what is whiteness? what is it to be "white" in the USA?

Casual conversation between friends. Anything goes (almost).
Post Reply
User avatar
Luke
Posts: 2000
Joined: Mon Apr 06, 2009 9:04 pm
Location: Europe

Re: what is whiteness? what is it to be "white" in the USA?

Post by Luke » Thu Nov 24, 2016 4:08 pm

The Cicada wrote: 3) I can understand the concept of going to great lengths to acquire a fortune and capture womenfolk, but I can't envision anyone sailing as a recreational activity.
Sailing isn't just about showing off. It is also a great way to connect with nature and to learn to appreciate the power and beauty of the ocean.

It is a beautiful thing to pull your mainsail sheet (the rope connected to your main sail) in tight and feel the increase in speed as your boat leans farther over and glides over the waves. But, alas, I no longer live near the ocean, so I haven't sailed in many years.

I guess my point with all this is to point out that there are certain tastes and preferences which are more typical of white people than black people in the US. So these tastes and preferences are one component of "whiteness."

However, poor, uneducated whites have less of a "white privilege" than many of the social activists claim they do. Yes, a poor white guy is less likely to get shot by white police officers than a poor black guy is, but beyond that, poor whites have few advantages and have many problems associated with poverty. The rich, liberal white Americans general despise the poor white Americans and want nothing to do with them. So white Americans aren't even close to being one big unified tribe at all.

User avatar
Redfaery
Posts: 531
Joined: Tue Sep 30, 2014 1:14 pm
Location: Smalltown USA

Re: what is whiteness? what is it to be "white" in the USA?

Post by Redfaery » Thu Nov 24, 2016 4:52 pm

Luke wrote:However, poor, uneducated whites have less of a "white privilege" than many of the social activists claim they do. Yes, a poor white guy is less likely to get shot by white police officers than a poor black guy is, but beyond that, poor whites have few advantages and have many problems associated with poverty. The rich, liberal white Americans general despise the poor white Americans and want nothing to do with them. So white Americans aren't even close to being one big unified tribe at all.
It's not that they have less white privilege. It's that they don't have class privilege. So much of the discourse on social issues today ignores intersectionality. There are multiple types of privilege, and multiple types of oppression, and they all overlap and get tangled. Just because you have "white privilege" doesn't mean your life isn't hard because of other socio-economic or cultural reasons.
NAMO SARASWATI DEVI
Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever. - GANDHI
I am a delicate feminine flower!!!!

User avatar
Grigoris
Global Moderator
Posts: 17129
Joined: Fri May 14, 2010 9:27 pm
Location: Greece

Re: what is whiteness? what is it to be "white" in the USA?

Post by Grigoris » Thu Nov 24, 2016 6:06 pm

Redfaery wrote:It's not that they have less white privilege. It's that they don't have class privilege. So much of the discourse on social issues today ignores intersectionality. There are multiple types of privilege, and multiple types of oppression, and they all overlap and get tangled. Just because you have "white privilege" doesn't mean your life isn't hard because of other socio-economic or cultural reasons.
:good:
"My religion is not deceiving myself."
Jetsun Milarepa 1052-1135 CE

"Butchers, prostitutes, those guilty of the five most heinous crimes, outcasts, the underprivileged: all are utterly the substance of existence and nothing other than total bliss."
The Supreme Source - The Kunjed Gyalpo
The Fundamental Tantra of Dzogchen Semde

boda
Posts: 1856
Joined: Thu Jul 03, 2014 8:40 pm

Re: what is whiteness? what is it to be "white" in the USA?

Post by boda » Thu Nov 24, 2016 6:10 pm

Yes, a poor white guy is less likely to get shot by white police officers than a poor black guy is, but beyond that, poor whites have few advantages and have many problems associated with poverty.
It goes well beyond that, such as the mass incarceration of people of color, and everything that goes along with that.

binocular
Posts: 374
Joined: Fri Apr 05, 2013 3:58 pm

Re: what is whiteness? what is it to be "white" in the USA?

Post by binocular » Thu Nov 24, 2016 7:36 pm

Malcolm wrote:Sometimes in evolution, species make nonadaptive choices. This would be one of those.
It's not clear how this is the case.
Look how much time, how much attention you give them. They've managed to get large amounts of your attention -- attention which you could have spent otherwise. They have psychologically conquered you, at least occasionally. Now that is evolutionary success! To gain power over someone's mind, over their time, over their attention!

- - -
Bristollad wrote:How are you judging evolutionary success? By population numbers of particular phenotypes characterised by lightness or darkness of skins? Or are you judging their evolutionary success by another criteria such as annual income or level of successfully completed education and their supposed adjustment to modern societal pressures?
The latter -- their confidence and their effect on other people.
Or are you alluding to the incorrectly held belief that some hold, that "whites" and "blacks" are different species, just to be provocative?
I dare you to tell the Hindus that whites and Indians are the same species.
Why should white (supremacist)s care about blacks? This isn't a rhetorical question.
Why should the french and russian aristocrats have cared about their serfs? From a purely self-interest point-of-view, because today's malcontents and oppressed are tomorrow's revolutionaries and lynch mobs.
People generally don't seem to think all that highly of economical wellbeing, even if they say they do. What seems to matter the most in life is to be in a particular psychological state -- to feel powerful, regardless of one's material state.

User avatar
Malcolm
Posts: 27758
Joined: Thu Nov 11, 2010 2:19 am

Re: what is whiteness? what is it to be "white" in the USA?

Post by Malcolm » Thu Nov 24, 2016 9:05 pm

binocular wrote:
Malcolm wrote:Sometimes in evolution, species make nonadaptive choices. This would be one of those.
It's not clear how this is the case.
Look how much time, how much attention you give them. They've managed to get large amounts of your attention -- attention which you could have spent otherwise. They have psychologically conquered you, at least occasionally. Now that is evolutionary success! To gain power over someone's mind, over their time, over their attention!
People generally don't seem to think all that highly of economical wellbeing, even if they say they do. What seems to matter the most in life is to be in a particular psychological state -- to feel powerful, regardless of one's material state.
Because it is so much better to feign indifference and lack of concern when observing the rise of fascism...
Buddhahood in This Life
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔


[A]nything at all that is well spoken is the word of the Buddha.

-- Ārya-adhyāśaya-sañcodana-nāma-mahāyāna-sūtra

The different sūtras in accord with the emptiness
taught by the Sugata are definitive in meaning;
One can understand that all of those Dharmas in
which a sentient being, individual, or person are taught are provisional in meaning.

-- Samadhirāja Sūtra

Bristollad
Posts: 359
Joined: Fri Aug 21, 2015 11:39 am

Re: what is whiteness? what is it to be "white" in the USA?

Post by Bristollad » Thu Nov 24, 2016 10:01 pm

Bristollad wrote:How are you judging evolutionary success? By population numbers of particular phenotypes characterised by lightness or darkness of skins? Or are you judging their evolutionary success by another criteria such as annual income or level of successfully completed education and their supposed adjustment to modern societal pressures?
The latter -- their confidence and their effect on other people.
And you think the confidence and their effect on other people of some white people is just because of the colour of their skins? Not because of any other socio-economic factors? Really?
Or are you alluding to the incorrectly held belief that some hold, that "whites" and "blacks" are different species, just to be provocative?
I dare you to tell the Hindus that whites and Indians are the same species.
Not encountered any problems with HIndus nor anyone else from the Indian sub-continent so far. The most aggravation I've ever received was from a sweet little old grandmother who was my landlord when I studying at Horticulture college, who threw me out when I explained that blacks were not a different species to whites - this sweet old lady had been explaining to me why her granddaughter musn't marry the Nigerian she was going out with because the children, if there were any, would be damaged, not properly human. I've no doubt that racial prejudice is widespread amongst many groups around the world but you seem to feel there is a particular problem with Hindus...at least it makes a change from islamophobia.

Bristollad
Posts: 359
Joined: Fri Aug 21, 2015 11:39 am

Re: what is whiteness? what is it to be "white" in the USA?

Post by Bristollad » Thu Nov 24, 2016 10:20 pm

Why should white (supremacist)s care about blacks? This isn't a rhetorical question.
Why should the french and russian aristocrats have cared about their serfs? From a purely self-interest point-of-view, because today's malcontents and oppressed are tomorrow's revolutionaries and lynch mobs.
People generally don't seem to think all that highly of economical wellbeing, even if they say they do. What seems to matter the most in life is to be in a particular psychological state -- to feel powerful, regardless of one's material state.
This is not an answer to my point - you asked why white supremacists should care about blacks. Because if they don't, it may come back and bite them.

Your "answer" seems to suggest that you think people just need the illusion of power to be happy? I've not seen that work anywhere, have you?

You can fool some of the people some of the time, but you can't fool all of the people all of the time - eventually illusions are seen through.

binocular
Posts: 374
Joined: Fri Apr 05, 2013 3:58 pm

Re: what is whiteness? what is it to be "white" in the USA?

Post by binocular » Fri Nov 25, 2016 9:55 am

Bristollad wrote:And you think the confidence and their effect on other people of some white people is just because of the colour of their skins? Not because of any other socio-economic factors? Really?
? How did you come to conclude I might be thinking that?
at least it makes a change from islamophobia.
So often, what is popularily termed "phobia" is actually a hatred, not a fear.
Calling something a fear when it is actually a hatred messes things up.
This is not an answer to my point - you asked why white supremacists should care about blacks. Because if they don't, it may come back and bite them.
Sure, but bad consequences often aren't enough to deter people from a particular course of action.
Your "answer" seems to suggest that you think people just need the illusion of power to be happy? I've not seen that work anywhere, have you?
You can fool some of the people some of the time, but you can't fool all of the people all of the time - eventually illusions are seen through.
Having a psychological sense of power over others is essential to obtaining long-lasting, pervasive material power over others. Without that psychological sense of power over others, other forms of power over others cannot be obtained, or at least don't last anywhere near as long as with it.

The question is, where, how do people get that psychological sense of power over others? Religion -- particular varieties with particular interpretations -- certainly seem to be conducive to it.

- - -
Malcolm wrote:Because it is so much better to feign indifference and lack of concern when observing the rise of fascism...
Fighting them or feigning indifference toward them aren't the only options.
Another option is that you could try to convert your opponents to your way of thinking and living -- but for that, you'd need to give up your doctrine of personal autonomy.

User avatar
Malcolm
Posts: 27758
Joined: Thu Nov 11, 2010 2:19 am

Re: what is whiteness? what is it to be "white" in the USA?

Post by Malcolm » Fri Nov 25, 2016 3:15 pm

binocular wrote:
Malcolm wrote:Because it is so much better to feign indifference and lack of concern when observing the rise of fascism...
Fighting them or feigning indifference toward them aren't the only options.
Another option is that you could try to convert your opponents to your way of thinking and living -- but for that, you'd need to give up your doctrine of personal autonomy.
One could try, but it did not work very well in 1933.
Buddhahood in This Life
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔


[A]nything at all that is well spoken is the word of the Buddha.

-- Ārya-adhyāśaya-sañcodana-nāma-mahāyāna-sūtra

The different sūtras in accord with the emptiness
taught by the Sugata are definitive in meaning;
One can understand that all of those Dharmas in
which a sentient being, individual, or person are taught are provisional in meaning.

-- Samadhirāja Sūtra

User avatar
Grigoris
Global Moderator
Posts: 17129
Joined: Fri May 14, 2010 9:27 pm
Location: Greece

Re: what is whiteness? what is it to be "white" in the USA?

Post by Grigoris » Fri Nov 25, 2016 6:22 pm

binocular wrote:Another option is that you could try to convert your opponents to your way of thinking and living -- but for that, you'd need to give up your doctrine of personal autonomy.
Classic mistake of the egotistical. You believe that your view is the only correct view and that their view is incorrect. Thus all you have to do is to prove to them the validity of your perfect view.

A fatal error. Why? Because they believe the same thing too. They also believe their view is the only correct view. The difference is that they are willing to use violence to coerce you into accepting their view. Given their willingness to use that tool, that means you will lose, unless (unfortunately) you also pick up and use the same tool. And we've all seen how that worked out in the Stalinism vs Fascism conflict.
Last edited by Grigoris on Fri Nov 25, 2016 6:23 pm, edited 1 time in total.
"My religion is not deceiving myself."
Jetsun Milarepa 1052-1135 CE

"Butchers, prostitutes, those guilty of the five most heinous crimes, outcasts, the underprivileged: all are utterly the substance of existence and nothing other than total bliss."
The Supreme Source - The Kunjed Gyalpo
The Fundamental Tantra of Dzogchen Semde

Bristollad
Posts: 359
Joined: Fri Aug 21, 2015 11:39 am

Re: what is whiteness? what is it to be "white" in the USA?

Post by Bristollad » Fri Nov 25, 2016 6:23 pm

? How did you come to conclude I might be thinking that?
From your reply. That whites exhibited evolutionary success by being better adapted to societal pressures.
So often, what is popularily termed "phobia" is actually a hatred, not a fear.
Calling something a fear when it is actually a hatred messes things up.
Neither are conducive to peace of mind. Is it fear or hatred you have for Hindus?
Sure, but bad consequences often aren't enough to deter people from a particular course of action.
Again, you asked why SHOULD they care. I gave the pragmatic answer - self-interest. Of course, better would be because they develop compassion but baby steps first.
What seems to matter the most in life is to be in a particular psychological state -- to feel powerful, regardless of one's material state.
and
Having a psychological sense of power over others is essential to obtaining long-lasting, pervasive material power over others. Without that psychological sense of power over others, other forms of power over others cannot be obtained, or at least don't last anywhere near as long as with it.

The question is, where, how do people get that psychological sense of power over others? Religion -- particular varieties with particular interpretations -- certainly seem to be conducive to it.
You think achieving power over others is the path to happiness?

Which teachings of the Buddha attracted you to Buddhism?

binocular
Posts: 374
Joined: Fri Apr 05, 2013 3:58 pm

Re: what is whiteness? what is it to be "white" in the USA?

Post by binocular » Fri Nov 25, 2016 7:49 pm

Malcolm wrote:One could try, but it did not work very well in 1933.
Sherab Dorje wrote:Classic mistake of the egotistical. You believe that your view is the only correct view and that their view is incorrect. Thus all you have to do is to prove to them the validity of your perfect view.
A fatal error. Why? Because they believe the same thing too. They also believe their view is the only correct view. The difference is that they are willing to use violence to coerce you into accepting their view. Given their willingness to use that tool, that means you will lose, unless (unfortunately) you also pick up and use the same tool. And we've all seen how that worked out in the Stalinism vs Fascism conflict.
So, again, I ask: What are your suggestions on how to change, reform racists? How to make them stop being racists?

binocular
Posts: 374
Joined: Fri Apr 05, 2013 3:58 pm

Re: what is whiteness? what is it to be "white" in the USA?

Post by binocular » Fri Nov 25, 2016 8:15 pm

Bristollad wrote:From your reply. That whites exhibited evolutionary success by being better adapted to societal pressures.
Oh, I haven't thought of that. I know some blacks who are extremely manipulative, and as such, quite successful.
I don't think being of a certain color is connected with being better adapted to societal pressures, but in certain social contexts, being of the right color certainly seems conducive to be better adapted to societal pressures. E.g. being white among whites helps in becoming better adapted to societal pressures among whites; being black among blacks helps in becoming better adapted to societal pressures among blacks etc.
So often, what is popularily termed "phobia" is actually a hatred, not a fear.
Calling something a fear when it is actually a hatred messes things up.
Neither are conducive to peace of mind.
Maybe we need to rethink what "peace of mind" is.
Is it fear or hatred you have for Hindus?
They don't like me, I don't like them.
I had no idea my skin had color until I came in contact with Asians. Then, suddenly, I was considered to be someone who is eminently incapable of any spiritual progress because I am white and that the best I can do is pay them lots of money and unquestioningly obey them, and then, maybe, after a few kalpas of dutiful service to them, I will finally get it right and be reborn in Bharatavarasa with the proper skin color, although surely no higher than a sudra.
Sure, but bad consequences often aren't enough to deter people from a particular course of action.
Again, you asked why SHOULD they care. I gave the pragmatic answer - self-interest. Of course, better would be because they develop compassion but baby steps first.
Why should they have compassion for anyone?
In evolutionary terms, being very selective about whom to have compassion for seems to be an important trait for the survival of an individual or species.
You think achieving power over others is the path to happiness?
Observing society suggests that such is the case. Despite all "common sense" and the things that so many religious people like to say.
Which teachings of the Buddha attracted you to Buddhism?
I came to Buddhism by reading the suttas of the Pali Canon. I developed a practice around that, as good as I could, which wasn't difficult, since I grew up in poverty and am used to plain living. Then I came in contact with actual Buddhists. And I began to see that my understanding of what I thought were the Buddha's teachings was all wrong. For example, if you call yourself a Buddhist, then you can claim that the Buddha said this or that the Buddha said that, and you don't need to provide any scriptural reference for your claim, and you can nevertheless demand that other people believe that the Buddha said what you claim he said. That's something I've never managed to do, but it is very common among Buddhists.

Now I'm somewhere inbetween, although probably on my way out of Buddhism.

User avatar
Quay
Posts: 273
Joined: Mon May 16, 2016 6:07 pm

Re: what is whiteness? what is it to be "white" in the USA?

Post by Quay » Fri Nov 25, 2016 8:48 pm

binocular wrote:...
Now I'm somewhere inbetween, although probably on my way out of Buddhism.
That probably explains a lot of what you post. May your fortune be better next time.
"Knowledge is as infinite as the stars in the sky;
There is no end to all the subjects one could study.
It is better to grasp straight away their very essence--
The unchanging fortress of the Dharmakaya."

– Longchenpa.

Bristollad
Posts: 359
Joined: Fri Aug 21, 2015 11:39 am

Re: what is whiteness? what is it to be "white" in the USA?

Post by Bristollad » Fri Nov 25, 2016 9:45 pm

For example, if you call yourself a Buddhist, then you can claim that the Buddha said this or that the Buddha said that, and you don't need to provide any scriptural reference for your claim, and you can nevertheless demand that other people believe that the Buddha said what you claim he said. That's something I've never managed to do, but it is very common among Buddhists.
Huh? You've been mixing with some strange people if they've all been making stuff up and calling it Buddhism...unless of course you mean anything outside of the material recorded in pali is made up? And if that is your opinion, perhaps you've been posting and reading in the wrong forums.

But you seem to be questioning whether hatred is a problem, whether compassion should be non-preferential: so here is Karaniya Metta Sutta: Good Will to remind us of the Buddha's teaching on these questions.

1. "He who is skilled in (working out his own) well being, and who wishes to attain that state of Calm (Nibbana) should act thus: he should be dexterous, upright, exceedingly upright, obedient, gentle, and humble.

2. "Contented, easily supportable, with but few responsibilities, of simple livelihood, controlled in the senses, prudent, courteous, and not hanker after association with families.

3. "Let him not perform the slightest wrong for which wise men may rebuke him. (Let him think:) 'May all beings be happy and safe. May they have happy minds.'

4.& 5. "Whatever living beings there may be — feeble or strong (or the seekers and the attained) long, stout, or of medium size, short, small, large, those seen or those unseen, those dwelling far or near, those who are born as well as those yet to be born — may all beings have happy minds.

6. "Let him not deceive another nor despise anyone anywhere. In anger or ill will let him not wish another ill.

7. "Just as a mother would protect her only child with her life even so let one cultivate a boundless love towards all beings.

8. "Let him radiate boundless love towards the entire world — above, below, and across — unhindered, without ill will, without enmity.

9. "Standing, walking, sitting or reclining, as long as he is awake, let him develop this mindfulness. This, they say, is 'Noble Living' here.

10. "Not falling into wrong views — being virtuous, endowed with insight, lust in the senses discarded — verily never again will he return to conceive in a womb."
Last edited by Bristollad on Fri Nov 25, 2016 10:17 pm, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
Grigoris
Global Moderator
Posts: 17129
Joined: Fri May 14, 2010 9:27 pm
Location: Greece

Re: what is whiteness? what is it to be "white" in the USA?

Post by Grigoris » Fri Nov 25, 2016 10:13 pm

binocular wrote:So, again, I ask: What are your suggestions on how to change, reform racists? How to make them stop being racists?
Image
"My religion is not deceiving myself."
Jetsun Milarepa 1052-1135 CE

"Butchers, prostitutes, those guilty of the five most heinous crimes, outcasts, the underprivileged: all are utterly the substance of existence and nothing other than total bliss."
The Supreme Source - The Kunjed Gyalpo
The Fundamental Tantra of Dzogchen Semde

User avatar
Malcolm
Posts: 27758
Joined: Thu Nov 11, 2010 2:19 am

Re: what is whiteness? what is it to be "white" in the USA?

Post by Malcolm » Fri Nov 25, 2016 11:29 pm

binocular wrote: So, again, I ask: What are your suggestions on how to change, reform racists? How to make them stop being racists?
Desegregating schools, eliminating charter schools, and generally enforcing laws which are designed to orotect the civil rights of minorities.
Buddhahood in This Life
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔


[A]nything at all that is well spoken is the word of the Buddha.

-- Ārya-adhyāśaya-sañcodana-nāma-mahāyāna-sūtra

The different sūtras in accord with the emptiness
taught by the Sugata are definitive in meaning;
One can understand that all of those Dharmas in
which a sentient being, individual, or person are taught are provisional in meaning.

-- Samadhirāja Sūtra

undefineable
Posts: 736
Joined: Fri Feb 03, 2012 1:34 am

Re: what is whiteness? what is it to be "white" in the USA?

Post by undefineable » Sat Nov 26, 2016 1:24 am

binocular wrote:
So often, what is popularily termed "phobia" is actually a hatred, not a fear.
Calling something a fear when it is actually a hatred messes things up.
Neither are conducive to peace of mind.
Maybe we need to rethink what "peace of mind" is.
Are you suggesting that fear and hate are conducive to peace of mind? :rolleye:
You think achieving power over others is the path to happiness?
Have you achieved power over others?
binocular wrote:if you call yourself a Buddhist, then you can claim that the Buddha said this or that the Buddha said that, and you don't need to provide any scriptural reference for your claim, and you can nevertheless demand that other people believe that the Buddha said what you claim he said.
Google.

User avatar
maybay
Posts: 1604
Joined: Thu Sep 22, 2011 4:12 pm

Re: what is whiteness? what is it to be "white" in the USA?

Post by maybay » Sat Nov 26, 2016 8:32 am

Malcolm wrote:
binocular wrote: So, again, I ask: What are your suggestions on how to change, reform racists? How to make them stop being racists?
Desegregating schools, eliminating charter schools, and generally enforcing laws which are designed to orotect the civil rights of minorities.
Goodbye freedom of association.
People will know nothing and everything
Remember nothing and everything
Think nothing and everything
Do nothing and everything
- Machig Labdron

Post Reply

Return to “Lounge”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 33 guests