“Can Bobo Make It Racist?” Episode 1
Prefatory note: Several years ago I met a character online who went by the name of “Bobo Fiendish.” Being a sour curmudgeon like myself we hit it off spectacularly. As we continued our talks, I learned Bobo had several talents. This is the by-product of one such talent.
Hello, friends and compatriots, and welcome to the first ever installment of “Can Bobo Make It Racist?” Did you know that everyone and everything you love is racist? Well, our good friend Bobo Fiendish is here to school you on the fine points of why the things you love are racist.
During this show we give Bob several topics picked completely at random and see if we can answer the most important question: “Can Bobo Make It Racist?” Here we go with round one. Bobo, take it away!
- Ren and Stimpy
Technically, I don’t *make* anything racist — it either is or it isn’t. Ren and Stimpy takes a Hispanic, sickly ‘asthma-hound’ chihuahua, and a stupid cat that is his henchman and sends them on ‘adventures’ — usually based around scamming themselves into a home or a job they don’t really deserve. The dog, being Hispanic, is the ‘brains’ of the team — and so comes up with the majority of the schemes to get them what they’re after, which conditions kids watching to automatically figure anyone with a Spanish accent is up to shenanigans.
The cat is portrayed as a stupid but good-natured Caucasian, generally shown to go along with Ren’s plans — even when he disagrees — which shows kids that if you don’t step in to promptly stop the minorities from doing their crimes, you’re obviously stupid and foolish and deserve all the trouble that will follow from such folly.
2. The sitcom “Friends”
You ever see any black folks? I sure didn’t. Next.
Hmm. Sushi is pretty overtly in the cultural appropriation sphere. Nothing says ‘awkward’ quite as succinctly as white folks trying out ‘ethnic food’ — unless you’ve got one of them that bought a copy of Rosetta Stone and is trying to order in the Native Language, like it’ll get them a discount or something. On the plus side, it’s one of the few times you can see a Japanese person’s entire eyes, when they bug out in shock at these goofballs making melvins of themselves.
4. Jiffy Lube
Jiffy Lube used to be its own thing, but it was gobbled up by Pennzoil in 1991 and Shell in 2002, who still owns them. Their slogan used to be ‘Every 3000 miles’ which turned out to be more for their health than your vehicle’s. What’s more, it was discovered by KNBC in an investigative report that they tended to charge you for services not performed and parts not installed. Indeed, five stores of nine tested did this to their undercover reporters.
With egg on their face, Jiffy Lube promised sweeping reforms and new training — but we soon learned much of that training was in how to detect undercover reporters. Jiffy Lube finally opted to put cameras in the work area so you could see what they were doing to your car — which meant they probably didn’t have to tell you what they did anymore, so that worked in their favor as well.
This sets aside that most people went to Jiffy Lube because they had no idea what the hell was what in their car to begin with, but that’s probably just unimportant details.
The important thing to keep in mind is that Jiffy Lube was started by a white guy, Edwin Washburn, in 1971 — then sold to another white guy — Western Maryland College football coach W. James Hindman in 1979. The basic idea of ‘using what we know and you don’t to screw you over’ is of course part of the very DNA of the caucasian race, and it’s no surprise that it was the guiding ‘principle’ of the Jiffy Lube company then, now, and likely for the foreseeable future.
5. Dr. Seuss’s “Horton Hears A Who”
The story of an elephant, Horton, whose large ears give him the ability to detect the existence of life on a dandelion — indeed an entire separate world, that of the Whos. Generally, the other animals in the jungle disbelieve Horton’s claims that there is life outside what they can readily detect, so they torment Horton for his foolishness and attempt to take from him his now precious dandelion, of which he has made himself protector.
This is of course an allegory that Horton — in this situation being the gentle, protective white man, must fight off the wicked jungle beasts — primarily the monkeys and the birds, who are our stand ins for the Negros and Jews, respectively — because they have neither the ability nor the demeanor to understand existence beyond their own limited senses and general ignorance.
Horton eventually, if barely, saves these cruel beasts from their own folly by getting the Whos to collectively make themselves known to the ignorant throng, who sheepishly apologize for their misdeeds and make Horton a celebrated hero, as he richly deserves.
And there you have it, ladies and gentlemen. From your favorite one stop auto shop to children’s books, there’s nothing Bobo can’t make racist. Tune in next time for another thrilling rendition of “Can Bobo Make It Racist?”
If you’d like to try and stump Bobo, leave a comment to this story with the topic you’d like to see Bobo make Racist. We’ll pass it along.