Fake Diversity and Racial Capitalism

Posted in Articles, Law, Media Archive, Politics/Public Policy, United States on 2014-11-27 02:52Z by Steven

Fake Diversity and Racial Capitalism

Medium
2014-11-23

Nancy Leong, Professor of Law
Sturm College of Law
University of Denver

For decades now, it’s been fashionable for institutions of all kinds to showcase their racially diverse constituencies. This is true even when the institution in question has been sued for discrimination on the basis of race, gender, or other protected categories:…

…But behind the smiling, diverse faces, many institutions also share a dirty little secret. A lot of the diversity is the result not of the institution’s inclusive practices when it comes to recruiting, hiring, admitting or whatever other word is appropriate. Rather, it’s the result of Photoshop

…How can we explain this impulse to overstate diversity, either through Photoshop or through aggressive presentation of diversity? I examined this phenomenon in a 2013 article in the Harvard Law Review called “Racial Capitalism.” What I call racial capitalism is the process of an individual or group deriving value from the racial identity of another person. While in theory any group might derive value from the racial identity of another, in practice, since white people are historically and presently a majority in America, racial capitalism most often involves a white person or a predominantly white institution extracting value from non-white racial identity.

Racial capitalism explains why white people are so keen to tell you about their black friends. It explains why white people are so anxious to tell you about the diverse neighborhood they live in. And, more generally, it explains why people have a powerful incentive to display their affiliation with non-white people…

Read the entire article here.

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Obama failed Ferguson. The prosecutor is pathetic. Between the split-screen, the protesters get it

Posted in Articles, Barack Obama, Law, Media Archive, Politics/Public Policy, United States on 2014-11-26 18:48Z by Steven

Obama failed Ferguson. The prosecutor is pathetic. Between the split-screen, the protesters get it

The Guardian
London, United Kingdom
2014-11-25

Steven W. Thrasher, Columnist for Guardian US

Politicians have found themselves on the wrong side of the gap between the fantasy of what the law does and the reality that people live

There we had Barack Obama, the first black president of the United States, finally admitting on one side of the television that structural racism is real. There we finally had him saying that when it comes to police terrorizing black folks, “communities of color aren’t just making these problems up”. But, in nearly the same breath on Monday night after the grand-jury decision in Ferguson, as the people were taking to the streets in cities across the nation, the president also said he doesn’t believe unequal enforcement of the law is “the norm. I don’t think that’s true for the majority of communities or the vast majority of law enforcement officials.”

It wasn’t just surreal, then, to witness Obama’s anti-Trayvon Martin moment at the very same time a split-screen on the other side of the TV showed police launching smoke bombs at protesters in Ferguson. It was heartbreaking. Because if that was reality rising up through the gap on Monday night, the reality is that legal discrimination is the norm – and our law enforcement officials refuse to acknowledge reality.

This is the gap in our collective split-screen: The Ferguson cops arrest black citizens three times more often than they do white people, but USA Today recently reported that “1,581 other police departments across the USA arrest black people at rates even more skewed than in Ferguson.” That’s right: the police department that won’t even see officer Darren Wilson stand trial – a cop, mind you, who complained that Michael Brown “looked like a demon” after he’d shot the unarmed black teenager – engages in less racial profiling than 1,581 other American police departments.

So it was nothing short of a gut punch to see our African American president on the wrong side of the gap between the fantasy of what the law does and the reality that people live. Obama, in that moment, gave credence to the fiction that if citizens just faithfully adhere to being “a nation built on the rule of law”, the result will be justice. Perhaps he will finally go to Ferguson tomorrow, but today, we are a nation looking upon a pile of ashes, death and broken dreams…

Read the entire article here.

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Undoing Race? Reconciling Multiracial Identity with Equal Protection

Posted in Articles, Law, Media Archive, United States on 2014-11-26 18:19Z by Steven

Undoing Race? Reconciling Multiracial Identity with Equal Protection

Lauren Sudeall Lucas, Assistant Professor of Law
Georgia State University College of Law

California Law Review
Volume 102, Number 5 (October 2014)
pages 1243-1302

The number of multiracial individuals in America, many of whom define their racial identity in different ways, has grown dramatically in recent years and continues to increase. From this demographic shift a movement seeking unique racial status for multiracial individuals has emerged. The multiracial movement is distinguishable from other race-based movements in that it is primarily driven by identity rather than the quest for political, social, or economic equality. It is not clear how equal protection doctrine, which is concerned primarily with state-created racial classifications, will or should accommodate multiracialism. Nor is it clear how to best reconcile the recognition of individual identity with the continuing need to address group-based racial discrimination and subordination. In this Essay, I explore the potential impact of multiracialism-and multiracial identity in particular-on the future of racial classifications under equal protection doctrine.

As a framework for its analysis, the Essay invokes two theories used to interpret the meaning of equal protection: antisubordination and anticlassification. Viewed solely through the lens of multiracial identity, the common normative understanding of these two approaches contorts. While antisubordination is often perceived as more beneficial for groups battling entrenched racial hierarchy, it may facilitate unique harms for multiracial individuals seeking to carve out a racial identity distinct from traditionally defined racial categories. And although anticlassification is often viewed by progressives as detrimental to the pursuit of true racial equality, it may lend more support to policies of racial self-identification and the recognition of a unique multiracial identity. A looming danger, therefore, is that anticlassification advocates wishing to dismantle frameworks rooted in traditional notions of race may exploit multiracialism to “undo” race and to undermine the use of racial classifications altogether.

In response to that possibility, this Essay argues that although law and identity inevitably inform and impact one another, they also serve distinct purposes that should not be improperly conflated in the context of multiracialism. The construction of identity is ultimately a very personal endeavor, and although legal recognition may be one aspect of identity, in the area of race, the law has a more powerful function to play in preventing racial subordination. Where possible, the law should accommodate multiracial individuals who wish to define their own racial identity, but as long as it remains more aspirational than realistic, the individual’s perception of race should not be used or manipulated to undermine the use of racial classifications to counter societal race discrimination.

  • Introduction
    • I. Multiracialism and Multiracial Identity
      • A. Historical Treatment of Multiracialism
      • B. The Emergence of Multiracial Identity
        • 1. The Numbers: Measuring Multiracials
        • 2. The Multiracial Movement
      • C. The Nature of Multiracial Identity
      • D. Consequences of Identity
    • II. Equal Protection and Multiracial Identity
      • A. The Meaning of Equal Protection: Anticlassification and Antisubordination
      • B. Viewing Equal Protection Through the Multiracial Identity Lens
    • III. Reconciliation: Undoing Race?
      • A. The Temptation Toward Anticlassification
      • B. Untangling Identity from Doctrine
  • Conclusion

Read the entire article here.

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Mixed-Race Identity, Ferguson & Why it Matters to Us

Posted in Articles, Canada, Law, Media Archive, United States on 2014-11-26 01:25Z by Steven

Mixed-Race Identity, Ferguson & Why it Matters to Us

Mixed In Canada
2014-11-25

Rema Tavares

By now you probably already know that Darren Wilson was not indicted yesterday, November 24th, 2014 for murdering unarmed Black youth Mike Brown on August 9th, 2014. Ever since that day, folks around the world have been showing their support, as well as massive hatred, towards the Brown family. Today in Canada, there will be protests in Toronto & Vancouver as well as in Hamilton on December 1st. So what does this mean to us, mixed-race identified people? While I can’t speak on behalf of all mixed-race identified people, here are some thoughts that come to mind about how it affects us.

NON BLACK-MIXED FOLKS: Show your solidarity to your Black-mixed brothers, sisters & trans* siblings. Black and Indigenous folks (mixed-identified or not) face the most heinous forms of state-sanctioned violence around the world and here in Canada. Our struggle is your struggle, just as yours is ours, all oppression is connected. #IdleNoMore #BlackLivesMatter

FOLKS MIXED WITH WHITE: Calling out white supremacy does not mean that you don’t love your white family. If anything, seeing our friends and family as real people with flaws, is true love. We have all been raised in this system, we are all complicit. Let us remember that the revolution starts at home.

BLACK MIXED FOLKS: Make sure to take care of yourself and if you can, reach out to our brothers, sisters & trans* siblings. Take time for self care and care of the community…

Read the entire article here.

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In Response to #Ferguson

Posted in Articles, Law, Media Archive, Politics/Public Policy, United States on 2014-11-26 01:12Z by Steven

In Response to #Ferguson

One Drop of Love
2014-11-25

Fanshen Cox DiGiovanni

I spent yesterday, like so many of my friends and family, wavering between deep sadness and deep anger. I understand that, because I was a witness to a family member being brutalized by a police officer, I have a different perspective than those who have not either been the victim of police brutality, or a witness to it. I would like to think that I would still have the same passionate feelings, whether or not I had this experience…

Read the entire article here.

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Bill: New Yorkers could identify as multiracial

Posted in Articles, Census/Demographics, Law, Media Archive, United States on 2014-11-25 22:20Z by Steven

Bill: New Yorkers could identify as multiracial

The Associated Press
2014-11-25

Jonathan Lemire, City Hall and Political Reporter

NEW YORK (AP) — New Yorkers may soon be able to identify themselves as more than one race under legislation introduced in the City Council on Tuesday.

The measure would change dozens of official documents, including applications for public housing, registration with the Department of Small Business Services and complaint forms with the city’s Commission on Human Rights. Documents required of more than 300,000 city employees would also need to be changed.

Currently, city forms that ask for ethnicity or race have five options: “black, not of Hispanic origin,” ”white, not of Hispanic origin,” ”Hispanic,” ”Asian or Pacific Islander,” and “American Indian or Alaskan native.”

Advocates of the bill believe the measure would provide a clearer picture of demographics and allow New Yorkers to better recognize their heritage.

“I am 50 percent Irish, 25 percent Korean and 25 percent unknown,” said Corey Johnson, a city councilman from Manhattan, who drew upon his own heritage to champion the bill during a rally on the City Council steps. Johnson, a Democrat, was one of the co-sponsors of the bill, along with Councilman Ben Kallos, another Manhattan Democrat.

New York City has the highest multiracial population in the country. More than 325,000 city residents identified as more than one race on the 2010 census…

Read the entire article here.

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Proposal for NYC Forms: Option to Identify as Multiracial

Posted in Articles, Census/Demographics, Law, Media Archive, United States on 2014-11-25 17:16Z by Steven

Proposal for NYC Forms: Option to Identify as Multiracial

The Wall Street Journal
2014-11-24

Mara Gay, City Hall Reporter

Legislation Being Introduced in City Council on Tuesday

New Yorkers would be able to identify as more than one race on city documents under legislation set to be introduced in the City Council on Tuesday.

“We just wanted to bring New York City into the 21st century,” said Councilwoman Margaret Chin, a Manhattan Democrat and the lead sponsor of the measure. “This will allow New Yorkers to identify their heritage and be proud of it. They shouldn’t have to only check one box.”

The city has the highest multiracial population in the country, with 325,901 people identifying as more than one race on the 2010 U.S. Census.

Right now, city forms that ask for information about race or ethnicity have five options: “white, not of Hispanic origin”; “black, not of Hispanic origin”; “Hispanic”; “Asian or Pacific Islander”; and “American Indian or Alaskan Native.”

The legislation could mean changes for dozens of city forms. Complaint forms with the New York City Commission on Human Rights would be changed under the bill, for example, as would applications at the Department of Small Business Services and at the New York City Housing Authority. Documents required of New York’s more than 300,000 city employees would also be affected…

…The bill, which is co-sponsored by Councilman Ben Kallos and Councilman Corey Johnson, both Democrats, would require city agencies to have the capacity to maintain the new demographic information within three years of the bill becoming law…

Read the entire article here.

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What is a White Man?

Posted in Articles, Law, Media Archive, United States on 2014-11-19 23:20Z by Steven

What is a White Man?

The Independent
Volume 41 (1889-05-30)
pages 5-6
Source: The Charles Chesnutt Digital Archive

Charles W. Chesnutt, Esq.

The fiat having gone forth from the wise men of the South that the “all-pervading, all-conquering Anglo-Saxon race” must continue forever to exercise exclusive control and direction of the government of this so-called Republic, it becomes important to every citizen who values his birthright to know who are included in this grandiloquent term. It is of course perfectly obvious that the writer or speaker who used this expression—perhaps Mr. Grady of Georgia—did not say what he meant. It is not probable that he meant to exclude from full citizenship the Celts and Teutons and Gauls and Slavs who make up so large a proportion of our population; he hardly meant to exclude the Jews, for even the most ardent fireeater would hardly venture to advocate the disfranchisement of the thrifty race whose mortgages cover so large a portion of Southern soil. What the eloquent gentleman really meant by this high-sounding phrase was simply the white race; and the substance of the argument of that school of Southern writers to which he belongs, is simply that for the good of the country the Negro should have no voice in directing the government or public policy of the Southern States or of the nation.

But it is evident that where the intermingling of the races has made such progress as it has in this country, the line which separates the races must in many instances have been practically obliterated. And there has arisen in the United States a very large class of the population who are certainly not Negroes in an ethnological sense, and whose children will be no nearer Negroes than themselves. In view, therefore, of the very positive ground taken by the white leaders of the South, where most of these people reside, it becomes in the highest degree important to them to know what race they belong to. It ought to be also a matter of serious concern to the Southern white people; for if their zeal for good government is so great that they contemplate the practical overthrow of the Constitution and laws of the United States to secure it, they ought at least to be sure that no man entitled to it by their own argument, is robbed of a right so precious as that of free citizenship; the “all-pervading, all conquering Anglo-Saxon” ought to set as high a value on American citizenship as the all-conquering Roman placed upon the franchise of his State two thousand years ago. This discussion would of course be of little interest to the genuine Negro, who is entirely outside of the charmed circle, and must content himself with the acquisition of wealth, the pursuit of learning and such other privileges as his “best friends” may find it consistent with the welfare of the nation to allow him; but to every other good citizen the inquiry ought to be a momentous one. What is a white man?…

Read the entire article here.

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Sesquicentennial Event Addresses Colorado Inequality

Posted in Articles, Asian Diaspora, History, Law, Media Archive, Slavery, United States on 2014-11-18 22:21Z by Steven

Sesquicentennial Event Addresses Colorado Inequality

Clarion: The University of Denver’s Newwspaper Since 1892
Denver, Colorado
2014-10-21

Carissa Cherpes

DU hosted a Sesquicentennial Conversation entitled Miscegenation Law, Marriage Equality, and the West 1864-2014 on Oct. 15 in the Sturm College of Law.

Over 50 students, faculty and others gathered to listen to three panelists lecture on how Miscegenation Laws and inequality affected our region throughout history. Miscegenation Laws banned marriages or relationships between mixed raced couples.

The three panelists were Rachel Moran, Ronald J. Stephens and Anna N. Martinez. The moderator was Bill Convery, who holds the position of Colorado State Historian

…Next to present was Moran. She described how Miscegenation Laws originated in the South when concern over mixed race slave children became an issue. The popular opinion was that “mixed race children were black,” and therefore could not be considered free or have rights.

She then went on to talk about California’s Miscegenation Laws, which targeted Asian immigrants. In California, the laws were designed to force Chinese, Japanese and Filipino immigrants to return to their native country.

Moran then discussed how the Colorado territory had Miscegenation Laws as well, but only after additional land was acquired from Mexico. Because the people living in the territory had different customs and laws, there was an invisible boundary where mixed race couples were more accepted. She concluded by explaining how it was not until the 1960s that the Supreme Court decided Miscegenation Laws were unfair

Read the entire article here.

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It’s her Ferguson — and it’s not all black and white

Posted in Articles, Law, Media Archive, Social Science, United States on 2014-11-17 16:25Z by Steven

It’s her Ferguson — and it’s not all black and white

Cable News Network (CNN)
2014-11-17

Moni Basu

Ferguson, Missouri (CNN) — Stefannie Wheat carried a yard sign all the way from her Midwestern town to the nation’s capital. She visited the White House and tucked it into the guard rail.

“I Love Ferguson,” it said.

It was mid-October and her beloved city turned restive after the police shooting death of black teenager Michael Brown. Businesses were boarded up and losing money, protests had on occasion turned violent and anxiety had spread through the city of 22,000 people northwest of St. Louis.

Ferguson, the quiet community she chose to make home, had become synonymous with racism, injustice and police brutality. Wheat wanted to scream.

Her Ferguson was not what it had become in the headlines.

For this 45-year-old white woman, things were far more complex than they appeared in the news. The world that she, like many others, saw as black and white had morphed into myriad shades of gray over the years.

She has been married to Ken, who is black, for almost two decades. She adopted Christopher, a black child from a foster home. In eight years, he will turn 18, Brown’s age at the time of his death, and embark on life in a world she knows is still full of hate…

Read the entire article here.

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