One of the most frustrating things about existing while black in America and dealing with white supremacy, white privilege, white tears and white people’s awkward casseroles is the process of determining exactly how to react to racism when faced with it.
Should you address microaggressions immediately, or should you wait until a particularly egregious racist act occurs to push back? (And what defines “particularly egregious” anyway?) If you do decide to react, how should that look? A calm and sober explanation of why what happened was wrong? A fiery and passionate rebuke? Should you want them to learn, or should you want to scorch earth? If at work, is it worth reporting to human resources or perhaps even finding a new job? And if someone uses hateful language, is it justifiable and right to respond in kind? Or perhaps even up the ante and strike them physically?
Making things more exasperating is that, aside from the rare instances when the racist receives real repercussions and you’re able to experience a bout of well-deserved schadenfreude, none of the reactions feel particularly good. It’s kind of like what happens when you kill a roach. You don’t throw a parade for your successful roach murder; you just wish you weren’t in a circumstance where it was necessary, and now you feel all icky.
But sometimes chance and circumstance combine to create an answer for a seemingly unsolvable question.
Perhaps you’ve seen the video now of the Lime-a-Rita-clutching racist thrown off of the L train. It’s truly a sight to behold. Imagine the level of Caucasian hubris necessary to go full “MAGA” on a packed subway train in Brooklyn, N.Y., and think you’ll leave unscathed.
And while the entire video is worth watching, the moment of truth occurs around the 1:45 mark. As Lime-a-Racist is attempting to get back on the train, a cup of soup is thrown at him: a moment both glorious and sublime. Think about it: Would you rather get smacked in the face or have a lukewarm cup of thick, yellow soup splashed in it? (The smack, definitely.) And what would feel more cathartic? Smacking a racist or splashing a lukewarm cup of thick, yellow soup at him? (The soup, definitely.) This moment was so perfect that I want to laminate it, shrink it down into a charm and wear it on a chain around my neck. I want to sleep and shower with that moment!
Yesterday, rapper Princess Nokia revealed that she was the soup thrower, an act which should immediately qualify her for sainthood. And earlier today, while in GMG’s Diversity Mafia Slack discussing another act of egregious racism committed against the homies Danielle Young and Genetta Adams last night, Victor Amos suggested that we all follow Princess Nokia’s lead and just carry a spare cup of soup around to throw at racists. And I think that’s the best idea I’ve ever heard.
I’m ready for #SoupOnRacists to be a movement. It’s the perfect response to racism—the perfect answer to that elusive question. I’m ready to drive to Panera Bread or Au Bon Pain or maybe even Bruegger’s Bagels today, and I plan to ask them for five cups of their yellowest, thickest and grittiest souplike substances to hoard and, if the moment calls for it, splash on racist motherfuckers. Who’s with me?