Dr. Blume has degrees in Logotherapy from the Österreichische gesellschaft für logotherapie nach Victor Frankl in Vienna and in Nail Technology from the Schilling-Douglas School of Hair Design in Newark. Every week, he answers your questions about will to meaning, pedicures, and especially libido.
Q. Dear Dr. Blume,
As a lifelong Republican, I can’t stand to see Tom Robinson disrespectin’ my Mayella!
Bob Ewell, Maycomb, Alabama
A. The trope of the black man who disrespects a white woman is at the core of the the inferiority complex that has led to the creation of what some call “movement conservatism” but which we Logotherapists call “pasty dudes with penis envy.” A charge of “disrespect” is clearly a code word that expresses their fear of rejection, predicated on the sneaking feeling that the objects of their desire actually desire the “other” – any other – rather than them. The idea that Mediterranean men are more romantic, that African men are better endowed, that Northern Europeans are more debonaire, are all projections of these white American male anxieties and fears onto national groups in a way that would be laughable if it weren’t so ubiquitous.
We all know that the secret knowledge that they do not have the compassion or self-discipline to actually care for children has caused conservative Republicans to create a fictional class of “fetus-Americans” that they can claim to care more about. So, too, the secret knowledge that their celebration of self-absorption and sense of their own superiority leaves real-world women cold causes them to create a class of white women who are harassed by black men, allowing them to imagine themselves the (literally) white knights who save those damsels in distress.
In reality, black men in the Jim Crow South were rather unlikely to come on to a white woman, because this was an act that could result in getting lynched. Even today, when John McCain accuses Barack Obama of disrespecting Sarah Palin by calling her “good looking,” you can be sure it is an exaggeration intended to provoke just such a lynching. The truth is that Joe Biden called her good looking, and he was simply saying that the difference between them was that she was “better looking” than he himself was. If he was implying she had no other abilities, then he was saying the same thing about himself! But the point is not to be truthful, but present an image of Obama smiling that stokes the fears of white male voters.
In my opinion, Herr Ewell, it is unlikely that Tom is disrespecting Mayella, but possible that Mayella was actually coming on to Tom Robinson. Frankly, every time you say “the black man is disrespecting her,” you are in effect saying: “I fear my microscopic penis is deeply repugnant to women.” So please do us all a favor and contact John McCain and you two can form your own support group, rent a high-powered microscope and a keg, and spend a weekend playing drums and finding your inner id. Herr McCain might even teach you a thing or two about his marvelous ape. Afterwards, you can stop in for therapy and a hot wax at Dr. Blume’s Logotherapy und Nagel-Technologie-Handelszentrum. We have seven locations to serve you, six of them conveniently located in Steglitz von Berlin.