Anti Racist Meme

I was tagged for this one by Shelliza. She doesn’t say if she was tagged, or if she made this meme up herself. But I’ll go for it.

1. I am:

Mostly British. Some of my family came to the U.S. as recently as maybe 4 generations ago, from England. Some of them came over back in the mid 1600s. I remember growing up saying I was English, Irish, Scottish, and Welsh. I did our family genealogy a few years ago, and couldn’t find any Welsh, and the Irish and Scottish were both disputed. Some of my family came over as indentured servants, some as farmers, I don’t think any of them were rich when they arrived. At least, not many.

2. My child is:

Half British, half East Indian. I say British, because all of the groups I mentioned above are considered the ‘British Isles’, right? Her East Indian half comes via Ted, who was born in Canada, and his parents, who were born in Guyana. So you have to go back several generations to get to India.

3. I first started thinking more about race, culture, and identity when:

I was 16 or 17, working at Mr. Steak. (Boy, for such a short term job in my life, it sure comes up a lot on the blog, huh?) My male coworkers were all black, my female coworkers were all white. At one point, the restaurant was closed, but we were all sitting around talking, and I noticed that it was just the girls out front talking. I asked where the guys were, and someone said, “In back, probably eating watermelon”. I got up to go get some. Someone stopped me, thankfully. But that was a stereotype I hadn’t heard before. I’d like to say I didn’t hear many, but I guess I did, because my grandparents were very racist. I tried to ignore it as best I could, and my mom usually called them on it anyway.

4. People think my name is:

July. I swear, my name is Julie, and some people cannot spell it. Odd, huh? (This answer might be more interesting if I were Maya…she has a more interesting name.)

5. The family tradition I most want to pass on is:

The ability to cope with life’s struggles, and to maintain a sense of humor about it.

6. The family tradition I least want to pass on is:

Ignorance. My family comes a long way each generation, so I think I’ll be OK on that one. But I have heard my grandma say that she’s tired of black people complaining about slavery, because her great-grandfather died in the Civil War to free them. What she ignores is that on her father’s side, there were people fighting that same war from the other side. And my great grandfather refused to go through high school graduation, because he would have to stand next to a black boy.

7. My child’s first word in English was:

Maya.

8. My child’s first non-English word was:

Does Findi count? (That’s fake Hindi…when you make up words and say them in an Indian accent.)

9. The non-English word/phrase most used in my home is:

Mostly Findi words that mean nothing, often used to scold the dog. 🙂

10. One thing I love about being a parent is:

Watching Maya grow from a dependent little girl into an independent young woman.

11. One thing I hate about being a parent is:

The fights that come along with Maya both craving and fearing her independence.

12. To me, being an anti-racist parent means:

Teaching Maya that all people are created equal. I would like to say that we are teaching her to be color blind, but sadly, that’s not the world we live in. And actually, to understand someone’s color, and therefore maybe some of their culture, gives the world some of its beauty. So to me being anti-racist means acknowledging people’s differences, strengths, and weaknesses. Admitting to yourself that the color of someone’s skin does sometimes inform their beliefs and reactions to the world. Working with this information, and not judging someone as better or worse than another based on their ethnicity.

Also, being an anti-racist parent to me means to walk the walk. Standing up for your child, or yourself, or a stranger, when you see racism in action. Donate money to causes that support your beliefs in this area. For me, I donate to the Southern Poverty Law Center. They do amazing work. Check them out.

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As for tagging…no, not going to tag anyone. Feel free to take this one on if you feel like it.

13 thoughts on “Anti Racist Meme

  1. “Teaching Maya that all people are created equal” , is the best thing you can do as a parent.

    I’m so glad my parents raised me that way, because I feel racism growing in my adult thought process. I have to battle it every day and it’s so easy to blame race on everything!

    My Dad is much more racist now than he was when I was growing up! He always had his own business when I was a kid. Then he went to work at G.E. in the late 70’s. He has had to work with those of the “You owe me” mentality that our government has manifested! And again, it’s so easy to blame it on race.

    We are all born with a little racism. I battle myself with the Mexican invasion. I always tell my friends that I need to marry a Mexican chic so I will be more sympathetic to them.

    I get defensive when blacks pull the race card on me. I just flat out tell them “yes I’m racist, but I’m no more racist than you are!”

    I’m bluntly honest to a fault! Sorry!

    I find it impossible for anyone to be completely non-racist. We are only human, we’re always looking for a scapegoat. Some of us just have to be honest and say I battle it daily, just as I battle laziness!

  2. I know what you mean about generations. I think of things my grandparents said and I cringe. My parents are not quite as bad but they have their moments. I’m sure growing up in the South when they did permanently left ideas in their heads. I’ve had lengthy discussions with my children about race and racism.

  3. Thanks for doing this meme, J. I wasn’t tagged, just saw it on another blog and thought I’d do it.
    I speak Findi, too. Just didn’t know that was the name for it:)

  4. J
    I read the article, and of course I agree with very little of it. I guess I’m not liberal enough? Tee hee!

    I loved the comment section and agree with most who disagree with Mr. Carrol!

    My comment would be a mile long if I went into detail!

    I know it’s not their fault when I mentioned the “Mexican Invasion” in my earlier comment! They are just trying to better their lifestyle. I will agree it’s the government behind the scenes making it so easy for them to flood our country.

    I despise what our government has become, but I don’t blame one man or one party as the liberals do!

    Our government’s absurdity is the single biggest reason behind my decision to not have children!

    I love your posts, because you make me think! Even if we don’t think alike sometimes!

  5. My grandparents are constantly harping on the Mexican presence, which as everyone knows, is especially large here. And I think to myself, do you not remember that your grandson-in-law, whom you adore, is half Mexican himself? And that your great-grandson is 1/4?

  6. INTERESTING meme! Thank you for this one.

    You just reminded me of some of my own very important values that I need to talk with my kids about. Not just as the opportunity “arises”.

    You also reminded my of one of the many reasons that I had to unplug from my adoptive family. They are often prone to ignorant, racist remarks. NO THANK YOU!

  7. I was tagged to do this meme too. I need time to think it out because racism is one thing that is so ugly, that I hate talking about it.

  8. Hey, I subscribe to that magazine! I really like your answers. Racism is something I’m very conscious of and it’s probably the number one thing that can make me lose respect for a person. I can (sometimes) understand when someone holds hatred in their hearts over a wrong done to them. But I can’t even begin to fathom holding on to a form of hatred based on nothing more tangible than different ethnicity. Or sexuality or religion or gender, etc.

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