Monthly Archives: September 2015

Reverse Racism…

So I didn’t want to talk about this. I tried very hard to ignore it, yet the topic has found me, multiple times, despite me being in Nicaragua. So I do what I must: educate the masses. Because that is what I am called to do. Living in my skin, is a journey I have all my own and I cannot expect anyone of another hue to understand unless I enlighten them.

Here’s to enlightenment.

Warning:

This blog post is about exposing widely accepted lies and unapologetically stated the writer’s opinion based on facts. Do not keep reading if you can’t handle the truth, don’t want to be wrong and/or are not ready for another way of thinking.

So let’s get into it. Firstly, the proper definition of racism:

racism
[rey-siz-uhm]
noun
1. a belief or doctrine that inherent differences among the various human racial groups determine cultural or individual achievement, usually involving the idea that one’s own race is superior and has the right to dominate others or that a particular racial group is inferior to the others.
2. a policy, system of government, etc., based upon or fostering such a doctrine; discrimination.
3. hatred or intolerance of another race or other races.
Now keeping that in mind, let’s define prejudice:
prejudice
[prej-uh-dis]
noun
1. an unfavorable opinion or feeling formed beforehand or without knowledge, thought, or reason.
2. any preconceived opinion or feeling, either favorable or unfavorable.
3. unreasonable feelings, opinions, or attitudes, especially of a hostile nature, regarding an ethnic, racial, social, or religious group.
 
Before I get into the why, here’s the bottom, irrefutable, unquestionable answer: rreverse racism does not exist.
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Now the why:
Racism is structural, not personal. If I have the luxury of being your boss, I can choose to hire an all black staff. If that decision was made intentionally to keep out other races, instead of providing blacks with opportunities they are so often denied, that does not make you victim of reverse racism. It makes me prejudice of people of a certain color. ‘Tis all.
 
1. People swear minorities take all this scholarship money and jobs from whites….
aka Affirmative action (an action or policy favoring those who tend to suffer from discrimination, especially in relation to employment or education)
but let’s check the stats.
White students receive more than three-quarters (76%) of all institutional merit-based scholarship and grant funding, even though they represent less than two-thirds (62%) of the student population, according to the report published by Mark Kantrowitz, the financial aid guru behind Fastweb.com and FinAid.org.*
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It’s just an untrue idea that continues to be perpetuated.
And although it might seem to play in minorities favor, it actually helps more white women than the others. See this TIME article for more info on that.
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2. Having things “black” things does not take away from white things
I.e., Black Girls Rock, Black History Month, BET, Black-ish, etc.
I want you to think briefly on what you see on any tv channel, just flick through any channel. White faces. What does every President except the current one have in common? White faces. Who writes the history books that every school must read? White people. White people have pretty much have it all.. minorities of all descendants have to fight for the very basic things we have.
So nope, not reverse racism, just a little fish trying to make it in a big pond. Attempts to rectify systemic oppression does not mean reverse racism, it means there should be and we are fighting for true equality in all facets of life. Never noticing that you are NOT in the room means you are ALWAYS in the room, which is a benefit we do not have. So I say bravo to those pioneering more black shows, more black channels, more black models, more black products, because there is just not enough out there for us, by us.
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3. Systemic Oppression
You just can’t change history honey and we, everyone in the world, are bound by history. I believe the phrase goes something like, “those who forget the past, are bound to repeat it.” So let’s peruse our sad history:
  • Slavery
  • Jim Crow Laws
  • Racial Disparity in Jailing
  • Unemployment rates by race
  • Media Portrayal of different races

Just to name a few. As a black woman there is nothing I can do to change my skin or my hair to fit in. I can change my name, because studies have shown that you’re less likely to get hired having an “ethnic name.” I will not be paid the same as you and I can forget being promoted at the same rate.  I can do everything in my power to be the exact opposite of stereotypes because the black actress doesn’t have to be angry. The latina woman doesn’t have to be a maid or speak broken English and the asian male does not have to be a brainiac. The system was not built in my favor. Acknowledging that  AND how you benefit from it, does not make you racist, it makes you a realist.

All in all , if you didn’t get all that, it’s described quite clearly in a scene from 2013’s “Dear White People” that is applicable to all minorities.

tessa thompson animated GIF
tessa thompson animated GIF
tessa thompson animated GIF
and that’s all folks. *drops mic*

Black Traveler – How to Treat One?

I have heard of white people Americans not really knowing how to act when they see a black traveler, but have had the pleasure to not have any of those interactions occur in my life. Until now. In my travels outside of the great US of A, I have had such experiences and can relate. It is understandable the reactions I elicit from these people, I am probably the first black person they have ever seen in person. Although my President is black and often on TV, they seem to believe, they are 0.0% blacks living in the States. Thus their fascination, curiosity and  inappropriate behavior towards me. Hopefully this blog post helps rectify some of that:

2015-09-12-13

Continue reading Black Traveler – How to Treat One?

6 Months and Volcano Boarding

I have been here 6 months! Congrats Nica 65. We started with 40, we’re down 5. We started a collective group, excited, nervous and ready to work. I can admit, I am still nervous, excited and working! It has been hard. That one week stint in the hospital truly did a number on me. BUT my work, my co-workers, my Nica friends and Nica family are making way into my heart and I am just not ready to say goodbye. To celebrate, I went volcano boarding. I heard it’s something to cross off your bucket list and CNN listed it as number 2 fun but terrifying experiences.  It was TOTALLY WICKED!! First you have this hour long hike up the volcano. Not to worry, although it is active, the lava comes out the bottom. The entire way up you feel a lot like you could plunge to your death because it’s steep, covered in ash that’s not exactly stable and carrying a very heavy board. Then you get to the top, enjoy the view and start the ride. There’s no real way to say how you feel leading up to it. You’re seeing people slide and then suddenly they disappear! It’s so steep you can’t see them to the bottom. Just people seemingly boarding off a cliff. While waiting, I got so nervous I thought I would throw up, so I asked to skip the line and just did it. Seeing as I weigh, practically nothing, I was flying down the volcano from the start. It was a rush and the entire time I was saying, “good Lord, what did I get myself into.” I didn’t think I would die but you feel like you’re go way faster than you probably are. Then you get to the base where it’s the steepest and you’re racing into ashy wonderland. Rocks were flying and got in every crevice imaginable despite the suit. I would definitely go again and I regret NOTHING. I was scared and had so much adrenaline running through my veins, I was shaking like a leaf when I finally got to the bottom of the volcano. BUT it was more than I could ever imagine and a great way to toast half a year achieving my dreams!