Monday, April 25, 2011

Local News | Census ranks Seattle among whitest big cities | Seattle Times Newspaper

Local News | Census ranks Seattle among whitest big cities | Seattle Times Newspaper

this song is still so relevant:

No, You Don't Know Me by Good Sista/Bad Sista featuring beat by OG One

the weather underground (documentary)

"We felt that doing nothing in a period of repressive violence is itself a form of violence. That's really the part that I think is the hardest for people to understand. If you sit in your house, live your white life and go to your white job, and allow the country that you live in to murder people and to commit genocide, and you sit there and you don't do anything about it, that's violence." Naomi Jaffe

Unfair Skin

A Holiday Message from Ricky Gervais: Why I'm a good Christian.

Ricky Gervais... Obviously.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Aya de León-Icon/I Have A Dream


Icon/I have a dream

Martin Luther King fought for justice, not integration
Don’t confuse the method of transportation with the destination
But history remembers our heroes distortedly
like black & white kids holding hands is all he stood for
& completely forgets his opposition to the viet-nam war
& what’s more
his ideas are intellectual property &
if Ghandi can be an icon for apple computers, then
everything in this nation is for sale
I can just imagine what advertisers would do with
King’s letter from the birmingham jail
picture this: it gets bought by corporations in the
prison industrial complex
& they take it all out of context
putting up billboards in the hood that say:
hey young black men, MLK went to jail; if you’re
lucky, you can be next>
Or imagine this one
Let’s say the NBA buys his speech at the march on
talking about I have a team
I have a team so the sons of former slaves can sweat
and toil up and down basketball courts like modern day cotton fields
for the profit & amusement of the sons of former slave owners;
it is deeply rooted in the american dream; I have a team>
Or perhaps it would be bought by developers talking about
I have a scheme.
I have a scheme that little white yuppies can live next to
little black and brown boys and girls,
digging the convenience & flavor of their hood
& when the black & brown folks get moved out
white yuppies will say in their newly acquired hipster slang
don’t trip peeps, it’s all to the good
yes, I have a scheme
still deeply rooted in the American dream
feeling like a dij` vu, except without the smallpox blankets
& then developers can go to black church testimony meetings
talking about
I’m not here to testify
I’m here to gentrify!
can I get a witness?>
Or maybe it would be bought by a multinational
pharmaceutical conglomerate
talking about I have a cream
I have a cream & even if the red hills of georgia are
nothing compared to the acne on your face, I have a cream.
A cream that guarantees that every pockmark will be
exalted and every pimple made low, I have a cream.
I have a cream that fights against itching,
anti-government bitching and encourages snitching.
I have a cream that is spermicidal, herbicidal,
pesticidal & genocidal, I have a cream today!
I have a cream that will turn little black boys into little white girls
& we sold some to michael jackson & he said
white at last, white at last, thank god almighty I'm
white at last!
yes, people, we must be very careful who we let
control our past.>
© Copyright 2002. 
All rights reserved.  This material cannot be reproduced without consent of author.


La Domination Masculine (the dominant male)



Monday, April 11, 2011

Alice Walker, Olympia, Washington, April 8th, 2011

Alice Walker, Olympia, Washington, April 8th, 2011 by decolonize

On the Cleveland Indians and other racist sports mascots

by guest contributor BB, originally published at Brady Braves
As I sit here and watch the men’s basketball teams from Texas A&M and Memphis battle for a spot in the elite 8, i am reminded that the Cleveland “Indians” baseball club has been invited (along w/the st. louis cardinals) to play in Major League Baseball’s inaugural Civil Rights Game in Memphis on march 31, 2007. so, here’s a game devised to recognize and to remember “the home of the National Civil Rights Museum and the city where Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. was assassinated on April 4, 1968.” And mlb invites the “Indians”? (and invites them to a city that’s part of the “trail of tears”?) The playing goes beyond a sport when “Indians,” led by their “chief wahoo,” are involved. We’re talking playing “Indian”; we’re talking redface. But heck, why not make it an all anti-real “Indian” day by inviting the Atlanta “Braves,” too? And since the game is in Memphis to call attention to African American civil rights, why not change the name of Cleveland “Indians” to Cleveland “Blacks”? Or as artist Oscar Arredondo suggests, the Cleveland “Negroes”?
So many folks still not getting it, eh? Sports fans’ claims to honorable intentions of the use of “Indian” imagery, intentions of being pro-”Indian,” do not dismiss nor outweigh the disrespectful effects that many native peoples experience. An example of one of those effects? Ironically, many pro-”Indian” mascot/logo/image critics verbally attack the real Native peoples who call for the eradication of such “Indian” representations. so, those critics honor their “Indian” images and “Indian” objects, their “Indians,” but they disrespect and dislike the real natives?
Reflecting back to a protest years ago of the University Of Illinois’ mascot “Chief Illiniwek,” Tim Giago (Oglala Sioux) writes, “I joined the protest one year as a newspaper reporter. I walked near the protestors taking pictures as they marched. I was once again overwhelmed by the degree of hatred aimed at these protestors. Profanity such as ‘F- you squaws’ or ‘Get the hell out of here you drunken Indians,’ rained down on the protestors on their march to the stadium. My God, what a proud tradition! How can a people exude such hatred for real Indians while honoring a phony chief?”
And check out what Cleveland’s general manager Mark Shapiro said in response to his “Indians” being invited to Memphis: “The history of civil rights needs to be honored. The pursuit of civil rights, for compassion and for tolerance, needs to be fought for not only in our game, but also in our country and in our own organization. It’s that belief system and that history that is the root of our pride and why we are participating in this game.”
Sounds like “our country” and “our pride” isn’t about including indigenous peoples. sounds like “compassion” and “tolerance” aren’t to be shown to indigenous peoples. Sounds like Mr. Shapiro isn’t used to being objectified, dehumanized, commercialized, exploited, and all else that accompanies being associated with a ridiculously racist image known as “wahoo.”

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Why the Libra Turned Off “Portlandia” (re-post)

Posted on  by Famous For Bad Reasons

If it wasn’t okay for Mickey Rooney to portray a Japanese stereotype in Breakfast at Tiffany’s, why is it okay for Carrie Brownstein and Fred Armisen to do so in a “Harajuku Girls” skit for “Portlandia”?
The skit, featured below, involves two supposedly Japanese tourists, in Harajuku regalia, wreaking hyper-manic (read: girlish) havoc in a coffee shop.

Not only is this skit rather dull, it’s truly disturbing, especially coming from a show that pokes fun at leftists who can’t recognize their own silliness and hypocrisy. Also, for what it’s worth, the Japanese tourist stereotype is just plain boring. If I have to see another white person imitate a Japanese tourist wielding a camera, I won’t forget to mention the time we put Japanese Americans in internment camps. Where are the cameras for that?
Now. I know what you’re thinking. You’re thinking, “Dear Libra, since when do you take the time to critique all the racism and other -isms in television? This is Famous For Bad Reasons, not Bitch Magazine.”
This, however, is important to me. As a huge Sleater-Kinney fan, I’m feeling shocked and disappointed that Carrie Brownstein would take part in something so boring and downright racist. If they’d just hired Japanese girls to portray the stereotypes, I could maybe get behind another boring jab at satire. However, both Brownstein and Armisen decorated themselves to mimic Japanese girls. It wasn’t self-reflexive enough or transparent enough to indicate to the viewers that yes, they were mimicking white Americans mimicking a Japanese sub-culture.
If you’re going to be an asshole, be transparent about it. Not everything is excused or made socially progressive by simply labeling it “satire.”

Monday, April 4, 2011

Black denial


Yara Matos holds her hair extensions as a stylist in the Herrera neighborhood prepares to give her the look of long, straight hair. (Candace Barbot/Miami Herald)
Black denial
Nearly all Dominican women straighten their hair, which experts say is a direct result of a historical learned rejection of all things black
SANTO DOMINGO -- Yara Matos sat still while long, shiny locks from China were fastened, bit by bit, to her coarse hair.
Not that Matos has anything against her natural curls, even though Dominicans call that pelo malo -- bad hair.
But a professional Dominican woman just should not have bad hair, she said. "If you're working in a bank, you don't want some barrio-looking hair. Straight hair looks elegant," the bank teller said. "It's not that as a person of color I want to look white. I want to look pretty."
And to many in the Dominican Republic, to look pretty is to look less black.
Dominican hairdressers are internationally known for the best hair-straightening techniques. Store shelves are lined with rows of skin whiteners, hair relaxers and extensions.
Racial identification here is thorny and complex, defined not so much by skin color but by the texture of your hair, the width of your nose and even the depth of your pocket. The richer, the "whiter." And, experts say, it is fueled by a rejection of anything black.
"I always associated black with ugly. I was too dark and didn't have nice hair," said Catherine de la Rosa, a dark-skinned Dominican-American college student spending a semester here. "With time passing, I see I'm not black. I'm Latina.
"At home in New York everyone speaks of color of skin. Here, it's not about skin color. It's culture."
The only country in the Americas to be freed from black colonial rule -- neighboring Haiti -- the Dominican Republic still shows signs of racial wounds more than 200 years later. Presidents historically encouraged Dominicans to embrace Spanish Catholic roots rather than African ancestry.
Here, as in much of Latin America -- the "one drop rule'' works in reverse: One drop of white blood allows even very dark-skinned people to be considered white.

Capellan Dominquez, center, and Anthony Rosario, right, join others as they warm up for Carnival in February in the Cristo Rey area of Santo Domingo. (Candace Barbot/Miami Herald)
As black intellectuals here try to muster a movement to embrace the nation's African roots, they acknowledge that it has been a mostly fruitless cause. Black pride organizations such as Black Woman's Identity fizzled for lack of widespread interest. There was outcry in the media when the Brotherhood of the Congos of the Holy Spirit -- a community with roots in Africa -- was declared an oral patrimony of humanity by UNESCO. "There are many times that I think of just leaving this country because it's too hard," said Juan Rodríguez Acosta, curator of the Museum of the Dominican Man. Acosta, who is black, has pushed for the museum to include controversial exhibits that reflect many Dominicans' African background. "But then I think: Well if I don't stay here to change things, how will things ever change?"
A walk down city streets shows a country where blacks and dark-skinned people vastly outnumber whites, and most estimates say that 90 percent of Dominicans are black or of mixed race. Yet census figures say only 11 percent of the country's nine million people are black.
To many Dominicans, to be black is to be Haitian. So dark-skinned Dominicans tend to describe themselves as any of the dozen or so racial categories that date back hundreds of years -- Indian, burned Indian, dirty Indian, washed Indian, dark Indian, cinnamon, moreno or mulatto, but rarely negro.
The Dominican Republic is not the only nation with so many words to describe skin color. Asked in a 1976 census survey to describe their own complexions, Brazilians came up with 136 different terms, including café au lait, sunburned, morena, Malaysian woman, singed and "toasted."
"The Cuban black was told he was black. The Dominican black was told he was Indian," said Dominican historian Celsa Albert, who is black. "I am not Indian. That color does not exist. People used to tell me, ‘You are not black.' If I am not black, then I guess there are no blacks anywhere, because I have curly hair and dark skin."

Manuel Núñez (Candace Barbot/Miami Herald)
Using the word Indian to describe dark-skinned people is an attempt to distance Dominicans from any African roots, Albert and other experts said. She noted that it's not even historically accurate: The country's Taino Indians were virtually annihilated in the 1500s, shortly after Spanish colonizers arrived.
Researchers say the de-emphasizing of race in the Dominican Republic dates to the 1700s, when the sugar plantation economy collapsed and many slaves were freed and rose up in society.
Later came the rocky history with Haiti, which shares the island of Hispaniola with the Dominican Republic. Haiti's slaves revolted against the French and in 1804 established their own nation. In 1822, Haitians took over the entire island, ruling the predominantly Hispanic Dominican Republic for 22 years.
To this day, the Dominican Republic celebrates its independence not from centuries-long colonizer Spain, but from Haiti.
"The problem is Haitians developed a policy of black-centrism and . . . Dominicans don't respond to that," said scholar Manuel Núñez, who is black. "Dominican is not a color of skin, like the Haitian."
Dictator Rafael Trujillo, who ruled from 1930 to 1961, strongly promoted anti-Haitian sentiments, and is blamed for creating the many racial categories that avoided the use of the word "black."
The practice continued under President Joaquín Balaguer, who often complained that Haitians were "darkening'' the country. In the 1990s, he was blamed for thwarting the presidential aspirations of leading black candidate José Francisco Peña Gómez by spreading rumors that he was actually Haitian.

Dominican girls Luz Freiney Paulina, from left, Esther Celeste Santana, Mayelin Eloisa Valdez and Melisa Valdez, comprise the dance troupe Las Nizas. Below, Dominican author Manuel Nunez writes about the issues of 'black' and 'Dominican' as they relate to the history in his country. (Candace Barbot/Miami Herald)
"Under Trujillo, being black was the worst thing you could be," said Afro-Dominican poet Blas Jiménez. "Now we are Dominican, because we are not Haitian. We are something, because we are not that."
Jiménez remembers when he got his first passport, the clerk labeled him "Indian." He protested to the director of the agency.
"I remember the man saying, ‘If he wants to be black, let him be black!' '' Jiménez said.
Resentment toward anything Haitian continues, as an estimated one million Haitians live in the Dominican Republic, most working in the sugar and construction industries. Mass deportations often mistakenly include black Dominicans, and Haitians have been periodically lynched in mob violence. The government has been trying to deny citizenship and public education to the Dominican-born children of illegal Haitian migrants.
When migrant-rights activist Sonia Pierre won the prestigious Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights Award in 2006, the government responded by trying to revoke her citizenship, saying she is actually Haitian.
"There's tremendous resistance to blackness -- black is something bad," said black feminist Sergia Galván. ‘‘Black is associated with dark, illegal, ugly, clandestine things. There is a prototype of beauty here and a lot of social pressure. There are schools where braids and natural hair are prohibited."
Galván and a loosely knit group of women have protested European canons of beauty, once going so far as to rally outside a beauty pageant. She and other experts say it is now more common to see darker-skinned women in the contests -- but they never win.

Mariana Ramirez smiles as she sits in Daisy Gran Salon in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic. (Candace Barbot/Miami Herald)
Several women said the cultural rejection of African looking hair is so strong that people often shout insults at women with natural curls.
"I cannot take the bus because people pull my hair and stick combs in it," said wavy haired performance artist Xiomara Fortuna. "They ask me if I just got out of prison. People just don't want that image to be seen."
The hours spent on hair extensions and painful chemical straightening treatments are actually an expression of nationalism, said Ginetta Candelario, who studies the complexities of Dominican race and beauty at Smith College in Massachusetts. And to some of the women who relax their hair, it's simply a way to have soft manageable hair in the Dominican Republic's stifling humidity.
"It's not self-hate," Candelario said. "Going through that is to love yourself a lot. That's someone saying, ‘I am going to take care of me.' It's nationalist, it's affirmative and celebrating self."
Money, education, class -- and of course straight hair -- can make dark-skinned Dominicans be perceived as more "white," she said. Many black Dominicans here say they never knew they were black -- until they visited the United States.
"During the Trujillo regime, people who were dark skinned were rejected, so they created their own mechanism to fight it," said Ramona Hernández, Director of the Dominican Studies Institute at City College in New York. "When you ask, ‘What are you?' they don't give you the answer you want . . . saying we don't want to deal with our blackness is simply what you want to hear."
Hernández, who has olive-toned skin and a long mane of hair she blows out straight, acknowledges she would "never, never, never'' go to a university meeting with her natural curls.

Product promoter Margarita Munoz, right, tidies up the shelf displaying her company's hair-straightening products in a Santo Domingo market. (Candace Barbot/Miami Herald)
"That's a woman trying to look cute; I'm a sociologist," she said.
Asked if a black Dominican woman can be considered beautiful in her country, Hernández leapt to her feet.
"You should see how they come in here with their big asses!'' she said, shuffling across her office with her arms extended behind her back, simulating an enormous rear-end. "They come in here thinking they are all that, and I think, 'doesn't she know she's not really pretty?' "
Maria Elena Polanca is a black woman with the striking good looks. She said most Dominicans look at her with curiosity, as if a black woman being beautiful were something strange.
She spends her days promoting a hair straightener at La Sirena, a Santo Domingo department store that features an astonishing array of hair straightening products.
"Look, we have bad hair, bad. Nobody says 'curly.' It's bad," she said. "You can't go out like that. People will say, 'Look at that nest! Someone light a match!' ''

Angela Martinez, 12, left, entertains friend Estefany Diaz, 10, as Estefany's sister Ariela does her hair in the Paraiso de Dios neighborhood west of Santo Domingo, a scene that plays out on the streets throughout much of the Dominican Republic. (Candace Barbot/Miami Herald)
Purdue University professor Dawn Stinchcomb, who is African American, said that when she came here in 1999 to study African influences in literature, people insulted her in the street.
Waiters refused to serve her. People wouldn't help Stinchcomb with her research, saying if she wanted to study Africans, she'd have to go to Haiti.
"I had people on the streets . . . yell at me to get out of the sun because I was already black enough," she said. "It was hurtful. . . . I was raised in the South and thought I could handle any racial comment. I never before experienced anything like I did in the Dominican Republic.
"I don't have a problem when people who don't look like me say hurtful things. But when it's people who look just like me?"

Read more:

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Darcus Howe's Devil's Advocate about Haile Selassie I.

my stance:

In This Together by Gabriel Teodros

Play song from MySpace Music
Lovework - 2007 - 3:59
Listen on: MySpace Music - Rhapsody - Pandora

jennifer cendaña armas-letter to a sista and brotha in hip hop

letter to a sista and brotha in hip hop
jennifer cendaña armas
strong sistas survive slaps and slurs
beyond our hip hop world
stretching seas and skins
over scars and whims
cuz we don’t have a dick remind how we brought about sin
but we wear hope in our eyes
and rhyme our cries
below our belly
above our breasts
heading west for the sun
and east for the womb
bomb walls cause some brothas
still go and assume
that we ain’t as tight
our flows don’t light the light
of a greater understanding
beats ain’t as commanding
bop heads amongst truths they hide
so sistas get placed upstage
one spot in a crew
where one is too many and zero’s too few
fight for some time
disregard one another
but if I’m uplifting my sista don’t mean I’m hating my brotha
cause some women, too
will just look at you, like,
bitch- get off the stage
but this culture is also made of our blood
our feet
our voice
more than catchy hooks and hooch shaking noise
we just as fly when our poems don’t rhyme
and we merely pontificate with perfectly delivered diction
hip hop is our world we feed on bleed on get our groove on work our learn on
sistas got just as much right to be here
and I ain’t trying to break down a list of everything I don’t do
pleading won’t you show me
some goddess
cuz that’s still playing a game
and this is my yes campaign
cause I can’t remember the last time we had one-
yes to our ideas
yes to we
yes to manifesting all the shit we see
yes to our balance
yes to mad loot
yes to el barrio cause our connection’s not moot
yes to hips swaying cause my sexuality’s mine
yes to everything more than biding some time
yes to remembering the powers of our mothers
if I’m uplifting a sista don’t mean I’m hating a brotha
see the shit
ain’t about them cats
it’s about we
about us
our relation to ourselves
so we don’t see them cats as a must
our verses we spit
our beats we break
our taggings we tag
for sanity’s sake
our bodies rock move smooth our soul
patch visions and knowledge with rhythmic flow
our stories are roots
our hip hop’s our petition
ain’t no progress gon’ come without our women’s upliftment

TRAILER: Existence is Resistance Presents: Hip Hop is Bigger Than the Oc...

Saturday, April 2, 2011

native american patriotism?

note:  all images and underlined text are hyper-linked so simply click them for additional reading/viewing/listening.

i have a once-close friend from my childhood, who is indigenous (adopted and raised by two white parents) and is now completely dedicated to the marine corps--he somehow conflates his u.s. military experience with being indigenous and concludes that it's "warrior culture."  however,  the u.s. military  isn't anything like being an indigenous warrior.  the u.s. military is nothing more than the weapon used to maintain u.s. imperialism.  just as police officers in the u.s. serve and protect corporations and the rich, the u.s. military protects corporate and u.s. capital interest globally.  ironically it was indigenous warriors, who resisted westward expansion, colonization, white supremacy, and yes the u.s. military!

i've only ever attended one powwow in my life and this was one of the most surprising and actually upsetting aspects of what i witnessed.  i am a person of color and veteran, who has woken up to the true history of the united states or as some of my latino folks say, "esclavos unidos."  i firmly feel that history has proven over and over that no matter how much a member of a marginalized community tries to acculturate they will never be completely accepted by the dominant ("white") culture.  i am reminded of these instances:

The Soldiers Speak:  Black Americans and native Filipinos discover "an affinity of complexion"

Justice for Filipino American Veterans

The Contradictions of World War II (Japanese American experience)

Fort Minor - Kenji (Original Music Video) from ShadowfoX Productions on Vimeo.

Arab-Americans in military juggle patriotism, suspicion

An Excellent Reason Not to Join the Military

We women, people of color, and immigrants are especially attracted by the idea that we could live our lives on equal footing with other Americans. But the military isn't the egalitarian nirvana that its multi-billion dollar advertising blitz -- with a budget of almost $4 billion in 2003 -- claims.

Quese Imc-Good Ol' Amerikkka

“let me tell you a little something about the american flag and it's red, white, and blue and all the history that it has, the genocide of this land to annihilate the red man, pay a dime for skin off the forehead of a kid no older than ten so hence the redskins were scalps of children and men, but what they would do to our women, yo! i just cannot comprehend, they would take a knife and cut her breast off and howl to the moon and if she was pregnant they would cut her baby out and mutilate the womb, they would murder little boys and girls point blank with a rifle, and it was all in the name of the american flag and their bible, so why do you find it so hard believe that they are liable to be so genocidal to a people who are so spiritual and tribal, this an american holocaust that surpasses any you study, so when you pledge allegiance to the flag your chest is bloody.”

more voices of native resistance

i've read "ojibwa warrior" and this reminds me of dennis banks realization when he was stationed in japan:

"The year was 1899, and Private David Fagen had a decision to make. He'd volunteered to serve in America's first overseas war to prove to the folks back home a black man's blood just as good as a white's when spilled fighting for Old Glory. Now, at the dawn of a new century, Fagen realized he was only a pawn in the white man's crusade for empire. Every time he pulled the trigger he helped enslave the people he came to liberate." excerpt from "cousins of color"


Friday, April 1, 2011

african/black...hated vs. emulated

despicable, mocked, ridiculed, the butt of every joke...

"yeah, it was written in the books of europeans we were savage, that our history was insignificant and minds below average, but how can one diminish the work of the most imitated culture on this earth..." ~ akrobatik of the perceptionists

More Black Men Now in Prison System than Were Enslaved

More Black Men Now in Prison System than Were Enslaved
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