Phenotypes & Stereotypes

I drive three hours almost every weekend to go home to my family, and lately I’ve been listening to podcasts to help pass the time, namely RadioLab. I came across an episode from season five simply titled “Race.” There are a lot of interesting stories featured under this topic, but one in particular has kept me thinking long after listening to it. There has been this trend circling around the internet where people reveal the results of a DNA test that tells them what percentage of their genes are specific to other people living in certain regions. For example, if … Read more

Racist Comments in the Public Eye and How We Deal with Them

There are moments when a comedian goes from funny to offensive, or an ordinary college student goes from innocent and ordinary to an ignorant offender of a racist action. These are pivotal moments, because the way the world and those involved choose to respond can make all the difference of how the racial discourse continues on. Melissa Villaseñor was recently announced as the first Latina cast member of Saturday Night Live, and will start her first season on the show this fall. This was a great step forward for the show, adding some diversity and representing people of more racial … Read more

What’s A Patriot, Anyway?

Growing up in Massachusetts this word, “patriot,” was thrown in my face a lot. We even have a holiday day celebrating patriots, complete with parades, reenactments, and no work or school. It wasn’t until I came to college when I asked a friend whether we got off school for Patriot’s Day that I realized, from her very confused expression, that this day is not a national holiday and many people have never even heard of it. A recent article I read in The New York Times Magazine by Wesley Morris, Colin Kaepernick and Who Gets to be Called a ‘Patriot’, … Read more

Every. Single. Day.

Every. Single. Time. I got a campus safety alert in college, I crossed my fingers and hoped it was not a black or brown man. I remember hearing people say to stay away from sketchy neighborhoods in Allentown, which at the time didn’t look too different from where I grew up. I heard people talk about going to White Wawa instead of Black Wawa or “Blawa.” Some people would drive out of their way to exclusively go to the former. These instances are a symptom of a larger problem, black and brown bodies being seen as dangerous. Police brutality is a … Read more

Identity, Awareness, and Change

Last semester, I took an introduction to anthropology course because I thought it would be interesting to learn about other cultures and societies. This class taught me many valuable concepts, but one word that stuck out to me was the word, positionality. Positionality refers to how anthropologists define their background and how their identities influence their research. I found this quite interesting, because it made me examine who I am and where I fit in the big picture of society and race relations. I am a Chinese American, adopted when I was 16 months old by a white couple living … Read more

Complacence in the Classroom

I’ve been thinking a lot lately about my own racism. In class discussions of explicit versus implicit racism, I realized that although I am not an overt racist, I do (like many other White people in today’s society) exhibit implicitly racist tendencies. Over my education both in previous courses and this class of Contemporary Racism, I have become increasingly more aware of these tendencies and am actively making every effort to combat them. For example, a couple years ago in Multicultural Psychology, I learned the problematic nature of adopting a color-blind ideology. This semester, I learned about aversive racism and … Read more