You Can Keep That to Yourself: A Comprehensive List of What Not to Say to Black People, for Well- Intentioned People of Pallor

Adam Smyer. Akashic, $15.95 (136p) ISBN 978-1-6177-5896-6
In this slim and witty volume, attorney Smyer (Knucklehead) collects an alphabetized short list of things not to say to African-Americans. Smyer, writing as Daquan, “the black co-worker you are referring to when you claim to have black friends,” wisecracks about the common verbal miscues of whites, whether when complimenting educated blacks on their speech (“This black man talking to me is so articulate!”), talking in Ebonics (“Don’t say, ‘They be like.’ Keep that ‘be’ shit to yourself”), referring to someone as a thug (“Half the people you think are thugs are in high school. Meanwhile, you politely overlook the several overt nazis you pass on the street each day”), or commenting on watermelons (“Just kidding—you can say watermelon”). When conversations turn to immigration and Ellis Island, Smyer notes the irony of slavery: “Getting on the boat was [your grandfather’s] idea.” Each entry is designed to strip away the hypocrisy and half-truths of these cultural exchanges by laughing at them. Smyer’s hilarious sampler offers astute observations on race and culture. (Sept.)
Reviewed on : 05/29/2020
Release date: 09/01/2020
Genre: Nonfiction
Open Ebook - 124 pages - 978-1-61775-897-3
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