Sunday, June 29, 2008

Diminishers and Deniers of the Isms

Diminishers have a subtle intellectual superiority and depend on the word "ignorant." They believe that black people still encounter unpleasantness related to blackness but in benign forms and from unhappy people or crazy people or people with good intentions that are bungled in execution. Diminishers think that people can be "ignorant" but not "racist" because these people have black friends, supported the civil rights movements or had abolitionist forebears.

Deniers believe that black people stopped encountering unpleasantness related to their blackness when Martin Luther King Jr. died. They are "colorblind" and use expressions like "white, black or purple, we're all the same" -- as though race were a biological rather than a social identity. Incidents that black people attribute to blackness are really about other factors, such as having too many children or driving too fast, but if deniers are compelled to accept that an incident was indeed about blackness, they launch into stories of Irish or Native American oppression, as though to deny the legitimacy of one story by generalizing about others. Deniers use "racist" as one would use "dinosaur," to refer to a phenomenon that no longer exists.

Read the rest.

H/T: The Luscious Librarian which I discovered via Hagar's Daughters which made note of it after Sojourner's Place passed them the Arte y Pico award. And the blogosphere turns round and round neteros!

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