Black folks in America have been saying the same lament since they involuntarily arrived here - “Leave us alone.” “13th” is another installment of the lament, which specifically points out how white people change their racist tactics and terminology to foster a fear of black folks to keep them down.
I highly recommend the show.
I think everyone spent all their racist juices on the thread that referenced the Central Park Five case. The people who watch these documentaries already get that it’s a problem and the people in denial about it spend their time seeking conspiracy theories to dispute them. That is what keeps widening the divide in America and why those of us on the outside are no longer interested in swimming that moat.
I get it, LJ. Besides, it’s mostly an American thing. What happened at the end of the Civil War was (mostly) everyone wanted to forget that inglorious episode and move on, which happened for the states on the Union side, but the Southern racism didn’t just magically disappear. Regretfully, the narrative for the war came to be dominated by the South, while the North did not make much of an attempt to justify their victory. Northern silence on the narrative for so long allowed the Southern narrative to dominate, and has gotten America where it is today of fighting to re-take the victor’s narrative, which is what “13th” does.
When the brutality of Southern slavery and subsequent segregation is exposed, then the Southern narrative must play defense. So bring on the Northern narrative in huge numbers!
Alright, I watched it again. There’s really no excuse for not knowing the history at this point unless you’re a child. There’s not knowing and there’s knowing and spinning the evidence so many times you never have to face it. The same way people do when they redefine words like woke. The original definition portrays an awareness of social justice and racial inequality. It’s unfortunate that focusing attention on such things makes people uncomfortable enough to change a term to one that carries a more negative connotation. It isn’t because the first depiction is insufficient. It’s the lie they need to tell themselves. But it doesn’t erase the idea.
The same thing happens when they attempt to control the narrative by altering the historical record. It requires an audience as willing to lie to themselves about context as they are. And anyone who isn’t already at least part way down the road on the matter will create a break in continuity that no one can afford. They’ve turned into the ignorant children they tried to keep silent. While the kids were getting wise. They are more than capable of carrying these ideas forward given the chance. Coz they get it too. It can be as simple as considering what it might be like to work twice as hard for half as much. And be constantly told yer lucky to have anything at all.