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The Cowardly Dog

TV Bounty Hunter Said “Nigger” and Then Apologized, Pleasing No One


Do you enjoy when white celebrities make racially inappropriate remarks and face public crucifixion for it?

I mean, do you enjoy it as much as I do?

The last few years have brought a bumper crop of racially inappropriate celebrity scandals. First came a shit-faced Mel Gibson railing against Jews during a traffic arrest. Then came Michael “Kramer” Richards yowling about “niggers” during a standup act. And then, my favorite, Duane “Dog the Bounty Hunter” Chapman faced unyielding scorn and possible career death because his turncoat son taped him saying “nigger” during a phone conversation about his other son’s black girlfriend.

I’ve personally enjoyed each of these scandals more than nearly any other celebrity-related news in memory. These days entertainers are so groomed and scripted and coached and clipped and manufactured, about the only entertaining thing they can do anymore is to fuck up and get caught saying something racist. Saying “nigger” is about the only exciting thing I’ve seen celebs do in a long time.

It has nothing to do with a hatred…or love…or any real emotional investment either way…with American blacks, Jews, or anyone but myself. It’s due strictly to the fact that I LOVE watching people get upset over NOTHING. In truth, it’s unlikely—no, it’s impossible—that there’s a black person in America who was as hurt by Dog’s comments as Dog was. In terms of literal, measurable damage these days, saying “nigger” only hurts the person who says it.

In case you didn’t know, Duane “Dog” Chapman is a less-than-handsome ex-con who gets paid handsomely to kidnap cons on television. As an ex-con, he should have known that you don’t say incriminating shit whenever there’s the possibility of it being recorded, but Dog is not the brightest bulb in the bail-bonds demimonde. He is a grizzled half-animal character from the land of Oz—both the classic children’s fantasy movie and the HBO prison drama. His face is cracked and creviced like a slice of turkey jerky, and his family looks as if it was created by a meth-lab explosion.

In short, the fact that Duane “Dog” Chapman says “nigger” a lot is hardly the most offensive thing about the guy. Where are the outraged legions of citizens grabbing torches and taking to the streets in protest of Dog’s hairstyle? Where are the advertisers threatening to withdraw all sponsorship unless Dog’s wife does something about those Snoopy Boobs of hers? What about his son’s Mohawk/braided-ponytail thing? Isn’t the fact that Dog and his wife reproduced far more objectionable than the fact he ever said nigger? On his TV show, Chapman routinely referred to other males as “brah.” Look in my eyes and tell me with a straight face that’s less offensive than saying “nigger.” In the long run, is it worse to call someone a nigger than to act like one? Dog’s very existence begs this question.

Public hysteria and lifelong social excommunication based on racist comments is a relatively new development. Perhaps America’s first big racial-slur scandal was back in the mid-70s, when US Secretary of Agriculture Earl Butz was forced to resign after cracking a joke about blacks only wanting three things: loose shoes, tight pussy, and a warm place to shit. In the interim, the Reverend Jesse Jackson called New York “Hymietown” and cuddly family-film star Ice Cube said all sorts of disparaging things about Jews and white “devil cave bitches,” but that notorious “slavery” thing which ended A HUNDRED AND FIFTY FUCKING YEARS AGO absolved them of all guilt.

To try and save his career, Dog went onto Sean Hannity’s cable show, apologizin’ like the Dickens. Like Michael Richards before him, he donned sackcloth and ashes and allowed himself to be paraded through the muddy streets as centurions whipped him and he begged for mercy. On Hannity’s show, Dog cried more than once—NOT a pretty spectacle. He said that if killing himself would make things better, he would do it. He even suggested that when he dies, he should be buried in an unmarked grave alongside ex-slaves.

I liked him better when he was saying "nigger."

At least it was sincere. If Chapman and Richards hadn’t been threatened with the final, immutable ends of their professional careers for saying nigger, would they even have apologized? And if they did, would they have looked nearly as scared while doing it?

Throughout his self-flagellating public apology, Dog the Bounty Hunter looked very much like the hunted. Or, more precisely, the retarded hunter suddenly found himself hunted by retards. By apologizing, Dog alienated the last group possibly willing to cut him some slack—the racists. With his transparent duplicity, he’s aligned both the racists and the anti-racists against him. That’s a formidable coalition.

Dog also apologized to every black person in America.

 “Thanks, Dog,” said every black person in America. “It means a lot, Dog.”

I’m not big on making or accepting apologies. Exactly what does an apology accomplish, anyway? Can anyone tell me? State legislatures across the South are now apologizing for slavery—as if it makes a dif!

If there is indeed a God, He or She created Duane “Dog” Chapman to look like a guy who says “nigger” a lot. It’s a violation of Dog’s civil rights to deny him this God-given privilege.

In between tears, Dog mentioned the word “healing” a lot. Kramer, in his pathetic apology, mentioned the word “healing,” too. In truth, neither Kramer nor Dog looked like they were healing. They looked liked they’d just been infected with a terminal illness—the incurable, lethal Racial Guilt Germ. The only literal, logical, true psychological healing would occur—instantly—if Dog wiped away all the crocodile tears and just fucking admitted he wanted to say “nigger” in the first place.

This screamingly pious outrage over the “N” word has perhaps eclipsed the Red Scare of the 1950s on the hysteria meter. The difference is that in the 1950s, communists were ACTUALLY killing people in the millions. These days, if a single racist even suggests harming a nonwhite, you never hear the frickin’ end of it. Actual violent hate crimes—at least, the white-on-black variety—are so truly rare, the mere utterance of “nigger” is enough to bring out the National Guard.

In the entire media hubbub surrounding all of these celebrity racial-slur scandals, reporters dance around the “N” word like Bill “Bojangles” Robinson. And nothing approaching truth, logic, or reality EVER encroaches upon the discussion. It’s all some jitterbuggy public psychological voodoo exorcism.

Here in Atlanta, I once walked past a fat black woman barking into her cell phone about how she’s still “working for the white man.”

First off, she ain’t working for THIS white man, or I would have forced her to write this for me.

Would she feel better back in Africa, swatting at flies?

In Africa, I’d reckon they’re far less worried about having their feelings hurt than they are about keeling over from AIDS or finding a bite to eat over the next month. If you’ve reached the point where being called a bad name is your primary gripe in life, you have it pretty fucking good.

Americans, black, white, and urine-colored, need to get over their goddamned feelings.

At least that’s how I feel.