I just read Mike Adam’s latest Natural News article and it blew me away. It’s called “Racism theater: How the media, Obama and the racism industry are tearing America apart for their own selfish gain.” He has made it clear that Black Americans, including Obama, need to basically shut the f*ck up about racism; if we at all talk about realities of things like racial profiling (like Obama implied in his talk after the George Zimmerman verdict), then we are promoting “the racism industry for our own selfish gain.” If you don’t know who Mike Adams is, he considers himself the “Health Ranger.” He advocates healthy eating and exercise as a way to be liberated and healthy.
Mike Adams positions himself as an expert on my and most Black Americans experiences with racism as a system. He is completely enraged that Obama is part of the “racism industry” in the USA, simply because Obama spoke frankly about Trayvon Martin in July 2013. Obama let us all know what it means to be read as a Black man in a country in which Obama’s propensity for being racially profiled is far greater than that of those like Mike Adams (white, straight, economically stable, and able-bodied).
In his latest article, Adams writes:
“The myth of systematic oppression of blacks in America
The very premise that black people are systematically oppressed in modern-day America is a myth. America is a nation where the President is black, the Attorney General is black, most of the highest-paid athletes and sports figures are black, the highest-paid entertainers are black, and black people hold key positions as mayors, governors, senators and members of Congress. If anything, the racial composition of our nation and its political, entertainment and business leaders is absolute proof that the era of black oppression is ancient history in America. I’m not saying there aren’t isolated cases of one-on-one racism that still go on, but the idea that there is systematic oppression of blacks is absurd.
What he wrote really scared the hell out of me because of his confidence and entitlement to speak for the entire demographic of Black people in the USA. Furthermore, he clearly has a strong backing from a plethora of [white] commentators who support the notion that ‘the era of black oppression is ancient history in America.’ And yes, my response of disgust isn’t just from my experience as a Black woman, born and raised in the USA. Unlike Mike Adams, I have a PhD in social science training that focuses on how racism operates at systemic, institutional, and structural levels. No this doesn’t make my perspective 100% right, but it does imply that I studied extensively for years, as well as researched, how racism operates in the USA. I developed a critical race literacy for a “post-civil rights” era that a significant number of white Americans do not seem to have. For this collectivity, racism is a thing of the past (i.e. racism is understood as the violent act of lynching a Black person or the institutionalization of antebellum Black slavery). In the Mike Adams article, no where can I identify any social science research that backs up his claim that ‘the era of black oppression is ancient history in America.’ It just comes from his subjective experience as a white male who has never experienced anti-black racism. Well Mr. Adams, there are a plethora of peer-reviewed social science articles and books that show that the system of racism in the USA is not a thing of the past. This canon of research shows that racism deeply affects the well-being of Black Americans (see the list at the end of this article). By the way, since you are a”health ranger” Mike Adams, I just wanted to point out that getting shot is unhealthy and negatively affects well-being.
It is quite clear to me and from Adams’ supporters that there is a tremendous amount of hate towards Black people who simply don’t know their place and just can’t shut the f*ck up about how they experience the consequences of racialization in the USA. Also, I do not understand how anyone who is part of any privileged group can be so confident to speak for the Other. It’s like me, a CIS gender-privileged woman stating, “The idea that there is systematic oppression against transfolk is absurd.” I would never do that. I would never say that. I don’t believe that. I am benefiting from a system of trans-hating heteronormative USA logic. I can’t speak and never will speak for the embodied and visceral experiences of the collectivity of trans-identified people in the USA. It’s so arrogant to do so; so colonialist and dismissive of the pain and suffering that a significant number of trans people must live through.
Nor would I write an article that supports my able-bodied privileges by telling people living with disabilities that structural ableism doesn’t negatively affect them anymore. Just imagine if I started rambling,”I mean, we have handicap bathrooms, paid disability leave, and wheelchair ramps throughout the country. And look at all the famous [able-bodied] celebrities who play roles about people living with disabilities. If anything, I as an able-bodied woman am more likely to be discriminated against. I know I was better qualified than that woman who got the job I should have gotten, but they just gave it to her because she is legally blind.”
I also think it’s really ridiculous that there are so many attacks on Trayvon Martin’s character. He has received these attacks by mostly white people who have marked him as the boogie man who would have committed some heinous crime anyway when he became an adult. So let’s be glad that Zimmerman nipped that in the bud! It’s just plan disgusting to argue that Martin deserved to die because he was obviously a ‘bad kid’ and his mother had ‘just kicked him out of her house’ (Read comments to Adams article, as people make these claims). Yea, let’s prevent all children and young people from becoming criminals by simply killing them; after all, only a good child — a redeemable child — is one who is white, middle to upper class and grew up with two married heterosexual parents— because every time a young white male makes the news for opening fire in a school house or in a movie theater, the media starts getting confused on how such a person from a good family could be so violent. Sorry folk, but that is all about race-class stereotyping that is part of the systemic racial narrative in the USA on who gets to be seen as born criminal and who gets to be seen as Well, they probably aren’t innately criminal, let’s give them some grace’; they certainly don’t represent the entire demographic of white people in the USA.
I have been thinking about how people on Adam’s article have commented on how Martin’s history ‘shows’ that he was obviously ‘bad.’ I can list a plethora of white semi-famous to famous youths and those in their 20s who have ‘criminal’ history in which the mainstream do not speak so violently about. One big name that comes to mind is Lindsey Lohan. But no, we don’t have the same rhetoric around the criminal behavior of white, conventionally pretty young girls in this country as we do when it comes to the rhetoric around the brown and black boogie man/child. Whether it be Martin, Lohan, or other youths who have displayed ‘bad’ behavior, killing them as an answer is not an answer. Speaking badly of the character of a dead child is so unmindful, sick, and unloving — I don’t care what their ethnicity, race, nationality, etc is. I can’t imagine what Martin’s family must be going through, having to constantly read and listen to how their child supposedly deserved to die, regardless of what really happened that night. What kind of human being takes pleasure in making these types of comments?
Mike Adams, the “Health Ranger”? Whose health are you really concerned with? I consider health holistic; that it is not limited to the audience that you seem to be targeting with your products and rhetoric. If you truly cared about the health of everyone, you would be open to understanding how everyone’s health is affected by all types of systemic oppressions; and that these systems of oppression are maintained by those who are incredibly frightful of losing resources from what their privileged social locations have afforded them.
Thank you for reminding me to just shut the fuck up about the systemic racism I may witness or experience. Thanks for reminding me that if I’m not silent about it, I am only helping to “tear America apart”. Being silent about systemic abuse PROTECTS me, but even more, it protects someone with your multiple levels of privilege; and we wouldn’t want you or your supporters to feel unsafe or compromise their health and safety.
I doesn’t matter how many degrees or how much training people of color, women, gays/lesbians have, the opinion of Straight White Men will always matter just as much, and usually more. Their anecdotes outweigh the research–after all, it’s THEIR perspective and THEIR interpretation of the world that is the “real” world.
sadly you’ve nailed it right on the head we live in a society to where racism or race is rarely if ever talked about at least not in polite company i would suggest looking up british racism toward’s people of middle eastern decent
You and Coreywrenn are correct, I affirm, from differing perspectives and experienced perceptions, but parts of the whole. This, to me, is basic. When the myth that the individual is the only entity of value, what follows is this arrogant ignorance. Students and scholars of interdisciplinary social science, and a proper interpretation of the “liberal arts” are aware, intuitively and intellectually of the concept of the “commons,” the tribe, clan, culture–sisterhood and brotherhood, mother and fatherhood. They are unaware that no one on the planet is further removed in relationship than 50th cousin. We are all parts of the singularity–the cosmos.
We are living through a neo-wave of heightened isolationism, that denies any connectivity, therefore the ultra conservative impulse in all areas worldwide. This, despite scholarship-research in every discipline that is uncovering the interdependent existence of all.
Strange, that some of these same reactionaries scream loudest about their god/religion missing the central message of all “faiths” of oneness. The racist, Tea Party, one % by all names are the same–isolates, scared of losing what they do not have, and fear most of all,–freedom of spirit and conscience. They have no capability to see themselves and others, but must segregate by gender, “race”(sic) any mode of artificial, perceived difference, rather than within the commonality of existence.
I would like to think that this period is the death gasp of a fear filled perspective of the cosmos and existence. If so, the sickness should expire by “midnight.” We wish, study, and work for the awakening.
Mike Adams and his clones hate the mind. They have only the primitive-reptilian brain stem as their modus operandi-a physical strength, and a moral dis-ease.
Thank you, Amina, for understanding. Sometimes, in my well-intentioned efforts to HELP explain, what comes through as clear as spring water is not comprehended. I am a “conduit,” merely one in the continuum of seekers who tries, and seriously wants to add some clarity to the tangled web of fear, propaganda, lies and subterfuge. We can, if we WILL it. In my first post I wrote “unaware,” when I meant “aware.” Writing in this medium is not easy. I’ve used a desk for decades–not a “desktop.” Sorry.
PS, the word “myth” originally meant a true story. We, now, conveniently, degrade the word when we choose. We do so at our peril.
My experience from living in New York city is that black people are very racist towards whites, hispanics, and any non-blacks. As a dark-skinned caucasion I experienced this several times between 2008-2011. In the last 5 years I have seen more black on white racism in this country than the other way around. I have friends that have similar experiences.
“C” , Do excuse me for being precise in regard to language and scholarship. When one has spend all the decades of one’s life being taught concepts and processes to HELP understand ourselves and the world there is a problem when the efforts to clarify our quest is not known, denied and ignored. I realize that our educational systems are more training grounds for segregated aspects of learning and life, than they are efforts to develop and teach a holistic, conceptual format that advances learning. (Our culture and schools “train” us to remain chattel in a system of exploitation–our own worst enemies. Racism is a structured-institutionally SUPPORTED system of thinking and actions that has resulted in the 1%-controlling v. 99% controlled segregation in society, with a class of controllers in the hierarchical system of institutional oppression–“the suits,” some say..
What you have observed with blacks is emotional anger, personal prejudices, frustration, and a history of hundreds of years of people who look like them being “locked-out” by a current generation of people of color–primarily “black.” Check NYC “stop and frisk” data.
As individuals and recipients of perceived denial and lock-outs in schools, work/advancement and life chances, a generation of blacks have taken the, formerly forbidden, opportunity to behave in what you call “racism.” Without the power to actually affect socio-economic changes in any systematic, effective ways, the sense of anger and denial brought about name calling, and individual-small group hostility and actions.
There is no excuse for this except poor information on how generations handled their denials, through the 1960s.
The overt hostility is like swatting a mosquito. The power that hires, advances and fires is not in the people on the street, club or neighborhood where “we” live. It is in the security protected businesses and up-scale neighborhoods into which “we” never have entry. Really, the name callers, and nasties are destroying potential allies by frightening them.
ML King Jr. was, in some minds killed because he was beginning to a convince disenfranchised slaves–blacks and browns (of all nations) poor whites, and women, even perhaps multi-gendered, if he had livedl ong enough, that the enemy is not those who are in the same socio-economic shoes, but those who control the making of those shoes, from cattle ranching to the plants in Asia where slave labor construct the shoes.
Prejudice, hatred, anger, frustration, you and other whites receive–and are scared–but the real enemies, white-black-brown are laughing all the way to the Cayman Islands, Zurich and other tax havens and gated refuges.
Racism begins with a power structure! Money and governmental power to control power!
Do “black people have that because of Obama”? Hell No! Black people have the pent-up rage and hatred of white oppressors and “Brothers” shit ain’t bros anymore since the ’70’s. When you see a black man dogging his own people, he has only gone steps beyond what whitey wants to do anyway and whitey, the power structure, allows it continue until black people, BLACK MEN commit genocide of their own race here in America.
Your anger and frustration are obvious, and understandable. Save your energy and watch your blood pressure. Any response-reply to the frame of thought like the one to which you responded is hopeless. It is important to realize that such a reply indicates deep levels of non-comprehension of the concept of POWER, of the history of domination, particularly in regard to the European dominance of Africa, the rest of the world for the pat 600+ years. Beneath it all are denial (head in the sand) and fear that blocks intelligence. So the person attacks like the monkeys in the experiments on “flight or fight. In other words, he and you, we and they, exist in two different universes. Sadly. the resolution is simple, but will not happen. Imagine oneself in the other person’s shoes–white/black with our unique histories (stories) and the reaction will be the same. It’ll never happen, or perhaps when Earth is invaded by REAL aliens–from another solar system.
I still say racism is form from a power structure. Where did the Nazis get the idea to commit genocide on the peoples in Europe? From the whites in America!!! The white man almost exterminated the indigenous people of this country! Yet, the white man is so damn greedy, slaves of any color are subjected to harsh labor, torture and rape. Such is the state of the “White Man”. He and is kind are no more than animals!
Sounds to me you have been fed anti white propaganda . It’s as if you claim that the “white man” invented slavery. Hitler didn’t get the idea from white people. He got the idea from his own twisted thoughts. The man was a drug addict. He got the idea for hating jewish people partially from ww1. He felt that the communists and jews living there at the time were to blame for Germanys defeat. And when he saw and opportunity to come to power he knew the German people still felt that jews were to blame . And used that as a way to gain popularity . And it worked . It’s Hitler fault . Not white people. There are fucked up people of all races. So don’t sit there and play the white devil card. It just doesn’t fly anymore.
then i suggest you use all your rage toward’s a man on you tube called tommy sotamayor check him out and yes they haven’t been the same since then you are sadly correct one lone texan slash black british girl
a “dark skinned white person” what is that?
Breeze has written, and others echoed that “race” is a social construct; there is no scientific basis for the word and its social meanings. “Race” serves a purpose, a context for species wide fear of “the other,” the different,” the perceived alien. This excellent forum, is not–no internet forum is–adequate for the full sequence of investigative study and thought required to move from elementary to highest level in regard to “race” and racism. Briefly: “white” is about 500 years old in the thousands of years of separation in thought and action. Consider the neanderthal and homo sapien in the Stone Age. Who, eventually, won? Remnants of the earlier species exist in some modern people.
Racism/white/black is applying one faulty concept on another, even though the results of practices are real. Please read J. M. Blaut’s “The Colonizer’s Model of the World. There were no whites, so designated until in recent history.
The Nazis did not need Americans to each them racism-genocide. Control, and fear of difference have been here all along. Have you heard of Ruwanda, idi Amin, of tribal annihilation planet-wide, throughout history? It’s who dominates NOW.
If we know genetics our anger–hostility–blame–can be placed accurately, and we might be able to overcome the negative effects on “whites,” and “blacks.” “Whiteness” is a learned concept, and the variations within so-called whiteness is greater than between white and black. I continue to ask people to read the research-studies where scholars have spent decades + .We will never be able to intelligently solve the problem without accurate knowledge. What “they” and “we” do is prolong and negate the problem and hurt ourselves, and “them” because most are willingly ignorant of change and chance to remove and heal.
I’m always asking READ-for we learn by study, not be denying. Also, read J Tim Wise for more insight. it would be good if we stopped being our own worst enemy–white, black, brown, all over the map. A most stupid issue today, played out as one of immigration–race–is the inability to recognize that the people called “wetbacks”/Latinos/Hispanics in US context are the descendants of the original inhabitants in the areas whee they are so hated-Texas-New Mexico-Arizona… How stupid to call r these people “illegal aliens.” As a “white” person once said, “I don’t know why we call ourselves ‘white,’ we’re really sort of pinky-gray.” Racism is an issue, but the context is historical aggrandizement, with weapons, resulting in control and power. We must know ACCURATE history–The story– to discern clearly, and plan intelligently.
This Adams fella sounds like a dumbass. No more than that really need be uttered about his shenanigans. What an idiot.
The only way to address racism is to keep it in the open. If your boss, teacher, plumber, doctor , lawyer, etc, etc, let everyone know that this person is racist.