anti assimilation

I love Hamilton, but something about the way white fans engage with the musical really bothers me: a lot of them are posting in the tag about the actual, historical revolutionaries and founding fathers in a way that makes them seem like funny, sweet, good people. They weren’t. I don’t just mean “Jefferson was a piece of shit”: none of them were good. Every one of their asses saw black people as inferior, even if not all of them supported slavery. All of them participated in genocidal policy against indigenous peoples. If you’re watching/listening to Hamilton and then going out and romanticizing the real founding fathers/American revolutionaries, you’re missing the entire point.

Hamilton is not really about the founding fathers. It’s not really about the American Revolution. The revolution, and Hamilton’s life are the narrative subject, but its purpose is not to romanticize real American history: rather, it is to reclaim the narrative of America for people of colour. 

Don’t romanticize the founding fathers and the revolution. They’re already romanticized. It’s been done. Your history books have already propagated those lies. The revolution is romanticized as an American narrative because it was a revolution lead by and for white men. Their story is the narrative of the nation and it is a narrative from which people of colour are utterly obliterated. 

Do you understand what it’s like to live in a nation where you are made marginal and inconsequential in the historical narrative that you are taught from your first day of school? In the Americas, to be a person of colour is to be made utterly inconsequential to the nation’s history. If you are black, your history begins with slavery, and your agency is denied; they don’t teach about slave rebellions or black revolutionaries. You learn about yourself as entirely shaped by outside forces: white people owned you, then some white people decided to free you and wasn’t that nice of them? and then you’re gone until the civil rights movement. That is the narrative they teach; in which you had no consequence, no value, no impact until less than a century ago. If you are indigenous, you are represented as disappeared, dead, already gone: you do not get to exist, you are already swallowed by history. If you are any other race, you are likely not present at all. To live in a land whose history is not your own, to live in a story in which you are not a character, is a soul-destroying experience.

In Hamilton, Eliza talks, in turn, of “taking herself out of the narrative” and “putting herself back in the narrative.” That’s what Hamilton is about: it’s about putting ourselves in the narrative. It puts people of colour in the centre of the damn narrative of the nation that subjugates them; it takes a story that by all accounts has been constructed to valourize the deeds of white men, and redefines it all. 

Why was the American Revolution a revolution? Why were slave revolts revolts? Why do we consider the founding fathers revolutionaries and not the Black Panthers or the Brown Berets or any number of other anti-racist revolutionary organizations? Whose rebellion is valued? Who is allowed to be heroic through defiance? By making the founding fathers people of colour, Hamilton puts people of colour into the American narrative, while simultaneously applying that narrative to the present. Right now, across the United States, across the damn world, people are chanting “black lives matter.” Black people are shutting down malls and highways, demanding justice for the lives stolen by police, by white supremacy. And all across the world, indigenous people are saying “Idle No More,” blockading pipelines, demanding their sovereignty. And “No One is Illegal” is chanting loud enough to shake down the walls at the border; people are demanding the end of refugee detention centres, demanding an end to the violence perpetuated by anti-immigration policies. People of colour are rising up. 

…And white people are angry about it. White people are saying “if blacks don’t want to get shot by the police they shouldn’t sag their pants”; saying “get over it” about anti-indigenous policies of assimilation and cultural genocide and land theft; Jennicet Gutiérrez was heckled by white gay men for demanding that president Obama end the detention of undocumented trans women of colour. White people see people of colour rising up and they tell us to sit down. Shut up. Stop making things difficult. The American Revolution was a bunch of white men who didn’t want to be taxed, so white history sees their revolutionary efforts as just; they killed for their emancipation from England; they were militant. That, to white people is acceptable. But those same white people talk shit about Malcolm X for being too violent–a man who never started an uprising against the government leading to bloodshed. Violence is only acceptable in the hands of white people; revolution is only okay when the people leading the charge are white. 

Hamilton makes those people brown and black; Hamilton depicts the revolution of which America is proud as one led by people of colour against a white ruling body; there’s a reason King George is the only character who is depicted by a white man. The function of the visual in Hamilton is to challenge a present in which people of colour standing up against oppression are seen as violent and dangerous by the same people who proudly declare allegiance to the flag. It forces white people to see themselves not as the American Revolutionaries, but as the British oppressors. History is happening, and they’re on its bad side.

So don’t listen to or watch Hamilton and then come out of that to romanticize the founding fathers. Don’t let that be what you take away from this show. They’re the vehicle for the narrative, and a tool for conveying the ideologies of the show, but they are not the point. Don’t romanticize the past; fight for the future. 

how is it “self-flagellating” to criticize our community for our antiblackness? how is it “self-flagellating” to say that far too many in the east asian community think that we’ve assimilated into whiteness when we’ve been whittled down to “ninja kungfu fighting” caricatures with “funny” accents by the very same people we keep whitesplaining for? don’t come to me with your analysis on how we’re second class citizens to white people and then stay quiet when it comes to antiblackness among our own. you’ll yell to the heavens about needing “poc solidarity” because you want black people to do the fighting for you and in the same breath talk about how it isn’t our job to address their suffering. news flash: black people don’t owe us anything and antiblackness hurts us too. poc solidarity is a myth because of our silence about the suffering of black people.


more queer pride flags/variations. see if you can spot the differences! 

queer gay pride | queer lesbian pride | queer bisexual pride
queer pansexual pride | queer intersex  pride | queer aromantic pride
queer non-binary pride | queer trans pride | queer asexual pride

based on the updated version of the queer chevron flag, now with 80% more symmetry. the traditional colors of each flag was used, with a chevron design on an off-white background, representing the queering of these sexualities, the inherent non-straightness of queer identity. the chevron is reminiscent of militaristic imagery, reminding everyone of our pride in the radical anti-assimilation of queer identity. 

more awesome identity versions by @theangrybi here and here 

**these are free to use as icons, headers, avatars, as well as for inspiration for your own designs**

if you have any requests, shoot me an ask!

sorry-im-hot  asked:

why do people say "Jews run Hollywood" when Jews are rarely even represented accurately/ non-stereotypically in movies or TV shows?

First of all, several of the founders of Hollywood were Jewish. The Warner Bros. were Polish Jewish immigrants. Louis B. Mayer of Metro Goldwyn Mayer was also Jewish. So the reason there are “so many Jews” in Hollywood is because Jews were there on the ground floor building the industry. Movies weren’t treated as “high art” and many Jews saw the potential of the medium and worked hard to build it from the very beginning. This is treated as something “evil” by anti-semites because any field in which Jewish people are disproportionately represented is proof that we are stealing something for goyim even if it’s something we built with our own hands and they later decided that we “stole” too much of it from them.

This goes to the model minority myth as it was applied to Jews. Christians were not allowed to be Bankers in many countries during thee Middle Ages in Europe because of Christian anti-usury laws, but because Banks were necessary, Jews were allowed to be bankers (and weren’t allowed to hold many other professions deemed “appropriate” for Christians thus ensuring the prominence of the “Jewish banker.”  Too much presence in any field that is lucrative or popular is proof that we are punching above our weight and worthy of vilification. Jews are not allowed pride for our accomplishments.

Knowing this to be true, many Jewish Hollywood execs developed an aversion to making anything overtly Jewish for fear of being demonized. It’s no coincidence that Daryl Zanuck, a non-Jewish studio head (because disproportionate Jewish presence in an industry they helped create is not the same as owning it), was the mastermind behind the creation of “Gentleman’s Agreement,” the first significant Hollywood film about anti-semitism. Louis B. Mayer, actually tried to convince Zanuck not to make the movie

The New York Times, which was owned by the Jewish Arthur Sulzburger during WWII, actually underreported on the Holocaust as it happened in part because they were afraid people would stop buying a paper that pushed a Jewish agenda.

Jews have traditionally placed a great deal of cultural weight on education and there is an enormous amount of pressure by Jewish families to send their kids to college. So schools created quotas against Jews because they thought there were too many of us on college campuses. 

So to answer your question, Jews are disproportionately active in Hollywood because we were they from the beginning. We don’t “own it.” But fear of Hollywood movies being “too Jewish” is a result of assimilationist pressures and fear of anti-semitism.

And while I’m on the subject of movies and Jewish assimilation, I highly recommend the movie “Quiz Show” which deals heavily in those themes. Rob Morrow’s character is very much caught in between his desire to assimilate into Christian-normative society as a sign of “making it” and ends up acting in a manner that is best described as “internalized anti-semitism,” a reality his wife calls out by calling him “The Uncle Tom of the Jews.” 

There’s another movie, though not nearly as good (and something of a disappointment given how the same cast and crew was coming off a string of much better movies), called “For Your Consideration” in which a movie about a Jewish family gets goyified horrifically to try to make it more appealing to gentile Oscar voters. “Home for Purim” gets turned into “Home for Thanksgiving.” That movie hurts to watch, but it makes a lot of good points about how Hollywood actually deals with Jewish identity.


Alok Vaid-Menon Rant: LGBTQ, We’re Not All Proud

The Palestine movement is NOT AN ANTI-JEWISH MOVEMENT. To conflate anti-Zionism with anti-Jewish sentiment is to buy into the Zionist conflation of “Israel” with “Jewish.” That in and of itself is anti-Jewish: not all Jewish people are Israeli, not all Jewish people believe in Israeli colonization, and there were Jewish people before the state of Israel was founded and there will still be Jewish people after apartheid is smashed.

I wonder whether my silence about anti-Semitism has been warranted. I wonder if my movement partners truly will abandon me if I challenge them in this, or find the weakest examples and pick them apart in order to argue that the pattern itself does not exist. I wonder if they’ll reject me as an apologist for Israeli violence. […] Or maybe my fear is just paranoia, an outdated defense mechanism handed down from my Savta, a fear and vigilance learned by Jewish bodies over literally thousands of years to protect us from the next crusade or pogrom or gulag or blacklist or cattle-car that we assume is surely just around the corner.

Alongside the fear, I find myself hesitating to speak out about these issues amidst such grief, mourning and resistance — a moment of such heightened crisis for so many people and groups. And at the same time, this is the world we live in, so there will never be a good time, and I will have to trust my friends to see that this is meant not to take away, but to make us stronger and more connected.

And then, alongside that, there is a deep resentment that we Jews, whose ancestors have been forcibly converted, raped, tortured, slaughtered, and chased across the globe for literally thousands of years, still have to prove that people hate us and that there are systems in place to ensure it. But my friends are worth convincing, and capable of transforming, and we need each other.

Throughout the dozen earlier drafts of this piece, I wrote: “My friends are not anti-Semitic, but…” I know my friends don’t believe in The Protocols of the Elders of Zion. I know they think anti-Semitism is wrong. And I know with every fiber of my being that they would defend me and my family if they believed anti-Semitism was a real threat. But I know, too, that their disbelief is part of the very fabric of anti-Semitism. I know that, in another time and place not far from here, it was a similar disbelief that made possible the wiping away of my tribe, the orphaning of my Savta, the chopping down of my family tree. Silence, perhaps more than the careless repetition of ignorant ideas, is fundamental to this system, perhaps to every system of oppression.

Being ignored or dismissed is not an experience unique to Jews; women, queer folks, people of color, working class folks, and other marginalized groups are always disbelieved, always have to fight like hell to be heard, understood, and supported. I know this to be true because I have been, many times in my life, the one unwilling to do the listening and transforming. And so it occurs to me finally that of course my friends are anti-Semitic. Not in any vulgar or intentional way, merely in the way that we are all shaped by the systems around us until we do the work of uprooting them — in the same way that I carried racism and sexism in my every mannerism until folks helped me practice something different instead (or in the way that I still do carry those values around with me, because such things are burrowed deep into our bodies and the work of unlearning them is perhaps as long as our lives).

Yes, my friends are anti-Semitic. Now the challenge: To convince them that anti-Semitism even still exists, that it is hurting all of us, and that it can be undone.

“Toward the Next Jewish Rebellion: Facing Anti-Semitism and Assimilation in the Movement”

i am so honestly and genuinely surprised by some (not all) of the antics pulled by the turkish organization that orchestrated yesterday’s propaganda campaign in new york city. it’s surreal…and nonsensical. they took out a full page ad in the wall street journal (the major symbolism was in 3 hands dyed the colors of the russian, armenian, and turkish flags–the turkish hand was making a peace sign and the russian and armenian hands had their fingers crossed to symbolize lying) that denied the armenian genocide. they flew planes over the city that spelled out “FACT CHECK ARMENIA,” “TRUTH = TURKEY,” and, most disgustingly, “NE MUTLU TÜRKÜM DİYENE,” a phrase popular among turkish nationalists that means “HOW HAPPY IS THE ONE WHO SAYS ‘I AM A TURK’.” ne mutlu türküm diyene specifically has a long history–it was part of the pledge of allegiance all turkish students regardless of ethnicity were expected to say every day until recently, and is associated with anti-minority campaigns of assimilation, especially against kurds. they also organized some kind of hired flash mob with people in turkish flag t-shirts hopping around on pogo sticks and smiling wildly. then they had those dancers hold a giant turkish flag and stand in a moment of silence (for what, i have no idea).

anyway this is to say that turkish diaspora organizations are honestly repugnant. and also that, as targets of propaganda, it is your responsibility to stand in solidarity with armenians and against this historical revisionism that harms us–all of us.

“The Palestine movement is NOT AN ANTI-JEWISH MOVEMENT. To conflate anti-Zionism with anti-Jewish sentiment is to buy into the Zionist conflation of “Israel” with “Jewish.” That in and of itself is anti-Jewish: not all Jewish people are Israeli, not all Jewish people believe in Israeli colonization, and there were Jewish people before the state of Israel was founded and there will still be Jewish people after apartheid is smashed.”

Assimilation, Anti-Jewish oppression, and White Supremacy

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been presented with the argument that fighting assimilation takes attention away from the “real” battle, which is fighting anti-gay violence. Assimilation IS violence, not just violent cultural erasure, by the violence of stepping on anyone who might get in the way of your upward mobility.
—  Mattilda Bernstein Sycamore, That’s Revolting - Queer Strategies for Resisting Assimilation

Have we forgotten where we come from? We have risen up against some of the most violent conquering armies ever assembled, played meaningful roles in revolutions throughout history, have been part of countless undergrounds, organized labor struggles, fought for civil rights, led student movements, stood up to Apartheid, and more. We are survivors of never-ending attempts to wipe out our people. We are famous for carrying humor, intelligence, and a commitment to truth as forms of resilience and resistance. I even read somewhere that the Romans used to think of us as innately rebellious.

We must become, once again, that rebellious tribe the Romans feared. We must acknowledge generational trauma so we can move past it, break open the ways we have internalized anti-Semitism so we can develop new practices instead. We must tell a different story about ourselves and invite the people around us be our allies in that reclamation. We must fight against anti-Semitism and demand that all our movements take responsibility for this alongside us. We must reclaim our identity.

Identity is not merely about recognition, or acceptance, or representation; it is about becoming a people again, about finding our potential within that, about power. We must acknowledge the advantages we’ve been given by this system so we can use them as weapons to destroy it. But we must also acknowledge that we are an oppressed people — not so that we can evade responsibility for the ways we are empowered, or use our victimhood to shame and tear others down — but so we can align ourselves deeply and authentically with the titanic struggles for collective freedom before us. It is the only way we will ever genuinely stand in solidarity with others, the only way we will truly become our most powerful selves, the only way we will become whole again.

And as we become whole, we can play an even more grounded role as partners in the struggle for a free Palestine by refusing to allow Israel and the US to shed blood in our name. We can show up in this moment for Black Lives as true partners, as we are being called upon to do. Those of us who are white can disrupt white supremacy by using the benefits it gives us as tools to destroy it, sabotage it by reclaiming our Jewishness and refusing to do its dirty work. We can make all the movements of which we are a part stronger, smarter, fiercer, kinder, and funnier. And we can reclaim the peoplehood that is at our fingertips, protect our people — love our people. We can even, perhaps, give ourselves permission to grieve — for ourselves and our children, but also for our Savtas and Sabbas who never got the chance.

“Toward the Next Jewish Rebellion: Facing Anti-Semitism and Assimilation in the Movement”

"But black women wear wea--"

Do people still not understand the difference between ASSIMILATING to the dominant culture after centuries of being punished for having different features/culture vs. APPROPRIATION, aka stealing from a culture that literally has nothing to do with you while the people of that culture continue to be persecuted…. for that culture. Do people literally still not understand this

What is abundantly clear is that the witch hunts did not begin with witches, and are thus not avoided by making ourselves harmless or integrating and ingratiating ourselves with the corrupt systems of governance…Simply acting out the parody role which our enemies have scripted for us is not a solution…Yet when our enemy describes their fear to us with such eloquence, they reveal their weaknesses which we would be foolish not to exploit.
—  apocalyptic witchcraft

almost everytime i talk to my mother i cry. it feels like she throws the trauma i’ve experienced at the hands of the police state in my face- to pressure me to assimilate, to be ‘reasonable’. i know that by agitating for revolution, by exploring my own revolt, by finding joy in the resistance, i will let her down. this tension is painful.

anonymous asked:

As an ethnic jew born in America, I found your post on the term Zionism very interesting. What do you think of Vanessa Redgrave calling Zionists Hoodlums? She refuses to acknowledge that she is antisemitic because she actively protests antisemitism that is unrelated to Israel and doesn't treat antisemitism as a threat that 'no longer exists'. Do you think her use of the term Zionism is justifiable? Thanks so much, I must admit I am not very educated on the Israel-Palestine conflict.

“Zionism” has become a very loaded term and I honestly wish non-Jews would just stop using it. Hell, Uri Avnery made a very good case that no one should use it. When someone mentions Zionism, you honestly have no idea what they think that term means.

The worst meaning of “Zionist” refers directly to the notorious anti-semitic forgery “The Protocols of the Elders of Zion,” which postulated that Jews secretly control everything or at least are plotting to. People under this false belief will often mask their anti-semitism in anti-zionist language, using “Zionist” interchangeably with “Jew.”

Modern Political Zionism, as suggested by Theodor Herzl, was the belief that Jews needed a state to be safe from anti-semitism. That idea ultimately took shape in the modern State of Israel, though that wasn’t an inevitability. Both Uganda and Patagonia were suggested as alternatives. Regardless it ended up with Jewish groups purchasing land in Palestine during the Ottoman rule and then with the British Mandate which promised a safe Jewish home there. A lot of anti-Zionism is based in the thoughts, acts and theories of these Zionists who were responding to the anti-semitism of Europe during the late 19th and early 20th century. Jewish anti-Zionists of this period mostly believed in other solutions to anti-semitism including assimilation, communism, social justice activism, prayer and other ideas. Very often you’ll see anti-Zionist attacks along these lines based on the (frequently cherry-picked and decontextualized) statements of Zionists like David Ben-Gurion, Ze’ev Jabotinsky, Chaim Weitzmann and others.

Then there is what I’ll call “circumstantial” Zionism wherein Jews had to flee to British Mandate Palestine and later Israel as a practical matter rather than as a deliberate support of a political theory. In this case I’m talking about refugees. First you have a major flood of refugees from central Europe in the 1930s who fled to British Mandate Palestine because of the rise of Nazi Germany and its ideologies. 

As you can see here, there is an enormous spike in Jewish immigration in that period. Most of the rest of the world had severe caps on Jewish immigration during this period. The British promised a safe Jewish homeland in Palestine, so that’s where Jews fled. This is where I get frustrated with the people who are against ideological Zionism based on the statements and actions of the early Zionists. They don’t have a good answer for this population. 

The slowdown in 1936 came in large part as a result of Palestinian riots against the British and Jewish populations, which culminated in the British White Paper of 1939 which put extreme caps on Jewish immigration. 

As you can see in 1932, there were just under 200,000 Jews in Palestine. By 1942, that number had more than doubled. These are Jews who had to flee. You can condemn that 200,000 all you want, but I’m frustrated by the general apathy towards the other hundreds of thousands who came during this period where their immigration almost certainly saved their lives. Combine this with later waves of immigration which also included large masses of refugees from anti-semitism and you see where a country built on the notion of “all Jews always welcome” was not a theoretical but a practical matter. 

What I’m saying is that, for a great many Jews, Zionism isn’t a political theory, it’s a practical question of survival. To these Jews “I’m against Zionism” means, “I don’t care if Jews have a safe place to live.” 

The question of the costs of Zionism is a necessary and important one. But in taking sides, a lot of people ignore or downplay the role that the existence of Israel has played for the very survival of millions of Jews. Any solution to the question of Israel/Palestine that doesn’t take this into account is doomed to failure and will only exacerbate the situation. 

To borrow the cliche, “one person’s terrorist is another’s freedom fighter.” Anyone who isn’t interested in a better future for both peoples is one I don’t  fully trust.

Calling Zionists “hoodlums” is a grotesque oversimplification. I don’t doubt that Redgrave and other anti-Zionists have good intentions. But I also don’t think they are taking the effort necessary to understand the complexities of the issue. It’s much easier to take a side than it is to try to find practical solutions. Especially when the personal cost to her isn’t an existential one.

Anti-Zionism does not at its core call for the expulsion of Jewish people from the land that is now called Israel; instead, it calls for decolonization and the return and self-determination of Palestinian people… That does not mean that non-Jewish white people don’t use the act of criticizing or challenging Zionism as a stage for their own white supremacist, anti-Jewish sentiment. The funneling of anti-Jewish white supremacy through anti-Zionism or anti-Israel relies upon the completed (?) Ashkenazi assimilation into whiteness to disavow any oppressive tendencies. This type of white supremacy operates through the maintenance of Jewish (usually Ashkenazi) stereotypes like my nonexistent big nose and fat bank account, and the claim to Jewish conspiracies (Jews run the economy, Jews run Hollywood, Jews are ruining Christmas and thus Christianity, Jews made up the Holocaust, Jews control the U.S. government through Israel). But it’s okay because Jewish (read Ashkenazi) people are white now, so it isn’t really oppressive, right? Let me also say that I have never experienced anti-Jewish oppression from non-white people in the movement, only American, often bourgeois, straight cis white boys, who have the world on their shoulders, using radical language and tactics to perpetuate age-old anti-Jewish white supremacy.