Race

All posts in the Race category

What do you know about Black history month?

Published February 9, 2012 by lorijss

This video show the racism and stereotypical behavior towards or about people of African descent at BYU. I am sure all the white respondents in this video are nice, friendly, fun, welcoming individuals, who mean no harm or don’t intend to insult black Americans. Also they obviously don’t consider themselves “racists” or “color-blind racists.” In response to some of the white girls’ thoughts: “Classy”obviously should not or does NOT equal white, and white does NOT or should not equal “classy.” Classy is also very subjective in other words self-defined, but may seem to be more defined by people who are members of the white American culture and ideology which is the most dominant & prevalent culture and ideology in the US. These statements about being “classy” can be interpreted as “racist” or color-blind “racist.” What does it mean “to act” like a “black guy” or what does it mean “to act” like a “white guy?” That question is open to many debates and discussions that I won’t lend a hand to in this post. For the sake of this post, the white girls in the video are basically trying to say that “acting white” is “better”without actually being conscious that that can be interpreted as “racist.”

In this video, all the white respondents can be viewed as racist in it’s own right because they are first of all White Americans. White Americans since the beginning of the United States have always enjoyed unearned privileges at the expense of non-whites, specifically people of African descent. In this video the whites can be interpreted as standing at the pedestal looking down on Black Americans or anyone of African descent without intending to or meaning to, this is on the basis of their own ignorance.  So African immigrants which includes immigrants from Kenya, Nigeria, Ghana, Botswana or Caribbean immigrants which includes, Jamaica at BYU are put into this box of stereotypes that white Americans have. This is due to their ignorance which is a direct result of their upbringing, or their inexperience with having  interactions with people that are directly from African countries and immigrated or black Americans that are born and raised in the US . Whatever the case may be either way the white respondents in this video have had both little social interaction with black Americans or meaningless social interactions with black Americans.  In addition to that these whites don’t understand the concept of white privilege and in order to understand that they have to step outside the box that they’re in & accept their white privileges. In order to accept that  they have white privileges, however major and minor it is, is by going out of their “way” to be in an environment where they’re interacting with blacks or non-whites on a day to day basis, even leaving the US will do. After doing that go back to interacting with whites and they will see it loud and clear if they open their minds. At least that’s what I think. Therefore, as a result of this lacking in experience that I just discussed, these whites are unable to form sensible responses when interviewed. Whether or not they were being interviewed by that dude their views of black Americans would still be ignorant and stereotypical, therefore it can be interpreted as “racist.” On top of that white Americans are the majority at BYU and most of the positions of power and affluence are filled with people that are White Americans. Honestly my personal experience at BYU as a black Caribbean/Jamaican has showed me that BYU is not only the whitest and most white-washed institution in the US but as a result of that both the most “racist” and “color-blind” racist institution. Still due to the fact that most whites at BYU are Mormons who have served a mission, which is basically spending 2 years in another country for the purpose of spreading Mormonism. The melting of stereotypical views is hopeful especially for those who have served missions in African countries, the Caribbean, Central America, and South America.

What are your thoughts on this video?

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Racist people are plainly put: dumb

Published February 6, 2012 by lorijss

New study shows that: Racist people are plainly put: dumb

Racist people were just, there is no other word: dumb. I have gotten into countless debates with racist whites online and it seems to be impossible to sway or reason with them, they usually remain steadfast in their backward mentality concerning race. I put racist whites in two categories:1) whites who’ve, according to them, personally felt like they have been harassed, ridiculed, humiliated, put down, beaten up by black/s. 2) whites who have done something racist towards blacks/a black person and the guilt is eating them alive. These whites feel so guilty about past injustices that they try to rid this strain on their brains by coming up with an excuse to absolve themselves from any personal responsibility. “Closed attitudes come from closed minds.” Both categories listed leads to their delusions that in itself is a disease of the mind. Of course racism is not just limited to whites but I do believe that because of the after effects of European colonization in the Americas which in turn led to present day white, European American privilege. Whites are more likely to appear more racist than any other social or racial group.

So word to the wise don’t waste time having discussions with racists online, these people are safely hidden behind their computer screens and can type anything they want to type in the world. On top of having a disease of their mind they are cowards who are doing nothing to make the world a better place. Lets come together to make the world a better place and walk away from all manner of hatred and instill love in our hearts.

“Arabs are only shown in large numbers…”

Published February 1, 2012 by lorijss

In the media in this society, magazines, books and television shows and movies, portray or ‘orientalize’ non-westerners more so than offering unbiased portrayals.  I agree with Said, “Arabs are only shown in large numbers. No individuality, no personal characteristics or experiences (823).” This is an image always portrayed by the American media, like popular media networks that create this illusion that they are being unbiased. If the media were being unbiased they would portray the personalities or individual Arabs and talk about the culture and ways of the Arab world. The only time Arabs are shown on the news is in relation to war and political upheavals. Like Said said “most of the pictures represent mass range misery or irrational…gestures (823).” Only European Americans and even Europeans who are not living within supposedly US borders are usually portrayed as having their own personality and own individual experiences. Even African Americans, Native Americans, Asian Americans who live within the American border, are not portrayed as having individual personalities the way the European American is portrayed. Instead like the Arab, the supposedly ‘ethnic’ subpopulations of the US are portrayed always in large masses and in large groups.

Subpopulations in the US are always portrayed from the point of view of the European American who may have one-sided and stereotypical views of subpopulations that are non-white or of non- European decent whether they are conscious of it or not.  The European American or European are sometimes generally portrayed as being ‘cultureless’ and ‘raceless’ and not as having their own point of view but having a view that is seen by their own way of life, as universal, just and right while other groups that are not European decent are portrayed as having a culture and a race. Mostly the former group is always portrayed as uncivilized, underdeveloped, and inferior, sometimes evil, and treacherous by the mass media. People get their perception of Arabs from the media and this becomes like a cycle, stereotype and prejudices thus remains intact.
The book Orientalism by Said, states that before the attacks on the US on September 11, 2000, the Arab was portrayed in “simplistic stereotypical terms.” In television and films” the Arab was portrayed as an “oversexed savage, a treacherous, if clever, marauder or an oil sheik (824)” who regardless of being seen as ‘inferior,’ lacking “intelligence” or being “uncivilized” and backwards was able to make the West feel as if they are lacking in something that their culture and lifestyle says that they should have and control, such as oil. One hundred million people are seen as all the same despite being located in different regions of the world, always portrayed in large numbers, and seen as being one and the same persons.
Academic knowledge and discourse legitimize colonial rule through its vocabularies and images. Even today while Britain for example, no longer has colonies in almost half of the globe, the effects of colonial rule still rings true today. The countries are seen as having the language of their colonizer as the formal language.  People in these previously colonized countries may view themselves as in the way their colonizers viewed them. For example, in Jamaica now there is a phenomenon called “the bleaching” in which people who are dark skinned do not see themselves as beautiful so do things to make their skin seem lighter. This is apparently a result of slavery and colonialism in which to be white and fair was seen as superior and to be black was seen as inferior and subject to the slavery. Even in the media today, problems that occur in countries are sometimes portrayed as having only to do with the third world countries and nothing to do with Western Europe and the United States.
References:

Orientalism by Edward Said

SOC 101 – Socialization Race and Gender

Published January 28, 2012 by lorijss

So I was listening to some sociology 101 SEX&Gender college class from CSUDH. 101 classes seem to be the only kind of college classes that are free, its my way of not becoming a dunce lol. The professor Segio Soto was basically saying that back in the days women were seen as properties of men. (The same way blacks where seen as properties of whites except this is much worst because it’s slavery.)The double standards that exist between men and women are slowly cracking down and I am sure that 400 years from now these double standards will be depleted. (It is like race there are double standards as it concerns blacks and whites, blacks are definitely under more surveillance in society today and maybe after 400 years etc…) The objectification of women and the objectification of blacks, is tied up with their dehumanization which then leads to violence and aggression. To objectify someone,  is to dehumanize someone to justify violence against them. There is no violence without objectification and dehumanization. Lynching of blacks in history is an example of objectification, blacks weren’t seen as human beings with emotions and feelings but just seen as objects, dehumanized to justify the infliction of violence against them. And that’s just me repeating the same thing in different words because that’s how I roll. Even up to this day there specks and grains of the black man&woman being dehumanized not like before but it’s still there.

Like race, gender is also socially constructed. Men and women are socialized to behave a certain way, the professor said, “men may say, I’m not emotional, I’m a male, I rarely cry or I don’t cry at all.” because men who cry are seen as sissys or wimps and that’s how we’ve been socialized.  And he also stated that as a male child you may have been sanctioned for crying over…anything really, you may have gotten smacked or disciplined for crying. These are all socially constructed notions of how a male should behave. But I won’t mention how society says a woman should behave because it is too obvious to mention. Professor Soto stated that all human beings have the same emotions. It is self-evident that all humans have, feelings of anger, pain, happiness, etc we all have those emotions. This is random but I want to add that we should also be grateful that we do have emotions because it means that we are breathing and we have life and life is the # one most important thing to be grateful for. Anyway, Professor also stated that as children male and females are very similar, but overtime men are socialized not to express emotions, not to be compassionate,to be rational, to be aggressive and violence may even be rewarded. You know I can’t stop bringing up race, it’s like race, children do not bring attention to skin color in anyway form or shape and white kids will play with black kids and notice no racial difference whatsoever add no weight or anything to skin color, until white kids become socialized into thinking race matters, “problems” of race only occur in adulthood as a direct result of socialization.  Or I should say kids of all races will see no differences between each other until they are socialized to see it by the respective cultures in which they will be brought up in.  As kids we don’t really see each other as different nor do we treat each other as being different until we have been socialized to think that we are more different(than we actually are) and socialized into thinking we have to act a certain way. Human beings are social animals, we think we’re just being ourselves but half the time we are really socialized into thinking a certain way. It’s debatable though how much of the way we act is learnt or socialized and how much is us being our individual selves I’d say fifty fifty. Radically speaking I’d say there is nothing inside of us, nothing we didn’t put inside ourselves, ourselves. We are all living in this one big social illusion, in one society in Africa, men wear make-up not make-up as we see it in the west but body paintings. Make-up is still body paintings and in some societies only the men wear body-paintings. It’s really the power of this social illusion that is governing our lives today, what has been past down socially and culturally from generations to generations.

Sometimes I wonder do we really get wiser when we get older  because most of the time how we were as kids are really what we need to get back to. IF you didn’t care when you were a kid why should you care now, and if you care now it is what is holding you back. How we were as kids and didn’t have a care in the world about skin color or gender and how society think a person should act on the basis of skin color and gender. Professor closed off by stating that all of society is a human construction, people got together and created these ideas which are now governing all our lives,  these ideas have been built on top of each other, some ideas die, some things change on the surface and some things remain the same. I’m going to close by saying that there is really no difference between men and women more than the biological differences that we have been born with. There is no difference between human beings of different skin color than socially created differences that have been worked up to benefit one group over the other.

MLK (Martin Luther King)

Published January 27, 2012 by lorijss

In the post civil era there is a new type of racism that is wide and rampant today: color-blind racism. This article explains this new form of racism that most present-day whites are unaware of.

MLK (Martin Luther King)& the era of Color-Blind Racism

Look!  some quotes by Martin Luther King:

Never succumb to the temptation of bitterness. -Martin Luther King, Jr.

Nothing in all the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity. -Martin Luther King, Jr.

Rarely do we find men who willingly engage in hard, solid thinking. There is an almost universal quest for easy answers and half-baked solutions. Nothing pains some people more than having to think.
Martin Luther King, Jr.

The art of acceptance is the art of making someone who has just done you a small favor wish that he might have done you a greater one.
Martin Luther King, Jr. The Negro needs the white man to free him from his fears. The white man needs the Negro to free him from his guilt.
Martin Luther King, Jr. We must use time creatively.
Martin Luther King, Jr.

Many whites want discussions of racism to be done and over with but the truth is it still exists even in the most subtle ways ever. Color-blind racism is a new kind of racism that exists today, not the old KKK kind of racism but the color-blind racism. Colorblind racism (1970- ), also known as aversive racism,  is racism that acts as if skin colour does not matter – even when it does. It is the most common form of racism among white Americans who grew up after the fall of Jim Crow in the 1960s. A part meaning of it in my words is that It is also the perpetration of stereotypes of African Americans and other people of African descent by whites. For example, when whites view media they see an image of people of African American portrayed in the media and believe that all people of African decent fit into stereotype mold or stereotype box. When present day whites believe these stereotypes of African American’s (the same stereotypes that their forefathers originally created and impressed upon U.S society), when present day whites believe these stereotypes they add some more stereotypes of their own and when they act upon these stereotypes subconsciously or consciously this is called prejudice. Thus the viscous cycle continues and endures.  Like I said there really is no image of blacks, but an image that whites forefathers and ancestors created of blacks and sustained subtly by their fore-children(present-day whites) throughout the timeline of history to the present. Like I said this “image” is what whites make of it and what whites make of it will affect the daily lives of Hispanics, blacks, etc why because whites are still dominant in positions of power, dominant economically, socially, culturally etc.  Stating that Hispanics are now becoming the majority proves nothing because Hispanics are not the majority in positions of power, whites are. Reminds me of Haiti and Jamaica where people of African decent where the majority during slavery days in the 1600-1800s and whites were the minority, but being the majority didn’t stop the fact that slavery of people of African descent(who were in the majority) existed in the Caribbean for 300 years. If you’re white you will never truly know what it is like because you are not on the receiving end of color-blind racism. You can try as best as you can, and that is fine it shows whites progress against color-blind racism, but you are still not in the shoes of someone who is of African decent. My experiences at an excessively white institution such as BYU and my experiences here in NYC as showed me that color-blind racism is rampant and at large. As long whites remain the most segregated racial group in all of the US, color-blind racism will exist. The color-blind worldview preaches that there is a thing called a neutral and colorblind society when the “laws” and goals about educational gains and social mobility have been designed & created by whites, for whites in other words to benefit whites and passed off as universal and just laws. It can’t truly be universal and just when these “laws” benefits whites at the expense of people of African descent or Hispanics or any other group for that matter. Was reading this article on facebook by Dr. Darron Smith, he stated that the responsibilities of educating whites shouldn’t be the responsibility of people of color instead it is antiracist whites who must shoulder that burden. These anti-racist whites would have been or would be schooled by people of African descent because they able to teach about the realities of racial oppression and how whites benefit from race supremacy. In order for this country to reach what it could be. I just think that Whites need to step aside from their positions of power and/or be more welcoming of people from other races &diverse backgrounds and stop being afraid. That was my experience with whites at BYU the majority were afraid to interact with people of color and at the Black Student Union, every person of African decent have had the same or similar experiences at BYU. When whites refrain from interacting with and forming meaningful friendship or any form of relationship with people of African descent they will continue to have stereotypes of people of color, continue to have prejudices, & there will continue to be inequality in the way power& money is distributed in the society because it is evident that whites continue to dominate positions of power. Barack Obama is a very good step forward (it’s a start) but there is more to be achieved to come to the realization of what Martin Luther King preached. Now MLK day isn’t celebrated in Jamaica for obvious reasons, not specifically apart of Jamaica’s history we do celebrate peeps like Marcus Garvey though.

The dream that Martin Luther King aspired in his speeches are still yet to be fulfilled in this time and age. Is it but a fleeting illusion to be pursued but never attained?