The Gates Arrest: what does it say about race?

Discussion in 'Archive: The Senate Floor' started by Obi-Ewan, Jul 23, 2009.

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  1. Fire_Ice_Death Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Feb 15, 2001
    star 7
  2. Espaldapalabras Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 25, 2005
    star 5
    Oh come on. You know why people are "cowards" when it comes to talking about race in this country? Because we can't have a discussion about it without it eventually coming down to somebody being called a racist. And when you call a white person a racist, there is really no appropriate response to the charge. I can go off on how I have black friends and voted for Obama and such, but that just comes off as hollow. Once charged, there is really no way for me to prove I'm not a racist.

    If you really think I wasn't aware of the irony inherent in the statement, believe what you want. I was just pulling a FIDo. Obviously not all black people are the same and it is silly to make such sweeping generalizations. But if there is something "teachable" that applies to race relations throughout the country, yes it is what we have learned that it is the black person who labels another racist when race played no part of that person's actions because by crying racism when it is not present they may get better treatment by those now avoiding the appearance or racism. Don't act as if nobody has ever played the race card for entirely suprious reasons. Whether race played a role in his arrest a totally different matter, but it is ridiculous to claim that it was racist of the cop to show up at the house and ask questions of the person living there. To me to cry that the action is racist is in fact much more racist than any pseudo-racist generalization I made in order to provoke a reaction.

  3. SuperWatto Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Sep 19, 2000
    star 5
    If it is - which I don't necessarily agree with - then I don't see how your going on about it is any less racist, Espy.
  4. Lord Vivec Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Apr 17, 2006
    star 7
    Seriously, just stop.

    Oh come on. You know why people are "cowards" when it comes to talking about race in this country? Because we can't have a discussion about it without it eventually coming down to somebody being called a racist.

    You made a comment in the beginning which creates a lens for everyone to look through when analyzing any subsequent posts. Now don't try to make this about me attacking you. I didn't post in the very beginning what you did.

    And when you call a white person a racist, there is really no appropriate response to the charge. I can go off on how I have black friends and voted for Obama and such, but that just comes off as hollow. Once charged, there is really no way for me to prove I'm not a racist.

    Yes there is. You can post that you have made no racist statement and proceed to show why said statement is not racist. Or you can post that you made a racist statement, was not careful about the statement you made, and would like to retract said racist statement.

    Instead, you're trying to cop out of a defense by making a false analysis of the situation. By falsely claiming that you cannot defend yourself, you are trying to get out of defending yourself, something which is either intellectually lazy or intellectually dishonest.

    Now instead of stating that I am attacking you unfairly and calling you racist, look at the situation. You made a comment, something you claim, through back-peddling, as "pulling a FIDo." I have spoken to FIDo many times, so this "pulling a FIDo" makes no sense to me as he doesn't do this kind of stuff. Now back to the situation.

    1)You make a statement which I (and many others) claim to be "racist"
    2)You make a statement which is not racist in an of itself, but, through questionable evidence, claims that African Americans commit more crimes.
    3)I claim that statement you made was on racist thinking.

    Now, had you not said earlier what you had said, I could not come to my conclusion in point (3). But you did, so I feel justified that I am not unfairly attacking you.

    Now what I say is that you can defend yourself, by either stating that what you said earlier in point (1) is not racist and then proving it, or by stating that it was racist/poorly thought out/etc and state that you did not mean point (2) through racist thinking, in which case I will retract my point (3).

    It's up to you.
  5. DarthPoojaNaberrie Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jun 21, 2005
    star 5
    :oops:

    And if you look through those 11 pages you'll see people talking about Crowley, about Gates, about the 911 caller, even calling each other racist, but not as much about Obama....and you keep bringing it up!

  6. Fire_Ice_Death Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Feb 15, 2001
    star 7
    Pulling a Me? Is that where I take a really ridiculous/extreme stance for humorous/bored purposes? Yeah, I have been known to do that, but I usually give a hint that I'm joking. You've made several points along the same line that Gates is black drama queen, that blacks whine about race too much, and they commit the most crimes. While any of those might be true, put them together one after another and they paint an ugly picture of how you view race relations. So, if what you were doing was making an exaggerated point I think you need to work at it.

    In other words:


    [image=http://knowyourmeme.com/i/126/original/you_re-doing-it-wrong.jpg]



    He does, but it's the conservative talking point as of late right now as well. Like I said earlier, if it's 'important' to conservatives I automatically dismiss it as the usual garbage they're spewing lately.
  7. Espaldapalabras Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 25, 2005
    star 5
    I have not said blacks commit the most crimes. I don't know if they do or they don't, I was making the point that if someone says they do it isn't racist if they have the facts to back them up. And the only circumstances where I imagine there is most likely a disparity between crime statistics on race, I suspected it was mostly to do with class instead of race.

    Yes I did take a really extreme stance for bored purposes including a kernel of truth. But I hardly see how suggesting all black people are drama queens is morally evil when you wanted to ban all religion or some such nonsense.

    I do think Gates is a black drama queen, because until you show me why there was a good reason to cry racism from the beginning, I don't see that he was doing it for any racist actions demonstrated by the police up to that point in time.

    When black people paint a similar picture of race relations there is very much a double standard because any comments by them that could be intrepreted as racist are fine because they obviously have 400 years of history to be racist about.

    Vivec, I can't have a debate about this with you because a debate necessitates that both parties consider the other one is acting in good faith. Nothing I can say will change your mind that I am a racist. The statement I made was a overly broad extreme generalization made to rile people up. FIDo does this all the time, and maybe the reason you haven't noticed is because you agree with them. I have already pointed out that on its face it is contradicatory, which was why it was ironic.

    It would be racist to say that the higher crime rates are because of the person's race. I do not believe that, and feel no need to justify that belief to you. Any higher crime rates are due to the culture of the race or the socioeconomic position of the race in proportion to the general population. If a race has a culture that does not value two parent families and raises most of its children in single parent families, and all single parent families produce higher crime rates, that is a problem to be addressed. If you can't confront the problem and label anyone bringing it up as racist, you aren't helping anyone.

    Is it racist to state that Muslims have a higher rate of a certain type of crime than any other group? Different groups of people have different problems to different degrees. I have tried to have an open dialogue about this, and the reason why nobody does this in real life is because everyone knows that the slightest inarticulate or humerous statement can be taken out of context for you to be seen as a racist.

    I knew a whole country full of black people that didn't complain about race the way African-Americans do. Of course they all wanted to be white, but that is a different story.
  8. Lowbacca_1977 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jun 28, 2006
    star 6
    On the first point, well..... it can't be racist as Muslim isn't a race of people.

    In general, the issue really is correlation and causation. The statement "African-Americans are more likely to commit crimes than European-Americans", for example, is a statement of correlation, not causation. What it doesn't address is WHY that statistic exists, and what factors are the cause. Things like single-parent homes, economic status, etc are all things that could have correlations as well and be better actual causes.

    One of the things that bugs me extensively about how race is discussed in this country is I think it is given far too much prominence, at the expense of not discussing class and education levels, which are two VERY relevant elements to the discussion. I do worry that by creating race as the focus, the real problems are ignored. For example, affirmative action, which sees middle-class suburban minorities as equal in needing a helping hand to poor inner city minorities seems to miss that the economically disadvantaged do need more help.

    That's not to say that there isn't any racism that is a factor, just that I've my doubts if making that the focus would yield the best results to get toward equality.
  9. Espaldapalabras Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 25, 2005
    star 5
    I'd actually agree with that Lowie. But when people look at racial disparities in something like crime, I think it is wrong to automatically assume it is because the police must be racist when there are all those other factors that are playing a significate role.
  10. Jedi_Keiran_Halcyon Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Dec 17, 2000
    star 6
    I never said it's not possible that blacks commit more crimes than whites. I said that the "blacks are convicted of more crimes" statistic is far from the conclusive proof that some think it is, because there are other significant factors involved.

    Oh yeah, I forgot that middle- and upper-class whites NEVER do drugs...:rolleyes:

    Was this another poor attempt at 'pulling a FIDo', or can you admit that you're actually saying racist stuff this time?
  11. Fire_Ice_Death Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Feb 15, 2001
    star 7
    How did I get my own maneuver named after me? That's the biggest controversy here.
  12. Espaldapalabras Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 25, 2005
    star 5
    Did I say they never did drugs or did you just put words in my mouth? I don't know anyone who I've known in the past 4 years be convicted of a drug abuse crime, but I have known sexual predators and a co-worker who was engaged in a rather stupid securities fraud scheme (If he had actually been intelligent, he could have got away with it). Those people were white, and are far more of a cancer on society than any drug user. No I don't think upper and middle class people (white and black) use as much drugs, and when they do they know how to keep it off the streets.

    If every sentence is now going to be scruitized as being racist or not, I don't see the point in talking. Just don't whine to me about why I'm not talking about it anymore. You people refuse to allow us to have an open and honest dialogue.
  13. Lord Vivec Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Apr 17, 2006
    star 7
    Espy, I am sorry that calling you out on racist remarks, whether "pulling a FIDo" or not (seriously, what the hell is "pulling a FIDo"), is refusing to have an "open and honest dialogue." Actually, I'm not sorry, because "an open and honest dialogue" about race doesn't involve people making racist comments and expecting others to simply be okay with it.

    Seriously, I can't believe this. The "open and honest dialogue" should be about how race is simply a category of phenotypes added to culture, and should not be even used in statistics to analyze crime nor anything else. It is not something that one uses to justify any statement. When two people share a race, that is all they share: phenotype and culture. Instead, you saw fit to make a few blanket statements about African Americans, implying that everyone of that skin color shares more than just phenotype and culture, and considered that part of this "open and honest dialogue." Well, I suggest you admit your errors so we can move on. Instead, you wish to back-peddle and pretend it never happened. My "scrutinizing of every sentence" is not what's stopping this open and honest dialogue, your comments and back-peddling is.
  14. Ghost Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Oct 13, 2003
    star 6
    Let's not turn this into a thread where we all point fingers and call each other a racist. There is nothing constructive or respectful about that kind of conversation at all.

    I think it's safe to assume that...

    1. Nobody here is willfully ignorant about or hateful/bigoted toward any particular race. Nobody here is an extremist, neo-Nazi, KKK-supporting, racist.

    2. As much as we all aim to be color-blind, it's plainly not yet true. We are all biased slightly in some ways, or ignorant about various different things, whether you are white or black or brown or yellow or red or whatever else you can possibly be. Every one of us, sometimes consciously, but mostly unconsciously, may have racially-biased thoughts or words or actions. Even when we do become conscious of some of our own personal racial biases, we can't all wish our prejudices away in one night. Nobody is perfect, nobody is 100% racially-objective. We should accept and forgive that of each other, as long as we strive to improve ourselves amd continue to aim for perfection. Even if we can never realistically reach it for ourselves in our own lifetimes, at least with the hope that future generations might reach it.

    Agreed, everyone?

    (This post is not aimed at anyone in particular, just at the tone that this thread is at right now.)
  15. Fire_Ice_Death Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Feb 15, 2001
    star 7

    No one has been accusing anyone of being racist, only making quasi-racist remarks. Which there have been.
  16. Ghost Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Oct 13, 2003
    star 6
    Then we should educate and enlighten, not finger-point and use the very loaded word "racist" at all.

    Because every time that word is used, whether intended or not, it's associated immediately with the KKK/Nazi foaming-at-the-mouth psychopath.

    Everyone has racial biases, including me and you, we just don't like to admit those flaws. Sharing knowledge, being respectful of one another by assuming we basically are all good & decent people and not intentionally even quasi-racist, is always the best way to combat "quasi-racist remarks."

    We've all gotten to know each other very well over the months/years in the Senate, we've all discussed many different hot-button issues, we've all shared our personal beliefs and thoughts on those issues... we should have mutual respect of one another and recognize we are all good and decent people, even if we disagree and believe each other to be misguided on some issues.

    The direction and the tone of this thread is definitely going the other way, it was getting very heated in some posts, that's why I felt somebody needed to say something.
  17. Jedi_Keiran_Halcyon Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Dec 17, 2000
    star 6
    The thing is, part of becoming as not-racist as possible is being open-minded when others bring to attention things you do and say that may be racist without your realizing it.
  18. Espaldapalabras Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 25, 2005
    star 5
    Alright guys, you got me, I hate black people. Always have, always will.

    The AG of the United States called us a nation of cowards when it comes to race. The way this discussion has turned is exactly why that is the case. Never did I say it was a person's phenotype that was determining their behavior. I made some broad statements that I meant to apply towards the cultural differences between races that were perhaps "inartful." Everybody knows you can't express any real thoughts or emotions when it comes to race, and those of us who don't get slapped around real quick.

    Obama's thoughts, as unhelpful and wrong as they were, were a rare moment of reality in an unreal world.

    My racist buddy.
  19. Gonk Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 8, 1998
    star 6

    In general, the issue really is correlation and causation. The statement "African-Americans are more likely to commit crimes than European-Americans", for example, is a statement of correlation, not causation. What it doesn't address is WHY that statistic exists, and what factors are the cause. Things like single-parent homes, economic status, etc are all things that could have correlations as well and be better actual causes.


    Proof of that would be the Aboriginal community's experience in Canada, which is if anything even worse of than the African-American population (combine high arrests rates with high suicide rates).

    THe difference being, of course, that nobody pays attention to it up here. And from what I've heard from plenty of people, nobody told them that their racist attitudes towards them were wrong since the old TV doesn't find the situation as glamorous.
  20. Jedi Merkurian Episode VII Thread-Reaper

    Manager
    Member Since:
    May 25, 2000
    star 6
    Except that it's not mostly class. Look at the results you get when you Google "racial disparity in sentencing." For example, from the Wisconsin Office of Justice Assistance (emphasis mine):
    From the Open Society Institute:
  21. Jedi Merkurian Episode VII Thread-Reaper

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    star 6
  22. Lord Vivec Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Apr 17, 2006
    star 7
    Um, no one said you hate black people, so creating that strawman isn't going to work.

    Guess what, if your "real thoughts and emotions when it comes to race" are offensive, then yes, you will "get slapped around real quick."

    Seriously, what the hell? What are these "real thoughts and emotions when it comes to race" that you have? That "all black people cry out racism?" You continue to say I'm preventing you from having an open an honest dialogue about race, but if your open and honest dialogue is just a bunch of racist remarks, then how can you expect to have others discuss this with you peacefully.

    So now, what are your "real thoughts and emotions when it comes to race." And a bigger question, why do you have thoughts and emotions when it comes to race? Do you also have "real thoughts and emotions" when it comes to blood type?

    Darth-Ghost, stating that someone made a racist remark does not mean I'm stating that the individual is a KKK-Nazi-Racist. Don't even begin to imply that I'm stating that, understood?

    And one more thing, not everyone has subconscious racist tendencies. People make jokes, but don't confuse a moment of humor as having a subconscious racist tendency. In order for one to have that, he or she would have to make a connection (an illogical connection) that race means more than shared phenotype and shared culture, a connection that not everyone makes.
  23. Lowbacca_1977 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jun 28, 2006
    star 6
    I'm also going to disagree that it means "shared culture" as that's making a greater presumption to race than I'd feel is accurate.
  24. Ghost Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Oct 13, 2003
    star 6
    I never said that. I said that when you throw the word "racist" around, that's what people immedidately associate the word with, whether intended or not. That post wasn't directed towards anyone in particular, but at the tone of the thread, and I actually started writing that post before your post appeared right above it.

    As for your second statement, I don't agree with it. Reminder, I'm talking about racial bias, not racist tendencies. Also, race doesn't always mean "shared culture."
  25. Lord Vivec Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Apr 17, 2006
    star 7
    I agree, actually. In smaller groups, culture can be shared, but not in as large a group as race.

    So I amend my statement. The only significance of race is shared phenotype.
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