Daily Archives: March 21, 2012

Humility, Resilience and Connection: What I learned from First Nations communities in Vancouver

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 I’m a featured contributor at the Dialogues Youth Vancouver blog today. Here is an excerpt from my piece:

“I was born in this skin for a reason.” – Lynda Gray, First Nations activist and author

“O mankind! We created you from a single pair of male and female, and made you into nations and tribes, that you may know each other (not that you may despise each other).”  – 49:13, The Quran

I’ve been asked to share my story. My story is not unlike many others – my voice is one of many, one in a chorus.

I want to start my story by situating myself. I’m currently writing on unceded Indigenous land in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. On this land, I am a visitor….

To continue reading, click here.

Why I (and many others) won’t shut up about race

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It’s the International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination today! (Try saying that 5 times fast)

March 21 is marked every year as the International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination to commemorate the anniversary of the 1960 Sharpeville Massacre in South Africa when police opened fire on hundreds of South Africans protesting against Apartheid’s passbook laws, killing at least 67 and wounding 186.

Racism is alive and well today. For those of you who’ve been living under a metaphorical coconut shell, please understand this. I feel like I’m going to make myself sick saying this over and over again. We are not post-race. Let’s chant this together and get this into our thick skulls. Post-race is a lie. It is a myth. It is as much a myth as money falling from the sky. When dollar coins start falling from the sky, I’ll maybe start considering that we might be post-race. But until then, I won’t shut up about this. You can count on it.

I was prepared to write a whole long spiel about how we’re not post-race blah blah blah but you know what? I’m sick of writing. I am sick of wasting my energy trying to convince people that just because their friends are black, or just because they claim to be part-Native or just because they have travelled to Africa or India or just because they took one course or workshop on racism or just because they are colorblind, that they are the best anti-racists in the world. You’re deluded if you think that and frankly, I’m not going to entertain delusion. I’m not a certified psychologist and even if I was, they get paid for that shit. I’m not getting paid for this. I am not going to waste any more energy trying to teach people, especially white people, that when I talk about racism and whiteness and white privilege, I am not talking about them as individuals. Please try to rise above your narcissism and believe that when people of color say they hate whiteness, it’s not you they hate. God forbid we have a life outside of hating individual whiteys. It’s the system we hate – remember? the system you white folks benefit from every single day of your life? Yea, that one.

So instead of a long spiel, I’ve given you a semi-spiel and a graphic below (cross-posted from here). Look at the graphic. Study the graphic. Nice graphic, nice. Now go and click on the links below the graphic. Good job! You just took one step to further edeucate yourself. And look – you did it all on your own.

Some writings of mine you might like to read:

White defenders and internalized racism

Interracial relationships for a post-race future? My ass.

Coming to terms with the whiteness in me

Negotiating my Muslim identity

Links you might be interested in reading if you gave a crap about the state of the intersectional political activism today:

Deconstructing White Privilege

No Feminist Wedding For Me, Thank You

Men, Sexism and Faux Oppression

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