Mentioned this before in a comment. Guess I should make those inline for the archives, although that's gonna be a killer for dialup users. . .
Courtesy of the the American Hypertext Workshop at the University of Virginia, American Slave Narratives: An Online Anthology:
From 1936 to 1938, over 2,300 former slaves from across the American South were interviewed by writers and journalists under the aegis of the Works Progress Administration. These former slaves, most born in the last years of the slave regime or during the Civil War, provided first-hand accounts of their experiences on plantations, in cities, and on small farms. Their narratives remain a peerless resource for understanding the lives of America's four million slaves. What makes the WPA narratives so rich is that they capture the very voices of American slavery, revealing the texture of life as it was experienced and remembered. Each narrative taken alone offers a fragmentary, microcosmic representation of slave life. Read together, they offer a sweeping composite view of slavery in North America, allowing us to explore some of the most compelling themes of nineteenth-century slavery, including labor, resistance and flight, family life, relations with masters, and religious belief.
Although I'm certainly not going to suggest people read through all of the interviews before speaking on the oh-god-shut-up-Shut-Up-SHUT-UP reparations issue, anyone whose knowledge of American slavery comes entirely from repeated viewings of Roots, Gone with the Wind and Mandingo is requested to shut the fuck up.
Anyone making jokes about Jews building the pyramids is encouraged to emigrate to Egypt, obtain citizenship, and begin legal proceedings at their earliest convenience. Otherwise, as before, shut the fuck up.
Any Indians hoping the lot of us go the fuck back where we came from after cleaning up the mess, in contrast, may rant as they like.
Conveniently, this includes me.
Others claiming an "Indian princess" (what, were there kings, then?) as a multi-great grandmother should take the brown bag test before speaking up.
Are you darker than the bag?
Rant how you like.
Are you lighter than the bag?
If you're one of my sisters, this means you one of them peanut-butter-coloured Negroes, and I don't know how I got all the melanin either, but at least I got the good hair too, so nyaaaah.
Otherwise, rant with care.
If this talk of brown bags and good hair confuses you, this is probably a good indication that you should pretend you failed the test, and really really really need to shut the fuck up.
Management appreciates your compliance.
Update 8/19: See, this is what I'm saying.
George Kelly manages to say about the same thing, only with fewer words and a noted lack of profanity.
He also links to a sober consideration of the issue which includes a historical context, which I'd called for by throwing a tantrum instead of just, you know, looking for one.
I could be good. If I wanted. Possibly.
Update: I wasn't going to do the link/trackback thing, but figured I should give a context for the extreme bitchiness of this entry.