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Racism in the lesbian community


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#1
domino

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Hey out there.I'm new to computers in general,but I am tired of trying to meet other women in the conventional way. What really bothers me is people judging who you are based on skin color. We lesbian women are just as guilty of this as anyone.I love sistahs and hope to meet one I can settle down with.Anyone had luck on here? Women here in N.O. are really racist,or very ghetto or both.Sorry if I offended anyone,Im just trying my luck on here.The last girl I dated was married;so it didnt work out.Any help would be apprieciated. ONE HUMAN RACE. domino

#2
Guest_Anonymous_*

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Peace Domino...It would be more than wonderful, if we lived in a society that was not totally based on skin color and race issues...Within the gay and lesbian community however...the greatest misconception is that...because we deal with homophobia, in all areas of our lives...this should then allow us to be more sensitive to other people's struggles...from my experience...that is not the case at all... In order to deal with the racism that I was put under, by white lesbian women...I have learned to build my own circle of black women who work, are sexually intimate and who deeply love one another...doing this saved me alot of tears and frustrations....this is just the way that I learned how to keep my sanity and stay active in my community...I hope that this helps somewhat....

#3
Dees

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Mmmm, I don't know. I haven't seen racism in the lezzie community yet. Interesting concept though. Oddly, I'v only had serious realtionships with white women, which has always lead me to belive that there wasn't such a thing. How could there be?

#4
Lise441

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Dees, believe me it's out there, yet I'm in the same boat as you where I have long term relationships with White womyn but I don't ignore the fact that racism is alive in the lesbian community. You would think a group of womyn who are already considered outcast in main stream society would learn how to embrace one another as we are all up against the same struggle. I mean it's hard enough being a womyn, add being a lesbian, now discrimination from people who are in the same boat. Sad isn't it, but true. So, what do we do about it? ...But just in case they are reading this section I want to know if any of the White womyn have their own view on this issue and is not afraid to share as I am very curious about what they think.
Sometimes you stand on the edge of a cliff and you jump. You jump because you're tired of being scared. Sometimes you jump just to feel the fall

#5
roo

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I think it is easier to accept what you are, because you live it and understand it. It is also easier to not accept someone who is different because you don't understand that difference.

I have had the misfortune of being treated like garbage by folks in the black community (I'm white). I worked in a job in a large metropolitan area that is one hour from my home (which is much smaller). I had numerous people treat my rudely. Many times it had nothing to do with skin color, but (I think) sometimes it did. Sometimes I encountered the I'm-black-you're-white-so-you-owe-me attitude. I am not trying to be rascist, but this attitude does exist. I was brought up to believe we are all human beings and have to live on this planet together. We all have the same needs, and many of the same desires. No one should be treated like crap because of something like skin color, religion, etc. Do NOT treat me with the same attitude you would not like to be treated with. It goes both ways. If you want respect, then act like you deserve it.

I respect only those who deserve my respect. If I do not know you, I will give you the benefit of the doubt. If you treat me like garbage, I will lose respect for you, regardless of your skin color, sexuality, age, etc. Life is too short for me to bother with anyone who can't get with the program and treat others decently.

I do realize that there is frustration among minorities because there is still descrimination going on. And I do know that, historically, the groups that stand up and loudly protest are the ones that make the most progress. But I do know that you can both stand up and loudly protest and treat others (in and out of your group) with respect and decency.

I did not enjoy the treatment I got while in this job. I was just trying to do my best and help out anyone who needed it. There are people in EVERY group, (black, white, whatever) who act like jerks. Those people are an embarassment to the group as a whole, especially if people with limited exposure to that group see mostly the jerks. Also, unfortunately, there are pockets of these jerks in various communities. In my neck of the woods, most of the black people I know or encounter are like anyone else. They are curteous and reasonable. In this larger city, many (not all) acted like they had a big chip on their shoulder. They thought it was acceptable to be rude, just because they could be. I have seen the same thing in white communities. I used to live in a tiny, rural community. Many of those white people were intolerant, redneck, racists. They made me want to puke.

We are all human beings living on this planet together. Many groups have endured horrendous treatment at the hands of another group (slavery, concentration camps, the poor treatment of women throughout history, the discrimination against gays, etc.) We must both look past this, yet never forget it. Look past, because we can get caught in a cycle of feeling sorry for ourselves and forget that we can pull ourselves up and out of a bad situation and to fight against anything that keeps us down. Never forget it, so it does not happen again.

And I don't care what group you are from: There are those who whine that they are being oppressed and can not get a fair shake at life. They mope around in the muck they call life, never trying to move up and out. How is it some people with a shitty existence can pull themselves up and make something productive of their lives, yet others (sometimes in less shitty circumstances) can only whine and want handouts? You see it in all kinds of groups (the poor, whether black or white; some Native American tribes; younger people; older people; it doesn't matter). Sure, there's a certain amount of stuff that's going to happen no matter what, but YOU are still in control of how your life turns out. It may suck and be a lot of hard work, but it will be worth it in the long run.

Wow, did I rant? Lol. I do get tired of people who play the victim. You only get one life, why ruin it by acting helpless? Do something and be proud of yourself. I keep pulling myself out of crap holes. My efforts are not easy, but they are worthwhile. One more crap hole to go and I'm pretty much done.

Yeah, it does suck that those in the much-descriminated-against gay community will act hatefully towards others of a different race. C'mon, you know how it feels to be denied certain rights and treated like hell---don't treat others the same way you don't like to be treated.
A good woman is like a good book: you'll want to get lost in both for hours and be much the wiser for it.

#6
Lise441

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Roo, I don't think it's about people playing the victim, because when a group of people have been oppressed for so long and even today still struggles with subtle oppression, it's not playing the victim, you are the victim. Racism in this community sucks, and yeah I wish everyone was more open minded, but I have learned to be thankful for the ones who are open minded and hope that others will see the light.
Sometimes you stand on the edge of a cliff and you jump. You jump because you're tired of being scared. Sometimes you jump just to feel the fall

#7
kahloeyes

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This is an issue that I deal with in my work, and I am going to have to concur that yes, racism is alive and well. I am white, and will say, in regards to the victimization identity, that I disagree strongly with that. There is such a thing called 'stratifications' in society and to pull oneself up one must have the Resources to pull oneself up, and when those Resources are controlled, unequal access to, limited, hoarded, etc., then for many its not possible to pull themselves up, no matter how much they strive, and yes, many strive.

The Native American Indians are still having their lands raped, pillaged, misused, e.g., nuclear waste in Nevada, conflicts over sacred burial grounds, etc.

The African Americans and Latinos are the majority in our prison systems, majority who receive death sentences, the majority to suffer at the hands of outright and blatant police brutality (here in my state alone, we are fighting three cases of police brutality against African Americans and Latinos...in fact, not too long ago, an African American couple was shot in front of a store, and the man wasn't even charged, he was white. He should have been charged and he should have been held accountable to the full extent of the law.

The Arab community (and this one really irks me to no end) is being not only targeted but are being arrested, and not only arrested but held without legal representation, for undue amount of time, and it has been stated by both the government agencies (not only stated but CONDONED) and by Human Rights Watch groups that torture is common place.

The Latino community is still more apt to be exploited employment wise, immigrants who are legal, are more apt to be underpaid (sometimes illegally below minimum wage), refused worker's comp if they get hurt and if they protest they are threatened with deportation and I know personally because I work with these cases.

The Poor in this nation, including whites, especially Homeless, have absolutely No civil rights whatsoever, they are Criminalized, arrested for being homeless, told they can't sleep anywhere, can't use the restroom, if they attempt to form solidarity and build their communities then they are threatened, harassed, their personal belongings taken from them, threats of losing their children and often times do (and I won't EVEN go into the numbers of child abuse in the foster care system). And yet, we Still refuse, and still tolerate Regentrification of neighborhoods that are blue collar, working class (in all racial communities) and housing cost are ridiculous. Rent in this nation is more than Half of income. For someone making minimum wage, they aren't going to make it, especially if they are supporting a family.

Education tuition has been voted to go up in this nation and many colleges are privatizing, meaning only the Rich will be able to afford college...multicultural studies, women's studies, etc., grants have been cut, etc., from colleges.

Military recruitment is higher in poor and minority neighborhoods with the promise of how great the service is, however, statistics Prove that upward mobility in the service is not as easy for minorities as it is for whites.

Asians are reported to work in sweatshops, the women having to undergo pregnancy checks and being locked in for hours and hours, not able to leave, etc., within our Own US borders.

and we Wonder why there is anger in these communiites, among these peoples, we Wonder why they are Rude, etc.?

Yes, other groups have suffered horrendous crimes against humanity, hate crimes, etc., and several, lets take the Japanese Comfort Women, still have not received reparations, and Reparations for African Americans in this nation, which I feel is Due to them, because they did create the wealth and power of the South, is an issue that majority of whites won't even discuss much less consider...

and we wonder why they are rude?

Its called White Privilege and Class Privilege (sp) and its not only a problem, its increasing. If we really want to deal with racism then we are (whites) are going to have to stop skirting around the question of priviledge (and not saying that all whites have benefited from racial oppression the same way, sure, they haven't, and sure, immigrants from Europe too were mistreated, etc., but add up the tally and in time they all benefited/assimilated, etc [excluding those few individuals who did stand up and in solidarity fought racial oppression].

This however, is too, tied into the whole labor movement in this nation and why I think if we are going to address race then we have to address class, because the two are interlinked. And its been the issues of race and class that has been the thorn in the side of feminists, labor groups, homosexual rights, etc...

as far as the respect goes, sure, I can understand, even relate, however, its not an issue of simply 'moving on', how can one move on when the justice is denied that is rightly theirs? Judith Sklarr wrote an excellent piece on the question of justice (I'll find it and post link here).

And we have to know, that our nation Thrives on the exploitation of other nations, particularly nations of color, look at where our goods, those cheap goods, etc., are made? And the conditions they are made under...and the regimes that not only oppress freedom but terrorize the people into submission, eg., when they form unions and groups to fight for decent treatment, living wages, etc...

and we wonder why they are rude?

And is it that they are rude or just that they see all of the above, and that words of anti-racism is just not enough....same goes for classism. And too, what many don't realize, is that by refusing to really see, and I mean really see, we not only perpetuate a system and the social stratifications that oppress minorities, women, poor, poor nations, etc., we perpetuate a system that oppresses us too.

Something to think about...
"Both the oppressed classes, women and the immediate producers, must understand that their emancipation will come from themselves. Women will find allies in the better sort of men, But the one has nothing to hope from man as a whole" Eleanor Marx

#8
blacklesbian

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Quote

And I don't care what group you are from: There are those who whine that they are being oppressed and can not get a fair shake at life. They mope around in the muck they call life, never trying to move up and out. How is it some people with a shitty existence can pull themselves up and make something productive of their lives, yet others (sometimes in less shitty circumstances) can only whine and want handouts? You see it in all kinds of groups (the poor, whether black or white; some Native American tribes; younger people; older people; it doesn't matter). Sure, there's a certain amount of stuff that's going to happen no matter what, but YOU are still in control of how your life turns out. It may suck and be a lot of hard work, but it will be worth it in the long run

You speak of power but to be honest, without unity from all people who struggle, not a damn thing can happen. Blaming the poor, or suggesting that "the victims stop whining, and work harder", means that you have lost focus of who the real enemy is. Those MEN in blue suits who say that you can't marry who you want, or who use to say that if you got pregnant you have to have a baby, are the same men who make it hard for people to really live as humans. And when you lose sight of the enemy, you have already lost the battle.

I have to speak my piece before I fall out of my mind. You have stated in your argument Roo that some people need to just work harder, and this hard work will be their benefit in the long run. Please explain to me, how this goal can be accomplished when (a) people of color in america today still get paid less than the average white american, (b) race discrimination on the job is so rampant that "the victims" as you say, have to take low-end jobs to support their families resulting in inadequate health-care, and the mis-education of their children, and dangerous working environments. and last but not least © the jobs that do offer decent pay are often taken by people with higher educations and of course more money...

It is important that people not assume that poor people of color only have to "stop playing the victim, and work a little harder", in order to establish a better life in this country.That theory or that belief is the result of a capitalist, imperialist mindset, which blames the poor for being poor and NOT major corporations who make billions of dollars off of POOR PEOPLES LABOR.

Behind every counter, in every factory, in every basement, in every nail salon, there are people who work in order to SUPPORT their families, and these people GET NOWHERE, but hope that with their hard work...their children might have a chance. Which for the most part never happens. There are families who have been in this country for more than 3 generations and have nothing to show for it, even though their contributions continues to make this land very rich.There is a reason why socialists and communists parties advocated for unity and the slogan "workers of the world unite", suggests that if we remove humanity from struggle there will never be ANY progress. Roo, believe it or not "the victims" that you speak of, keep this world moving, and until we can recognize them as HUMANS who struggle under a capitalist regime, we have lost our essense as womyn and as lesbians...

because not to long ago, womyn who loved womyn were persecuted and burned at the stake. And womyn were told, that it is NOT their right to have abortions, or equal rights next to men. Womyn were told to "STOP COMPLAINING. Work hard and you can be a good housewife"!!! "Be submissive, you are weak, I am strong, deal with it". So why now in the year 2005, a womyn who says she is a lesbian, takes the same attitude as dick chenney, regan, bush and all those other assholes, I don't know, maybe one day I'll find out what the hell is going on :roll:

#9
Lise441

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blacklesbian, you're right! It's like I said before: you can accuse someone of playing the victim when they really are the victim. A lot of people have lost sight of who the real enemy is and instead turn to the racial/ethnic groups and tell them that it's their fault they can't get ahead or accuse them of not trying to better themselves. I don't know when this fight/struggle is going to end but I hope it ends soon :evil:
Sometimes you stand on the edge of a cliff and you jump. You jump because you're tired of being scared. Sometimes you jump just to feel the fall

#10
BauboBBW

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:evil:

we gotta get a grip, 'cos they are comin' for us....there's a perfect poem that would fit in this thread...don't have it with me now....but, i will come back and post it....
*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*
"Don't compromise yourself, you're all you've got..." - Janis Joplin





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