In the wake of the Charlottesville brotests, celebs and scholars alike have utilized the #THISISNOTUS hashtag to denounce the vehement displays of hate that were being shown. Anyone with an ounce of sense though recognizes that this is in fact us. America was built on slave labor, murder and downright debauchery. At this point, to be surprised is to be simple-minded.
The balance of commerce and condemnation is a delicate one so generally it’s not surprising when celebrity figures take safe stances. They don’t want to veer too far to either side and risk alienating the folks that sign their checks. There are times though when we need to just cut the doo-doo. What happened in Charlottesville doesn’t deviate from things that we’ve seen before in American history. Lets take off the rose-colored glasses that trick us into seeing America as some post racial utopia and acknowledge it for what it is; a country of opportunity and deceit, a country of hope and hate, a troubled, conflicted soul.