Race, A Few Different Angles


I Got No Race

Among Nepalis, I am Indian. Among Indians, I am Nepali. I am not Chinese. I am not Arab, although some people think otherwise. The day 9/11 happened, I was in this small town in Kentucky. The locals called the cops on me! I am not black, not white, not Hispanic. So for me to say race is the number one issue in my personal life is more like saying race is a rather huge social reality, and I notice it.

But then white is no country, white is no culture, white is no religion. White is no language. White is an artificial construct. That is where blac comes in.

Desis who hit the glass walls and ceilings on Wall Street want to get into activism on the police brutality issue in Queens. Identity never goes away.

Pan American Desi Caucus: Brown Is Beautiful
Your Many Identities

Even so it is not a blac, white issue. There are progressive whites, and there are internalized racism blac folks. And there are people in the so called progressive camp who are anti Bush alright, but they do want to be making their racist comments. Shun them. They do need that space to nurse their sick hearts.

Race As Work

For a political worker, it is just another issue. The rich details can feel fascinating. It does not take much to realize the goal is to expand the social space. As in, it is not one group versus another really, or how do you explain the self hate! It is more like both groups struggle with the same group identity. Race can feel like Physics 201 to many people, all that homework they are reluctant to do.

The Race Jujutsu

Some blac folks waste time thinking world history and national politics when they encounter a racist comment. It might be more effective to localize the hurt, see it is coming from one isolated person, and realize every person is at the receiving end of one or more ism, and to give back just as good.

Big World, Small World

Video blogging can make feel like feeding the search engines cuts through the fog. It can be put in the same category as shaking hands. The internet is a powerful medium for its democratizing element.

One example. Girija Koirala became Prime Minister of Nepal after the April Revolution. Google his name. The first two results are my blog.

I think there is a lesson right there for all the component ethnic groups in the blac community. The internet has to be the backbone of the organizing effort. All the internal fermentations have to be kept transparent. That is empowering. Let the other side know all that we are thinking, discussing, going through. It is good marketing. Collaboration also becomes easier, it becomes easier to build coalitions.

Video Blogging For 2006, 2008

"I am working to launch an online talk show, pay per view." That has been my standard reply when I work the political events in town. I prefer to reach my target audiences online because there are no geographical boundaries. I have to feel global. Otherwise there is a feeling of disconnect.

Also that way my message is broader, and it is about Democratic victory as well as blac empowerment.

Plus, I smell money!

The Personal, The Political

The FBI's attacks on Martin Luther King's marriage is the more famous example of institutional racism disrespecting the private life of someone fighting racism. Less talked about are things like the impact of racism on things like family breakdowns in general. Some of it is about self hate, some about dimmer economic prospects, some about frustrated ambitions, some about overt racial attacks.

Ethnic Complexities

When you look at the ethnic grievances in a country like Nepal, race in America can feel like a piece of cake sometimes. But that is hardly an excuse to put up with racism.

Personal Responsibility

Race is a larger, social reality, it is a macro issue, and hence a collective challenge. But it still can be tackled through a stronger exercise of personal responsibility. Infighting among the ethnic "warlords" can complicate things a little starting out, but they usually come around to it.

Cultural Diversity

Racism is the ugly cousin of cultural diversity. Diversity is beautiful. Listen to world music. Look at all those festivals, different kinds of food, the clothes people wear, the languages they speak, their religions.

The progressive challenge is to expand the public space so as to suggest there really is room for everybody.

On The Web

Race Relations - Exploring Group Relations and the Dynamics of Race
Online NewsHour -- Race Relations Reports
Perspectives on Race Relations -- US Dept. of State
Institute of Race Relations news network
SpeakOut.com - Race
Race Relations (Amendment) Act 2000
SAGE Race Relations Abstracts
The RACE RELATIONS PAGE
Race During the Great Depression
Race Relations Day - 21 March 2005
How the Blues Affected Race Relations in the United States
Amazon.com Books: Sociology / Race Relations : General, America ...
Fisk University Race Relations Institute
Open Directory - Society: Issues: Race-Ethnic-Religious Relations
Race Relations
Welcome to the Commission for Racial Equality
Race relations - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Committee on Campus Race Relations
Cultures & Community, Issues and Causes, Race Relations,
US Commission on Civil Rights - Publications
South African Institute of Race Relations
Race Relations: 14 to 18 years
Issues and Causes > Race and Racism in the Yahoo! Directory
On Race Relations
The Race Relations Act 1976 (Amendment) Regulations 2003
Center for Race Relations
Race Relations - For Faith & Family
Eberron Under the Glass -- Race Relations and Prejudice
The Sociology of Race and Ethnicity
SSRN-Race Relations and Modern Church-State Relations by Thomas Berg
Matters of Race: Bridging the Divide In Greater Cincinnati
Lesson Plan no. 39 | Wartime and Race Relations | AskAsia.org
Ahmed Iqbal Ullah Education Trust
Race Relations Progress Report
The Princeton Prize in Race Relations - Home
The Race Relations Act
Townhall.com :: Columns :: "Crash," the movie vs. race relations ...
IRR: HomeBeats: Struggles for Racial Justice CDROM
Canadian Race Relations Foundation
Civil Rights and Race Relations
Home Office | Race relations
FrontPage magazine.com :: Race Relations at Bucknell by Kyle McNeel
Race Relations

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