Hipsters are generally quite moronic. Not bathing and googling 'Ska', then telling anybody with ears and an Ipad that you love Ska, doesn't make you interesting in anyway. Neither does uploading pictures of topless French girls smoking cigarettes to Tumblr. Or having a Disney themed bong. Or saying your favourite musician is P Money. Or sitting shoeless on a train platform.
The hipster level of idiocy has increased ten fold, as apparently educated people go to pathetically predictable lengths to express their "individuality" and general radness, in the irritating form of hipster racism. To paraphrase, Hipster racism is a term coined by Carmen Van Kerckhove and is basically thinking you are so past bigotry, you can behave like a bigot without actually offending anyone because you know... you wear lensless glasses. Can you actually imagine that earlier this year, one of my University's local clubs thought the following was in any way acceptable:
Yep. Let this garbage seep thoroughly through your cornea. The amount of times I have probably unknowingly grinded on this piece of bollock is beyond me. Stupidity like this is all in aid of being 'cool' and above everything. And nobody ever wants to call anyone out on it, in fear of being 'that guy'.
Well I don't give a stuff about being 'that guy'. I know I'm not militant. I know I'm not easily offended. So I have no qualms in saying I can't be bothered to pretend I'm cool with people making racial 'bants' because they've seen Django a couple times. Stop asking me 'How come you guys get to say the N-word?' How come you got to watch The Lion King in school without bloody teachers asking you if you knew what 'Ahhhhhsibenyaaaaabaseetiseebaba' meant?
It's a hard knock life. Get over it.
Dropping an 'N' bomb doesn't bring on a shower of free magazine subscriptions or Skittles. It's not 'Alakazam'. It will not retrieve a rabbit from a hat. What it will retrieve is incessant anger from several offended parties. Being 'allowed' to say the N-Word is a privilege I'd rather not have, if it meant I didn't have to unfollow 4Chan's Facebook feed due to the amount of arbitrary hate speech in the comments, heavily featuring this apparently race-neutral N-Word. Or be welcomed to the new area I would be chugging in with a loud cry of the N-Word from the top deck of a bus by a slurring group of 'lads'. That's why it's flippant usage is still uncomfortable for many. To act as though its original meaning is now totally obsolete is naïve at best and downright stupid at worst.
Let's get some things straight: Is wearing brown make up to depict a black person racist in my opinion? Not at all. Is wearing brown make up to depict an N-Word in Paris racist? Yes. Yes, it is. Because by doing so, you are acknowledging the word in its original racial sense, leaving the 'but it means mate now' defense to fall by the wayside. And when just using it in the name of 'banter' without any racial connotations? The problem is, even if unintentional, there are always racial connotations. The meaning of words can certainly develop and change, but when a word is still used in its original sense more often than in any other, its use is not quite as straightforward as Hipster racists would hope. It's like how John Mayer played a bit of Snoop, smoked a few blunts and then started casually throwing around the 'N' word in interviews without expecting repercussions. Because he had a 'black pass' apparently. Who gave it to him? Where is this Shaft-like, dreadlocked deity handing out 'black passes' that allow everyone to say the N-word? Can someone point him out to me so I can challenge him to mortal combat? Mayer took to Twitter minutes later to say the following:
"I am sorry that I used the word. And it's such a shame that I did because the point I was trying to make was in the exact opposite spirit of the word itself. It was arrogant of me to think I could intellectualise using it, because I realize that there's no intellectualizing a word that is so emotionally charged."
The operative word being 'intellectualise'. You're not big. You're not clever. Give me good old-fashioned, BNP, 'effing nig-nogs, get out of my country' racism any day. Because at least we all know that it is perpetuated by ignorance and unadulterated stupidity. But Hipster racism is done under the guise of irony, wry wit and a 'I'm so not racist, I'm racist' shtick. Only 3% of Hipster racists are probably actually racist. 100% are twats though.
Listening to ASAP Rocky doesn't mean you should use the N-Word. Jamming in Brixton doesn't mean you should use the N-Word. Saying would bang Kerry Washington, doesn't mean you should use the N-Word. Calling me the N-Word 'ironically' will leave you with my foot 'ironically' jammed so far up where the sun doesn't shine, you won't even have time to spurt "But my God daughters, vets, mothers, shopkeeper's, aunts, ex husband is black!"
Stop citing Kanye West as a reason for your ignorance. I am not Kanye West. 99.9999% of the black population are not Kanye West. Kanye West will not protect you when you try that shit on Peckham high street. Stop trying to be wacky. Stop trying to be original. Stop trying to make a point.
Follow Yomi Adegoke on Twitter: www.twitter.com/sittingwitty