Black Folks are at the Bottom of the Racial Hierarchy (and yes, there is a racial hierarchy)

Black folks are at the bottom of the racial hierarchy and yes, there is a racial hierarchy.

Fight me.

The trendy trifecta of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion has familiarized most of the country with basic concepts of race and racism. Most are whitewashed and watered down, but there’s at least a conversation. At the policy level, racism is named (even if not wholly) and acknowledged as immoral.

As we broaden our understanding and deepen the work toward the liberation of all people, we are met with resistance. The deeper we go and the more intersections we come upon, the more folks are asked to examine their power and privilege. The discomfort is felt by all and it makes us reluctant to push through the ick to get to the truth and a step closer to liberation. Nobody wants to feel like they benefit from the oppression of others. Continue reading “Black Folks are at the Bottom of the Racial Hierarchy (and yes, there is a racial hierarchy)”

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Black Panther’s Jabari Tribe and Black Men

Black Panther’s weekend premiere was spectacular. Everyone has been talking about the movie and it’s cast of characters since the first nationwide showing. All kinds of opinions are flying around, good and bad, but there seems to be one thing we can all agree on. M’Baku, leader of the Jabari tribe is fine as all get out. *in my auntie voice*

Played by Winston Duke, M’Baku actually got a huge makeover for the film. One of the most notable updates is that he does not go by the name Man-Ape, though they still worship the ape god, Hanuman. I won’t bore you with comic book history but it shouldn’t be hard to see what may have been wrong with an African super-villain named Man-Ape. Instead, M’Baku is molded into the strong noble leader of Jabari land. Continue reading “Black Panther’s Jabari Tribe and Black Men”

A Story of Modern Slavery Receives Archaic Praise

Alex Tizon was a disgusting human being and deserves no praise for writing about the atrocities he and his family committed against Eudocia Pulido. We do not need to understand Filipino culture to determine that. We do not need to consider his twisted “love” for her. We do not need to see things from his perspective as a child. All we need to know is that three generations of his family held a woman captive until she died. And on top of that he waited 5 years to return her remains to her family who was robbed of her presence for the better part of a century. Continue reading “A Story of Modern Slavery Receives Archaic Praise”

Race, Culture, Nationality, and Ethnicity: Knowing the Difference

Recently I’ve gotten into a lot of “arguments” that could have been easily avoided if people understood different forms of identity. So in an attempt to spread knowledge and avoid these kinds of “arguments” in the first place, I thought I’d help out a little bit.

Disclaimer: This is my opinion based on experience and knowledge as a Black woman in America. Continue reading “Race, Culture, Nationality, and Ethnicity: Knowing the Difference”

Friendly Allies vs. Unchecked Foes

The Pacific Northwest is really white. How white? Well…..

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Having lived in this sea of whiteness the majority of my life, I’ve had to face many battles with white supremacy. Being called “nigger” by a white relative, people avoiding elevator rides or sitting next to me on the bus, hair touching, work place discrimination, and all the microagressions in between. I also have to deal with a great deal of closeted racism that has gone unchecked due to the lack of non-whites the white folks here interact with. I don’t know. It might not be a regional thing. But it sure feels like it sometimes. I don’t know how else to explain it. Continue reading “Friendly Allies vs. Unchecked Foes”

A Black History Month #WCW Dedication

On this first Wednesday of Black History Month I wanted to write about the amazing Black women who came before me. This is dedicated to:

Maya Angelou, Toni Morrison, Gwendolyn Brooks, Sonia Sanchez, Nikki Giovanni, Ida B. Wells, Phillis Wheatly, Alice Walker, Zora Neale Hurston, Audre Lorde, Octavia Butler, my mother, Wendy Battles
And the thousands of others who put pen to paper and paved the way. Continue reading “A Black History Month #WCW Dedication”

Enough is Enough

Portland Public Schools is currently examining issues of inequity, looking to re-balance schools across the city. An advisory committee was formed and with community input, plan to guide the school board toward a solution.

When I went to Harriet Tubman Middle School we had a marine biology program. I took zoology. We dissected animals. We had Bunsen burners in more than one classroom. We had a dark room where we developed our own pictures from the cameras we made. We had two PE teachers, but I was able to opt out of PE and take dance instead. I felt like my opportunities were endless. My children will not have those same opportunities at Boise-Eliot/Humboldt. There are limited classrooms to share with 10 grade levels. The PE teacher is forced to teach 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, and 14 year olds in the same room. The same room where they have 15 minutes a day to eat lunch. The same room where they hold assemblies. And that is just a small piece of the problematic puzzle. Like many other (P)K-8s in the city, Boise-Eliot/Humboldt is not okay Continue reading “Enough is Enough”