Racism

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Re: Racism

Postby vijayjohn » 2021-04-03, 21:54

Yasna wrote:
linguoboy wrote:
Yasna wrote:You liked my post so much that you responded to it twice? I'm flattered.

You don't have any more intelligent response to the points I made? I'm not surprised.

It's not a profitable use of my time to respond to snark with thoughtful arguments.

To clarify, this:
linguoboy wrote:
Yasna wrote:When you make such a serious accusation, you're obligated to make a specific, substantiated, coherent argument.

Fun fact: No you're not. Hence my crack about the "Internet Argument Police". You can dictate whatever rules of engagement you want--it's a free world for guys like us, so go off, fam--but you're not in any position to enforce them. The only leverage you have is your choice of whether or not to engage. This is something worth keeping in mind whenever you argue with anyone here: Nobody who chooses to respond owes you anything. Not a damn thing.

So either make one, or else I'm going to report you for slander.

I was going to ask how that's working out for you, but I guess we all just found out.

is what you're calling "snark"?
Yasna wrote:Hamner is an outspoken social justice activist who clearly sees himself in an alliance against "white supremacy".

I don't know about that, but he does claim to be in an alliance against white supremacy. For that matter, though, he also claims to be in an alliance with Asians, so go figure.

White supremacy is definitely a Thing btw. No need for scare quotes
Actors small and large from other ethnic groups are constantly making choices that affect the kind and degree of anti-(East)Asian racism found in their groups.

Look, I'm well aware that lots of Indians in the US have bizarrely racist attitudes towards East and Southeast Asians, especially Chinese people, but let's not pretend that's why Asian Americans have been attacked recently. They exacerbate the problem, but they do not cause it. There is a difference.
Minority groups don't simply swallow the attitudes and mores of white America

Speaking as the only person who's clearly from what you're calling a minority group and who's been participating in this discussion (or even who's been participating in this thread for more than a year and a half), I can truthfully say the attitudes and mores of white America are actively shoved down our throats. So, I mean, we swallow them in about the same way geese being stuffed to make foie gras swallow their feed.
or else those groups would have been assimilated into European American society.

I mean, a lot of us are assimilated into mainstream American ("European American"?) society. I don't think most of us feel we have any alternative.
To sweep all of that aside in favor of the "white supremacy" hammer strikes me as hopelessly reductionist and a case of the genetic fallacy.

No one is sweeping aside inter-minority discrimination; this is why we minorities are telling each other to stop hating on each other because almost all the powerful people in the history of the United States have been white and have been actively working to subjugate the rest of us - and, for that matter, to subjugate most white people.

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Re: Racism

Postby linguoboy » 2021-04-05, 22:47

Yasna wrote:
linguoboy wrote:
Yasna wrote:You liked my post so much that you responded to it twice? I'm flattered.

You don't have any more intelligent response to the points I made? I'm not surprised.

It's not a profitable use of my time to respond to snark with thoughtful arguments.

Arguments don't get much more disingenuous. You're pretending that, since I used a little bit of snark in replying to you, my reply was entirely snark without a shred of content. But my reply is still sitting there in plain view so everyone can see this for what it is--Vijay, for instance, immediately saw through it, zeroed in on the substance of my response, and reposted it. You flatter yourself by calling your arguments "thoughtful" when--let's be clear--the argument I was mocking amounts to "You owe me the thing because I say you do". He doesn't, and I think it's an important point to make because it's exactly this sense of entitlement that contributes to the greater problem I've been trying to discuss.
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Re: Racism

Postby Yasna » 2021-04-06, 1:15

vijayjohn wrote:Speaking as the only person who's clearly from what you're calling a minority group and who's been participating in this discussion (or even who's been participating in this thread for more than a year and a half), I can truthfully say the attitudes and mores of white America are actively shoved down our throats. So, I mean, we swallow them in about the same way geese being stuffed to make foie gras swallow their feed.

Indian Americans, far and away the most affluent ethnic group in America, seem to be in a category of their own. For example, it's plain to see that the vast majority of African Americans have not wholesale adopted the attitudes and mores of white America. They essentially pick and choose. Also true for Latino Americans to a lesser degree. East-Asian Americans also seem to resist assimilation to a greater degree than Indian Americans, for example by attending Chinese School (or Korean School) on Sundays. I'm speaking in broad strokes. Exceptions abound of course.

During your school years, were you generally the only, or one of the few Indian Americans in your classes?

Edit: It looks like Jewish Americans are even more affluent.
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Re: Racism

Postby linguoboy » 2021-04-06, 17:09

Yasna wrote:I don't consider myself a conservative

Most libertarian types don't.

Yasna wrote:Hamner is an outspoken social justice activist who clearly sees himself in an alliance against "white supremacy".

Your point being?

You could fill volumes with the sexism of men who loudly proclaim themselves "feminists" or the homophobia of self-hating gay men. Proclaiming your opposition to an ideology doesn't magically liberate you from all its effects.

Yasna wrote:
Where does anti-Asian sentiment originate if not white supremacy? Who was it who conceived of, passed, and enforced the Page Act and the Chinese Exclusion Act? Not Hamner or men who looked like him. He was born into a society where anti-Asian racism was already normalised. How did that happen? What's your way of accounting for this which doesn't invoke an ideology similar if not identical to what I and others have come to call "white supremacy"?

The attitudes and behaviors of population groups towards other population groups are constantly evolving. All involved groups are agents in this dynamic process. For example, East Asians have through their relative success become an increasing target of envy-based racism in the US, a phenomenon observed in many places around the world where you have an "overachieving" ethnic minority. Actors small and large from other ethnic groups are constantly making choices that affect the kind and degree of anti-(East)Asian racism found in their groups. Minority groups don't simply swallow the attitudes and mores of white America, or else those groups would have been assimilated into European American society.

Wow, just wow.

This is the kind of false conclusion you can only come to when you deny the systematic nature of racism. "Minority groups" have not been assimilated into European American society because we haven't let them. We don't want them to be the same as us. This is a lesson millions of BIPOC immigrants to this country who did everything they could to become "good Americans" have learned the hard way. You're all one of us until the time comes that we need some scapegoats, then look out. Twenty years ago, Southwest and South Asians got their turn in the barrel. Now we've decided to focus on East Asians again--but it'd only take one major incident (a bomb, a migrant caravan, another disease, a recession) for that to change.

Yasna wrote:To sweep all of that aside in favor of the "white supremacy" hammer strikes me as hopelessly reductionist and a case of the genetic fallacy.

Who's "sweeping that all aside"? I feel like you're the one who's oversimplifying the discourse by repeatedly deploying "white supremacy" as a punchline. Yes, Hamner and others in his community made choices which led him to this point. But those choices weren't made in a vacuum; the water in which he (and all us) swim is permeated with white supremacy and it affects our actions on an unconscious level--even if we consciously resist it, even if we're not white. It's the same with sexism, ableism, homophobia, transphobia, or any other societal bias.

So Hamner has the choice to work on his anti-Asian biases in the same way that you or I do or that Asian Americans have a choice on whether to work on their anti-Black biases. But there are societal forces encouraging him not to make this choice and they are mostly allied to white supremacy, which can only survive in this country if BIPOC don't unite against it.

Yasna wrote:Indian Americans, far and away the most affluent ethnic group in America, seem to be in a category of their own.

I don't even understand what this means. Of course they are--the experience of all ethnic communities within this society is distinct. Asia is the largest and most diverse continent on earth so it only stands to reason that "Asian Americans" are the most diverse grouping within US society.

Yasna wrote:For example, it's plain to see that the vast majority of African Americans have not wholesale adopted the attitudes and mores of white America. They essentially pick and choose. Also true for Latino Americans to a lesser degree.

Setting aside the fallacy of full freedom of choice here for minute, what makes you think African Americans have more freedom in this respect than Latinx?

Yasna wrote:East-Asian Americans also seem to resist assimilation to a greater degree than Indian Americans, for example by attending Chinese School (or Korean School) on Sundays. I'm speaking in broad strokes. Exceptions abound of course.

Exceptions abound so much I'm not even sure this is a useful generalisation at all.
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Re: Racism

Postby linguoboy » 2021-04-07, 18:47

Why The Recent Violence Against Asian Americans May Solidify Their Support Of Democrats

tl;dr: The more Asian-Americans see themselves as targets of discrimination, the more likely they are to support the Democratic Party--and nearly 60% reported a rise in anti-Asian attitudes since the start of the pandemic in the USA.
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Re: Racism

Postby vijayjohn » 2021-04-13, 8:51

Yasna wrote:
vijayjohn wrote:Speaking as the only person who's clearly from what you're calling a minority group and who's been participating in this discussion (or even who's been participating in this thread for more than a year and a half), I can truthfully say the attitudes and mores of white America are actively shoved down our throats. So, I mean, we swallow them in about the same way geese being stuffed to make foie gras swallow their feed.

Indian Americans, far and away the most affluent ethnic group in America, seem to be in a category of their own. For example, it's plain to see that the vast majority of African Americans have not wholesale adopted the attitudes and mores of white America. They essentially pick and choose. Also true for Latino Americans to a lesser degree. East-Asian Americans also seem to resist assimilation to a greater degree than Indian Americans, for example by attending Chinese School (or Korean School) on Sundays. I'm speaking in broad strokes. Exceptions abound of course.

The reply has nothing to do with what it's responding to, so I guess you were talking about something else entirely. My point is (or was, in that post) essentially that White America only cares about the differences between ethnic groups it can use to manipulate and keep us (and a lot of white people!) down. Apart from that, it doesn't. It shoves its attitudes and mores down all our throats equally.

Indian Americans could not be more culturally different from mainstream American culture. At the same time, unlike any of these other groups, Indian immigrants invariably come from a country that was a British colony within living memory, and studying English is practically a life-and-death matter in said country. Black Americans are mostly descended from people who White America literally enslaved, speak more or less the same language as White Americans, eat more or less the same food as White Americans, have a history in the Americas that predates British settlement, etc. Latino Americans speak a different language but have always lived pretty much right next door to the US before immigrating if they were not already there before English-speakers showed up; the entire American Southwest used to be basically half of Mexico. Unsurprisingly, they're not that different culturally. East Asian Americans have a lot in common culturally with us Indian Americans but mostly do not come from a place that was a British colony until recently and are also somewhat more likely than us to find the US appealing for political reasons.

No reasonable person would adopt the attitudes and mores of White America wholesale. That would just be stupid. Even if only white people all adopted them wholesale, none of us would probably exist in the US. Most of White America (or, for that matter, most of America in general, regardless of ethnicity) isn't willing to keep around a bunch of nerds.
During your school years, were you generally the only, or one of the few Indian Americans in your classes?

Yes. There was often one other Indian American in a given class. It was much harder for me to get along with other Indian Americans than with people of any other ethnic group.
Edit: It looks like Jewish Americans are even more affluent.

Really? I'm curious; what makes you say that?
Last edited by vijayjohn on 2021-04-13, 20:27, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Racism

Postby Yasna » 2021-04-13, 17:56

linguoboy wrote:
Yasna wrote:I don't consider myself a conservative

Most libertarian types don't.

I support universal healthcare, strict gun laws, and a vigorous climate policy, which would make me a very odd libertarian. Are you done trying to pigeonhole me?

linguoboy wrote:
Yasna wrote:Hamner is an outspoken social justice activist who clearly sees himself in an alliance against "white supremacy".

Your point being?

You could fill volumes with the sexism of men who loudly proclaim themselves "feminists" or the homophobia of self-hating gay men. Proclaiming your opposition to an ideology doesn't magically liberate you from all its effects.

My point being there is no evidence for your claim that he "decided to ally himself with white supremacy". The most parsimonious explanation is that he is a racist at heart who tried very hard to compensate for his racism.

linguoboy wrote:Wow, just wow.

This is the kind of false conclusion you can only come to when you deny the systematic nature of racism. "Minority groups" have not been assimilated into European American society because we haven't let them. We don't want them to be the same as us. This is a lesson millions of BIPOC immigrants to this country who did everything they could to become "good Americans" have learned the hard way. You're all one of us until the time comes that we need some scapegoats, then look out. Twenty years ago, Southwest and South Asians got their turn in the barrel. Now we've decided to focus on East Asians again--but it'd only take one major incident (a bomb, a migrant caravan, another disease, a recession) for that to change.

Are you saying you've never encountered any of the millions of members of racial minorities in the US who have assimilated into mainstream American society, maintaining unremarkable, functioning relationships with white classmates, colleagues, and friends; living unremarkable, productive lives at the heart of American society? That doesn't mean they never experience bias or racism. They do, but they don't let it define their lives. But all these millions of people are either allied with white supremacy or otherwise ill-intentioned, so what's the point of getting to know them and taking them seriously, right?

linguoboy wrote:
Yasna wrote:To sweep all of that aside in favor of the "white supremacy" hammer strikes me as hopelessly reductionist and a case of the genetic fallacy.

Who's "sweeping that all aside"? I feel like you're the one who's oversimplifying the discourse by repeatedly deploying "white supremacy" as a punchline. Yes, Hamner and others in his community made choices which led him to this point. But those choices weren't made in a vacuum; the water in which he (and all us) swim is permeated with white supremacy and it affects our actions on an unconscious level--even if we consciously resist it, even if we're not white. It's the same with sexism, ableism, homophobia, transphobia, or any other societal bias.

So Hamner has the choice to work on his anti-Asian biases in the same way that you or I do or that Asian Americans have a choice on whether to work on their anti-Black biases. But there are societal forces encouraging him not to make this choice and they are mostly allied to white supremacy, which can only survive in this country if BIPOC don't unite against it.

Once again I'm left to guess what exactly you mean by "white supremacy" in this context. I'm guessing you mean stereotypes of East Asians. Yes, Hamner was exposed to stereotypes of East Asians, just like most people in the world. Let's remind ourselves that many stereotypes have a kernel of truth and are reinforced by the experiences and observations of populations groups in contact with one another. In other words, even if you magically extirpated racist stereotypes from America tomorrow, many of them would be back in recognizable form in no time as long as East Asian Americans are on average more academically successful, African Americans are on average more successful at basketball, etc., etc., etc.

Let's also remind ourselves that the vast majority of us who are exposed to these stereotypes do not turn into racist assholes. Or are you tempted to go yell racist profanities at East Asians if you don't "work on your anti-Asian biases" studiously enough?
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Re: Racism

Postby linguoboy » 2021-04-13, 23:34

Yasna wrote:
linguoboy wrote:
Yasna wrote:Hamner is an outspoken social justice activist who clearly sees himself in an alliance against "white supremacy".

Your point being?

You could fill volumes with the sexism of men who loudly proclaim themselves "feminists" or the homophobia of self-hating gay men. Proclaiming your opposition to an ideology doesn't magically liberate you from all its effects.

My point being there is no evidence for your claim that he "decided to ally himself with white supremacy". The most parsimonious explanation is that he is a racist at heart who tried very hard to compensate for his racism.

What does that even mean, to be a "racist at heart"? This term has no explanatory power at all; like the pro-gun rhetoric about "bad guys with guns" and "good guys with guns", it simply divides people arbitrarily into two types so that the speaker can claim to be on the side of the angels. How did he become "racist at heart"? Why did his racism take the form it did when it did? Your "parsimonious explanation" doesn't cover any of that.

Yasna wrote:Are you saying you've never encountered any of the millions of members of racial minorities in the US who have assimilated into mainstream American society, maintaining unremarkable, functioning relationships with white classmates, colleagues, and friends; living unremarkable, productive lives at the heart of American society? That doesn't mean they never experience bias or racism. They do, but they don't let it define their lives.

This is another weasly phrase. "Letting racism define your life" = "Pointing out that racism exists and causes actual harm". We only accept minorities when they don't do anything to make us uncomfortable. That's what we mean by "assimilation".

Yasna wrote:But all these millions of people are either allied with white supremacy or otherwise ill-intentioned, so what's the point of getting to know them and taking them seriously, right?

Some of them doubtless are. Most are just trying to keep their heads down so they don't become one of its targets.

By don't take my word for it. Why not start listening to the actual person of colour who's been in this discussion all along? Oh, right, he's one of those bad ones who "let racism define their lives" so his testimony is not to be trusted.

Yasna wrote:
linguoboy wrote:
Yasna wrote:To sweep all of that aside in favor of the "white supremacy" hammer strikes me as hopelessly reductionist and a case of the genetic fallacy.

Who's "sweeping that all aside"? I feel like you're the one who's oversimplifying the discourse by repeatedly deploying "white supremacy" as a punchline. Yes, Hamner and others in his community made choices which led him to this point. But those choices weren't made in a vacuum; the water in which he (and all us) swim is permeated with white supremacy and it affects our actions on an unconscious level--even if we consciously resist it, even if we're not white. It's the same with sexism, ableism, homophobia, transphobia, or any other societal bias.

So Hamner has the choice to work on his anti-Asian biases in the same way that you or I do or that Asian Americans have a choice on whether to work on their anti-Black biases. But there are societal forces encouraging him not to make this choice and they are mostly allied to white supremacy, which can only survive in this country if BIPOC don't unite against it.

Once again I'm left to guess what exactly you mean by "white supremacy" in this context. I'm guessing you mean stereotypes of East Asians. Yes, Hamner was exposed to stereotypes of East Asians, just like most people in the world. Let's remind ourselves that many stereotypes have a kernel of truth and are reinforced by the experiences and observations of populations groups in contact with one another. In other words, even if you magically extirpated racist stereotypes from America tomorrow, many of them would be back in recognizable form in no time as long as East Asian Americans are on average more academically successful, African Americans are on average more successful at basketball, etc., etc., etc.

Why are you still guessing at this point?

White supremacy is not reducible to "stereotypes of East Asians". As I've explained before, it's an ideology which has at its core a racial hierarchy with white people at its apex. Stereotyping other races (hell, conceiving of "other races" at all) is one of the ways it defines and justifies that hierarchy. The purpose of most white stereotypes of Asians (such as that they are "good at math") is to support the model minority myth, which functions as a wedge between Asians and Blacks in order to preserve white dominance. The resentment this creates between members of the two groups manifests in many ways, and one of them is the kind of open bigotry displayed by Hamner. No need for a mystical appeal to some essentialised spark of racism in his "heart"; this is the system working exactly as it was designed to do. If you "magically extirpated racist stereotypes from America tomorrow" without altering the underlying ordering of society which produced them, of course they'd be back in no time. They're the symptom, not the cause.

Yasna wrote:Let's also remind ourselves that the vast majority of us who are exposed to these stereotypes do not turn into racist assholes. Or are you tempted to go yell racist profanities at East Asians if you don't "work on your anti-Asian biases" studiously enough?

Honestly? Yes.

The university I work at has a lot of East Asian students. Many are recent arrivals from Mainland China. Their behaviour is different to the standards of politeness I was raised to valorise and many of the things they do in public rub me the wrong way. This especially comes out when I take the university shuttle to and from work. More than once (generally when I'm already in a bad mood for some other reason) I've found myself thinking "those damn Chinese". Sometimes I've come close to expressing my frustration out loud and I have to check myself. I have to remind myself that my standards are not universal, that my expectations are not intrinsically better than someone else's, and the mixing of cultures is something I'm staunchly in favour of. And that's how I talk myself off the ledge.

But this isn't a once-and-done kind of thing. It's not as simple as just deciding one day not to be racist and then never again having another racist thought. It's an ongoing project of not giving into anti-Asian biases, of not stereotyping, of not enforcing my expectations onto the rest of the world. That's why I've been trying to post openly about the process here. I'm trying to foster some appreciation for what it actually takes for a white person to be anti-racist so that others don't fall prey to the simplistic manichaean notion "Well, I didn't hurl racist abuse at anyone today so that means I must not be 'racist at heart'" and don't think any more deeply about how their actions do or don't reinforce existing inequalities.
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Re: Racism

Postby Gormur » 2021-04-14, 3:25

So where does racism come from? Why do some societies not seem to have it? :hmm:
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Re: Racism

Postby linguoboy » 2021-04-14, 3:35

Gormur wrote:So where does racism come from? Why do some societies not seem to have it? :hmm:

Which societies would those be?
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Re: Racism

Postby Gormur » 2021-04-14, 17:29

linguoboy wrote:
Gormur wrote:So where does racism come from? Why do some societies not seem to have it? :hmm:

Which societies would those be?
Well I'm thinking in terms of [reported] violence against other enthicities as racism. I couldn't speculate peoples' attitudes or opinions of outsiders. I'm also thinking of groups like the Inuit and certain tribes in Central and South America that don't seem to have visible racism

Please let me know how I'm supposed to look at this. I'm still learning :hmm: I still tend to think racism is a political term because obviously the first humans wouldn't've been racist but maybe, for example the first group of humans growing up in civilization were. Groups of people started fighting over which religion to believe in, what their gods looked like and such things

Cheers
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Re: Racism

Postby linguoboy » 2021-04-14, 18:46

Gormur wrote:
linguoboy wrote:
Gormur wrote:So where does racism come from? Why do some societies not seem to have it? :hmm:

Which societies would those be?
Well I'm thinking in terms of [reported] violence against other enthicities as racism.

Name what societies you're talking about and I'll tell you.

Gormur wrote:I'm also thinking of groups like the Inuit and certain tribes in Central and South America that don't seem to have visible racism

You mean isolated peoples who don't live in multiracial societies?

Gormur wrote:Please let me know how I'm supposed to look at this. I'm still learning :hmm: I still tend to think racism is a political term because obviously the first humans wouldn't've been racist but maybe, for example the first group of humans growing up in civilization were. Groups of people started fighting over which religion to believe in, what their gods looked like and such things

If you define "racism" the way I do (i.e. "prejudice plus power") then it really doesn't make sense to talk about it before the beginnings of civilisation and the power differentials this entails.
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Re: Racism

Postby Gormur » 2021-04-16, 14:53

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NVH7JewfgJg&t=327sCheers linguoboy. That makes sense. I had a look at this short video and while I did learn about the Apartheid in school (while it was still intact), it's been a while since I heard or read anything about what's currently going on in South Africa

I thought it was interesting how there was forced segregation. I wonder if they separated people by language first and physical features second, but I don't know how they defined black people either, since this concept can vary around the world. I also wish I would've heard about Tamils and if they were ever considered to be black :hmm:
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Re: Racism

Postby linguoboy » 2021-04-16, 16:25

Gormur wrote:I wonder if they separated people by language first and physical features second, but I don't know how they defined black people either, since this concept can vary around the world.

It was the other way around. Individuals were first sorted by "race" and then classified according to "ethnicity" within that "race". This short article provides an overview of how that process worked:

https://www.thoughtco.com/racial-classification-under-apartheid-43430

The most important takeaway is that the classifications were based on public perceptions. People could be (and were) reclassified if they could prove that they were "perceived" as members of another race but genetic evidence was not considered definitive (as the case described in the article shows). Documents show that individual officials had a lot of discretion when it came to what criteria they used and often weighted who the person associated with or how they lived at least as much as their appearance.

Gormur wrote:I also wish I would've heard about Tamils and if they were ever considered to be black :hmm:

At first, all South Africans of South Asian heritage were classified as "non-whites". The Population Registration Act of 1950 defined three separate categories, "White", "Coloured", and "Black". "Coloureds" were defined as "not a white person nor a native". The law was later admended to create a fourth category of "Indian", because they were not considered to be "native". So it's possible that some Tamils were initially classified as "Black" before being reclassified as "Indian".
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Re: Racism

Postby Gormur » 2021-04-16, 17:49

I gave that example because it's the only one I know from school / a long time ago. Thanks for responding. I'm trying to figure out where this hatred comes from even if I may never understand it. I still wonder though, say if a white (maybe English or German-parentage) family spoke Swahili would they be considered black or if one had a spouse of a different skin color?

This is why the whole skin color thing doesn't make sense to me. I think skin color is a euphemism somewhere but I just don't know what it means :hmm:
Eigi gegnir þat at segja at bók nøkkur er hreinferðug eðr ønnur spelluð því at vandliga ok dáliga eru bœkr ritnar ok annat kunnum vér eigi um þœr at dœma

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Re: Racism

Postby linguoboy » 2021-04-16, 19:22

Gormur wrote:I gave that example because it's the only one I know from school / a long time ago. Thanks for responding. I'm trying to figure out where this hatred comes from even if I may never understand it. I still wonder though, say if a white (maybe English or German-parentage) family spoke Swahili would they be considered black or if one had a spouse of a different skin color?

In what context? Swahili isn't spoken in South Africa (it's an East African language) so I don't know if you mean in South Africa under apartheid or somewhere else. From what I've read[*] about the South African situation, language spoken at home could be taken into account when classifying an individual but it wasn't one of the primary criteria.

Gormur wrote:This is why the whole skin color thing doesn't make sense to me. I think skin color is a euphemism somewhere but I just don't know what it means :hmm:

No, in discussions of race and racial categorisation, "skin colour" literally means the colour of one's skin. But it's never been the sole criterion on which racial categories are based, just one of the most salient. (Albinos in Sub-Saharan Africa, for instance, are still considered racially "Black" despite the fact that their skin colour is paler than yours or mine.)

[*] I found this article particularly helpful: https://www.ascleiden.nl/news/whats-name-racial-categorizations-under-apartheid-and-their-afterlife
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Re: Racism

Postby Gormur » 2021-04-17, 15:35

Ah, I get it. I was confusing what I heard about South African schools teaching Swahili and more speakers coming to SA from surrounding countries. I was also thinking of white Zulu speakers in rural areas, so I mixed up those two. Sorry about that
Eigi gegnir þat at segja at bók nøkkur er hreinferðug eðr ønnur spelluð því at vandliga ok dáliga eru bœkr ritnar ok annat kunnum vér eigi um þœr at dœma

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Re: Racism

Postby Yasna » 2021-04-26, 20:06

vijayjohn wrote:The reply has nothing to do with what it's responding to, so I guess you were talking about something else entirely. My point is (or was, in that post) essentially that White America only cares about the differences between ethnic groups it can use to manipulate and keep us (and a lot of white people!) down. Apart from that, it doesn't. It shoves its attitudes and mores down all our throats equally. [...]

Yes. There was often one other Indian American in a given class. It was much harder for me to get along with other Indian Americans than with people of any other ethnic group.

The point is that due to historical migration patterns, the experiences of many Indian Americans (you included) are not representative of the experiences of racial minorities in this country, and thus you're not in a position to be saying things like "speaking as the only person who's clearly from what you're calling a minority group and who's been participating in this discussion, I can truthfully say the attitudes and mores of white America are actively shoved down our throats." A common story I hear from coastal East Asians is that they went to school with a lot of other East Asians, grew up watching anime and K-dramas, went to Chinese or Korean school on the weekend, and socialized almost exclusively with other East Asians in college. Do you think most of them feel that "the attitudes and mores of white America are actively shoved down [their] throats"? Of course not. They generally have a much more nuanced view of these things.

Edit: It looks like Jewish Americans are even more affluent.

Really? I'm curious; what makes you say that?

I realize this is based on religion not ethnicity, but I didn't find anything comparing ethnicities directly that included Jews.
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Re: Racism

Postby Yasna » 2021-04-26, 21:38

linguoboy wrote:What does that even mean, to be a "racist at heart"? This term has no explanatory power at all; like the pro-gun rhetoric about "bad guys with guns" and "good guys with guns", it simply divides people arbitrarily into two types so that the speaker can claim to be on the side of the angels. How did he become "racist at heart"? Why did his racism take the form it did when it did? Your "parsimonious explanation" doesn't cover any of that.

By "racist at heart" I mean Hamner was strongly predisposed to racist attitudes. He was likely to become a racist regardless of what society he grew up in.

This is another weasly phrase. "Letting racism define your life" = "Pointing out that racism exists and causes actual harm".

That's not what that means and you know it.

Yasna wrote:But all these millions of people are either allied with white supremacy or otherwise ill-intentioned, so what's the point of getting to know them and taking them seriously, right?

Some of them doubtless are. Most are just trying to keep their heads down so they don't become one of its targets.

Your idea of what it's like to be a racial minority in this country is stuck in about 1960.

The purpose of most white stereotypes of Asians (such as that they are "good at math") is to support the model minority myth, which functions as a wedge between Asians and Blacks in order to preserve white dominance. The resentment this creates between members of the two groups manifests in many ways, and one of them is the kind of open bigotry displayed by Hamner. No need for a mystical appeal to some essentialised spark of racism in his "heart"; this is the system working exactly as it was designed to do.

The math stereotype formed precisely because East Asians perform, on average, better in math than most other population groups in the US. It exists independently of whatever purposes some people have found for it. The interracial dynamics of 2021 were not "designed", they evolved.

linguoboy wrote:Why The Recent Violence Against Asian Americans May Solidify Their Support Of Democrats

tl;dr: The more Asian-Americans see themselves as targets of discrimination, the more likely they are to support the Democratic Party--and nearly 60% reported a rise in anti-Asian attitudes since the start of the pandemic in the USA.

If the Democratic Party would stop demonizing the police (you know, the people who are trying to keep the public safe), maybe. Otherwise, I see a repeat of this:

Liberals Envisioned a Multiracial Coalition. Voters of Color Had Other Ideas.
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Re: Racism

Postby mōdgethanc » 2021-05-03, 13:46

linguoboy wrote:You could fill volumes with the sexism of men who loudly proclaim themselves "feminists" or the homophobia of self-hating gay men. Proclaiming your opposition to an ideology doesn't magically liberate you from all its effects.
Very important point ! In fact, this is so widespread I don't even like to call myself a feminist. There are lots of feminists I agree with, but so many self-styled "male feminists" turn to to be creeps that it's become a trope that women are well aware of.
White supremacy is not reducible to "stereotypes of East Asians". As I've explained before, it's an ideology which has at its core a racial hierarchy with white people at its apex. Stereotyping other races (hell, conceiving of "other races" at all) is one of the ways it defines and justifies that hierarchy.
This is about as good a definition of the term as I've ever seen - I might steal it in the future if it comes up. A lot of energy is wasted on debating semantics when it comes to contentious words like "racism". (Adding to the problem, I also think "white supremacy" is sometimes overused when "white privilege" would be more fitting, but that's a whole other can of worms I don't want to open right now.)
Honestly? Yes.

The university I work at has a lot of East Asian students. Many are recent arrivals from Mainland China. Their behaviour is different to the standards of politeness I was raised to valorise and many of the things they do in public rub me the wrong way. This especially comes out when I take the university shuttle to and from work. More than once (generally when I'm already in a bad mood for some other reason) I've found myself thinking "those damn Chinese". Sometimes I've come close to expressing my frustration out loud and I have to check myself. I have to remind myself that my standards are not universal, that my expectations are not intrinsically better than someone else's, and the mixing of cultures is something I'm staunchly in favour of. And that's how I talk myself off the ledge.

But this isn't a once-and-done kind of thing. It's not as simple as just deciding one day not to be racist and then never again having another racist thought. It's an ongoing project of not giving into anti-Asian biases, of not stereotyping, of not enforcing my expectations onto the rest of the world. That's why I've been trying to post openly about the process here. I'm trying to foster some appreciation for what it actually takes for a white person to be anti-racist so that others don't fall prey to the simplistic manichaean notion "Well, I didn't hurl racist abuse at anyone today so that means I must not be 'racist at heart'" and don't think any more deeply about how their actions do or don't reinforce existing inequalities.
I truly believe the same thing or something like it happens to everyone sometimes, but we don't talk about it because it's embarrassing. It's time we did. Even if you don't think of yourself as a racist and would never willfully be racist (and I'm pretty sure you wouldn't) you can still have intrusive thoughts sometimes that are bigoted. The key thing is to check them and ask where is this even coming from? so they go away. I sometimes I have to remind myself of this when someone annoys me as well, e.g. that just become some random zoomer was trolling me isn't any excuse to think things that are ageist or homophobic. It doesn't make you a bad person to have prejudiced thoughts that are automatic and unbidden, it's how you respond to them that matters.


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