links for 2011-03-09

  • "Immigrant rights groups in Mississippi say that the only way to make sense of the current mess is by understanding the unique economic and labor dynamics in the town, where Howard is the largest employer. In 2008, Howard workers were organized under the IBEW, the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers. White, black and Latino workers were building capacity so they could head into contract negotiations with a solid worker mandate, according to Bill Chandler, executive director of the Mississippi Immigrant Rights Alliance. Their union contract expired on August 30, 2008."
  • "I wish there was a way to talk about being a woman in the culture without replicating the fact that in this misogynist culture, women get status from how sexually desireable they are. I find a great deal of online feminism to be, to a certain extent, about a kind of performative desireability, which doesn't leave a lot of room for women that society doesn't find desireable–like many Spanish and black females, or Asian females who don't fit certain Orientalist stereotypes (or do), or women who don't have the right body type or who are no longer young–or who don't find themselves desired in their own lives. The media and just living our lives in the world can make us feel bad enough about not being desireable (or with aging, no longer being desireable); it's unfortunate that online feminism compounds this effect in such unthinking ways."
  • "Around the same time I created MizX I created another ladyblog persona and I called her DarlingBecky (surprise?!!) [...] I chose to set up the most common and illogical racist arguments I was familiar with so that the folks with good sense could knock them down. After all, I’ve been trained to argue both sides.

    "The experiment didn’t last long…in part because I am apparently too blatant to pull off subtle satire and in part because I quickly grew bored of being so inane. But in the time DarlingBecky was on the ladyblog she made dozens of purposeful, flat-out ignorant and flagrantly racist comments in the smarmiest tone I could conjure. She offered absolutely nothing of substance. And she was never banned…even after several people pointed out that she was an obvious troll."

  • The world *is* on fire. 'Libya's revolution date is pencilled in for February 17 – but it seems that the Libyans are too eager to voice their rage and anger at Colonel Muammar Gaddafi, who has ruled their country for almost 40 years.

    "Reports on Twitter and videos uploaded on YouTube speak of protests in Benghazi, where around 200 relatives of political prisoners killed in the Abu Slim Prison massacre of June 1996 have gathered after the spokesman on behalf of the families was arrested.

    "Like with Egypt, which ousted Hosni Mubarak after 30 years of corruption, the February 17 date was originally spread through social networking sites, including Facebook and Twitter."

  • Paz

    I was a huge MizJ fan, but I was absolutely disappointed to read that she was the one who made the “I bet the girl will eff a black man when she’s older” comment — and under the MsX account, not the trolling DB one!
    Anyway, editors claim that the reason for her banning was for the activity that occurred outside of Jez — namely, sending harrassing or threatening emails. Obviously it’s her word against theirs, but I just find the whole matter disheartening.

  • miga

    The MizJenkens post has tipped the scale for me. I’m giving up Jez for Lent, in hopes that it’ll break my habit. That site isn’t really worth wading through the crap and constant WOC erasure to get to the good articles.

  • Anonymous

    Hi. I know about Miz Jenkins through another corner of the internet besides Jezebel.com. She was part of a group that vigorously and enthusiastically discussed matters regarding race and culture. We were a subset of a larger group that was mostly social oriented, but discussions about issues relating to our experiences with race and culture were raised. Sometimes we chatted about different ethnic foods or music or particular customs (taking off shoes in households for example). Miz Jenkins asked the administrators to please start a separate board to address all of our varied interests. Nothing was done for many weeks. We continued our discussions as we patiently waited for the separate board.

    In the meantime our discussions became more serious, especially after many POC voices seemed to be ignored, drowned out, and dismissed on Jezebel. Unfortunately La Toya has had experience with this site. Many of us mourned the loss of her contributions to Jezebel. However it also led many of us to Racialicious, so that was a gain. We were very frustrated, especially Miz Jenkins whose posts were recognized for her strong voice. Some people did not agree with her, but most did and she gained a loyal following. Miz Jenkins herself never appointed herself to be an arbiter of all racial matters. It’s how people reacted to her intelligence, boldness, and razor sharp analysis. The subject of Becky–a code name for a certain type of White privileged female–became a hot topic. Other voices chimed in with their own experiences about the Beckys in their lives. Miz Jenkins announced starting the Darling Becky persona. Not all of us agreed with the idea of a troll account, but we did support her reasons for it.

    Then boom without warning that thread was shut down and locked. No warning to Miz Jenkins or anyone else, no discussion. Later we learned that private complaints were lodged with the administrators, but were never raised with those of us involved in those threads. And guess whose voices were silenced by the closing of that thread? Miz J and mostly POC, and White allies. It was extremely hurtful and painful to all of us. Like having Miz Jenkins’ tongue cut off.

    Yes a board was opened after that sudden silencing. But the damage had been done. It was clear that some who had also been strong voices of racial and social justice no longer felt comfortable in that corner of the internet, similar to what had happened on Jezebel. They posted less often, and eventually left.

    It’s also crucial to note that other POCs who expressed the same views on Jezebel as Miz Jenkin,s but in more “polite” language and in a “calmer” tone–notably The Science Girl–was congratulated for her measured approach. Oh really? She was praised for not sounding like the angry Black woman as MizJenkins was labelled.