Appeals Court: Call Black Guys 'Boy' All You Want, It's Not Racist

Appeals Court: Call Black Guys 'Boy' All You Want, It's Not Racist

Most everyone agrees that, after Barack Obama was elected,almost all racism in America ended. But there's still a little racism around, if you can find it! Still, you will need to establish a consensus of white people before you can truly deem someone's actions to be motivated by racial animus. Take, for instance, the case of an African-American chicken plant employee who started with a job hanging live chickens onto hooks and worked his way up to the bottom rungs of management, then got passed over for promotion in favor of two white guys by a white boss who called him "boy." Would you say that maybe there was some racism at play here? Two overwhelmingly white juries in Alabama did, as did John Roberts' Supreme Court! Thank goodness the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals is here to stop all this race-card playing.

Did you know that "boy" is just a totally neutral word, with no racial connotations whatsoever? Every single earnest movie about racism made in the 1980s that you ever watched was a dirty lie.

Last month, for the third time and in the face of a 2006 rebuke from the United States Supreme Court, the federal appeals court in Atlanta said there were no racial overtones when a white supervisor called an adult black man "boy."

"The usages were conversational," the majority explained, repeating what it had told the trial court after the Supreme Court ruled, and "nonracial in context." Even if "somehow construed as racial," the unsigned 2-to-1 decision went on, "the comments were ambiguous stray remarks" that were not proof of employment discrimination.


The Supreme Court unanimously reversed [an earlier] decision, suggesting that the real world was the right modifier. 'The speaker’s meaning may depend on various factors including context, inflection, tone of voice, local custom and historical usage,' the justices said in an unsigned opinion.

We think some federal judges in Georgia know better than you about "local custom and historical usage," unanimous John Roberts court. Thank goodness these judges are on hand to prevent notorious race-baiters like Antonin Scalia from imposing an unfair stain on America's non-racist majority. [NYT]


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