Local Voices: What Does it Mean to “Pass” as White?

Posted in Articles, Autobiography, Latino Studies, Media Archive, Passing, United States on 2020-06-15 00:17Z by Steven

Local Voices: What Does it Mean to “Pass” as White?

The Coronado Times
Coronado, California
2020-06-07

Carolyn Osorio
Barrio Logan, San Diego, California


Carolyn Osorio

The Coronado Times asked its writers to tackle the topic of race in Coronado. Given the current environment, we were asked to address the topic head-on and at first, I’ll admit, I wasn’t sure how to tackle it. I do not live in Coronado, I am not black, and I would not presume to imagine the lived experience of being black in America today. However, tensions are high everywhere and an altercation with one of my Barrio Logan neighbors about my whiteness this past week highlighted a very important topic that I do feel qualified to tackle: What does it mean to “pass” as white?

This is a question I, and other mixed-race people, ask ourselves constantly. Born from a combination of cultures, we have a foot in two (or more) worlds but, oftentimes, none of them fits quite right. For many of us, our racial makeup can be physically ambiguous and this ambiguity often allows us to “pass.” I’d like to think we are the living embodiment of America’s melting pot, a celebration of mixed cultures and languages, the product of two people choosing to love a different race than their own. Instead, we are often not quite white enough to be “white” but not quite brown or black or Asian or native enough to belong entirely to part of our cultural makeup. When we fill out the racial demographic section of forms, we are forced to select just one box that might define us. This has never felt more important than it does now in the face of protests and movements dedicated to abolishing racial prejudice…

Read the entire article here.

Tags: , ,

‘Racialization works differently here in Puerto Rico, do not bring your U.S.-centric ideas about race here!’

Posted in Anthropology, Articles, Caribbean/Latin America, Latino Studies, Media Archive, Social Science, United States on 2020-06-13 22:07Z by Steven

‘Racialization works differently here in Puerto Rico, do not bring your U.S.-centric ideas about race here!’

Black Perspectives
2020-03-03

Hilda Lloréns, Associate Professor of Anthropology
University of Rhode Island


“FSA – T[enant] P[urchase] borrowers? by their house, Puerto Rico” – Jack Delano (Library of Congress)

This title is a variation of a statement I have heard during the last two decades as a professional anthropologist. I was reminded of it again recently, when a Puerto Rico-based colleague mentioned that it is common in the archipelago to think about the race research produced by U.S.-based Puerto Rican researchers as being tainted by U.S.-centric ideas about race. At its base, this assertion has the effect, and maybe even the goal from the outset, of discrediting the race research produced by those of us living in the Diaspora. But I believe there is more going on than just marking our research as suspect.

Because at this point I have heard variations of this opinion dozens of times, and particularly so by a subset of the archipelago’s intelligentsia, it is time to explore the ideological work this claim does. This brief analysis is less a defense of the validity of research like mine, and instead exposes how as a cultural construction in itself, this hegemonic statement is an example of how cultural nationalism and anti-Black racism warps even the brightest minds. While it is true that anti-Black racism takes on specific and locally contextual qualities, it is also true that the anti-Black racism experienced by evidently Black individuals throughout the American hemisphere has strikingly similar consequences: poverty and marginalization; lack of access to quality education, health care, employment, and a clean environment; police profiling and brutality; spatial segregation and territorial dispossession; denial of entry into restaurants, night clubs, stores, and country clubs; social marginalization and political exclusion; and the attempt to silence the voices of those who dare speak out against on-going racial violence and terror.

Read the entire article here.

Tags: , ,

HALF MEASURES: California’s Journey Toward Counting Multiracial People By 2022

Posted in Campus Life, Census/Demographics, Health/Medicine/Genetics, Latino Studies, Law, Media Archive, Politics/Public Policy, Reports, Social Science, Social Work, United States on 2020-04-29 00:02Z by Steven

HALF MEASURES: California’s Journey Toward Counting Multiracial People By 2022

Multiracial Americans of Southern California (MASC)
2020
30 pages

Thomas Lopez, Editor
Sarah Gowing, Lead Researcher

Reviewers:

G. Reginal Daniel, Ph.D., Professor and Vice Chair, Department of Sociology
University of California, Santa Barbara

Kelly F. Jackson, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Social Work
Arizona State University

Racial and ethnic data is collected by the government to enable the enforcement of civil rights laws, ensure equitable distribution of resources, and measure inequality. In 2016, the State of California released new policy standards for the collection and public reporting of racial/ethnic demographic data. All State agencies, boards, and commissions that collect this data must comply by January 1, 2022, allowing respondents to select multiple racial/ethnic categories. They must also disseminate this information in such a way as to not obscure mixed-race individuals. Potentially the most significant change to the standards would be the counting of people with mixed Latina/o and non-Latina/o identity. California will be the first state in the nation to do this.

This study’s aim is to determine whether these agencies are in compliance or whether there are still changes to be made. After reviewing organizations and aims from four sectors (education, business, health, and criminal justice), it was found that only one system is in compliance with the data collection, and none have followed the standards for race/ethnic data presentation. The counting of mixed Latina/o identified people is the most conspicuous gap in both the data collection and reporting methods. With less than two years to make the required changes, agencies must ensure that they are beginning the process now due to the time and resources required.

Table of Contents

  • Executive Summary
  • About MASC
  • Terminology
  • Introduction
  • Current vs. Future Standards
    • Future Data Collection Compliance
    • Future Data Presentation Compliance
  • Methodology
  • Results
    • Data Collection
    • Data Presentation
  • Discussion & Recommendations
  • About the Authors
  • Works Cited
  • Appendix A: Assembly Bill 532
  • Appendix B: Supporting Data

Read the entire report here.

Tags: , , , , , , ,

White Colorism

Posted in Articles, Latino Studies, Media Archive, Social Science, United States on 2020-03-10 17:41Z by Steven

White Colorism

Social Currents
Volume 2, Issue 1, March 2015
pages 13-21
DOI: 10.1177/2329496514558628

Lance Hannon, Professor of Sociology and Criminology
Villanova University, Villanova, Pennsylvania

Perhaps reflecting a desire to emphasize the enduring power of rigidly constructed racial categories, sociology has tended to downplay the importance of within-category variation in skin tone. Similarly, in popular media, “colorism,” or discrimination based on skin lightness, is rarely mentioned. When colorism is discussed, it is almost exclusively framed in terms of intraracial “black-on-black” discrimination. In line with arguments highlighting the centrality of white racism, the present paper contends that it is important for researchers to give unique attention to white colorism. Using data from the 2012 American National Election Study, an example is presented on white interviewers’ perceptions of minority respondent skin tone and intelligence (N = 223). Results from ordinal logistic regression analyses indicate that African American and Latino respondents with the lightest skin are several times more likely to be seen by whites as intelligent compared with those with the darkest skin. The article concludes that a full accounting of white hegemony requires an acknowledgment of both white racism and white colorism.

Read or purchase the article here.

Tags: , , ,

To fight discrimination, the U.S. census needs a different race question

Posted in Articles, Census/Demographics, Latino Studies, Media Archive, Social Science, United States on 2020-03-10 14:48Z by Steven

To fight discrimination, the U.S. census needs a different race question

Science News: Independent Journalism Since 1921
2020-03-08

Sujata Gupta, Social Sciences Writer


An accurate sense of racial diversity is hard to achieve with current U.S. census questions.
Delphine Lee

The government has asked people their race since 1790

Wendy Roth has been arguing for years that the U.S. Census Bureau should ask about race in a different way. The race box that people check for themselves on the census doesn’t always match the box someone else might have checked for them. And that, Roth says, is a problem.

Roth, a sociologist at the University of Pennsylvania, began researching that mismatch in racial identification in the early 2000s. She recruited 60 New Yorkers who had been born in Puerto Rico or the Dominican Republic, showed them the census race question and asked them how they would answer. The responses surprised her.

Consider the case of Salvador, a kitchen worker in the Bronx. “Many Americans observing him would consider him to be black,” Roth wrote in December 2010 in Social Science Quarterly. But Salvador told Roth that he checks “white.”

While attitudes in the mainland United States have been shaped by the long legacy of the “one-drop rule,” in which a single drop of “black blood” conferred “blackness,” Puerto Ricans believe the opposite — that even dark-skinned people can’t be black if they have “white blood.” Puerto Ricans use terms like mulatto or trigueño to describe those falling somewhere between white and black. But when presented with race checkboxes that offer no intermediate options, Salvador simply goes by what he knows…

A slippery sense of self

As minority groups fight for greater visibility, and the race question gets wound up in ideas about self-affirmation and group empowerment, the census data have been getting more difficult to decipher since the 1960 shift to self-identification.

With the power to check their own race box, many people previously identified as white have embraced a nonwhite or mixed-race identity. That’s evident in the American Indian numbers. From 1890 to 1960, the American Indian population grew from 248,000 to 524,000, with an average annual growth rate of just 1.1 percent. But over the next several decades, and coinciding with the shift to self-identification, that population grew to almost 2 million by 1990 — with an average annual growth rate of 4.3 percent. That meteoric growth extends well beyond what is possible through births alone, [Carolyn] Liebler says…

Read the entire article here.

Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

Soledad O’Brien Isn’t Holding Back Anymore

Posted in Articles, Communications/Media Studies, Latino Studies, Media Archive, Social Justice, United States on 2020-03-06 15:33Z by Steven

Soledad O’Brien Isn’t Holding Back Anymore

Rolling Stone
2020-03-03

EJ Dickson, Reporter


After leaving CNN, the veteran journalist started Soledad O’Brien Productions.
Leeor Wild for Rolling Stone

After a new executive pushed her out at CNN, the veteran journalist became one of mainstream media’s most fiery critics

Soledad O’Brien likes to tell a story: Eleven years ago, a senior employee at CNN — “my boss’s boss’s boss” — called her into his office to upbraid her about a comment she had made while promoting her multipart series Black in America. At a panel, O’Brien had said she had interviewed black parents from various socioeconomic backgrounds, all of whom said they had conversations with their sons about how to navigate interactions with police. The superior, who was white, told her this experience was not specific to people of color, and that white parents had this discussion with their sons too. He requested that she stop publicly speaking about young black men and police brutality.

O’Brien was stunned. “I’d spent 18 months working on that doc,” the veteran journalist recalls in the office of her company, Soledad O’Brien Productions. “But the idea that I would come back with something that challenged his belief was just not acceptable.” Nonetheless, she wanted to keep her job, and she knew that speaking out would be career suicide. “I didn’t tell that story,” she says. “Until I was telling it on Twitter.” And once she started telling stories, she found she couldn’t stop.

Read the entire article here.

Tags: , , , , ,

Who is Hispanic?

Posted in Articles, Census/Demographics, Latino Studies, Media Archive, United States on 2019-12-02 02:00Z by Steven

Who is Hispanic?

Fact Tank: News in the Numbers
Pew Research Center
2019-11-11

Mark Hugo Lopez, Director, Global Migration and Demography Research

Jens Manuel Krogstad, Senior Writer/Editor

Jeffrey S. Passel, Senior Demographer

Miami, Junta Hispania Hispanic Festival, beauty pageant contestants
Beauty pageant contestants at the Junta Hispana Hispanic cultural festival in Miami. (Jeffrey Greenberg/Universal Images Group via Getty Images)

Debates over who is Hispanic and who is not have fueled conversations about identity among Americans who trace their heritage to Latin America or Spain. The question surfaced during U.S. presidential debates and the confirmation of Sonia Sotomayor to the U.S. Supreme Court. More recently, it bubbled up after a singer from Spain won the “Best Latin” award at the 2019 Video Music Awards.

So, who is considered Hispanic in the United States? And how are they counted in public opinion surveys, voter exit polls and government surveys like the upcoming 2020 census?…

Read the entire article here.

Tags: , , ,

Establishing the Denominator: The Challenges of Measuring Multiracial, Hispanic, and Native American Populations

Posted in Articles, Census/Demographics, Latino Studies, Media Archive, Native Americans/First Nation, Social Science, United States on 2019-12-01 00:22Z by Steven

Establishing the Denominator: The Challenges of Measuring Multiracial, Hispanic, and Native American Populations

The ANNALS of the American Academy of Political and Social Science
Volume: 677, Issue: 1, What Census Data Miss about American Diversity, (May 2018)
Pages 48-56
DOI: 10.1177/0002716218756818

Wendy D. Roth, Associate Professor of Sociology
University of Pennsylvania

Issues

For multiracial, Hispanic, and Native Americans, norms for racial and ethnic self-identification are less well established than they are for other population groups. There is considerable variation and fluidity in how multiracial, Hispanic, and Native Americans self-identify, as well as how they are classified by others. This presents challenges to researchers and analysts in terms of consistently and accurately estimating the size and population dynamics of these groups. I argue that for analytic purposes, racial/ethnic self-identification should continue to be treated as a statistical numerator, but that the challenge is for researchers to establish the correct denominator—the population that could identify as members of the group based on their ancestry. Examining how many people who could identify with these groups choose to do so sheds light on assimilation and emerging racial classification processes. Analyses of the larger potential populations further avoid bias stemming from nonrandom patterns of self-identification with the groups.

Read or purchase the article here.

Tags: , , ,

What Racial Discrimination Will Look Like in 2060

Posted in Articles, Latino Studies, Law, Media Archive, United States on 2019-11-30 23:00Z by Steven

What Racial Discrimination Will Look Like in 2060

Scientific American
2019-11-29

Marisa Franco

What Racial Discrimination Will Look Like in 2060
Credit: Getty Images

As biracial people become increasingly common in America, bias based on perceived rather than actual identity will too

In 2009, Nathaniel Burrage requested a transfer from his job in Youngstown, Ohio, where he worked as a driver for FedEx. He alleged that he was experiencing ongoing racially motivated harassment. According to Burrage, his supervisor, Dennis Jamiot, alternated between referring to him as “Mexican” and “cheap labor,” and shouted “ándale” and “arriba” at him as he walked by. Soon after, he said his other supervisors began to chime in with the same racist insults, and Jamiot began to lob paper clips and chalk at him. One co-worker asked him to weigh in on whether what was etched on a graffiti wall was true: Mexicans are proof that American Indians had sex with buffalos.

Burrage filed a lawsuit under the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Yet, despite the verbal and physical abuse he alleged he’d experienced, his case was dismissed. The reason? Nathanial Burrage was not actually Mexican, or even Hispanic. Burrage was a black/white biracial man experiencing what I have termed in my research as “identity incongruent discrimination.” Identity incongruent discrimination occurs when someone experiences racial discrimination for a race they are misperceived as.

As the browning of America continues, identity incongruent discrimination will only continue to rise. It’ll be a pressing problem for the growing multiracial population—a group that is the fastest growing racial group in America and that’s set to triple in size by 2060. Research finds that members of the multiracial group are more likely to be miscategorized than members of any other racial group. Compared to categorizing people into a single-race category, categorizing someone as multiracial is more mentally cumbersome, takes longer and is less likely to occur. And the most common race that black/white biracial people, like Burrage, are categorized as is Hispanic…

Read the entire article here.

Tags: , , ,

Rosie Perez Says It’s ‘Dangerous’ For Afro-Latinos To Separate Themselves Within Latin Community

Posted in Articles, Arts, Latino Studies, Media Archive on 2019-11-12 20:26Z by Steven

Rosie Perez Says It’s ‘Dangerous’ For Afro-Latinos To Separate Themselves Within Latin Community

ESSENCE
2019-10-25

Lapacazo Sandoval

Rosie Perez Says It’s ‘Dangerous’ For Afro-Latinos To Separate Themselves Within Latin Community
Photo by JC Olivera/Getty Images

“The Latinos that are not dark-skinned don’t call themselves White Latinos or Caucasian Latinos. I know that might sound controversial,” she admitted.

Puerto Rican-American actress Rosie Perez burst onto the Hollywood scene thanks to Spike Lee’s Do The Right Thing at a time when Tinsel Town wasn’t necessarily rich with opportunities for people of color. And some decades later, Perez, who identifies as Afro-Latino, still isn’t shy when it comes to voicing her concern about the pervasive racism in Hollywood.

“I think it’s very dangerous—the separation of color within the Latin community,” Perez told ESSENCE last Saturday while receiving Hispanicize’s Latinavator Award at The InterContinental in Los Angeles. “ People who are dark skin have to pronounce themselves as Afro-Latinos. The Latinos that are not dark-skinned don’t call themselves White Latinos or Caucasian Latinos. I know that might sound controversial, [but] I think it’s important that we unify.”

“That said: there is a disparity in regards to seeing brown, dark brown and Black-skinned colored Latinas, Latinos, LatinX—whatever—it hasn’t changed that much,” she added…

Read the entire article here.

Tags: , , ,