For those of you who don't see why any of this matters, please read these (heartbreaking, to me) posts: closing a door, softly,
operating in hostile territory.

For those of you either baffled by the calls for sf pros to take a stand or who feel that requests for statements of position are McCarthy-like, there are two things that shed light on that for me, neither of which were part of the current discussion.

One is a beautifully written blog post off LJ: ...white friends who don’t understand race and all it’s implications may hurt you deeply, consciously or unconsciously. It’s not about a friend you’ve hung out with for years one day turning on you and yelling a racial epithet or trying to beat you up or anything of that nature. No, it’s about the smaller things. As my friend and housemate Jackie put it “People can die by a thousand cuts.” and it’s much more painful that way.

The other is that, in my experience, for a woman to discover how her male friends, relatives, and/or significant others define rape is typically not a happy or comforting moment.

In light of those experiences and the societal racism and sexism that cause them, it does not surprise me that some people want to know who considers their experiences and feelings and lives important, and who doesn't.

From: [identity profile] mckennl.livejournal.com


"It has become clear to me that the one privilege most white people not only expect to have but demand to keep and cling to indignantly is the privilege of being presumed not to be racist. It isn't the most rational position."

Seriously. What is the deal with that?

I don't really understand it. I was raised that being a racist is a VERY BAD THING, but why should everyone on the interwebs presume that of me? Or presume anything? How would they know? It effing kills me when some white person goes, "Well anyone who knows anything about me knows I'm not a racist." REALLY? SERIOUSLY? Because that's not how it works, even according to the not-exactly-groundbreaking most recent episode of "Lie to Me" on FOX, for heaven's sakes.

And why should I, as a white person, presume that my work on racism is done because I believe Racism Is Bad? Or because Racism is the "nuclear option" -- WTF, where does that leave anyone who wants to do work on it?

From: [identity profile] cija.livejournal.com


"Well anyone who knows anything about me knows I'm not a racist."

yeah-- by contrast, it happens to be true that anybody who knows anything about me knows that I'm a feminist. But how do they know that? Is it because a golden anti-misogynist aura shines off of me? No! They know because I NEVER SHUT UP ABOUT IT.

(There are lots of ways to display good-will, and I reluctantly concede that not all of them involve never shutting up, but you have to do something if you want anybody to notice or feel safe around you or whatever.)

& yes it is a little different because in discussions of race, unlike gender, I don't have the instinctive rock-solid certainty that I know what I am talking about and I know who should be allowed to live and who must be destroyed--or, in fact I do, but I am aware that I am not an authority in the same way--but if I never said anything, how would anybody know I cared or what I thought? They wouldn't. I think a lot of people just figure that if nobody's calling them a racist, they must be doing fine.

brownbetty: (Default)

From: [personal profile] brownbetty


yeah-- by contrast, it happens to be true that anybody who knows anything about me knows that I'm a feminist. But how do they know that? Is it because a golden anti-misogynist aura shines off of me? No! They know because I NEVER SHUT UP ABOUT IT.

Hah! Yes, this. QFT.

From: [identity profile] daedala.livejournal.com


I think it is because being racist is a VERY BAD THING, and it is wrong to presume VERY BAD THINGS of people. So there's a lot of insistence that people must always assume that someone is non-racist and this non-racistness completely erases any behavior that might possibly be perceived as racist.

From: [identity profile] mckennl.livejournal.com


Also, and this is what's killing me right now, there's a complete refusal to even *engage* in discussion of white privilege. It's like something people don't believe it, or Intelligent Design. "Oh I don't believe in all that, let me cut-and-paste another dictionary definition of "racism" here."

.

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