On Saturday, I covered the case of psychiatrist Aruna Khilanani, who spoke to a Yale School of Medicine crowd about her fantasy of murdering white people
“The Psychopathic Problem of the White Mind” saw Aruna express her passionate peevishness toward the pale: “Nothing makes me angrier than a white person who tells me not to be angry, because they have not seen real anger yet.”
She admitted she’s cut off most white friends.
And don’t fall in love with her, counsels Kenny Rogers — she’s a dreamer:
“I had fantasies of unloading a revolver into the head of any white person that got in my way, burying their body and wiping my bloody hands as I walked away relatively guiltless with a bounce in my step. Like I did the world a f—–g favor.”
On the other hand, her website lays out a love for people:
My background is literary, and I have a love of stories, people, and immersing myself in other worlds.
Call it a wash.
Aruna’s fantasy of cold-heartedly murdering people solely on the basis of their color garnered a curious label: not great.
Some even went so far as to rate it as racist.
Perhaps it was the skipping away that came across as uncouth.
Yale Professor Nicholas Christakis saw it sourly:
“The racism expressed by Dr. Aruna Khilanani…is deeply worrisome & counter-productive.”
“[H]er views must be soundly rejected,” he wrote.
The racism expressed by Dr. Aruna Khilanani in a Grand Rounds at Yale, just released by @bariweiss & @kittypurrzog, is deeply worrisome & counter-productive. Of course, as an invitee, she is free to speak on campus. But her views must be soundly rejected. https://t.co/9KoFtOXOG9
— Nicholas A. Christakis (@NAChristakis) June 4, 2021
Many called for her medical license to be revoked.
“When I entered her office, she put a revolver to my head and said I needed to play five rounds of Russian roulette before I could get an appointment,” one critic reportedly claimed.
Well, there’s big news: She’s responded with thoughtful consideration following the flogging.
Her conclusion: She was right.
In a Saturday email to The New York Times, the psychiatrist insisted she was taken out of context by people trying to “control the narrative.”
Evidently, she was just using her wizardry to make you think:
“Too much of the discourse on race is a dry, bland regurgitation of new vocabulary words with no work in the unconscious.”
“And, if you want to hit the unconscious,” she explained, “you will have to feel real negative feelings.”
She’s skilled at metaphor, and it helps you feel normal:
“My speaking metaphorically about my own anger was a method for people to reflect on negative feelings. To normalize negative feelings. Because if you don’t, it will turn into a violent action.”
She made clear her “work is important.”
“And, I stand by it.”
“We need to heal in this country.”
She can help us do just that, even though we don’t want to. And the naysayers? Racists:
“No one wants to look at their actions or face their own negative feelings about what they are doing. The best way to control the narrative is to focus on me, and make me the problem, which is what I stated occurs in the dynamic of racism.”
The professional was only being proper:
“Most human beings have disturbing fantasies, and this can be a proper topic for discussion. People’s actions are more important than their thoughts or words.”
It seems to me American culture isn’t currently consistent.
While one person speaks boldly of race-based murder in a manner for all to see, the reaction meter remains relatively unpegged.
At the same time, a girl who attended a ball — one that didn’t allow black participants 20 years before — is made out as a member of the KKK.
Back to Aruna’s fantasy, it’s a valuable lesson: When next you hear of someone aching to empty a gun into a stranger’s head and then bounce away, don’t embarrass yourself with assumptions.
For those ready to face their feelings — and to get the kind of help the doctor can deliver…according to Healthgrades, she’s “accepting new patients.”
But like Kenny and Kim Carnes sang, try to keep your amore in check.
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