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Thread: Blacks, whites show prejudices along racial divide

  1. #1
    Elite Member celeb_2006's Avatar
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    Default Blacks, whites show prejudices along racial divide

    (with the increasing diversity of America, I hope one day these discussions will be more than just black and white)

    Blacks, whites show prejudices along racial divide - Yahoo! News

    The Classic Creations barber shop sits empty, surrounded by drunks and shuttered storefronts just two blocks from the manicured lawns of Grosse Pointe Park. The contrast isn't lost on LaVar Anthony, a young barber who speaks in riddles of race, class and politics.
    "What's already understood," he says without looking up from his Ebony magazine, "don't need to be explained."
    But when it comes to race, what is understood? And what is misunderstood?
    And how can it be that in 2008 143 years after slavery was abolished, decades after the civil rights movement an AP-Yahoo News poll could find that racial misgivings could cost Sen. Barack Obama the election?
    In search of explanations, two Associated Press reporters one black, one white listened to people of both races along Detroit's divides: Alter Road, which separates the city from the tony Grosse Pointes near Lake St. Clair, and 8 Mile Road, the vast northern border between a mostly black Detroit and its mostly white suburbs.
    They found people of both races living just blocks apart who nonetheless spoke of each other like strangers. There was suspicion, contempt and yet, for many, a desperate hope that Obama's candidacy might be the final step in America's long path to racial equality. For whites, their support of Democratic economic policies forces them to confront their racial prejudices.
    It is here you meet decent people with much in common both sides of 8 Mile Road are populated by blue-collar Democratic families. But many still can't get past their racial differences.
    Whites say their neighbors consider blacks to be violent and solely responsible for problems in the black community.
    Blacks say many of their own consider whites to be spoiled and condescending.
    But nobody well, hardly anybody acknowledged their own prejudices. Both blacks and whites instead blamed "they," a vague and unaccountable surrogate for their own racial attitudes.
    "They" are whites who say Obama is unqualified when they really mean he's black.
    "They" are blacks who say all whites are bigots.
    Anthony knows who "they" are.
    "It's understood that there's still a lot of racism that goes on out there," the barber says with a nod out his window and a wisdom beyond his 30 years. "A lot of white people look down on blacks as being lazy or whatever."
    Perched on a ragged leather barber chair closest to the door, his knees pulled to his chest, Anthony fixes his gaze on a white journalist visiting his shop. "The stereotype against whites is that they have all the advantages," he says. "They all look down on us. They're snobs."
    ___
    Four of every 10 white Americans hold at least a partly negative view toward blacks, calling them "lazy," or "violent" or blaming them for the ills of black America, according to the AP-Yahoo poll. Such surveys draw criticism from whites who say the numbers are exaggerated and from blacks who say the numbers are too low.

    Let others argue about the math. Listen while the people of Detroit explain.
    "My kids have been called nigger babies. ... That was from a white family," says Cherlonda Hampton, a black woman shopping at an outdoor mall on 8 Mile Road.
    A petite mother of nine who looks half her 37 years, Hampton says she was harassed by whites while living in suburban Detroit. Feces were smeared on her car. A dead bird was left on a tire. When her child was bitten by a white classmate, the white principal didn't seem to care.
    After a year, Hampton returned to her segregated Detroit neighborhood.
    This is an apt place to talk about race in America. Detroit's population peaked at nearly 2 million in the 1950s and has been on the decline ever since, dropping to less than 1 million in the latest Census figures. Although racial tension isn't the only cause, the 1967 race riots hastened Detroit's decline and mandatory school busing a decade later stoked unrest.
    Coleman A. Young, the city's first black mayor and a racially polarizing figure, said before his 1997 death, "No other city in America, no other city in the Western world has lost the population at that rate. And what's at the root cause of that loss? Economics and race. Or should I say, race and economics?"
    White working-class Detroiters fled the city in droves, many to Macomb County and its working-class suburbs north of 8 Mile Road. Detroit's white-flighters were among the first to be dubbed "Reagan Democrats" socially conservative, economically progressive, mostly Catholic voters who abandoned the Democratic Party for the GOP, in part because Republicans exploited their racial fears.
    Their children and grandchildren are just as politically independent swing voters in a swing county that both Obama and Republican John McCain hope to carry en route to winning Michigan.
    And, like the Reagan Democrats of a generation ago, whites in Macomb County today aren't sure whether to vote their pocketbooks or their prejudices.
    "I work at a grocery store and I know a lot of people who are not going to vote for (Obama) because of the racial thing," says Colleen Mullins, a white woman who lives with her husband Daniel in a black neighborhood south of 8 Mile Road.
    "I'm hoping Obama wins because he's for the middle class," says Mark Coccia, 48, outside a suburban post office just north of Detroit. He's white, a laid-off factory worker and lifelong Democrat who's about to declare bankruptcy.
    An American flag cracks in the wind as Coccia explains that he agrees with Obama's politics and admires the Illinois Democrat. But Coccia can't move beyond race.
    "They can't blame the white man," he says of blacks. "Their own color sold them into slavery."
    Coccia takes a seat at a picnic table and opines that McCain will die in office if elected and leave a woman, Sarah Palin, as president. "That," he says, "is not right."
    Still, he may not back Obama.
    "What kind of choice do guys like me have? A black guy or a woman," Coccia says. "It's a lesser of two evils."
    He laughs, then turns serious though it is never clear how serious he was all along.
    "If Obama was a white candidate and gave the same convention speech," McCain wouldn't stand a chance. "But people are going to judge by the color of his skin."
    "Not me, mind you," Coccia hastens to add, "But they will."
    There's that pesky "they." You can talk for hours about "they" and "them" along 8 Mile Road. Though race relations are nowhere near as bad as they were in the 1960s, a white person can live for years in the suburbs without ever coming in contact with a black and, conversely, a Detroiter can grow up in the city without getting to know a white suburbanite.
    Here, it's unfamiliarity that can breed contempt or at least misunderstanding.
    It would be a mistake to dismiss Coccia as a "bigot" or "redneck." Such labels turn him into a cartoon, somehow taking the edge off his racial views.
    He exists, and so do his views, and they're shared by countless blacks and whites.
    "They're everywhere," says Scott Flatt, 37, after stopping his bike just north of 8 Mile Road in Eastpointe to talk about blacks. "But I don't mind blacks as much as some of my neighbors. They're bigots."
    Richard Mosely, a 35-year-old engineer working just west of Alter Road in Detroit, sets aside his blueprints to discuss the sentiments of fellow blacks. "They think whites are punks," he says. "I don't, necessarily."
    Blacks are more generous in their description of whites than whites are of blacks, according to the AP-Yahoo News poll, but the two races see racial discrimination in starkly different terms.
    When asked "how much discrimination against blacks" exists, just 10 percent of whites said "a lot" and 45 percent said "some."
    Among blacks, 57 percent said "a lot" and all but a fraction of the rest said "some."
    ___
    Two blocks from Anthony's barber shop in Detroit, James Turnbull of Grosse Pointe Park takes a break from his morning gardening to show off his prized blooms to a black journalist. Before long, the conversation turns to race, class and politics, subjects the 71-year-old white man encountered as a young man working in poor, black neighborhoods in the Jim Crow South.
    While repossessing a family's kitchen appliances, "I would have a, pardon the expression, pickanniny on one arm," he recalls.
    In one breath, Turnbull politely uses that long-passe pejorative for a black child. In the next, he says he's been around black politics for a long time and worked for former Detroit Mayor Dennis Archer, who is black. He believes the poll results showing white Democrats are letting their prejudices affect their vote.
    "It does surprise me that they admitted it," he says.
    Separated by a short walk from Anthony's barber shop to Turnbull's blooms are two ways of life: Porsches north of Alter Road, busy bus stops to the south; canopied awnings decorating storefronts to the north; bars and steel sliding doors protecting shops to south; white and black drivers pumping gas across the street from one another at unofficially segregated stations.
    Not that Turnbull minds. "You live here, you don't see it," he says.
    But he does notice a group of young, black men walking west on Jefferson, headed out of the Grosse Pointes into Detroit.
    "You see them?" he points. "Some folks would look at them and say, 'There go three potential gang members. They've got the black do-rags. Their pants are sagging. They don't look like your neighborhood kid here.'"
    But to him? Turnbull wipes the soil from soiled hands and thinks for a minute. "I would hope that I would see just a bunch of kids."

  2. #2
    Elite Member Grimmlok's Avatar
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    i dont care what color someone is as long as they do a good job.
    I am from the American CIA and I have a radio in my head. I am going to kill you.

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    Elite Member kingcap72's Avatar
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    ^^Same here. But what I find interesting is that Obama keeps getting accused of playing the race card, but the media keeps making a bigger issue of race. Will whites vote for Obama? How many blacks will vote for Obama? Will racism cost Obama the election?

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    Elite Member HWBL's Avatar
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    ^It is true. I saw a white lady on TV the other day in Mississippi, right
    after the debate. She said she originally was going to vote for Hillary,
    but now she'd vote for the McCain/Palin ticket citing as the most
    important reason that McSame had so much more experience than
    Obama..... So, suddenly the issues didn't seem to matter, cos she
    changed alliances (as in actual differences in their programs) from
    Dems to Repugs when Hillary didn't become the democratic candidate.
    Go figure!
    Warren Beatty: actor, director, writer, producer.

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    Elite Member RevellingInSane's Avatar
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    That does not surprise me. Some of the most ignorant, bigoted people, who represented every race, I have ever had the misfortune of dealing with were from Michigan, Illinois, and Minnesota.

    In the south, the bigots have enough functioning brain cells to know their beliefs are socially unacceptable. Not so north of the Mason-Dixon.

    If skin color is still such an important issue, no one had better whine if McCain is elected and they are white, poor, and hiding in caves to avoid the warfare McCrazy brings.



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    RIS, I saw some of the same thing in Boston. And don't even get me started on the black people (including a few family members) I know who talk about "dem white people" all the time like it's all white people who are out to get them. SMDH...
    My rape kit brings all the girls to the yard, and I'm like, where's your credit card?
    Damn right, where's your credit card?
    Cause to get this there's a hefty charge!

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    Elite Member bychance's Avatar
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    I have to put spaces

    Blacks, whites show prejudices along racial divide - Yahoo! News

    The Classic Creations barber shop sits empty, surrounded by drunks and shuttered storefronts just two blocks from the manicured lawns of Grosse Pointe Park. The contrast isn't lost on LaVar Anthony, a young barber who speaks in riddles of race, class and politics.

    "What's already understood," he says without looking up from his Ebony magazine, "don't need to be explained."
    But when it comes to race, what is understood? And what is misunderstood?

    And how can it be that in 2008 143 years after slavery was abolished, decades after the civil rights movement an AP-Yahoo News poll could find that racial misgivings could cost Sen. Barack Obama the election?

    In search of explanations, two Associated Press reporters one black, one white listened to people of both races along Detroit's divides: Alter Road, which separates the city from the tony Grosse Pointes near Lake St. Clair, and 8 Mile Road, the vast northern border between a mostly black Detroit and its mostly white suburbs.

    They found people of both races living just blocks apart who nonetheless spoke of each other like strangers. There was suspicion, contempt and yet, for many, a desperate hope that Obama's candidacy might be the final step in America's long path to racial equality. For whites, their support of Democratic economic policies forces them to confront their racial prejudices.

    It is here you meet decent people with much in common both sides of 8 Mile Road are populated by blue-collar Democratic families. But many still can't get past their racial differences.

    Whites say their neighbors consider blacks to be violent and solely responsible for problems in the black community.

    Blacks say many of their own consider whites to be spoiled and condescending.

    But nobody well, hardly anybody acknowledged their own prejudices. Both blacks and whites instead blamed "they," a vague and unaccountable surrogate for their own racial attitudes.

    "They" are whites who say Obama is unqualified when they really mean he's black.

    "They" are blacks who say all whites are bigots.
    Anthony knows who "they" are.

    "It's understood that there's still a lot of racism that goes on out there," the barber says with a nod out his window and a wisdom beyond his 30 years. "A lot of white people look down on blacks as being lazy or whatever."

    Perched on a ragged leather barber chair closest to the door, his knees pulled to his chest, Anthony fixes his gaze on a white journalist visiting his shop. "The stereotype against whites is that they have all the advantages," he says. "They all look down on us. They're snobs."

    Four of every 10 white Americans hold at least a partly negative view toward blacks, calling them "lazy," or "violent" or blaming them for the ills of black America, according to the AP-Yahoo poll. Such surveys draw criticism from whites who say the numbers are exaggerated and from blacks who say the numbers are too low.

    Let others argue about the math. Listen while the people of Detroit explain.

    "My kids have been called nigger babies. ... That was from a white family," says Cherlonda Hampton, a black woman shopping at an outdoor mall on 8 Mile Road.

    A petite mother of nine who looks half her 37 years, Hampton says she was harassed by whites while living in suburban Detroit. Feces were smeared on her car. A dead bird was left on a tire. When her child was bitten by a white classmate, the white principal didn't seem to care.
    After a year, Hampton returned to her segregated Detroit neighborhood.

    This is an apt place to talk about race in America. Detroit's population peaked at nearly 2 million in the 1950s and has been on the decline ever since, dropping to less than 1 million in the latest Census figures. Although racial tension isn't the only cause, the 1967 race riots hastened Detroit's decline and mandatory school busing a decade later stoked unrest.

    Coleman A. Young, the city's first black mayor and a racially polarizing figure, said before his 1997 death, "No other city in America, no other city in the Western world has lost the population at that rate. And what's at the root cause of that loss? Economics and race. Or should I say, race and economics?"

    White working-class Detroiters fled the city in droves, many to Macomb County and its working-class suburbs north of 8 Mile Road. Detroit's white-flighters were among the first to be dubbed "Reagan Democrats" socially conservative, economically progressive, mostly Catholic voters who abandoned the Democratic Party for the GOP, in part because Republicans exploited their racial fears.
    Their children and grandchildren are just as politically independent swing voters in a swing county that both Obama and Republican John McCain hope to carry en route to winning Michigan.

    And, like the Reagan Democrats of a generation ago, whites in Macomb County today aren't sure whether to vote their pocketbooks or their prejudices.

    "I work at a grocery store and I know a lot of people who are not going to vote for (Obama) because of the racial thing," says Colleen Mullins, a white woman who lives with her husband Daniel in a black neighborhood south of 8 Mile Road.

    "I'm hoping Obama wins because he's for the middle class," says Mark Coccia, 48, outside a suburban post office just north of Detroit. He's white, a laid-off factory worker and lifelong Democrat who's about to declare bankruptcy.

    An American flag cracks in the wind as Coccia explains that he agrees with Obama's politics and admires the Illinois Democrat. But Coccia can't move beyond race.
    "They can't blame the white man," he says of blacks. "Their own color sold them into slavery."

    Coccia takes a seat at a picnic table and opines that McCain will die in office if elected and leave a woman, Sarah Palin, as president. "That," he says, "is not right."
    Still, he may not back Obama.

    "What kind of choice do guys like me have? A black guy or a woman," Coccia says. "It's a lesser of two evils."
    He laughs, then turns serious though it is never clear how serious he was all along.

    "If Obama was a white candidate and gave the same convention speech," McCain wouldn't stand a chance. "But people are going to judge by the color of his skin."
    "Not me, mind you," Coccia hastens to add, "But they will."

    There's that pesky "they." You can talk for hours about "they" and "them" along 8 Mile Road. Though race relations are nowhere near as bad as they were in the 1960s, a white person can live for years in the suburbs without ever coming in contact with a black and, conversely, a Detroiter can grow up in the city without getting to know a white suburbanite.

    Here, it's unfamiliarity that can breed contempt or at least misunderstanding.

    It would be a mistake to dismiss Coccia as a "bigot" or "redneck." Such labels turn him into a cartoon, somehow taking the edge off his racial views.

    He exists, and so do his views, and they're shared by countless blacks and whites.

    "They're everywhere," says Scott Flatt, 37, after stopping his bike just north of 8 Mile Road in Eastpointe to talk about blacks. "But I don't mind blacks as much as some of my neighbors. They're bigots."

    Richard Mosely, a 35-year-old engineer working just west of Alter Road in Detroit, sets aside his blueprints to discuss the sentiments of fellow blacks. "They think whites are punks," he says. "I don't, necessarily."

    Blacks are more generous in their description of whites than whites are of blacks, according to the AP-Yahoo News poll, but the two races see racial discrimination in starkly different terms.

    When asked "how much discrimination against blacks" exists, just 10 percent of whites said "a lot" and 45 percent said "some."

    Among blacks, 57 percent said "a lot" and all but a fraction of the rest said "some."

    Two blocks from Anthony's barber shop in Detroit, James Turnbull of Grosse Pointe Park takes a break from his morning gardening to show off his prized blooms to a black journalist. Before long, the conversation turns to race, class and politics, subjects the 71-year-old white man encountered as a young man working in poor, black neighborhoods in the Jim Crow South.

    While repossessing a family's kitchen appliances, "I would have a, pardon the expression, pickanniny on one arm," he recalls.

    In one breath, Turnbull politely uses that long-passe pejorative for a black child. In the next, he says he's been around black politics for a long time and worked for former Detroit Mayor Dennis Archer, who is black. He believes the poll results showing white Democats are letting their prejudices affect their vote.

    "It does surprise me that they admitted it," he says.
    Separated by a short walk from Anthony's barber shop to Turnbull's blooms are two ways of life: Porsches north of Alter Road, busy bus stops to the south; canopied awnings decorating storefronts to the north; bars and steel sliding doors protecting shops to south; white and black drivers pumping gas across the street from one another at unofficially segregated stations.

    Not that Turnbull minds. "You live here, you don't see it," he says.

    But he does notice a group of young, black men walking west on Jefferson, headed out of the Grosse Pointes into Detroit.

    "You see them?" he points. "Some folks would look at them and say, 'There go three potential gang members. They've got the black do-rags. Their pants are sagging. They don't look like your neighborhood kid here.'"
    But to him? Turnbull wipes the soil from soiled hands and thinks for a minute. "I would hope that I would see just a bunch of kids."
    I was deeply insulted by one comment on Sodahead where someone spewing the same patriotic questioning nonsense, mentioned he doesn't respect affirmative action, which brought him where he is today

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    Elite Member kingcap72's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by HWBL View Post
    ^It is true. I saw a white lady on TV the other day in Mississippi, right
    after the debate. She said she originally was going to vote for Hillary,
    but now she'd vote for the McCain/Palin ticket citing as the most
    important reason that McSame had so much more experience than
    Obama..... So, suddenly the issues didn't seem to matter, cos she
    changed alliances (as in actual differences in their programs) from
    Dems to Repugs when Hillary didn't become the democratic candidate.
    Go figure!
    True, everybody's got prejudices, black, white, brown and yellow. And there are going to be people who refuse to vote for Obama because of his race. That's a given.

    But my point was, why are the media making such an issue out of the role that race may, or may not, play in this election? It's almost as if the media is trying to fan the race issues in this election by constantly making an issue out of it.

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    Elite Member RevellingInSane's Avatar
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    Truth be told, every "race" has issues. The only dividing line between people is based on intelligence. I admit I am prejudiced, but only against ignorant people.

    The ignorant few lead to the stereotypes, which the media exploits. The most racist people I have met are usually living, breathing examples of the stereotypes of their culture, but are too busy pointing out the shortcomings of everyone else to notice they are trash themselves.



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    Elite Member crumpet's Avatar
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    In other words, water is wet. News at 11.

    What I take issue with is the fallacious assertion that if he loses it will be becaue of race, as though there are no other reasons that people lose elections. Someone always wins and someone always loses even when they are both white men. The election will be close no matter how it ends up and if Obama loses by 4 percentage points it will be ludicrous to blame racism because that is a hell of a lot......millions and millions of people who will have voted for him and these are people of all races, not just black Americans. This man has tons of white supporters. Also, this assumes that he is so perfect that nothing other than racism could be behind someone not supporting him. John Kerry lost,too, was that becasue of racism?

    Racism exists for sure but it is not the only reason that things don't go the way you want it.
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    Elite Member kingcap72's Avatar
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    ^^Well, Obama has already stated that if he loses it'll be for other reasons than racism. And I don't think racism is going to play as big a role as the media thinks. If it was, Obama wouldn't have gotten this far.

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    Silver Member betagrl's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kingcap72 View Post
    True, everybody's got prejudices, black, white, brown and yellow. And there are going to be people who refuse to vote for Obama because of his race. That's a given.

    But my point was, why are the media making such an issue out of the role that race may, or may not, play in this election? It's almost as if the media is trying to fan the race issues in this election by constantly making an issue out of it.
    I completely agree with you. I just try to ignore most of these types of articles. They're not productive at all.

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    Elite Member crumpet's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kingcap72 View Post
    ^^Well, Obama has already stated that if he loses it'll be for other reasons than racism. And I don't think racism is going to play as big a role as the media thinks. If it was, Obama wouldn't have gotten this far.
    I agree with you. Obama hasn't said it, but you have some of his supporters making that assumption and hopefully it will not be reflected back on him. I especially agree with your last line. If race were that huge of an issue someone should explain how he beat out all those white contenders to get where he is.
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    Quote Originally Posted by crumpet View Post
    I agree with you. Obama hasn't said it, but you have some of his supporters making that assumption and hopefully it will not be reflected back on him. I especially agree with your last line. If race were that huge of an issue someone should explain how he beat out all those white contenders to get where he is.
    I hate that. Someone once remarked that "Obama's camp" has made race an issue. Since when?!

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