D. Watkins of Salon recently posed the question “Who is the white Al Sharpton?”
A reasonable white person might ask, “Yes, who is the go-to figure out there representing white interests? Who is looking out for us?”
This idea bounced around in my mind for a couple of days, so I decided to do some research by reaching out to some white people I know and asking them who the white Al Sharpton is.
I presented a scenario: “I said some hurtful things about white people that kind of made me look disconnected. Who is the go-to white person I should be talking to — the expert on white issues — who can help me reconnect with and regain my respect in the white community?”
This is a good question. Do white people have any such representative? Not that The White People’s Press is aware of — at least not officially — but perhaps we should. Perhaps an explicitly white advocacy group, with a Sharpton-esque figurehead, would be beneficial.
D. Watkins is asking an important question.
Unfortunately, D. Watkins is not asking it in earnest.
Each time I crossed my fingers, hoping and praying they’d say Seth Rogen.
For starters, he’s hilarious. But Rogen I think also has the kind of balanced temperament to help me understand the necessary rules of engaging with and interacting with whiteness.
But no one recommended Rogen, even when I seeded the idea by slipping his name into the conversation. White people just laughed.
“Bro, it’s Ellen; hands down!” a colleague told me. “She has white people on lock, kind of like a White Oprah.”
“Whoa-prah?” I responded. “Woke-prah!”
“I love Ellen,” I continued. “How great would our country be if she had Trump’s job?”
We laughed because we’re silly, or at least I’m silly. We laughed because the whole conversation is silly.