Get out the list

And mark ’em all off.

The scene:  A white Murray State University professor to two black students, whom he believed were tardy to his class.  What he claims he said:

‘Do you know why you were late? There’s a theory that a way to protest their master’s treatment was for slaves to be late.’

What one of the students reported:

It is part of your heritage. The slaves never showed up on time to their owners and were lashed for it. I just don’t have the right to do that.

What did Professor Mark Wattier have to say in his own defense? Continue reading

The hive tells me no.

(Also, ten bucks says Eli Steele is related to Shelby Steele.  You know, the “Content of Our Character” guy.)

This piece of byte-waste from the LA Times is about how the new interracial generation will save us all.  It’s yet another version of once we all f*ck each other and the races mix we will have harmony. No, seriously. Because identity politics are the cause of all our racial problems:

The day will arrive when this interracial generation reaches political consciousness and finds itself at odds with America’s divisive identity politics. Of all Americans, they represent the best opportunity to end these politics and point America back to its tradition of individualism.

People who identify as mixed race have already reached “political consciousness.” There are groups such as Mavin and Swirl and numerous hapa organizations. Do they find themselves “at odds” with identity politics? I can’t really say.  But what I do know is that many multiracial people self- identify as people of color.  Is that buying into “divisive identity politics”? Continue reading

Dear WAP

We exchanged a few emails at the beginning of the year when I helped you get information on citizenship for your child. We even met at that cultural event. And then you wrote to me frustrated that you couldn’t find any cultural activity for your very small child. My response that cultural communities had no real need and little inclination for such activities, and that the adoption community could hardly care less obviously didn’t please you.

I applaud your efforts to set something up, and I told you that in no uncertain terms. So why does it piss you off so much that I protested your use of a racial stereotype in your logo?

Please allow me to deconstruct your message:

Wow, I never even thought about it!!!! (I am so privileged I don’t HAVE to think about it.) I agree that it isn’t very original but when you have ZERO budget, originality cannot be bought! (I don’t actually know what the word “stereotype” means and I am not motivated enough to find out because, frankly, it doesn’t concern me.) Anyway, I wonder how it’s possible to not use a “racial stereotype” when trying to represent a Chinese child!!!! (But I’m still not motivated enough to find out.) Should I have given him a pseudo americanised look so he appeared less Chinese? (‘Cos he IS Chinese, right, and you know you are being ridiculous, right?)

You know, sometimes I wonder if that’s what really shocks you the most? (I think you have a chip on your shoulder.) Whatever, I don’t hold it against you. (‘Cos it’s all your fault anyway. You should be less sensitive.)

Please refer to my free apology.

Sorry to tell you, Toto

But you’re not in Kansas anymore.

So Time magazine published a “humor” piece by Joel Stein lamenting the changes that have befallen his hometown of Edison, N.J.  Specifically, too many Asian Indians have moved in.  Guess they must be changing the complexion a little bit too much.

Basically, what Stein did was vomit up every stereotype he could think of.  The sheer number is testament to the racism in our society.  And it’s not like we haven’t seen it before.

Anna of Sepia Mutiny covers it here.

Time magazine gave Stein a huge, national (international?) audience upon which to spew.  And in so doing, it chose to inform its audience just what Asian Indians are like.  Additionally, it provided license for people to laugh at a group of people.  Because when people don’t get out much, these kinds of images and derogatory speech fill in the space where real knowledge is supposed to be.

But that actually isn’t what struck me the most about Stein’s piece.  Continue reading

The non-apology apology

So a chain called “RA Sushi” had a recent promotion featuring free edamame.  How did a diner qualify?  By saying “Me Luv You Longtime” to the server.

Here’s the “apology”:

RA Sushi Chicagoland RA Sushi would like to apologize to anyone offended by the recent “Me Luv You Long Time” promotion. It was not meant to promote or perpetuate stereotypes and it does not reflect our views as a company. We sincerely apologize for not taking into consideration the many interpretations of this phrase and thank you for bringing it to our attention.

Got that? We took an insulting stereotype and used it to promote our business, encouraging people to repeat the phrase, but we didn’t mean to promote or perpetuate stereotype by doing so. We chose it despite the fact that it doesn’t represent our views as a company. Next promotion: Free sushi when you say “You are a racist fuckhead!” to your server. And obviously there are many interpretations of this phrase and we took the one made by the stupidest people on the planet.

That is all.

‘A [redacted] on a corporate plantation’

Yes, that’s really what a Towson adjunct professor said.  He was referring to himself.  Just so you know, he has a good reason for using the term:

Zaruba, who is white, told The Sun that his black stepfather used racial terms freely, and that, “I never quite got the horror of the word.”

Black stepfather? Not quite as good as a black friend, but close.

But wait!  There’s more! Continue reading