Tag Archives | Race

Nothing Happens Unless White Folks Say So

redhook summerJames Mcbride, co-writer of Spike Lee’s ‘Red Hook Summer,’ has penned a pull-no-punches open letter to Hollywood, detailing some serious issues on race and representation in cinema, and what it means to be a storyteller in an overtly commercial studio system. Via Colorlines.

The reviews for Spike Lee’s film “Red Hook Summer” that premiered at Sundance earlier this week have not been good. His comments made after the premiere about Hollywood studios knowing “nothing about black people” made more headlines than the actual film.

An open letter published yesterday by “Red Hook” co-writer, James McBride, is sure to make even more headlines because he takes the film community to task and says “nothing in this world happens unless white folks says it happens.”

Below is an excerpt from McBride’s open letter on the 40 Acres and a Mule website:

Three days ago, at the premiere of “Red Hook Summer” at The Sundance Film Festival, Spike, usually a cool and widely accepting soul whose professional life is as racially diverse as any American I know- lost his cool for 30 seconds.

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Photos Of Child Slaves, 1863

Child SlavesVia How To Be A Retronaut, scans of a series of collectible cards, sold to raise awareness of the anti-slavery cause, with photos of slave children whom abolitionists had brought North and freed. It’s an interesting glimpse into how widely “blackness” could be defined in the slave-era South:

‘Slave children, freed and brought North by abolitionists to emphasize the plight of slaves. The proceeds from sale of the photographs were to be used to educate freed slaves who had come under the jurisdiction of the Union Army in the New Orleans area. A caption on one of these photographs points out that the children had been turned out of a hotel in Philadelphia because of their “color.”’

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The Blood on Our Hands is the Blood of the Land

On misogyny, misopedia, racism, homophobia, anti-semitism and misogeoia, Julian Real writes:

My hands have blood on them, no matter how many times I wash them. The blood is from the Earth, and its inhabitants, human and nonhuman.

What does it mean to “hate the Earth”? Do heterosexual male batterers of women really hate women? Do child molesters love or hate children (are they pedophilic or misopedic)?

In conversation, I came across a critique of Derrick Jensen’s book Endgame (vol. 1), which I strongly recommend reading, along with Derrick’s other books, including vol. 2 of Endgame. The critic said they did not really believe people “hate the Earth” as Derrick claims.

This brought to mind many related matters: hatred of people of color by whites, hatred of women by men, hatred of children by adults, and hatred of the Earth by “civilised” humans.

What does it mean to “hate the Earth”?

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New Study Reveals Whites Feel More Discriminated Against Than Minorities

In my newspaper, the headline would have been “Whites Feel Racism Is Worse For Whites Than Minorities; Minorities Stare Open-Mouthed In Stunned Silence.” A new study on perceived racism coming from Harvard Business School and Tufts University has yielded surprising results.  Whites are reporting that they feel racism is “worse for white people than black people” in modern western society, despite statistics showing that social inequality between ethnicities is still rampant and still very much in the favor of white people.  So if the actual racism is still directed at minorities, why are whites suddenly feeling so discriminated against? (More on the Telegraph)

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White People Mad About Homeland Security “How to Identify A Terrorist” Video

This has been blowing up in the conservative blogosphere and media since Paul Joseph Watson posted it on InfoWars yesterday:
A new promotional video released by the Department of Homeland Security characterizes white middle class Americans as the most likely terrorists, as Big Sis continues its relentless drive to cement the myth that mad bombers are hiding around every corner, when in reality Americans are just as likely to be killed by lightning strikes or peanut allergies.
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For Women, Darker Skin Tone Means Longer Prison Sentences

X63248-02Racial bias in our criminal justice system isn’t a binary matter, with different treatment for blacks versus whites — rather, a new study suggests that it is a sliding scale, in which severity of punishment increases proportionally as skin color becomes darker. Via the Root:

Villanova researchers studied more than 12,000 cases of African-American women imprisoned in North Carolina and found that women with lighter skin tones received more-lenient sentences and served less time than women with darker skin tones.

The researchers found that light-skinned women were sentenced to approximately 12 percent less time behind bars than their darker-skinned counterparts. Women with light skin also served 11 percent less time than darker women.

The study took into account the type of crimes the women committed and each woman’s criminal history to generate apples-to-apples comparisons. The work builds on previous studies by Stanford University, the University of Colorado at Boulder and other institutions, which have examined how “black-looking” features and skin tone can impact black men in the criminal-justice arena.

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John Abarr, Former Ku Klux Klansman, Running For Congress in Montana To ‘Save The White Race’

John AbarrChristine Roberts writes in the New York Daily News:
A former organizer for the Ku Klux Klan announced Wednesday that he will run as a Republican for Montana's U.S. House seat. John Abarr, 41, says he wants to run in response to the election of the America's first black President in effort to "save the white race." "I am running to draw attention to the fact that white people are becoming a minority and losing our political power and way of life," he said. Abarr is running on a platform of legalizing marijuana, increasing mental health programs, keeping abortion legal and abolishing the death penalty.
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More Black Men Now In Prison System Than Were Enslaved Before the Civil War Began

LA Progressive reports on law professor Michelle Alexander's stunning claims:
“More African American men are in prison or jail, on probation or parole than were enslaved in 1850, before the Civil War began,” Michelle Alexander told a standing room only house at the Pasadena Main Library this past Wednesday, the first of many jarring points she made in a riveting presentation...
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Racial Identity Tied to Happiness, Study Finds

Oprah Winfrey. Photo: vargas2040 (CC)

Photo: vargas2040 (CC)

ScienceDaily reports:

African American people who identify more strongly with their racial identity are generally happier, according to a study led by psychology researchers at Michigan State University.The study, funded by the National Institute of Mental Health, appears in the current issue of Cultural Diversity and Ethnic Minority Psychology, a research journal published by the American Psychological Association.

“This is the first empirical study we know of that shows a relationship between racial identity and happiness,” said Stevie C.Y. Yap, doctoral candidate in psychology at MSU and lead researcher on the project.

Previous research has found a relationship between racial identity and favorable outcomes such as self-esteem, Yap said, but none has made the link with happiness.

For the study, the researchers surveyed black adults in Michigan. The results suggest the more the participants identified with being black — or the more being black was an important part of who they are — the more happy they were with life as a whole, Yap said.

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