“Niggas In Paris” Are Still Niggers To Parisians » VSB

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“Niggas In Paris” Are Still Niggers To Parisians

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I have an older cousin named Halima. She lives in Nimes with her husband and five-year-old daughter, named Hikma, who is an avid Frozen enthusiast (called La Reines des Neiges in French) and Beyonce-in-training.

For the most part, they live relatively peaceful middle-class existences. But every morning, Halima makes the trek from Nimes to Avignon to go work at the hospital there — and every morning, she quietly recites the basmala to herself. Bismillahirrahmanirrahim – “In the name of God, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful.” Those few words help her muster up the strength to get on the train and face her sincere fear that her next day on public transportation could be her last.

It should be no surprise that anti-Blackness is a phenomenon that extends to Western Europe, considering that they were the initial settlers of what is now America and the Transatlantic Slave Trade. However, the concept that countries like France are these magical, post-racial havens for the truly evolved and erudite has been a concept that seems to have persisted from the Baldwin era. Visions of smokey rooms where elites hobnob with Black American intellectuals over cognac and transcendent jazz music continue to be the predominant perspective, drawn out from the near-reverent recounting of Black American academics and artistic contemporaries from the Harlem Renaissance and post WWI-era.

You even see it in present day with renowned race and culture commentator Ta-Nehisi Coates, who during a recent interview, said the following:

“..the sociology that comes out of slavery is a little different from the sociology that comes out of colonialism. France colonized all sorts of people—Asian people, black people, whoever. So the relationship is a little different. It’s not a good relationship. But America has a very specific thing with black people. Here, the people who get it the worst are actually the Muslims…”

While that may be a seemingly innocuous statement, it obscures a few key things. Most glaringly, there’s an implication that France did not participate in chattel slavery, which it did, as did most Western European empires at the time. Secondly, while it is true that the French colonial empire extended to parts of Southeast Asia, any map of the modern French colonial empire will make it plainly clear that their rule extended primarily over Black nations — and that autonomy over Black states extended well into the the 20th century. The country where my family is from, Comoros, didn’t obtain independence until 1975; which is to say, my mother was born under French rule, with a French passport, and a French birth certificate.

What is arguably most glaring is this attempted bifurcation of race and religion — identities, which in France, are almost inextricably linked. Yes, France has a strong case of Islamophobia, which is made quite evident by things such as the “secular” law banning women from wearing religious headdresses in public, as well as the recently passed law enabling French government to revoke the birthright citizenship of anyone convicted of “terroristic” activity — terroristic activity being this amoebic catchall that is yet to be defined, of course.

That said, the key oversight in that assessment is that of the millions of French citizens and residents that self-identify as Muslim, approximately 80% of them at last count were 1st or 2nd generation descendants of the African continent. Subsequently, it is these people who are consistently harassed; pulled off trains and demanded to show their papers, pushed into slum communities (also known as banlieues), denied jobs they are qualified for, quality education or service without cause, arrested with limited justification, belittled via “satirical” comics.

And yes, even murdered, as we are in the United States.

On July 19th, Adama Traore, a Black Muslim Frenchman, died on his 24th birthday in police custody. As I write this, the family still doesn’t have any concrete answers as to what happened during his transport. This is a tragedy that we are all too familiar with here in the US, but it is a pain that reverberates globally; the extinguishing of Black bodies with little disregard or concern for the communities that continue to sear with the remnants of that anguish.

It is for those reasons that my cousin prays. She prays to get home in one piece. She prays to not run into law enforcement. She prays for her daughter to not have to recall her in memories before she should have to.

This isn’t the part of France you will see on TV. It might not even be the part of France you see in person; the banlieues exist on the outskirts for a reason, and if you just stay in the 20 arrondissements of Paris with your American passport in full view you may just consistently be viewed as a tourist first. I would certainly assume that a writer of Coates’s stature would be of the means to stay close to the city center, nor do I deride him for that choice. That experience, however, doesn’t dismiss the suffering of large swaths of Black communities just a few miles south. Black neighborhoods are being torn apart by fraught relationships with both police and non-POC demographics, and they are crying for their voices to be heard. We should take pains to not erase that context in framing our own personal experiences.

Baldwin once said of America, “all you are ever told in this country about being Black is that it is a terrible, terrible thing to be.” That sober reality unfortunately still hold us tight in our clutches in 2016; not just in the United States, but in large swaths of the Western World. Anti-Blackness is everywhere, even in the home of the Age of Enlightenment; and it would behoove us to step away from viewing White supremacy as a uniquely American problem as much as it is a pervasive viciousness that has left its imprints on Black populations the world over.

Shamira Ibrahim

Shamira is a twentysomething New Yorker who likes all things Dipset. You can join her in waxing poetically about chicken, Cam'ron, and gentrification (gotta have some balance) under the influence of varying amounts of brown liquor at her semi-monthly blog, shamspam.tumblr.com

  • rehreh

    Oh man, first post to VSB (been a lurker for a year or so), but I have SO MUCH TO SAY ON THIS TOPIC WHERE DO I START? As a Black USAer that has been living in France for almost a decade, the French experience is interesting and nuanced and horrifying and amazing and complicated, more complicated than a 12-paragraph article can express. I will say this, les Nîmois (people from Nîmes, I live the next town over) cannot and should not be compared to Parisians, as the title would suggest, compared with the story in the article. May I also say that the Adama Traore case is sad and fucked up, no surprise, but on another note is CARED about by a very large and vocal part of the White population here, which is surprising. Also, this article touches on France + Black Americanness, Black Africanness, Northern Africanness, former-Colonialness, Muslimness AND immigrationness (I am aware that these are not words) and personally, I don’t think these are things that should be conflated because France’s race problem – and it is a HUGE PROBLEM – is one that cannot even begin to be compared to America’s.

    I’ll stop here because I don’t have a way with words and my thoughts are circling around and none of it makes sense – great article that is lacking details which is understandable. France is definitely not a “magical, post-racial” haven, I just wish I had the time and brain cells to truly explain why.

    • LMNOP

      Welcome!
      It sounds like you have a really interesting perspective, and if you’d like to expand on it a little more, I’m sure we’d all like to hear.

      • rehreh

        Thanks! I’d like to expand more as well, but I won’t – for now. I have an “explaining myself well” issue i.e. I can’t do it hahaha. But sociologically, as an American and a Black person and a woman and an immigrant (I hate the term expat), France is certainly interesting…

        • LMNOP

          I think it’s always hard when a subject comes up that you have A LOT of opinions about and there are 10 million things jumping around in your head to express yourself.

        • Question

          20/20 being hindsight and assuming you had the option, would you do it again (e.g. choose to be an American immigrant in France)?

          • rehreh

            You know… I would – it hasn’t been easy and with the question of children looming over my head, I am getting more and more nervous about emigrating here (I want 100% American kids, sorry spouse, plus being without my family and friends, etc), but the life I am creating for myself is a good one. I’m luckier than most people.

            Are you interested in moving abroad?

    • L8Comer

      I remember a French exchange student in one of my classes on organizational management at an HBCU saying she didnt understand why we talked about race in the work place and was always rolling her eyes and said they had no such problem in France and there was not even a word for “racism” I was like trick I speak a bit of French and I’m pretty sure the word does exist and its “racisme”

      • L8Comer

        So the same damn word ?

        • rehreh

          Lol there are a lot of French people who buy into the “we are not racist” thing. It’s astounding.

          • L8Comer

            I’m like so why are u here? At an HBCU? But I was just so baffled she thought she could say the concept didn’t even exist. Like… We all know your history with North Africa ?

            • Mochasister

              She probably went for the Black men.

          • rehreh

            Replying to myself to say there are also a lot of French people who are “well-meaning, liberals – les gauchistes” who take white guilt to levels that I don’t think exist in America. And it is incredibly, horribly patronizing, like I just can’t.

            • L8Comer

              Huh that’s interesting

            • MsSula

              I think this is the breed I hate most: ces fameux gauchistes!! Patronizing and condescending and generally all around annoying.

              I can’t even write out thoughtful and well constructed replies but yeah, if you haven’t noticed I am not too fond of France. Lol.

      • Hugh Akston

        it definitely does…but French have this complexity of not discussing certain things at work…la laicite when it comes to religion…but yeah they definitely do have a big problem…with racism

      • Does she not know were Haiti is?

        • L8Comer

          I don’t think she cared. She got all flustered and started to tear up when they professor challenged her

          • Classic White girl getting educated move. It is so much fun to watch. I gotta start taking classes somewhere.

            • Gibbous

              It’s actually more enraging than fun. I mean, I have to live this stuff, how is it OK that you can just “not know?” ARGH!

              I’m not a violent person and I’ve never been in a fight in my entire life, but the “innocent white woman getting attacked for ignorance” excuse was one that drove me close to the edge when I was in school.

              • Every time I would hide my face for the laughter. Angry frat boys used to kill me, too. They don’t appreciate White privilege getting called out at all.

                • Gibbous

                  If the teacher is calling them out, it’s one thing, but it’s often left to others in the class who are clearly ‘ganging up’ on the poor, innocent, ignorant, &*(^%!

                  • I have rarely been in a classroom with another black folks to actually gang up. I have let the wolf out on unsuspecting classmates when they caught me on the wrong day, though.

                    • Gibbous

                      It’s more like death by 1000 side eyes! And a lot of “What??”

                  • LMNOP

                    That irritated me so much when I was in school, because who is getting paid to teach?? How can you just let sht slide all the time and leave it up to your students to be doing the educating?

          • Kas

            White women’s best defense is their shield made of tears.

            • L8Comer

              So true

            • Mochasister

              I thought that was just a white American woman thing.

              • Blueberry01

                Nope. It’s universal.

          • Blueberry01

            Expected.

      • Lisss

        While doing an exchange in Istanbul, i met with A LOT of french students
        (i have never particularly cared for the french since my people kicked
        them out back in 1804 and they had the nerve to tax us but i digress…)
        and one of them explain to me that, after WWII and how the Nazis hunted
        down the Jews among others, there is a federal law that prevents
        race-based statistics. So when French people say they never talk about
        race, its true. Its seen as uncivilized and very American. Of course, it
        also makes them very blind to race-based issues such as police
        brutality or unemployment rates…

        • God Shammgod

          I’d be interested to know what the race of these French people are…

          A lot of French people will emphasize their whole historical context of Laicite…but honestly a lot of it has been used as a crutch to dismiss and erase non white communities, even with legislation. So take their perspective with a grain of salt.

          They talked about race when they booed their mostly black French national team and called them monkeys.

          They talked about race when they attempted to expell their immigrant populations. All of this is post WWII by the way.

          • L8Comer

            right, I always hear about how they (and other EU countries) treat their football players… throwing bananas at them and such. If I know about that, how is it that they don’t?

        • L8Comer

          Oh I believe they don’t talk about it, but to say it’s not q problem and there isn’t even a word in French for it was so outlandish lol like I’m not the only French speaker in class either. I mean even Je suis Charlie highlighted the racism in their country

        • Question

          The older I get the more I question the point of race-based statistics here in the US. No, I’m not advocating for the erasure of race as a critical lens through which to view economic and social issues.

          I, however, also know that race is not something that can be “corrected” or “adjusted for” through policy, legislation and resources. In other words, knowing, for example that Blacks when compared to Asians, Hispanics and Whites are less likely to get flu shots means what, exactly? If we aren’t willing to take the next step to understand WHY that is (e.g.a general distrust of the medical establishment passed down through families as a result of Blacks being used as medical lab-rats up until about ~60 years ago), then what point does the race based statistic serve?

      • NonyaB

        I’d have been like, bish, shall I list your ex-colonies and the fxcksh*t they’re still undergoing today or should I list blatant examples of how racism is still going on in FR tahday? Deluded heffa.

        • Blueberry01

          Yup. Straight delusional. I feel like it’s one thing not to know something or have never been exposed to it. But it’s completely something else to assume that BECAUSE you haven’t seen or been exposed to it, it’s not possible.

          #CockyDeludedHeffa

      • NonyaB

        LOL, reminds me of white Brazilian classmate bish that tried to tell me no racism in Brazil. Such delusion.

        • DanceHallKing

          I had to drag some poor Brasilian dude over at the Cracked.com comments section, He was saying it was better in Brasil because they took their good sweet time eliminating slavery instead of fighting a war and that afterwards there was no segregation.

          I laughed in his face (figuratively).

          • NonyaB

            See that mess?! Yeah, no segregation is why the Brazilian Black women blogs are publish stories daily of some that ish still happening, on a scale way worse than what one typically sees in N. America.

        • Mochasister

          Notice how it’s always white people who tell people who aren’t white that there is no racism?

          • NonyaB

            Ain’t it though? Them and deluded racial draft candidates like Stacey Dash SMH.

          • Blueberry01

            I was just about to say that!

        • Blueberry01

          Did you sniggle, laugh out loud, or (my personal favorite) the Angela Rye eyeroll?

          • NonyaB

            It was more staring in disbelief then trying to ask her what about all them other Brasileras saying the opposite. When she insisted that only income divide, I snipped the convo short. Yeah, I shoulda just dropped an Angela Rye eyeroll and walked off.

      • Blueberry01

        It’s usually the ones that say there’s none of something that are ones that perpetuate that very thing.

        • L8Comer

          exactllyyy

    • God Shammgod

      Author here. Welcome! I encourage you to speak your piece – as you said, there are only so many ideas I can cogently express in ~1K words, and the comments section is a good space to expand on multiple threads. Looking forward to hopefully hearing from you, it sounds like you have plenty of personal context to draw from as do I.

      • rehreh

        Yeah I get that – I got all hyped up reading an article on France on VSB and BONUS: for once, it wasn’t all about Paris, but your family who live in the South as I do. Down here is another world. Great healthcare, though :)

        • God Shammgod

          True! I wanted to include Marseille, where I also have family, but the story of Marseille would require its own essay altogether. France, as you’ve pointed out, has a lot of very complex issues re: race and its immigrant populace that you could write entire novels about parsing through.

          • rehreh

            I just got back from Marseille a couple of hours ago. Unpopular opinion: it’s my favorite city in all of France, both despite and because of its unique issues. Something about that place gives me energy.

            • NonyaB

              LOL, I find Marseille rough, yo! I prefer Nice and its surrounding villages.

            • MsSula

              I can see why Marseilles would be a favorite city. It has identity.

              • rehreh

                Identity! Yes… it is what it is, love it or hate it

            • Nandiehills

              This is a popular opinion with me. I love Marseille! Used to go there a lot when I lived in Aix-en-provence.

    • NonyaB

      Welcome! Your comment made all the sense. *Hands you some jollof and lemonade*. The complex, convoluted state of factors you mention is partly why I rarely discuss it, because it would have to be such a long convo.

      • rehreh

        Yes! The discussion is entirely too long, but I couldn’t not say anything. I accept your gift of welcome, thanks

    • miss t-lee

      Thank you for your insight.

      • rehreh

        And thank YOU for seeing my jumble of thoughts and feelings as insightful – I appreciate it!

        • miss t-lee

          Of course :)

    • Kas

      What LMNOP said below

    • RewindingtonMaximus

      This has been a most helpful outlook right here.

  • bigheadbaby

    I have read this about a lot of Europe, which I see some commenters are saying: they treat black people one way until they find out you are an American black person, then they treat you differently…better. Because if you are American Black…you are not their “problem” so to speak. You are not the one living in their country that they have to deal with daily, you are going home…you are someone else’s problem. So sad that blackness is a “problem” in so much of the world.

    • Lisss

      Exactly! They know you’re only passing through. Matter of fact, being the tourist that you are, they can even appreciate you cause they know you’re contributing to their economy while you’re here.

  • Brandon Allen

    This is a necessary post. I know America is some ish but it irks me how people are so myopic about the struggle of anti blackness sometimes. Mostly because people forget that in reality, anti blackness = anti-africanness. The very core of the issue is, that to bigots, African people are subhuman, whether you speak, french, english, spanish, or whatever. So don’t think you can just go to a Parisian cafe and be free cuz you’re channeling the spirit of Josephine Baker…

  • Hugh Akston

    so much to say on this topic…lived in France for a little while, and lived with a family…that hated muslims…and black folks…every night i spent was to argue with that family…la laicite, le foulard, les signes, 1989, les pieds noirs, etc…i could go on and on…but merci

  • NonyaB

    You better come THRU with this insight, Sham!! When I see how people romanticize it, I sometimes laugh. Having lived there before, the LAYERS of history and current reality of the onion called la France are heavy. There are great things about it, as well as jarring aspects, especially given that we’re in the bloody 21st century. There’s a reason I decided not to settle there.

    • God Shammgod

      i will definitely check this out, thanks for this. And appreciate you reading!

  • MsKey

    Thank you for this!

  • Brandon Allen

    Kanye’s foray into fashion fits in here somewhere….

    • Nah, they disrespected his leather sweatpants.

      • Brandon Allen

        All jokes about Kanye being an insufferable narcissist aside. During his rating period, he would go over there and study and intern, and he obviously had capital to start his brand but he was ‘froze’ out by the old fashion guard…

        • You could definitely see Kanye loving the Parisian mystique and being at the fashion capital of the world.

        • cyanic

          He wants white approval wherever he can get it. Assuming European whites are superior to American whites in the race department is likely his first mistake.

          • Brandon Allen

            I don’t know if its approval but more of an attempt to escape the race game which he failed.

          • Nik White

            He was probably trying to get the JamesBaldwinJosephineBakerkinda love.

            • cyanic

              He’s nowhere near as awesome as they were.

    • Brooklyn_Bruin

      He has a very complicated relationship with the oppressor.

      But remember, Lupe Fiasco schooled him on blood diamonds. That’s like David Duke putting Trump on to being offensive

      #lowblow

  • I’ve heard this about France, too. It is one of the most segregated countries in Western Europe. I also hear that Paris is not France and France is not Paris. The countryside, I hear, is very nationalistic. As we all can see by the recent election cycle this can lead to waves of Islamaphobia. Their colonialism is haunting them because of so many Africans that identify themselves as French the way identify as Americans.

    I get why people like Saul Williams, James Baldwin and Coates wax poetic about Paris but it is hard for me to reconcile that with the treatment of immigrants and those of North and Western African decent. It’s an insult over there just to accuse someone of having African heritage. It’s yet another sad result of the African Diaspora caused by the very people that loathe us. The question remains: Why don’t we hate them to the degree that they hate us?

    • Kas

      “Why don’t we hate them to the degree that they hate us?” – I vacillate between we are better than them (questionable) and we are to busy trying to survive and take care of our families to waste the energy.

    • Val

      Hate alone without the power to turn that hate into a systematic thing that is beneficial to those doing the hating is both counterproductive and self-harming.

  • Minx

    Ottawa police beat an autistic Somali man to death about 2 weeks ago. I need people to stop pretending anti-Black racism is a uniquely American problem. It’s not. And to try to remove “slavery” from “colonialism” (or capitalism, imperialism, really it can be applied to most -isms) is a level of intellectual cognitive dissonance that I cannot fathom.

    Bruh, France was making HAITI pay reparations and they were the first country in the Caribbean to get their independence – for why?!

    • Asiyah

      When I read what happened in Ottawa, I was like wow. Then I read Canadians saying it’s time to pretend that racism doesn’t exist in Canada. Americans, in their weird way, perceive Canada as some sort of haven, devoid of problems. Not. at. all.

      YUP! FRANCE SUCKS! The damage it did to Haiti in the long run is morally reprehensible and I say that without any hint of hyperbole.

      • God Shammgod

        One day I’ll write about how France gutted Comoros. The largest producers of vanilla in the world and we were gutted and left for damn near dead.

        • Sahel

          The French dont play with that scorched earth policy they popularized in war.

          • God Shammgod

            They don’t. And in Comoros its so eveident because on of our islands, Mayotte, is still a French principality. People are literally dying trying to get there and get access to resources the French government stripped from us. A visa is required to see our own people just across the way…I could go on and on.

        • Asiyah

          :(
          I’m prepared to read all about it.

        • In America, we get so bogged down with our brutal history that we forget what the Western nations have done to the continent. We can’t even perceive what it meant to be under colonial rule until the 80’s and how companies like de beers are still are bleeding places dry.

          • China is taking its turn now.

            • Kas

              Yep

            • Brooklyn_Bruin

              Not like African elites haven’t been messing over their own countrymen…

              Guillotine time for a lot of people soon

          • Frankly, it’s too much. So many of us have friends or family living on the islands or continent so we get their stories in addition to our own home grown traumas. It’s no wonder we seek comfort in overindulgence. Even though it kills our bodies, it soothes our souls. Being Black means you live with a certain level of PTSD on the regular.

          • Minx

            De Boers has planted itself in Attawapiskat, a first nation reserve that has had two suicide crises in this past year alone – but they got diamonds, so no one cares about the community that is falling apart.

          • L8Comer

            ughh de beers…

        • Word. Heck, that would have been Barbados if it wasn’t for the random fact that America recruited labor for the Panama Canal from there. The resulting cash has kept the island afloat for generations.

      • miss t-lee

        Well…reading how they have treated and are still treating some of the First Nations folks, they aren’t exactly anywhere near a haven.

        • Asiyah

          People don’t hear that because Canadians are the friendly neighbors up North.

          • miss t-lee

            pshhh. I read too much to think that.
            You’re right though, some think it’s all universal free healthcare and fairy dust.

        • Jackie Robinson played his triple AAA ball in Montreal and he spoke of the good and bad of Canada.

          • miss t-lee

            Totally forgot about him being up there for a bit.

      • Nik White

        I attended a panel in Montreal and learned how PoC (mostly from the Caribbean) have been there for years but still looked down upon as enterlopers.

    • God Shammgod

      My mom has long told me that the worst racism she ever encountered was when she was in university in Montreal.

      • Conrad Bess

        Quebec is on some next level racism ish in Canada. The issue is simple – the “pur laine” aka white folk are dying off. French is also a dying language, so Quebecers increased immigration to the province. For some reason, they thought “white” French would migrate to Canada, meanwhile, it’s the former colonized countries that have their people leaving (Haiti, Cameroon, Algeria, Laos etc.) and making QC their home.

        • Gibbous

          Well Quebec is almost not French. Quebecois is a whole different animal all together!

          • Conrad Bess

            Agreed.

        • La Katiolaise

          Looonnnggg time lurker, first time commenter. I apologize in advance for any mistake lol. French is my 1st language.
          Spent my teenage years in France and came to Montreal for college so I’ve seen and lived racism in both France and Quebec. In France it was the “blunt-in your face” type of racism. I did not fit into their narrative of the poor African girl who had to learn french and knew nothing about the western world (Ya bon banania for those who understand) -_- teachers and students alike were going non-stop with ignorant questions and unfunny jokes. In Montreal, I kinda had the same issue: I am not Haitian (cuz yeah all francophone Black folks in Quebec come from Haiti…) and I have the french accent. They can not put me in a box and it is really unnerving to them. They would be all smiles and oohs and aahs when in fact they are a frustrated and have a huge complex of inferiority.

          • NonyaB

            Welcome! Have some jollof and lemonade avec cognac and stay awhile. :)

            • La Katiolaise

              Thank you girl! Love me some jollof rice :D we call it “riz gras”

        • NonyaB

          Never mind the fact that France peeps alternate between mocking and being mystified by Quebecois accent. Montreal’s great in summer tho’, just never live there.

          • Conrad Bess

            That city stays forever partying.
            I’ve always known about Quebec, but what sealed it was when Montreal traded PK Subban. Top 5 defender in the NHL, loved the city, was apparently loved back by the people, but management in MTL is just a microcosm of how they feel about boisterous black folk. They wanted him out.

      • NonyaB

        Crazy especially in given that that even France doesn’t fuxç with Quebec like that. Whenever QC has had rumblings of separation (whole other can o’ worms), not a peep from FR.

    • Johanne Sterling

      Haiti was the first black republic in the history of mankind and took Frances supposed values to a new level and BOTH the US and France worked to absolutely demolish the economy for it. As a black Haitian woman, knowing that my country lost it’s future because of this hurts. bad.

      • Minx

        I’ve been trying to educate myself better on the history of the Caribbean and how that informs its contemporary politics, economy, etc.

        They have done ya’ll so dirty, it blows my mind.

    • Gibbous

      I grew up on the Quebec border and knew that Canada has a horrible record with their First Nation people TO THIS DAY! I am so not surprised.

  • Sahel

    Was training a bunch of preppers a few months back,one of them used France as an example where there is so much tension that social order could break down at any second.I will not hold brief for the French because they have a crazy history in terms of slave trade.But i wilk be real,fact is blacks must start considering to move out of these countries because assimilation is a myth.We have racial issues in Europe,the middle east,the Americas and Australia.Asia is even worse.But as one of the preppers also said,blacks are the least united of the races.She then took me to youtube where videos posted by black men and women prasing other races,some even celebrating deaths of black men via police.It really made me wonder,where exactly is the disconnect.

    • Kas

      Where exactly would you have us move to?

      • Brooklyn_Bruin

        I’ve always wanted to build my fortress of negritude on Kilimanjaro

        • Cheech

          Good coffee there, I hear.

        • Kas

          I grew up in an all Black neighborhood of lower middle-income, two-parent households. Most families owned their homes. I can honestly say it was not nirvana. Not horrible, not great, just was.

    • Val

      “…blacks are the least united of the races.”

      I really get tired of people making ridiculous and unproven statements like this one about Black people. And worse, some people actually believe any negative thing that’s said about us sans any facts.

      • TheCollinB

        Tell em why you mad son!

      • NonyaB

        EXACTLY. Why are views of vocal misinformed minority in Black communitities given more credence than voices of vocal minorities of other communities?

      • Sahel

        Let me make you angrier then.I was told because African Americans depend so much on the Govt,if it did not exist.You guys would be wiped out and i was given the example of Katrina.

        • Val

          Meh, that’s just your basic uneducated White racist rhetoric.

        • Kas

          A more accurate take, is that a large portion of middle class Blacks achieved that level by “working” civil service jobs because it was one of the few areas open to us (shout out to my retired LEO pops and County Clerk mom).

      • Asiyah

        I’m so tired of repeating that this isn’t only the case with Black people. Many of us black and brown folks are far from united. To act as if one is less united than another is a gross generalization.

        • Val

          I mean, are White folks united? If they were there wouldn’t be Irish neighborhoods and Italian neighborhoods and German ones, and Polish ones, etc. But no one ever talks about that.

          • Asiyah

            Excellent point.

          • Minx

            White folks aren’t united, they’re protected. That’s really the only difference.

          • LMNOP

            And just look at White on White crime.

            • Kas

              Stahp dat

          • Cheech

            Interesting SN, I was at Ellis Island last weekend, showing and explaining the ship’s manifest records to my child. In the “race” column, it was pretty much a duplicate of the “nationality” column. Everyone was listed as being of the “German” or “Italian” or “Greek” race or what have you. It reminded me that race is a social construct used by the dominant group to class and subclass people into “us” and categories of “other.”

            In my short time I saw only European immigrants listed. I could not compare to any African or Caribbean immigrants who came through.

    • You should reconsider taking hardcore fact from “preppers” dude.

      • Sahel

        Preppers are fun.We spent hours arguing over which would make more sense during the apocalypse,a shotgun or rifles.

    • LMNOP

      Training a bunch of preppers? Hmm…

      • Sahel

        I should have used the word consulting.

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