Silence is a Luxury

The idea of white privilege is a very controversial topic for many, primarily because many white individuals do not acknowledge their race and its meaning, are not aware of the advantages and benefits they receive because of their race, and do not see how their whiteness affects their perception of society. However, white privilege and society have a large intersection because, “when it comes to privilege, it doesn’t matter who we really are. What matters is who other people think we are.” The existing societal norms decide who we are as people and where we are categorized. By being white, … Read more

Racism in The Simpsons

The long-running animated series The Simpsons features a character named Apu, an Indian man who works at the local convenience store and is a close friend of the family. When the show first aired in 1989, the character was instantly beloved by viewers and rose to be one of its most popular characters. However, as almost 30 years as past, Apu has become more and more controversial. Last year, Indian-American comic Hari Kondabolu released a documentary titled The Problem with Apu, in which he criticized the character for essentializing a group of people and fueling bullying of and racism towards … Read more

Stereotype Threat, Not just a Threat

Think about the word “stereotype”, what first come up to your mind? For many people they may recall some stuff like “blacks have lower intelligence”, “females are not good at math” and so on. It’s not a surprise to find many stereotypes are related to race and gender, which are also major sources of lots of social contradictions. People know that stereotype sometimes can cause intense emotional reaction and defensive behaviors, but their understanding of it may just stop there. They believe stereotype is just as abstract as a concept. However when stereotype becomes a threat, it will have actual … Read more

Starbucks Doesn’t Serve their Coffee Black

Early last week, on April 12th, two Black men were arrested inside a Philadelphia Starbucks. The store manager had called the cops, saying there was a disturbance, that these men were refusing to leave the premises, and that she was scared. In response to the call, a group of police officers came inside the establishment, did not ask the two men any questions about their presence in the Starbucks, and immediately handcuffed them and walked them out to the patrol car. During the events taking place, a customer filmed what was going on and posted it onto her Twitter, making … Read more

An Open Letter to My “White” Black Friend

It is very easy, I’ve found, to look out and look around and see behaviors and interactions that are silently swept into the cyclical system that White supremacy has made out of our country. It is valuable as it is easy to analyze and self-educate in response to these observations. A habit equally if not more valuable to the resistance to oppressive systems, however, is the ability to look inward to analyze and learn from one’s own behavior. In practicing this, I am writing an open letter to one of my best friends from home. We’ll call him James for … Read more

Mythbusters: Mass Incarceration

For most of the 20th century the prison population in the United States remained below 300,000 prisoners. By the year 2000 the population rose to over one million prisoners. When numerically compared to other western nations, the US prison population rises to the top. The racial disproportion in prison populations is unmistakable; African American men make up 39% of the prison population though they represent less than 12% of the total adult male population. (Bobo and Thomson, 2010). The heavy presence of incarceration in the United Sates might seem to reflect high crime rates and a successful police force, where … Read more