Monday, October 22, 2007

Oddness from the Yazz-monster

Since the Independent used to hide its comment pieces behind a subscription wall, and I wasn't going to go out and buy the bloody thing, I had never read the articles of Yasmin Alibhai-Brown until recently. I rather think that should have remained my policy, as today's article is by equal measure baffling and irritating. There are bizarre non-sequitors:
There is still no genuine and uncontested equivalence between white Britons and those who are unfortunate enough not to be. Old forms of overt racism have been banished from the landscape; the main political parties have tacitly agreed a red line on racist statements by influential insiders; chosen black and Asian citizens now get to powerful positions; friendships and romances between us steadily weave a multicoloured social tapestry, strong and beautiful. New internal fissures and violent hatreds within black and Asian hearts and minds sometimes make white racism appear tame and polite.
Or in other words, there is no acceptable racism any more, but it's still a racist society. Is it just me or is that a rather pointless argument? Don't worry about the facts - just go with how you feel! There are odd statements:
I still say there is no genuine and uncontested parity between whites and non-whites, not here, not in Europe, not Australia, not in the US, not even in post-apartheid South Africa rejoicing today in their rugby win.
Not even in South Africa? South Africa is still a far more racially divided society than Europe, the UK, Australia or the US. There is still a clear social and economic division between white and black, while the political legal situation veers ever further towards positive discrimination. It's a bizarre thing to say. The whole article feels very flat - rather as if she was writing 800 words to a deadline with nothing new to say and no new ideas to examine. I preferred it when I couldn't read them to be honest.

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