Slave gravesite in New York City
“SOMETHING YOUR TOUR GUIDE MIGHT NOT TELL YOU:
The heart of NYC’s Financial District is built on a huge 18th century African Burial Ground. Some 419 Africans were discovered in 1991, a large portion women and children.
The burial ground extends from Broadway Southward under City Hall, and almost to the site of the former World Trade Center. It is believed that there are as many as 20,000 slavery-era Africans in graves under the buildings in Lower Manhattan.
Abolish historical amnesia and ponder for a moment the fact that this financial epicenter of the world is built on slavery, oppression, and death.”
Literally, and daily.
I am tired of wannabe linguists and bubblegum hipsters telling me that Gypsy is “such a beautiful word, it would be such a shame if we can’t use it”…
How hard is it to understand that it’s a slur? I don’t understand the constant queries of “but, why?”
Gypsy is a racial and ethnic slur because it has, historically and contemporarily, been used to murder, enslave, rape, marginalize, and discriminate against Roma (and other - see below) people.
There is much about the history of the Roma on my blog. This animated video from the Open Society Foundations covers some of our history [CLICK].
Linguistically, the word is an exonym - a name given to us by outsiders with no regard for our own preferences. It is a word that, at is very root is inaccurate (simply… wrong). It stems from the belief that we came from Egypt - because of our darker skin and different language (Indo-Aryan, unlike the Celtic, Germanic or Romance languages Europeans were familiar with). It later came to apply to anyone that white Europeans thought had a similar lifestyle to us - Kale/Kaale, Romany, Romanichal, Irish (Pavee) & Scottish Travellers, Jenische, Manouche, Sinte, and many others, some of whom are racially white (and these groups did not suffer the same during the Holocaust or in since).
The word itself is hideous.
A disgusting misnomer that has been stapled to our foreheads for generations. It has been burned into our skin before we were hung. It was tattooed on our arms before we were gassed. It has been whispered in the ears of mothers as they were forcibly sterilized. It has been screamed at fathers as their houses were set alight. It has been used to deny education, employment, healthcare, and housing. It has been used to pass laws banning our free movement, banning the owning of wagons, banning the selling of horses or other traditional trades, banning our languages. It has been used to send us to prison, to remove us from stores, restaurants, schools, libraries, buses - all because of our ethnicity.
Don’t tell me it’s a “nice” word. It’s not.
I suppose, if a word has never been spat at you in hatred, you have a different view of it. If you are outside of the group to which it applies you have the privilege to use descriptors such as “nice” or “beautiful”. When you haven’t heard the stories of your relatives that were murdered because of it. When you haven’t seen the tears in your own mother’s eyes, because of it.
I am so tired of these questions.
As my grandfather used to say, “O čhavoro na bijandola dandencar” - A child is not born with teeth.
In other words, we learn to be disrespectful, mean, hateful, racist. It shouldn’t be up to me to continually explain why a slur is a slur.
It’s a slur. Period.
It doesn’t matter if the word emits rainbows and sparkledust every time it is written or spoken…
it’s a slur.
the fuck is this imperialist crowdsurfing
The imagery in this scene hearkens back to every Victorian cartoon depicting mother Britannia taking care of unruly babies of color labeled India, Jamaica, etc. I understand that conquering is part of the story in A Song of Ice and Fire and these people are grateful for their freedom, but the visual of a thousand brown arms reaching for their white savior “mother” is extremely problematic.
This image is sickening, and emblematic of every movie dealing with race created by White America.
racial fetishization is racism.
it is not a compliment.
stop pretending that you are ~appreciating the culture~, and being respectful.
reducing the many varied people within a culture to the parts that you think are cute is not being appreciative. racism is not respectful.
submitted by redvelvetcupcakemurder
[WARNING whitewashing and dehumanization] cut the ‘male’ part and you can add that all humans are white, and people of color are ‘metaphorically’ represented as non-humans (aliens, elves, ‘children of the forest,’ etc)
Joss Whedon quoting Junot Diaz (“If you want to make a human being into a monster, deny them, at the cultural level, any reflection of themselves.”) makes me see red with anger. How clueless and full of yourself do you have to be to say that and not see that YOU DO THE SAME EXACT THING?
Here is a man talking about how women at 51% of the population yet he continuously colonizes and erases Latinos from his work set in counties in CA with Latinos approaching majority population numbers. He erases Asians COMPLETELY in Firefly and instead uses their language and culture to the benefit of white folks. He casts white folks for asian characters. Stop White Washing has an article on how Whedon white washed Maria Hill (I did a google search that puts her ethnicity as undetermined but not white).
And let’s not even start on LGBT representation. Sure Willow/Tara was great but in Whedon’s world, the only queers are lesbians. Gay men are used as props and jokes. Buffy’s potential bisexuality seemed almost a prop to sell comics and titillate a male audience. Speaking of comics, pick up his writing on Runaways for some really messed up transmisogyny.
He needs to quit patting himself on the back because he put TWO of the hundreds of female Marvel chars in The Avengers. Yeah, he is great at advancing the cause of white women (and even then his rape fetish is disturbing). But what about the rest of the world, the majority of the world, he is making into monsters?
I’m really confused why people think colonization just stops presenting problems when the colonizers leave or are driven out. Never mind that they wreck cultures, rob people of their languages, disorient people’s identities, pillage the land’s resources, and outright kill anyone who would dare stand in their way.
Clearly, it would be really simple to recover from that. Clearly.
…[some] may not remember what made Iran-Contra such an extraordinary scandal. The Reagan administration “raised money privately” by selling weapons to a sworn enemy of the United States. Why? Because it wanted to fund an illegal war in Nicaragua. And when I say “illegal war,” I mean that quite literally—Congress told the Reagan administration, in no uncertain terms, that Reagan could not send money to the Contras. Period. The Reagan administration, unrestrained by laws and the Constitution, did so anyway, and much of the president’s national security team ended up under indictment.
Reagan knew everything. However, I bet this Time magazine piece doesn’t get into the juiciest part of Iran-Contra, which is that in the 1980s the CIA put into operation a crack cocaine pipeline to import narcotics from Central and South America and distribute it in US inner cities. This is not a “conspiracy theory”, this is a documented conspiracy, most rigorously researched and reported by Pulitzer-prize winning journalist Gary Webb, whose series in the San Jose Mercury News and subsequent book “Dark Alliance” literally got him killed. To me, that’s the story of Iran-Contra: not that Reagan sold weapons to Iran, but that the US government imported and sold crack to Black America, as part of an arms and drugs trade which funded war in the Third World and which devastated lives and filled prisons in the USA.
This is complete bullshit on SO many levels.
1) It belongs to someone else
2) It’s sacred to that someone
3) It’s against the fucking LAW
4) Wrong, just fucking wrong…I have no more words
Please enter your information below if you would like to sign this statement against scientific racism.
Open letter from scholars opposed to scientific racism
We are a group of 72 scholars (and counting) opposed to scientific racism - the use of science or social science to argue that a racialized group is inferior. Jason Richwine’s dissertation is an example of scientific racism and this work has no place in twenty-first century academia.
In 2009, Jason Richwine successfully defended a dissertation at Harvard University where he wrote that Hispanic immigrants have a substantially lower I.Q. than the white native-born population and that, because of the hereditary nature of I.Q., this fact should be taken into consideration when designing immigration policy. In May 2013, Richwine’s views came under public scrutiny after he co-authored an immigration policy report for the Heritage Foundation.
Richwine’s dissertation is problematic for three reasons: 1) it is part of a tradition of scientific racism; 2) it is based on discredited ideas of intelligence testing; and 3) it relies on an unscientific relationship between racialized categories and genetic makeup. Ideas of racial inferiority have been used justify slavery, forced sterilizations, the Holocaust, and all forms of contemporary racism and sexism. These ideas have no place in 21st century social science because of their historical use to justify genocide and mass sterilization and their lack of scientific rigor.
Richwine makes a connection between the genetic makeup of Hispanics and their I.Q. However, there is no genetic basis for racialized differences. And, Hispanic is an ethnic category made up of people of every racialized category. A Hispanic is a person with roots in Latin America who lives in the United States. Their ancestry could include people from any continent. The claim that Hispanics share a genetic makeup that could differentiate them from white Americans is not debatable; it is untenable.
Intelligence testing is also deeply flawed. Stephen Jay Gould points out that the primary error in intelligence testing is that of reification – making intelligence into something by measuring it. Intelligence tests attempt to measure a wide range of abilities. The score on these tests is named an “intelligence quotient” or I.Q. Gould contends that these tests are flawed and do not meet their stated goal of measuring innate intellectual ability.
To the extent that it is true that Hispanic immigrants score lower on these tests than white Americans, this is a result of unequal educational opportunities, not genetics. Diego von Vacano, a graduate of Harvard’s Kennedy School, points out that
“the rudimentary statistical analysis of the kind that Richwine carried out ignores the important interface between social realities and genetics. … [I.Q. scores] reflect the intertwining of some aspects of mental capacity with education, life experiences, socioeconomic status, and other contingent contexts.”
Despite the fact that this perspective is widely accepted among scholars, Richwine chose to rely on the scientific racism tradition of his discredited predecessors, such as Charles Murray and J. Philippe Rushton, and attributed the differences to genetics. His argument that I.Q. scores should inform immigration policy hearkens back to the eugenics movement of the early twentieth century – during which time about 60,000 people were forcibly sterilized in the United States, on the basis of their purported intellectual unfitness.
As academics, we find it appalling that, in 2009, three professors at Harvard University were willing to guide and approve a dissertation in this academic tradition. There are three central problems with Richwine’s work that should not pass muster in any dissertation committee: 1) the argument that I.Q. scores are an indication of innate intelligence; and 2) the assertion that I.Q. is a genetic trait; and 3) the presumption that Hispanics, as a group, share a genetic makeup. All these ideas have been discredited and all are linked to an unfortunate history of scientific racism.
The idea that I.Q. scores could be a reflection of a heritable trait is one of the pernicious ideas that led to the Holocaust as well as eugenics programs and restrictive immigration policies in the United States and elsewhere. Apart from its ugly history, scientists do not have a clear understanding of the extent to which intelligence may be a heritable trait. Even if some aspects of intelligence are based on heritable traits, there is no doubt that environmental factors shape one’s ability to score highly on an intelligence test. Nevertheless, in his dissertation, Richwine eschews this evidence and argues that “the low average IQ of Hispanics is effectively permanent.”
It is clear that Richwine’s dissertation is thin – with weak statistical analyses and a literature review that relies too heavily on racist and substandard publications by Charles Murray, Richard Herrnstein, and Philippe Rushton. But, this dissertation should never have been written in the first place. Before Jason Richwine began the work that was to be his dissertation, he would have had to consult with scholars in his department to ask them if they would be on his doctoral committee. At that point, they should have explained to him that this work carries on the tradition of scientific racism, and has no place in twenty-first century scholarship. Instead, three scholars - George Borjas, Richard Zeckhauser, and Christopher Jencks - agreed to supervise this scientifically racist dissertation and approved granting him a PhD degree from Harvard University.
Dean Ellwood at Harvard Kennedy School takes the position that this dissertation is part of an academic debate. We are not against academic freedom. However, there is no academic debate on whether or not Hispanics as a group are less intelligent than native-born whites. There are debates on whether or not Hispanic is a pan-ethnic, ethnic, or racialized category. There are debates on how and whether or why we should measure intelligence. There are debates on the extent to which intelligence is a heritable trait. But, there are no debates on whether or not Latino immigrants have the intellectual caliber to be part of the United States. Those kinds of debates happen in nativist and white supremacist circles, which have no place in academia, which prizes arguments and debates based on valid constructs and scientific evidence.