Imagine if there was a reality show on American TV that normalized members of ISIS. The cameras would show how the ISIS members interacted with family members and how American standards were threatening their way of life. The viewer could develop a sense of sympathy and finally understand why an ISIS member would blow up a place of worship, initiate brutality on innocent people, and kill thousands through acts of terrorism. However, such a show would never be allowed to gain national exposure on a major network in America.
But White terrorists are allowed the platform. In January, A&E will air a reality show called “Generation KKK.” According to a statement by the A&E, the series is about “extracting families from the KKK and exposing hate.” Overall, the producers want to examine how people are born into hate.
However, it doesn’t take a series to examine how some people are born into hate. America has a way of revealing how racism continues to be a major problem in this country. Beyond a show that highlights racist terrorists, we have all witnessed how unarmed Black men such as Trayvon Martin, Eric Garner, and Walter Scott were killed for simply being Black. It’s not a mystery how the segregation of public education continues to occur in cities that claim to be liberal. Gentrification has forced older Black residents out of their homes as White residents help to raise tax rates and take over urban communities while profiling the citizens who have lived there for years. Mass incarceration, lack of healthcare, and economic inequality still disproportionally affect Blacks.
So if A&E really wants to examine and expose how people are born into hate, they should first take the time to do a reality series on hate and systematic racism. Because normalizing a family of KKK terrorists will not help to solve America’s deepest issues when systematic terrorism is just as deadly.
But one of the best ways to hit A&E is for advertisers to boycott the station. And if advertisers refuse to boycott the station, citiznes should boycott the advertisers who continue to work with the station.
There is power in numbers and A&E should be forced to realize the harm that can be done by airing a show based on the KKK.