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1 minute ago, Luna Bliss said:

Well you know one thing I'd like explained is why the word you brought up in the title (being 'woke') is now such a derogatory term for quite a few people.  Being 'woke' just means 'being aware of racial injustice'.    So being aware is now wrong in America????

I don't concern myself much with other people's opinions about the meanings of words.  When I use a word, it means what it means.

 

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This graphic, which I saw over the road at VVO, distinguishes between the political and the non-political quite well, I think  

Why it can feel hard to talk about racial inequality, and why you should do it anyway.... So, anyway, as i mentioned in a couple of other threads, the company I work for gave us a paid day off in

Racism is defined as: prejudice, discrimination, or antagonism directed against someone of a different race based on the belief that one's own race is superior. You can't change the definition to

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"When I use a word," Humpty Dumpty said, in rather a scornful tone, "it means just what I choose it to mean—neither more nor less."

"The question is," said Alice, "whether you can make words mean so many different things."

"The question is," said Humpty Dumpty, "which is to be master—that's all."

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14 minutes ago, kali Wylder said:
17 minutes ago, Luna Bliss said:

Well you know one thing I'd like explained is why the word you brought up in the title (being 'woke') is now such a derogatory term for quite a few people.  Being 'woke' just means 'being aware of racial injustice'.    So being aware is now wrong in America????

I don't concern myself much with other people's opinions about the meanings of words.  When I use a word, it means what it means.

Do you propose that we just ignore those who don't have their 'wokeness' stories such as you have revealed (I'm very impressed with your story btw).  I could get behind that really, as I'm tired of the conflict.  Yet I feel the need to encourage those who don't recognize how they have benefitted by being White to understand the issues better, because if they can't recognize the benefits of being White they can't  understand what Blacks still do not have in this country.  This is the core of why Blacks are at a disadvantage -- Whites who, still, think Blacks are inferior, and not always at a conscious level.

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33 minutes ago, Paul Hexem said:

Off the top of my head, words like equality, equal rights, safety, reform, solidarity, even what you just said, racial disparity. Spend some time in a thesaurus or dictionary, or even just giving it thought, and a person could easily come up with more. There are lots of options out there.

There's no need to sound racist in the fight against racism. It undermines the effort.

Paul is right in very many, very serious ways.  So, I'm going out on a limb here all by myself and say we cannot over-look "police privilege" in our attempt to examine ourselves as a people, a country and a society.  A privilege the police have no right too under the 9th Amendment.   

As far as how much to focus on white privilege to change things...I've said we need to enact more laws because that is really our staying power.  

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7 minutes ago, Paul Hexem said:

Off the top of my head, words like equality, equal rights, safety, reform, solidarity, even what you just said, racial disparity. Spend some time in a thesaurus or dictionary, or even just giving it thought, and a person could easily come up with more. There are lots of options out there.

There's no need to sound racist in the fight against racism. It undermines the effort.

So then, if there are other terms associated with this 'phenomena' if you agree that there is some sort of problem there, why not just use one of the many other things you just pulled out of your hat and just not use the term 'white privilege'?

The funny thing about language is words and terms fall in and out of favor, but it depends on how much something is used. To me its used as an umbrella term that encompasses all of those words you just used, but at the same time...I can understand how that could be misconstrued as a slap in the face to a white person.

I'm not trying to make this about language, but the connotation seems to be a sticking point. The language I'm seeing is (and maybe I'm interpreting this the wrong way) "I don't agree with any of this because I don't like terms like 'white privilege'" But I'm not really seeing, "I agree with the idea of this, but I don't like the term 'white privilege' lets call it something else." Is it really hard for someone to say something like that? There's a nuance there, but I'm really not seeing that put forth just, "I don't agree with that term, so I WON'T AT ALL" so then it becomes an issue of denial.

Did you have siblings growing up? Have you ever sat at the table and your mother poured you and your sibling a glass of milk? Your brother has more milk than you so you scream "He has more milk than meeee! Its not fair!" Then your mother does the funny dance of balancing the glasses of milk. Ok, now take that idea and apply it to this. Equality *pour* equal rights *pour* safety *pour* Reform *pour* Solidarity *pour* Racial Disparity *pour* You: HE HAS MORE MILK THAN MEEEEEE! Brother: ....I'm deeply offended you said that! *drinks his milk*

So what would you use to encompass all of those things?

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1 minute ago, Luna Bliss said:

Do you propose that we just ignore those who don't have their 'wokeness' stories such as you have revealed (I'm very impressed with your story btw).  I could get behind that really, as I'm tired of the conflict.  Yet I feel the need to encourage those who don't recognize how they have benefitted by being White to understand the issues better, because if they can't recognize the benefits of being White they can't they can't understand what Blacks still do not have in this country.  This is the core of why Blacks are at a disadvantage.

Name calling very rarely results in change; it's more likely to make a person dig in and fight back.  I think that sharing how you came to see the need for change without accusing anyone is more likely to result in a thoughtful exchange of ideas instead of an adversarial impasse.

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We could call it white privilege, racial disparity, white advantage, rainbow unicorn sparkle...won't make a difference. As soon as that type of person clocks that it's about acknowledging a systemic racism problem that works against black people, they'll start trying to delegitimise it.

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1 minute ago, kali Wylder said:
7 minutes ago, Luna Bliss said:

Do you propose that we just ignore those who don't have their 'wokeness' stories such as you have revealed (I'm very impressed with your story btw).  I could get behind that really, as I'm tired of the conflict.  Yet I feel the need to encourage those who don't recognize how they have benefitted by being White to understand the issues better, because if they can't recognize the benefits of being White they can't they can't understand what Blacks still do not have in this country.  This is the core of why Blacks are at a disadvantage.

Name calling very rarely results in change; it's more likely to make a person dig in and fight back.  I think that sharing how you came to see the need for change without accusing anyone is more likely to result in a thoughtful exchange of ideas instead of an adversarial impasse.

I can get behind resisting calling anyone a name, but are you saying that pointing out 'white privilege', trying to discuss what this means when we see it, is name calling?

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16 minutes ago, Janet Voxel said:

white privilege

Janet, sorry if I am answering for someone else...so just hear me out or ignore me.

Paul is suggesting reform because we do need to focus on "police privilege"; privileges the police have granted themselves that need to be over-turned, imo, that's what Paul was saying.  That's what I got from Paul's post anyways but he can answer it himself.  

White privilege next in line here.  Do you feel white privilege is behind the hurting of POC or is it a few crazies who feel they can get away with it?  

One of the ways to bring down "white power" if i may put it that way, is to bring down police power.  Yes, the police will still have power but not in the ways they did before if we bring about reform.  

"White privilege" we can enact laws against it but it's a little more hidden under the table than police privilege is although police privilege is hidden and corrupt too.  White privilege can vary from personal experience to why are all the presidents white except for one who is part white?  Could we say this country was founded by whites as their government so it favors whites?  I don't know.  

What can we change by having the phrase "white privilege"?    Just ourselves?   But, what do we do with our white privilege as white people...I mean how are we supposed to change white privilege?  Tell our government not to be biased towards white people?  That won't work.  Laws need to be enacted.  

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Just now, Amina Sopwith said:

We could call it white privilege, racial disparity, white advantage, rainbow unicorn sparkle...won't make a difference. As soon as that type of person clocks that it's about acknowledging a systemic racism problem that works against black people, they'll start trying to delegitimise it.

lol there was even a big issue about using the word "whites" on another thread,  and Love made up a funny name for 'whites'....whirmsbigs or something...

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Is anyone else noticing the trend of people desperately wanting to blame the state of race in the US to everything except racism?

It's poverty, it's classism, it's the police... 

No. It's racism. 

All of those other things exist, yes, but the root of it all comes from one source - the white man's belief that their race is superior to that of the black man. 

The US hasn't had some great moral awakening since the Civil Rights movement - racists just got better at hiding their racism until Trump came along and encouraged all the racist white people to rise up and shout it out proudly that they do, in fact, still believe the white race is superior to the black race. 

Shamefully, a lot of those people are cops. 

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3 minutes ago, Luna Bliss said:

lol there was even a big issue about using the word "whites" on another thread,  and Love made up a funny name for 'whites'....whirmsbigs or something...

Well to be fair, if I don't know the context then I might think you're talking about my next laundry load. I do prefer to use colour as a prefix for "people". 

And now back to our scheduled programme.

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2 minutes ago, Luna Bliss said:

I can get behind resisting calling anyone a name, but are you saying that pointing out 'white privilege', trying to discuss what this means when we see it, is name calling?

depends on how you do it Luna.  If you say I am benefiting from white privelege and you relate your experience of that, someone listening to you can see that they also might have a similar experience.... and their awareness rises.  If you describe the very same experience saying you, you, you, instead of I, I, I, then the person reacts with "who are you to tell me what I am experiencing, you are wrong because I feel you are picking on me and they fight you.  One way is sharing an experience that can be seen as non threatening and even identified with, the other way is an accusation.

 

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1 minute ago, kali Wylder said:
8 minutes ago, Luna Bliss said:

I can get behind resisting calling anyone a name, but are you saying that pointing out 'white privilege', trying to discuss what this means when we see it, is name calling?

depends on how you do it Luna.  If you say I am benefiting from white privelege and you relate your experience of that, someone listening to you can see that they also might have a similar experience.... and their awareness rises.  If you describe the very same experience saying you, you, you, instead of I, I, I, then the person reacts with "who are you to tell me what I am experiencing, you are wrong because I feel you are picking on me and they fight you.  One way is sharing an experience that can be seen as non threatening and even identified with, the other way is an accusation.

Totally agree, Kali, and I have done that pretty well on this thread.  I really can't blame those who get frustrated with people who try to make these issues about everything else but racism though, persisting in denial just so they don't have to assume any responsibility for the issues, worried more about others trying to get them to accept some responsibility vs the horrific conditions Blacks have endured in America.   Sometimes we reach a limit and just say "for God's sake, just admit you had some privilege being White  throughout your life"!!! 

To enact your scenario we have to assume the opposite side is debating in good faith with an attempt to learn and understand and the maturity to present their side with some skill and effort, and not only to win. I have seen some do that, but I've seen more who just want to trash others and win.

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12 minutes ago, Beth Macbain said:

Is anyone else noticing the trend of people desperately wanting to blame the state of race in the US to everything except racism?

It's poverty, it's classism, it's the police... 

No. It's racism. 

All of those other things exist, yes, but the root of it all comes from one source - the white man's belief that their race is superior to that of the black man. 

The US hasn't had some great moral awakening since the Civil Rights movement - racists just got better at hiding their racism until Trump came along and encouraged all the racist white people to rise up and shout it out proudly that they do, in fact, still believe the white race is superior to the black race. 

Shamefully, a lot of those people are cops. 

The really sad thing is,  cops are at the bottom of that totem pole. it gets worse the higher you climb it...

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2 minutes ago, kali Wylder said:

depends on how you do it Luna.  If you say I am benefiting from white privelege and you relate your experience of that, someone listening to you can see that they also might have a similar experience.... and their awareness rises.  If you describe the very same experience saying you, you, you, instead of I, I, I, then the person reacts with "who are you to tell me what I am experiencing, you are wrong because I feel you are picking on me and they fight you.  One way is sharing an experience that can be seen as non threatening and even identified with, the other way is an accusation.

And this is why you are a better human being than I am. 

I just don't have the patience for it unless it is with a person that is showing a willingness to listen, and think.

It's been my experience, though, that most people know full well that they have some biases, and admitting it would mean that they have to change it, and change is really hard, and it's just easier to say, "Nope... no biases here, you're crazy, I don't see color, I have black friends, and you are wrong," or they own it by saying things like, "Black people need to get over slavery," which someone actually said in one of these threads. 

There's no sharing with people like that, and I'm just not going to be nice and polite to them. They are wrong, and they need to wear big signs that say they are wrong so everyone who encounters them also knows they are wrong and can shun them as well. 

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Just now, Ceka Cianci said:

The really sad thing is,  cops are at the bottom of that totem pole. it gets worse the higher you climb it...

I sometimes wonder if that's what provokes them to be so violent. They know they'e at the bottom and are just one step above those they are beating, choking, and killing in the eyes of the people higher up on the pole, and that they'll never climb higher because although they were born with white privilege, there were many other whites born with much more privilege. 

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4 minutes ago, Beth Macbain said:

I just don't have the patience for it unless it is with a person that is showing a willingness to listen, and think.

I try to stay in the moment. If I let the mountain of past experience color my present, it is much harder to be present.  Just like in SL, I choose to accept people as they present themselves; they may be totally different than what they present, but I need to discount that and just respond to them in the moment and accept them as they present themselves.  I stay true to myself and i give them my willing suspension of dis-belief about themselves. I let go of the results of my endeavor, that's not up to me.

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27 minutes ago, FairreLilette said:

What can we change by having the phrase "white privilege"?    Just ourselves?   But, what do we do with our white privilege as white people...I mean how are we supposed to change white privilege?  Tell our government not to be biased towards white people?  That won't work.  Laws need to be enacted.  

I encourage you to review as many of your life experiences as you can remember, and imagine how your life might have been different had you been Black in these experiences.  It's quite an eye-opener, and it can lead to an understanding of what White privilege is and provide clues as to how it can be overcome.

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12 minutes ago, Luna Bliss said:

Totally agree, Kali, and I have done that pretty well on this thread.  I really can't blame those who get frustrated with people who try to make these issues about everything else but racism though, persisting in denial just so they don't have to assume any responsibility for the issues, worried more about others trying to get them to accept some responsibility vs the horrific conditions Blacks have endured in America.   Sometimes we reach a limit and just say "for God's sake, just admit you had some privilege being White  throughout your life"!!! 

To enact your scenario we have to assume the opposite side is debating in good faith with an attempt to learn and understand and the maturity to present their side with some skill and effort, and not only to win. I have seen some do that, but I've seen more who just want to trash others and win.

Got to let go of the winning, let go of the debate.  If that's the goal then you've already lost.  The goal is understanding each other. Promoting more understanding, seeing each other as fully human, that's my goal.

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17 minutes ago, Luna Bliss said:

To enact your scenario we have to assume the opposite side is debating in good faith with an attempt to learn and understand and the maturity to present their side with some skill and effort, and not only to win. I have seen some do that, but I've seen more who just want to trash others and win.

oWn tHe LiBzz!!!

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7 minutes ago, kali Wylder said:

Got to let go of the winning, let go of the debate.  If that's the goal then you've already lost.  The goal is understanding each other. Promoting more understanding, seeing each other as fully human, that's my goal.

I agree 100%. To me that's what being "woke" means.

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23 minutes ago, kali Wylder said:

Got to let go of the winning, let go of the debate.  If that's the goal then you've already lost.  The goal is understanding each other. Promoting more understanding, seeing each other as fully human, that's my goal.

I agree for the most part, but I see you as a bit over-idealistic too.  Thinking back to one of the 'debates' I read about when studying the plight of Blacks in the south, if I was standing around in the crowd watching a man lynch a pregnant Black woman, slitting her stomach so that her baby fell to the ground and had its head stomped, I think I want Beth in the crowd.

Edited by Luna Bliss
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Power simply doesn't give up power easily.  Gotta have some radicals. There's a fight to be had.  To "wrestle the earth from fools", as Patti says. In fact, this song is great for Black empowerment (yes those who fight against injustice must believe they have the power to fight against those who oppress them) as opposed to Shelby Steel's notions of shaming Blacks for being victims and not trying hard enough:

 

 

People Have the Power

I was dreaming in my dreaming
Of an aspect bright and fair
And my sleeping it was broken
But my dream it lingered near
In the form of shining valleys
Where the pure air recognized
And my senses newly opened
I awakened to the cry
That the people have the power
To redeem the work of fools
From the meek the graces shower
It's decreed the people rule

People have the power
People have the power
People have the power
People have the power

Vengeful aspects became suspect
And bending low as if to hear
And the armies ceased advancing
Because the people had their ear
And the shepherds and the soldiers
And they lay among the stars
Exchanging visions
And laying arms
To waste in the dust
In the form of shining valleys
Where the pure air recognized
And my senses newly opened
I awakened to the cry

People have the power
People have the power
People have the power
People have the power

Where there were deserts
I saw fountains
Like cream the waters rise
And we strolled there together
With none to laugh or criticize
And the leopard
And the lamb
Lay together truly bound
I was hoping in my hoping
To recall what I had found
I was dreaming in my dreaming
God knows a purer view
As I lay down to my sleeping
I commit my dream to you

People have the power
People have the power
People have the power
People have the power

The power to dream to rule
To wrestle the earth from fools
It's decreed the people rule
It's decreed the people rule

I believe everything we dream
Can come to pass through our union
We can turn the world around
We can turn the earth's revolution
We have the power
People have the power
People have the power
People have the power

The power to dream to rule
To wrestle the earth from fools
It's decreed the people rule
It's decreed the people rule

We have the power
We have the power
The people have the power
We have the power

 

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42 minutes ago, Luna Bliss said:

I encourage you to review as many of your life experiences as you can remember, and imagine how your life might have been different had you been Black in these experiences.  It's quite an eye-opener, and it can lead to an understanding of what White privilege is and provide clues as to how it can be overcome.

Well, my Dad made good money both as a social worker and as a comedian in Hollywood and television and as a comedy writer.   So, I'd be a privileged Black girl in that situation.  Having that kind of money growing up is very sheltering although you are going to meet all kinds of people who have a fairly open mind in Hollywood.  They were kind of an open bunch of people in Hollywood at the time I was growing up often talking about ways to except others who might be considered "different".

But, just thinking of "white bread television" back then, if I were a Black girl brought onto a TV show it would have been painted as all buttercups and roses and look how anti-racist we are.  It's part of Puritanical American censorship which my family had to face; it's puritanical based and they paint it like it's perfected paradise of colored ponies that fall from heaven or some such nonsense.  Some censorship is less now but that's only in the areas where there are parental controls for cable and internet.  However, for general audiences, censorship is still puritanically based.  

So, I had a privileged life in that respect.

Now if I were a poorer Black girl, I think quite honestly to tell you the truth, I'd be afraid of this so-called freedom I'm supposed to have because what skills would I have?   I used to do odd jobs from sewing to ironing until I taught myself to type by buying a $35 dollar typewriter and getting a book from the library called "Teach Yourself to Type" and I started to get a job with my typing skills which are average.   I may have done well as a black girl in this respect as a typist because typing jobs and Data Entry jobs were prevalent at the time; our typing pools were all kinds of people though predominantly white.  

I have lived in multi-ethnic towns my whole life but not as many Black women went for the typing jobs.  Many were nurses and cafeteria workers though as I worked for hospitals as a typist.  

So, it's going to depend on which situation of income I have.  And, I think I come from a kind of a privileged area.  Many Black women have done well in the towns I've lived in.  So I don't know what it's like to come out of poverty as the minorities in the inner cities have to face.  If I had to face that I think I'd be kind of scared at all the competition I think I would have to face.  I'd think people might look down on me as some look down on some whites they call "trailer trash".  

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