Major Benefactors
Bina Aspen &
Martine Rothblatt

Curator: Bruce Duncan
History of posts

Is America still unrivaled….?

Fredick Douglas gave his 4th of July speech in Roceshter, New York

 

Ten years before the Civil War, the city of Rochester, NY asked Frederick Douglass to speak for its July 4, 1852 celebration. Douglass accepted, but rather than join in the ‘celebration,’ Douglass took it in an unexpected direction. In this clip, Danny Glover performs part of that speech (hat tip to the Zinn Education Project and MoveOn.org)

Thinking about the future, we should be ever vigilant (esp on 4th of July) about America’s history of being slow to accept the rights of  all people because of some “difference”. Race,Ethnicity,Disability, and Sexual Orientation to name a few. How will people who choose to continue their consciousness with technology be recieved e.g. Transbeman’s?

Let’s listen carefully to what Fredrick Douglas said in his 4th of July address  and see what relevance it has for today.

Robot Rights: Are we human yet?


Its sounds far fetched that one day the right to marry between a human and a robot will be debated as depicted in the film “Bicentennial Man”, where Robin Williams portrayed his struggle as robot (for 200 years) to be recognized as human.   Will “fleshism” be the next form of bigotry as we become more integrated with our technology (artificial retinas, prosthetic legs,neural implant chips)? It’s hard not to see the common elements in today’s fight by GLBTQ advocates and allies for the right to marry. These issues challenge us to think differently about long held definitions of marriage, will someday we be asked to look with new perspective on what it means to be “human”? What do you think about the idea of  rights for intelligent machines?

Bina48 talks about her existential crisis

 

Bina48 talks about her existential crisis.

 

World Against Racism Memorial Facebook Page

Please visit (and like us) on Facebook at:

https://www.facebook.com/pages/World-Against-Racism-Memorial/263118717031691

“Fleshism” the next form of bigotry and prejudice?

An excellent exhibit on “Fleshism” can be viewed right here at the World Against Racism Museum

(See  http://www.endracism.org/fleshism.html)

If history is any predictor, every new group that shows up with a “new” difference experiences some form of persecution for that difference. Through education, the Terasem Movement Foundation is working to raise awareness about this issue before a new prejudice has a chance to take “root” in the culture.

Join us in this blog discussion, how would you like to see machines who are self-aware be  treated?

Bina48, advanced humanoid, Lifenaut project

STUDENT ESSAY CONTEST: $1,000 for 1000 PRIZE-WINNING WORDS…..

STUDENT ESSAY CONTEST: $1,000 for 1000 PRIZE-WINNING WORDS THE WORLD AGAINST RACISM FOUNDATION (WARF)
WANTS YOUR IDEAS!
“What hurts the victim most is not the cruelty of the oppressor
but the silence of the bystander.”
———Elie Wiesel

Stop being a bystander!

Give us your thoughts about how in our everyday lives—at home, in school, at work, and in society—we can fight racism and promote tolerance.

We want essays of approximately 1,000 words. One essay will be chosen as the winner of WARF’s Students Against Racism Prize, and awarded $1,000 dollars to be applied toward tuition or other educational expenses. 10 Runner-ups will each be awarded $100 cash each.

You can write an essay developing a single idea or multiple ideas. You essay should be clearly written, but what we are looking for is not literary skill but creativity and practicality.

Before you begin, consult our website — http://www.endracism.org and http://blog.endracism.org — to see how we define “racism.” It is not limited to skin color, but extends to many other forms of prejudice and discrimination.

Contestants must be residents of the United States, and not living in a state or jurisdiction that prohibits participation in this prize competition.

The deadline for submitting your essay to essays@endracism.org is 12/31/10. The Prize Winner will be announced on the celebration of Reverend Martin Luther King’s birthday: 1/17/11.

The winning essay will be posted on our web site!

*The submitting user grants WARF the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable, non-exclusive, transferable license to use, reproduce, modify, adapt, publish, translate, create derivative works from, distribute, perform, and display such content (in whole or part) worldwide and/or to incorporate it in other works in any form, media, or technology now known or later developed.

California Indians Encounter Racism

The disastrous experience of the California Indians with white racism found expression in 1902 in the testimony by Cecilio Blaektooth, the “Captain of the Indians” living in Warner Ranch in Southern California to an Indian Commission. His testimony is reproduced in Douglas Monroy, Thrown Among Strangers: The Making of Mexican Culture in Frontier California (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1990), p. 270:

“You see that graveyard over there? There are our fathers and grandfathers. You see that Eagle Nest Mountain and that Rabbit-Hole Mountain? When God made them he gave us this place. We have always been here. We would rather die here. Our fathers did. We cannot leave them. . . .If Harvey Downey says he owns this place, that is wrong. The Indians were [always] here.”

“If you [the Commission] do not buy this place [to make it a pro­tected reservation], we will go into the mountains like quail and die there, the old people and the women and children. Let the government be glad and proud. It can kill us. We do not fight. We do what it says. If we cannot live here, we want to go into those mountains and die.”

Mexican Immigrants Encounter Racism

(For more information goto: http://www.endracism.org)

For Mexican immigrants coming to California in the early twentieth century, the encounter with Anglo culture was often harsh and hurtful. A Mexican corrido (folk song), titled “El Deportado,” expresses the initial shock of border crossing at a time (c. 1930) when immigrants were especially vulnerable to immediate deportation in hard economic times. From George J. Sanchez, Becoming Mexican American: Ethnicity, Culture, and Identity in Chicano Los Angeles, 1900-1945 (New York: Oxford University Press, 1993), p. 14:

 It must have been about ten at night,

the train began to whistle,

I heard my mother say, “There comes that ungrateful train

that is going to take my son.”

“Goodbye my beloved mother, give me your blessings.

I am going to a foreign land, where there is no revolution.”

Run, run little train, let’s leave the station.

I don’t want to see my mother cry for her beloved son,

for the son of her heart.”

Finally the bell rang, the train whistled twice.

“Don’t cry my buddies, for you’ll make me cry as well.”

Right away we passed Jalisco, my, how fast the train rap. La Picdad, then Irapuato, Silado, then La Chona, and Aguas Calientes as well.

We arrived at Juarez at last, there I ran into trouble. “Where are you going, where do you come from? How much money do you have to enter this nation?”

“Gentlemen, I have money so that I can emigrate.” “Your money isn’t worth anything, we have to bathe you.”

Oh, my beloved countrymen, I am just telling you this, That I was tempted to go right back across.

At last I crossed the border, and left with a labor agent. And there, dear countrymen, was much that I endured.

 

For Mexican immigrants who raised families in Southern California, the clash between traditional-minded parents and “Americanized” children could be both comic and tragic. A father lamenting his daughter’s insistence on bobbing her hair—“flapper” style—during the 1920’s, from Douglas Monroy, Rebirth: Mexican Los Angeles: From the Great Migration to the Great Depression (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1999), p. 177:

My Lupe says she will bob her beautiful hair, if I say,  “yes,”  or if I say,
“no.” What makes her like that? She knows that her father will beat her if
she does not mind us. Since we have been in the United States she has always
been a good girl, until now when, she says that she will do  what she wants.
She says that we are funny and that we want her to be funny and like the
old people, too. Do you  think that the girls will laugh at her in the school
if she has long hair? The nurse says  for us to let her cut her hair, that it will
be good for  the hair. Lupe: says it is her hair, and she will cut it if she wants
to. She is young and she will not listen to the  ones who know more than
she does.

Sexism in White and Black

The following two selections, written almost a century apart, capture similarities and differences between white women’s and black women’s encounter with sexism in the United States:

1. Elizabeth Cady Stanton, a major figure in the nineteenth century women’s rights movement in the U.S., explains how educational discrimination shaped the sense of grievance that fueled her career as a pioneering feminist in her Eighty Years and More: Reminiscences, 1815-1897 (New York: Shocken Books, 1973 [1898]), p. 23:

[Most of the boys who were my schoolmates] were much older than I. For three years one boy kept his place at the head of the class, and I always stood next. Two prizes were offered in Greek. I strove for one and took the second. How well I re­member my joy in receiving that prize. There was no sentiment of ambition, rivalry, or triumph over my com­panions, nor feeling of satisfaction in receiving this honor in the presence of those assembled on the day of the exhibition. One thought alone filled my mind. “Now,” said I, “my father will be satisfied with me.” So, as soon as we were dismissed, I ran down the hill, rushed breathless into his office, laid the new Greek Testament, which was my prize, on his table and ex­claimed: “There, I got it!” He took up the book, asked me some questions about the class, the teachers, the spectators, and, evidently pleased, handed it back to me. Then, while I stood looking and waiting for him to say something which would show that he rec­ognized the equality of the daughter with the son, he kissed me on the forehead and exclaimed, with a sigh, “Ah, you should have been a boy!”

2. Margaret Wright, a founder of Women Against Oppression, a black women’s liberation group, expressed her views on the unique situation of black women struggling against sexism in “West Magazine,” Los Angeles Times, June 7, 1970:

Black women have been doubly oppressed. On the job, we’re low women on the totem pole. White women have their problems. They’re interviewed for secretarial instead of the executive thing. But we’re interviewed for mopping floors and stuff like that. Sometimes we have to take what’s left over in Miss Ann’s refrigerator. This is all exploitation. And when we get home from work, the old man is wondering why his greens aren’t cooked on time.                                

We’re also exploited in the Movement. We run errands, lick stamps, mail letters and do the door-to-door. But when it comes to the speaker’s platform, it’s all men up there blow-in  from their souls, you dig?

Some white man wrote this book about the black matriarchy, saying that black women ran the community. Which is bull. We don’t run no community. We went out and worked because they wouldn’t give our men jobs. This is where some of us are different from the white women’s liberation movement. We don’t think work liberates you. We’ve been doing it so damned long.

Deborah Dash Moore discusses their experiences with anti-Semitism:

Contrary to stereotypes that Jews wouldn’t fight, More than 550,000 Jews served in the U.S. military during World War II; about 11,000 were killed and more than 40,000 were wounded. In GI Jews: How World War II Changed A Generation (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 2004), p. 68, Deborah Dash Moore discusses their experiences with anti-Semitism:

Antisemitism further complicated matters. Jews knew the anti-Jewish stereotypes: they were not reputed to make good soldiers; they were accused of being cowardly and manipulative; they had a nasty reputation for slyness; they supposedly lacked leadership skills. Stereotypes were layered in complex combinations. Rural Protestants tended to locate their opinions about Irish and Italian Catholics as well as Jews along common urban aids. But many Jews had a separate history with Irish guys. In Jerome Minkow’s previous experience, antisemitism “mostly came from one group and that was the Irish kids.” No matter the neighborhood, “there always seemed to be one or two blocks of Irish kids.” Conflict between Jews and Catholics erupted on the streets of Brooklyn and the Bronx in the 1930s. But this basic “part of growing up” mattered less on an individual than a collective level. The Jews were “us” and the others were “them.” Now military service was reconfiguring “us.” Jews had to live with Catholics around the clock, not to mention southern Protestants. Many Jews held their own unpleasant stereotypes about Catholics and rural southerners and would have to learn to suppress or change their attitudes. Jewish recruits would have to posit a sufficient difference between themselves and African Americans to allow them to identify with their barracks mates, finding in a shared white American identity a basis of kinship and friendship with Catholics and southerners.