All Articles Tagged "race relations"
‘He Didn’t Unite Us, He Did The Exact Opposite:’ Stacey Dash Says Obama Worsened Race Relations In America
Yes, she’s still talking.
By now we’re all pretty aware that Stacey Dash isn’t crazy about President Obama or the Democratic party. She rarely ever passes up an opportunity to let this be known. During a recent interview with Adam Carolla, Stacey expressed that she believes the nation’s first Black President not only failed to help unite us, but he’s actually contributes to division in this country.
“[In 2008] I voted for Obama and I have to say, I got ‘blacked’ into it. I didn’t know anything about him, but I just knew we needed a Black president. I thought, ‘He has a way to unite us in such a profound dynamic.’ But he didn’t [unite us]. He did the exact opposite,” said the former “Single Ladies” actress.
“There’s been more racial conversation over last five years than we’ve ever had before,” Carolla added Carolla. “If Hillary Clinton gets elected … I suspect there’s gonna be four years of feminist talk. It’ll be found in every story.”
Stacey; however, made it clear that she wants no parts of Hillary getting elected in 2016.
“I don’t want it. I hope not,” said Stacey. “There will be a big excuse on this big huge platform to say, ‘You’re doing this because she’s the President. She’s a woman, you don’t like it.”
Despite being ripped to shreds on social media, Dash says she definitely does not regret voting for and endorsing Mitt Romney during the 2012 elections—adding that it’s racist to vote for someone based on the color of their skin.
“I feel like I did the right thing,” she told Carolla. “It’s not a form of racism, it is racism. Racism is racism is racism. You should be able to make a choice based on the content of someone’s character, not the color of their skin.”
She also seemed to imply that Black people should get over racial inequality because that time has passed.
“It’s not 1965,” said Dash. “We’ve won that battle. We should move on.”
Growing up in Northern Kentucky, I got used to being the only Black kid in most of my classes. In high school, there were other Black students, but none of them in my close-knit drama and speech class circles. Because of this, I have dated quite a few White guys, and while there are similarities when dating any man, there are still some small cultural quirks that never go unnoticed when you’re with a White dude. LIke these nine things, for instance.
1. They will never understand the hair thing. It might start with an innocent “did you get a haircut” right after you wash your hair and there is shrinkage–but it does not end…EVER…after that. From moisturizing, to protecting with a satin cap, there is always a new and interesting thing for your guy to discover. Trust me, while it gets easier to explain, it doesn’t ever stop needing to be explained.
2. They don’t want to say the N-word, but they do want to talk about why some people do. Though I date smart enough humans to not ever be asked to be the voice of my entire race, I still get asked how I feel about rappers using the N-word, and who has access to it. This conversation doesn’t have to be uncomfortable if you’re certain of your stance, but if you waiver, they will be forever confused and your weighing-in on the subject can save them from physical harm and embarrassment in the future.
3. They will always be embarrassed about fried chicken. Every damn body loves fried chicken, but now he’s far too aware of the stereotypes associated and will be torn about it every time you pass a KFC.
4. They need help knowing what to tell their friends. As much as we live in a post-racial society <#sarcasm<, their friends may not be as enlightened as they are. Their friends want to know what the differences are, even when none are all that apparent. Give him some ammo. If he says the wrong thing, and you catch wind of it, he knows that’s his ass. Don’t be afraid to give him a script.
5. He’s just as scared to meet your family. While you might be dreading meeting older family members due to 50+ years of internalized racism, he just as much fears that your family wants to retaliate for having to endure ignorance while they were coming up. You will both help each other through this. Talk to your family, and if they don’t want to meet him, sit with that. Figure out what’s important to you. You shouldn’t not see a man just because your family has prejudices, and the same goes for his family.
Read on for more tips when dating a white man at Essence.com
Dear My Fellow Fed-Up Sistas and Brothas,
This has been a particularly trying year for people of color, hasn’t it? The cold-blooded killer of an innocent, college-bound, black boy went free. A former college football star was shot dead when running to the police for help. Blackface Halloween costumes seemed to be all the rage this year. A young black man was racially profiled, arrested and detained for buying a $350 belt at a high-end clothing store. A young black woman had her head blown off for seeking help after a car accident. Racist columnists showed, in no uncertain terms, just what they thought of New York City’s new mayor and his racially mixed family.
We are trying to process such regression of race relations and civil rights in a country that can boast progression in almost every other area. We are all dealing with it. How well we’re dealing with it is anyone’s guess at this point. Some of us choose to get involved in the legal processes. Some are engaging in thought-provoking, life-changing discussion. Some are creating art in all forms to spread messages of nonviolence, anti-racism and unity.
And there are the others. The point-of-view police. Calling folks out far and wide for tweeting or retweeting jokes, but not discussing Marissa Alexander’s trial. Questioning folks’ dedication to their race and The Struggle because they choose not to participate in race discussions. I do believe you mean well. You’re fed up like the rest of us. You’re livid and God knows you have every right to be. We all do. Trying to spread the message of racial equality only to be met with more murders and cases of racial profiling is enough to keep us all either living in a constant state of fear or animosity. We’ve been fighting the same fight for eons and forward movement seems slow at best.
What we have to remember is not to turn our frustrations on one another. We are all in this thing together. We are all coping the best way we know how. For some of us, coping looks like an hours-long Twitter discussion about the insistent choice of law enforcement (and society at large) to blame the victim of even the most debased hate crimes. For some of us, using that space as a starting point to unapologetically raise our voices and organize against racial inequity is powerful. For some of us, that is where our talents best serve. Others choose to talk less and involve themselves in whatever physical labors of unity their hands can find to further the cause. Protesting. Taking classes on race relations. Establishing relationships with local law enforcement.
And then some of us are silent and motionless. Some of us don’t know what to say. Some of us don’t know what to do. We feel helpless at first so we crack jokes, unsure of how else to bring comfort to so many of our people who are hurting and angry. Some of us avoid direct contact with the issues until we can make sense of them by ourselves first. And there is no shame in that.
We are all feeling our way through this. Lashing out at those who respond differently than you do is not a solution to the problem we’re facing as a people. Deriding each other for processing, thinking, feeling, reacting to troubling race related news in a way you might not readily understand does nothing to coax even the slightest bit of solidarity out from behind the shadows of fear, pain and indecision. Only patience, understanding and affirmation will do that. Let us remember to embrace one another, but bare our teeth toward racism. That is the only way to honor those we’ve lost.
Peace to Trayvon Martin.
Peace to Jonathan Ferrell.
Peace to Renisha McBride.
And to the rest of those whose lives have been lost but whose names will continue to inspire the fight against racism, peace to you.
Columbus Short Says Don’t Be Consumed By Injustice Of Trayvon Martin Case In Letter On Race Relations
It’s no secret George Zimmerman’s acquittal of Trayvon Martin’s murder has caused a national uproar. As African-Americans try to navigate an American judicial system that doesn’t seem to have their back, many black celebrities have written letters to the younger generation via social media. Scandal gladiator and Dartmouth graduate Columbus Short is the latest to write an exquisite letter on how African Americans must take inventory on their current societal standing as well as how Black men should not become stagnant in how they expect their manhood to evolve. Short writes:
As I have sat and listened to debate after debate, in depth analysis and tempered opinions on “The Verdict” I couldn’t help but feel helpless, frustrated, hurt and yes, angry. As I plummet into the labyrinth of my mind in search of answers, solutions, or a way I could help subdue the burning desire for things to change, my only recourse was to start writing.
Presume we step back and take pause for a moment. Pause to take a cultural and personal inventory on where we have come as a people. As oppose to being blinded by the present emotional and economical condition of our nation, our community. What if we begin by acknowledging some of the triumphs, rather than becoming consumed solely by the injustice? I ask these questions for one reason being, that if I reflect and remember just how far we’ve come, instead of sitting and stewing over what has happened, I am now ensuring that I am not going to allow this “Decision” to stifle me as a human being nor as a black man in America.
It may seem quite pretentious and easy to hear coming from my heart. However, I assure you I experience the same profiling and discrimination daily regardless of what I happen to do for a living. We must recognize that if we allow this particular ‘lost battle’ in the continuing war, that is ‘Race In America,’ to take us backwards, we will be backtracking and negating the progress that we have already made to date.
Columbus later went on to explain how rioting or looting is not the answer, but for African-Americans to investigate what companies funded the defense team of George Zimmerman so they may solicit the economic growth of them. He concluded by reinforcing the idea that those who are living and are of African descent are the survivors of racial profiling. By being survivors, there should be a cultural evaluation of how African-Americans can take control of their representation. By doing so, Short suggested African-Americans implement how they should be treated by their counterparts as well as each other.
To read Columbus Short’s full letter, click here.
Do you agree with Columbus’s take on race relations in America?
Things That Make You Go Hmmm–Or Not: New Study Claims Black People More Racist Than Whites And Hispanics…?
So in a new Rasmussen study, Americans were asked who they perceived to be more racist and apparently, black people took the cake. Honestly, I call bull.
According to the study, 37 percent of Americans feel that blacks are more racist, while only 15 percent believed whites were more racist. This same study also claimed to gather that 30 percent of people believe that race relations are getting better in America while 30 percent believe they are getting decidedly worse.
I’m not really sure what the poll was trying to prove as it is obvious that there is something quite off in the findings and how they came to them. Perhaps they asked these questions in the Bible Belt? Perhaps the number of whites to blacks was significantly off? Or maybe folks are seeing something that we just haven’t realized?
Oh wait… here’s an interesting stat:
“From an ideological point of view, almost 50 percent of conservative Americans think that blacks are racist as opposed to only 12 percent of white people.”
This is probably one of the most ridiculous and unnecessary polls I have ever seen. Ridiculous because due to the increasing visibility of racial profiling due to social networks and outspoken pundits, we see that disrespectful treatment and crimes against blacks because of their race and appearance are still happening throughout the country by police and everyday people (stop-and-frisk anyone?). We also see that we are clearly NOT living in a post-racial society no matter how you slice it or skew the numbers. Whatever the numbers say in this poll – the news tells a totally different story. Amadou Diallo. Oscar Grant. Sean Bell. Travyon Martin. To name just a few.
At the end of the day, I’m just wondering what this poll sought to accomplish? I’m also wondering who would take such amazingly off stats as the gospel truth about our nation’s race relations?
Do you think that blacks can be more racist than whites? Is it possible? Some argue that minorities can’t even be racist. How does this survey represent your own life? Or does it at all?
Tia Norfleet made her mark in black history by becoming the first black race car driver. But then she made us all look bad when she was kicked out of NASCAR for lying about her identity to cover up a few drug and theft charges and faking her NASCAR racing license.
Tia also had a criminal past she tried to apologize for, saying:
“People make mistakes in their life and move forward and make a better way. I think things that I’ve done, people make mistakes, as a child, as a teen, and basically, it’s things that you may not be proud of but you move forward and you help others. And they may be in the same situation and you can relate and they can relate to you, and you help them as much as possible.”
But we still feel bad for all of the little black girls who looked up to Tia before they found out that she was a criminal and a liar.
Earlier this week we told you about the internet’s negative reaction to Queens rapper LL Cool J’s collaborative track with country singer Brad Paisely. During a recent appearance on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, LL addressed the controversial track, titled “Accidental Racist” and admits that it “wasn’t perfect,” but it was put out with good intensions. Check out some of what he had to say.
On how he feels about the controversy surrounding “Accidental Racist:”
“I feel good. The song wasn’t perfect. You can’t fit 300 or 400 years of history into a three or four-minute song.”
On being criticized for downplaying slavery and racism:
“A lot of people took offense to the lyrics and ultimately, I can’t defend the song, but I can clarify my intentions. There’s a point in the song where I say, ‘If you don’t judge my du-rag, I won’t judge your red flag.’ I in no way would compare the history of the Confederate flag with a du-rag. However, when you think about a kid like Trayvon Martin, and you think about some of the things that happen in society based on clothing and when you put it in its proper context it makes sense.”
“I would never suggest to anyone that we should forget slavery and act like that didn’t happen. I understand the systemic racism that exists. But if the playing field is unleveled and you feel it’s unfair, then maybe putting down some of that baggage would help you to make it up that hill a little bit easier.”
On his intentions behind putting out the song:
“The intention was to put a song out there that causes people to have a conversation. The fact that we’re having so many conversations about this song is proof that the song did its job. People are talking about it. That elephant in the room needs to be discussed.”
Turn the page to watch LL’s interview. Do you feel he has a point?
Here We Go Again: Controversial South African Study Says Black People Are Less Attractive Than Other Races
Outrage erupted at the University of Capetown in South Africa when the school’s paper, The Varsity published the results of a highly controversial study conducted on campus, in an article entitled, “Is Love Colour Blind?,” reports Sowetan Live. The study suggests that students on the campus find White people “more attractive” than people of other races.
Sixty students on the UCT campus were surveyed and the study revealed that 38% of participants felt White people were the “more attractive” race. 19% said they preferred Coloureds, which according to the Encyclopedia Britannica is “a person of mixed European (‘white’) and African (‘black’) or Asian ancestry.” 14% said they found Indians “more attractive” and only 8% said they found Blacks attractive.
“In total, I surveyed 60 people, 10 from each of the following racial groups: white, coloured (culturally), Indian, East Asian, biracial and African,” the article’s author, Qamran Qabo.
Yesterday, following an outcry from school organizations such as the Student Representatives Council, the South African Student Congress and the Young Communist League, the paper was forced to apologize.
Chairman of the university’s YCL branch, Mangaliso Khomo expressed that she found the study to be insensitive and revealed that race relations is still a “working progress” on the campus. University of Cape Town spokesman Pat Lucas has declined to comment on the matter.
Aside from the rather small population of people surveyed and the study’s questionable results, the real issue that should be addressed is why students even felt it necessary to conduct such a study. But I suppose we should ask Psychology Today that same question since the web publication found themselves under fire after publishing a similar study back in 2011.
What do you think of the UCT study?
On Tuesday evening, Teach for American Outreach hosted an online discussion about race and education, looking at the historical context as well as the implications of current issues including No Child Left Behind and the Franklin v. University of Texas Supreme Court case.
Moderated by Teach for America manager of professional recruitment Christie Clark, “Civil Rights in the Classroom: The Past, Present, and Future of Race and Education in the U.S.” featured Dr. Sheneka Williams, assistant professor of educational administration and policy at the University of Georgia, Saba Bireda, policy and legal advisor for EducationCounsel LLC, and Justin Reid, associate director at the Civil Rights Movement-related Moton Museum in Virginia.
The event was part educational and part for recruitment, as Teach for America is still accepting applications for fall of 2013, with the final rounds of deadlines on January 11 and February 13.
“Start with Plessy and think about how segregation in public facilities was seen as an OK practice at that time,” Williams explained. That led to ”separate but equal” in the education system, which eventually led to Brown v. Board of Education.
Reid discussed how the NAACP spent years filing suits against “separate but equal” in schools. However, they realized that “in order to really make American schools equal, they had to be integrated.” Brown v. Board of Education was an “integration suit, which was at first a class action suit involving hundreds of plaintiffs saying we want integrated schools.”
“Brown really informed our whole understanding of what equal opportunities in education really means,” said Bireda. “After Brown, there was a transformative movement in education and Civil Rights. While progress to integrate was slow, there was a transformative effect on education.”
With the background laid out, the trio also discussed the recent achievement goals in Florida and Virginia, which seemed to include lower goals for black and Latino students compared to their white and Asian counterparts. Virginia has since revised its goals.
“If you set the bar differently for different races, are we saying that for poor little Johnny who is black or Latino, that this is the best he’s going to do? Let’s set the bar where he is and keep it there because it’s not likely he’ll get farther?” Williams said. “It’s the perpetuation of the achievement gap that we have. We need to think about how this would translate in the classroom. How will people respond to these students? There is a trickle-down element here.”
And the panel looked at the current Supreme Court case on race-based admissions, Fisher v. University of Texas, highlighting that Teach for America has joined with 100 other organizations to sign an amicus brief in support of the University.
“What is at stake here is the future of our economy and the future of the opportunities in this country,” Bireda said. “That has implications for what our workforce looks like and whether or not we’re going to be competitive globally.”
The panelists also answered attendee questions, including advice for first-time teachers. Answer: check your biases at the door and get to know the students without pre-judging.
“If we don’t get education right, we enter a new generation of slavery of sorts,” Williams said. “I know everybody cringes at that word, but we have to understand that we are a diverse country and what has been the norm is no longer. We have to embrace that and start there. Everyone deserves a chance at equal educational opportunities. If we don’t get this right, long-term, there is a trickle-down effect and we might never get out of this economic situation in this country.”
A record number of 4.8 million Americans are now in an interracial marriage, meaning 1 out of every 12 marriages involves people of a different race. The percentage is still small—8.2 percent—when compared with marriages between people of the same race, but when you look at the fact that that number was 3.2 percent in 1980, it’s clear this trend is quickly rising.
According to the Pew Research Center, which used data from the previous census as well as the 2008-2010 American Community Survey, which surveys 3 million households annually, Asians and Hispanics continued to be the most likely to marry someone of a difference race, but the biggest increase in interracial marriages occurred among African Americans. Blacks who married outside their race increased from 15.5 percent in 2008 to 17.1 percent in 2010, which the Associated Press says is “due in part to a rising black middle class that has more interaction with other races.”
Other findings included:
- Black men were more than twice as likely as black women to marry someone outside their race: 24 percent vs. 9 percent. For Asians, the reverse was true: 17 percent of Asian men married someone of a different race compared to 36 percent of Asian women.
- White-Asian couples who married had the highest median income, nearly $71,000, followed by Asian-Asian ($62,000), white-white ($60,000), white-Hispanic ($57,900), white-black ($53,187), black-black ($47,700) and Hispanic-Hispanic (nearly $36,000).
- The top three states for white-black married couples are Virginia, North Carolina and Kansas, all with rates of about 3 percent.
Public acceptance of interracial marriage is improving as well, although perhaps not as much as it should be. About 83 percent of Americans say it is “all right for blacks and whites to date each other,” which is a big jump from the 48 percent who said so in 1987. About 63 percent of those surveyed also say it “would be fine” if a family member were to marry outside their own race.
In addition to changing attitudes about interracial marriage, researchers point out that the influx in Asian and Hispanic immigrants has also increased the dating pool. But now that there are substantial numbers of immigrants in the US, members of these racial groups may be able to find a partner of the same ethnic makeup up going forward, which could slow interracial marriage rates.
Divorce, which is high across the board, was found to be more likely among interracial couples. The Pew researchers cited a study conducted a decade ago which found that mixed-race couples had a 41 percent chance of separation or divorce, compared to 31 percent for those who married within their race. A different analysis found divorce rates among mixed-race couples was more dependent on the specific race combination, with white women who married outside their race being more likely to divorce. Mixed marriages involving blacks and whites were also considered the least stable, followed by Hispanic-white couples.
Overall, Paul Taylor, director of Pew’s Social & Demographic Trends project, sees this data as a positive sign of racial tolerance in America.
“In the past century, intermarriage has evolved from being illegal, to be a taboo and then to be merely unusual. And with each passing year, it becomes less unusual. That says a lot about the state of race relations. Behaviors have changed and attitudes have changed.”
Do you agree that the rise in interracial marriages is a sign of improved race relations?
Brande Victorian is a blogger and culture writer in New York City. Follower her on Twitter at @be_vic.
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