White Anti-Racist Parents - Page 13 - Mothering Forums

Forum Jump: 
Reply
 
Thread Tools
#361 of 377 Old 06-06-2006, 12:14 AM
 
MomInFlux's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: the beautiful mountains of sunny Southern California
Posts: 1,835
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
This thread has been rattling around in my brain - and that's a GOOD thing. What I've noticed is that I'm taking more opportunities to talk about differences among people with my DS - regarding race or otherwise. For example, I've been talking with my DS about getting him a rash-guard type swimsuit with SPF 50 so he doesn't get a sunburn when we're at the lake. So we talked about how DH's ancestors came from a place where the sun wasn't very strong and so his ancestors didn't develop much skin pigment and so he sunburns really easily. Then we talked about how there are people whose ancestors came from places with really strong sun and they developed more pigment to protect their skin. And we discussed it as if it were just a really interesting difference among people. Yesterday our part-time neighbor came by, and DS mentioned that he had a "funny" accent. So we talked about how our neighbor is from Boston and has a Boston accent and different people from different places sound different and isn't that interesting. I know, it's over simplified, but our opportunities are limited, so I feel that talking about whatever we can when we get the chance is what I can do right now.
MomInFlux is offline  
#362 of 377 Old 06-06-2006, 12:19 AM
 
ibex67's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Rural[ish] NW, VA
Posts: 535
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by MomInFlux
SNIP I know, it's over simplified, but our opportunities are limited, so I feel that talking about whatever we can when we get the chance is what I can do right now.
Yes, it's oversimplified but I agree that it is vitally important. No where else in our culture is he going to get the message that difference [of any kind] is okay and to be respected.

I'm with you and try to be matter-of-fact and explanatory of all difference and diversity. These kind of simple, everyday conversations come up in all kinds of circumstances. In noticing people with disabilities, with different body shapes, different colors, and folks who challenge gender stereotypes. I beleive my children need to keep hearing the message "differences are okay. they are not scary or wierd."
ibex67 is offline  
#363 of 377 Old 06-06-2006, 02:27 AM
 
sadie_sabot's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: dystopia
Posts: 5,191
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
yes, and yes to all these ideas about talking about variances among people. I think part of my goal is to normalize difference, so that whe people are different from, say, me or my kid, she won' feel as though anything is *wrong* just that they're diffrent, we;re different, etc.

part of it too is trying to help her to see that it isn't always THEM being different from US, but maybe WE are the different ones, at least some of the time.
sadie_sabot is offline  
#364 of 377 Old 06-06-2006, 12:56 PM
 
eastcoastmomof2's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Nova Scotia
Posts: 94
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I apologize if this has already been mentioned, but what about taking your child to different cultural festivites in your area? Or reading up on different religions and cultures? Exposure to different cultures and religions is usually the best way to come to understand them. We take our children to the different cultural festivals (Greek-Fest, Black history month celebrations, Chineese New Year celebrations/parade, etc) as much as possible to share with them all of the wonderful traditions and contributions of other nationalities and religions all over the world. Possibly acknowledging religions outside of your own during their holy days (Chineese New Year, Kwanzaa, Rosh Hoshanna, etc) by renting a video, or getting a library book about it?

These things greatly help my daughters understand and place value on all people, and all religions and cultures. it's a small step, but if you don't live in a verry culturally diverse, or racially mixed area, it is sometimes necesarry to put a bit more effort into exposing them.
eastcoastmomof2 is offline  
#365 of 377 Old 06-07-2006, 05:46 PM
Banned
 
~member~'s Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2002
Location: on a lily pad
Posts: 13,061
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
http://trainingforchange.org/
Not sure if this link has been posted before.
I am kind of shocked that they would make money from it, but, I guess.

I liked this article from the website
http://trainingforchange.org/content/view/78/33/ Understanding Power-Over and Power-Within.

I like how it explains how when you stop supporting something, it is easier to get it to stop. But if you are silent, it is the same as being a supporter.
~member~ is offline  
#366 of 377 Old 06-07-2006, 06:20 PM
 
ibex67's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Rural[ish] NW, VA
Posts: 535
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by MamaInTheBoonies
http://trainingforchange.org/
Not sure if this link has been posted before.
I am kind of shocked that they would make money from it, but, I guess.
I would love to attend this!!! I wonder if they would be cool with a nursing infant there the whole time?

Why are you shocked that they would make money? Are you shocked that people would pay or are you shocked that they would charge money?
ibex67 is offline  
#367 of 377 Old 06-07-2006, 07:08 PM
Banned
 
~member~'s Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2002
Location: on a lily pad
Posts: 13,061
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by ibex67
Why are you shocked that they would make money? Are you shocked that people would pay or are you shocked that they would charge money?
Sorry! That they would charge money, but I know they deserve to be paid for their work, kwim?
It makes sense. I do hope that one day, anti-racism will be a mandatory class in schools for ALL students.
~member~ is offline  
#368 of 377 Old 06-08-2006, 02:10 PM
 
twilight girl's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: Costa Rica
Posts: 2,531
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by termasan
Racism is a white problem.
Huh? Wha? Please do not be so naive as to think that racism is only a white problem. There are racist clashes between blacks and latinos in the U.S. There are racist clashes between indigenous and "European" descent people in Latin America. There is racism between Chinese and Korean. There is racism between Arabs and Kurds. Between dark-skinned Africans and lighter-skinned Africans.

Racism is unfortunately a HUMAN condition, not one confined to nor perpetuated by one race in particular. It appears to be universal.

The way we deal with these issues in our lives (my family, I mean) is that we make friends with people that we have a good rapport with. Makes not a single bit of difference what their politics, religion, race, creed or favorite soccer team are. Our friends are Persian, our friends are black, our friends are white, Jewish, Catholic, Muslim, Republican. We don't teach our daughter that these are criteria for selecting friends, rather they are just the parts that make up the whole of who your friend is. She is comfortable with differences. Because my husband and I have always been of a mind that differences are what make us unique, and what make us interesting.

We also happen to live in a country where we are the minority. We are white, fair skinned and light eyed, living in Central America. Judgements are made about us every day based on the color of our skin and the color of our eyes.

We consider ourselves pretty much color blind (and religion blind, language deaf, political blind--although not as much there, this one is much harder!). That said, to give you an idea how pervasive racism can be, I'll share an anecdote from last night. We are planning on buying an old Toyota Land Cruiser. We just looked at one last night, great shape, good price, etc. We go inside the person's house, and they happen to have the same Persian rug we have at home. The woman says, "my husband is Iranian." (Mind you, one of dh's best lifelong friends is Iranian). Later, when we get home, we confide in each other that both of us had the same thought when she said that, which was, "you have to be careful buying from Iranians."

Part of human nature is also to learn from experiences. We had a bad experience with an Iranian businessman in Costa Rica, and also had a friend who had a bad experience with another Iranian in Costa Rica. And that was enough to create this doubt in our minds about Iranians. Isn't that terrible? It's that easy, though.

Anyhoo, people are people. Some of us will love each other for our differences, and others will judge each other for our differences. With any luck, our children will be the ones to love, and maybe a better world will come of it.
twilight girl is offline  
#369 of 377 Old 06-08-2006, 03:04 PM
 
sadie_sabot's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: dystopia
Posts: 5,191
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I understand racism to mean "race prejudice PLUS power." so while it may be true that lots and lots of people have race prejudice, the question of power complicates things. People of color in the US may have prejudices toward other groups of people of color, but here in the US the only racial group that holds power with regard to race is white people. so my understanding, which I know is shared by a lot of folks who spend a lot of time thinking aobut and challenging racism, is that in the US only white people are RACIST.

I am also not sure that I believe it is human nature to be prejudiced. I think that explaining that way kind of makes it seem on some level ok, excusable, and also presents it as an inevitablitiy. I do not believe racism and prejudice (and all other systems of oppression) are *inevitable;* I think they happen a lot, and that they can be challenged, opposed, and overcome.

the other thing I have to say, and I'm sory, I'm not trying to pick on you exactly, is that the concept of "color blind" is not compatible with anti-racism. You are not colorblind, clearly. No one shuld be. We should see and appreciate and celebrate all of our differences; pretending that you don't notice racial differences is dishonest. And, at least in the US, only white pople can pretend to color blindness. For people of color, seeing color is a survival skill.
sadie_sabot is offline  
#370 of 377 Old 06-08-2006, 04:18 PM
 
Qtopia's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: Central VA
Posts: 405
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by sadie_sabot
<snip> the concept of "color blind" is not compatible with anti-racism. You are not colorblind, clearly. No one shuld be. We should see and appreciate and celebrate all of our differences; pretending that you don't notice racial differences is dishonest. And, at least in the US, only white pople can pretend to color blindness. For people of color, seeing color is a survival skill.
:
Qtopia is offline  
#371 of 377 Old 06-08-2006, 11:11 PM
 
eastcoastmomof2's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Nova Scotia
Posts: 94
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
rac·ism ( P ) Pronunciation Key (rszm)
n.
The belief that race accounts for differences in human character or ability and that a particular race is superior to others.
Discrimination or prejudice based on race.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
racist adj. & n.

I'm not convinced racism is a "white " issue", based on the dictionary definition.
I would think a person of any nationality or race could think that their own race is superior. Not everyone considers white to be the 'ideal', although, many probablky do.
I have known African American friends who's parents did not want them dating white people...as well s good friend of mine who is Greek; she HAD to marry Greek man, there was no choice. Her parents did not feel it was a "step-up" to be married to a white, or non-Greek man...her father considered Greek people to be the best thing going. I don't know that he felt "better' than non-Greeks, but would that not be considered racism if he did?

ETA: Isn't "class-ism" just a bad? considering oneself to be superior based on one's "class"?
eastcoastmomof2 is offline  
#372 of 377 Old 06-10-2006, 02:25 AM
 
sadie_sabot's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: dystopia
Posts: 5,191
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
1) In trying to figure out, oppose, deconstruct racism, in working to have an accurate understanding of systems in order to have effective resistance to them, sometimes the dictionary definition isn't the best starting point. anti-racists all over the country use the "racism + race prejudice plus power" definition. This isn't about what definition is correct according to dictionary writers, it's about what definition reflects reality.

2) the examples you cite sound like race prejudice to me, not systemic oppression based on race. There is a difference.

3) class is a Huge issue in this country. At the same time, it is a common tactic of predominantly white folks to attempt to derail any conversation about racism by bringng up class. clas sis an issue, and certainly the two systems of oppression do intersect. but this thread is about anti-racism, not class war. If you start a class war thread, I'll be hapy to join you there.
sadie_sabot is offline  
#373 of 377 Old 06-10-2006, 10:00 PM
 
BelovedBird's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2002
Location: HOME!! Northern Israel
Posts: 3,505
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Sadie

Twilight- I think it is quite disrespectful to be BLIND to others' differences. You prefer to imgine that everyone is just like you?? Why is that okay?

Mom of 5 boys- 13, 10, 8, 2 : and newbie Aug. 24th, '09 . babywearing advocate . Cook, baker, homemaker, wife to a man with another woman's kidney (live altruistic, unknown donor).
BelovedBird is offline  
#374 of 377 Old 06-11-2006, 12:02 PM
 
twilight girl's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: Costa Rica
Posts: 2,531
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by BelovedBird
Twilight- I think it is quite disrespectful to be BLIND to others' differences. You prefer to imgine that everyone is just like you?? Why is that okay?
I think you misunderstand my meaning about being blind. I absolutely did not say that we are blind to people's differences. In fact, I think I said that we celebrate difference, as differences are what make us all unique, interesting and special.

What I mean by being "blind" is that we don't choose or reject friends based on color, race, religion, politics, sexual orientation, etc. I don't seek out a person and try to make a friendship just because is, say, Japanese. Nor would I reject striking up a friendship because someone is christian and I am atheist.

Being blind (in my usage) only means that. You either hit it off with a person or you don't, and I don't try to stack my friendship deck with certain people just for the sake of a diverse portfolio of friends. If my friends are black, gay, Arab, Lutheran, Japanese, etc., it's because of who they are as people, not BECAUSE they are black, gay, Arab, Lutheran, Japanese. Of course, cultural, religious, political, sexual differences are all part of who we are, and part of what makes us interesting as people. Therefore it is a big part of what makes people interesting to us, and therefore why we develop a good rapport.

All I mean, is that it doesn't matter to me if you are mostly like me, or not at all like me. If we get along well, and have a good rapport, then we will become friends. If we don't, we won't. And your color, religion, nationality, etc., really don't come to bear.

Don't know if I explained that well or not. Yesterday was a fine example. Met a christian woman, with whom I had a lot in common. She was very sweet, and we got along nicely (except for the constant suggestion that I should find a good church, and seek out Jesus through Bible study). Now, I feel that she and I could actually be friends, despite this difference. I don't try to talk her away from Jesus, and as long as she agrees to stop trying to talk me into Jesus, I think we'll be fine. But I wouldn't reject a friendship with her just because she is christian. I am blind to that (in my meaning of blind).

Judi
twilight girl is offline  
#375 of 377 Old 07-13-2006, 01:30 PM
 
member's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2002
Posts: 2,971
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Way back on page 11, there was discussion of whether or not to buy media materials produced by a white person about another race/culture/ehnicity.

I will only speak to Indigenous peoples' literature here. Many think Barbara Kingsolver and Tony Hillerman are wonderful examples of white folks "getting" American Indians. But they're not. White people in America know Indians in one way - as colonized peoples. So, even if it seems so anti-racist, it is still a colonial tale.

Some people are okay, with that, and eh, read/buy what you wish, but Indigenous people have been saying this for quite a while, Sherman Alexie the most prominent of us.
member is offline  
#376 of 377 Old 07-13-2006, 03:56 PM
Banned
 
boongirl's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: a place where freedom lives
Posts: 4,636
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Selu

Some people are okay, with that, and eh, read/buy what you wish, but Indigenous people have been saying this for quite a while, Sherman Alexie the most prominent of us.
good point
boongirl is offline  
#377 of 377 Old 07-13-2006, 04:12 PM
 
lucyem's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Posts: 2,263
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I have 4 instances in my life that stand out. The first was in college. I asked my boyfriend what he did for Christmas. He laughed and said he was Jewish. We had been dating for over 4 months and he just assumed I knew because he had a very Jewish name. I having never been exposed to anything but "everyone is created equal" was clueless. I have since come to discover some people think my cluelessness is racist.

My second exposure to racism was also in college. I had 2 friends who were african american. I would sit with them at meals. I was the only white person at the only african american table in the cafeteria. I was shuned by some people at that table because I was white. I was shuned by some white students because I sat at that table.

A couple of years ago I watched a show on tv about a hospital in inner city LA. They got on the racist subject as most patients were not white and the lack of funding issue. What was interesting was listening to the people being interviewed. A white woman was saying it did not matter who you were or your background it did not matter to her. Then an african american man very angry that these white people would discredit his heritage as it was part of himself. I realized there was a lack of communication going on. In an attempt to not be labeled racist we so often say "it does not matter". Yet to the person in question their heritage "does matter" as it makes them who they are. I started paying attention to this and I realized it does not matter the race/heritage/sexual orientation etc but that people want to be liked for who they are. And yet so many "WASPs" for want of a better way to say it say things like "it does not matter to me if you are........" I do not believe they are discrediting the heritage, I used to say this the same way myself, yet it sounds like they are. I think we all need a better way to say we do not make prejudgements about you because of your race/heritage/sexual orientation. Does that sound right? What about a better way?

I am presently in a new experience with racism. One I am not sure how to handle. Our babysitter is German and should go home next month. Only she fell in love with a young man here. They are planning on getting married so she can stay. He has no money, no job, no apartment etc. He is on a full college football scholarship. They want us to sponser them and put them up in our guest cottage. We have serious issues with him. We had no issues at first, had him over to dinner etc. But a year ago after they became engaged he cheated on her. Not just with one woman, but several. She showed me his email and he is a member of every match.com type site I can think of and the emails he was sending to women....well I was more then shocked. In the process he also gave her herpes. Of course it ended up being "her fault" and now they are together again. She does not trust him, he calls her at least 5 times a day while she is working, telling her where he is. We have tried repeatedly to discuss this with her and we get no where. What concerns me is that in a 5 minute conversation he can drop the word racist about 2-4 times per minute. He is african american. "they will not give me a job at Wendy's because they are racist. They will not give me a job at the shoe store because they are racist. I cannot pass english class because the professor is racist. So and so hates me because he is racist." His comments are now coming out of her mouth. She is accusing everyone of being racist and to blame in all his problems. This has got my husband and I a little bit concerned. IMO this is racist. I am not denying this young man has run into racism. But to spend your life accusing everyone of racism seems horribly negative and just as racist. And then the fact that I do not think he is the smartest guy around and I do believe that may be more of the issue with his jobs and professors. Argh. I am afraid as soon as we refuse to help her we will be considered racists. No we have serious issues about the herpes, the very good chances of future cheating, the fact she is constantly paying for everything, he calls her up and she ends up sending him western union payments.

My mother has an african american boy in her art class. One of many. A wild out of control child with many many detentions and behavior issues that come up. Every time the father storms into the school saying the school is racist and that he will sue. And the child learns his behavior is not wrong but the problem of the "racist" teachers. But anyway I digress.

You know at first reading comments about authors writing about other ethnic groups as being able to totally understand the ethnic group my first thought was well why not. But then I thought about it from another angle. I am a woman and I often have a hard time reading books about women written by men. (kind of like seeing a male gynechologist) Maybe they do a great job, but until they live the experience they cannot fully understand. Coming in at page 19 here I apologize if this has already been said.
lucyem is offline  
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Drag and Drop File Upload
Drag files here to attach!
Upload Progress: 0
Options

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the Mothering Forums forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.
User Name:
If you do not want to register, fill this field only and the name will be used as user name for your post.
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.
Password:
Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.
Email Address:

Log-in

Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.



User Tag List

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page


Forum Jump: 

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are Off