Yvette Carnell: What the Colorado Massacre Says About White Male Entitlement
by Yvette Canell
In a previous essay, I had this to say about the race based level of entitlement that some white men harbor:
- Rank is important, and for quite some time in this country, whites, and white men especially, have outranked black and brown people… justbecause. Not because of skill, education, work ethic, intelligence, or any other measure that matters. But globalization has turned that world upside down. White men could once get a job, eventually, no matter what. But with outsourcing and cheaper labor, which is the consequence of globalization, not Mexican “illegals”, those days are over, and white working class men refuse to place blame where it belongs.
The massacre in Aurora, Colorado only forces a continued exploration of my view. This from Summer M. of the ’Black Youth Project’:
The media will spend the coming weeks putting together a profile of James Holmes that does anything but call him a domestic terrorist, that will never question how he was taken into custody relatively unscathed compared to young black and Latino men who are accosted by the police for an ounce of weed or nothing at all. And no popular news network will openly consider the idea that Holmes was a white male who felt entitled to something better, his alleged American birthright. And because he didn’t have better, he responded violently–tragically.
At some point, we should all explore whether the psychological conditioning of some white men in this country, to feel as if they’re entitled to something as opposed to they’re going to have to compete for something, has caused a devastating psychic fracture among them. It’s as if they’ve awakened in a maze, befuddled and confused, and are now forced to wonder, Who Stole My Cheese?
The news coming from Colorado is tragic, shaking us from within, but why are our only initial assessments about the shooter related to mental illness? And even if he is mentally ill, so what? Don’t life’s pressures often trigger crazy? No one has presented any evidence, as yet, that James Holmes was a perpetually troubled young man, so why aren’t we exploring other possible inducements for his b****y rampage? How does a neuroscience student morph into a mass murderer? I don’t know, but I’m not going to narrow the possibilities in order to reassure white people that everything is just fine in their brains.
Premeditating the murders of strangers isn’t normal, it’s sick. And so is slaughtering your school mates, and sicking a police dog on a woman with her infant in tow – which we saw done by the police in Anaheim this week.
And while these predator sorts are lurking among us, while they, like Holmes, are freely purchasing arsenals of high grade weaponry, Malik and Mateo are being stopped and frisked in NYC. It all intertwines. And it will all go on until the dominant forces in American culture face what is broken and twisted up in them. Until then, nothing changes.
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