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chinichin
R.I.P. Suntan thread!

I hope this thread will be just as interesting and have more traffic so it doesn't get snipped.

For those of you who didn't hang out in the Suntan thread, we talked about many and various things, including:

* interracial relationships
* race/culture issues in parenting
* resources for education
* various cultures and their "reactions" to immigration

We also vented and hung out and did a lot of "this happened to me today, can you believe it??"

Holy moley my kid is screaming, gotta go.
rantrave88
chinichin!!!!!

doood, i missed you.

how is the Minichin?
pepper
hey, i'm thinking about adopting or fostering. i have been doing some reading and (i'm caucasian but get mistaken for nearly every culture all the time, black, hispanic, european, mediteranean, etc.) i'm interested in anyone of colour's perspective on interracial adoption. i couldn't care less, to be honest, i've never even thought about there being any difference, but i wonder if i am being insensitive because i'm white(ish). i, of course, would want to honour the traditions of any child's cultural background by including those practices in our lives, but perhaps that's an easy thing for me to contemplate considering my priveleged first world *white* status. hope i said that without sounding like a total tool.
you know, it's a difficult thing to walk a mile in anyone else's shoes but i think it might be harder still to walk a lifetime beside someone who's cultural history and entire life experience is totally different than yours. being a parent is hard, let me tell you (if you don't already know). i try to do my best with my own son. the thought of trying to do my best for someone else's son or daughter is daunting.
but maybe i'm overthinking this. perspective from others is welcome.
gumby_cc
Pepper, I work as a teacher at an extremely diverse school where maybe 1/3 of the kids are adopted, mostly Chinese girls by caucasian parents. There's a large Asian population at the school anyways, and adoption is not considered a big deal here.
There's one girl in the school...her and her brother were both adopted from Equador and although she told me she doesn't remember being adopted (at age two), she has an incredibly hard time being the only spanish-looking girl in the whole school. She knows the conditions which she was adopted (and it's so sad), but it's just hard for her to adjust to being Jewish now when she knows she used to be Catholic. I dont know. Most of the kids are totally fine with talking about their adoptions but it is so hard for her, and I think a lot of it has to do with how different she looks from everybody else.
I donno. I grew up in a very homogenous town and no one there was adopted. I imagine that it would be even more difficult in that situation.
I don't know if that is helpful at all.....
missladyj
I just have to tell this story. I am jewish but pass for being nonwhite ( people think I am persian, Indian, Brazilian, Latina, etc) My husband is black and we live on the west side of chicago which is a black neigboorhood.

On a Friday night we are standing on a street corner and this drunk white dude crosses the street in front of this car with two black women in it. The black women start yelling at this dude and block traffic to go off on this guy. IN a car behind them are two black dudes and one starts yelling at my husband " Every black man should have a white women"

I'm thinking wow that is not usually the response we get but ok

the he continues by saying " Black women aint shit"

ok not so cool anymore
bklynhermit
i'm interested in the ramifications of interracial adoption, as well (also from a white potential mom perspective). though any adoption would take place AGES from now -- i'm mostly just curious at this point.

the ecuadorian story is interesting -- i wonder if it's not so much that the 'transition' from catholic to jewish is such a big deal but that in jewish communities it is a Big Deal to look the part and have the right background. i have a good friend who is half ashkenazi jewish and half japanese. unfortunately, it's her dad who is jewish. she also looks very japanese. she and her sisters were actually not allowed to attend hebrew school at their dad's synogogue because they weren't considered "jewish enough". i imagine it would be even harder if you were adopted. bloodlines are a really big deal in some jewish communities.

edited to add that, being noticeably latin-american, she probably gets the same thing from the other latin-americans in her life. 'what, you mean you're not raising her catholic?', strangers who don't know the family asking what church they go to, kids at school asking why she doesn't go to afterschool catechism like the other catholic kids, etc. having grown up non-catholic in a catholic community myself, the assumptions can be pretty hardcore regardless of how your ethnicity lines up with the religious assumptions that go with it.
snafooey
Bklynhermit, that may not have had so much to do with the way that they look (though I'm not saying that isn't an issue) so much as the fact that Jewish lineage is directly passed through the mother. If they weren't "Jewish enough" it's b/c if your mother isn't Jewish, you're technically not considered Jewish according to most branches of Judaism (Reform's position has shifted in the past few years, from what I understand). My parents belong to a fairly Conservative (not to be confused with small-c "consevative" although it has elements of that too) and there are several members who do not look traditionally Jewish. The difference is that they were either "born Jewish" (like the sizable Ethiopian Jewish community) or converted either b/c of belief or for marriage.
bklynhermit
i'm familiar with that, snaf. but as she described it, her appearance and the fact that her parents fully intended them to be versed in both cultures were also an issue. i think had her mom converted or had their parents raised them to be only jewish and not both japanese and jewish, it might not have been such an issue.

sorry if i stepped on any toes.
snafooey
Well, that's the thing, if you're a woman and you don't convert, your children are not Jewish. . .I'm not saying I agree with that, but that's how it (usually) goes. From the way you initially described it, it seemed that their exclusion specifically had to do with the way that they looked, which runs contrary to everything I've personally seen (and read). That's not to say a Japanese-Jewish family would not have to deal with xenophobia from the community, but a synagogue is not going to reject someone based solely on the way that they look - it has a lot more do to do with how you are living your life, how the children are being raised (there is a huge emphasis in Judaism on creating a Jewish home, which is part of the reason lineage goes through the mother - b/c it's assumed that she has the most responsiblity in that department).

ETA: I remember reading several years ago about an Orthodox Jewish family who had adopted children from around the world. They admitted that it might be difficult for their children in such an insular community, but there was never any question that their children were Jewish.

ETAA: Sorry for derailing the thread - talk about privilege, eh?
gumby_cc
Sorry to jump right in, this is really interesting. I really personally know nothing about Judiasm, but the town I teach in is really liberal, and coincidently, there are a few kids who were adopted from Korea or China who go to Hebrew School and they've never had problems...I'm not sure though whether it's because their adopted moms are Jewish or not.

The thing about the girl from Equador is that not only does she look different, but this school has seriously, NO kids who are Catholic. Her parents, like most of the other adoptive parents, don't try to teach their adopted kids about the culture they come from....they're just raised to be whatever the parents are. This girl knows her adoption story but doesn't know anything about Equadorian culture....and somehow, (maybe it's a direct effect of it), she HATES spanish people herself. It's really upsetting....We have a new principal who is from Mexico. He tried talking to her in Spanish and she totally freaked out, and later told her teacher she hates Hispanic people. I don't know how much is due to being the only kid in school from Equador, from being adopted, or from her crazy parents...I don't know.
bklynhermit
again, the friend of mine who went through this situation specifically said she felt that if she didn't look so japanese and wasn't so obviously culturally japanese-identified, it probably wouldn't have gone down that way. i don't think she ever said she got kicked out for looking japanese, but it was definitely part of why she and her sisters didn't feel included and definitely was lumped in with her rejection from hebrew school, in her eyes at least.
snafooey
The question remains - was her mother Jewish or not? If her mother converted to Judaism, she probably would have been accepted (assuming it was not an Orthodox school - the Orthodox generally don't consider Conservative or Reform conversions valid) - by accepted I mean into the program, not necessarily blanket social acceptance. You can identify as Japanese and value that aspect of your heritage, but if your mother isn't Jewish, then you technically aren't considered Jewish either. It sounds harsh, but I've heard of the exact same scenarios occurring when both parents are white - in some cases even if it's the mother who is Jewish (as in, the mother is Jewish and is raising her kids Jewish, but the father doesn't want to join the synagogue with them and is therefore an indicator of them not being a unified Jewish home).

ETA: Case in point: In my own family, we had a relative who married a non-Jewish man who didn't convert and what I described above is exactly what happened to them (it was a fairly traditional synagogue). Meanwhile, I have another relative who married a woman who was a visible minority who converted. They ended up divorcing, but she remained more involved in the religion than he ever was, and their kid went to Hebrew school and had a Bar Mitzvah no problem.
bklynhermit
no, i totally agree with you there.

i'm just saying her appearance and experience of her other culture seemed to be wrapped up in all of that. in her mind, anyway.
missladyj
not only is there a distinction made if you are jew only if your mother is a jew but jewish people can discriminate against other jews based on skin color , looking "jewish" etc.

I am Ashkenazi,( jews of eastern Europena descent ) but look Sephardic (Jews who left Spain in 1492 and went to North Africa, Greece, Turkey etc). We went to an Ashkenaz Conservative synogage and I really stuck out until an Iranian family joined the shul and then everyone would comment on how I looked like a member of their family.

I could see how other jewish people would discriminate against someone who was biracial even if their mother was Jewish which in Jewish law makes them a Jew .

Also the Ethopian Jews are not treated very well is Israel.

It all just makes me sad because as a people , we should know better.
snafooey
No arguments there, Missladyj. . .although having lived in Israel, I can tell you that the discrimination against, say, new Russian immigrants was just as bad (sometimes worse) than their Ethiopian counterparts. It's a skin colour issue for sure, but it also goes back to, "Wait - so you're Jewish? I've never seen a Jew who looked/acted like you!" In the case of the Russians, the stereotype was that many of them were heavily assimilated Russians (possibly not Jewish at all) who just wanted to get a free pass out of the old country - they'd get benefits and then move on to Europe or North America.

But yeah - Israel is (or was - a lot more issues are being addressed in the "post-Zionist" era, though they still, uh, obviously have a long, long way to go) unfortunately like a lot of other cultures in that lighter is always better (for example, the African-American brown paper bag test in the States). Ashkenazi Jews became the "elite" whereas Arab Jews (generally referred to as Sephardim, though as you noted, technically Sephardim are originally from Sfarad, aka Spain) were thought to be culturally and intellectually inferior. When the right wing finally came into power after years of Labour rule, it was seen as a victory of the Sephardi underclass against the "blue staters."

Side note - the first Jews who settled the U.S. were actually German Jews of Sephardic descent. It was only after the much larger influx of Eastern European Jews that American Jewry came to be primarly associated with Ashkenazi culture.
maddy29
hey, i'm a total white girl, hope it's ok for me to jump in. i had this weird experience last weekend, well not that weird cause it's happened to me a lot.

i'm REALLY pale (irish/austrian mix) and i just don't tan. esp my legs. i burn, then i peel, then i'm white again.

anyways people used to make fun of me and tell me to get a tan, etc. a girl on my sports team who i had to spend a lot of time with was really vicious about it, calling me an albino, etc. it was weird.

so this weekend i was wearing shorts outside which i rarely do (partly because of this!) and my very dark skinned black roommate (the same one who says mean things about what i eat) says "oh maddy, my god, you need to get some color" then her and her fiance laugh "ha ha! you are so pale!!!" and she says again "you need some color, now."

i was so shocked. i mean first of all i haven't heard that in years (probably cause i don't wear shorts anymore, i guess!), but also- she's black. is it stupid to think that she'd be more aware of stuff? i mean, if i said something equivalent to her, it'd be horribly racist. i know it's different but dang....

i guess it's just amazing how much,in general, people care about skin color. it's either too dark, or not dark enough....
trudyjuice
what the . . .!

so this is the new suntan thread. wow. i haven't been here in TIME!

chin has pickney now? raaas! hey chin


maddy, tricky one. i think it would be somewhat different if you made a comment about your friends colour as it would be construed as a race remark. whereas, although she sounds extremely blunt, she was only commenting on your colour and not your race, i guess . . .

i just think its off-key to make remarks about physical appearance like that. but being black doesn't necessarily equal more sensitivity like that . . .
hummingbird
Hello,

Well I am glad that this thread was started.

Maddy29, it doesn't matter if what colour, race, ethnicity you are, if you have something to say about this subject please, busties, delurk.
I think we could use the traffic...

Maddy29, Sorry about that nasty mean comment your roomate made to you...the only reason she would teased you like that is because she's insecure.

I was livid when I found out that there are African Jews because the media only shows a certain kind of Jewish people. There is so much I don't know about Jewish people, it makes me sad because I like different cultures, and I grew up with so many different kinds of people, but no Jewish people. I'm from Cali. Not a lot in the Nor Cal...I guess...
hummingbird
Toni Morrison, "race is a "metaphor" necessary to the "construction of Americanness."
katiebelle2882
i have a friend whose mom converted to judaism before the kids were born (and who is consequently the most crazed about the religion) and her daughter got told by other jews that she wasnt a "real" jew bc her mother was catholic at one point. in my experience, Jews are some of the most intolerant when it comes to stuff like that. however, given the history, i think it makes sense sometimes. i dont necessarily agree with being so close minded, but honestly, if i was in that position i might be as well!

maddy, i am not so sure what you are shocked about, its a racial thing, and she was probably commenting, albeit bluntly, that you were pale and weird looking in the bright sun. should she have more tact, yeah i guess, but i have had someone say that to me before right after winter ended and just laughed it off. not really sure why you consider it something shocking or (no pun intended) off color. friends make fun of friends and tease eachother. she probably doesnt realize you are very sensitive about it bc you used to be teased, so maybe you should just let her know.
maddy29
no, that's not it at all katie. why does she have any right to comment on my skin color? that's' my point. i don't really care what she thinks about my skin color, but how is it ok for her to make a comment about my skin color being somehow "wrong?"

it's not about tact. if i told her she should maybe stay out of the sun because she's gotten a lot darker, i think that'd be really a racist comment. now, since i'm white, the reverse comment isn't racist, but it's still discriminatory.

i hear what you are saying about some jewish people- i've known some who are so fiercely protective of their history, heritage, religion, and really, is it any wonder? sometimes it's frustrating though, when it comes to love....
katiebelle2882
well, i see your point there, in terms of reverse racism. i definitly agree with the idea that neither is right. i think i would have just been like ok RUDE. but i think that when *most* white people get comments about their skin it isnt racist in intention, however when most black people do it is most certainly racist in intention. sometimes, it is taken like that even when racism wasnt the intention, but thats the price we pay for such a fucked up world.

i can sit here and say that i would tell my family to fuck off if they didnt like someone merely bc of their heritage. however, i know thats not the case with most people, and while i find it hard to understand the idea that you rather be miserable but on good terms with your family then telling a racist group of yahoo's you happen to be related to to fuck off-well i dont know what its like to walk in peoples shoes who view things this way.
ilovemyff
As for transracial adoptions, I personally feel that as long as there is genuine love and caring and understanding, color shouldn't matter. But there are adoptees, especially ones from Korea, who have had horrible experiences that they've even formed an antitransracial adoption group, and a few have written books about it. Of couse, in books you only get the extreme experiences, but it might be worth looking into just to get their perspective. Nobody who had a normal adoption experience would bother to write a book I think. There was a little black boy in my dd's preschool, and his parents were these twenty-somethig white as white couple, and they also foster three of his older brothers, and admittedly they don't look like your traditional family, but there is a lot of love on all sides and the kids are thriving. I think as long as you go into it sensitive to and willing to address the issues that are going to affect your children and not just expecting love to take care of everything, then transracial adoption shouln't be a deterrant. And of course develope a thick skin for comments from ignorant people.
lucizoe
You know what phrase I really cannot wrap my head around and has always bugged me? "Reverse racism." It's just racism; it doesn't matter what color the people involved are. If someone is making judgements and taking actions and making statements and assumptions based on the color of someone's skin, it's just racism.

Unless there's some sort of significant historical context re-that phrase of which I am unaware...
maddy29
That's a great point lucizoe. It was once explained to me that racism is the systemic thing, and that discrimination are the actual acts of racism. So, a white person in american can't experience racism, because they are in the power/privilege position. they don't have the systemic stuff going on.

BUT, a white person CAN experience discrimination.

Does that make any sense? hopefully more people will weigh in....
missladyj
Racism = power + predjudice


Using this definition racism includes a power component meaning that someone has to be in a postion to deny a person benefits and priveledges because of prejudice which is prejudging someone. In general most people of color are not in positions of power that allow them to deny white people access to benefits or privledges thus the term "reverse racism" is inherently flawed. Can people of color be predjudice against white people? Absolutely! Are they in positions of powere whereby they can systematically deny white people access to a quality education, a secure job, housing etc usually not.

So saying that a person of color who makes fun of you for being so white isn't "reverse racism". Prejudice and not so nice yes, racist no.


Racism is when I go with my black husband to look for an apartment and the white landlord doesn't want to rent to us because we are an interacial couple. He is in a postion of power to deny us housing based on his predjudice. When my husband calls him a cracker, he is not being a reverse racist, he's just salty cuz whitey wont rent us an apartment. see the difference?
chinichin
*jumping up and down*

So happy people are posting! I was afraid that I'd come back in and I would have to double post ... sort of like sending myself flowers on Valentines' Day ... not that I have ever done that ... ahem


TJ, wah gwan gyal?? Yes indeed I have a gyal pickney, she is one feisty little thing smile.gif I have missed you! What's up these days with you?

So many interesting things to comment on, where to start before the little one starts yelling at me (she is teething!)

About being Jewish and the descent being matrilineal ... I can see that technically the question is whether the mom is Jewish or not, supposedly cut and dried. But ... this situation reminds me of being Canadian - I'm Canadian because I was born in Edmonton, but I am not white. People constantly ask me "the question" and have even told me that I am "not really Canadian" because I'm not white. I can see that bklnhermit's friends may have felt excluded or actually been excluded by people in the Jewish community even though, technically, they may have been Jews-by-th-rules. Not that it's right but Jews are human too smile.gif and race really is a factor for some when it comes to inclusion!

"Reverse racism" is one of my pet peeves. I agree with luzicoe. I don't agree with maddy29's explanation that she had explained to her (OMG! Pardon my awful grammar) ... my understanding of racism is that racism is racism is racism, there is systemic racism (e.g. the reason for most CEO's in America being white men) and racism that's exercised on a more individual level, etc.

IMO the concept of "reverse racism" - with the understanding that it means "racism against white people by non-white people" - is yet another framing of an issue in a white-paradigm frame. Of course there are non-white people who are prejudiced against white people. The only people who find that surprising and worthy of a different term than plain old "racism" are people who (knowingly or unconsciously) think from a white priveleged point of view. I suppose it's a handy term if shorthand is needed but IMO it perpetuates the idea that everything has to be defined from a white point of view.

And about the pale skin thing ... bearing in mind that I don't know maddy or her friend, I really don't think I would frame that rude comment about her appearance as a racial thing. Yes, she has pale skin because she is white, but IMO it's reaching to make it about that. Would the comment have been framed as racist if it had come from a friend with a similar background?

rantrave88
Interesting that it all does lead back to suntans!


My sister and I talk about each others' darkness and lightness during different times of the year, and we're both brown. During the winter or when I'm sick, I can look "pale." but still browner than "caucasian."

i think the idea of "needing some color" is an interesting phenomenon and though it may be rude to comment, it's slightly different from being denied privileges/rights/citizenship. there's "needing some color" and then there's "because your skin is naturally 'white' you are bad"

I'm not sure racism everywhere is really about color itself but about the way color is manifested through other things like class, status, etc. I wonder if we're always tied down to history. I know my sister browns in the sun, so if I say, "whoah, so dark!" am I just replicating the reaction to lower class workers who stayed out in the sun and proliferating the dark=negative popular view in the eyes of the bourgeousie? Because apparently we're the same "race" otherwise.




chinichin
RR88, good to see you smile.gif

I have actually had that same comment from relatives, that I "need to get some colour." Heh the sight of my pasty legs must have been overwhelming!

It's kind of a funny thing, eh? That fashion/culture has influenced the perception of "good" colour, i.e. that dark is good ... when, not so long ago, dark was socially less desirable? But ... is darker only better when skin is naturally pale? That's my feeling. I know I'm not saying it in a very articulate way. The point being, I guess, that if a person is dark *by choice* then it's desirable.

When my dad went to China he was asked often by locals if he was "a minority," as in, one of China's ethnic minorities (still Chinese, but one of the less common ethnicities). He was somewhat offended, I think, because he considers himself as Chinese as the day is long smile.gif and the thought that Chinese people would assume he wasn't one of the "true people" was a little off-putting. He wasn't born in China, he was born in Jamaica, but I think as he's gotten older he's begun identifying more and more as Chinese. Anyway, the reason he was asked so often is that his skin is on the darker side and his features are strong - the Chinese ideal is pale.
maddy29
so interesting!

chinichin-i think you are right-it's like if you are white, you should be tan. but, it's "bad" to be dark if it's natural. what? crazy.

thanks to ladyj who explained it soooo much better than i ever could have! that's basically what i meant, about the power thingy, but you said it so lovely-y:)

yeah, i don't think that my roommate was being racist about my skin color. mostly i was just frustrated and didn't know what thread to put it in....plus thought it might stir some interesting discussion. i guess my point was just that people have weird opinions about what other people's skin color should be.
chinichin
"people have weird opinions about what othe people's skin color should be" - word! (LOL do people say that anymore? I am so old and uncool!)

Maddy after I posted I was thinking about what I said (about your roommate's comment not being racist), and I felt like I may have jumped the gun or been dismissive ... I glad you responded the way you did, that you didn't think she was being racist after all. I was thinking of all the times I felt that people had been racist to me, and how often my ex would tell me that I was reading in or imagining things ... and how that made me feel.

I cross posted with the lovely ladyj about the definition of racism. I wonder about the power / oppression angle - I understand it, but I don't agree that the definition of racism has to include it. One of the dictionary definitions I came across used 'superiority' as opposed to 'oppression.' Clearly that makes the definition broader, eh?

I think that for the sake of argument, dictionary definitions are important so that everyone can be on the same page ... but I find that for me, in my life, my process of defining myself and figuring out my identity has forced me to define what I think racism is. My definition: racism is prejudice or discrimination against a group of people based on perceived racial characteristics. It's not perfect but it covers what I want it to smile.gif
missladyj
thanks Maddy! glad it made sense.
maddy29
word to your mother!!! i'm old too:)
chinichin
Hey, just wanted to see if there were any other thoughts on transracial adoption. I am the natural mom of my baby, but find transracial adoption resources helpful since my child and I are of different races, sort of. I like ilovemyff's post - especially the part about love not being enough, that awareness is needed. I find myself being afraid that she will reject me later in life (hopefully just temporarily!!) as she tries to find her own identity.
turbojenn
chinichin - Well, I work at an adoption agency, and we have an e-learning site where we offer courses to help prepare parents, and you might like a couple of the courses - they're free (unless you need a training certificate - which you don'y), and the "conspicuous families: race, culture and adoption" course might be of interest to you. check it out at http://www.adoptionlearningpartners.org.

I don't have any particular experience in the area myself...I'm just a content and programming monkey. wink.gif
bebesho2
Hi all! I am back!

"i think you are right-it's like if you are white, you should be tan. but, it's "bad" to be dark if it's natural. what? crazy. "

My white cousins and aunts are often much darker than my "non white"kids. Some of my cousins are brown, from tanning all the time and having olivish skin. Yet they have racist parents and/or are a bit racist themselves...

Transracial adoptions...I have too seen the parents who make me cringe. Like when I was at work years ago and saw a bunch of white Mosm with little girls wearing shirts tha tsaid Çhina girls" It just was not cute..

I will bbl-I have so much to discuss!
anarch
hey all,

I've been away for a few weeks but oh it feels good to read your words again.

came across a link that some might be interested in - a documentary on racial politics of African-American hairstyling products. Haven't viewed the documentary itself (I've got sound problems on my computer) but read an interview with the director.

smooches!
saktii
Hope you guys don't mind me jumping in, but I was wondering if maybe you could give me advice on something. One of my best friends is black (she doesn't like the term "African-American", so i won't use it here) and she is completely obsessed with Japan, Japanese culture, etc. Her big dream is to go there someday, and she is considering looking into hostessing.
So-- I told her that I'd ask my boyfriend about it because he lived in Japan for a couple of years, and also his cousin made alot of money hostessing there.
When I asked him about it, he explained that it would probably be impossible for her to get a job hostessing in Japan because she's black, and the Japanese are notoriously racist-- especially against black people.
She's been asking me if I've talked to my bf yet, but I really really really don't want to hurt her by telling her what he said.
I mean, she has to deal with an entire lifetime of discrimination and pain here in America. I guess I just don't want to see her even more hurt and disappointed.
It's not fair, you know? It sucks so much that a person I love is not afforded the same chance to live out her dreams as I am, simply because there are still idiots in this world who can only see skin-color. It sucks that people she doesn't even know, or will never meet dislike her because of skin-color.
It's not fair that she grew up in a crack-infested family in the middle of a fucking ghetto because her great-great-great grandparents were ushered into inescapable conditions of inequality and poverty by the federal government as soon as they were freed.
It makes me want to cry, and I hate it, and I want it to stop.
free_spirit
I was feeling your post, up until you got to the end about her growing up in a crack- infested family...What did that have to do with her wanting to live out her dream of going to Japan and the racist aspects of it?
Just curious...
(ok, back to lurking...even though I'm trying to come out more, all for the sake of being able to customize my member status wink.gif )
saktii
QUOTE(free_spirit @ Aug 19 2006, 08:04 AM) *

I was feeling your post, up until you got to the end about her growing up in a crack- infested family...What did that have to do with her wanting to live out her dream of going to Japan and the racist aspects of it?
Just curious...
(ok, back to lurking...even though I'm trying to come out more, all for the sake of being able to customize my member status wink.gif )

Well, what I meant was that she suffered alot of physical and emotional abuse as a child as a result of her mother's drug use, which has left some pretty deep scars.
I'm not saying that crack is a "black" drug or anything, but the prevalence of drug use in *any* economically disadvantaged community is usually an indicator of the overwhelming feeling of hopelessness that is perpetuated.( I know, I grew up in the poor white trash parts of town, where people did meth all day long and beat their wives and didn't have time to dream because they were too busy trying to just survive day to day)
All I'm saying is that drug addict parents make very poor role models, and it's not fair to my friend that she couldn't have had a happier childhood.



and towards the end there when i was talking about my friend, i just sort of lost it and started ranting because i was feeling emotional and protective of her.
missladyj
Just be honest with her, it's not like she has never had to deal with racism before. You don't have to protect her from the reality of the world we live in. She can still go to Japan if that's what she wants to do.
dani837
OMG I'm such a WEIRD mix. I'm 100% peruvian(born and raised there baby! Just came to the US 5 years ago to go to a university here cool.gif ) but considered "creole". Even though my parents and grandparents were born in Peru, they are all descendants from europeans(french, italian, spanish, czech, irish, german and even) and one from an arab country. There's not even one person in my biological tree that is indian. And YET I do look latin! All my direct family(parents and brothers and sister) look white(they all had blonde hair when they were little) except for me haha! I might have gotten the arab genes from my grandfather!(people have told me I look italian, spanish, arab, and even greek!)
What is even funnier is that everybody who asks me where I am from I tell them to guess, its from somewhere in Latin America, and the first thing they say its Brasil! Haha I think most outsiders have this stereotype that all the latin people who are tall and kind of slim have to be from Brasil, but that's not true! cool.gif

venetia
But Saktii, her dream is to go to Japan, not to be a hostess. Not all of us are cut out to be a hostess or a model or an actress or a stripper in all cultures, but that doesn't mean there is no way of going to other places for us.

Maybe she could find a different sort of job (eg teaching English)? Not all Japanese are racist!
hummingbird
*never mind: decided to go post this in the white privilege thread.
hummingbird
well. i guess the white priveledge thread is gone.

What do people think about this: white privelegde = freedom. When the United States government claims that we're fighting for freedom, I decode that as more and more and more freedom for white people. Here I exclude poor white people, somewhat, because they don't have the same swagger because they know what oppression is too, even though their skin is still white.

It's hard to put all of this down into words, and I am at work, but I wanted to see what your (everyone, not just busties of color) thoughts are?

This freedom or privelegde makes it easier to start your own businesses or run your own co-ops or DIY. Do you guys/girls understand what I am saying. It's a mind set like mental slavery vs. mental freedom. Oppression of the mind. So, look at the ghetto. The ghetto is not just that way because they don't have a lot of money, they could DIY, but they aren't free enough to realize it, mentally, sometimes physically, emotionally, spiritually. And don't get me wrong there are a lot of brown and black kids that are DIY-ing it but it's only focused on DIY your own mixtapes or whatever---mc-ing and dj-ing and breaking...but all the other ways to DIY, just aren't happening there. Why, no freedom no access. Well, I may have gone off of my own topic now. Wondering what the wonderful busties thoughts are.
erinjane
Hey hummingbird, I bumped up the white privilege thread for you in F-Word. You could post it in there too.

http://www.bust.com/lounge/index.php?showtopic=46998

I'll ponder your question a little later.
missladyj
hummingbird,
it is not just mental oppression but institutional as well. The lack of access to quality education, the lack of economic opportunities etc. There is less economic development in the " ghetto". DYI requires access to resources and those resources require money to aquire them in the first place. starting your own business requires a small business loan . Saying that it is just that the people of color in the "ghetto" who don't do more dyi because of their mental oppression is simplistic and ignores the whole way that racism is institutionalized and there for does not empower those people. It is almost like blaming them for not making their communities and lives better because they are just not as mentally liberated as white liberals. This is paternalistic and denies the complexities of racism in Amerikkka.
hummingbird
So, misladyj, you agree with me, white priveledge does equal more freedom because of racism in general and the covert ways that racism works, instutionally etc.

But I was getting at something else. More towards my own interactions therefore with DIY white folks....but I am not sure how to express it....
hummingbird
really not sure how to express w/ out sounding like a tool.
hummingbird
It's like this, I see the white priveledge thing and it makes me want to rip it from those that have it. It's frustrating, you know, it can make one do strange things. Maybe this should go in the confessions. My post was long because I was trying to over-explain and maybe sugar-coat the fact that I have warped thoughts sometimes because it's not fair. And yet, to confess even further, I feel like, maybe by osmosis I have attained some of this priveledge, I've got a higher education, I talk standard english, I can write, I can fake a certain degree of gentileness (?)...I know how to act in an all white environment, in a way, that diffuses most of the inert racism that comes my way, ahem, my boyfriend and my closest girls are white. I have crossed into that world, somewhat , I could never pass for white in a million years, unless maybe I talk to you on the phone and even then some slang and ebonics are bound to come spilling out rolleyes.gif . I don't like it, 100%, though. I'd rather be in the freaking jungles of Jamaica. I always feel the need to be around other people of color. And yet, I want more of "it", more freedom and more of that priveledge. And I will never have "it" totally because I will never be white. And the other side of me says, "and thank god for that!" I like being me. But, I have had to weed out a lot of internalized racism, and in dealings with my white friends I wish more white people had access to classes that deconstruct white priveledge and the insidious ways that it plays out in relation to other people who aren't white. This is what goes on...in my head...there I was as honest as I could be...
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