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Send a Bulllet

Due to “credible death and kidnapping threats”, T-Pain has cancelled a concert in Guyana for Mashramani, the festival that marks the anniversary of Guyana’s independence from Great Britain. Last years, celebration was soured by a killing spree perpetrated by a heavily armed gang led by man known as “Fine Man”. Because the 23 victims were mainly of East Indian descent, the massacre was a powder keg issue for the tiny South American nation. With a population of 44% East Indian and 30% African ancestries, Guyana tends to be socially and politically divided along ethnic identity lines. [more inside]
posted by Stu-Pendous on Feb 24, 2009 - 12 comments

It's Pancake Day!

It's Pancake Day! Also known as Shrove Tuesday or Mardi Gras, the day before Lent is celebrated in the UK by events such as football matches, races, and the consumption of mountains of pancakes. Perhaps you celebrated by running a pancake race, like the famous one in Ripon? Or, perhaps, you made some lovely pancakes of your own?
posted by Grrlscout on Feb 24, 2009 - 48 comments

Is he suggesting the President needs to be shot?

An editorial cartoon in the New York Post gets reactions from around the world about its possible racial depictions. [more inside]
posted by happyroach on Feb 19, 2009 - 301 comments

Playing together shouldn't hurt

The Socially Conscious Gamer is just the most recent example of growing discussions about how gamer culture and problems with silencing and pushing women out, wallowing in racist stereotypes, self-fulfilling cycles of exclusion, and why these conversations are hard, if not impossible to have. Still, if rational discussions can be had about games dealing with slavery, perhaps there is still hope. Personally, I can't wait for escapism to be for all of us, and not about escaping FROM us.
posted by yeloson on Feb 16, 2009 - 159 comments

Deadly Symbiosis

Deadly Symbiosis: Rethinking race and imprisonment in twenty-first-century America.
posted by lunit on Jan 29, 2009 - 16 comments

What is race in the Obama age?

What is race in the Obama age? Some blacks say there are two black races, one poor and one rich. Does that mean Obama is from the rich black race? Some wonder if he's black enough or too black. Or do we have to choose among four options: "a) black or b) white or c) half-black and half-white or d) an American and who-gives-a-damn about his ethnicity"? Or is he multiracial? All I know for sure is he's the president.
posted by shetterly on Jan 20, 2009 - 47 comments

The Dream is Alive

Happy Birthday Dr. King. Today is Martin Luther King Day. He was born 80 years ago, on January 15th, 1929. He was assassinated on April 4, 1968, at the Lorraine Motel in Memphis, Tennessee. He was just thirty-nine years old. Tomorrow, more than four decades after Dr. King’s death, Barack Obama will take his oath of office to become the 44th president of the United States and the first African American president in US history. The Reverend Joseph Lowery, a civil rights icon who co-founded the Southern Christian Leadership Conference with Dr, King, will deliver the benediction at the inauguration ceremony. Obama accepted the Democratic party nomination on the 45th anniversary of Dr. King’s “I Have a Dream” speech, arguably his most famous address. While Dr. King is primarily remembered as a civil rights leader, he also championed the cause of the poor and organized the Poor People"s Campaign to address issues of economic justice. Dr. King was also a fierce critic US foreign policy and the Vietnam War. [more inside]
posted by caddis on Jan 19, 2009 - 30 comments

Science Fiction, LiveJournal, and "Magical Negros"

A tempest in a Livejournal: It starts with author Elizabeth Bear's post Writing for The Other. Or maybe it started with Jay Lake's Thinking about the Other. It leads to a wide ranging, intense and angry debate on the portrayal of ethnicity in fiction, culture and the media. Avalon's Willow responds with an open letter on the racial content in one of her books, and relates it to media portrayals of ethnic peoples. Deepa D follows up with a post on, cultural appropriation. And then things get intense. [more inside]
posted by happyroach on Jan 19, 2009 - 82 comments

above us only sky

The end of white America is a cultural and demographic inevitability. "At the moment, we can call this the triumph of multiculturalism, or post-racialism. But just as whiteness has no inherent meaning—it is a vessel we fill with our hopes and anxieties—these terms may prove equally empty in the long run. Does being post-racial mean that we are past race completely, or merely that race is no longer essential to how we identify ourselves?"
posted by plexi on Jan 16, 2009 - 69 comments

Team Hoyt on the Today Show

Team Hoyt: The story of Dick and Rick Hoyt (Today Show SLYT) (prev)
posted by allkindsoftime on Jan 2, 2009 - 22 comments

"What are you?" "Tired of answering that question."

The Bill of Rights for People of Mixed Heritage (pdf) is a great document covering some basic issues of self definition many take for granted, including the right to not be pressured to choose an identity for the comfort of others. Of course, it's not like this is new, though it seems little headway is being made despite growing numbers of multi-ethnic people in the media spotlight. (Previously)
posted by yeloson on Dec 31, 2008 - 32 comments

Whitewashing Avatar

M. Night Shyamalan has decided to cast white actors in the main roles of the upcoming motion picture based on the TV show Avatar: The Last Airbender. The problem: Avatar featured an Asian world with Asian characters, including Aang, the titular character, and his friends Sokka and Katara. [more inside]
posted by lunit on Dec 23, 2008 - 252 comments

The Not Rape Epidemic

My friends and I confided in each other, swapping stories, sharing out pain, while keeping it all hidden from the adults in our lives. After all, who could we tell? This wasn’t rape - it didn’t fit the definitions. This was Not rape. We should have known better. We were the ones who would take the blame. We would be punished, and no one wanted that. So, these actions went on, aided by a cloak of silence. From Racialicious.
posted by Navelgazer on Dec 23, 2008 - 348 comments

IMPASSE

Bram Schouw's short IMPASSE [more inside]
posted by pwedza on Dec 11, 2008 - 8 comments

"...a liberal who's been mugged..."

A discussion about "white fear" and "black crime" [more inside]
posted by neroli on Dec 5, 2008 - 91 comments

“I don’t mind you having a black character, but please don’t show them in school together.”

Charles Schulz: "I finally sighed and said, 'Well, Larry, let’s put it this way: Either you print it just the way I draw it or I quit. How’s that?'" We don't usually think of Peanuts as given to political statements but this great post at Edge of the American West makes the case for Schulz's progressive racial politics. [more inside]
posted by LarryC on Nov 30, 2008 - 69 comments

"just numbers on a piece of paper"

I do not want to spend too much time beating a dead war-horse, but your average D&D game consists of a group of white players acting out how their white characters encounter and destroy orcs and goblins, who are, as a race evil, uncivilized, and dark-skinned. To quote Steve Sumner’s essay again, “Unless played very carefully, Dungeons & Dragons could easily become a proxy race war, with your group filling the shoes of the noble white power crusaders seeking to extinguish any orc war bands or goblin villages they happened across.” I would argue with Sumner’s use of the phrase “could become,” and say that unless played very carefully, D&D usually becomes a proxy race war. Any adventurer knows that if you see an orc, you kill it. You don’t talk to it, you don’t ask what it’s doing there - you kill it, since it’s life is worth less than the treasure it carries and the experience points you’ll get from the kill. If filmed, your average D&D campaign would look something like Birth of a Nation set in Greyhawk.
- Race in Dungeons & Dragons by Chris van Dyke, a powerpoint talk given at Nerd Nite. Via Ta-Nehisi Coates' blog where there's a smart discussion going on about the essay.
posted by Kattullus on Nov 19, 2008 - 195 comments

Obama win spurs white racial backlash

Obama's win is a racial milestone in world history, but beneath the surface a white backlash is festering in the US, spurring hate crimes around the country and an uptick in recruitment among white supremacists, according to the The Southern Poverty Law Center.
posted by stbalbach on Nov 17, 2008 - 98 comments

Debunking the Bradley Effect

The Persistent Myth of the Bradley Effect proposes that even if racists lied to pollsters in the 1980s, there's no evidence of that happening in 2008. The Bradley Effect - Selective Memory goes further: "The Bradley Effect was born amidst some major polling errors and a confusing array of mixed predictions, hardly a firm foundation to construct a theory."
posted by shetterly on Oct 16, 2008 - 62 comments

The Quiet Thaw

NYT: A new generation of black elected officials are wooing white voters and winning local elections in predominantly white districts across the country.
posted by chuckdarwin on Oct 14, 2008 - 29 comments

Climb Dance.

Climb Dance A short (and fast) film about a Pikes Peak International Hill Climb run from 1989. (Warning: Contains a small amount of jazzy piano sandwiched around about five minutes of very loud high RPM engine revving.)
posted by loquacious on Oct 11, 2008 - 15 comments

The Changing Face of the Inner City

Are you a young middle-class creative type (probably white) who has chosen to live in an urban neighborhood that your parents would have shunned? Have the families that formerly lived in your neighborhood (probably not white) been pushed out by soaring rents and real-estate prices to the city fringes or suburbs? The New Republic on demographic inversion.
posted by digaman on Aug 2, 2008 - 64 comments

The Great Automobile Race of 1908

On 30th July 1908, after 169 days of competition, the 4-cylinder, 60-horsepower Thomas Flyer, driven by George Schuster from America, crossed the finish line to win the Great 1908 New York-to-Paris Automobile Race. After driving to the West Coast, the vehicles were shipped to Vladivostok from where only three teams managed to continue with the race across Asia and Europe. [more inside]
posted by peacay on Jul 30, 2008 - 5 comments

Yes, I'll take the full insurance coverages please.

Rental Car Rally. (From the guys who brought Street Wars to NYC). That is all.
posted by allkindsoftime on Jul 8, 2008 - 29 comments

Whither Aaron and Robinson and Mays and Griffey, Jr. and...?

"The pervasive narcissism and cartoon chest-thumping of young black culture no longer jibes with what's essentially a sacrificial game. Basketball hawks the individual star. Football offers glamour jobs like quarterback, running back, receiver. For baseball, meanwhile, sacrifice is an actual statistic: The best fail in 70 percent of their at-bats. 'The thing about baseball is that it's such a team sport,' Philadelphia's Rollins told Sports Illustrated. 'And when you're in the inner city, it's all about being the man, about establishing your strength as an individual. So how can you be the man? You want that ball in your hands with three seconds on the clock to take the shot, or you want the football under your arm. That's how.'

Race, class, families, fathers, and baseball: Where Have All the Black Guys Gone?
posted by mudpuppie on Jun 13, 2008 - 61 comments

A moment in history; Obama Wins Presidential Nomination.

It's official. Obama has won the Democratic Party nomination for the US Presidency. In response, McCain has launched a "verbal sortie" against him and the media has already begun disecting Hillary's campaign.
posted by Effigy2000 on Jun 3, 2008 - 949 comments

The Amazing Race

The Great NYC Commuter Race! A short by Streetfilms about Transportation Alternatives' annual event that pits a cyclist against a car and a straphanger in a race to Union Square from Fort Greene. Guess who wins?
posted by [NOT HERMITOSIS-IST] on Jun 3, 2008 - 77 comments

Caucasian Challenge

Looking for a little something to do come August? Haul yourself from from Budapest to Yerevan in a "minimal assistance" rally they're calling the Caucasian Challenge. Our idea of a tricked out and dependable race vehicle is an old Soviet Lada with fuzzy dice.
posted by Wolfdog on May 30, 2008 - 18 comments

Moyers interviews Wright

Bill Moyers interviews the Reverend Jeremiah Wright in his first broadcast interview with a journalist since he became embroiled in a controversy for his remarks and his relationship with Barack Obama [more inside]
posted by homunculus on Apr 28, 2008 - 159 comments

i can has privilij?

White Privilege: Unpacking the Invisible Knapsack as illustrated by lolcats. Also, White Liberal Bingo.
posted by streetdreams on Apr 17, 2008 - 197 comments

What Black People Like (JUST KIDDING)

The Cosby Conservatism Conundrum Proving that the new "dialogue" on race has five, six, maybe seven sides. No more pudding pops for you...
posted by wendell on Apr 11, 2008 - 26 comments

Immigration on the UK political agenda

Record levels of immigration have had "little or no impact" on the economic well-being of Britons says a report (pdf) from an influential House of Lords committee. Initial reactions from the various parties, institutes and publications have been largely predictable. Coming so closely on the back of the BBC's recent "White" series on white working-class Britain, it looks likely to provoke some debate on British attitudes to immigration (pdf). [more inside]
posted by Jakey on Apr 1, 2008 - 27 comments

One for the History Books

Obama's Gettysburg Address. Today we saw and heard a preview of our brightest possible American future in Senator Barack Obama's glorious speech. This, then, is what it means to be presidential. To be moral. To have a real center. To speak honestly, from the heart, for the benefit of all. If there was any doubt about what we have missed in the anti-intellectual, ruthlessly incurious Bush years, and even the slippery Clinton ones (the years of "what is is"), those doubts were laid to rest by Barack Obama's magisterial speech today. A speech in which he distanced himself from a flawed father figure, Reverend Wright, and did so with almost Shakespearian dignity and honor. One of the most important speeches on race in decades if not longer. (text) [more inside]
posted by caddis on Mar 18, 2008 - 1126 comments

Tim Wise on Obama and Race

Obama and Race: "In short, the success of Barack Obama has proven, perhaps more so than any other single thing could, just how powerful race remains in America. His success, far from disproving white power and privilege, confirms it with a vengeance." Tim Wise, an American anti-racist activist, writer, and author of White Like Me, has published two new essays about Obama, racism, and the 2008 election bid. More can be found on his official website.
posted by lunit on Mar 11, 2008 - 176 comments

Amchi Mumbai ~ My Mumbai

Politics of Hate: What's happening to the city of Mumbai
posted by hadjiboy on Feb 13, 2008 - 14 comments

Black History Month

Time Magazine's 25 Most Important Films On Race
posted by hadjiboy on Feb 8, 2008 - 69 comments

Understanding Race

A new look at race through three lenses: History, human variation and lived experience. Be sure to check out some of the quizzes, notably White Men Can't Jump and other assumptions about sports and race. [via SpoFi] A product of the American Anthropological Association.
posted by psmealey on Feb 3, 2008 - 14 comments

American Code Words

Would you vote for an articulate horizontal-thinking Canadian? Race and religion in America defined through obfuscation.
posted by waraw on Jan 29, 2008 - 55 comments

A Genetic Basis for 'Race'

'Race' graphically illustrated - "most Europeans" vs. Ashkenazim (previously; see also IQ & Gladwell, viz. ;) [more inside]
posted by kliuless on Jan 23, 2008 - 101 comments

Who Gets to Tell a Black Story?

Prior to his critically acclaimed program The Wire, creator Edward Burns wrote the HBO miniseries The Corner, which also focused on the drug trade in Baltimore. Charles S. Dutton, an African-American Baltimore native and former convict probably best known to most as TV's "Roc," was chosen to direct the miniseries. Who Gets To Tell a Black Story?, part of a Pulitzer-prize winning NYT series on race in America, examines Dutton's take on how to make a TV program which portrays a mostly African-American cast of characters, the struggles and differing perspectives of Dutton and Burns, and how race is portrayed in Hollywood. [more inside]
posted by whir on Dec 17, 2007 - 24 comments

Race and Intelligence, Redux

About a month ago, a MeFi FPP on this article sparked a controversy here on the usefulness of the concepts of IQ and race in determining whether some ethnic groups can be shown to be intrinsically less intelligent than others. Now James Flynn, discoverer of the Flynn effect, has written a book, What is Intelligence?, that settles many of the issues of this controversy. In this week's New Yorker, Malcolm Gladwell summarizes Flynn's arguments succinctly in a review entitled "None of the Above: What IQ doesn't tell you about race."
posted by ubiquity on Dec 16, 2007 - 85 comments

Black Panther: The Revolutionary Art of Emory Douglas

Black Panther: The Revolutionary Art of Emory Douglas, the Black Panther Party's Minister of Culture from 1967 to 1979. Douglas is still alive and making posters for the cause, in this case the San Francisco 8, who were arrested earlier this year for the murder of a police officer in 1971 -- despite the fact that evidence was thrown out of federal court in 1976 because "officers stripped the men, blindfolded them, beat them and covered them in blankets soaked in boiling water," and "used electric prods on their genitals." The SF Weekly published a detailed 5-page story about the case in November 2006.
posted by mediareport on Dec 14, 2007 - 19 comments

What Happened to My Forty Acres and a Mule, Fool?

40 acres and a mule has been a slogan of African-American economic aspirations ever since the legislation creating the Freedman's Bureau promised ex-slaves parcels not exceeding forty acres each, to the loyal refugees and freedmen. General William Tecumseh Sherman's Special Field Order No. 15 decreed that the land on slave plantations be seized and distributed to freed slaves, but Andrew Johnson rescinded the order and vetoed expansion of the Freedman's Bureau. Both Henry Louis Gates and Dalton Conley have associated the failure to grant freed slaves their "40 acres and a mule" with the wealth gap between black and white Americans, but now an economics grad student, Melinda Miller, has brought important quantitative data to the debate in a new research paper. [more inside]
posted by jonp72 on Dec 14, 2007 - 43 comments

Fantasies in black and white

If even most African-Americans believe the black poor are primarily responsible for their own plight, does that make it true?
posted by shotgunbooty on Nov 27, 2007 - 79 comments

When novelists attack

Shame on him for saying it, and shame on us for tolerating it. In an article in Monday's Guardian, the writer Ronan Bennett argued that the lack of a popular outcry against Martin Amis' remarks about Islam (covered previously) represents a cultural failure that ought to shame us. Yesterday, Christopher Hitchens and Ian McEwan wrote attacking Bennett and defending Amis. Perhaps they ought to have deployed a slideshow.
posted by hydatius on Nov 22, 2007 - 48 comments

I Am Crack

Crack Is Whack (nsfw)
posted by Xurando on Nov 13, 2007 - 33 comments

Would you like to drive a car?

Perhaps you'll recall DARPA's Grand Challenge where autonomous vehicles competed in a off-road race but most barely made it off the starting blocks? And Grand Challenge 2 where they did the same thing more successfully and also filmed a NOVA special?. Well, they are doing it again, on city streets this time. [more inside]
posted by DU on Nov 2, 2007 - 24 comments

"[W]hat I really wanted to hear ... was a bit of swing, some empty space, and palpable bass frequencies."

Q: Is [country] somehow more soulful than Wilco? A: Oh, hell yeah.: Sasha Frere-Jones writes a polemic on why indie music lacks a certain something. Writes more and more and talks about it, too. The Voice weighs in. Slate says it's class, not race. Or perhaps kt's response is more your speed?: not everything needs critical assessment or whatever.
posted by wemayfreeze on Oct 19, 2007 - 103 comments

"The niggers are coming!"

Through a Lens Darkly - on September 4, 1957, when 15-year-old Elizabeth Eckford tried to enter Little Rock Central High, she was blocked by the National Guard and surrounded by a screaming mob of 250: "Lynch her! Lynch her!" "No nigger bitch is going to get in our school! Get out of here!" "Go back to where you came from!" Looking for a friendly face, she turned to an old woman, who spat on her. Photos. Dramatic news footage. Ernest Green, another of the Little Rock 9 recalls the first day of school. [more inside]
posted by madamjujujive on Sep 25, 2007 - 48 comments

Are you white?

Should I use blackface on my blog? A flowchart.
posted by klangklangston on Sep 4, 2007 - 44 comments

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