Thursday, September 25, 2008

Discuss . . .

We had a speaker today who expressed something I've been thinking for years - I don't like the expression "people of color", I find it racist, and here's why.

I've been a musician most of my life, although you wouldn't know it lately but I digress. In music you have many pieces labeled as variations on a theme. You have the original theme, then composers will write their own interpretation of the original. But the original is always the THEME, the others are just VARIATIONS.

That's what I think about when I hear "people of color". Sounds like PEOPLE - meaning white folks, then PEOPLE OF COLOR - who are merely variations on the original theme. As though they are an alternative to the original "standard" idea. As though white people are O Holy Night, and everyone else is just some crazy interpretation of it by Mariah Carey.

White = the standard, Not White = alternatives to being white.

White = right, Not White = wrong, but we'll tolerate your craziness

Also, I'm "white" but I'm by no means colorless.


Missy said...

I am not colorless....I got a pedicure the other day and my feet turned bright pink in the hot water, and I have tan freckles all over my body. My skin is so pale and Scandinavian that if you touch it it leaves a pink mark for a few moments and when I was young I blushed all the time.

Anonymous said...

The phrase people of color has bothered me, too. I hate to go all Pollyanna, but wouldn't it be nice if we could stop seeing color all together?

michaelg said...

I'm pink in flesh and spirit. White people come with all sorts of damn dumb things like Colorama. You know, that thing that used to be called Indian Summer- a period of beautiful weather in the autumn with brightly colored leaves. Yes, dumbass white people have renamed it Colorama, at least in Wisconsin- which, as you know, I feel is full of dumb ass people.

Bubs said...

"people of color" has always bothered me for two reasons:

1) I almost inevitably heard it uttered by some pretentious academic or leftist, and

2) It sounds a lot like "colored people".

FranIAm said...

I so agree with what you and everyone else says- especially Bubs.

A woman in our church office used the phrase "colored woman" to describe another parishioner to me.

I almost fell over and needed last rites from that one.

Sheleta said...

I hear it both ways MC Hammer. I hear black folks saying they don't like the word "minorities" so they prefer people of color when they are being addressed in multi-racial settings when there are other ethnic groups there. Cause either you get called "people of color" or you get called "minority" and they believe "minority" the term that is, lends itself to making one group feel inferior. People are people, whether they are white, black or got hot pink toes from a pedicure.

Dr. Monkey Von Monkerstein said...

I agree. Also I think anyone who was born here is a native American.