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Ayinde
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« on: September 13, 2004, 04:36:13 PM »

Colorism

Colorism is a form of black-on-black racism, based on skin-tone, exemplified in terms such as "high yellow" (sometimes written and/or pronounced as "high yaller") as well as the "brown paper bag test". There seems to be an implicit calculus behind this belief that makes the goodness of the individual inversely related to the darkness of his/her skin.

The brown paper bag test was a ritual once practiced by certain African-American sororities and fraternities who discriminated against people who were "too black". That is, these groups would not let anyone into the sorority or fraternity whose skin tone was darker than a paper bag. Spike Lee's film School Daze satirizes this practice.


The paper bag test

By BILL MAXWELL, Times Staff Writer
© St. Petersburg Times
published August 31, 2003

 
Each year, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission receives about 85,000 discrimination cases, a phenomenon to be expected in a society that touts itself as a "melting pot."

Many of these cases involve the complaints of minority groups against majority groups. We rarely expect a member of a minority group to discriminate against someone else in the same group. But that is exactly what happens among African-Americans.

More than any other minority group in the United States, blacks discriminate against one another. The discrimination, called "colorism," is based on skin tone: whether a person is dark-skinned or light-skinned or in the broad middle somewhere.

Most African-Americans refuse to discuss this self-destructive problem even in private. According to the EEOC, though, the number of such cases are steadily increasing, jumping from 413 in fiscal year 1994 to 1,382 in 2002, a figure that represents about 3 percent of all cases the agency receives yearly.

The most recent case making news in the black press involves two employees of an Applebee's restaurant in Jonesboro, Ga., near Atlanta. There, Dwight Burch, a dark-skinned waiter, who has left the restaurant, filed a lawsuit against Applebee's and his light-skinned African-American manager.

In the suit, Burch alleged that during his three-month stint, the manager repeatedly referred to him as a "black monkey" and a "tar baby." The manager also told Burch to bleach his skin, and Burch was fired after he refused to do so, the suit states.

Colorism has a long and ugly history among American blacks, dating back to slavery, when light-skinned blacks were automatically given preferential treatment by plantation owners and their henchmen.

Colorism's history is fascinating: Fair-skinned slaves automatically enjoyed plum jobs in the master's house, if they had to work at all. Many traveled throughout the nation and abroad with their masters and their families. They were exposed to the finer things, and many became educated as a result. Their darker-tone peers toiled in the fields. They were the ones who were beaten, burned and hanged, the ones permanently condemned to be the lowest of the low in U.S. society. For them, even learning - reading, 'riting, 'rithmetic - was illegal.

When slavery ended, light-skinned blacks established social organizations that barred darker ex-slaves. Elite blacks of the early 20th century were fair-skinned almost to the person. Even today, most blacks in high positions have fair skin tones, and most blacks who do menial jobs or are in prison are dark. Believe it or not, popular black magazines, such as Ebony as Essence, prefer light-skinned models in their beauty product ads.

For many years, entrance to special social events operated on the "brown paper bag" principle, which I will explain. Until quite recently, black fraternities and sororities, for example, recruited according to skin tone. Spike Lee's film School Daze satirizes the problem, and Alice Walker's novel The Color Purple makes it a biting subtext.

In his 1996 book The Future of the Race, Henry Louis Gates Jr., chairman of the Afro-American studies department at Harvard, described his encounter with the brown paper bag when he came to Yale in the late 1960s, when skin-tone bias was brazenly practiced: "Some of the brothers who came from New Orleans held a "bag party.' As a classmate explained it to me, a bag party was a New Orleans custom wherein a brown paper bag was stuck on the door.

"Anyone darker than the bag was denied entrance. That was one cultural legacy that would be put to rest in a hurry - we all made sure of that. But in a manner of speaking, it was replaced by an opposite test whereby those who were deemed "not black enough' ideologically were to be shunned. I was not sure this was an improvement."

Gates was overly optimistic. The brown paper bag test remains in black culture in various incarnations, as the Applebee's case and the EEOC's statistics confirm. We separate ourselves by skin tone almost as much as we ever did. If, say, you check out the "desired" female beauties in rap videos, you will find redbones galore.

Back to the Applebee's case. A spokesman for the chain issued this statement: "No one should have to put up with mean and humiliating comments about the color of their skin on the job. . . . It makes no difference that these comments are made by someone of your own race. Actually, that makes it even worse." Although the chain denied the allegations, it paid Burch $40,000 to settle the suit.

Now for the irony of ironies: Applebee's has added a protection, along with cultural sensitivity training, against skin-tone discrimination to its antidiscrimination policies.

In other words, the company must protect African-Americans from other African-Americans.

Discrimination from whites and other groups remains a big problem for blacks. But colorism is just as serious, if not more so. Colorism saps our strength from the inside. It weakens our power and ability to fight the outside forces that keep us marginalized in larger society.

Correction
The Tamiami Trail was misidentified as Alligator Alley in Bill Maxwell's Aug. 27 column.

http://www.sptimes.com/2003/08/31/Columns/The_paper_bag_test.shtml
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Oshun_Auset
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« Reply #1 on: September 13, 2004, 07:55:22 PM »

There was also something reffered to as the the Blue Vein Society; to join, a person had to be light enough that their veins were visible at the wrist. I also read of a church who would hang a fine toothed comb(meant for European/Whites) over the doorway by a string. If you couldn't pass it easily through your hair, you couldn't enter. Churches used the paper-bag test as well; into the early 20th century there were Black churches that painted their doors brown, and worshippers had to have skin color lighter than the door to be invited to join the congregation. The books Color Complex and Skin/Deep go into great detail about these things.

The form may have changed but the essence remains the same. Colorism is netrenched in this global capitalist apologist, white supremacist society. The only thing that will change it is organization of the masses of oppressed and exploited peoples and individual action counteracting it.

Quote
Discrimination from whites and other groups remains a big problem for blacks. But colorism is just as serious, if not more so. Colorism saps our strength from the inside. It weakens our power and ability to fight the outside forces that keep us marginalized in larger society.


Very well put.
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Ayinde
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« Reply #2 on: September 13, 2004, 09:47:03 PM »

Oshun Auset said:
Quote
"The form may have changed but the essence remains the same. Colorism is netrenched in this global capitalist apologist, white supremacist society. The only thing that will change it is organization of the masses of oppressed and exploited peoples and individual action counteracting it."
 
This really says nothing to me, and it is the same line I have seen quickly repeated on this board before you came here. Colorism is also entrenched in people of all colors and nationalities today.  
 
Think of Whites telling Blacks that "racism is rooted in this global capitalist apologist, white supremacist society. The only thing that will change it is organization of the masses of oppressed and exploited peoples and individual action counteracting it."  
 
Well coming from a white person I would just leave them to babble, as it really says 'nothing'. It is slightly different but not too far off for me to say I feel the same about all other light-skinned people 'telling' dark-skinned Blacks to organize. It is not like I have some dislike for them, or White people, but I would expect them to respect the right of the people most affected by the system to advocate the solution.  
 
Usually before this issue is properly reasoned out, there is a rush to 'solution', and calls to organize. Even the discussions on Racism, Gender discrimination and Colorism are not solutions. These discussions are supposed to lead people to an understanding of how to ensure that those who are most receptive to, and affected by, these social ills get to directly benefit from the moves to resolve it.  
 
As I have said earlier, any attempt to come together (organize) with this issue out there, means that dark-skinned Blacks are expected to support light-skinned ones to get ahead based on the same unfair privileges. Any mobilization that is not taking all of this into account is bound to repeat the same errors.  
 
There is no way White people can prove with words that they no longer hold racist assumptions. There is no way anyone can prove with words that they are above Colorism and gender discrimination. But there is a way to operate that ensures that people who receive unfair privileges in the system are not used as symbols for change, and are not the first to get recognition or material benefits from attempts to change the system.  
 
There is a lot more to discuss about Colorism before I share some of my views on how people can operate to ensure that those who are privileged in this corrupt system do not block others from progressing.
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Oshun_Auset
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« Reply #3 on: September 15, 2004, 02:51:37 PM »

Quote
This really says nothing to me, and it is the same line I have seen quickly repeated on this board before you came here. Colorism is also entrenched in people of all colors and nationalities today.  
 
Think of Whites telling Blacks that "racism is rooted in this global capitalist apologist, white supremacist society. The only thing that will change it is organization of the masses of oppressed and exploited peoples and individual action counteracting it."  
 
Well coming from a white person I would just leave them to babble, as it really says 'nothing'. It is slightly different but not too far off for me to say I feel the same about all other light-skinned people 'telling' dark-skinned Blacks to organize. It is not like I have some dislike for them, or White people, but I would expect them to respect the right of the people most affected by the system to advocate the solution.  
 
Usually before this issue is properly reasoned out, there is a rush to 'solution', and calls to organize. Even the discussions on Racism, Gender discrimination and Colorism are not solutions. These discussions are supposed to lead people to an understanding of how to ensure that those who are most receptive to, and affected by, these social ills get to directly benefit from the moves to resolve it.  
 
As I have said earlier, any attempt to come together (organize) with this issue out there, means that dark-skinned Blacks are expected to support light-skinned ones to get ahead based on the same unfair privileges. Any mobilization that is not taking all of this into account is bound to repeat the same errors.  
 
There is no way White people can prove with words that they no longer hold racist assumptions. There is no way anyone can prove with words that they are above Colorism and gender discrimination. But there is a way to operate that ensures that people who receive unfair privileges in the system are not used as symbols for change, and are not the first to get recognition or material benefits from attempts to change the system.  
 
There is a lot more to discuss about Colorism before I share some of my views on how people can operate to ensure that those who are privileged in this corrupt system do not block others from progressing.


The comment was directly taken from The AAPRP(All African People's Revolutionary Party) ideological training guidelines, not my personal beliefs...Hence it was coming from the ideology of Kwame Nkrumah, Sekou Ture, Marcus Garvey, and the masses of African people on the continent and in the diaspora  and their struggle, as well as other Pan-Africansits who developed this ideology who are not 'light skinned'.  I am repeating these words from my ideological training in this organization....not from my own personal ideas that I came up with. I am not "telling" my darker brothers and sisters anything...in fact this information was taught to me throught the struggles of the masses of my darker brothers and sisters...I just happen to be in agreement with it.  So if you have an ideological argument with it or disagree with it, you do not aggree with the personalities that came up with it as a solution at the 5th Pan-African congress, not me.  It therfeore seems that your attack on this ideological statement is unfounded because you are responding to who you wrongly percieved came up with this ideology and statement. It is Nkrumahism-Turaism. Not Oshun-Ausetism. Knowing who the authors of this statement are, has your opinion of the statement now changed? Or does the ideology formed at the 5th Pan-African Congress, largely authored by Kwame Nkrumah and Sekou Ture, as well as promoted by Kwame Ture still "mean nothing to you"? If you disagree with it in general that is one thing. But from what you have stated it seems you were criticizing it because you thought it originated from a light skinned person trying to tell other dark skined people what to do...Which is not the case. This solution originated from "the people most affected by the system". So therefore, I am respecting these people by taking on this ideology.
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Ayinde
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« Reply #4 on: September 15, 2004, 03:16:35 PM »

Oshun_Auset
Quote
The comment was directly taken from The AAPRP(All African People's Revolutionary Party) ideological training guidelines, not my personal beliefs...

Well if the statement was directly taken from others, it would have been good to put their names to it (credit them). Here the real authors were overshadowed again.  

My opinion is the same, especially in the context of exploring Colorism with mixed-race light-skinned people. Prematurely using those statements before an issue is properly aired can be viewed as an attempt to discourage proper examination of the issue.  

I am not supposed to accept what they say in the context others use it. I am also saying that whatever they explored then, we now have to take into consideration other factors like Colorism. I am sure I know the meaning of what they said, and not just the words. In that regard, I am cool expressing for myself how I feel and think on any matter.
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Oshun_Auset
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« Reply #5 on: September 15, 2004, 03:48:21 PM »

Quote
Oshun_Auset
Well if the statement was directly taken from others, it would have been good to put their names to it (credit them). Here the real authors were overshadowed again.


Not so, considering I always post information from this organization(with it noted), espouse this ideology, and have repeatedly stated I am a member. The statement was not plagerized...because I put it in my own words....It is also the ideology of others which is now mine and whoever else is in the AAPRP.  Almost all of my political ideology comes from this organization. that is why I have promoted it on this site(and any other site I visit) so much.   

Quote
My opinion is the same, especially in the context of exploring Colorism with mixed-race light-skinned people. Prematurely using those statements before an issue is properly aired can be viewed as an attempt to discourage proper examination of the issue.


It is habbit for anyone from the AAPRP to try to end a statement on a possitive note with some referrance to the organizations  ideological standpoint. It is something that has been ingrained in the members for years. It is not an attempt to discourage any discussion. But rather something we have been ideologically trained to do. In my conversations with brothers and sisters from other chapters in the states and when in Africa, I noticed we all do this. We actually often all finish each others end statements in unisen when discussing particluar subjects since we have been trained under the same ideology, with the same information.

Quote
I am not supposed to accept what they say in the context others use it. I am also saying that whatever they explored then, we now have to take into consideration other factors like Colorism. I am sure I know the meaning of what they said, and not just the words. In that regard, I am cool expressing for myself how I feel and think on any matter.


Since I know the meaning of what they said and not just the words also. I will also continue to express what I feel and think. Colorism was explored at the 5th Pan-African conference and by the people mentioned at great length...as it should have been and should continue to be. Hopefully, this continued exploration will take place on this thread. .
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Ayinde
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« Reply #6 on: September 15, 2004, 06:22:20 PM »

Previously, I responded to this:  
 
Oshun_Auset
Quote
The comment was directly taken from The AAPRP(All African People's Revolutionary Party) ideological training guidelines, not my personal beliefs...

I do know the meaning of the words I highlighted.  
 
People are always free to promote what they understand, and should express themselves, even if others disagree.

I personally believe that many White and light-skinned ones do not get Black issues for several factors (I will develop this later on). They are often too eager to show that because they can use the words that they are supposed to be different.  
 
We had a recent example of this on the other board, of a White one, who was well armed with all the words and images of Haile Selassie, but obviously he had been interpreting these things quite differently from 'informed Blacks'. He was quick to produce Selassie's quotes, and at the end of the day he was still ignorant about their appropriate use.  
 
This kind of thing is quite common in Black Movements, as words are the easiest thing to get. Many Whites/Light-skinned ones are much more comfortable with words. Recently, I saw on the TV this 3 to 4 year old white child repeating word-for-word one of Martin Luther King's speeches. I am sure she has more of the words than many Blacks. But being armed with those words does not mean she understands anything.  
 
The proof that many light-skinned and White ones do not get it, is very obvious in their efforts to show they are the exception to the general White and light-skinned conduct. If they really got it, they would know that they couldn't prove that they are different with words. It is the same way that no number of words can prove that I am above gender biases. I may genuinely believe I am different, but words cannot prove it.  
 
If someone says that dark-skinned Blacks do not care about Africa, then that is a generalization that also applies to I. I do not feel any desire to argue about that. I do not feel a need to show that I am an exception.  
 
Anyhow, I will share more on this Colorism thing.  
 
Light-skinned Blacks come to these Black movements with a double 'advantage'. They feel they are more deserving than Whites because they can claim to be Black, while at the same time they benefit from the unaddressed Colorism to get added leverage over dark-skinned Blacks.  

They usually want everything tailored to appease them, and quite often they get their way. They are usually chosen to lead in many quarters, because even the Blacks who pick them are aware that the media plays the color game, and they may never get the exposure to express themselves.  
 
In that regard, light-skinned Blacks are usually the most defensive and aggressive when challenged. Armed with revolutionary words, and a color 'advantage', they are quick to point out the White problem, and play down their own role in the White system. But for some of us it is not difficult to accept personal responsibility for our poor evaluations and choices, while at the same time showing all the layers of the oppression.  
 
This is not a discussion for this one thread. But it is a discussion that should always go along with discussions on White supremacy and White Privileges.

White Supremacy may be the bigger cause, but Colorism robs Blacks of advancing meaning to words. It robs dark-skinned Blacks of the exposure they rightly deserve. It keeps dark-skinned Blacks unwilling to learn to clearly articulate their own feelings. Many give up because they feel the light-skinned ones will always get the breaks. Ultimately it denies self-determination to the worst victims- the dark-skinned kinky-hair Blacks.
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Oshun_Auset
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« Reply #7 on: September 15, 2004, 09:11:53 PM »

Quote
The proof that many light-skinned and White ones do not get it, is very obvious in their efforts to show they are the exception to the general White and light-skinned conduct. If they really got it, they would know that they couldn't prove that they are different with words. It is the same way that no number of words can prove that I am above gender biases. I may genuinely believe I am different, but words cannot prove it.


Unfortunately words are all that can be used over the internet. Actions speak louder, but only can be seen when dealing with people in "the real world" not cyberspace.  
 
Quote
If someone says that dark-skinned Blacks do not care about Africa, then that is a generalization that also applies to I. I do not feel any desire to argue about that. I do not feel a need to show that I am an exception.
 

I personally would feel compelled to argue against it, even though I am not dark skinned, because it is simply not true. The majority of dark skinned African/Blacks are on the continent. So how could they not care about their home?
 
Quote
Anyhow, I will share more on this Colorism thing.  
 
Light-skinned Blacks come to these Black movements with a double 'advantage'. They feel they are more deserving than Whites because they can claim to be Black, while at the same time they benefit from the unaddressed Colorism to get added leverage over dark-skinned Blacks.


"More deserving" or "also oppressed"(although obviousely not to the same level) because they are also of African heritage?(not to be confused with exploitation which everyone experiences outside of an elite few)  Is this not also a factor in light skinned Blacks/Africans coming to African liberation movements?

Quote
They usually want everything tailored to appease them, and quite often they get their way. They are usually chosen to lead in many quarters, because even the Blacks who pick them are aware that the media plays the color game, and they may never get the exposure to express themselves.


Now as far as certain leaders getting picked because they are lighter...by lights and darks alike because of the medias role in the color game, that has and does happen, especially in integrationalist activist movements(NAACP, civil rights activism/Rosa Parks for example) In Pan-Africanism...I don't know any examples of this. A Light skinned person approaching this movement with that attitude would get called out immediately and laughed out of a meeting. 
 
Quote
In that regard, light-skinned Blacks are usually the most defensive and aggressive when challenged. Armed with revolutionary words, and a color 'advantage', they are quick to point out the White problem, and play down their own role in the White system. But for some of us it is not difficult to accept personal responsibility for our poor evaluations and choices, while at the same time showing all the layers of the oppression.
 
 
Quote
"Defensiveness and aggressive challenging" is what people who try to defend themsleves against unfair accusations or behavior are almost always labbelled as, reguardless of the situation. Even if what they are defending is just.


Quote
This is not a discussion for this one thread. But it is a discussion that should always go along with discussions on White supremacy and White Privileges.
 

Very true.

Quote
White Supremacy may be the bigger cause, but Colorism robs Blacks of advancing meaning to words. It robs dark-skinned Blacks of the exposure they rightly deserve. It keeps dark-skinned Blacks unwilling to learn to clearly articulate their own feelings. Many give up because they feel the light-skinned ones will always get the breaks. Ultimately it denies self-determination to the worst victims- the dark-skinned kinky-hair Blacks.

This is very true and well said, much like what was hilighted in my first post.

In your opinion(and anyone else who would like to chime in) What should dark skinned people do to combat and distroy colorism they experience?.... also, what should light skinned people do, that are aware of the advantage they have, and see it as unfair, and try in every way possible not to take advantage of the advantaged possition colorism puts them in, as well as fight(personally and systematically via organization) against every instance they possibly see of their darker brothers and sisters being put into the background...not shying away from discussions about it, and constantly taking the background possition when available so that their dark skinned brethren can be in the forfront? (even though that is impossible to always accomplish because of the nature of colorism)

I am aware that even asking the question (What should light skinned people do?) may be construed as an attempt to take the focus off of the darker masses, but I am really curious as to your personal advice on this(and anyone elses). I wish others would give their opinion and/or experiences connecting with the origional article and post any other information about this subject they deam important because it needs to be examined and discussed.
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Bantu_Kelani
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« Reply #8 on: September 16, 2004, 06:16:22 AM »

Quote
I personally would feel compelled to argue against it, even though I am not dark skinned, because it is simply not true. The majority of dark skinned African/Blacks are on the continent. So how could they not care about their home?

Facts: Millions black people in the Motherland are not educated to understand the current injustices done to our homeland incited by common enemies (white & Arab  population). The majority of the black African population which is poor, still has to deal with and endure a lot of pain, from economical and political pressures to slavery and modern day severe brainwashing. The product is black African groups in Africa castigating, discriminating and disregarding their African civilizations, but they are kissing their invaders behind. You know this.

B.K
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We should first show solidarity with each other. We are Africans. We are black. Our first priority is ourselves.
Ayinde
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« Reply #9 on: September 16, 2004, 04:49:51 PM »

Oshun_Auset,

I said this: "If someone says that dark-skinned Blacks do not care about Africa, then that is a generalization that also applies to I. I do not feel any desire to argue about that. I do not feel a need to show that I am an exception."

Your response was:
   
Oshun_Auset
Quote
I personally would feel compelled to argue against it, even though I am not dark skinned, because it is simply not true. The majority of dark skinned African/Blacks are on the continent. So how could they not care about their home?

Please present your argument against it before I respond further.
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preach
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Roots


« Reply #10 on: September 17, 2004, 05:15:29 AM »

There appears to be a sweeping generalization about light skinned blacks when this subject is addressed. Is it a sweeping generalization to assert that dark skinned blacks have serious complexes about their skin that makes them attack light skinned people out of self hate or jealousy? It is difficult for either party mentioned to recognize exceptions. Perhaps a step forward would be for both parties to admit their prejudices and shortcomings. Perhaps some ideals, problems , biases, etc., are deeply psychologically rooted or self induced. Some may argue that this is a given. True, but only in theory. I challenge anyone who personally has a problem with someone of a different complexion to openly express themselves.



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Bantu_Kelani
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« Reply #11 on: September 17, 2004, 08:19:10 AM »

The narrow-minded approach you forward is certainly shameful preach. Millions of millions African blacks have negatives attitude towards their ancestral traditions, customs and civilizations in the world! So, what's wrong with being general about it in this discussion? Should we have this discussion as a whole, or use personal uncharacteristic illustrations? Do you like using marginal illustrations for broader context discussions preach? I guess so.
Moreover, you have the audacity to tell people to confess their racial/color bigotry here. I suppose you have the guts to show your picture in public like Oshun Auset? I judge you to be mixed race light-skinned yourself. Prove me wrong can you be honest yourself?

B.K
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We should first show solidarity with each other. We are Africans. We are black. Our first priority is ourselves.
Oshun_Auset
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« Reply #12 on: September 17, 2004, 02:33:23 PM »

Quote

Facts: Millions black people in the Motherland are not educated to understand the current injustices done to our homeland incited by common enemies (white & Arab  population). The majority of the black African population which is poor, still has to deal with and endure a lot of pain, from economical and political pressures to slavery and modern day severe brainwashing. The product is black African groups in Africa castigating, discriminating and disregarding their African civilizations, but they are kissing their invaders behind. You know this.

B.K


Yes, you are correct. But that doesn't mean they don't care about their home/environment. Even the westernized continental Africans I have had contact with still care about home...Keeping abreast of current events ect. Now their "caring" is not on the level of someone who is conscious of course, but it is their home and they care. They may be going about everything the westernized(wrong) way...Many people on the continent(and the diaspora) are in survival mode because of the economic conditions...it's hard for them to put effort into other things...like organizing...when you have to worry about the basics being met... IMO a lot of the glorification of the west by continental Africans comes from the economic situation. Almost everyone I have asked...from the continent that now lives here, and on the continent itself when I visited, love their home...and if the economic situation was different...wouldn't be trying to come, or wouldn't have came to the West....Of course as far as loving culture and African spirituality...they are lacking love of these things for the same reasons we all are lacking love of these things globally. Which you covered in your post...So I wouldn't say darker ones suffer from not caring about Africa anymore than any other shade...We all have been trained to not care about mamma Africa...

In comment on the direction of the rest of this thread...

Preach...I doubt very highly any dark skinned Blacks are jealous of light skinned Blacks, on this site especially!Come on now, the people you are takling to are conscious and love themselves! I actually can't believe you just said that!...That is insinuating that you are thinking there is something to be jealous of...Which there is not. Unless of course you think light skin is "better"??? Talk and beliefs like this from light skinned Blacks is the problem! Thanks for taking this conversation about 10 steps backwards! Unfortunately, your comment is a good example of the colourism this article is referring to.  Generalizing is necessary when their is general behavior coming from a particular classification of people...If it is a group phenomenon it has to be dealt with that way. I have no argument with that. AN infact encourage it to deal with ourselves in a communal rather than individualistic way.

Ayinde,

My main beef is that you came off as rude by saying stuff like "this means nothing to me"  The entire tone of your post(that was in direct criticism of my post) was very angered and negative. (not that all of us shouldn't be angered by colourism, especially those greatest affected by it) I know you say that nobody can't prove "exceptions to the rule" with words...but that is all we have on the internet. I'm not trying to prove that anyhow, I gave up on that when I said I did on another thread...But I must state my observations...Prior to me revealing I was light I never recieved such negative assumptions about my motives or negative reactions to anything I posted...Even on threads dealing with dark/light issues. I can't help but notice that things have changed and I find that odd yet understandable to some degree. You may  have reacted with the same tone in your posts without the disclosure of my appearance...or if anyone else posted the same comments, but people that look like me are part of the colourism problem(of course)...So since I am honestly trying to discuss and battle such things...I would appreciate if my year+ posting behavior on this site would also be taken into consideration when evaluating my motives for posting something...anything actually. I don't like the tension that has developped between you and I. I think it should be discussed.
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Ayinde
Ayinde
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« Reply #13 on: September 17, 2004, 05:37:00 PM »

Your response does not invalidate the generalized view from more informed Blacks, that Blacks in general do not care about Africa. Even the term 'care' carries different meanings to different people. But I do know what another more informed dark-skinned Black means when they make such a statement, and in that regard I find it is true. Explaining the reasons Africans may not 'care' about Africa does not make the statement about them not caring untrue. I deliberately used dark-skinned Black to make the generalization specifically applicable to I, to further develop the argument that the defensiveness is not necessary especially if a generalization is true.
 
With regard to your more personal response at the end of this post, When 'some privileged ones' are challenged they often use terms like rude, angry and negative to describe the responses of ones who do not accept what they say and do. They often feel they are the best judges on these things. They usually feel that all discussions should be done in a way to promote them at the expense of the real victims. So of course from your position, I can be considered rude for not accepting your word that you are an exception to the rule.    
   
Whites and light-skinned ones really cannot set the terms and conditions for any discussion that involves issues that negatively impact on dark-skinned Blacks the most. It is either they choose to get involved in these debates or not. I don't think it is my place to placate anyone.  
 
Also, this reference to your yearlong history posting on this board makes no sense to me. I see other Whites and Light-skined ones who have been around these boards for years posting fair pro-African comments, and I am still convinced that they are operating from a position of undeserved privileges and light-skin arrogance. That doesn't make them evil, and it does not invalidate all that they post. But in my view, they still just do not get it.  
 
Oshun_Auset said: "I don't like the tension that has developed between you and I. I think it should be discussed."  
 
Some may get some weird impressions from this comment. Anyhow, you are quite entitled to interpret anything any way you feel. I am not responding to you any differently from how I would respond to any other White or light-skinned ones who choose to engage these matters.    
 
Beyond your idea of tensions between you and I, I feel that Colorism is the source of real tension between light-skinned and dark-skinned Blacks, and Colorism should be discussed. This is not personal to just you and I.
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Oshun_Auset
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« Reply #14 on: September 17, 2004, 06:02:51 PM »

I didn't see your entire post as negative....mainly the phrase I pointed out "this means nothing to me"...Please don't placate me, I don't need it. But "nothing" is a very dissmissive term for anyone to use about what anything anyone says/posts IMHO.

So do you think light skinned African/Black people suffer greater or any oppression(not meaning the exploitation everyone gets including European/Whites) in comparrison with European/Wites under this system? The reason I ask is because light skinned/whites seem to being put into the same category with no variation like their experience under the system is the same...which is interesting to me because society(this system) categorizes Africans/Blacks together although it designates different levels of oppresseive treatment to different skin tones within that grouping. Is the light skinned Black experience completely removed from the dark Black/African experience in your view?....Also, In your experience have you ever known or witnessed anyone that is an "acception to the rule" of any of the generalizatios made on this thread about dark and light African peoples?
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