Links – 2009-04-08

Complied by Latoya Peterson

WireTap – Ask a Sex Goddess: How Do I Address Privilege with My White Partner?

I am a brown-skinned woman of color, and I have been dating a white man for almost 8 years. Our different ethnicities have never really been a problem, but lately I have been noticing a disparity in the way we see each other that really bothers me. We went to college together, and after we graduated, I worked really hard, long hours with a number of different non-profits, and because of that I now have a successful career as a consultant. My partner, on the other hand, worked as a bartender for 2 years. When he decided he did want to work at a non-profit, he got the first job he applied for, and within a year he received a promotion.

And yet, when we argue, he accuses me of always getting what I want. He says that everything comes so easily to me, that I don’t have to try. And yet he clearly has more social privilege than I do. He doesn’t see how hard I work because he doesn’t have to work hard. And because I feel that this is very much about our backgrounds, I don’t know how to address the issue. How do I have this conversation with him? How do I help him see this disparity?

Racewire – The Numbers Game

Counting people is harder than it looks. The 2010 census is morphing from sociological project into a political one: conservatives are crowing about the dangers of tallying “illegals,” and activists are seeking policy changes to guard against undercounting.

Immigrant advocates are leveraging the threat of an undercount to press for immigration reforms, warning that aggressive crackdowns drive undocumented immigrants further underground. An estimated 3 percent of the Latino population was undercounted in the 2000 census.

The Women’s Media Center – Intervale Green Apartments: Green, Affordable—and for Low-Income Women

By 2004 Nancy Biberman believed it was the right time to take on another daring venture. This time it would be a new green low-income apartment building with beautiful amenities.

Welcome to Intervale Green Apartments. Quietly but clearly it engages in a dialogue with the old psychology and social policies that say the poor don’t need beauty—just basics. But Biberman understands that beautiful places change people’s attitudes, reduce stress, improve productivity, and also give people hope.

Examiner.com – Can Pilates Help Reduce Cellulite?

Moreover, studies have shown that caucasian women are more susceptible to cellulite development, whereas African American and Asian women are less susceptible. Just as darker skin tones — those with more melanin — display a stronger resistance to UV rays, so to do darker skin tones show more resistance to cellulite development. As the levels of melanin, and thus skin tones, can vary greatly among caucasians, an individual’s susceptibility to cellulite development will depend on genetic make-up. The more an individual tans naturally, the more melanin in their body, and the more resistant to cellulite development they naturally are. Redheads with blue eyes have the least amount of melanin in their bodies, while African American women with dark eyes have the most.


Sepia Mutiny – We Are Fatter Than We Think We Are

An African-American friend of mine on Facebook recently jubilantly posted a link to this article about a recently-discovered problem with the BMI Index, a number widely used to determine body fat levels — whether people are underweight, healthy, overweight, or obese.

The BMI index was calculated with reference to caucasian body types. But people from different ethnic backgrounds have bodies that might be constructed slightly differently, so one BMI might not accurately determine everyone’s body fat level. [...]

The good news for African Americans and bad news for Asian Indians [in, in short] people who are ethnically “Asian Indian” (desi, South Asian, etc.) are on average approximately six percent more overweight than they previously might have thought.