A little bird told me that there is an “European POC” problem in the Hetalia fandom. 

Something regarding APH Italy’s skin colour. 

Now, let’s make it clear: Europe is mostly white. Southern Europe too. 

There are different shades of white, but hey, it’s always the same base colour. 

Now, if you think that explaining this true fact is racism, you need to think a little more about WHAT RACISM ACTUALLY IS. . 

What happened to listening to people who know more about a thing?

I’ve read some posts and I’m like:

image

what?

Please, don’t be rude to actual Europeans who point out something which isn’t accurate: we know more about our history, and we just want to help. 

We don’t know your history as much as you do though, we might need some help and advice as well! 

But please, please, listen to us when we say that the majority of people in Europe is white. Is this racism for you? The fact that we have this skin colour? Well, there’s nothing we can do, so deal with it. 

Italians are white, and South Italy (oh, my poor land! How many misconceptions) is white too! Yes, Northerners and Southerners have a different historical backround -as regards the influence of some ancient populations- but the difference of their skin colour isn’t that big, and, more important!, it’s not a fact: it’s not true that all Northerners must be lighter that Southerners, and vice versa. Italians come in different shades throughout all the peninsula, even if Southerners tend to be more olive-skinned. 

nanatsus pointed out how there is the stereotype that “Southern Italians are more tanned because they work in the fields”. Well, that stereotype is just concentrated ignorance. Ignorance that belongs to people who can’t think about us as something different that farmers.  

Really, drawing white countries as POC to promove diversity is bullshit. 

Why not picking actual black countries instead??

That’s the right way of doing it! Not smashing all the accurancy and everything that makes sense in this world!

If you follow me, you already know I’m from Calabria, the “tip” of Italy. That’s pretty Southern. 

Well, you can see my face in the photo I posted. I’m not milky white. I’m darker than most of my friends (not very much, but still noticeably enough). 

I’m not black, though, as you can see ((my blond reflexes look lighter than they actually are because of the light)). 

I fail to see myself represented in a black Romano. 

When we want to give you an information that regards Europe, we don’t want to offend you, but just to share some facts about it!

So why should you take it badly? I’d like to learn new stuff from countries outside Europe!

Do not diminish what native people tell you about their ethnicity, claiming you know more than them. 

I’m sorry for this long post in the tag, I just wanted to make it clear, and this is the tag where the argument has been going on. 

The history of the Jewish diaspora in the modern nation-state is thus one of endurance and achievement but also of anxiety and distrust. However economically or professionally successful, however long-settled in peaceful settings, it is difficult for many Jews in the diaspora not to ‘keep their guard up’, to feel the weight of their history and the clammy fear that brings the demons in the night to remind them of their murdered ancestors. The sense of unease or difference that members of the diaspora feel in their countries of settlement often results in a felt need for protective cover in the bosom of the community.
—  Robin Cohen, Diasporas and the State

anonymous said:

One thing that I like about Islam is that it encourages diversity. Interracial marriages are encouraged by Quran; once you accept 'I believe in one god' you are considered an equal (in theory). In the west there's this racial hierarchy where whites are on the top and we as PoC are serving them in a system created by them and that benefites only them. You can have 3 phd's if you are muslim you are a sandnigger in their eyes. Nothing you do is enough to be considered equal... what do you think?

I think you’re letting the sick mentality of a few racists allow you to pain a picture of White people in the West. This is wrong, that’s exactly how many view Muslims, based on the actions of pathetic scumbags like ISIS, Boko Haram, and other terrorist groups. You cannot do that, you need to get out and meet more people, interact with more people. I personally have many white friends, along with friends of other races. Not to mention, with the exception of 1, all of my girlfriends have been white. None of my white friends ever view the situation that way, in fact many of them come to me for advice and don’t see any division based on colour, race or beliefs. I’ve heard many white people say how impressed they are with the level of intellect, and high level of education amongst Iranian people. People don’t see race and colour, that’s only bigots and racists and we have to work on alienating them, trying to paint an entire group that way is wrong. Well you asked what I think and that’s what I think. We shouldn’t need a religion to tell us to accept others regardless of their race.

A PSA on Jewishness, because apparently non-Jews just have to know this stuff and can't figure it out on their own

Jews are an ethnic group. Global Jewry is made up of several different ethnic groups, the largest of which are: Sefardi Jews, whose ancestors historically lived in the Iberian peninsula (Spain and Portugal) and western Europe; Ashkenazi Jews, whose ancestors historically lived in central and eastern Europe; and Mizrahi Jews, whose ancestors historically lived in MENA (Middle East/North Africa). There are other groups of ethnic Jews living in other places in the world as well. Jews from all of these groups have moved across the world, largely due to persecution in their host countries, and formed new communities in new places, so that there may be longstanding communities of Ashkenazi Jews in France, and Sefardi Jews in Morocco.

All ethnic Jews have ancestral, genetic heritage stemming from the Levant (specifically, the area now known as Israel and/or Palestine). All Jews also have cultural heritage stemming from the Levant. This is no less important or relevant than genetic heritage.

Some Jews have mixed heritage (one Jewish parent only). They are also Jews. The matrilineal descent question is a question of Jewish religious law, and is interpreted differently by different Jewish denominations and individuals. (My personal stance is to affirm patrilineal descent.) 

The religion historically practiced by Jews is Judaism. Ethnic Jews may practice any religion they please; this does not mean they are less Jewish in terms of their heritage. Non-ethnic Jews may convert to Judaism; this does not make them any less Jewish in terms of their religious practice. Judaism does not proselytize.

Judaism as a whole takes no global stance of Zionism as a political ideology. Different Jews have different opinions on Zionisms (plural intentional, because Zionism takes a lot of forms), and while they may be good or bad people, and you may agree or disagree with their politics, their Zionism or anti-Zionism does not inherently make them any more or less Jewish. 

The question of Jewish identity is ultimately not the purview of non-Jews. It is nothing more or less than gross arrogance for non-Jews to assume that their opinions on this question are remotely relevant or of interest to Jews, and the persistent insertion of some non-Jews into these private conversation is extremely offensive.

If you are not Jewish, and have written, or are considering writing, a post on  Jewish identity/ethnicity, I have some advice for you: don’t. You almost certainly don’t know what you’re talking about, and you definitely can’t have a better understanding of these complex issues than someone who is actually Jewish themselves. If you really feel, for some inexplicable reason, that you simply must weigh in on this issue, consult an actual Jew before doing so. 

6

I just shared this story on Twitter. It’s something I’ve been turning over in the back of my mind for a few days, and I felt like it was important to share.

The reaction from a lot of people has been to reduce this experience to “one bad individual,” and while the person who left those comments was certainly not a nice person, I think reducing instances like this to one-off occurrences (they’re not) is part of how and why they persist.

The belief that black women are inherently unattractive (and even subhuman) is not a unique or uncommon point of view. One only needs to look at how the fashion world treats black women to see that. While what happened to me was an extreme example, it’s also a logical outcome, a part of the continuum of how black women’s beauty is regarded in society at large.

We are on the fringes, the margins. Our features, our bodies, our hair are not only viewed as inadequate but as not even worth addressing in broader conversations on beauty standards (something I’ve discussed in terms of how it relates to my niche - lingerie - here, here, and here).

Like I said, I’m not bothered by those comments. I haven’t internalized them and made them a part of my being. But I do think they illustrate some larger social issues, and they have absolutely coalesced and reinforced my own perspective on the importance of diversity and representation, and how we approach it, on my own blog.

Black preschoolers more likely to be suspended 

Black students are more likely to be suspended from U.S. public schools — even as tiny preschoolers. The racial disparities in American education, from access to high-level classes and experienced teachers to discipline, were highlighted in a report released Friday by the Education Department’s civil rights arm.

The suspensions — and disparities — begin at the earliest grades.

Black children represent about 18 percent of children enrolled in preschool programs in schools, but almost half of the students were suspended more than once, the report said. Six percent of the nation’s districts with preschools reported suspending at least one preschool child.

Continue reading

(Photo: Kathryn Scott Osler/The Denver Post/Getty Images)

Overlooked due to race, Melvin Morris receives belated military honor

Melvin Morris, 72, lives like a typical retiree on Florida’s coast. He spends his days leisurely by the water of Port St. John, reading the Bible, fishing and working on his boat. Then, almost a year ago, the retired salesman got a call from an Army colonel at the Pentagon who said a high government official needed to speak with him. Morris was told to stand by his telephone at 12:30 p.m. the next day.

The official was Barack Obama. The president apologized to Morris, and told him that he was presenting him with a Congressional Medal of Honor, which he should have received 44 years ago.

Continue reading

(Photo: America Tonight)

Nation’s largest African-American history museum at risk in Detroit

DETROIT — The tall woman in the leopard print gown and grove of dreadlocks flowing onto her shoulders had just moved the group through some of the grimmest moments in American history. She had walked her audience of local schoolchildren through the bowels of a replica slave ship, described in detail the horrors of the antebellum South, told of the journey through Jim Crow segregation and the brutal lynchings by the Ku Klux Klan.

“And every time, the African-American people survived,” she exclaimed. “They would say, ‘We shall overcome!’ And they always did!”

The docent might have been speaking hopefully about the challenge facing not black America but her own imperiled institution, the Charles H. Wright Museum. The Wright, the nation’s largest museum of African-American history, waits anxiously to see whether bankrupt Detroit will be able to provide any funding in the coming budget cycle.

Read more

(Photo: Jeffrey Smith for Al Jazeera America)

All you armchair (and real) historians, educators, upstanding citizens and cool people out there. Help Code Switch annotate the Civil Rights Act of 1964!

You can highlight stuff you didn’t know about it, things you find fascinating, interesting historical context and the influence and echoes of the act today…or anything else that you think is cool!

Also find it on our Twitter and Facebook

Instructions are in the document, happy Monday! 

Image source: Getty Images 

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