Of all the things going on in our world, the L.A. Times wants you to know that hiking has a diversity problem:
Note that hiking is generally a solo or small-group activity. It's also FREE. To hike, one needs a pair of good shoes, maybe a water bottle, and a door or window to escape their home.
While the latter may be difficult in places like California – where Supreme Emperor Gavin Newsom wants everyone locked in their homes – it's still possible if you wear five masks as to not offend anyone walking within 20 feet of you.
"Longtime oppression and historical barriers have kept many people of color from feeling comfortable in the American outdoors," says the L.A. Times in their opening statement.
It's literally the "out-doors," L.A. Times. When you say there are "barriers" in the "outdoors," you're making a nonsensical statement.
I had to do a bit of digging on the premises here, because oxymoronic statements like these have to come from somewhere.
According to the environmentalist Sierra Club, there is an "unbearable whiteness" along hiking trails.
"[It's] tragic that throughout American history, ethnic minorities have so often been underrepresented or intentionally excluded from the outdoors," they said in 2016.
It's funny, I don't recall seeing "white-only" hiking trails in my history books, yet the Sierra Club goes on to argue "parks originally excluded people of color."
Just because you see more of a particular identity group in a specific activity, hobby, or even job doesn't mean that such "inequity" is the result of oppression and racism. Such thinking is bonkers, and it leads to "solutions" like forced racial quotas in the name of diVeRsiTy.
Let me ask you a question: if I notice that more Japanese people enjoy karaoke than white people, is karaoke therefore racist? Should we implement equity programs to make sure the appropriate percentages of each race are represented?
What about basketball, where there are far more black individuals than there are Latinos or Asians? Should we create an affirmative action program to ensure that more Latinos and Asians get scholarships and jobs?
See, this thing only works one way: things that white people do are wrong because being white is wrong.
Like the L.A. Times and the Sierra Club, the rest of the media wants you to know how racist is it to enjoy a hike, a camping trip, or anytime spent outside at all. Look at just a few examples from the past few years:
Ultimatum: If you're white, it's racist to do anything.
If you look through these articles, you'll find none actually spell out what policy barred people of color from enjoying God's green earth. In fact, there's much more evidence that other countries throughout history have done so. After all, the concept of "public land" didn't exist in medieval England when the king would have you executed for trespassing in his forests.
In addition to a lack of any specifics outside of the assumption that all whites are rich racists and all blacks are poor and oppressed, none of the solutions presented include asking different ethnic communities why they are or are not interested in a particular activity.
The L.A. Times goes on to list all the "BIPOC" groups working to change the horribly racist practice of walking outside. Their solutions are based on motivating non-white communities to hike based on "representation," an overused term meant to imply that we need people to bravely pave the way in the historically oppressive sport of breathing while walking.
They also include subjective stories about people getting looked at "funny" while they're hiking. I've definitely had one or two people look at me weirdly as I'm huffing and puffing toward them on a trail – I never knew they were sexist racists!