BONUS EPISODE: ANNE & MARSHA
Compiled & Synthesized by Samia Mounts
00:10:36 What is white privilege?
Marsha tackled this question beautifully in the conversation, but if you want some reading material, Christine Emba did a wonderful job explaining what white privilege is in The Washington Post.
Gina Crosley-Corcoran fielded this question for the Huffington Post and directed it specifically at poor white people who don’t see themselves as being privileged at all.
The New Yorker published a great piece about the history of the term white privilege, and the slow awakening our culture has experienced in recognizing it.
00:11:28 What happened with a black girl at a pool party in Dallas?
A white police officer named Eric Casebolt responded to a call about possible trespassing at a pool and ended up slamming a black teenage girl, wearing only a bikini, to the ground and then pinning her there. Her name is Dajerria Becton, and she and her family are now suing the officer and the city of Dallas. The officer subsequently resigned from the police force. His lawyer said his conduct had nothing to do with race.
00:12:02 I’ve heard of Black Lives Matter, but what’s Black Men Running?
“Black men running” is a catchphrase that references what happens when black men run from cops to escape police harassment and racial profiling—all too often, it can lead to death, even if the person isn’t armed or threatening anyone. It’s such a huge issue that the Massachusetts Supreme Court ruled that black people have good reason to run when approached by a police officer, and that officers shouldn’t automatically assume that means the person has committed a crime if they run.
00:12:27 Where can I find this Joe vs. Jose video?
You can watch that video right here.
00:15:30 What is a microaggression?
From Wikipedia: “A microaggression is the casual degradation of any marginalized group. The term was coined by psychiatrist and Harvard University professor Chester M. Pierce in 1970 to describe insults and dismissals he regularly witnessed non-black Americans inflict on African Americans.”
There are many examples of microaggressions within normal everyday conversations, and it’s a topic that has gained more and more momentum in the national conversation as people are becoming aware of all the small, insidious ways we all contribute to the oppression of minorities in America.
Even I am on the receiving end of microaggressions on a regular basis, as an ethnically ambiguous woman—like when people ask me where I’m from but what they really want to know is what ethnicity I am. Sometimes they just straight up ask, “What are you?” That’s not so bad in the grand scheme of things, but when you get people comparing your hair to that of a dog, like what happened to Marsha while we were on a hike, that’s fucking weird and needs to fucking stop.
00:16:50 Where can I find the book 35 Things Well-Meaning People Say by Maura Cullen?
It’s actually called 35 Dumb Things Well-Intended People Say, and you can read the full text of the book here.
00:18:47 Were black people really considered three-fifths of a human being when our country was founded? And was it really so that the Southern states could bolster their influence in Washington?
Yup. In order to compete with the more populated North, the South struck a deal to allow them to count slaves in their total population, although one slave only counted as three-fifths of a person. And of course, slaves couldn’t vote, so this rationale was deeply unfair on every level. Also, back when the Electoral College was invented, women couldn’t vote. Neither could white men who didn’t own property. It was all kinds of fucked up.
Here’s another article that goes deep into how large a role slavery played in the origin story of the Electoral College.
00:20:01 Is there a movement to take down Confederate monuments?
Yes, and this is happening in several southern states, Texas included. The motivation behind the movement is that Americans shouldn’t be celebrating people whose “great deeds” were based on extending the practice of enslaving other human beings.
Of course, there are those who argue the monuments should remain, saying that we need those monuments to remember our history and hopefully learn from our mistakes.
I understand the argument, but I personally disagree with it. I don’t think we should have public monuments that celebrate monsters.
00:20:47 What’s going on in New Orleans with taking down statues of Confederate heroes?
The mayor of New Orleans, Mitch Landrieu, announced in May that New Orleans would begin taking down all of its Confederate monuments in the coming months. His argument for why he thinks this is important is spectacularly forward-thinking. He says, “The record is clear: New Orleans’s Robert E. Lee, Jefferson Davis and P.G.T. Beauregard statues were erected with the goal of rewriting history to glorify the Confederacy and perpetuate the idea of white supremacy. These monuments stand not as mournful markers of our legacy of slavery and segregation, but in reverence of it. They are an inaccurate recitation of our past, an affront to our present and a poor prescription for our future. The right course, then, is to excise these symbols of injustice.”
00:21:45 Is it true that the medical field of gynecology was founded by a doctor who experimented on the bodies of enslaved women? Where is the statue of this guy that you mentioned? And that interview with the woman who said we should instead have statues of the women whose bodies he used?
Yes, this is true. The doctor was J. Marion Sims, and he’s considered the father of modern surgical gynecology. He experimented with new surgical methods on the bodies of black slave women. His ethics have been called into question by modern researchers, but there is controversy around that, as the slave women he experimented on really needed treatment for their reproductive health problems.
The statue of Sims is not in Georgia, as I thought. It’s actually in New York City’s Central Park, which makes me a really bad New Yorker. (I should’ve known this.) There have been petitions and requests from activists asking for the statue to be removed, but no moves have been made in that direction, as far as I can tell.
The interview I mentioned is from the NPR podcast Hidden Brain, which I highly recommend you subscribe to now if you haven’t already. Here is the episode I referenced:
00:22:57 Where is this art piece Marsha described where the white family is whitewashed, leaving only the unsmiling little black boy in the frame?
I can’t find it, but I will update these Show Notes with the info once I get it from Marsha!
00:26:57 What is intersectionality?
As we explained in the interview, intersectionality is the stacking of multiple layers of discrimination against people who belong to several marginalized populations at once. For example, a person who is both black and a woman is facing racism and sexism at the same time—which is much worse than just dealing with one or the other alone. The woman who coined the term, Kimberlé Crenshaw, wrote about why understanding and acknowledging intersectionality so important for the Washington Post.
00:29:27 Is it homogenous or homogeneous?
While homogeneous is technically correct, these words are used interchangeably in the modern vernacular. Lol. Just thought I’d clear that up.
00:30:25 Where can I find White Privilege: Unpacking the Invisible Knapsack by Peggy McIntosh?
00:31:29 Is it true that news outlets are more likely to show a mugshot if the perpetrator of a crime is a person of color?
Oh yeah, and it’s a huge problem for minority communities. One study that looked at how television news reports dealt with white and minority criminal suspects found that black suspects are way more likely to be shown in a mug shot than white suspects are. On the flip side, it took over 16 months for authorities to even release the mug shot of the white rapist, Brock Turner.