and to me, the important thing to notice is the differences in how rihanna and britney spears are treated. or madonna or denise richards or kelly preston or any of the multitudes of white women who have been abused or ARE being abused, in the case of spears—and how are they looked at? compared to rihanna? is madonna known and defined by the abuse she experienced? does anybody even know what i’m talking about when i say brittney is being abused?
why is nobody pressuring brittney to “just leave” and hoping she “stays safe”?
“That life is stressful for Black students and other students of color on predominantly White campuses should not come as a surprise, but it often does. White students and faculty frequently underestimate the power and presence of the overt and covert manifestations of racism on campus, and students of color often come to predominantly White campuses expecting more civility than they find. Whether it is the loneliness of being routinely overlooked as a lab partner in science courses, the irritation of being continually asked by curious classmates about Black hairstyles, the discomfort of being singled out by a professor to give the ‘Black perspective’ in class discussion, the pain of racist graffiti scrawled on dormitory room doors, the insult of racist jokes circulated through campus email, or the injury inflicted by racial epithets (and sometimes beer bottles) hurled from a passing car, Black students on predominantly White college campuses must cope with ongoing affronts to their racial identity.”
— Beverly Daniel Tatum, Why Are All The Black Kids Sitting Together in the Cafeteria? (via tabularasae)
Literally all of this stuff happened at Pomona College, a supposedly liberal haven.
also. i don’t feel like there’s enough discussion on public space when it comes to the civil rights movement. see the sitting at the front or back of the bus discussions or the lunch counter discussions. i feel like color blind liberalism has largely clouded the structural issues at stake with those situations almost completely—the question that rosa parks was forcing to the surface was not “where can i sit when i’m tired”—but “who controls the public space?”
who gets to decide what the rules of public space should be? who enforces the rules of public space? who gets to *access the resource of public space*?
do you realize how *massive* this is? how *profoundly* the black community toppled the order of white supremacist heteropatriarchy?
Important to note because the question of who controls public space is still relevant today. While that control isn’t rooted in law, if you are making it unfavorable or uncomfortable to be somewhere, it’s still a form of control.