Friday, September 26, 2014

Thoughts on Ferguson


I know the whole Ferguson incident has been out of the media for awhile, but I wanted to get this off my chest.

In discussions and arguments I've read online about the Michael Brown shooting and Ferguson protests, common responses from mostly white people are along the lines of "what about black on black crime" or how no one makes a big deal about black on white crime.

For one thing, the blacks HAVE expressed concerns over issues like violence that goes on within the community.  There have been marches, meetings, etc., they just weren't nationally televised. 

Second point - when it comes to black on black crime, more often than not there's no question of guilt and the guilty party is rightfully put away.  On top of that:
On average, blacks receive almost 10% longer sentences than comparable whites arrested for the same crimes
And while we're at it:

From the Huffington Post
  • Drugs. According to the National Survey on Drug Use and Health, among youths aged 12 to 17, the rate of current illicit drug use was 11.1 % among whites, and 9.3% among African Americans. [5] In a previous year, the same survey found that white youth aged 12 to17 are more than a third more likely to have sold drugs than African American youth. [6] The Monitoring the Future Survey of high school seniors shows that white students annually use cocaine at 4.6 times the rate of African Americans students, use crack cocaine at 1.5 times the rate of African Americans students, and use heroin at the same rate of African Americans students, and that white youth report annual use of marijuana at a rate 46% higher than African American youth. [7] However African American youth are arrested for drug offenses at about twice the rate (African American 314 per 100,000, white 175 per 100,000) times that of whites, [8] and African American youth represent nearly half (48%) of all the youth incarcerated for a drug offense in the juvenile justice system. [9]
  • Weapons. According to the Center on Disease Control's annual Youth Risk Behavior Survey, in 2001 whites and African Americans reported similar rates of carrying a weapon (whites 17.9%, African Americans 15.2%), and similar rates of carrying a gun (whites 5.5%, and African Americans, 6.5%). [10] African American youth represent 32% of all weapons arrests, and were arrested for weapons offenses at a rate twice that of whites (69 per 100,000, versus 30 per 100,000). [11]
  • Assault. According to the Center on Disease Control's annual Youth Risk Behavior Survey, African Americans report being in a physical fight at a similar rate (36.5%, versus 32.5% for whites), but were arrested for aggravated assault at a rate nearly three times that of whites (137 per 100,000, versus 48 per 100,000)
And I'll leave this here for the heck of it.

More about black on black crime.  From the Daily Beast:  The Trayvon Martin Killing and the Myth of Black-on-Black Crime.
 ....in Chicago, 16-year-old Darryl Green was found dead in the yard of an abandoned home. He was killed, relatives reported, because he refused to join a gang. Unlike most tragedies, however—which remain local news—this one caught the attention of conservative activist Ben Shapiro, an editor for Breitbart News. Using the hashtag “#justicefordarryl,” Shaprio tweeted and publicized the details of Green’s murder. But this wasn’t a call for help and assistance for Green’s family, rather, it was his response to wide outrage over Saturday’s decision in the case of George Zimmerman, where a Florida jury judged him “not guilty” of second-degree murder or manslaughter in the killing of Trayvon Martin.
Shapiro, echoing many other conservatives, is angry over the perceived politicization of the Zimmerman trial, and believes that activists have ”injected” race into the discussion, as if there’s nothing racial already within the criminal-justice system. Indeed, he echoes many conservatives when he complains that media attention had everything to do with Zimmerman’s race. If he were black, the argument goes, no one would care. And so, Shapiro found the sad story of Darryl Green, and promoted it as an example of the “black-on-black” crime that, he believes, goes ignored. Or, as he tweets, “49% of murder victims are black men. 93% of those are killed by other blacks. Media don’t care. Obama doesn’t care. #JusticeForDarryl.”
......But there’s a huge problem with attempt to shift the conversation: There’s no such thing as “black-on-black” crime. Yes, from 1976 to 2005, 94 percent of black victims were killed by black offenders, but that racial exclusivity was also true for white victims of violent crime—86 percent were killed by white offenders. Indeed, for the large majority of crimes, you’ll find that victims and offenders share a racial identity, or have some prior relationship to each other.
What Shapiro and others miss about crime, in general, is that it’s driven by opportunism and proximity; If African-Americans are more likely to be robbed, or injured, or killed by other African-Americans, it’s because they tend to live in the same neighborhoods as each other. Residential statistics bear this out (PDF); blacks are still more likely to live near each other or other minority groups than they are to whites. And of course, the reverse holds as well—whites are much more likely to live near other whites than they are to minorities and African-Americans in particular.
.....“Black-on-black crime” has been part of the American lexicon for decades, but as a specific phenomenon, it’s no more real than “white-on-white crime.” Unlike the latter, however, the idea of “black-on-black crime” taps into specific fears around black masculinity and black criminality—the same fears that, in Florida, led George Zimmerman to focus his attention on Trayvon Martin, and in New York, continue to justify Michael Bloomberg’s campaign of police harassment against young black men in New York City.
Now about black on white crime.

It turns out that "most death sentences are handed out for killing white people, even though African-Americans make up 50% of murder victims (they are only 12% of the population)".

In other words,
....if an African-American male had fired ten shots into the SUV of some white suburban kids playing their music too loud, killing one of them, I think we all know there would have been a murder conviction and almost certainly a death penalty imposed.
In case of conviction for murder, African-Americans are 38% more likely to be handed the death penalty than members of other racial groupings.
So basically, when it comes to black on white crime, the conviction of blacks is pretty much guaranteed.  Again, there's not really a questions of guilt.

Then there's this article

Lastly, one thing that bothered me was the news and media take on the protests.  They basically combined the rioters and the protesters into one group and gave the impression that the protesters were the ones violent.  That was not true; there was no differentiation between the rioters and the protesters.  To make matters worse, the police treated the protesters as if they were the violent ones.  In a continuation post, I plan on posting tweets and pictures recounting the protests and violence from the ones there.

Saturday, February 2, 2013

I'm Back...Hopefully

Ok, so whoever is out there reading this....I know that I've been MIA since August.

I was in graduate school, then some issues rose up, I was temporarily in a bad head space, and now I'm back home looking for a job that'll last me until August - when I'll go back to graduate school at another institution.

So yeah, I'm planning on posting again soon.

Saturday, August 11, 2012

A MUST READ if you're SICK of the lack of diversity in comic book movies!



Here is an EXCELLENT piece I first read on Oh No They Didn't. 

Original source here: On Marvel, Mandarin, and Marginalization by Marrisa Lee - from Racebending.com:
At ComicCon 2012, Marvel Studios announced that Sir Ben Kingsley will be playing a version of The Mandarin, Tony Stark’s traditional yellow peril arch-nemesis, in Iron Man 3. The announcement was a sudden about-turn from previous statements the Iron Man directors have made about the Fu Manchu-inspired villain.....

Kingsley’s casting has made some waves; he is a British actor of partial South Asian descent while the Mandarin was originally of Chinese descent in the comics. It’s complicated by the fact that the Chinese government is virtually co-financing and co-producing Iron 3 through DMG film group; China likely had a say in the depiction of The Mandarin in Iron Man 3. [A stamp of approval from the Chinese government doesn't mean much given Asian Americans who live in the United States as a minority group are arguably more strongly affected by sinophobia and stereotypes than the people of China or the Chinese government. (eg. Han Chinese people living in China have access to unlimited representation of themselves in their domestic entertainment industries; Asian Americans do not.)]
Does the casting of Kingsley serve to perpetuate the stereotype that all Asian ethnic groups are interchangeable? Or does it simply cement Marvel Studios’ decision to shift the stereotypical bad guys of the comics from “yellow peril” to “Middle Eastern/South Asian terrorism”? (The first Iron Man film had the Ten Rings bad guy Raza, played by South Asian American actor Faran Tahir.) Rather than debating among ourselves about which Asian American or Asian actor should have the sad privilege to continue the legacy of the reviled Fu Manchu-esque Mandarin, or hand wringing about how Asian Americans don’t have much say in how to reinvent or salvage unforgivable stereotypes that have caused great harm to our communities, there are more pertinent questions we need to lob at Marvel. 
Questions like: How did we end up with The Mandarin in a Marvel Studios movie before any Asian American lead heroes?
Or even just: Why isn’t Marvel really utilizing it’s pantheon of women heroes or characters of color?

Thursday, August 9, 2012

A few thoughts on stuff I've been reading about SMP and such

Before you begin reading this, you may want to look up terms such as "Sexual Market Place", "alpha", "beta".  These terms are used to deal with the dating scene, sexual matters between males and females, and general interactions between the sexes.  A good place to start is Hooking Up Smart created by Susan Walsh.  There are a whole lot of other sites that discuss this subject but personally Walsh's site is more well-rounded.  But that's just my personal opinion.

There are a few things I've been noticing a while when visiting blogs focusing on the SMP (Sexual Market Place) as it's called in circles and blogs focusing on men's issues.  Guys who identify themselves as "beta's" express how upset they are about how eager and how quickly females have sex with "alphas" while with betas, females are less eager and less willing to have sex with them. 

My thing is this though.  Anytime a woman complains about not being noticed by by guys, other men are quick to say "Oh well, you were (or are) just focusing on the alphas/studs/etc., etc.", basically disregarding her experience.  They say that if she, I guess, expand her focus or whatever, that she'll notice more men interested in her.  To them, if you are modestly attractive, then it's almost a guarantee that there are guys attracted to you.  Simply put, chicks have it easy to them.

But wait a minute...couldn't the same be said for these betas who are upset at the lack of attention they they receive?  If they are focusing on only the really attractive girls, I'm sure that the less attractive girls or modestly attractive ones are ignored....girls who may be interested in them, if they would only pay them any attention.  It's like a guy who focuses on the "cheerleader" and pays no attention to the "band geek", "the good girl", or "nerd".

There's another way of looking at this too.

Are males and females obligated to consider EVERYONE, absolutely not.  If you're not attracted to someone, then you're not attracted to someone.  The whole issue seems to be the lack of people you find attractive being attracted to you.  Sure there are people out there who are attracted to me...OK.  But if I don't find them attractive myself, then most likely it won't go anywhere, especially considering the fact that I am VERY visually oriented when it comes to attractiveness in men (something that's apparently rare in females).  So while I think it'd be nice for people to expand their horizons when it comes to attractiveness, people have preferences.  But we should realize that when we go strictly with our preferences, we ignore those who may find us attractive who aren't attractive to us. 

Well in the end, I think both males and females struggle with being ignored when it comes to the opposite sex.  I'm sure guys will say that they have it worse, but I wouldn't be so quick to think that females have it so easy.       



In other news....I need to stop taking these big breaks in between posting lol :P

Sunday, May 6, 2012

The Trayvon Martin Tragedy and the Media's Handling of News Involving Black Victims of Crime

There has been alot of talk about the Trayvon Martin tragedy, and I have my own views, which I will get to in a moment.  But first I want to discuss the media's handling of the case.

It was around late-March I think when the nation was made aware of the incident (around second to the last week in this month). But here's the thing....

I first read about the case when reading this article.  Check out the date of the article....it was March 7, 2012.  The actual incident took place February 26th!

Now think about how long it took the mainstream media to even mention the case, much less broadcast it nationwide.  In fact, you could consider it a miracle that this case even made it that far into public consciousness.

I see it time and time again...if a victim of an attack, murder, or disappearance is not a beautiful white woman or a adorable pretty white girl, then most likely the media won't pay any attention and report on the crime nationwide.  Or drop the story all together for one missing white woman like CNN did in 2009.  Then there's good ole Nancy Grace.  All the disappearances/attacks/murders she has reported have been of white women and girls. Excerpt from the article How the Media Treat Murder:

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Using Birth Control = SLUT????

Rush Limbaugh has once again stirred up controversy with his comments about Sandra Fluke, a Georgetown law student, who - in her Congressional testimony - argued that birth control should be covered by health insurance at religious institutions.  From NY Daily News:

Conservative radio host declared Georgetown Law School's Sandra Fluke "a slut" for arguing that birth control should be covered by health insurance at religious institutions.
The shock jock mocked Sandra Fluke for arguing that her fellow students shell out $1,000 a year in out of pocket expenses. Georgetown University, a Catholic institution, does not cover  birth control as part of its health insurance plan.
Limbaugh dismissed Fluke’s assertion that women may be prescribed the pill for medical reasons and accused her of merely promoting promiscuity.

“What does that make her? It makes her a slut, right? It makes her a prostitute,” he said. “She wants to be paid to have sex. She's having so much sex she can't afford the contraception.”
Limbaugh went on to insult Fluke’s family for raising a daughter with loose attitudes.

“Can you imagine if you're her parents how proud of Sandra Fluke you would be?” he said. “Your daughter goes up to a congressional hearing conducted by the Botox-filled Nancy Pelosi and testifies she's having so much sex she can't afford her own birth control pills and she agrees that Obama should provide them, or the Pope.”

In order to accentuate his point, he played the 1970s soul song “Troglodyte (Cave Man)” by the Jimmy Castor Bunch. He shouted “get pregnant!” over the lyrics about clubbing and grabbing women.

Even the top-ranked Georgetown Law School, a Catholic institution, did not escape Limbaugh’s sexist wrath.

“Well, I guess now we know why Bill Clinton went to Georgetown and why Hillary went to Wellesley,” he said. “Well, all the sex going on at Georgetown.”
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