or Connect
Mothering › Mothering Forums › Mom › Parenting › Multicultural Families › Racial identification
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Racial identification - Page 4

post #61 of 91
Quote:
Originally Posted by Joyster View Post
Oh my goodness. You have no ideal of how relieved to see that someone else understood my posts! Thank you for helping to clarify. :
You're welcome. btdt.
I expect that because we each have different/unique experiences, we miss what others are trying to say. It's like the joke that you had to be there to find it funny.

I accept that others will see things differently than I do because they've walked in different shoes. I'm OK w/ that, as long as someone doesn't hold a gun to my head and forces me to think like them. We can only learn to see it from a different perspective w/o being so defensive and automatically discounting what others feel or have experienced. I'm open to hearing others' opinions so that I could expand upon my limited experience and make more sense of my world.
post #62 of 91
Quote:
Originally Posted by Missy View Post
Oh, and by the way, I'm white, not "white", just like my husband and kids are Black, not "black". Thanks.
Some other posters here are offended by those terms you prefer, just like I can't stand the term "Latina", but I let it go.
So I apologize if you were offended.
It gets difficult to constantly have to jump thru hoops to please everyone on these boards. Very frustrating.
Then we speak of tolerance as long as it's what WE think.

ETA- Missy, again, i apologize for my frustration and if you were offended.
It's hard to keep up with the terms that are the least offensive.
If you read through some of the other threads... some posters don't like when you write White or Black. They insist that they don't exist because race is a construct of people trying to place others in a box.
I personally try not to get defensive, especially when the terms are used as descriptors and not meant to be derogatory. but that's me.
post #63 of 91
Quote:
Originally Posted by LoMaH View Post
I shouldn't post now that I'm rushing, so I hope this comes across right.

There's a difference between affirmative action and "white privilege".
aa is when you self-identify on paper.
wp is when others identify you in person
I think these 2 are being confused.

White privilege is extended to people without them having to claim it. It's NOT an advantage that you "take", it's "given" to you w/o asking for it.
You don't have to be white to receive it. You only have to be *whiter* to receive it. The closer you are to Anglo looks- the more privilege you receive.
That's what joyster was saying.
For ex.- you go out in public and are treated better than other people of your same race- simply because your appearance is closer looking to typical Anglo looks, not because you shouted that you were white.
Everyone knows you're not white, but in the spectrum- you are closer to looking white.

As I wrote before on this thread, it's prevalent even in the "white" community. It's why **I suspect** so many of them prize blonde hair/blue eyes.

It's terribly unjust. Terribly embedded in people's minds.
Just Horrible.
But it's real and there's no denying that it's there.
How can it possibly be remedied if not even we (people of color) can openly discuss it w/o getting very defensive?

I don't get angry at my "white" friends for wanting their children to have an easier life by having blonde/blue kids.
Essentially that's what they want.
I feel sorry for the fact that society thinks like this.
My friends, joyster- didn't create this system.
And perhaps, as I said- we can make progress if we can talk about why this privilege exists and how we can change it.

Hope I didn't offend anyone. Just felt it needed to be said.

ETA: if you read some of the history of "white privilege", when a family member was able to live a better life and let those around them believe that they were white, the other family members DIDN'T out them. They let them live better.
It's really sad- how family members were separated from each other in order for some of them to encounter better opportunities.
No one said Joyster created this problem but she said she would teach her kids to take advantage of it so she is perpetuating the problem. The thing is her kids won't KNOW when white privilege is being handed to them nor will anyone else. It is an unspoken truth that can only be seen when you do studies or when people admit that they do it. So why teach a child to take advantage of white privilege? I think its something people need to be AWARE of but its not anything you can see.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Viola View Post
I don't think of it as teaching them to pass so they benefit, I think of it as teaching them that they already have the privilege, and they should acknowledge it, or at least will probably be called to do so one day.
Those were her words that she gave. Whe would you tell a child, Honey you are privileged because your skin is so light.. Doesn't that tell them that its not a good thing to have dark skin?? People are not seeing that if you teach a child that you will be treated better because they are light that that is also saying you won't be treated as good if you were darker. This sets up the whole light is better then dark problem in this world. They can't be called to do something they won't even know they benefited from.

Quote:
Originally Posted by LoMaH View Post
So what do you think can be done to remedy it? How do we change people's minds?

I don't think in daily life, they actually perpetuate that definition. Or else only certain people would be privileged.

People realize that there are other definitions of beauty, look at celebrities, they're not all blonde.
But somehow in people's minds they believe it will be a privilege. I'M Speaking of my 2 friends ONLY- since I've never had discussions about this with anyone else, so I should stress that this pertains to them and not every white person. ( I edited my previous post since I should say **I suspect** it's why it's prized. I really don't know the reason why it's prized.)

One of them dated her dh for years (since hs) and she was physically attracted to him.
The other friend- I feel one of the reasons (not a main reason) she married her husband was because he's blonde/blue. Prior to marrying him/during her pregnancy, she kept talking about this "advantage"(possibly blonde/blue kids) while admitting that he's not attractive.

Trust me, this guy IS NOT beautiful and you can't even notice his eye color. No one gives him a 2nd look (not even her. lol)

But I still don't see a reason to get mad at her?
We first have to stop teaching that light is better and you will benefit. We need to teach that all people are beautiful and should be treated equally. I am not saying we should make our kids blind but when we teach them these things we don't need to also categorize them into the, "you are light and thats is better" category. Teach kids that some people do unjust things like give people jobs because they have light skin BUT that is a horrible thing to do because all people whether being black, red, yellow, brown, pink, white, green, or blue have feelings and are beautiful so we should treat everyone equally no matte what differences. That is what we should teach our children. Teach your kids to stand up in the face of bigotry and discrimnation. standing idly by is not going to foster change and it starts with us.
post #64 of 91
Quote:
Originally Posted by futurmama8 View Post
We first have to stop teaching that light is better and you will benefit. We need to teach that all people are beautiful and should be treated equally. I am not saying we should make our kids blind but when we teach them these things we don't need to also categorize them into the, "you are light and thats is better" category. Teach kids that some people do unjust things like give people jobs because they have light skin BUT that is a horrible thing to do because all people whether being black, red, yellow, brown, pink, white, green, or blue have feelings and are beautiful so we should treat everyone equally no matte what differences. That is what we should teach our children. Teach your kids to stand up in the face of bigotry and discrimnation. standing idly by is not going to foster change and it starts with us.

post #65 of 91
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jannah6 View Post
why thank ya ma'am :
post #66 of 91
And to that end, can we even imagine the outrage, if, say, Michelle Obama decided to stop relaxing her hair, and went natural? I mean, people are already up in arms (get it?) because her official White House portrait is her in a tank dress.

I saw a photo of her earlier in Feb. and her kitchen was starting to look a little napped, and i thought, maybe? Could it be? But then the very next picture had her hair straight as could be.

So, yeah. I agree that the first thing we need to do is reframe the paradigm that light skin and good hair are the symbols of beauty and privilege.
post #67 of 91
Quote:
Originally Posted by MustBeJelly View Post
And to that end, can we even imagine the outrage, if, say, Michelle Obama decided to stop relaxing her hair, and went natural? I mean, people are already up in arms (get it?) because her official White House portrait is her in a tank dress.

I saw a photo of her earlier in Feb. and her kitchen was starting to look a little napped, and i thought, maybe? Could it be? But then the very next picture had her hair straight as could be.

So, yeah. I agree that the first thing we need to do is reframe the paradigm that light skin and good hair are the symbols of beauty and privilege.
Actually what I hear is that she is actually natural but keeps her straightened. I don't know how true that is. Now imagine if President Obama wasn't christian! O the horror! it will be the end of a nation (sarcasm).
post #68 of 91
Maybe she doesn't chemically relax it, but she still wears it straight, to conform to the Eurocentric standards of beauty, and tangentially, achievement. I think it's whack, personally. She didn't always wear it straight, she used to be happy to be nappy, but now, even if she wanted to go back, I don't think she could, at least, not without creating the public outcry of the century. Even if she went for braids, instead of the more 'counter culture' (and please read all of the dripping sarcasm there and then some) look of dreds or a fro, it would still offend our sensibilities as a nation, IMO.

And that's sad. But that's what we need to combat.
post #69 of 91
Quote:
Originally Posted by MustBeJelly View Post
Maybe she doesn't chemically relax it, but she still wears it straight, to conform to the Eurocentric standards of beauty, and tangentially, achievement. I think it's whack, personally. She didn't always wear it straight, she used to be happy to be nappy, but now, even if she wanted to go back, I don't think she could, at least, not without creating the public outcry of the century. Even if she went for braids, instead of the more 'counter culture' (and please read all of the dripping sarcasm there and then some) look of dreds or a fro, it would still offend our sensibilities as a nation, IMO.

And that's sad. But that's what we need to combat.
You are so right, it is whack that this woman has to straighten her and her beautiful daughters hair when they are in the spotlight. I was so happy when I saw Malia with her big cornrows to the back. If only we all could change
post #70 of 91
Thread Starter 
I just wanted to make the point that some women straighten their hair because it makes it easier to care for. I have naturally wavy hair and if I don't straighten it it takes 30 minutes every morning just to tame all of the bits that stick out everywhere. Just looks messy, not natural.
post #71 of 91
Quote:
Originally Posted by VanessaS View Post
I just wanted to make the point that some women straighten their hair because it makes it easier to care for. I have naturally wavy hair and if I don't straighten it it takes 30 minutes every morning just to tame all of the bits that stick out everywhere. Just looks messy, not natural.
Easier to who? you? It is not easier because if you are natural all you have to do is put some water in it, pull it out, oil it a little bit and then go. But if you get it straightened you have to take all the time to get it straight and have to go throughout the day making sure you don't get it wet. I have been natural for about 7 months and I would take natural hair over straightened hair anyday, having to wrap it every night and making sure not to get it wet. I have a better relationship with my hair now that it is the way it is supposed to be.

Why are you trying to tame your hair? Just let it be how it is supposed to be, you were born with it that way so that is how it is supposed to be? That is the same argument for people who circumcise.. because its easier to clean but that is a big misconception and its a misconception that naturally kinky or wavy hair is harder but its not it is the way it is supposed to be and it wasn't meant to be tamed
post #72 of 91
Quote:
Originally Posted by futurmama8 View Post
No one said Joyster created this problem but she said she would teach her kids to take advantage of it so she is perpetuating the problem. The thing is her kids won't KNOW when white privilege is being handed to them nor will anyone else. It is an unspoken truth that can only be seen when you do studies or when people admit that they do it. So why teach a child to take advantage of white privilege? I think its something people need to be AWARE of but its not anything you can see.
I went back and reread joyster's thread and I now see why people are upset with it. I can't say that I'm AS upset with her post as others are. Not because I agree with her choice.
But because I think the problem is so large, I feel to an extent - as if I would be getting angry at the "victim".
I guess I took it to be that people didn't understand why she wanted her kids to have privileges. Oops.

Someone else here wrote that the reason people wanted blonde/blue children was because they thought it was beautiful.
And I gave that some thought and in the example I've given of my friend, it wasn't about beauty alone. There's more to it than that.
Her 1st son IS beautiful. Instead of hearing that after his birth, she heard comments that implied how unlucky he was to not be blonde/blue.
Ugh.

Back to the comment about what defines beauty, I ask - so why do people place sooo much importance in being beautiful? Because there are privileges that come with it.

Now, I want to preface this next thought with clarifying that I completely understand that when it comes to race vs. other physical traits, what I'm about to write isn't comparable. Race privileges have caused much more damage to whole groups of people than the latter.
If I may step back from race for a moment and compare these "privileges" to other physical traits that are advantageous...
In our society, people are given privileges if they are beautiful, thin, young.......
And it's unfair. Unjust.

So, if a parent wishes that their child has "beauty privilege" or " looking youthful privilege"... do I get angry at them? No.
Even though I think it's sad that these exist.
Are they perpetuating the injustice? Hmmm. What do you think?

I do get angry...... but I get MORE angry at those who give that privilege and deny it to others, also I'm angry FOR those who don't receive it.

In my world, I try to elevate those who don't receive it and I speak up when I witness it. At the same time, I try not to do it in anger, because it's not always deserving- often times they are simply ignorant and unaware that they're doing it.
When I disagree with someone, I try to not fly off the handle because it makes the person put up another brick on their wall. Kwim? (though it's hard not to get emotional)
Quote:
We first have to stop teaching that light is better and you will benefit. We need to teach that all people are beautiful and should be treated equally.
I'm totally with you on this.
This is what I do.

I think that the way you explained it now was better than in the way joyster was addressed before.
post #73 of 91
Quote:
Originally Posted by LoMaH View Post
Some other posters here are offended by those terms you prefer, just like I can't stand the term "Latina", but I let it go.
So I apologize if you were offended.
It gets difficult to constantly have to jump thru hoops to please everyone on these boards. Very frustrating.
Then we speak of tolerance as long as it's what WE think.

ETA- Missy, again, i apologize for my frustration and if you were offended.
It's hard to keep up with the terms that are the least offensive.
If you read through some of the other threads... some posters don't like when you write White or Black. They insist that they don't exist because race is a construct of people trying to place others in a box.
I personally try not to get defensive, especially when the terms are used as descriptors and not meant to be derogatory. but that's me.
I was actually coming back earlier to respond to you that the people I see most offended by White and Black are those individuals who believe that race is imaginary, a social construct that won't exist if we refuse to acknowledge it. Which, to me, is bull. Like someone saying that you can find racism anywhere if you look hard enough. Most of us don't have to look for racism, and the implication--that, yes, I've even seen in this forum--that people have to look for racism is offensive. So, please, don't use those descriptives in quotes, because it caters to that thought process and implies that racism is not significant and is somehow the creation of those most impacted.
post #74 of 91
Quote:
Originally Posted by LoMaH View Post
ETA: if you read some of the history of "white privilege", when a family member was able to live a better life and let those around them believe that they were white, the other family members DIDN'T out them. They let them live better.
It's really sad- how family members were separated from each other in order for some of them to encounter better opportunities.
Would you like to hear about the results of having those so-called opportunities?

I've been making contact with relatives/families we haven't spoken to in 80+ years. You know what? They're telling me that they knew about us all this time, and they were told by their elders that they weren't allowed to contact us because we crossed the colour line. Do you know how angry that makes me, to have lost all these people and the culture for the sake of a better job, a better area to live in? I'd rather have the relatives, but I wasn't given that option.
post #75 of 91
Quote:
Originally Posted by Minerva View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by LoMaH
ETA: if you read some of the history of "white privilege", when a family member was able to live a better life and let those around them believe that they were white, the other family members DIDN'T out them. They let them live better.
It's really sad- how family members were separated from each other in order for some of them to encounter better opportunities.
Would you like to hear about the results of having those so-called opportunities?

I've been making contact with relatives/families we haven't spoken to in 80+ years. You know what? They're telling me that they knew about us all this time, and they were told by their elders that they weren't allowed to contact us because we crossed the colour line. Do you know how angry that makes me, to have lost all these people and the culture for the sake of a better job, a better area to live in? I'd rather have the relatives, but I wasn't given that option.
Yes, thank you!!! From what I've heard, of the relatives my husband has who made the decision to pass, it wasn't a matter of "letting them live better". There was a choice made by those who crossed, a choice to leave that family. My husband's family knows of relatives who crossed the color line, and "not outing them" has nothing to do with letting them live a better life. There were also those who passed during the day, for work, and returned home at night. But that was a little different.
post #76 of 91
Quote:
Originally Posted by Minerva View Post
Would you like to hear about the results of having those so-called opportunities?

I've been making contact with relatives/families we haven't spoken to in 80+ years. You know what? They're telling me that they knew about us all this time, and they were told by their elders that they weren't allowed to contact us because we crossed the colour line. Do you know how angry that makes me, to have lost all these people and the culture for the sake of a better job, a better area to live in? I'd rather have the relatives, but I wasn't given that option.
I'm so sorry for what you've lost.

I'll tell you a quick story.
My father left communist Cuba almost 50 yrs. ago along with 3 other siblings who were also married. They came for a "better" life. My grandfather wouldn't allow the younger ones come to the U.S.. So, the family was split and they didn't even see/visit each other for over 2 decades.
Better hasn't only meant better housing, better jobs.....
Better has meant access to lifesaving medicine (the younger siblings have already died young, years before the older ones who live here)
Better has meant the freedom to express one's opinion without being arrested and losing one's job (esp. when all of the jobs are provided by the govt).
Better has meant being able to buy sugar and simple food items. I could go on.

Despite the fact that I'm aware that I've benefited greatly from being born American, I can't help but feel robbed. Loss of extended family, loss of learning about mine/my parents' culture, etc.. These decisions were made with the best of intentions. So, I try not to blame them. Just wish things were different.

ETA: I've never been there, but many of my immediate relatives are gone.
post #77 of 91
Quote:
Originally Posted by Missy View Post
Yes, thank you!!! From what I've heard, of the relatives my husband has who made the decision to pass, it wasn't a matter of "letting them live better". There was a choice made by those who crossed, a choice to leave that family. My husband's family knows of relatives who crossed the color line, and "not outing them" has nothing to do with letting them live a better life. There were also those who passed during the day, for work, and returned home at night. But that was a little different.
Do you have a source that you can recommend about the topic so that someday I can read further?
post #78 of 91
Quote:
Originally Posted by Minerva View Post
Would you like to hear about the results of having those so-called opportunities?

I've been making contact with relatives/families we haven't spoken to in 80+ years. You know what? They're telling me that they knew about us all this time, and they were told by their elders that they weren't allowed to contact us because we crossed the colour line.
Were you given the reasons?

I'm probably way off, I was under the impression from something I read long ago that it would jeopardize the person crossing. There's probably much more to it than that, huh?
post #79 of 91

Do you know her?

Quote:
Originally Posted by futurmama8 View Post
Easier to who? you? It is not easier because if you are natural all you have to do is put some water in it, pull it out, oil it a little bit and then go. But if you get it straightened you have to take all the time to get it straight and have to go throughout the day making sure you don't get it wet. I have been natural for about 7 months and I would take natural hair over straightened hair anyday, having to wrap it every night and making sure not to get it wet. I have a better relationship with my hair now that it is the way it is supposed to be.

Why are you trying to tame your hair? Just let it be how it is supposed to be, you were born with it that way so that is how it is supposed to be? That is the same argument for people who circumcise.. because its easier to clean but that is a big misconception and its a misconception that naturally kinky or wavy hair is harder but its not it is the way it is supposed to be and it wasn't meant to be tamed
It's a big misconception that all AA hair is alike. What's "easy" for some isn't necessarily easy for others. Your experience is just that, yours. As is your relationship with *your* hair.

To be plain:

Your.Relationship.With.Your.Hair.Is.Not.Mine. Or Vanessa's. Or anyone else's.

Asking someone why they "tame" their hair --- and likening it to circumcision --- isn't really warranted at all, IMO.
post #80 of 91
Quote:
Originally Posted by Barbamama View Post
It's a big misconception that all AA hair is alike. What's "easy" for some isn't necessarily easy for others. Your experience is just that, yours. As is your relationship with *your* hair.

To be plain:

Your.Relationship.With.Your.Hair.Is.Not.Mine. Or Vanessa's. Or anyone else's.

Asking someone why they "tame" their hair --- and likening it to circumcision --- isn't really warranted at all, IMO.
She said tame not me.. read her post. And I am not saying what is for me is for everyone, I was simply tellin her that it is not always easier to have straight hair as she said it is.

That is the best way I can describe being natural or chemically processing your hair. You are permanently changing your hair and their is no way to get that back unless you cut it all off.. ofcourse it is not as permanent as circumcision because you can get your hair back in some cases. Circumcision is permanently altering a body part (without the persons say of course so a difference there also) so that it will look different and will be easier to clean and take care of as VanessaS said it was with her hair. With a foreskin you can never get the actual foreskin back but you can restore it as best as it can be done. I know this is not a perfect example nothing is but I used it because most people get their child circumcised because they THINK it is easier and that is the only reason I used it. Now if you like getting a perm because you just do then fine I don't care as long as you love it. But I just used that example because VanessaS said permed or straightened hair was easier. Hope you that explanation is better.
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Multicultural Families
Mothering › Mothering Forums › Mom › Parenting › Multicultural Families › Racial identification