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View Diary: An Open Letter to Don Lemon From An Angry Black Man (184 comments)

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  •  Different != black (1+ / 0-)
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    From what I am aware of other more general studies have indicated that the bias is towards average sounding names. Not against black sounding in particular.

    Point #2) Your argument that racism and bias exists does not counter  Trobone's argument at all.

    Trobone is stating that no matter who you are your behavior is a/the key component of your success or failure.

    You simply point out that race can/does have an effect. Those two ideas are not mutually exclusive.  

    You are essentially arguing against a point that the author is NOT making.

    •  Nice nitpicking (7+ / 0-)

      Now explain the one where the names were the same and the black people in the interviews were still less likely to be hired.

      Or the housing one.

      Or heck -- explain why a supposed bias toward "normal American names" is NOT a de facto racist thing considering how many black people are not named Tom, Dick or Harry and still need to find a job.

      And speaking of perfectly normal American names, did you stop to wonder how the applicants named Leroy Smith or Ronald Jefferson did compared to Thomas O'Malley and Michael Trotta?  I'm guessing not.

      You sound like nothing but a blind denier.

      •  Since you jumped the boat on name calling (0+ / 0-)

        I am going to simply question your reading comprehension.

        For the sake of the argument. My entire point in my first post was to differentiate between the two points.

        Once again for those who are comprehension challenged.

        One user was pointing out that racism can play a role.

        The other user was pointing out that a person's actions play a significant/greater role than race.


        Please continue ranting on your point which is completely irrelevant to the posters comment.

        Its amazing that you have the ability to type words as you clearly lack the ability to read them.

        •  Sigh. (1+ / 0-)
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          Trombone was pointing out how a person's actions can hinder job prospects.  Implying that "see that's not racial".

          The other poster(s) were trying, in vain, to point out that because of racism/bias, some applicants did not even have the opportunity to be accepted or rejected because of behavior because their ethnic names, etc excluded them before they even got a foot in the door.

          In other words,, having advanced degrees, pulling up your pants, speaking proper english and not throwing up gang signs won't help you one damn bit if your name is Antwan Jones and the person screening the resumes is biased.

          •  Its not an all or nothing (0+ / 0-)

            proposition with different names, its a reduced set of odd's. The truly elite still succeed, the crappy always fail.

             The ones in the middle  are the ones punished. But even still in that group you may have reduced odds of getting that an invite but that in itself is NOT career ending.

    •  Trobone certainly seems to be saying that (2+ / 0-)
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      oldmilitant, EastcoastChick

      personal responsibility and presenting yourself well are THE keys to success, trumping anything else.  In this he (probably without recognizing it) echoes people like Bill O'Reilly, who responds to any mention of racism by thumping the table and declaring that black people have to take personal responsibility.  Then he starts yelling about the "grievance industry," and waxing apoplectic about Al Sharpton.

      What O'Reilly is of course implying, what many on the right imply or sometimes say straight out, is that the black community is a blighted desert when it comes to personal responsibility, which only occasionally makes a feeble appearance in some hidden corner, before it's stamped out by Al Sharpton and the "grievance industry."  Thus the struggles of millions of ordinary people to make a decent life for themselves and their families are routinely dismissed and discounted by a lot of people who make a lot of noise.

      Do you understand that's likely to produce some frustration and anger?

      What I say is that of course no one succeeds without taking personal responsibility, but that is not the only factor for POC in this country.  Among other things, racism is a POWERFUL FACTOR that can mitigate against personal acheivement.  

      Trobone says one factor tells the whole story.  I say two, at least.  Yes, those arguments are mutually exclusive.  Either the lack of "personal responsibility" explains all the ills of the black community, or it doesn't.  

      Why is this so hard?  It should be easy for either of you to simply say, “Well of course, racism is a real factor that seriously affects black people's lives and achievements.”  Why is it so hard to acknowledge such a powerful historic factor at work?

      I'd just love for you to flat out acknowledge that, and then the conversation could go on more fruitfully from there.

      --------------------- “These are troubling times. Corporation are treated like people. People are treated like things. …And if we ever needed to vote, we sure do need to vote now.” -- Rev. Dr. William J. Barber

      by Fiona West on Wed Jul 31, 2013 at 08:13:09 PM PDT

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      •  actually (0+ / 0-)

        that's not what I'm saying at all.

        And your thinly veiled accusations and insinuations about me being racists are inherently and completely wrong.

      •  and I've admitted many times (0+ / 0-)

        in this thread alone that racism is a factor.... not 100% of the time, but it's out there.

        And I have never said that personal appearance is the only factor holding people back, nor have I claimed it is the key to success.

        I have simply, and repreatedly stated that people of every color, religion, etc need to consider their personal brand and personal appearance.

        It's not a black problem, it's an everyone problem.

      •  Why is it so hard (1+ / 0-)
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        To recognize that both things are ging on and are mutually reinforcing?  

        Proper presentation is a social signaling function an learning those signals requires access to settings where you learn them.  They require mentors and training.  People help those who are of the same social group and are neutral to everyone else.   Since blacks are under represented in positions of power, far too few black professionals have the mentors and sponsors to get the inside track.  This is a significant contributor to white privileges and its flip side institutional racism.  So, even without a ton of animus (which is also prevalent) we see being of the wrong group, being different, even having the wrong name leaves people without the leg up that one often needs to get in the door.   Obviously it isn't a 100% thing (note: President Barack Obama has done well) but statistically spread over the entire population it creates big disparities in income and access.

        That lack of access in turn creates negative impressions of the under class. You know,every under class, whether black people in the US, Turks in Holland, or Koreans in Japan, has the same charges leveled at them.  The language is eerily similar.  So, lack of access reinforces negative stereotypes which drives a lack of access and a perception of "doing it wrong"

        These two things are really part of the same elephant

        Touch all that arises with a spirit of compassion. An activist seeks to change opinion.

        by Mindful Nature on Thu Aug 01, 2013 at 04:19:07 PM PDT

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        •  I agree. (0+ / 0-)

          Of course, not all black people are underclass.  YOung people from working class or middle class backgrounds, who work to get good educations and are free of sagging pants, can still run into racism and rejection because of the assumptions or unease created in the dominant majority by underclass images.  But I know you know all that.

          There's a white underclass as well, mostly rural (and grindingly poor, of course).  But they aren't taken to define anything essential about the nature of white people.

          --------------------- “These are troubling times. Corporation are treated like people. People are treated like things. …And if we ever needed to vote, we sure do need to vote now.” -- Rev. Dr. William J. Barber

          by Fiona West on Fri Aug 02, 2013 at 05:43:00 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

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