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Paul Beatty on the difficulty of discussing race

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Sorry for missing a few days.

I want to continue quoting from texts by black intellectuals for Black History Month. Today’s quote is from a bit of essential reading, especially now that we’ve elected an authoritarian. This is from The SelloutPaul Beatty’s scathing satire.

I‘m high as hell, but not high enough not to know that race is hard to “talk about”because it’s hard to talk about. The prevalence of child abuse in this country is hard to talk about, too, but you never hear people complaining about it. They just don’t talk about it. And when the last time you had a calm, measured conversation about the joys of consensual incest? Sometimes things are simply difficult to discuss, but I actually think the country does a decent job of addressing race, and when folks say, “Why can’t we talk about race more honestly?” What they really mean is  “Why can’t you niggers be reasonable?” or “Fuck you, white boy. If I said what I really wanted to say, I ‘d get fired even faster than you’d fire me if race were any easier to talk about.”


Paul Beatty photo from Wikipedia

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