Tag Archives: links

The WTF Files [Mailbag]

Think Progress alerts us to this racial asshattery:

The OhioDaily blog reports on a “rogue” dispatcher from the North Canton Police who recently sent out a racist e-mail from her work account. Dispatcher Anita Malachowski forwarded this message:

    “New “Air Force One” Tail Number and yes, please forgive me, I’m really sorry, I really, really tried not to laugh, but …………………..!”

Attached to the e-mail was an Photoshopped image of Air Force one with NI66ER written on the plane’s tail.

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Mailbag – Quick Items and Links

Reader Michael sent in this interesting chess set:

The description?

“For their RS&A chess set commission, the Chapman Brothers chose to create a game played by postapocalyptic adolescents, the one side white with Arian haircuts and the other side black with Afro hair. The set is displayed in its own handcrafted games box, the board inlaid with white and black double-headed skull and crossbones.”

Fatemeh sends in the news that Representative Keith Ellison was arrested in a Darfur protest:

Rep. Keith Ellison of Minnesota and four other members of Congress were arrested Monday [April 28th] in front of the Sudanese Embassy in Washington as they protested the expulsion of aid groups in Darfur.

It was an apparently unprecedented act by a member of Minnesota’s congressional delegation and somewhat out of character for Ellison, a Democrat who has generally avoided controversy since he arrived in Congress, attracting international attention as its first Muslim member.

Minnesota Republican Party officials, while saying they respect Ellison’s advocacy against genocide in Darfur, criticized his decision to get arrested as a “publicity stunt unbecoming of the office he holds.”

Keeping in tradition of the racist sock, we now have a racist camera:

We got our Mom a new Nikon S630 digital camera for Mother’s Day and I was playing with it during the Angels game we were at on Sunday.

As I was taking pictures of my family, it kept asking “Did someone blink?” even though our eyes were always open.

(Thanks to reader Mandy for sending this in!)

Links – 2009-04-24

Shashwati’s Blog – Manufacturing Outrage – Slumdog and Its Discontents (via DeafMuslim)

Piecing the story together, it seems that the tabloid entrapped the family by posing as an Arab couple (being Arab increases the pathology, get it?), and offered to adopt Rubina and pay $300,000 to the family. This exchange took place via a translator since Rubina’s father doesn’t actually speak English. Rubina’s parents are divorced and the relationship between her parents is far from cordial. The mother wants custody of her daughter, the papers say after the film came out, but it could be an ongoing conflict, we don’t know.

There are a couple of interesting things in this story, firstly everyone is outraged at the father for considering adoption. This is hardly unusual, poor people have often given up their kids up to foster care for a time (the example of filmmaker Stan Brakhage comes to mind, he was in an orphanage for a while), and in India, its not unusual for kids to grow up in places other than their parents house – I lived with my aunt for a while, and my brother grew up at my grandparents place. The ideal of the soccer mom based nuclear family is quite recent. Yes, I get it, the proposed exchange of money is what really bothers people and everyone is sickened by the avariciousness of the family. Now if most people look into their family histories, they’re sure to find that uncle who took everything the other siblings should have inherited a fair share of. Yes, its terrible that people are greedy and criminal, but its hardly the province of the poor. So I wish people would take their outrage to where it belongs – a grossly unjust world where some countries are far richer than they deserve to be, and some people have the luxury of taking the moral high ground without every having to interact with the poor.

Guanabee – Dallas Morning News

The problem is not that Woolley fails to use statistical date or examples beyond the existence of Spanish-language Wal-Marts in her rebuttal… it’s the fact that her column is a rebuttal, referring directly to Linda Chavez’s column:

    If, as Linda Chavez seems to think, the intent of those who come to America illegally is simply to raise a family, send the kids to college and assimilate into American society, then where’s the problem? The problem is – that’s just simply not the case.

This doesn’t create a conversation or dialogue about the topic, nor does it seem fair that the Dallas Morning News’ editors chose which columnist would have the privilege of getting the “last word.” So was the purpose of running both articles to present opposing views on the lives of illegal immigrants… or simply to refute Linda Chavez’s points?

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Longform Links – 2009-04-15

We talked about The Game on Monday – here’s some more information:

Here’s the forum thread. (via Black Enterprise)

Geist Magazine has an interesting piece on wealth stratification and social status at the border (via Utne):

This Berlin Wall for the twenty-first century reflects the ironic era of its construction. Built to protect a territory defined in terms of culture rather than ideology, it is breached thousands of times a day by cleaning ladies and manual labourers who turn its meaning on its head. Indeed, the United States government encourages certain categories of people to ignore the border. In this, as in other areas, the economics of globalization heightens social stratification. Mexicans who live close to the border can receive a visa that authorizes them to work in U.S. border towns but forbids them from penetrating deeper into the U.S. or residing there. Many Mexicans take advantage of this system to travel at dawn every day to San Diego, where they clean houses or work in gardens. Unlike millions of other poor Mexicans—those who risk their lives trying to cross The Wall—these workers earn cash dollars and pay taxes to neither the U.S. nor Mexico. Professionals like Dr. Portillo, who do pay taxes, can apply for a sentri (Secure Electronic Network for Travellers’ Rapid Inspection) pass for their car windshields. This allows them to take the express lane at the border, sweeping past the two-hour lineup of cars waiting to reach U.S. Immigration, with no questions asked.

Melissa Harris-Lacewell is at The Kitchen Table sharing her Reflections from South Africa, Installment # 2:

These moments have pushed me to think more carefully about what black Americans are exporting to the rest of the African world and African Diaspora. Continue reading

Links – 2009-04-13

Compiled by Latoya Peterson and Fatemeh Fakhraie

Sepia Mutiny responds to Raakhee Mirchandani’s article in the New York Post about dating inside the race.

The Los Angeles Times reports on how Middle Eastern students at UCLA want alternatives to “white” or “other” when filling out demography boxes on applications. KABOBfest weighs in.

Renee Martin writes about Madonna and Malawi for GlobalComment.

Sonny Caberwal is the world’s first Sikh supermodel, making his debut in GQ‘s Spring-Summer style issue. Hawt.

“Arab in America”, a short documentary about being…uh…Arab in America…won the Link TV contest’s grand prize.

LAT also discusses Middle Eastern rappers.

Black Enterprise takes on the NEWBOs – and tells CNBC where to shove it.

This is why we hate x is the new y comparisons. Here’s one: Is Fatism the New Racism? Meanwhile, played out ass racism is still in effect. Can there be a new x if the y is still a major issue?

Amalgamated at Vegans of Color asks “What experiences of rejection (as a person of color/against people of color) have you experiences/witnessed in (mainstream white) vegan communities?

The Supreme Court has released an opinion in regards to “the United States v. Navajo Nation (07-1410), on Indian coal lease amendments. The decision below, which held for the Indian tribe, is reversed and remanded in a unanimous opinion by Justice Scalia, available here. Justice Souter filed a concurring opinion joined by Justice Stevens.”

There is an interesting (and somewhat heated) conversation going on at What About Our Daughters on “divestment” and “ark building.” This is based on some posts over at Black Women Blow the Trumpet. Seattle Slim has a dissenting opinion.

Off-Topic, but worth a look

Piny over at Feministe provides an interesting piece on the fetishization of trans people. Good links are in the comments.

Marge Twain blogs about that horrific Tough Love scene I mentioned where the host said a woman behaving in a sexually forward manner will “end up raped” and the lack of fallout both on the show and in the online community.

Hilzoy over at Obsidian Wings provides an answer to the oft-posed question when conversations surrounding DV begin: Why Do They Stay?

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.

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Compiled by Latoya Peterson

Washington Monthly – Black and Blue

The violence perpetrated by the P.G. cops is a curious development. Usually, police brutality is framed as a racial issue: Rodney King suffering at the hands of a racist white Los Angeles Police Department or more recently, an unarmed Timothy Thomas, gunned down by a white Cincinnati cop. But in more and more communities, the police doing the brutalizing are African Americans, supervised by African-American police chiefs, and answerable to African-American mayors and city councils. In the case of P.G. County, the brutality is cast against the backdrop of black America’s power base, the largest concentration of the black middle class in the country.

[Latoya’s Note – The above article was published in 2001, but I felt like we should bring this one back out, considering the nature of the news being submitted.]

Salon – Oakland Mourns

The four officers’ murders stunned and saddened the broad Bay Area community, but there had been a few discordant notes. There’s long been tension between the Oakland Police and the city’s low-income black community, as in most other big cities. It was inflamed most recently by the New Year’s Day killing of unarmed Oakland resident Oscar Grant, who was shot by BART police, not Oakland cops. Despite this tense background, most Oakland residents of every race and class were horrified by the killings, but there were a few examples of callousness and cruelty. The Associated Press reported that about 20 residents taunted police when they came to retrieve their fallen comrades in East Oakland on Saturday. The irrelevant resistance group Uhuru House even held a poorly attended rally Wednesday to defend Lovelle Mixon and criticize the police who killed him.

Friday was the day the rest of Oakland spoke for itself. Waiting in line to enter the Arena, I found myself next to a bunch of middle-aged and older men and women in motorcycle gear — black leather jackets, badges, leather caps. They looked like respectable, aging Hell’s Angel’s — law-abiding but still formidable. I asked the big, bald-headed, muscular guy next to me what the group was.”We’re the Patriot Guards,” he explained. “It’s a motorcycle group, made up mostly of ex-vets who go to funerals and homecomings of veterans, policemen and firemen.” The big guy’s name was Jay Cobb and he was a law enforcement officer at the Lawrence Livermore Lab. He had known one of the slain cops, Mark Dunakin, had played football with him, and had come with a bunch of his colleagues to pay his respects. He said that on the way in, people were lined up on overpasses showing their support.

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Links – 2009-03-23

Compiled by Latoya Peterson

The Daily Beast – Obama’s ‘Third Culture’ Team

John Quincy Adams lived in France, and young Franklin Delano Roosevelt visited Europe often enough to master French and German, but Barack Obama is the first modern American president to have spent some of his formative years outside the United States. It is a trait he shares with several appointees to the new administration: White House advisor Valerie Jarrett was a child in Tehran and London, Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner was raised in east Africa, India, Thailand, China and Japan as the son of a Ford Foundation executive, and National Security Advisor James L. Jones was raised in Paris. (Also, Bill Richardson, tipped as Secretary of Commerce, grew up in Mexico City.) […]

This is more than a trivial coincidence. So-called “Third Culture Kids”—and the adults they become”—share certain emotional and psychological traits that may exert great influence in the new administration. According to a body of sociological literature devoted to children who spend a portion of their developmental years outside their “passport country,” the classic profile of a “TCK” is someone with a global perspective who is socially adaptable and intellectually flexible. He or she is quick to think outside the box and can appreciate and reconcile different points of view. Beyond whatever diversity in background or appearance a TCK may bring to the party, there is a diversity of thought as well.

The F-word.org – New Study Refutes Bulimia as “Rich, White Girl’s Disease”

Eating disorders are often thought to be a “rich white girl’s disease,” but a new study shows that black girls and girls from low-income families are more likely to develop bulimia than their wealthier white counterparts. The study is based on information from a government database of 2,300 girls from schools in California, Ohio and Washington D.C. The girls were surveyed annually about their eating habits and body image between the ages of 9 and 20. The study included an equal number of blacks and whites.

About 2.6 percent of black girls were found to be bulimic, compared to 1.7 percent of whites. Bulimia affected 3.3 percent of girls whose parents had a high school education, compared to 1.5 percent of girls in households where at least one parent had a college degree. In other words, black girls are 50 percent more likely than whites to develop bulimia, while girls in low income brackets are 153 percent more likely to develop bulimia than girls in the highest income bracket.

Real Media Ethics – The Usage Panel: “Illegal Immigrant”

“Illegal aliens” and “illegals” are two answers that can be dispensed with pretty easily. When used in journalism, the legal term “aliens” suggests an exaggerated sense of strangeness, and the connotation with martians is unavoidable. Although it’s relatively rare to find uses of “illegal aliens” in major news organizations (cable news, as always, excepted), except in quotes, a quick Google news search found numerous examples from local news organizations. “Illegals” dehumanizes, defining a diverse group of people by one (negative) characteristic by employing the reductive practice of noun-ifying an adjective. In a 2006 press release addressing immigration terminology, the National Association of Hispanic Journalists states that “using [“illegals”] in this way is grammatically incorrect and crosses the line by criminalizing the person, not the action they are purported to have committed.” “Illegals” is increasingly unusual even in headlines (where more accurate and ethical, but longer, phrases are sometimes eschewed for space considerations), though the AP seems to have few scruples about using the word, in headlines, the body of a story, or both. I don’t know how much control publications that use AP stories have over style issues like that, but it would be interesting to know to what extent they are allowed to impose their own style guildelines.

The interesting question for me is whether “illegal immigrant” is an ethical/accurate way to refer to people who enter or reside in the country illegally.

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