Motherfuckers are really going to believe that Taylor Swift didn’t know what a swastika was.
That’s her actual response.
And people will actually believe it.
Because she’s a cute white girl and it’s totally believable that she’s innocent enough to not know what’s going on around, because there’s no way someone as pretty, white, and blonde as her would ever do something so terrible.
But soft! What middle finger through yonder window breaks? It is M.I.A.’s and she is the worst person ever for doing it.
Mmmmm dat whiteness.
And the thing is, Whites are constantly positioning themselves as the utterly unbiased arbiters of what’s racist and what isn’t when they can’t recognize hardly any of it. That’s like me trying to call myself a wine expert and constantly mistaking apple juice for vino.
Bolded everything because EVERYTHING ABOUT THE POST AND COMMENTARY ARE TRUE.
Dear Fellow White People,
I’ve noticed that when PoC (particularly the many wonderful WoC here on Tumblr) talk about their lived experiences and things happening to them and their communities, especially things inflicted by white people, white patriarchy, or general whiteness there are a great deal many of us who’s first and most vehement response is, “Not all white people are like that!”
As someone who is trying to come get her fellow white folks and herd them onto the clue bus so that PoC don’t have to waste time with you, let me inform you (as they have so often informed you) - if your first response to reading about someone else’s pain is, “But I’m not like that” then, actually, yes you are exactly like that.
They’ve been telling you this for a while. A long while. But you’re not getting it. And you’re showing your ASS or acquired selective sociopathy, which is what I like to call the way whiteness causes you to dehumanize non-white people.
The appropriate response to someone’s pain is empathy. The minimally decent reaction when told you might - however involuntarily or unwittingly - be involved in causing that pain is to think, “Well, gee, I don’t want to be part of that. How can I make sure I’m not doing that?”
If you are a white person who’s pushed back the pervasive, sociopathic influence of whiteness just enough to start asking such questions, then be aware that you still don’t deserve a cookie. Because that’s the bare minimum requirements of not being a total and utter douchewaffle, okay?
When you lay down your very life to combat whiteness, then we’ll talk about maybe a half a cookie or something. Until then, just realize that on the Test of Humanity, that response gets you a couple of points above the pass/fail mark. You pass, but you could be doing so much better.
As for you others?
You are like that. You are once again prioritizing your feelings above their very lives and realities. That’s what makes you EXACTLY like that. Because that’s the essence of whiteness and racism - to place yourself, your feelings, your wants, your needs, your comfort, and your view of the world far above those of anyone else and then do all that is necessary to make sure you never need do any different.
Because when someone makes a post like this about the n-word slur and white people who use it and then act afraid of Black people in public settings? The correct response (or at least the minimally decent one) is, ”Wow. That’s very true. Do I do that? I better make sure to eradicate the n-word from my vocabulary and thinking as a white person. I should make a point to learn about that word and it’s harmful use against Black people and communities so I can be more away. Maybe I also do the head down thing in public. I should go read more about it so I can learn how it’s harmful and ways to do better. Oh, hello there Mr. Google. Can you help me find some things that have already been written on this topic?”
That’s the response you need to be giving at the very least. And if you aren’t, if you’re not even trying to give a different once besides “We’re not all like that! Stop generalizing us based on your completely correct observations about how a VAST NUMBER OF US WHITE PEOPLE HAVE ACTED!” - then yes you are EXACTLY like that.
The amount of white whine in comments for the poster about racism and “fair skin” is kind of making me facepalm so much right now.
Oh, fellow white people. That ad? Was mild. It was a mild and rather polite way of trying to tell you something that’s been an obvious fact…
yes, racism exists. That’s a hard truth. But why should I be blamed for something my ancestors may or may not have done? why should I have to take responsibility for somehting that may not even relate to myself or my family?
racism still exists, yes, but you know what?
things have improved so much now!! it’s a crime what’s happened in the past, but.. it’s the past! what about “irish need not apply”? that’s racism too, and guess what.. omg irish people are white!!!!!!!!!!
i’m not afraid to point out racism, but when does equal rights become “let’s blame everything on white people”?
for the record, i see nothing wrong with that poster. it’s trying to make me feel guilty for something i haven’t done that i dislike :\
First, let me issue you your very own “Fuck you, you privilege denying, white supremacy lovin’ asswaffle”. It’s free, on the house. And there’s more where it came from.
I was wondering when somebody would bring White Whine to the party and start in with the whitesplaining and the excuses and the “but but but” and the “but that was sooooo long ago” and the “but the Irish were discriminated against!”
Excuse me while I go laugh at such a textbook example of defensive white fail.
Oh, fellow white person. Let’s get you a seat on the Clueless White Person bus before you wave your ass in anymore faces.
If you’re white, everything I listed has EVERYTHING FUCKING THING to do with you and your family. Right now. Today. Because you benefit from it. And the biggest benefit is getting to be utterly, blissfully ignorant of what those benefits are or how woven into your daily life they are. A few BAJILLION people of color/non-white people who get slammed in the face by this fact have said this over and over and over.
But you don’t want to listen to that because then you won’t get to automatically feel comfortable just because you’re white. Because you might have to earn things that you’ve been handed freely your entire life.
Because you might just have to consider how much in your life you don’t deserve and just how drenched in other people’s blood, sweat, and tears it is.
So, hey, instead of learning and doing some thinking, come and cry me a river of those nice white tears. Bawl at me about how baaaaaaaaaaaaad you feel. Try to derail by bringing up the “but, but, they were mean to Irish people, too” bullshit (please don’t think you’re original, every third white person who tries to derail pulls that crap). Try to distance yourself and make false dichotomies and pretend that telling the truth about the past and the present is “blaming everything on white people”. Make other people’s realities and pain about you, you, you.
And then point me to the part of your response that is supposed to make a person of color feel better or feel like they’ll be listened to by white people. Please. Highlight it for me. Show me how your response isn’t telling PoC: “Look, your history doesn’t matter to me, and the things you live through aren’t MY problem. Sorry you get treated horribly, but I’m getting treated just fine so I don’t want to have to think about it anymore!”
Yeah, I can see how willing you are to point out racism.
This is perhaps the main reason (white) social justice activists, be it on tumblr or in real life sketch me out. The very use of the word “justice” in this way gives me pause. What good is social justice in a society where justice has been systematically defined and enacted so as to favor the dominate ideology, only siding with the marginalized when the gulf between principle and practice becomes to large to simply rationalize or ignore?
Social justice would seem to be nothing more than a way to ‘philosophize disgrace’ and prevent the revolutionary destruction of the social order which uses its justice as a tool to oppress and marginalize
I didn’t even think of it that way, but you’re right. Justice has been notoriously used to refer to the spoils gained by the winner, hasn’t it?
So where does it go from here?
I think the first thing is that it needs a new turn of phrase.
Instead of “Social Justice”, let’s call it “Social Upturning”. I thought of “Uprooting” at first, but that sounds too violent.
I actually like uprooting because it sounds violent. Because I think that’s necessary. White people play that language game, let’s take them to task on OUR rules.
If my opinion as an uprootee isn’t intrusive…
Uprooting really feels like a really evocative description to me, compared to “upturning”. It’s not as easy flipping over a table (what “upturning” calls to mind), it sounds like you’re fighting something deep and entrenched with a lot of little tiny branches. If you just chop down the obvious growth on the surface, it’ll grow right back, and even if you attack the root it’s hard to know you killed it.
And from the point of view of people brought up in whiteness: “uprooting” in the figurative sense is what it takes. We have to be removed from that element of our upbringing, or remove it from ourselves.
Once again, AE reads my mind, cause this is the other reason I liked it so much. Tree-trimming at racism is what white people have been doing. They cut a couple of branches and go “hey look at what we’re doing, isn’t that nice?” But everyone knows when you don’t get the root of the weed, it just comes back.
Racial-based hate crimes still make up like 49% of all hate crimes, period. That basically means that there is NOTHING as dangerous in this world as being non-white. Anti-black hate crimes make up nearly 3/4s of all racial hate crimes.
There’s just nothing in this world as dangerous as being black. Nothing at all.
And that’s got studies behind it.
It’s not like I needed statistical confirmation of this because I already knew it, but damn. It hurts more when you read it like this.
I think that’s what’s necessary though. For not just non-black people to see it, but for us to realize that none of this shit is in our minds or imaginary or oversensitivity or overreacting.
Exactly. Because there are some mornings when I wake up and I just DO NOT WANT to deal with the bullshit I know I’m gonna have to face and for just one quick second I start to doubt whether it’s really as bad as I think it is. And then I get the proverbial slap in the face that reminds me it’s not as bad as I think it is. It’s worse.
YES. There have been days where I am so tired and angry and confused and wondering what more I can say to get these white people to understand, and wondering if there is really just something I am somehow missing, maybe I’m overexaggerating, maybe it is just me.
But, it’s really not. I have to live my life in fear of whiteness.
At the same time though? I’m so much happier than I ever was when I was seriously black-hating. Even though I have less friends, even though I’ve pulled away from all the things I used to do…I have much more self-love right this moment than I’ve had since I was a small child.
the bolded. yasssss
The participants – all white – watched simple videos in which men of different races picked up a glass and took a sip of water. They watched white, black, South Asian and East Asian men perform the task.
Typically, when people observe others perform a simple task, their motor cortex region fires similarly to when they are performing the task themselves. However, the UofT research team, led by PhD student Jennifer Gutsell and Assistant Professor Dr. Michael Inzlicht, found that participants’ motor cortex was significantly less likely to fire when they watched the visible minority men perform the simple task. In some cases when participants watched the non-white men performing the task, their brains actually registered as little activity as when they watched a blank screen…
The trend was even more pronounced for participants who scored high on a test measuring subtle racism, says Gutsell.
[TW: Examples of frequent, offensive use of the n-word in URL’s and other grossly anti-Black/racist rhetoric!]
I’m about to write an post, as well as a guest post to a well-known external blog about this, and if need be, I will submit it to my local news organization for review, and I need for you to understand that before I proceed. This is not something you will be able to explain away or cover up. There is already a blog post that is spreading across tumblr about this, so it’s not like no one is going to hear about it. It’s already out there. Your staff has made a mistake.
You recently removed a blog titled deathtoallwhitepeople from your servers. This is understandable, and was expected, as the entire reason it was created was to point out the hypocrisy in how certain users are well-treated at the expense of others. However, you appear to have missed all of the following blogs:
These blog titles are equally reprehensible, equally offensive, and violate your Terms of Service in the same way. I can’t imagine why they are all allowed to remain.
I also need to point out that the 1st Amendment protects private citizens against governmental censorship. It does not provide protections against the actions of a private company, like yours. You have the option — the power — to do something about this, to stop such hateful terms from being used against a group of people who are being harmed and oppressed by them. You’ve already chosen to use that power, and therein lies the hypocrisy: you didn’t protect the free speech of the person or persons who started the deathtoallwhitepeople blog, or protect other people of color from the death threats they reported to you.
In doing what you have done, you let all of the people who were involved, along with anyone who is reading and reblogging the related posts, know that you care for the so-called 1st Amendment rights of white persons, but none for the rights of people of color.
I am disgusted by your actions, and ask that you treat your members the same — that you remove blogs that use the word “nigger” in their title, and do not allow anyone to use it in their URLs in the future.
I look forward to your prompt response.
Everybody, please, reblog the shit out of this.
mimi is out here makin moves!!
Of being able to go the the movies and see full, 2 and a half hour features of nothing but white people. (Not to mention if someone makes a movie with a good amount of black people, suddenly its a niche film just for blacks, but white movies are for all, ya’ll!)
Its like we worship them on the daily. On our computer screens, our TV screens, our movie screens. With our hair, with our learned capitalism, our jesus-love. Worship worship worship.
Do any of them even KNOW that they are not the world’s majority?
When you are not, at all, the world’s majority of the population, yet you dominate in such a way that it is impossible to live in any “developed” part of the world without being effected by beauty standards that adhere to your people, enjoy entertainment that is so heavily populated by your people, when you and your white skin have become the norm for us all, when you can walk through the financial district of NYC amongst $4000/mo. studio apartments, all rented by people that look like you, with doormen/maids/homeless folk that look like me, how do you NOT see your privilege?
How does that bootstrap/”we worked hard”/”we gave you your rights” drivel really cloud the vision so successfully? What, you think brown/black skin folks are inherently ALL lazy? Let’s think about this. I mean look around, what much is different between now and the technical slave state we were in not that long ago?
What really is different? I’m still serving your pleasure, smiling in your face, working overtime constantly just for the bare minimum while you lavish about. Just to be able to afford a not-so-sturdy roof over my head and the cheapest food I can find. Really. The amount you are handed is just infuriating. How do you not see?
How did we come to praise and aspire to be like the people who have and still are oppressed/oppressing us? We want to be billionaires so freaking bad? What? No. Snap out of it. That’s how we got here in the first place.
I don’t want a white mask. I don’t want a perm. I don’t want to be a capitalist. I do not want to be you, I want to end you. I want to live. I want people who look like me to be able to live to. To eat. Not to die working just to live, that is ass backwards.
I’m so tired of ya’ll.
When little Black girls are talking about getting nose jobs to look more Eurocentric, you know it’s time for a real change.
I bolded the parts that are especially inherent to today’s society.
now let’s see how many people get pissed because they don’t understand what you mean by whiteness or what you meant at all and how many say you’re “generalizing” *sits back in my seat*
Seeeriously! I find feministjenn and stogu’s whole line of reasoning to actually be pretty offensive, here. And like, I have an anxiety disorder, panic attacks, PTSD and a history of abusers who would use yelling as a form of triggering/manipulating me into submission.
I still think it’s some unchecked-privileged bullshit to cry oppression and trigger when the CONSEQUENCES OF YOUR OPPRESSIVE ACTIONS are someone getting angry/upset enough to yell at you. For three reasons:
1. Legitimate, healthy anger and abusive rage/bullying are two EXTREMELY FUCKING DIFFERENT things, and it’s pretty manipulative and disingenuous in and of itself to equate the two. Especially given that I’ve SEEN a lot of bullying go on in on-line SJ communities, and does it ever get called out when the person being bullied is less privileged than the person/people doing the bullying? nah, brah.
2. If your reaction to someone being openly pissed at you for actions that negatively impacted their mental health, is to shut them down by saying that their anger at you is negatively affecting YOUR mental health, I always have to seriously wonder why you think your mental health is de facto more important than theirs, and more important than accountability for your own actions.
And finally - and (to me) most importantly - you know what?
3. feministjenn’s whole “oh so people who are triggered by yelling/have anxiety/have PTSD etc can’t engage in social justice dialogue??” thing - well, I mean, most of us - at least those of us who I know - DO ALREADY limit our engagement with this sort of thing, and monitor ourselves/our emotional states when we do engage. A big part of engaging in dialogue/activism around social justice issues for me has been drawing and enforcing boundaries, learning when to disengage, etc. AND THAT’S FINE. THAT IS HEALTHY FOR ME TO DO. IT IS NOT ABLEIST TO ENCOURAGE ME TO DO THAT. IT IS NOT ABLEIST TO WARN PEOPLE THAT THE DISCUSSIONS THEY ARE ABOUT TO ENTER INTO ARE LOADED WITH CENTURIES OF HISTORY AND HEAVY PERSONAL LIVED EXPERIENCES OF OPPRESSION, AND THAT PEOPLE WON’T ALWAYS BE NICE AND USE INSIDE VOICES.
Saying that it’s “ableist” to assert your right to express anger over legit oppressive shit, AND TO WARN PEOPLE THAT YOU HAVE NO QUALMS ABOUT DOING SO, SPECIFICALLY, because then “people might not engage with the discussion”, is like saying that it’s “ableist” to put a trigger warning on an article about sexual assault because then survivors of sexual assault might not read the article. It is important to write about sexual assault, just like it is important to express, validate, and respect peoples’ anger over their own oppression(s). Everyone has the right to self-determine if they can handle that, and if they can’t, they have the right to not engage, but they do NOT have the right to shut down the discussion because they, individually, cannot engage. Even if/when they themselves are the subject of the discussion.
Because this really just needed a post of it’s own.
Especially WRT to the part about how rarely people give a shit when the person being bullied in an SJ discussion is LESS privileged than the bully. It’s ALWAYS stanning for the more privileged people. ALWAYS.
THAT IS DOING IT WRONG.
Bless this post. Bless everything about it. And bless missvoltairine for speaking sense about this. I’m all for being careful and accomodating about PTSD and triggers and what not, but it’s like the OP (of the post that this post is referring to) doesn’t think that PoC have triggers and mental health things they deal with as well.
Not to mention that anything who’s end result is telling PoC that they need to be quiet or not express themselves in certain ways or otherwise conform to white people’s standards or in anyway step down from taking care of themselves and doing what they need to do in order to accomodate white folks is a big ol’ red flag for me.
Rule of thumb should be: if the sum total of your argument is: “These [insert group of marginalized people] need to not do something because it makes [insert privileged person/s] uncomfortable in some way” then it it’s a bad argument and invalid on its face.
[Image: The front cover of an August 1965 issue of Ebony magazine that features a black background with the white silhouette of a face on the right side and next to it the text: “The White Problem in America”.]
My point of view certainly is formed by my history, and it is probable that only a creature despised by history finds history a questionable matter. On the other hand, people who imagine history flatters them (as it does, indeed, since they wrote it) are impaled on their history like a butterfly on a pin and become incapable of seeing or changing themselves, or the world.
This is the place in which, it seems to me, most white Americans find themselves. Impaled. They are dimly, or vividly, aware that the history they have fed themselves is mainly a lie, but they do not know how to release themselves from it, and they suffer enormously from the resulting personal incoherence. This incoherence is heard nowhere more plainly than in those stammering, terrified dialogues white Americans sometimes entertain with that black conscience, the black man in America.
The nature of this stammering can be reduced to a plea: Do not blame me. I was not there. I did not do it. My history has nothing to do with Europe or the slave trade. Anyway, it was your chiefs who sold you to me. I was not present on the middle passage. I am not responsible for the textile mills of Manchester, or the cotton fields of Mississippi. Besides, consider how the English, too, suffered in those mills and in those awful cities! I also despise the governors of Southern states and the sheriffs of Southern counties, and I also want your child to have a decent education and rise as high as his capabilities will permit. I have nothing against you, nothing! What have you got against me? What do you want? But, on the same day, in another gathering, and in the most private chamber of his heart always, the white American, remains proud of that history for which he does not wish to pay, and from which, materially, he has profited so much.
On that same day, in another gathering, and in the most private chamber of his heart always, the black American finds himself facing the terrible roster of his lost: the dead, black junkie; the defeated, black father; the unutterably weary, black mother; the unutterably ruined black girl. And one begins to suspect an awful thing: that people believe that they deserve their history, and that when they operate on this belief, they perish. But one knows that they can scarcely avoid believing that they deserve it; one’s short time on this earth is very mysterious and very dark and very hard. I have known many black men and women and black boys and girls who really believed that it was better to be white than black, whose lives were ruined or ended by this belief; and I, myself, carried the seeds of this destruction within me for a long time.
This whole fight with Occupy Memphis shows us to what extent that it is really difficult for oppressed POC’s and whites activists to work together on a principled basis, in this the most dynamic struggle in decades, the OWS, but has the same Achilles heel as previous coalitions over the years in America:, internal racism and domination, which relegates peoples of color to the to the activist ghetto. It needs to be said again, that there is not going to be a revolution which does not include Blacks not just taking equal part, but in the front ranks with their struggles taking center stage. This society is based on slavery and the exploitation of the labor, land theft, and mass murder of POC: Indigenous, African, and other oppressed peoples. Capitalism got its very start in America from slavery, but these folks try to pretend that is not the case, and this is just the movement of the white working class. We need to reject racism and censorship by the Left, not just the state or corporations.