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 Letters to the Jim Crow Museum


Hi, I happened upon your site when I was researching the history of African-Americans in cartoons. I honestly had no idea so many racist artifacts existed. I'm sad to say that new stereotypes have replaced the old ones. A popular one has become the pimp daddy, or the bling-bling daddy. A lot of rap music isn't helping to deconstruct racist images. White people who watch rap music videos will think this is how all African-Americans act and feel. But, I do think you're doing an excellent job showing the history of racism. Some of the artifacts were a big wake-up call for me.

My letter, Mr. Pilgrim, was to ask how a show like the Boondocks could play on modern television. It shows African-Americans in a very negative light. They have sterotypical cornrows and an afro.The little boy supports the criminal activities of R-Kelly and it's really an insult to honest, hard working African-Americans, in my opinion. An African-American man on the show talks gushingly about slavery and how white people saved them. Now, I am a white person and I find this sort of thing appaling. I also found it disturbing that this show praised trying to become "white" and calling African-Americans "lazy and complaining." It even mocked the Civil Rights movement!

Mr. Pilgrim, I just wanted to know how a show like this could exist in a society that is trying to stamp out racism? Throughout the show they use the word "nigger" non-stop. They laugh at things like domestic violence and other serious topics. I'm just wondering if most African-Americans find this show on Adult Swim offensive? I was offended by it, and it wasn't even my people they were slandering.

Sir, I just wanted to thank you for your website. It's not an easy thing to look at. I honestly did not know much about Jim Crow laws besides the "Whites Only" or "Color Only" signs. But, I would just ask that most people protest the Boondocks. It's not a good show in any way, shape, or form. I'm pretty disgusted Adult Swim would chose to air this at all.

One more thing Mr. Pilgrim, can I make a suggestion? I know you mainly focus on artifacts from the past, which is good, but I think it would be good if you showed how a lot of rap music is making new stereotypes for African-Americans. Young people may not realize the impact it's having, but it's not a very good one. Most rap glorifies using women, drugs, and law-breaking. I too am a college student and hope your muesum will help others to realize that there's a lot of American history we don't see in textbooks.

-- Dec. 29, 2005



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