"One of the problems with the idea that America needs a ‘Conversation On Race’ is that it presumes that ‘America’ has something intelligent to say about race. All you need do is look at how American history is taught in this country to realize that that is basically impossible."

Ta-Nehisi Coates (via theatlantic)

(via theatlantic)

Tags: race racism

"I tell people that I get dumber every time I read our comments section."

Donnie Douglas, Editor, The Robesonian, to Jim Romenesko. North Carolina Newspaper Cracks Down on Racial Comments.

The News: The paper is banning comments about race for stories that have nothing to do with race. Says Douglas: “We are not obligated to provide a forum for bigotry and hatred.”

(via futurejournalismproject)

"My party, unfortunately, is the bastion of those people — not all of them, but most of them — who are still basing their positions on race. Let me just be candid: My party is full of racists. The real reason a considerable portion of my party wants President Obama out of the White House has nothing to do with the content of his character, nothing to do with his competence as commander-in-chief and president, and everything to do with the color of his skin. That’s despicable."

— Retired Army Colonel and former aide to Colin Powell, Lawrence Wilkerson • Diving headfirst, in the most blunt terms possible, into the media dust-up kicked off last Thursday by Romney surrogate John Sununu. Responding to news that former Secretary of State Colin Powell had endorsed President Obama, Sununu suggested that Powell had a “slightly different” reason for doing it than politics – namely, his race. Sununu reversed course on this today, saying “I do not doubt that it was based on anything but his support of the president’s policies,” but not before Wilkerson unleashed this incendiary attack on some of his fellow Republicans. An attack which, frankly, seems destined to generate a lot more heat than it does light. source (via shortformblog)

motherjones:

Michael Jordan = “failed baseball player”
Carmelo Anthony = “noted anti-police activist”
… UM …
Fox Nation = “notorious race-baiting troll site”
(via)
UPDATE: Fox Nation = “unoriginal notorious race-baiting troll site,” which bogarted this from the “aspiring online rag” Washington Free Beacon.

motherjones:

Michael Jordan = “failed baseball player”

Carmelo Anthony = “noted anti-police activist”

… UM …

Fox Nation = “notorious race-baiting troll site”

(via)

UPDATE: Fox Nation = “unoriginal notorious race-baiting troll site,” which bogarted this from the “aspiring online rag” Washington Free Beacon.

Jerks

Ambassador Philip D Murphy, September 8, 2011:

There are jerks everywhere.

There are jerks where I come from in America, and there are jerks in the heart of Europe, here in Berlin.

A jerk is someone who shows no respect for other people, because they dress differently, talk differently, or were born with skin darker or eyes shaped other than the local standard. 

Ultimately, jerks are people with such a deficit of character and self-respect that they feel a need to belittle and intimidate others to fend off feeling small, scared and insignificant themselves.  So we need to help them change the way they think and the way they feel about themselves.  But first of all we need to stand up to them.  Because words and deeds do have consequences.

I was painfully reminded of this recently.

A group of U.S. Embassy staff and friends attended the Hertha game on August 26th.  They had a great time during the game, and were pleased to cheer on the home team.  One of them was African-American.  After the game, as they were walking away from the stadium, two men came at them and accosted our African American colleague.  One jostled him and the other doused him with beer and directed a deeply offensive racial insult at him.  The Embassy group tried to calm the situation, but it became clear that these individuals, along with an approaching group of their friends, were bent on violence.   The police arrived quickly and confronted the thugs, and the Americans left the area. No one was left bleeding or bruised, but things might easily have ended differently.

You can’t just let these things go.  Regardless of where incidents like this happen, whether it’s in America or Germany or anywhere else in the world, we have to stand up and say it’s wrong.  

This week in Washington, D.C., a national memorial to Dr. Martin Luther King opened on the Mall where the famous freedom fighter spoke to hundreds of thousands at the height of our civil rights campaign – half a century ago.  Dr. King remains a wonderful example for all of us.  He saw things that weren’t right and he refused to remain silent.  He had the courage to take action to change things for the better.

For many Americans, regardless of their political views, the election of Barack Obama was a triumph over our own history, a victory over the petty hatreds of many generations of our own jerks.  It was a milestone, but it wasn’t the end of the story.  Racism is still present in America.  We still have our jerks, the small people who need to prove themselves by lashing out at people they perceive as different.  And so we Americans have to keep working to make thing better.   The same is true for Germany.  Society – whether American or German – cannot look the other way and hope that somehow magically bigotry and racism will disappear.  We have to speak out and we have to take action.

Racism is not a thing of the past, neither in Germany nor in the U.S.  It remains a very modern problem, and increasingly so as populations move around the world in search of better lives in these tough economic times. Racism must be confronted firmly wherever it rears its head – whether along a country lane in America or on a sidewalk outside the Olympia Stadium or anywhere else in the world where jerks think that they can hurt people and get away with it.

ChristianityToday:

Opposition to Interracial Marriage Lingers Among Evangelicals
This month marks the 44th anniversary of the Loving v. Virginia, the landmark U.S. Supreme Court case that struck down state laws prohibiting interracial marriage. A 1968 Gallup poll found three-quarters of whites disapproved of a whites and blacks marrying. Today, opposition to interracial marriage is low, but it still lingers. Among religious groups, evangelicals remain the most opposed to interracial marriage, according to a poll by the Pew Research Center for the People and the Press (Pew).
Pew’s February Political Typology Poll asked people about recent trends in American society. Pew asked if “more people of different races marrying each other” was good or bad society. Overall, only nine percent of Americans said it was bad for society. However, 16 percent of white evangelicals said this, more than twice the opposition found among other Americans (7 percent). The survey found that 27 percent of Americans overall said more interracial marriage was good for society, compared to 17 percent of evangelicals.
Evangelicals may have the most negative view of interracial marriage, but there is also opposition among white mainline Protestants (13 percent) and Catholics (10 percent). Statistically, the percentages in these traditions who saw interracial marriage as bad for society were about the same as for evangelicals.
The views of white Christians stand in stark contrast to two other groups: black Protestants and those with no religion. Only three percent of either group said interracial marriage was bad for society. Eight-in-ten respondents said the trend “doesn’t make much difference.”  Those who are not religious were more optimistic, with 38 percent saying it was good for society.
Such a poor view of interracial marriage comes despite its near universal acceptance—even celebration—among evangelical leaders even as they acknowledge sensitivity to the issue. For example, in a 2005 sermon, John Piper of Bethlehem Baptist Church in Minneapolis said, “interracial marriage is not only permitted by God but is a positive good in our day. That is, it is not just to be tolerated, but celebrated.”  He followed this by noting that the issue remained “extremely controversial since it is opposed by people from all sides.”
Bob Jones University removed its rule against interracial dating in 2000; the university apologized for this and other racist policies in 2005.
Today, the issue of interracial marriage is most likely to be breached during debates over same-sex marriage. Ted Olson and David Boies released a video this month for the American Federation for Equal Rights (AFER). The video features the two lawyers (who argued successfully against California’s Proposition 8) discussing Loving v. Virginia as the foundation for the argument for same-sex marriage.
Focus on the Family’s Glenn Stanton said the video is emotionally persuasive but makes an invalid comparison between interracial marriage and same-sex marriage.
“Segregation was a profound social evil. Full stop,” Stanton said. “Loving v. Virginia struck down a legal regime, peculiar to certain parts of the nation, that was wholly racist at its core … It was about nothing more than the racial purity of whites and all the ugliness that implies.”

ChristianityToday:

Opposition to Interracial Marriage Lingers Among Evangelicals

This month marks the 44th anniversary of the Loving v. Virginia, the landmark U.S. Supreme Court case that struck down state laws prohibiting interracial marriage. A 1968 Gallup poll found three-quarters of whites disapproved of a whites and blacks marrying. Today, opposition to interracial marriage is low, but it still lingers. Among religious groups, evangelicals remain the most opposed to interracial marriage, according to a poll by the Pew Research Center for the People and the Press (Pew).

Pew’s February Political Typology Poll asked people about recent trends in American society. Pew asked if “more people of different races marrying each other” was good or bad society. Overall, only nine percent of Americans said it was bad for society. However, 16 percent of white evangelicals said this, more than twice the opposition found among other Americans (7 percent). The survey found that 27 percent of Americans overall said more interracial marriage was good for society, compared to 17 percent of evangelicals.

Evangelicals may have the most negative view of interracial marriage, but there is also opposition among white mainline Protestants (13 percent) and Catholics (10 percent). Statistically, the percentages in these traditions who saw interracial marriage as bad for society were about the same as for evangelicals.

The views of white Christians stand in stark contrast to two other groups: black Protestants and those with no religion. Only three percent of either group said interracial marriage was bad for society. Eight-in-ten respondents said the trend “doesn’t make much difference.”  Those who are not religious were more optimistic, with 38 percent saying it was good for society.

Such a poor view of interracial marriage comes despite its near universal acceptance—even celebration—among evangelical leaders even as they acknowledge sensitivity to the issue. For example, in a 2005 sermon, John Piper of Bethlehem Baptist Church in Minneapolis said, “interracial marriage is not only permitted by God but is a positive good in our day. That is, it is not just to be tolerated, but celebrated.”  He followed this by noting that the issue remained “extremely controversial since it is opposed by people from all sides.”

Bob Jones University removed its rule against interracial dating in 2000; the university apologized for this and other racist policies in 2005.

Today, the issue of interracial marriage is most likely to be breached during debates over same-sex marriage. Ted Olson and David Boies released a video this month for the American Federation for Equal Rights (AFER). The video features the two lawyers (who argued successfully against California’s Proposition 8) discussing Loving v. Virginia as the foundation for the argument for same-sex marriage.

Focus on the Family’s Glenn Stanton said the video is emotionally persuasive but makes an invalid comparison between interracial marriage and same-sex marriage.

“Segregation was a profound social evil. Full stop,” Stanton said. “Loving v. Virginia struck down a legal regime, peculiar to certain parts of the nation, that was wholly racist at its core … It was about nothing more than the racial purity of whites and all the ugliness that implies.”

bensgrabbag:

Although I am white, Barantunde sums up how I feel about birtherism perfectly in this video. Watch it and pass it on. 

Yup.