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What can we do to address race-relations and solve racism?

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posted on Sep, 12 2006 @ 03:10 PM
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Karby. Your thread fits perfectly. To say well done on your accomplishments as well as your parents would be to understate it. But I'll say it anyway: Well Done.

Immigrants of any sort can have it hard...that you overcame is testiment to you and your family.




posted on Sep, 12 2006 @ 03:34 PM
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karby, I enjoyed your post. I have the movie loading now, but my download speed is pretty slow. This may take a while...

I think there is definitely a perceived difference in the US between American blacks and African (or other foreign) blacks. Since you read the thread, you know of my experience of dating an African man for 1.5 years. He was also very dark and nappy.


I am a pretty light skinned white girl even though I do have brown hair and eyes and the sight of our hands and fingers interlocking made quite the picture for people to stare at as we walked down the street. I thought it was an exceptionally neat and beautiful picture, but many observers didn't see it that way. But when they heard him speak with his heavy Luganda accent, you could see their face brighten as if to say "Oh... I thought you were black! You're not black, you're foreign! Exotic! Welcome to America"! That always cracked me up. Especially since they had been following us around in the store watching our every move only moments before!


Interesting how he (and apparently you) were discriminated against by American blacks and he at least was much more accepted by American whites. Do you find that American white people are/were as critical of you?

I'm not surprised you suffered bigotry at the hands of your own race. People have a tendency to dislike or fear things that are different. And you were different. And kids can especially be cruel with their insecurities and honesty.

Do you feel that you and your family have moved through the sometimes stupid and ignorant American culture to make your place here and become successful? Are you glad to be here? For the most part, do you find people still as stupid as they were in your childhood or do they look beyond the tint of your skin and the texture of your hair to see the person that you are?


Originally posted by karby
well i don't know about all of them but i do know that 1 works at the pizzaria down the street from my school.


That's great !
I love it!



posted on Sep, 12 2006 @ 04:05 PM
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What can we do to address thread-relations?

Yes, I'm tired of the continous sniping, baiting, and labeling that seems to continue on this thread AND the steady stream of complaints regarding the conduct here toward other members.

Is there some way things can be toned down?

I don't want to isolate people, but I have seen some people get dragged through the mud using casual innuendo and after 40+ pages, it's tiring.

Either discuss the issue or don't. Please stop labeling people and being insulting or the next step will be to close this discussion.



posted on Sep, 12 2006 @ 04:15 PM
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"A Girl Like Me"

That was very good! I find it interesting that most of the input about skin color and hair straightener is coming from these girls' own families! Their aunts and mothers.

To tell you the truth, I never knew anything about hair straightening and skin bleaching until relatively recently. To me, and I'm sure to most white people, a black person is a black person. The darkness of the skin doesn't matter. I guess it matters to other blacks.

And the hair? I used to think some black women had naturally straight hair. And then when I learned it was straightened, I figured it was the same thing as me getting perms. A choice.

Not until the conversation here with HH did I realize that black women were doing this out of shame! And that black women were perpetrating this myth that straight hair is better than nappy. And that light skin is better than darker. PEOPLE! We don't care!
You're black, whether your hair is straight or not and whether your skin is light or dark. Some of us care that you're black, but we don't care what shade!


I just loved the first little girl in the film. She's not buying the myth that she has to be someone she's not to be accepted. Her mother tried to get her to change, but she stood up to her. Right on! That's what needs to happen.

And as regards not knowing where she came from... neither do I! One parent's ancestors came from Europe and the other's came from here. I have no idea which country in Europe or which tribe! Who cares? That doesn't mean I'm lost or don't have a heritage. I'm American! What does it matter where 5-6 generations back came from?

Who is teaching these young children 5-6 years old that it's better to be white (pick the white doll) than it is to be black? Shame on them! I can only hope that when these little kids grow up that they cast off the lies told to them by their parents. It's the parents' responsibility to instill in these kids pride in who they are. They're failing...

If TV has too many white people on it, then monitor their TV. Expose them to black role models, movies, stories. Let them learn that being black is a good thing. Not better or worse than being white.

Thanks karby. Excellent film!



posted on Sep, 12 2006 @ 05:57 PM
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karby,

Thank you for your contribution to this thread. You do not know how much I have been wanting a different voice to contribute here for a long time. I have read your other posts on various threads and found your work to be very fascinating and erudite. I am glad that you finally come to grace us with your presence. Welcome from the bottom of my heart.

You have answered my prayers in many ways. I've read your story and it touched me. The tale of your family strikes a chord with me. And I know that it couldn't have been easy. But still you continue to persevere.

I'm sorry that you have had to experience racism on both ends. That has to do with fear and being misunderstood on many levels. My brother, the only thing I can say is that even with all that, you have managed to articulate that a lot of us have been trying to say. You even kept on and continued to triumph. And congrats from being at Howard and succeeding. I have had a relative and friends graduate from there. I am especially proud of the successes of your father, mother and siblings.

Please continue to share your insight here with us because you bring a very different perspective here that can help compliment that we have been trying to articulate during this long and very complex thread.

I appreciate and am gratified that you have come. I will be very interested your insights and perceptions into this subject matter.


[edit on 12-9-2006 by ceci2006]



posted on Sep, 12 2006 @ 10:25 PM
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jsobecky, you said:


Originally quoted by jsobecky

When you randomly "enclose words or phrases" with quotation marks, it gives the impression that others have used those terms. Most often, nobody except you have used them.


You also said:


Originally quoted by jsobecky

What have I said to or about you? I challenge you.



All right:

Page 5


Originally quoted by jsobecky

Who would want to be "people like you"?

Hypocrite.


Now, I can truly put "hypocrite" in quotes.


Originally quoted by jsobecky

Or else please stop stalking me around from thread to thread, bringing up the past. I believe that is against the T&C. Yes, it is. Right here in this thread


Well, since I am "stalking you", why are you here on my thread? If memory serves, I started this thread independently of you and your input.

Page 4


Originally quoted by FlyersFan
My God ... she's a sick puppy. Go get some
help Ceci. You are in desperate need of it. I doubt you even know what reality
is anymore.


page 35


Originally quoted by FlyersFan
wrapped in passive/aggressive


Now I can put "passive/aggressive" in quotes.

Page 7

Speaking about democrats and social giveaways....


Originally quoted by FlyersFan
I don't think that the mexican-american population votes republican. I'll have to look up stats ... but I'm pretty sure it's like the black population...democrat and social giveaways.


Page 4


Originally quoted by FlyersFan
Go to college. Get educated.



Originally quoted by FlyersFan
Go to college. Get educated. I suggest sociology.
You might learn something. Then again ... considering
it's you ... you probably won't.


Well, can I please say "uneducated" in quotes now?

Page 19


Originally quoted by jsobecky

You lost a lot of your credibility as a serious thinker and poster. You lost a lot of your debating privileges, too, because most serious thinkers see you for what you are, and can't be bothered with you anymore.
[...]

You have an insecurity problem; you need acceptance to validate your life. "Let's see what the mods think about this" and "we think such and such is true" are very telling statements from you.

I don't dodge questions. At least not from serious thinkers.


Now that wasn't so civil, wasn't it? And that is why I lost a lot of respect for you then. That is also why I just cling to indifference. Now, I have little to no respect of you.

Please do not say I do not tackle the hard questions.


Please do not give me any more of your condescending advice. Never again.


Btw, follow your own advice when "putting things in quotes". Your last quote shows you not even adhering to your own words.




Note: Sorry, Mr. Zedd. It will never happen again. I will tone down the rhetoric and fully answer questions of a mannerable disposition made to me. And please do, read all of the threads linked in question.

It is also fair that you read the BBQ thread that started this off:

What are acceptable topics?



[edit on 13-9-2006 by ceci2006]



posted on Sep, 12 2006 @ 10:29 PM
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seagull: thank you. i really take that to heart.

Benevolent Heretic: thanks much. i was really nervous about writing. to answer your questions:

Interesting how he (and apparently you) were discriminated against by American blacks and he at least was much more accepted by American whites. Do you find that American white people are/were as critical of you?

i really don't know how to answer this, because i have experienced racism from both sides of the fence. i don't have an accent, so when meeting white (or any other for that matter) people for first times, they automatically assume that i am a Black American, and technically, they're right. by birth and place of upbringing alone, i AM a Black American. but all of that usually changes when they see or try to pronounce my name. usually just out on the street if i'm having a conversation i guess they'll just assume that i am simply black. i've met some very rude white people. i've also met some very nice white people. before the start of this semester, the dean of my department was white. a lot of the students that i work with who are over from GW are majority white, but they're pretty normal. then they're are those people on capitol hill. who will just look at you and automatically assume that you are up to no good. now i just classify people into two groups no matter the race. either you're an a**hole, or you're not. that's pretty much how i see everything now.


Do you feel that you and your family have moved through the sometimes stupid and ignorant American culture to make your place here and become successful?
for the most part, yes. my mom was telling us about a patient of hers. she still has a thick accent and this patient would insult her ethnicity any which way he could, telling her that she should go back to her country and whatnot. then 5 minutes later would be rejecting the other nurses on the floor trying to give him his medication. he'd be asking for my mom. his reason? "oh, she's a good nurse. at least she's nice to me." hmph. go figure.



Are you glad to be here?

oh i've been here my whole life
. the only one's who immigrated to this country are my mom and dad. the rest of us were born here. i've only ever been to Nigeria twice in my life. the first time was when i was very young, and my dad wanted to show us his village and his house, our relatives and peple and things like that. for the most part we stayed in Lagos at my uncle's house. it was pretty nice. we didn't really go anywhere in our own because we were too young. we did go to the beach like everyday though. the second time was back in yr.2000 when i was 16. going back a second time was a real eye opener. i had been listening to the whole "african = eww!" for so long, that it became what i expected to see, in spite of what i had experienced when i was younger. my cousin decided to teach me a lesson, and set me up. i was supposed to get my hair braided before coming back stateside. on the day that i was supposed to go to the "salon" my hair, not washed, was flying in every direction. i had worn a raggedy hole-y tshirt with mismatched flip flops and a dusty pair of beat up jeans with holes in the knees.

my cousin said: "you're going to go out looking like that?"
me: "well yeah. i mean all the salon is is just a mud hut with a washtub where everyone sits on the floor."
cousin: "..."
me: "what?"
cousin: "nothing. well if you're ready then lets go."
well, we got to the salon. which was on Victoria island. which is like the urban evquivlant of new york city, seriously. Victoria Island is like one if the more devolped parts of the country even though the rest of the rural areas still look like crap. when we got there, there was an actual salon. and the people inside were dressed like 'normal' teenagers. there was a TV in the left corner of the ceiling playing MTV videos. then i walked in and the whole place fell dead silent. well, except for the snickering and wispering, anyway. and the hair stylist wouldn't even touch my hair.
her first statement: "You just came from village?"
i was mortified. and my cousin in his car, laughing his a** off. and i deserved it. i had closed my mind and stereotyped in the exact same way in which other people had closed their minds to me. i will never do that again.


For the most part, do you find people still as stupid as they were in your childhood or do they look beyond the tint of your skin and the texture of your hair to see the person that you are?

well, for the most part, yes. i rarely run into people who would say and do the kinds of things people did to me when i was younger. and for those people who would, they're not worth dealing with anyway.

actually the last instance that i can remembering it happening so overtly was in the beginning of my 9th grade year. after St. Francis, i attended Eastern High, which is one of the most ghetto schools in the District. even after i left the 8th grade, the whole racial bullying thing still continued. and i was pretty shocked, because these were kids i didn't even know. it didn't stop until i actually snapped. after my teacher finished (struggling through my name) calling the roll, a kid decided that he was going to dump me back into the same hellish situation that i had just came out of. he starts saying things: "chi--chi what?!? chewbaka?! hey bushwhacker! do you eat monkey and elephant butts in africa?"" next thing i realize, i'm standing next to his desk, with him on the floor holding his nose. and honestly, that is all i remember. i don't remember ever hitting him. but i know i did. now i don't advocate violence in retaliation for verbal taunting, but honestly i simply couldn't take it anymore. that was it. after that, it just stopped. like grade and middle school, i didn't have any friends in high school. i was always alone. the only difference now was that at least i had peace.



posted on Sep, 12 2006 @ 10:44 PM
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Originally posted by ceci2006
karby,

Thank you for your contribution to this thread. You do not know how much I have been wanting a different voice to contribute here for a long time. I have read your other posts on various threads and found your work to be very fascinating and erudite. I am glad that you finally come to grace us with your presence. Welcome from the bottom of my heart.

You have answered my prayers in many ways. I've read your story and it touched me. The tale of your family strikes a chord with me. And I know that it couldn't have been easy. But still you continue to persevere.

I'm sorry that you have had to experience racism on both ends. That has to do with fear and being misunderstood on many levels. My brother, the only thing I can say is that even with all that, you have managed to articulate that a lot of us have been trying to say. You even kept on and continued to triumph. And congrats from being at Howard and succeeding. I have had a relative and friends graduate from there. I am especially proud of the successes of your father, mother and siblings.
sister, you mean. i'm female.
and yeah, Howard is a really great school. though i think i worded my post wrong. i don't have my degree yet, i'm still a year shy of getting it. but i am well on my way and i'm not slowing down.




Please continue to share your insight here with us because you bring a very different perspective here that can help compliment that we have been trying to articulate during this long and very complex thread.

I appreciate and am gratified that you have come. I will be very interested your insights and perceptions into this subject matter.


[edit on 12-9-2006 by ceci2006]


thank you ceci. i want to participate in a way that will make anything i contribute meaningful. i will try to address any of the questions i am able to answer.



posted on Sep, 13 2006 @ 12:21 AM
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karby, I give you my humble apologies for thinking that you are male. I never got any indication from your previous posts that you were female.

I haven't said I was female until I had said so. Still, those who don't know my posts very well, think I'm a guy.



Originally quoted by karby
Howard is a really great school. though i think i worded my post wrong. i don't have my degree yet, i'm still a year shy of getting it. but i am well on my way and i'm not slowing down.


That is good to hear. I'm rooting for you to succeed with your degree in computer science. Please continue to keep on working on it and always do your best. I'm sure that you will make a meaningful and important contribution in your discipline when you finally go into the marketplace, if not now.



thank you ceci. i want to participate in a way that will make anything i contribute meaningful. i will try to address any of the questions i am able to answer.


You're very welcome. I mean what I say when you came at the right time. I thank you from the bottom of my heart because this thread needs as many diverse voices as it can get. Your stories of your experience are excellent and very moving. And unfortunately, they highlight the continual problems which occur in our society, if not the rest of the world.

That is why people have to be aware of these issues and try to continue to make things better through dicussion and action.

Please contribute any way you can. I will be waiting and watching for your posts when you get a chance to write more about your experiences with race-relations.


edit: trying to rework question to karby; my earlier questions were answered.



[edit on 13-9-2006 by ceci2006]



posted on Sep, 13 2006 @ 12:34 AM
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BH, I gave you those links because they illustrate the false dichotomy and its RL effects on black people (like, not getting a job). If they were not clear enough for you, I found another that might be. I'm including excerpts, in case you don't have the time to read the whole thing- it's pretty long, but interesting. Again st Bipolar Black Masculinity: Intersectionality, Assimilation, Identity Performance, and Hierarchy. About the author.

This is from the introduction:

I contend that popular representations of heterosexual black men are bipolar. Those images alternate between a Bad Black Man who is crime-prone and
hypersexual
and a Good Black Man who distances himself from blackness and
associates with white norms
. The threat of the Bad Black Man label provides
heterosexual black men with an assimilationist incentive to perform our
identities consistent with the Good Black Man image.

The reason for bipolar black masculinity is that it helps resolve the white
mainstream’s post-civil rights anxiety.
That anxiety results from the conflict
between the nation’s relatively recent determination that some black men merit
inclusion into the mainstream and its longer-standing and ongoing belief that
most black men should be excluded. Bipolar black masculinity addresses that
anxiety by clearly demarcating which black men merit inclusion — only those
who fit the assimilationist ideal
.

...

...this Part of the Article details the two predominant images of heterosexual black men: the Bad Black Man and the Good Black Man. The first section describes key aspects of the image of the Bad Black Man. He is animalistic, crime-prone, and
sexually unrestrained. The second section explicates the message of the
image of the Good Black Man. He is supposed to distance himself from
black people and assimilate into white culture.
The third section argues
the images combine to provide an assimilationist incentive for black men
to emulate white norms.


I don't know why the lines are all messed up.
Anyway, he continues with a look at how this all works out in the corporate world.


My model of the behavior of corporate executives draws from the
identity performance school of jurisprudence. Briefly, it holds that, in
many workplaces, promotion is not based solely on the amount of
widgets you produce. Performance is often difficult to measure and
is instead judged based on a subjective evaluation that is influenced by
one’s relationships with higher-ups. For that reason, one’s reputation
within the institution, one’s attributed identity, may be as important to
advancement as one’s actual performance
. The minority employee will
attempt to create the impression that is rewarded by the corporation by
engaging in identity performance practices, such as sending emails at
late hours, in order to imply he is hardworking.

In order to succeed, black men will engage in behavior that conforms
to corporate expectations. It turns out that corporations provide
assimilationist incentives designed to make it likely that only those black
men who affirm white male norms will succeed. That approach is
successful, as those minorities who make it to the upper echelons of
corporations tend to adopt strategies that do not promote, and
sometimes even harm, the interests of their racial group
.


Everything I quoted is explained further. The document is 54 pages long.


Originally posted by Benevolent Heretic
That's not to say that the idea of "good blacks and bad blacks" that is supposedly the meat of this discussion was once a very important and ruling mindset in this country. But no more. If you believe that, you're living in the past.

You're being close-minded. Just because you don't believe in "good blacks and bad blacks" doesn't mean that other people don't. Those other people might, and very often do, have hiring and firing power. I understand that you would like to think all this nasty race business is in the past, but it's truly not.



I get the feeling sometimes that until EVERY SPECK of racism is blotted out, you (generic) will hold it against "white people".

It's not about "specks", BH, and I resent you characterizing it that way.



it's unfair and incorrect to say that the "dominant culture" ("white people") needs to change their definitions. We have. Join us, won't you?

Cute. Make a joke. I'm very disappointed in you.



posted on Sep, 13 2006 @ 02:13 AM
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karby

Great post, and finally (for me) a concrete example of what people are talking about when they speak of the black experience.

The black doll/white doll experiment was fascinating. I need to read up on that - how can children so young have their minds fashioned in that way? What does it?

I'm looking forward to reading more of your posts.



posted on Sep, 13 2006 @ 05:16 AM
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karby, now I can write you the questions I was thinking of. I apologize before, the last question I asked you was very nicely answered in your previous posts.

So, I would like to ask:

1)How you how you see race-relations as progressing from your own experience? Your perspective must be different knowing that your parents and relatives are from Nigeria. What do you think about the struggles of Black people in America and Africa?

2)What social reformer or civil rights leaders do you look up to for a source of inspiration?
(a few pages ago, we were having a debate between Dr. Rev. Martin Luther King and Malcolm X)

3)How do you read the issue of immigration in America, especially with the debate about an immigration bill being discussed in Congress? How do you perceive the different issues of immigration related to race and the national perception of it?

4)How do you see yourself within the Black community? You could either go by being a
"Nigerian-American" (by your ethnicity, parents' country of national orgin), or you could go by being an "African-American" (which is what some blacks use here as a way to describe yourself) or like you said before, you could be a "Black American". Would you use your "ethnicity" in trying to describe yourself (like some people I know would use "Jamaican American") as a black person? Or do you go with all three explainations?


Sorry to bog you down with these questions, but as I read your last posts, I became very curious about how you would view these issues since they have been discussed on the thread earlier. It would be fascinating to know how you deal with these issues on a daily basis in your area and at your college.

I know for myself, these three issues are very complex to figure out because each of these things have a wide variety of answers attached to them. Nearly forty pages later we are still trying to hash out these things.

Again, thank you for your posts. They were very informational and welcomed on the thread. I give you my gratitude again for you chiming in at this time.

[edit on 13-9-2006 by ceci2006]



posted on Sep, 13 2006 @ 09:20 AM
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I posted this on another thread, but after reading it through, discovered it very applicable to here as well.


Many times when conversing with people one is not so familiar with, like here, it is not so much what you say, as how you say it. Any fact can be put "out there" and worded in such a way as to inflame one side or another on any issue.

Even those of us that have formal education in debate, can fall victim to the emotional rise caused by information displayed in just such a way. We all are human after all and equally susceptible to all of the natural instinctive reactions to defend ourselves and our positions.



Balthazar Gracian once said, (rough! translation!!) "It is our appearance that matters most to others."

Using that standard, we may have wonderful intent in our hearts, and yet when we "spew" it out of our mouths, or on here, it inflames others. I'm not saying in anyway to not be "true" to your feelings, perceptions and opinions! Of course not. I am simply stating that there are always several ways of saying anything. You can get your point across and still word it to intentionally NOT cause an emotional response. On the other hand, you can do the opposite as well; I have personally found that in posting in an intentionally inflammatory manner, if your careful and discuss the issue, you can "slip" by the mods and "get away with it." I have also discovered that this is EXTREMELY counter productive to rational discourse.

In Police work there is an old adage, "It doesn't really matter what happened, it matters what's on the report. Now that is not as insidious as it sounds. You have to put the truth down, but again, there are also a number of ways to express that truth. Same applies here. Especially on a topic as heated as this one.

We all also know that there are several posters slipping in and out that post relevant material, but post it intentionally inflammatory. We all know who these are and hopefully ignore them.

I have learned much reading these different opinions here. I guess I had no clue that race could be discussed on so many varied levels in one forum. It is delightful to see it happen.
I always enjoy ceci's threads and the way she propagates her opinion. BH, Flyersfan and jsobecky are also favorite posters of mine. I've not gotten to know HH yet, but she seems very well informed and articulate. Lets all give them a chance and anytime we post, lets read over it a couple of times and think about the feelings of the person we are talking too.

Maybe we can word it a little different, get our point across and prevent anyone from abandoning the thread.

Just my thoughts....

Semper



posted on Sep, 13 2006 @ 09:41 AM
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Originally posted by HarlemHottie
BH, I gave you those links because they illustrate the false dichotomy and its RL effects on black people (like, not getting a job).


Like I said, I know it's an issue. I'm not arguing that. I just didn't see the particular "good/bad" (accommodating/autonomous) issue that Ceci talked about in those quotes. I believe you. You don't have to prove it further.

I think our only difference of opinion is in the 'saturation' of this mindset in American culture. And that the "good/bad" dichotomy applies to almost every group of people in the US.

I'm not denying that it exists. I believe it does. I'm just not sure that it's any more prevalent with blacks than with any other group of people.

Just a hypothetical example using your excerpt as a format:

In order to succeed, women will engage in behavior that conforms
to patriarchal corporate expectations. That approach is
successful, as those women who make it to the upper echelons of
corporations tend to adopt strategies that do not promote, and
sometimes even harm, the interests of their gender group.


That happens! Look at the women in high corporate and political positions. Many of them are virtually indistinguishable from their male peers as regards morals and values. Not to mention having distanced themselves from what is considered to be "feminine". And notice what they sometimes do to other women to get there.


Originally posted by HarlemHottie
The document is 54 pages long.


I honestly appreciate your research, but I'm not eager to read a 54 page document that says something that I already believe. Your quotes have been very helpful in pointing out your point. And again, I believe it exists.


Originally posted by HarlemHottie

Originally posted by Benevolent Heretic
That's not to say that the idea of "good blacks and bad blacks" that is supposedly the meat of this discussion was once a very important and ruling mindset in this country.

You're being close-minded. ... I understand that you would like to think all this nasty race business is in the past, but it's truly not.


(Emphasis added)

I'm not claiming that it's ALL in the past! This isn't a black-and-white situation! I may be being close-minded, and I'm sure I don't know the exact saturation, but I'm not claiming that it's all in the past. I never have. I'm claiming that it's not the RULING mindset. And until and unless someone can take an honest poll of all the corporations and political positions in America, I'm not sure we can say who's right on this one.



Cute. Make a joke. I'm very disappointed in you.


I'm very sorry that you're disappointed in me. Making jokes like that is part of how I communicate and keep things light and familiar. I am aware that sometimes it's considered inappropriate by others (like my husband, for example), but unfortunately, I often don't recognize it ahead of time and only become aware of its "biting" nature after I hear how it has impacted someone else and am forced to analyze it. But I promise I didn't intend to offend anyone and I apologize for the inappropriateness of it.

[edit on 13-9-2006 by Benevolent Heretic]



posted on Sep, 13 2006 @ 09:54 AM
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Just What The Members Ordered

Sorry for the off-topic commercial interruption, but there has been a change to the Slug-Fest forum, and I ask all members to review these before continuing:

Slug-Fest Guidelines

These guidelines were developed based on what I learned from the members participating in this thread, and I thank all of you for helping to improve Slug-Fest and mold it into its new form.

Nothing Personal

Because I let things slide for so long in this thread as an experiment (and I sincerely apologize to anyone who may feel hurt by this), I want to call special attention to the fact that personal attacks of any kind are now explicitly prohibited in Slug-Fest.

This is in response to the overwhelming (to understate things tremendously) demands of you, the members.

I know it's easy to slip when things get hot, and I ask both members and mods to try to be forgiving when someone slips, but we are going to start cracking down on personal attacks, so please try to avoid making them.

And definitely stop making them when a moderator asks nicely.




[edit on 9/13/2006 by Majic]



posted on Sep, 13 2006 @ 10:23 AM
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I've tried to read through this whole thread because it's very interesting. Unfortunately I've found myself skipping ahead through some pages, just for lack of time. I think the best way to start my contributions is through my own experiences.

My father is Antiguan, and my Mother is German/Irish. I was born in a poor section of Boston, and was split between the heavily Caribbean culture of my father’s family and the Reagan era Republican family on my mother’s side. As you may imagine, neither side was too happy about their child coming home with a half black/white baby. Being so young, I didn’t really think about it then, but remembering back there are many instances that show me that even within families there is an underlying racism. Imagine your own grandparents ignoring you when you were a child because of something that was far beyond your control.

When I began going to daycare, the first place I went to was an all black church daycare. I was the lightest skinned person in the place, and was ostracized by the other children. I didn’t like it, so I asked my mom to send me somewhere else. That’s when she sent me to a nearly all white daycare. Things weren’t any better there. Except rather than simply ostracizing me, they accused me of everything that went missing, or anything else criminal (however much you can call it such in daycare) occurred.

In an attempt to regain her parents love and help, my mother ditched my father with no warning, and ran away with us. She went somewhere where you would be hard pressed to find a booming black population, Attleboro Mass. This is where I spent my school age, and where I learned that most everyone couldn’t tell the difference between 2 black kids. It just so happened that there were only two black males in the school, me being one of them. And, because I had an unusual African name, they just called us both “Calvin”. I even remember more than one occasion where I wasn’t allowed to go into friends houses because their parents didn’t trust me in particular.

After a while, I started to believe all of it, and just stopped caring. Rather than be ostracized by everyone else, I beet them to the punch and became a total introvert. Not only that, but I learned to give other, more prominent, reasons to be ostracized, rather than skin tone. I grew natty dreds which I bleached, and dyed. I pierced myself up, and had 4 piercings by the time I was 15. Anything to make sure that the reason people thought I was abnormal was something other than being not quite white/black.

Now, I use that same concept of staying away from the mainstream, because the mainstream thought always tended to be off the mark as far as I could see. As far as eradicating racism goes, it took nearly 20 years for my grandparents to be as excited to see me at Christmas as they were to see my all white cousins. Unless everyone with prejudices can spend enough time with enough diverse people there will always be that little voice that says, “Should I cross the street now? They look dangerous” or “Lock the door before he gets too close” or even “this guy won’t hire me because I’m black”


[edit on 13-9-2006 by Rasobasi420]



posted on Sep, 13 2006 @ 10:41 AM
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Rasobasi420, all I can say is thank you for posting that.

Thank you.



posted on Sep, 13 2006 @ 12:10 PM
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Originally posted by Rasobasi420
I think the best way to start my contributions is through my own experiences.


Wow, Rasobasi420, I want to thank you, too! The pain you have felt throughout your life is apparent. And I think it takes guts to pour some of it out here. I really appreciate it. The special situation of not being accepted by either the black or white race must be so much worse that having a race to call 'home'; having a group to which you fully 'belong'.


Originally posted by Rasobasi420
Now, I use that same concept of staying away from the mainstream, because the mainstream thought always tended to be off the mark as far as I could see.


Believe it or not, I totally agree with you here. My husband and I say we're proud to be out of touch with "mainstream America". We're misfits. We're white and have had what some would term as a fairly normal existence, but growing up in the "American culture" (whatever that is) has made us both realize that we do not belong in it.


I hope things are at least somewhat easier on you now that you're an adult. And I'm quite sure that you're an amazingly strong and open-minded person as a result of living through your special set of circumstances.



posted on Sep, 13 2006 @ 12:14 PM
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Originally posted by Benevolent Heretic
Just a hypothetical example using your excerpt as a format:

In order to succeed, women will engage in behavior that conforms
to patriarchal corporate expectations. That approach is
successful, as those women who make it to the upper echelons of
corporations tend to adopt strategies that do not promote, and
sometimes even harm, the interests of their gender group.


That happens! Look at the women in high corporate and political positions. Many of them are virtually indistinguishable from their male peers as regards morals and values. Not to mention having distanced themselves from what is considered to be "feminine". And notice what they sometimes do to other women to get there.


Very true, BH, and it goes along with this from HH:


My model of the behavior of corporate executives draws from the
identity performance school of jurisprudence. Briefly, it holds that, in
many workplaces, promotion is not based solely on the amount of
widgets you produce. Performance is often difficult to measure and
is instead judged based on a subjective evaluation that is influenced by
one’s relationships with higher-ups. For that reason, one’s reputation
within the institution, one’s attributed identity, may be as important to
advancement as one’s actual performance. The minority employee will
attempt to create the impression that is rewarded by the corporation by
engaging in identity performance practices, such as sending emails at
late hours, in order to imply he is hardworking.

In order to succeed, black men will engage in behavior that conforms
to corporate expectations. It turns out that corporations provide
assimilationist incentives designed to make it likely that only those black
men who affirm white male norms will succeed. That approach is
successful, as those minorities who make it to the upper echelons of
corporations tend to adopt strategies that do not promote, and
sometimes even harm, the interests of their racial group.



The first paragraph is obvious; subjectivity exists in many decisions made in this world. I won't even address it.

The second paragraph is not news. A corporation exists because everyone is supposed to pull toward a common goal; non-conformity threatens that, and is frowned upon because it is disruptive to the well-oiled machine. Certainly, the "interests of their racial group" are not at the top of the priority list, although many large corporations do have programs that encourage diversity. But they do it because understanding diversity is key to reducing competitive friction and accomplishing the goals of the corporation, not because any one racial group deserves special attention.



posted on Sep, 13 2006 @ 12:30 PM
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And unfortunately, I think that both of you are missing the entire point of HH's article. She is trying to describe to you what it means to have the Good/Bad Black dichotomy in the workplace.

But that's all right. I appreciate what you can understand. That's better than nothing.




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