One has to salute the remarkable courage of this brave young woman who was faced by a terrible moral crisis in the very last place she expected it:
A few weeks ago, as I settled into an exceptionally crowded midday
class, a young, fairly heavy black woman put her mat down directly
behind mine. It appeared she had never set foot in a yoga studio—she was
glancing around anxiously, adjusting her clothes, looking wide-eyed and
nervous. Within the first few minutes of gentle warm-up stretches, I
saw the fear in her eyes snowball, turning into panic and then despair.
Before we made it into our first downward dog, she had crouched down on
her elbows and knees, head lowered close to the ground, trapped and
vulnerable. She stayed there, staring, for the rest of the class.
Because I was directly in front of her, I had no choice but to look
straight at her every time my head was upside down (roughly once a
minute). I’ve seen people freeze or give up in yoga classes many times,
and it’s a sad thing, but as a student there’s nothing you can do about
it. At that moment, though, I found it impossible to stop thinking about
this woman. Even when I wasn’t positioned to stare directly at her, I
knew she was still staring directly at me. Over the course of the next
hour, I watched as her despair turned into resentment and then contempt.
I felt it all directed toward me and my body….
I got home from that class and promptly broke down crying. Yoga, a
beloved safe space that has helped me through many dark moments in over
six years of practice, suddenly felt deeply suspect. Knowing fully well
that one hour of perhaps self-importantly believing myself to be the
deserving target of a racially charged anger is nothing, is largely my
own psychological projection, is a drop in the bucket, is the tip of the
iceberg in American race relations, I was shaken by it all the same.
this, one is left with one immediate and inescapable question: how on
Earth can anyone possibly even attempt to justify female suffrage?
Although one can’t help but be amused by the idea that a single invasion
by one African is sufficient to make this no-doubt “anti-racist” white
woman begin to question the safety and value of six years of yoga
Now, a few years ago, one might well have
assumed that this simply had to be an SWPL parody. And perhaps it is.
But we now live in a post-parodic society where nothing, no matter how
absurd, can be assumed to be a joke.
Especially such deadly serious matters as
interracial inter-subspecies same-sex stare rape.