You are currently browsing the daily archive for April 18, 2012.

    To comprehend any issue it is important to have a understanding of key terms base principles at work.  Two very different narratives of how racism works are identified by John Stoehr in this excerpt from his article on Al-Jazeera.

“[…] Everyone agreed the shooting of Trayvon Martin, the Florida teenager killed by a neighbourhood watch volunteer, was tragic, but liberals and conservatives disagreed on what caused it. On the left, racism was ultimately to blame. Why else would the shooter, George Zimmerman (who was recently arrested), spot Martin walking around a gated community, call the police, follow him and then later shoot him? On the right, race had nothing to do with it. This was a case of horrible judgment, bad policy and a tragic wrong that should be righted.

These are two views of racism. In one, racism is a concrete social force that exerts power over individuals. In the other, racism is an abstract universal human failing like any other that can be overcome with the right attitude. While the liberal view is often exaggerated, the conservative view does not account for who is doing what to whom. In this case, a half-white man killing a black boy.

The conservative view of “racism” is ambivalent, unmoored from history and freed of its long association with white violence. This has given rise to laughable locutions like “reverse racism” of which conservatives regularly accuse blacks whenever they rage against the racist machine, as Al Sharpton and others did in the wake of Martin’s death and the fact that justice did not prevail.

Yet when conservatives say race doesn’t matter, what they are saying, hopefully without meaning to, is that white violence doesn’t matter – and obviously white violence matters. In US history, blacks did not lynch whites with the blessing of the establishment, but whites did lynch blacks in the name of white supremacy.

Conservatives rightly say blacks kill more blacks than whites kill blacks. But that’s another one of those false equivalencies that hides what’s really going on. Black violence, even on those very rare occasions when whites are its victims, is scary and unjust, but white violence, especially when the victims are black, echoes through the web of history and can terrorise African Americans into submission. That’s been the historical purpose of white violence. If explicit laws and pernicious social norms didn’t control you, then the threat of violence did. That’s why racism is not about race so much as power – who has it, who doesn’t, what’s done with it and why.

And power is often above the law. Zimmerman and the man who killed Jake England’s dad are equally protected under a similar law that allows you to “Stand Your Ground” when facing life-threatening situations. Neither man was changed, because both claimed they acted in self-defence. But that’s where the similarities end. Trayvon Martin’s family has appealed to public opinion for justice. Jake England appealed to his gun. The present is a product of the past. To take white supremacy out of racism is to willfully ignore that reality.”

I’ve seen some of the arguments that more conservative commentators put forth regarding racism, and it seems they miss the key point (as they often do)- as highlighted from Stoehr’s article – the imbalance of power in society and how power is used and misused by those in control.  The discussion of racism needs to be framed around this idea of the misuse of power in society and how we can best redress the imbalance that is the cause of  much racial violence.

This Blog best viewed with Ad-Block and Firefox!

What is ad block? It is an application that, at your discretion blocks out advertising so you can browse the internet for content as opposed to ads. If you do not have it, get it here so you can enjoy my blog without the insidious advertising.

Like Privacy?

Change your Browser to Duck Duck Go.

Contact Info

Need to send me email? I have a infrequently monitored email account. Reach me at : arbourist at outlook dot com.

Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 313 other followers

Progressive Bloggers


April 2012
« Mar   May »


Blogs I Follow

The DWR Community

A Radical TransFeminist

when I said "fuck the patriarchy", I didn't mean it literally

Women's Space

Re-Member the Past, Seize Today, Dream the Future

The Colour of Pomegranates

Screaming into the Void

Finally, A Feminism 101 Blog

Frequently Answered Questions

Cloak Unfurled

Life is a journey. Let us meet at the intersection and share a story.


Fallout from my Peak Trans

Dead of Winter

Bitter Cold Truth from a Bisexual, Gender Critical, Almost Conservative Catholic


feminist heresy in an age of gender worship

Women’s Liberation Radio News

WLRN: A Radical Feminist Media Collective

UVic Womyn's Centre

bring back the women's centre

Joys of Joel

The Poetry of My Life through My Writings and Journeys

Sex and Gender

A Beginner's Guide

Coalition of the Brave

A Voice against the Darkness

Root Veg

dig deeper

TERF is a slur

Documenting the abuse, harassment and misogyny of transgender identity politics

In Permanent Opposition

Notes from the Feminist Underground

Revolting Europe

On Europe, the left, labour and social movements


because facts really should be sacred


The Killer Songbird

a rain and a gale

Feminism, mental health and stickin' it to the man


radical feminism - female liberation from male domination.

~Burning Woman~

This site is for thoughts from "the other side"

Skin City Sister

The radical feminist musings of a simple Vegas girl.

Our Rape Blog

Everything we never wanted to know about sexual assault


humourless mummy, cuddly feminist

First, Do No Harm: Youth Trans Critical Professionals

Professionals Thinking Critically about the Youth Transgender Narrative

My Only Path to Power

Diary of a Trans Widow


Just another site

Esme's Cloud

The Wanderings and wonderings of a sentient cloud.


Cross All Boundaries

Don't listen to them. Just live for YOU.

Writing in the AM

One english student attempts to write something during the 'golden hours' of the morning

Transgender Reality

What Trans People Are Really Saying Online

Critiquing Transgender Doctrine & Gender Identity Politics

Over 400 curated links to blog posts and online articles that question and critique transgender doctrine, genderist dogma, and gender identity politics.

OUT of My Panties, Now!!!

Confronting Gender


Nolite te bastardes carborundorum

%d bloggers like this: