Tag Archives: wecheckother

Afro-Latino or African American & Latino

Good Morning World Wide Web,

The other day I was speaking to a young man. He actually reminded me of my son. He was raised by an African-American mother, and his father who was not a part of his life is Latino. He doesn’t speak Spanish or understand Latin culture much at all and it made me wonder about there being a distinction.  If you’re African-American and Latino mixture, does that just make you Afro-Latino? Are you African-American & Latino?  Comparably, I have a friend who is Latina, that would racially be considered white after she selected her ethnicity of Latina, then her race next.  Her husband is also Latino. If he selected race he could consider himself black by his skin tone and obvious mixed hair texture. Although multiracial and similar to how a child of black and white American heritage would just be considered black or African-American, the off-springs of the couple that are both Latino could be considered “black” and could pass for “black or African-American” The difference is the child of the Latino couple would more than likely speak Spanish, celebrate and understand the Heritage and be able to speak to what would make him or her Afro-Latino. What about the mixed African-American and Latino, raised by the African-American mother without having been introduced to Latin culture? Is he Afro-Latino also? It makes me wonder what truly classifies a person. Is it skin color or culture? Is it skin color & culture? Does it have to be both? What does that do for the person from a two parent household of Latino parents but doesn’t speak Spanish? Could he/she still pass somewhere else outside of their Latin heritage not having a connection to it, with the same measure that someone else could be accepted into the same culture without having a direct connection to it?

My questions just started to stack up once I noticed this. This is the main reason I started this project. As an African-American woman with children from a Latino father, I wanted them to celebrate me as well as their father. Somehow if I just throw them into the box of “Afro-Latino” there are several open-ended questions of racial classifications that would leave my children’s identity up to another person’s experience and perception.  This is also why I chose “other” so many times and then decided to start a conversation for the infinite questions there are about “other.” Who checks this race box and why? If you’d like to chime in with an answer or opinion type away.  You can also email me at info@wecheckother.com.  I always love to hear for you.

XOXO,

MarjorieIam

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

 

 

 

The North Carolina History Project

The Civil Rights Movement was an effort, among many things, to overturn segregation, commonly known as Jim Crow legislation.  Throughout the Jim Crow South (1890-1960), state laws required blacks and whites to use separate facilities, attend different schools, sit in different places in theaters and buses, and even to be buried in different areas in cemeteries—to draw only four illustrations from various cases.  As early as the 1930s, African Americans protested these laws.  In Greensboro, black ministers boycotted the War Memorial Auditorium’s opening, and young people there started a theater boycott.  Lumberton youth marched to protest a lack of educational opportunities.  Meanwhile during the twentieth century, municipality leaders, including Charlotteans, used local ordinances to create residential segregation.

The Civil Rights Movement, as it commonly known, began in the 1950s.  In 1954, the U.S. Supreme Court issued its Brown decision, and schools were ordered to desegregate.  For some time North Carolina avoided compliance, with various creative ideas such as the Pearsall Plan.  Meanwhile in the 1950s, North Carolina blacks started what would become known as sit –ins.  In 1957 seven blacks, for example, demanded service in the white section of a Durham ice cream parlor.

In 1960, a series of events occurred in North Carolina and began the Civil Rights Movement in earnest.  The Greensboro Sit-In occurred in North Carolina, and this demonstration gained national attention and set an example for others to follow throughout the Jim Crow South.  Four N.C. A & T State University students walked to the downtown Woolworth’s store in Greensboro, sat in the white section of the store’s restaurant, and demanded service.   In time, more and more students started protesting in Greensboro and protests spread to Raleigh.  In the capital city, Shaw University and St. Augustine’s College students carried out sit-ins at various stores.  At other time, college students picketed stores.  Picketers, in one instance, were arrested at Cameron Village.  Although storeowners initially resisted accommodating the blacks, they eventually complied for legal and economic purposes.

Several organizations helped organize and energize the Civil Rights Movement.  The Congress of Racial Equality (CORE) sponsored the Freedom Rides in 1961; black and white bus riders boarded Greyhounds and Trailways buses and challenged segregation on the buses and in the bus stations.  In North Carolina, the riders experienced no violent resistance.  The following year, the organization led a successful campaign against Howard Johnson’s restaurants.  During the mid-1960s and under the leadership of Floyd B. McKissick, a Durham attorney, CORE embraced black nationalism. The Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC), like CORE, evolved into a more confrontational group.  Ella Baker of Raleigh trained students to live in the rural South and to participate in task forces assigned to educate rural blacks and register them to vote.  In the mid-1960s, student enthusiasm waned for the nonviolent approach, but under the leadership of Stokely Carmichael, student interest revived as the organization promoted black nationalism and black power.  The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), a legal arm of the Civil Rights Movement, worked to ensure that the law was applied in a nondiscriminatory manner.  Reginald Hawkins was a prominent leader.  Kelly Alexander reorganized the Charlotte NAACP chapter and emerged as one of the Tar Heel State’s leading civil rights leaders during the 1950s and 1960s. Ministers led the Southern Leadership Conference (SCLC), an influential organization that consistently employed nonviolent means.  A well-known North Carolina SCLC leader was Golden Aros Franks; he led various protests in eastern North Carolina towns.

Although Kenneth R. Williams served on the Winston Salem Board of Aldermen during the late 1940s, North Carolina blacks, as a voting bloc, lost political power during the late 1890s and lacked political power, until the passage of national legislation such as the Voting Rights Act.   After blacks regained their suffrage rights, more and more blacks could run for political office and were elected to public office.  Others were appointed to public office.  Henry E. Frye, for example, was appointed to the North Carolina Supreme Court and became the first African American to serve in that capacity.

“Por UNO Pagan Todos”

Hello WWW,

So the title!?   I know that it may look foreign to some people.  You may wonder if you clicked on the wrong page.  I’ll make sure to explain it.  Have you ever walked into any setting and been the only person in the room that looks like you, or representative of your race, culture or ethnicity?  In a world that is at least leaning towards now giving lip service to the concept of diversity, singular situations are becoming more common.  I’ve been in this spot a few times.  At times its been purposeful.  Partly because of the explorer inside of me, and because I’m interested in things (music, food, locations, etc) that are outside of the limits of what stereotype and mainstream dictate.  This can happen to anyone.  There’s not a race, culture or ethnic prerequisite.  As a member of an interracial family, I have to tell you the first few years of interactions with my in-laws were BRUTAL!  I made it to a point where hatred was being born in my heart I promise.  This is not an easy place.  I’m going to paint a quick picture for those unfamiliar.

You are a black (woman/man) walking into a room with only caucasian (or other different) people.  Someone walks up to you and begins to start one of two conversations; one that involves Barack Obama or fried chicken.  Every question is asked with the expectation that you can answer for THE ENTIRE BLACK RACE and all it’s participants good and bad.  You begin to attempt to explain by gently opening the door to a world that is just as diverse as the birds in the trees with its individual sets of opportunity and obstacles.  You realize you’re talking to someone who doesn’t have an earthly concept of what you’re mentioning.  Instead they address you with a demeaning behavior and make it brutally clear that they believe you should act and react the way that media has told them you should.  They start neck popping, quite horribly, speaking slang, and talking about “black people” as if it were a meat label.  If you get upset because of “their” ignorance then you’re an angry black woman, further feeding the furry of ignorance.   Ignorance is not derogatory here, it’s truly not knowing.  This can also happen if a person had ONE bad experience with someone who represents your racial classification.  You must pay!  You are them, and you have the same ideas, and are a replica.

The title is ‘por uno pagan todos”  It is a phrase in Spanish used quite often that says, “Everyone pays for one.”  Does everyone carry the weight of an entire racial/ethnic classification on their backs?  It’s amazing that one bad interaction; the person who cut you off in traffic or was mean to you in high school, can dictate how someone receives and entire group of people.  This also happens when someone has never had an interaction and only knows what they’ve been told by people and media outlets.   There are many rhetorical theory that say in bulk that we even gather & congregate with people who see interactions through the same lens.  The only way to break down walls is to trust that one person can NEVER carry the weight of their race of their backs.  I want to encourage everyone reading this to give a new person another chance.  This time leave the rhetoric and bias at the door.  I promise you can have a different, and even life changing experience.

Until the Next,

Others’Mother /  @MarjorieIam

 

Culture + Culture or Ethnic + Ethnic= Multicultural or Multiethnic

2ndAsiaMap

 

Good Afternoon World Wide Web!  Yes that’s a map.  A really big one.  I’m a visual learner so I like to see  what someone is explaining to me.  It helps for a bit better understanding.  Today we’re going on a virtual voyage.  I’ll be your tour guide Others’Mother and I will offer some perspective for the conversation.  I picked this map because it will help to better understand some points.  Most of us can easily find possible issues between two races coming together in a relationship.  Once they have a child; the child is then bi-racial according to how they look physically.  What happens when two ethnic people have a relationship?  I’ve seen tendencies to assume that someone  who “looks” Asian is “Chinese” or someone who “looks” Latino is “Mexican” where in fact they may not be either.  Of course China, and Mexico are the largest countries in their regions, but their sizes is not what I would say is the reason for the lack of understanding.  Asia is huge and so it Latin America.  One part I’d like to offer & what I’ve seen in my journey is that people in Latin America, speak “Spanish” but feel very connected to the countries they are from.  Each country has their own way of using and saying words in Spanish, different preparations for food, and many more items that make them feel in fact very different and not a collective of “Hispanic” or “Latino” people.  You couple this with race and well, I couldn’t type it all in a few pages.  For simplicity, I won’t go into racial differences; I will just keep it uniform and leave that for the comments.  I just want to stick with ethnic and cultural difference.  In Asia, unlike Latin America, the languages are different even in neighboring countries, along with their food etc.  So let’s just say that someone’s mother is from Columbia, and their father is from Mexico.  They grow in a household with two parents who listen to two different types of music, prepare food differently, and so much more.  It’s the same in Asia, the middle east, Africa etc.  You can have people who have similar features on the outside, born in the same region, yet their countries are different in many ways.   A person could be Cambodian and Laotian or Japanese and Korean.  They grow up with multiple cultures, languages, & cuisine in one home yet seem to someone with just a gauge for race as just that; one race.  In fact they may have a rich heritage of multiple ethnicity or culture to share.  My rule of thumb; I ask.  Even when the carnal part of me wants to think a certain way, I force my self to ask even if I feel sure to gain clarity.  You never know; you may learn something new!  Maps ROCK!

As always, Thank you for visiting We Check Other!  I love to spark great conversation.  The comments are open to great minds to finish the conversation below!

XOXOXO,

Others’Mother

 

*Bonus (Map of Latin America)

latin_america