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Resistance (Participation)

February 8, 2012

Here are several videos that reflect on stereotypes, discrimination, privilege and resistance.  Response?  Thoughts and how this relates to claims of colorblindness and post-racialness.  How does the following connect to these videos: “The beauty of resisting racism in this way [countering the racist joke with discussion] is that by doing it, we as whites send a message to other whites: a message that says they can’t take anything for granted. They can’t assume that they know our views; they can’t be too sure that an attempt at white bonding will be met with acceptance by others. This is important because racism, especially of an institutional nature, requires the collusion of many persons; the lone bigot can’t accomplish it. So by throwing racists off balance, even that much, we increase the cost to racists of acting out on their racism.” (tim Wise, p. 93)

 

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From → Participation

9 Comments
  1. Alexandra Wilson permalink

    After watching the videos I have been inspired by the few individuals who actually spoke up, to step in when needed. Today in class (2/8) we were asked we would intervene on the scenario of either the three white or three black male teenagers who were vandalizing the car. I answered no I would personally not approach them myself if I was alone, although if I had a strong male figure present where I felt safer then I would feel more confident approaching the situation. As for the video of the three black female shoppers being racially profiled and discriminated against because the salesperson automatically assumes they would steal based on their color and age. I would definitely intervene and protect those who were accused. When I was in middle school I have had my bag searched at stores just because I came in without parents, the salespeople automatically don’t take you seriously and assume you can’t afford to buy anything. Like the video demonstrated I felt obligated to always buy at least one thing in order to prove I can afford it and wasn’t wasting their time. Personally, I work in retail and have been trained to spot shoplifters and I am very proud to say color has never been a factor in my training.

  2. Alyssa Rumann permalink

    I was especially moved by the video with the bakery that staged discrimination against the Muslim customer. I was appalled when one of the men who came into the store gave the cashier man a thumbs up for telling the woman she wasn’t American, dressed wrong, and was a terrorist. He even thanked the teller for putting her in her place. To know that there are people out there who still have such deep seeded feelings that if you don’t look a certain way, you are instantly profiled as an outsider is frustrating and worrisome. However, I thought that the people who stood up for her were very courageous, because they spoke up when most people who passed through the store decided to ignore everything. I think people don’t always agree with racial profiling, but are too afraid to do anything about it. Perhaps the fear is out of protecting safety for themselves, or to avoid being outcast from the majority consensus. On a side note, I had much respect for the man who stood up for her and told about his son who just served a year in the war and had recently returned home. He was very calm and sincere and didn’t raise his voice or call the man stupid or swear at him. His emotion was very evident, but he displayed his injustice in a very respectable way. Those are the kinds of actions we need to see more of.

  3. I think we see resistance here in profound ways — yes, we see people who support or go along with the racial discrimination but we also see efforts from people to challenge and resist

  4. Hailey Pusich permalink

    I think these videos proved that resistance is out there still. The few people that did stand up and show resistance for the people that were being discriminated against were very inspiring to me. That takes a lot of courage and bravery but also it shows what type of person they are. I would like to say I would stand up in a situation like of the three boys vandalizing the car like we watched in class but I know if it came down to it I would be too scared that they would hurt me, white or black. I think many people don’t say anything or stop the discrimination because they are afraid or they feel it doesn’t concern them so they just keep on walking. I think if more people show resistance the more likely more people are to show resistance as well because we know we are not alone in standing up for what we believe in.

  5. Carolina Salazar permalink

    I was surprised by the few people in the first two videos that spoke up and the ones that didn’t spoke up as well in different ways. For the ones that did spoke up, that just proved that resistance is out there, and it just inspires me to intervene if I do ever witness something like this, but depending on the situation, like say there is actually some sort of physical violence going on between the two or so people, I would probably just avoid the situation entirely and get away. For some of those that didn’t spoke up in the first two videos, to me it just seemed as though they were just not sure what to do with a situation like that, but the one guy in the first video that said that the black shopper was just “playing the black card” really caught my attention because it seemed as though he didn’t see this situation to be a racial issue which to me was more of an example of colorblindness.

  6. Katie Nelson permalink

    All of these videos truly inspired me to want to speak out and take a stand against racism in retail environments. I, fortunately, have never been in a situation where standing up against prejudices was necessary. I believe all of the videos however, demonstrate how discrimination and stereotypes are still prevalent in society. Whether the people doing it are actually aware that they are stereotyping a certain person, it happens all the time and I can even admit to doing so. In the restaurant I used to work at, a black bartender was always accused of stealing tips from other people when some were missing. It ended up that a white male teenager that was the new “expo” was actually stealing from the tip jar at night. This was a wake up call to my boss when she discovered all of her accusations were false, and she came off as racist to the staff.

  7. Alex Clark permalink

    I think it is very wrong to be suspicious of shoppers based on the color of their skin. If a person was black, they would be just as likely steal as someone who was white. The problem lies here; why are black individuals the only ones getting tailed in these stores and why are whites given a blind eye? The reason I feel is mostly lack of education and the effect that society and media has on people. If someone took about 10 minutes out of their day to do a little research on crime statistics, they would find that only following black people in their store might be the wrong decision, due to the fact that whites steal just as much, if not more than any other race.

  8. Connor McGee permalink

    Despite the fact that it was just an experiment, I felt that the video about people standing up for the black woman in the expensive store was an accurate portrayal of what actually happens in real life. I think that many people will go by situations like that and not stand up for the person being discriminated against, because they are afraid of what might happen or do not want to get involved if they do not know the person who is involved. I was glad to see a few people stand up to the store clerks, however, I was disappointed that so many let it go and turned a blind eye. If we are to do as much as we can to put and end to racism and discrimination… they key word here will have to be “DO”. Actions speak much louder than words – if we start to stand up to perpetrators of discrimination and injustice, more will follow. Setting a positive example outweighs talking about it in any situation.

  9. Kyla Chappell permalink

    After watching the videos, I was especially appalled by the videos of the black shoppers in the expensive stores. Also, I did not expect anyone, not one person, to stand up for this black girls. Considering it was an expensive store, I expected majority of the people to be “snoody” and not to really care if the store owners were discriminating against colored shoppers. I disagree with the comment above mine, that this is an actual portrayal of what really happens in everyday life. I think there are certain few people that would stand up for other people, but most people would be bystanders of it happening and stay quiet. To answer the videos question, “What would you do?” I would most definitely stand up for someone being discriminated against. No matter if I was in a high end retail store or at Walmart, I would NOT stand by and watch someone getting discriminated against and not do anything about it.

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