Do Brown lives matter? By Brown, with a capital B, I mean non-Black POC (people of colour) in the US, anyone who is neither Black nor White: Latinos, Asians, Natives, Muslims, Others, etc. And, the way things are going, maybe Jews too.
Note: Strictly speaking Latinos and Muslims are not races, but in the US in the 2010s they are close enough, certainly close enough for the purposes of this post. “Muslim”, by the way, includes Sikhs, and any Arab person, since most Islamophobes do not know the difference.
It should go without saying that Brown lives matter. But over and over again, whenever I do a post on Brown lives, some commenter, sooner or later, is going to inform me that said Brown people do not like Black people, meaning that I should not waste my breath on them.
But Brown lives do matter:
- Because all lives matter. While it is understandable that Blacks will be mainly concerned about Blacks, Asians about Asians, Whites about Whites, and so on, that concern should never be so narrow and limited as to shut out concern for others. Pro-Black should not mean anti-Brown. After all, if it is wrong to be against Black people because of their skin colour, it is wrong to be against anyone else because of their skin colour.
- Because racism against any strengthens racism against all. It is all part of the same mindset – White supremacy. Although racism takes different forms against different races, racism tends to weaken or strengthen as a whole. At least in the US. The Chinese Exclusion Act, for example, was passed at the same time as Jim Crow laws. Likewise, the Immigration Act of 1965 was passed during the Civil Rights Era.
Part of why I do posts on Brown people is because White people are not as good at hiding their anti-Brown racism, particularly their Islamophobia. It gives me a better understanding of their much better-hidden anti-Black racism.
Divide and rule: In the US people of colour either hang together or they will hang separately. So long as Whites are able to divide people of colour against each other, Whites will rule, no matter how small their numbers.
I used to think 2042 would be some kind of turning point, the year Whites become less than half the US. I no longer believe that. The rise of Donald Trump makes clear that a good number of Brown people (and some Blacks too) will vote for an open racist.
Counter-frames: I need to do a proper post on Brown Trump voters (and Black ones too), but it seems that many Asians and Latinos are too new to the country to fully understand what is going on. They have weak counter-frames, as sociologist Joe Feagin would say. They trust Whites too much and believe in the fool’s gold of becoming honorary Whites. They have not lived through enough US history to learn the hard way.
– Abagond, 2017.
- The three pillars of US racism – my main way of thinking about it
- Oppression Olympics – see the thread below for an example (I am saying that even before I post this!)
- people of colour
- Che Guevara
- The nadir of US race relations
- The Trump Era
- two-race model
- Black Liberals