Oscar Bustamante/GMG/The Root
Oscar Bustamante/GMG/The Root
Clapback MailbagEach Friday, we select the best (or worst) emails, tweets, DMs and comments from our readers and respond to them in the The Root's Clapback Mailbag.

Each Thursday I wade through all the mean emails, tweets, comments and direct messages sent to the writers at The Root and find the ones that warrant a response. I examine them for white tears, anger and racism and formulate a response in my head. Then I look at my computer and say:

“I’ll do that shit in the morning.”

Yes, I am a “late motherfucker.”

I am one of the precious few people who have been endowed with the special gift of never being on time. I am always late. Late motherfuckers don’t enjoy being late. Instead, we have a disability that prevents us from being on time, unlike some people who wake up at the crack of dawn and start working diligently. (I won’t mention any names. Let’s just say she might be a deputy managing editor at The Root.) I honestly think I should get disability and one of those parking decals so I can park up front and rush in.


My late-motherfucker-ness came in handy today because this was a slow week for hate mail. Then, at the last minute, it flooded in like white tears at a Black Lives Matter rally. I say all of this to ask a favor of the haters:

Can you be a little more prompt?

[Editor’s note: For the record, I was up at 4 a.m. today and waited hours for this post ... because Negroes are always late. I thank my Irish side for never being a late Negro. —Yesha]


As an example of how being a late motherfucker works, our first item is a comment from JC-Sean, who took umbrage with me calling Post Malone a “cultural appropriator” in a post from a few hours ago.


“Cultural appropriation” is the very definition of hypocrisy. Our society is a mixing pot of culture, meaning everyone from every background takes some aspects of another previous society and implements them to their needs. I needn’t list off the dozens of things white culture has created that black culture has taken advantage of. If Post doesn’t want to be known as a rapper and simply as a musician, who are you to question him? If society relies on pure feelings as it is, then what makes his claim unjustified in comparison?


Dear JC-Sean:

I was all set to clap back at your white nonsense about cultural appropriation. It was going to be good, too. I was going to write how you, like many others who present this ignorant argument, have no idea what cultural appropriation actually means. I was going to explain to you like you are 5 years old how cultural appropriation has nothing to do with taking “aspects of another previous society” and using them for one’s needs.


Damn, JC, I was going to roast your ass for being so dumb that you think using an art form, invention or technique created by another culture is “cultural appropriation.” My best line was going to be, “Nigga, I’m not accusing every motherfucker who uses fire or a wheel of stealing from Cro-Magnon man!”

Then I was going to rip apart your kindergarten-slow-class-like logic by explaining that there is a difference between Eminem immersing himself in a culture, respecting it and contributing to the art form and Post Malone using the art form to make millions while simultaneously saying: “Don’t lump me in with those niggers. I’m a musician, not a rapper.” Then I was going to explain how he gets to dabble in the stereotype of hip-hop while enjoying the privilege of not having to deal with the consequences.


My only problem was, I needed an analogy to illustrate my argument. If only there were some incident that could show how Malone’s whiteness means that he isn’t treated like the black artists he emulates with his Caucasian step-and-fetch-it-ery. I desperately needed a way to prove that Malone gets to enjoy the societal privilege of being white and pocket the money from his pseudo-black stereotype. I must admit, JC, that I was stuck.

And then this happened:


Yes, that is Post Malone, on video in Las Vegas, the recent site of one of the deadliest mass shootings in U.S. history, riding around with a machine gun mounted atop a truck.

Post Malone is not in jail.

Post Malone is still alive.

Shut the fuck up, JC.

Our next clapback comes from an accident:

Yesterday, while searching for something on the internet, Producer Danielle Young discovered that there is a whole section of YouTube devoted to black conservatives clapping back at The Root.


Here are two of my favorites:

And this dude, who calls himself “Uncle Hotep” and spends a lot of time attacking black people in videos:

I must be honest: I thoroughly enjoyed these niggas, in the same way people enjoy watching Bumfights and Jackass. I actually subscribed to their channels after watching a few of their videos because I sometimes need to remind myself what the opposite of “self-aware” is.


Next week, no one will be talking about the Erykah Badu article or that wig-wearing mop bucket who called April Ryan out of her name, and I can use these videos to help me become a better person. I’m just going to scroll through them every now and then, and if I ever hear any of them say anything and think to myself, “You know, that guy makes a lot of sense,” then I’ll know what to do next:

Slit my motherfucking throat.

The next clapback comes via an email written by a reader who disagreed with the article disparaging the Democratic Party.


From: DJ
To: Michael Harriot
Subject: Thanks

You’re a racist but you’re right that democrats aren’t friends of struggling communities. They love poverty. They keep people addicted to crumbs without teaching/promoting how to be independently successful and self reliant. They love when writers like you promulgate victim hood because it keeps people victims. When the black Fordham law professor wtites an article saying black people are disabled(link below), they cheer. If a person is disabled or a victim, they need help. So yeah, they’ll keep giving those crumbs to the victims....in exchange for votes. They won’t tell the victims they can succeed through hard work and making good decisions.(see Asian and black immigrants) Then they wouldn’t need the Democrat’s loving help. It’s ethereal whiteness that’s holding people back. Hmm, something that can’t be quantified so can never be proven to be ended. That’s the perfect boogeyman to keep people addicted to oppression. Maybe this is your wakeup call. I hope you’re not as stupid as you are racist.



Dearest Dj:

First, I’d like to thank you for recognizing both my stupidity and my racism and agreeing with me that the Democratic Party is trash. When I saw your link from the Fordham professor, I also agreed with you that it is a stupid idea to equate being black with being disabled.


Then I read the article from the link you sent from that bullshit right-wing site and the original article from Kimani Paul-Emile, who is an associate professor of law and director of Fordham University’s Center on Race, Law, and Justice. After reading all of this, I sympathized with you because I quickly realized that one of my theories is correct:

White people can’t read.

I realized this because Paul-Emile specifically wrote, “Blackness, of course, is not, by itself, an impairment.” Then I realized, after noting that the article explains that she is using the concept of disability law because “it accurately reflects what Black, as a racial designation, is and was designed to be: disabling. Racial categories were created explicitly to serve as a caste system to privilege some and disadvantage others ... ,” that you probably didn’t read that part, because it is in the first sentence!


This is what white people like you will do.

You plant the seeds of racism in every square inch of fertile soil, and when the poisonous flowers bloom, you wonder why we’re sick. You accuse people of acting like victims because they’re allergic to hate.


I have seen the rape, oppression, torture, thievery and hate you spread around the world. You are a scourge of humanity, Dj. You are a monster. No one is afraid of “boogeymen.” But to quote Kevin Spacey from the great documentary The Usual Suspects:

“The greatest trick the devil ever pulled was convincing the world he didn’t exist.”


His second greatest?

Creating Dj.

World-renowned wypipologist. Getter and doer of "it." Never reneged, never will. Last real negus alive.

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