than sit at a desk all day, I suck at math, and I’m crazier than my mild-manner projects.  I dont live in a trailer and have cars on blocks in my front yard.  In fact, I live on a bucolic piece of ground, am restoring an old farmhouse myself (for the most part), and yes, we have indoor plumbing (although the outhouse is still standing and could be used to this day, in a pinch).  I’d imagine some would say that because I’m a white male in the US that I’m privileged and had things handed to me.  I would prefer to say fortunate or blessed, depending on he mood or day.  What they don’t know is the disastrously fucked up childhood I endured, leading to rebellion, jail, drug use, and near fatal mistakes.  Only to finally get my shit together, bust my ass, pay my way through school, and earn the existence I’ve created.  I didn’t have jack shit handed to me.  EVER!

And I’m sure everyone of you have a story to tell, that the binding of your book can’t possibly begin to explain or describe.  To know ones story, one has to open the book, and read.  Education comes in many forms and accepting others for who they are rather what we perceive them to be is a valuable lesson.  I’m not saying we all have to agree.  We don’t all have to be the same.  We don’t all have to comply to one set of beliefs, norms, morays, and traditions.  Those differences are the beauty in life, the variance, the unordinary, the differences are what make us one…humans.

So, I guess my question is, when and where and why are humans like that?  What makes us automatically assume things about people, oftentimes letting feelings of hatred, distrust, and venom about a person we have never even spoken to.  I don’t think this picking sides attitude is new.  It’s a stale idea, having been given ample time to prove that it’s the right way for us to exist on this rock.  I call epic fail on the effectiveness of racism, sectarianism, segregationism, and generally hating everyone who doesn’t look, talk, or believe like you do.  It’s bullshit!  And, frankly, what gives you, me, or anyone else the right to judge any other person and how they choose to live.  Why do we constantly feel the need to take sides against one another?  We are all on the same team!  We are all facing the same fate.  Possibly different times, scenarios, and places, but the fate is the same regardless.  No one person is superior to another.  Why don’t we play nice in the sandbox, respect the borders and nationalities of everyone, accept that we are all different, yet all still the same at our core, and get the fuck along?  Life’s to short for all this fussing and fighting my friends!  If anyone has some answers, I’d loved to hear some explanations.

My songs of the day are:

“The Way It Is, The Way It Could Be” by The Weather Station

“Strange Times” by The Black Keys

“Repo Man” by Ray LaMontagne

“Lazaretto” by Jack White

“Went Looking For Warren Zevons L.A.” by Lucero



51 comments on “Some ‘splainin’ to do”

  1. Love it. That: “You’re from Louisiana? And have a drawl? Heh, I bet you married your cousin didn’t ya? No? How about a banjo? Got one? Squeal like a pig!” That shit is so tired and ignorant that it really is NOT funny anymore. Grrrrrr.

    Love your conclusion…and your songs, too.

    Liked by 4 people

  2. Thank you so much for writing this. I love you for saying these things. I feel judged and condescended to sometimes because I grew up in a developing country. Just days ago, a subscriber talked about her husband being laid off but instead of talking about how she felt, she made sure say she knew how to live on a small salary because she lived in a “third world country”. I wanted to tell her that I regularly turn down invitations to hang out on friends’ yachts. Or, in high school, if I stayed over at with friends and their parents felt like shopping in Miami, I’d pop back home for my passport. Everyone I went to high school is a “Dr” of something or a lawyer. My skin colour and country of origin are sometimes used like weapons to injure my self confidence but I take that as a sign that the other person is underexposed and needs help. I love your reflection very much because I feel like I’ve said it one hundred million times. Coming from you, it just feels right.

    Liked by 4 people

    • It sucks to be pigeonholed. I’m sure there are millions of people who are. I think everyone can relate to being judged based solely on a superficiality. It’s wildly unfair. I can’t change the world, but I can do what I can to insure that my boys go out in the world with an open mind and minimal preconceived notions. I just don’t understand humanity sometimes. Thank you for reading, and the compliments. I truly appreciate it, mon amie. 😃

      Liked by 2 people

  3. You know, this post resonated with me. I have always had a ‘thing’ about American Southerners as being inherently racist, KKK affiliated or having deep seated, generational intolerance of black Americans (and native American Indians). I know this to be because of how I was raised in New Zealand and influenced largely by watching American movies, like Westerns. The movie ‘Song of the South’, ressonated with me and is one of my favorite classics. I would LOVE to have a DVD of it if it exists. As I’ve grown older, I can understand things a lot better. Not everyone in the South was racist but their voices are rarely heard. I guess most of you were influenced by your grandparents and their parents. As it is in every culture. Your forefathers lived through these era’s and we witnessed the telling of it being passed down in their storytelling, in their opinions however subtle (or not). It’s the same everywhere I guess. An interesting read and I’ve run out of time to discuss my thoughts further. Later. Jx

    Liked by 2 people

    • Actually, I wasn’t raised by racists, parents or grandparents. My parents were hippies, and not the best role models, but racist is something they are not. Never really discussed with my grandparents in detail but they never displayed bigotry that I saw. And it’s not just the south. The kid from inner city Chicago that “must be a thug”, the Asian guy that “must be great with tech”, the Mexican that “must be an illegal alien”, and so on and so forth. Ya think Muslims aren’t being unfairly lumped and “must be terrorists”? It’s wildly unfair and narrow minded for a whole group of people to be condemned because a tiny fraction, skin color, religion, etc, etc. I don’t understand

      Liked by 3 people

      • Exactly. It’s not that straight forward and your article made me think about my own bigotry in my culture. I am educated now and much older, nearly 50. I have a compassion for different cultures which is not so narrow. I’m a Kiwi living in Australia and I see a whole new set of mores here which is way more ‘racist’ than in New Zealand. It is confronting. The nation is divided over the Muslim debate, similar to what happened in America over the Vietnam war. My husband’s grandparents were victims of the Holocaust, surviving and being liberated from Dahau. Their stories of horror were passed down. They have passed away now but their legacy continues. He was raised by them. It’s tough trying to come to grips with the world at war today. It’s a different kind of war but the issues remain the same. Jx

        Liked by 2 people

      • Not sure if those issues will ever change. I have my doubts, as these kinds of issues have been going on for thousands of years. It seems humans are incapable of getting along. 😕

        Liked by 2 people

  4. Wow, this got me thinking….I believe that humans are like pack animals, the ones that run in certain circles all think a like, some are extremely judgmental and think that anyone and everyone not part of there pack are idiots…reminds of the how people think about bikers, if you rode a Harley or wore biker gear you were automatically part of a gang…what narrow minded thinking….or like me the other extreme of the spectrum, I am extremely bohemian…I have been called a hippie and sometimes not the nice kind..LOL never let it bother me, and I am reverting back to my extreme bohemian ways of dressing with the more weight I loose….LOL. good thing I married a man who could care less….my long flowing skirts and Birkenstocks are plenty in my closet….sometimes I go over board and enjoy watching the heads turn…LOL when I moved to Alaska I used to go on float planes back and forth off the island, no problem I would hike up my skirt, remove my birks and climb aboard, the pilots all got to know me…..they said never had the likes of you on my plane before….LOL It is so sad how society reacts to others….I dated a man from Africa, making him a man of color, and man I didn’t realize just how bigoted, even Californians were until we went out to eat or just to the movies….ones that I got the most dirty looks from were the black women….my friend said because it kills them to see a white woman with there men…LOL great post….and so true….I never judge, love all races, colors and creeds and basically just try to get along with everyone….and can only hope they see me as kind, caring person…..kat

    Liked by 3 people

    • Oh the hippie thing! My parents were what one would consider hippies. My dad was called a slacker, lazy, etc. And when he returned from Vietnam, he was called worse. Like he wanted to be there! Hell, he thought about bolting for Canada instead, he had no interest in going. But labeled he was. I hate labels, especially with no basis for support. I, like you, just try to get along with everyone. I’m certainly doing my part to change my corner of the world. Well, maybe not change, but to teach my boys that people are people, no matter who they are, where they’re from, etc. Then hopefully they’ll teach their kids the same thing, and so on. I guess that how change happens, over time.

      Liked by 1 person

      • that’s where it all begins….my nephews from Germany are certainly changing the way of the “Hitler” thinking in there generation, they are in there 30’s early 40’s and that entire generation over there is so tired of the old way of thinking….they say that was history, now is now…I agree…its really hard to change the views of the older population but teaching our youth a new way of thinking is the only way…kat

        Liked by 1 person

  5. wow, did I get alittle long winded…LOL

    Liked by 2 people

  6. I don’t get how we humans still can claim we’re the smartest creatures on earth. I would believe we’re the opposite.

    No one wants to be called names or be judged after anything you can be judged for. Still we do this to each other all the time.

    I treat people I meet the way I, my self, want to be treated. Nicely and with respect.

    Most of my good ideas comes from talking with people or listen to people that disagree with me. I get bored fast if I’m in a conversation that everything ends with an answer like “exactly what I think too”.

    We lived on earth for millions of years and we still don’t get that the best way to develop is getting along. We are not fast learners 🙂

    Actually it takes less energy to get along than to fight each other. How hard cn it be to get along then?

    You wrote a great post! Thank you.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. My dad was actually quite racist when I was younger. He grew up in a small town, wasn’t exposed to any other cultures. When my aunt (his sister) started to date a man from Trinidad, he warned her to stay away and cut off contact for some time. Alfred was a very sweet man and over time they became great friends. By the time I was a teenager, most of his preconceived notions had disappeared. There were no longer comments about skin color or prejudices based on race. We even went to a mosque for a wedding and marveled (not condoned) the differences. Exposure and the reality that we are all just human helped greatly with his transformation. It was something good to see from him – personal growth.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. This is definitely one of your best posts ever! I don’t know why so many people hate, judge and spread negativity. Some of it is definitely learned behavior. Intolerance passed down from generation to generation. But there are also so many truly loving, special, and accepting people too. What I love about this is even all of us loving n caring people are guilty of it too to some degree. And it’s good to do a gut check and be aware of it so we can do better. Lots of love n hugs to u my friend!!!

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Ugh. It’s one thing to not understand or innocently ask a question about another culture but it’s when people start judging and being straight out rude that makes you want to punch them. It’s pretty simple, really. Don’t bother me, I won’t bother you. Be kind. Be welcoming. Sheesh. I feel like these are easy rules to live by. Life is more complex, I know, but sometimes it really is that simple. Nice post. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  10. It actually occurred to me the other day, mid-political-debate-slash-conversation with the hubs, that one of the reasons I try so hard to understand, relate, and preach tolerance/team coexist is because I was judged quite harshly by society for some things that, absent the important factual details, didn’t paint me in the best light. So lumpy stereotypes are something I try to avoid – and am drawn to passionately argue.

    Liked by 1 person

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