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Entries in diversity (2)

Thursday
Jan262017

Another Tap, Tap, Is This Thing On Post...

Maybe this one will stick. I make no promises to the seven people who seem to be visiting here every day. Why? What are you being so persistent about?

I've noticed that a lot of people are either talking about blogging again or actually blogging again.

I looked over the last few posts of mine and it's like I've been wanting to get back to doing this, and I just haven't had the attention span. I think some of us old-timey bloggers just hit a wall when our heads got stuffed with brand identities and all that weird SM marketing based stuff. I've written about that before. I guess since I started this blog nine years ago, it'd be safe to assume I've written about most of it before. I've been blogging long enough to know, for example, that I should probably have backlinked to a few times that indicated the wide span of topics I've covered over the past nine years. Maybe it's not even attention span, maybe it's that I've lost the will to appear interesting to others. Maybe I'm at the point where I'm thinking that if someone doesn't find this sort of high school dairy writing interesting, that this is not my concern.

Let's see... back when I blogged, you wrote about interesting stuff you did. I really wanted to say "shit" there. But I just couldn't. I'm growing up, Internets. Anyway, I did some interesting stuff. I marched in the #MemphisWomensMarch last weekend. That was amazing and rejeuvenating. (If you're interested in my marching experience, you can hear about it on the HTMH podcast that I co-host with Mike Scheinberg. It's available on iTunes or you can just listen from our website at heythatsmyhummus.com)

I did notice that the march was incredibly, er, monochromatic in terms of melanin given that Memphis, like it's slightly dirtier, sluttier sister New Orleans is pretty chocolate. I imagine that most of the some 600 sister cities have their own explanations for why their cities might not have been able to brag about diverse populations at their respective marches. I assume that the diversity factor has to do with who is organizing the march and how committed they are to building inclusivity.

This is the thing about having to build inclusive environments in America: we are a nation of communities who have solid, historically based reasons not to trust each other. So, people have to go out of their way not only to include but to show that they are committed to rebuilding trust. And, oh, also acknowledge that they are aware why trust was lost. It's hard work, and the diversity of your march basically shows how up for working on that you are. I would like to brag at this point that the group of friends that I marched with...very diverse. 

I took some nice photos with my phone at the march, you can check that out on my Instagram account if you don't already follow that.

Okay, I'm done not appearing interesting now. See you later, Dear Diary.

 

Tuesday
Jan312012

"The Month": Race, Difference & Diversity

Have you heard of The Week?

It summarizes op-eds on "hot" current event topics for the past week.  Like Cliff's Notes.  Cliffs' Notes.  Whatever.

Let's do a The Month post for my blog.

Wait!!

It's going to be good!!

Don't!!

leave!!

Early in the month, I posted "How to Talk so People (or Racists) will Listen".

JM Randolph of accidental stepmom pinpointed how this situation can be awkward:



It's difficult to speak up when confronted with intolerant beliefs.  For me, it's exasperating if it's my own family or people I'm close to. Sometimes, I don't even bother because I know the person enough to know my words won't make a difference.  I wonder, though, is speaking up about these issues about changing someone's mind or is it about making a statement about who we are and what we're willing to tolerate?

In "The Help... in Mississippi or in Pakistan", we discussed K. Stockett's best selling controversial novel, The Help

Kailyn elaborated on the objections eloquently and passionately:
What pissed me off about the book was the widespread popularity of it. For me it was the feeling of, “What? The experiences of my family are only valid if they are told by a white woman?” The more and more I thought about it, it just all felt like more of the Great White Savior being played out.

When I read literature about India, Pakistan or even Muslims written by individuals outside of those cultures, I can feel like that.  Sometimes, those perspectives seem to emanate from academic ivory tower conjectures. That's not to say that only African Americans can write about African Americans, etc, but people write best when they offer their truth as they have lived it.

Still, while I agree with some of Kailyn's assessment, but Windyfairy offers the zero sum of my opinion:
Part of racism was that ethnic people were stripped of their voices. [...]Maybe what we should take from this story is that there were people willing to work together for the same goal, despite their differences. Maybe what should be important isn’t who told the story, but that it was told.

It's entirely possible that my not being African American is a factor in my tendency to agree with that.

It was also my birthday on the 9th. In addition to a MACBOOK AAAAIRRRR(!!!), I got an extraordinary "present" on my Facebook wall from Dave2 at Blogography.


I celebrated Dr. M.L.King, Jr.'s birthday here in Memphis this year, too. It was significant and beautiful experience for me.  One comment in particular on that post from RW, however, brought home a stark reminder of the realities of our times.
There’s no question but that for a lot of white Americans this is viewed as a “black” holiday that they have to just put up with not getting their mail on.

Including my family, there were six individuals who were not African American at the event I attended. I can unequivocally say that for me "black" or "African American" are rarely the first words that come to mind when I think of Dr. King.  Do people really still see him as an African American hero and not just a plain old American hero?

Megan finished out the month by graciously offering a guest post in the style of her blog  One Thousand Words (Or More).  I was honored to celebrate her talent and beauty with you.

Finally, I want to extend thanks to Nyt, and like bloggers.  As someone who can often fall on the other side of political and social issues than me (and most of the readers here), Nyt often takes the time to express opinions here. Disagreeing is more than just "okay", it is needed. We can never be less for acknowledging "the other side" and taking the time to consider opinions oppositional to our own.  Being open minded means, well... being open.

Most posts this month were inspired by race, difference and diversity.  As always, I'm impressed with the respectful nature of the dialogue here and want to thank everyone for respectfully participating in conversations that could have gone horribly awry.

Also I've started a Native Born Facebook page, where I'll be posting articles, videos and fascinating things relating to my blog.  And Star Trek.  Vampires, too.

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