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Sage Steele is more than just a black person

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Life in a Shanty Town

October 8 · Issue #345 · View online

The hip-hop newsletter that's not afraid to ask the tough questions


Internets,
Misogynoir, the special kind of racism reserved just for black women, is the single most destructive force in American society today, and it’s even worse when it’s combined with jealousy.
That’s the only thing I can think to explain the backlash against ESPN host Sage Steele, who’s someone I’ve turned to for years when I need someone to analyze sports.
Steele came under fire the other day for raising the important, perfectly valid question of why Barack Obama would only check the black box on the US Census, when he was raised by his white mother and grandmother, while his African father was off spreading his seed far and wide, profligately and indiscriminately, as if he were an authentic black American.
On her own census form, Steele said she checks both the white and black boxes. Specifically, she says she’s half African-American and half Irish/Italian. I’m assuming her mother is the one who’s Irish/Italian, and I’d be curious to know which ethnic stereotypes she conforms to. Does she eat spaghetti with potatoes in it?
It doesn’t make sense to me why legit, according-to-Hoyle African-Americans would be upset with Halfrican-Americans for checking more than one box on the census. You’d think they’d be in favor of black people who are part-white identifying as such if only so we can track those numbers, in case we need to cite them in our online discourse.
Is miscegenation as prevalent in our society as it is in my rich fantasy life? The only way we’ll know is if black people who aren’t fully black are forced to admit as much once every 10 years.
I’d also recommend that people should be allowed to pencil in their percentages in the space next to the race boxes, in cases where they’re not exactly half-black and half-white. If they’re not 100% certain what percentage black they are, perhaps because they refuse to submit a 23 and Me for political reasons, maybe they can submit a picture of their face that can be analyzed by an AI.
No need to hold up a paper bag anymore: there’s an app for that!
Black people were pissed that Steele would acknowledge her partial whiteness, as if it wasn’t already clear from the quality of her hair, and they were even more pissed when she was suspended from ESPN for a week, not because she had the audacity—the caucasity, if you will—to suggest that Barack Obama isn’t really black (he’s not, come on), but because she spoke out against vaccine mandates.
I guess they’ve been having problems in the NBA with people not wanting to get vaccinated. At one point, it looked like Lebron was about to go antivaxx, but someone from Nike and/or the Illuminati must have gotten on the phone with him. Several other brothers still refuse. I’m pretty sure some of them are also flat-earthers. In a just society, Lebron’s HBO series “The Shop” would be canceled and replaced by a show in which the NBA’s Hotep subcommunity gets together to discusses current events and how to build a successful career in real estate.
After the backlash against Sage Steele began to spread, someone turned up a video in which she allowed a white guy to touch her hair and then compliment her on the fact that it was real. That, more so than anything, revealed to me what this is really about. People aren’t upset with Sage Steele because she checks more than one box on the US Census. They’re upset with her because she’s capable of allowing white guys to run their fingers through her hair, confident that it probably feels even better than it looks and it’s not gonna fall out.
If you’re a woman, and you can’t generate a full, healthy head of manageable, presentable hair, I’m sure it’s difficult to watch that video. But that’s no reason to remove Sage Steele from ESPN. If anything, it’s all the more reason why she should be on ESPN.
Take it easy on yourself,
Bol

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