‘Dutch people, you can be so racist. You mean well, but.. racist.
You aren’t even aware of it, but.. racist.
Monday’s headline in the Spits: ‘Zwarte Piet voor Wilders.’
I ask my favorite Dutch guy: Why Zwarte Piet?
Dutch guy: ‘It makes perfect sense.’
Me: Does it? To me it could mean at least 2 things:
- ‘Zwarte Piet supports Wilders’ - ?
- ‘A Zwarte Piet is being given to Wilders’ - ?
Maybe Zwarte Piet is now voting for Wilders. Maybe Mr. Black-face has sympathy for Mr. Hair-dye. OR maybe – for blowing up the Dutch cabinet – Wilders is being given his own personal Zwarte Piet. As an assistant. Technically, that would make him Sinterklaas - ? Which can only mean one thing: Wilders is attempting to collect all the Zwarte Pieten so he can deport them.
Dutch guy: ‘No! It’s obvious! “Zwarte Piet voor Wilders” means Wilders is taking the blame for the fall of the government.’
Me: Okay. But why ‘Zwarte Piet?’
Dutch guy: ‘It’s from the card game, when someone gives you the Joker. That’s the Zwarte Piet.’
Me: So Wilders is The Joker? Does that mean Mark Rutte is Batman?
Dutch guy: ‘No, Zwarte Piet means you take the blame, you get punished. You get the Zwarte Piet.’
Me: Ah. So literally: ‘Wilders Is Being Painted Black. Like zwartmaken?
Dutch guy: ‘Yes! Zwartmaken is bad, Wilders is bad.’
Me: So Zwarte Piet is bad - ?
Dutch guy: ‘NO! Zwarte Piet is good!’
But if ‘making someone black’ is bad…
Dutch guy: ‘No, Zwarte Piet isn’t really black. It’s just the soot from the chimney!’
Me: Okay! So soot is not bad.
Dutch guy: No.
Me: Black-face is not bad.
Dutch guy: No.
Me: So BEING black is bad.
Dutch guy: ‘Yeah …Not bad meaning bad, but bad meaning good.’
There it is.’
- Greg Shapiro