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How white women use strategic tears to silence women of color


‘Often, when I have attempted to speak to or confront a white woman about something she has said or done that has impacted me adversely, I am met with tearful denials and indignant accusations that I am hurting her’
 ‘Often, when I have attempted to speak to or confront a white woman about something she has said or done that has impacted me adversely, I am met with tearful denials and indignant accusations that I am hurting her’ Photograph: Caro/Alamy

The legitimate grievances of brown and black women are no match for the accusations of a white damsel in distress

 

By: Ruby Hamad: The Guardian Uk

That the voices of “women of color” are getting louder and more influential is a testament less to the accommodations made by the dominant white culture and more to their own grit in a society that implicitly – and sometimes explicitly – wants them to fail.

At the Sydney writers’ festival on Sunday, editor of Djed Press, Hella Ibrahim, relayed the final minutes of a panel on diversity featuring writers from the western Sydney Sweatshop collective. One of the panelists, Winnie Dunn, in answering a question about the harm caused by good intentions, had used the words “white people” and “shit” in the same sentence. This raised the ire of a self-identified white woman in the audience who interrogated the panelists as to “what they think they have to gain” by insulting people who “want to read their stories.”

In other words, the woman saw a personal attack where there wasn’t one and decided to remind the panellists that as a member of the white majority she ultimately has their fate in her hands.

“I walked out of that panel frustrated,” Ibrahim wrote. “Because yet again, a good convo was derailed, white people centred themselves, and a POC panel was told to police it’s [sic] tone to make their message palatable to a white audience.”

Trauma assails brown and black women from all directions. There is the initial pain of being subjected to gendered racism and discrimination, there is the additional distress of not being believed or supported, and of having your words and your bravery seemingly credited to others.

And then there is a type of trauma inflicted on women of color that many of us find among the hardest to disclose, the one that few seem willing to admit really happens because it is so thoroughly normalized most people refuse to see it.

It is what that writers’ festival audience member was demonstrating, and what blogger and author Luvvie Ajayi called the “weary weaponising of white women’s tears”.

To put it less poetically, it is the trauma caused by the tactic many white women employ to muster sympathy and avoid accountability, by turning the tables and accusing their accuser.

Almost every BW (black woman) I know has a story about a time in a professional setting in which she attempted to have a talk with a WW about her behavior & it has ended with the WW (white woman) crying,” one black woman wrote on Twitter. “The WW wasn’t crying because she felt sorry and was deeply remorseful. The WW was crying because she felt “bullied” and/or that the BW was being too harsh with her.”

When I shared these tweets on my Facebook page asking brown and black women if this had ever happened to them, I was taken by how deeply this resonated, prompting one Arab woman to share this story:

A WW kept touching my hair. Pulling my curls to watch them bounce back. Rubbing the top. Smelling it. So when I told her to stop and complained to HR and my supervisor, she complained that I wasn’t a people person or team member and I had to leave that position for being ‘threatening’ to a coworker.”

For the doubters, here is a mild version of this sleight-of-hand in action:

Pinterest
Jully Black and Jeanne Beker

Notice it is the white woman – Jeanne Beker – who first interrupts the black woman – Jully Black – who takes the interruption in her stride. Black continues to speak passionately and confidently, which Beker interprets as a personal attack on her even though Black is clearly talking in general terms (just as Winnie Dunn was). Beker then attempts to shut Black down by essentially branding her a bully.

Had Jully Black not stopped and repeated Jeanne Beker’s words back at her – “Why are you attacking me?” – they would have passed largely unnoticed, just another woman of colour smeared as an aggressor for daring to continue speaking when a white woman wanted her to stop.

It doesn’t usually end this way. “White women tears are especially potent … because they are attached to the symbol of femininity,” Ajayi explains. “These tears are pouring out from the eyes of the one chosen to be the prototype of womanhood; the woman who has been painted as helpless against the whims of the world. The one who gets the most protection in a world that does a shitty job overall of cherishing women.”

As I look back over my adult life a pattern emerges. Often, when I have attempted to speak to or confront a white woman about something she has said or done that has impacted me adversely, I am met with tearful denials and indignant accusations that I am hurting her. My confidence diminished and second-guessing myself, I either flare up in frustration at not being heard (which only seems to prove her point) or I back down immediately, apologizing and consoling the very person causing me harm.

It is not weakness or guilt that compels me to capitulate. Rather, as I recently wrote, it is the manufactured reputation Arabs have for being threatening and aggressive that follows us everywhere. In a society that routinely places imaginary “wide-eyed, angry and Middle Eastern” people at the scenes of violent crimes they did not commit, having a legitimate grievance is no match for the strategic tears of a white damsel in distress whose innocence is taken for granted.

“We talk about toxic masculinity,” Ajayi warns, “but there is (also) toxicity in wielding femininity in this way.” Brown and black women know we are, as musician Miss Blanks writes, “imperfect victims”. That doesn’t mean we are always in the right but it does mean we know that against a white woman’s accusations, our perspectives will almost always go unheard either way.

Whether angry or calm, shouting or pleading, we are still perceived as the aggressors.

Likewise, white women are equally aware their race privileges them as surely as ours condemns us. In this context, their tearful displays are a form of emotional and psychological violence that reinforce the very system of white dominance that many white women claim to oppose.

Ruby Hamad is a journalist and PhD candidate at the University of New South Wales, Australia.

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In Pictures: 17,000 turn out for the poshest picnic in Paris


In Pictures: 17,000 turn out for the poshest picnic in Paris
Photo: AFP
From: The Local France
This year’s “Dinner in white” – a chic, pop-up style picnic drew a record 17,000 diners all dressed in white. Here are some pictures of the impressive spectacle.

The annual “diner en blanc” picnic took place in Paris on  at the Esplanade des Invalides and drew a record 17,000 participants, according to organisers.

The location of the giant chic picnic is only revealed at the last minute. In previous years it has taken place outside Notre Dame Cathedral or the Louvre Museum.

The picnic is not authorised by authorities but “tolerated”. Although the organisers made an exception and asked authorities and police if they could hold it on the Champs-Elysées. But their request was turned down and they chose the Invalides as plan b.

Last month’s  attendance was twice the size of previous gatherings and the 17,000 picnickers also included 6,000 from abroad, who had come to Paris specially for the occasion.

The “diner en blanc” phenomenon  was celebrating its 30th anniversary. The concept began in France but has since spread to other cities around the world including New York and Sydney.

There are certain rules those attending have to stick by, notably they must wear white. They are also not allowed to leave behind any trace of rubbish and strong alcohol and beer are banned.

They are informed at the last minute about the location and have to bring fold up tables and chairs. Remarkably it only takes a few minutes to set up.

 

Dear, Canada, Britain, France, Mexico, Australia, Germany, Sweden, Italy, Nigeria, Argentina,Japan, New Zealand and the rest of the world.


Dear, Canada, Britain, France, Mexico, Australia, Germany, Sweden, Italy, Nigeria, Argentina,Japan, New Zealand and the rest of the world,

Despite what you read and see on television. America and Americans haven’t lost our minds or our way.  We realize you are bombarded with negative sounds and images emanating from our great nation, leaving the impression we aren’t the welcoming nation we once were.

These aren’t the best of times for the United States

Our current President, businessman with no experience on the world stage    Who in short time, has become the President his competitors warned us about during our presidential primary.

He is easily played.   Compliment him and you’re in.  In his mind, he is always successful.

Like you, most Americans are in a constant state of shock .  Many Americans are overwhelmed by the amount of negative and often destructive news emanating from the White House.

Just when we think our President has reached bottom, he finds a way to go even lower.  He has insulted our neighbors ,Canada and Mexico.  Damaging long-term relationships with our Allies and forging relationships with enemies of our nations.    He is impulsive, and often acts without council and doesn’t fully understand protocol.

Most Americans (not all) are frankly embarrassed.

Its seems, by the hour he is dismantling, environmental laws in favor of business.  Relaxing and reversing laws that benefit the poor, laws that once protected women, members of the gay communities and people or color.

 Two America’s

This picture taken last Thursday in Montana,  gives the impression that Americans  overwhelmingly support the President and his policies.   The reality is far from the truth.  Look at the participants in this photo.  They are good Americans, however they do not represent the majority of Americans.

Donald TrumpImage result for president obama crowd

Compare this picture to the one above.  The participants represent the real landscape of America.

Donald Trump rarely travels beyond his fan base.  Our great cities  with their diverse populations, New York, Chicago, Houston, Los Angeles, San Francisco,or Honolulu are not on his itinerary.

At these rallies, the Real Estate business man and Reality Television personality  is energized by his fan base.  Where he seems more comedian than politician, here in a friendly enviroment is where he is the happiest, places where he feels loved.

 His words and global intentions, are often designed to keep this narrow base happy.   Our Commander-in-Chief, goes his own way, he doesn’t like to be told what to do.  He oftens ignores the advice of those with decades of experience in global affairs, to spout conclusions that is loosely based on facts.   Which often confuses and angers our allies and friends around the world

He has often said, he and he alone have the answers to the worlds issues.  The Tariffs he is levying on our friends and neighbors and China, does not have the support from most Americans.   Politicians in both parties and the business community and yet he continues.

In Montana, he made fun of the #MeToo movement.  He insulted our war hero’s, Senator John McCain and former President Herbert Walker Bush, who are highly regarded members of his political party.  Both of these men are ill, one is terminally .

In the United States, he has always been a bit of a social media bully, who often acts differently when in the presence of the people he’s attacked.

While he insists upon loyalty, he hasn’t demonstrated any loyalties to anyone including those he appointed and placed in positions of power.

I have lived in the United States  my entire life.  When one group is attack , we react!    Many Americans are currently outraged by the treatment of children, who were stripped from their parents.  Simply to intimidate those who want to immigrate to the United States.  This has never been a policy of America to separate families.  Again, this was done to appeal to some of the  Presidents supporters, many of whom have long wanted to limited the number of  individuals immigrating from south of our Border.

Many of family members and friends who live outside the United States often asked ,how was he elected?   I believe the fault lies with our leaders. 

The day Donald Trump announced he was running for President and then went on to insult Mexican American and citizens of Mexico.  There was no major outrage from either party.

In 1968, George Wallace the former Governor of Alabama ran for President.   Wallace supported segregation and was outraged by the Passing of the Civil Rights Legislation.  The Governor stood at the entrance of the University of Alabama to prevent a black student from enrolling .

Forty eight years later, both parties were relatively silent.  Presidential candidate and former Governor of Florida, (Father George HW, and his brother George W,  were both Presidents of the United States)  Jeb Bush, whose wife is Mexican American, and has three bi-racial children and other bi-racial family members  wasn’t outraged enough to speak against Trump.    Not one candidate from either party, went in from of the Cameras and screamed “The statement made by Donald Trump goes against everything that America is!  They were all playing politics.   There was an assumption, Donald Trump would never be elected president.

Today, most members of the Republican party remains silent.  Unlike most of the world, the United States, has primary elections then ,General Election in November.   In the majority of the states.  Members of a party can only vote for members of their party in the primary election.  Only in the General Election can citizens vote for any candidate.

Because of our electoral system, and Donald Trump’s current popularity in his party. members of his party is choosing him over party and country.   To criticize him could mean losing in the primary.    While his actions go against many tenets of the Republican party and against many conservative views of the party.   Most Republican bite their teeth and support the President even though his views and actions are not only damaging to the Republican Party and the United States, it’s having a negative effect on our friends and allies.

His insistence in meeting in Vladimir Putin is a slap in the face to Prime minister May  after several Russian based poisonings in the United Kingdom.

If the Russians intent was to destabilize the Western Alliance by meddling in the US election then they were successful.  Our friends very concerned.  Nothing would make Putin happier than a dismantled Nato.

The majority of his party are afraid to speak out against him  because they need to survive the primary .  Even though his practices conflicts with the party and is damaging to the country.  The few member of his party who are critical of him and his policies are not running for re-election.

There is a bright high!     After the initial shock and disappointment,followed by proposed ban on Muslim immigrants.   Americans are angry!   People are all walks of live are getting involved , in numbers we haven’t seen since the 1960’s

The challenge, unlike the 60’s, it’s not just the Vietnam war,  it’s not just civil rights.   There are so many issues,created by this president we are overwhelmed.    We are less confident.  Conventional wisdom says ,with all of this outrage by the American public, there will be a change after this fall’s midterm elections.    However, conventional wisdom said, Donald Trump could never get elected.

To our all of our friends in:  Canada, Britain, France, Mexico, Australia, Germany, Sweden, Italy, Nigeria, Argentina,Japan, New Zealand and the rest of the world. .  America is still America, the land of immigrants and the place where dreams can come true.   America is at a crossroads, many American are disappointed with our government.

For nearly 10 years, there has been a civil war within our government.  A war of a zillion words which has been damaging to Americans as our needs have been ignored.   Many frustrated Americans wanted something different, something new, as the old guard had placed their political ambitions and party over the needs of its citizens.

Something you maybe currently experiencing in your country.  In America, we basically have a two-party system, this was deliberate.   The Republicans and the Democrats have made it difficult for other parties to participate in the system.  There are many political parties in the United States.   However, Americans are unlikely.  to hear from them.  They are not allowed to participate in public media debates.

 As a result, we have limited choices in this great nation.   Some, angry americans chose, a business man whose “business” reputation is so poor, he cannot get a loan from an american bank,   A man who had well known credibility problem, a man whose family has a legal history of not renting to people of color,and a man who has little respect for women, over the status quo.  Despite all the money in world, spent to prevent him from being elected,  Donald Trump became President of the United States.

I do not represent all Americans in my views.  But I am sorry.

I hope you learn from our mistake.  I believe in choosing a leader, demand experience, and integrity, empathy and heart.   Avoid, shiny objects, with promise, but doesnt have a history of performance or you may just elect a Donald Trump

Better days to come

CityFella

 

 

 

Empty roads during England vs Sweden World Cup match shows a football-mad country as you’ve never seen it


Or go to the beach (Image: London News Pictures Ltd)
Or practice your driving (Image: London News Pictures Ltd)
And plenty of non-fans (and football widows) took advantage of this.

In towns around the country, life seemed to grind to a standstill as fans flocked to pubs or headed home to watch the match.

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In London, large queues started forming as early as 10am outside pubs in London Bridge and Clapham – and eager viewers were queueing for as long as five hours.

Just as well their patience was rewarded…

 

South Africa: ‘Dead’ woman found alive in mortuary fridge


The unnamed woman had been certified dead by paramedics at the scene of a pile-up in the early hours of June 24

Image Credit: Supplied  Image for illustrative purpose only

JOHANNESBURG:  A South African woman who paramedics had declared dead after a horrific car crash was later found alive in a mortuary fridge, emergency services said on Monday.

Ambulance service Distress Alert confirmed that the unnamed woman had been certified dead by paramedics at the scene of the pile-up outside of Carletonville, southwest of Johannesburg, in the early hours of June 24.

Mortuary technicians then found her alive in a morgue fridge several hours after the crash in which the victims’ car rolled, throwing all three occupants clear of the vehicle, killing two of them.

“We followed our procedures – we’ve got no idea how it happened,” Distress Alert operations manager Gerrit Bradnick told AFP.

“The crew is absolutely devastated – we’re not in the business of declaring living people dead, we’re in the business of keeping people alive.”

“All the right checks were done – breathing, pulse – so the patient was declared deceased,” he said.

The company has now launched an investigation.

“Paramedics are trained to determine death, not us,” a source at the Carletonville mortuary told the Sowetan newspaper.

“You never expect to open a fridge and find someone in there alive. Can you imagine if we had begun the autopsy and killed her.

 

 

 

Source: Gulf News: South Africa

 

 

Tacky Comment:   They found her in the fridge, and she was cold…..

China: Fengxian opens ‘Dream Market’ to help less fortunate


Ti Gong

 

Residents check the difficulties and dreams publicized at the Dream Market launched in the outskirt Fengxian District on Sunday.

 

Fengxian District launched its annual campaign on Sunday to encourage citizens help to realize the dreams of the less fortunate.

The Dream Market campaign, which was initiated in 2016, encourages individuals, social organizations and enterprises within the southern outskirt district to offer their help and support. It is part of the district government’s poverty reduction campaign to create a generous and warm-hearted social atmosphere, the district government said.

“More than 320,000 people who sought help during the campaign have made their dreams come true thanks to the involvement of others,” said Sheng Qunhua, director with the district’s spiritual civilization office.

“Fengxian people has a long tradition to help others,” said Sheng. The name of the district literally means “to respect the nobility,” because early residents in the area offered help to an apprentice of Confucius.

During the Love Market on Sunday, those in impoverished regions were encouraged to write down and publicize their difficulties on a notice broad at the administrative service center of the district, while other residents selected and helped to realize these “dreams.”

Ti Gong

 

A resident in Fengxian District picks up a “dream” publicized by another citizen to help realize it at the Dream Market launched in the district on Sunday.

For instance, Zhou Baocai, 80, an “intangible cultural heritage” master of the traditional paper-cutting skill of local Fengcheng Town, publicized his dream on the market to have a large-size bespoke table to finish a masterpiece, the paper-cutting copy of the “Along the River During Qingming Festival,” a famous panoramic scroll dating from the 11th or 12th century.

A furniture store boss soon claimed his dream and promised to made a long wooden table for Zhou. “I’m willing to help master Zhou to complete the masterwork to promote the traditional local skill that is at risk of being vanished, as well as the traditional Chinese culture,” the helper said on Sunday.

To better promote the campaign, the district government established 130 Dream Stations across its towns and subdistricts in May. Residents can publicize their difficulties or help others at the stations throughout the year, said Zhuang Mudi, the Party secretary of Fengxian. Over 1,000 helping projects have been collected at the stations, mainly on employment, agricultural problems, poverty reduction and cultural development.

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