Archive for August, 2008
Posted by Jack Stephens on August 31, 2008
Mia, at Black Looks, blogs:
My name is Mia Nikasimo. As a volunteer for Changing Attitudes at the Lambeth Conference I found myself in an opportune position to reflect from a translesbian (i.e. a transsexual woman who identifies as a lesbian not to be confused with above or beyond “lesbians,” or a transgender man) standpoint on the Anglican Communion and attempts to exclude the LGBTI.
I have purposely mentioned my trans status here because “transgender” as an umbrella term (for transsexual female, male, sister, brother, mothers, fathers any of the following might choose to cross dress, are intersexed, queer, kings, drag queens and more) can easily loose ones identity in the mix and because I can only share this reflection as a translesbian in the full awareness that some, like my LGBTI African brothers, sisters cannot. As the founder of an online support group call Transafro I aim to give voice to our various narratives Anglicans or otherwise, to promote, empower and raise consciousness in Africa, the Diaspora and allies.
Posted in Christianity, International, LGBTQI Issues | Leave a Comment »
Posted by Jack Stephens on August 28, 2008
Margari Aziza Hill blogs on white privilege in society:
Some individuals have striven so hard to be accepted and to succeed in majority white environments may find themselves transformed with little vestiges of their original self. Others, I know, feel disingenuous as they wear different masks for different people. It is interesting how this plays out in many different environments. Even in the Muslim community, whether on college campuses or in my local area, I find myself shape shifting make people comfortable with me as a Black woman. It is something I do almost instinctually, because this is how I’ve been able to survive in the broader society, in both the corporate world and academia. When I do fall into my normal speech patterns or topics of conversation, I am either very aware or made aware that what I say and how I say things has made my others uncomfortable. This reminds me of the backlash against PC (often by privileged white males).
Posted in Black Issues, People of Color, White Privilege, White Supremacy | 1 Comment »
Posted by Jack Stephens on August 26, 2008
So my beef with these guys is not that they make structural critique, it’s that they seem bound to a set of strategies that just haven’t gotten us anywhere. Again, I need to hear about something else besides Affirmative Action and a vague notion of social justice. And then I’d like to see it pitched in such a way that it makes the broader country see their own interest in our interest. That’s not merely crass politics–I actually believe that Jim Crow was ultimately bad for the broader country, not just for black people. I don’t think boom in prisons is a good thing for any American of any color.
Posted in Affirmative Action/Reservations, Black Issues, Contemporary Racism, Government, White Supremacy | Leave a Comment »
Posted by Jack Stephens on August 22, 2008
Eugene Cho, pastor of Quest Church in Seattle, blogs about the Spanish Basketball team’s picture in where they slant their eyes as an “affectionate gesture” toward their Chinese hosts:
I’m in no position to judge any of the individuals or players involved as racists. I like to give people the benefit of the doubt and I certainly do in this situation; Truthfully, I also really like Pau Gasol and Jose Calderon as NBA players…I intend to draft both of them for my fantasy basketball teams in the upcoming season. But having said that, I have no problems with calling the ACT racist. While the intent may have been to demonstrate an “affectionate gesture,” let’s make this very clear: slitting or slanting your eyes is NOT an affectionate gesture. You don’t mock physical appearance because you think it’s affectionate.
Posted in Asian Issues, Contemporary Racism, International, Racism | Leave a Comment »
Posted by Jack Stephens on August 20, 2008
Canadians are too polite to tell the gooks to go home, that just wouldn’t seem right.
It does, however, seem to be ok to tell them to “integrate” with “our culture” or else “Canada should reject that person as a potential Canadian citizen.”
A recent Toronto Star article titled “Sure we have rights, but what about duties?” by
Posted in Contemporary Racism, International, Media, White Supremacy | 1 Comment »
Posted by Jack Stephens on August 19, 2008
Montreal-North is burning. After the murder of Fredy Villenueva by the Montreal Police (SPVM), and the riots which broke out to express the people’s anger, the community of Montreal-North remains angry. The time has come to organize a social and political offensive against the local elites who are trying to cover up this state of affairs.
Montréal-Nord Republik (Montreal North Republik) is a new voice in the neighbourhood. It intends to put forward another view of the recent events around the death of Fredy Villanueva and the riots which took place in Montreal North. The group also intends to dispute the dominant discourse which is insinuating that the rioters and protesters are just apolitical hooligans. Montréal-Nord Republik hopes to bring together the neighbourhood community along with all the population of Montreal in order to denounce police repression as well as economic, social, cultural and political oppression.
Posted in Class, Government, International, People of Color, Police Brutality, White Supremacy | Leave a Comment »
Posted by Jack Stephens on August 18, 2008
Last year around this time Nobel Prize laureate, James Watson, shocked the scientific community with his ludicrous claim that race is a scientific category.
Watson, you may remember, won the Nobel Prize for his research that led (in part) to the ‘discovery’ of DNA.
So, it is October again. Now comes a report that Akhil Bakshi, a fellow of the prestigious Royal Geographic Society and celebrity photographer, is pushing the preposterous claim “that blacks, whites and Asians have different ape ancestors.”
Posted in Contemporary Racism, International, Racism, White Supremacy | 1 Comment »
Posted by Jack Stephens on August 18, 2008
First, the author notes that she was expelled from high school for truancy. Yet none of the vitriolic responses chastise her for “not valuing education” or “not finishing school” or “not having parents who knew the value of hard work.” All of these sentiments are expressed. However, they are all directed towards black people.
Second, she believes that she has not experienced privilege. One of the main ways privilege functions is through its invisibility. I was thinking about this recently because of a white friend who had been stopped by the police while carrying a large amount of an illegal substance. He wasn’t arrested. Rather, the police officer scattered the drug and told him to stay out of trouble.
And this is one of the ways in which I believe privilege functions. White people give other white people the benefit of the doubt, maybe even when it’s not deserved.
Posted in Class, White Privilege | Leave a Comment »
Posted by Jack Stephens on August 16, 2008
I am really uncomfortable with how a lot of vegan cooking is described as “exotic” (to whom?). It assumes so much about the audience racially & culturally, & as well is loaded with really creepy connotations — the exotic is there to be conquered, mastered; it’s there purely to titillate your (white/Western/etc.) self (which also implies that white people have no culture — a convenient excuse used by people participating in cultural appropriation, but not actually true). It’s a “safe” way to imagine you’re experiencing other cultures without, you know, having to do that pesky thing known as actually engaging with the people whose cultures you’re attempting to eat via their food.
Posted in Commodification, Contemporary Racism, White Supremacy | 1 Comment »
Posted by Jack Stephens on August 12, 2008
I got this e-mail from the blogger Brown Man, check it out:
I’ve heard a constant refrain lately – at work, on TV, on the internet – from some of my black brethren about Barack Obama.
He doesn’t need to “lecture black people” about personal responsibility.
He should be mindful of the tone he uses when he speaks to us.
He’s just saying what racist white people want to hear.
He sacrifices black people to score points with whites and other non-blacks.
I was offended by his criticism of black people.
What gives him the right to call anybody out about anything?
Since he doesn’t have anything good to say about black people he shouldn’t say anything at all.
What do we want from this man?
Over the next five days, the blog Brown Man Thinking Hard presents “What Do We Want?” which will explore some of the issues that underlie this intraracial discord within black America.
Posted in Black Issues, Government | 1 Comment »
Posted by Jack Stephens on August 11, 2008
Asabagna blogs on white people and no longer expecting them to change a system that benefits them:
In regards to the eurocentric dominant culture, this has meant four things. One, I no longer felt any responsibility to be their teacher (and/or confessor… as a way for them to ease the angst of their white privilege) on the effects of white supremacy – eurocentric superiority thinking and practice on people of colour. Two, I had no desire for the material and/or societal trinkets which signifies “success” in their society. I could no longer be bought. My soul… beliefs, values and principles… are more important to me than to “gain the world”. Three, I don’t expect anything from white people. I don’t expect them to be fair. I don’t expect them to be just. I don’t expect them to be empathetic to my situation or to the struggles of people of African descent. I don’t expect them to take any sort of responsibility for their past, present or future behaviours. Finally, I care about all people… regardless of nationality, ethnicity, colour, religion, gender, age and sexual orientation… who are oppressed and/or taken advantage of. I don’t compare and rate oppressions on a scale. However with that being said, the issues concerning people of African descent are first and foremost in mind… because I am one of them… and what we need to do, not only to overcome to survive, but more importantly, to empower ourselves to live, is the core of my cause.
[Hat Tip: IllVox]
Posted in Contemporary Racism, International, People of Color, Racism, White Privilege | Leave a Comment »
Posted by Jack Stephens on August 10, 2008
…race is not real; it is a socially constructed phenomenon based solely on visible physically differences. Race is so fictitious a concept that in the post-emancipation U.S. a man could be considered Black in one state, and White in another!
Although race is not real, the effects of racial differentiation; however, are very real. Not every racial group experiences racism in the same manner or to the same degree. Racialized groups (those who society labels “visible minorities”) continually face institutionalized, racial discrimination based solely on stereotypes attached to our skin tone.
Posted in History, Race, White Privilege | 1 Comment »
Posted by Jack Stephens on August 8, 2008
Snowball, a British socialist blogger, writes:
If only Orwell were still around to see that certain things seem to run in the family of the British Union of Fascist leader…
Anyway, instead, we will have to make do with the fact that Orwell’s old diaries will be serialised online starting from tomorrow, day by day, here. Orwell I think would not only have approved of the blogosphere, he is a very much needed new presence in it given the kind of idiocy which currently dominates it, not least from those who claim to stand in his legacy yet cheer on imperialist war.
[Hat Tip: Bhupinder]
Posted in Leftism | Leave a Comment »
Posted by Jack Stephens on August 5, 2008
Tammerie, who is pursuing a dissertation on anti-racism and Christian theology, blogs:
By the numbers, white people still hold a preponderance of the positions that count, out of proportion to our presence in the population, from which I would argue we are able to maintain white-privileging control over the systems and institutions that shape our society, including business, legislative and judicial systems, property sales and management, education and health care. (Note that the percentages of non-white, non-male legislators was considered too small to be tabulated.)
Of course, not all white people are employed in positions that afford economic power and privilege. Whites represented 44 percent of the 37 million U.S. citizens living below the poverty line in 2006. The (historically constructed) sad thing about that is that most of the white people living in poverty think they have more in common with wealthy white people than they do people of color also dealing with poverty. And that keeps folks from banding together and working together to insist on change in an unjust reality.
Posted in Christianity, White Privilege, White Supremacy | 2 Comments »
Posted by Jack Stephens on August 4, 2008
This Carnival is intended to focus on beauty and what it means to and about women of color. In particular, I would like to see discussion go beyond a focus on the ways in which women of color can internalize self hatred to the ways in which women and communities of color recognize and celebrate beauty.
Submissions from women and men of color are welcome, focusing on these areas:
[Hat Tip: Jess]
Posted in Women of Color | Leave a Comment »