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Thread started 10/10/18 9:03am

OldFriends4Sal
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IDENTITY CRISIS: My problem with black identity

Remi Adekoya on the danger of racial politics.

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a very good train of thought, and articulated clearly

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https://www.spiked-online...-identity/

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There is no shortage of figures, wielding considerable cultural power, ready to talk up the threat of racism in the UK today. Like Ta-Nehisi Coates in the US, commentators such as Afua Hirsch, Reni Eddo-Lodge and others wanting to fly high in the often academically accredited punditsphere talk of the persistence of structural racism, worry at the inexorable force of white privilege, and damn British society as an inhospitable place for black people. Racism is everywhere, they say. Something is still to be done.

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Remi Adekoya, a Polish-Nigerian journalist and academic, is different. Not that he doesn’t think racism is a problem in 21st-century Britain. He has lived here for nearly four years, and racism does exist, he says. But it is not the huge problem it is being hyped up to be. It is not a daily experience. And it is not everywhere. What is more, he contends, the black identitarians promoting the racism-is-rife narrative, and portraying white people as deeply, even if unwittingly, racist, are making things worse – for white people andblack people.

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To explore his thinking in more detail, we caught up with Adekoya earlier this month. Here’s what he had to say:

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spiked review: What is the main thrust of your critique of identitarianism today? And what, ultimately, do identitarians want?

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Remi Adekoya: What do they want? It’s a vast camp, there are various people there with various motivations. If you ask them, they’ll tell you the focus and motive is racial equality. Various people will have various motivations, and it would be very unfair and wrong for me to say that none of those people are motivated by a desire for racial equality as they see it. So there are true believers who think their actions might lead to greater racial equality.

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Then, as in all ideological movements, there will be opportunists, who see that this movement or school of thought is getting pretty popular. And this is very easy to gauge today – through social media. You just see what people are tweeting and liking on social media. Opportunists will pick up on that because they think this is what sells today.

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So it’s a mixed bunch. One of my major problems is that identitarianism doesn’t make long-term sense, both for wider society and the black group that I’m focused on. For wider society, a politics that is propagated as a zero-sum game, in which X group has to lose in order for Y group to win, is inevitably bound to foster antagonisms and drive divisions in the long run. Yet, the whole narrative of what I call identity populism is steeped in group-based assessments of what they have and what we have. If group X has more than us, then we need to be angry about it because it means we are being cheated. If that kind of message is being propagated, there is no way it’s not going to lead to increased tensions. It’s not conducive to live in a society in which people look at each other suspiciously, thinking: if they’re getting this, it means we’re not getting that.

#IDEFINEME #ALBUMSSTILLMATTER

A Liar Shall Not Tarry In My Presence

What's the matter with your life
Is poverty bringing U down?
Is the mailman jerking U 'round?
Did he put your million dollar check
In someone else's box?
Tell me, what's the m
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Reply #1 posted 10/10/18 12:53pm

djThunderfunk

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This was excellent. Thanks for sharing, OldFriends!

We were HERE, where were you?

4 those that knew the number and didn't call... fk all y'all!
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Reply #2 posted 10/10/18 2:12pm

CherryMoon57

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The whole article is spot on. Thanks OldFriend. cool

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Reply #3 posted 10/10/18 4:02pm

KoolEaze

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Interesting.

Thanks for sharing.

" I´d rather be a stank ass hoe because I´m not stupid. Oh my goodness! I got more drugs! I´m always funny dude...I´m hilarious! Are we gonna smoke?"




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Reply #4 posted 10/10/18 11:43pm

uPtoWnNY

What that cat said is similar to what to my father taught me and my brother. Racism's never going away - no matter a black person's economic status/education, too many folks (and not just whites) will look at you as 'just a n****r'. But that's no excuse not to achieve - we were taught to work/study twice as hard as white kids. In our home, blackness was equated with excellence.

And growing up, my blackness was questioned too, because I didn't "fit the mold". I always got good grades, was only average at sports, didn't have a "rap' with the ladies and I listened to different kinds of music. So I got the usual 'punk' 'fa****', 'whiteboy' comments from some of the brothers. That's why I was so happy going to college and meeting other black folks who didn't "fit the mold".

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Reply #5 posted 10/11/18 4:16am

jjhunsecker

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uPtoWnNY said:

What that cat said is similar to what to my father taught me and my brother. Racism's never going away - no matter a black person's economic status/education, too many folks (and not just whites) will look at you as 'just a n****r'. But that's no excuse not to achieve - we were taught to work/study twice as hard as white kids. In our home, blackness was equated with excellence.

And growing up, my blackness was questioned too, because I didn't "fit the mold". I always got good grades, was only average at sports, didn't have a "rap' with the ladies and I listened to different kinds of music. So I got the usual 'punk' 'fa****', 'whiteboy' comments from some of the brothers. That's why I was so happy going to college and meeting other black folks who didn't "fit the mold".

Very good post. And one I can relate to. I've been exposed to many different types of people , many different cultures, and I personally am comfortable in different types of situations. Racism is still here, and still affects lives- even someone like me, who's a college educated middle aged guy who has never been in any trouble with the law.

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Reply #6 posted 11/29/18 11:41am

OldFriends4Sal
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I've been looking at "Identity Politics" in various avenues of like not just racial, and he makes some good points about it that I feel impedes on individuals freedom

review: Do you think that identitarianism, and political correctness, has helped black people? Is there anything you can draw from it which is positive? Surely the people you mention who are interested in genuine racial equality would say it has been historically significant to the anti-racist movement?

Adekoya: I draw a distinction between political correctness and identity politics – or what I prefer to call identity populism. Political correctness has indisputably helped black people. I’ve lived in Poland, my mum was Polish and Poland is 99 per cent white with a very low level of political correctness towards minorities like myself in comparison to the UK. It wasn’t pleasant to watch TV interviews in which politicians compare government policies to those of a ‘Bantu State’ or a ‘backward African country’. Of course, when I heard things like that, I got angry and felt bad. I like the fact that a British minister would never say something like that on public TV. It’s far more pleasant, far more conducive for minorities to live in society in which people, especially authority figures, address all groups of people with a fundamental decency and politeness. That has benefitted black people, no doubt about it.

However, identity populism is another matter altogether. Like all populism, it proffers very simplistic solutions based on a simplistic black-and-white worldview. Right-wing populism will essentially suggest the West’s only major problem is excessive immigration and the arrogant elites who support it. Identitarian populism is a similarly simplistic worldview: the world is essentially made up of inherently good black and brown people, and bad oppressive white people. We, the inherently good black and brown people, are being oppressed by the bad white people. It’s hugely simplistic.

#IDEFINEME #ALBUMSSTILLMATTER

A Liar Shall Not Tarry In My Presence

What's the matter with your life
Is poverty bringing U down?
Is the mailman jerking U 'round?
Did he put your million dollar check
In someone else's box?
Tell me, what's the m
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Reply #7 posted 11/29/18 1:58pm

2freaky4church
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Our moderator is right wing. It's ok, but why hide behind it. Spiked is not exactly a great journalist haunt.

*** Noted by Moderators ***

See Your Orgnotes

"My motherfucker's so cool sheep count him."
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Reply #8 posted 11/30/18 11:25am

Camileyun

2freaky4church1 said:

Our moderator is right wing. It's ok, but why hide behind it. Spiked is not exactly a great journalist haunt.


Just couldn't resist, could you? In your twisted little world, people must be categorized in neat little political camps. You couldn't just read the article for it's merits...You must, first, identify the OP as having a political bent to covertly suggest don't read too much into their post. "It's ok"? Oh, thank you, your all knowing highness. Hiding? What from? Closed-minded people like you, perhaps. Shut up!


Good article.
[Edited 11/30/18 12:31pm]
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Reply #9 posted 12/01/18 12:05pm

uPtoWnNY

2freaky4church1 said:

Our moderator is right wing. It's ok, but why hide behind it. Spiked is not exactly a great journalist haunt.

*** Noted by Moderators ***

See Your Orgnotes

SNIP - Of4$ Do not instigate, engage in, or encourage 'flame wars'. If you insult someone "jokingly", be prepared to have it not interpreted that way by the Moderators. A good general rule: "criticize ideas, not people."

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Reply #10 posted 12/01/18 12:11pm

uPtoWnNY

Camileyun said:

2freaky4church1 said:

Our moderator is right wing. It's ok, but why hide behind it. Spiked is not exactly a great journalist haunt.

Just couldn't resist, could you? In your twisted little world, people must be categorized in neat little political camps. You couldn't just read the article for it's merits...You must, first, identify the OP as having a political bent to covertly suggest don't read too much into their post. "It's ok"? Oh, thank you, your all knowing highness. Hiding? What from? Closed-minded people like you, perhaps. Shut up! Good article. [Edited 11/30/18 12:31pm]

SNIP

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