Because the Idiot’s Guide to Race Relations is the proverbial gift that just keeps on giving, one haggard-looking mother of two decided to forgo all of the disingenuous niceties racists are encouraged to perform, to save face after they’ve been put on blast for their extreme behavior.
Janelle Ambrosia went right for the gusto when she assailed a man identified in the news as Narvel Benning (IAMOYAB on YouTube) with a flurry of cacophonous ‘Nigger, Nigger, Dirty Nigger!’ epithets, worthy of a hatecore song, as he sat in his car recording her. And because Janelle probably wanted to give all those hifalutin soccer moms a run for their money, she made sure to dial up the hate for her children, as they stood close by witnessing their mother’s meltdown in the parking lot of a shopping plaza in Cheektowaga, NY.
According to Benning (who reportedly recorded the video last week and posted it to YouTube on Tuesday), Ambrosia and her children had been walking in front of his truck when he started it up to leave. The ‘vroom’ noise apparently startled her children, sending Janelle into a tailspin… nostrils flaring.
In the video, Narvel can be heard saying, “I have her on tape calling me racist comments, calling me a nigger in front of her children.”
“He scared my children!” Janelle countered, cell phone clutched to her ear (apparently she was on the phone to her children’s father). At one point, Janelle’s young son could be heard in the background, bragging about how tough his father is. “He sure is,” Janelle agreed. “He don’t like black people either.”
And things only disintegrated from there …
“Talk to this fucking nigger, right now!” Janelle yelled into the phone, as she charged at Narvel Benning’s vehicle – an onlooker, another black man, paused just outside a Dollar Store entryway to witness the altercation, before shaking his head (knowingly?) and heading into the store. It was an inconsequential detail to Janelle though; she was adamant about showing her target who’s boss as she continued to scream ‘Nigger!’ at Narvel’s car window… this time, shivering with white hot rage (no pun), making sure to beef up the epithet with attributive words, before bragging about how many cops she’s busted it open for, “Oh, he knows the cops?!” she spat into the phone to her husband, “How many cops have I stripped for?!”
Janelle could barely contain herself at this point. She was gesticulating wildly and resorting to threats,
“Tell him dude, you will fucking kill him! I will fucking yank his ass out of the car!”
… And oxymoronic insults,
“ … [H]e wants to put it on YouTube and try to act hard ‘cause I called him a racist, ‘cause he’s a RACIST, IGNORANT NIGGER!” She said that last bit pointedly into the car before storming away, for dramatic effect… I think.
But Janelle wasn’t done. She whirled around and threatened that her husband was on his way, and demanded to know where her cup of coffee was. Ah, there it is. Resting patiently on top of Janelle’s home away from home… a trash can. Janelle screamed… her face beet red … and she ranted some more… And then she threatened to throw that same cup of coffee at Narvel Benning; who had the frame of mind to hurriedly roll his window up and auto-lock his doors, muffling Janelle’s hate-filled tirade, and ruefully concluding, “Racism is alive and well… but this is exactly where we live, and what goes on.”
Cheektowaga is a large, predominantly white suburb of Buffalo (NY); and judging from Narvel’s video commentary, antiblackness seems par for the course; actually the slew of recorded incidents suddenly cropping up in the news are; because none of this is new. More amplified thanks to social media? Yes. But not new.
“I’ve been called the N-word growing up,” Benning told the Buffalo press, “I went to school in south Buffalo, but it was never confrontational. I’m kind of sick and tired, you know, of racism being swept under the rug and nobody knows about it. I mean, it happens here.”
Most annoying are the stupefied reactions of white people who believe being ‘colorblind’ isn’t equally as problematic, and who move through the world as if racial hierarchy (both flagrant and institutional) is no longer a thing, because… post-racial. Most black people and non-black people of color don’t want to hear white people gasping and saying how ‘shocked’ and ‘appalled’ they are when these issues surface. Black folks and non-black people of color want white people to stop pretending these incidents are rare, just because they have the luxury of burying their heads in the sand, and poking it out only when it affects them personally and whenever they’re looking for cookies for treating black and brown folks like human beings.
Even more annoying? The patronizing comments about how ‘calm’ and ‘level-headed’ Narvel remained. Because, once again, black people are saddled with the burden of ‘being the bigger person’ when they’ve been besieged by hate and abuse. Even in the face of racially driven violence and hostility, ‘blackness’ is still under heavy scrutiny; and since black folks had to, by law, act in deference to ‘white authority’ and remain impassive while under duress, there’s still this unspoken expectation for us do so now.
Janelle Ambrosia spat, cursed, and flailed herself into a racist tizzy re-enacting some psychotic Mama Bear role, but some folks insisted on centralizing Narvel’s behavior … what he did and/or didn’t do … instead of fully unpacking Ambrosia’s rage.
Janelle reportedly deleted all of her social media accounts and all that remains is a ‘parody’ Twitter feed. During an odd interview on a local radio show, Janelle vacillated between being sorry (not sorry), claiming not to be racist, saying she’s bipolar, blaming Narvel for ruining her life (because now her ex-husband wants sole custody of two of her kids… she has four) , and trying to offer a distinction between ‘different blacks’ and Niggers.
But alas, now that Janelle Ambrosia’s Twitter account is gone, I can’t peruse her tweets for answers or glean anymore insight about her stripping for the fuzz. Janelle could have made this so much easier to parse, had she just gone to a black church.