So, I wrote last week about being called a (borderline) racist at Fuller Seminary because I questioned the sophistication of burgeoning Pentecostalism in the Global South. Well, I was happy to discover yesterday, via NPR, that saying “That’s Racist!” has gone from a serious accusation to a commonplace quip.
Fourteen-year-old Gus Rachels and his friends use it to call out people overly sensitive to race issues. Regina N. Bradley, who teaches classes in African American literature at Florida State University, says she thinks kids are using “that’s racist,” to establish that they’re not — but even the college students she teaches get confused about the difference between race and race issues. Saying “that’s racist” is sometimes a way to get out of difficult discussions about race, she says — which is still a sensitive topic.