Quaker Oats, which has made Aunt Jemima pancake mix for 130 years, says it is “retiring the brand” because it’s based on “a racial stereotype.” It’s not clear how this is so. To me she just looks like someone who really knows how to make pancakes. Jemima has certainly graced my breakfast table many times over the decades, to my benefit. I was a young adult in the early Sixties, the last days of Jim Crow, when America was systematically racist. I stuck my neck out then by speaking out against this vicious policy and calling for it to end. No doubt, I sometimes did this after a hearty breakfast of Aunt Jemima pancakes.
Oh yeah, Uncle Ben and Mrs. Butterworth are getting the sack too at another socially conscious (sarcasm intended) company. The latter is not even a person, just a pancake syrup bottle. Who knew that syrup bottles were of different races? But pancake syrup is brown, so maybe this is racist now too. Not many things aren’t in our current pandemic of racial hysteria. (For a partial list of formerly benign items and individuals now deemed racist, see our Robert Stacy McCain’s fine deconstruction of the current madness in this morning’s web.)
Of late we’ve had not only tsunamis of violence and grievances, but of pointless gestures as well. Perhaps some enterprising reporter could locate a black American whose life is being made better because these three have received their pink slips. It won’t be an easy assignment. Maybe Geraldo could do it.
More of this to come, I’m sure. Chiquita Banana, watch your back.