Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Playboy, Passes, & A Racist Penis

I'm sure this topic has been beaten to death in the blogosphere over the past week, and I may be late in discussing it (especially in this instant message-twitter-google buzz world we live in), but eff it. I feel like talking about it anyway, not only because I like to look at my own words (which I do), but also because I don't think it's been discussed from my particular point-of-view.

After John Mayer's Playboy interview leaked (click here to read it), there were two things that I saw everyone up in arms about: his racist penis and his ownership of a "nigger pass." Now, as a black man who's not only super-proud of his heritage but also someone who has made a number of public statements about my love for black women, I guess I was supposed to be annoyed and bothered by Mayer's statements. I should call him a racist, ban his alleged "hood pass" and tell everyone to boycott his music. But guess what? I'm not doing any of that stuff. And to be honest, I wasn't even offended by what he said.

If you're surprised/shocked/appalled by my lack of concern, I would implore you to go and read the interview for yourself. I say that, of course, because I'm willing to bet that most of the people who were upset by Mayer's statements didn't even read the context from which the statements came. As a product of a journalism education, I'm well aware that a quote without the proper context can sound completely different than how it was meant to sound. But when you read the article, you'll see that neither of his "offensive" quotes were actually meant in a racist way. I'm convinced that the same people who were quick to get offended either didn't read the article or misunderstood the context from which the quotes came. Let's explore...