An Arab School? Must Be One of Dem Crazy Jihadi Places!

Former Brooklyn High School of the Arts is becoming a high school that focuses on the teaching of the Arab language and of Arab culture. But of course with this comes "controversy!" Why controversy? Well because in the same phrase as "culture" and "school" comes "Arab!"

Oh hold on to your pants white folks! They'll be jihadis running rampant in New York city and in our public schools!! Oh sweet Jesus! Imagine it! These Arab and non-Arab children actually learning about another (or their own) culture! And learning another language besides English! Another language besides English! Oh the humanity!

But seriously. What's important to note here about this whole hoopla is the fact that for some reason when these right wing whackos and racists hear the word "Arab" they have to set up an organization titled the "Stop the Madrassa Coalition" when this school isn't even a religious school. It's a secular public school. They somehow stupidly assume that Arab=Muslim when the fact is that there are many different Islamic beliefs; Sufi, Whabi, Sunni, Shia, etc. and Arabs of different religions; Christian, Islamic, Catholic, etc. So for some reason they just automatically assume that Arab=Muslim when in fact it really doesn't. Hell Muslim doesn't even need to equal Arab since the majority of the world's Muslims are Asian. Yet for most people Asian doesn't equal Muslim (but anyways).

This is yet another example of white supremacy and institutionalized racism embedded within our society. In a society that is awash in white "culture" and white images and English it would be nice for an Arab family to have their child learn about their own culture and their own language and to get away from the imposing presence of whiteness which essentially destroys all semblance of culture in a non-white family within two to three generations.

I found out about this while watching Al Jazeera English on You Tube. One thing I found interesting was something Steven Emerson, an opponent of the school, said. In the report he says. "Oh I think it's possible to teach Arab culture without teaching terrorism. I think that you have to be careful because history is always shaded by political views. I don't think one is synonomous with the other but it requires careful delineation."

Now the knee jerk reaction of this white male is to think that if there is an Arab school (not an Islamic school mind you) that it might be possible to teach Arab culture without teaching "terrorism" but that you have to be careful because somehow "terrorism" is embedded within the gene pool of Arab culture.

Not only is this wholly ignorant to the intricacies of Arab history and contemporary Arab culture but it gives us an opportunity to view what the other side really thinks about Arabs, Arab Americans, and the Middle East.

Image From:
Alkabi 1970


"Language and Racism"

I was actually searching for an SNL skit called Nick Burns: The Company’s computer Guy when I came across this TV show put together by the Salt Lake City Community College. It’s called Up in the Valley, and in this particular episode the host, Nick Burns, and his guest, Dr. Victor Villanueva of Washington State University, discuss how racial inequality today is masked and thus perpetuated through language.

You can view this show in its entirety at the Valley Television website.


White Privilege in Little Leage Baseball

I found an interesting article in a recent issue in Leisure Science an academic journal. The author describes in the abstract:
This paper adopts critical race theory as a framework to expose elements of racism embedded within the seemingly "color-blind" policies of little league baseball. It attempts to uncover the hidden subtext of race in a popular children's sport in America. Inspired by interviews conducted with the African-American founders of a grassroots baseball league for neighborhood children, the story focuses on the experiences the founders encountered with little league baseball that prompted them to create "a league of their own." Policies and practices related to player selection, travel/transportation to games, isolation of minority players, spectator behavior, and coaching/role modeling are shown to privilege white children while disadvantaging children of color.
You can find the article probably in your local library or at your local library or university library website.

Glover, Troy D. "Ugly on the Diamonds: An Examination of White Privilege in Youth Baseball." Leisure Sciences 29, no. 2 (March/April 2007): 195-208.


Mutha Fucking Black Face?! With MUD!?

Que? I'll cross post from The Blog and the Bullet.

Black Woman in Europe blogs:
Besides claiming that every single person in "Africa" isn't educated, and doing so in an extremely patronising way, it is also disturbing that this organisation thinks blackfacing kids with mud (!) equals "relating to african children". Also, the kids' statements ignore the existance of millions of african academics and regular people and one again reduces a whole continent to a village of muddy uneducated uncivilized people who need to be educated (probably by any random westerner). This a really sad regression.
Bottom lines of this campaign are: Black = mud = African = uneducated.


There's this great community of bloggers out there called Afro-Spear that is a group of bloggers of African decent. Now apparently Double Consciousness is apart of Afro-Spear (or allied with) too despite the editors being white/Latino and Pilipino and one of the contributors being Pinay. But the other contributor is Black/Irish, so, hey, if Afro-Spear wants us appart of their community than I'm all for it. If not, cool with me. I just hope that the moderator who added us to Afro-Spear knows the ethnic make-up of the bloggers on Double Consciousness.

Image From:
Invisible Woman...Black Cinema At Large


Saturday Beats: The World is Crazy

From the latest issue of The Beat Within.

The World is Crazy, Huh!
This jail shit is for the birds. The white man got shit set up for us blacks to fail. He brings drugs into this country to get us high, but then he locks us up when we go rob someone to support our habit, or he keeps us poor in the hood and expects us not to sell drugs after he shows us how much money we can make off of it. It's a messed up world that we live in and now all we have to do is realize it and make a change before it's too late. And the next thing that the white man wants is us on a t-shirt 'cause our caskets are already dropping.

If we just take time to think about life itself then we'll see what's really going on. All people are different, it's our nature to do what we do. Like some people were born to be doctors and lawyers and others of us were born to be thugs. God make us all different and to serve different purposes in the world. If there were no thugs like us to commit crimes, then there would be no need for jails and lawyers to even exist. There would be no judges, prosecutors, or any of these crooked ass staff. The same thing for doctors, 'cause if nobody got sick or shot and had to go to the hospital then they wouldn't have a job. I think to exist they all need thugs...we're connected in this world.

Now it's up to us to make this change in the world. Now it's up to us to make this change in the world cause I think we all had enough of this life we live. The choice is yours. Now take some time to think because we all need to realize: This is reality.

- By Lil' Rome, Alameda County Juvenile Hall.


Inner City Hospital To Close in LA

The New York Times reports:
Federal regulators said Friday they're pulling $200 million in funding from a troubled hospital that serves the inner-city poor, condemning the facility to almost certain death.

The decision came after the county-run Martin Luther King Jr.-Harbor Hospital failed two federal inspections.

Over the past few years, Los Angeles County tried to improve patient care through disciplining workers, reorganizing management, closing the trauma unit and reducing the number of inpatient beds to 48.

Yet Herb Kuhn, acting deputy administrator for the U.S. Centers of Medicare and Medical Services, said a federal inspection as recently as last month found "conditions at the facility have placed the health and safety of patients at great risk."

So while the hospital does serve the inner-city poor and homeless it also is a health risk to the very people they serve. Yet instead of trying to improve the hospital the government figures they might as well just shut it down. So a hospital that serves the poor and many people of color is going to be closed by the government because they figure that no hospital is better for the population?


Racism: Not Just for Rednecks

What I find disturbing in mainstream society is that whenever there is someone racist in a sketch show, a TV show, or a movie, whether it be comedy, drama, or otherwise, more than likely (especially on television) that person is portrayed as a white trash red neck. Yet in today's society racism is inclusive to just "red necks." It's much greater than that. Racism is systemic and rooted within the very social and economical structures of American society that date back centuries.

When someone is portraying a racist as a redneck what that is trying to tell us is that racism is just confined to one small part of the country, the rural south. Yet in reality racism is everywhere. From the backwoods of Georgia to the liberal San Francisco Bay Area.

For once I would like to see a racist portrayed as someone who is, well, a typical racist. Like a upstanding business man who has a nice job, a spouse, kids, and has a neighbor who is Korean and a cousin's friend who is Black, etc. Racism isn't just confined to ignorant people who don't know any better. Racism is more than just "being ignorant" since racism doesn't stem from ignorance. It comes from something that is bigger than ignorance. If all it took was to be educated to not be racist than hell, this would be one nice society to live in. But that's not the case.

One can be liberal with a "Black friend" and still be racist since racism stems from centuries of building up white privilege by economic means, social means, and violent means.

For more read:

"Honkey Want a Craker?"

"White Suspicion"

"Racism and White Supremacy"

"The Construction of Whiteness"

"'No! I'm Not Black! I'm White'"

"[X]Press Newspaper: An Example of White Privilege and Ignorance"

"The International Committee for Black Authenticity"

And of course you browse or other posts as well.