Race, Ethnicity, & Culture


Race, Ethnicity, & Culture

Beliefs about race and ethnicity influence our cultures, politics, and relationships.  What is race?  What is ethnicity?  This group explores those concepts.

Location: Global
Members: 234
Latest Activity: Jun 26


Racism and the effects of ethnocentrism are alive and well in the 21st century.  Racism and humanism are incompatible by definition. 


The most human, and humane, thing that we can do is acknowledge and support the humanity of people who are different from ourselves.  Curiosity about what makes us human, by necessity, includes curiosity about our human ethnic heritage.


We are incredibly enriched by immersing ourselves in a diverse world.  We are intellectually and emotionally impoverished when we exclude others who are not our mirror image.


This discussion group includes many topics about race and ethnicity.  Feel free to comment to new threads, or resurrect old threads, if any spark your interest.


My 2 cents. Daniel W.


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Comment by The Flying Atheist on January 13, 2017 at 1:54pm

GG, yes, Daryl Davis makes the important point of distinction about wanting to return to a better time.  Ask any "minority" group what better time in the past they would like to return to and I guarantee they will have a different answer.  

Comment by Grinning Cat on January 13, 2017 at 11:38am

Catching up here... in the video Carl posted, Daryl Davis makes important points about the racist and white supremacist code language, the dog whistles that proved crucial in recent US politics, words that "ring a bell... that's only heard by certain people." Every American politician wants to "make America great"; tRump's one crucial additional word, without which he might have decisively lost the election, was "make America great again", resonating with people who'd like to return to the days of segregation and unapologetic white privilege.

Similarly, he talks about how the rise of the Tea Party and its slogan of "take our country back" didn't happen under presidents Jimmy Carter (a Democrat) or Bill Clinton (a Democrat). "Take our country back" doesn't (just) mean "back to Republican rule". It echoed a Klan rallying cry; meaning take our country back to segregation, so their little boys and little girls wouldn't have to go to school with "little n-words".

Reposting the video, cued up to the relevant part at 9:18:

Comment by Loren Miller on January 13, 2017 at 10:52am

Daniel, I'm not quite halfway into the video you posted and It ... Is ... BRILLIANT, never mind gutsy as hell.  What it tells me are two things:

  1. We need to knock it off with the rose-colored glasses approach to social engineering and face some hard FACTS.
  2. The US needs someone to look at our racial and ethnic issues here with the same brand of neutrality which Trevor Phillips brought to the UK.

That second line item would be a tall order, America's size and diverse regional variations being what they are, yet I wonder at the commonalities we would find, regardless of location.

Many thanks for posting that, Daniel!

Comment by Daniel W on January 13, 2017 at 9:30am

On the video below, that I posted yesterday - I'm so impressed by Trevor Phillips' reasonableness, calm manner, and willingness to ask hard questions. It helps that he's discussing UK from his own experience, and not the US. Some aspects are different from the US but the similarities are almost staggering.

There is a lot to learn from this video. It is without accusation, no demonization, and he states that preventing people from saying what's on their minds, will not change what's in their hearts.

It's a long video. I had to watch in 3 parts. I think it's interesting and thought provoking.

Comment by Daniel W on January 12, 2017 at 7:16pm

This video is from the former UK Minster for equality.  I may have the name wrong, but that was basically his role. 

"Things we won't say about race but are true"

This is a thoughtful essay that comes from experience, and an hones appraisal of his observations and data.  Not politically correct, and not everyone could say the things that he says.

Comment by Ruth Anthony-Gardner on January 11, 2017 at 6:36pm

I agree Rich, "Humanity's only chance is a drastic change of consciousness." In particular, we must have greater awareness of the techniques social media, mass media, and politicians use to manipulate our minds.

Comment by Daniel W on January 11, 2017 at 5:23pm

Exploring the Epigenetics of Ethnicity.  From "The-Scientist.com". 

Scientists researched markers on the chromosome that are not within the DNA, but added to it.  Those added markers are called epigenetic, and can be inherited.  The asked if there is information to be gained that might lead to better targeting of medical treatments which have varying effectiveness and varying harm, depending on ethnicity.

"about 75 percent of methylation signatures [epigenetic markers on DNA molecules] could be explained by the children’s genetic ancestry. The other 25 percent, however, is likely due to social or environmental factors that co-vary with self-identified race/ethnicity.  In their conclusions, "Based on our study, the concept of race and ethnicity includes a lot of things including genetics, but also social, cultural and environmental factors."

In other words, 3/4 of the epigenetic changes observed here, went along with ethnicity, but 1/4 did not. 

It just gets more and more interesting!

Comment by Rich Goss on January 11, 2017 at 2:00pm

Joan, Better is Homo vacuous.  Your point about Mother Nature (Gaia) is undeniable.  Humanity's only chance is a drastic change of consciousness.  Corporate plutocrats have working people in a mental cage. 

Comment by Compelledunbeliever on January 10, 2017 at 2:40pm

Daryl Davis is indeed a great man!!!!!!

Comment by Joan Denoo on January 9, 2017 at 10:38pm

It is time I get off my pity potty and come to terms with the fact that Homo sapiens, "wise Man," is simply not the case. Racism, sexism, ethnicity, owners of capital and owners of labor, all struggle and the minute we think we have made progress, up pops another racist, sexist, ethnicist, classist, or whatever. Progress forward>regression backward. 
We are coming upon a challenge for which Homo sapiens of any kind cannot be victorious. Mother Nature will get us all, each one of us, in the end. The Trumps will fail as well as those who try to progress and those who try to regress. 


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