This is a response to a post made by @nilaharan earlier today. I found the post to be very troubling and completely misinformed. Firstly, it is important to know that there is no such thing as “reverse racism.” Racism is based in systemic and institutional oppression. POC do not navigate society with the same power and privilege that white people do and therefore cannot be “racist” towards white people. People of colour (POC) calling out Amy Jackson for putting on brownface and portraying a Tamil girl on screen is a critique of this very system that celebrates Eurocentric standards of beauty. Also, Amy Jackson in Indian films is not at all comparable or the same as POC taking up roles in Hollywood. Aspects such as dialogues that are written for her (the picture for this post) are degrading and we need to continue to speak out against these aspects of Indian movies. As a makeup artist, I think it is important that we critically analyze what we post and understand that when we post images of Amy Jackson in South Asian attire/jewellery we are perpetuating the same systems of oppression that we experience on a daily basis. As a womyn of colour (WOC) I am dedicated to making sure that my workspace, social media included, is a safe space for POC. I encourage you to do the same and rethink some of the information you’ve posted.
Riot police fired
tear gas and stun guns at hundreds of students protesting university
tuition hikes outside of the South African parliament building in Cape
Town on Thursday.
“We were pushed back by police with force,” Motheo Lengoasa, a University of Cape Town student told
the Guardian amid chants and songs from fellow protesters. “The stun
grenade was shot right next to my ear. I still have the buzzing in my
Ethiopian tribes transform trash into body ornaments
The lower valley of the Omo Valley is just one of the sets most important paleontological sites in Africa declared a World Heritage Site in 1980. The Omo Valley is home to many tribes, however, the French photographer Eric Lafforgue the author of this impressive photographic record spent more time with Bana, Dassanech and Mursi.
Unfortunately, modern civilization lurks dangerously slow, Omo Valley and the advance of Western technology is not far behind. With the completion of a hydroelectric dam downstream, many tribes lost their ancestral lands and will be forced to resettle in modern environments, the landscape will be completely overhauled and will become very difficult resignifying all.
If I was to wear a kimono into class one day in high school I would have been told to “go back to China, you chink” even though I’m not even Chinese. While if a non person of color did, they would be praised for their “unique” style choices. Up until very recently I stayed away from anything obviously connected to my race because when I was younger I was severely bullied about being Asian. I can’t speak Japanese, I can’t make traditional dishes by heart, I never wanted to wear kimonos or embrace my culture at all. Today I’m very disconnected from my culture, as well as the other cultures I was born into but do not look like I obviously belong to. I regret letting kids saying mean racist things to me keep me away from who I am. But now many of those things I was taught to be ashamed of are now trendy and popular. Culture appropriation is an issue because non poc can cherry pick the “beautiful and inspiring” parts about my cultures but I will be shamed and made fun of if I did the same thing.
Black People and other POC: *explains why something is racist and cultural appropriation*
White People: But is it really racist? Really? We’re appreciating your culture. Aren’t you being like overly sensitive? This is why we can’t all get along now *proceeds to wear bindis/dreads/headresses/fetishize poc/and say racial slurs*
Black People and Other POC: This why we dont like ya’ll
Because when I was five, my kindergarten classmate told me I couldn’t be the princess in the game we were playing because black girls couldn’t be princesses. Because I was in third grade the first time a teacher seemed shocked at how “well-spoken” I was. Because in 4th grade I was told my crush didn’t like black girls. Because in 6th grade a different crush told me I was pretty — for a black girl. Because in 7th grade my predominantly black suburban neighbourhood was nicknamed “Spring Ghettos” instead of calling it its name (Spring Meadows). Because I was in 8th grade the first time I was called an Oreo and told that I “wasn’t really black” like it was a compliment.
Because in 9th grade when I switched schools a boy told me he knew I had to be mixed with something to be so pretty. Because in 10th grade my group of friends and I were called into an office and asked if we were a gang, or if we had father figures. Because in 11th grade my AP English teacher told me that I didn’t write like a college-bound student (though I later scored perfectly on the exam). Because when I volunteered in Costa Rica that summer, I was whistled at and called Negrita. Because when I asked my host father if that was like being called nigger, he said, no, it was a compliment because black women are perceived to be very good in bed. Because I was a kid. Because I watched from the bleachers while the school resource officer didn’t let my brother into a football game after mistaking him for another black boy who was banned. Because the school resource officer maced him for insisting he was wrong. Because I was suspended for telling the school resource officer he didn’t deserve respect. Because my senior year boyfriend said nigger.
Because I was one of two black girls in the freshman class at my college. Because at meetings to talk about how to attract more black students, someone suggested that the school attracted a certain demographic (sustainable living, farming, general hippiness) and that maybe black people “just weren’t interested in things like that.” Because my college boyfriend called me a “fiery negress” as a joke when he ordered for me at a restaurant. Because the boyfriend after that cut me off for saying he was privileged. Because I can’t return to my hometown without getting pulled over.
Because when I got married people assumed I was pregnant. Because people who know I’m married call my husband my “baby daddy.” Because my pregnancy with my son was plagued with videos of black lives being taken in cold blood. Because their murderers still walk the streets. Because America sent me a message that my son’s life didn’t matter. Because when Tamir Rice was murdered I curled up on the bed and sobbed, cupping my belly. Because my son heard me sobbing from the inside. Because they don’t care about us. Because when I was seven months pregnant my neighbour asked me to help him move a dresser up a flight of stairs. Because I am not seen as a woman. Because I am not allowed to be fragile. Because the nurse that checked me in at the hospital to deliver wouldn’t look my husband in the eye. Because the vast majority of people won’t look my husband in the eye. Because when the doctors put my son in my arms and I saw that he was as dark as his father, I knew life would be even harder for him. Because he will be regarded the same way I was. Because he will be forced to grow up before he is grown. Because strangers at the store think it’s okay to reach into my son’s stroller and touch him without a word to me. Because we aren’t entitled to boundaries. Because they think we are here for their enjoyment. Because people don’t think we are people.
Because I’ve been called racist for defending myself. Because all the major protests are for cis black men. Because I’ve been told that talking about the women who’ve died is taking away from the real issue.
Because my nephew told me he couldn’t be Spider Man like he wants to because Spider Man is white. Because when he was four he said that he wants to be white so that he can go on a boat like the people on TV. Because I couldn’t save him from that. Because I can’t protect my son. Because I can’t protect myself. Because my stomach sinks whenever I see a police car. Because when my husband leaves the house at night I am afraid he’ll be killed for looking like somebody. Because I worry that if I went missing like the 64,000 other black women in America, the authorities wouldn’t try hard to find me. Because I am disposable. Because I am hated. Because we keep dying. Because they justify our deaths. Because no one is held accountable. Because I am gas lighted. Because I have been told that by speaking about being oppressed I am victimising myself. Because our murders are filmed and still pardoned. Because I don’t know what it means to let loose. Because doing the things that my white peers do with ease could cost me my life — trespassing in abandoned buildings, smoking joints, wearing a hoodie, looking an officer in the eye, playing music loudly, existing. Because I am afraid to relax. Because I am traumatised.
Because there isn’t a place in the world White Supremacy hasn’t touched. Because I am trapped here. Because the playing field isn’t levelled. Because I love my skin. Because I love being a woman. Because not hating myself is considered radical. Because I’ve been called racist for defending myself. Because all the major protests are for cis black men. Because I’ve been told that talking about the women who’ve died is taking away from the real issue. Because I get no break from fighting. Because everything is a struggle. Because my anger isn’t validated. Because they don’t care about my pain. Because they don’t believe in my pain. Because they forgive themselves without atoning. Because I’m not free. Because the awareness of it permeates everything. Because it’s not ending. Because they teach the children that it’s already ended. Because someone will assert their supremacy over me today. Because they’ll do it tomorrow. Because I want more. Because I deserve better.