Personal Accounts of Racism in Davis

Share:

BLM-19 by Jerika L.H.        

The introduction to this article will be purposefully short on the grounds that this piece is a much needed exercise in listening, instead of sermoning. However, I would be remiss if I did not divulge that every single individual I interviewed highlighted only a select few out of a rich collection of incidents to recount.

Thus, these stories are in no way comprehensive, but instead only a snippet – a thumbnail image of content that is too copious to fully grasp in one view. It is an excerpt from a longer chapter on the daily microaggressions of racism.

It is also important to note that some students abstained from noting things that were simply too traumatic to share. Therefore, this sampling does not express interactions which were categorized as ‘the worst’ that the speaker had experienced.

These accounts were not lifted from 1950’s Birmingham – they reference life in present day Davis, California.

Davares Robinson

Davares Robinson articulately explains how displays of anti-blackness are ever present as he divulges some of his own experiences. “As a black man attending a highly regarded R-1 institution, I have encountered various instances that appear to be rather typical for a black student attending a college that is not an HBCU (Historically Black College). Micro-agressions flourish here.

“They are the occasional remorseless stares of disdain that I receive as I’m walking to class, the library, or any public space. It is me making eye contact and smiling only to witness the re-tightening of the grip between two lover’s hands. It is the indistinguishable voice of one student amongst five hundred students, whispering, ‘yeah right,’ after my psychology professor says that there is no difference in intelligence amongst students; while discussing unethical practices in past experiments among students of color and their white counterparts to justify otherwise.

“It is my childhood friend saying, ‘I think that ALL Lives Matter is a better statement.’ It is me being told that a romantic relationship between me and a non-black student cannot happen because of our ‘cultural differences’ but yet a sexual relationship will do.

“Macroagressions live here. It is me nearly getting pummeled by bikers, while silently protesting to Mrak Hall and holding up a sign that reads, ‘#BlackUnderAttack.’ It is me and my peers being referred to as ‘niggercunts’ on social media platforms to counter our plea to have students oppose anti-blackness in all of its variations. It is me live streaming a black lives matter protest, and reading comments that say, ‘I Hope they die.’ It is here because everything was founded on needed perpetuation of it.”

Kyla Burke

Kyla Burke is a 5th year Environmental Science & Management major. She notes that when she shares her experiences with racism, she is always taken aback at how shocked white people are that her accounts actually happened.

To her, this is a testament to how commonplace micragressions have become and how much she has normalized them. Her most unsettling memory of biased treatment in Davis involved seeing her beloved father, a 6’2″ Jamaican man with dreadlocks, being treated as a criminal spectacle when he came to visit her at the dorms.

“I lived in the Segundo dorms and didn’t give him the best directions so he ended up driving down California Ave. to where the gate is. When he got to the gate he turned around and started to drive back. The cops pulled him over for no reason. He wasn’t speeding. He was driving slow, looking for me. He didn’t have his lights out or anything like that. As far as we could tell he was pulled over because they found him suspicious and a black man on campus at night. They ran his license even though they had no right to and when I walked up they wouldn’t let me approach the car until they were done.”

Kyla has also been aggressively told by a Davis citizen that she should be working to eradicate rape instead of spending her energy on addressing injustices within the black community. She has been slighted not only by police and random passerbyers, but also by her peers.

“My sophomore year I was at a party at AEPi and it was pretty crowded. I was walking into the backyard when I heard someone behind me say, ‘There are too many black people at this party.’ I turned around kind of shocked and his friend noticed me and pointed me out. The guy who made the comment got embarrassed and they got away from me quick. I left the party because I was upset and when I was walking down Russell I walked by SAE and you could see from the street that one of the members had a confederate flag hanging on his door.”

Lawrence K

Lawrence K. was a freshman interested in Davis for its music department. He is an avid percussion and horns enthusiast, and self-identifies as a “band nerd.”

“My very first class at Davis. Like literally, the first experience I had. We were supposed to get into groups and interview the other student, then present their story to the class as a way to get to know each other. I was paired with a guy sitting on the aisle across from me. As soon as the professor signaled to start the group work, the guy turned to me and said “WASSSSUP MY NI**A!!!” in this funny voice like he was mimicking Dave Chappelle as he threw up some hand signal that I guess is supposed to be a gang sign, or a greeting, or – I don’t even know.

“I laughed as a reflex, or lack of another response – like a laugh of embarrassment. But it actually really pissed me off inside and humiliated me. I didn’t want to work with the guy. Lots of people heard and laughed and I felt like I was already otherized. I finally said to him…’hey, why did you call me “my n*gga”?’

“He got all apologetic like it was all a big misunderstanding and that he loves rap and is not racist. And then he patted me on the back and said, ‘Come on, don’t be like that. I’m half Asian. You can call me Bruce Lee if you want,’ and I was just like, ‘Dude, I don’t want to call you Bruce Lee.’

“It was all a joke to him. I couldn’t get him to be serious. It really upset me because my father is always caring about what other people think about us and has really internalized racism. Like, that we have to set an example that not all black people are ghetto. That’s why he always pushed jazz music on me and here is this guy saying, ‘Don’t worry… I like rap too.’

“As if he was trying to talk to me in terms he thought I would understand. No offense to rap aficionados but, please don’t assume anything about me simply based on my skin. The whole thing is problematic in itself, but when this guy did that, I just wanted to seriously ask, ‘Why did you equate me with some urban caricature?'”

Jerome Wren

Jerome Wren’s story is not only appalling but eerily too familiar, with the headlining altercations between people of color and police which have resulted in the loss of human life. “I’m a survivor of police brutality and racial profiling. Many folks wouldn’t believe that I was beaten and Tased by six cops here in Davis but it happened. My mentor and I were minding our own business at my apartment complex when the police pulled up and singled me out. There was no questions– the first words they said was, ‘You’re under arrest.’ I can’t help but to think it had everything to do with my blackness.”  (Editor’s note: The Vanguard covered this story in 2012.  Initial article Sustained Complaint, Officer Fired)

Markell

Markell studies Neurology, Physiology & Behavior at UCD, but finds himself constantly having to prove that he is allowed to be on campus and is part of the community. “My freshman year I was walking on campus and I was followed by the police while I walked to class. They asked me what are you doing here, only for me to say I go here…And, when me and my friends walk in to parties some of the white people there always ask, ‘Do y’all go here?’ We say yes. They say, ‘Oh, okay cool, what do you study?’ and then it turns into a interview of me being established at this school. But honestly, in classes, on buses, solely because you’re black no one will sit by you.” Markell also recounts one of the most prolific questions pushed on the black community: “Can I touch your hair?”

Markus King

Marcus King emerged onto the Davis campus from the redlined community of South Central LA. With a Psychology & Communications Studies degree now under his belt, he is currently gathering his ducks in a row to prepare for law school. Marcus’ experiences touch on a theme which has been present among many the individuals I had the pleasure of interviewing for this thread. It speaks to law enforcement’s hyperfocus on black bodies as signifiers of an impending threat or as foreshadowings of crimes yet to be committed.

Most of the incidents which stand out to him involved the feelings of injustice which arise when the old adage is flipped and people of color are instead guilty until proven innocent. When one must provide substantiation that they mean no harm, that they are allowed to be there, and that the only thing suspicious about their presence is that they are an African American person in an overwhelmingly white space.

“The first incident that I can think of was actually the day of my very first midterm. I was at that light – that main intersection that leads into the student parking lot. I came to make that left turn, my back window was rolled down, and I glanced over and happened to see a cop next to me. My first reaction was to smile, my mom always said when you make eye contact with someone you acknowledge them, and so I made my turn.

“As I pulled up to get the ticket to park and pay, the lights came up behind me.”

Marcus was then approached by the officer who said he was pulling him over because his music was too loud. When the officer saw Marcus had something in his hand, he reached for his gun. Upon realization that the student was unarmed, a second officer cuffed Marcus and put him in the back of the police car. Marcus was interrogated about previous unpaid tickets and the stipulations of his license, but was finally released. He was one hour late for the midterm he arrived early to study for.

“UC Davis is a good school, but on the other hand, it’s hard to go to a predominately white place. [To the police] I’m seen as somebody that’s undesirable, a nuisance, and then it leaves me wondering what I could have done different, or just questioning the whole thing. Like, is it because I’m black? Is it because of the music I listen to? Is it because of my shades? And when these microaggressions happen to you, you try to play the scene over and over in your head and think, what could I have done differently? I didn’t expect to see the [UC Davis] police behave in that manner, and I’m from South Central LA. I mean, if we’re always talking about how progressive things are in Davis, why the are the police so confrontational?”

Share:

About The Author

Disclaimer: the views expressed by guest writers are strictly those of the author and may not reflect the views of the Vanguard, its editor, or its editorial board.

Related posts

99 thoughts on “Personal Accounts of Racism in Davis”

  1. SODA

    Jerika L.H., once again thank you for your article. I ‘listened’ and as a Davis resident, am saddened by the experiences these students have experienced in my town. My recently ‘acquired’ daughter in law who is black has tried to explain to me the way it is: she feels that black people are not given the ‘benefit of the doubt’ by others, especially law enforcement. That has helped me understand and hopefully be more compassionate. These stories appear to reinforce that thought.

    I saw an interesting interchange on CNN last night in relation to the crazy election but the basis was that a color blind society is NOT what we want; that would negate the rich cultural differences we all can benefit from…..admiration for those differences and granting that important benefit of the doubt might be a step….

  2. Tia Will

    Hi SODA

    My son’s significant other also attends UCD. She is a Chicana whose skin color and appearance also make her stand out on the campus as “different” from the majority white or Asian students and she has had multiple encounters that mirror those related here. She is currently involved in reviewing for the university cases of perceived race related events. In the some of the instances that she was sharing, the behavior clearly stems from nothing more than looking “different” from the majority and thus having one’s reason for being on campus at all challenged. I think that it would benefit all of us to ask how we would feel if our presence in a place we had every right to be were repetitively challenged simply because of our appearance.

    1. SODA

      Hi Tia!   Yes, repeatedly challenged because no benefit of the doubt is something that we have difficulty relating to, even if those we love relate their experiences to us. Am sure you are familiar with ways of having health care workers mimic certain disabilities (hearings vision, mobility) so that they can sense what their patients experience.  NOT to say at all that racial difference is a disability…..but if the ‘majority’ could experience  what you describe, I think it could profoundly change ‘our’ perceptions. Agree?

      1. Tia Will

        SODA

        I agree. I believe that every opportunity to see the world through the eyes of someone different from us is a chance to expand our view of the world. If we all engaged in this type of experience, which is now common in medical training, we would have a much better understanding or the reality that others face daily.

  3. LaMaruja

     “It speaks to law enforcement’s hyperfocus on black bodies as signifiers of an impending threat or as foreshadowings of crimes yet to be committed.”

    YES!!! Nailed it.

    And ya’ll are officially invited. LOL   #WhitePeopleInvitedToTheCookout

    1. Tia Will

      LaMaruja

      #WhitePeopleInvitedToTheCookout”

      I presume that this is something on Twitter, which I do not use. However, I do like invitations 😉

      Can you give particulars to this event here on the Vanguard ?

       

    1. David Greenwald

      And I would say the opposite.  I think there is a portion of the population is that is not nearly sensitive enough to this stuff.  Part of what you’re missing are that these examples are not isolated incidents.  They happen every day.  A classic example I like to give is how many times do you think things happened to Eli Davis before he finally decided to go against his inclinations as a quiet, private person and actually speak out?

      The other problem is that in my experience, most blacks live with these things are on a regular basis and most whites are unaware of either their occurrence or their impact.

      Every single time this site has tried to raise these issues, we get people like you pushing back to minimize them.  You belittle people with notions of hypersensitivity and victimhood.

      So I would argue that we will never fully bridge our racial gaps until white people are willing to embrace the fact that blacks and other people of color feel marginalized by the conduct and the attempts to minimize that conduct.

      1. Frankly

        Whenever, where ever a person goes, if that person does not look, dress or act like what are the normal standards of the majority, that person will get more attention.

        You can have two extreme reactions to that.  One is the hypersensitive reaction.  The other is to understand and be empathetic to how others process difference.

        1. The Pugilist

          “You can have two extreme reactions to that.  One is the hypersensitive reaction.  The other is to understand and be empathetic to how others process difference.”

          Why is it hypersensitive to get tired of being pulled over or questioned or dealt with suspicion by others due to skin color?

           

        2. Tia Will

          Frankly

          The other is to understand and be empathetic to how others process difference.”

          And does this not apply equally to the members of the majority who feel no need attempt to understand and empathize with the minority individual ?

        3. TrueBlueDevil

          Tia, you assume a whole lot. For example, when police officers pull over a car for an infraction, or when they investigate a murder or domestic violence call, rarely do they know the ethnicity of the individuals involved.

      2. hpierce

        We will never bridge the gaps until folk realize that not every [or even most] white person is racist, and not every ‘minority’ is marginalized/abused…  only then can we focus on the true problem areas.

        You said, “until white people [looks like you are implying all white people are the same] are willing to embrace the fact that blacks and other people of color [ibid.] feel marginalized by the conduct”.

        If you’re saying that all whites bear the guilt, and should “do the time”, then perhaps I should start “doing the crime” [I’d never be able to do that]… oh, and minority groups NEVER act in a way to ‘marginalize’ other minority groups, nor ‘whites’, right?

        The marginalizing behavior is WRONG, no matter who does it, or who the recipient is.  Whether it is on racial, other ethnic, religious, political, appearance (ex. obesity), or other lines.

        1. The Pugilist

          I think that’s why concepts like implicit bias are so important.  It’s not that every white person is consciously and overtly racist, it’s rather that when we see someone who fits a certain profile, hair style, they stand out more and access our pre-programmed responses.  For police officers that may manifest itself with viewing them with suspicion, for citizens that may mean we clutch our purposes more tightly or tense up or flee or some other response.

        2. hpierce

          So Pugilist, you are saying/implying that all ‘whites’ have implicit bias, that it is unique to the ‘white’ race?  It doesn’t exist in other races?  Police and other “authorities” aside, which is a separate but linked issue, yes I will “clutch my purpose” [which is to live a good, caring, honest life] tightly.

        3. The Pugilist

          Actually, I am saying the scientific research shows everyone is biased: http://www.boston.com/news/science/blogs/science-in-mind/2013/02/05/everyone-biased-harvard-professor-work-reveals-barely-know-our-own-minds/7x5K4gvrvaT5d3vpDaXC1K/blog.html

          That study was a seed, which grew into an idea in psychology that has become transformative: everyone carries with them implicit biases that may change how people perceive or interact with others. Doctors, judges, police officers, teachers—even Banaji herself—are all subject to these biases, which can lead people to inadvertently act in ways that may be discriminatory or are influenced by stereotypes that people would consciously reject.

          From Ohio State University: http://kirwaninstitute.osu.edu/research/understanding-implicit-bias/

          Defining Implicit Bias
          Also known as implicit social cognition, implicit bias refers to the attitudes or stereotypes that affect our understanding, actions, and decisions in an unconscious manner.  These biases, which encompass both favorable and unfavorable assessments, are activated involuntarily and without an individual’s awareness or intentional control.  Residing deep in the subconscious, these biases are different from known biases that individuals may choose to conceal for the purposes of social and/or political correctness.  Rather, implicit biases are not accessible through introspection.

          The implicit associations we harbor in our subconscious cause us to have feelings and attitudes about other people based on characteristics such as race, ethnicity, age, and appearance.  These associations develop over the course of a lifetime beginning at a very early age through exposure to direct and indirect messages.  In addition to early life experiences, the media and news programming are often-cited origins of implicit associations.
          A Few Key Characteristics of Implicit Biases

          Implicit biases are pervasive.  Everyone possesses them, even people with avowed commitments to impartiality such as judges.
          Implicit and explicit biases are related but distinct mental constructs.  They are not mutually exclusive and may even reinforce each other.
          The implicit associations we hold do not necessarily align with our declared beliefs or even reflect stances we would explicitly endorse.
          We generally tend to hold implicit biases that favor our own ingroup, though research has shown that we can still hold implicit biases against our ingroup.
          Implicit biases are malleable.  Our brains are incredibly complex, and the implicit associations that we have formed can be gradually unlearned through a variety of debiasing techniques.

           

        4. Frankly

          What about the implicit bias of someone that “is sure” that “the look” they noted was due to racial bias of the looker?

          What about the criticism of “not feeling safe” is rooted in a personal inability to cope with what are general human interactions and relationship challenges, but instead are projected as racial intollerance?

          In other words, maybe there is a similar percentage of people of all races that struggle with this ability to cope… being highly sensitized to any indication that someone does not like them, or is critical of them, or is supicious of them… but people of some races don’t go to the exlanation of racism and hence are more likely to identify the issue as a personal one that must be overcome, rather than some systemic social problem that politics must solve.  If this is the case, and I think it is, then the social justice crusader implicit bias narrative would be harmful in denying these people the opportunity to recogize the need for helpful personal development.

          For example, I will quickly determine who has a hypersensitive chip on their soulder and will not hire them.

        5. The Pugilist

          “What about the implicit bias of someone that “is sure” that “the look” they noted was due to racial bias of the looker?”

          Unfortunately you are using words that have a specific meaning and trying to use them in a context for which they were not intended.  You’re not describing “implicit bias.”  You are also shifting the meaning of the term implicit bias when you write “due to racial bias of the looker.”  At least from the account provided in the article, the father was pulled over by police based on his appearance, that doesn’t mean the police were racially biased, but it does mean that his appearance was deemed suspicious possibly based on stereotypes.

        6. Frankly

          Do you have any experience with risk assessment and risk management?

          Do you you disagree that there are observable differences with different racial groups and subgroups?

          For example, if you want to prevent mass shooting, why would you not have a bias for suspecting young white males in their 20s?

          If we are talking about racism here, what about PDs that have a majority of black officers?  Why not the implicit bias against Asians?

          Implicit bias is a concept that is misused and is in fact a construct for political manipulation and social engineering more than it is useful for improving the human condition.

        7. South of Davis

          > it’s rather that when we see someone who fits a certain profile, hair

          > style, they stand out more and access our pre-programmed responses.

          > For police officers that may manifest itself with viewing them with suspicion,

          EVERYONE (of ALL races) and ALL police officers react to people who “stand out” (unless you want to correct me and say that because the guy in the link below is white that no one including the police would notice him if he spent a day on the UCD campus).

          http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-vBQvX5CW5Uw/TnLVeAk_jUI/AAAAAAAAQi8/rOp4y4BeUCk/s1600/Picture-65-650×473+%25281%2529.png

  4. TrueBlueDevil

    Heightened Sensitivity meets Liberal Guilt?

    How is it that when we have 2x or 3x the black students as 30 years ago, and white students are now under-represented, that alleged racism exists everywhere?

    Does this calculus suggest that Asian American students are racist? Or merely liberal college students?

    Here is the hierarchy in a liberal college town after the BlackLivesMatter hysteria.

    1. Student held up at gunpoint by Hispanic male in West Davis Tuesday night = no fanfare.

    http://www.davisenterprise.com/local-news/crime-fire-courts/man-robbed-at-gunpoint-in-west-davis/

    2. Elderly Davis resident Cynthia Jonasen killed by a speeding reckless driver high on drugs and booze on Feb. 24th = no fanfare.

    The suspect has previously been found guilty on charges of burglary and domestic violence. He was given bail on his recent DV convictions. Four children were in the car with the suspect, Steven Hendrix, unrestrained. (Child endangerment.)

    Hendrix is African American.

    3. A young female student allegedly has racial slurs and objects hurled at her by intoxicated white citizens = campus uproar.

      1. TrueBlueDevil

        The Liberal media and political movements distort what type of actual crimes are being committed.

        Aren’t repeated violent crimes worthy of consideration? Instead, the media ignores them.

        Second, I have been told by on-campus sources that white students, and especially asian students, feel like they are a target for crime by people of color.

        There are reportedly crimes committed where the criminals tell the victims not to report the crime or they will pay, and if they have stolen their laptop and iPhone, I guess they have reason to be concerned.

        1. The Pugilist

          Worthy of consideration for what?  It’s a separate issue.  You are saying because Hendrix committed a crime, we should racially profile?

    1. Tia Will

      TBD

      How is it that when we have 2x or 3x the black students as 30 years ago, and white students are now under-represented, that alleged racism exists everywhere?”

      I think that you are raising an important point that should be addressed. The students who are protesting today were not alive 30 years ago. They do not know from experience that their experience today is far different from the students of 30 years ago. They are judging only by their own experience which is exactly what many of those who have benefitted by being white are doing, namely using their own experience as the norm and not being able to appreciate the range of  experiences of others, whether their predecessors or their peers.

      There is another different but related point to consider. One poster here frequently implies that because we have a black president, that must mean that there is no significant amount of racism in the country. But this is a ridiculous claim. Would anyone claim that just because Nelson Mandela became the leader of South Africa, that meant that racism was obliterated or reduced to “de minims” in that country ?

      1. South of Davis

        Tia wrote:

        > One poster here frequently implies that because we have a black president, that must

        > mean that there is no significant amount of racism in the country. 

        I don’t recall anyone posting that, just that if the “majority” of Americans and around 80% of the people in Davis voted for a black man that there is a safe bet that “most” people are not racist.  We all know that (sadly) there are racists (of ALL races) in America…

  5. Tia Will

    South of Davis

    In response to the picture you posted, I do not think that anyone is claiming that there aren’t some individuals who adopt a certain appearance specifically to stand out and to differentiate themselves. If such an individual draws what they see as “undue attention” they have the option of taking out their piercings, covering their tattoos and/or hairstyle.

    However, if you look at the pictures of the 300 on campus protesters, the vast majority of them do not appear to be dressed or styled so as to make themselves stand out. They are simply college students who are drawing attention to the fact that they experience being singled out simply because of the color of their skin. True some of their experiences may not be truly racist but maybe genuine curiosity, or naivete such as the requests to touch their hair, which my very white daughter frequently got because of the nature of her very curly hair, but those that involve crude attempts at racial humor or derogatory racially based comments are unequivocal and should not be trivialized or denied. It is the perpetrator that needs to work on their basic humanity, not the victim who needs to develop a “thicker skin”.

    1. South of Davis

      Tia wrote:

      > If such an individual draws what they see as “undue attention”

      > they have the option of taking out their piercings, covering their

      > tattoos and/or hairstyle.

      One of the examples above was a “6’2″ Jamaican man with dreadlocks”.  I don’t have a problem with people (of any race) having dreadlocks, but when you get “undue” attention it probably has more to do with the hairstyle (and clothing since I’ve never seen anyone with dreads in a polo shirt and khakis) than the color of your skin.  I have a (white) friend with long hair and a long beard (think Duck Dynasty meets ZZ Top) and he gets a lot of attention (security would always want to know where he was going when he met for lunch since he did not blend in to the world of middle aged business people (of all races) in “business casual” at my office building)… 

    1. Frankly

      I know BP… what have we become?  From lynching, outright racial hostility and materially-damanging racial discrimination to “he looked at me funny”.

      I think we are seeing a post-civil rights societal devolution caused by the percetange of our population that are psychologically under-devloped, damaged and/or weak… leveraging this “implicit racial bias” narrative as a desparate refusal to get their sh _ _ together.

      Usually, we are not justified in our expectations that others have a responsibility to make us feel better.   Others are not responsible for our individual happiness… and everyone is better off figuring that out.

      1. TrueBlueDevil

        Is this the result of the fuzzy parenting of the children of the 60s and 70s?

        I’ve seen that it affects many areas, not just racial topics. It also could be that we have less and less folks from the midwest, and fewer people who went through the Depression. We’re rich and spoiled. I heard someone recently remark on the radio, “A poor person today lives better tna most well-off people 100 years ago.”

  6. Dave Hart

    Seems to me the “hypersensitivity” around race is all on the white privilege side.  Why, when these issues come up, do we get treated to all the bulls*@t about how minorities and especially black folks just somehow need to grow up and get over it?  And this from people who have no idea what it is like to have to move around in a world where if you’re black, your every movement is critiqued by white people.  It is a fact that every, yes EVERY white person is TRAINED to be racist from an early age.  None of us escaped it.  The only difference is that some of us “get it” and understand what we have to do as individuals as well as collectively to mitigate or minimize our own training.  It is part and parcel of being an American and a direct result of our history.

    These testimonials are heart-breaking to listen to.  Imagine any one of them being the testimonial of your own child.  What would be your response if that were the case?

     

    1. Miwok

      While many of these commenters, including me, have our own little anecdotes it only to me shows we are swinging back to the older biases instead of forward. Trying to be a part of another culture is hard, and being accepted even harder. You may spend your whole life getting “accepted” in one community, then twenty miles away you are perceived as an outsider.

      At some point you give up. At least now there are Black people arguing for the Blacks, Hispanics for Hispanics, etc. NOW – We need the appropriate Police force to respond to each ethnic crime, because Whites “do not understand” another culture. I was told twenty years ago that “you will never be one of them”. Well, too bad, I thought I was learning something, and I did. Now, I could care less.

      But the way Davis is heading, the PD will not have any weapons, rather will just be video guys. Then the Video will determine sentence, based on a sliding scale depending on race? Automation!!

    2. South of Davis

      Dave wrote:

      > EVERY white person is TRAINED to be racist from an early age.

      Do you really think Tia “TRAINED her kids to be racist”?

      I must be one of the few that didn’t get this “training” can you let me know some details of the “training” you (and EVERY other white person) received?

      > None of us escaped it.

      So “EVERY” white person was “TRAINED” to be racist and “None” escaped it but we still had just about every white person in town vote for Obama (and the white kids at UCD elect a black femals AS President).  Can you explain this?

      1. Dave Hart

        No, I doubt Tia trained her children thus and I don’t even think anyone posting here including the usual anonymous V10 have actively trained their own children to be racist.  It’s a social conditioning training that perpetuates itself in a million subtle ways.

        For example, I never heard my parents use the ‘N’ word growing up in western Kansas where I was raised, but I remember driving in east Wichita (the black area) and my mother suddenly telling us to lock the doors on the car.  Not another word was said.  Us three kids in the back seat 13, 11 and 8 knew what she meant, because all of the sudden we were in an area of town where whites were in a conspicuous minority.  Nothing explicit.  But we could hear in her voice that she was alarmed and we could see out the window what was different from “normal”.  We put two and two together in our own minds.  That is how it is handed down from generation to generation and it is far more effective than explicit “teaching” of racial fear.  If you are white, and if you are honest, you can recall similar situations.

        1. South of Davis

          Dave wrote:

          > No, I doubt Tia trained her children thus and I don’t even think anyone

          > posting here including the usual anonymous V10 have actively trained

          > their own children to be racist.

          Glad to hear that you don’t really think that EVERY one of us is a trained racist.

          > I remember driving in east Wichita (the black area) and my mother

          > suddenly telling us to lock the doors on the car.

          I only remember my Mom telling us to lock the car once it was in a (mostly) white area when two white guys were walking around our car as we waited for my Dad to come home on the last train since he missed his carpool (we only had one car).

          My grandfather died young and my grandmother who came to the US in her 20’s with a 6th grade education did not have a lot of job skills so she worked as a hospital cleaning lady with quite a few black women and my Mom grew up babysitting quite a few of their children.

          Since my Mom kept in touch with a lot of my grandmother’s former co-workers and their kids (including a lady we called “momma” that sent me $1 for Christmas every year until she died in her 90’s when I was in High School) we went to a lot of mostly black funerals in the Western Addition (and even more mostly white funerals in the Sunset and Mission).  We were always treated well even if we were the only white people int he church and I always felt that most went out of their way to make us feel comfortable.

      2. Tia Will

        Do you really think Tia “TRAINED her kids to be racist”?”

        Dave wrote a good response to this already, but since my name was invoked, I’d like to share my response.

        I certainly did not deliberately train my kids to be racist. To the best of my ability, I modeled for my children an acceptance of each individual based on their character and behavior, not their appearance. But herein lies part of the problem. My mother and and father would never have admitted to being racist. And yet my sister and I, while being expected to be polite to everyone in public, were never allowed to visit the homes of anyone other than whites. After my father’s death and my mothers re marriage years later, no “n…….s” were allowed in the house.  This was my background, and despite my best efforts to not pass on any of these attitudes, was I successful ?  I don’t know, after all, my mother also claimed that she was not racist !  This is the hallmark of implicit bias. When you add to that our educational system, which at the time I was in school had virtually all white characters in our picture and history books, rare mention of blacks or others in the stories told about the development of our nation I think it would be very hard to have not developed and carried some bias along the way whether I knew it was happening or not.

        1. South of Davis

          Tia wrote:

          > at the time I was in school had virtually all white characters

          > in our picture and history books

          I know it it not polite to talk a woman’s age but there are some UC Davis students who have grandmothers around Tia’s age.

          Just like things were a lot different in the late 1800’s (when Tia’s grandmother probably started school) they are a LOT different today.

          I was not joking when I say that I have NEVER seen a white male doctor in any children’s book or cartoon in over a decade.

          Whites are a little over half the population of the state today but I have never seen a school book with more than half white people (and since in our family we focus on learning not counting the people of color in the books I don’t care)…

  7. Dave Hart

    Bottom line on all of this is that if you’re white and see racism as a serious issue, you must take white privilege to heart.  You have to accept that it exists.  It’s no different than the problem of the alcoholic or drug abuser.  The first step is to acknowledge you have a problem.  If you can’t do that, you are the problem.  I accept that it is a big step to take, particularly if you’re one of those who denies white privilege exists, but your soul will remain stunted unless you get past that one.  You’ll feel a burden lift when you at least acknowledge it, when “you git it in your soul”.

      1. Barack Palin

        Why do you consider that offensive?  Do you not think there’s such a thing as white guilt?  I’m sure many consider the term white privilege offensive too but that doesn’t stop it from being thrown around on this blog.

        1. David Greenwald

          Because its dismissive of people’s legitimate concerns and ignores the fact that many white people, including myself, have family who are impacted by this stuff. I’ve never used the term white privilege.

        2. Barack Palin

          Yes, David gets offended by and comments about the term white guilt and claims he’s never used the term white privilege.  But has David ever been offended by the use of the term white privilege on his blog?

      2. Frankly

        I agree with BP.  I don’t know why the concept of white guilt is offensive.  Let’s talk about implicit bias… the message that being born white means you are automatically racist.  Now THAT is offensive!  It angers me to a point that I might vote for Trump.

         

        1. David Greenwald

          Actually the concept of implicit bias is not the white people are racist, it is that all people have unconscious biases – white or otherwise.

        2. Dave Hart

          Yes, research shows implicit bias is present from a very early age as children struggle to categorize the external world.  The question is how this natural tendency is subject to manipulation.  The first instances of conscious manipulation of skin color was in the late 17th century in the British colonies.  Seeing race does not cause racism.  Racism is the use of obvious differences to infer something about a person that is not tied to their race.

      3. Alan Miller

        some of the souls on here are burdened with white guilt.

        How can you be offended unless you first identified yourself as the object of the comment, which can only be done if you believe it to be true for you?

        1. David Greenwald

          You think I can’t be offended by the someone using the “N-word” because I’m not black? You think I can’t be offended by misogynistic comments because I’m not a woman? The only way one can be offended is they are the object of the attack? Really, you really believe that Alan?

    1. Dave Hart

      I think you are right, BP, and I also think some would prefer to believe their sense of guilt originates from outside of them, by others imposing it on them.  Of course, it’s entirely internal and within the control of each person to do something about it more than just cluck-clucking about how sad it all is.  To those who feel guilt, it is a sign that their souls aren’t so blackened they don’t feel it.  It’s a good thing, like the pain one feels when a hand comes to close to a flame and the reflex kicks in to prevent injury.

      David, I think you may want to do some study on white privilege and consider using the term in the appropriate context. It’s a real phenomena, it’s a fact and discussion around the negative impact of race is impossible without it.

      1. South of Davis

        Dave wrote:

        > David, I think you may want to do some study on white privilege

        We all know that just like there is “racism” there is “white privilege”, but just like all white people are not racist all do not have “white privilege”.  If your Dad was a Yale grad and US President and your Mom’s Dad was a Yale grad and a US Senator you probably have “white privilege”, but if your Dad ran off to FL with some gal when you were 13 and Mom raised you in a single wide outside Dixon working as a waitress at the Milk Farm in the day and working at the Davis Drive in at night your level of “white privilege” is probably pretty low…

        1. David Greenwald

          I don’t like the term white privilege for the very reason you bring up. BUT, you are missing something here. In the south, racism wasn’t just about keeping blacks in their place, but poor whites as well by pitting them against blacks for resources. No matter how poor whites were, they had privileges conferred based on race that blacks didn’t have.

          Here is a good essay: Explaining White Privilege to a Broke White Person http://www.huffingtonpost.com/gina-crosleycorcoran/explaining-white-privilege-to-a-broke-white-person_b_5269255.html

        2. South of Davis

          David:

          I was never in the south before the civil rights law passed since I was a little kid and correct me if I’m wrong, but I think it was before you were even born (as well as before every current UC student was born and even before some of their PARENTS were born).

          It sounds like things were real bad in the 50’s in the south, but they are not so bad in Davis today.  I clicked your link that said:

          > “I can turn on the television or open to the front page of the paper

          > and see people of my race widely represented.”

          This is not the case today (can you name an all white news team on TV?)  Whites are in the minority in California, for people my kids age they are in an even smaller minority.  I don’t think my kids ever read a book with a white male doctor or saw a cartoon with a white male doctor.

          > “When I am told about our national heritage or about ‘civilization,’

          > I am shown that people of my color made it what it is.”

          Maybe in the 1950’s but not for the last 50 years.  Our public school  int he early 70’s spent way more time on George Washington Carver than George Washington

          > “If a traffic cop pulls me over or if the IRS audits my tax return,

          > I can be sure I haven’t been singled out because of my race.”

          I believe all the conservative groups targeted by the IRS were white and I’ve been told by a cop they need to have “diversity” in the tickets they give so they don’t get in trouble (sometimes that means the white kid going 37 in a 35 gets a ticket).

          > “I can if I wish arrange to be in the company of people of my race most of the time.”

          I think most people can make this happen but it is tough in SF where one night I was one of three white people at Costco (it took a while to find the other two whites since I started looking when I thought I might be the only white person out of a couple hundred shoppers) and less than 10% of most public schools are white.

          1. David Greenwald

            ” Whites are in the minority in California, for people my kids age they are in an even smaller minority. ”

            Whites may be in the numerical minority, but they still hold the political and economic power in the state.

        3. Dave Hart

          SOD, white privilege is what a person who is white experiences a thousand ways every day without realizing it regardless of their social class or financial status.

          White privilege, even for poor whites, is what you experience when walking into a store and NOT noticing that your movements are being watched because you aren’t black.

          White privilege, even for poor whites, is what you experience when you are pulled over by police and the worst thing you imagine that can happen is that you will get a ticket.

          White privilege, even for poor whites, is what you experience when you walk into a rental agency and do NOT worry that your skin color will affect the availability of an apartment or house you want to rent.

          White privilege, even for poor whites, is what you experience when nothing at all happens and it’s simply a beautiful day and you NEVER ONCE are forced to wonder if your skin color was the reason for a scowl or a sideways look by a stranger.

          All white people, even poor whites, benefit from white privilege regardless of social class under the circumstances above.  It comes with the territory.  Poor whites are as easily lured into supporting racist ideologues because it is one of the ONLY things that separates them from someone who is worse off than they.

        4. TrueBlueDevil

          Frankly, you want history, like the recent armed holdup in West Davis, and the vehicular manslaughter? No sympathy for non-minority victims of violent crime.

        5. tribeUSA

          DH–Re: “White privilege, even for poor whites, is what you experience when walking into a store and NOT noticing that your movements are being watched because you aren’t black.”

          I’m a white guy with blue eyes and formerly blond hair turning bronze colored as I’m getting a little older. Back when I had long blond hair; I would frequently get watched/followed (I think the staff tried to be discrete) in Davis stores. I didn’t like it; but  I quickly learned to ignore it–no big deal. I also for  a time was frequently pulled over by Davis PD for very small equipment violations (mainly re: license plate visibility).

          “you NEVER ONCE are forced to wonder if your skin color was the reason for a scowl or a sideways look by a stranger.” Occasionally I too get strange looks from people I don’t know, at the supermarket or just about anywhere. When I was younger this used to bother me sometimes, and if I was with a friend I would ask if I had something on my face or doing something peculiar unawares (or if alone I would check myself–was I wearing a strange expression on my own face)? I think most people get these looks once in a while–I don’t take it personally and it doesn’t bother me any more. I realize that most people doing this may not be aware they are giving someone else a funny look; sadly it does reflect somewhat a breakdown in civility and graciousness in society (in some cases people take out their negative energy on strangers, where  it is generally less socially costly than taking it on their own family or friends)

          The rest of what you are describing is the internal state of being of the perceiver; and how the perceiver projects attributes on to what he is perceiving. I have no doubt that many people have these thoughts and feelings, and often the attribution is accurate, but I would contend that often it is not (how do you get into the headspace of another person and attribute motives/biases to the other persons behavior; it often is not obvious).

          I think you are on to something about some of the negative ways that people of differential cultural backgrounds interact with each other; some of the inter-cultural friction. Might one way of easing this friction to gradually adapt to each other and into a single common cultural mode of behavior, rather than to diverge into multi-cultures? It seems to me people have enough trouble trying to understand and grapple with the peculiarities and peccadillos of those individuals within their own culture; perhaps we can humbly admit our own limitations and strive for a common cultural understanding so that we can get along better. It seems to me racial integration in primary schools has been a very good start; most people under about 55-60 have generally been educated in multiracial primary school classes; almost everyone nowadays. The children get to know each other naturally before being propagandized about race, religious differences, etc. one way or another by adults.

           

        6. Dave Hart

          Yes, TrueBlue, the basics of white privilege is that you have the luxury of thinking of yourself as the “default” American, the “default” Davisite, etc.  I don’t know you personally, so it could be your appearance lies a little outside the “norm” and you draw stares in the way a white kid with a glued up green mohawk to give an extreme example.  The fact is, however, if you so choose, you can probably make yourself invisible if you dress and cut your hair in the most neutral way possible.  You can choose to do that if you wish.  If your skin is black, there ain’t nothing you can do.

        7. South of Davis

          Dave wrote:

          > If your skin is black, there ain’t nothing you can do.

          I don’t think this guy will have the staff follow him if he walks in to a store (despite his skin color):

          http://s3.amazonaws.com/kidzworld_photo/images/2012515/9310a8f2-09ff-4dda-beee-b2ace0adcfee/gallery_tommy_hilfiger_plaid_boy.jpg

          But a guy dressed like this probably will (even if he was a blond white kid):

          https://i.ytimg.com/vi/TyKisWfmyMs/hqdefault.jpg

          Many southern Italians, Indians and Greeks darker skin that many “black” people and getting followed in a store has more to do with “personal style” than “skin color”.

      2. Alan Miller

        To those who feel guilt, it is a sign that their souls aren’t so blackened they don’t feel it.

        So . . . you’re saying I have a black soul?

        1. Dave Hart

          I don’t know you personally or what you’ve been through, Alan.  It’s hard for me to conceive of anyone who is white and has a conscience of not thinking about their own role in either supporting racism or trying to end it.  My comment is directed at white people who can simultaneously disavow their own privileged position AND believe that racism is not their problem after these things have been brought to their attention.  There is something missing in people like that.  What is far too common is people who do feel the guilt but are resentful that it is pointed out to them.  At least they feel it.

          Political correctness is nothing more than exposing bigotry.  Bigots hate it when that happens.  But underneath it, bigots are hurting and they are human.  All they want is to be able to blame or look down on someone, anyone.

      1. Frankly

        I learned a log time ago to ignore people that keep turning to irrelevant historical references.  It is a clear sign that they are messed up.

        1. Dave Hart

          I appreciate your Zen approach of living only in the moment, Frankly, but surely there must be some historically relevant references regarding this topic?   Please share.

        2. Frankly

          If we were experiencing racism relevant to your historical reference I would accept that historical reference.  But we are not… not anything close.  So your historical reference is essentially hyperbole.

          Now if we look to old Europe and the growing antisemitism on display, that is a valid historical reference because we are seeing the same repeated as pre-WWII.

          The way I see it is that we are in need of civil rights version 2.0, but folks like you are still stuck on version 1.0 and thus preventing the migration to 2.0.

           

        3. Dave Hart

          Well, Frankly, civil rights 2.0 just may be unpacking white privilege so that you can take that next step into a ‘post-racist’ future.  Your skills would be welcome in aiding the BLM movement as a strategist or tactician.  I would become your acolyte.

        4. TrueBlueDevil

          Frankly, people like Dave Hart can’t comprehend how Ethiopian-Americans, Nigerian-Americans, and British-Americans of black ancestry have higher incomes than the average American. Where is the racism and white privilege?

          Further, a black couple with college degrees earn basically the same family income as their white counterparts. Again, where is the racism?

          The biggest pill to swallow is the massive out-of-wedlock birth rate in the black community – which didn’t exist before the “war on poverty” and explosion in welfare programs! Add to that the drug generation. So a 17-year-old dropout, who gets knocked up by her unemployed 25-year-old boyfriend, has little to do with racism. Lots of poor choices, little to do with racism.

          I will admit the failed liberal economic and social policies that helped eviscerate cities like Detroit didn’t help. The Fox Theatre was beautiful tonight at the GOP debate – what a city it used to be! But unions, taxes, regulations, red tape, failed social policies, etc., sure helped kill that golden goose.

          1. David Greenwald

            “Frankly, people like Dave Hart can’t comprehend how Ethiopian-Americans, Nigerian-Americans, and British-Americans of black ancestry have higher incomes than the average American. Where is the racism and white privilege?”

            And yet, the guy attacked at the train station last week was Ethiopian. Professor Yilma who wrote this piece, on of the very few black people appointed to the National Science Foundation, a world renowned scholar who came here from Ethiopia in 1965, can tell about the racism he has faced and had to overcome. You just don’t know what you are talking about.

        5. South of Davis

          David wrote:

          > And yet, the guy attacked at the train station

          > last week was Ethiopian. Professor Yilma

          I did a Google search for “professor attacked” and got over 8,000 hits (most were white guys) so (fortunatly) an attack on a black professor is very rare.

          The first hit was a 79 year old white Yale professor attacked by 5 black kids and the second hit was a Duke Professor “attacked” for writing this:

          “I am a professor at Duke University. Every Asian student has a very simple old American first name that symbolizes their desire for integration. Virtually every black has a strange new name that symbolizes their lack of desire for integration. The amount of Asian-white dating is enormous and so surely will be the intermarriage. Black-white dating is almost non-existemt because of the ostracism by blacks of anyone who dates a white.”

          https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/morning-mix/wp/2015/05/18/duke-professor-attacked-for-noxious-racial-comments-refuses-to-back-downversial-comments/

      2. South of Davis

        Dave wrote:

        > For those of you that can’t spare more than ten minutes of your

        > life to learn about the history of race and development of

        > white privilege

        I watched the video and the history part from 200 years ago was good, but when he says closing the border will not help the people out of work due to “capital” flowing across borders he forgets that there are a lot of things (like homes and hotels) that “can’t” flow across a border and if we had less immigration we would have a lot more jobs for American’s (of all races) doing gardening, home repair and home and commercial real estate construction.

        P.S. I find it ironic that most (but not all) the people that don’t want to stop immigration from Mexico are well educated and seem to forget that as recently as the 70’s a CA a huge percentage of housekeeping, gardening and construction laborer jobs in California were filled by blacks (like they still are in southern states that are tougher on illegal immigration) and the black unemployment rate was much lower (and the marriage rate was much higher)…

        1. wdf1

          South of Davis:  P.S. I find it ironic that most (but not all) the people that don’t want to stop immigration from Mexico are well educated and seem to forget that as recently as the 70’s a CA a huge percentage of housekeeping, gardening and construction laborer jobs in California were filled by blacks (like they still are in southern states that are tougher on illegal immigration) and the black unemployment rate was much lower (and the marriage rate was much higher)…

          Please provide sources for these assertions.

        2. Dave Hart

          I did farm work during the 1970s and there were a few white kids like myself doing the work, but mostly Central Americans.  I tried to convince my two sons to spend at least one summer working in basic industries like ag, mining, timber when they were in high school or college.  To no avail.  They found better, more “fun” and otherwise rewarding work for the same pay.  THAT is why stopping immigration from our southern border would only serve to degrade the level of service in hotels, restaurants and make it impossible for farmers to produce at the same level.  It’s a labor shortage that domestic sources cannot or will not fill. Farmers will confirm that they cannot run their operations on domestic labor. Our domestic workforce will not work for any amount of wages that they can feasibly offer.

        3. South of Davis

          wdf1 wrote:

          > Please provide sources for these assertions.

          How long did you spend on the internet trying to disprove what I said before asking your question?

        4. wdf1

          South of Davis:  How long did you spend on the internet trying to disprove what I said before asking your question?

          I didn’t.  I’ve been too busy for that.  But it’s the sort of thing that I’m interested in reading about.  I thought you would clarify.

  8. tribeUSA

    Somehow the notion of white privilege and the fervent, strident support of it bring me back to my Roman Catholic upbringing, where I even attended a Catholic primary school (with some nuns) and was an altar boy–got some good old fashioned fear of God and wholesome Catholic guilt drilled into me, that helped keep me on the straight and narrow to adulthood.–something about the tone of some of the postings puts me in mind of the Order of Flagellants in Christian Europe–alas, our modern society has no such socially acceptable outlet for our existential guilt; for being born in sin with the mark of Cain upon us! Perhaps we can resuscitate something like the order of the flagellants; within which we can have chapters for White Privelege flagellation, and we can apply ourselves with wholesome vigorous energy with the flails, mutually to each other or in solitary, so that our whole being, physical as well as spiritual and mental, is the recipient of wholesome, cleansing atonement. This puny and partial abstracting and intellectualizing is inadequate!

    1. South of Davis

      tribeUSA wrote:

      > the tone of some of the postings puts me in mind of the

      > Order of Flagellants in Christian Europe

      There is still a Catholic group that does this:

      http://opusdei.org.in/en-in/article/opus-dei-and-corporal-mortification-2/

      “Some of the celibate members of Opus Dei use the cilice. It’s a small, light, metal chain with little prongs worn around the thigh. The cilice is uncomfortable–it’s supposed to be”

      I’m hoping that those that suffer from “white guilt” will feel better if they have the ability to tighten a cilice around their leg every time they slip with  a “microagression”…

    2. Dave Hart

      Except for the fact that recognizing white privilege has nothing to do, necessarily, with feeling guilty.  White privilege is a fact, there is nothing you can do about it.  It just is.  Not doing the right thing about unfair and discriminatory behavior toward those who are not privileged when you know better is what the Church generally refers to as a “sin”.  In my fundamentalist church upbringing, and most of the real world, the point is to “sin no more” by changing your behavior, atoning and adopting a forgiving attitude.   It’s what we now call a win-win-win situation and feels good.

      Self flagellation is only meaningful in a sick institution like the Catholic Church where, I can only surmise that the point is to continue to do wrong and whip yourself over it.  I don’t understand your reference.

      1. tribeUSA

        DH–rarely have I witnessed a level of intolerance and bias as you exhibit on your posts. It is somewhat laughable, because your posts are an exhibition of the same form of intellectual bigotry, stereotyping, and unfounded assumptions that you criticize in others. You blanket criticize the Catholic church as a sick institution. If you feel a need to atone you are entirely free to do so; but it seems to me you are projecting your own guilt, perhaps of your own feelings of unearned entitlement, onto the entire white race. Do you recognize any room for diversity of opinion and of different life experiences; or is your way the only way? You share this smug certitude in your views as absolute truth with many of those clergy in the catholic church; perhaps you can find some common ground there.

        1. Dave Hart

          Nothing I said was intolerant.  Nothing I said was bigoted.  Nothing I said was stereotyping.  It was you who brought up the strange rites of self-flagellation and the strange relationship to guilt in the Catholic Church.  I just read about another series of child molestations in the Church…will it ever end?  Sorry, but with current events and your suggestion regarding self-flagellation I assumed you felt the same as I.

          “The Roman Catholic Church is bigoted, misogynistic, controlling, judgmental, outdated and pharisaical – in the view of some its own most devoted members, according to an unprecedented official snapshot of opinion in the pews revealed by Britain’s most senior Catholic cleric… [Cardinal Vincent Nichols]”.

          I’m not Catholic, so what do I know more than a Cardinal?  In any case, I would like to live in a “post-racist” society.  That is a worthy goal.  People who want to continue to live in a racist society stand in the way of a better world.  All that can be done is to denounce their attitude.  Remaining silent is not a viable way to make change.  Each of us has to do what we can.  If you find that attitude to be bigoted and intolerant, then I guess we will never find common ground.

        2. tribeUSA

          DH–you ‘justify’ your view of the Catholic Church based on one snapshot of opinion in Britian; demonstrating that you are willing to base your viewpoint on a single piece of data–I’m sure you can find many other critiques of the catholic church. There is no balance here, no weighing of the positive and the negative. You bring up pedophile priests, with no mention of the vast majority of priests who are law-abiding–this is the same level of thinking of people who label blacks as a group as violent criminals (or who critique black leadership) based on the behavior of a small %. It is an extremely narrow and stereotyped viewpoint.

          DH if you want to bring people around to your point of view, you have to support it. Most of your postings here are assertions that have no more weight than the dogma of a religion (say, official papist decrees), since you do not provide much evidence or even an argument to back them up. I have no doubt that many scholarly tomes have been written about ‘white privilege’. I have looked at some of it; and it strikes me as an edifice built in the air, with little foundation. As an evidence-based researcher in other fields (applied physics, chemistry, and hydrology), I have often have evaluated the data of our research team in the light of competing hypotheses–some of the hypotheses have more explanatory power and prove to be more accurate than others. It seems that in the construction of the ‘white privilege’ edifice, there are very few competing hypotheses against which social outcome data are compared (maybe they exist and I haven’t seen them). For example, I would contend that most of the social outcome data that is attributed to ‘white privilege’ in  contemporary america can be more accurately and comprehensively attributed to what might be given the meme  ‘financial privilege’, and to a complex of cultural factors. Can you point out some rigorous studies that have compared such competing hypotheses for different social outcomes for different races?

          The onus is on you to support your contentions (decrees are reserved for the Pope!).

           

  9. Barack Palin

    I’m down in Southern Ca right now and took my grandson to a school event yesterday.  There was a line of middle schoolers waiting for the bus.  I found myself looking at one of the black students.  I wonder if he thought I was staring at him because he was black?  Actually I was staring because this kid had to be 6’2″ tall, at least 8″ taller than the tallest other kid at the bus stop.

    1. Dave Hart

      Yeah, he probably did wonder since he is old enough to have had some bad experiences already.  It would be pretty hard not to stare at such a young kid who is that tall.  Maybe a kind gesture, if you think he actually noticed your stare, would have been something like:  “I can’t help noticing how tall you are.  Sorry for the stare.”  Shoulda, coulda, woulda.

        1. Dave Hart

          Yes, he would have been wrong and wouldn’t have known otherwise.  On the other hand, he might have thought you were staring at him because he is tall and gets those stares all the time with “Hey, how’s the weather up there?” comments.  Either way, putting a kid at ease is always an heroic thing to do.

  10. tribeUSA

    DH–Re: “The fact is, however, if you so choose, you can probably make yourself invisible if you dress and cut your hair in the most neutral way possible.  You can choose to do that if you wish.  If your skin is black, there ain’t nothing you can do.”

     

    Perhaps one reason for why the different average social outcomes for different races in contemporary america is framed in terms of racism, white-privilege, etc is as follows: by so doing, those who promote these viewpoints can help to guarantee that the problem will not be resolved and thus they can make a lifetime career of the cause, because after all there is nothing one can do about one’s race. If these social outcomes were instead framed in terms of economic factors and cultural factors, then the problem would be in danger of being resolved–because after all, economic status is somewhat mutable and to some degree within one’s power to change, as are many cultural factors and personal decisions (like delaying having children until marriage, and encouraging and taking concrete actions to help with a growing child’s school education, and instilling values that help the child onto a path that does not lead to crime). Is not a framework of economic and cultural causes more empowering to the thinking of an individual than an attribution to racism, bigotry, oppression, white privilege, micro-aggression, etc.; (which seem to me to be negative, disempowering, and discouraging to young people).

Leave a Reply

X Close

Newsletter Sign-Up

X Close

Monthly Subscriber Sign-Up

Enter the maximum amount you want to pay each month
$ USD
Sign up for