Posts filed under ‘Racism’

Being Biracial: Videos

Here are the videos I promised about being biracial from a different perspective.
These are from people who see it as negative and [like I mentioned in the post ] deny one side of themselves due to some of the reasons I listed.

Preconceived Notions About Race

Part 1

Part 2

Part 3

Part 4

Part 5

This one is just shocking
http://www.worldstarhiphop.com/videos/video.php?v=wshh1s789DJjzH2Z3qG5

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January 12, 2010 at 7:46 pm Leave a comment

Being Biracial

Biracial is defined as someone who has parents from two races; for instance they may have a black mother and a white father, or an asian mother and a black father etc. [I’ll mainly be talking about those who are mixed with black and white, but there’ll also be mentions of other mixes]

People are used to being categorized as one race, and in a country like America, there has been rules to keep things that way; the most common being the One Drop Rule. It stated that if you were partially black (whether you’re 1/2, 1/4. 1/8 or even 1/16) you were still considered black. This meant that even if someone looked white but had a black great grandmother, they would be considered black and at the time, not be accepted by the white race [in America] It’s because of such rules that there have been constant debates on what to classify biracial people like Halle Berry, Lou Jing and Barack Obama.

As well as black people having various complexions, certain aspects can come out stronger from one parent, meaning biracial people vary in appearance. Believe it or not, the following people are all of the same mix (one black parent & one white parent):

Jael (ANTM contestant)    Emily King (Singer)

Charley Uchea                                     Slash (Musician)
(Big Brother UK Contestant)

Lenny Kravitz (Singer)              Rashida Jones (Quincy Jones’ daughter)

As you can see, some of them look mixed while others only look black (Charley Uchea) or only look white (Jael or Rashida Jones). Although I’m not biracial myself, I know many people who are. While many of them embrace both of the races, just as many prefer one half of themselves, leading them to be ashamed of the other half if not deny it completely.

This could be for many reasons [not only with those I know, but generally], one is discrimination they face from friends and even family. Many within the black community automatically dislike them for stupid reasons; they assume that those who are biracial think they are better than them because their skin is lighter etc. when most of the time, that is not true.

Many within the white and Asian community don’t approve of biracial people, especially if they’re half black, and they’re not afraid to admit it. That’s how derogatory terms such as “half breed” developed (just look at what happened to Lou Jing)

Another reason is their perceptions of the denied race is based on either a bad experience or stereotypes. Say a biracial girl (black and white) was only in contact with the white side of her family and the only exposure to black people she had was the negative perceptions of us as rapists, gangsters, drug dealers etc. through the media. Not only could she deny her black side, but she may try and do anything she can when she’s older to not associate herself with black people, even if that means talking in a certain way, listening to a certain type of music, or even straightening her hair and bleaching her skin to look more white.

She may even be forced to deny one side. On the Tyra Banks show singer Kimberley Locke spoke about how in High School her black friends tried to make her choose one side of her as they believed she couldn’t be both black and white. Although she refused to choose between the two, that’s unfortunately not the case for many other biracial people in the same position. Many are proud of only one when they really should be proud of both. Being biracial doesn’t make them “dirty” or “unpure”, if anything it makes them more diverse and unique.
If they’re surrounded by those who don’t accept them for who they are, then they’re not the people they should associate with, there are millions of people out there who will embrace their mixed heritage.

January 10, 2010 at 4:35 pm Leave a comment

The Lou Jing Situation

A few months ago, a lot of speculation was made about Lou Jing, a 20 year old Chinese student from Shanghai who entered a Chinese talent show called Let’s Go! Oriental Angel. What gave her the attention in China was not necessarily her talent, it was her skin colour; The attraction from it reportedly made her one of the most famous talent show contestants in China, and she didn’t even win the show.

Lou grew up in China her whole life, meaning she speaks fluent Shanghai and Mandarin chinese. On the show, it was revealed that her mother had an affair with an African American man, resulting in the conception of Lou. Many chinese blogs and forums blew up with insults towards Lou and [mainly] her mother as a result. Some gave Lou the name 小黑鬼 (xiaoheigui) meaning “little black devil” [click here for more comments made about her]

It exposed the narrow minds of many Chinese people and how bigotry is still very much alive in the country during the 21st century. However, as racist as the whole outcome has been, people [especially those criticizing the issue] must remember two main things

1. Lou Jing’s Father
On the internet, many Chinese people used this as an example to justify the stereotype that black men abandon women once they’re pregnant, leaving them to to single mothers. While there is some truth in that, men of other races do the same thing, however it’s highlighted more in black men. In the case of Lou Jing’s father, he left China with no idea that he’d gotten her mother pregnant, meaning he probably still doesn’t know of Lou’s existence

2. Such racism does not only occur in China
As distasteful and offensive as the comments were again Lou and her mother, there are just as many [if not more] people who have the exact same views as those Chinese commenters outside of China. When hearing her story a lot of people seem to forget that such racist views are apparent everywhere. There are people in almost every country who feel the same way about people who are black, mixed or any other race/ethnicity that isn’t the same as theirs. Perhaps what’s given China so much attention on it is the fact that they don’t have a long history discriminating against black or mixed people compared to places like Britain or the United States.

People must also remember that not all Chinese people were against Lou Jing’s racial mix.
She had support from alot of Chinese people aswell as her friends, professors and Chinese journalists. One author even wrote on their blog:

In the same year that Americans welcome Obama to the White House, we can’t even accept this girl with a different skin colour.

– Hung Huang –

China isn’t the first, and definitely won’t be the last country to express such racist views in the 21st century. Unfortunately for Lou, it was the first time she experienced any racial hatred in her life. With such a story, people should also remember that the same views are also felt by those in their countries of residence, not just in the country of question.

Lou Jing’s story [in more detail]:
http://abagond.wordpress.com/2009/09/29/lou-jing/
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lou_Jing

An opinion from another perspective [this person is the same mix as Lou Jing]:
http://african-chineseguy.blogspot.com/2009/09/lou-jing-sad-story-of-black-chinese.html

January 7, 2010 at 10:12 pm 2 comments

Why The “Pure White Race” Idea is Unlikely To Happen [Part II]

[Click here for Part I of this post]

The study carried out by Peter Fine of Florida Atlantic University (see previous post) proved one main thing: that many whites are of mixed heritage and don’t even know it. Imagine hypothetically if that 1/13 fact applied to the white population of the United States: less than 1/10 of them would actually be “purely white” while the rest [at least 200m people] would be annihilated, and that’s just in the US alone.

Although they reached their peak in the 1920s with about 6m members, the KKK now stands at less than 10,000 members. As extreme as they are as a terrorist group, it’s far from possible that they’d be able to wipe out such a large amount of people when they’d simply be outnumbered by less than half that amount.

Like mentioned at the beginning of this post, many white people are mixed with other races and don’t know it; this probably includes those in groups like the BNP and KKK who are all for white supremacy and constantly talk about there being a pure white race. For all they know they and their families could be examples of those people who they believe are in Hitler’s words bastarding the white race. They can’t just simply rely on what they look like or what family members tell them as it’s not enough. The only concrete evidence that could prove what their families told them is by taking a DNA test that breaks down their racial background.

When two white people of mixed background marry and have kids, their children will too become more mixed and complex in their heritage or in other words, become “less pure” or “Aryan”; and that’s something that can’t be helped. Like every other race, the white race already has a large percentage of people who have mixed ancestry, making it difficult to make or keep a race as something it isn’t. The only way that idea will happen is is millions of people die in some kind of mass genocide or massacre, or if those who were technically “pure” only had children within their families. Either way the results wouldn’t turn out well.

If the mass killing(s) were to take place, it would be stopped before “the job was done” as the people trying to do the killing would most probably be killed first. If the incest was to happen, the inbred children would mainly end up somehow physically disabled w/many health complications and die early.

So while the white race would technically be pure, they’d also be immensely unhealthy, meaning their offspring would die young, possibly marking the end of the human race (if the mass killings of everyone else were too to take place).

As said by Peter Fine [the professor who carried out the DNA testing]

‘I honestly think these tests could have a large effect on American consciousness of who we are. If Americans recognise themselves as a mixed group of people, that could really change things,

January 6, 2010 at 2:44 pm Leave a comment

Why The “Pure White Race” Idea is Unlikely To Happen [Part I]

[This is split into 2 Parts in order to avoid being over my 600 word limit]

Nick Griffin, Hitler and the KKK have a few things in common. While the obvious is that they are all extreme racists, another is that they all want there to be a pure white race. However, with history consisting of so many interracial rapes, marriages and relationships, in reality, this idea would be very difficult to carry out. Many people are mixed with other races.

With Black people, it’s not unusual to find traits of white ancestry most commonly due to interracial rape from the the slave trade. It’s because of past historical events (as well as mixing with other races from past interracial marriages) that we have various skin tones, hair textures and sometimes even eye colours.

With Hispanics, they’re well known for being mixed with mainly African, European and Native American ancestry, meaning they can vary from having white skin and blonde straight hair to dark skin with thick afro hair.

A lot of White people also have traits of African, Asian or Native American blood in them. However, due to such mixing not being highlighted as much in the white race, such traits are usually hidden in their ancestry. This means that many white people have no idea about their mixed racial identity.

Many batches of information have come out that prove this, one of the most recent examples can be  in an Art class Florida Atlantic University professor Peter Fine had with a group of his students. The idea was to create a piece of art work revolving around their racial identity. However, before creating the piece each student had to take a DNA test that would break down their racial background. He did this making a bet to them: that almost everyone in the class who defined themselves e.g as white would in fact, have no idea of what they actually were. When the results came back, it turned out he was right.

The term “white” is defined in Wikipedia as anyone who has solely European ancestry. However, out of the 13 students who had claimed themselves as “white”, the tests showed that only one of them was completely European. The rest had mixed African, Asian and Native American ancestry. The one black student who did the test discovered they were 20% white.  Even the professor himself, who considered himself white discovered that he was in fact 25% Native American, despite looking like what he described as a “corn-fed stereotype of a white Midwesterner“.

CLICK HERE FOR PART II

January 5, 2010 at 7:05 pm Leave a comment

The Dangers of a Single Story

Single stories are everywhere. They are one sided stories that give people the wrong idea about a certain place, thing or group of people.
What makes them such an issue is that they create stereotypes. Instead of highlighting how similar people or places are they highlight the differences. We have all believed a single story at one point in our lives, some of us still do.

My Grandmother believed a single story when she left St. Lucia for the UK. People there convinced her she would have no difficulty getting a job, and that England was a wonderful place where the streets were literally paved with gold. Despite this, no one told her that England had areas below the poverty line and that most of the time she would be refused a job as the colour of her skin was an issue. One example of me personally believing a single story is when I went to America for the first time. I found it strange to see poor areas and homeless people living on the streets everyday as beforehand, I didn’t believe that such a thing existed in America. It was nothing like the way I’d seen/heard of it before.

While there’s some truth in single stories, they all have one thing in common, they leave important things out. A good example can be seen with the author Chimamanda Adichie. Raised in a Middle Class family in Nigeria, she decided to go to College in the US. When meeting her American room mate, she was surprised that Chimamanda could speak English so well, despite being told that English was Nigeria’s official language. She was surprised that Chimamanda knew how to use a stove as she didn’t think that such basic facilities existed in Africa. When she  asked if she could hear some of her “tribal music”, she was pretty surprised when Chimamanda pulled out her Mariah Carey CD.

Like mentioned before, single stories leave vital bits of information out, making it very similar to propaganda as they’re used to manipulate people into thinking a certain way about a various noun. In the case of a continent like Africa, vital bits of information are constantly left out. While it’s true that there are people there who suffer from things like AIDs, conflict and poverty this only happens to some of them, not everyone, (in the same way that AIDs and poverty only affect some people in Britain and the United States rather than the whole nation). What’s left out is the fact that there are just as many there with average lives. There are middle class people who work and do things like drink coffee and read newspapers daily just like their counterparts in places like America, however many people will never know or believe this due to them hearing single stories that leave all these factors out.

While we all can’t control what is being said in these single stories, we can control whether to believe them or not. We also have the choice to look more into the topic and find out those vital parts of information that are being left out.
There are two sides to every story, in the case of a single story, we have to option to hear that other side and know the truth rather than one’s misconceptions.

January 2, 2010 at 1:04 pm Leave a comment

The Proof Is In The Pudding

After writing the “OMG White Beauty!!” post a while ago, a had a few people thinking that such things going on in certain minorities didn’t happen. They didn’t feel that the things I went into brief detail of was “hard evidence” that these things went on
….Well here’s the hard evidence. This Channel 4 Documentary focuses on people from various ethnic groups trying to look more whiter in appearence, as they feel it is more attractive and more acceptable. However it’s not just media based. If you watch the video you’ll see them explain other things that have happened to them in the past [and even now] that make them want to Westernize their appearence.
By watching this, I hope that people try to stop it rather than encourage this kind of thing to carry on.

Remember, the media’s idea of beauty does NOT correspond with my own. [i.e light skin, light eyes, long hair etc].
I do not wish to be white or look more Western in appearance because that’s not the way I naturally am.
As insecure as I can be, it has NO RELATION to my race. Out of all the things I’ll be unhappy about appearance wise, that will not be one of them.

While I think there is nothing wrong with those features, I don’t think it defines beauty as a whole. Yes that can be beautiful too, but beauty comes in every colour, race, hair texture, eye shape, body shape etc. I just wish the people in this documentary could realise that and love themselves the way they naturally are.

http://www.worldstarhiphop.com/videos/video.php?v=wshhbwgeAR5mddmM0c3m

December 6, 2009 at 8:13 pm Leave a comment

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