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I'm really not a fan of Rev. Al Sharpton... but then again... i have given him my support at times when he has pioneered 'the right' causes/justice...
For example, a few yrs back...I was AMAZED and outraged at how little people were interested in the murder of Amadu Diallo with 41 shots from the undercover 4. I really was shocked at how little outrage there was...at the time there was only Sharpton who was organizing protest rallys...

Recently i was inrigued to see that Sharptons offices burnt to the ground... don't know enough about it all but seems VERY suspicious...especially as he is always looking for justice against the police.
America always talks about being free but the US has more cases of free thinking people being attacked that anywhere in Europe...
Especially when it comes to race issues.

Wish there was a great MLK 'black' leader - a true humanitarian... But I find America so Pro-Black or Pro-White... very rarely united.

My dad was a white Irish man who worked in the 60's for the ANC (African National Congress) when Mandela was first imprisoned. I grew up around many black leaders/politician but i am white.. But this is unheard of in America as people feel you need to be black to support a struggle... its so sad the way it is here... but i find myself at constant issue about race with both white and black folk in america.

Really feel its different in Europe.
Original Post
As Anna Nicole knows I too was born and raised in the UK. I was blessed (really) with a melting pot of infuences and visuals from an enormous spectrum of colours sights and sounds from the huge influx of west indian immigrants into England from the 60's. For us (white kids) being born into this 'new' culture we shaped it and twisted it into a wonderful tapestry of style called Mod, and punk and rasta and reggae and skins and suedheads and smoothies, it crossed over into every corner of life and in every city in the country. It changed for-ever the people we became.It changed our perceptions, it broke down barriers and through the depressions and Thatcherite era we realised we all had a commonality that bonded us. We blended.
This countries (sad) racial history is what seperates us still. There is some surface unity going on, depending upon what social circles we move in, what industries we work in, but when we, in 2003, are still witnessing Hollywood garbage being thrown out there for the masses with the likes of Steve Martin hamming it up and throwing lines like "Yo Mamma" at Queen Latifah (anything for a buck I guess huh Queen) and Chris Rock as a black president (!!!) in his latest movie...."The only thing White is the House".....Humm all good clean harmless fun I suppose huh? Not!
America, you really have a long long way to go don't you.
To be more informed watch Melvin Van Peebles Classified X. Brilliant, but ever so sad, made with French money because the 'man' wouldn't "let" him make it here.
Last note. Eartha Kitt will always be the most beautiful woman on the planet!!!!!!!

kiddus I
i truly agree with you both on this topic. being a black queen, i've seen how recessed race/race relations are here in North America.
now, across the waters in England, France & the Netherlands(just to name a few), i've fell in love with the mentality towards citizens of different persuations.
...if only the mentality was the same here("sigh!").
...but i must say that i'm blessed to have friends of all different races & sexual preferances, for it really is a cultural/learning experience for all of us.

...'cause when the smoke all clears, we're all one child of GOD. we forget that most of the time.
every last one of us has a vital connection to the other - whether we admit it or not - so we all need each other.

granted, there's some bad apples in every race of people...but it seems the bad apples are ruining it for the rest of us good-hearted souls.

what REALLY shocked me some time ago was when i found out there was racism within gay culture.....what, what, WHAATTTTT?!?!?!?!
...the LAST culture that should have any sort of racist mindstate about them is the gay culture(in my opinion). we live in a world that - for the most part - is still quite uncomfortable with gay men/women & just gay lifestyle in general. i'm fortunate enough to say, i've yet to meet a gay man/woman that is racist(well, if they meet me, guess they couldn't be, right?). again, it all goes back to each one needing each one.

...i dream of a unified world - & hopefully we'll all live long enough to see such a utopia.

...& look at the bitch NOW!
Rupaul
"Wigstock:The Movie"
Wonka, finally another opinion in this post ...i am suprised really as how ambivalent folk are about this issue... it really bothers me... even on these here boards... you and Kiddus are the only responses...which suprised me as it really is smth that bothers me... cos growing up in the UK it IS so different... real small stuff that creeps in... you know... how in soaps (eg Eastenders) the black characters inter-racial date and that is not the storyline... on Blind Date (The dating game show) its often mixed couples and thats not the issue... i have often (if not always) dated out my race... but when i do so here... its a big issue... a big issue for both American blacks and American white... an as for queens being racist... i still am shocked that queens can vote republican an sway towards the right ... but hey... what do i know... my Dad was a proud card carrying Commy who worked for the ANC! God Bless im!
humans......such an odd creation we are. Wink Big Grin

"Eastenders"...can you believe i have YET to see that show(i'm pretty big on BBC shows)....& it's HUGE over in the UK!
...actually, where i'm at, we're lucky enough to have "Chef!"(one of my favorites), "Are You Being Served?", & the various "Monty Python's Flying Circus" episodes.

but back to the topic at hand, m'dear:

yes, i too am quite surprised at the lack of responses to such an eye-opening topic....could it be denial? who knows?
...republican queens?!?!?! Eek Eek Eek

...who would've thunk it?

well, i'm just glad a braveheart like yourself felt the need to address the situation in America.
..kudos ma'am. Wink

...& look at the bitch NOW!
Rupaul
"Wigstock:The Movie"
As a gay white man who has been involved in an interacial relationship for over five years, I can attest that yes, there is racism in the gay scene as well as the goth, fetish, bi, freaky deaky set. Basically, its an all pervavise situation here in the States. This relationship has been an eye opener for me as to the sense of entitlement we whites have and take for granted on a daily basis. Simple things like hailing a cab or walking into a high end store become an issue when you are not of a certain hue, and I have gotten my share of attitude from both whites and blacks. Try walking into an all black gay bar like say, "One Potato" with your black lover if you want to hear some bitchy threats. It's sad but unfortunately there is no easy answer.
i read the initial posts on here when they were first put up. i chose not to respond. it wasn't a matter of ambivalence. it was a matter of finding it difficult to participate in a conversation built on so many vast generalizations.

the united states it, without question, a racist nation. this nation was built with the blood of bigotry as fuel. it fought wars over states rights (namely the right to practice slavery), and to this day, battles over desegregation are fought in this nation's most liberal bastion (see: san francisco schools).

however, when a conversation on racism barters in notions such as "american's think such and such...," or "people in the u.s. think this...," or "in europe, people are much more like...," and
"europeans are more enlightened because...."

yes, i know they're generalizations and, perhaps, not intended to be taken literally. but when one is having a discussion on racism, of all things, there is little room for generalizations, for generalizations are one of the motivators of ignorance, and thus perpetuate racism.

so, yes, america is a racist country with racist citizens and leaders. BUT, that is NOT the whole story. it is not helpful to pretend otherwise.

when examining american racism, it is incumbent upon each of us to consider the truth, both ugly and beautiful. more important, we must take the time and find the mental discipline to look at the infinite nuances in national, regional, and individual thought.

any statment that begins with "americans are..." is bound to be innacurate, if not a total falsehood.

whom are we describing? stom thurmond? bloomberg? toni morrison? paul welstone? a poster on the motherboards? (which one?) george w. bush? the guy at the corner deli? a citizen of los angeles? (which neighborhood? which house?) the deepest south? the islands of hawaii? and so on and so on...

are we talking about america today? twenty years ago? one hundred years ago?

are we talking about participants in the civil rights movement? whom? malcom x? martin luther king jr.? rabbi michael lerner? angela davis?

in america, at any point in history, there are examples of great thinkers, brave leaders, solo fighters for freedom.

and there are equivalent examples of violent racists, the mass of the silent and complicit, and those who vote their fears, instead of their ideals.

each individual must look deep into his or her heart and ask, "How do I suffer from, or benefit from racism, even in ways i do not intend?"

a white person who fights oppression may still unwittingly benefit from it on a trip to a shopping mall where a security guard shadows a black person instead.

despite that example, i'm aquainted with many white people who loudly claim to take no part in the racist patriacrchy. i believe that no one benefits from denying this nuanced truth.

i know white people who decry their genetic makeup. "i hate being white," i heard one claim. what good does this do anyone? said person is white. denying it not only benefits no one, but it excused that person from having to participate in his flawed society and take responsibility for who he is, and the mistakes of those around him. (only adherents of ayn rand would suggest the each-for-himself philosophy.)

as for europe, a same complex analysis must be done. was it not sinead o'connor who sang only a few years back about "black boys on mopeds..." england brought margaret thatcher to the world stage. the french bring jean marie le pen to the world stage every few years. that man can keep company with the worst of the world's racist. europe has participated in some overwhelmingly destructive genocides. the polish continue to practice widespread bigotry. italy and spain did the facist and racist thing. france, beligum, england, ireland, germany and more all host a variety of neo-nazi organizations, and said countries newspapers are all dotted with accounts of racist killings -- this year!

and europeans, like their american counterparts, have trod the road toward true enlightenment.

we must battle demons wherever they dwell; and they live everywhere (e.g african, europe, asia [see: pol pot, mao and wwII japan, for starter], north american and south america.

we must also shine the light upon our human strengths wherever they are.

as we proceed, we must resist the temptation to rely upon gross generalizations and crude rhetoric to make our point. to do so may put our forces into a fenzy, but in the end, history has also put all such movements into the garbage bin of brutality.

america is racist. so is europe. and both are flush with individuals who will give their lives to change it all for the better.

let's keep the whole picture in mind and we'll serve humanity much better.
I read your post again, Yumo, and I think you have a simplistic viewpoint when it comes down to it. The reality is that racism, as well as homophobia, does exist...the advantage I have as a white male is that I can conceal the fact that I am gay, (since I am not overtly flamboyant, only when I drink). Could I do the same if my skin color was the gauge of acceptibilty? When I first read this post, I, too, was unsure if I should respond...I felt this is too complex an issue to tackle on a web forum. Maybe I was right.
ankou, i appreciate your take on it. to clarify, i didn't write, nor imply, that there is a place on this world free of racism, least of all america. in fact, in my post i do believe i listed most continents, and would do the same with countries, but i believe the point is made; racism is a worldwide human failing, present throughout the ages.

as for any person taking responsiblity for his lot in life, i also made that point.

i'm not sure where you got that i suggested otherwise on either point, so i want to clarify those points.

as for your last point, on refraining from responding, i think again you misundersood my point. i did not refrain from responding because i think the issue is too complex to merit the effort, nor because i believe this forum is insufficient to do so, but because i thought the initial points were too general in scope, and thus difficult to address.

to clarify that point, i think that anyone can draw profound distictions between the oppressions from various cultures. then, one can selectively point to said differences and paint an inaccurate picture. that must be avoided if we are to look holistically at racism, in all of its facets.

i agree that this is a very complex issue. hatred, it seems, is ubiquitous as water and death. yet, we must address it now, and always. the alternative is too unbearable.

for my contribution, right now, in this forum, thus far, in intended to broaden the scope and accurately frame the issue.

i do not intend to hurl blame back at another person or culture.

racism is not unique to our time, to one nation, or to one people.

change will come in many forms. what i read here was based on blame and generalizations -- two qualities i don't consider helpful, insightful, or productive.

know what i'm saying?

to pound my point home like a 50 lb hammer on a thumb tack, ankou, i'm not calling for a simplistic viewpoint on this issue. on the contrary, my point is to acknowledge the overwhelming complexities, the painful distribution of blame when it comes to hatred in this world, and proceed with this difficult discussion anyway.
A black woman I know, after studying German for several years spent some time in Germany and Austria. At first she felt like a movie star. She was constantly showered with attention and she had her pick of hot guys, etc. Then she realized that there's this weird condescending fetishization of black people in some ot these countries. They kept referring to her as "exotic", wanted to see her dance, etc. One shook her hand and said "I love rap music. One asked her to "slap five".

Not to say that this can't all be used to your advantage. Okay, so the French thought of Josephine Baker as a wild passionate savage. But hey, it beats the way she was treated in America. If I were black, I'd probably go to France and get laid. Sometimes you gotta take lemons and make meringue.
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I have enjoyed this topic these past few days, but don't read too much into the discussion not taking off for several months - that has happened on the Boards with several topics that ended up being active for years. Its the beauty of the medium, that a thought or question can be planted, then answered at the moment when someone feels passionate about addressing it, or has time to solidify their opnions into a post.

I did want to point out that online communities can be freer than most of racism, gender bias, etc. as here no one knows what color your skin is (or anything about what you look like) unless you decide to tell them.
Geez, how did I miss this topic the first time it came around? I must have been asleep at the keyboard.

The subject of race is certainly a can of worms. So many angles to look at, questions that can never be fully answered and on and on. But being "high yella" bi-racial black & white I guess I should weigh in on this discussion.

Though my parents were not together long, my (white) Irish-American mother who raised me remained sensitive to racial dynamics thereafter. I feel extremely fortunate to say that incidents of racial bigotry directed at me personally during my childhood were few and far between and very isolated. Of course the relative lightness of my skin had a lot to do with it, but there were other factors. After leaving the Midwest when I was 9 y.o., we lived in Denver, where the pace is slower and attitudes milder compared to other more volatile sections of the country. We lived in a middle-class, racially mixed neighborhood and I always attended racially diverse schools, where I had black friends and white friends. Many other biracial people I've met described feeling torn between worlds or unable to fit in amongst either community but that was not the case with me. For high school Mom sent me to a private school located in a wealthy section of town where affluent blacks lived alongside "new money" white families in big beautiful houses. Many of my black schoolmates, like their white counterparts, were the privileged sons and daughters of successful businessmen and community leaders. This had a huge impact on me in that it gave me a picture of black American life far different from the stereotypical ghetto/housing project scenarios constantly played out in media and pop culture. Though my sexuality and effeminate behavior proved to be a frequent stumbling block and the source of much aggravation, none of my schoolmates ever gave me a problem on the race issue. The few episodes of racial animosity I faced always involved adults, never the kids at school who didn't seem to care. While Mom never went out of her way to introduce black history to me herself, I never felt I was missing out on anything because I had black friends, I went to their parties, listened to their music and understood their references. Likewise my white friends felt comfortable with me and never drew a distinction between my background and their own.

Ironically it wasn't until I came here at the age of 20 that I began to see an uglier picture. One situation I encountered frequently (and still do sometimes) was people freely airing their bigotry right in front of me, obviously not realizing my half-black ethnicity -- thus placing me in the position of either ignoring their remarks or challenging them. Still though, compared with things that darker African-Americans face, that's nothing and I'm very very lucky.
...aahh yes, i remember when i use to be "high yella" - that is, before i got scorched by the sun - now i'm caramel. *LOL!* Big Grin
but i understand your plight, Luxury. it's funny how people can say the darndest things when they think they're in the "safety zone", so to speak.

..but i must say, i'm really, really glad so many of you have joined-in this discussion & given your personal points of views to such an itchy topic.

...where's my box of tissues, dammit! Wink

...& look at the bitch NOW!
Rupaul
"Wigstock:The Movie"
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I speak simple... i only speak how i feel and truly i DO feel that things and people opinions on race are more open in Europe... we can discuss with big words about generalization but we can also be honest and open about how we feel and how i feel is that America is much more racist than European countries i have lived in... i speak as I find, i speak as the mother of a mixed race child... yes of course there is racism everywhere and good and bad folk everywhere... however the media and the generalization in this country is far more segregated.... look at the movie with Queen latifah and Steve Martin.... the reviews for that movie in the UK were HORRIFIED that it was so stereotype and racist and characature... hardly ever was that mentioned in the US media as we have become accustom to it... now i don't mean to polarize this one issue/movie... again i have to generalize cos we are speaking in sound bite here on the boards ... but ON THE WHOLE... how i feel without having the time to type long long long thesis... is... America is more segregated than Europe and i do miss that!
Anyway.. am off to London today... so will get my fix!
we can discuss one another's ideas in this topic, or we can resort to cheap digs at the words we use: big words, little words, mispelled words. I prefer to stick to a discussion of ideas.

Regardless of the words any of us use, I prefer to stick to a consideration of ideas. To go after one another's grammar is a cheap shot, a waste of time, and really belongs in the bag of tricks of those who lack solid ideas.

That said, when disucssing matters as important as racism, I agree that it's imperative and essential that we share our personal experiences. This is, of course, a discussion about how the individual, each of us here on these boards, finds ourselves received in this world.

But the discussion must not be limited to our subjective experience. We are discussing broad social themes that have spanned millennia.

It is not good enough to come onto these boards, throw out a careless verbal-bomb about who is racist, and who isn't, then retreat under the protection of, "It's how I feel," without bothering to back up our claim with solid information.

If we are to overcome the insidious and ever pervasive racism all over the world, we must share our experiences, but we must also study the problem.

Where are racism's deepest roots? How does racism flourish in modern society?

When I read the slipshod statement that America is, in general terms, more racist than the rest of the world, or that Europe, somehow, has shed its brutal and long-racist traditions, I feel compelled to point out that such a statement is careless and untrue.

One person's experiences in Europe may be that it is enlightened and freer from bigotry than the rest of the world, and that America is dwelling in a murky racist sludge. But another's experience may be exactly the opposite.

(I grew up in a very enlightened town in America. Racism was all but non-existent in this town. The society of this town was, and still is, multi-cultural, cooperative, and inclusive.

When I made my first trip to Europe as a teenager, I was overwhelmed by sights of segregated slums on the outskirts of Paris, racist literature in England, Nazi skins in Germany and so on. I was tempted then to apply my intial observations to all of Europe. But, as my travels continued, I realized that though those elements existed, their opposition was bigger and stronger. Sometimes I'm tempted to reduce Europe to a cartoonish analysis of its most brutal past, but such a caricature of Europe is false.)

If we are to share our personal experiences, lets at least have the intellectual and emotional honesty to label them as such: personal experience and perception.

But if we are to slap broad and damning labels on other societies, let us at least muster a bit of respect and learn a little before we condemn.

George W. Bush barters in the logic of "I saw it, therefore it must be true." America's sham-of-a-president also uses one or two anecdotes and considers that sufficient evidence to put forth his anti-women, anti-poor, anti-children, and racist policies.

Remember when Dan Quayle, America's most stupid vice president on record, condemned the entire output of Hollywood based on a single Murphy Brown episode?

Are we to condemn American society as dripping with racism because of one ill-conceived Steve Martin/Queen Latifah movie? We could. But we'd be keeping company with the intellectual charlatan Dan Quale and his "Murphy Brown" tactics.

(Hollywood does have a history of racism, but it's complex...beyond the scope of a single film or decade. Hollywood also has an illustrious history of progressive activism, such as Dead Man Walking, etc. Broad condemnations rarely suffice.)

Let me reiterate: America is racist. This is an easily documented fact. But, so is Africa, today, and not just South Africa of a few years past. European football games are rife with horrible racism, as are European politics (see: England, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, etc.) Asia, India, Pakistan, the Middle East (see: Saudi Arabia, Israel, Egypt, Iran, Iraq and more, all practice racism today.

Humanity, I am afraid, is often violent and racist.

The point is clear. America, like its sister nations of the world and of the ages, has fostered and perpetrated racism to its most extreme.

But to sit here and isolate one society as alone in this, or another as above reproach, is to undermine our long struggle away from such oppressive thought.

America is a complicated land. While some American companies profited from the apartheid, others lost money in an effort to cut off the racist, white South African government from the rest of the world.

When some southern governors carried out segregationist policies, other Americans, of all races and classes, sacraficed their lives to change the system.

It is offensive and counter-productive to sit here and play a game of child-like finger pointing. It is just as wrong to reduce all of these actors, brave and evil, to simple generalizations.

We must abandon the temptation to simplify this issue. We must take thoughtful action. We must look inward and around our own societies, and then the world.

If we succumb to simple finger pointing and anecdotal evidence, the results will be no more sophisticated.

We live in complex times. I hope we have sufficient conviction to see ourselves through.
Many whites - especially ones that have deep roots in this country, have no sense of their own history. So deep is their sense of entitlement as "Americans" (as white Americans), that the mythology of Great White reads like gospel truth: Whites aren't different - everyone else is. Its the reason "non-whites" are people of color (as opposed to the colorless ones: whites!)

In order for racism to change (to become unveiled, see the light), Euro-Americans must see the priviledge illustrated in our language, our sense of entitlement, our American history as invaders, conquerors, pioneers - everything.

Most whites really aren't up to that. Notice how defensive people get and start bitching about "politically correct" when this dialogue has been raised (a bitter, cynical term in my book). Couple this with the fact that America is "king of the world" - not a recipe for change.
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hmmmm...guess i could say the same thing; call is like i see it.

the irony here is, i suspect that we agree on most points. i agree with jade as well.

america is a racist nation.

my contribution in this dialogue is to point out that as tempting as it might be to say, "racism isn't my problem, it's someone elses problem," that just isn't good enough.

i must admit, it's a pet peeve of mine when white people, or any one person for that matter, proudly boasts that he or she is free of racism, then pointing to all the other bad people who are not so enlightened.

keep calling it like you see it. what you say has truth.

all i'm doing is pointing out the rest of the story that you're leaving out.

that much of the world is racist. if we are to change this, at all, then we must look within, all of us, and do the hard work.

just calling it like i see it. and like it did in my last post. and the post before that.

and to drive home my point, again, i was just pointing out the lack of logic in your points.

you wrote that no one cared about the 41 shots fired. i remember bruce springsteen writing a song about it. hard to get more mainstream than that.

you wrote that you feel that america is more racist than europe. that's how you feel. well, that's fine if that's how you feel, but there's more to the story.

and for those whites in here who don't know there own history, let me introduce you to it. america's racist cultural heritage comes to you straight from european imperialism.

we all can write what "we feel." but we all must hold ourselve accountable for what we write.

for me, defeating racism isn't a passing fancy. it's not a matter that i push off onto others, claiming that my best friends are latino and therefore i'm imune.

many of us are looking here for the recipe for change. it is found among those who put themselves on the frontline of social change, no matter how tough the battle.

everyone who takes pride in shifting the blame around the plate like unwanted peas will be judged by history like the passive german citizens of world war II, the non-slave holding whites of the south and pre-civil war who thought it was someone elses problem.
SILENCE Yumako!!! You're a sniveling swine and I'm tired of your rubbish and poppycock! QUIET!!!

Anna is right! England, home of the queen, is a most wonderful land! Thank you Anna for reminding us all, ALL OF US, what a royal, beautiful land Great Britain is.

America should learn something from what Anna says. STAND UP AMERICA! Hold yourself accountable.

What you say, Yumako, that America is no worse than England?!?

Where do you live, sow, under a rock? Do you not breathe the same air we breathe? Are you not human?

America is the crippled child of an enlightened England, and don't you forget it.

Stop hiding behind your big words, Yumako! You are nothing here. Your explanations about the complexities of racism are UNWELCOME HERE!!!

Anna and I just call it like we see it! We don't need your lengthy thesis and polysyllabic words to understand what we see.

No one in America cares about racism. In England, it's different. I remember, a time when I was a boy, sitting in a park in England with my mother, and a little black boy came up and played with me. It wasn't like in America where blacks and whites don't play together.

Yumako, have you no eyes? Can you not see what Anna sees?

So what if Bruce Springsteen wrote that song! NO ONE CARES!!!

Long live the queen!
Frown please, everyone stop it. can't we all get along?

so much anger Mad

everyone is making good points. Red Face

anna, you are making good points... Smile
yumako, you are making good points... Smile
jade, you are making good points... Smile
ankou, you are making good points... Smile
tylwyth, you are making good points... Smile

i'm so proud of all of you Eek i am!!! Eek !!! Razz

you all have such wonderful ideas for ending racism...Red Face jade, my goodness, what a grand idea...yes!!! Red Face and yumako, youve clearly given this a lot of thought...and anna, sweetheart, i can tell what an important issue this is for you, and ankou...what wonderful ideas you have... im so luck to live in a world with such smart and lovely people...Red Face Red Face Red Face

you guys should start your own gang.Big Grin..and you can be the unracist gang and go around the world in a van fighting racism whereever you go!!!!Big Grin you guyes will be like the next apple dumpling gang...only betterBig Grin Red Face

if you all just try, you wil realize yoour all saying the same thing.

racists are bad people too!!! Mad Mad Mad Mad

why are you all making yourselves so upset over who is more racist??? Confused

is america more racist? Confused is europe more racist? Confused

anna, yumako, please...you both come from horribly racist places, so stop fighting...okay???

enough of this silly competition already Big Grin

now that we know that both europe and america are horrible, uncaring, and racist lands, can we all get along!!! Big Grin

yea!!!! yea, you guys, yea!!!

Smile


Smile Big Grin Razz


the way i see it, if we want to end racism, we must all love each other.

i love you anna!!! i love you yumako!!! ilove you jade!!! i love you ankou!!! i love you tylwyth!!!

Big Grin Big Grin Big Grin Eek Wink

SHELLLYMOM LOVES ALL THE LITTLE CHILDREN...ALL THE CHILDREN OF THE WORLD!!!
Cool
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THE 'INGRATITUDE' OF THOMAS: It would be hard to find a more
appalling example of racial animus than in Maureen Dowd's column
this morning. For some reason I guess I do understand, Clarence
Thomas isn't just opposed by many on the Left; he is hated. He is
hated because he is, in Dowd's extraordinary formulation, guilty of
"a great historical ingratitude." The good negroes, in Dowd's
liberal-racist world, are those grateful to their massas in the
liberal hierarchy: they are grateful to Howell and Gerald and
Arthur; and they know their place. For them to express the
psychological torment of being advanced for racist reasons, to
explain in graphic, brave and bold terms the complexity of emotions
many African-Americans feel as 'beneficiaries' of racial
preferences, is unacceptable. To describe such a person who has been
courageous enough to put these feelings into a powerful dissent as
"barking mad" is nothing short of disgusting. Yes, there are all
sorts of psychological inconsistencies in Thomas' journey. But that,
in part, is the point! If Dowd supports "diversity" as a good thing
in elite institutions, why isn't it a good thing for one black
Justice to contribute his own experience as part of a landmark
judicial ruling? Of course I don't know whether Dowd supports
diversity in this sense. That would require her to argue something -
of which she is apparently incapable. And then Dowd, of all people,
complains that Thomas is more interested in his own personal dramas
than "bigger issues of morality and justice." When was the last time
you read a Dowd column that grappled with "bigger issues of morality
and justice"?

http://www.nytimes.com/auth/login?URI=http://www.nytimes.com/2003/06/25/opinion/25DOWD.html

www.andrewsullivan.com

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