links for 2011-04-19

  • "I think what bothers me about this is that neither side can see the sun through the trees. Look, the word f@ggot cannot be justified. Getting into a game of semantics leaves everyone a loser. It is equally wrong for anyone White, inject a racial slur into the conversation. No White person will ever know what it feels like to be called a nigger, and all analogy accomplished was to level the playing field and remind the Black person of the racial hierarchy. Why is it that marginalized groups cannot seem to understand that using oppression to fight oppression simply leads to – you guessed it – more oppression. Everyone loses when we take this approach. The bottom line is that White people don't get to invoke the word nigger as a teaching lesson, and no straight person gets to say the word f@ggot and get away with it. It all seems pretty simple to me, the moment one stops focusing on semantics."
  • "What did Bonds do to 'obstruct justice'? According to one juror, 'Steve,' the obstruction of justice charge was reached because, 'The whole grand jury testimony was a series of evasive answers. There were pointed questions that were asked two or three or four different ways that never got clearly answered. That's how we came to that.'

    "Wow. Apparently, a 'series of evasive answers' lines you up for a 10-year sentence behind bars. By that standard, Dick Cheney, Karl Rove and Scooter Libby should be breaking rocks in Leavenworth for their performance at the Valerie Plame trial."

  • This mess never ceases, does it?–AJP "To be sure, it's newsworthy that BWMs saw significant job losses during this recession, when previous downturns had been kinder to them. That tells us something important about the Great Recession: that its effects have been felt across the board, not just among workers who traditionally are the most vulnerable.

    "But the magazine seems to argue that the job woes of the BWMs deserve more widespread concern than the job woes of other groups…"

  • "And we label Whiteness or 'Color' from a North American perspective that is very, very specific to North American socio-cultural constructions. But that might as well be useless to explain realities someplace else. I have tried to explain before how racial constructions, perceptions and identifiers are pretty different in some countries in Europe (and more specifically, in The Netherlands, where I live), but still, I see that dominant view of what is White and what is not, will be predominantly North American. Which, OK, I know the difference. However, not everyone else will."
  • "In an interview a year ago, Manyi was quoted as referring to an "oversupply of coloreds," as mixed-race South Africans are known, in the country's Western Cape Province. Manyi said the comments, seized upon by opposition parties after he was appointed government spokesman, were part of a broader discussion of employment patterns in the country.

    "Trevor Manuel, a Cabinet minister who is mixed-race, published an open letter in a South African newspaper saying the comments made Manyi a 'racist' and comparing him to apartheid-era politicians."

  • "Ethnic minorities in the United Kingdom also lag behind white people in accumulating wealth, and this is probably true across Europe. This disparity is bad for everyone.

    "In the UK, the government has collected data on ethnicity since the 1991 Census, and public authorities are required to monitor ethnicity. In contrast, in most European countries collecting data on ethnicity is illegal. We cannot precisely quantify wealth holdings elsewhere in European countries, but, by extrapolating from UK data and for reasons set forth below, we know that European ethnic minorities have fewer assets than white people on the continent."

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  • jvansteppes

    This Kobe Bryant N-word business is so Dan Savage. “How would he feel if someone called him n*****?” How do you think he’d feel? And do you really think he’s never heard that in his life? Did all that talk of lynching at his rape trial teach him not to rape anyone again? Did it bring anyone justice? Does punching someone who punched you make your bleeding nose go away?
    People talk about ‘how would you feel if I used a racial slur?’ as if it’s hypothetical, as if it hasn’t actually ever happened to him or anyone else. And white gays leap so quickly to use that defense that they reveal their own discomfort with acknowledging racial hierarchy.
    He cheapened his integrity by using a bigoted statement, a bigoted statement that doesn’t erase his experiences of racism, just as Dan Savage’s racism doesn’t negate his experience of homophobia.