Tag Archives: Barack Obama

Sometimes The Debate Just Tires You Out

After much deep thought (well semi-deep at least) I have decided to discontinue this blog. It is in part because my film production company and talent management company are keeping me extremely busy these days, but the biggest reason frankly is just fatigue from trying to open people’s minds.

In the aftermath of the Trayvon Martin trial, I have watched the racial division get even more entrenched between those I feel are trying very hard to get people to to realize the many subtle and profound ways race plays into life in America, and those on the other side who simply refuse to see it. I think I have come to realize that blogs like mine either preach to the choir of those who are like-minded already (though it has been a joy to meet so many through this blog) or it goes to those who simply want to argue and no matter what logic is used, prefer to discount.

I have also reluctantly come to the conclusion that at the end of the day, for the most part, the only people that can impact white racism, in terms of getting people to maybe possibly listen, is another white person. When a person of color, especially a black man, tries to discuss what racism feels like, it is hard for some whites, the ones who most need to hear it, to get beyond the fact that a black person is saying it. They see it as whining, complaining, exaggerating, being mistaken, everything but being what it is. And certainly the same may well be true for dealing with closed minded blacks or other minorities, only other people of color may be be able to get through to them also.

The reality of this fact hit me the most in the aftermath of President Obama’s wonderful discussion on the Trayvon Martin verdict. It was heartfelt, honest and just a man talking about his real life experience. Yet the outcry from those who don’t like Obama or don’t want to hear that black male view was swift and ugly in many instances. Again, basically totally discounted.

So my decision to stop writing this blog doesn’t mean I am giving up on what matters to me. That would be impossible when I live a mixed life, with a mixed family, one of varying ethnicities and cultures. Nor do I think the majority of the people out there are bad. Not at all. And as I said before I have had the pleasure of meeting some wonderful people all over the world, and of varying skin colors through this blog. And I will continue to support, follow and comment on their blogs. I treasure them too much. I will continue to chime in occasionally through my Huffington Post blog, which I write here and there, as I am moved. I have found lots of great blogs and sites on matters of race, mixed life, and equality in general, so I know the information is out there. So mine ceasing won’t end the debates and good work so many are doing.

Thanks to the loyal readers and those that stumbled hear occasionally . I hope I added something. And I’ll be jumping into the fray here and there, so don’t think I am disappearing.

Advertisements
Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Mixed Relationships and People On The Rise

The changing concept of "race."

The changing concept of “race.”

Saw this article on the blog Mixed American Life. America, and the world, is indeed changing when it comes to seeing more and more mixed relationships and kids. Glad to see it. Love does’t know color or ethnicity. Here is an excerpt:

President Obama is biracial, and in media, multiracials are everywhere. More than ever, they’re touting their mixed heritage.

Comedians Keegan-Michael Key and Jordan Peele are biracial, half-black and half-white. They made their names playing black characters on MADtv. But last year, they premiered their own show, where they take on multiracial issues with glee.

But taking on such issues doesn’t always go smoothly, as music diva Beyonce discovered in a commercial for L’Oreal. In it, she declared the secret to her skin was a “mosaic of all the faces before it.” The screen flashed the phrases: “African-American. Native American. French.”

The backlash was immediate. The singer was criticized for abandoning her black identity. But the multiracial community embraced her.

It’s not just that there are more multiracial and biracial people. The government is now counting the group differently. For the first time in modern history, the 2000 Census allowed us to check off more than one box for race.

The last Census showed 9 million people, about 3 percent of the population, reporting more than one race. That’s an increase of one-third from the decade before.

“The youngest age group, kids under 5 [years old], 7 percent are identified as having more than one race group,” says Jeffrey Passel, a senior demographer at the Pew Hispanic Center. “If we look at the elderly, over 65, it’s only 1 percent.”

That means more people are choosing spouses outside their own race. The change, Passel says, comes from evolving attitudes. Over the past few decades, he says more people have simply come to view intermarriage as no big deal.

“More than two-thirds of people in our surveys, when asked how they’d feel about someone in their own family marrying someone of a different background, said they’d be fine with it,” he says.

Ask young people — those under 40 — and the number rises to more than 80 percent.

To read the full article go here.

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , ,

Bigotry At The White House Correspondents’ Dinner

Ridiculous treatment.

Ridiculous treatment.

This is an excerpt from The Huffington Post this morning. It is written by a physician and wife of a noted journalist who was attending the White House Correspondent’s dinner last week. She happens to be Muslim:

As I left the hotel and my husband went to the ballroom for the dinner, I realized he still had my keys. I approached the escalators that led down to the ballroom and asked the externally contracted security representatives if I could go down. They abruptly responded, “You can’t go down without a ticket.” I explained my situation and that I just wanted my keys from my husband in the foyer and that I wouldn’t need to enter in the ballroom. They refused to let me through. For the next half hour, they watched as I frantically called my husband but was unable to reach him.

Then something remarkable happened. I watched as they let countless other women through — all Caucasian — without even asking to see their tickets. I asked why they were allowing them to go freely when they had just told me that I needed a ticket. Their response? “Well, now we are checking tickets.” He rolled his eyes and let another woman through, this time actually checking her ticket. His smug tone, enveloped in condescension, taunted, “See? That’s what a ticket looks like.”

When I asked “Why did you lie to me, sir?” they threatened to have the Secret Service throw me out of the building — me, a 4’11” young woman who weighs 100 pounds soaking wet, who was all prettied up in elegant formal dress, who was simply trying to reach her husband. The only thing on me that could possibly inflict harm were my dainty silver stilettos, and they were too busy inflicting pain on my feet at the moment. My suspicion was confirmed when I saw the men ask a blonde woman for her ticket and she replied, “I lost it.” The snickering tough-guy responded, “I’d be happy to personally escort you down the escalators ma’am.”

Like a malignancy, it had crept in when I least expected it — this repugnant, infectious bigotry we have become so accustomed to. “White privilege” was on display, palpable to passersby who consoled me. I’ve come to expect this repulsive racism in many aspects of my life, but when I find it entrenched in these smaller encounters is when salt is sprinkled deep into the wounds. In these crystallizing moments it is clear that while I might see myself as just another all-American gal who has great affection for this country, others see me as something less than human, more now than ever before.

When I asked why the security representatives offered to personally escort white women without tickets downstairs while they watched me flounder, why they threatened to call the Secret Service on me, I was told, “We have to be extra careful with you all after the Boston bombings.”

What a shame that she was treated like this. I hope the men who did this all lose their jobs over it, though I doubt it will happen. No one deserves this kind of treatment and humiliation, especially simply for their appearance since that is all these men could have known about her at the time. And so stupid that with people of color all must bear the brunt of stupid acts of individuals. But no one was paying extra attention to young white males after Aurora, Colorado’s theater shootings. Or the Newtown massacres. Or to white men after one shot up the Sikh Temple. Or many other incidents of stupid people doing awful things. But Dr. Jilani had to bear the brunt of the actions of stupid people. Strange again that those security guards only focused on the misguided interpretation of the Muslim religion by the Boston bombers, but he ignored that they were from the place that the Caucasian ethnicity was named, Caucasus. It was more convenient to focus on their radical religious ties than their skin color I guess. Read the must read full piece here.

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , ,

So What Determines Your “Race”?

So is skin color the key to what we are now?

So is skin color the key to what we are now?

Good Lawd.

From Gawker:

Former Democratic strategist Karen Finney, who was once the first African-American spokeswoman for the Democratic National Committee, was revealed today to be the new host of a 4 p.m. weekend show on MSNBC. Good for her, and good for MSNBC, which adds Finney, pictured at left, to an already diverse roster of talking heads that includes Chris Hayes, Melissa Harris-Perry, and Al Sharpton.

Don’t mention Finney’s race to Tim Graham, however. Graham, a so-called media “watchdog” for the conservative Media Research Center, doesn’t think it’s fair for MSNBC to herald Finney’s entrance as an arrival of another African-American host—y’know, considering her skin is so light and all.

 

Untitled

 

Finney has a black father and a white mother so she is actually mixed. However, much like President Obama, Finney has the right to self-identify however she chooses. What is most interesting to me though in situations like this, that show once again how silly our “race” notions are, is that the key to determining if is is ok for her to be called black (or African-American) is her lighter skin and straighter hair. But Graham has no problem labeling Obama as black (also black father and white mother) presumably because he has darker skin and less straight hair.

So I guess this is kind of an admission that what your parents are has nothing to do with your “race.” Just how you look.

Just silly. I say again people, there are no different “races,” just different blendings.

 

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Michelle Obama Brings Fun To White House & Jimmy Fallon

While the right wingers and racists (and I don’t always think those two things are tied together) use stuff like this to belittle the President and the First Lady, I have to say I so love those two for being so real. Whatever else is said about them after their term is up, The Obamas showed that a bit of color in the White House sure made it more fun.

Tagged , , , , , , , , , ,

American Black Presidents Before Obama?

Ole Andrew Jackson may have been a brother.

Ole Andrew Jackson may have been a brother.

One of the problems with the “one drop” rule, that racist idea that one drop of black blood makes a person black, which one of those still accepted beliefs here in America, at least to many, is that if you apply it fully, it may turn out everybody is black. After all, wouldn’t that simply be a question of how far back you want to go.

Several scholars are now saying Barack Obama may not, according to the one drop mindset, be our first African-American President. Look out! This may cause some people great consternation.

Andrew Jackson, Abraham Lincoln, Warren Harding, Calvin Coolidge, Dwight D. Eisenhower, and ole Thomas Jefferson all may have had blacks in their genealogy.

Well, well, well.

Of course I don’t buy into the one drop rule. But this goes to show, defining people by what they look like or what is in their ancestry is all just a wasted exercise. We are all mixed somewhere down the line.

Read more about these other “black” Presidents here.

 

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Freedom Tower In NYC Now Filled With Hate

A symbol of hope and hate.

A symbol of hope and hate.

This is just sad. Really I have no words for the strange and ironic symbolism involved with this.

Welcome to the 1,776-foot tower of hate.

Shocking Daily News photos show bathrooms throughout 1 World Trade Center rife with repugnant graffiti — appalling scrawls that range from the N-word to sexist slurs and ethnic insults.

“Whites only,” reads a Jim Crow-era taunt over the urinals in one bathroom of the 104-story building.

Other anonymous offenders target President Obama — who visited the construction site just last June: “Where’s Obama’s birth certificate!!!!”

The soaring symbol of American resilience now bears the markings of lowlifes.

“It’s filthy, it’s shocking,” said Marie-Anne Sanchez, 37, who was visiting from Paris with her fiancé. “This is a holy place. People died here. I don’t like this. It makes me sad.”

A worker at the site told The News it’s difficult to walk into 1 WTC, commonly known by its previous name, Freedom Tower.

“We’re all supposed to be there as one, the whole 9/11 thing,” the worker said. “When you walk through the gate, you get a strong sense of pride.

The most vile comments are near the top of the gleaming structure that will have 15,000 window panels when it opens in 2014. There, the breathtaking view is tempered by the vile commentary, the insider told The News.

“Most of it’s racial,” said the insider. “Most of it — I mean, there’s a lot of stuff with the N-word. But pretty much every race is covered: Spanish people, Irish people, Jewish people, women.”

The N-word, he added, “is written all over the place, to be honest with you. That’s a big deal. It’s there.”

No words. Read more and see photos of some of the graffiti here.

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , ,

Ann Coulter Now Blames Gun Violence Problem On Minorities

She knows how to stir things up.

She knows how to stir things up.

I’m really starting to think this is the most dangerous woman in America.

On an appearance on Sean Hannity’s show this week she said this:

Conservative commentator Ann Coulter implied that racial minorities are the cause of the country’s “gun problem” during a Monday appearanceon Fox’s Hannity show.

“If you compare white populations, we have the same murder rate as Belgium,” she said. “So perhaps it’s not a gun problem, it is a demographic problem, which liberals are the ones who are pushing, pushing, pushing.”

Wow. Now she is implying minorities are to blame for our gun violence problem, as if the killers at Sandy Hook Elementary, Columbine, the mall in Oregon, the theater in Aurora, you get the point, were minorities.

Which is not to say that minorities aren’t shooting each other up in inner city neighborhoods too thanks largely to gang violence. But to ignore that guns are often wielded by whites also, and possibly more so in instances of mass murders, is just ignorant and a dangerous thing to say. Gun violence is not the fault of minorities alone.

Surely she knows this and is just doing her thing to stir up the controversy.

Read a full article on her comment here.

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , ,

Watermelon-Eating Obama Display Simply Sign Of Ignorance

Stereotypes die hard.

Stereotypes die hard.

Something is seriously wrong with this man:

Danny Hafley of Casey County, Ky. said this week that people are reading the mannequin in his front yard depicting President Barack Obama eating a watermelon completely wrong.

“The way I look at it, it’s freedom of speech,” Hafley told Lex 18 in a recent interview, going on to state that he had included the watermelon not in attempt to play to any racist stereotypes, but because the statue “might get hungry standing out here.”

Uh huh.

To see the interview with this fool man, click here.

Tagged , , , , , , ,

Mixed Couples – Susan Rice and Ian Cameron

A smart and accomplished couple.

A smart and accomplished couple.

The United Nations ambassador, Susan Rice, is married to ABC News producer, Ian Cameron. They fell in love while both were at Stanford.

Tagged , , , , , , ,