At one point the discussion lit a fire under the Admiral, and the talk of human rights turned personal for Edward James Olmos. The “Old Man” launched into a passionate speech about casting off the idea of race as a cultural determinant, and said we were one race, the human race. His voice echoed throughout the chamber growing louder until – I kid you not – he was yelling, “So Say We All,” and the crowd answered right back. Hell, even I yelled it, I was in the fraking United Nations with Adama, the gods themselves could not have stopped this moment. It was surreal – the entire audience turned into one massive optimistic/role-playing/saddened goosebump, because who knows when we’ll ever hear those words again?
For those who still can’t grasp the concept of white privilege, or who are constantly looking for an easy-to-understand example of it, perhaps this list will help.
White privilege is when you can get pregnant at seventeen like Bristol Palin and everyone is quick to insist that your life and that of your family is a personal matter, and that no one has a right to judge you, or your parents, because “every family has challenges,” even as black and Latino families with similar “challenges” are regularly typified as irresponsible, pathological and arbiters of social decay.
I been reading a lot of quotes on the interwebs that are saying that Iowa is handling flooding better than New Orleans dealt with Katrina. A lot of the comments (some are more overt than others) imply that white folks in Iowa (of course these comments completely marginalize Iowans of color) are doing a better job of steadfastly standing up to floodwaters while folks of color in New Orleans were looting and relying on handouts. Is this rhetoric racist? Of course it is. It’s comparing two situations that are logically impossible to compare. A single urban area vs. acres of farmland dotted with small to medium sized towns does not present a landscape that is comparable. The rhetorically racist comparisons of flooded Iowa and Katrina-impacted New Orleans reminds me of this Tim Wise video that illustrates how racism has been used to facilitate division amongst working class white folks and working class folks of color.
via Michael Faris
Below, I will address the claims made in the above comments.
Before I do this, though, I want to make something clear about what I wrote in this column. In the above comments I read that I called people racists or that I resorted to personal attacks. This column did no such thing. I wrote, “I believe that for a white person to host a party themed “Cowboys and Indians” is racist.” No where in this sentence does it state that I believe that someone who holds this party is racist. I wrote that the ACTION of holding this party is racist. If we break down the above sentence, the subject is “to host a party,” which is an action.
This is a subtle distinction, but one that needs to be made. I don’t believe that calling someone racist does any good, as we are all affected by institutional racism and prone to racist acts when we do not think critically about our actions.
Nor was this meant to be a personal attack: I was not attacking the personhood of who hosted this party or the people who attended. I was attacking and critiquing an ACTION. It is imperative, I believe, to keep this distinction in mind.
Kevin Hampton is a sports writer for the Corvallis Gazette Times. His latest blog post is titled, “Out with the blackout?“. In the post, Kevin states that “the people complaining know very well that there is no connection to racism.” Ummm, nope. I think they know very well that there is a connection to racism. (see blackface and something called “historical context“).
See Kevin’s post and my inner monologue after the cut…
What happens when Native Americans in Arizona attempt to stop construction of an oil refinery on sacred lands? Lots and lots of racist rhetoric.
According to the NY Times, Arizona is
“one of the fastest-growing parts of the country and a place where developers are increasingly running up against newly powerful but tradition-minded American Indian leaders.”
Don’t you just love the part about Native American leaders being “newly powerful”?
“Like the land itself, the fight over the refinery reflects a tangle of cultures and centuries of bitterness between Indians and newcomers.”
I wonder why Native Americans in Arizona might be “bitter” with “newcomers” (code for white people)?
The blogosphere is pulsating with ferocity this morning. I have about 50 potential posts floating around in the soup that makes up my consciousness…
Random Item number 1: This isn’t a link but I really want to post that I am super excited, happy, giddy, etc. that this Sunday, the 25th of March will be the 2 year anniversary for me and Wendy!
Random Item number 2: I just signed up to be the host for the Erase Racism Carnival in November of 2007. I am very excited, nervous, and exuberant about this opportunity.