Back in 2012 when I graduated high school our class song was Young, Wild, and Free by Snoop Dog and Wiz Khalifa.
For those of you who live under a rock, the song talks about smoking weed, drinking and living freely.
The artists in the song don’t really care what others say about their actions or lifestyle.
Recently Kylie Jenner posted a picture on Instagram of her smoking weed.
She is definitely living the carefree easy going life.
I really do not care if you post a picture of you drinking but drugs are another story.
“Come one it is one picture” you may say but if I posted one picture of me smoking weed my career as a nurse would be over before it even started.
Weed is still considered illegal and classified as a scheduled I drug by the DEA.
Let me go ahead and put this out there, I fully support cannabis in a medical setting to help people who really need it.
For example, that video on YouTube where the older gentleman has Parkinson’s disease but his tremors go away once he takes cannabis.
On other circumstances I am not totally against it but if you are going to blaze it up maybe don’t post it on Instagram.
My main concern with her post is young girls look up to her as a role model and as a kid we are taught not to do drugs…see where I am going on this?
I wish she would post images of her creating something new for Kylie cosmetics, videos of her cooking (I’ve heard she is a good cook), or her showing girls how to be successful.
I am sure Kylie Jenner is aware of the damage is done when you smoke weed but just in case she doesn’t, let me explain.
Have you ever heard of lung cancer?
Brain cells dying?
I don’t know about you but I’ll pass.
Lastly, I will close with this final statement.
It is her life and she may do whatever she pleases but she is a role model to millions whether she likes it or not.
RISE NEWS is a grassroots journalism news organization that is working to change the way young people become informed and engaged in the world. You can write for us.
Cover Photo Credit: Kylie Jenner/ Instagram
What Do You Think?
About the AuthorAnnalia is a nursing student who has a passion for kids, coffee, and makeup. She loves meeting new people and exploring this thing we call life. Her current goal is to not kill her cactus named Pricks.
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By Caroline Galloway
What just happened in America is beyond anything I could have ever imagined.
The soul of this country was torn apart at the very moment when we had a chance to rise above the hateful rhetoric we have been forced to listen to for months and to unite with a compassion for those who are different, a love for our country beyond measure and an acceptance of opinion and ideals that makes this country great….Not Great Again … GREAT!
Instead we watched a wild witch-hunt supported by a predominantly white male force incessantly run after our first female candidate as if she was the most horrendous human being alive. The emails, the emails, and the emails….must I say more.
We have allowed a man to escape the same trials beset on a woman and skate free through a remarkable path of no consequence for things that otherwise make us gasp in disbelief.
Has anyone, including the media, dared to bring out the stories of Donald Trump’s association with a convicted sexual predator who he has called “a decent man?”
Has anyone, especially the media, given any of the women who accused Donald Trump of mishandling them more than a story or two, or a conversation sparking protests and demands for the truth within their own circles?
Does anyone who voted for Donald Trump even understand how many lies he told during the campaign and how many facts he got wrong, all proven in written form by fact-checkers, historians and other leaders?
Does anyone who voted for Donald Trump really think he is going to be honest with anyone when he takes the Oval Office?
What do I tell my teenage daughter when she asks why a man who has obviously done so much wrong in his life doesn’t get held to the same standard as a woman?
In this case, one who devoted her life to public service and the betterment of the lives of children and women?
What do I tell my teenage daughter when she asks me how an election can be won by a man who has proven to be unfit?
Donald Trump fed into the weaknesses of this group just like the schoolyard bully.
He surrounded himself with people who feed negative and unfair propaganda to the masses each and every day.
He has been fed by a silver spoon all his life and has never known what it feels like to mine for coal, live in rural America on a fixed income or work all day every day for minimum wage barely making ends meet.
I do. How can anyone expect him to understand? What do I tell my daughter?
This president-elect has admittedly, and in his own words, grabbed women by their “pussy” and let’s not forget had extra-marital affairs.
A man who has bankrupted companies more than I like to count at the risk it puts such great fear in my heart for our country that I can’t even keep my head up.
A man who openly made fun of a disabled person on national television with the world watching. A man who couldn’t even bring his ego in long enough to pay respect to a four-star father who lost his son fighting for our country.
A man who has no military experience whatsoever and had the fortune of money behind him when he escaped serving our country because of a spur in his foot, a spur he cannot even remember correctly.
A man who has made clear he has no tolerance for immigrants, minorities, gay people and the like. Is this really what my America looks like? What do I tell my daughter?
I am old enough to remember several elections and while my candidate of choice didn’t always win, I don’t remember our country protesting with such fervor at the prospect of an individual not fit to run our country ever before.
How can this be? Why didn’t the majority of people who voted for this man understand this? How can a narcissistic egomaniacal liar make it to the oval office? How can bad behavior continue to be awarded in a country that was to represent “strength, power and honesty?” What do I tell my daughter?
He fed into the uneducated and the displaced, allowing them to believe he will save them. That’s what bullies do.
They find the most disenfranchised weak individual on the playground and pick on them. Does anyone not see this and how this played out for someone who has the world in dismay and our allies bewildered?
Does anyone not notice that headlines across the globe are using such words as “W.T.F” and “Are you Kidding Me?. While those headlines circulate, can we not sit here and really ask ourselves if that is OK, if it is OK for a man to allow our country to now be a joke, a misfit, a low-lying power that doesn’t take all the risks involved with letting this man through the front door seriously. What do I tell my daughter?
I worked for someone who bears the exact same traits and behavior of Donald Trump.
They don’t change my friends, but they keep on winning despite their arrogance, lies and ugly behavioral traits.
I worked for a narcissistic man who treats women horribly, depletes the human spirit as a game of fun and thrives on power he exerts to make the “little person” feel even smaller.
The day I was able to leave that horrendous work situation was the best day of my professional life.
It is because of that and why I anxiously wait for four years to fly by faster than anything imaginable.
I am ashamed our country has gotten to the point where decency didn’t outweigh ignorance.
When I woke this morning I was hopeful to feel a bit of anxiety leaving my body, a sense of “we shall overcome” and a certain bit of optimism that would take me through the next four years.
It didn’t happen.
The tears keep flowing and the idea of uncertainty and embarrassment override any sense of understanding I can possibly relate to what just happened in this country…my country.
We have an Electoral College system that I believe is flawed and antiquated.
We have a process that doesn’t allow for certain standards of conduct to be upheld for the highest office in the world.
We have people who still believe that black Americans and women have only defined places in their lives.
Yet none of that thought process, none of that diabolical way of life compares to the remarkable and unprecedented statement on humanity in which the election of Donald J. Trump leads to.
And that is the purpose of why I write today.
As of this morning Hillary Clinton continues to win the popular vote. I now know how Al Gore felt.
Our electoral college process which Donald Trump, in his own words and in his own tweet said “our electoral college process is a disaster, it is not democracy” proves once again to not honor the real power of our people.
I am hopeful that enough Americans join in to petition for this process to be reviewed, refined and changed so the people do speak in our next election and that the process is changed.
I know that I will do what I can to encourage and persuade those I come in contact with or know to support this change. “We the People” is exactly what we should be thinking!
I will close with recognizing that people wanted change. They wanted change in Washington and they wanted change in policy and for this, I can agree.
There were so many better choices for change throughout the entire election process. There were so many candidates who could have brought about change while keeping our country’s reputation alive with our allies, protected our country from the threat of all kinds of evil, changed our education, health system and environment for the good and protected our children.
But yet the hate-filled people who couldn’t get past their own simple way of thinking that someone who has billions will also make them billions have a very rude awakening coming their way.
It is hard to try to determine how change will be brought on by someone contemplating putting the same “old white men” in his cabinet and some who have questionable pasts…Giuliani, Gingrich, Christie. Is that an example of the change this country was looking for?
When the DOW drops 7,000 points in one night everyone needs to pay attention. When social media trends with #notmypresident in a democratic society, everyone needs to pay attention.
When women are asking “why have we not come any further?” everyone needs to pay attention. When immigrants who are the very fabric of our nation, and black Americans who gave more than they should have ever had to so we could build this country, ask am I safe, everyone needs to pay attention and when gays and transgender people ask if they can walk the streets and be free anymore, everyone needs to pay attention.
I simply ask “What will I tell my daughter?” And what will my daughter tell her daughter?
Open your eyes and ears America.
Be a voice stronger than you ever expected.
Please bring about change and force yourself to not tire in this fight and trying to make a difference, blocking hatred in any way or form possible. Be proud of who you are and for who will become.
Take a stand and be a force for those who need to be held up.
Don’t let this get away from you over time, don’t become complacent and don’t ever stop making sure your path to greatness is an important opportunity for all of us!
This is what you can tell your daughter.
Caroline Galloway is a PR specialist with 23 years experience in Entertainment and Consumer Brand Marketing & PR. She is based in Cleveland, Ohio and is a working mother of two, who has published numerous announcements and articles on a variety of topics.
RISE NEWS is a grassroots journalism news organization that is working to change the way young people become informed and engaged in the world. You can write for us.
Cover Photo Credit: Ted Eytan/ Flickr (CC By 2.0)Post Views: 555
What Do You Think?
The following is an opinion piece penned after multiple bomb threats shut down a Miami based discussion on ethics in video game journalism, also known by the shorthand- GamerGate. The following piece does not necessarily reflect the views of Rise News. This piece was original published in Rise Miami News on 8/25/2015.
By Arad Alper
GamerGate is marking a year of existence, a year in which it has been the most notable and important cultural event around, the clearest reflection of the zeitgeist. The story of GamerGate enfolds many of the characteristics that define our time: online activism, the questionable ethics of Internet journalism, a liberal identity crisis, the civil war of the left, the opening of a new generational gap, and of course the turning of video games and gaming culture into the center of pop culture, the place to be.
A year later, it is time to stop for a moment and take a more historical perspective, to ask how we came to this point and where we are headed. And, most importantly, what’s it all about?
Politically, GamerGate is an event that takes place in the left, and its roots are in the conflict between two different leftist approaches. The left as a whole believes that humanity has to liberate itself from traditions and structures that cause injustice, to create newer and better worldviews and aspire to build a society where everyone will enjoy freedom, equality and peace. But there are two different approaches to this struggle.
The first, which I shall term the liberal approach, is an evolutionary approach. It regards the human creature as an ape that is in a gradual process of leaving the jungle, a process that transforms homo sapiens into an increasingly enlightened and sublimated being. This approach espouses giving humans the largest possible amount of freedom to express themselves, even if what they express is not enlightened or cultivated, because by exposing all our different sides we eventually learn how to sublimate them.
This approach also acknowledges that humans will forever be apes and will never reach a perfect state of liberty, equality and peace, but we can get closer and closer, and in fact the Western world has already reached a stage where even the most wretched members of society can live a good and happy life.
Therefore we should focus of achieving a happy life for ourselves, while working at the same time for ever greater social harmony.
The second approach, which I will term the puritan leftist approach, is revolutionary. It believes that humankind is born by nature to live in a state of perfect social harmony, and the only thing preventing it is the structure and mindset of contemporary society. Therefore, all we need to do is change the way we educate our children, instill in them the ideals of perfect social justice from birth, and in a generation or two we will have the perfect society.
We must therefore censor anything that is not enlightened, tear down any state of inequality and enforce total equality in its place, and soon enough the people will learn to think correctly and will live in a state of justice and happiness. Millions of years of evolution coded into our biology, tens of thousands of years of cognitive development coded into our language, thousands of years of civilization coded into our manners, all of this can be erased in one stroke if we only wish it – so believe the puritans.
This view is actually the continuation of the old Christian concept of the fall from paradise, as if humankind was born to dwell in heaven but fell into this imperfect world and can be happy only if it returns to its rightful place. And just like with puritanism of the religious kind, leftist puritanism has nothing to rely on – it is based on blind faith, faith that the nature of humankind is good.
Because that perfect world is always on their mind the puritans feel alienated and cannot find any happiness in our imperfect world, and regard others’ happiness negatively because it distracts the latter from striving for Utopia. While liberal leftism continuously develops and progresses, embracing the inventions of the modern world and the new experiences it opens for us and weaving them into the rich and diverse social fabric of today’s Western society, puritan leftism changed very little since the days of the Jacobin.
It’s the same rigid and narrow minded approach, that is busy with dreaming Utopian dreams that are completely divorced from reality and can therefore affect very little positive change in our world.
Nevertheless, those two approaches usually work together to fix the world, with the liberals doing the work and the puritans cheering from the sidelines. But there were moments in the past 250 years when the puritans felt like they could fight the battle on their own, and now is one of those moments.
What gave them that sense is the Internet, where they could find each other and form a large community with power and influence. It happened mainly on Tumblr, where they converged in the beginning of this decade and became known pejoratively as “Social Justice Warriors”, or SJWs.
The reason why the rest of the Internet mocks the SJWs is that it is obvious to anyone that their actions have nothing to do with social justice. They are not trying to improve society, since they don’t believe in gradual change but in revolution. Instead, they work as one to destroy anyone whose opinions are incompatible with theirs. The SJW is characterized by the belief that only his way to achieve social justice is the right way and anyone who disagrees is against justice.
In other words, even if you are a liberal who agrees with them that we must work to achieve equality, but disagree with their revolutionary approach and believe in the evolutionary process, they will immediately brand you “racist”, “misogynist”, “homophobe” etc., and gang up on you like an online lynch mob. Sometimes you don’t even have to express disagreement: you only have to use terms that are not “politically correct” in their book, or tell an inappropriate joke, or socialize with a right-wing person, and you risk becoming a target of their bullying. The SJWs are also notorious for their disregard of facts, their neurotic reaction to anything that causes them discomfort, and most of all in the amusing disparity between the way they perceive themselves as lofty and moral people and the way anyone else regards them as nasty and reprehensible louts. As long as they were contained in Tumblr they were treated mainly as a joke, but in the past couple of years they extended their activities to other regions and are beginning to become a real nuisance.
SJWs who critique computer games do not care if the game excites and elevate the spirit or if it makes the gamers face their dark side in a way that would stimulate their minds to think about it. What they mainly care about is if the game obeys the ideals of social justice and if it educates the players that they will win only if they abide by them, and if it doesn’t (and no good art ever does) they denounce it.
One of the outlets which the SJWs employ to express themselves is online media. While old media obeys an ethical code and cares about its public image, online media is an anarchic world in which almost anything goes. In the years 2009-2013 this proved to be an advantage, because online media could undermine entrenched narratives and affect liberalization of the mind in the US, in the Arab world and in other places. But this anarchy also allows extreme views to flourish and promote their narratives without the need to address pesky things like facts or ethics, and in this way the puritan left managed to establish itself as a journalistic force. In most fields there are enough channels to counter their ideology and they remain marginal, but there is one field in which they found an uncharted territory they could take over. And so, to its detriment, the world of video games became their experimental lab.
The video game is one of the newest art forms, so new that we have yet to develop theories to analyze it properly. Its greatest uniqueness lies in its way of turning the consumer into an active participant in the story, not just a spectator. This opens up avenues to do things that are impossible in other mediums, and the possibilities this holds thrill the imagination. It is no wonder that this art form currently draws the most creative forces and rapidly expands in many directions.
In liberal thought, art has a few main functions. First, of course, it elevates our spirit, puts us in contact with the sublime. Secondly, art is a way to express what cannot be said in words, and thus it expands our consciousness and opens our mind. In that, it is also an agent of social progress, because it teaches us new things about ourselves which help us arrange society in a better way. Art must therefore not recoil from any subject, penetrate even the darkest corners of the human psyche and bring them to light, because then we can learn how to deal with them. Puritans, on the other hand, think of art as an instrument to educate the masses.
SJWs who critique computer games do not care if the game excites and elevate the spirit or if it makes the gamers face their dark side in a way that would stimulate their minds to think about it. What they mainly care about is if the game obeys the ideals of social justice and if it educates the players that they will win only if they abide by them, and if it doesn’t (and no good art ever does) they denounce it. Unfortunately, since more intelligent ways of thinking about video game art are still in gestation, the puritan outlook is the one that dominates the online media on the subject (we can take comfort in knowing that this is not a problem that is unique to video games. Every young art form passes through such a stage).
The people who dedicate their lives to playing video games are called gamers, and are full of love and passion for their hobby. They immerse themselves in the mythologies of the different games, identify with the characters, create playing and discussion groups, build entire worlds around every game.
They want journalism that shares this devotion, but what they get instead is didactic and boring puritan criticism. Worse, they feel that this journalism is deeply corrupt, exploiting the lack of ethics in online media to operate with impunity. It’s not just that game Journalists of the SJW type are using their power to promote games that obey their values; gamers have been sensing for years that behind the scenes there is also collusion, inappropriate relations between game developers and those who write about them. Since the gaming media is the source that any other media draws from when writing about the subject, the gamers feel like this corruption creates a distorted image of their world. They demand transparency, accountability and compliance with principles of journalistic ethics, but the online media always ignored their demands. And then, in August 2014, the game critics hit the fan.
It all began with a blog post written by a game developer in which he revealed how his girlfriend, also a game developer, cheated on him with several men, among them a game critic. The juicy story had all the makings of a good scandal, and the scandal did not fail to arrive. For those who complained about the corruption in media, this was the evidence they were looking for, a story about a developer trading sex for a good review from the critic.
But, as is always the case with such stories, the legitimate demand to investigate the corruption was swamped by a lot of other things: fictional supplements to the story, disinformation, personal attacks on the adulteress, railing against all those slut women, etc. Still, it could have ended there if the media had reacted properly. The gaming journalism sites could have addressed the serious part of the arguments against them, promise to adopt better ethics, and appease their enraged readers. What happened instead is what is remembered now as “August 28th”, the day that will go down in infamy in the history of online media, the day gaming journalists showed their true colors, the day that changed everything.
For those who don’t know how the Internet works, we should make it clear that most of the bad behavior does not come from the GamerGate or SJW communities but from anonymous anti-social trolls who exploit the mayhem to let their violent nature loose.
Rather than addressing the demands, the SJWs went for their usual tactic: claiming that the attacks on the developer are not due to substantive issues but because she is a woman, and the real problem is not her but the character of her detractors. In the span of two days there was a series of articles, by different journalists in different sites, in which they depicted the gamer as a white male who hates women and minorities and feels like his world (a world of video games aimed at racists and misogynists) is being taken away from him so he lashes against the people he deems responsible for it. Suddenly it dawned upon the gamers that their media, the media that is supposed to represent their world, is actually driven by prejudice and hate towards them. This was the beginning of what became known as GamerGate.
And it was ugly, in the tradition of all online flame wars since the 4Chan civil war of 2009. The heart of GamerGate was still the demand for ethics, but its essence was the fight against the SJWs. This was the first time a large group of people stood up to the SJWs, and the latter reacted according to their nature. Individuals from both sides received nonstop harassment, murder and rape threats, and some had their private details exposed online.
A couple of events organized by GamerGate had to evacuate the premises due to bomb threats, and so was a lecture by SJW game critic Anita Sarkeesian. For those who don’t know how the Internet works, we should make it clear that most of the bad behavior does not come from the GamerGate or SJW communities but from anonymous anti-social trolls who exploit the mayhem to let their violent nature loose.
But both said communities were responsible for creating the toxic atmosphere, and should both be condemned for it. However, even though the responsibility lay equally on both sides and both sides suffered the same, the media put the blame squarely on GamerGate. Not just the puritan online media, but even the established mainstream media that is supposedly liberal bought the narrative that GamerGate is a hate movement against women and minorities, and they bought it hook, line, and sinker. Every attack on an SJW was touted in the media as evidence to the true nature of GamerGate, while similar attack on gamergaters got no coverage at all. The GamerGate people, most of them leftists of the liberal type, watched in dismay as their heroes in the media turned against them, accusing them of views that are completely opposed to their character and beliefs, while the only media that defended them were right-wing sites. Many of them experienced severe identity crisis as a result.
But that only motivated them to soldier on, and slowly they began to turn things around. The reason that mainstream media reported with such bias against GamerGate wasn’t that it was taken over by puritans, but simply the result of a generational gap. Mainstream journalists have no clue in video games, gaming culture and Internet culture, so they just buy wholesale what they are being told by those they perceive as journalists like them. Like the rock’n’roll generation of the sixties, the gamers had to create their own media channels if they wanted to be represented. The community began to produce its own YouTube stars – intellectuals, comedians, culture critics, game critics etc. – who drive the discussion that combines the world of video games with current sociology and politics. Gradually they are getting mainstream journalists to listen, and compelling the online media to adopt ethical standards.
As an onlooker, I was neutral at first and put the blame equally on all sides. But I kept watching, and now, a year later, I feel that I can pass judgment the true nature of each side. The GamerGate community is working to rid itself of the negative elements and proved to be a culture based on fun, creativity, self exploration, the acceptance of the other, rational and critical thought, a dialogue based on listening to diverse views, and fighting the corrupt system. The SJW community, on the other hand, continues to be a piranha infested cesspool and a culture based on resentment, self-righteousness, the rejection of otherness, herd mentality, ideological thinking that discards facts, sweeping censorship, and hatred to all earthly pleasures except the pleasure of destroying anyone who disagrees with them.
They do not try to better themselves, but work effortlessly to prevent any opinion that might make them doubt themselves from entering their consciousness (one of the main characteristics of an SJW is the blocking on Twitter of anyone who attempts to debate them). All of their actions are based on the delusion that they truly speak in the name of the oppressed and that those who oppose them are really just doing so because they are white straight male who want to maintain their hegemony.
In the last year the SJWs, driven by their self-righteousness and tripping on their delusions of self-importance, expanded the range of their attacks and went after movie people, musicians, comedians, scientists and politicians.
Whenever they encounter a gamergater who doesn’t fit this stereotype (and they are of course numerous) they tend to claim that it is actually a white male in disguise, and then proceed to immediately block that gamergater whose very existence threatens their delusional bubble. Actually, there is not a shred of evidence to corroborate their claim that “there is a new generation of gamers to replace the old generation of racist, sexists and homophobes”, but what seems to be happening is a natural evolution is which the gamer community, liberal by nature, is organically developing from a white male dominated group into something more diverse “Of course, female and minority gamers mostly despise the SJWs and are offended by their anti-gamer attitude, so the latter’s contribution to the process amounts to zero or even less.”
In the last year the SJWs, driven by their self-righteousness and tripping on their delusions of self-importance, expanded the range of their attacks and went after movie people, musicians, comedians, scientists and politicians. They are beginning to reveal their true nature to the people outside the Internet, and more and more liberals wake up and realize that they are an enemy.
The SJWs are bound to fall, but the question is what damage they will do to the left before they go. The American right went through something similar in the beginning of the decade, as the puritan Tea Party challenged the conservative establishment. The latter was oblivious to the danger, helped the Tea Party advance, and ended up losing control over conservative politics. The outcome was that the Republican party alienated the majority of Americans, came to be regarded as irrational and unhinged, and lost the culture war. The SJWs are threatening to do the same to the left, but it is not too late to stop them. GamerGate marks an awakening in the left, a moment of clarity. Some people involved in the battle are already talking about “the civil war of the left” and are vowing to kick the SJWs back to the nether regions of Tumblr. Let them continue to be a pain there but nowhere else.
And it contains an opportunity for the right as well. Needless to say, not only liberals play video games, and GamerGate also has many right-wingers in its ranks. Moreover, the battle draws right-wingers who recognize in GamerGate’s claims many of their own traditional claims against the left. The difference is that they always thought that the puritan positions characterized the whole left (typical mistake: the left errs in the same way about the right), and now they realize it is only a noisy minority. This already forms a dialogue between left and right, a better understanding of the other side’s positions. Maybe this will be the thing that will reconnect the American right with the spirit of the time.
GamerGate currently contains many contradicting positions, and will eventually be unable to hold them all together and will fall apart. But while it exists it plants seeds of positivity, seeds which will fertilize society, culture and politics for years to come. Stay tuned.
Have an opinion about GamerGate? Would you like to write about it? Then read this.Photo Credit: David Shankbone/Flickr (CC BY 2.0)Post Views: 884
What Do You Think?
By James Kardys
Aren’t racism and race hatred the same thing?
Actually, no they aren’t.
According to the Oxford Dictionary, in order for one to be a racist, he or she must possess the belief that “all members of each race possess characteristics or abilities specific to that race, especially so as to distinguish it as inferior or superior to another race or races.”
If that is true, then the racists of the world form a rather big tent, consisting of two main camps.
In the first camp, there are those who can be considered racists on the grounds because they take racial stereotypes into account in their thought process, and therefore may subconsciously think one race is inferior than another because its members are unable to break free of the mold that forms the perceived stereotypes.
In the second camp, there are those who harbor an actual hatred for other races and seek to undermine and/or destroy them, because they believe that races are inherently designed to function as if they were countries, forming alliances with and against one another.
Although most people don’t stop for a moment and realize these distinctions when thinking about racism, it is important they do.
There are many good people out there who view racism as a cancer that needs to be eradicated.
However, it is becoming increasingly apparent to me that the commonly accepted strategy to combat racism isn’t working.
A few days ago, I read an article written by my fellow RISE NEWS contributor Courtney Anderson titled “Only White People Can Have Racist Friends.”
The multiple uses of the absolutist word “only” to describe the traits of certain races (“Only one of us can actually experience racism, and it isn’t him;” “The only people with societal power are white people;” “White people are the only people who are not negatively affected by racial stereotypes;” “They are also the only ones who can safely have “dialogue” with racist individuals.”) is a perfect example of how a good-natured person can be racist without realizing it.
While Anderson is (hopefully) not trying to portray white people as an enemy, she is relying on stereotypes to make her point. Let me ask you two questions.
1) Is it possible for white people to break free of the mold that forms the perceived stereotypes of people who are unable to experience racism, hold societal power, are not negatively affected by stereotypes, and are safe to have dialogue with racist individuals?
2) Is it possible for other races to break free of the mold that forms the perceived stereotypes of people who do not hold any power and are not safe to have dialogue with racist individuals?
The answer to both of these questions is “yes.”
It is possible for white people to experience racism?
Any white person… sorry… any person who read that article technically did, due to the presence of absolutist language that creates stereotypes.
Is it possible for someone other than a white person to hold power?
Let’s ask Barack Obama.
Is it possible for white people people to be negatively affected by stereotypes?
Yes, because stereotypes are relied upon by race haters who seek to construct a narrative regarding the nature of what they consider to be monolithic entities whose members are incapable of dissenting, and therefore cause every single person who is a member of the races perceived to be at war to have weapons aimed at them, whether they know it or not.
And finally, is it possible for minorities to have dialogue with racist individuals without risking harm to themselves?
As previously stated, by writing her article, Anderson has displayed a racist trait, right here on RISE NEWS.
And that’s okay.
Because racism is such a broad topic, and there are different kinds of people who can be classified as racists, whose overall natures range from friendly to malevolent, the best way to attack racism and make it a thing of the past is to start at different levels.
Let’s ask ourselves a question.
Which racists are the most problematic?
The most harmful to our society?
The ones that are calling for open warfare between the races. Groups like the KKK, neo-Nazis, the New Black Panthers, etc.
These groups are willing to balkanize this country and cause it to descend into lawlessness in the name of their agendas.
Most people who like to crack jokes about racial stereotypes because they like politically incorrect humor, and most people who refer to racial stereotypes when issuing grievances about the state of our society, don’t want to see that happen.
In that case, those of us who do not abide by stereotypes in our mindsets, need to offer an olive branch to those who do but still want peace, law, and order, and vice versa. And those of us who do abide by stereotypes need to do the same with others who abide by stereotypes of our own race (and perhaps play “Everyone’s a Little Bit Racist” by Avenue Q on our phones when talking to them).
This suggestion may sound ridiculously stupid to you, but this approach has been made before. And the last time it was, it saved the country.
Let’s not forget that during the Civil War, when this country was on the edge of descending into oblivion, Abraham Lincoln forged alliances with Congressional Democrats who supported slavery but opposed secession, and even named one, Andrew Johnson, as his Vice President when he ran for re-election in 1864.
Hell, even Lincoln himself had some racist tendencies, having advocated the resettlement of freed slaves back to Africa and saying that his motivation for freeing the slaves was to protect the union and allow African-Americans to enjoy the fruit of their labor as opposed to them being entitled to universal human rights.
But yet, he knew what must be done. He put aside his feelings and acted according to his duties as Commander in Chief and as a citizen of the United States.
Another question that you may be asking now is, “is the state our society as grave as it was 155 years ago, that we must follow this course of action?” I say “no. Not yet.”
Our political climate is changing.
Prominent voices on both sides of the political spectrum are arguing that the current system isn’t working.
We have people like Bernie Sanders saying, “we must be more like the European Left.”
And we have the alt-right saying, “we must be more like the European Right.”
Both the European Right and the European Left are serving as destabilizing forces that are fueling the collapse of a once-promising economic bloc and the rise of ethnic nationalism and separatism. Some view this decay as the prelude to war in the region.
In that case, if our politics begins to resemble Europe’s more and more, shouldn’t we have the same fears as what will happen at home as well as abroad?
I have no doubts that if civil disorder or civil war breaks out, self-proclaimed “racial warriors” will be at the forefront.
If they are indeed planning what I suspect they are planning, they need to be stopped, and they need to be stopped sooner rather than later.
We need all the allies we can get. We need to put politics, religion, gender, age, differences on political correctness, etc aside. No more talking about “privilege,” “wealth,” or “power.” And no more talking about who needs to do it either.
Talk about government, and you will alienate potential conservative allies. Talk only about how we as a community are going to act on the individual level. Act peacefully. Engage in dialogue. Get those whose hearts are immersed in darkness to see the light. Only fight back when attacked.
Our country doesn’t have much time for infighting between those who love peace, freedom, and security.
Those who fought and won the Civil War realized this.
And I pray to my God that we do, too.
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