Martin Luther King Jr. (via loveinfamine)
The Martin Luther King Jr. White people never quote
Martin Luther King Jr. (via loveinfamine)
The Martin Luther King Jr. White people never quote
Do you know how many of my students can’t even say the word white? You all will talk about African-Americans, Latinos, and Asian-Americans all day long but at soon as it comes time to say white peoples’ voices drop. You ain’t have seen that? Come on man, people come up with crazy terms you have never seen before, they would be like: “And that Caucasoid…” You can always tell, you could always tell where the supreme power rests in the society because of the reluctance people have in naming that power.
Part of what privilege requires, guys privilege cannot operate without silence. It cannot operate without silence, and this tremendous silence around whiteness, if you are foolish enough to post a blog on your Facebook that mentions whiteness the amount of attacks that you will get, because privilege defends itself viciously, to maintain the silence that is required for its operation.
So, given this I would argue that the other thing that we need to do is coming off of James Scott’s idea of “anarchist calisthenics,” we need to practice racial anarchist calisthenics. What he, what Scott meant by anarchist calisthenics is that this society has ton of little rules that we all practice without thinking. And he argues that we need to practice breaking little rules consistently because one day this society is going to ask you to prosecute a horrifying rule, that I think we will long live to regret, and the muscles of resistance needs to be exercised, they need to be prepared for the time we need to make that big, big, big, big stand.
And so racial anarchist calisthenics, I would say, begins with all of us getting that tongue muscle back in to place and saying Saurons name. I challenge people; I challenge people every time you say African-American, Asian-American, whatever the group count it and say white just as much. And say white just as much. We don’t do it you guys, we don’t do it, we don’t do it. And yet if we were ever going to confront in a real way white supremacy, which is not only linked to white folks you guys. White supremacy is the racial order in all of us, but if we are not able to discuss whiteness as a category, as a critical way of looking at the world and even simply as just the racial group, we are in some serious trouble. The reality is even if we took every white person on Earth and put them on a space ship and sent them to outer space white supremacy wouldn’t miss a beat.” —
Junot Díaz - Facing Race (2012)
I once posted a link on my fb about white privilege, explaining what it is. And I got responses from white people about how natives are the ones who have privilege and take away from them. The link never even mentioned Natives!
For women who are tied to the moon, love alone is not enough. We insist each day wrap it’s knuckles through our heart strings and pull. The lows. The joy. The poetry. We dance at the edge of a cliff, you have fallen off. So it goes. You will climb up again.
You rare girl, once again, you have a body that belongs to no lover, to no father, belongs to no one but you. Wear your sorrow like the lines on your palm. Like a shawl to keep you warm at night. Don’t mourn the love that is lost to you now. It is a book of poems whose meters worked their way into your pulse. Even if it has slipped from your hands, it will stay in your body.
You loved a man who treated you like absinthe, half poison and half god. He tried to sweeten you, to water you down. So you left. And now you have your heart all to yourself again. A heart like a stone cottage. Heart like a lover’s diary. Hope like an ocean.” —Letter From Anais Nin to Clementine von Radics (After Marty McConnel)
immigrants, poor people, queer people of color, disabled folks, women (esp trans women of color) and gender-nonconforming folks if you are in academia and you don’t feel smart enough, remember that you are in the playground and training grounds of the elite. academia was not designed to include you. you are surviving something that has been systemically designed to exclude you in order to keep power in the hands of white, middle class, able bodied cis-men.
—fabian romero- indigenous immigrant queer boi writer, facilitator and community organizer (via jatigi)
knowing this, don’t let academia train you to believe that elitism is the right way to make it through school. you can learn shit, hold the knowledge of your people in your heart, discard shame for your humble beginnings and/or marginalized identities. move through this experience knowing that the changes it offers you don’t have to include accepting academic elitism, inaccessible language or superiority. you can can simultaneously own the privilege that comes with being college educated and connections to your roots. academia does not have to kill your spirit.
I need to be uncomfortable in my privilege because in discomfort there is learning.
Every day, workers are forced to minimize safety in order to keep their jobs. The vast majority of American workers have no unions to defend their right to workplace safety. The U.S. Department of Labor and other federal agencies do not protect workers from being killed on the job.
The explosion in West, Texas was as big as the 1995 Oklahoma City bombing by Timothy McVeigh, yet there will be no war on this kind of terrorism. This is because the prevailing philosophy is profit before people.
American workers are more likely to be killed by their boss than a terrorist. Last year, approximately 5,000 workers were killed at work by unsafe conditions.
Kevin Harrington, New York City
An honorable human relationship - that is, one in which two people have the right to use the word ‘love’ - is a process, delicate, violent, often terrifying to both persons involved, a process of refining the truths they can tell each other.
It is important to do this because it breaks down human self-delusion and isolation.
It is important to do this because in so doing we do justice to our own complexity.
It is important to do this because we can count on so few people to go that hard way with us.” —Adrienne Rich (via mypropheticsoul)
For a quarter-century, Antonin Scalia has been the reigning bully of the Supreme Court, but finally a couple of justices are willing to face him down.
As it happens, the two manning up to take on Nino the Terrible are women: the court’s newest members, Sonia Sotomayor and Elena Kagan.
The acerbic Scalia, the court’s longest-serving justice, got his latest comeuppance Wednesday morning, as he tried to make the absurd argument that Congress’s renewal of the Voting Rights Act in 2006 by votes of 98 to 0 in the Senate and 390 to 33 in the House did not mean that Congress actually supported the act. Scalia, assuming powers of clairvoyance, argued that the lawmakers were secretly afraid to vote against this “perpetuation of racial entitlement.”
Kagan wasn’t about to let him get away with that. In a breach of decorum, she interrupted his questioning of counsel to argue with him directly. “Well, that sounds like a good argument to me, Justice Scalia,” she said. “It was clear to 98 senators, including every senator from a covered state, who decided that there was a continuing need for this piece of legislation.”
… Sotomayor allowed the lawyer for the Alabama county seeking to overturn the law to get just four sentences into his argument before interrupting him. “Assuming I accept your premise — and there’s some question about that — that some portions of the South have changed, your county pretty much hasn’t,” she charged. “Why would we vote in favor of a county whose record is the epitome of what caused the passage of this law to start with?”
Moments later, Kagan pointed out that “Alabama has no black statewide elected officials” and has one of the worst records of voting rights violations.
Scalia and Justice Samuel Alito tried to assist the Alabama county’s lawyer by offering some friendly hypotheticals, but Sotomayor wasn’t interested in hearing that. “The problem with those hypotheticals is obvious,” she said, because “it’s a real record as to what Alabama has done to earn its place on the list.”
Sotomayor continued questioning as if she were the only jurist in the room. “Discrimination is discrimination,” she informed him, “and what Congress said is it continues.”” —
DANA MILBANK, writing in The Washington Post, “Sotomayor, Kagan Ready for Battles.”
Has someone started fuckyeahelenaandsonia.tumblr.com yet?
For future reference: Next time anyone tries to tell you that Presidential elections don’t matter/candidates are all the same.
Barack Obama put both these women on the SCOTUS, and I can barely begin to start thanking him enough for that. They aren’t as progressive as I may wish on some things, but hot damn—someone’s finally sticking it to Scalia in session.(via aka14kgold)
U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, discussing Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 in oral arguments for Shelby County v. Holder, Feb. 27, 2013.
Why does this matter?
As Suevon Lee explains Aug. 30, 2012 for ProPublica: “A single provision of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 has been playing a key role on the election front this year. Section 5 has blocked photo voter-ID laws, prohibited reduced early-voting periods in parts of Florida and just Tuesday barred new redistricting maps in Texas. It’s the reason South Carolina is in federal court this week to try to convince a three-judge panel its photo voter-ID law will not disenfranchise minorities. It’s the reason that Texas went to trial on the same issue last month — and on Thursday, lost.
Not surprisingly, then, Section 5 is increasingly the target of attack by those who say it is outdated, discriminatory against Southern states and unconstitutional.”
Justice Sonia Sotomayor smacked down the idea that Section 5 was a racial entitlement, and reminded us all that the right to vote is just that — a right, not a racial entitlement, no matter how desperately some jurisdictions and justices may want to reverse that fact.
Further, though, the TOMS campaign — like the million shirts — misses the fundamental point that not having a pair of shoes (or a shirt, christmas toy, etc.) is not a problem about not having shoes. It’s a problem of poverty. Shoelessness, such as it is, is a symptom of a much bigger and more complex problem. And while donating a pair of shoes helps shoelessness, it does not help poverty.
Things like jobs help poverty. Jobs making things like shoes, for example. But TOMS doesn’t make its shoes in Africa, it makes them in China where it’s presumably cheaper to make two pairs of shoes and give one away than it is to get people in a needier community to make one pair of shoes.
The result of this setup, as Zizek explains most succinctly, is that on a big-picture level, TOMS (and other buy-my-product-and-donate companies) are busy building the exploitative global structure that produces economic inequality, while on the other hand pretending that supporting them actually does something to fix it.
It doesn’t. It just gives people shoes.” —
YES. YES YES YES.(via confidencebucket)
A very good definition of privilege.
Judge Mathis, speaking the truth (via thatprettyoddfeminist)
facts on facts on facts
THIS is why I do what I do
working in education these past few months have made his point all the more heartbreakingly clear
Information is power. But like all power, there are those who want to keep it for themselves. The world’s entire scientific and cultural heritage, published over centuries in books and journals, is increasingly being digitized and locked up by a handful of private corporations. Want to read the papers featuring the most famous results of the sciences? You’ll need to send enormous amounts to publishers like Reed Elsevier.
There are those struggling to change this. The Open Access Movement has fought valiantly to ensure that scientists do not sign their copyrights away but instead ensure their work is published on the Internet, under terms that allow anyone to access it. But even under the best scenarios, their work will only apply to things published in the future. Everything up until now will have been lost.
That is too high a price to pay. Forcing academics to pay money to read the work of their colleagues? Scanning entire libraries but only allowing the folks at Google to read them? Providing scientific articles to those at elite universities in the First World, but not to children in the Global South? It’s outrageous and unacceptable.
“I agree,” many say, “but what can we do? The companies hold the copyrights, they make enormous amounts of money by charging for access, and it’s perfectly legal — there’s nothing we can do to stop them.” But there is something we can, something that’s already being done: we can fight back.
Those with access to these resources — students, librarians, scientists — you have been given a privilege. You get to feed at this banquet of knowledge while the rest of the world is locked out. But you need not — indeed, morally, you cannot — keep this privilege for yourselves. You have a duty to share it with the world. And you have: trading passwords with colleagues, filling download requests for friends.
Meanwhile, those who have been locked out are not standing idly by. You have been sneaking through holes and climbing over fences, liberating the information locked up by the publishers and sharing them with your friends.
But all of this action goes on in the dark, hidden underground. It’s called stealing or piracy, as if sharing a wealth of knowledge were the moral equivalent of plundering a ship and murdering its crew. But sharing isn’t immoral — it’s a moral imperative. Only those blinded by greed would refuse to let a friend make a copy.
Large corporations, of course, are blinded by greed. The laws under which they operate require it — their shareholders would revolt at anything less. And the politicians they have bought off back them, passing laws giving them the exclusive power to decide who can make copies.
There is no justice in following unjust laws. It’s time to come into the light and, in the grand tradition of civil disobedience, declare our opposition to this private theft of public culture.
We need to take information, wherever it is stored, make our copies and share them with the world. We need to take stuff that’s out of copyright and add it to the archive. We need to buy secret databases and put them on the Web. We need to download scientific journals and upload them to file sharing networks. We need to fight for Guerilla Open Access.
With enough of us, around the world, we’ll not just send a strong message opposing the privatization of knowledge — we’ll make it a thing of the past. Will you join us?” —
July 2008, Eremo, Italy