Who isn’t prejudiced?

I received one of the many chain emails I get from family and friends periodically.  For some reason they are usually either geared at making you happy or at pointing out the shortcoming of some group.  I usually look all of these various emails up on snopes.com out of curiosity.  I think that chain mail is one of the more interesting forms of media and culture.   Upon reading said email the first thing I thought of was the Communications Flow and Flowmations chapter that we read.  While it never discussed chain mail (not to be confused with a medieval form of armor) I feel that its descriptions of the way people interpret messages and information is quite accurate to this situation.  As media forms, like pictures are transmitted their meaning can easily become altered.  When reading the email keep this in mind “any idea that moves through space also undergoes a transformation”

Here is the chain e-mail I recieved:

George Washington statue is hidden at the MLK rally
in Columbia, SC.
The annual MLK observance at the state house in Columbia
SC had an interesting twist this year. The event is held on
the north side steps of the statehouse.
Prominent at that location is a large bronze statue of
George Washington.
This year, the NAACP constructed a “box” to conceal the
father of our country from view so that participants would
not be ‘offended’ by his presence.
I could hardly believe my eyes when I saw this picture of
the MLK Day rally in Columbia, South Carolina.
This rally was sponsored by the NAACP and they said that
they covered the statue because they “didn’t want to
offend anyone”. Really? George Washington is the father
of this nation. How is he offensive to anyone?
Can you imagine what would happen if we covered the
statue of Dr. Martin L. King on President’s Day? or is only
the statue of a ‘white guy’ offensive ??
Of course, this display of anti-Americanism wasn’t covered
at all by the national media (surprise, surprise !!), and the
local paper in Columbia only ran a short piece on it. It has
been covered a little by the blog-world but I think the word
needs to get out to the general public that this is what the
NAACP is all about…militant and (most definately) racist.

Here is what was later written about this event by the NAACP:

“A three-sides structure that covered the front and sides of the statue was intended to display a rally graphic and serve as a photo-and-television backdrop for the events speakers.  However the graphic was not finished before the rally and could not be put into place.”

With the media and many of its stories I often find it difficult to tell where the truth actually lies.  I feel as though the images we see have been distorted by transformed by so many different peoples perspectives and agendas that by the time we actually hear a story, the reality of it is often distorted beyond recognition.  While I must admit that this picture looks pretty bad, its difficult for one to determine what kind of ‘reality’ it is showing.  Was the picture taken specifically for the purpose of angering people?  Did the organization realize what they were doing?  Was their later statement just a cover-up?  If the board wasn’t going to be used as a backdrop why did they leave it up?  Or was there really something on the other side that we couldn’t see from the angle of the camera?

Most interesting to me is that this all came about last January, and nearly a year later this e-mail has become a kind of folklore and continues to be transmitted.

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2 Comments to “Who isn’t prejudiced?”

  1. I admire anyone who questions that which comes across their computer and makes the attempt to legitimize same before forwarding. I do this on a regular basis and must typically go waaaaay past Snopes, as I have come to find a very real bias in their work. I say this after personally not only researching the article / news story / event myself but also looking at Snopes response and comparing their editorializing to my own take. I have come tothe concluison, in my own mnd, they have a strong bias.

    Research all info on your own…then pass it along with your own comments, including the results of your research. Truth is critical and passing along something that fits your own viewpoint without ensuring to the best of your ability the “‘truthfulness” of the content’, sn’t going to help anyone regardless of which side of the aisle you recide upon.

    The rally organizer’s “explanation” smells like “damage control” to me.

  2. Sorry…got in a hurry and did a lousy job of spell checking before prior submission.

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