The Racialicious Links Roundup 6.20.13

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Bono and Olusegun Obasanjo, President of Nigeria (FLTR), captured before the start of the session ‘The G-8 and Africa: Rhetoric or Action?’ at the Annual Meeting 2005 of the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, January 27, 2005. Via Wikipedia.

  • ‘Bono can’t help Africans by stealing their voice’ (The Guardian)

    Bono, Browne charges, has become “the caring face of global technocracy”, who, without any kind of mandate, has assumed the role of spokesperson for Africa, then used that role to provide “humanitarian cover” for western leaders. His positioning of the west as the saviour of Africa while failing to discuss the harm the G8 nations are doing has undermined campaigns for justice and accountability, while lending legitimacy to the neoliberal project.

    Bono claims to be “representing the poorest and most vulnerable people”. But talking to a wide range of activists from both the poor and rich worlds since ONE published its article last week, I have heard the same complaint again and again: that Bono and others like him have seized the political space which might otherwise have been occupied by the Africans about whom they are talking. Because Bono is seen by world leaders as the representative of the poor, the poor are not invited to speak. This works very well for everyone – except them.

  • ‘Serena’s Apology: The Net Isn’t Impressed’ (The Root)

    What this shows us is that women are not immune to or exempt from the poisonous thinking of rape culture. It’s very possible that Williams just didn’t know that what she said was offensive or why, because that line of thinking is the societal norm. And you know what? There’s no harm in that. I’d have so much respect for Serena had she said, “Listen. I was wrong. I didn’t understand that I was blaming the victim, but I see now that I was, and I’m sorry for what I said [as opposed to "what I supposedly said"]. I am working to educate myself further on the matter.”

    “I’m sorry you feel that way,” “I’m sorry if you took it that way” and “I’m sorry that this is what you think I said” are not apologies, and Twitter isn’t buying it.

  • ‘Sebastien De La Cruz: Racism On Twitter Helped Me Showcase Mexican Culture’ (Huffington Post Latino Voices)

    “Mexico is in my heart. I feel it. Even though I’m from San Antonio I still have a big feeling for Mexico. That’s why I go for the Chivas and not for the America,” de la Cruz joked, referencing two rival Mexican soccer clubs. “[I wear the charro outfit] because it shows my culture, it’s a part of my life. It’s a part of me, actually. When I see somebody wearing a traje and it’s missing a gala [or] you see a gala hanging off, I actually think that it’s kind of disrespectful to the Mariachi.

  • ‘You Can Touch My Hair: What Were We Thinking?!’ (Huffington Post Black Voices)

    A lot of those who were upset with the exhibit also exclaimed, “Why do we have to educate them?” Explaining normal aspects of our everyday lives or even aspects of our history to non-blacks is something no one individual necessarily wants to do. Considering we’ve all pretty much been in America for the same amount of time, they should know us by now. I’ve often been put in situations where I have to explain my hair for sake of being polite to co-workers. This video was basically my life for two years. But by way of being put in those situations, I’ve actually discovered that I really like talking about my hair. It’s something that’s beautiful and something that I’m proud of, and I like sharing it with other people, hence un-ruly.com. But that’s my choice. That’s my feeling about it. We, collectively or individually, don’t have to educate anyone about any aspect of our lives. But I enjoy doing so because people have done the same for me. Throughout my life there have been moments when I’ve been completely clueless about a subject matter and have probably asked some really stupid questions. But people tolerated my ignorance and informed me by answering those questions. And I’m a better person for it. So why not pay that forward?