Decisions….. it’s that time of year again…
Read all sorts of different stories by all sorts of different people who are nothing like you, they help you fill in the missing parts of your map.
With a spate of huge stories breaking in the past few weeks, you might not have caught the massive environmental crisis in northern Mexico that began earlier in August.
According to the Associated Press, local politicians claim that Grupo Mexico, a private mining company in Sonora with a troubling track record of hazardous waste violations in Mexico and the U.S., was slow to report a disastrous fault in its leaching ponds, which hold industrial acid used in the mining process. The spill released around 10 million gallons of acid into the Bacanuchi and Sonora Rivers.
Just putting this here to refer back to later…
In conversations about Gaza, I have heard many thoughtful people in the Jewish community lament the loss of Palestinian lives in Gaza but then say, “But Hamas…,” as if that were the heart of the problem. I’d like to suggest that, when we have these conversations about Hamas and Israel’s current bombing campaign, we begin with the necessary context and historical perspective.
Re: The Nakba
1. To create the Jewish state, the Zionist movement destroyed more than 400 Palestinians villages and expelled 700,000 Palestinians from their homes and land. Palestinians who remained in what became Israel were relegated to second-class citizenship, had much of their property confiscated, and, to this day, have fewer rights than Jewish Israeli citizens.
Re: The 1967 Occupation
2. In 1967, Israel occupied the West Bank, Gaza, and East Jerusalem and still occupies them until this day.
Re: Settlement expansion; the apartheid wall; and the siege of Gaza
3. Over the past 47 years of occupation, Israel has illegally confiscated more and more Palestinian land; built an apartheid wall; systematically denied Palestinians basic human and civil rights and engaged in state-sponsored violence; and forced the Palestinians in Gaza to live in appalling conditions that make it increasingly impossible to survive. Israel’s latest bombing campaign, Operation Protective Edge, has killed over 1,900 Palestinians, at least 450 of whom are children, and has displaced hundreds of thousands more.
If those of us in the Jewish community who are committed to justice begin from these facts, I think it would become clearer – regardless of who the Palestinian leadership is – that the underlying problem really is the denial of freedom and basic human rights to millions of people, for decades. And, as a community, it should also become clearer where priorities need to be in order to have any integrity on this issue: addressing the Nakba of 1948 and the responsibility for the Nakba head-on – including the right of return for refugees; ending the occupation; ending the siege on Gaza; and recognizing the right to full equality for Palestinian citizens of Israel.
"I have a one-and-a-half year old daughter at home. There are two things that we do every day. When I get home from work in the evening, she runs to me, and asks me to buy her a sausage. And every morning when she wakes up— at exactly 5:30 AM — she needs to go to the bathroom, and she screams for me to bring her the pot. She never screams for Mom. Just for me. How this became my job, I don’t know."
(Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of Congo)
"I get way too sensitive when I get attached to someone. I can detect the slightest change in the tone of their voice, and suddenly I’m spending all day trying to figure out what I did wrong." (Amman, Jordan)
If there is one picture i post on here that i really wish y’all would reblog the fuck out of, it’s this one.
PLEASE. It could save many people that are under the ridiculous police state going on right now in Ferguson Missouri. Those people need our help.
That this post exists is so depressing. It’s one thing to understand that we haven’t come as far as “they” say we have, but its another to have the proof shoved in your, and everyone else’s, faces. I’m glad that despite the attempt to restrict media coverage we have access to the events happening in Ferguson. They are undeniable even to the most staunch members of the “I don’t have privileges” and “I don’t see color” crowd. But I would much rather the hundreds and thousands of victims of police and societal violence and neglect be safe and with their loved ones then be able to prove to ignorant assholes what kind of country this truly is.
Are there any angry Asian-Dutch girls here? My name is Janet. I am a Chinese girl who’s born and raised in the Netherlands.
As an Asian minority living in a white community, I can relate to your personal stories. Since I was little, I’ve been called slit-eye and “poepchinees” (translated as “poop Chinese”, which is a normal Dutch word, sadly enough). When I was 11, I started my first day at a new school. Another kid on the playground yelled “Look, a Chinese. What the hell is a Chinese doing at our [white] school?” Such a warm welcome. One time, a random guy at a party asked me about Asian women’s sideways vaginas. I was angry, but my boyfriend at the time told me to “relax”’. He told me the guy was “not a racist and actually very nice”. Well, fuck you very much. Two guys once followed me down the street and kept shouting words like konnichiwa, happy ending and ching chong.
A lot of Dutch people think racism doesn’t exist in the Netherlands. They act like this country is “post-racial”. To them, every racist remark and microagression is “just a joke, lighten up”. Someone even said it’s “typical Dutch humor”.
There’s an old Dutch children’s song called “Hanky Panky Shanghai”. It’s basically a nonsensical song that mocks Asian languages. They might as well called it the Ching Chong Song. This video (1:14) shows little children internalizing “innocent” racism by singing it at a birthday party. The video is from 1997, but schools are still doing this. I would always cringe when they sang this at my elementary school. I didn’t understand why everyone (even the teacher) was mocking my language and my culture. The kids would pull their eyes back and say “This is how you talk right? And you don’t have to pull your eyes back, because your eyes are already slanty.”
Last year, a Chinese contestant on Holland’s Got Talent was ridiculed by the Dutch judge. This was exactly the racist shit I encounter every day. It made me angry that the Dutch media and people dismissed the racism. To them, it’s “an innocent joke”. This was it. Enough is enough. Then, a lot happened:
I wrote an article about dealing with racism as an Asian in the Netherlands, which got published in a big Dutch newspaper (NRC). I also created the platform “Number 39 With Rice”, a Facebook-page that attracted 4,000+ likes in a few days (it may not sound much haha, but The Netherlands has a small population of only 16 million people). My platform attracted attention from the media and I was invited to a very well-known Dutch television show to talk about racism (which garnered 1 million live viewers). It felt amazing to stand up for myself and others. A month later, 39 Chinese restaurants reacted to the racism by offering a 39% discount to their menu item number 39. The Asian-Dutch community finally spoke up.
After that, I’ve got a lot of hate mail from white people who told me to “go back to my own country if I don’t like it here”. I should be able to “take a joke”. Even a few Asians told me to shut up and not cause a “stir”. Fuck that.
My biggest inspirations were my Asian-American sisters, like AAGU, Fascinasian, Angry Girl Comics, Kristina Wong and Jenny Zhang from Rookie. Although the hate crime rates in the US are much higher than in The Netherlands, to me the US is a place where minorities can stand proud and fight back. I would love to study a semester in the US en meet Asian-American sisters who are also proud and loud. We don’t have Asian organisations in the Netherlands that speak up against racism. Growing up, I’ve never had empowering Asian rolemodels. I felt lonely and blamed myself for being “too sensitive” when someone called me slit-eye. And now, on my platform, other Asians tell me they admire my fire. I feels good to be a rolemodel and inspire others to stand up for themselves. No, you shouldn’t be silent when someone mocks you language, culture and heritage. Tell them they’re rude, or re-appropriate stereotypes by telling them “Yes indeed, my mother’s maiden name is Ching Chang Chong” or “That waitress in the Chinese restaurant is my sister” (something I’ve learned from Jenny Zhang). Be ahead of the game, show them how ridiculous stereotypes are and most of all: stand proud.
After everything I’ve done for the Dutch Asian community, there are still days where I feel powerless and just want to bury my head in the sand. It sucks to deal with racism. It sucks to think about it. Till the day I die, I will encounter racist assholes. My children will have to deal with them, and their children, and so on.
Most Dutch Asians would rather be silent, suck it up and “stand above it”. But they’re not standing above it. They’re ignoring racism and rather act as the “model minority”. Although they say they admire my guts, they do not want to stand up against racism. I feel different, as if I don’t belong with the white AND Asian people.
Yesterday, it hit me. I felt lonely as hell. I love my Dutch friends. But no matter how much they tell me they support me, they will never truly understand how it feels to be Asian in a white community. I have always been the only non-white person in my friend groups. I really need to go out there and find more Asian friends. I need my brothers and sisters. I can not fight this battle alone.
Lamentation by (Karezoid Michal Karcz)
"There is no last taste. The fourth stage of grieving is depression. The Goldfinch is over and you are a wastrel now, you must scavenge out the rest of your days reading about people you don’t care about and can’t believe in. Life is pain, Highness. For this penultimate awful crawl through the five stages I recommend nothing. Just watch TV, I guess.”