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By Sean Mac

Racism is still around. Let that just settle for a second…..oh, you’re not shocked? Well you shouldn’t be because there are over 6 billion people in the world and to think that it will ever go away is as ignorant as racism. What gets me is how afraid white people are of being considered a racist. When they think they see something racist they go out of their way to point it out so they can show the world that they love all the colors of the rainbow.

Which colour are you?

Recently at an NHL pre-season game a player named Wayne Simmond was on the ice ready to do a shootout. Now Simmond is…..well he’s….black. During his shootout a fan threw a banana peel onto the ice. ”Go on…”. That’s it, that’s the news.  Now the real story is the entire media scrambling together so they can all point out that what happened was racist. During every interview, during every news team chat the only thought in my head was how everyone else was being racist. THEY were the ones making the connection between a banana peel and a black person. They were basically saying “Because of the obvious fact that black people like bananas what happened was racist, we think”.  So what does the media do to find out if it was racist? Go ask a black person, they’ll know! The media goes and gets their black correspondents to talk in the news room while the confused white correspondents hunt down some black individuals to ask them their opinion. Any of that sound racist? Then to make things worse is the reporter’s pussy footing around when interviewing black people. “Did you see or hear about the incident? What do you think about the incident? Does the incident make you angry? Thank you for your time, here’s a banana for your troubles”

"BANANA, BANANA, BANANA, BANANA!"

I have no clue if the person who threw the peel was trying to be racist. They could of done it because their a jackass. Anyone think of that? I think the person was trying to be funny and make the player slip on a banana peel. Which makes sense; cause since the person is a jackass they didn’t think about how the player is already on slippery ICE! Besides, maybe the person who threw the banana peel is black. I mean the actual banana was eaten right? And we all know how black people love them banana! Us white people just buy them so we don’t seem racist. “Sean that was soo racist”. All kidding aside I just think that if you’re making an immediate connection between the stereotype and the person, then that can be racist. I have more on racism and stereotypes I want to talk about, but that will be for another time. In the end, can’t we all just get along?

No.

"I thought I like bananas cause they taste good"

70 thoughts on “Orange you Glad I Didn’t say Banana you Racist!

  1. “Black” people loves chicken and watermelon. Monkeys love bananas. The connection was black people are monkeys. Anywho, females who enjoy giving oral sex has the major connection with bananas. LOL!

  2. Absolutely, positively, the BEST use of my daughter’s favorite knock-knock joke I’ve ever seen. I’m glad you clicked on my blog, because it led me to this gem. You did a hilarious job of describing the media-hyped “offensensitivity” that’s led me to stop watching the news!

  3. I think you’ve pretty much nailed it, Sean.

    I have zero tolerance for bigots. I’ll never forget the lesson I learned about how prejudice is cultivated.

    When I was 12 years old our family went on a cross-country trip. One of our stops was in Alabama, to visit a high school freind of my mother. They were your typical middle-class family who lived in an average house in an average neighborhood. My mom’s friend’s husband was a big guy, with a booming voice and an outgoing personality.

    We were all gathered around a picnic table in their back yard when this big guy proudly announced he had something to show us. He called his 6 year old daughter over to his side. He smiled as he asked his daughter, “What does black mean?” She looked up at her father and nonchalantly replied, “Nigger.” Her father laughed out loud and said something in robust approval, although I don’t recall his exact words.

    My parents just looked at him expressionless. We talked later (after we left) and my parents tried to explain that it’s “Just the way some people are in the South.” I remember being disappointed with their explanation at the time, and also being disappointed that they didn’t say something to this guy…but I understand now that we were guests in their home and I suspect they (my parents) just didn’t want to make it an issue. But I never forgot that incident, and it helped me learn how prejudice is taught.

  4. It’s simple, ALL races have their bad apples. 🙂 I refrain from using ‘taboo’ words as not to get banned, I can use them pretty creatively. Those words and names? Those people exists in every race.

  5. Good post. There is plenty of subtle racism, not just the blatant “banana” stuff. Randy Newman phrased it well in his song “Rednecks.” Thanks for visiting my blog; stop in any time!

  6. You make a very valid point how snall gestures can be blown way out of proportion. I would just like to point out that racism isn’t just a black/white issue. That’s just the “in” topic these days as you succinctly demonstrated. For example, a lot of people are racist against Arabs. But they don’t call it that. They call it Islamohpobia as if it’s the exact same topic; it’s not. Not all Arabs are Muslims. And while it is “in” to be anti-racist against blacks, it certainly isn’t to be so against Arabs. Quite the opposite actually.

    The same standard of “horror” at racism needs be applied to all races. Surely then people will have enough overtly racist acts to be outraged at and stop giving attention to harmless pranks…

    • Very true. Also its not always “White” against every other race. Some Indians don’t like Paki’s, Some Chinese don’t like Koreans, Some Japanese don’t like Chinese, and I can go on. In the end it’s not even the colour of the person skin, its the way a culture lives that an other culture doesn’t agree with. An American is as white as a Canadian but if they were both to visit another country they would be treated differently. A little something I learned on my travels.

  7. LOL! ROFL!!!! But, doesn’t everyone like bananas? Do black people (like me) really like bananas that much more than everyone else? Maybe it was just convenient for the thrower to throw a banana. He was probably thinking to himself ” Gee. I conveniently have a banana peel in my hand and a clear shot at that hockey player over there. Let’s throw it!”.

  8. Wow, never knew that about bananas and blacks! Thanks for the info! 🙂 I really like bananas myself, what’s that make me?

    There’s only one race, the human race, so anybody who hates anybody else must be a racist!

  9. I threw the banana peel… it was not racist. I had seats in the middle of the row; do you know what a pain in the ass it is to get to a trash can from the middle of the row at a hockey game? Especially during a shootout? I think what we need to ask ourselves as a society, and as a Flyers fan, is why do the Flyers have so much trouble beating Detroit?

    Seriously though, watch the episode of South Park about changing the South Park flag… it makes a similar point to authors’. The probability is high that it was a racist thing but do we really need to project the installed stereotypes of past generations into our current society which has certainly progressed beyond things like this. The younger generations really don’t think like that, let’s not call attention to an isolated incident and dump our baggage on them.

  10. You raise some interesting points, but seem too willing to give the act (throwing the banana peel in the ice of a hockey rink, seemingly directed at an African-American player) the benefit of the doubt, despite the history of racism in this country, and African-Americans being portrayed as monkeys, among other offensive things.

    The possibility does exists that the person who did so is just that stupid that they didn’t get that ice is pretty slippery even without the addition of a banana peel, but then again, perhaps not.

    Maybe his gesture was racist in nature, but he was also hungry, and didn’t want to waste a perfectly good banana.

    You may be right, I may be right. Though, since there’s no way of knowing short of asking the guy himself what he meant, wouldn’t it be best not to do things so open to misinterpretation in the first place?

    And sure the media fans the flames of such incidents. They want attention, which translates to ratings, so that’s to be expected. Though that doesn’t make them any more racist than the person that started this ball rolling–or is that banana peel flying–in the first place because what they’re guilty of most of all is opportunism.

  11. Haha, man I am so with you here! People skittering around the subject so hard they end up sounding like idiots. Who gives a crap if we’re ‘white’ or ‘black’, in South Africa we even have ‘coloureds’.

    PS: I eat so many bananas I must be an undercover black person.
    PPS: I am a musician and tour a lot around South Africa, and I meet a lot of white people who just love being racist. I find it REALLY hard to deal with, and find myself walking away from them when I realize what they’re doing. It’s an ongoing challenge in this country.

    Here’s a great poem looking at the label colored:

    When I born, I black
    When I grow up, I black
    When I go in Sun, I black
    When I scared, I black
    When I sick, I black
    And when I die, I still black

    And you white fellow
    When you born, you pink
    When you grow up, you white
    When you go in sun, you red
    When you cold, you blue
    When you scared, you yellow
    When you sick, you green
    And when you die, you gray

    And you calling me colored??

    -Arun

  12. Racism is for weak minds.

    That said, who the hell brings a banana to a hockey game? Or a banana peel? Some sick puppies in this world. That’s the bigger issue right here. Sheesh.

  13. Thanks for liking my blog. What gets under my bonnet is you can’t disagree with President Obama without someone calling you a racist. He could be any color of the rainbow. It’s his policies I can’t stand. I wouldn’t like them any better if he were white.

  14. So true that nowadays EVERYTHING has to be racist. Every remark, every act, someone will give it a racist twist. And too often we have the precious media to thank for that!

    And here another, different, thought: in Belgium a lot of gays get bashed up by muslims. If the gay guy defends himself and beats back, he is called racist. The muslim is called underpriviliged and disadvantaged…

  15. The trick is for us to keep talking about it. We see a lot of racist indicators in our society because we are committed to changing it. In societies where they don’t talk about it because “a fish never talks about the water” the principles of racism are so natural that they are unremarkable. (The Filippinos can’t even agree to speak the same language as those assholes from the other side of the same island!)

    As long as we continue to look for and eliminate the important aspects of racism (such as procedural mechanisms that create disadvantages based on race), we’ll be doing the right thing.

    But we are humans, and sometimes we go to far. Bananas? C’mon!

    Where we lose big is when we acquiesce to the “code” language that goes, “all this politically correct bullshit” which is an expression of frustration from someone who wants to openly espouse (what I would call) “racial superiority bullshit” but feels disempowered.

    I like to encourage them to let their pinhead jingoist tribal flag fly proudly. I like to know who these people are and keep them in plain sight.

  16. I love this. And in tribute to racism i created a art piece called Same Blood Different Worlds. I know Hate is a strong word yet i hate racism and wish people would get it together. Ignorance is an epidemic that unfortunately gets recycled generationally.

  17. Black people like bananas? I haven’t heard that one. I’ve heard of the stereotype about black people supposedly loving watermelons, but not until I was in high school. I thought it was Italians who had the watermelon thing because my immigrant grandfather always had them at our family cook-outs. Now that I have biracial relatives because of two of my Italian cousins marrying black spouses, I guess the watermelons work all around. Does that make me sound racist? If so, whom do I hate more, blacks or Italians? Discuss.

  18. Thanks for liking! I agree with shadrock2k; I believe the banana is a reference to “monkey,” a racial slur. Too bad this stuff still goes on in the year 2012…

  19. I would like to make three bullet points:
    first, Blame media ! They can go to any extent just to promote their TRPs
    Second, It’s human behaviour, they will weave out negatives first, can’ help that
    theirdly, Racism do exist but no only limited to white & black …
    Reach me at Krazy Memoirs

  20. I find it hilarious at how many people are trying to get the “correct” stereotype for black people.

    Ok look. I’m a black guy – whoa, wait wh, where is everyone going? Come back. Hear me out.

    On one hand I agree with you. In this world today where if you feel anything but jubilee toward someone because of their race, sexual preference, habit of having sex with animals, etc, you’re pretty much crucified. So people go out of their way to make it seem like we are all living in the rainbow, as you say.

    But in a weird way while your post had great points, it was also mildly contradicting.

    The first line reads “Racism Is Still Around”.

    Then you kinda that the stance that the banana peel wasn’t racist. Well if racism is still around, is it impossible to think that it was racist?

    I’ll tell you one more argument for why it COULD BE construed as racist that I haven’t seen in your post or in any of the hilarious comments.

    Black people were/are sometimes referred to as Monkeys. Monkeys like to eat, yep, bananas. You may remember that scene in Remember The Titans?

    Now is that what the person who threw the banana peel meant? Who knows? Only he/she does. We can speculate on it till we’re blue in the face. All I’m saying is that there are many possibilities for each argument.

    • interestingly enough, the Monkey idea was the only way I was assuming that somebody might have dreamt up and thought it was racist if a banana in fact was referring to that and yet it took you to call it out. maybe everyone else was scared to say it. who knows

      • I totally forgot about the monkey thing. I think a lot of people did as well. Probably a good thing. Maybe one day people will forget about the watermelon thing. I wonder where that came from?

      • My mom used to call one of my brothers “Monkey” due to his large protruding ears- he was white as cotton. She used the same nickname for another brother because of his dark skin and mannerisms; mouth was always open and shaped like a monkey’s; all were used as funny, loving nicknames. None of us ever knew it was ever used as a derogatory
        term for blacks. I think racism depends on your outlook. If you think something is racist, it is to you. Even if it wasn’t intended as such. Conscientious people, once aware of a person’s sensitivities, (white *or* black) try to be careful not to offend when possible. Within reason, of course 🙂

    • My thoughts were i don’t think it was meant to be racist just cause people jumped to that conclusion way too fast. It just happened to be a black player that the banana was thrown at.

      P.s. Person was cleared of Hate Crime and received a $200 fin for mischief

    • As a Flyers fan who was watching that game but missed the whole “banana episode” when it happened, it was the monkey slur that I connected to the banana. Now I might be overly sensitive to the entire subject of subtle racism, but I’m pretty sure the idiot who did it knew exactly to what he/she was referring.

      That being said, after almost 50 years since America was finally forced to confront its not-so-subtle racism, it’s perfectly natural for whites who lived through this period to be a bit sensitive to such idiotic displays of personal disrespect.

      Great thought-provoking post …

    • Dude, I’m so glad I read your comment. I thought I was the only one wondering why so many white people on this post weren’t associating the banana incident with the whole monkey labeling thing. Thanks brother for putting in the work with what you wrote 🙂

      Maybe it IS a good thing (like Sean Mac says a couple comments down) that people didn’t make the connection because it’s fading in their minds. But those who don’t know history are doomed to repeat it, so remembering (historically, not racially) might be a good thing too.

      Brother Sean, I think when a white person (or any non-black person) throws a banana in front of a black person, 97 percent of the time it’s meant as a derogatory move. The other 3 percent mean for him to slip on it haha. Unless they are friends, in which case just switch the percentages. I still give you credit for pondering the subject with your post. That’s it, I’ve said all I needed to say.

      Oh, and thanks for ‘liking’ my post the other day. I really appreciate it.

  21. As always… the freedom of speech of blogging, I think, wins the argument!

    It is no different to a “passing comment” I made years ago about Obama winning the election (giving the Democrats ALL positions: Congress, Senate, and the White House) and all I said was, “It looks like the monkey’s are now running the zoo!”

    It’s just a saying.

    Reminds me of when the UK “Race Relations Bureau” wanted to censor (no, BAN) the nursery rhyme “Bah, bah, Black Sheep…” because they deemed it as racist.

    The real racists are those that propagate racism. Discrimination is the real issue. There are – as you say – over SIX BILLION of us – we are all unique, we are all individual (“I’m not!” re Monty Python!) just drop the bullsh@#t and learn to live in peace already…!

    Ramble over.

    PS – I am a self-confessed “Ignorantist”: I HATE ignorant, stupid, narrow-minded, and intellectually-challenged pri#ks that have nothing better to do than be Ahhhh… souls!

  22. Interesting take on the “incident.” I thought the racist accusations were that someone was trying to “slip up” a black player in a sport that is predominantly white. Sounds like there are many takes on it. Thanks for sharing your honest thoughts – and for your “like” on my “Danger of Unasked Questions” post.

  23. we are humans, traveling around since childhood, my babysitter was an man from Niger, mom is from chinese origins, dad from italian ones, I am born in France, I live in Singapore, so people just don’t like what’s new or different
    fear is common to all of us, fear to be with the wrong man or woman, fear to eat something bad tasting, afraid to be misunderstood, to buy the wrong hue of a tee,
    it’s about education and experience
    when a child dad told me I missed one thing : experience! I kniw now it’s precious, experimentation, once you’ve tried you may like or not, before you’re just afraid
    I like the “banana syndrom” it’s sound like the egg and the chicken, who did it first? Racism is also fear, ignorance, taste, limited education, lack of experience!
    Behind my color skin, who am I really? White wants to tan, dark wants to clear, yellow likes pale, and what does the little green man want? Thanks you all.

    • I couldn’t agree more with you. Racism is because of several things, but in many ways because of fear, lf the unknown, of what is different. And it’s often about a lack of experience, as you put it. I’ve been living in different places on different continents and i think that by living it, you can only start to accept differences. It has also made me realize that it is such a stupid thing to generalize.

  24. Okay, this reference that is totally beyond me has, I’ll admit, made me lose focus on the actual intent of this post. Now I need to go do an internet search to find out why a banana is racist. I have no idea what the heck that’s about. LMFAO

  25. Being prejudiced is a word linked to, and confused with, racism. Many more people, I believe, are just prejudiced, not racist. And quite frankly, what is wrong with that? It’s only wrong when one redefines “prejudice” as racism, hate, and bigotry. Being prejudiced toward something is nothing more than showing a preference, not hate. I preferred to Mary a white woman, not because I’m racist, but because I prefer them – because I’m white.

    I honestly think we get too upset over words that don’t even mean what we think they mean. The result is an inability to recognize true racism – the belief that one race is inherently better than another. I might be prejudiced toward a ripe banana, but that does not mean I think a green one is a different fruit – they’re both bananas!

  26. Personally, I refuse to be color blind. I appreciate all the colors of the rainbow. What I ask my kids though is, “Was it relevant?” It’s interesting what that one question will get through.

    In the instance you cite, I really doubt it was. It was just some twit being a twit.

  27. I didn’t read your post, but I will suggest you remove the copyright protected (and clearly watermarked) stock photo from your post before you do anything else.

    I don’t believe it is wise to infringe on the rights of the photographer who created the woman with the banana image.

    Copyright infringement is against the law.

  28. Patanjali says – watch your reactions. Watch your reactions to your reactions. Watch the reactions that you disown and protest inwardly are not you. Now look at yourself and accept yourself, because until you accept yourself you cannot begin to learn anything about the world.

  29. amen.

    I would start writing out my true thoughts on this subject, as I saw them yesterday on a return flight home, however I feel like I need to save them for a post of my own whenever I feel annoyed enough at political correctness again to rant.

    in short, every time the idea of diversity (in any aspect) is mentioned, it’s one more solid indication that people truly do not view each other as equals because diversity is nothing more than a sign of differences

  30. I thought it was watermelon not bananas that is stereotypically black. But, then, heaving a watermelon onto the ice would be inconvenient.

    Racism “Has to Be Taught” according to Rodgers & Hammerstein’s “South Pacific”. I certainly was. However, it surprised me that black kids criticize ambition in black kids by saying, “That’s so white.”, “You’re acting so white.”

    Thanks for the like.

  31. I find this to be very agreeable but i also would like to point out that whether or not we mean to we’re all racist in away it’s just some take it to the extreme. Btw i too believe the person was just being idiotic.

    P.S. Thanks for the like:)

  32. I didn’t know black people have a thing for bananas. I know about the fried chicken and watermelon stereotypes but hadn’t heard about the banana one. Intellesting, velly velly intellesting.

    p.s. no that’s not all I got out of your post 🙂

  33. I agree entirely. Focusing on racism – even pointing out that it’s a bad thing – keeps it around. By making a big deal about race, we ensure that our children will be aware of race instead of just treating the way we do hair color.

  34. Great read and the paradoxical argument – well made…

    To not be a racist, one need acknowledge racism that my doing so effectively makes you racist…

    Stephen Colbert says it best: `I don’t see color’ – but then by acknowledging that color is present – he in fact sees color…

    There is no end – life itself is a paradox – it cannot be avoided.

  35. Yeah, true. Racism is a business interest for media and politicians and a normal defensive reaction–suspicion of the different–for humans and other animals. Don’t much like bananas…kind of like the tarantulas that occasionally accompany them, though…

  36. I got a kick out of this post. The person was most likely a jackass in myopinion and I doubt intentional racism was a part of it. people are just freaks sometimes. Period. Thanks for the like btw!

  37. Maybe my computer is racist. It doesn’t like humans. But back to what I was saying before the computer posted it.
    Beyond her being an angry woman is the issue that people seem to call race. She called attention to the hue of her flesh. I mean lets be real here. We are all human. Show me a country run by squirrels and I’ll show you another intelligent race. Like the dolphins and the whales who in my opinion rule the seas. Or the guy in Kentucky who was arrested for having sodomy with his neighbors dog, now there was an interracial relationship.
    Other than that as far as I am concerned we are humans. 99% of us are also idiots.

  38. Gee, This really does sound like it gets to the point. I think it does miss one. The very point I sent an email to Mrs Obama about when I read the headline, “I’m not an angry black woman!”
    She was right! She is however an angry woman. Bey

  39. I completely agree with you, especially about the part where you said, “…if you’re making an immediate connection between the stereotype and the person, then that can be racist.”

    If you point out something that may or may not be connected to a stereotype, wouldn’t that make you racist?

    Good article.

  40. Just because you grew up with the power rangers and you stocked bananas at your previous job doesn’t mean you’re a racist! You don’t have to write articles about it to convince people otherwise. you bigot jeeeez

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