I know, what can you expect? Gigantic asshole gonna gigantic asshole (I saw this on Facebook over the weekend, but I can’t find who linked to it now).
During his October 7 show on KIRO-FM, Dori myopically focused on a part of POC Yoga’s class description which put forth “white friends, allies, and partners are respectfully asked not to attend.” Despite on-air claims that he had “zero problems” with POC Yoga, was “perfectly fine” with the practice, and believed POC Yoga “should be free”—he also openly accused POC Yoga of being “racist,” “exclusionary,” and more than once (instead of calling the collective by its self-chosen name) referred to it as “no whites yoga class.” Dori gave no historical context, did not acknowledge whites disproportionate privilege in a white-dominated culture, and made no mention of the ongoing microaggressive to extreme racism people of color have faced in America for centuries.
Jesus. When I hear his show, he isn’t typically interested in, for example, making sure that Black kids aren’t gunned down by the police. Maybe I missed it. He’s on the air for like 500 hours a day. And, inexplicably, halftime in the Seahawks’ radio broadcast.
I guess, if he wanted to make a perfectly race neutral type argument, he would naturally spend time trying to figure out why there’s still a wage gap between the races. Again I haven’t seen it. You’d certainly think someone who wants to call out racism so much he’s worried about a yoga class wouldn’t be so quick to call George Zimmerman “a hero” and “a superhero” in the clip (not in the context of murdering a Black child, but still: Holy shit).
Anyway, that’s the argument qua the argument. But were there any consequences to his dumbassness?
Directly following Dori’s heated criticism, Teresa said hate calls and death threats started pouring in every five minutes. There were all together over 200 phone calls, and hundreds and hundreds of emails filled with hostility and hate. What had just been anger generated out of a Nextdoor post spiraled into a violent, racist fervor that swept the country and made its way onto inflammatory websites like Infowars and Drudge Report. She rushed out that day to get a security system for her home though she stayed with a friend that night for safety. From that point through the weekend POC Yoga and Rainier Beach Yoga (the studio where class was held) filed several police reports. On Monday they filed an FBI report.
“Those death threats alone illustrate exactly why people of color need safe spaces,” said Joe R. Feagin, Distinguished Professor of Sociology at Texas A&M. Feagin is author of over 200 research articles and over 60 books on race, class, and gender. He has been studying patterns of white discrimination against people of color in the United States for 50 years and has reviewed hundreds of empirical studies. Feagin says the empirical data is clear. “Racism is still extraordinarily widespread in this country and does great harm to people of color,” he explained. “Therefore it is not only logical but necessary that people of color create safe spaces away from whites in which to deal with the stresses of racism and build up strategies to resist.”
Now Dori isn’t responsible for all the dumbassness that his dumbass listeners do. But maybe he’ll think a little next time.