Dec 02 2011

Movie Friday: Jay Smooth

It’s always a happy coincidence when I find out there’s someone else out there who I hadn’t heard of, but who’s saying the same stuff I am. It brings me great joy.

Jay Smooth is doing exactly what I think everyone should be doing – talking about race – and perhaps more importantly, talking about how to talk about race. My experience running this blog for the past 20 months and the impetus for starting it in the first place is that I think people want to talk about this stuff, they just feel uncomfortable. Learning the language is part of starting the discussion.

Anyway, this video pretty much states exactly what I was trying to get across with my “You’re not ‘a racist’, you’re just racist” post, but with far more class. Enjoy the clip!

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  1. 1

    It’s strange how happy I get when I see awesome people appreciate each other’s work :) I love Jay Smooth because he does what he tells other people to do. Whenever he talks about gender or sexuality, it’s clear he’s examined his own privileges, that he heard what women and LGBT people have said, that he truly is an ally. It’s what I aspire to be, too. (ok, enough gushing)

  2. 2
    Lou Doench

    Welcome to the cult of Smooth. Even a tremendously white dude like me gets where he’s coming from. He makes it sound so simple.

  3. 3

    He does a great job, and definitely makes the discussion accessible. It’s what I try to do here, but of course different personalities/different media.

  4. 4

    Thank you for posting. I <3 Jay Smooth, but hadn't seen this one.

  5. 5

    I’m surprised you haven’t found Mr. Smooth before! He really does do a fine job of laying things out. Here’s another particularly relevant video– Ill Doctrine: How To Tell People They Sound Racist.

  6. 6
    Bruce S. Springsteen

    Love the hygiene analogy. Works both ways, for the person offering the criticism as well as the recipient. Imagine you’re telling someone their deodorant isn’t working. How would you want to be told? What approach would work on you? Same consideration with racial topics. “Hey, that was a racist thing you said” isn’t going to work any better than “Hey, you don’t smell very good.” Gotta be, well, smooth with people – especially the ones you are trying to change – if you want to let everybody win. If you just want to get up on someone and call them out, then your social hygeine isn’t so hot either, and you need to sniff your own pits first before you give instruction. Good stuff here. Thanks for sharing it.

  7. 7
    Daniel Fincke

    Kind of amazed you’ve never heard of Jay Smooth before. Here’s the great video I discovered him with http://freethoughtblogs.com/camelswithhammers/2009/11/17/is-carrie-prejean-from-the-future/

  8. 8

    I’ve heard of him before today. I hadn’t heard of him when I started blogging.

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