MSNBC Host Chris Hayes and Gawker Editor Cord Jefferson's Elaborate Joke About Racism
You're going to want to check out Gawker editor Cord Jefferson's appearance on Tuesday night's episode of All In With Chris Hayes. What Jefferson and Hayes pulled off was pretty awesome. The two staged a well-played, thought-provoking joke about racism for MSNBC's national audience.
Their discussion is based on a satirical post Jefferson wrote about riots in Huntington Beach, Calif. where a violent mob of primarily white people vandalized, looted, and fought in the streets of the quiet town. "It was an ugly display and a sad day for California," Jefferson wrote. "But more than that, it was a reminder that we must begin to seriously consider the values of our thuggish white youth."
Hayes opened the segment with a similar take, discussing white people the way black people are all too often considered by the media, and in general. "Look, I don't want people to be suspicious about white men, but the Huntington Beach riot underlines a stark truth about white culture. The fact is 84 percent of white murder victims are killed by other white people... Some people may feel like I'm stereotyping. I don't care. I'm dealing with reality."
Jefferson joined Hayes for a interview on the California riots. "I'm a person of color, Chris," he began. "But first and foremost, I consider myself an American citizen and a resident of Southern California, and seeing what the mob did in Huntington Beach on Sunday night, I just felt there was no way I could sit on the sidelines anymore in good conscious and watch so many white youths debase themselves."
Jefferson continued, "The thing is, these young people are learning this kind of behavior in lacrosse camps, they're learning this kind of behavior at college spring break, they're learning this kind of behavior at Ivy League fraternities, where drug use and binge drinking are normalized behaviors. These kinds of places are the hives of moral debasement that are leading to this white-on-white crime scourge."
Watch it, and then watch it again...
...and leave it to Nick Confessore to sum it up perfectly.