Have We Run Out of Things to Call Racist?

Associate Professor of Marketing at Loyola University Jenna Drenten has claimed that the recent trend on TikTok of showing off perfectly organized home pantries is rooted in a history of classism, racism, and sexism. In her research, Drenten has observed an increase in what she calls “pantry porn,” where women display their fully stocked and meticulously arranged kitchen and household supplies on social media.

Drenten believes that tidiness and cleanliness have historically been used as tools to reinforce status distinctions and create assumptions about a person’s responsibility and respectability. “Cleanliness has historically been used as a cultural gatekeeping mechanism to reinforce status distinctions based on a vague understanding of ‘niceness’: nice people, with nice yards, in nice houses, make for nice neighborhoods,” Drenten writes at The Conversation. “What lies beneath the surface of this anti-messiness, pro-niceness stance is a history of classist, racist, and sexist social structures.”

According to Drenten, the butler’s pantry, which originated in the late 1800s, acted as a status symbol for the wealthy. “This small space was a marker of status — an area to hide both the food and the people who prepared it.”

The fact that certain academics have to manufacture racism where there is none is a testament to how far our society has progressed. It’s worth pondering how hate crimes nowadays have to be fabricated just to give professional race-baiters (like Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson) something to gripe about.

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But it’s also deeply concerning. When people like Drenten link anything and everything to racism, it dilutes the meaning of the word ‘racism’ itself. Racism is a serious and harmful issue that should not be trivialized or used for political gain — yet it is constantly. Republicans are habitually accused of racism for not supporting Democrat policies.

When everyday things are constantly labeled as racist, it makes it challenging to address actual instances of racism and causes division among different communities. It also teaches minorities to always be in a victim mindset, while non-minorities are constantly worried about unintentionally being accused of racism. This is particularly concerning because Democrats are seeking to criminalize whatever they deem to be hate speech.

Earlier this year, Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee (D-Texas) introduced a bill that would make certain forms of “hate speech” a criminal offense. The proposed legislation states that an individual commits a hate crime “when white supremacy ideology has motivated the planning, development, preparation, or perpetration of actions that constituted a crime or were undertaken in furtherance of activity that, if effectuated, would have constituted a crime.”

But what is “hate speech”? If even the most mundane and innocent things can be deemed racist by a woke academic, then pretty much anything can be “hate speech.” Sure, this bill will go nowhere until Democrats have one party of government, but the threat of everyday speech being hyper-scrutinized for so-called “microaggressions” is very real. Could your impeccably organized pantry get you charged with a hate crime?

Sadly, I think that’s the world the Democrats want us to live in.

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