Sunday, June 30, 2013

Post Racial America and Indirect Racism

  Since the end of the Civil Rights and Black Power movement, many white people have tried to distance themselves from being labeled a "racist". Although there are many other methods, the internet has long served as a safe medium for many people to voice their true feelings of other races in this current era called "Post-Racial America". With the beginning of George Zimmerman's murder trial, the judicial diarrhea of the US Supreme Court on the Voting Rights Act of 1964, and Paula Deen's (past) diarrhea of the mouth, the events of this week have removed multiple layers from the "Race Relations" onion of American society.

  There are 2 types of racism, both of which are common in the US, as defined by Kwame Ture (Stokely Carmichael) in his book Black Power : The Politics of Liberation(1967): Individual Racism and Institutional Racism.

  Individual racism is a small scale event between individuals or a small group of people in which one group acts against another based on an ideal that is intentionally or neglectfully racist. Paula Deen's "n-word" jokes are little more than examples of individual racism. Which, for those who didn't know, the law suit against Paula Deen was filed by a white employee, and it is about more than simple "n-word" jokes as described in this article from Black Legal Issues. Another example would be a group of Black guys beating up a white guy, just because he's white. As offensive as it may be, incidents involving individual racism do not have a lasting impact on the target group as a whole. But since it is on a person to person basis, the impact may last for the individuals involved. This factor is what allows racist ideals to be passed from generation to generation.

  Institutional racism is far reaching in the number of people it affects and is usually carried out by a group of people, although individuals can carry out this form of racism as well. This usually occurs when groups of people with racist ideals and states of mind get together - a majority of the time having positions of power. Where, as the picture above states, company policies, law enforcement practices, and legislative practices are created with the intention of harming, or infringing on the rights or progression of a designated group of people. These policies are designed and promoted as resolving a problem, but either intentionally or inherently create disparities through disenfranchisement, harassment, and other abuses of the negatively affected race. Some other race or group of races naturally benefits from it. The support for these forms of institutional racism comes from individual racists who would not want to openly express those views, or would otherwise be powerless to act on those views. Therefore they invest in or vote for, companies and politicians who will be able to deliver policies and business practices that have a similar ring to their racist ideals(although not explicitly stating so). The students of Prairie View A & M University's struggle for voting rights is a prime example of institutional racism, inspired by individual racists. Sporadic incidents of individual racism then begin to occur as a result of the policies and attitudes behind institutional racism.

  The Civil Rights and Black Power movements marked the end of the then commonplace overt racism. The passing of the Civil Rights and Voting Rights Acts, overt racism was outlawed. At that point, racial slurs took a back seat in the public eye, and made way for neutral terms like "criminals" and "illegals"(immigrants) to refer to a broad spectrum of people who will be affected by these policies. So we can ultimately define "Post-Racial America" as the period where it's OK to be racist(individually or institutionally) as long as you don't actually say that that is what you are doing. A period of time where race shouldn't matter, but it does, and unless there is a large enough group of people affected by it, there is no sure fire way to identify it.

  With a better understanding of what racism is and the different forms it can take, we can better prepare ourselves to develop and act on solutions to these problems. The problems of racism cannot be eliminated, but, similar to computer security, the threats or affect of those threats of institutional and individual racism can be transferred, delayed, or prevented from reaching fruition. By having a healthy and practical understanding of how racism works and the forms that it can take will help us to educate ourselves and others outside of the race in our continuing struggle is to secure economic, political, and social freedom and self-determination.


Saturday, June 22, 2013

The Black Silicon Valley

Ironically, I was listening to this song earlier in the day. Then heard Black In America was on.

I thought it was pretty good. As a people, we consume more technology than we produce. And with those working to create their own start-ups being in the NewMe Accelerator program, they already know what trying to break into the industry will be like. The telltale part of the show was when the Indian guy was telling them he had to use a white guy just to get his idea accepted into Silicon Valley. It shows us what the obstacles are and what level we'll have to be on to get known, for those of us in looking to get into the tech industry. But of course, the only way to recieve the best treatment and do business on our own terms is if we have our own cultur/economic centers, a Black Silicon Valley, similar to the Black Wallstreet we've had in the past.
I was in school for computer science... haven't finished the degree yet as I started working full time in anticipation of becoming a father. But I also saw that most of the people they featured on the show never graduated, and actually stopped at the same level that I did. Shows me, and hopefully others in my position that there's still more to struggle for than just getting a job. Takes self-education and motivation though. I've actually got quite a few ideas for software, games, and possible phone apps. Haven't been in school since the Spring semester of 2011, but I've still been trying to pick up where I left off and teach myself what I need to know about these programming languages to make them a reality.

A lot of times people in the conscious community get carried away with the "Matrix" talk and forget, or purposefully ignore, the fact that there are a lot of people who claim to be conscious but are out of touch with the average person that has to work a 9-5 or has dire financial problems that need to be solved.

 I'm not saying that independence shouldn't be or is not the main goal. But it takes money to start and run a nation, and money and skills to start a business. And you have to start small before you can move up to a city-wide, nation-wide or global clientele - all depends on what you're trying to do but the possibilities are endless. Build up clientele through your reputation and so on. I understand all that full well.

On an economically competitive level, we have to have some kind of training or skill development self-taught or otherwise. Nobody's going to do business with a doctor (holistic or not), a computer technician, carpenter, a teacher, etc.. with no training or certification. And if he/she fucks up while performing their job, they can't say "well there's nothing you can do cuz im not a citizen of the country(or a Sovereign Citizen) so the law doesn't apply to me" and not expect an ass whoopin(LOL).

I don't just sit on my ass waiting on someone to give me a hand out. I (1) use long ass facebook comments/conversations like these to write blog posts(
), I recently started doing gigs on, and since i'm not in school right now I've been teaching myself C++ and Python so I can actually create some of the software ideas I've come up with over the years.  There's money on the internet, and technology is and will be one of the many ways that black people will become competitive in the global economy, but unless you have a large following then you're just paying dues and scratching up money where you can. And I'm (2) looking for decent paying jobs that will a) help me develop my skills so i can run my own business, b) have a financial cushion for when I'm not getting much clientele, and c) have some start-up money (primitive capital) to be able to afford more books to further develop my skills and buy better equipment. Until then I've learned how to make do with freeware. Before I buy something I see if there is an equivalent free version. If there isn't then I try to get it cheap, or just do without. It's called survival and anybody with common sense would say that I'm not going to sit on the computer all day and not figure out how to use it to make money - applying for jobs or otherwise. There's more than one way to get up, get out, and get something.

(Updated 6/22/13) I have also attained the COMPtia A+ Certification, and I am currently studying to get the Network+ and Security+ certifications. The ultimate goal is to turn my knowledge and skills in computer repair and maintenance from a side hustle to an independent business. So once things pick up and when I get out my situation I can go back to the youth on the street in the same situation I came out of and say "I was in the same situation and this is one way to get out of it." But to do that you have to be in tune with the masses of the people, specifically the youth, because they're the main ones who need to be reached. They're the ones who make up the statistics that conscious people rant and rave over but preach to the choir (other conscious people) about, or teach the congregation (the masses) shit that goes over their heads or does nothing to solve their immediate, every-day, real life problems. If you're out of touch with those people, then no matter how you dress up your presentation they're either not going to listen, or they're going to give you more credit and power than you deserve which is no good for them. And that's the shit that I'm saying needs to stop.

Starting a nation and all that is good, like I've said before doing business and living under traditional African principles is a great goal. BUT focusing on starting a nation and developing our own laws and currency and all that is jumping the gun when the people you're supposed to be reaching can't or don't know how to pay their bills and fight dictators and corrupt politicians in the country they're living in now. And unless there are safeguards in place that the masses of the people know how to utilize, then those same masses that exist today on the bottom rung of society will exist in that future nation. They will be the worker ants of that new nation without a pot to piss in while they put money in the pockets of a new dictator with a black face. Denouncing your citizenship to where you don't have to pay taxes to America or any other European nation is all good and well but you have to have another nation to go to and a means of getting there or creating it (and PROTECTING it).