Whiteness isn’t a biological fact, rather it is a sort of members-only club that has rewritten its entry requirements over the years.

Posted in Excerpts/Quotes on 2017-03-23 01:27Z by Steven

The idea that white identity is under attack assumes that whiteness is something fixed, something immutable. But whiteness has always been a fluid category. Whiteness isn’t a biological fact, rather it is a sort of members-only club that has rewritten its entry requirements over the years.

Arwa Mahdawi, “I’m a bit brown. But in America I’m white. Not for much longer,” The Guardian, March 21, 2017. https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2017/mar/21/us-census-whiteness-race-colour-middle-east-north-africa-america.

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Whiteness is “pure” and doesn’t extend to brown girls, even those who can trace their Irish ancestry back to the 10th century.

Posted in Excerpts/Quotes on 2017-03-19 01:57Z by Steven

Specifically, many of the problems arose out of my claims of Irishness itself. That was what really seemed to offend people’s sensibilities. Irishness is synonymous with whiteness, it seemed. Whiteness is “pure” and doesn’t extend to brown girls, even those who can trace their Irish ancestry back to the 10th century. How frequently I heard that I “wasn’t really Irish”. But I am Irish. In addition to being born there, my mother, her parents before her, and theirs before them, for generations and generations, are all Irish.

Emma Dabiri, “I’m Irish but I’m not white. Why is that still a problem as we celebrate the Easter Rising?,” The Guardian, March 29, 2016. http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2016/mar/29/irish-white-easter-rising-ireland-racism.

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Katherine Johnson is not the first black woman to accomplish some of the things she did but the first woman, period.

Posted in Excerpts/Quotes on 2017-03-13 01:52Z by Steven

“I’ve seen some of the interviews NASA has done with its modern figures’—women of color at NASA who are scientists, mathematicians and engineers, and they make me really happy,” [Heather] Graham says, “because I want the message to get out that Katherine Johnson’s achievements aren’t history but rather the beginning of a movement of women in space science! Katherine Johnson is not the first black woman to accomplish some of the things she did but the first woman, period. She’s such an all purpose hero!”

Linda Billings, “Before “Hidden Figures,” There Was a Rock Opera About NASA’s Human Computers,” Air & Space Magazine, February 3, 2017. http://www.airspacemag.com/daily-planet/hidden-figures-there-was-rock-opera-about-nasas-human-computers-180961980/.

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I enjoy a lot of privileges. I’m middle class and I go to a good school. On top of that Asian Americans just seem to fare better in terms of bias and racism — at least these days.

Posted in Excerpts/Quotes on 2017-03-13 01:44Z by Steven

I enjoy a lot of privileges. I’m middle class and I go to a good school. On top of that Asian Americans just seem to fare better in terms of bias and racism — at least these days.

I think it’s important to acknowledge that privilege exists. We don’t have to become defensive, and we don’t have to feel guilty for it, but we do have to know when it’s there.

Sierra Fang-Horvath, “Mixed Race Privilege?KQED Radio, March 9, 2017. https://ww2.kqed.org/perspectives/2017/03/08/mixed-race-privilege/.

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Let’s not ask if European Jews are white. The more urgent question is: what price have they paid in colluding with whiteness?

Posted in Excerpts/Quotes on 2017-03-11 04:07Z by Steven

Let’s not ask if European Jews are white. The more urgent question is: what price have they paid in colluding with whiteness? The price of heritage, of language, and of culture? Or the price of dignity, of accountability, of moral authority? Far from giving white Jews a free pass on confronting their own white privilege, I hope that answering this question might just lead more of our Jewish communities towards truly joining the multi-racial, multi-faith fight against white supremacy.

Mark Tseng-Putterman, “More than a Feeling: Jews and Whiteness in Trump’s America,” Unruly: A racial justice blog by the Jews of Color Caucus organized in partnership with Jewish Voice for Peace, February 23, 2017. http://jocsm.org/more-than-a-feeling-jews-and-whiteness-in-trumps-america/.

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In contrast to the Loving litigators’ approach, the ideology that race is important to genetics but not to society is spreading in the United States today.

Posted in Excerpts/Quotes on 2017-03-11 03:20Z by Steven

In contrast to the Loving litigators’ approach, the ideology that race is important to genetics but not to society is spreading in the United States today. The current resurgence of genetic definitions of race at a time when a majority of Supreme Court justices have embraced a colorblind approach that ignores white supremacy has the potential to intensify racial inequality. The coincidence of these two flawed ideologies—that human beings are naturally divided into genetically distinct races and that racism has ceased significantly to affect society—reinforces a biological explanation for persistent racial inequities. Finding racial differences at the molecular level seems to make sense of the paradox of intensifying racial gaps in health, economic status, and incarceration since the civil rights movement.

Dorothy E. Roberts, “Loving v. Virginia as a Civil Rights Decision,” New York Law School Law Review, Volume 59, Number 1 (2014/2015), 208. http://www.nylslawreview.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/16/2015/02/Volume-59-1.Roberts.pdf.

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Ultimately, the narrative that imagines mixed-race people as a panacea for racism is a flawed one that reinforces ideas around the very existence of race.

Posted in Excerpts/Quotes on 2017-03-09 21:38Z by Steven

Ultimately, the narrative that imagines mixed-race people as a panacea for racism is a flawed one that reinforces ideas around the very existence of race. Instead, we might want to refocus our conversation around how the collective fiction of race is weaponized to limit access to equality and justice for some groups and not others, then maybe we’re onto something.

Alexandros Orphanides, “Why Mixed-Race Americans Will Not Save The Country,” Code Switch: Race and Identity, Remixed, National Public Radio, March 8, 2017. http://www.npr.org/sections/codeswitch/2017/03/08/519010491/why-mixed-race-americans-will-not-save-the-country.

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Like many mixed race kids I felt that I didn’t belong anywhere, but I wasn’t really an outsider…

Posted in Excerpts/Quotes on 2017-03-03 19:21Z by Steven

Like many mixed race kids I felt that I didn’t belong anywhere, but I wasn’t really an outsider: I was full of the invisible tensions of inside, hyper-aware of the contradictions and tensions my friends and peers ignored or never saw in the first place. I couldn’t put a name to any of it then, it was just this intuitive sense of the anger and hatred that pulse through modern life, how America in all of its contradictions hates itself and how that hatred is everywhere and nowhere to see, layered over with sanctioned forms of like and dislike, but never love, that spiritual love Mimi was drawing always closer to — never love because love is too close to hate for America to allow it into daylight.

Lawrence-Minh Bùi Davis, “Dispatch from the Floor of the Model Minority Factory,” The Offing, September 8, 2015. https://theoffingmag.com/essay/dispatch-from-the-floor-of-the-model-minority-factory/.

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Nearly all African-Americans carry within them white blood, usually the result of white rape. White slaveholders routinely sold mixed-race children—their own children—into slavery.

Posted in Excerpts/Quotes on 2017-03-03 19:18Z by Steven

Nearly all African-Americans carry within them white blood, usually the result of white rape. White slaveholders routinely sold mixed-race children—their own children—into slavery. [James] Baldwin knew the failure to acknowledge the melding of the black and white races that can be seen in nearly every African-American face, a melding that makes African-Americans literally the brothers and sisters of whites. African-Americans, Baldwin wrote, are the “bastard” children of white America. They constitute a peculiarly and uniquely American race.

Chris Hedges, “James Baldwin and the Meaning of Whiteness,” Common Dreams: Breaking News & Views for the Progressive Community, February 20, 2017. http://www.commondreams.org/views/2017/02/20/james-baldwin-and-meaning-whiteness.

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I cannot tell you how many times in the past few years I have been asked, “Why are you here? You are not Black.”

Posted in Excerpts/Quotes on 2017-03-03 19:08Z by Steven

I cannot tell you how many times in the past few years I have been asked, “Why are you here? You are not Black.” “Why are you here? You are a non-Black person of color.” What many movement people, leaders, foot soldiers and woke folks fail to understand is that, in America, the binary of Black and white has always excluded “Latinx” people. One need only look at the media to see that, even in 2017, Blackness in America means African-American. Never are we as Black Latinx people represented in the media, and you will rarely find Africans and Black Caribbean people in dialogues and discussions about race.

Rosa Clemente, “Rosa Clemente: How I Came to Know and Appreciate My Blackness As An Afro-Latina,” Atlanta Black Star, February 23, 2017. http://atlantablackstar.com/2017/02/23/rosa-clemente-how-came-know-appreciate-blackness-afro-latina.

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