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BS: Responses To Racism

Azizi 19 Feb 06 - 01:34 PM
Amos 19 Feb 06 - 01:40 PM
John MacKenzie 19 Feb 06 - 01:53 PM
Divis Sweeney 19 Feb 06 - 01:58 PM
Ron Davies 19 Feb 06 - 02:02 PM
gnu 19 Feb 06 - 02:09 PM
Jeri 19 Feb 06 - 02:10 PM
Cluin 19 Feb 06 - 02:22 PM
wysiwyg 19 Feb 06 - 02:26 PM
Clinton Hammond 19 Feb 06 - 02:30 PM
Rapparee 19 Feb 06 - 02:34 PM
The Shambles 19 Feb 06 - 02:37 PM
Clinton Hammond 19 Feb 06 - 03:15 PM
gnu 19 Feb 06 - 03:36 PM
GUEST 19 Feb 06 - 03:43 PM
leftydee 19 Feb 06 - 04:24 PM
gnu 19 Feb 06 - 04:30 PM
autolycus 19 Feb 06 - 04:58 PM
GUEST,questioner 19 Feb 06 - 05:07 PM
Rapparee 19 Feb 06 - 05:56 PM
GUEST,dianavan 19 Feb 06 - 06:03 PM
Azizi 19 Feb 06 - 06:13 PM
Azizi 19 Feb 06 - 06:18 PM
Bobert 19 Feb 06 - 07:00 PM
CarolC 19 Feb 06 - 07:07 PM
Clinton Hammond 19 Feb 06 - 07:17 PM
GUEST 19 Feb 06 - 07:41 PM
Janie 19 Feb 06 - 07:46 PM
Clinton Hammond 19 Feb 06 - 08:02 PM
hilda fish 19 Feb 06 - 08:05 PM
wysiwyg 19 Feb 06 - 08:13 PM
Bobert 19 Feb 06 - 08:16 PM
Jeri 19 Feb 06 - 08:21 PM
kendall 19 Feb 06 - 08:22 PM
Ebbie 19 Feb 06 - 08:23 PM
wysiwyg 19 Feb 06 - 09:12 PM
Clinton Hammond 19 Feb 06 - 09:39 PM
GUEST 19 Feb 06 - 09:42 PM
Azizi 19 Feb 06 - 09:45 PM
Janie 19 Feb 06 - 09:47 PM
Clinton Hammond 19 Feb 06 - 09:48 PM
Azizi 19 Feb 06 - 09:51 PM
GUEST 19 Feb 06 - 09:53 PM
freda underhill 19 Feb 06 - 10:09 PM
Cluin 19 Feb 06 - 10:42 PM
Bobert 19 Feb 06 - 11:24 PM
Clinton Hammond 19 Feb 06 - 11:42 PM
number 6 19 Feb 06 - 11:53 PM
hilda fish 20 Feb 06 - 01:00 AM
GUEST 20 Feb 06 - 01:33 AM
Ebbie 20 Feb 06 - 01:47 AM
katlaughing 20 Feb 06 - 02:14 AM
The Shambles 20 Feb 06 - 03:23 AM
hilda fish 20 Feb 06 - 04:54 AM
GUEST 20 Feb 06 - 05:55 AM
The Shambles 20 Feb 06 - 06:11 AM
number 6 20 Feb 06 - 08:41 AM
Janie 20 Feb 06 - 08:56 AM
GUEST,guest 20 Feb 06 - 09:26 AM
Big Mick 20 Feb 06 - 09:32 AM
GUEST,guest, 9:26 am 20 Feb 06 - 09:38 AM
number 6 20 Feb 06 - 09:48 AM
Big Mick 20 Feb 06 - 11:17 AM
Clinton Hammond 20 Feb 06 - 12:49 PM
GUEST 20 Feb 06 - 12:53 PM
Janie 20 Feb 06 - 01:04 PM
Rapparee 20 Feb 06 - 01:59 PM
wysiwyg 20 Feb 06 - 02:04 PM
gnu 20 Feb 06 - 02:10 PM
Amos 20 Feb 06 - 02:15 PM
Grab 20 Feb 06 - 02:23 PM
Janie 20 Feb 06 - 02:45 PM
Janie 20 Feb 06 - 02:59 PM
Ebbie 20 Feb 06 - 03:01 PM
Donuel 20 Feb 06 - 03:24 PM
The Shambles 20 Feb 06 - 03:31 PM
GUEST,foog 20 Feb 06 - 03:39 PM
GUEST,foog 20 Feb 06 - 03:40 PM
Donuel 20 Feb 06 - 03:43 PM
Janie 20 Feb 06 - 03:52 PM
Clinton Hammond 20 Feb 06 - 03:53 PM
Janie 20 Feb 06 - 03:57 PM
GUEST 20 Feb 06 - 03:58 PM
Clinton Hammond 20 Feb 06 - 04:28 PM
number 6 20 Feb 06 - 04:31 PM
Tinker 20 Feb 06 - 04:59 PM
Cluin 20 Feb 06 - 05:10 PM
Cluin 20 Feb 06 - 05:11 PM
Clinton Hammond 20 Feb 06 - 05:16 PM
The Shambles 20 Feb 06 - 07:21 PM
Grab 20 Feb 06 - 07:34 PM
Bobert 20 Feb 06 - 08:14 PM
Clinton Hammond 20 Feb 06 - 08:33 PM
GUEST,oofg 20 Feb 06 - 09:10 PM
Little Hawk 20 Feb 06 - 09:13 PM
GUEST,mg 20 Feb 06 - 09:39 PM
Peace 20 Feb 06 - 09:41 PM
GUEST,oofg 20 Feb 06 - 10:33 PM
Peace 20 Feb 06 - 11:02 PM
Once Famous 20 Feb 06 - 11:03 PM
Gurney 20 Feb 06 - 11:04 PM
Bobert 20 Feb 06 - 11:09 PM
Janie 20 Feb 06 - 11:25 PM
Once Famous 20 Feb 06 - 11:30 PM
Little Hawk 20 Feb 06 - 11:32 PM
GUEST,dianavan 21 Feb 06 - 12:08 AM
Janie 21 Feb 06 - 12:09 AM
GUEST,gruff loner, who just needs a little love 21 Feb 06 - 12:59 AM
Gurney 21 Feb 06 - 01:27 AM
The Shambles 21 Feb 06 - 03:23 AM
Paco Rabanne 21 Feb 06 - 04:14 AM
GUEST 21 Feb 06 - 04:15 AM
Paul Burke 21 Feb 06 - 04:25 AM
the one 21 Feb 06 - 04:27 AM
Grab 21 Feb 06 - 05:38 AM
GUEST 21 Feb 06 - 08:26 AM
Bobert 21 Feb 06 - 08:59 AM
Azizi 21 Feb 06 - 12:12 PM
Clinton Hammond 21 Feb 06 - 12:24 PM
The Shambles 21 Feb 06 - 12:42 PM
The Shambles 21 Feb 06 - 12:54 PM
Clinton Hammond 21 Feb 06 - 01:00 PM
Little Hawk 21 Feb 06 - 01:09 PM
Azizi 21 Feb 06 - 01:21 PM
Clinton Hammond 21 Feb 06 - 01:23 PM
Little Hawk 21 Feb 06 - 01:29 PM
GUEST,mg 21 Feb 06 - 05:45 PM
autolycus 21 Feb 06 - 06:20 PM
Azizi 22 Feb 06 - 08:05 AM
Bobert 22 Feb 06 - 08:30 AM
Greg F. 22 Feb 06 - 10:34 AM
GUEST,me 22 Feb 06 - 10:48 AM
GUEST,foog 22 Feb 06 - 10:59 AM
wysiwyg 22 Feb 06 - 11:14 AM
Dave the Gnome 22 Feb 06 - 11:24 AM
Bobert 22 Feb 06 - 11:29 AM
Paco Rabanne 22 Feb 06 - 11:33 AM
Peace 22 Feb 06 - 12:23 PM
GUEST 22 Feb 06 - 01:47 PM
Clinton Hammond 22 Feb 06 - 01:56 PM
Bobert 22 Feb 06 - 03:51 PM
Janie 22 Feb 06 - 04:57 PM
number 6 22 Feb 06 - 05:03 PM
autolycus 22 Feb 06 - 05:18 PM
Bobert 22 Feb 06 - 05:26 PM
Clinton Hammond 22 Feb 06 - 05:30 PM
GUEST 22 Feb 06 - 06:46 PM
The Shambles 22 Feb 06 - 07:22 PM
Bobert 22 Feb 06 - 07:30 PM
GUEST,Wesley S 22 Feb 06 - 07:58 PM
GUEST,Wesley S 22 Feb 06 - 08:03 PM
Azizi 22 Feb 06 - 08:03 PM
Bobert 22 Feb 06 - 08:36 PM
The Shambles 22 Feb 06 - 08:47 PM
Azizi 22 Feb 06 - 08:50 PM
The Shambles 22 Feb 06 - 09:05 PM
GUEST 22 Feb 06 - 09:05 PM
Azizi 22 Feb 06 - 09:37 PM
Gurney 22 Feb 06 - 10:50 PM
Paco Rabanne 23 Feb 06 - 03:11 AM
The Shambles 23 Feb 06 - 03:15 AM
Azizi 23 Feb 06 - 05:14 AM
GUEST,bob 23 Feb 06 - 06:45 AM
Azizi 23 Feb 06 - 11:49 AM
Azizi 23 Feb 06 - 12:05 PM
Azizi 23 Feb 06 - 12:10 PM
GUEST 23 Feb 06 - 12:11 PM
GUEST,bob 23 Feb 06 - 12:13 PM
Azizi 23 Feb 06 - 12:33 PM
GUEST 23 Feb 06 - 01:20 PM
Peace 23 Feb 06 - 01:24 PM
GUEST,bob 23 Feb 06 - 01:28 PM
GUEST 23 Feb 06 - 01:42 PM
Azizi 23 Feb 06 - 02:36 PM
GUEST 23 Feb 06 - 03:02 PM
GUEST,petr 23 Feb 06 - 03:41 PM
Greg F. 23 Feb 06 - 04:55 PM
GUEST,dianavan 23 Feb 06 - 09:23 PM
Bobert 23 Feb 06 - 09:41 PM
wysiwyg 23 Feb 06 - 10:31 PM
Ron Davies 23 Feb 06 - 10:57 PM
hilda fish 24 Feb 06 - 07:16 AM
Bobert 24 Feb 06 - 08:09 AM
The Shambles 24 Feb 06 - 10:19 AM
The Shambles 24 Feb 06 - 10:30 AM
wysiwyg 24 Feb 06 - 11:49 AM
CarolC 24 Feb 06 - 05:48 PM
autolycus 24 Feb 06 - 07:09 PM
Peace 24 Feb 06 - 08:16 PM
Greg F. 24 Feb 06 - 08:48 PM
GUEST,dianavan 25 Feb 06 - 12:56 AM
The Shambles 25 Feb 06 - 02:46 AM
Don(Wyziwyg)T 25 Feb 06 - 05:04 AM
The Shambles 25 Feb 06 - 05:43 AM
The Shambles 25 Mar 06 - 01:30 PM
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Subject: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Azizi
Date: 19 Feb 06 - 01:34 PM

I'm back!

[Put an "l" after the "b" and before the "a" and that's also a true statement. LOL!]

First, I would like to thank all those who wrote public and/or private messages to me about my decision to leave Mudcat.
I very much appreciate all of those messages.

I had decided to leave Mudcat because I felt that I was blindsided by what was -in my opinion- a particularly offensive post by a Mudcat member. The thread's title appeared to be one that had nothing to do with race or racism. The offensive post was the thread's first comment. After that first comment, most posters on that thread ignored the offensive comment and talked about issues related to that thread's subject. However, at least one member commented about the racist comment before I posted my comment.
After I wrote my comment, several other persons posted comments that also spoke out about that first comment.

In hindsight, I believe that if I had not had a particularly traumatic day at work, I may not have reacted as I did to that post. But my work is often traumatic, so perhaps that is not the reason.
I just think that I had one of those moments when it all became too much. As I said in my post that was deleted along with the rest of that thread, what bothered me more than the racist comment was the fact that most people ignored it. [btw, there was absolutely no allusions-that post was openly racist]

Ignoring racist and otherwise offensive posts may be the perferred strategy for Mudcat forum's members. I admit that this is the tactic that I usually use. Most of the times, I don't even open a BNP thread, or other such threads. But I'm wondering now if the practice [policy?] of ignoring such post might not send a message that Mudcat doesn't mind racism.

Furthermore, deleting the responses to that racist posts may mean that teaching & sharing moments were lost. But since the offensive post was the first one in the thread, would my comment and others speaking out against it make sense if only the first comment and not the entire thread been deleted? Should the first post been deleted and the thread declared closed? That is not my call to make.

But I wonder what folks here think should be the appropriate response when I and others are confronted with racist and offensive remarks.

If we email Joe and ask that the thread be deleted or closed, then if we feel the need or the desire to share our feelings about this experience in the public forum, where should we do that? Maybe some people might think that sharing a personal response to racism shouldn't be done at all on this public forum. However, I disagree.

That's the main reason why I'm back. I feel the need to talk to 'Catters about my response {reaction?}to that offensive post and the lack of comments in the thread about that post. I should say that a number of members have PMed me to say that had they seen that post, they would have responded on that thread. I thanked them privately and I want to thank them publicly.

And perhaps I should say what should go without saying-I have talked to people in the real world outside of Mudcat, about this experience. But I feel the need to know what 'Catters think about this. Should people ignore offensive posts? If so, what about the feelings those posts cause? I think that ignoring them would be unhealthy. And what about sharing feelings and insight about these types of experiences with the community at large? Isn't there some value to that?

I guess I could have stayed gone. But I like it here. And as some of you have said in your PMs to me, the racist poster would win if I decided to leave because of him.

So here I am. And this poem exemplifies where I am emotionally:

Invictus
William Ernest Henley

Out of the night that covers me,
Black as the Pit from pole to pole,
I thank whatever gods may be
For my unconquerable soul.
In the fell clutch of circumstance
I have not winced nor cried aloud.
Under the bludgeonings of chance
My head is bloody, but unbowed.
Beyond this place of wrath and tears
Looms but the Horror of the shade,
And yet the menace of the years
Finds, and shall find, me unafraid.
It matters not how strait the gate,
How charged with punishments the scroll,
I am the master of my fate:
I am the captain of my soul.

Source:
a href="http://academic.udayton.edu/vernelliarandall/poetry/Invictus.htm">http://academic.udayton.edu/vernelliarandall/poetry/Invictus.htm

Thanks, again. You all know who you are.


Azizi


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Amos
Date: 19 Feb 06 - 01:40 PM

Man, I am glad you decided to come back, Aziz.

But I dunno the answer to your question. Dealing with assholes in the midst of a civil conversation is always dicey, since most good conversations are predicated on inclusion and civility. Someone like that comes along and you are faced with a schizo situation. Perhaps the right thing to do is to not receive any such communication -- the intant you see it, you drop it without regret or response and it isn't allowed to register.

That's a personal choice sometimes hard to make. I guess it depends on which buttons get pushed.

Anyway, you should know your usually good spirits and articulate courage are appreciated.

A


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: John MacKenzie
Date: 19 Feb 06 - 01:53 PM

Welcome back, I didn't see the thread complained of, and perhaps a permathread could be added to point out that all such posts will be deleted without hesitation. It's a shame that you are as far as I am aware, the only black person posting here as I would like to think this is an all inclusive site, and like to see all folks feel they can post on here, providing they keep a civil tongue in their head that is!
Giok


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Divis Sweeney
Date: 19 Feb 06 - 01:58 PM

A welcomed return.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Ron Davies
Date: 19 Feb 06 - 02:02 PM

As I've said earlier, I think that a racist posting should result in killing the thread immediately. We don't need to, and shouldn't, tolerate that garbage. Of necessity it has to be a judgment call.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: gnu
Date: 19 Feb 06 - 02:09 PM

WB! Glad you did.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Jeri
Date: 19 Feb 06 - 02:10 PM

If a racist thread or post isn't yet deleted, it likely will be. Discussion and people saying stupid things others don't agree with likely won't.

I don't reply to racist provocation because it will only do the harm they wish done. It never does any good to reply to trolls. There are thousands of Mudcatters. Every one of them replying angrily to ever abomination they saw would make for a pretty scary site. If you honestly believe I might be a racist because I don't jump through hoops set by these people, I offer the following:

I hate racism. I hate it in other people and would hate it in myself more. In real life, when my words have meaning and can lead to action, I will speak out. If my words have no meaning other than to inflame anger and contibute to a troll's smug, feeling of power and control, I will not post. I believe I validate a point of view by arguing with it.

In short, I'm not going to be responing to racists here. If you see me not responding, and you think I might be agreeing because I'm not playing their game, please refer to this message or PM me.

And I'm glad you decided to stick around!


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Cluin
Date: 19 Feb 06 - 02:22 PM

Welcome back, Azizi. Good to see you try to clear the air.

I didn't see the offending thread & post, though I did see the one that set off Peace, and his responses to it.

How to deal with it?

I have to admit my first impulse is to do what Peace did. But I've learned over time to not go with my first impulse, at least in an Internet forum (in person, however, it's a different story). You really do have to develop a thick skin when on-line. There are a lot of people out there who like to get other people riled up, for no other reason than the sense of control it gives them. I might speculate on why, but I really don't care; they don't deserve the attention, frankly.

And as for whether responding to them encourages them to come back, I think it might. They remember this place as a good one to come to when they want a fight. As for why they want a fight, well... see the above paragraph. There are a lot of right-wing oriented people who come here to post and argue and discuss, because they find a lot of left-wing thinking people here who oppose their views. Hey, it's a folk music oriented site. Go figure!... Why do they keep coming back? Because they get something out of. And most of those discussions are constructive, if polarized. Nature of the beast, really; short polarized posts read better than long, reasonable monologues. What works in face-to-face conversation doesn't work as well in an internet forum because so many of the tools of communication we humans have evolved don't come across in a series of typed words.

But with the out-and-out rascist and insulting posts and threads, I'd say the best course of action would be to not respond to them (giving them what they want) and to either post a request for deletion or send a PM to Joe Offer requesting their deletion. If a discussion forms over such issues, while it may have some positive benefits, it makes it hard for Joe and the Clones to decide what to delete. It's a very hard topic to discuss without tempers flaring and things falling apart into chaos. Which is too bad because it's a very important issue which needs discussing. Catch 22...


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: wysiwyg
Date: 19 Feb 06 - 02:26 PM

Azizi,

I post about 'isms' when I see a chance to teach, if my mind is working well on that day and if I have effective real-life experience to back up my planned comment. That would be one end of a WIDE spectrum-- at the other end of the spectrum would be ignoring a post I am sure was made only for the purpose of trolling.

Sometimes I don't comment because I just need to think about the MOST effective response and that doesn't always happen instantaneously.... but I can see how the cumulative effect of that is to leave a gaping silence, with your heart (or others of people of color) scrunched into a long, painful moment. You raised the issue so sensitively, so articulately, that I can see how wrong that is-- and right now, I don't know what to do about that.

I did make an observation in a thread not long ago, about PC-ness, where I mentioned how Mudcat seldom hears the voices of people of color on what "we" (whie folk) have the luxury of dismissing as PC. My thought at the time was that making that observation was probably going to push most folks past their tolerance for a learning opportunity, but that it might just start one or two people thinking in a new way, so I went ahead and said it. Azizi, you posted in that thread as well, so you probably saw the heat I took for just that one small observation. Even after people tried to provoke me, I worked pretty hard to avoid posting there further, so as not to detract from anyone's opportunity to reflect on what I had already said my mucking it up with a debate over what I had meant, etc. And I was glad to see your thoughts in that thread.

I think that the reality is that Mudcat has enough people who have not shared your experience of racism that it's going to remain a hard place for most people of color to hang out. In the anti-racism work I've done, it's invariably been said by people of color, in their time to share, that being alone or nearly alone in an unaware environment is just really, really hard.

So I would ask-- what response from other members here would make it better?

There was one response I proposed to the uglier trolling behavior here, a long time ago, that served to register community feeling without giving the trolls a textual respose to feed off of. That was the frown-emoticon, which looks like this:

:~(

It fell into disuse soon after it caught on. :~)

But would a symbol like that help you see how many people are standing with you, even if silently?

Please advise,

~Susan


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Clinton Hammond
Date: 19 Feb 06 - 02:30 PM

About the only thing worse than "I'm Leaving" threads are "I'm Back" threads.....

Sweet merciful fuck, it's just the internet... try oh try to get some frigg'n perspective eh


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Rapparee
Date: 19 Feb 06 - 02:34 PM

OLD PROC
by Wallace McRae

Old-timers in the neighborhood
Would bandy words on who was good
At puncher jobs for hours on end when I was just a kid.
They'd get wall-eyed 'n paw and bawl
And swear, "By damn I knowed 'em all.
If'n Josh he wasn't best trailhand, I'Il eat my beaver lid!"

"Down and dirty, I'm the dealer.
Old Bob Seward? Best damn peeler
Ever snapped a bronc out, jist give me one he broke."
"Give, you say? That's what I heard.
You're right that Bob's a tough ol' bird.
But better practice cactus pickin' and work on your spur stroke.

Cain't stay astraddle one of his'n
When he pops the plug and goes t' fizzin'
She'll be adios caballo and howdy to the nurse."
They'd move from bickering bronc peelers
To rawhide hands 'n fancy heelers.
"Red Carlin?" "Young Mac Philbrick?" They'd testify and curse.

They'd analyze Link Taylor's cuttin':
"His bag-splittin' way of calf denuttin'
Is pure askin' for trouble, 'sides he don't cut by the sign."
"You cut your calves by the moon?
Keep on night brandin' and pretty soon
The sheriff'll change yer address and you'Il be twistin' hair and twine."

On they'd rave and postulate
'Bout who was fair 'n who was great.
As they scratched brands in the hot dust, I'd never say a word.
But in their jousting verbal battle,
Among the boasts and barbs and prattle,
I sat in youthful judgment as they sorted out the herd.

So I came early to understand
The names of every good top hand.
In my scope of country, from hearing tough hands talk.
But when they'd crow and blow and boast
The one name that came up the most
Was a wily wild horse runner they simply caIled "ol' Proc."

"You boys jist start 'em. I'll stop 'em."
Old Proc'd say and then he'd chop 'em
Off at some escape route. He'd wheel 'n bring them in.
"Proc thinks horse," I'd heard them say,
And finally there came the day .
That I would get to meet this fabled mounted paladin.

My mother's father, John McKay,
Up and said one fine spring day
While I was staying with them, "Minnie, get your bonnet."
"Let's go up by the Castle Rock
'N see some country, visit Proc.
If you're late, I'll be upset. You can bet your life upon it."

He never paused for her reply.
My grandma fussed around and I
Asked grandpa, "Is he the wild horse man?" "That's him," my grandpa said.
As we ricocheted and bounced our way
In a tobacco-stained green Chevrolet
My grandpa told "Proc stories" and chewed and spit and sped.

From all the tales Grandpa told me
I felt like an authority
On this ranahan, Joe Proctor, who came north with Texas cattle.
His wife had been the JO cook.
But Proc had sparked and won and took
Her for his bride. They fought and won the homestead battle.

I couldn't wait to meet Mr. Proc,
Whose peers all praised his ways with stock.
But when his calloused hand gripped mine, surprise hit me in waves.
Those old cowboys who cut no slack
Deemed it unimportant Proc was black,
And wasn't worth a mention that Joe Proctor's folks were slaves.


That's the way I feel.

Welcome back, lady. You're a Top Hand.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: The Shambles
Date: 19 Feb 06 - 02:37 PM

The following was posted in another thread but fits as a response to the first post of this one.

If there was ever anything that was obvious in the context of censorship - it would not be the sensitive and difficult issue that it is and accepted to be, just about everywhere else but on our forum. Where it and our essential freedoms are encouraged to seen in such embarrassingly simplistic terms.

As for "snuffing out racist/hate/abuse", most of us would be in favour of this but perhaps we have to be realistic on our forum? If "snuffing out" means preventing such things from being posted - there is no way of doing this.

All that current reactive measures can do is trying prevent such stuff from remaining after it has been posted and any damage already done. But the answer to 'snuffing it out' starts with accepting that such posting cannot be prevented and not indignantly over-reacting to it when it inevitably does appear.

All of this righteous judgement and indignant over-reaction does is provide the attention that these things crave and should be denied. If threads they appear with such things - ignore them - without fuss and let them die. If such posts appear in existing threads - simply ignore them. It is not too difficult - we do it with graffiti, so just treat it here in exactly the same way.

Leaving things that are posted univited on our forum in place but ignored is neither tolerating such propaganda or endorsing it. It is a show of strength not weakness. It is simply accepting the fact that there is no more way of preventing those with a will to do this - than there is of preventing graffiti. It is simply demonstrating acceptance of that fact and not indulging ourselves in making useless judgements.

Washing off graffiti does not solve the problem it only gives temporary respite and provides an irresistable open space to be filled again with bigger letters, brighter colours and more extreme opinions. The challenge is the same online and only increases with any clumsy measures to combat it.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Clinton Hammond
Date: 19 Feb 06 - 03:15 PM

"If "snuffing out" means preventing such things from being posted - there is no way of doing this"

Bull... Disallow 'guest' postings... make people have to register to post.... make people have to proved an ISP email addy to register...

If someone 'breaks the rules' warn them once.... and delete the offending post.... if the person continues, delete the post and BAN their IP number... (except that I'll wager Mudcats software can't do that)

It's not rocket science.... But it would mean that the people who claim to run this place would have to take an active interest in running it...

That's what it means to be an admin. or moderator of an internet message board....


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: gnu
Date: 19 Feb 06 - 03:36 PM

Ah... I feel poorly because I didn't PM every clone I know and alert them to "that post" (I am pretty sure I am talking about the same post.) when I read it. I did just that previously, a couple of times. a fair while ago, and then thought, gnu, who are you to judge? Essentially, an "alert" is pretty much ASKING to have a post or thread deleted. Puts the clones in an awkward position, doesn't it?

All I can say is that I knew it was destined for the garbage bin as soon as any clone saw it. I only read that first post... twice. I had to read it twice because I had to verify that I had not missed something in the first reading. I was shocked. I left.

BTW Azizi, since you have not been at the Café for all that long a time, let me inform you that it was not the first time I (we?) have been shocked by this 'Cat. This 'Cat has been taken to task on more than one occasion and not just for racist posts. Even with contrition, every now and then, this 'Cat's true colours show. (Sorry... I can never help myself if I see even a glimmer of trying to lighten things up with a bit of humour.)

So. Azizi. Another hearty WB!!! Don't, well, of course, try not to, feed the trolls... or the assholes. Let the clones sort them out. And never, NEVER, ever, leave again. Even for a minute.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: GUEST
Date: 19 Feb 06 - 03:43 PM

Reality check time for y'all.

Clinton, Mudcat's software can be set to block IPs, because mine have been blocked, sometimes for months at a time, for criticizing Max. Hence, the "personal attack" rule.

However, it has never stopped me from posting, either as a guest or a member.

The actual reality that Azizi and others don't want to accept is that racist posting IS tolerated here, just as sexist posting is.

It is tolerated with the justification "We clones can't do anything to delete a racist/sexist thread once all the Usual Suspects start responding to it."

Which is bullshit, of course. If it were my forum, I'd regularly delete all that crap.

The "personal attack" rule is justification for keeping dissenters in line, and criticism of the leaders of the Mudcat hierarchy in check.

People who post hear do fear being censored, while also wanting others to be censored. Just not for the right reasons ethically.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: leftydee
Date: 19 Feb 06 - 04:24 PM

90+% of the 'Catters are good genuine folk. Don't let the assholes get you down. Consider the source and pity them.

Lefty


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: gnu
Date: 19 Feb 06 - 04:30 PM

In response to... Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism, From: GUEST
Date: 19 Feb 06 - 03:43 PM. I offer this...


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: autolycus
Date: 19 Feb 06 - 04:58 PM

Azizi, welcome back from another relative newcomer.

The responses to you show how Mudcat can function like a support group. That's surely to be treasured.

It's a pleasure (for me) to find such a funny, interesting, argumentative, friendly, helpful, knowledgable and tolerant bunch as I've stumbled across here.



Obnoxious racists seem to disappear if

a)there is zilch respose

b)you ask the kind of questions or make the cool factual statements they can't answer.

My taste is for the latter e.g.re the U.K."Unless you're a Pict, you're a descendant of immigrants";re anywhere, people from our beginnings and for many millenia, wandered the planet, so we're all a mixture; or, geneticists say we are all related by not more distant the about sixth cousin.

What's probably counter-productive is arguing or attacking/defending.

"The world belongs to the enthusiast who keeps cool."(William McFee,novelist)


I suppose we may each come and go as we please, as long as we realise that there will be consequences either way.

Auto/Ivor


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: GUEST,questioner
Date: 19 Feb 06 - 05:07 PM

About the only thing worse than "I'm Leaving" threads are "I'm Back" threads.....

So the question of the day is: Why does Cinton Hammond feel the need to respond numerous times to every "I'm leaving" and every "I'm back" thread?


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Rapparee
Date: 19 Feb 06 - 05:56 PM

Even the Picts and the American Indians were immigrants....


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: GUEST,dianavan
Date: 19 Feb 06 - 06:03 PM

Azizi - I'm glad you're back.

It does no good to run away and hide. I'm glad you're back. Its the only thing to do to prove that racism is futile.

Just remember that racist remarks make them look worse than anything you would ever say or do.

Always speak up and call people on their racism. That goes for everyone. Someday racism will be unheard of. In fact, very little racism exists in the upper class. Racism is cultivated as a means of keeping the lower classes at each other's throats (that way they will never join forces against their true enemy - the filthy rich).

When racism ends, the socio/economic class structure will collapse.

Don't run - Fight back.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Azizi
Date: 19 Feb 06 - 06:13 PM

Hello. I'm just popping in to say that I appreciate the posts that have been added to this thread.

Maybe this is one of the answers to my question of what should people do who want to speak out about how they felt as a target of the racist comment-they could post on this thread...But then the trolls would come here too.

Maybe it is best not to say anything but then if a newcomer visits that thread would he or she understand what's going on and realize that Mudcatters chose this means to silence the offensive poster?

I also want to add what is probably a given-racism has negative consequences for both non-White and for White people.

Also it would be nice if there were more people of color posting here on Mudcat. But I'm not naive enough to believe that if there were another African American posting here [or two or three or more]we'd agree on most things just because we're part of the same race. But still I wish more African Americans and other people of color would come and stay and being active here.

PS: I have a very good friend who is quite ill so if I have to be away for a space, it's because of that.

Azizi


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Azizi
Date: 19 Feb 06 - 06:18 PM

ClintonHammond, re: your distaste for "I'm back" posts.

I thought mine was rather witty. Oh well, I tried.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Bobert
Date: 19 Feb 06 - 07:00 PM

Well, if I didn't get my consciousness jacked up growing up a mom who was not only a feminist but also an active civil rights advocate and activist then I sho nuff got the rest of the educvation when I went off to college and met alot of folks who were fightin' against all the "isms" but...

...with that said, yeah, over my life I confess to having become very leary of white guys...

(But, Bobert, you is a white guy???)

Well, okay, good point... But, unfortunately, this is my "ism confession" but ti ain't like I don't try to work on it... I mean, lets get real here... As "classless and free" as we may think we are, this is a very "ism-istic" world in which we live and the "ism's" are freely encopuraged and fostered thru all kinds of turmoil and events... Look at the recent cartoons of Mohammed, fir example...

So, it is my opinion that its better to have a discussion about the "isms" and they way theu are manipulated to keep folks divided (and conquered) than to ingore them...

Now, with that said, I think there has been way too much finger pointing here recently about anti-Semitism but that's only MO... If I felt that those discussions were anything other than one individual wanting persona; (as opposed to collective) attention I might have taken those threads more seriously...

Bill Clinton suggested that our nation oneeds to have a discussion on race and I couldn't agree more.... And we also need to talk about the way that minorities and women have been and continue to be discriminated against in education, employment, housing, etc., etc...

Yes, we do need to talm about these thing and we need to fix some stuff... It's one thing to say, "Hey, why should I be responsible for what my grand=daddy did?" but quite anjother to look at what *we* are doing under *our* watch... But we need to look at both...

Bobert


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: CarolC
Date: 19 Feb 06 - 07:07 PM

I haven't been around for a while myself (we just moved to another state and we don't have any internet access yet... right now, I'm sitting in a Taco Bell parking lot, mooching off their free wi-fi ;-) but I'm really glad you didn't leave permanently. I would have hated to come back after a long absence and found you gone.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Clinton Hammond
Date: 19 Feb 06 - 07:17 PM

"Clinton, Mudcat's software can be set to block IPs, because mine have been blocked... However, it has never stopped me from posting, either as a guest or a member."

Then it doesn't work at all does it? The whole point of blocking an IP# is to keep a person from posting...

I suspect that if Mudcat wasn't running on the internet equivalent of bear-skins and stone tools, it would be up to this and other basic challenges....


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: GUEST
Date: 19 Feb 06 - 07:41 PM

Their inability to block me isn't because of faulty software. It is because I know how to get around their IP blocking.

And it don't take a rocket scientist to figure it out either.

But then, there is an alarming shortage of rocket scientists here, so maybe that's why a luddite like myself can so easily get around the system and it's great warrior "defenders of the realm". Obviously, if they'd taken a peaceful, intelligent path rather than the warrior route, Mudcat wouldn't be the cesspool that it is today.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Janie
Date: 19 Feb 06 - 07:46 PM

What happened was a 'Catter cut and pasted a very offensive racist joke. I'm sure he did it to get a rise a out of people. And to an extent he did, but not to a strong extent. If he had posted a hurtful joke about something that involved more 'Catters life experiences and traumatic cultural history, I think the rise would have been a bit more severe. Many of us didn't like it, but not having been on the receiving end of racism, we experienced it as an intellectual insult, not really taking it in emotionally or spiritually.

Azizi, that ugly post also came right in the middle of a number of threads dealing with trolls, polarization, name-calling, etc. And there may have been an element of people trying to remain civilized even if the member troll was not. I don't know.

I think the deletion of the thread was the right and effective action. The learning can happen right here in this thread and in others, without continuing to advertise such jokes.

Blessings and prayers for your friend, Azizi.

(((((((((((((((((((((HUG)))))))))))))))))) for you.

Janie


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Clinton Hammond
Date: 19 Feb 06 - 08:02 PM

"why a luddite like myself can so easily get around the system"

I suspect you're right there

And if they'd get their shit together to actually be able to BLOCK IPs, Mudcat wouldn't be the cesspool....


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: hilda fish
Date: 19 Feb 06 - 08:05 PM

Azizi I'm back too but just for a min. I've already posted you about my anger re racism at another time and I just need to say a little more on this. It hurts it hurts it hurts. Sometimes I just have to grab my throat to stop the sob. Ultimately that's what it's about whether its print, internet, face to face, whatever. It breaks the heart. I find that there is a point where I have to withdraw I am so enraged. It's no good ignoring stuff in the hope it will go away. It doesn't as history shows. Confronting and challenging it wherever it pokes up, like ripping out a bad weed before it kills the garden when it's too late, is my answer. And by the way black is what we have all become who are not 'white' - many Indigenous people are neither 'black' nor 'white' in looks but are black in psychology and the impact historically and in the day to day of racist comments, attitudes etc. ultimately kill the hope of our children from the instant they are born. It's a bit of a platitude to say to develop a thick skin - my people have done that in order to survive and still it hurts. The 'thick skin' response is also a form of denial of racism and how it impacts on many people in this worl. Its not just that we get a bit sulky you know. It puts most of us on the bread line, homeless, uneducated, unemployed, dispossessed in more ways than can be said, dying horrible deaths. It's not afternoon tea. Racism is racism - it is not anything else. Anti-racism is not feminism - it is not communism, it is not left thought. It is something I demand or my fellow human beings make a stand on in order that we are not so continually demeaned as a group. See, here I go again!!! It rips my heart out and it makes me wild! I can never ignore it and I am embarrassing and obnoxious often enough in my attempts to grab it's head and rip it off. I stutter and stammer for words but I will not let anyone get away with it if I can help it. Thick skins I think we have a plenty wouldn't you agree Azizi? It's the heart that is always human. It breaks and breaks. Racism!! If I could just grab hold of it, take it to the river and drown it I would be a happy person. As a famous Oz once said, I luv yoos all, but not some.xx


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: wysiwyg
Date: 19 Feb 06 - 08:13 PM

When I read your post, hilda fish, I can see that maybe standing up to those bad posts doesn't stop the racism-- or the trolling using racosm as the hook-- but it strengthens the ones who stand up and maybe the ones targeted. And that's a good thing just in itself.

Do you have a suggestion how people might respond in a way that would ease your heart when it happens here?

~Susan


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Bobert
Date: 19 Feb 06 - 08:16 PM

Well, well, well...

I never made it to the thread before it got deleted but now I find that the offense came from a cut 'n post??? Is that correct???

Well, it seesm that the cut 'n post has hit my usaul nerve... Why is it some folks come to this joint without one original thought in their mindless little heads and have to use cut 'n posts to say what they think they might mean, that is, if they could think...

I've made no bones about cut 'n pastes... They are cowardly and they speak more to the intellegence of the poster than anything the poster could do to say, "I'm a friggin' moron!!!"

Yeah, heck with GUEST's... Ban cut 'n paste!!!

Think about it... You get to obne and it's longer than the "Tropic of Cancer"... Like, did the poster read all that crap??? Well, heck no he or she didn't!!! But there it is right here in Mudville poluting our neigborhood... Hey, if someone wants to take out a few lines from the "Tropic of Cancer" length cut 'n paste, fine... Do it... At least this shows that the poster actually read the crap they want everyone else here to read...

But to just to post a "Tropic of Cancer" lenghth cut 'n post thinking that it "might" support their arguments because it came from this blog or that blog is intellectually dishonest...

So, IMHO, if we could have a better po0licy on the cut 'n post bandits we'd cut down on a lot of crap and probably a lot of the "ism" promotion here in Mudville...

(But, Bobert... They're gonna scream "censorship"...)

No, it ain't censorship of the poster... It juast keep them honest...

Bobert


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Jeri
Date: 19 Feb 06 - 08:21 PM

Bobert, it wasn't that long, and copy/paste wasn't the issue.

It was a racist 'joke'.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: kendall
Date: 19 Feb 06 - 08:22 PM

Seems to me that as long as the clones are on the ball, there is no need to block anyone.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Ebbie
Date: 19 Feb 06 - 08:23 PM

I'll add my voice to Susan's, hilda fish and Azizi. In your
opinion(s) and experience, what is a/the good/proper way to respond to someone's viciousness in print? In person I don't have a problem expressing my distaste or outrage.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: wysiwyg
Date: 19 Feb 06 - 09:12 PM

Well... I am not asking Azizi or hilda fish to teach me THE way, or to speak for all people of color (not saying Ebbie said that either), but to tell me, as a person who wishes them well, what could be said that would help THEM, as the individuals they are.

~Susan


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Clinton Hammond
Date: 19 Feb 06 - 09:39 PM

" long as the clones are on the ball"

If someone shits on my floor over and over, I'm gonna kick them outa my house... not follow around behind them with a mop...


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: GUEST
Date: 19 Feb 06 - 09:42 PM

But if you needed to be needed you would opt for the mop method?


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Azizi
Date: 19 Feb 06 - 09:45 PM

We [Hilda Fish and me] have shared that racism hurts. We respond to it in myrid ways depending on the circumstances and our mood and our resources.

What I [and maybe Hilda Fish] need to know and see is that somebody's got our back.

I'm glad to know through pms that so many here oppose racism. But when it rears its ugly head here, how do you oppose most of you oppose it? Does it hurt you to see it, read it, hear it? Do you experience it or do you say "Let's pretend there's no elephant in this room who had shat on the carpet and it stinks to high heaven".

Speaking of heaven, Jesus showed anger at the moneychangers in the temple. So why are so many of you so polite around garbage?

Though its not my nature to hurl profanity at those members and guests who believe it's acceptable to ridicule my ancestors and Hilda's and others, I have to say that at least I know those who attack those racists that way "get" that racism is wrong.

When I see an offensive comment that is followed by multiple posters talking around that post, I interpret that to me that this doesn't matter to you as much as it matters to the person who belong to the targeted group.

As I said earlier in this thread, I usually avoid the threads that I know [by title] are racist/offensive. But there have been times-like in that Hurricane Names thread, that I have been blindsided by unexpected racist posts. When that happens, I hope that somebody has my back [a street saying meaning "I hope that I have some support from another person or other people"]. If not, depending on my mood, the circumstances {i.e. the comment] and the presence or lack of resources {i.e. posters I know who will go to bat against the offending person] I may post a comment or I may pm Joe Offer or a Joe Clone, or I may close the thread and scream or cry.

That's what I would do. But this reminds me of my university days when I sometimes was the only Black person in classes. Invariable, the White teacher or my White classmates would say "What do you people want". AAAHHHH! That question can really gets to me.

Speaking of my university days, one of the comments that I made in the now deleted Hurricane Names thread was that I had wondered why African Americans and other people of color don't post on Mudcat. But the lack of response to that offensive cut & paste "joke" * by most of the posters to that thread, reminded me why people of color often self-segregate ourselves at universities and other places. Paraphrasing what Hilda Fish so eloquently wrote, after a point we get tired of the shit. We get tired of explaining our selves, our languaging, our music, etc etc etc. It is "hard work" living in a world that is generally hostile to you & your people. Sometimes we just want to get away from it all, relax, and forget about it ["it" being "racism"] As I put it in that deleted thread, when African Americans want to let our hair down, we don't want to have to answer any questions about why we use grease it our hair.

*That "joke" not only made fun of contemporary African American names but also threw in a reference to Black folks asking for government handouts as a result of Hurricane Katrina, making the "joke" even more offensive.

BTW2: One member PMed me and asked how I knew that there were only two Black people who are members of Mudcat. My response [which I may not have PMed back-sorry] was that when subjects like this come up and a person is Black, it's likely that they would respond in some way. And when matters of race, racism, Black slang, Black personal naming traditions, soul food, Black musical genres, Black Mardi Gras groups such as the New Orleans Mardi Gras Indians, holidays such as Martin Luther King Jr Day, and Kwanzaa, and Black holiday customs such as eating black eyes peas and rice on New Years Eve, not to mention political news and castrophies that disproportionally impacted African Americans and other Black people, no other Black member or guest posts but Hilda Fish {from Australia} and me {from the USA}.

So that's my reason for saying that there's probably no other Black people on Mudcat but Hilda and me.

I just had to get this off my chest.

Do I feel better having said all this. No. Not really. In 2006 it's a low down cryin shame that it still has to be said.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Janie
Date: 19 Feb 06 - 09:47 PM

I just reread Azizi's first post. The question asked was "Should people ignore offensive posts?"

I guess I think that it depends on the offense. Racism is not the same thing as conservatism, liberalism, socialism. I agree completely that racist posts should be deleted as soon as a clone detects or is told about them. Until that time, however, I think it is wrong to ignore them.

Racism is morally reprehensible. It is institutionalized in societies or in cultures, and so becomes pervasive, and lingers long after efforts are made to begin to change those institutions. To not confront racism within ourselves and when we observe racist acts in others is to let it stand. We can look at the brutality of slavery in the Americas, the death camps of the Nazis, the genocides in Northern Ireland, Bosnia, Africa, the treatment of Native Americans in this country and know that racism is deadly. A liberal and a conservative slugging it out is a very different battle of isms than is racism.

People of conscience must always take a stand against racism.

IMHO

Janie


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Clinton Hammond
Date: 19 Feb 06 - 09:48 PM

"But if you needed to be needed"

I don't understand your point


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Azizi
Date: 19 Feb 06 - 09:51 PM

Lemme try that again:

"As I put it in that deleted thread, when African Americans want to let our hair down, we don't want to have to answer any questions about why we use grease in our hair".


I'm abandoning all the other typos in that last post. Poor babies, they will just have to fend for themselves.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: GUEST
Date: 19 Feb 06 - 09:53 PM

Some people need to feel like they are doing a good job. Even if that job doesn't actually need doing. Because as you pointed out there is a far more efficient way to clear up shit.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: freda underhill
Date: 19 Feb 06 - 10:09 PM

I missed that other thread and post, Azizi, but am very glad you're back. I thought your opener on this thread was pretty wonderful. I've got a spare room upstairs until the middle of the year - if you want to come to Sydney, you have a place to stay, at least til the middle of the year. Hilda and I can take you round the traps!

x freda


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Cluin
Date: 19 Feb 06 - 10:42 PM

I saw where you posted a link to the lyrics to "Strange Fruit" in another thread, Azizi. Thanks. I hadn't heard that song before.

It reminded me vividly of a movie I watched on the History Channel last night, Rosewood, which was based closely on events in 1923 Florida. Very disturbing, sickening and eye-opening all at once. I thought, watching the women and children "escaping" on the rescue train, "But where the hell are they gonna go that's any safer for them?" It really brought home the realization that visible minorites still have to deal with that crap every minute of their lives. As you said, it's a crying shame.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Bobert
Date: 19 Feb 06 - 11:24 PM

People say them Greyhound bus don't run
Yeah, people say them Greyhound bus don't run
Come to West Memphis, Arkansas
And look down Highway 61...

Yeah, lotta things that most folks don't know much about... Fred McDowell was saying just that in his song "61 Highway"... He was atlkin' 'bout folks in Memphis, Tennessee right over that steel bridge... Yeah, folks in Memphis to this day say stuff like, "I ain't been over on *that* side... Like *that* side was some kinda evil world... Yeah, them fine Mephis, Tennessee folk didn't know nuthin' much about West Memphis and they sho nuff didn't know much 'bout the lives of the black folk who lived from West Memphis south thru the Delta of Mississippi...

Same way today... I been thru neighborhoods in NE Wsahington D.C. maybe a hundred or more times on my way to play blues at an old barber shop way up in NE and these neighborhoods is like what Mississippi Fred McDowell was talkin' about... Lotta folks don't know what is really going down... And it ain't purdy... Makes you wanta scream sometimes to see folks who you know ain't got much chance to ever find their way here as MiziAzizi and Freda have an' makes you crazy that you just can't find the right magic wand to make all that stuff go away...

Yeah, come to West Memphis
Look down Highway 61...

Bobert


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Clinton Hammond
Date: 19 Feb 06 - 11:42 PM

"need to feel like they are doing a good job"

Gotcha...

But aren't these the same people who claim they want mudcat to be hands-off?


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: number 6
Date: 19 Feb 06 - 11:53 PM

"People of conscience must always take a stand against racism"

Easier said than done.

As Aziz said "It is "hard work" living in a world that is generally hostile to you & your people."

sIx


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: hilda fish
Date: 20 Feb 06 - 01:00 AM

I just can't see that there is a problem saying THAT IS OFFENSIVE - THAT IS RACIST - IT DEMEANS ME - IT DEMEANS YOU - IT DEMEANS WHAT IS HUMAN IN US ALL. IT IS NOT RIGHT. IT IS NOT SOMETHING I'M PREPARED TO LET GO BY UNCHALLENGED. IT IS CRUEL, DANGEROUS AND MURDEROUS AND IF I WAS IN YOUR FACE YOU'D CERTAINLY FEEL HOW I FEEL ABOUT WHAT YOU ARE DOING. GET THIS INTO YOUR HEAD - RACISM IS AN INSULT. I AM CALLING YOU A RACIST. GO AWAY!!!!! To name it and attack it is a good start I think. A story - I was once at a pub with a friend. It was a social meeting between a big group of people of like mind. Various people were getting up to talk about things. It was all pretty progressive and 'good'. Then this guy got up and in response to an article in a newspaper stated that Aboriginal people were more aligned with animals than human - that white people were superior and it was time that Indigenous (Blak) people got the picture. And so on. Everyone listened politely while I started steaming. Oh dear I thought, waiting for my 'friends' to rip him to shreds one way or another. They didn't. There was a lot of polite discussion about how what he said was unacceptable. Un...f...acceptable! I was dying there by what he said and I was dying there because no-one (here you are Azizi) was watching my back. Here we go again I thought. I have to stand up and name this crap and condemn it because no-one else is gonna. They don't even see it. Or they believe in 'freedom of speech', 'politeness'. I thought for a minute and realised no-one was going to listen so I launched myself out of my chair and gave him a mighty smack in the mouth. Everyone grabbed me but I did get a good kick in.    I was hauled out of the pub and banned. Well. I was shaking and in a shocking way but I felt good - not belittled or victimised - but good. Now those who know me know that I am pretty mouthy sometimes but not violent. The worst I mostly do is getting into a swearing frenzy and walk away but truly, mostly I am polite, ladylike, blah blah blah. Some Koories in the front bar came out and sat with me. We sat together and then various people including my friends came out and condemned me at first for being 'violent'. We talked and basically I said they were gutless for not naming and challenging it - they said they had left that to me. Why me? They saw it too. Why always us to deal with this stuff? Everyone knows about the lynchings and the shootings and all the terrible stuff that is given permission through racist words and racist deeds. Sometimes I am beyond words as my people are sometimes so beyond words that all we can do is scream, go mad, and yes, smack someone in the mouth. The guy said he'd never speak like that again in front of me if that is the result. What did I care what the racist creep thought. He hadn't cared about me or my blood. All I can say is name it, challenge it, reject it in all its forms. Its not a polite discussion you know. Good phrase Azizi - "need to know and see is that somebody's got our back". I'd like to rely on that as one human being to another. Life has shown that I can't - yet. And yeah, come to Sydney Azizi and stay with me or Freda. You can see how Australia practises its racism!! There are many forms (just joking heh heh). Oh, the first time I heard "Strange Fruit" was in Melbourne at a folk club such a long time ago. Everyone thought it was a terrific song - I was the only Aboriginal there and I cried and cried and cried once I got what it was about. Everyone thought I was drunk!! How awful and sad is that song? What can I say? Rest in peace all my brothers and sisters on this planet who no longer walk the earth because someone did not like your skin. I honor your short lives and your suffering and will not forgive so easily and well not let racism have a healthy life wherever I meet it. Rest in peace. That's the bottom line isn't it?


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: GUEST
Date: 20 Feb 06 - 01:33 AM

No Clinton they're the ones who have the keys to the mop cupboard. If there wasn't a mop cupboard they wouldn't be needed.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Ebbie
Date: 20 Feb 06 - 01:47 AM

Hilda, you are a power. I'd be proud to watch your and Azizi's backs.

Incidentally, one of the problems inherent in addressing racist posts is that not everyone sees them before they are deleted. Life being what it is, the targets may see the nasties while other posters may never. Maybe they ought to be kept until people have a chance to react.
One more thing occurs to me: At times I - and I'm sure that I'm not the only one - have gone directly to PM Joe Offer to delete the obscenity. He deleted it swiftly - but not before more Mudcatters had seen it and responded in vehement outrage.

I, on the other hand, am not on record as having responded - because I did the "right" thing. I don't know- I don't have any answers.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: katlaughing
Date: 20 Feb 06 - 02:14 AM

There's a long history of some of us responding to racist language, in this case the prominent display of an old song entitled, "Run, N*****, Run in this old thread. I hated that newbies might see that title when first coming to the Mudcat and I still would advocate for a thread title change.

We have had a few Native American members, too, though we lost one to illness, Walking Eagle, almost two years ago. I'd love to see more diversity of membership.

Also, what Ebbie said, Azizi, hilda and freda...I'd be honoured and proud to stand with you.

luvyakat


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: The Shambles
Date: 20 Feb 06 - 03:23 AM

When I see an offensive comment that is followed by multiple posters talking around that post, I interpret that to me that this doesn't matter to you as much as it matters to the person who belong to the targeted group.

Then perhaps it is your interpretation that is wrong? For are there not also other targeted groups that you do not belong to who could make the same interpretation when you do not take issue with these offensive posts? You appear to see racism only as a black issue?

I would suggest that much of your interpretation here is wrong and that great care is needed if what I take to be your good intentions are not to make matters worse.

For the way that you started an entire thread that told people what to avoid so that they did not offend you and your racial grouping could be considered to be a racist one. It may not have been hateful thread but in my view it was equally racist one and would have been viewed as such if for example it had been to the effect of what steps your racial grouping could avoid offending mine.

Perhaps it would be better if you limited your reaction here to what may offend you as an individual as most others generally tend to do. If everyone saw insult to their racial grouping, nation, religion etc and reacted on behalf of them in this way - any discussion here would prove to be impossible.

Azizi your racial grouping may matter a great deal to you and I can respect that. But is the thought offensive to you - that I don't give a fig what colour or creed you or any other poster on our forum is and will treat what you say on its merits.

To me this approach is showing tolerance which is to be encouraged - is this what you would consider to be racist?


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: hilda fish
Date: 20 Feb 06 - 04:54 AM

Teachers and other 'educated' people used to say they taught each child as a person - that they did not see colour. They didn't recognise that they were making children who were 'other' even more invisible. Tolerance is not about 'not seeing' or 'not giving a fig' about colour or creed (which by the way is another form of denial of racism) but about recognising, respecting, and NOT DIMINISHING each person for what they are or who they are. In fact recognising diversity and embracing it and FIGHTING the racism that undermines this tolerance (well maybe not the last part...the fighting part is truly an individual choice). You are perhaps saying to Azizi - "look you don't belong to a specific group of people who, provably and observably, have been shockingly treated through racism - you are an individual just like me and I don't go around representing anyone but myself and I (and all my friends) don't go around getting offended at perceived slights, so get over yourself, you should be doing the same thing - being more like me?" Reaction to racism from a person who is within the group that experiences racism is never about individual offense as much as you may want it to be, and black people have no choice when it's in their face - it is about diminishing a race and however it is seen in this world one thing is a fact - black people experience more racism and have over history than any other race on earth simply because of something they had no control over - their race. The American black people are imprisoned more than their white brothers and sisters, suffer unemployment, higher infant mortality rates, lower education rates, and death, because of racism - its affects on the social and economic system in which we live. You could probably point out the Gitane in Spain, or the Turks in Germany, and you'd be right - it's still all about racism not individual sensitivity. So here you go, Azizi - I'm on your back sister girl! Don't ever make the bloody racist thing some black persons individual problem and some black persons (I should have an apostrophe there) oversensitivity. "Perhaps it would be better if you limited your reaction here to what may offend you as an individual as most others generally tend to do. If everyone saw insult to their racial grouping, nation, religion etc and reacted on behalf of them in this way - any discussion here would prove to be impossible" is not the road to reasonableness so much as yet another racial slur on a good woman who is trying to communicate and make sense of stuff that really hurts. It's also patronising which I guess, really, is also part of racism but it can also be part of a lot of other things including straight out rudeness. See, I get so wild and mouthy ....................................................................


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: GUEST
Date: 20 Feb 06 - 05:55 AM

Azizi I am really glad you are here. Not because of what colour you are but because of your knowledge. There have been anti British threads, Anti Irish threads and plenty of threads by the Anti Jewish ( and everybody else for that matter ) BNP.
I don't remember you in those threads but I wasn't offended by your abscence.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: The Shambles
Date: 20 Feb 06 - 06:11 AM

Tolerance is not about 'not seeing' or 'not giving a fig' about colour or creed (which by the way is another form of denial of racism) but about recognising, respecting, and NOT DIMINISHING each person for what they are or who they are.

No - 'not giving a fig' about anyone's colour or creed and dealing with what they say on its merits another not a form of denial of racism. That is still all too apparent for anyone to attempt to deny in any form. It is a realistic approach and the only way for us all to deal fairly with everyone else.

As for such an approach DIMINISHING each person for what they are or who they are - it is exactly the opposite. It is not limiting our approach to one of continuing to judge each other based only upon on one's racial grouping. Which remains only a result of an accident of birth.

I have no problem with you feeling proud or needing to celebrate or defend your racial grouping but not everyone has the same need. However, I suspect that I may be accused of being a racist if I openly were to celebrate mine in the same way?

You are perhaps saying to Azizi - "look you don't belong to a specific group of people who, provably and observably, have been shockingly treated through racism - you are an individual just like me and I don't go around representing anyone but myself and I (and all my friends) don't go around getting offended at perceived slights, so get over yourself, you should be doing the same thing - being more like me?"

I am saying to Azizi exactly what I said to her. Perhaps it is you who is expecting everyone to be and think more like you and diminishing them by not allowing them to treat others as they think best?

If someone offends other individuals by what they post here - I do not have a handy 'ism' to accuse them of and have to deal with them about this offence on a personal level. I could start a thread called 'Responses to posters who may have offended me in some way' but you may accept that such a title would not attract as many posters as the title of this thread will? And my title would have been unlikely to have received a sympathetic response form you or any response?   

In that case would I have been justified in expressing something like the following?

When I see an offensive comment that is followed by multiple posters talking around that post, I interpret that to me that this doesn't matter to you as much as it matters to the person who belong to the targeted group.

Some of the most blatent racists comments that I have read or heard personally expressed have been from black people - just as some of the most blatent sexist comments I have read or heard are from women. Does that mean that these people must be racists and sexists?

Does it also follow that those who do not write or express such comments can't be not racists and sexists?

I suspect not. What this clear does say is that some people feel free to write or express such things and others do not feel so free to do so..........I am not sure if this current situation is addressing racism and sexism in any positive form or the use of such labels is just keeping a temporary lid on a pressure cooker that will eventually have to explode?


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: number 6
Date: 20 Feb 06 - 08:41 AM

Billie Holliday has a lot of guts to initially go out and sing Strange Fruit ... everyone around her at the time (black and white) strongly advised her not too.

sIx


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Janie
Date: 20 Feb 06 - 08:56 AM

Racism is different from 'anti-ism.'   Racism is about devaluation, about seeing a whole race or ethnic group of individuals as genetically inferior. As being a little less than fully human. Not about dislike or disagreement.

RACISM IS ABOUT DEHUMANIZATION!

Pedophilia is about dehumanization. Torture is about dehumanization.


I agree, sIx, that confronting racism where ever we encounter it is not necessarily easy. But it is still the right thing to do.

Janie


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: GUEST,guest
Date: 20 Feb 06 - 09:26 AM

Consider it a personal triumph against racism, Azizi. Big Mick usualy tells leavers "not to let the door hit them on the way out."


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Big Mick
Date: 20 Feb 06 - 09:32 AM

Racism has nothing to do with its victim, but they suffer the effects of it. It is about a faulty sense of self on the part of the racist. It is about seeking validation by making others out to be less than you. In other words, making oneself feel good or superior, by making others feel bad or inferior. Within societal racism, it is about making someone a "them" in order that "us" can take unfair advantage, usually economic. It is not about the color of skin. African descended peoples do not have sole claim on this one. That is just in the US. Ask the Irish Catholic, both in the States and Ireland. I often chuckle when I am informed by some well intentioned Irish American that the reason some black people have Irish surnames is because they came from a plantation that was owned by an Irishman. No, dear one, it is because they were both the underclass and often lived together and had children together.

Individual racism is about poor self worth. Societal racism is about economics. It allows the capitalist to take advantage of the underclass' labor for the benefit of his/her profit margin. If African descended slave had never come to this country, it would be some other group of "they".

My individual response to racism is to point out that it is the sign of an ignorant person and a lack of intellect. Gets me in a bind once in a while, most especially when I point this out in a room full of racists, but that is what makes life fun to live **chuckle**.

Just sitting here thinking about this, and thinking about how rich my life experience is due to being exposed to and having friends from so many cultural backgrounds, I can't help but pity these ignorant souls for their racist ignorance. But the pity is tempered, indeed overcome, by my outrage at the treatment afforded to folks whose only guilt is the amount of melanin in their skin, or their religion, or their country of origin. When I think of four little girls singing hymns in a church, or the little Catholic schoolgirls walking to school through a torrent of verbal filth and garbage being thrown at them, I know that benign action is not the answer. Our response to racism must be intellectual, but also visceral. It must be to speak out, and if necessary, to strike out against it. No child should ever face this, because of what, by the grace of God, they were born to be.

Mick


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: GUEST,guest, 9:26 am
Date: 20 Feb 06 - 09:38 AM

I thought I could flush out you and your eloquence on that subject!
Can't say it better myself. Just try to live it, Motor City style!


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: number 6
Date: 20 Feb 06 - 09:48 AM

Of course we must make a stand Janie, I will not deny that ... but as i said it isn't easy and one must lay oneself way out on the line in doing so.

sIx


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Big Mick
Date: 20 Feb 06 - 11:17 AM

You know me pretty well. But thanks for jogging me on this one. You have my mind working overtime.

I am sitting here thinking about my daughter's basketball team. All of them are white, middle class girls. Great kids, and fortunate to live as part of the first generation for whom color seems not to have consequence except as a simple genetic difference. We were having a lunch celebration, with a ton of 14 year old girl chatter and giggling after they played very well in a game. The area of South Jersey (Southern part of the State of New Jersey for those from overseas) has a large population of Puerto Ricans, with some Mexican, some Guatamalen, some Peruvian, etc. The young gentleman busing the tables was Hispanic, and was speaking Spanish with his co-workers. So when I needed something, I spoke to him in Spanish. For those who have seen me, you would understand that usually this causes a reaction. I hardly look like someone would speak Latin American Spanish with little or no Yanqui accent. In speaking to him, I asked "Es usted de Puerto Rico?" He indicated that no he was from Guatamala. After he left, one of the girls asked me what the difference was between folks who speak Spanish. She figured they were all roughly the same in a cultural sense. This led to a wonderful discussion of the various Hispanic cultures. We spoke of the Inca and Aztec influences on various folks. We spoke of the differences in food and food preparation. We spoke of idiomatic differences in the language. Then one of the girls, and Italian descended young lady, said; "Mr. Lane, it is no difference between them than there is between and Irish person and an Italian person, right? Same language, but different cultures, right?" I pointed out to her that it even goes further. Between her and him, the language and culture was different, but the desire to live in peace and the desire to get ahead were all the same. I told her of my Grandmother telling me to find what we have in common with each other, and celebrate the differences.

A good day in the diner for the girls, the wait staff, and for me.

That is how we fight racism, sexism, ageism, and any other -ism out there. Teach, and more importantly, teach to speak out against the evil that pits one child against another.

Mick


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Clinton Hammond
Date: 20 Feb 06 - 12:49 PM

"they're the ones who have the keys to the mop cupboard."

And the ones who are more than likely to leave a turd on the floor than mop it up even....

Seems to be you're better off booting out people who crap on the floor....


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: GUEST
Date: 20 Feb 06 - 12:53 PM

I think you're right.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Janie
Date: 20 Feb 06 - 01:04 PM

Another thing about racism, is that few, if any people consider themselves to be racist. In fact, most people will emphatically deny they are racist.

"I'm not racist, but this is a funny joke."

"I'm not prejudiced. I just don't think it is right for the races to mix."

My own goal when confronting racist behaviors is to decrease the extent to which racism is operationalized in the world. Social ostrasizm can be very effective in changing behaviors if not beliefs. Only when enough of us who say we abhor racism also act like we abhor racist behaviors will some of these "unconscious" racists, as well as conscious racists begin to modify their behaviors. And ultimately, it is behaviors/actions that matter in the world.

I also think one's message is more effective if it comes from the place of 'love the sinner but hate the sin.'

Janie


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Rapparee
Date: 20 Feb 06 - 01:59 PM

I took a stand against racism. I could correct a problem that was years old and I did; I did it in a former slave state, too. I was told not to. (I won't go into it here; Azizi knows the story.)

It cost me my job.

I don't care. What I did was right, not convenient.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: wysiwyg
Date: 20 Feb 06 - 02:04 PM

I asked earlier, and have not been asnwered, would it be helpful to use this symbol to indicate we saw and disapproved of a racist post:

:~ (



It shows the reaction, but gives someone using racism as a trolling attempt very little to get gratification from.

~Susan


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: gnu
Date: 20 Feb 06 - 02:10 PM

Very well said, Mick. Thanks.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Amos
Date: 20 Feb 06 - 02:15 PM

Teach, and more importantly, teach to speak out against the evil that pits one child against another.


A single sentence as close to perfection as any I have read.


A


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Grab
Date: 20 Feb 06 - 02:23 PM

after a point we get tired of the shit. We get tired of explaining our selves, our languaging, our music, etc etc etc. It is "hard work" living in a world that is generally hostile to you & your people. Sometimes we just want to get away from it all, relax, and forget about it ["it" being "racism"] As I put it in that deleted thread, when African Americans want to let our hair down, we don't want to have to answer any questions about why we use grease it our hair.

Is explaining to people from other cultures *really* shit?

I grew up in a small town in Lancashire (UK). When I was growing up, I knew precisely one black family, who were African immigrants. So what are the chance of me knowing about black American language, culture and music? But that doesn't make me hostile to you, or to your culture - it just makes me someone who doesn't know it. How do *you* know about the English? :-)

Now the music is do-able - anyone can go and buy CDs. You can even read up on the various people involved and find who influenced them. History-wise, anyone can dig into that with the best of them. But what it's impossible to get is the culture, which is the detail of how people live and behave, and all the unwritten rules around it. And the only way to get that is to explain to people from different cultures why you do stuff when they ask, bcos it's only when they ask that you find out they do it differently, and both of you learn something. That's why Bill Bryson is so popular in Britain - he's dissecting British strangeness *and* showing us how a typical (white, educated, middle-class, male) American mind works in the same moment.

Even as far as your posts go, you're making assumptions too. "People of colour" elsewhere in the world will almost certainly have had similar experiences from racists as you, but the chance of them having the same cultural experience as you is low. So I guess you're looking at comparing experiences and opinions with them to see what's the same and what's different, yes?

What I'm trying to get at is that colour-blindness doesn't mean ignoring the facts that we have different backgrounds and a different colour skin - it just means that each of us has an equally valid background and experience, even though they're different. Asking someone else about their background and experience, or even commenting that it doesn't seem to make sense to you, isn't hostility. Now not *caring* that someone has a different background, or not considering that their different background would make them see something differently - that's a different matter...

Graham.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Janie
Date: 20 Feb 06 - 02:45 PM

I have it on good authority that the poster of the racist joke does not consider himself racist and does not appreciate me calling him one.

Oh Well.

Janie


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Janie
Date: 20 Feb 06 - 02:59 PM

FWIW, I labelled his thread as mean and racist, and cancelled some music plans because I don't choose to make music with people who actively promote racism.

It is not for me to say that a person is a racist. It is my right and responsibility to label behavior as racist. (And all of us have probably behaved in a racist fashion at some point-either by commission or by omission.)

But denial is not a river in Africa.

Janie


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Ebbie
Date: 20 Feb 06 - 03:01 PM

Individual Whites may or may not have had the experience of being discriminated against (Using 'discriminate' in the sense of unequal treatment). That may be true even when the 'white' person is a distinct minority in a country or a town or a household. The pale culture has been very successful in blindly and blandly believing in their own superiority and teaching others to buy into that concept.

In a Georgia restaurant years ago I experienced just a tiny amount of it. I sat at the counter; when I first walked in I didn't notice that the waitress and every one of the customers was black.

The young woman behind the counter took care of everyone before me, including a few who sat down after me.

I kept my face and demeanor unruffled (in fact, I was unruffled. I felt that she was doing an excellent job of making her point.) Eventually she came to me and took my order and served me. At that point, everyone started chatting with each other- they had gone quiet before.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Donuel
Date: 20 Feb 06 - 03:24 PM

I wouldn't go so far as to call a waitress' decision to serve a white person last, "reverse racism", so lets call it humbugging.

Hummbugging is very common in the DC area.

I may just be a common mid western hick but my Ma used to say "Even a dog knows if they've been kicked on purpose or by accident".


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: The Shambles
Date: 20 Feb 06 - 03:31 PM

Another thing about racism, is that few, if any people consider themselves to be racist. In fact, most people will emphatically deny they are racist.

That is the problem as to some extent all of us will be racist. The casual use of the label just means that the problem largely remains to be addressed. Many folk who may make a valuable contribution to this discussion will not do so for fear of being labelled a racist.

The idea that racists have horns and those who we come into contact with will always have racist additudes that will always be immediately clear to us - is just too simplistic.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: GUEST,foog
Date: 20 Feb 06 - 03:39 PM

Well, I hate, despise, fear and distrust Arabs as a group. I even distrust the girl with the chador that serves me at the convenience store. I'm not proud of this racism but it is very hard to shake. Any suggestions? And why should I give it up? Maybe I'll just wait until they give women full freedom and eq.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: GUEST,foog
Date: 20 Feb 06 - 03:40 PM

equal treatment. Durn, this sliced up finger is not typing very well.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Donuel
Date: 20 Feb 06 - 03:43 PM

DOWN WITH HUMBUGGERY !


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Janie
Date: 20 Feb 06 - 03:52 PM

Self awareness is an excellent place from which to start shaking all kinds of things off.

With self-awareness, we can make conscious choices about our behaviors.

Good on you, Froog.

Janie


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Clinton Hammond
Date: 20 Feb 06 - 03:53 PM

"Well, I hate, despise, fear and distrust Arabs as a group. Any suggestions?"

Ya... get to know 2 or 3.... you'll discover they're not very different from you at all....


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Janie
Date: 20 Feb 06 - 03:57 PM

Clinton--whadda ya' gotta be so practical:>)


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: GUEST
Date: 20 Feb 06 - 03:58 PM

Clinton, my racism is like most others. I don't fear the individuals I know personally, who are Arabs. It's the rest of the strangers I fear. Everyone I don't know personally is frightening. Nothing rational about racism. They could all be strapped to twenty sticks of dynamite, as far as I can tell.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Clinton Hammond
Date: 20 Feb 06 - 04:28 PM

"They could all be strapped to twenty sticks of dynamite"

Like white people are any different there Guest....

Or brown ones... or yellow ones... even the blue ones!


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: number 6
Date: 20 Feb 06 - 04:31 PM

I wouldn't even bother posting to this nut (GUEST).

sIx


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Tinker
Date: 20 Feb 06 - 04:59 PM

I missed the thread. I missed the post. I'm not African American, but my husband is and my children will very emphatically tell you they are bi-racial, not one or the other, proud of both. I'm very high on the list of Mudcatter's who ignore online vile posts. Like racism they come in all different colors. Yes, I take a stand on a face to face. From either side.   Respoding here has always been like asking for a sucker punch.

Yes, I've responded to Mudcatters in person who have said thougtless or down right hurtful things. And for those who have come to my house I have flat out asked if it will be a problem before they step in the door. And yes, I would ask that question regardless of the color of the guest. We all deal in different ways. Perhaps even on different days.

Azzi, don't judge the crowd based on the rude clowns. I'll try to find time to PM soon.

Tinker


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Cluin
Date: 20 Feb 06 - 05:10 PM

I knew an Italian girl who didn't like my blue eyes. She said blue-eyed people all looked crazy to her.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Cluin
Date: 20 Feb 06 - 05:11 PM

Maybe she was right.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Clinton Hammond
Date: 20 Feb 06 - 05:16 PM

"they are bi-racial"

There is only one race of upright walking-tool using homonid on this planet... it's Homo-sapien... and MOST of the people in this thread qualify....

The jury is still out regarding blue-eyed people....

:-)


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: The Shambles
Date: 20 Feb 06 - 07:21 PM

I have pondered on this one for some time.

If I had joined a blues forum - or indeed this one - been a generally accepted contributor and found out/established/assumed/suspected at some point that the rest of the contributors were black mainly African American blues enthusiasts:

Would I feel that I could or should continue to post as I had been?

Would I feel that I could not or should not continue without making it clear that my racial grouping was?

I think the honest answer would be that I probably would not make a point of revealing this but that I would not have concealed it either.

And if I ever did decide to make it clear to the rest of the contributors what my racial grouping was - it would not have been because I was either proud or ashamed of it. Or that the thought of not doing so may have felt dishonest or given the impression that I may have been being dishonest.

It would have been because - and probably would have been revealed in this way - that my background and perspective about how I became to shared their enthusiasm for the music - would be of some interest or value.

As indeed in the way that I have found Azizi's background and perspective for her interest in this music to be intersting and of value. But perhaps both I and perhaps Azizi can give such things too much thought sometimes?


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Grab
Date: 20 Feb 06 - 07:34 PM

Clinton, I know I'm not - I'm Pan Decurrans, the singing ape...

(with apologies to Terry Pratchett for nicking his idea)


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Bobert
Date: 20 Feb 06 - 08:14 PM

Ahhhhh, if my memory serves me correctly this coming April 4th (?) will be the 46th anniversary of the Greensboro sit in at a Woolworth's lunch counter by 4 Greensboro College, A & T students...

When we discuss racism it is important to reflect on the stuggles and the victories of those who have laid it on the line...

Speaking of laying on the line, again back to Greensboro, I believe it was 1979 when the Klan shot and killed several white folks who were participating in an anti-Klan ralley... I don't think anyone was ever charged...

Racism, winessed by the Grensboro Massacure, isn't a black problem, not a white problem but a human problem... As are all the "ism's" that have been created to keep un-empowered folks at each others throats while Boss Hog makes off with the gold...

It's up to each of us to call it down every time we see it...

I agree with Ebbie on this one... Seems that I'm always late to the skirmishes because I just don't have as much time as I once had for Mudcat... Yeah, when I've had my opportunities I have stepped up but I sho nuff would like to register one "punch on the mouth" to whomever started this last one...

Yeah, sometimes the easiest thing to do is to delete and in the case of mindless foul language it's probably the best thing to do but I'd request that should another poster come up with some racist comment that, hey Joe, you'd allow evryone an opportunity to let this individual know that he ot she has some seriously screwed up values... Like Freda's pal did that night in the pub...

You might be letting folks off too easy???

Hey, I've said some real controversal things here in the Catbox and didn't mind for one minute defending my positions... No one stepped in and said "Bobert's taking a real beating here so let's just pull the plug..."

No, make these creeps take the weight... Too easy to just let them out by pulling the plug...

Grrrrrr...

Bobert


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Clinton Hammond
Date: 20 Feb 06 - 08:33 PM

If it's Terry -Prat-chett, you can have it...


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: GUEST,oofg
Date: 20 Feb 06 - 09:10 PM

6, you can ride the double decker next to a sweating raghead (oops, I meant Arab gentleman) with a heavy coat on. Not me


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Little Hawk
Date: 20 Feb 06 - 09:13 PM

Right again, Clinton. I see nothing but homo sapiens around here, with the exception of Chongo Chimp. You want to talk about racism, get him going on chimps vs gorillas sometime...


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: GUEST,mg
Date: 20 Feb 06 - 09:39 PM

I haven't yet read the entire thread but I think you can't just "ignore the trolls" when things are seriouslly and/or inflammatory. Sometimes there are innocent mistakes or phrases that we don't relate to racism etc. and we all need to cut some slack in those situations...but the blatant situations have to be spoken out against so people are on record....

And Mick..about the plantation thing..I don't know but I suspect there were not too many plantation owners who were Irish...but I think that unfortunately there were a number of overseers who were and there were serious abuses there that could account for the names..I am not talking about voluntary situations...something in our heritage not to be proud of.... mg


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Peace
Date: 20 Feb 06 - 09:41 PM

Excellent thread, Azizi. As always. You have given the only response there is to give to racists. You are here, and you ain't gonna let them turn you 'round. I am happy you chose to stay because you are a good person, good friend and very intelligent individual. Always count on your posts for knowledge and insight--and the odd bit of humour now and then. NB: I am ignoring the post by GUEST oofg. See if THAT works.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: GUEST,oofg
Date: 20 Feb 06 - 10:33 PM

Hey, I'm admiting my irrational racism and laying it bare for all to witness. So far I see no practical suggestions for relieving myself of fear of Arabs except "get to know one or two." I already know a bunch. I'm not afraid of those Arabs, just the ones I don't know.

All you perfect "holier than thou" non-racist individuals should tell me why you don't fear strange Arab men and women on buses, trains, airplanes, and in convenience stores. So, I guess no one else admits to racism regarding the Arabic people. Oh well. I'll just be the only racist individual on Mudcat. I can live with it.

"Confronting racism" is an empty phrase on this subject as far as I'm concerned.
I should know better than to come back here.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Peace
Date: 20 Feb 06 - 11:02 PM

Cat Stevens had the answer for you.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Once Famous
Date: 20 Feb 06 - 11:03 PM

It's not racism, Guest. It's the world we live in today.

Everyone is so fearful of offending someone there is just complete denial that fear is even there.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Gurney
Date: 20 Feb 06 - 11:04 PM

Azizi, any comment, remark, or joke that I post is NOT intended to upset, belittle, or insult you in any way, racial or otherwise.

I really do not care if you are black, white, or any shade between.

To answer the thrust of your question, If I thought you were trying to insult me racially, I would ask if that was your intention before I decided on a course of action.

If, however, you want to make jokes about short, bald, white males who are immigrants, go ahead. I'm literate, I can answer back.

Many jokes told today are about 'blondes' and noone seems to see much wrong with them. Why not? They insult a much smaller racial group than 'black' jokes.

Regards,   Chris.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Bobert
Date: 20 Feb 06 - 11:09 PM

Why would you fear Arabs, GUEST, oofg??? Because 19 of the hundreds of millions of Arabs did some dumbass stuff???

Hmmmmmmmmm?

Yes, you do have some problems here...

But rather than dwell on them, how about telling us about a couple of the Arabs that you know and that you trust... That's the story that needs to be told...

Bobert


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Janie
Date: 20 Feb 06 - 11:25 PM

Foog oofg,

From your last post, I don't know if you are just trolling or not. I am going to assume you're not for the purposes of this post.

You have everything you need to deal with your paranoid racism. You are aware of it. You are aware it is irrational. You are aware it is fear-based. You can begin using socratic reasoning in a very deliberate way to gradually restructure your beliefs and to decrease your fear and your racism.

Question: Have you developed a phobia of ethnic Arabs and were not aware of your racism before you developed the phobia, or were you socialized to see ethnic Arabs as not as 'good' as you? Is your fear of Muslims or is it of non-caucasian Muslims? Or is it strictly Arabs, regardless of their religion? Is the entire prejudice centered on fear that 'these people' might have a bomb strapped to them and kill you, or is it more generalized?

Your responses to the above questions can help you frame the socratic process-- to fine tune it to be most effective as a tool for cognitive restructuring.

If you are serious about dealing with this I can direct you to some links that explain cognitive restructuring and also the process using socratic reasoning to challenge ineffective or incorrect beliefs within ourselves.

If you are not serious and are just baiting--then foog oofg.

xxoo,

Janie


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Once Famous
Date: 20 Feb 06 - 11:30 PM

19 bobert?

You are not watching much news about the cartoons are you?


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Little Hawk
Date: 20 Feb 06 - 11:32 PM

Yes, many (if not most) people do sometimes in certain moments feel an irrational fear of some other identifiable groups of people who are culturally or racially different from themselves. Those fears are not the product of reasoning or of a political theory, they are simply instinctive reactions to the unfamiliar, the unknown. In the same way, dogs are often nervous and edgy around other dogs (or other animals) with whom they are not yet familiar.

To admit to such a reaction is not a confession of racism, it's a confession that one is human, vulnerable, and like most other people.

Most people who refuse to admit that they have ever had such a reaction in some situation on a city street (or wherever) are not being honest with themselves...or they're not being honest with others, because they are afraid they will be accused of being racists.

"Everyone is so fearful of offending someone there is just complete denial that fear is even there."    YES, Martin! That is the God's Truth. It ought to be written somewhere in letters of gold.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: GUEST,dianavan
Date: 21 Feb 06 - 12:08 AM

Gurney said, "They insult a much smaller racial group than 'black' jokes."

Blondes are not a racial group and they have not been subjected to years of discrimination.

I get your point but its totally invalid.

Blondes were never enslaved by brunettes.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Janie
Date: 21 Feb 06 - 12:09 AM

What dianavan said.

J


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: GUEST,gruff loner, who just needs a little love
Date: 21 Feb 06 - 12:59 AM

fuck racists and all other pathological intolerant extremists


lets all be misanthropists..


then start to work backwards from that pragmatic position
until we can sift out and establish friendships
with the best of all kinds of people we encounter
along lifes desparately ruthless and cruel machavelian way;


and if it is ever possible to engage the badguys
in consructive debate,
and maybe just manage to convince even a handfull of them
to change their negative attitudes and beliefs..
Then maybe they're the ones who should deserve
our friendship even more..
..if they can gradually be persuaded to metamorphose
into positive valuable citizens.




but on the other hand..
it can be too tempting to enjoy ripping the piss out of nazis who visit here.

exposing, ridiculing and dismissing their abject pernicious ideologies
with the utter contempt they deserve.

.. sometimes it is so hard to ignore a good justified fight !!!


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Gurney
Date: 21 Feb 06 - 01:27 AM

Dianavan and Janie: Blondes are racially from the Germanic and Scandinavian peoples. Where else would they be from?

How can anyone justify classifying peoples with brown skin as a group, and not classifying peoples from a limited area of western Europe the same way?

They haven't been enslaved nor discriminated against because you would have to defeat them in battle to do it. The only brown(ish) people who even came close were the Moors, who got well into France before they were driven back. Perhaps you should ask a Spanish historian how they behaved, while they were there.

I have read that blondes fetch a good price in the Middle East, though. Don't know if it's still true. It used to be.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: The Shambles
Date: 21 Feb 06 - 03:23 AM

Blondes were never enslaved by brunettes.

Were they ever enslaved by other blondes?

I come into contact with a lot of people in my work who are of a generation that is not perhaps very aware of current attitudes on racial matters. I know on first meeting that I will most probably being seeing and generally conversing with them over a reasonable period of time. Now one first meeting - unless they are carrying banners which would make this clear or start immediately on a rant or racial slur - I do not know if they they are racist.

The way it works is that over time issues come up and you may get some indication that they may hold a view that may result in them making a blatant racist comment. Sometimes it may come without warning. Then you are placed in a difficult position. If you do not make it clear at that point that you are not prepared to converse in this manner - the danger is that you will get sucked-in to a situation where such comments are thought to be acceptable and it will be very difficult if not impossible to carry on.

This is the sort of reality that faces us when we talk about confronting racism. It is far from some imagined vain-glorius charge on a white horse.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Paco Rabanne
Date: 21 Feb 06 - 04:14 AM

Some of you just don't have enough to worry about in the real world do you?


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: GUEST
Date: 21 Feb 06 - 04:15 AM

Well said, Shambles.

It means that if you continue a racist conversation, you are a part of that conversation.

Thats why you have to speak up and tell the racist that you consider that a racist (or sexist or...) remark. If they want to argue, you excuse yourself and walk away. It means standing up for your beliefs.

Thats why I won't respond to Gurney who wants to believe that Germans and Scandanavians are a different race of people.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Paul Burke
Date: 21 Feb 06 - 04:25 AM

Blondes weren't, but redheads were considered suspicious in the middle ages, and suffered discrimination.

As for blondes being Germanic, didn't Caesar describe the (Celtic) Gauls as blondes?

Gurney wrote: "The only brown(ish) people who even came close were the Moors, who got well into France before they were driven back. Perhaps you should ask a Spanish historian how they behaved, while they were there."

They created the most spectacularly proficient Mediterranean culture between the Roman Empire and the renaissance, at a time when Byzantium was in intellectual decline, and western Europe was a collection of illiterate warlordries. Their tolerant (by almost any standards) multi- ethnic society laid the foundations for the Italian renaissance, and hence that of all Europe. Their destruction by the Spanish crusaders led to the forcible concersion or expulsion of Spanish Moslems and Jews, and the permanent decline of Spain as an intellectual force.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: the one
Date: 21 Feb 06 - 04:27 AM

to right ted::<:


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Grab
Date: 21 Feb 06 - 05:38 AM

The Moors were incredibly tolerant. So too were most Islamic countries of the time. At the time of the Crusades, when the Christians were busy trying to eradicate Islam from the "Holy Land" and massacring civilians (how little changes, eh?), Saladin was renowned even by the Crusaders for his conduct and the conduct of his army. In fact, if you want to do the history thing, there's precious little in the way of nastiness that *hasn't* come from whites.

And FWIW Gurney, all of Europe *has* been at war with its neighbours at one time or another. Hell, the west of England and the east of England went to war with each other, and you know how big those areas aren't! Defeats in battle in Europe are ten a penny.

For myself, I'll readily admit to being less comfortable around black Americans or Asians than I am around white Brits. But I'm equally uncomfortable in France, Spain or Greece - I'm around people with a different culture from mine, and I don't want to be unintentionally offensive. (I'm not too worried about being around white Americans, bcos Britain's been McDonaldised enough that this isn't a big problem.) It's not a skin thing, it's just recognising that I don't know enough to participate in that culture. The more time I spend with people from those backgrounds and the more I learn, the less uncomfortable I feel, bcos the less chance there is of making a prat of myself.

Graham.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: GUEST
Date: 21 Feb 06 - 08:26 AM

How about client centered instead of restructuring?

Oh an Arab in a thick coat
I'm sitting down next to him
I'm not afraid
He's just cold
He's reaching inside his coat
He has to scratch
He's clicking his cellphone
BOOOOOMMMMM
BOOOOOOMMMM


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Bobert
Date: 21 Feb 06 - 08:59 AM

Yeah, Martin, just 19...

How many of the folks of Islamic Faith who have demonstrated against the cartoons have struck the United States???

If anything, all these folks are trying to get accross is that they are tired of being treated like second class citizens... If the tables were turned, I would expect you would do what these folks are doing... I mean, you certainly stand up for those of Jewish Faith...

You don't have dual standards, do you???

Hmmmmmmmmm?

Ain't it dual standards that are the common denominator of purdy much all the "ism's"???

Bobert


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Azizi
Date: 21 Feb 06 - 12:12 PM

Grab, I appreciate your 21 Feb 06 - 05:38 AM comment about being uncomfortable around persons who have a different culture from you because you don't want to be unintentionally offensive.

It is unfortunate that sticking to what is known & comfortable combined with combat fatique of living in a hostile world and the avoidance of possible conflict & questions {innocent or otherwise} cause quite a few people of color to self-segregate in settings such as university campuses when they are the minority. Undoubtably, this voluntary segregation makes it difficult to bridge cultural chasms and get to know each other.

Related to this point, Shambles, in your 20 Feb 06 - 07:21 PM, you speculated whether you would reveal your racial grouping if you had joined a forum that you discovered had almost all Black members. You wrote that "if I ever did decide to make it clear to the rest of the contributors what my racial grouping was - it would not have been because I was either proud or ashamed of it."

Let me say that I first posted on Mudcat as a guest on a thread about the song "Kumbaya". In that post, I felt that "revealing my racial grouping" would add context and background {if not a certain measure of validity} to my comment. Racial pride or lack of pride has nothing to do with it.

As an armchair folklorist, when I collect, document, and share text versions of children's rhymes [my primary area of interest] and spirituals, & other songs, I feel that for the historical record is desirable, helpful, if not critical to provide as much demographical information as I possible can. This includes race/ethnicity, gender, age, geographical location, time [usually indicated by decades], and the way the songs {rhymes} are performed.

IMO, these variable can result in changes in the text of these songs and rhymes. Having demographic information can also result in a more correct interpretation of words and phrases. Demographics may also point to differences in the performance of a song even when the lyrics are the same.

So-in a nut shell-that's why I reference my race in some Mudcat posts. However, unless the topic is race or etymology, or other cultural topics where knowledge of my racial background is pertinent, I don't include it in my post.

For example, when I posted on the Rocky & Bullwinkle cartoon thread, I didn't say "As a Black person, I love the fractured fairy tales feature of that show". Race had nothing to do with my enjoyment of those segments.

However, it could be said that even if I don't reveal my racial identity, being bilingual {in standard English and some types of African American "Ebonics"}, the fact that I am African American might be surmised from my posting style.

But then again, it might not.

It bes that way sometimes. And sometimes not.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Clinton Hammond
Date: 21 Feb 06 - 12:24 PM

Historically, almost nobody has died as a result of 'terrorists'

Ya wanna be afraid of something? Fear heart disease...


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: The Shambles
Date: 21 Feb 06 - 12:42 PM

Related to this point, Shambles, in your 20 Feb 06 - 07:21 PM, you speculated whether you would reveal your racial grouping if you had joined a forum that you discovered had almost all Black members. You wrote that "if I ever did decide to make it clear to the rest of the contributors what my racial grouping was - it would not have been because I was either proud or ashamed of it."

Well I was not accusing you or saying that this was the reason for you. I was just trying to work it our from my perspective in order to better understand yours. It was a worthwile exercise for will accept that I found it is not to be an easy one.

For whichever course you decide - you are open to criticism and self-examination. Part of me would probably like to be thought of and accepted as a black African American blues man. Looking back that was probably what many of my schoolfriends would have much preferred to have been born - rather than suburban English white boys. A romantic concept possibly more that a very realistic one.   

But I think we have been over this before and I can remember you making some comment about not being happy at the thought of posting without making your racial grouping clear. My view may have been that you had the choice because this was a written medium - but I am not sure that is still my view.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: The Shambles
Date: 21 Feb 06 - 12:54 PM

Historically, almost nobody has died as a result of 'terrorists'

The point is well made but if you accept that terrorism is a violent political, religious or social conflict - the ratio is looking a little more balanced as a form of fatality.

But perhaps if you accept death as inevitable - the form in which it eventually comes is less of a concern than the quality of your remaining life. Violent conflict in all its forms is not really likely to result in having a quality a life to recommend - is it?

The existence of heart disease hardly makes the effects of terrorism a good thing and you don't really need to die of either for both of them to be bad news.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Clinton Hammond
Date: 21 Feb 06 - 01:00 PM

"if you accept death as inevitable"
How can you not? It's not like that's an IF at all....

"hardly makes the effects of terrorism a good thing"
Nobody said it did...

It's about getting some fkng perspective.... Especially if you THINK you have to be afraid of people you don't know....

"Violent conflict in all its forms"
I worry more about drunk drivers than 'terrorists'....


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Little Hawk
Date: 21 Feb 06 - 01:09 PM

Ha! Again you are the voice of common sense and sanity, Clinton. I don't know what's going on here lately...I may have to take that dartboard with your face on it off my wall and replace it with one of those Clinton Hammond Fan Club T-shirts that Raptor made up for your forthcoming World Tour. (grin)


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Azizi
Date: 21 Feb 06 - 01:21 PM

Shambles, I can not recall ever writing on Mudcat or anywhere else that I wouldn't be happy at the thought of posting without making my racial grouping clear.

However, since this quote is taken out of context, if I wrote it,
I believe that this comment was part of a larger post in which I meant that I wouldn't be happy at the thought of posting on certain subjects without making my racial grouping clear.

Not that it looms large in the grand scheme of things, but if anyone wants to know my position on why & when I reference my racial identity, I would refer them to my 21 Feb 06 - 12:12 PM post in this thread.

Of course, I would never suggest that everyone should do as I do. This works for me. But maybe it's a matter of different strokes for different folks.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Clinton Hammond
Date: 21 Feb 06 - 01:23 PM

"Again you are the voice of common sense and sanity"

Wow... this MUST be a pretty sad place if that's really the case....


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Little Hawk
Date: 21 Feb 06 - 01:29 PM

Well, Clinton, that depends on which angle you look at it from, I guess.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: GUEST,mg
Date: 21 Feb 06 - 05:45 PM

One thing I know it is not necessary to put down a group of people in order to stop driscrimination and bad treatment to others...Bobert and whoever else...no need to be smug about white guys. White guys died in the West Virginia mines recently. Some are helping to liberate others in Afghanistan and Iraq. They drive trucks, crawl under houses to fix plumbing, run little diners, pay child support, or not...most are not out oppressing anyone. They loaded up trucks and boats with food and water and tarps to help out after Katrina. They rushed upstairs in collapsing buildings during 9/11. No need at all to put them down as a group. As individuals, go right ahead. mg


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: autolycus
Date: 21 Feb 06 - 06:20 PM

Susan - I think :~ (    (is that it?) is an o.k. response of disapproval of racism, tho' the poster might not know it means disapproval.

Surely there is an obvious objection to disliking a racial (?)group ,e.g. Arabs. That is, in EVERY group, some are "good", some are "not-so-good". Further, unless you've met everyone in the group, you can't have a reasonable opinion about them.

When anyone hates a group like that, they are living by stereotypes. We all know (don't we?) the situation of a stereotype crashing into REALITY, and the follow-up line,"I thought they were all ......,but when I met ....... ,I discovered that they aren't." That is surely a common element of racists and anyone wealding stereotypes. They don't KNOW anyone or hardly anyone of the relevant group. (Rather like people hating classical music;ask them if they've heard any and chances are pickings will be mighty slim.)

So hating all ........ is treating a piece of ignorance (the stereotype)as the truth when it is obviously NOT.

I doubt if there is AN answer to how to respond to racists 'cos, as with all other groups, there is no one type.

If the racism is owing to ignorance, some cool facts/education could help; if it is down to fear (conscious or unconscious), I doubt if argument will be fruitful.

How about us finding, as a community, some way of deciding that there is nothing further fruitful to be done with a given racist and to have a simultaneous signal to fall silent. My limited experience here is that racists go away quite soon.

There is stuff to read about the experiences of various oppressed peoples. For example, for the black experience there is the wonderful and sad "Black Like Me" by John Howard Griffin. For those who don't know it, it's about a white journalist who alters the pigment of his skin in a hotel, and emerges to discover what the black experience is like, as an experience.


Finally, I'd like to say I think this is a community of essentially non- and anti-racists, and if any of us feels threatened or smells dubiousness in postings, no-one should be backward in picking it up.

Ivor (in Norwich 11.25p.m. and I'm bloody cold)


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Azizi
Date: 22 Feb 06 - 08:05 AM

Some early morning thoughts:

It occurs to me that avoidance of racist or probable racist/ confrontative situations [or threads,in the context of Internet discussion forums] is not the same thing as ignoring the occurance of racism when you are confronted with it.

****

If Mudcat members or guests read racist or otherwise offensive posts, they could post a brief message that indicates their abhorrence for the post and then immediately go to the Help feature to inform Joe Offer. It doesn't have to be one or the other.

If people see that post and wait for others to comment and to contact Joe Offer or a Joe Clone, then isn't it like a person who sees fire shooting out of a building and assumes someone else is going to call the fire department?

****

Someone asked me upthread [or elsewhere in this forum] if I thought Black people were racist. For the record, Yes. I know that there are African Americans, and other Black people, and other people of color who are racist.

If the racist "joke" that appeared in the beginning of the now deleted Hurricane Names thread was written or had been shared by a Black person, I still would be highly offended.

****

Thanks again for your comments. IMO, the quality of this thread's discussion speaks well of Mudcat.

Azizi


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Bobert
Date: 22 Feb 06 - 08:30 AM

Not too sure why I got singled out by GUEST, mg, as some kinda "Hate Whitey" kinda whitey kinda guy but...

...hey, some of my best friends are other white guys!

(Bobert's attempt at a little comic relief...)

Nah, I don't have any problems with white guys except those who have fired me, busted me, screamed at me, stolen from me and beat me to a pulp for standing up for pro-human causes... No, I realize and will sate empharically that, fortunately, these folks represent a small minority of white guys but none of those things has ever happened to me at the hands of the black guy...

(Oh, Bobert. Now you done it...)

Well, maybe I have but it needs to be said that it is white guys who haver wrestled the power in America and they continue to use it to their advantage at the disadvantage of all others, including their own sisters, mothers and wives???

Okay, yeah, I know about the miners and heroic deeds of white guys and those deeds are indeed well and good... I can take nuthin' from the struggles of white miners who crawl into a 36" hole to extract the coal that gfuels the electric plants so rich white folks, mostly children of the rich, can heat their McMansions...

But this ain't about miners... It's about discrimination and about an unlevel playing field and its about extreme poverty and it's about ouur nation's values... And iot's also about the systemic and institutionalized social systems that are involved in maintaining wealth and power... And it's about the various "ism's" that these folks use to maintain this power...

Bobert


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Greg F.
Date: 22 Feb 06 - 10:34 AM

I think MG's trying to tell us -as Phil Ochs put it- that some of our best White Guys are her friends.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: GUEST,me
Date: 22 Feb 06 - 10:48 AM

Bobert, mg is a long time and bveloved Mudcatter, mary garvey. She always gives good advice and definitely did not mean anything negative. She (and I) like pale men. So be nice to her, you crankcase!
me


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: GUEST,foog
Date: 22 Feb 06 - 10:59 AM

Janie despite the fact that you appear to be using a clinical term (paranoid) pejoratively, (a big no no in my book)as well as suggesting that I am another insulting term (troll), I am going to take your advice and use both socratic reasoning and restructuring whenever I encounter an individual that appears Arabic so that I won't feel fear and distrust. I discovered that I don't hate really, just fear.

Around here the term troll is just an insulting term used to negatively label anyone who differs with the clique on anything or becomes angered at mean or insulting remarks. It lost its intended meaning many years ago, in my opinion.   

But I still dislike the Islamic world, primarily because of their oppression of women, which is justified in the name of protection of virtue. What a crock!


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: wysiwyg
Date: 22 Feb 06 - 11:14 AM

Auto, whereas the best way to deflate a troll is to ignore them...

and whereas Azizi and others need to know an offense has been seen and not ignored....

my thought was to use the :~ ( symbol.


That said, I think a really serious problem with this whole business is that a troll will post ANYTHING to stir up trouble, just for their own entertainment. S/he will choose any target available to get people's panties in a wad. Posts like that are not about racism, or anti-semitism, or anti-religion, or any other topic involving mistreatment in and of themselves-- they are calculated shots at the WHOLE community, using our care and concern as the vehicle.

My concern is that we not lose sight of that phenomenon, AS WELL AS the phenomenon of racism.

Racism runs a WIDE range of misunderstandings, lack of education, fears, economic and calss manipulation, and outright hatred. Face to face, one can assess more accurately just where it sits for both the "offender" and the "objector." There is a broad opportunity for a unique, potentially-helpful exchange.

In the threads-- it's much harder to get it right. The more delicate a situation is, the more complex-- the more likely a text-only conversation can go wrong and become multiplied by the number of responses.

In a perfect world, the first poster to encounter the offense could post words to the effect that such is not tolerated here, and Azizi (and others) would know, from this thread as well as from the network of relationships here, that a post to that effect really does speak for the whole community.

The reality, though, is that NO ONE should ever be mistreated; being or feeling alone when it happens (in a crowd that appears not to support one's presence) is really, really hard to deal with. And-- a further reality is that few members here can actually let anyone's single post stand without adding, embroidering, etc., and so there a troll can really have a field day.

Maybe a link back to this thread or to an anti-racism resource would be answer enough.

~Susan


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 22 Feb 06 - 11:24 AM

Blondes have never been enslaved by brunettes? I guess that is probably true but what the hell has it got to do with the point of this thread? Does it mean that it is OK to tell blonde jokes and the blondes in question have to sit back and take it? Does it mean that the only people who can have a say are those who have had a rough deal?

Just be careful there! I have noticed the tendancy to belittle the easy targets. Us white, middle-class, males seem to be getting the rough end of the stick. Keep that up and I will get out of the BMW and sit next to you on a bus one of these days;-)

Seriously though, is it OK to make fun of anyone because of physical characteristics, demographic placement or religious viewpoints? I think that at some point in time every race on the planet has been enslaved by another. We have all been enslaved by someone else in our past. Or will be in the future:-(

Cheers

DtG


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Bobert
Date: 22 Feb 06 - 11:29 AM

Yo, GUEST, me...

Hey, I've never been called a "crankcase" before--cranky, yeah-- but never a crankcase...

I kinda like it...

Might even change my performing name from "Sidewalk Bob" to "Crankcase Bob", then when I have a band backing me up I could be "Crankcase Bob and the Shafts"... Got to admit that it has a nice ring to it...

Nevermind...

Thread drift over...

Crankcase Bo(ert)


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Paco Rabanne
Date: 22 Feb 06 - 11:33 AM

DtG,
    Keep your head down! If you are white, middle aged and middle class surely you must realise that everything in the World is your fault!


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Peace
Date: 22 Feb 06 - 12:23 PM

"crankcase"

You might not want to be called a crankcase when ya find out what that means in a maximum security prison.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: GUEST
Date: 22 Feb 06 - 01:47 PM

don't change your name, bobster. It means portable meth lab. But it does fit your level of activity!!!! hahah


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Clinton Hammond
Date: 22 Feb 06 - 01:56 PM

"middle aged"

Ya.. right... cause all you old hippies are gonne live past 100

Middle aged my ass... Middle aged for a male is closer to 35-40


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Bobert
Date: 22 Feb 06 - 03:51 PM

Well, Bruce, back when I was workin' in the joint they had a whole different vocab... Don't recall nobody every callin' nobody "crankcase" but now that it's been brought to my attnetion that it ain't good to be no crankcase, "Bite me", GUEST,me...

But danged if "Crankcase Bob and the Shafts" don't sound good...

Oh!?!?!?...

I get it!!!

Crank... case... Hmmmmmmm? Like a head...case.... Haha....

Meth??? Actually we had that stuff back in my druggy days as well... It weren't no fun.... Wire you up purdy good but then you'd crash and the crash weren't worth the wirin'...

Nevrmind...

No back to the subject at hand...

Bobert


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Janie
Date: 22 Feb 06 - 04:57 PM

Foog,

I was using paranoid clinically, and not perjoratively. I agree that is a big no-no. I thought it described what you were saying you were feeling when you were around Arabs. I am sorry that you understood it to be a put-down. I consider a phobic reaction to be a paranoid reaction. I have my own phobias and therefore my own areas in which my emotional reaction is paranoid.

I really couldn't tell from the tone of your last post before I responded whether you were frustrated because you weren't getting the support or help you were seeking, or if you were just looking for a fight. So I couldn't tell if you were trolling or not. When you went from foog to oofg, and I looked at both of them together, along with the change in the tenor of your posts, I wondered if you were communicating f*ck off. And I guess I didn't want to look like an idiot if I was taking a troll posting seriously. We all got egos, ya know?

I am sorry that you were offended and hope the cognitive techniques help.

Janie

Janie


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: number 6
Date: 22 Feb 06 - 05:03 PM

God be damned if this old geriatric hippy {me} gets past 70!!

sIx


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: autolycus
Date: 22 Feb 06 - 05:18 PM

How about leaving Joe to spot racist trolls and redirect them into a siding of their very own where they can just talk to each other.?

Is that possible?

Ivor


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Bobert
Date: 22 Feb 06 - 05:26 PM

Now, now, now, sIx.... Ain't no reason to be fussin' wid the Big Guy 'cause He gives you a little longivity... But I have it on releiabvle sources that Hs looks after His old hippie population... And He sho nuff knows the real ones from the kids who thought it was all about long hair, loud music, gettin' high and gettin' laid... If yer an old hippie you know exactly what I mean...

Now I'd like to reiterate my feelings to Joe or Max or whomever that next time you get one of these "racist" posters to leave him out there for like 24 hours to get his or her public cyber floggin'... Pullin' the plug is too good fir these folks... The innernet has this wonderful ability to provide it's own kind of peer pressure...

Bobert


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Clinton Hammond
Date: 22 Feb 06 - 05:30 PM

There's NO peer pressure on the internet....


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: GUEST
Date: 22 Feb 06 - 06:46 PM

Janie, true apologies require that you apologize for your own behavior. Perhaps you are not offering a true apology. Nevertheless, I will accept your explanation and I appreciate your sharing.
I'm not clever enough to use letters for a name which spell out an insulting acronym unfortunatley. thanks for your feedback. Off to the convenience store to practice my restructuring.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: The Shambles
Date: 22 Feb 06 - 07:22 PM

Thanks again for your comments. IMO, the quality of this thread's discussion speaks well of Mudcat.
Azizi


Hmmmmmm? Ponder, ponder.

And if you considered it didn't speak well of Mudcat, could we all then assume that we were all being judged by you as being racist?

Do you think it is better for our forum and possibly safer, to try and avoid making public judgements (well-intentioned or not so well-intentioned) about other posters, on mass or as named individuals?

I feel it would probably cause less trouble if we just tried either to address or ignore what was being said in posts.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Bobert
Date: 22 Feb 06 - 07:30 PM

Nah, Clinton, I believe there is... Yeah, there are folks who would appear to not be pursuaded like MG but if you look at his posts of today verses those of last year I think you'll see that even the most outragious have bent a little to the pressures of their peers...

Now, I'm not speaking for everyone but this joint does seem to police itself quite nicely even when Joe or Max don't intervene...

MO, of course...

Bobert


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: GUEST,Wesley S
Date: 22 Feb 06 - 07:58 PM

Bobert - I have always assumed that Martin's departure, and reappearence { and the slight change of tone on his part } were forced on him by the Mudcat powers that be. I'm guessing he was told to change his tune or get out forever. And faced with the propect of losing his key to the playground that he underwent a vasectomy. I could be wrong of course.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: GUEST,Wesley S
Date: 22 Feb 06 - 08:03 PM

Bobert - On second thought - I must be wrong. I'm sure the positive affects of debating with you, Amos, Carol C and others has had a positive effect on Martin and we're seeing a kinder and more generious Martin emerge. I'm sure of it.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Azizi
Date: 22 Feb 06 - 08:03 PM

Oh Shambles, didn't ya mama teach you how to take a compliment?

If you don't want that compliment, leave it be.

As to you or you all assuming me to be a racist if I didn't consider that this thread "spoke well of Mudcat", all I will say to that is assuming doesn't make it so. The proof is in the pudding.

Best wishes,

Azizi


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Bobert
Date: 22 Feb 06 - 08:36 PM

MiziAzizi,

Now, I fir one read nuff of your stuff to know that you sho nuff ain't no racist... Heck, there are sho nuff some dumbass white folks here and if you were a racist you'd have been down the road a long time ago...

Actually, I prolly still working thru some racism of my own since I am somewhat prejudical toward white men... Hey, most of 'um here are real cool but this is a danged folk music web site so one would expect that but, now, out in the real world??? Hmmmmmmmm??? Well, let me say that I am leary of a white guy until I know him...

Yeah, I've tried a couple things here on this thread and seems that I ain't gettin' nowhere with either of them... First I suggested that maybe a good dialouge on racism might be benefical for those folks who seem not to get the damage it has done our society... I've also asked that when folks come out with racist posts that these threads not be jerked out as if they never existed... We are grown-ups here and not kids and racism is a social problem that we all need to deal with... And we don't need to be protected either... What we need is an opportunity to talk about it... Or to rant... But we should be trusted to do the right thing... It ain't like someone just trying to trash the joint with foul juvinilistic foul language... It's a real, everyday problem that cries out fir real everyday reaction by real everyday folks...

I think we should be trusted to deal with the racists... If it digresses to threats and name calling then that's different but to pull it 'cause it smacks of racism, IMHO, ain't doing anyone any good...

Bobert


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: The Shambles
Date: 22 Feb 06 - 08:47 PM

Oh Shambles, didn't ya mama teach you how to take a compliment?

She did indeed although it may have been possible that my mother had died or that for one reason or other I had been denied such motherly attention and your reference to my mother may have upset and offended me. It may have upset and offended others reading it?

But I am not much used to being given many compliments on our forum.

There is some that is intentional but perhaps you will accept that it is so very easy for all of to upset others and give offence - often when quite the opposite is the intention?

I was just pondering on the situations that we are often placed in by our attempts to deal with racism and not offend. I don't generally find young babies very interesting to look at but for some reason - babies of other racial groups do sometimes look very attractive (not sexually so I must add) and result in me adopting that gooey-eyed look and approach that some (usually) women have when they tend to see or hold any baby. Not a pretty sight and one to surely terrify any baby.

It is not that the sight of black babies is exotic or something that is rare. I may could compliment a black mother on how happy just seeing her child has made me for that moment. But I probably would not do so. It possibly may make her even more proud if I did but I would be worried that she may be insulted or think me patronising or worse. And to be honest, I would not be sure that I wasn't being patronising. Especially as I know that I would be very unlikely to feel to made to feel good by just seeing a white baby.

In fact as a man and for different reasons and wisely - I am very careful about not making any sort of contact with or paying any attention to young children in public.

Life is just not very easy - is it?


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Azizi
Date: 22 Feb 06 - 08:50 PM

I agree Shambles that life is just not very easy.

But hopefully, we do the best we can and we try to keep on growing
"in spirit and in truth".

Again, my best wishes to you.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: The Shambles
Date: 22 Feb 06 - 09:05 PM

As to you or you all assuming me to be a racist if I didn't consider that this thread "spoke well of Mudcat", all I will say to that is assuming doesn't make it so. The proof is in the pudding.

I think you have this wrong. I meant that if you have not posted your approval - should we have considered that you thought us to be racist? Did we need your approval or disapproval?

Perhaps I am not explaining this well? It is a bit like receiving a post out of the blue saying that you are forgiven - when you are not sure what you may have needed to be forgiven for. Or indeed forgiven by.

Equally a post out of the blue saying that you were not forgiven - would tend to have a similar result.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: GUEST
Date: 22 Feb 06 - 09:05 PM

maybe tarheel is just a foolish old white man and not the evil racist everyone is implying. everybody around here seems to need a projective object for their bad impulses. it's rather boring, actually. hardly anyone on this thread has tried to be nice to tarheel in response to his silly jokes. how many people really know him to be a racist? what a witchhunt. like a pack of mad dogs, you people. you get more flies with honey and all that...still lord of the flies, i think...


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Azizi
Date: 22 Feb 06 - 09:37 PM

Okay Shambles. I repeat-if you don't want that compliment, leave it be.

Or let me say it this way, if the shoe doesn't fit you don't have to wear it.

Or let me say it this way "Whatever, man."

And that's all I'm sayin about that.

****

GUEST, 22 Feb 06, I did not consider that joke to be silly.
Though I did not think so at the time, it appears others who read it or hear about it, also did not think that it was silly.

My intention for starting this thread was to share my opinions and feelings about that experience, and ask others what they thought would be appropriate responses to racism on this forum.

My intention was not to attack the poster of that offensive cut & paste "joke". Neither did then [and do I now]have the intention of of pondering the whys and wherefores of poster's action in starting that now deleted thread.

Also, you will note that I did not name his name. You did.

And that's all I'm gonna say about that.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Gurney
Date: 22 Feb 06 - 10:50 PM

How about a 'Not Totally Politically Correct BS' partition?

Would that work? Joe and the clones would have somwhere to move doubtful stuff to, The sensitive would have somewhere to avoid, or to go when they want to be insulted, the insensitive would have somewhere to ease the stress of using their PC muscles. It could be the only place where Guests are able to post. The same behavoural rules would have to apply concerning personal attacks and rampant bad manners.

I hesitated to post this in case it upset someone, but I don't see why the PC and easily hurt should entirely make the going, or we will get to the stage where humour is as rare as hen's teeth, and banality rules. Anything that someone says is likely rattle some other individual's perch.
Chris.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Paco Rabanne
Date: 23 Feb 06 - 03:11 AM

Yo Shambles,
            We must be twins!! I had the same thought as you. ie We are being assessed for our naughty racist content. This thought was compounded when I looked at Miss Azizi Powells website entitled "TAUNTING RHYMES" If you scroll down to a section headed "RACE AND RACE RELATIONS" You will find that Miss Powell has lifted whole sections of this thread and reprinted it there, as part of her ongoing quest to 'out' racism wherever she can provoke it!
             Methinks the lady doth protest too much!


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: The Shambles
Date: 23 Feb 06 - 03:15 AM

Okay Shambles. I repeat-if you don't want that compliment, leave it be.

I am labouring the point that often what may be intended as a compliment can be thought to be something else. That what are genuine compliments are often thrown back as being patronising or worse and what the effect of that is on someone who is honestly considers that their intentions were honourable.

I am suggesting that before there is any question of someone's post being labelled as racist or sexist etc, that they are given the full benefit of any doubt. And that such labels are only used (if at all) when there is absolutely no doubt about the intention and before we make total war upon racists in our 'responses to racism' etc - that we recognise that most of the battles will first and always be with ourselves....


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Azizi
Date: 23 Feb 06 - 05:14 AM

With regard to flamenco ted's 23 Feb 06 - 03:11 AM comment about the Cocojams: Race & Race Relations pages, if you visit that website, you will note that the only "section" of this thread that I have "lifted" are [some of] my poste from this thread. Also, you will note that
in one of my repost, I deleted the name of a Mudcat member who had acknowledged some discomfort being around persons of other races.

In addition to reposting some of my comments on this thread, if you visit that site you will also notice that througout the www.cocojams.com website, I have reposts of other comments that I have written on Mudcat. And there are a few reposts of comments written by other Mudcat members. Any reposts from other Mudcat members are used with their prior permission.

My writing on Mudcat is as spontaneous-in the spur of the moment-as what I imagine other people's writing here is. Sometimes after I write these comments, I have reposted them on my Cocojams website.
I suppose that the process could be reversed. If that were the case, I would note that my comment on Mudcat is a repost from Cocojams.

IMO, reposting my comments from this thread, and encouraging Cocojams readers to visit this thread and other Mudcat threads is fully in keeping with the stated goal of that website {provided on Cocojams' About Us page}to increase knowledge, awareness, and understanding of African American and other African cultures. IMO, reposting my comments {as well as the posts of other Mudcat members with their prior permission} is also fully in keeping with that goal.

It's no secret that I have a website on children's rhymes and other folk memories. The Cocojams website has been mentioned on Mudcat by other posters, and by me. Furthermore, I have mentioned on other Mudcat threads that I am engaged in a project to collect and study contemporary {post 1940s} examples of English language children's rhymes {including taunting rhymes}.

Not too long ago, a Mudcat member started a thread on this forum about Cocojams. This was started without my prior knowledge. And I have started several Mudcat threads on children's rhymes. In compliance with the process of using Mudcat members' posts as I understand it from Joe Offer, I have pmed a number of Mudcat members seeking their permission to use their posts on rhymes in a book I am editing. I am grateful that I have received permission for the use of these posts from every Mudcat member who I have contacted.

If you visit the Cocojams website, you will notice that I always acknowledge my sources-including Mudcat Discussion Forum. You will also note that I repeatedly encourage readers of that site to visit and to join Mudcat. Perhaps some African American visitors to that site, and visitors of other races/ethnicity will join Mudcat as a result of hearing about from that site. Perhaps not.

And, since you mentioned it, let me take this opportunity to invite those reading this thread to visit Cocojams. I also would like to encourage Mudcat members and guests to submit examples of rhymes, comments, and questions to that website. However, it should be noted that submissions to Cocojams are made through the contact page, but are not automatically posted on that website. That format is in place because that website I am the only person involved in that volunteer effort {except for some free but sporadic technical support from a friend}. I suppose that there could be some free or low cost means of providing automatic message posting to that site, but I prefer this format at this time because I am concerned about the probability of offensive postings on that website's pages.

Finally, let me say that it is a "fig newton" of flamenco ted's imagination that I have an "ongoing quest to 'out' racism wherever she can provoke it".


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: GUEST,bob
Date: 23 Feb 06 - 06:45 AM

Azizi why have you not posted on any of the anti Irish or Anti British or anti Jewish/Muslim threads started by the BNP?

I mentioned it wearlier on in this thread but perhaps you didn't see it?


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Azizi
Date: 23 Feb 06 - 11:49 AM

Greetings Guest, bob.

I have read some if not all of those threads you mentioned, but I rarely post on them. With regard to the Irish and other European issues and movements, I am still in a learning mode. For instance,
I had never heard of BNP until I read about that organization/political party on Mudcat.

However, my absence [with regard to the posting record] from a thread that discusses efforts and movements for equal justice under the law and intercultural understanding should not be interpreted as my not caring about those movements. I do. Very Much.

But sometimes, IMO, focused energy is better than energy scattered.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Azizi
Date: 23 Feb 06 - 12:05 PM

Maybe it's not obvious, so let me say it:

BNP is the exact opposite of efforts and movements for equal justice under the law and intercultural understanding.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Azizi
Date: 23 Feb 06 - 12:10 PM

I'm still not satisfied with how I worded that statement. One more try:

Let me paraphrase what I wrote since maybe it's not obvious from the way I phrased my 23 Feb 06 - 11:49 AM post, but I do understand that BNP is the exact opposite of efforts and movements for equal justice under the law and intercultural understanding.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: GUEST
Date: 23 Feb 06 - 12:11 PM

Thank you Azizi for your reply. I was puzzled why you would write :

Should people ignore offensive posts? If so, what about the feelings those posts cause? I think that ignoring them would be unhealthy.

in your opening post, in light of your absence from these many recent racist threads.

And above you have written :

I have read some if not all of those threads you mentioned, but I rarely post on them. With regard to the Irish and other European issues and movements, I am still in a learning mode. For instance,
I had never heard of BNP until I read about that organization/political party on Mudcat.

However, my absence [with regard to the posting record] from a thread that discusses efforts and movements for equal justice under the law and intercultural understanding should not be interpreted as my not caring about those movements. I do. Very Much.


I hope that you equally understand that in the UK our experience of the discrimination that African Americans face is limited which may explain our lack of involvement in the threads you find offensive.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: GUEST,bob
Date: 23 Feb 06 - 12:13 PM

Thank you Azizi for your reply. I was puzzled why you would write :

Should people ignore offensive posts? If so, what about the feelings those posts cause? I think that ignoring them would be unhealthy.

in your opening post, in light of your absence from these many recent racist threads.

And above you have written :

I have read some if not all of those threads you mentioned, but I rarely post on them. With regard to the Irish and other European issues and movements, I am still in a learning mode. For instance,
I had never heard of BNP until I read about that organization/political party on Mudcat.

However, my absence [with regard to the posting record] from a thread that discusses efforts and movements for equal justice under the law and intercultural understanding should not be interpreted as my not caring about those movements. I do. Very Much.



I hope that you equally understand that in the UK our experience of the discrimination that African Americans face is limited which may explain our lack of involvement in the threads you find offensive.

That looks better with the italics in the right place! I hope.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Azizi
Date: 23 Feb 06 - 12:33 PM

Bob,

It was not the lack of involvement of lurkers that bothered me [for how would anyone know who's lurking]. What bothered me {and "bothered" is a mild word for my what I felt} was the fact that so many people who posted on that thread chose to ignore the offensive post and instead focused on other facets of what was given as the thread's topic.

This may have been their way of registering their distaste for the offensive post, but as I have said, I had {have}problems with that approach.

And yes, I know that when all is said and done, my problems are my problems. Yet I felt and still feel that the subject of responses to racism was/is/should be important for the larger community and not just for those who felt/feel themselves or their group was targeted by a racist post/s.

Also, let me say this: long before that thread last weekend I have known that a person's absence from a thread should not be used against her or him. When all is said and done, a person has to be selective about which threads she or he posts on.

There is life outside the Internet after all.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: GUEST
Date: 23 Feb 06 - 01:20 PM

Azizi, You have totally depersonalized tarheel by sticking him in a category (racist) and gotten on your high horse about everyone here joining you in your witchhunt to identify racist remarks. Nobody joins me when I rant about sexism and I don't get offended if they don't. tarheel is a human being and you might understand white southern men better if you didn't depersonalize him by talking about him as if he weren't a real person. not naming him is not doing anything good. we all know who he is. his post went bybebye so grow up and make this better by connecting with him instead of manipulating all us foolish white people into joingin your bandwagon. geezis girl, look at yerself.
motorcity mama


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Peace
Date: 23 Feb 06 - 01:24 PM

"Azizi, You have totally depersonalized tarheel by sticking him in a category (racist)"

Disagree. Tarheel just posted the kinda stuff he believes. He seems to think racist jokes are funny. He depersonalized himself. More than a few people objected to his cut and paste crap. FYI.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: GUEST,bob
Date: 23 Feb 06 - 01:28 PM

Yet I felt and still feel that the subject of responses to racism was/is/should be important for the larger community and not just for those who felt/feel themselves or their group was targeted by a racist post/s.

I am in total agreement with you azizi. And the total lack of response to the BNP threads has amazed me. A man convicted of inciting racial hatred (which was pointed out for those who were unaware)was posting his diatribe on here quite regularly, and bar a handful of posters, the 'community' did not challenge his views.

In fact we were told by Joe to engage in civil conversation with him. And Joe then went on to delete about twenty posts that specifically ridiculed his views. None of which were in the slightest offensive.Whilst leaving his original racist posts in tact.

What message do you think this gives the person chancing upon this forum? That racists are by and large unchallenged?

Although the 'War on Racism' declared in this thread may appear very noble, it isn't actually what has happened in practise, and unless posters can post their opposition without it being deleted, the opposition is rather worthless?


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: GUEST
Date: 23 Feb 06 - 01:42 PM

Well, peace, Azizi would have impressed me much more if she had gone directly to tarheel and dealt with him as an individual than getting all bent out of shape about the rest of us white inertia bound slobs who don't have the time or energy to talk directly to tarheel about putting his foot in his mouth again. Azizi's not the only one who tries to gather support from other people when she gets bent out of shape. I say take personal responsibility and deal directly. Don't be wimpy and say stuff like "lots of other people agree with me" or " I got so many PM's in support of my positiion" or " I'm shocked at the inertia of folks against the BNP" or whatever. you don't need a mob to be right or take action. You just need your own convictions.

I'm not interested in being guilted or prodded into joining Azizi's outrage to make her feel safer about speaking out. let her take responsiblity herself for dealing directly with tarheel. people around here always run to daddy about everything they are outraged about. grow up you babies. don't marshal a mob or use manipulative guilt to feel comfortable in speaking out.

Azizi is pulling that baby stuff just like tarheel is putting up stuff that pisses people off. they both flunked grownup on this one in my book.

mcm


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Azizi
Date: 23 Feb 06 - 02:36 PM

GUEST 23 Feb 06 - 01:42 PM

So if a person is "bent out of shape" she or he must in their emotionally vunerable condition take on the responsibility of confronting the person whose actions bent her or him out of shape while other people who are not bent out of shape keep on keepin on Is that how it goes?

I appreciate the fact that you have provided me with one more response that I could have taken and maybe should/would if I can which I feel more capable of doing now than then. However, if I contact the poster of that cut & paste joke, it will be nobody's business but him and me.

As to me dehumanizing Tarheel because-prior to now-I did not name him as the poster of that joke, your saying that sounds to me like "blaming the victim of dehumanization for failing to be considerate of the person who dehumanized them. On a much lesser scale, this is like Whittington saying he is sorry to Cheney for shooting him in the face.

But then again, while that "joke" may have seemed minor to others, it was a straw that broke the camel's back moment- for me. It's not just one thing but the cumulative effect of many things.

And I'm sure you won't mind if I feel that being an adult or not has nothing to do with how I responded to what for me was a crisis.

I am not going to apologize for asking the community that I joined to help me work through this crisis. I believe that I had the right to do so, partly because while it was personal, imo, what I perceived and still perceive as a racist joke, should have impacted folks here regardless of race.

That's all I have to say to you at this time Guest. If you want to talk to me more, you can PM me.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: GUEST
Date: 23 Feb 06 - 03:02 PM

While I am sympathetic to you that you had a traumatic day and I know those days well myself, I still believe you have dehumanized poor racist or foolish tarheel by not speaking directly to him as a human being. Yes, he did it first. But, so what? Not naming him is not virtuous, it is avoidant. We all know who you mean. You didn't say anything about what the crisis was, just the straw that broke your back. And I'm not looking for an apology, just saying what I think about this thread and it's precipitator.

Instead you got self- righteous about so many people ignoring his post and then admittedly started an interesting discussion. HOWEVER, I still think you are mishandling this. You did get at least one person to jump up and say they were going to stop playing music with him because of his politics.(pretty foolish response in my view) that will not enlighten him. A personal response from you might. And, I'm not going to PM you because you made this a public issue and I'm keeping it that way. You better toughen up, if you want to play in this sandbox. I'm not used to whiney black girls where I come from or where I am living now. and that's that. I like you but I think you
pull the same thing a lot of girls (women) here do, which is run to daddy and get everybody's support to make your case. I hate that.

motor city mama


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: GUEST,petr
Date: 23 Feb 06 - 03:41 PM

regarding the 'blonde' comments..

there was an experiment in schools a few years ago, that attempted to look at racism, and how kids deal with it.

As far as I remember the teachers, selected only the blond kids in a class made them sit at the back, and when it came time to do 'fun' activities the blond kids were not a part of it, but instead were given work assignments. THe experiment was to see how the other kids dealt with it, whether or not they would complain to the teachers.

Not surprisingly, the blond kids didnt like being treated differently,
however almost none of the other kids complained or raised the issue of unfairness to the other kids.

also...
- what is your take on this? A few days ago a school trustee (of Chinese background) in a district here in vancouver, gave a speech on some students )who received top marks in some aptitude tests-
8 of the 12 students were Asian) He said Id especially like to thank these Asian families that encouraged their kids etc..

Whereupon another trustee took offense and this and criticized it
(her response was quite measured, she pointed out it is not helpful to anyone to specifically praise one group over another)

was the first comment racist?, was the other trustee being too politically correct?
I think the answer would be clear if he had said 'White' families instead of 'Asian'.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Greg F.
Date: 23 Feb 06 - 04:55 PM

Azizi-

You're wasting your time arguing with an anonymous, agent provacateur "guest"- instead, let Tarheel speak personally if there's a problem.

However, in light of past "discussions", you're also wasting your time with Tarheel, who aside from thinking racist jokes are funny, is a something of a Neo-Confederate & actually believes that the ante-bellum South was living in some sort of Sir Walter Scott fantasy novel, that "niggers" all have loved their "White Folks"who only had their best interests at heart, that "Birth of a Nation" [a.k.a. "The Klansman"] is an historical documentary, that Reconstruction- despite the wholesale murder of Blacks and the denial of their constitutional rights- was simply Yankee Oppression to "punish" the South, that the Ku Klux Klan was only a social club that helped "Redeem" the White Christian[sic] South fromgullible, childlike, Bestial Blacks and Carpetbaggers & scalawags, blah blah blah.

So be warned. There are others on this forum who display the same abysmal ignorance and embrace the same lies.

And keep up your good work!

Best, Greg


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: GUEST,dianavan
Date: 23 Feb 06 - 09:23 PM

That trustee was wrong to single out Chinese parents for praise. He is there to ensure all children receive a good education. The Chinese parents deserve praise but so do plenty of other parents. You are right. If White parents were praised in the same way, there would be outrage.

If anyone in this city deserves praise, it is the First Nations students who overcome all odds to graduate, let alone get top marks. Maybe this trustee should realize that as long as certain groups are singled out for their rate of failure and others are singled out for their rate of success, it is promoting racism and hostility between groups.

What a dunce! He should spend a little more time educating himself and less time on political grandstanding. He's after the Chinese vote thats all and he's appealling to a segment of the Chinese population who believe they are superior. Yes, the Chinese students do well in school but because of the extreme pressure at home, many of these same students are struggling emotionally.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Bobert
Date: 23 Feb 06 - 09:41 PM

Would be real nice to get beyond the he-says, she-says finger pointing and and deal with the issue at hand: racism here in Mudville...

Hey, I will repeat what I have proposed: Don't pull the plug on the thread!!!

Let the racists have to suffer from their postings... There are adults here who are perfectly willing to call down racist just as tyhey are willing to call down George Bush when he does stupid stuff...

Hey, if it's just juvilinistic genital/scataological crap (pun inteneded) then axe those posts...

But let the goodness of the community have an opportunity to speak up... I'm not speaking for Azizi but I think she would rather have the Mudcat community speak against a racist than have a Joe clone give the racist a reprieve by pulling the plug...

Bobert


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: wysiwyg
Date: 23 Feb 06 - 10:31 PM

This is about TARHEEL?

"Consider the source" was invented for his posts, whatever the topic.

He's not amenable to education or correction, either, on any topic.

~Susan


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Ron Davies
Date: 23 Feb 06 - 10:57 PM

Tarheel is one sick puppy.

I'm not surprised that he's the one who contributed the racist "joke". He has a gospel radio show. But to give you an idea of his credentials, here's what he wrote to me after I criticized Mr. Bush (as usual, just with sarcasm--no bad language--but evidently it was too much for Tarheel's tender sensibilities.

So here's his PM to me in late August--I had sent nothing to him, nor did I afterward.




He addressed with my formal title, which is of course "bush hater".

"you are so full of hate and greed that it makes me sick to even be here!...but i have that right no liberal el (sic) pinko, commie, environmentalist, animal righist (sic) bush hater bunch is gonna make me leave! you get it!

tar


A true classic. Well it's nice to know somebody cares about what you write.


Yes, Mudcat is graced with not one but two equal opportunity bigots. And here we may have thought our favorite denizen of the Chicago sewer was the only one?


And, of course, both of them are stalwart Bush supporters ---(except of course, for the extremely rare occasions when Bush makes sense (as in the Dubai flap).

Perhaps somebody else has received fan mail from Tarheel. It would be interesting to compare notes.

So, please, don't take Tarheel's verbal excrescences (now there's a $64 word) as representative of white males, or even Southern white males.

And I'm sure he's now on everybody's watch list.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: hilda fish
Date: 24 Feb 06 - 07:16 AM

It used to be that if a man wanted to bash his wife nearly to death and abuse his kids then the door was closed and he did whatever he did. It was, after all, between him and his wife. Now it's a crime, and the man is held accountable to the community because now we know that if we ignore that sort of behaviour it undermines our humanity in the very many communities that we are. That sort of behaviour is intolerable, threatening to all of us and now we don't leave the poor wife and kids to deal with it 'face to face' just because it's felt to be 'domestic', 'private' and so on. We challenge it wherever we see it happening 'cos we know that's how it stops. Excuse the analogy but it's the same thing. Why should Azizi raise it between one other person and herself? Stick it in the middle of the lot of us I say, and sure enough that's exactly what she's done. Named it, sprayed it, and shot it. Goodoh. Azizi raises "responses to racism" as a serious issue and I'm right there with her. I thinks its wonderful to see all those who are not only prepared to go off and think about it, but also let their views be known and more importantly, name and challenge racism if they see it and wherever they see it. I still don't have any time for racism in any of its form and I personally am beyond being polite about it. I love that sister girl Azizi can give us all such respect as to raise this one and keep on batting in there despite the crap that is going down. Racism is beyond discussion or reasoning - it should be shot down and sprayed on. If there are names and faces so be it. They did it, they wear it. And everyone seems more than capable of talking/communicating. A song by an Koorie (Aboriginal) group called Tiddas which means sisters, which is about what this thread is about, and if I could play it Azizi I would dedicate it to you my sister. Keep on keeping on!
Poison Blood
If you build it, don't tear it
If you build, don't tear it down
If you build it, don't tear it
Sand will turn to stone
If you leave it just standing
If you leave it standing there
You will find you're not looking
You won't see
Can't you see just be being together
We can make a change
Then we're free from the chains that bind us
Nobody can hold us back
Nobody can hold us back
Poison blood it runs freely
Poison blood it runs fast
But if you look towards your brother
You'll see there's love to last
Can't you see, just by being together
We can make a change
Then we're free from the chains that bind us
Nobody can hold us back
Nobody can hold us back
Poison blood it runs freely
Poison blood it runs fast
But if you look toward your Tidda (sister!)
You'll see there's love to last.
If you build it, don't tear it
If you build don't tear it down
If you build it, don't tear it
Sand will turn to stone......
(By Amy Lou & Sal, three Koorie girls who were called Tiddas


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Bobert
Date: 24 Feb 06 - 08:09 AM

I don't buy into the theory that folks can't or won't change 'cause I have seen so much change in my life time...

I remember as a small kid hearing my dad use the term niggar for black folks becuaswe he had grown up in a tough neighborhood in Trenton, NJ and his peers used the term... My mom worked on him and by, oh, by the time I was 7 ot 8, he stopped using the term and never used it again as far as I know... By the early 60's my mom was working in the civil rights movement and my dad, well, still a little behind thwe learning curve but still learning... By the tuime thwe Poor People Campaign came to Washington, D.C. my dad was driving food and blankets into D.C. to the participants...

The point of the story is that folks do and can change... I don't write off "tarheel" or anyone else for that matter and that is why I think these threads shouldn't be closed because someone shows how unenlightened they are...

Bobert


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: The Shambles
Date: 24 Feb 06 - 10:19 AM

Not surprisingly, the blond kids didnt like being treated differently,
however almost none of the other kids complained or raised the issue of unfairness to the other kids.


This tells us about one aspect of human nature - and perhaps tells us nothing that is not already clear. I don't think that tell us much about racism/sexism etc etc - which are all manifestations of this basic aspect of human nature. Which is usually us taking the easy option, which is so tempting to take.

But is should be some consolation that there is a an aspect of human nature that leads some human beings to act selflessly and positively and caring equally for and and working with all colours and creeds.

This will always be an less easy option for those of us with busy lives and ambitions - but hopefully it will always remain an option for all of us?


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: The Shambles
Date: 24 Feb 06 - 10:30 AM

There all all types of songs on the subject. This is another one and another view. A racist one and insulting one or just a simplistic and unhelpful one? A dream or a nightmare?

The group that fist had a 70s hit with this song was mainly white but one of the two lead singers was Madeline Bell - who was black.

Melting Pot

Take a pinch of white man
Wrap him up in black skin
Add a touch of blue blood
And a little bitty bit of red indian boy
Oh like a curly latin kinkies
Oh lordy, lordy, mixed with yellow chinkees, yeah
You know you lump it all together
And you got a recipe for a get along scene
Oh what a beautiful dream
If it could only come true, you know, you know

What we need is a great big melting pot
Big enough enough enough to take
The world and all it's got
And keep it stirring for
A hundred years or more
And turn out coffee coloured people by the score

Rabbis and the friars
Vishnus and the gurus
We got the beatles or the sun god
Well it really doesn't matter
What religion you choose
And be thankful little mrs. graceful
You know that livin' could be tasteful
We should all get together in a lovin machine
I think I'll call up the queen
It' s only fair that she knows, you know, you know

What we need is a great big melting pot
Big enough enough enough to take
The world and all it's got
And keep it stirring for
A hundred years or more
And turn out coffee coloured people by the score

Coffee coloured people
Coffee coloured people
Coffee coloured people by the score


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: wysiwyg
Date: 24 Feb 06 - 11:49 AM

I'm neither giving up on Tarheel nor suggesting anyone else do so. BUT, he has shown that at present, he is not amenable to change (of any sort).

And we can't control people. You can only offer information-- after that, they have to decide for themselves if the information is relevant to them at that point in time. And if they find it relevant, they have to find their own motivation to act upon it.

~Susan


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: CarolC
Date: 24 Feb 06 - 05:48 PM

Outrage is the appropriate emotion to feel when we see racism displayed in this forum, in my opinion. But to show it in our posts doesn't correct the problem. The reason is that often times (most of the time), when people post things like that in an internet forum like this one, their intention is to get an emotional response. So whatever gets them that response, they will do more of, not less. The agenda of such people is to elicit a visceral response using any means necessary.

The reason the policy is to ignore and delete is because otherwise, the quite valid emotional responses people have toward hateful posts willcause the hateful behavior to increase rather than to decrease. I know this seems counterintuitive, but the internet seems to have a different behavioral reality attached to it than the 3D world.

Having said that, if a member is promoting racism or hate, and is not doing it in a trolling sort of way, I think it is important to poke as many holes in his or her arguments as possible (but in a non-emotional way). If we shine a light on that kind of foolishness, we might at least be able to make them uncomfortable enough to think twice about doing it again here, even if they don't ever really experience a change of heart about people whom they see as being different than themselves.

Either way, Azizi and Hilda Fish, I'm sorry for your pain.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: autolycus
Date: 24 Feb 06 - 07:09 PM

I'd like to bring the thread back to one of Azizi's original questions, what should we do when presented with racist comments. i.e.Responses to Racism, cp. Thread subject.

My answers are above.

Ivor


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Peace
Date: 24 Feb 06 - 08:16 PM

I will not reason with racists or nazis. Period.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Greg F.
Date: 24 Feb 06 - 08:48 PM

Surprised you'd construct a sentance combining "reason" with "Nazis" and/or "racists", Bruce.

;>)


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: GUEST,dianavan
Date: 25 Feb 06 - 12:56 AM

What Carol C. said,

"...if a member is promoting racism or hate, and is not doing it in a trolling sort of way, I think it is important to poke as many holes in his or her arguments as possible (but in a non-emotional way). If we shine a light on that kind of foolishness, we might at least be able to make them uncomfortable enough to think twice about doing it again here, even if they don't ever really experience a change of heart about people whom they see as being different than themselves."


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: The Shambles
Date: 25 Feb 06 - 02:46 AM

Responses to bullying


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: Don(Wyziwyg)T
Date: 25 Feb 06 - 05:04 AM

Please explain the relevence of your link to the subject of this thread, Roger.

Another hijack?

Don T.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: The Shambles
Date: 25 Feb 06 - 05:43 AM

No.


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Subject: RE: BS: Responses To Racism
From: The Shambles
Date: 25 Mar 06 - 01:30 PM

Baby, black promoters oppressed me before white promoters ever got hold of me. Don't talk skin to me.

Mahalia Jackson


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