Archive for June 27th, 2006

(re)defining racism: who gets to?

I’ve been neglecting this blog for the past few days, mostly because I’ve been caught up in debate over on this thread at Alas, A Blog. The part of the conversation that I got involved in began with someone comparing my saying that white gentrification can seem like an invasion to anti-immigration rhetoric, but the whole thread travels down a long and winding road about immigration and gentrification in general and winds up (yet another) debate on the correct definition of racism. I ascribe to the definition of racism as racial power and privilege plus racial prejudice, and the notion that, while all of us are prejudiced as a result of living in a racist society, only white folks have the racial power that enables them to be racist. As usual, some (actually, only two) white folks disagreed, vehemently, and many other folks, people of color and white people alike, disagreed with them in turn.

In the course of this discussion, I discovered one of the best breakdowns of this definition of racism that I’ve ever read, an Understanding Racism workshop outline from the Prison Activist Resource Center that is inspired by the Undoing Racism workshops of the People’s Institute. I highly recommend that folks read it.

Coming soon (hopefully tomorrow): what happened at the Dyke March, and a whole lot of replying to comments, old and new.