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Racism in Arizona: Latinos Have No History in Arizona Schools


By dlindorff - Posted on 17 January 2011

By Jess Guh

It's all too appropriate that on the day that we celebrate the birthday of one of history’s most notable civil rights leaders, Arizona is in the national news spotlight.  Arizona,one of the last states to recognize Martin Luther King Jr's birthday as a federal holiday only began doing in 1992.  Ironically, Arizona’s Attorney General Tom Horne, a supporter of the states tough new immigration laws, and author of a new ban on ethnic studies in the state’s public schools, continually cites his participation in MLK's marches as proof that he's not a racist.

Today , my anger over his actions, a "killing rage" that makes my heart pound, has burned itself out.  Instead, a steady determination sets in as I reflect on my disappointment over Arizona's new legislation.  I realize that much of my anger, though directed at Tom Horne, comes from an awareness that though he may be extreme, he's also an embodiment of most of white America, a testament to the painfully shallow understanding that most folks have about race in this country.

It actually reminds me of the beginning of medical school.  In addition to adjusting to new academic demands, the first fews months are a whirlwind recruiting process for the numerous clubs on campus.  Of the professional organizations, one can join the American Medical Association, the American Medical Student Association, the Black Medical Association, the American Medical Women's Association, the Latin American/Native American Medical Association, the United Asian American Medical Student Association, and the Bisexuals, Gays, Lesbians, and Allies in Medicine.  Every year a white guy who thinks he's pretty clever will ask, "What about me? How come there's nothing for white guys to join?"  There is one and he's already joined it.  It's called the institution of medicine.

I shudder to think about the number of white folks in this country who are like that.  They know that groups for minorities exist and that it would be politically incorrect to question them, but they're not really sure why.  And deep down inside, though they may never say it out loud, they do think it's wrong when a minority applicant is given a position "over an equally qualified white applicant." It's "reverse racism" - the battle cry of white folks with only a superficial understanding of race and no concept of privilege.

Tom Horne wants to talk about race and history without talking about racism.  That's not only impossible, but an untruth.  It's like trying to talk about women in the workplace without talking about sexism...

For the rest of this article by JESS GUH in ThisCantBeHappening!, the new independent online alternative newspaper, please go to: ThisCantBeHappening!

there is [a] discrimination against White Americans, perhaps esp. males. This discrimination, however, is not always, often isn't really because we're white; and that's if that ever really is the reason. It's often for economic, $$$ reasons.

It happened a lot in the IT industry with the H-1B program, through which very many, if not most recruiting firms, which main employers of IT professionals used to replace internal HR departments and staff, recruited for the main employers; while racketeeringly profiting from very increased profit margins through the lowballing of imported foreign "temp" professionals. It drastically affected employability, that is, the ability to find employment, for citizens, as well as non-citizens who had obtained the status of permanent resident or landed immigrant in the U.S. This did not affect only white IT professionals, but I would guess that we were hit hardest because of [many] white IT professionals who were American, U.S. citizens charged the highest rates. I was white, U.S. citizen, and posted in consulting forums about this very high billing tendency that could only work against the rest of us, because we were all being treated in the same manner even if we didn't all charge high rates. I never charged high rates, only having sought enough to reasonably live; never seeking riches, never treating my field of work as "get rich quick" scheme, and never having wanted to [gouge] companies employing my skills and knowledge. But we all got treated by recruiters as unhirable and some of them even posted job openings saying that H-1Bs and people capable of getting or else having TN-1 visas were welcome to apply, but if an applicant was a U.S. citizen, then the person didn't need to bother to apply; because the person was predestined to exclusion.

I went [totally] bankrupt because of this racket, above, and it literally was a racket; and it continues today. But not only whites were or are affected; it's just that white Americans probably were the most targeted for exclusion because white IT professionals tended to [gouge] with [very] high billing rates. Many white IT professionals would get a bachelor's degree in computer science, learning Java, f.e., and withing two years be able to bill $135 and more per hour. That's a short-term win; it's going to add to the impact of many others, with billing very high rates definitely far above what's needed to live. Employers aren't going to want to take on such high rates employing many people 40 hours a week at similar rates. They will race to replace such workers, and they will resort to every means possible for this replacement. And recruiting firms and immigration lawyers join in to profit as much as they can from the replacement of U.S. citizens and permanent residents with imported workers. They did and do, and it's in true racket manner.

Many American IT people treated the above situation as due to racism, screaming, "Racism, racism, ...!", but it wasn't racism. It's racket, though direct employers struck me as having understandable cause for wanting to get billing rates lowered. They employed millions of us, in total, and this was for both salaried and contract positions, while contracts would often be for six to 12 months and 12 months is about 2,000 hours when there isn't much overtime required. 2,000 hours at $125, $135 and more per hour? Not many employers are going to want to pay this. They'll race to find a way to get these rates lowered. Recruiting firms could get rates lowered for direct employers of IT professionals all while greatly or hugely increasing their own profit margins. They made a real and strong racket of this. And immigration lawyers joined in. Many American IT pros, perhaps all young ones, only, saw this situation as "reverse discrimination", but it's not about race. It's about $$$$.

In university, I joined a student association called the International Students Association. I was studying in Canada and was originally from the U.S., so since I'm international in or at heart, this seemed like a good association to join and it was. It consisted of either mostly, or else many non-whites.

"Variety is the (a, anyway) spice of life" and we're all human beings; and it's great to learn from people of other countries, esp. when they're from third-world countries, though not only them. It's also great to learn from the indigenous people(s) of the U.S. and Canada, whenever I have an opportunity to read or hear what they say, or to directly exchange with them.

Racism is extremely ignorant. It isn't "my bag". It's stupid. It wastes life and opportunities to truly live.

Whites who want associations for themselves have had some for ages; KKK and other white supremicist groups or organizations, f.e. Whites who aren't racist can simply work on finding or creating a group, organization or association that is not only white and which accepts whites.

Love your neighbor as you love yourself. Do for others as you'd want done for yourself.
[Understanding] makes for a great start to humanizing this world that the West and its evil "lords" around the world extremely dehumanize, render inhumane.

Understanding? Jesus the Nazarene, a Palestinian, once said to not judge others until we've walked in their shoes; iow, [understand] before judging, relate to or with the other persons' humanity and human experience(s), learn what it really is. If we don't do that, then we definitely can't be good or competent judges.

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