Thursday, August 27, 2009

racism in action

This just makes me so sad:

Keeping St. Bernard Parish White.

You may notice the news source. I've been challenged in my media intake. All mainstream media is dominated by a white middle-class perspective. So I'm trying to get my news from a broader variety of perspectives. The Root is a great news source covering all the same stories from a black perspective.

1 comment:

fendeilagh said...

Obviously the court ruled that there was racist intent in the ordinances, and the parish needs to obey the court rulings, but it is difficult to see just from the facts in the article that race is the issue.

The ordinances clearly restrict housing opportunities for low-income families, the article makes that much clear, but it continually attaches "black" or "African-American" to the "poor" and "low-income" adjectives. I don't see how the ordinances would affect a poor black family more than a poor white family. Granted it is unfair for the middle-class to be oppressing the lower-class, but what has race got to do with it?

Again, I can't know the attitudes of the actual people there, the court obviously found sufficient evidence to believe the actions were intended to be racist, and the comment mentioned in the article from another news site clearly shows a race issue, but I think race and class often get mixed up.

Maybe the people of the parish don't like having poor people around because it makes them uncomfortable with their wealth. Then they decide they don't like blacks simply because they think blacks are poor. Then an article like this reaffirms their conclusions that blacks are poor. So they continue disliking blacks.

All this not to say that it is right, but to say that I think it would be more effective to fight the root class issue. Focusing on the issue of color is convient for drawing attention, but ultimately locks blacks into a lower class in the minds of blacks and whites alike.