working with white people

The idea that racism will die out with the white baby boomers is a myth perpetuated by white millennials who do not want to take action and responsibility for calling out racism in their own generation. White millennials are not inherently less racist than white baby boomers and racism does not disappear with a generation. Racism is a construct that exists in all aspects of society, from politics to economics to social norms and activities. It can only be eradicated with constant and fervent dismantling of these powerful constructs in place and new generations must keep working at it. I’ve heard too many fellow white people say that when all these ‘racist old people’ die off then we’ll be fine but we all know that racism is not limited to old white people and that the alt-right is littered with white millennials. Check your friends and family on bigoted and racist remarks. Be a good ally. Sitting back for old people to die is not good allyship and you’ll soon see that they are not the only racists in power.

“Rosa Parks didn’t stand up because she was tired/her feet hurt” is one of the most outrageous lies we tell children in the guise of history and it is so harmful. It takes this brave, courageous and intentional act of civil disobedience and makes it passive and unwitting. Rosa Parks knew she would be arrested that day and she made a choice to do so. She was already heavily involved in the Civil Rights movement when it happened. She saw the opportunity and took it because she knew she could turn it into a moment that would change history. She wanted to change the law and she got arrested so she could do so. It was not an accident and telling Black children otherwise teaches them that history just happened to them instead of telling them about a woman who put her life on the line to change an unjust law. It sanitizes her, turning her into a little old lady (she was 42) who was just tired after a long day of work makes her more palatable to white people and that is a disservice to her memory and her movement.

To this day I marvel at how many well-meaning white Americans will parachute into remote villages and slums in Africa, Asia and South America to do charity work, but won’t set up anti-racism projects in places like Logan County, West Virginia, where at least 96% of residents are white and most believe Trump is all that stands between them and racial oblivion. It’s hard to fathom how many white-run think tanks, foundations and charity organizations exist in the U.S., but how few focus specifically on deeply studying white racism and eradicating it.

This is not work that people of color can shoulder alone. White spaces are isolated by design. According to the Washington Post in 2014, 75% of white Americans have no friends of color. We’re not going to get past a nation where between 40 and 50% of Trump’s supporters think black people are lazier and more violent than whites and nearly 70% dislike Muslims if anti-racist white people don’t penetrate the communities from where this thinking originates.

— Zak Cheney Rice, Only white people could have prevented a Donald Trump presidency

follow @the-movemnt

As someone who, overall, enjoyed fantastic beasts, it really causes a lot of issues for the worldbuilding

I think fantastic beasts really highlights a flaw in jkrs writing. Mainly, how the rules for her world really only work if you consider white people, and totally fall apart when you consider the same world from anyone else’s point of view.

The idea that in america you can have 0 contact with no-majs is fine, if 1. Everyone is white and/or 2. Magic is entirely hereditary. But neither or those ia true.

The movie takes place, what 60 years after slavery was abolished? What happened when a wizard was born a slave? Were they left to form an obsurial? (No, they say there hadnt been one for centuries in america) were they whisked away to the magical world and expected to leave their relatives to rot in slavery?

The movie takes place 30 years after the wounded knee massacre. What about magical children born in native communities? Are they invited to ilvermony? Do they let their communities be butchered?

What will happen in less than 20 years when japanese internment camps begin? Will witches and wizards of Japanese heritage just pack up and go to the camps too? Will they go into hiding and leave their potentially nonmagical families?

Jk seems content to act as though the Wizarding world has no racsim and instead uses magic vs nomaj tensions as an allegory. But that doesnt work when you have muggle born wizards who would be affected by racism in the nonmagical world.

And i dont think jk has ever even considered this. And it shows.

I ! am ! finally ! done ! This was one of those were you go, eh, I’ll start it, I’ll doubt I’ll finish it, but whatever. So here’s Anders, kudos to @timesorceror again, for making this a thing.

I was going to write this post whether Clinton won or not, because even before the election it was clear that Trump was going to clean up among working class whites. Right now, exit polling has Clinton at 53% of those who make $30,000 a year or less, down from Obama’s 63% in 2012. The people who voted for Obama in past years and who voted for Trump this year determined the way the election went. Why did people vote that way? Because they’ve seen no benefits from voting Democratic.

American wages have been in freefall since 2000. This is the greatest drop in income since the Great Depression. Working class white people voted for Bush, realized he couldn’t change stuff, voted for Obama, realized he couldn’t change things, and were going to stay home until they saw somebody speaking to their concerns. They came out heavily for Bernie Sanders in the Democratic Primaries, but not quite enough to put him over the top against a vast well-oiled party machinery, and they came out for Donald Trump, who at least made mention of the troubles working class people have but who more importantly positioned himself as the anti-Obama anti-Bush candidate. Clinton ran on 4 more years of Obama, without even being as well-liked as Obama. She didn’t even want to campaign on single payer healthcare, feeling too worried that she might alienate the billionaires overwhelmingly backing her. Her opinions on trade agreements seemed contrived, and nobody believed she’d regulate the banking sector in any way. She failed to oppose the cops that kill black people on the street every day, giving her absolutely no appeal for black people as a voting choice except as a perceived defensive measure. No wonder black working class turnout was down so much. Part of the appeal that Trump had to the white working class was based on the media simply giving in and portraying him as he wished to be portrayed, rather than actually challenging his ostensible pro-working class credentials. A significant part of it was racism, certainly. But it wasn’t racism that put him over the top, it was his ability to convince people that he might change their desperate circumstances. He can’t, of course. Wages will continue to decline during his time in office because his party is wedded to those economic policies that cause wages to decline. There will be a crackup, and we can take advantage of that by stridently opposing him from day 1. We should recognize though that we’re fighting to defend the working class, not to blame it.

This is the wrong time to dismiss the role racism played in Donald Trump’s win.

Contrary to the popular narrative, economic anxiety was not the main reason white Trump voters cast ballots for the president-elect. Those who listed the economy as their top concern voted for Clinton at a rate of 52% compared with Trump’s 42%, according to exit polls published by the New York Times. Of the four priorities given as options by the pollsters, Trump voters on average ranked immigration and terrorism — both starkly racialized issues in the U.S. — above America’s financial state. 

In case after case, instead of figuring out how to ensure stable and livable jobs and wages for these workers, GOP leaders have scapegoated black welfare mooches and “illegals” coming from Mexico, whom they accuse of stealing jobs and committing crimes. Rather than reject this race-baiting, white Americans have been consistently willing to accept these explanations.

The result has been a deep entangling of economic anxiety with racial anxiety. There is no hard line between the two, as many today would suggest. …

If anything, the shift in the debate over whether Trump supporters were guided by racism seems more rooted in a desire to avoid confronting racism. You could argue that calling these people racist hurts their feelings and will make it harder to convince them not to vote for candidates like Trump in the future. This may be true, but it’s also dishonest about the dynamics at play. If we want to create a society where we flatter and indulge people into voting how we want, avoiding calling out their “racism” when it arises may be a good idea. But if we want to address the real root of the problem, we’ll have reckon with more uncomfortable truths.

— Zak Cheney-Rice, Read the full op-ed                          follow @the-movemnt

This is my new strategy for white people who ask "Do you work here?"

I can’t tell you how many nice (and not-so-nice) white women have walked up to me in a store to ask me where something is, how much something costs, or to otherwise find out information she should be getting from an employee who MUST BE ME because I am a brown person nearby on the salesfloor.  Nevermind whether I have on an overcoat, I’m wearing headphones, or I have a complete lack of nametag, apron, or company t-shirt, I still get asked all the time “Do you work here?”

Before, my standard response was to pause for just enough beats to make her uncomfortable and then say, “No I don’t.  What about me made you think I work here?  And please be specific.”  Face crack.  Every single time.

Thanks to a friend’s comment thread on the Internet, I have a new tactic.

Pretend you do work there!!  It’s brilliant.  Observe.

White Woman:  How much is this shirt?
Me:  The sign is right there.  Can you not read it?
White Woman:  I was just making sure to see if it was on sale.  No need to be rude.
Me: No need to be stupid.  The sign has the price.  The tag has the same price.  Therefore, that’s the price.  Why are you bothering me with this?
White Woman:  Well I never!  I need to speak to the manager!
Me:  Fine, so do I.  I don’t even like this store.
[we march to customer service]
White Woman:  I’d like you to fire this employee immediately.  He was SO RUDE and I’m going to take my business elsewhere unless he is fired right now!
Manager:  I don’t think –
White Woman:  [”I was told by Applecare” voice] YOU DON’T THINK!?  I’M CALLING CORPORATE!
Me:  And say what?  That a perfect stranger with no nametag, apron, company ID, or any other sign of being an employee was mean to you in a store?  Susan I don’t even work here.  I just felt like making you look like the ass you clearly are.  Have a nice day.

Like…I’m finna go shopping RIGHT NOW just to test it out.  I’ma put on my big obnoxious hipster headphones just so there’s no reason whatsoever someone would think I’d be on the clock, and I’ma casually walk through a store and just wait.  And I happen to be wearing black jeans and a black jacket, which is the unofficial NYC uniform of fast-fashion retail.  And H&M is like three blocks away too…

I don’t think that this is the moment for people in other countries to go on their “we’re better than the US” spiel.  There isn’t really a Western European country who’s history isn’t as blood soaked as the U.S. so it would be nice if folks didn’t try to posture. 

i was trying to avoid posting too much about the election because i like keeping my blog stress-free, but i just have to give a shoutout to those of you who are terrified for your lives but have no choice but to go to work (and/or school) but especially customer service work.

i know you can’t be vocal about how you feel and have to force a smile and cheerful attitude when you might be talking to someone who voted trump and that’s so fucking hard, i am so sorry and my heart goes out to you. stay strong.

Understanding Bannon and Breitbart has also helped me to understand the distorted thinking of my Trump-supporting brother. I was confused that he could possibly be a Sanders supporter who turned to Trump over Hillary Clinton. I didn’t understand how he could espouse these views that seemed so at odds with the Republican Party, yet consider himself conservative. I feel that Sanders would have had a better chance to appeal to Trump’s followers because he appealed to working class whites way more than Hillary Clinton did.

A lot of people are fixed in this liberal/conservative, democrat/republican dualistic way of thinking. But as I read Bannon’s/Breitbart’s criticisms of capitalism as it is now and this upper-crust in control of everything, and how both Democrats and Republicans are corrupt, I realized some leftists including myself would agree with some of the observations he made, and you come to realize that the political spectrum is not that simple. Now, they are not leftists, progressives or communists in any sense, even when Bannon calls himself a Leninist. I think these far right movements all over the world have stemmed from conservatives who are disenfranchised with mainstream conservatism, as well as liberalism, but instead of joining progressives and working toward making a more equitable system, they turn to populism: blaming minorities, other nations, globalization, and progressivism. 

They scapegoat outsiders and believe in a more extreme form of capitalism. They identified some of the enemies accurately (corrupt politicians and an elite), but they misfire, also demonizing mainstream press, minorities, immigrants, and regulations on capitalism. They never point the finger at corporations that exploit them. They never see their shared struggles with marginalized groups. They never realize that it isn’t globalization that is the enemy in and of itself, but the exploitative practices of corporations. They also don’t see rich people as the enemy, either, but see regulations on capitalism as well as minorities and outsourcing as preventing them from sharing in that wealth. 

What they also miss is that leaders like Bannon do NOT have their interests at heart. People like Bannon are MANIPULATING and misdirecting and capitalizing on their anger. Now that Bannon has power, frighteningly enough, he won’t just profit from and fuel the racism and fury of these white people. Now, he and Trump can take control–can potentially create a fascist state. And THAT’S what we have to stop from happening.

Muhammad Ali, 1942-2016. A people’s champion and a champion of humanity. Photography by Gordon Parks.

i can’t even find the humor in ‘love on ice’ honestly… like kubo-sensei spent 5 years working on yoi and then some white people decided to bring it to north america and make it heterosexual and steal the same plot

i get that it’s funny to see an anime being so popular that it’s blatantly plagiarized in the west but it just feels like a smack in the face

Okay but I’m so angry at everyone who spread and continues to spread that “the ace community is super extra white” shit.

Like at first I was like “okay I’m just pissed at white people doing it, PoC need to be able to talk about the racism they experience in pretty much whatever way feels right to them”. But people have not just vented about racism and called it out in this way, they have over and over used this “aces/aros are so white” argument to try and discredit “ace tumblr”, they have erased me and others like me from my own community, they have erased the work that many PoC have put into the community.

White people in “the discourse” have over and over acted like their own white privilege pales compared to that of “the ace community” and they have largely gotten away with it. People have used a god damn AVEN survey and acted like a census from a racist site many PoC left early on accurately represents us, while ignoring more inconvenient data from that same survey (like only 22% respondents having been heteroromantic). People have told me curtly to shut up, that I’m tokenizing myself by having opinions they don’t like, and they have literally tried to remove my PoC card despite me making it very easy for people to find it on my blog and in my posts that I’m not white.

“Discoursers” have sexualized aces and dehumanized aros and don’t see that it’s racist. “Discoursers” have said people on the other side of the debate have never experienced “real oppression”, often coupling it with the “most aces are white+cis+het” claim, and don’t understand that it’s among other things racist. White “discoursers” talk about how super extra white and racist “the ace community” is and don’t understand that they have left their lane far behind and that it’s racist, and an expression of them distancing themselves from their own white privilege.

“The discourse” thrives on this, on painting “the ace community” as the most white, the most privileged, because it means our opinions are ignorant and worthless essentially by default. Saying “ace tumblr is the most white and racist” as an “argument” in “the discourse” is convenient, and is one thing that makes it so much easier to dismiss anything we say out of hand and mock us relentlessly, and if the price is making PoC who are part of “ace tumblr” feel like shit or even exposing us to more racism, oh well, we’re just tokens, we’re barely even there, we don’t matter.

Every time I see this “the ace community is so white (and that’s why ‘the discourse’ is right)” bullshit I get furious and I have not felt this erased as a PoC in the ace community since I left AVEN.