Category Archives: General

Why Should I Care About Ferguson Missouri?

Greetings WWW,

There might be someone who asks, “What is Ferguson Missouri? ” “What is there to care about?”  Well…. 1st off Ferguson Missouri is a place in the mid western region of the US.   What took place is the reason so many major news outlets in the US are now shining a light on a problem deeply engraved in American culture.

On August 9, 2014 an 18-year-old black male named Michael “Mike” Brown and his 22-year-old friend Dorian Johnson visited Ferguson Market and Liquor shortly after noon.  The exact details around what happened inside of the store are unclear but there is an ongoing narrative and investigation.  A Ferguson police officer responded to a call made by a customer alleging there had been a robbery.  Responding to the robbery was a “white male” police officer who shot the young black male “Mike” Brown multiple times and he was “unarmed.”  There have been a total of 3 autopsies and a myriad of investigations surrounding this particular incident.   So many things took place after this incident that I would need multiple blog posts to go into detail.  ( Please see info on Mike Brown or Ferguson MO via search engine of your choice)

If you are a regular visitor to this site, you know that the atmosphere is very open.  There’s a glossary literally giving real definitions of race and even discussion surrounding the terms and why they are important.   What I’ve come to notice is that people really aren’t interested in the biological factors and definitions.   If solving our issues were as easy as teaching someone terms we would no longer have a problem.  People want to know about the everyday interactions  with family, relationships, friends, co-workers and etc.  But why should people who aren’t racially “black or African-American” care about this incident?  Why would people who are racially “black or African-American” care?   Part of the reason there’s a misunderstanding about “why” is that “mainstream media” does an absolutely poor job of covering the depth and complexities of racism.  There’s race, ethnicity, culture, colorism and an eternity of other variables.   Most of the time the only incidents that you hear about is when someone who is famous is “intentionally racist.”  The fact that there is structural and institutional racism that is the very thread of America is often ignored.   There is a systematic approach to covering what “seems” to be important rather than what we should actually be paying attention to.   I’ll bet that no one has turned on the news and heard terms like, “structural racism or institutional racism.”  Often you’re only going to hear individual occurences of “racial profiling or voter suppression and other personal prejudices.  There’s this term “minority” that everyone who is “non-white” has heard to describe themselves.  It seems to just toss all the crabs into a bucket except for the “blue” ones.

This individual occurrence, although it’s one of many very unique incidents that happen everyday, allows the world to actually take a look at structural and institutional racism.  Individual groups with specific collective interests can then decide how Court rulings will affect them.   We need that collectivism.  Because this incident has garnered international attention, it’s hard to ignore that there will be lingering conversations and opportunities to focus on the root causes of racism.  It effects everyone differently but there are effects.  For the people who check “other” as their race, it could be a very unique affect, but it’s almost guaranteed to reach you on a personal level because more than likely you could be “non-white” exclusively.

As this project grows and more collaborations are made I hope to shed a unique light so that we can see where and how the faces of particular demographics are represented.

Please take a look and listen to the narrative from a reliable source that is representative of your values.   I’m certain you’ll find that the narrative if reliable will illustrate that structural and institutional racism is far-reaching.

XOXO,

MarjorieIam

 

 

 

Diversity! What does it mean to you?

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Hello World Wide Web.  As I dream about a conversation; one that can entertain the uniqueness of the growing individual.  The one that is not defined by a race box, or cultural description.  Single and Pluralistic in form, I keep dealing with this pretty little word called “DIVERSITY”   I just ask what does it mean to you?  When you hear someone say, they teach or practice diversity.  I even saw a quote that said, “Diversity is not a choice, and inclusion is??” Really? Then why is there always a fight on the adult playground?  It’s amazing, that laws change, and then the expectation of, “go now, and everybody play nice” means that someone is actually being diverse.  When we’re young we go to school; make friends, even develop crushes.  Sometimes they don’t look just like us.  I remember my first crush.  He certainly didn’t look like me but I thought he was dreamy!  We talked in school, hung out….at school, and then went home to separate worlds that would never cross.  Did that make us diverse?  How do you get there?  We have all these divided islands and no bridges.  That’s the vision I have most times when I hear somebody talking about bringing people totally different together.  Where’s the bridge?  The relationship?  It takes more than a conversation to consider ourselves diverse.  It’s listening while the person speaks in passion of what you may not agree with and vowing not to change them.  Accepting their individuality. Interracial relationships; people who don’t fit perfectly into “the norm”  Do we have it?  Can we pass societal norms?   I’d like to know what you think.  Chime in below.  Do you have an idea or a vision to affect diversity?  The world needs you!  The safety of the adult playground depends on it!

Thanks for stopping by.  The conversation is going to start on Twitter and I would enjoy the thoughts of open minds and hearts @wecheckother.  Don’t forget to like the facebook page.

XOXOXO,

Others’Mother

A Letter from a Black Mother! Dear World…

Good Afternoon World Wide Web!  I want to share a letter.  This letter could be written by any mother with some of the same questions that this letter addresses.  It will pose some major questions and spark discussion.

Dear World,

I have a few questions.  It’s one that may or may not take very long to answer depending upon your views of the world that we share.  I’m preparing my son to become a productive member of our society and I would like to know what your reaction to the love of my life will be after I add all the love, support, lessons, and self-esteem I can to him at home.   In my home he enjoys a very rich experience of having multiple languages and cultures in his everyday interactions.  After I release him to you, your views, rejection, or opinions could reverse everything that I’ve placed my life into building up.  If I listen to the news, according to his melanin content that I adore, he will be profiled and have to walk in fear of being jailed because the statistics aren’t in his favor.  I love my baby.  There is nothing that I wouldn’t do to make sure that he can have every opportunity that the world could offer him.  I’m his mother!  My son is Hispanic and Black.  I know that the statistics actually aren’t in his favor on either side.  My letter represents so many who have a relationship with someone different from themselves.  We could even imagine that my son was Black and White (Non-Hispanic)  No matter the race, the question would be similar.

My afro isn’t exactly the pillar of beauty in the Latino community.  I watch television in Spanish and I can count on one hand the number of people who look like me or my baby on the collective of their broadcasts.  I fear for him because the love that he feels here at home could cause him to walk blindly into a place where he would not feel accepted.  That’s an issue for me.  When he looks at his father, who provides an un-bias love to him, I’m often reminded that everyone will not be so nice.

On the other hand, in the Black Community everyone with an ounce of black is accepted.  To be honest, in my community, once his or her hair follicle is opened and his or her skin is lightened, he becomes even more accepted.  I would go as far as to say, he becomes even more popular in my community because he or she is now, “light-skinned black”  I’ll admit this is something that if you aren’t apart of this group it may not be of importance to you.  It’s one that my race will continue to work on as time continues on.  So let me ask.

Does my son now forget his father because I’m a black woman?  As I prepare my son to be a “black” man, I often try and expect what you will reverse.   How do I protect my baby from the racism in the Latino community?  How do I prepare my son for the racism in America?  How do I help him properly nurture all of his identity?

A concerned “Black” Mother who Checks “Other” for her child

 

So there you have it.  Let me know what you think.  Thanks for stopping by.

Until the next,

Others’Mother

Great Read! Enjoy!

 

Good Afternoon We Check Other Community!  “Today is a GREAT day! We are all closer to perfection today than we were yesterday!”   I just want to suggest a book that may be a great read for you.  I’ve had the privilege of interacting with the author and his energy is very positive!  Take a look!  Enjoy!

 

 

book2

XOXOXO,

Others’Mother

Cheerios Commercial-Bi-Racial Family “Just Checking – YouTube”

Great Evening World Wide Web!  “Today is a GREAT day.  We are all closer to perfection today than we were yesterday!”  I came across a video that seems to be getting some mixed reviews over the web.

Just Checking – YouTube.

 

 

I was actually surprised to see that it was!  I know that racism and bigotry still exist.  It’s one of the biggest hurdles that we face in the human experience.  This just goes to show that although it has been legal for people to choose to marry outside of their race for over 30 years in most of the U.S., there is still plenty of work to be done with our overall understanding of race, culture, ethnicity and the understanding & respect of individual differences and beliefs.  As for the beautiful, innocent angel in this video I salute her and her actor parents for making a conversation invoking commercial.  Way to go Cheerios!  I think I will go and buy some for my kiddos right now!

Let me know what you think?  Controversy? or It’s about time?  Chime in.  I would love to hear from you!

XOXOXO,

Others’Mother

 

What Makes Diversity Possible?

world baby boy girl

“Great Morning World Wide Web!  Today is a beautiful day!  We are all closer to perfection than we were yesterday.”  I’m going to do something totally out of the ordinary today.  I’m going to ask after you read this content, to exercise your imagination.  It’s going to be hard because most people who are not physically limited, see the entire world with colors.  The greens that protect our vision, the blues both above us and below us that inspire us to dream and even LOVE.  There are all the beautiful hues of flowers that in the western world are currently in full bloom.  My yard now has about 10 different hues that balance me every time I look at them.  Now imagine a world where those gifts didn’t exist.  The human experience with every single person was the exact same size, same color; eyes, skin hair etc.  That the beauty in nature was uniform and without color.   Hair was always the same texture, no variety in eye, nose or mouth shapes.  You look out on the world and the colors that ignite you and even bring you happiness didn’t exist.  I don’t know about you, but I just imagined myself right out of the joy of living.  I think if the rules applied where humans were uniform it would have to apply to nature as well.  Just try it.  You’ll see.  For anyone who feels that, “well yeah…that’s the world I want”, then this blog may not be for you, and that’s okay.  There is a blog and a world for everyone.  But for those of you who are in the right place, my point is to engage your mind.  I understand that I can’t change the world or the people in it.  Besides, the diversity of thought and physicality is truly what makes the experience.   I severely enjoy these gifts of nature.  All of the colors, beauty, and differences of existence.  I don’t want to live without them, I am working for a solution to exist and love within them.  There is a RESPECT: an act of giving particular attention to what is.  Then there is working together to find out what makes peace possible?  How can understanding happen?  What makes diversity possible?  DIVERSITY: understanding that everyone is unique.  It recognizes individual differences and encompasses RESPECT.  This is a collective effort and I feel there is not a right or wrong answer.    So after you have taken a second to visualize, please share.  What do YOU think makes diversity possible?

As always, I would like to thank you for your time & attention.  Please connect with me on Twitter @MarjorieIam.  There is also a growing audience of emerging like minds @wecheckother on Twitter and Facebook.   I look forward to growing towards a solution collectively.  Please share your thoughts.

XOXOXO,

Others’Mother

 

Let’s Talk Race?

alberteinstein

Greatest Afternoon World Wide Web.  Today is a beautiful day!  We are closer to perfection than we were yesterday.  I am going to spread my wings and type today.  Most of the time, there is this thought out idea, attempting to not step on any toes, offend, and omit bias.  I check once, twice and have my friends to proofread before pressing publish.   I have this vision of education,community and arts but there are days that I am just discouraged.    When I met my husband; we fell in love and our relationship has been an adventure.  We dated 2 years with a family language barrier for the 1st year.  I learn fast, so we were up and communicating in no time.  I even hopped on a plane and left the country to meet his family with all the broken Spanish that I could take with me.   I wondered what my friends would think.  How we would integrate our very different upbringing and beliefs?  We were married and our first child was born in 2007.  I wondered, “How would she be perceived?”  Even I wondered “What was her race?”  How would I describe my beautiful baby to the world?  Her name was a challenge; my in-laws don’t speak any English.  My mother doesn’t speak Spanish.  Now I have my children with their first name that my in-laws can’t pronounce, and their 2nd name, that my mother can’t.  Problem solved!  They call them by which name they can pronounce and everyone is happy.   Learning to live within and integrate this new existence that is as delicate as a feather.  I’ve had so many challenges and triumphs.  In certain parts of the world, this isn’t an important conversation.  There are plenty of major Metropolitan cities that are as diverse as a tropical paradise.  Unfortunately, there are so many more that are beyond that horizon that have not arrived yet.  There is not true respect and understanding for racial identities in so many places.  Stereotypes, racism and bias plague the futures of our diverse little pioneers who will go out into the world with multiple perspectives on cultures and race.  Why did my life have to touch on one of the super sensitive subjects?  You know the ones you’re never truly suppose to discuss without expecting an argument; religion, politics, race.  The most sensitive ones in the pack.   These subjects are all tied to culture.  With everything considered,  I know it’s where I’m suppose to be going.    It helps that I’ve always been the person that’s really hard to tell “be quiet” to.  I enjoy speech that is  relative to issues that I am passionate about.  Right now I am the director, founder, CEO, funder, fundraiser, grant research/writer at We Check Other.com/org.   Today I am PR /Outreach.  If you are interested in connecting, to partner with and or partnership opportunities you can reach out to me at letstalkrace@live.com.  Have an idea?  Are you a individual or organization with a passion for race, culture, diversity, multi- racial, cultural, ethnic issues, conversations, arts, research. etc? Sponsor?

If you have a general inquiry, you can always send your email to wecheckother@yahoo.com.  As always thank you for tuning in.  Your support is always welcome on facebook and twitter @wecheckother.  Until the Next!

XOXOXO,

Others’Mother

 

Pride, Prejudice, and Egocentrism

 

pledge

Greatest Evening World Wide Web!  Today is a wonderful day!  We are closer to perfection than we were yesterday.  The words that are coming from my fingers have been inside my mind for some time.  I didn’t really know how to speak on the subject without seeming like I would offend anyone.  Then I realized the very existing of children that are mixed offends some people so I won’t make everyone happy.  Well…here it goes.

Pride, Prejudice and Egocentrism.  Once I learned another language and interacted with people outside of my cultural comfort zone I started to see the world that I lived in from the outside in.  I see black differently.  I think at the same time I started to see all people and culture differently. Ladies. Have you ever walked into a nail salon with Asian employees and asked the employee to maybe change your nail polish like three times? Gentlemen. Maybe you’ve gone into a business where you’ve made a similar petition.  You can tell they are upset, and they immediately convert to speak to the person beside them in their native language.  What if it was a racial slur?  What if it was a comment that if it were in English would be illegal and enforceable by law?  Have you ever gone into an Authentic Latino, African, Middle Eastern or any other restaurant or business and right in front of you, the person started to speak in their native language?  Do you assume?  Take your business elsewhere?  Now let’s switch the scenario.  A person whose nationality is from a country outside of the USA comes into a business that is owned by an US Citizen of US Nationality.  The client upsets them  and the owner or employee says in English a derogatory comment about a protected status; race, color, religion, national origin etc.  Would it be fair to say that just because this is America and the national language is English that this is now a CRIME?  Why wouldn’t it be the reverse?  I’m not saying that we need a translator in every business where someone is speaking another language, but there should be a common ground.  I’m not saying now that people can not practice their languages of their heritage in their homes either.  What does this mean?

I am raising children that check OTHER.  They are of Latino and African-American descent.  That is two ethnicities; Latino and African American, marrying themselves IN the beautiful United States of America.  This is of course multiple races.  (Latino/Spanish is NOT a RACE; it’s an ethnicity/culture)  It’s also the largest classification other than color on the Census, assuming that everyone is an American and understanding that the country is filled with immigrants from all over the world.   Here is where my question gets sticky.  Flags, language, cultural shift etc.  I am an American and I speak, read and write Spanish as a 2nd language.  I want my children to be proud of both of their heritages.  I want them to appreciate America, immigration, and understand the WHY in all of their future questions.  Opportunity is what called most immigrants to the United States.  Teaching them about racism is important.  This is a real issue in our world.  Children of multiple races and ethnicities are perfect, little ambassadors to bridge a racial conversation that is long overdue.  My children are bilingual; learned at home.  They speak and understand BOTH languages well.    Being bilingual is important.  All too often, I’ve heard people tell me, you should speak only SPANISH in your home and let “the teachers at school” teach your child English. ” They will learn fast, my children did.”  Is that the teacher’s responsibility?  In an already stressed economy where poor teachers are loosing their jobs based on performance, and plagued by variables such as language being one that are beyond their control.   I just feel that this subject can be explored more.  The refusal to learn English by some.  Is this Egocentrism.  The expectation of a translator?  The demand that laws are enforced when they are broken in English only?   How far does this go?   Realizing that as an African-American it’s NOT normal in the SOUTH for me to hang an American flag to show patriotism to my country of origin; America.  America is the only country embedded into my being.   Can I be Patriotic?  Am I Patriotic?  Is my allegiance to the Africa that I’ve never known? When I’ve asked people from outside of the country that come as immigrants, “Who is American?”  The answer provided normally is Caucasian.   Black American is “Black”, and Caucasian is American.  I almost drifted off into another blog, but I won’t press backspace because it’s necessary.  I couldn’t properly discuss this subject without at least mentioning that  “I” am not completely recognized on a consensus as an American.  What is patriotism?  Lack of Inclusion? I’ve often wondered why “Black” people who were brought as slaves more than a century ago are kept from their heritage and all flags because of broken records etc. BUT everyone else who came voluntarily can proudly say where their lineage comes from and even waive flags of other countries of origin. I’ve met people who mark “Caucasian” as their classification, yet the only LOVE that flows from their mouth is that of ITALY, IRISH, SCOTTISH, EUROPE etc.  The people from around the world who are aware of their heritage and proudly waive their flags.   Are we guilty of looking at ethnic groups and based on their physical appearance keeping them in a country of origin?  One can not LOOK Latino, because it is not a race, but we take part in racial profiling.  The culture also practices similar racism to that of America’s past and present.  If you look Asian, (which is a valid uniform ethnic group) then you are Asian, and not an American and etc….  Can one have pride without having EGOCENTRISM?     Egocentrism? Possibly.  Prejudice?  Could be.  Pride?  I’m sure it may be….  But where is the Red, White, and Blue line?

Patriotism is a cultural attachment to one’s homeland, excluding differences caused by the dependencies of the term’s meaning upon context, geography and philosophy. In a generalized sense applicable to all countries and peoples, patriotism is a devotion to one’s country.[citation needed]-WIKIPEDIA

Let me know what you think.  Shares are recommended!!!  I would love to hear from you.   As always I would like to thank you for tuning in.  Please find me on facebook and twitter @wecheckother.  Thank you!

XOXOXO,

Others’Mother

For your reading pleasure…..

Egocentrism is characterized by preoccupation with one’s own internal world. Egocentrics regard themselves and their own opinions or interests as being the most important or valid. Self-relevant information is seen to be more important in shaping one’s judgments than do thoughts about others and other-relevant information (Windschitl, Rose, Stalkfleet & Smith, 2008). Egocentric people are unable to fully understand or to cope with other people’s opinions and the fact that reality can be different from what they are ready to accept.-Wikipedia

 

The word prejudice refers to prejudgement: i.e. making a decision before becoming aware of the relevant facts of a case. In recent times, the word has come to be most often used to refer to preconceived, usually unfavorable, judgments toward people or a person because ofgendersocial classagedisabilityreligionsexualityrace/ethnicitylanguagenationality or other personal characteristics.-Wikipedia

Pride is an inwardly directed emotion that carries two common meanings. With a negative connotation, pride refers to an inflated sense of one’s personal status or accomplishments, often used synonymously with hubris. With a positive connotation,pride refers to a satisfied sense of attachment toward one’s own or another’s choices and actions, or toward a whole group of people, and is a product of praise, independent self-reflection, or a fulfilled feeling of belonging. Philosophers and social psychologists have noted that pride is a complex secondary emotion which requires the development of a sense of self and the mastery of relevant conceptual distinctions (e.g., that pride is distinct from happiness and joy) through language-based interaction with others.[1] Some social psychologists identify it as linked to a signal of high social status.[2] In contrast pride could also be defined as a disagreement with the truth. One definition of pride in the first sense comes from St. Augustine: “the love of one’s own excellence”.[3] In this sense, the opposite of pride is either humility or guilt; the latter in particular being a sense of one’s own failure in contrast to Augustine’s notion of excellence.-Wikipedia

 

Multi-ALL Must READS

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kidsbook2

 

 

Good Afternoon World Wide Web!  Today is a wonderful day.  We are closer to perfection than we were yesterday!  I am sending out some great options for every person living, loving, raising children or just simply interested in diversity.  I’ve said this to so many people in my life; my children (2) are my greatest teachers.  Their actions, and minds allow me to attempt daily to better understand our world.  I’ve included two children’s books with great material that are wonderful to share with our children.  Please enjoy!

Please find @wecheckother on Facebook and Twitter!  Thank you!

Others’Mother

 

Black, White, Other

black white other

Good Evening World Wide Web!  Today is the greatest day!  We are closer to perfection than we were yesterday!  I’m going to begin by saying, “Happy Groundhog Day!”  Punxsutanwney Phil didn’t see his shadow.  Pennsylvania’s most famous groundhog has forecast an early spring.  Ok..so for anyone unfamiliar, there is a legend in the United States that if this furry rodent, or groundhog sees his shadow in a place called Gobblers Knob in Pennsylvania, winter will last 6 more weeks.  If he doesn’t then spring will come earlier.  There’s a ceremony and all conducted by the “Inner Circle.”  Well today, cameras rolling, and no shadow.  My flowers are ready!  I come offering a great read.  The book “Black, White, Other” has gotten some good reviews.    Enjoy!