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From time to time, we use satire to talk about race issues. Often we do so because life is so unfunny, it’s a joke. Or because the only way to get people to think about uncomfortable things is not to beat down the gates but to distract them with some kind of Trojan Horse. Other times, it’s simply the most expedient way to spit out the metallic taste of bile and blood that ignorance leaves in our mouth.
This week, Hipster Runoff, a satirical blog about all things “alt” and “authentic” (“What is the most authentic body part 2 do blow off of?”) that reveres hipsterdom while simultaneously underscoring how it’s just as full of mindless followers as the mainstream, published a post called “Should I h8 AZNs?” Here are a few excerpts:
Sad about the economic crisis, and how AZNs have been smarter than us about saving ‘money’ and only spending what they have. I think America is beautiful. We’ve had a good run, but maybe we’re not as special as we thought we were. Kinda sad. I still feel ‘cooler’ than a lot of foreigners, and like smarter…
Is it cool to ‘be better’ towards AZNs who live in America, or are they ‘one of us’? Or should we construct some ‘internment camps’ in the middle of the USA where we force all AZNs to live and do manual labor, even if they are respected within society? Not trying 2 be radical, just know that we have 2 hold some1 accountable for our crisis, and it might ‘unite’ our country if we single out a group of people who are responsible. Kinda like when they had 2 find communist actors in Hollywood.
I don’t really know much about China, except that they are ‘commie reds’, violate a lot of human rights, and pollute a lot. Learned that from the newspaper…
Should I h8 azns and hold them responsible for the destruction of my country?
Or should I move out of the USA and move to an authentic city like Paris/Beijing/Tokyo/Cairo?
There are several Hipster Runoff posts that begin similarly with a question–“Should I Vote?” or “Is it ALT 2 watch the Super Bowl?”–where the answer is patently obvious, and “Should I h8 AZNs?” was probably intended to fall into that category.
Unfortunately, “Should I h8 AZNs?” is not satire. It highlights a very real cultural anxiety and its attendant racist backlash without taking it to task in any substantive way. While some of the post’s defenders brand it as satire in the comments section, others take it for what it really is–license to be a dumbass:
lets kills all AZN males.
and all the AZN woman can clean are houses and get naked for us
when the end comes the asians and jews will be left to rule mwuahah
think maybe we should make the ayzns and mexicans and non alt girls slaves again
funny… i love AZNs love em. but thats a problem too.
it’s called reverse racism.
I love the bcoz their azns. with their petite frames and slanty eyes! amazing…
It’s a fettish.
even economic turmoil doesn’t stop me loving them.
A number of commenters on the post do protest that “Should I h8 AZNs?” crosses the line, but that’s precisely the problem. It doesn’t cross the line–the line into satire–it toes the line of reality. That China is taking over everything, and people are really fucking bitter about it. And it’s okay to turn our cultural anxieties about not being the Number One Superpower into outright xenophobia, and it’s acceptable to hate when you feel like somebody else is downsizing your dick.
If “Should I h8 AZNs?” had been satire, the answer to its central question would have been an obvious, resounding “no.” As it stands, the feeling you’re left with is far more murky and unclear. The post does nothing to dissuade the reader from saying “yes” to the question or from thinking that h8ing Asians is okay. The only thing that is clear to us after reading “Should I h8 AZNs?” is that these AZNs h8 Hipster Runoff.