Magazine December 21, 2015, Issue

Dear Residents of Whoville:

By now, you’ve probably noticed that the various gifts and decorations you associate with your holiday have been removed during the night.

I don’t expect that this discovery has made you “happy” — whatever that word may mean to you in your privileged taxonomy — and you may regret the lack of “Christmas spirit” that is now evident in Whoville, but I assure you that, from my vantage point, here atop what you all call, with utter disregard for my pain, “Grinch Mountain,” this day is just the beginning.

I have been “othered.” I have been mocked and ignored. I have been forced to live in red-lined areas of the community. I have been slandered and slurred and libeled and smeared. I have been treated, quite simply, the way one might treat a “monster.”

The hate ends now. It ends today.

You want your Christmas back? Seriously? The colored lights and the jingtinglers and floobfloobers? The roast beast? The Who Whompers?

Want to know what I want back? I want the land your people stole from me. I want an awareness of exactly how I’ve suffered for the past two centuries. I want an acknowledgment that your Who Privilege has perpetuated a system in which people like me have been kept down (ironically by being exiled above) and forced to accept and use the language of oppression.

I am not a Grinch. That’s your word. I am a proud warrior prince.

I hear you singing below, in what I can only assume is an attempt to “win me over” or make me forget a century of disregard and hate. I will not be moved. Do you even know the origin of that song? The words you sing, which sound either like “Fah whoo door ay” or “Bah whoo door ay” — do you know that those are words from the ancient language of my people, a language you have appropriated and turned into nothing more than a minstrel act?

Sung properly, the song tells of my warrior forebears, who came to this land with their tiny dogs, guided by the Green Spirit. They made the mountains and the rivers and then slept for centuries.

I have puzzled and puzzled until my puzzler was sore trying to remember how your people came here. Oh! Right! How could I forget?? You invaded!!!!

I’ve read the editorials in your newspapers. “Why doesn’t he just come down and join us?” “Why does he insist on isolating himself?”

For your information, the last time I came down from the mountain — for the “Whoville Day of Reconciliation” — I felt unwelcome and unsafe. I noticed people muttering behind my back and was humiliated – humiliated — to discover no chairs — as in zero — suited to my body type, which as you know is characterized by long, pencil-like limbs and an onion-shaped torso. Sorry for not conforming to the Who standard of physical attractiveness. Sorry for not having wisps of blond hair.

So, yes, I took it all: Pop guns! And bicycles! Roller skates! Drums! Checkerboards! Tricycles! Popcorn! And plums! I stuffed them all very nimbly up each of your chimbleys. (Chimbleys, might I add, that have done more to pollute this land than any of the so-called Grinch Civil Wars that you teach your children about in your fear-indoctrination facilities — I mean, schools.)

And I will keep them all until my demands are met:

1. I insist on a more proportional representation in your legislative body;

2. Your schools and universities will now include “Grinch Awareness” modules in each of their curricula, including workshops and privilege-sensitivity training for faculty;

3. The immediate termination of the event planner who neglected to provide the appropriate chair, all those years ago.

Please note that these demands are not negotiable. The time for “debate” and “discussion” is long past.

Accede to my demands and I will happily return all of the items from your holiday celebrations. (Except for Cindy Lou Who, who I must say was delicious last night hot from the oven, and who made scrumptious leftovers today in a sandwich.)

Yours for a better world,

“The Grinch”

P.S. Do you even know my real name? It isn’t the G-word, for your information. That was a name I was “assigned” by your ancestors out of fear and ignorance. That was the slur they invented for me and that you, in your ignorant Who Privilege, adopted without thinking. The name I have chosen for myself — and self-naming is very much a part of my emerging consciousness of liberation — is Tyler. That is my name and that is the only name I will answer to.

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