Big Brother 15: A Microcosm in a Society of Silent Bigotry

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  • Nae

    Great post…while I appreciate and agree with most of your analysis, I do take a couple of exceptions:

    In the specific case of the Big Brother show, I agree with Howard’s decision to remain silent. I believe it is the best decision for their game play. Sure one could argue the the importance of playing the game vs. your integrity, etc. but the reality is that Big Brother is a game with the goal of making it to the end in order to win a cash prize.

    “In some ways, minorities help to perpetuate the actions against other minorities.” Agreed however it always makes me uncomfortable when this observation is brought up when discussing racism causes/solutions. Although valid, the two are mutually exclusive. Attributing any level of responsibility to the oppressed takes away from the inherent structural nature of racism.

    Hadn’t seen that Daily Show parody – funny stuff. Thanks for sharing!

    • Thanks for visiting Nae!

      I think on the first note that much of the same things can be said of everyday life. Folks choose to remain silent in the face of racial opposition because it furthers their game in some way. But, I theorize that if one of the white houseguests had stood up for the minorities in the house, it might have broken the ice and banded the house together thereby making them look like a hero rather than a sacrificial lamb.

      On the second point, I disagree that minority interracial animus and racial discrimination from an outside group are mutually exclusive. That implies that when there is one, you most certainly cannot have the other. Instead, they are mutually inclusive. You almost always find the two together. Not only that, they are correlative (increases in one causes increases in the other and vice versa). Statistically speaking, majority privilege theory denotes a major causal relationship with interracial hatred. Though they are dissimilar and happen for different reasons, they very much so happen in lockstep with one another.

      This isn’t to say that minorities (or the oppressed) are responsible for the oppression of others. But, to some degree, we (oppressed and non-oppressed) are responsible for the silent bigotry induced by our collective shame. Correct?

      Thanks again for visiting and engaging in thoughtful discourse. Come back anytime:)

  • Jaster

    I’m not a big fan of reality TV, especially one’s that include the things that are in this article.

    Here’s a better video to watch; it made me tear up a little.