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#391 of 417 Old 04-02-2009, 02:03 AM
 
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This statement:

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“My experiences at Princeton have made me far more aware of my “Blackness” than ever before. I have found that at Princeton no matter how liberal and open-minded some of my White professors and classmates try to be toward me, I sometimes feel like a visitor on campus; as if I really don’t belong. Regardless of the circumstances underwhich I interact with Whites at Princeton, it often seems as if, to them, I will always be Black first and a student second. ”
is not exclusionary of this statement:

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I'm more optimistic. More hopeful. It comes from traveling all over America and connecting with so many different people. And this was long before anyone thought Barack had a chance. This was the kindness of strangers. I think we should all have to get to know one another around kitchen tables. It changed me. It's helped me to give other people the benefit of the doubt."
There is certainly nothing racist in the first statement and to be able to assert so demonstrates how little many of us understand about racism in this country. It is the reality--not the perception, but the reality--of many and to be able to address racism in this country means being able to see that statement as a reality and examine why it is so.

Jane, I'm going to assume that, this being the forum for multicultural families, that your family is also multicultural or biracial and therefore probably has some experience with racism in the US. I'd be interested in hearing how that racism has affected your children.
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#392 of 417 Old 04-02-2009, 03:06 AM
 
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I think Jane was saying that Michelle Obama was assuming incorrectly that her classmates were racist (in which case the "they" in Jane's parenthetical remark refers to the classmates, not to Mrs. Obama's assumptions).
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#393 of 417 Old 04-02-2009, 05:02 AM
 
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Originally Posted by Jane91 View Post
This is a stark difference from that portion quoted from her thesis. So maybe the problem she notes in her college thesis with her "liberal and well-meaning" classmates was, to a certain extent HER perception.
Jane,
In her paper, MO didn't write anything about people being racists.

Coincidentally, one of the purposes of her paper is to look at whether Princeton's Black alumni experience a change in their comfort levels with each race (black & white)- pre,during, and post Princeton. Indeed, she found that their comfort level with whites increased post-graduation. Which is most likely what happened to her as she became more "familiar" with working with Whites.

To expand upon why she may have had this "perception", in her thesis -she explains that during her attendance- the push in Princeton was towards integration of the races. She goes on to state that because there are distinct differences in Black culture and White culture, a Black student may experience frustration and lacking sufficient support systems available to them while in a predominantly White culture (she explains that there were few Black groups, AA studies, even Black food, etc. at PU at the time).

I also have to add an angle that you're missing-
In the past 20+ yrs. since MO attended PU, with the increase in integration in the workplace and elsewhere - is it safe to say that MO isn't the only one who has changed her perception/comfort level? Many white people's comfort levels have also changed, no?
Unless you're assuming that white people's comfort levels with blacks has remained unchanged since the early 80s.
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Maybe she was unable to connect and felt different because she made certain false assumptions (that they were really racist underneath it all), rather than giving the benefit of the doubt.
Maybe, since she found this to be true for the respondents in her thesis.
Would that mean though, that the only way one must feel out-of-place is with racists and not with anyone else who might not share our own beliefs, culture, and experiences?
Isn't it possible that they unintentionally alienated her?
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And that raises an interesting question -- to what extent is it the responsibility of a white person to make a minority person comfortable in a particular environment?
This reminds me of- To what extent should POCs or people from other countries have to do so for White Americans (or other Americans)? (isn't that our reputation worldwide when we're their guests?)

No one should feel obligated to bend backwards for anyone else if they don't want to. I don't think anyone expects that. But, it's certainly nice when people genuinely extend themselves to others.
Lunch is nice. If the person declines- then hey, that's on them.
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For example, in one of my college class discussions of racial issues, one of my black classmates talked about how the mere existence of my blonde ponytail (and especially how I would pull it out from under my coat collar when I put my coat on after class) irritated her. I was fine but my hair drove her nuts. While I can understand the social/historical origins of her issue, at the end of the day that was HER issue to work out. It shouldn't be my responsibility to dye my hair brown to make her comfortable.
How would you have responded to this if the same was said by a white woman instead of a black woman?
The same way you did, right?
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#394 of 417 Old 04-02-2009, 07:28 AM
 
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Originally Posted by lolar2 View Post
I think Jane was saying that Michelle Obama was assuming incorrectly that her classmates were racist (in which case the "they" in Jane's parenthetical remark refers to the classmates, not to Mrs. Obama's assumptions).
I went back and re-read and, yes, you're probably right. However, I don't think Michelle Obama made any false assumptions in her thesis. I think she made some very real observations that make people uncomfortable.

And the rest of my post remains true. Those two statements do not cancel each other out. As I said: it is the reality--not the perception, but the reality--of many and to be able to address racism in this country means being able to see that statement as a reality and examine why it is so.
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#395 of 417 Old 04-02-2009, 11:09 AM
 
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Maybaby
Maybe you might look over your post and rethink how you paint black people with such a broad brush.

On Michelle Obama- no one has mentioned that when she entered the hallowed halls of her college she was subject to a room change because of the color of her skin. That would make me uncomfortable from the very beginning. And yes I speak from experience on this. I went to boarding school and had a family make the same request because of my race. Thankfully my school had more backbone and did not oblige. And yes, I was on alert.

And speaking for myself, I do not want to see minorities pooling together to undermine the white race. As futurmama says
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this country needs to recognize the problems of ALL people and find ways to improve on them instead of minorities getting together to "scheme a way to the top"
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#396 of 417 Old 04-02-2009, 12:26 PM
 
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Maybaby -

there is an old thread on MDC Do black people scare you? Which discusses a lot of the hugely stereotyping comments you have made, and how these things impact on and perpetuate racism.

It is a very long thread, but an important read, I think, to help understand the broader picture.

nothing more to say I guess :
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#397 of 417 Old 04-02-2009, 02:51 PM
 
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The purpose of the Multicultual Families forum is to learn about families of various backgrounds. This is not a forum that will be used to spew racist commentary under the guise of trying to understand. We are all people here and we have come here to learn about one another. This is not the place to perpetuate stereotypes and the host of -isms that abound.

Please take a moment to consider people's feelings when posting and ask yourself, would this post be acceptable if I substitute in the name of any other group? Be that women, Africans, children, Irish people, Asians, men, transgendered people and the list goes on. Racism will not be tolerated as it is not within the spirit of the Mothering community. Thank you for your time. I now return you to your regularly scheduled thread.

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#398 of 417 Old 04-02-2009, 03:24 PM
 
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Originally Posted by ernalala View Post
One of the weirdest things, I find is that apparently in the US, people are officially categorised under a race or what is officially defined as race. Do citizens of the US see this as a good or bad thing, I mean do you feel the categorising has clear advantages to it as a good reason of existance? Or is it part of the overall systemic racism problem?

The result of these 'official definitions on race' must also be that many many people who are oficially defined as 'white/black/other' are actually not at all 'white/black... in appearance/' and the result may also very well be that many people considered white officially may experience a lot of prejudice/bigotry (considering US definition of racism in this discussion) in reality, and vice versa again. And well, how does all this has effects to 'statistics' considering 'racial categories'.

In my coi, you may be 50/50 or 25/75 European/African descent and look very much like African but no form would require you to fill in 'race' of any kind. There will be records of own/parental/ancestral (original) nationalities for sure, but not 'race'. I just find this unthinkable.

((...addition: There are distinctions made in politics and media between 'original inhabitants' as 'autochtone' and immigrants as 'allochtone' people and I do not know in how far I feel comfortable with these distinctions, ss a matter of fact, in many contexts I don't, but I honestly cannot think of any official form where you have to fill out one of these terms when you have the nationality and definitely never 'race' or 'skin colour'.))

I am learning on this thread from all of you, as racism has always been a topic phenomenon that I have been trying to understand, but I am very curious about the above.
(I am a Western European living in Western Asia, hereby not defining race but geograpical origin/state :-).
No-one here who would like to or could shed some light on the above question?

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#399 of 417 Old 04-02-2009, 03:57 PM
 
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Originally Posted by futurmama8 View Post
Was that perception the crux of the thread? I just know she talked about racism in reverse which is something that doesn't make sense.
I think this thread has evolved much further. And a big part of that includes people having to challenge their perception on what is reality. And it's something that the majority needs to do to help these kind of important conversations moving forward.

Ex.:
Perceived reality: Reverse Racism
Actual reality: a response to lifelong experiences with racism and racist institutions.
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#400 of 417 Old 04-02-2009, 04:10 PM
 
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I've learned one important thing about myself- *I* have enough trouble writing cohesive sentences when I'm awake, it's that much worse when I'm half asleep.

Evidently, I missed something... and I'm glad I did.
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Originally Posted by Jane91 View Post
My actual POINT about her thesis was that she acknowledges that her classmates were well-meaning and liberal but that wasn't enough to make her comfortable on campus. I was asking then if being welcoming and well-meaning and so forth ISN'T enough in individual relations between blacks and whites then what the heck is?
I suppose that's another way to interpret it.
I sometimes feel like a visitor on campus; as if I really don’t belong. Regardless of the circumstances underwhich I interact with Whites at Princeton, it often seems as if, to them, I will always be Black first and a student second. ”
I interpret this differently than you did. To me, this isn't a call for whites to do anything. I take this to mean that at the time SHE felt defeated and is believing that nothing that SHE does will help whites see her as a student first and black second.
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Its not "to get" another minority group. Its to accomplish a particular political goal. I'm curious why, at least in my experience, community leaders from one minority group and community leaders from another don't seem to do much horse-trading -- support for one issue that benefits a particular group in exchange for an issue that benefits the other. Happens in Congress all the time..."I'll support your bill if you'll support mine...."
I'm just as curious as you are as to why this doesn't occur.
If you ever get a chance to skim through M. Obama's thesis, in it another purpose for her study was to find out if once Black Princeton alumni graduated- they would continue to feel connected to other Blacks from the poorer socioeconomic level and whether the alumni would continue to feel motivated to benefit the Black community.

Back to your question,
Actually in one of the books in her bibliography "Black Elected Officials: A Study of Black Americans Holding Governmental Office" the authors (Conyers & Wallace) suggest that black officials integrate with white officials, forming a common social & cultural structure in order to help the black community. The book also discusses the problems black officials face in order to accomplish that goal.
So, Jane, I'm assuming that what you're proposing has been thought of before, but hasn't materialized mainly because it hasn't been achieved on a large scale for one minority group, let alone several.
Perhaps the process is just very slow.
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#401 of 417 Old 04-02-2009, 04:13 PM
 
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[QUOTE=ernalala;13484202]Originally Posted by ernalala
Quote:
One of the weirdest things, I find is that apparently in the US, people are officially categorised under a race or what is officially defined as race. Do citizens of the US see this as a good or bad thing,
I know POC see this as defining because it is our reality. This is how we live our lives. We are black, or hispanic, or NA, or Asian first them American second. For some white people they are seen as Americans first and then maybe white but they are the norm so I don't think race is AS defining than for a POC.
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I mean do you feel the categorising has clear advantages to it as a good reason of existance?
What kind of advantages do you mean?
For me, sometimes being black can be a henderance because people do judge me for my color and don't see that I am a little more than black. BUT I am black and I am VERY proud of that and don't have a problem defining MYSELF that way.
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Or is it part of the overall systemic racism problem?
It is part of systemic racism because it is defined by what you look like. Any hint of non-whiteness and the system turns against you.

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The result of these 'official definitions on race' must also be that many many people who are oficially defined as 'white/black/other' are actually not at all 'white/black... in appearance/' and the result may also very well be that many people considered white officially may experience a lot of prejudice/bigotry
Are you white/black in terms of biracial? Like victoria rowells daughter? She may define herself as black or biracial but the world will see her as a white woman from the way she looks.

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In my coi, you may be 50/50 or 25/75 European/African descent and look very much like African but no form would require you to fill in 'race' of any kind. There will be records of own/parental/ancestral (original) nationalities for sure, but not 'race'. I just find this unthinkable.
In the U.S. everyone has a race and if you mark other on an application and then get called to that interview, as soon as a African person walks into the room they will be judged by skin tone immediately. We like categories over and everybody has to fit.


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I am learning on this thread from all of you, as racism has always been a topic phenomenon that I have been trying to understand, but I am very curious about the above.
Glad you are learning

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No-one here who would like to or could shed some light on the above question?
I hope I shed some light but the wording in your post kind of confused me so I explained it the best way I could
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#402 of 417 Old 04-02-2009, 04:29 PM
 
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[QUOTE=LoMaH;13484561]
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I'm just as curious as you are as to why this doesn't occur.
I said this earlier,
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So you are saying for example, Native Americans and blacks should get together and do a "I will scratch your back if you scratch mine"? The question is, why does this even need to happen? This shouldn't even be a suggestion from anyone, this country needs to recognize the problems of ALL people and find ways to improve on them instead of minorities getting together to "scheme a way to the top".
I guess you took her suggestion a different way, I don't know
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Back to your question,
Actually in one of the books in her bibliography "Black Elected Officials: A Study of Black Americans Holding Governmental Office" the authors (Conyers & Wallace) suggest that black officials integrate with white officials, forming a common social & cultural structure in order to help the black community.
Ugh I don't know that just seems...weird. especially the bolded part. Why can't white officials notice the problems and affect change ALONG WITH officials of color without us have to make a whole social structure? I mean can't we affect change because it's right, it seems like having to do this means there is some otherside that doesn't want the right things to happen.
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The book also discusses the problems black officials face in order to accomplish that goal.
What problems do they face, I am very interested?

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So, Jane, I'm assuming that what you're proposing has been thought of before, but hasn't materialized mainly because it hasn't been achieved on a large scale for one minority group, let alone several.
Perhaps the process is just very slow
Or very wrong. I think the idea of this process shows that there are BIG problems with minorities in this country.
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#403 of 417 Old 04-02-2009, 05:46 PM
 
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This is my first post in MDC. I am not a mother, but one day I hope to be. I am white. My boyfriend is Middle Eastern.

I have been reading this thread over the past couple of days. I've really appreciated it. Thanks for the good conversation mamas!

I teach at a community college in Houston, TX. My students are typically 95 percent minority, split fairly evenly between African-Americans and Latinos. I have two Asian students this semester (one is from China and the other, Viet Nam). I actually have no white students this semester, so I guess I have 100% minority students this semester. This makeup is a mirror image of the surrounding neighborhood and is the closest community college to where I live. Since you are probably wondering, the faculty/staff of the college is very diverse; although, my department (English) isn't.

The reason I am posting is that today, three of my female AA students were talking about "ghetto" names, and how they were so glad they didn't have them. They said that if they had been named a stereotypical black name, they would have it changed. These three young women then went on to say how they would never land a job (or the job they wanted ) with a name like that, and rather than asking why that was, they were seriously hating on and mocking "black" names. I asked them whether the problem was the names or racism. It was as though they had never really thought about it. At that moment, they were totally self-hating and seeing white names (and people) as better. They did refer to their names as "white" names. I just thought this was a good example to add to what has gone on in this thread.

Another wee story before I go. On Valentine's Day, My boyfriend (Arab) and I went out to dinner at a local Mexican restaurant. When we were seated, our waiter (Latino) proceeded to ignore us practically the whole time. He did the bare minimum (took the orders and brought the check), all the while wooing the other couples in our section (white and latino couples). He was being very, very friendly to everyone else and rather impolite to us. We are kind people who treat people well, so this isn't an instance of our being rude to him. The only reason for this treatment must have been that the waiter disliked Arabs. It was a sad feeling to realise that. It put a damper on our evening.

So I wonder, is what we experienced racism? I mean Latino to Arab. I don't really mean me because I am fairly confident that if I were alone or with a white man, I would not have had this happen. I guess based on the power equation, this isn't racism but rather xenophobia.

Oh and by-the-way, we tipped the waited as if he had done a good job, but we left him a little note asking him to be nicer next time.

Kate
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#404 of 417 Old 04-02-2009, 10:20 PM
 
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[QUOTE=vegk8;13485246]

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The reason I am posting is that today, three of my female AA students were talking about "ghetto" names, and how they were so glad they didn't have them. They said that if they had been named a stereotypical black name, they would have it changed. These three young women then went on to say how they would never land a job (or the job they wanted ) with a name like that,
I know many people within the black community who choose not to give their kids black names so they give their kids white names. But why should these girls and parents have to worry about that? Because there is discrimination when it comes to names that are not white sounding.
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and rather than asking why that was, they were seriously hating on and mocking "black" names.
I find that some of the ghetto names (despite race) can be pretty ridiculous and I may shake my head, I guess that is mocking but it is what it is.

Quick question, why does everything ghetto have to equal black??


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I asked them whether the problem was the names or racism. It was as though they had never really thought about it. At that moment, they were totally self-hating and seeing white names (and people) as better. They did refer to their names as "white" names. I just thought this was a good example to add to what has gone on in this thread.
As I have said before, don't expect all black people to be aware of our problems. There are ignorant people of all races and I keep seeing how blacks SHOULD know what they are doing. Some people just aren't aware.

Technically white names are better and that is the reality. If a T'yawn (my bf name), shanika, jamal, shauntae or taqueisha put their name on an application you better believe people will see their names as non white and they probably won't get called for the interview. Now if a black person with a white sounding name like Katie, Dakota, Conner, Becky or Max put their name down on an application, they would get called to the interview but seeing what they look like might be a surprise

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Another wee story before I go. On Valentine's Day, My boyfriend (Arab) and I went out to dinner at a local Mexican restaurant. When we were seated, our waiter (Latino) proceeded to ignore us practically the whole time. He did the bare minimum (took the orders and brought the check), all the while wooing the other couples in our section (white and latino couples). He was being very, very friendly to everyone else and rather impolite to us. We are kind people who treat people well, so this isn't an instance of our being rude to him. The only reason for this treatment must have been that the waiter disliked Arabs. It was a sad feeling to realise that. It put a damper on our evening.
Sounds like a horrible V day
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So I wonder, is what we experienced racism? I mean Latino to Arab. I don't really mean me because I am fairly confident that if I were alone or with a white man, I would not have had this happen. I guess based on the power equation, this isn't racism but rather xenophobia.
I think you answered your own question about the racism question. It is not racism nor do I think it is xenophobia because it is hard to label a person xenophobic if you can't tell what their views are. Xenophobic is defined as:

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Xenophobia is a dislike and/or fear of that which is unknown or are different from oneself. The term is typically used to describe a fear or dislike of foreigners or of people significantly different from oneself.
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Oh and by-the-way, we tipped the waited as if he had done a good job, but we left him a little note asking him to be nicer next time.
I probably wouldn't have tipped him a lot at all. But I definitely would have left him a nice note as a tip
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#405 of 417 Old 04-02-2009, 10:36 PM
 
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Quick question, why does everything ghetto have to equal black??
In places I've had to live, ghetto means poverty stricken area with higher than average crime rate for the city.

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#406 of 417 Old 04-02-2009, 10:45 PM
 
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See that is what I thought but on some threads (older ones too) and IRL when people say ghetto they automatically equate that with black. I just don't like that.
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#407 of 417 Old 04-02-2009, 10:51 PM
 
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Originally Posted by futurmama8 View Post
I guess you took her suggestion a different way, I don't know.
futurmama
I took her to mean that there were minorities groups who could easily form alliances with the majority group, and then turn around and use those connections to benefit other minorities/min groups.
I wasn't saying that this is the way to go, but I do wonder why the different strategies that have been applied and/or proposed haven't achieved sufficient support and success.
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Ugh I don't know that just seems...weird. especially the bolded part. Why can't white officials notice the problems and affect change ALONG WITH officials of color without us have to make a whole social structure? I mean can't we affect change because it's right, it seems like having to do this means there is some otherside that doesn't want the right things to happen.
In a perfect world, people would simply be just and fair. But, if we had lived in that kind of world- things would have always been right and fair. There would be no need for; laws, checks and balances, regulations,...
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What problems do they face, I am very interested?
Well, I haven't read the book, and the solutions might be outdated (1976).
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Or very wrong.
Even if that strategy is wrong, it's still useful to understand why exactly it hasn't been implemented successfully. Especially if it's the way things are typically done in politics in order to benefit other interest groups.
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I think the idea of this process shows that there are BIG problems with minorities in this country.
Well, yeah.
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#408 of 417 Old 04-02-2009, 11:06 PM
 
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^^^ didn't mean to say that you were saying it was the way to go. I was just wondering which way you saw the question

I know this world is not fair but I would expect that our government could notice that minorities are just as important in this country. You can't think to be called an example of equality when the people within your country aren't equal.

I have a feeling that this plan or strategy has been put into place before people even wrote about it. I doubt what people see as not very important doesn't gets inacted within this strategy so that is probably why it hasn't taken off.
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#409 of 417 Old 04-02-2009, 11:42 PM
 
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Originally Posted by futurmama8 View Post
^^^ didn't mean to say that you were saying it was the way to go. I was just wondering which way you saw the question
I know this world is not fair but I would expect that our government could notice that minorities are just as important in this country. You can't think to be called an example of equality when the people within your country aren't equal.
I have a feeling that this plan or strategy has been put into place before people even wrote about it. I doubt what people see as not very important doesn't gets inacted within this strategy so that is probably why it hasn't taken off.
futurmama
I'm sure you know there's a huge disconnect between people of different races due to segregation.
Sure, you can see people of all races walking the streets on any given day- but at the end of the day most people return to live among their own groups- especially among their own socioeconomic group. So, most people are out of touch with other groups' problems. Kind of "out of sight, out of mind."
Most politicians come from the upper class elite.
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#410 of 417 Old 04-02-2009, 11:53 PM
 
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So very true LoMah
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#411 of 417 Old 04-03-2009, 02:01 AM
 
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I'm going to try my best here because there's no easy answer.
Quote:
Originally Posted by ernalala
One of the weirdest things, I find is that apparently in the US, people are officially categorised under a race or what is officially defined as race.
There are 3 ways to be categorized by race (these aren't official terms or anything- I made them up in order to explain it as best I can. I hope this is helpful.) :

^^^- You may be asked your race on paper (the Census, scholarship applications, etc.)- in addition to race, many of these forms may ask you to identify your ethnicity, nationality, etc.
Note: not ALL forms at every institution asks you to identify your race. Plenty of them don't. When they do, it's optional and you self-identify.
Many forms require that you check whether you're a citizen- employment applications, driver's license, etc.. Most of these do not ask for race.

It used to be that someone could fill in whatever race THEY thought you belonged to by simply looking at you (birth certificates, passports, marriage certificates, scholarship forms, school forms, etc.)
It's my understanding that there's only a handful of states in the U.S. left that ask for race on birth/marriage certificates.

It's possible to be discriminated against (not outright- that would be illegal) by whatever race you self identify on forms or by the someone in charge (landlord, employee) being able to identify your race (or guessing) by your name. (resumes, job application, housing application, etc.)
Also you can be discriminated against by the way you sound on the phone (tone of voice, accent, jargon, etc.)

^^^- Self-identification- is usually the culture/s that you most identify with and the ones you tell people that you belong to. You don't have to identify by race. I'm OK with people identifying however they wish.
I usually identify myself by ethnicity and by my parents' nationality, as an American, (and sometimes even by State - depending on the context ). However, other people may not know their ethnic backgrounds or they chose to self-identify by religion, culture, or other, or others may refuse to identify themselves as any category.
(ex- Jewish, Russian-Jew, Italian-American, Latino, White, Arab, Black, African-American, Vietnamese, Asian, Indian, etc.)
When people identify by race- it might be problematic if you don't physically match the stereotypes of that race. It's possible for people not to accept your self-identification and argue with you or insist that you self-identify in the way that they want you to.

^^^- Identification based on physical appearance- is when people see you and identify your race simply based primarily on your physical attributes (skin color, hair texture/color, dress, etc.)- ones that they stereotypically associate with a particular race.
In the other thread "correct terminology", someone wrote that in Canada- people identify you based on color. Only it didn't seem that they assigned any race to that skin color- apparently it's only used as a descriptor.

*For me*, I don't find it a problem to use color/racial/etc. terms as descriptors. Nor does it bother *me*, most of the time, when others try to categorize me by my physical attributes and conclude that I belong to a particular race/ethnicity, even if/when they're inaccurate. As long as it's not malicious.
For me, the problem ensues when they assign negative qualities/stereotypes to particular races and then act upon those assumptions.

This last one, is probably the basis for the most discrimination. It's based solely on your appearance and other people's perceptions of race.
This is the one that has nothing to do with forms and may not actually match what you fill out in forms. It's the one that you can't escape from.
Quote:
Do citizens of the US see this as a good or bad thing, I mean do you feel the categorising has clear advantages to it as a good reason of existance? Or is it part of the overall systemic racism problem?
This is my personal response, of course, I'm not answering for all other Americans.
My answer is both yes and no. *I* personally don't think it's bad to be identified by race -sometimes-, as I wrote above, if it's not with malicious intent.
I know people can feel solidarity with others based on their physical appearance. That's mostly a good thing. I love to spot people who I think may speak a particular language so that I can brush up on my language skills. It sometimes also helps me find commonalities with other people or they do so with me.

Of course I'm an individual, as is everyone else. Race shouldn't be the only thing that defines me. In no way, does it make me an exact clone to others that identify themselves in the same way that I do.
Quote:
The result of these 'official definitions on race' must also be that many many people who are oficially defined as 'white/black/other' are actually not at all 'white/black... in appearance/' and the result may also very well be that many people considered white officially may experience a lot of prejudice/bigotry (considering US definition of racism in this discussion) in reality, and vice versa again. And well, how does all this has effects to 'statistics' considering 'racial categories'.
Oh, definitely- people don't always physically match what they're stereotypically expected to look like.

Regarding stats
For instance, in elections, race is used to try to predict outcomes because many times members of particular groups tend to vote for specific political parties or agendas.
Race may also be used to determine what social programs to support.
Or it might be used to determine which groups have economic power.

I hope this helped.
I'm also learning a lot from this thread.
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#412 of 417 Old 04-03-2009, 08:27 AM
 
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[QUOTE=futurmama8;13484579]
Quote:
Originally Posted by ernalala View Post
Originally Posted by ernalala
I know POC see this as defining because it is our reality. This is how we live our lives. We are black, or hispanic, or NA, or Asian first them American second. For some white people they are seen as Americans first and then maybe white but they are the norm so I don't think race is AS defining than for a POC.
But this is no official way of determining race by stating it on paper. How can you (general term) calculate statistics based on racial breakdown if that is not being done (anymore)?

Quote:
Originally Posted by futurmama8 View Post
What kind of advantages do you mean?
For me, sometimes being black can be a henderance because people do judge me for my color and don't see that I am a little more than black. BUT I am black and I am VERY proud of that and don't have a problem defining MYSELF that way.
I do not mean 'being' black, more being 'required to fill in your RACE on a form'. It has been mentioned here that you are officially defined as white when you are (forgive me if I remember wrongly) a certain percentage of 'white' descent. Therefore 'white' and 'black' and other racial categories must already be defined to be able to do that. Is that written somewhere in paper, lol my BIL would say 'black on white' (expression in my mother tongue, referring to printed text :-).

Quote:
Originally Posted by futurmama8 View Post
It is part of systemic racism because it is defined by what you look like. Any hint of non-whiteness and the system turns against you.
Yes, and that's so sad. I realise that some people won't only judge/categorise you (consciously or unconsciously doing so) by your race, descent or skin colour mentioned on paper (when they havn't met you personally), but also on your name or any other hints that you may belong to a minority.


Quote:
Originally Posted by futurmama8 View Post
Are you white/black in terms of biracial? Like victoria rowells daughter? She may define herself as black or biracial but the world will see her as a white woman from the way she looks.
No I am not. My children are not biracial where we would all be catalogued as 'caucasian' under a certain definition of 'race', but they ARE mixed nationality/ethinicity, so I look white, Dh looks more like arab, one child is almost as pale as me and the other one is almost as dark-skinned as dh and they look well uh 'mixed'.


Quote:
Originally Posted by futurmama8 View Post
In the U.S. everyone has a race and if you mark other on an application and then get called to that interview, as soon as a African person walks into the room they will be judged by skin tone immediately. We like categories over and everybody has to fit.
Hmm. So it may be used by some to eliminate you from a process, such as the may eliminate people with a certain name etc. (this kind of discrimination may also happen in my country of origin where defining race is not required)
I was also thinking of visa applications. I believe my dh had to fill out race and/or skin colour when he once applied for a US travel visum and for us it was so out of the normal.





Quote:
Originally Posted by futurmama8 View Post
I hope I shed some light but the wording in your post kind of confused me so I explained it the best way I could
Sorry it's not my native language, or are you pointing out to the use of the 'light' phrase nu pun intended .


There must be somewhere somehow a thorough keeping track of race by official sources to be able to provide statistics regarding racial minorities.

I can imagine this can be used for the good or the worst, for and against.

But I sincerely hope, that, one day (the sooner the better), this racial 'classification' (for certain, officially, and ideologically among all citizens) will not be (have to be) a reality anymore in your country (or elsewhere in the world).

I thought maybe people would always perceive it as wrong to have to fill out race but I think to understand it is not particularly so. Personally, it would totally bug me, since it also bugs me to be requested to fill out religious or political views (we decided not to categorise our childen under a religion officially and on requesting my residency papers here I was reluctant to fill out this part as well out of fear of possible reactions/discrimination based there on). That's where my question originally came from.

And, thank you for your responses.

Me:,loving HB,two active sons of 3 & 5,1 cat, nature lover,,extbf,occ,SAHM, multicultural/lingual family,+/-cl, :become a better parent/person by not expecting to be the perfect parent/person
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#413 of 417 Old 04-03-2009, 05:14 PM
 
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[QUOTE=futurmama8;13486991]
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Originally Posted by vegk8 View Post


I know many people within the black community who choose not to give their kids black names so they give their kids white names. But why should these girls and parents have to worry about that? Because there is discrimination when it comes to names that are not white sounding.

I find that some of the ghetto names (despite race) can be pretty ridiculous and I may shake my head, I guess that is mocking but it is what it is.

Quick question, why does everything ghetto have to equal black??

That is a good question. I just think it boils down to how the word is used most commonly in popular culture, the media and in turn in the USA. It's not an accurate usage, but that's how people use it, so that's what sticks.

As I have said before, don't expect all black people to be aware of our problems. There are ignorant people of all races and I keep seeing how blacks SHOULD know what they are doing. Some people just aren't aware.

I don't. I was really just sharing this story in support of your earlier comments on this fact. I don't think these girls are ignorant in the slightest. They are just a product of a system that is in need of change.

Technically white names are better and that is the reality. If a T'yawn (my bf name), shanika, jamal, shauntae or taqueisha put their name on an application you better believe people will see their names as non white and they probably won't get called for the interview. Now if a black person with a white sounding name like Katie, Dakota, Conner, Becky or Max put their name down on an application, they would get called to the interview but seeing what they look like might be a surprise

Oh yeah, having a "white" name is more advantageous and they were talking about exactly that. I don't think it's fair to say that white names are better, but they certainly carry much privilege. My bf's name is Mohammed. I know that has cost him many an interview.

Sounds like a horrible V day

It's just one of those things that reminds you that we have a long way to go, a huge systemic problem.

I think you answered your own question about the racism question. It is not racism nor do I think it is xenophobia because it is hard to label a person xenophobic if you can't tell what their views are. Xenophobic is defined as:

I do think it could be xenophobia, but you are right in the sense that I couldn't read the waiter's mind. Thinking back, he seemed a bit uncomfortable. Who knows though, really. It's a shame it happened.


I probably wouldn't have tipped him a lot at all. But I definitely would have left him a nice note as a tip
I always tip pretty well. I feel bad that waiters make so little. I am from the UK where waiters are paid at least the minimum wage. I think it's BS they aren't here. If the waiter had verbally assaulted us, I might have done differently though!



Thanks for your response to my post Rianne
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#414 of 417 Old 04-03-2009, 05:20 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by futurmama8 View Post
See that is what I thought but on some threads (older ones too) and IRL when people say ghetto they automatically equate that with black. I just don't like that.
Just to clarify. I was quoting my students' usage of the word. I personally don't consider ghetto to equal black.

Kate
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#415 of 417 Old 04-03-2009, 05:49 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ernalala View Post
But this is no official way of determining race by stating it on paper. How can you (general term) calculate statistics based on racial breakdown if that is not being done (anymore)?
That is done in the Census, which takes place every 10 years.

Quote:
I was also thinking of visa applications. I believe my dh had to fill out race and/or skin colour when he once applied for a US travel visum and for us it was so out of the normal.
I think this is to help prevent fraud. They want identifying information on there such as height, weight, hair color, eye color, and I guess race (I wouldn't know specifically since as an American I obviously have never filled out a US visa application).
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#416 of 417 Old 04-04-2009, 09:42 AM
 
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Originally Posted by LoMaH View Post
I hope this helped.
I'm also learning a lot from this thread.
Yes it did. Thank you!

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#417 of 417 Old 04-06-2009, 04:39 PM
 
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....just SO interesting for me to read this thread !

in my country it' not legal to ask about race on forms but there is discrimination based on "ethnic" names, the look of people (some anti-racist association was able to make a point, legally, a few years back, after sending differents sets of people of different colors to nightclubs and recording who was refused entry etc ...) and other markers of differenciation .....

the reason I read the posts of this thread is that now, it's in question whether or not to introduce soon boxes to check about race on forms !!!!!!!!!!

some people think that we know there's racism in our society BUT we don't have any official statistics to prove it & the extent of it and therfore little means to take actions against it ....
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