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Reply #98: of course I did -- that was pretty much my point [View All]

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fishwax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Feb-11-10 01:02 PM
Response to Reply #90
98. of course I did -- that was pretty much my point
"likely" and "probably" when talking about a person of color, because the reality is that just from their ethnicity you can't know. It's an assumption. I think the analogy works well in that it is based off of someone's ethnicity. The assumption is that someone's color means they have certainly had a certain set of experiences, which isn't necessarily true.

Of course its an assumption, but its an assumption based on the history and continuing reality of racism in the United States. And of course I used words like likely and probably because its likely and probable. :shrug:

Personally, Im not going to make sweeping claims about all African Americans or all Hispanics or all Asian Americans. I use modifiers out of respect for the diversity of opinion and experience within those communities, and also to counter the assumptions of uniformity that are often made by voices from the dominant culture. Also (and this is a related point) I use these modifiers to counter the assumptions of absolutism with which you distorted Number23s original point, such as suggesting that her assertion that minorities know more about racism necessarily means that all minorities should agree about any given issue. Finally, I generally try to avoid absolute statements in discussions like this, because Im familiar with the tendency to point to some exception and pretend that this defeats the general rule, as you have done thus far.


Racism is an ideology. Experiencing it doesn't necessarily increase one's understanding of it.

Experiencing (or even participating in) systemic racism doesnt necessarily require any knowledge or understanding of the ideology of racism. But experiencing a lifetime of systemic racism likely gives you an understanding of what racism looks like and feels like that those with a purely intellectual relationship to racism simply dont have. Their opinion on whether or not a given situation is offensive or fits that pattern of racism is therefore an *informed* opinion in a way that the opinion of the typical white person simply can never be.

To disagree with the general assumption that minorities, who have experience dealing with racism, are more capable of identifying racism than the average white person, you would either have to believe that (a) all things being equal, experience carries no weight; or (b) people of color have some deficiency such that all things are not equal. The first is ridiculousthe second, obviously, profoundly offensive.

Of course its true that someone without *experience* can develop a deep understanding of the ideology (Tim Wise, for example). But when the intellectual relationship to racism as ideology is used to dismiss the experience of someone who has lived a relationship to racism as underlying social structure well, thats a problem.

As for your analogy to communism, the ideology of communism is a different animal from its institutionalization. The issue of communism as ideology is different from communism as practiced and experienced in the Soviet Regime, which is different from communism as practiced and experienced in Cambodia, and so on. Growing up under communism in Romania gives you a knowledge of communism as practiced and experienced in Romania. Studying Marx in college cant really provide the same understanding. Of course, that doesnt make the formers opinion on politics or the free market in the United States inherently more valuable. Why would it?


What about loud and proud racists? Does being racist make one more able to discuss racism?

Why would it? :shrug:

Simply using a hammer doesn't give you any sense of what it is to be a nail.
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  -John Mayer's racist comments in Playboy ignite Twitter ... HipChick  Feb-10-10 04:23 PM   #0 
  - Wow. And he thinks black people love him, huh?  SemiCharmedQuark   Feb-10-10 04:28 PM   #1 
  - Franti is touring w/ Mayer right now.  PuraVidaDreamin   Feb-10-10 04:38 PM   #2 
  - That would be my plan too  HarveyDarkey   Feb-10-10 05:58 PM   #22 
  - Well then,  PuraVidaDreamin   Feb-10-10 06:22 PM   #38 
     - Thank you very much  HarveyDarkey   Feb-10-10 06:29 PM   #40 
  - Love Franti  omega minimo   Feb-11-10 01:37 AM   #73 
  - jeez. I wonder if the sentence, "I'm talking and I can't shut up" ran through his mind  Iris   Feb-10-10 04:39 PM   #3 
  - He sends out some great tweets  proud2BlibKansan   Feb-10-10 04:40 PM   #4 
  - His mouth is a blunderland.  Starbucks Anarchist   Feb-10-10 04:44 PM   #5 
  - I hate you  Orrex   Feb-10-10 04:58 PM   #8 
  - DUzy  omega minimo   Feb-10-10 05:51 PM   #20 
  - an amazing blunderland.  cali   Feb-10-10 05:58 PM   #23 
  - don't drink & tweet  spanone   Feb-10-10 04:47 PM   #6 
  - Sorry, I don't see it  NickB79   Feb-10-10 04:54 PM   #7 
  - I'm kind of with you  tkmorris   Feb-10-10 05:02 PM   #9 
  - I agree. He isn't racist based on this interview. nt  Captain Hilts   Feb-10-10 05:45 PM   #17 
  - Why was it necessary to identify your wife's ethinicity?? This kind of thing  Number23   Feb-10-10 05:13 PM   #12 
  - I can't speak for him...  MellowDem   Feb-10-10 06:03 PM   #27 
  - I think you're right. And on one hand, I agree that a person's ethnicity does lend them more weight  Number23   Feb-10-10 06:14 PM   #33 
     - Well, it was the wife's opinion...  MellowDem   Feb-10-10 06:32 PM   #42 
     - Well, we'll just have to disagree on this point then.  Number23   Feb-10-10 07:05 PM   #47 
     - Lots and lots of people have experienced racism...  MellowDem   Feb-10-10 10:54 PM   #59 
        - You seem to be taking this extremely personally and getting totally off track  Number23   Feb-10-10 11:33 PM   #66 
           - You seem to think you can read my mind...  MellowDem   Feb-11-10 10:49 AM   #94 
              - I'm actually to the point where I don't undersand what you're saying anymore  Number23   Feb-11-10 04:16 PM   #102 
                 - My point is simple...  MellowDem   Feb-11-10 04:45 PM   #107 
                    - ??????  Number23   Feb-11-10 04:53 PM   #108 
                       - I would think...  MellowDem   Feb-11-10 05:04 PM   #110 
                          - Nobody said anything about keeping whites out of the conversation.  Raineyb   Feb-11-10 08:57 PM   #122 
                             - A conversation with unequal footing...  MellowDem   Feb-11-10 09:29 PM   #128 
                                - That's your problem. Conversations on unequal footing happens all the time.  Raineyb   Feb-11-10 09:31 PM   #130 
                                   - And they aren't productive...  MellowDem   Feb-11-10 09:37 PM   #131 
                                      - Well you can't make them equal by dismissing people's experience. So you'll just have to deal. n/t  Raineyb   Feb-12-10 12:08 AM   #137 
     - actually, it was his  fishwax   Feb-10-10 07:21 PM   #50 
     - He said...  MellowDem   Feb-10-10 10:35 PM   #58 
        - He also prefaced his post with "My take on this:"  fishwax   Feb-10-10 11:12 PM   #64 
           - But even you use words like...  MellowDem   Feb-11-10 10:19 AM   #90 
              - of course I did -- that was pretty much my point  fishwax   Feb-11-10 01:02 PM   #98 
                 - Fantastic.  Number23   Feb-11-10 04:27 PM   #103 
                 - aw shucks, Number23  fishwax   Feb-11-10 05:42 PM   #114 
                 - This is a false choice....  MellowDem   Feb-11-10 04:29 PM   #105 
                    - lol -- actually, no it isn't a false choice  fishwax   Feb-11-10 05:32 PM   #111 
                       - Yes, it is a false choice...  MellowDem   Feb-11-10 06:22 PM   #116 
                          - no, not really  fishwax   Feb-11-10 07:56 PM   #117 
                             - Yes, really  MellowDem   Feb-11-10 08:38 PM   #118 
                                - "more" =/= "exclusively"  fishwax   Feb-11-10 09:28 PM   #127 
                                   - "Are"  MellowDem   Feb-11-10 10:24 PM   #134 
                                      - no, it's not the case that everyone has experienced the reality of race and racism  fishwax   Feb-11-10 11:44 PM   #135 
                                         - We'll just have to agree to disagree...  MellowDem   Feb-12-10 10:42 AM   #139 
     - Your "logic" is as per usual completely faulty.  Raineyb   Feb-11-10 03:15 PM   #101 
        - Not at all...  MellowDem   Feb-11-10 04:59 PM   #109 
           - bwahaha -- one reason that whites might want to participate in such a discussion is to *learn*  fishwax   Feb-11-10 05:40 PM   #112 
              - I fully agree..  MellowDem   Feb-11-10 06:03 PM   #115 
                 - How else would they enter the discussion. You cannot enter a discussion based on experience on  Raineyb   Feb-11-10 08:49 PM   #119 
                    - Everyone has experience and perspective...  MellowDem   Feb-11-10 09:07 PM   #124 
                       - It seems to be plenty fine when you think it's black people on the short end of that equality  Raineyb   Feb-11-10 09:19 PM   #125 
                          - I was talking about third party experiences...  MellowDem   Feb-11-10 09:47 PM   #132 
                             - Third party experience? Like when a newspaper puts out a blatantly  Raineyb   Feb-12-10 12:12 AM   #138 
     - I'm African American and I find his  goclark   Feb-10-10 07:01 PM   #46 
        - American music is African American music...  immoderate   Feb-10-10 11:01 PM   #61 
  - Was it a subject in the conversation?  texastoast   Feb-11-10 09:30 PM   #129 
  - I just liked the words Playboy, ignite and twitter...giggity giggity  NM_hemilover   Feb-10-10 05:39 PM   #15 
  - agreed  Whisp   Feb-10-10 06:21 PM   #36 
  - I totally agree with you.  zonkers   Feb-11-10 10:42 AM   #93 
  - People Shouldn't Try to Look Into an Artist's Mind If They Can't Stand Brutal Honesty  NashVegas   Feb-11-10 12:00 PM   #97 
  - I agree. He may be frank and tactless, but racist he isn't. n/t  TroglodyteScholar   Feb-11-10 05:42 PM   #113 
  - I must be reading it the wrong way.  DefenseLawyer   Feb-10-10 05:09 PM   #10 
  - I'm black and I never heard of him  Number23   Feb-10-10 05:12 PM   #11 
  - He's a popular singer whose biggest claim to fame the past several years has been as actress  4lbs   Feb-10-10 05:42 PM   #16 
     - No actually the gossip is that he is messing with Taylor Swift.  Shell Beau   Feb-10-10 06:18 PM   #35 
     - I think he's a very talented musician  Whisp   Feb-10-10 06:22 PM   #39 
  - Didn't read what he said as racist. Nt  xchrom   Feb-10-10 05:30 PM   #13 
  - His comments are complementary of Black people  Schema Thing   Feb-10-10 05:34 PM   #14 
  - I believe that a "racist" remark is in the ear of the listener  goclark   Feb-11-10 07:47 AM   #81 
     - Deleted message  Name removed   Feb-11-10 09:35 AM   #83 
        - I'll stick with my beliefs  goclark   Feb-11-10 09:53 AM   #86 
  - I'd be happy  Blue Owl   Feb-10-10 05:48 PM   #18 
  - I'm a white guy that lives in the hood.  asdjrocky   Feb-10-10 05:49 PM   #19 
  - I don't think he's terribly good looking and I like his music  cali   Feb-10-10 06:03 PM   #26 
     - You know Cali,  asdjrocky   Feb-10-10 06:13 PM   #31 
        - This post demands pics...  tnlefty   Feb-10-10 06:49 PM   #45 
  - "My dick is sort of like a white supremacist. I've got a Beneton heart and a fuckin David Duke cock"  Renew Deal   Feb-10-10 05:53 PM   #21 
  - I cannot stop laughing over that. I just can't.  cali   Feb-10-10 05:59 PM   #24 
  - I think his comments were fucking ignorant and stupid...but not racist.  MadBadger   Feb-10-10 06:00 PM   #25 
  - Maybe he should just go back  customerserviceguy   Feb-10-10 06:06 PM   #28 
  - He really went off the rails.  TexasObserver   Feb-10-10 06:08 PM   #29 
  - Racist? No...  MellowDem   Feb-10-10 06:11 PM   #30 
  - Wait, somebody read Playboy for an article?  gratuitous   Feb-10-10 06:13 PM   #32 
  - DUzy  JeffR   Feb-10-10 11:02 PM   #62 
  - Who? n/t  retread   Feb-10-10 06:15 PM   #34 
  - He is obviously comfortable using the n-word, and I don't get that.  Shell Beau   Feb-10-10 06:21 PM   #37 
  - Drunk and given a free pass to run off at the mouth. He's just another asshole--  blondeatlast   Feb-10-10 06:31 PM   #41 
  - well if you're curious...  cali   Feb-10-10 06:46 PM   #44 
  - This is why you don't discuss racial issues when drunk.  name not needed   Feb-10-10 06:36 PM   #43 
  - I don't think he was trying to be racist, but "ni**er pass" is racist.....  marmar   Feb-10-10 07:15 PM   #48 
  - He's As Tedious A Person As He Is A Performer  ProfessorGAC   Feb-10-10 07:18 PM   #49 
  - +1  opiate69   Feb-10-10 07:34 PM   #53 
  - Nothing is ever considered racist on DU unless a conservative says it. nt  CBR   Feb-10-10 07:22 PM   #51 
  - sometimes, oddly, not even then n/t  fishwax   Feb-10-10 07:32 PM   #52 
  - BULLSHIT!  Renew Deal   Feb-10-10 08:15 PM   #55 
     - Wrong Spot  Toasterlad   Feb-10-10 08:47 PM   #56 
  - He was talking as if it were just one drunk guy to another. Nothing harmful here.  The Wielding Truth   Feb-10-10 07:52 PM   #54 
  - I Don't Get to Decide If Other People Should Be Offended By John Mayer.  Toasterlad   Feb-10-10 08:48 PM   #57 
  - My take on Mayer  rufus dog   Feb-10-10 10:59 PM   #60 
  - not so much racist as boorish, crude and insensitive...  Blue_Tires   Feb-10-10 11:09 PM   #63 
  - +1  AndrewP   Feb-11-10 01:35 PM   #99 
  - +2 n/t  texastoast   Feb-11-10 08:52 PM   #120 
  - Here's a youtube of Mayer playing with Clapton on "Crossroads"  cbdo2007   Feb-10-10 11:27 PM   #65 
  - the dude has great talent  rufus dog   Feb-10-10 11:39 PM   #68 
  - Actually....the LIVE John Mayer is completely different from the radio/MTV  cbdo2007   Feb-10-10 11:55 PM   #70 
  - Its great to hear both of them play on that video............  CrownPrinceBandar   Feb-11-10 10:21 AM   #91 
     - Good ear - I watched another Youtube video last night of Mayer  cbdo2007   Feb-11-10 11:48 AM   #96 
  - I still love Johnny  donheld   Feb-10-10 11:39 PM   #67 
  - The shit he said creeped me out.  whatchamacallit   Feb-10-10 11:41 PM   #69 
  - I've never understood what people see in this guy. Not only  Lindsey   Feb-11-10 12:41 AM   #71 
  - I totally agree. He's a scummy guy who talks and behaves like an immature teenager.  earth mom   Feb-11-10 04:09 AM   #80 
  - Sorry, but I think that John  texastoast   Feb-11-10 08:58 PM   #123 
  - Sombich  texastoast   Feb-11-10 08:54 PM   #121 
  - I love his music, but his a total jackass.  Lilyeye   Feb-11-10 01:17 AM   #72 
  - A "David Duke cock" and a Dukes of Hazzard brain  omega minimo   Feb-11-10 01:39 AM   #74 
  - DUzy!  BlueIris   Feb-11-10 01:52 AM   #75 
     - Prolly jumps in the car without opening the door and wonders why his head hurts.  omega minimo   Feb-11-10 02:02 AM   #76 
        - he's not remotely stupid. he is someone who doesn't seem to edit himself  cali   Feb-11-10 03:35 AM   #77 
        - And then wonders why African Americans don't rush up with cold compresses to help. nt  BlueIris   Feb-11-10 03:35 AM   #78 
  - Deleted message  Name removed   Feb-11-10 03:53 AM   #79 
  - what a dumbass  guitar man   Feb-11-10 09:24 AM   #82 
  - best post of the thread. drinking scotch while being interviewed is a stupid thing  cali   Feb-11-10 09:38 AM   #85 
     - Exactly  guitar man   Feb-11-10 09:59 AM   #87 
  - Mayer should lay off the scotch  derby378   Feb-11-10 09:35 AM   #84 
  - This guy's a mediocre musician with a BRILLIANT publicist.  Romulox   Feb-11-10 10:04 AM   #88 
  - Good guitar player. Shitty singer.  tilsammans   Feb-11-10 10:18 AM   #89 
  - racist comments? probably.  bigtree   Feb-11-10 10:30 AM   #92 
  - I have no idea who that guy is, but wow is he a pig.  Tailormyst   Feb-11-10 10:53 AM   #95 
  - John Mayer on Chappelle's Show...  SidDithers   Feb-11-10 02:05 PM   #100 
  - Racial Racist  zaj   Feb-11-10 04:27 PM   #104 
  - Whatever...  misanthrope   Feb-11-10 04:41 PM   #106 
  - Racist bitch  Sultana   Feb-11-10 09:20 PM   #126 
  - He probably thought readers of a sexist mag like Playboy would have no problem with a little racism  marshall   Feb-11-10 10:04 PM   #133 
  - The guy is a douchebag, but I don't think he's really a racist.  Luciferous   Feb-11-10 11:50 PM   #136 
 

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