A Soft Ratchet

Where the smartest Chickenheads roam

Posts tagged racism

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23 Quotes That Perfectly Explain Racism (To People Who Don't "See Color")

Black and Third World people are expected to educate white people as to our humanity. Women are expected to educate men. Lesbians and gay men are expected to educate the heterosexual world. The oppressors maintain their position and evade their responsibility for their own actions. There is a constant drain of energy which might be better used in redefining ourselves and devising realistic scenarios for altering the present and constructing the future. Audre Lorde

Filed under race racism white privilege

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father’s day

the one day a year black folk wanna talk about fatherless children and deadbeat dads

but only in the context to ranting about single mothers who celebrate that day as their own too

the other 363 days of the year radio silence

we so scared of airing our dirty laundry in front of white folks; we can’t even gather the nerve to throw some shit in the wash

black folks on fathers day stay spraying febreeze to cover up the funk

Filed under black people fathersday dirty laundry deadbeat dad racism sexism black women black women need love

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on ‘Ghetto’ Names

a while back there was a video poking jest at “ghetto names” I get the point…’ghetto’ or made up names* set kids up for failure, so the little boy I dreamed of having when I was little that I was gonna name Casino probably would have a harder time getting a job than say my little girl who I wanted to name Charlie… then again Charlie would probably get some male privilege because of her assumed gender, but at any rate, I’m saying I’m aware of this…. But I’m also saying I disagree with it. Not just cause I love creativity, but because its just low tech assimilation. Same shit immigrants do because American’s are too lazy to learn how to pronounce foreign names.

In a recent conversation my friend asked me would I be comfortable going to see Dr. Asshole (pronounced ash-o-ley) and after some thought I realized for me it had more to do with where I was seeing them… the county clinic can be a little more sketchy** than say, a private practice in Grosse Pointe. Because of your surrounds Dr. Asshole may seem more or less competent. All this means to me is that the babies with the interesting names got to work harder…. And I know we don’t wanna add any more work on kids who already got to fight racism, sexism and poverty, but what I think by backing down we are again giving up our rights to the approval of larger society.

Which is my other point, that this is, my favorite concept in the world, socially constructed. We determine what’s a ‘normal’ name and what isn’t and shit is defined as normal just cause everyone else is doing it. In the residence hall I oversee, I have around 15 Caitlins,  12 Stephanies, 10 Annes, 8 Amandas, 5 Brookes,  7 Chelseas, and 8 Jennifers, most of these all spelled different, which is funny cause even spelling your name different, even if it’s a ‘normal’ name, is considered ghetto…. Nevertheless, The point I’m trying to make is that homogeneous names are dumb. I clearly remember points in this semester where I sent info to the wrong Chelsea, or had several confusing conversations about the Brooke with the roommate issue or the 3 roommate change forms where Catlin who lived with Stephaney wanted to move in with Stephanie, so Stephaney requested to move with Kaitlyn. 

As I said, we, well society, determine the norm and this determination is completely arbitrary. The most popular, or normal names are taken from the bible- Mary, Joseph, John, Paul, Ruth, and so on.. But there are some names in the bible we don’t use- Jezebel, Herod, Jephtah, Bathsheba, Moses, to name a few… If someone names their child one of these not so common biblical names what do we think? religious fanatic? Hoodrat?

Why isn’t Jephtah the same as Joseph? They come from the same source. It’s all about what we deem an appropriate way to express your aspirations, hopes, wishes and creativity for and through your child. It is a form of social control and It’s clear that it is not only prejudice but ridicules for people to make assumptions about someone based on their names. I’ve had theories in the past about guys named john and I jump to conclusions about people who have the same name as someone I had a bad interaction with in the past. But that’s equally ridiculous. If someone didn’t hire you cause the last Bob who worked there fucked his daughter you’d be ready to sue for discrimination… but isn’t that the same thing? When La-a (pronounced LaDasha) comes for the interview and isn’t hired because it is assumed that she is gonna take off work because she got a bunch of kids and drama with her baby daddy is gonna interfere with her performance that is the same assumption based on bad experiences…. And it’s plain racist.

In a nutshell, I say name your kids Izreal, Quocvan, DaPlaya, and Orangello….. And educate the shit out of them so all those people talking shit can address them as Dr Aqualina Smith.Cause no matter what your names is following, it with “can I take you order” don’t make you no better than Cashmonea


*All names are made up.. They didn’t just exist and then God made man to so they would have purpose….

**I actually hate that word because the only time I hear it is from white folk who are trying to nicely say a place is heavily populated by black and brown people… but that’s why I used it… I digress

Filed under racism names ghetto ghetto names white supremacy what's in a name

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one of the worst parts about racism/ homophobia/ sexism/ microaggression/ etc

is long after the person has made their joke, expressed their “opinion”, or took action, there is another person who sees it and knows its wrong. if they don’t react at that time it stays with them, they think about it, replay it in their minds and start to become angry, not at the perpetrator, but at themselves, for their inaction or lack of ability to quickly find the right way to address it

this is what drive oppressed people to drink, to smoke, to pain

the self punishment for not managing someone else s actions. Actions that hurt them and not the person doing it. The feeling that we are responsible to confronting others, even those who let us down because we saw them as friends

i’m still struggle with that, because now that i’m in my late 20s i realize i waste my energy interacting with people who don’t respect me or value my words, meaning our interaction will have no positive effect. the questions i have to ask myself now is “what will it do for me? what will it do for them?” the 2nd questions is laughable. why the fuck am i asking what my interaction can do for a racist… but really i am say:

what can this do for me: is this a person i will have to interact with often and are their actions making it difficult for me to do my job/ live my life? will i feel better after confronting them

what can this do for them: this question is less about them and more about society- will me confronting them move them to reconsider their stance, words, actions. are they fertile ground where i can plant a seed or nah?

i spent a lot of time in my early 20s confronting people on their shit and its emotionally taxing. now i pick my battles, i know if i confront another str8 person on their homophobia that means more than pull aside a racist stranger. i also know, if this is a person i interact with socially, who cares about my feels and opinion, me calling them out will be more impactful than speaking to someone who can give 2 shits about my life, but we coexist in the same department.

… thing is, even knowing this, the guilt sits with me…..and that’s the thing with racism/ sexism/ homophobia/ microagressions/ etc

oppressed people still have to do the heavy lifting of the burden of guilt for their oppressors actions

Filed under oppression racism sexism homophobia poc heterosexual misogyny allies

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Stand alone complex

With racism and stereotypes nothing else maters
Doctor or drug dealer
Mother or hooker
Nun or stripper
Your identity is no longer your’s. Who you are lives in the mind of the person in power.
This is why POC fear for the safety of their children and themselves. Racism has nothing to do with wrong place/ wrong time. Because you are living in the place you shouldn’t be; in your skin, in America. There is no safe haven; there is no safe word when you are always on the receiving end of a sadist’s stress relief
We can dress ourselves up; we can change our voices, hair, musical taste, food. We can assimilate, but we cannot vitiligo. We cannot make our children into chameleons so they can blend into their surroundings for safety
But most of all, the lesson we have learned is we can never NEVER let our guard down. We must maintain an acceptable level of professionalism (read: whiteness) even when we are at home, in our neighborhoods, in stores, in social settings. We must remain unseen.
We were once adults perpetually referred to as ‘Boy’ or ’Girl’. This meaning still surfaces because we still live by the rule that the bastard children of America should be seen and not heard

Filed under poc trayvon martin micheal dunn White People racism white privilege Injustice

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just a suggestion:
if you are a member of the majority i wouldn’t suggest “educating” minorities who use slurs about their own group.
its patronizing and you sound stupid trying to tell a gay person the history of the F word or a black person the history of the N word like they don’t carry that shit on their backs

trust that even if they somehow didn’t know the latin roots of the word they know that when certain lips curve around that F or that N they are sending words of warning, alarm calls that danger is near.
just know that just cause you just recently cracked open a book or took soc 101 doesn’t give you a PhD to read.
that’s a lesson better taught from the mothers and fathers who lived it than from a savior who often times sounds more like someone complaining that they can’t use it than person with any standing to speak on
also its none of your damn business

Filed under homophobia racism racial tension savior complex well meaning white folk well meaning str8 folk

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this is sick and sad. 1. a baby is dead, period, regardless of a robbery gone wrong or bat shit crazy parents. 2. the whole notion behind the Meme 3. this is another example of how racism hurts whites. we are so quick to accept “the black guy did it” that we stop looking for the real answer, leaving the actual guilty parties free to possibly do it again. I’m interested to see how this plays out or if we even hear anything else.
honestly, i don’t think this got big news because, as the author said, the story of black criminal and white victim is part of the American narrative, it was neat, arrested and wrapped in a bow, despite the package not fitting.
given i am selective about who i am friends with on FB, this is the 1st time I’ve heard about this meme or this story:

“…exploiting the tragic murder of a baby—which resulted, by the way, in the immediate incarceration of two black teenagers—in order to bolster some malformed political plank about the systemic oppression of white Americans is a shockingly cynical move. In the same breath that the creator of this meme claims white people are the true victims, not the drivers and beneficiaries, of American racism, they change the murdered baby’s last name from his father’s to his mother’s. Antonio Santiago magically becomes Antonio West somewhere in the transition from news story to Facebook meme. They do this because they know that their propaganda is specifically targeted at people whose capacity for caring about a dead baby is directly proportional to the whiteness of that baby. They do this because they know that they are full of shit. They do this because they are not the victims of racism—they are racist.

And, turns out, they might be even more full of shit than anyone realized. Recent evidence in the Antonio Santiago case reveals that both of the baby’s parents—Sherry West and Louis Santiago—had gunshot residue on their hands on the day of the shooting. According to West, Santiago had also been stalking her and accusing her of killing their child…Additionally, in the days following the shooting, Sherry West’s 21-year-old daughter expressed concerns to police about her mother’s story:

Glassey said she started to have her doubts after receiving a phone call from her mother telling her that her brother, Antonio Santiago, had been killed. She claims the night of the shooting her mother asked, “How soon do you think life insurance policy will send me a check?”

…Glassey says her mother is bipolar and has schizophrenic tendencies. She believes her mother is on medication but could not tell me any prescriptions specifically.

“She changed her story she told me the baby was shot first and then she told me she was shot first,” said Glassey.

But, as Nsenga K. Burton at The Root points out, white women blaming black men for their own misdeeds is nothing new. Children being killed in domestic violence incidents—as revenge or collateral damage—is nothing new. Black suspects and their families not cooperating meekly with the authorities who routinely oppress and betray them is nothing new. If the George Zimmerman verdict tells us one thing, it’s that “blackness = guilt” is such a comfortable narrative that we apply it even to unarmed children. And “whiteness = credibility” is so entrenched that we take white people at their word, as long as their word is “but a black guy scared me!” We don’t know the facts of the Baby Santiago case—we only know the implications, what seems to be true—and those implications conveniently fit the same narrative that acquitted George Zimmerman. That warrants examination.”

Filed under racial tension racism murder

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I find it funny when people ask why do black people have attitudes? why are women so emotional? Why are gay folk so secretive? As if its genetic and not a natural response to how society treats us. If ur hostile towards me why wouldn’t i have an attitude or respond emotionally or just not share shit I know you will punish me for. That’s tunnel vision for u though, just a grown up version of the classic ” Why do all the black kids sit together in the cafeteria” when we were never invited to sit anywhere else….

it called self reflection

Filed under racism whiteness homophobia heteronoromativity sexism misogyny

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Louisiana woman says 3 racist men set her on fire

A 20-year-old black woman said she was set on fire by three men who wrote the initials KKK and a racial slur on her car in northeastern Louisiana, police said Monday…The FBI is investigating the attack as a possible hate crime, but no arrests had been made as of late Monday, Lewis said. She said Moffitt was in critical condition at a hospital and that some of her injuries were third-degree burns.

Filed under racism KKK hate crime