Featured, Race & Politics

Dear White People: We Don’t Give A Damn About Your “Black Friend”

It’s usually uttered when a White person is caught unintentionally doing something racially problematic. The statement is used as proof of the person’s ability to have meaningful interactions with people of another race. It is used as a buffer against current and future claims of anti-Black tendencies: “I’m not racist. My best friend is Black.”

The problem with the statement is that it assumes that a person, by virtue of being Black, cannot be an agent of White supremacy—and that is just not true. White supremacy is not about people…it’s about systems.

In a public lecture for the Media Education Foundation, bell hooks says she prefers to talk about White supremacy instead of racism:

[R]acism in and of itself did not really allow for a discourse of colonization and decolonization, the recognition of the internalized racism within people of color and it was always in a sense keeping things at the level at which whiteness and white people remained at the center of the discussion. … In my classroom I might say to students that you know that when we use the term white supremacy it doesn’t just evoke white people, it evokes a political world that we can all frame ourselves in relationship to …

White supremacy is not an indictment of any one person; it is a way of life that frames and influences the way we live. It is so ubiquitous and invisible that many White folks only notice its existence when their privilege is not prioritized. Beyonce drops an album that does not cater to a Eurocentric aesthetic? White folks rioted. Netflix releases Marvel’s Luke Cage? White folks said the show is racist because it does not feature White people.

As a result, since White supremacy is not about White people, a person of any race can be an ally and an accomplice in the fight against that injustice. However, it also means that Black people can be agents and accomplices in promoting, promulgating, and protecting racial inequality.  

As we come to the end of President Obama’s second term, we need to ask hard questions about what it means that the Movement for Black Lives came to fruition under the watch of our first Black president. Perhaps it means that the person who inhabits the oval office, regardless of good intentions and despite their race, cannot help but be an agent of White supremacy. Or maybe it means that the vicious legacy of anti-Black and brown policies cannot be undone in eight years by a president that spends the first two years in office trying to compromise with politicians who were elected on promises to remain uncompromising. Nevertheless, I imagine that future generations will look back on the absurd juxtaposition of American citizens protesting the killing of Black men and women by agents of the state while a Black family lives in the White House.

Also, the tenure of Clarence Thomas on the Supreme Court illustrates how a person of color can be a proactive agent of White supremacy. His voting record is one of a man who consistently sees things through the prism of White normativity. He was in favor of ending Affirmative Action in Fisher v. University of Texas. He voted against the Affordable Care Act in NIFB V Seleblius.  And when considering Section 4 of the Voting Rights Act, the provision that requires states to receive approval from the Justice Department or a federal court in Washington before changing voting procedures, he sided with Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr who wrote,Our country has changed. While any racial discrimination in voting is too much, Congress must ensure that the legislation it passes to remedy that problem speaks to current conditions.” Clarence Thomas shows us that White supremacy can filter the gaze of Black people. And that, like Ben Carson, if you suspect a Black man does not go to a Black barbershop, then he is almost certainly problematic in his racial thinking.

There are more examples: Stacey Dash, the ignant negro that says he only dates white women, that preacher who proclaims that racism is a sin problem and not a skin problem from the pulpit, and people who use anything other than Heinz ketchup and Louisiana hot sauce all show that having a Black friend does not really prove anything.

White people: if you get caught doing something racist, just apologize. We don’t care about your Black friend.

Law W.

Lawrence Ware is a philosopher of race at his day job and writes if the kids go to bed on time. He is a contributing editor of NewBlackMan (in Exile) and a frequent contributor to The Root and other publications. He has been featured in the New York Times and you can sometimes find him discussing race and politics on HuffPost Live and Public Radio International. He is the kind of Steelers fan that enjoys watching the Cowboys lose.

  • Hibiscus???

    Black Lives Matter would still have been borne even if Obama was NOT the President. It’s not like he fueled its conception. What did was the senseless killings. It will continue to thrive/exist even after he is gone. It’s not like he ever endorsed for any hard questions to be asked about its longevity or lack thereof.

    • chivalrous1won

      *sigh*

  • Jordan Hora

    Bravo fam

  • Valerie

    Great article.

  • BJenks

    Preciate the link to the Bell Hooks talk, adding this to my to-read list.

    • Negro Libre

      My lord, you used Capitalized letters!

      • BJenks

        wait, what I do wrong?

        • Val

          Isn’t it Bell Hooks who doesn’t believe in the capitalization of names?

          • BJenks

            Oh, I ain’t much know. My bad folks, this is someone I’ve only just recently started reading up on.

            • LMNOP

              I’m kind of jealous of you just stumbling on bell hooks. Enjoy!

          • cyanic

            Her problem no one else’s. Just like ee cummings.

          • QueenAT

            She decided not to capitalize her new name to place focus on her work rather than her name, on her ideas rather than her personality. When I see it without reference to literature, I am trying to figure out what are bell hooks.

        • TeeChantel

          It is bell hooks

  • ak1991200

    “Beyonce drops an album that does not cater to a Eurocentric aesthetic?”

    hmmm debatable, considering there was a color heirachy that was present through out lemonade. And how beyonce herself has worked very hard throughout the years to come as close as she possibly can to a eurocentric aesthetic.

    • Ari

      bell hooks also made that point.

      • Val

        Hiya, Ari!

        *waves*

        • Ari

          Hey Val hey!!!

      • ak1991200

        hmm, is that why everyone was dragging her and saying she was irrelevant?

        • Ari

          More than likely, yes.

          bell is from a different generation, and there are some things I disagree with when she critiques Beyonce, but when bell speaks I listen. I think it’s easy to dismiss her as outdated and someone who just doesn’t get it, but with bell it’s never really that simple.

    • OSHH

      And what was the album really about?
      Contrived marraige woes save for one or two songs correct?

    • QueenAT

      The visuals of Lemonade spread the complexion spectrum. Yes, she made a reference to Creole while choosing to wear her 40in Goldie loc hair, but that was Bey’s that was a part of the story. We are no monolithic. Bey’s feminism isn’t mine. We can’t dismissed the entire work for one subjective moment.

      • Ari

        Right – there are an infinite number feminist/pro-woman perspectives and dimensions.

        • QueenAT

          I would add there are an infinite number of Black perspectives and dimensions.

      • ak1991200

        I’m not really trying to get into it, because these days you can’t really talk about the flies in beyonce’s brand of coconut oil without having your black womanhood questioned, but I’m not dismissing the work. In fact I am considering it very seriously as asked of me along with a 20 plus year career. And I stand by what I said.

        • QueenAT

          I think you misinterpreted my tone or perhaps I am misinterpreting yours. I am no bee in the hive, just pointing out the entire works- including the visuals- in the importance of telling a very black and very Black woman’s story. Either way, your statement is yours to stand by and I assure you, with me, it’s all good.

      • HoobaStankyLeg

        I feel like we should give Lemonade a year. Then revisit it. I still haven’t been able to fully process it. I find something different I didn’t notice the first million times I’ve watched it.

        • QueenAT

          I’ve been drinking all year. Start here. It’s my first stop when trying to dissect works…

          http://genius.com/albums/Beyonce/Lemonade

          • HoobaStankyLeg

            I will definitely check it out. Thank you.

      • Blonde is her superstar color.

      • Jennifer

        “We are not monolithic. Bey’s feminism isn’t mine.”

        I wish people would understand this is the point of feminism. Even some of its white originators don’t see to understand it.

    • cyanic

      God made her light skin. If the black women behind her were as fair as she is people would say she’s leaving out her darker sisters.

      • ak1991200

        that’s not what I’m critiquing, if i was well that would be reductive. but I think if you look at her aesthetic choices over the course of her solo career along with lemonade, it becomes quite clear.

        • cyanic

          Her critics has suggested the darker skin women in the film are just background color. And she’s the superior lighter skin queen at the center of it all. I want to remind these people she’s a pop star filming a music video where the purpose is she’s the center of attention. Including black women of all shades is very important to remind each other of our extensive beauty.

          • grownandsexy2

            Thank you.

    • Brooklyn_Bruin

      *runs hands together like Birdman*

    • I’m not mad at Beyonce, because she comes from a particular aesthetic via her mom’s family that has clear European influences. Beyonce is Louisiana Creole and proud. I’m not mad at her for embracing that. Her Blackness isn’t the sum total of Blackness in America.

      • PinkRose

        Creole is culture, not race.

        • Kas
          • PinkRose

            Yep, he looks mixed raced like every other Creole person I’ve ever known. And that’s the main reason I think it’s creole is culture since you can look like any race, it’s the commonality of culture that’s shared.

            Of course I believe that there are 2 races, black, white, and brown.

            • Kas

              Uh, that’s 3?

              • PinkRose

                Yes it is. ;) Who says the world should be just Black and White? Not me!

                • Kas

                  But you said there are 2 races? Pink, I’m too sober for you to do this.

                  • PinkRose

                    LOL, that’s what I get for trying to study and read comments on VSB at the same time!!

                    I meant 3 races.

      • No Google

        Please, I’m just as much creole as she is….
        Read: I’m not creole.

    • Beyonce doesn’t have a more Eurocentric aesthetic than most Black Americans.

  • Val

    “…since White supremacy is not about White people…”

    I totally get your point but I disagree. It is about them. They started it and are the main beneficiaries. They also maintain it at all costs, with the help of others, admittedly. But, as you assert, it is also about non-Whites who live within that system.

    Otherwise, great post. So many Black folks are just lost or purposefully lost in a White Supremacist haze. To use them as an example of anything representing the whole is disingenuous at best.

    • cyanic

      Black people seeking refuge in good white folks is when our collective failure occurs. Stop looking for radical allies or those white people who valid your prejudices. Or needing the approval of whites because you want to emulate their behavior if they’re of a certain economic or social standing you desperately want for yourself. The best part of incorporating white supremacy into your language when discussing matters of race is how whites are unable to tennis ball back the term to you as they do racism.

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      • Blueberry01

        Yup!

        You mean that reverse racism BS they holla out when we point on when they just plain wrong?

  • LuckBALady

    Church. Tabernacle. Mosque.

    And I don’t care how many, if any, Black men you have been with, white co-worker lady. That does not make me want to invite you to my functions and I don’t want to be invited to yours.

    Management

    • blueevey

      Ugh, I would be that white lady (but mexican) and probably have been before. Before I knew better

      • PinkRose

        Why do Mexicans think they’re White, cause genetics/history, location in the globe?

        • Because there are white Mexicans.

          • Nikki Jeremy

            But even the ones who are clearly descended from mostly natives still think they’re white. George Zimmerman with black and native grand parents is cinvinced he’s white af. He better carry his papers because Trump will toss him right over that wall based on his appearance. His yt fifteen minutes are about up.

            • PinkRose

              LOL, I don’t think Zimmerman is White either. The overwhelming majority of Mexicans have Native ancestry whether they want to admit it or not and LOOK Native.

              That Spongbob Square pants “shape” they got going on is clearly a Native thing, neither Europeans or Africans are built like that.

              • Nikki Jeremy

                Rotfl. Lots of people have been given a path to ytness. The Irish, Southern Europeans, Eastern Europeans, even the Middle Easterners at one time (theirs was revoked after 911, and they are now back to being brown). I think Latinos were being led to believe they had a path, only to find out they are viewed to be more useful as scapegoats. Time for them to get woke.

                • PinkRose

                  Well d@mn to the white until after 911, lol!!

                • Nik White

                  Nah them Middle Easterners know that they’re referred to as Sand Ninjas. 911 made it official.

                • Namia

                  That’s new. Middle Easterners never want to pass for white, they are proud of their ethnicity!

              • Yahmo Bethere

                The poor who immigrate are largely mestizo. If you were to ever have traveled to Mexico, you’d be in for a surprise.

                ~person who lived in Mexico and was married to someone of that ethnicity

                • PinkRose

                  I actually HAVE been to Mexico (not sure why you would assume otherwise) so no, I wouldn’t be surprised. For the upteenth time, White looking people can live anywhere, GOT IT! (insert rolling eyes emoji here).

              • KCG

                Not Spongebob Squarepants shape!!! *hollers and slides down wall*

            • I’m not talking about George Zimmerman… I’m talking the Gloria Estefan’s, Don Francisco’s, the Ricky Martin’s, Jennifer Lopez’s….It is a proven fact that even black latinos will check white on the census…. With that being said, it doesn’t negate the very white latinos who exist.

              • DB. Just DB ™

                People consider Jennifer Lopez white? Don’t guess I’ve ever given it much thought but I don’t believe I’ve ever thought of her as white. Guess I could see it though. Has she ever expressed that she sees herself that way?

                • Jennifer is white. She gets the Kardashian treatment from black folks… Her parents are from Ponce… the very white part of Puerto Rico.

                  • Blueberry01

                    Very true! Remember when she was with Puffy back in the day? #OriginalKimKardashian

                  • Mary

                    She pretty golden colored, Asian-eyed and Black behinded to be white, but she clearly considers herself to be white. And, as you suggested earlier, there’s no one-drop rule in the rest of the Americas, so racial lines are dreamboat differently.

                    • Mary

                      Oops, racial lines are drawn differently.

                    • The one drop rule is complete bs though….it’s SOLE purpose was to keep black children of slave masters from inheriting their wealth.

                      So J.Lo is white.

                • PinkRose

                  I don’t.

                  • Janelle Doe

                    shots and shade all together?! wow.

                  • Ben Affleck is a blueblood.. his mama would have shaded an Italian too. Lol

                • Beauty In Truth

                  Don’t nobody think JLo is white. Plus look at how she speaks and those she has dated. And she is an around the way girl from the Bronx!

                  Why does everyone think being considered white or mixed is some ultimate praise? JLo is proud of her heritage. Not everyone hates their culture. Never got that one.

              • Blueberry01

                Oh yeah? I never knew that.

                But then, again, they do specify by stating, “White, but not of Hispanic Origin”. The census makes sure White Latinos do NOT get a pass.

                • They also say Hispanic regardless of race.. that’s the dead give away.

                  • Blueberry01

                    Also, gracias por la leccion de historia. You stay dropping the knowledge!

              • Mary

                Check out any telenovela or two minutes on Univision for peak whiteness.
                Wasn’t there a telenovela about slavery recently? I couldn’t do more than 15 minutes.

                • Come through Mary..it’s the reason why I don’t watch Spanish language tv.

          • PinkRose

            “Looking” white does NOT make a person White IMHO. I got first cousins that look “whiter” than the folks in that pic. But they ARE Black.

            The ONLY exception IMHO, are Europeans/those with majority European ancestry, living who in Mexico.

            • Jennifer

              I agree with you, but this social construct we call race has people claiming whiteness as much as they can. They know the benefit. I still remember a Mexican girl going off in high school at another Mexican classmate because she said “she wasn’t white because she was Mexican.” Girl #1 was incensed and told Girl #2 straight out that her family was not like these other Mexican families. From the mouths of babes…

              • PinkRose

                I see it all the time too, Mexicans with more European features, cling to “Whiteness”like stick on $hit.

            • There are White Mexicans… Just like there are white Cubans, Puerto Ricans, Colombians… etc… They are the ruling class in Mexico actually. They “look” white because they are. They aren’t indigenous…. you’d be surprised.

              • PinkRose

                That’s just it. Unless a person’s ancestors are from Spain, they aren’t White to me. Only Europeans can be White.

                Adding all these “other” groups into the White race was done to minimize and ostracize Blackness IMHO.

                • But their ancestors ARE from Spain. The ruling class in Latin America was not trying to mix with folks… It happened in Mexico, Cuba, PR, Panama, Venezuela…etc….

                  You have generations of ruling class folks not mixing with Africans or Indigenous.. hayle there are a ton of Eastern European Jews in Latin America from blanqueamiento movements. So when I say that these folks are white as in Euro.. they are. What you’re saying is the equivalent to Afrikaaners not being Euro because they are in South Africa. They are still white. Just now they are white inhabitants of the land they live in. Black folks need to stop putting any and everybody in our basket. As a first gen BLACK latina, everybody ain’t black or indigenous.

                  • Blueberry01

                    It’s interesting how some white South Africans are really pressed to claim their African heritage first, before their European.

                    • Mochasister

                      I think they do that to link themselves to the land.

                    • They do just as white Latinos do.

                    • Blueberry01

                      Yeah, I know, Mo. But I ain’t down for it.

                    • Exactly… like gtfoh.

                  • PinkRose

                    And how do you know their ancestors are from Spain? Do you honestly believe they’re going to say otherwise, hey ya’ll I’m really NOT white?

                    You’re talking about a very small group of people in Mexico to make your point correct. I’m talking about the overwhelming majority of Mexicans, the average Mexican who ain’t White.

                    Bringing up South Africa is another incomparable point made to win the debate. They HAVE a mulatto class, so NOT related to this discussion about Mexico.

                    You want to make everyone who wants to be White, White when their DNA VERY likely tells a different story. And since Black ain’t cool, what else you do think they’re going to say?

                    • It became illegal to whiten up the country in 1947. You’ve not said anything fact based, sis. The Porfirian Era as well the late 19th and 20th centuries, the Mexican government had Irish, French and Germans settle there to whiten the country. I don’t understand why is difficult to believe that their are all races in every country. There are white Mexicans. Mexican is a nationality not a race.

                    • PinkRose

                      You’re misreading if you think I don’t think there are White Mexicans. I NEVER said there weren’t. What I said again, was that most Mexicans are NOT White.

                      Not agreeing 100% doesn’t make everything I say incorrect either. That’s what makes these debates on here so difficulty why I usually don’t bother.

                    • The point is we know that folks list themselves as others but you flat out told me that the people I know to be white are not.

                      I, simply, stated that there were white Mexicans and you continued to shut it down taking about only whites were in Europe.

                      If you’re into reading…this is a great book on Mexican history..

                      https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&source=web&rct=j&url=https://www.amazon.com/Maximilian-Carlota-Europes-Empire-Mexico/dp/1595341838&ved=0ahUKEwjK4py559LPAhVHMSYKHYA4CvAQFghAMAA&usg=AFQjCNF7inTWsICqbWIYmjk3Hy2zvjNnSw&sig2=Ok_PWu8yWPBhm7wOtxVCCA

                      There’s also a couple on the African presence in Mexico.

                    • Epsilonicus

                      Thats because people dont understand race as an arbitrary, fickle political classification. They think that it is completely biological and is suppose to make sense. It doesn’t. Who is white and who is non-white changes many times based on political expediency.

                    • PinkRose

                      Try again, disagreement doesn’t ALWAYS = not understanding.

                    • Epsilonicus

                      Because of the arbitrariness of race, if you can pass and receive ALL the social and political benefits of whiteness, for all intent and purpose you are white.

                    • PinkRose

                      If you can pass is VERY subjective because who decides what passing is?

                      My favorite example of passing is Jayne Mansfield. To most/many people, she’s a White woman. But because these features are VERY common in many Black families including my own, I see a Black woman, that looks White.

                      https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/5b6b7fb997d35b98f02adacd1c2a12ebd0939eb16e261d4d828f09fff8d2151c.jpg

                    • Epsilonicus

                      You are equating race with biology. The issue is that race isn’t biology. It is white supremacy trying to base itself in some sort of biology but will arbitrarily throw said “logic” out when politically expedient for white people.

                      Implied in the concept of “passing” is that white people decide. One being able to fit into white social groups without anyone noticing, for if they did notice you as a person of color then you have not successfully “passed”.

                    • PinkRose

                      Look, all I know (and everyone else should too) is that what a person looks like depends on their genetic makeup. Genotype, what your genes/DNA “says”, doesn’t always equal phenotype, what you “look” like, hence how some people pass for white. So yeah, race IS biology TO ME, and I disagree with your premise on the subject.

                      So whether you want to call it genomic profiling, race, or monkey $hit, that doesn’t change how I, Pink Rose, view how genotype/phenotype determines race.

                      So lemme guess, you’re one of those “the only race is the human race” kinda folks?

                    • Epsilonicus

                      If you believe in the one drop rule then you believe in a very white supremacist construct. It was developed to protect the purity of whiteness and keep black folks from owning property

                    • PinkRose

                      Ignoring the one drop rule comment because I never EVER said I believed that.

                      BTW, did you check the Black race on your college/scholarship/job applications? If so, why? See I think if you’re going to take a position, take it ALL THE WAY, not just when it benefits you.

                    • Epsilonicus

                      1. You don’t know my position. You made assumptions about my position. Very different things. There is no evidence that race is genetic. You can identify White, Black, Asian by genes. Now there are ethnic groups with certain genetic markers but ethnicity =/= race. Race is a failed attempt to collapse large numbers of ethnic groups into some sort of larger group. Yet these larger groupings make no sense at all. You can believe otherwise but you would still be wrong.

                      2. Also, I said race isn’t genetic. Does not mean it is any less real. Obviously it is real otherwise we would not have the system of white supremacy we have (the concept of race is very much a white supremacist concept. research the history of its development). If race = phenotypes, then Irish people would have been white, no questions asked. However they were not considered white until it was politically expedient to make them so to maintain white supremacy in this country. Same for Italians and Jews. Or, as NPR Code switch demonstrated, there were quite a few Black folks wearing turbans, allowing them to sit at lunch counters because they were not “Black”. Race is incredibly arbitrary. It follows no rules except those that maintain current racial hierarchies. So who is white, black, or any other race changed and will continue to change on a whim. Its why the focus on political rights/power/benefits and how those are distributed in society is actually more important than phenotype. Thats much more consistent.

                      3. Most times I check Black. Sometimes I put Asian to be a troll.

                    • PinkRose

                      I’m not here to argue the social discussions around race because quite frankly that’s not my area of expertise. And as a Black woman living in America, my life experiences tells me ALL I need to know about that.

                      But when it comes to genetics, I know a little something about that especially as it relates to the genetics of cancer. Specifically the types of cancer Black women tend to get which are more often than not , VERY different genetically than the ones White women get. Very different, often difficult/impossible to treat. So we die at rates significantly higher than White women.

                      Now, you can argue that Black race makes no difference in what has been proven to be fact/what I saw with MY own eyes as it relates to breast cancer morbidity/mortality. And I would say you’re incorrect. I happen to believe that those decades long stress from slavery/slave diets contributed to Black women’s morbidity/mortality that we see today via gene/environment interaction, but that’s a whole other topic.

                      The bottom line is that when you look at clusters of breast cancer morbidity/mortality with ALL other contributory factors (insurance, income, education, ect) held constant, the one that stands out is race.

                      So you can continue to ignore that “cluster” that I call race and the powers that be will continue to justify not funding this research for Black women at adequate levels. And as a result, our mothers/sisters/aunts/daughters will continue to suffer and die and levels higher than ANY other RACIAL group.

                      PS- There IS a gene for melanin.

                    • Question

                      On your breast cancer example, do African-Americans and Ghanaians share similar incidence rates? If no, then the common denominator is ethnicity not race.

                    • PinkRose

                      Last I checked (I’ve been out of the game for about 4 years) all things being equal, Black women on both continents have the same breast cancer issues.

                      The only exception I can think of are Black women with Ashkenazi Jewish heritage, their rates are probably higher.

                    • Epsilonicus

                      Gene for melanin, not a gene for “Black”

                    • PinkRose

                      What a nit picking ^*&)*(^&((!!!

                      The amount of melanin is what MAKES you Black, DUH!!!

                      Now comeback with Albinos and imma jump thru this computer, LOL!!

                    • Epsilonicus

                      “Black” and “White” are definitely more than just amount of melanin color. If you can’t see that… welp

                    • PinkRose

                      There you go again, reading into my comments. I didn’t say ONLY melanin makes you Black. And I also don’t think in terms of 2 races, I think in terms of 3, Black, Brown, and White.

                    • Beauty In Truth

                      Girl, you better stop using all these facts and logic to n VSB! There’s no place for evidence here! We caint be having dat!

                    • HoneyRose

                      Breast cancer morbidity is not higher in black women – white women are actually more likely to get breast cancer than black women.

                      Black women do tend to get more genetically aggressive cancers, but that isn’t necessarily because of something specific to our genetic code. Researchers actually do not know why this happens yet. And a major difference in mortality is the socioeconomic structure of breast cancer: black women are diagnosed later, have more life stresses to deal with and have lower access to good quality medical care for a variety of reasons. So they are more likely to DIE from breast cancer.

                      Health differences in race is my area of expertise

                    • PinkRose

                      You’re right about the numbers of ALL Black US women bit my recollection is that this does NOT stand internationally. Also, if you stratify by income which is the demographic I’ve worked with for years the according to the data I worked with, the morbidity and mortality IS higher among Black women.

                      As for health disparities, that’s my area too, specifically as it relates to the health of Black women living with HIV, a transition from my work in Cancer. But my approach is scientific not sociological and I believe the approach makes a difference in what can facilitate the bench to bedside concept of patient care.

                    • PinkRose

                      Cancer IS a genetic disease, caused by mutations in normally functioning genes. So yeah, it IS mutations in our genetic code that leads to cancer. The CAUSES of those mutation can be debatable though.

                      Are you Scientist? Because your position doesn’t support that. And I don’t mean social scientist either, I mean have you had advanced courses in either the genetics of cancer or even basic genetics? Cancer as a genetic disease is really Biology 101.

                    • PinkRose

                      One last thing. Even when you stratify for SES (socio economic structure), Black women STILL die from breast cancer at rates higher than women.

                      As I said before, I’ve been out the bench cancer research game for a minute, but I still volunteer with Komen and have for almost 10 years.

                    • PinkRose

                      The latest CDC information (Oct 13, 2016), morbidity of breast cancer in Black women and White women is now almost even.

                      We were BOTH wrong.

                      https://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/volumes/65/wr/mm6540a1.htm?s_cid=govD_CancerNewsOctober13_01

                    • Namia

                      You could be right with these statistics…but on principle I take stats done by predominantly white people with a grain on salt..it could be also my bias that I think black people have superior stronger genetics

                    • PinkRose

                      I, along with quite a few other Black researchers I know, do our own statistical analysis. And while it’s VERY true there aren’t enough of us with this skill set doing research, you shouldn’t assume that when we quote statistics, they weren’t done by US. Or ME.

                    • Beauty In Truth

                      There is plenty of science on race and genes. What are you sipping on? Genetic chromosomes dictate everything from race to gender and eye color. Please do not spread nonsense because you may or may not feel comfortable identifying as a black male. I’d love to see you explain this to a white cop pulling you over. Lol.

                    • PinkRose

                      LOL!!

                    • PinkRose

                      One more thing. I think race is biology, based in genetics .

                      But I think RacISM IS a social construct, 2 completely different terms with VERY different meanings.

                    • Question

                      Race is biological? There is a race gene? Or are there ethnic genetic markers and ethnicity (not country of origin) can be an indicator of race?

                    • PinkRose

                      Is there a big booty gene? Does the lack of a gene for a big booty mean big that booties don’t exist?

                    • Mary

                      In the US it is true that race has been more biology based.And white is always white just as dark skinned Blacks are always Black.
                      But then, if you read about Black Native Americans you’ll find out that racial identities changed according to white folks needs. When more slaves were needed Native Americans were listed as colored and could be treated as runaway slaves . At that point, Native Americans distanced themselves from Black folks.
                      Reading birth certificates from that time period can be misleading with Natives and Blacksbot considered as colored.

                    • PinkRose

                      I agree that race has been manipulated and misused by some White folks.

                      You also make interesting points about Native Americans. And this is anecdotal, but even the ones in my family are pretty racists and I’ve always felt that racism and money ie casinos, were at the heart of why they distance themselves from Blacks.

                    • Question

                      The fact that you see a Black woman means what to Jayne and the rest of the world? I’m not discounting your opinion; what I’m saying is you claiming Jayne is/looks Black doesn’t matter if a) Jayne doesn’t claim Blackness and b) the world doesn’t respond to her as you see her.

                      And if there weren’t privilege associated with White, would it even matter?

                    • PinkRose

                      I simply used Jayne as an example of a Black woman passing for white, expressing my opinion on VSB like e’r body else ’round here, insert Kayne Shrug.

                    • HoneyRose

                      But Jayne Mansfield is not black. She’s white. She was born to a wealthy family that had a pretty fleshed out geneaology – she’s of German and English ancestry. There is no evidence of her being a black woman passing for white.

                    • PinkRose

                      There is evidence so I disagree. And even if they’re wasn’t, I probably couldn’t say she’s Black for sure but I could definitely say she’s NOT White just based on how she looks.

                    • Epsilonicus

                      ” what I’m saying is you claiming Jayne is/looks Black doesn’t matter if a) Jayne doesn’t claim Blackness and b) the world doesn’t respond to her as you see her.”

                      Bingo on B. Because you cannot ignore the entire social construction side of race, which can be effectively argue is the entire construction of race. Black, White, etc really would not matter if it wasn’t for white supremacy and hegemony, which basically determines rights/benefits/power etc based on “color”

                    • La Bandita

                      Yes, race changes as the politics change. A trend happens an example: Blacks who are Catholic, married in the church and have an income can put White. Blacks began putting White in numbers. Rule change! Only they’re children can put White AND only if they can pass a paper bag test. Rule Change! Only children w/one White parent can put White. Rule Change.

                      Race is constantly evolving.

                    • Question

                      I think NWT’s point is that there are more that are actually White than we are willing to acknowledge because of social and racial dynamics in the US.

                    • TheVilleintheA

                      NWT,
                      What references do you recommend regarding race as far as who is indigenous and who has African, European, or Asian heritage in Mexico and South America. Also, what references do you recommend for relations that the United States has with Mexico and South America historically and current.

                    • So let me qualify the question first… We are all “mixed” in this hemisphere so are you asking for references that speak to different races being throughout Latin and South America and how they came to be?

                    • TheVilleintheA

                      Pretty much.

                    • Mary

                      True. There are Lebanese Mexicans like that actress whose name I disremember at the moment, as well as Chinese Mexicans. And the French rolled up in there and even had an emperor.
                      I used to work at an upper class international student house, and yeah, the Latinos, with very few exceptions,were undeniably white and elite.

                  • Yahmo Bethere

                    You aare bringing it and folks don’t want to hear it.

                  • La Bandita

                    Thank you Chica!! Brazilian model Gisselle is perfecto example – she’s German from a ruling class that settled in Brazil. The Black Brazilians of wealth push to marry poor Turkish immigrants to have light kids. A White Brazilian will not marry a Black Brazilian.

                    • It’s rare as hayle and you see perfect examples of it here in Orlando… racist ayus white Brazilians come over here treating other diasporans like the blacks in their countries..

                      I’ve cussed out several. Bytch, I OUTCLASS YOU, HERE AND IN BRAZIL.

              • Blueberry01

                Marco Rubio just came to mind.

              • La Bandita

                Then then like me there are the Black Cubans, the Black Puerto Ricans, Black Mexicans, etc and you’re supposed to sell your soul to improve the race by having mixed babies. Worshipping Whiteness until you die.

                • Girl yaaaaaas! And my black Cuban ayus married a black ayus Dominican!!! Lmao

                  • La Bandita

                    Black Dominicans are the worse- I’m sorry to say. Only equal to White Cubans – they’re like the Klan at dios mio..

                    • My husband was born and raised in Brooklyn so it’s a little different.. Dominicans get a bad rap though… they aren’t any more colorstruck or xenophobic as any other diasporan group. They are just more blatant. With that being said, there IS an awakening among black dominicans especially younger ones.. our age, millennials and such… Itg’s quite beautiful to see…. Everything from embracing their natural hair to fighting with Haitians against discrimination.

                    • La Bandita

                      You’re right my bestie is Dominican and she doesn’t tolerate that stuff. But the older generations is bad.

            • Black is a spectrum.. and your your “white looking” cousins have 2 black parents, no?

              • PinkRose

                No they don’t all have Black parents and of the ones that do, their parents are Black/mixed race.

                But you apparently think White is a spectrum too, and I don’t agree. But I also think most people in the world are neither Black nor White, they’re Brown.

                • Why are you bringing up your mixed race cousins to validate a point?

                  We aren’t talking mixed races.

                  • PinkRose

                    Genotype of family = mixed race, phenotype of family = Black in ALL it’s glorious shades of brown, from fair to mahogany.

                    So yeah, I’m talking about my BLACK family members.

                    • Mary

                      Ironically, if it weren’t for the one-drop rule Black folks wouldn’t have lasted long in this country as a community.
                      PinkEose, you remind me of Louisiana Creoles I know. No matter how white featured they me be, they are Black, period.

                    • PinkRose

                      You know Mary I never thought about the one drop rule quite that way, and that’s an interesting point.

                • White is a spectrum with regards to nationality ONLY. And actually outside of Asians… BLACKS are the highest population globally.

                  We have to do better when presenting opinions as facts.

                  • PinkRose

                    People state opinions on VSB ALL the time, if people take what’s being said as fact, that on them.

                    That said, my personal beliefs are just that, mine, and I don’t participate in discussion on VSB for either confirmation or support.

                    I don’t give brown people a pass to be white and it’s not something I’m just pullig out of my a $$. I see it daily in the HIV data that takes up a significant part of my life these days. When I see White race and high HIV, I know immediately that unless the sexual orientation is gay, it’s Spanish speaking people.

                    • HoneyRose

                      Wait…what do you mean by this? When you see white race and high HIV? You mean viral load counts? White straight people can have high viral load counts as well. I am very confused by this comment.

                    • PinkRose

                      If you do research as you claim, you should know that I’m very aware that high HIV counts = incidence, does not in ANY way equate to high viral loads.

                      I’m down for talking science, but it’s difficult to have a discussion like that and sly throw shade at the same time.

                  • Beauty In Truth

                    And the world IS flat!

          • Mochasister

            True. But I have seen some of the brownest Mexicans ( we’re talking George Lopez brown) identifying as white.

            • I’m not denying that… Clearly, he’s a delusional indigenous person but that doesn’t mean that there aren’t actual white latinos.

              • Mary

                True dat. Some Latinos have more Spanish or other European ancestry and that counts as white. In the US we don’t really consider Latins (Spanish, Italians or Portuguese) to be white, but in LA they are.
                At one time in history though, Black folks in Latin America with money could be legally listed as white too. Now, if that Black wealthy person married white, and I’m guessing upper class whites weren’t having it, that was cool unless th children had Black features.
                Class and money play a part in race in LA that it doesn’t in the US.

                • But they are white.. they’re European.. lol

                  They aren’t Latinos at all.

            • Question

              Multitude of reasons – but in business school it was eye opening to hear some Mexicans (note: not immigrants, but Mexican nationals attending as international students) also took issue with how “Mexican” has become synonymous with “disadvantaged”. I remember one of my classmates saying “I am Mexican, I am not disadvantaged…but it seems like in the US that is not possible”. (His grand-parents founded one of the largest denim manufacturers in the world).

              • grownandsexy2

                Wish I was in that class. I would have told him, welcome our world. Being Black, according to way too many is synonymous with being “disadvantaged” also.

                • But it really depends on the Mexican… If he wasn’t a George Lopez type but a Thalia type… there would be a difference in treatment.

                • Mochasister

                  Chile, you ain’t said nothing but a word!

              • Exactly…There are Mexican nationals that are doing swell!

              • Mochasister

                I can see their point. However, in the US there are parameters for what’s considered “white.” Maybe in Mexico and other Latin American countries “white” is different. Some of the people that I have seen call themselves white make me shake my head. They may be considered “white” at home, but not here. They’re definitely on a higher rung of the US racial caste system, but not quite white.

                • Question

                  What are the parameters other than what can be visibly discerned?

                  • Mochasister

                    Be a WASP (I’ve noticed that whites tend to make a distinction between white non Hispanic versus white Hispanic with white non Hispanic being “better” than white Hispanic.) As you stated, be able to “pass” for “white” (Think Louis CK white or Cameron Diaz white); too brown a skin tone is not good. Speak unaccented English; if you do speak Spanish, you better damn well be bilingual. Be an American citizen. Preferably 2nd or 3rd generation. Can’t have any pesky close ties to another country. Vague ties are the best. These are some things that I have noticed from living out here in CA.

                    • Question

                      Agree with your description – and this is what I mean, its highly subjective and is all about reinforcing one’s position. Race is a tool of exclusion; White people define Whiteness based on who they want to keep out.

                    • Mochasister

                      Yes, I agree with you as well. Although I think some visible nonwhites can achieve somewhat of an “honorary white” status provided they are self hating enough and adopt a more “white” attitude towards life…and others of their cultural group.

          • mike2000917

            Mexicans are white when computing crime statistics. It makes the white numbers go way up.

              • Julie Mango TheGladiator Staff

                <—stole that^^^

              • Yahmo Bethere

                Poor thing, did she have stroke?

            • Beauty In Truth

              Not even true. Fact check your sources are easy off.

              • Epsilonicus

                That felt really random. Not your comment but the one above it.

            • Guest

              What a bunch of BS. What crime stats are you looking at!?

              Crime stats are listed by race and ethnicity and whites of non-hispanic origin are seperated from everyone else of hispanic origin.

              By your logic, black hispanics are listed as black too, that must be why the black numbers are way up.

              Try again.

        • L8Comer

          Some of them look white and they walk through life being perceived as white. Also some of them are white

        • Betty’s Babygirl

          Hispanic is generally meant to describe Spanish speaking people from South America. Latino describes Spanish speakers NOT from S.A.such as Spain and Spanish speaking Caribbean nations. However, one can be considered Latino but not Hispanic. Brazil is in S.A. but the main language is Portuguese. Therefore you’d be considered Latino because you do not speak Spanish. There are white Africans. South Africans, Angola, Zimbabwe,(formerly Rhodesia). They’re several generations deep in African countries. They do not consider themselves European but Murica views them as white.

        • blueevey

          I meant “but mexican” in that I don’t consider myself white since I’m mexican. “Except mexican” would have worked better, my bad.

          Technically, according to the US gvt and census, I’m white/hispanic. Mexicans and other latinxs aren’t one race. Mexicans are a mix of white/Spaniards/ etc and indigenous blood. Sometimes, there are mexicans of other races, Lupita N’Yongo was born in mexico, by birth she’s mexican but she’s not mexican in the sense that I am, in that my parents were born in mexico. I’m also not mexican because I was born in the states.

          Mexicans and other latinx people’s claim their white ancestry because of colorism and racism and white supremacy, et all. Light skin/hair/eyes is the preference in mexico and much of Latin america. There’s a lot of internalized hate.

          • PinkRose

            “Mexicans and other latinxs aren’t one race. Mexicans are a mix of white/Spaniards/ etc and indigenous blood.”

            Most of the Black people I know aren’t one race either. And even the ones in my family that could claim White based on genetics (One White parent/One Biracial parent) and looks (blonde hair/blue eyes), all say they’re Black. Except the ones that ran off to NYC and are living as “White”.

            Again, the Lupito example, not relevant to what I’m talking about here. Because it doesn’t change the fact that most (obviously NOT all) Mexicans are not White as I define it.

            Bottom line, folks want to be White when it benefits them and I totally get that.

        • Beauty In Truth

          Ding, ding, ding, WE HAVE A WINNER!

          To answer your?..When it’s convenient for them hunty, but when Trump came for DAT azz, they bees latina again? Smh!

          • PinkRose

            D@mn good point about Trump, like the one someone made about Muslims.

        • SororSalsa

          Latinos span the color chart…I’ve seen folks who were paler than the whitest of wypipo to folks that looked like they came straight out of Africa.

          • PinkRose

            Yep!

      • Beauty In Truth

        You totally like, are not white. Okyaheah?Just ask Trump, en espanol. Eye ROLL.

    • And fukk your seasonless chicken..

      • lkeke35

        Yup! Someone had to say this!

        • Judyjhutton4

          Google is paying 97$ per hour! Work for few hours and have longer with friends & family! !ap214f:
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          !ap214f:
          ??
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    • Jennifer

      I’ve had two women try to relate to me this way. Made me wanna spit, but I was raised right.

    • Marie

      “And I don’t care how many Black men you’ve been with”………Gross.

  • ~*V. von Schweetz*~

    I like Texas Pete tho…

    • OSHH

      Me too.

    • Anonymous

      BYE.

      Louisiana or Crystal. THAT’S IT, unless you have ventured into the land of exotic hot sauces.

      • brothaskeeper

        I’m a sriracha man myself, but other than that, Louisiana Hot Sawce, please.

        • KCG

          *screams* Sriracha!!! That’s my jam man.

      • Brother Mouzone

        Frank’s Red Hot or nuthin at all…….

    • PinkRose

      Cholula, MUCH lower in sodium/ salt.

      • Cheech

        And because it tastes great.

    • Jennifer

      So, it looks like we’re in agreement that Tabasco is trash.

      • B-Dot Willz

        I would rather my chicken be unseasoned than tainted with Tabasco.

  • Ari

    Great article and thanks for including the link to the bell hooks interview. Now to find the actual video…

  • blueevey

    This is something I struggle with. … all of my bf’s have been black. It went from coincidence to purposeful to idk now. … I’d write more but it all sounds like “I’m not racist because my bf is black.”

    • LMNOP

      Are you white?

      • Val

        I believe she is Mexican-American.

        • cyanic

          Is she a white Latina or an ethnic Latina?

          • Val

            That I don’t know.

        • LMNOP

          Yeah, I caught that after asking lol.

      • blueevey

        Mexican

    • L8Comer

      I have a friend like this. She admitted that used to fetishize black men. She says she doesn’t anymore, but I’m not so sure. She’s never dated a man of her own race, Latino.

      • Coco

        She doesn’t anymore? Is that even possible? Since most black men don’t mind.

        • L8Comer

          she says she doesn’t. idk if she actually does. i doubt it… some her language is suspect

          • LMNOP

            One thing that troubles me about those kinds of situations is the possibility of a Black boy being raised to be a Black man by someone who refuses to see the complexity and humanity of Black men.

            • kingpinenut

              This is a reality not a possibility. I’ve heard far too many black children raised by so called “good” white folks say they hate lack people.

              • LMNOP

                I meant possibility in the sense that chex doesn’t necessarily lead to babies.

                • kingpinenut

                  Lost me . . .come again?

                  • LMNOP

                    They’re not necessarily going to have kids.

                    • kingpinenut

                      Gotcha the kids I referenced were adopted

            • L8Comer

              Me too. I’ve challenged her on it, but i don’t think she’s really willing to go there and explore.she says she really loves them. She’s Latina n she says dating Latino men is like dating her brother or cousin.

              • Mochasister

                I have never understood that. How is it that every single male of your culture makes you think of your father, brother, or cousin. Believe me when I see Morris Chestnut the LAST thing on my mind is my Black male relatives!

                • L8Comer

                  Look man I do not get it. Especially since like black people, Latinx people are so diverse in appearance

            • cyanic

              This happened to our president. His mother was a real Becky with a fetish for everything not of her father.

    • cyanic

      Not asking you but when does racial preference become fetishizing?

    • Brooklyn_Bruin

      If there were dms on disqus, lol

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