|The Demon in the Freezer...
||[Dec. 3rd, 2004|06:53 pm]
The Kleptocracy of Nimrod
|||||Green Day - Platypus (I Hate You)||]|
Troy - The city where RPI is. Troy is cold like a freezer.
RPI - Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute... a college (don't try to pronounce it)
In response to the following quote in RPI's school newspaper:
(this is a story about an armed robbery at a local pizza shop)
The student did not get a clear view of the
suspect as his back was facing the robber when
he entered and the robber was wearing a ski-
mask. However, he described the robber as a
black male that who is tall and skinny. Ac-
cording to a crime alert released by RPI Public
Safety, the suspect was described as being ap-
proximately six feet tall.
It is now officially safe to say that author Richard Preston missed the mark when he called level four biological agents “demons in the freezer.” Thanks to the Polytechnic, it is apparent that a “black male [sic] who is tall and skinny” and happens to be wearing a ski mask is the more appropriately titled demon in the freezer of Troy. It is safe to assume that there will be demons of this type abound in the cold winter months ahead, ensuring that we, as a student body, are given a healthy dose of anxiety looking out for them. I hope nobody told the true “robber” responsible for the recent armed robbery at Pizza Bella that it would be a good time to take his mask off. After all, without the mask and the characteristic black skin and slender build, how are we to identify him?
It isn’t just the newspaper at this fine institution that is responsible for perpetuating the damaging racial stereotypes we all hold so dear. These misguided creeds of warning proliferate throughout our extensive and often omnipotent mass media voices. They serve to perpetuate what has been called the “black pathology biz” that is exemplified in sensational television shows such as “Cops” on Fox. Perhaps it is in the public’s best interests to omit such an apparent lack of details surrounding a story rather than indulge our largely racist assumptions about the typical perpetrator of devious acts. If the goal is to remind students to be careful then there are far healthier means to this end that do not involve the continuation of harmful anxieties and a general distrust of black people. For many privileged, white, middle-class students like me, Troy is the first example of diverse culture experienced to date. Messages like these that instill anxiety only serve to create a population of students scurrying about campus in fear of crime. Perhaps it is time to practice a more socially responsible form of journalism that informs the student body without manipulating behavior through fear.