From:   jemcgloin@verizon.net
Sent time:   Monday, November 07, 2011 2:26:33 PM
To:   september17@googlegroups.com
Subject:   Re: Re: [september17discuss] Analytics and race
 

I'm not sure if its possible, but what about tracking racism, but not race. 
 
 
On 11/06/11, rob hollander<lesrrd@gmail.com> wrote:
The only reason to track "race" is because landlords, police, judges, legislators, employers, city planners, bankers and politicians discriminate on the basis of their perception of racism. Racism has no biological basis, but it is VERY real -- in the perception of racists who discriminate on whom to rent, whom to beat and arrest, whom to sentence, whom to employ, whom to redline, and whom to lend to.

If you don't track that racism then you contribute to it by looking the other way.

For example, if you look at a social movement and say, I refuse to see the color of the people participating, and I don't care whether there are people of color in it or not. Well, if it turns out that your movement consists of only white people, then you'd be propagating a kind of racism, if the movement results in benefits to the members of the movement only -- all the non-whites in your society would be left out of those benefits because you didn't bother to address the whiteness of your movement.

So tracking racial perceptions in the society at large attacks racism. But tracking self-identity of race is, to me, endorsing racism. It asks you to accede in the myth of others' perceptions. In that respect, I like Harrison's insistence that he doesn't identify as white. But it matters only to him. From a race perspective, what's important is whether the police like his whiteness, or his landlord, his employer, his judge, his banker does.

Maybe a more perspicuous question would be: "Do police treat you as: American black), Anglophonic Caribbean black), Francophonic Caribbean black), African black), American white non-trash), white trash), white overprivileged weed-smoking hippie trash), Caribbean Latino), Chicano),  Caribbean coast South American Latino), south South American Euro-Latino), Muslim), Far East Asian), Indian Subcontinent), Euro-white), Staten Island/Howard Beach blue collar NYPD white."

 

On Sun, Nov 6, 2011 at 10:23 PM, <jemcgloin@verizon.net> wrote:
 You say, "Race has no biological basis -- race is created by racists. We should track it as such, not as self-identity, or not only as self-identity."
 
But if we track it the way racists track it, aren't we racists?  We do we say it is important for people to go by their self identified gender, but not their self identified race?  I think that OWS should attack racism inside and out, but not perpetuate it by identifying everyone. 

 
 
On 11/06/11, rob hollander<lesrrd@gmail.com> wrote:
I had an opportunity to see Prof. Cordero-Guzman's full survey report. It includes a good deal of background explanation and a great deal of detail, quite unlike the infographic, which was not made by the professor.

I had a talk with the author of the report about the "race" categories. I see no reason why OWS can't innovate in its survey categories to bust up some of these notions of race. For one thing, race is tracked mostly for the consequences of discrimination, not political identification, although both are useful, and surveys typically ask the question as "do you identify yourself as__".

For example, Harrison says that he doesn't identify as white. Admirable -- but do police, prospective employers, landlords, bankers and local businesses care about his political self-identification or do they care only about whether he appears to them as white when he applies for work, an apartment, a loan, or for a spell in jail?

Self-identification is largely a personal matter; appearance is all about discrimination (or privilege in the case of white-appearance) wherever you go. A Hindu student of mine at Hunter harbored deeply anti-muslim sentiments after 18 of his friends died in 9/11 -- until he was accused of being a Muslim terrorist on the subway and attacked.

Race has no biological basis -- race is created by racists. We should track it as such, not as self-identity, or not only as self-identity.

I'd like to see a question, "People typically seem to identify you as ____."

I'm hoping there will be a lively discussion on all this, because a firmly believe that OWS is capable of creating wonderfully new, creative perspectives on surveys.

.



--
Rob Hollander
Lower East Side Residents for Responsible Development
http://savethelowereastside.blogspot.com/
622 E 11, #10
NYC, 10009
212-228-6152




--
Rob Hollander
Lower East Side Residents for Responsible Development
http://savethelowereastside.blogspot.com/
622 E 11, #10
NYC, 10009
212-228-6152

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