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This Week's 5: You Aren't Harriet Tubman. The End.

May 4, 2018

Author's Note: This Week's 5 is a weekly collection of stories designed to provide insight into how racism works and serve as an easily accessible resource for people trying to have nuanced discussions about these issues. For more explanation on how This Week's 5 works and descriptions of each of the categories, click here.

 

Overt: Rest in peace Ramon Smith and Jarron Moreland. The two 21-year-old Black men were murdered by a group of white men, who then dismembered their bodies, tied them to cinder blocks, and tried to dispose of them in a pond. Read more from News One.

 

 

Institutional: Because of the pervasiveness of things like the model minority myth, which erases the struggles of Asian American communities by casting them as naturally exceptional and more hardworking than other minorities who complain too much, the systemic issues they face often go unaddressed. The nonprofit Restoring Our Original True Selves (ROOTS) aims to change that from within prison walls by providing comprehensive Asian American studies education and empowering Asian American communities to embrace their culture. Read more from Huffington Post Asian Voices.

 

 

Critical Race Theory: When it comes to providing a platform for intersectional feminism, artists like Beyonce and Janelle Monae are at the forefront. While much of popular entertainment is seen through the white male gaze (i.e. the perspective of white men from both a directorial standpoint and the assumption that they are the audience), Beyonce and Monae make art that centers Black women in particular and women and LGBT communities of color in general. Read more from CNN.

 

 

History: That we have to dignify Kanye West's "slavery was a choice" comments with a national discussion is beyond frustrating. Watching people compare themselves to Harriet Tubman from the comfort of their couches and keyboards illustrates just how little perspective we have of not just how great she was, but how much strength and resistance all of our enslaved ancestors displayed throughout the ordeal. To put it bluntly, if you wouldn't compare yourself to Nelson Mandela, who we rightfully praise for his strength in surviving decades in a South African prison, what makes you think you have any business likening yourself to a woman that actually freed herself and then went back and freed countless others? For those who clearly don't get it, or those who do and understand that there is always more to learn, Brooke Obie has compiled an essential reading list for you. Read more from The Root.

 

 

The Fragility Breaker: Michelle Wolf's performance at this past weekend's White House Correspondent's Dinner was the live action embodiment of what The Fragility Breaker is all about. The incredibly fragile response, in large part from people who have been known to decry others as "snowflakes," made it all the more satisfying. Read more from The Root.

 

 

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