I’m telling myself all this too because I can get caught in the same trap. And forgive me for rambling — I’ve been having a very long work week, then I have another one next week. But I just wanted to say something about this.
You know, the trap where you’re trying to explain to a white person what racism is, confront them on something racist they did that hurt you, or just trying to explain your point. It happens on Tumblr…well, this is pretty much the Tumblr experience for me and most PoC I follow.
We can get caught in this trap because we’re taught that we should have absolutely no boundaries or limits when it comes to white people.
When white people jump into a conversation, whitesplaining away or just being general invasive assholes, sometimes, you feel like you have to explain things to them and try to prove things for them. Even when they very obviously invade our boundaries. It might not even be so obvious at first, but when you look back on it, white people leap over our boundaries a lot, try to bend them, or just pretend they’re not there, even though EVERY HUMAN BEING has basic boundaries.
They cross our emotional boundaries by discounting, ignoring, or criticizing our feelings (“How could you feel that way?” “You shouldn’t be angry!” “I can’t read your posts when you sound angry.”)
Our intellectual boundaries by trying to “get into our heads” and discount or steal what we think (“How can you think that way?” “You’re wrong! WRONG WRONG WRONG WRONG WRONG!” “*insert ableist slur here*” “You just hate white people, do you?”)
Our social boundaries by telling us with whom we should associate (“Why not give white people a chance? Why not trust us?” “Why don’t you like *white person who did something racist*? They’re actually really good people!” “But that person is ALWAYS so mean! Why do you associate with them?!”)
Our time boundaries by making us waste our time trying to explain things to them when we could be doing productive things, having fun with each other, or just mindlessly reblogging food, and clothes I want to wear, and
fictional people I want to marry
And there might be others I can’t think of. There are actually a hell of a lot of kinds boundaries we have a right to establish.
But despite how many of our boundaries white people cross, we can STILL try to explain away our experiences to try to make them understand.
But here’s the thing: If they REALLY wanted to understand, then they wouldn’t have tried to cross boundaries to begin with. They would have at least made an attempt to follow them — knowing that we are individual, complex human beings with our own thoughts and emotions. They would know that there are lines they shouldn’t cross, and if they cross them, then they shouldn’t be so shocked when we respond in anger. If they cross them on accident, then they would learn not to do that shit.
The harsh truth is, most white people don’t want to learn from us. They really don’t. All they want to do is shut us up and will try to cross our boundaries without us knowing to do so. The ones who do want to learn don’t do this shit, especially repeatedly. They wouldn’t covertly abuse us. They wouldn’t try to gaslight. They wouldn’t try to turn the tables or manipulate the discussion.
But don’t think I’m saying white people are all inherently evil and they can never learn. They CAN learn. They can open their eyes, use their own critical thinking skills, and learn. There are plenty of resources for them to use, and they are not helpless against their own racism. They can unlearn if they really wanted to. With those, they usually do pretty good following our boundaries, realizing we have some. I normally don’t mind a white person asking me a question if they are respecting my boundaries doing so.
Honestly, I don’t get why people assume I think white people are hopeless and they’ll never learn — do you know how much hope a person needs to have to believe that people can unlearn shit on their own and transform themselves into genuinely better people without anybody holding their hand in the process? But anyway…
We PoC have every single right to establish our own boundaries and tell whoever crosses them to go fuck themselves. This is hard to do because we were taught we should have no boundaries. You might even feel guilty establishing them and enforcing them, but it gets easier the more you do it.
My personal resistance started when I started to establish my own boundaries. I’m not all the way there yet, but I’m getting there. If white people discounted my feelings, I try not to defend my feelings or my right to express them, and I just continue TALKING IN ALL CAPS without letting them interrupt me. If they discounted my mind or tried to steal what I thought, then I would know they really don’t care what I thought, and wasting my mind on them is useless. So, I try to end the conversation there. If they criticize me for being choosy about with whom I associate, I remind them that it’s MY life and MY friends, not theirs, and they should go and get their own. And I try not to waste my time arguing with racists so much. If they don’t get it, I walk away and move on.
It’s FUCKING HARD to do, even though we have every single right to our boundaries, especially living in a racist society.
There is this blog that is the second google link for “billy crystal blackface” and it is this woman going on how blacks should not be offended by the blackface skit at the Oscars done by Billy Crystal. Tumblr, you know what to do. BTW I can’t wait for the white opinions to show up.
Teppi is such a racist & she always always plays the “I choose to see through rose colored glasses” routine when she’s challenged. She’s going to play the victim no matter what anyone says to her.
This shit goes down and I don’t hear a PEEP from none of y’all.
But when anti-Asian sentiments come from the black community, y’all are too quick to come out of the woodworks and tell us black folks how we need…
APIA here pitching in too.
Fuck this anti-Black sentiment in our communities (and, in my experience all anti-color sentiment that comes out). It disgusts me that so many of our folks have internalized this drive to whiteness (particularly in APIA communities, I can’t speak as much to API folks experience outside the US). We are POC and spewing ignorant, genocidal bile against Black folks (and other POC) just makes you into a racist parrot.
Wu wrote about this in ‘YELLOW’ and it is something we really need to start calling out, deconstructing, and decolonizing in our communities. A resultant effect of the Model Minority stereotype is that it internalizes a separationist and oppositional frame between APIA folks and other POC- not quite like the other POC but not quite white either, but almost…. It’s bullshit and we need to realize that playing into the bigoted and racist perspectives that define the boundaries of model minority is dangerous and detrimental to ALL communities of color (of which we are, and always will be a part).
APIA folks, I’m adding her to the boycott list (and signing the petition)- I would encourage you to do the same.
I may have to head to twitter to start some shit with the disgrasian in question….
We aren’t all genocidal racist assholes :-/ I’m sorry that this much bile had to 1) exist & 2) come out of her head.
Would’ve jumped on this sooner, but phone access is all I have and it’s super awkward.
reblogging this because there is some east asian solidarity and i want people to know that
“Are you sure this movie was created in 2010?” Said the other Stabbington brother, in disbelief. “And they think we’re the bad guys of this movie? Talk about underrepresentation.”
“Well if you or Gothel are interested in reading more about it, I found a really good tumblr discussion about this entire issue,” said the first Stabbington brother.
(*POC: Person or People of Color)
but seriously tho
even though Tangled had a cute story and amazing art
for a movie that was made in like what? 2010? 2011? It is incredibly unsettling knowing that there was not a single POC.
idk- story time
Little Bangladeshi girl I used to babysit- she’s got dark brown skin and curly black hair and she owns this blond wig you know? And when ever she feels “ugly” (which is most of the time which breaks my heart) she puts on that blond wig so she can feel pretty again. She got that wig after she watched Tangled. She was so distressed by the fact that she was nothing like Rapunzel (or anyone in that whole movie) or all the other girl focused movies where the leads are always white ( with exception to Tiana, Mulan, Pocahontas and Jasmin) with long straight hair- that she got that wig so she could console herself with the fact that she isn’t “white girl pretty” as she likes to call it.
It’s the same bullshit I grew up with and internalised. There is an 18 year age gap between the two of us and I shit you not, the perceptions of beauty and what it means to be beautiful have not changed at all. Only difference is where I used to put powder all over myself to look white, she’s got a blond wig.
I know there’s gonna be people out there who say “it’s just disney! it’s just a kids movie! you’re an adult so you have no say”
Yeah, it is fucking Disney. If you knew about the history of Disney, it’s loaded with racism. The kids movie bit also turns to shit because what- aren’t our POC babies not worthy of being called kids? Aren’t they deserving of having kids shows that have folks who look like them in it? These things matter- believe me, they do.
As for the adults comment- that is actually really fucking scary that it is adults who make this. It’s adults who have a say in what kids can watch. And the adults who made this movie made it pretty darn clear that POC weren’t good enough for kids to watch in this movie. Or that POC kids aren’t deserving of a diverse viewing experience.
man one of my biggest problems with people who are like ‘omg stop complaining it’s not like kids will notice’
kids DO notice
shit, i noticed
and my friends all noticed too.
why do you think i got told to be jasmine or pochahontas when we played around w/ that shit when i wanted to be snow white? because kids notice. they looked at snow white in all her lily-white fucking adorable-ass glory and looked at me and saw some frizzy-haired brown bitch and they’re like, ‘nope.’
kids can develop massive complexes over this shit. little white girls start acting like they’re better because they get the quote-unquote cool princesses and little poc girls feel like shit that they don’t look like the ‘good’ princesses.
so while it may not be the most important thing ever omg in terms of race relations, it does have an effect so can we please stop pretending it doesn’t ok yes thank you.
okay i’d take this a lot more seriously without that ugly-ass graphic
in here poc are mad because they have no one to identify with in a disney movie,
boohoohooo how sad now shut up. Te story is based on Rapunzel by the Grimm Brothers and just so you know it takes placed in germany during the middle age. There werent that many people of colour during that time now were there?
Now stop fucking complaining, im so sick of all the THERE ARE NO BLACK PRINCESSES I AM SO SAD BOOHOO, when there are a lot of colour princesses but you decide to ignore them because she is not “truly black”. And when you DO get a black princess you get mad because she cooks
nice one there guys
so hopefully you’ve already gotten a taste of the issues with your argument through the reblogs. Let’s take this further. As I’ve already pointed out, the original tale means kaput here. If we stick to it precisely- which the movie did not at all- Flynn’s eyes would have been punctured by thorns, blinding him. Since his eyes got to make it through okay, seems reasonable to expect that adding in even a few POC-there are none- even if they weren’t in the original tale (which also had no lanterns, no finding her lost patterns, no quest) would not have killed the movie forever. In the original tale, there were like 3 characters. 2/3 pictured above were not in it, for example. So if white characters not in the original tale were added to the movie version, what was preventing them from also adding in POC? Most of the white people in this movie were also not in the original tale but you don’t seem to be upset over their existance.
Historical accuracy? No. As others have pointed out, not only is that not true to reality (in which POC have been a part of Europe for many centuries), but Tangled is not actually based in any real time period and stays true in detail to no time period. The clothing, the architecture, the attitudes, Rapunzel, everything is not specific to any real time in Germany. The movie setting is made to look “oldish” but is basically a modern story (true love! Find your real parents! Ignore who you think is your real parent! Follow your dream) set in an old time. Which is fine, it doesn’t have to be a history piece, but that makes it not a great excuse for excluding POC. It’s not a historical film.
There have been some princesses of color- each with their own set of representation problems- but as pointed out before, POC are incredibly underrepresented in movies overall so it doesn’t matter that they started getting on the ball and making some POC princesses. The attitude of “they gave you what you wanted, now we get to go back to an all white cast and if you complain you’re being picky” is incredibly rude and speaks to your true feelings on POC: that they don’t deserve representation… you believe they should only get it if they beg for it, and then be satisfied with whatever they get, because their issues don’t really matter to you- you just want them to be quiet.
there are a lot of colour princesses but you decide to ignore them because she is not “truly black”.
this is ridiculous. So a young, black girl should feel compelled to see herself as a chinese character (there are looaads of stories about how often that happened with little girls before PATF came out) because in your opinion Mulan was “close enough” to being black?? Chinese and native american are different from being black and from being each other just like being white is different from all these identities. They are all different identities deserving of representation. Do you realize how much your comment there was propelled by the (subconsciously racist) conception that “anyone not white is basically the same”??
Again, this survey (that was from 94-98, but I don’t think anyone would argue that society has completely restructured itself since then; in other words, the statistics are still valid) notes that:
- Only two out of ten Latino and Asian children, and four out of ten African-American children say they see people of their race “very often” on TV, compared to seven out of ten white children.
- Four out of every five children of colour agreed it was important for kids to see their race portrayed.
- Four out of five children of every race believe that media can teach children “that people of their race are important” (84 per cent overall), can “make children of that race feel included” (81 per cent), and can “provide role models” (78 per cent).
Alright so I told myself I’d keep my feminist ramblings confined to my other blog but I feel to lazy to log into that one, plus this kinda pisses me off. So…
okay i’d take this a lot more seriously without that ugly-ass graphic
Not really sure what to make of this part. I’d like to think the valid points and anecdotes people are sharing would be enough to take it seriously. Whateves I guess.
Te story is based on Rapunzel by the Grimm Brothers and just so you know it takes placed in germany during the middle age. There werent that many people of colour during that time now were there?
Okay, if we’re gonna use this whole based on a previous story argument, can I point out that in no version am I aware of is Rapunzel a long lost princess and her love interest is a common citizen not of royal blood. Vice versa, it’s always a prince who comes upon a girl with a beautiful voice that causes him to fall in love. This is true in the even in the fairy tale of Persinette by Charlotte-Rose de Caumont de La Force (which the Brothers Grimm adapted the story from) or the fairy tale of Petrosinella by Giambattista Basile (the earliest known variant of the story). But something that really caught my attention when I Googled the tale of Persinette was this:
“The tale goes that there was a girl of Fey/Alf decent. She was quite lovely, with onyx coloured skin and hair the color of polished gold. She was an orphan, and it’s said she was found in a Parsley patch by an older woman as an infant.” - Eifel Wiki
Onyx colored skin?
So there’s a version of this tale (over 300 years old, BTW) out there where it sounds to me the main character is actually a POC and here in 2012 we’re having a conversation suggesting that POC characters should be more integrated into our modern versions of said tales and other people are freaking out about it?
That’s why there is no need for an Ivory Magazine, White History Month or White Entertainment Television. Look at Seventeen, Elle, Vogue, W Magazine, Fox, Vh1, MTV, NBC, CBS, Philosophy/History/Anthropology classes. They all talk showcase, discuss and study whiteness.. this all belongs to you. It’s run by the white people, of the white people and for the white people. The fact that there needs to even be ethnic classes aside from regular History courses should be a good indicator of how non-existent we are in the grand scheme of things.
Just a short 50 years ago, Black People were subjected to being second-class citizens. This was our parents time, our parents experienced this. How dare any of you tell us we’re being racist for creating our own establishment when we were denied entrance into yours? The gall is outstanding to me.
When someone says “there shouldn’t be a BET” (which by the way is still a horrible representation), what’s really being conveyed is “you all don’t deserve to be heard or seen, this is our territory, you are only relevant when we need to talk about welfare and crimes.” This is whiteness, this is white supremacy. This is what we are angry about.
When someone says Black Magazines only further separates you, I think “Not discussing kinky hair, make-up for darker tones, etc in regular magazines kinda already did that”.
And when I hear that shows with Black people as main characters is excluding, this is when I don’t take white people seriously anymore. Because if your privilege is so strong and blinding that you can’t see that you equal everything that’s not explicitly a Black, Latino or Asian institution, then me educating you is a complete waste of my time, energy and sanity.
When I was in middle school, my parents moved to a predominantly white area. I wish I could say it was a culture shock, moving from a majority POC (and very ethnically diverse) town to a predominantly white one, but I was so used to seeing white people everywhere—on television, in magazines, reading about white characters in my books—that it wasn’t a big deal to me.
It was a big deal to the white kids. I heard a lot of ignorant ass shit. I got a lot of ignorant shit said to my face. But to this day, many years later, there is one thing I will never forget. On an assembly day, a white boy in my class named Matt came running up to me, dragging another white boy with him. I don’t know white boy #2’s name, because Matt never introduced us. The first words out of Matt’s mouth were, “Hey. He’s racist!” And then, grinning, they both stared at me, expectantly.
I didn’t know what to say. I didn’t know whether it was true or not; I didn’t know white boy #2. I barely knew white boy #1! I didn’t know why he felt the need to find his friend, and then find me, just to tell me that. And the more I reflect on it, think about the delayed emotions that never set in because I was so stunned that I couldn’t speak, move, do anything but stare between the two of them; the more I think about the stupid grins on their faces, the more confused I get.
I didn’t give it thought then. I was uncomfortable, I was racially aware, but very much unaware to the complexities of racism, even though I felt the discomfort that they provided every day. I knew something was wrong, but couldn’t figure out what. So I finally latched myself onto someone else’s conversation and forgot about the incident.
Except, I never forgot.
And now, years later, in college, it’s happened again. A white friend of mine was telling me about some white friend of hers; just going on and on about how fantastic he was. And then, she looked at me, big grin on her face, and said, “He’s really racist, though.” And then, she stared at me expectantly. I then proceeded to stare at her blankly, pack up my food, and leave. That incident triggered remembrance of the eighth grade incident with Matt, and all of my emotions just hit me at once: confusion, anger, frustration, complete and utter bafflement.
Why do white people do this? White people, I open this up to you, because I want to know: why the fuck do you feel the need to do this to people of color?
Do you get a kick out of telling us POC how racist someone we don’t even know is? Stupid question. The glee in your tone and the expectant stare you give us after saying so makes it evident that you do. Why, though? It’s not to protect us; it’s not a, “Oh, stay away from him, he’s racist,” kind of thing. It’s a “Hey, you’re a person of color, so let me tell you about this stranger I know. He hates people of color. Now, react!” kind of thing. Are you really that selfish? Are you really so willing to hurt the POC in your life because you want to see how we’ll respond to something? Another stupid question, because I already know the answer: YES. Yes, you are.
White people, I don’t know if you’ve heard or not, but our emotions are not something that you can just tinker and play around with. You seem to be under the impression that POC are toys, that you can just take open us up, take us apart, and fiddle around with our insides just to see what will happen if you do X, or say Y, or act like Z. You cannot. You do not have that right.
And it still baffles me. So tell me why, white people. Why the fuck would you want to provoke a person of color in that way, and make them feel so badly? Just… I can’t even properly word my thoughts. Maybe another person of color can do it better, but this has been on my mind all day, and I’m so frustrated. I can’t even properly pinpoint what it is.
I just… when you do this shit, what the fuck is it you’re even waiting for? Are you waiting for us to burst into tears? To get angry and yell at you, so that you can tell us we’re being sensitive, or something? I just… what kind of twisted, convoluted bullshit is going through your heads in the instance where you tell a person of color that a white person that they don’t even know is a racist? As if we’d give a fuck! Just… why?
This was never meant to be a fun and enjoyable activity. It was never meant to be one of those “LOOK BEYOND OUR DIFFERENCES, WE’RE ALL THE SAME” kind of things.
Because racism isn’t a fun thing. And unfortunately, we live in a society where we are not treated as equals. AND IT FEELS AWFUL. To the commenters who are up in arms about the treatment of the one white girl crying in that situation- did you even bother to think about the number of times POC have ever cried due to the racism they experience in their day-to-day being? Or the number of times we are permitted to cry? Or that our cries would be heard? Call me a terrible person, but I have no sympathy for the white girl who was crying in the activity because she dismissed the educational value of such a session and didn’t bring a pen or paper. A session which she would later be credited for and advance her educational experience.
If anything, she was being rewarded for enduring a short period of hardship. Where’s the credit I get for the hardship I endure?
Where was the credit for being denied the right to a proper education at the age of 6 because my accent caused me to pronounce all these English words incorrectly?
Where was the credit for being rejected to play any roles as any leading character in a school play because my skin colour was “aesthetically displeasing for the role” (aka too brown)?
Do I get a credit for getting beaten up because someone thought that all brown/ “muslim looking people” are terrorists?
How many credits do I get for being fetishised by white people who thought that Desi vaginas were a gate way to a fantastical exotic world, only to find out that they weren’t and would there for cause harm to you BECAUSE YOU COULDN’T LIVE UP TO YOUR RACIAL STEREOTYPE?
Even now in the work place, do I get a magic credit for being forced to Anglicise my name so “it doesn’t scare the clients”? Or to endure my manager telling me to dress more “professional” so “customers aren’t worried about people like me”?
So, do I get any credits here?
You see, it’s gonna hurt a few white people when I say this- but you all have that privilege of stepping in and out of discussions and situations to do with racism. That girl crying away in that experiment has the luxury of stepping out in an hour or, she has the freedom of saying”I DON’T LIKE THIS I’M MAKING IT STOP”. That’s a fucking privilege. It’s something that I, and many other POC here will never ever have.
So for the next white person who complains about this clip, consider all this before you spill your privilege denial everywhere.
I find it sooo damn funny when White people use the whole “it’s historical, you darkies weren’t there” and blah blah blah reason to justify the exclusion of POC from fantasy fiction. Yet when POC have just the one fantasy book, or game about them White people want to inject themselves and find bullshit reason as to why.
Avatar the Last Airbender film had white protags even though the main characters in the series are not white and the world they live in is high fantasy mythical Asia.
“These characters are Asian”
“Nooooo they are not it says Earthbender not Japanese!!!111”
Yet a POC in something like the Hobbit is just not allowed.
“They could at least have some diverse casting if not in the main cast maybe the supporting hell even in the background”
“Shut up!111!!oneone It takes place in European magic times you darkies werent there”
“Actually there is evidence of Africans and Asian in these places-
“BLAh shut up I like my fantasy whiter than bleach on snow white”
I think the only other times I saw Black people in fantasy medieval europe other than Merlin and Dr Who was in Black Knight with Martin Lawrence (everyone thought he was just a Moor that was visiting from Normandy, France) and Morgan Freeman as a Moor in Robin Hood
Dragonball Evolution based on Chinese folklore
“This sucks man Goku is Japanese, this is based on Chinese folklore.”
“Goku is not Asian he is Saiyan1!”
“Superman is from Krypton I guess that he can be portrayed by any race too huh?”
“NOOO!!111 Superman is an all American hero!”
And of course Neil Gaiman’s Anansi Boys was to be made into a film but the producers wanted to remove the mystical elements and have the characters be White instead of Black but Gaiman told them Fuck no.
Earthsea was another book that had a POC main cast and world but was whitewashed in the film adaptation even in the Anime.
The Arkh project features POC in a high fantasy game whenever have you seen that? And with a Black lead hero character that is genderqueer? I mean there are so few Black females in video games to begin with but can anyone name me one that is the lead? All I can think of is Catwoman and Shinobu from No More Heroes 2 and you only get to play as her for a short amount of time then its back to Travis
Yet there were white people upset that there wouldn’t any white characters (there are 2 but very minor.)
White people have soooooo many fantasy books, films, tv shows, video games based on Europe with White people and even hijack POC fantasy be content with what you have and let us have ours. Bitching like spoiled children, really.
POC ain’t supposed to have nothing in this world or the fantasy worlds created.