[eDebate] little white lies

Kevin Sanchez let_the_american_empire_burn
Tue Dec 9 08:40:57 CST 2008


to return obliquely to the discussion of anti-racism in debate from a couple
months back (http://www.ndtceda.com/pipermail/edebate/2008-August/075589.html ,
http://www.ndtceda.com/pipermail/edebate/2008-August/075643.html ,
http://www.ndtceda.com/pipermail/edebate/2008-August/075864.html ),
i'd like to add this recent exchange between slavoj zizek and cornel west:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KabYKzIoB4c

at 8minutes and 12seconds, zizek posits the following hypothetical directly
to west, "let us say that you are of another race. i as a white liberal (which
i'm not, but...) say, 'oh i like blacks blahblahblah'. but then through some hint,
you get my racism. literally, you see, i don't know, i'm not aware of beliefs
which i practice in my acts. that's the side of ideological illusion...".

you'll notice how this echoes the concepts of 'unconscious racism' and 'racial
micro-aggression' developed by critical race theorists (see above links). it's in
part due to this peculiar feature of ideological illusion that it's possible to have
a society not only in which no one openly says 'i'm a racist', but in which no one
*believes* themselves to be racist, while nevertheless racist practices continue.

perhaps this is also a way to account for the brute fact that at the same time as
american voters elected their first black president, they're also presiding over the
most dramatic evisceration of african-american wealth in u.s. history. 

"When Hurricane Katrina hit, 133,000
families lost their homes and dispersed.
When
the subprime crisis is
finished, about 3 million families will
be displaced and lose their
homes.
This tsunami is almost 30 times larger
than Katrina, but it is invisible because
it happens one house at a time in
neighborhoods across the country. It?s
a silent and
invisible storm, but the
magnitude is utterly catastrophic. ...[C]lose to 20 percent of
all African-American homeowners will lose their
homes,which is not too surprising if
you remember that 50 to 60 percent
of all mortgages by African Americans
in the
last three years have been
subprime loans."
-- http://www.ssireview.org/articles/entry/15_minutes_with_martin_eakes/

see also,
http://www.responsiblelending.org/pdfs/rr011-Unfair_Lending-0506.pdf
http://www.faireconomy.org/files/pdf/StateOfDream_01_16_08_Web.pdf

...yet talk of reparations is still widely considered a non-starter in the political
mainstream. crazy.



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