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Not everything is black and white..

I am so sick of idiots playing the fucking race cards.

Seriously.

"I forgot he was black." Wtf? Hmm, he's black. Woo. And? Just because someone is black, white, red, yellow, or pink and white checkered with day-glo green zig-zags, it doesn't make them act a certain way. That comment, as well intentioned as it may (or may not) have been, was just ignorant.

I get the point of people being offended by that, I really do, but I also take issue with something said by a black woman as well:

Sophia Nelson, a black attorney, former lobbyist and founder of PoliticalIntersection.com, which focuses on politics, race and gender, said she has been offended by people calling her articulate and intelligent: "That's saying that people who look like me normally aren't those things."

No. You idiot, you. That's like saying you appear to be articulate and intelligent. Should I- a female Native American and Caucasian mix- take offense when someone tries to compliment me by calling me intelligent and well-spoken? No. I'm going to thank them and more than likely pawn off the compliment with something witty in return.

And it only goes to show once more that idiots, no matter the race, creed, sexual persuasion, age or gender, will still go out of their way to take issue with things.

As ignorant as that first comment was, that second comment? It was just as bad. I'm so sick of the whole walking on eggshells bullshit so many people dance around, especially as of late.

You're black. Get over it.

I'm white. Get over it.

You and I? We still bleed red when you prick us. We both breathe oxygen, need food and water and sunlight to live and we both have feelings, emotions, wants and needs and goals we'd like to accomplish.

Get over your fucking skin color.

Unless you don't want to.

In which case, at least have the balls to say, "I'm black, I'm racist, and I think everyone owes me the world." Or, in the case of the white guy down the street: "I'm white, I'm racist, and I think no one can do anything as well as I can."

Either way, maybe we should just hand out shotguns and swords and let everyone kill each other off from their own stupidity. Because really, it doesn't matter what color the skin is- we'll still find some way of making ourselves morally superior to some other group.

Morons.

(no subject)

Date: Jan. 29th, 2010 02:47 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] sydneyrodriguez.livejournal.com
So...people are getting offended because Matthews actually saw Obama as simply a person, and skin color, for once, didn't factor into it?

I seriously don't get it.

Even if the man thought about Obama's race the other 23 hours of the day, Obama's charisma was still able to pull him beyond thinking that, and Matthews realized this. And because he realized it, if he was thinking about it before, he can consciously work to change that. Isn't that what this has been about for the past 50 years?

And Sophia Nelson is a moron for taking offense to such a compliment.

Frankly, in my opinion, it speaks far more about the person getting offended at stuff like that than it does about "the state of things these days," or whatever.

I remember one time, my mom told me a story about how she was at lunch with a female friend of her's and my mom was talking about a company that she referred to as "a white women's slave shop." Her friend asked her what she meant, because she'd never heard the phrase before. My mom replied with, "they don't hire men, and they don't hired bla..." and it was only then that it registered with my mom that her friend was black.

That, in my opinion, is the way it should be. Skin color shouldn't register any more than eye color or hair color or any other feature. Use it to add to the list of descriptive words to form that mental image of that person to store in your mind, sure, but it shouldn't have any other meaning beyond that, and it sure as hell shouldn't affect your opinion of them as a person.

(no subject)

Date: Feb. 2nd, 2010 04:59 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] arualanne.livejournal.com
you make a very good point. What is sad is that living up North in Michigan (as I can't speak for all Northern states) I found that mainly that is the mentality. Skin color is a way to describe someone nothing more, and when it is more the person admits they don't like X group blah blah blah and most people will roll their eyes and mark them down as a nit wit and go on with the day or drown them out. Down here in Louisiana, however it is a much different reaction to that sort of thing. They would never say they don't like x group when anyone of that group is around or they think they aren't around friends, but the second they think they can they berate that group horribly and when they do the rest of the people around join in with it rather than drown the person out or think he is a nit wit. It is actually one of the shocking things coming down here as everyone treats that sort of behavior as normal and okay to do. I personally don't feel that it is and am pretty offended when they do it, but when everyone in the room is doing it it is hard to reprimand anyone, so I stay pretty quiet or when asked my opinion I tell that that they are being pretty bad, they just chuck it up to the fact that I am a Yankee (I have been called this I don't know how many times even though I hail from Michigan, not the North East). It is bad down here and I am sure in many other areas of the country.

I don't know if that is the state of the world and I do beleive in time it can be changed if we all work together to make black and white merely an insignificant detail like they wore an orange shirt, but it just isn't the case yet. I do think we are all way too touchy nowadays though and we all regardless of race need to work on being less defensive.

(no subject)

Date: Feb. 2nd, 2010 05:18 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] sydneyrodriguez.livejournal.com
I'm on my phone so I'll respond more later but I just wanted to note that afaik Yankee is a term used in the south for anyone from the north. Iirc, it's a reference to the Mason-Dixon line.

(no subject)

Date: Feb. 2nd, 2010 05:46 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] arualanne.livejournal.com
yes see I know this, but a True yankee isn't just someone north of the mason dixon line and it is just one more instance of a blanket term for people that could be offensive. That would be like me calling someone from say Nevada a Confederate just because they are south of the mason-Dixon line. I have a feeling that they wouldn't appreciate it, or even better a southern Californian that. I don't take offense to it, it just doesn't make a whole lot of sense to me that something like that should matter in the same country. We are all Americans.

(no subject)

Date: Feb. 2nd, 2010 06:24 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] shadows-wolf06.livejournal.com
I refer to myself as a Yankee because I'm from the North.

Anyone who takes offense to the term need to get over themselves. It's not exactly like we're still in the War.

(no subject)

Date: Feb. 2nd, 2010 06:47 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] arualanne.livejournal.com
That is my point though, we aren't at war, why are we still using the term to describe northerners. We don't use Confederate to describe the southerners, so what is the point in labeling people from the North like that? I just don't get it. I am not upset by it, but it seems to serve no purpose than to have a convenient way to categorize people whether they fit in the group or not for no better reason than to write them off cause they wouldn't understand the culture here or something. That is how I feel when they use it as they generally only call me that when I don't join in on the black and white issue or don't know what a satsuma is (an orange I found out) or random stuff like that. It is almost a derogatory term the way they use it. *Shrugs* but I figure whatever as I am proud to be from North of the Line as well I don't particularly care for it down here and one day I will move back.

(no subject)

Date: Feb. 2nd, 2010 07:00 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] shadows-wolf06.livejournal.com
::shrugs::

Personally, I refer to myself just as easily as a Canuk as my mother's side of the family is French-Canadian.

Sure. Some people use it in a derogatory manner, but I just use it to describe my family's heritage.

(no subject)

Date: Feb. 2nd, 2010 07:41 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] arualanne.livejournal.com
lol, see that is the point though. It is how words are used and not the words themselves. I think we don't need to be as sensitive about the choice of words, but people need to think about how they use their words and how it impacts other people. Yankee is the least of my worries as really for the most part unless you get someone who doesn't like white people (mainly Irish and then a mutt mixture of english and some native american= lily white so pail you can see through me) I have it pretty easy. Down here there are many people who do not that tend to be of a minority ethnicity, however it seems to run both ways and each side of the populace is way oversensitive and defensive about everything. It is sad as it is just barely under the surface, so visit for a day or two and it can be anywhere in America, stay here a couple of months and you find out fast that you are in the deep deep south and the prejudices and actions are still there on both side, just thinly veiled. I wish I could describe it better, but I think it really is something you have to experience to truly understand, especially coming from a Northern perspective where you are mainly taught that people are just people no matter the race (although you do have the few shinning examples of prejudiced beleifs alive and well in some small towns) and then coming to the South where that isn't the perspective traditionally. I find the younger people tend to be a little more tolerant, but talking to the older generation that are my parents age is eye opening. What is sad is that they pass it on to their children and reinforce it and I have seen it happen. It is a sad vicious cycle.

Here you see I am talking more race issues and less cultural sensitivity. I do feel we are so far PC as to be repressed as a society as we are all afraid we might hurt someone's feelings and then be labeled racist or whatnot. We need to all learn to get along as we are all people at the heart of it. That though tends to be a problem if parents are teaching children that x group is one step above animals or slinging about names that compare them with animals every time they talk about them (here I speak about how a coworker tends to talk about any other race but white people). It is bad as it is the first step to making people no longer appear human and to then start breading hate and a callous attitude about what is done to those people.

We all need to relax and realize we are all people, but at the same time we all need to learn to respect the fact that we are all people and deserving of basic polite behavior.

I don't know I am tired and at work and I think I have started rambling. Sorry.

(no subject)

Date: Feb. 3rd, 2010 01:07 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] shadows-wolf06.livejournal.com
When I moved down to South Carolina to help my sister-in-law out while she was pregnant with Mara Beth (my brother was doing a stint overseas as a civilian something-or-other), I was absolutely floored by people's attitudes down there.

And while no one really talked about it, it was obvious that those of Caucasian origin were far more favored over the other races. My first time to Arby's was an eye-opener as I could subconsciously register that something was odd about the restaurant as soon as I entered it, but it took me a couple of minutes to realize that the only white worker was the manager- everyone else was either black or mexican.

There were other small things that showed the racial prejudices, too- one day I was standing in line at Wal*Mart and another register opened up. A black woman and myself scurried over to her line and the other woman got there first. The cashier told me to come on up and she'd help me first, of which, I declined, telling her the other woman was first. "No, no darlin, you were. I'll take you first." That was her reply. I told her I was in no hurry and to go ahead and take the other woman. The look of confusion, astonishment and surprise on the other lady's face was saddening to me as... well, it's just not the way things should be.

(no subject)

Date: Feb. 3rd, 2010 02:56 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] arualanne.livejournal.com
exactly it is a lot like that here too. Just a lot of little things that aren't directly said, but just socially accepted that amount to something horrible. What is sad is that they don't see it, it is just the way things have always been and according to them the natural order of things. It is really sad, although if you do think about it it has been a little bit of time and a lot of progress in that reguard. Less than 100 years and their whole way of life has changed. I suppose it would be too much to ask not to have some residual effects from that, which seem to be a general dislike of each other and bitterness over all of it on both sides. Eventually if we all keep working at it, I don't think it will be as bad. They need more people though to notice things like we have and to work to correct that sort of thing.

(no subject)

Date: Feb. 2nd, 2010 07:43 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] sydneyrodriguez.livejournal.com
Ironically, only other Americans use the term "Yankee" to reference people from former Union states. When used by people from other countries, "Yankee" means anyone from America, regardless of where at in America.

(no subject)

Date: Feb. 2nd, 2010 07:53 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] arualanne.livejournal.com
see isn't it funny how words get used. What is really funny is that living in Michigan I knew what the term was, but had never heard it used about a person. I hear it a lot down here in reference to me. It is just something I never really identified with. (Especially since technically I lived in Michigan, but I was born a southern Californian, Ventura to be exact, although I did spend the time from age 4-26 there, so sure.)

(no subject)

Date: Feb. 3rd, 2010 12:58 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] shadows-wolf06.livejournal.com
I have a couple of Aussie friends who constantly refer to me as a Yankee. I just laugh and tell them I'm a double yank as I'm both from the States and from New England.

(no subject)

Date: Feb. 2nd, 2010 07:32 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] sydneyrodriguez.livejournal.com
Well, technically, Nevada and California were Union States, so people from there would have a whole different issue with being called Confederates. And, now that I have the means to actually write something and do a little refresher research, I think I was mistaken on the Mason-Dixon line reference, and it's simply (or more complexly, however you look at it), a Union v Confederate thing from the Civil War (and, in that case, you would be considered a Yankee, as Michigan was a Union state).

But, nitpicking aside, I agree, using blanket terms and whatnot just reinforces the use of stereotypes. I think that's the core problem with such things as the term "black." It's not just used to describe a person's color, but is also a blanket term for various stereotypes ("you're not 'black' enough"). If we could get rid of the "blanket term" segment of the word black, then I think we'd be a lot closer to getting rid of some of the prejudices and racial tension (at least between blacks and whites).

I agree, too, that people are too touchy and overly defensive. If people didn't get so defensive about some of the dumber things, then they'd lose those "offensive" meanings.

I remember one time, I was describing a coworker to another coworker (because I forgot his name, I'm terrible with names), and my description went something like this:

Somewhat tall, slender build, Middle Eastern, well-dressed...

My coworker looked at me slack-jawed and bug-eyed because I used "Middle Eastern" in my description of him. "Well, he's from India!" was the response when I asked what the problem was. What she seemed to completely miss was that by using the term "Middle Eastern" among the rest of my description, she knew exactly who I was talking about (otherwise, she wouldn't have known who I was talking about, since there were several people in the office who could have fit that description sans "Middle Eastern"), because the phrase comes with it a particular set of characteristics (dark hair, darker complexion, maybe an accent, etc). Could I have used a better term? Perhaps, though, to me, it's not much different than using the term "Asian" to describe someone with a particular skin tone, hair color, and eye shape. No, I didn't get the exact country right, but that's not really possible when I don't know what country he was from (our office had something between 1/3 and 1/2 that were from the Middle East or India, and pretty much the rest are white, with a handful of people of various other ethnicities, and they may or may not be American citizens), and therefore my goal was to get the ethnic/"skin tone" region right. I also find it awkward to spend ten minutes trying to describe a skin tone that's something along the lines of a mocha color (or other such shade that isn't as simply described as "black" or "white" or "tan" or whatever) in such a way that it would actually be reasonably accurate in describing the color.

My phrasing was meant to be nothing more than to act as a single term to describe half a dozen characteristics that wouldn't have been otherwise very easy to describe, but because she interpreted as something else, it was offensive to her.

(On a side note, it's interesting to observe my feelings about whether or not to post my little story, because of fear of offending someone for whatever reason.)

(no subject)

Date: Feb. 2nd, 2010 07:47 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] arualanne.livejournal.com
(On a side note, it's interesting to observe my feelings about whether or not to post my little story, because of fear of offending someone for whatever reason.)


yeah I was just thinking of this. And thinking that we are talking about a very touchy subject. I appreciate you being able to share, but I do understand that many people would think we were trying to be offensive.

Really Avenue Q sums it all up very well with the song of Everyone's A Little bit Racist. (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MKg_ca3AgW0 I am not certain if this is the full song as I am at work and it isn't horribly offensive, but can be if you just heard an excerpt and hadn't heard the whole thing and what they are talking about in the song. So yeah listen at your own risk)

(no subject)

Date: Feb. 2nd, 2010 08:20 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] sydneyrodriguez.livejournal.com
Woot for Avenue Q not being afraid to tackle the politically incorrect stuff head-on!

(no subject)

Date: Feb. 2nd, 2010 08:42 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] arualanne.livejournal.com
If you haven't heard the whole music track for the musical you really should. It is very good, but very non-PC and tackles stuff like race and homosexuality with no problem, but you definitely can't have a thin-skin and like it.

(no subject)

Date: Feb. 3rd, 2010 01:37 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] shadows-wolf06.livejournal.com
Bwah ha ha!

Best.
Song.
Ever!

XD

(no subject)

Date: Feb. 2nd, 2010 08:04 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] arualanne.livejournal.com
I am going to have to do more research. Were California and Nevada even states by the time the Civil war happened? I know Michigan was as I remember it being in the war in my history class I took. Also from my understanding yankee was specific to the North-eastern states, but I could be wrong as it is information from my husband and I don't know what his sources were, but he is generally very good about getting reliable sources. *Shrugs*

(no subject)

Date: Feb. 2nd, 2010 08:17 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] sydneyrodriguez.livejournal.com
According to both the Library of Congress and their respective state websites, yes, both California and Nevada were states by the time the Civil War happened. Nevada joined in 1864 and California in 1850. Whether they had significant involvement in the Civil War, however, I'd have to do more research, as I don't know off hand.

Princeton's definition of Yankee actually has all three connotations: New Englander, specifically; Northerner/Union state person in general; and American in general (by non-Americans). So, technically, it seems we're all right.

(no subject)

Date: Feb. 2nd, 2010 08:19 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] arualanne.livejournal.com
lol figures. *grins* we can be all right. We win!

(no subject)

Date: Feb. 3rd, 2010 01:22 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] shadows-wolf06.livejournal.com
She was offended by your use of the term "Middle Eastern"?

Well that's ridiculous.

It's not exactly like you were calling him a (and excuse the ignorant term but it's used for the point) towel-head.

Now that would have been offensive to me. Not to mention ignorant, stupid and just plain mean. Middle Eastern, though? Gods, let's just get offended by calling people from the States Americans and people from the UK Brits.

(no subject)

Date: Jan. 31st, 2010 02:44 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] enteringxghost.livejournal.com
UGH.

The stupidity of some people is so goddamn ridiculous sometimes.

You're completely right. I have never understood why the surface is so important to people when we all are born, live, and die the exact same way. The idiocy of the human race amazes me.

(no subject)

Date: Feb. 2nd, 2010 05:20 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] sydneyrodriguez.livejournal.com
But...but..they don't look exactly like us!

(no subject)

Date: Feb. 3rd, 2010 12:39 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] shadows-wolf06.livejournal.com
I believe that was meant in humor. Lol.

(no subject)

Date: Feb. 3rd, 2010 02:22 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] enteringxghost.livejournal.com
I realize that now... *blushes in shame*

(no subject)

Date: Feb. 3rd, 2010 02:19 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] sydneyrodriguez.livejournal.com
(It's called sarcasm.)

(no subject)

Date: Feb. 3rd, 2010 02:21 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] enteringxghost.livejournal.com
Which apparently I did not pick up on. XD Sorry about that.

(no subject)

Date: Feb. 3rd, 2010 02:35 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] sydneyrodriguez.livejournal.com
No problem, it happens. Even moreso with text.

(no subject)

Date: Feb. 4th, 2010 12:09 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] enteringxghost.livejournal.com
XD Very true. Thank you.

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