Why is race such a taboo subject?

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posted on Apr, 18 2006 @ 03:36 PM
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posted by Ceci: “It's hard not be pessimistic when it’s a positive discussion about race. I too wish that others would join in because it would bring a different thread to the fabric of the discussion. It makes me sad to count all the threads that demean other races while there is one that features an open discussion, no one wants to put their two cents in. So, I'll just ask more questions to see if someone can respond: What questions about another race would you like to know the most - if you could ask them? I'm too decent a person to do that. [Edited by Don W]


The 1954 Brown v. Topeka Board of Education case set aside (overruled) the 1896 Plessey v. Ferguson case out of Louisiana. The Plessey case continued in the genre of the infamous 1857 Dred Scott v. Sanford case out of Missouri which is credited with precipitating the Civil War. See at www.pbs.org/wgbh/aia/part4/4h2933t.html

Brown also overturned the Jim Crow System that had grown up in the south. On my first visit to Hilton Head, do you know what I said to my wife? I said, “This is Apartheid North.” Even in the names of Hilton’s subdivisions racism was present. They called them “Plantations.” Do you understand what that convey’s to blacks? HH was divided into 12 plantations, gated communities - no sightseeing blacks here - and 1 measly public beach. Not fit for my dog to poop in. That met the law. I’d say to heck with that law and the lawmaker who made it.

Jim Crow? Maintained by 3,000 Lynchings. Mob murders. 15,000 Beatings. Only those so severe the victims never fully recovers. 50,000 Burnouts. All the possessions of a lifetime, so painfully accumulated, Old pictures, letters, clipping of hair, mementoes of good times, all gone. Burned in a few minutes by a sheet wearing mob. There are no accurate records. That is another way minorities are marginalized. They called it Jim Crow.

Jim Crow? Deadly? I offer you June 12, 1963, Jackson, MS, Medgar Evers shot to death by a sniper. Sept. 15, 1963, 4 young black girls bombed to death in Birmingham. Aug. 4, 1964, 3 more lynchings, Chaney, Goodman and Schwerner, 3 voter registration workers, murdered in Neshoba County, MS, by lawmen and Ku Kluxers.

Where was President Eisenhower between 1954 and 1957 when he finally (and reluctantly) ordered the Army to block Orval Faubus in Little Rock? Where was Ike when we needed him? I take the position that if Ike had spoken out a day or two or even a week after Brown, America would have been an entirely different place. But I regret Ike’s attitude was best expressed in his own words, “My greatest mistake was the appointment of Earl Warren to the Supreme Court.” Hmm? Racism is indeed, everywhere!

We would not be having this conversation if the white population - both north and south but mostly south - had obeyed the court’s decision and complied with the law as laid out in the Brown case. In my state of Ky, very typical of white America, the white’s at first flat out refused to obey the law. Suddenly conservative Christians split. The new Christian Academy spring up around the county. Denying they were racially motived, they added lying to their sin of hypocrisy.

The new schools were abusive of the children compelled by their parents to attend them, but the enforcement authority dared not close the ill-equipped facilities and inadequately trained instructional staff. A lot of money was made by sharp opportunistic operators in those early years, and a lot of it was stolen. But that’s life. In Christ.

By 1962, the blacks were tired of waiting for the Louisville School Board to desegregate the schools. The closest the Board ever got was debating whether to implement desegregation one year at a time beginning at Grade 1. Disgusted, lied to, deceived, hoodwinked and treated as fools by the whites, in 1962, the black community brought suit to enforce the 1954 law. Something they should not have had to do. The executive branch is the enforcing branch. Just read the oath of office.

Two years later - 1964 - the local Federal judge ordered bussing. You should have heard the howls and seen the crocodile tears shed by the whites. “It’s a waste of badly needed money.” “it is dangerous.” “It takes up too much time.” Now the blacks did not say anything because, for one reason, blacks had been bussed for decades.

The black school system - separate but equal - had only 7 elementary schools, 2 middle schools and 1 high school for the whole city. Blacks numbered about 20% of the school population. About 7,500 students. All references are to my city of Louisville. But I tell you it is typical of white America.

The whites never gave up. Today, racial enrollment is calculated or counted by clusters of schools around a high school, several middle schools and a lot of elementary schools. If the cluster race ratio is OK , then the whole cluster is said to be in compliance and excused from busing.

Inside the schools, however, it is an entirely different world. The overall black population has grown to about 30% of the city. Deducting the white flight and Christian racists children, the blacks now make up 40% of students attending public schools. But in the individual classroom, you will fined most classes have 90% white and the others are 90% black. It is called “tracking.” Segregation is effectively back inside the school buildings again. As they say, figures don’t lie, but liars figure.

Every public issue in America begins with race and ends with race. We can’t get over it. Richard Nixon exploited racism in 1968 when he decried busing as “wasteful” of public funds. Ronald Reagan exploited racism in 1982 when he invited the Southern Democrats (called boll weevils) over to the Republican Party where they found a welcome home and have managed to take over the south because GOP equals Racists. Recall Jesse Helm's Pink Slip ads.

Dems sure as heck are not perfect, but Dems did not do that! Dems seek judges who will support and enlarge racial justice in America. Republicans seek judges who won’t, like Clarence Thomas, who I call a cannibal because he “eats” his own kind to get ahead in whitey’s world. Recall Bush 41 and Willie Horton. Recall Bush 43 and his uncritical involvement with the Born Again Evangelicals? Everyone knows what that means in racial terms.

Now, Ceci, is this what you wanted to hear?

[edit on 4/18/2006 by donwhite]




posted on Apr, 18 2006 @ 04:19 PM
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Um, donwhite, the quote is from me: Ceci (ceci2006).

I will answer your comments as well as others later, though. Since I'm a little busy.
But, nevertheless, all of these questions are good ones. And I want to take the time to give them thought before I put my two cents in.

Btw, thank you, HarlemHottie for having the courage for helping to take a stand in the McKinney Thread. I appreciate what you said.

Ceci



posted on Apr, 18 2006 @ 04:26 PM
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Originally posted by missed_gear

Well basically because it is a very easy claim to make…



I am not sure how much clearer I can get than that^^^^^

Anyone can claim this...people of African, Hispanic, Asian, European decent etc... because you do not have to be "full blooded"...yes, you need to prove it.

And to the rest…I was really addressing this:


Originally posted by danigirl1974
Why is there no other race of people that must QUALIFY for affirmative action?


You are not ‘qualifying’ if you are already ‘qualified’, I was merely adding to support other reasons for requesting this heritage information suggesting that all requests are not necessarily negatively racist in intent or origin.


Originally posted by Benevolent Heretic
My guess is that Native Americans are required to have proof of heritage because it's not easy to tell their heritage by sight. Also, I believe there are extra benefits that Native Americans qualify for beyond being labeled as a minority. That's all just a guess, though.





Originally posted by donwhite
Now, Missed Gear, is this what you wanted to hear?


The quoted statement was not mine, thank you though.




mg



posted on Apr, 18 2006 @ 10:37 PM
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First of all, I would like to say welcome and thank you to all you for contributing your thoughts. I found them to be especially important because they bring up issues that have been perculating under the surface for a long time. I also have to state that by the concerns posters in this thread have brought up, that race is important and is needed to be addressed.

I just want to say one disclaimer: To be fair, I want this discussion to be open and frank because people need to hear these issues discussed out in the open. I did not start this thread to blame anyone for anything. Instead, I wanted the thread to be a "round-table" discussion about how people feel about race. I don't want people to fight it out like in the immigration threads. But it is fair to address concerns affecting race and racism because these things are not issues that "happen in our heads". They indeed do occur.


I would like to address some compelling statements that caused me to think today about the progression of race and racism:



Originally quoted by seagull
Each case should be judged separately, as it comes up. In that I do agree with you, but alot of people find it easier to use the stereotypical to judge all cases "equally". I find myself doing that sometimes, a kneejerk reaction to events going on around me. This is illustrated very clearly in the ongoing immigration debate. Kneejerk reactions all over the place. This is where the stereotyping of people does its most grievous amount of damage. Heat of the moment actions, with sometimes regrettable consequences.


Everybody does--especially when the issue of race becomes heated. One of the main problems about discussing race as a whole is when people succumb to the "knee-jerk" reaction. It happens to me when I think about whether something happened to me because I am African-American, or whether something just happened. Period.

But as I grow older, I am slowly learning to grasp judging things by a case-by-case basis. In that way, it takes me a while to think about the situation. I am not as quick to react to reading every situation as "racist". But then, in my neck of the woods, everything is subtle. People do not come out and say it as they would in other places. So you have to develop that heightened sensitivity. In the South, where my extended family resides, things there are different.

Despite the fact that "segregation" is over, it still happens--as mentioned by donwhite. Blacks reside in their area. White reside in their place. Never do they mix--except in business situations. The surrounding, newer communities involve a multi-cultural setting--where my younger extended relatives live. But the older ones still live in a Black area and feel comfortable there because they have lived through the ugliness of what the South had to offer back in the day and don't want any more of it.

And people sometimes, to avoid trouble, have to "keep their place". Now that, really bothers me. I've learned to speak up when I have to--if situationally, the occurrence confirms that "racism" has taken place. But, here again, you have to pick your battles. I too believe it is regrettable that things get blown out of proportion and it turns up the volume on a present situation. But if you do get into one of those situations, you have to pull yourself out of it for a moment and think. And then, you have to talk it out with the person and resolve the situation before it comes to blows, so to speak.


Originally quoted by danigirl1974
That doesn't clarify in my mind why Natvie Americans are the only group required to provide such documentation. That's great that the employers get a break for hiring Native Americans. Is that not true for every other member of a minority? Why aren't Vietnamese or Hispanics required to register or prove their minority status? I'm just saying, if you are fighting for equal rights, fight for everyone. Not only one group because it affects you personally. In that stance, you are fighting racism with racism.


I believe that you must fight for everyone because if you hold one group down, you hold us all down. And more than African-Americans (and we've had four-hundred years of our share, believe me), Native Americans have received the brunt of discrimination and colonization. And still do. Although I tend to believe that you have to fill out the paperwork in order to prove heritage, I still think that it isn't fair that you have to undergo all these things to provide documentation. I'm sorry to say, it's as if America is treating Native Americans as aliens in their own land--especially when forcing tribes to live on reservations--some of which is on arid land.

That's why it makes me furious when people bring up this "Manifest Destiny" mess. What gives a group of people the right to take another's land because "God" tells them to? It is the same reasoning that a group of people would take another group of people over, enslave them, take away their native culture, take away their rights and then imbibe them with the "right" culture and "Godly" belief system in order to "bring them out of their heathen ways".

African-Americans and Native Americans have a lot in common. Our histories intermingle with one another in many ways.

In the quest for civil rights, we all have to stand up for one another. That's the way that I see what you are trying to say.



posted on Apr, 18 2006 @ 11:21 PM
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It seems to me we have the Wrong Proportion of African Americans in America. In states where the AA population is low, like 1% of less, there is no race problem. It is my theory that up to 5% African American population causes no discernable dissension. I hate to keep saying “problem” as if it was the AA’s problem when it is in fact the white person’s problem but manifested on the black person.

Over 5% up to about 40% and you have the situation we have in America. Pervasive racism but now, politely inflicted. If the black population is around 50% of more, there is no “problem” between the races.

Imperfect explanation, but you may get my drift.



posted on Apr, 18 2006 @ 11:37 PM
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For the sake of breaking up my comments, I would like to address donwhite's comments separately because if I included them in the post above, I think all of you would be scrolling down to the end of the page!



Originally quoted by donwhite
Every public issue in America begins with race and ends with race. We can’t get over it. Richard Nixon exploited racism in 1968 when he decried busing as “wasteful” of public funds. Ronald Reagan exploited racism in 1982 when he invited the Southern Democrats (called boll weevils) over to the Republican Party where they found a welcome home and have managed to take over the south because GOP equals Racists. Recall Jesse Helm's Pink Slip ads.

Dems sure as heck are not perfect, but Dems did not do that! Dems seek judges who will support and enlarge racial justice in America. Republicans seek judges who won’t, like Clarence Thomas, who I call a cannibal because he “eats” his own kind to get ahead in whitey’s world. Recall Bush 41 and Willie Horton. Recall Bush 43 and his uncritical involvement with the Born Again Evangelicals? Everyone knows what that means in racial terms.

Now, Ceci, is this what you wanted to hear?


donwhite,

What you said is an indictment on a system set up by standards in place based on racism. It is good to remind people exactly how it got that way--especially when it is affected one particular institution, the schools. What is even more, I agree with you that it bothers me out east when names like "townships" and "plantations" are used because it still holds the affects of racism in place.

Your post also shows me the hypocrisy that happens when people--who love Christ--continue to engage their fears and prejudices to keep a color-based social caste in order. And when that racism is a part of the law, then it lacks a conscience of the highest order. You can see the same strains when discussing illegal immigration. In this issue too, it is what you said: it begins with race and ends with race.

Now, if that was the type of stuff I wanted to hear, I would say that it helps contribute to the conversation of race. I believe that whenever the "race card" is cynically dealt, the detractors forget that America has had a long history of racism in the midst of race-relations. And, to put it more appropriately, some Whites would like for it all to go away, wrapped up in a neat little package to be put out in the trash.

And yes, segregation continues to happen because of an unwillingness to face the issue that America is a multi-racial, multi-cultural place. And when race is brought up under these instances, it is under the act of "self-preservation" in which the most blatant of racist actions take place. That figures into the state, if not socially-sanctioned division between schools. And that is certainly a shame, because when you are in a school with different cultures, religions and races, you learn quite a lot about the real world. But for some, it is easier to forgo these attempts to keep "self-preservation" in place.

That is one of many things that has caused me anguish.

The problem is that racism does not go away. After forty-odd years of civil rights legislation, there are some groups of people who find it still bothersome to comply. And they willingly are complicit in the hinderance of keeping another race out of the system through providing social constraints and remaining complicit in keeping up the racial caste system. Any highlighting on prejudice on these terms are immediately seen as an "infringement" upon their rights. Any person of color who calls attention to this caste system, is seen as "uppity".

The only thing I can say here to address your comments is what the luminaries James Baldwin and Richard Wright said in their works about race: that racism is a factor that needs to be dealt with inside some segments of the White Community. I would also add that it is fair to say that racism needs to be addressed in all of our racial groups. But some Whites, more than others, need to overcome "racial denial" and be honest with their feelings, coming to terms with social, racial and political history. They need to take a good look in the mirror.

I don't mean to be insulting with what I said above. But, it needs to be said. I do not want this thread to turn into a "blame White people" thread, but it is one of the things that have been on my mind for a long time, along with other questions.

Is racism based on a "culture of Whiteness" or is it just a factor of social and political history?

P.S. That's just my next question, but anyone, please ask a question they want to know about another race, if they like--if they are curious about something.



[edit on 19-4-2006 by ceci2006]



posted on Apr, 18 2006 @ 11:40 PM
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The thing that bugs me about race in this community is that there are a lot of folk here that don't know they are racist. And, then comes the beef cause if you say something racist I'm going to tell you its racist...take offense if you like, you still need to know. There are too many folk that don't know they are racist out here claiming they love everybody....then comes the but..."but black folks need to" or "we all one human race..but Jesse Jackson"... "but Rev. Al"... "but the race card". If we are all truly one human race in your mind then one black person's issues is just one human with issues not a whole community of people that look like him/her. So all your but's are just racism.

This race card thing: It doesn't exist. There is no race card. When I hear someone claim a black person is using the "race card" I assume that person has some issues with the existence of racism in our society. Johnny Cochran played the "race card" and OJ got off. Now, they sum every issue of racism up with two lil words "race card".

"Race card."
Case closed.
"Race card."
Case closed.

I've come to believe its comforting for some white people. And I would say do what you do, have your lil "race card" safety blanket so that you can deal, but its insulting. Please think, if someone discriminates against you...like Cynthia McKinney felt she was put out because her race and her sex...who is going to say it? The cop? No. She is the one that felt it, so she has to be the one to say it. Then, in comes the race card crowd to close the case so their pretty lil world doesn't get disturbed. "We are all still humans...nothing to see here folks just a woman playing the 'race card'." This is not a game therefore there aren't any cards. Being pulled out of your car and sat down on a curb by the police is not a game. Being searched and having your stuff rummaged through is not a game. Being followed around a store is not a game. So, maybe you guys are comforted, by two lil words but I am not. Racism aint a big deal until it happens to you. I look to listen because I know it's real. I know the "race card" doesn't exist.

And maybe I'm just picking to pick, but no one wants to have an honest discussion about race. If we did want to have a real discussion there wouldn't be terms like "race card" in our vocabulary to make us all feel better. Shoot, my sister calls me a bigot all the time cause I don't like things that are made in China...so be it. I can say it and not feel bad because I know asians are beautiful to me, but everything I buy that was made in China breaks. Plus, buy american and americans work...that's the bottom line so I look to buy american first. Call me a bigot or xenophobe sticks and stones.


Let's acknowledge our prejudices instead of trying to roll up in something warm and fuzzy because all that's doing is covering it up. We need to be real with ourselves. Don't run around saying we are all one human race...but Jesse Jackson and Rev. Al...but the "race card". If it wasn't prejudice why would you need to cover the statement with some we are the world bull crap.

Now to edit so that I sound rational...done and packaged for pts consumption.



posted on Apr, 19 2006 @ 08:58 AM
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I haven't been spending as much time in the ATS world as usual, so I'm kind of dipping in and out of this thread, but I just wanted to say, I love the stuff being said here, and I co-sign what Ceci and Saphronia are saying, 110%.

I think black people ask themselves these questions all the time but, in the absence of any white people, those talks generally end with a whole bunch of maybe's.

ATS is a superior site because it brings such a diverse group of people together, so we have a chance here to come to some new conclusions. In the relative anonymity of the internet, people are much more likely to say what they really think, giving us a chance to talk it all out.



Great thread.

Oh, and I also wanted to agree that its unfair that Native Americans have to do all of that genealogy stuff. That's ridiculous. Its bad enough to have been squeezed onto the reservations. I was lucky enough to go to a college with a large Native population, and the stories I heard let me know that the hand they've been dealt is a harsh one.



posted on Apr, 19 2006 @ 09:47 AM
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I do believe the race card exists, just as I believe the sex card and the gay card and lots of other cards exist. I also believe that when someone feels something happened to them because of their race, sex or sexuality, it's not necessarily the card being pulled. And I think that's a cheap way to explain away feelings of prejudice or bigotry. To say, "Oh, she's just pulling the race card", without further investigation and analysis - is a cop out. It's for people who don't want to deal with the issues of racism.

Like Saphronia said, if SHE truly feels she's being discriminated against because of her race, then there is no card.

However, in my experience, there are plenty of cases where people will use their own race, sex or sexuality as an excuse for being a butthole and not being accepted by others.

Just one example: I was at an outside party. There was a basketball hoop and I was shooting some hoops. A young (black) man walked up and asked "Where's you get the ball"?

I smiled, shot and said, "Who wants to know"? (I was being flirty, I thought.)

He scowled at me, called me a name and said, "Forget it" and turned to walk away.

I said, "Heyyy! What's up with that"?

He replied, "You treat me like that just because I'm black and you want to know what my problem is"?

I called after him and even walked toward him to explain, "Hey, man, I didn't mean anything..." but he was having nothing of it. He turned and walked away.

I STILL (20 years later) feel terrible guilty for that scene. Even though I wasn't discriminating (I was at the party with my black boyfriend, for Christ's sake!) I felt terrible for not being more sensitive to his 'blackness' even though I know that's BS.

I consider that this man, a chip on his shoulder the size of a brick, assuming he was being discriminated against, pulled the race card because he had been a butthole to me and used the card so as to make me the baddie instead of him. And it worked.

In the above scenario, the "race card" wasn't pulled when he felt he was being discriminated against. He was hurt, felt terrible, it was clear. The race card didn't come out till AFTER he had called me a name. After he had been a butt to me, he used his race as an excuse to be a jerk.

I understand and respect that some of you don't think the race card exists, but I respectfully disagree. I don't think it's used often, certainly not as often as is charged by any means, but I think it's there. As is the sex card, and many other cards.

As regards the Cynthia McKinney case, I wasn't there, I can't really make a judgment as to whether I think she really felt discriminated against or not. I just know that I wish she had left the "black woman" defense completely out of it. I think publicly making race and sex the issue opens the door for people to charge her with pulling the race/sex card, whether it's true or not.

And if she did punch the cop, and then used her race to explain it away? Well, I can't muster up a lot of respect for her. But I'm certainly not saying she did and I'm CERTAINLY not claiming "case closed".

Racism exists. Sexism exists. Prejudice against other people exists. We need to learn to deal with it. I don't think they're going away, but talking about them is a Good Thing.



posted on Apr, 19 2006 @ 10:44 AM
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posted by Saphronia: “The thing that bugs me about race is there are a lot of folk here that don't know they are racist . . out here claiming they love everybody ‘but Jesse Jackson . . but Rev. Al’ . . So all your but's are just racism. Johnny Cochran played the "race card" and OJ got off. Now, they sum up every issue of racism with two li’l words "race card . . case closed.” (Well, maybe 4 words.) [Edited by Don W]

Last first. Johnny Cochran won the case for a variety of reasons. Listed in my order of consequence.
1) Judge Lance Ito was in way over his head.
2) Prosecutrix Marcia Clark was more interested in personal aggrandizement that in tending to legal business. I’m nasty, but here it is: Marcia got her job on her back, not on her feet.
3) OJ’s lawyers trapped Mark Furman in a lie. Everyone over 14 years of age knew white LA cops frequently used the “N” word. But if he would lie about that, then maybe he’d lie about other things. I used to be involved in the court system, and one maxim of trial lawyers was, Liars Lose.
4) The issue over the pictures of the bloody sock. The sock was “planted” but was it done carelessly or mischievously?
5) You’ve heard a lawyer is never to ask a question he does not know the answer to. Nor try an experiment he does not know the outcome of. Poor prosecutorial preparation led to the glove fiasco. Johnny Cochran took full advantage with the little but oh so poignant rhyme, “If it does not fit, you must acquit!”

Jury nullification? There is some evidence of it, but I must say, I’m surprised it does not happen more often. You don’t have to get that far in the OJ case. No's 3, 4 and 5 are more than enough for "reasonable doubt." Plus, prosecutors who think they have a slam dunk case are prone to look outside their own performance for reasons say excuses for losing the case. Jury nullification is easily believed by a white audience. But black audiences have “walked the walk” too often to put any confidence in nullification.

On leaders. Leaders need money. Ready cash. Recall that John Dean said Richard Nixon kept several million dollars in cash in the Oval Office safe and Nixon casually said ‘not to worry’ about money to pay off the burglars. He, Nixon, had ‘all he would need.’ Those statements are on the Nixon tapes.

So how is Jesse Jackson going to be a leader if, when as in the Duke U. Lacrosse team rape matter, he needs to fly to Raleigh? He must bring his “traveling” staff of maybe 5 or 6 assistants and hire Pinkertons to pull guard dutywhen they arrive. All on an hour’s notice. Have you priced 6 or 7 first class tickets lately? 4 or 5 hotel rooms? and etc. any leader must have access to ready cash.

If Jackson does not have ready money he can’t lead. What if Jackson had to call Warren Buffett or George Soros and ask for $50 grand advance? That won’t work, even though I have a high regard for both men.

Critics of what Jackson has done vis a vis money fall on deaf ears when it comes to me. His detractors say, "If you can keep him (and Rev. Al Sharpton) broke, they can’t lead!"

I agree with the rest of your post, Saphronia

[edit on 4/19/2006 by donwhite]



posted on Apr, 19 2006 @ 11:59 AM
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Donwhite.
GOP equals racist? I would say that those particular ads were playing to a wider audience then just "racist republicans" of which there are, no doubt, a number. But you are painting with an awfully broad brush, my friend, when you say GOP equal racist. The democrats, particularly just after reconstruction ended, were the ones who installed and enforced the segregationist laws the the South. I have no idea what political affiliation the judges, who gave us the infamous "Separate, but equal" ruling, claimed, but I would venture to guess it crossed party lines.

Your average Republican is no more racist than your average Democrat. Both can be virulently racist, or can be colorblind. Stereotyping does no one any good at all.

Saphronia.

Your point about the "...but Jesse Jackson is..." was well made. I don't agree neccessarily, but it is a point to ponder upon. Thanks for making it.

Danigirl.

It is unfair that Native Americans should have to "prove" who or what they are.
I've never been a fan of affirmative action. If you can do the job, and are qualified, you get the job, or can at least compete on an equal basis for it. Race, creed, or gender should have no place at that table.

Just a general observation.
There is, as Benevolent Heretic pointed out, a race card. It is used to excuse bigotry, both for and against someone(s).
Bigotry exists, it's all around us; we've all been touched by it in one way or another. I am not saying we've all been victimized to the same extent, that would simply not be true. Just that it has happened to all of us. A middle aged, approaching it anyway; white guy like myself isn't going to encounter it in anything like the amount a twenty-something black or hispanic male is going to, only an idiot would think that

We, here anyway, acknowledge that bigotry exists. In so doing, we give it less power over us and those around us. Calling it what it is helps, as long as we realize that hurling accusations of bigotry, without proof is very, very dangerous, and can bring about the very thing we rail against.

Ceci.

Looks like the thread has taken off. And you didn't even have to insult anyone
.



posted on Apr, 19 2006 @ 01:18 PM
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I was just telling my sister that white folk seem to try too hard, and the more they try, the harder black folk are on them. Not that racism is just a black or white issue, but after reading BH's post, it just made me think that its no wonder white folk had to invent the "race card". It let's them off the hook because we won't. We tend to hold them responsible for everything every racist white person has said or done to us. We come into every situation skeptical of the "type" of white person we are dealing with...because to be honest, we just don't know and experience tells us to be guarded.

Ah, I have so much to say but I'll have to come back because I should be studying for a microbio test...later.



posted on Apr, 19 2006 @ 01:31 PM
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posted by seagull: “Donwhite. GOP equals racist? I would say that those particular ads were playing to a wider audience then just "racist Republicans" of which there are, no doubt, a number. But you are painting with an awfully broad brush, my friend, when you say GOP equal racist. [Edited by Don W]


Maybe so, SeaGull. Maybe not. I will concede this much, that a lot of persons who label themselves as Democrats voted for Nixon, Reagan, Bush 1 and Bush 2. Those same people could have voted for Humphrey or McGovern. Neither were ever called “racists” to my best knowledge. Or, they could have voted for Mondale. Racist? Not to my knowledge. Or they could have voted for Dukakis. A racist? No one has said that to my best knowledge. Al Gore. John Kerry. Again, not to my knowledge in either case.

So you figure if a guy says he is -ANTI- racists, but then he votes for six Republicans in a row, all the time those same Republican candidates are employing racially divisive campaigns, what am I do say? “Oh, I’m sorry. I know you don’t mean it.” It’s just funny that way.


The Democrats, particularly just after reconstruction ended, were the ones who installed and enforced the segregationist laws the South.


Your reading of history is 100% on target. But you stopped reading too soon, S/G. In mid-1930s, FDR ordered equal wages for equal work - first time in America - at the construction site of Boulder Dam and on all future Federal contracts. A baby step, sure. But Herbert Hoover could have done that. But it never occured to him. Hmm?

Harry Truman, by Executive Order (it would not have passed in Congress) desegrated the Armed Forces in 1948. HST also demanded a civil rights plank in the 1948 Democratic Convention platform which resulted in the walk out of J. Strom Thurmond, then governor of SC, who formed the States Rights Party - Dixiecrats - and carried 4 states.

But the Southern Democrats saw the end coming. LBJ, a Southern Democrat amongst Southern Democrats, pushed the civil rights laws through a reluctant Congress. Ike could have tried, but he did not. Nixon, frankly, was OK but for his penchant to run a burglary ring out of the Oval Office. A no-no. Reagan killed the already sick labor unions - PATCO strike - and FREED the Democrats of their Southern baggage. Boll Weevils. One plus, one minus, in my book. So, how do you add this up? So how many “byes” should I grant the GOP, SeaGull? And for how long?

[edit on 4/19/2006 by donwhite]



posted on Apr, 19 2006 @ 01:38 PM
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Looking forward to hearing more from you, SAF, when you have the time.


I just wanted to add something about my own personal experience of racism against black people. I have said I dated a black man. Several, actually, but only one was a bonafide 'relationship'. He was from Africa, though, so he never experienced racism until he moved to the US as an adult. I found it interesting to look at things through his eyes and sometimes we'd mess with people just to see how they'd act.

We would go into a convenience store and go walking around the aisles, watching the reaction of the white cashiers. They'd be watching us real carefully straining their necks and 'casually' moving to put themselves in a position where they could 'keep an eye'.

And I know, not only were they afraid he would steal something, they didn't like me by association because I was a white girl dating 'outside my race'.

Then as we'd go up to the counter, they'd still have the suspicious scowl on their faces and then... he would speak. He had a lovely Ugandan accent that was really musical. And all of a sudden, the cashier's frown would turn upside down and they would just fall in LOVE with him, and ME TOO! Now, they would trust us with their first born because he wasn't a dirty American black person, but he was an intriguing foreign gentleman and I was his ladyfriend!



It was AMAZING to watch the transformation and it happened every time.



posted on Apr, 19 2006 @ 02:39 PM
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Originally posted by Saphronia
It let's them off the hook because we won't.


And I still don't feel 'off the hook'! But I know what you mean and I agree. Far too often, white people use the race card defense to let themselves off the hook for being prejudiced. I totally agree.

AND I think black people use the race card sometimes. And white men use the White Man card, and women use the Woman card. Sometimes. It does exist. It's a part of racism.



We tend to hold them responsible for everything every racist white person has said or done to us.


Why do you do that? That's the same as a white person holding every black person responsible for everything some black person has ever done to us. THAT is racism right there.
Regardless of whether it's toward black or white.



We come into every situation skeptical of the "type" of white person we are dealing with...because to be honest, we just don't know and experience tells us to be guarded.


I totally understand this and I think it works both ways. You put a white man in a black neighborhood and he's going to be skeptical, not knowing what 'type' of black person he's likely to be up against. The white man is guarded because of his experience or what he's heard or seen.

This is definitely a 2-way (or 3-way or 6-way) street.



posted on Apr, 19 2006 @ 03:17 PM
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first of all.

Race has no biological foundation in homo sapiens."Race does not exist". Race was this word/term brought up by the nazi party to refer to the jews"e.g jewish race".Yet countless scientific studies have showed that their is not enough genetic or biological backround of different humans for the term "race" to be of any meaning.

Yes there are human groups.Their refered to as ethnicities.
Ethnicity is a more appropriate term (most dictionaries have the meaning incorrect,this does not refer to racial groups,but cultural and common traits)

second of all.

We all here know that the term race really means subspecies,not groups with in a species.This is what the nazis ment by race."Sub species".
There are no sub-species of human.There were 1000`s of years ago with nethanderthal(excuse spelling) but not anymore.

Third of all.

The reason why race is not talked about more is because it hits some people personally here.

There are probably afew african america,hispanic,polynesian and asian members here who might take the term race as offensive.This is probably due to prior incidences."To understand a topic is to understand the people it will most likely effect"

Ethinicities,culture or maby human/ethnic groups are a more appropriate term.


I believe that this topic should be discussed more but the term ''race" is not an appropriate term,neither does have any biological references and scientific foundation to the human group.

On another side of this topic i have seen afew racist threads in this forum.Particularly in the UFO forum.This whole thing of "reptillians" has gone a tad too far.

I do not mind if people have their own opinions and own beliefs in E.T`S but when this whole topic of "reptillian blood" came up implying that blue eyed people superior because of "reptillian blood" not to mention that the africans of this world are of a different colour because they are ment to do certain things and they will be "wiped out because of their ill use in genetic breeding".This is the part where racism sneaks in.

People use these topics to spread their beliefs.Maby they dont know what their doing.As another member had mentioned,most members do not know their racist.And he/she is correct to an extent.But I believe that the mods should take alook into this problem.ATS is not a breeding ground for ill-social people,and i hope to see it continue as is.

[edit on 19-4-2006 by southern_Guardian]



posted on Apr, 19 2006 @ 05:49 PM
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posted by southern_Guardian: “First of all. Race has no biological foundation in homo sapiens. Race was the term brought up by the Nazi party to refer to the Jews, e.g a Jewish race. [Edited by Don W]


Well, actually “race” was invented in the 19th century when scientists really believed there were 3 or 4 separate and identifiable human races. White, Black, Yellow and maybe Red. There was a Sunday School song I sung as a child attendee that went like this, in part, “Red, yellow, black and white, they are precious in His sight, Jesus loves the little children of the world.”

I’m out of Sunday School now but they might still sing it? Jesus may love the little children of the world, but us humans don’t. 27,000 children die every day from lack of food. Hmm? Maybe they do not pass go, but will go straight to Heaven? OTOH, I have heard starving is a hard way to die. Say Hello, Jesus.


Third of all. The reason why race is not talked about more is because it hits some people personally. Ethnicity, culture or human ethnic groups are a more appropriate term. People use these topics to spread their beliefs. But I believe that the mods should take a look into this problem. ATS is not a breeding ground for anti-social people, and I hope to see it continue as it is.


That’s why I’m not applying for a job as Moderator.



posted on Apr, 19 2006 @ 07:05 PM
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Originally posted by southern_Guardian
Yes there are human groups.Their refered to as ethnicities.
Ethnicity is a more appropriate term (most dictionaries have the meaning incorrect,this does not refer to racial groups,but cultural and common traits)


OK. I can see how ethnicity is a more correct term, but I assure you, for the purposes of this discussion (and every discussion I've had about 'race') the terms race and ethnicity are synonymous.

If people know what I mean when I say race, which I believe they do, I don't see the purpose of changing to ethnicity. For one thing, we'd have to change the title to "Why is ethnicitism such a taboo subject"?

For another thing, I would bite my tongue far too much!




There are probably afew african america,hispanic,polynesian and asian members here who might take the term race as offensive.


I frankly don't have a lot of patience with political correctness and I'm not inclined to go chasing all over the English language looking for the perfect word that will offend no one. So, if someone is offended by the term 'race', when 99% of the people use it synonymously with ethnicity, that's not really my problem. I do my best to be about as un-racist as a person can get.

After all, when I speak of racism, "white" is one of the races.

As regards the reptilian/blood thing... Well, that's just ridiculous as far as I'm concerned. Sounds far too much like supremacy to me and I don't have any room at all for that in my life.

I would suggest if you run across particularly 'racist' sentiments, use the suggestion box and point it out to the mods. They don't always read every post in every thread and they count on the members to point these things out to them.



posted on Apr, 19 2006 @ 10:01 PM
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Originally quoted by seagull
Looks like the thread has taken off. And you didn't even have to insult anyone .


It has, and I have everyone to thank for that. It shows me that people do care enough to discuss these issues. And I am proud of that. I'm also glad that the thread has been civil. That's all a lady could possibly want!
A thread in which people can find a place in which they can ask all the questions about race they want without it getting ugly.

And of course, I appreciate you for committment and involvement.

As for everyone else,

I will have my comments about today's issues in my next post. But I just want to have a shout out to all the Latinos, Asians, Middle Easterners, everybody on this board. Come on. This board is international and mutli-cultural! Come on in and participate so we can learn more about you too!




[edit on 19-4-2006 by ceci2006]



posted on Apr, 19 2006 @ 11:17 PM
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Originally quoted by donwhite
It seems to me we have the Wrong Proportion of African Americans in America. In states where the AA population is low, like 1% of less, there is no race problem. It is my theory that up to 5% African American population causes no discernable dissension. I hate to keep saying “problem” as if it was the AA’s problem when it is in fact the white person’s problem but manifested on the black person.

Over 5% up to about 40% and you have the situation we have in America. Pervasive racism but now, politely inflicted. If the black population is around 50% of more, there is no “problem” between the races.

Imperfect explanation, but you may get my drift.


If you mean that if there should more inclusion of African-Americans, I think that should be the case. However, if there is a low percentage of African Americans in a particular state (such as Idaho or Iowa [folks, correct me if I'm wrong]), the problem is that the states in themselves have not been forthcoming to allow other people live there peacefully, let alone without racial contention. And to keep things status quo, they are not about to let that change through an aura of "intimidation"--quietly or overt.

My favorite travel stories is when I was going to Michigan, but I had to stay in Nebraska for a night. I went into a Mc Donalds to get something to eat. It was one of those small towns in which there were little to no Black people in them (well, none that I could see anyway). It was like your typical all-American town. Stars and Stripes hanging from every house and a church nearly on every corner. But when I walked into that fast food restaurant, every White face in the joint stopped their conversations and their eating and just stared at me. It was unnerving to walk in there because usually, you'd think nothing about getting your food and getting out of there. But this time, I felt like Cleavon Little in "Blazing Saddles" as he was approaching the little town he was to protect as sheriff.

So, if you think that problems are low in a town with little diversity, they still exist. And in my extended relatives' little towns in which they live, the Black people do have their moments of trying to integrate. Once, a cousin told me, that the people in the town she lived in tried to have a Juneteenth celebration (a celebration in which the state of Texas finally acknowledged Lincoln's Emancipation Proclamation--several months late. However, this is celebrated in many states amongst many enclaves of the Black community). And while they had the parade and the barbecue, some White people tried to put a stop to the proceedings. Things got ugly. But they had the celebration anyway. However, the celebration was pretty much treated by some enclaves of Whites in the same way that you see people complaining about the protesters for immigration waving Mexican flags.

The divisions in that area clearly showed the contempt for anything different. But that didn't stop everyone from having their "yellow ribbons" on the cars and the American flag pasted on their gun racks. Somehow, everyone in that little town knew that they were Americans. Still racism boiled under the surface. Even the churches demonstrated this fact. After all, some people say that Sunday is probably the most segregated day of the year. Whites went to their churches. And Blacks went to theirs, so on and so forth.

The more integration people of color experience with White people, the problems, I agree, are "politely inflicted". But, in this same way, this allows people more contact with each other. And within that contact, more people can approach each other and ask the questions that need to be asked. I believe that in a multi-cultural situation (with Latinos, Asians, etc.) can dampen the racial tension that happens in places of less diversity. But that is not to say that the tension disappears.

However, there are more venues in which these issues can be worked out and agreements can be made. But, there are still situations that in which the racism can be subtly played out. But also, there are more groups that integrate and live with one another. And that is more important to me. People do feel more comfortable with their own. But that cannot be the only way. I love going to different neighborhoods and mingling with other groups of people. I've learned quite a deal that way. And being in those situations, you learn customs as well as dispell stereotypes that the media might put up about different races.

The more multi-cultural a situation is, the more effort is made to make everything inclusive. It's not to say that there are growing pains. They exist. But, taking advantage of integration helps the progression of making the concerns of each race matter. And that's where my idealism lie--when I'm not truly cynical about the world.


Originally quoted by Saphronia
I was just telling my sister that white folk seem to try too hard, and the more they try, the harder black folk are on them. Not that racism is just a black or white issue, but after reading BH's post, it just made me think that its no wonder white folk had to invent the "race card". It let's them off the hook because we won't. We tend to hold them responsible for everything every racist white person has said or done to us. We come into every situation skeptical of the "type" of white person we are dealing with...because to be honest, we just don't know and experience tells us to be guarded.


That is true. I know in my own experience, my parents are especially protective of themselves as well as my sister and myself. And, because each of my nuclear family members have had our share of racist encounters, we have had to be guarded in society. Black people, in my experience, also even classify White people by "types" by the things they do or say. That is bad.

However, this contributes to the effort of not suffering "indiginities" in public. This adds to the observation some people perceive of Black people having a "chip on their shoulder". We do--because experience is a bitter teacher. African-Americans have endured and suffered a lot in order to be part of society. And we still fight for issues of equality because the efforts of "polite, but cold" racism still exist. You can see it in many laws passed by Congress. We know it and so do other people. So sometimes, we have to be vocal and let people know about it.

But in the same way, we, as Blacks, have to give people a break when they make an effort to try and build a bridge. There are some Black people who are very closed minded about other races. That could be stemming from too many bad experiences. That, I consider very sad. It hurts me especially when Benevolent Heretic tells her stories of trying to make connections. She was trying to make connections and was rebuked. What she experienced was unjust. And I am very sorry it happened to her. It demonstrates that Black people too have issues to work out as America struggles to become more inclusive for everyone.

And yes, we all have "racial baggage" that cannot be wrapped up neatly and made nicely. Bigotry is ugly and we have to confront it. Bring it out in the open. Make our feelings real and known. Allow others to address those feelings and intently listen. These are the things that test one's true character as a human being.


Orginally quoted by southern_Guardian
People use these topics to spread their beliefs.Maby they dont know what their doing.As another member had mentioned,most members do not know their racist.And he/she is correct to an extent.But I believe that the mods should take alook into this problem.ATS is not a breeding ground for ill-social people,and i hope to see it continue as is.


The problem is that people do use topics such as this one to spread their beliefs. And that is why I started this thread to address these issues. Despite how I feel about the state of things in America, I still have that glimmer of hope that people can get together and transcend the boundaries in their life. People need to talk with one another, ask questions as well as share things to sensitize others on their plight. As a result, we find that we are more alike than we are separate.

If this thread can be used to educate people about race and racism, then it has served its purpose. And if this thread can be used to get others to understand where they are coming from, I will be incredibly happy.

I see what you are trying to say. However, ethnicities and races are different things.


wikipedia.org
An ethnic group is a human population whose members identify with each other, usually on the basis of a presumed common genealogy or ancestry (Smith 1986). Ethnic groups are also usually united by common cultural, behavioural, linguistic, or religious practices. In this sense, an ethnic group is also a cultural community.



wikipedia.org
The term race distinguishes a population of humans (or non-humans) from other populations. The most widely used human racial categories are based on visible traits (especially skin color and facial features), genes, and self-identification. Conceptions of race, as well as specific racial groupings, vary by culture and over time and are often controversial, for scientific reasons as well as their impact on social identity and identity politics. Legal definitions, common usage, and scientific meaning can all be conflated, and care must be taken to note the context in which it is used.



An ethnic enclave might be like in Boston in which a lot of the Irish-Americans live. The Gullahs are Black and Seminole. They are an Black and Native American in their racial make-up. But they are a Black ethnicity which has its enclave in South Carolina. They even possess their own dialect.

Racial enclaves dictate to South Central or Boyle Heights in L.A or Third Ward in Houston. But inside these definitions, there are "national" enclaves--even though the same race inhabits them. For example, I would include Chinatown and Little Tokyo in San Francisco. Not to mention Koreatown in L.A.

But sometimes, it is naive to think that these problems do not exist. Biologically, we all may be alike. But because of those same racial "categories", social divisions based on the law and perception have been created. As a result, it is time to stop denial and do something beneficial that can help humanity get along with one another instead of fighting.


P.S. I give kudos to Benevolent Heretic, Saphronia, seagull and donwhite for their posts.





[edit on 20-4-2006 by ceci2006]





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