Page 1 of 6 123 ... LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 51

Thread: Barack Obama and Kamala Harris as black

  1. Top | #1
    Administrator lpetrich's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2000
    Location
    Lebanon, OR
    Posts
    5,599
    Archived
    16,829
    Total Posts
    22,428
    Rep Power
    76

    Barack Obama and Kamala Harris as black

    Both Barack Obama and Kamala Harris are clearly mixed-race, but they identify as black.

    Barack Obama's father, Barack Obama Sr., is from Kenya, while his mother Ann Dunham has mostly British ancestry. He has joked about his mixed parentage. A Mutt Like Me | HuffPost Life quoting Barack Obama as stating that "But obviously, a lot of shelter dogs are mutts like me." He has also jokingly called himself "O'Bama", suggesting Irish ancestry.

    Kamala Harris's father Donald Harris is from Jamaica, and he is likely mixed-race. Her mother, Shyamala Gopalan, is from Tamil Nadu, India. KAMALA HARRIS’ JAMAICAN HERITAGE - UPDATED - 14.01.2019 - Jamaica Global Online and also this fun bit: DONALD HARRIS SLAMS HIS DAUGHTER SENATOR KAMALA HARRIS FOR FRAUDULENTLY STEREOTYPING JAMAICANS AND ACCUSES HER OF PLAYING IDENTITY POLITICS - Jamaica Global Online When someone asked her if she smoked marijuana, she responded “Half my family’s from Jamaica. Are you kidding me?” Her father was not very pleased.

    If the D.A. Is of Half-Asian Descent, Why Does the Press Label Her 'Black'? - Poynter
    Race and the Law Prof Blog

    Tiger Woods describes himself as 'Cablinasian' - "a blend of Caucasian, black, Indian and Asian".

    Race in a Genetic World | Harvard Magazine
    “I am an African American,” says Duana Fullwiley, “but in parts of Africa, I am white.” To do fieldwork as a medical anthropologist in Senegal, she says, “I take a plane to France, a seven- to eight-hour ride. My race changes as I cross the Atlantic. There, I say, ‘Je suis noire,’ and they say, ‘Oh, okay—métisse—you are mixed.’ Then I fly another six to seven hours to Senegal, and I am white. In the space of a day, I can change from African American, to métisse, to tubaab [Wolof for “white/European”]. This is not a joke, or something to laugh at, or to take lightly. It is the kind of social recognition that even two-year-olds who can barely speak understand. ‘Tubaab,’ they say when they greet me.”
    So she goes from black to mixed-race to white.

  2. Top | #2
    Sapere aude Politesse's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2018
    Location
    Chochenyo Territory, US
    Posts
    2,123
    Rep Power
    9
    Quote Originally Posted by lpetrich View Post
    Both Barack Obama and Kamala Harris are clearly mixed-race, but they identify as black.

    Barack Obama's father, Barack Obama Sr., is from Kenya, while his mother Ann Dunham has mostly British ancestry. He has joked about his mixed parentage. A Mutt Like Me | HuffPost Life quoting Barack Obama as stating that "But obviously, a lot of shelter dogs are mutts like me." He has also jokingly called himself "O'Bama", suggesting Irish ancestry.

    Kamala Harris's father Donald Harris is from Jamaica, and he is likely mixed-race. Her mother, Shyamala Gopalan, is from Tamil Nadu, India. KAMALA HARRIS’ JAMAICAN HERITAGE - UPDATED - 14.01.2019 - Jamaica Global Online and also this fun bit: DONALD HARRIS SLAMS HIS DAUGHTER SENATOR KAMALA HARRIS FOR FRAUDULENTLY STEREOTYPING JAMAICANS AND ACCUSES HER OF PLAYING IDENTITY POLITICS - Jamaica Global Online When someone asked her if she smoked marijuana, she responded “Half my family’s from Jamaica. Are you kidding me?” Her father was not very pleased.

    If the D.A. Is of Half-Asian Descent, Why Does the Press Label Her 'Black'? - Poynter
    Race and the Law Prof Blog

    Tiger Woods describes himself as 'Cablinasian' - "a blend of Caucasian, black, Indian and Asian".

    Race in a Genetic World | Harvard Magazine
    “I am an African American,” says Duana Fullwiley, “but in parts of Africa, I am white.” To do fieldwork as a medical anthropologist in Senegal, she says, “I take a plane to France, a seven- to eight-hour ride. My race changes as I cross the Atlantic. There, I say, ‘Je suis noire,’ and they say, ‘Oh, okay—métisse—you are mixed.’ Then I fly another six to seven hours to Senegal, and I am white. In the space of a day, I can change from African American, to métisse, to tubaab [Wolof for “white/European”]. This is not a joke, or something to laugh at, or to take lightly. It is the kind of social recognition that even two-year-olds who can barely speak understand. ‘Tubaab,’ they say when they greet me.”
    So she goes from black to mixed-race to white.
    Being black in America isn't about the pseudoscience of biological race; it is a social identity foisted involuntarily on anyone whose skin is too dark, whether they have one African grandparent, a full set, or they moved here from Nigeria two months ago. I'm not going to contest anyone "claiming" an identity that they have no true choice whether or not to claim. What are Obama and Harris going to do, walk into a fascist rally and be like "as a fellow White..."?

    It is worth questioning why it is that our most prominent Black politicians are almost always mixed race, and raised in affluent households. No one likes to talk about it even if they know it, but even "whiteness" is a bit of a red herring disguising the true class structure that runs this country; being a descendant of the British royal family is and almost always has been an unofficial requirement for the White House. Barrack's mother was his tie to King James' line. All but two American presidents have had their own.

    A brief note about your other anecdote:

    When a friend of mine visited Mali recently, he noted that "Toubab" actually meant something more akin "foreigners with money" and included Chinese foreigners (a common sight these days) as well; White, or "Blanc", referred almost exclusively to Touaregs and other Arab-connected Malians.

  3. Top | #3
    Contributor
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Location
    South Pole
    Posts
    8,654
    Archived
    3,444
    Total Posts
    12,098
    Rep Power
    68
    Quote Originally Posted by Politesse View Post
    Being black in America isn't about the pseudoscience of biological race; it is a social identity foisted involuntarily on anyone whose skin is too dark, whether they have one African grandparent, a full set, or they moved here from Nigeria two months ago.
    Or embraced and exploited, such as with Rachel Dolezol.

    I'm not going to contest anyone "claiming" an identity that they have no true choice whether or not to claim. What are Obama and Harris going to do, walk into a fascist rally and be like "as a fellow White..."?
    I don't know much about Harris (maybe that will change if she wins the Dem nomination), but Obama was actually very good regarding it in comparison to many. He spoke often in inclusive and non-divisional tribal terms. His speech about there being not a black/white, or red/blue America, but a United States of America still impresses me after all these years. He wasn't perfect my any means, but he didn't push division and identity politics nearly as much as many other politicians. And he was usually quick to play down rather than play up the fact that he was the first "black" president, instead putting focus where it should be, on his policies. He is a great speaker, and I think has few equals in that regard.

    It is worth questioning why it is that our most prominent Black politicians are almost always mixed race, and raised in affluent households. No one likes to talk about it even if they know it, but even "whiteness" is a bit of a red herring disguising the true class structure that runs this country; being a descendant of the British royal family is and almost always has been an unofficial requirement for the White House. Barrack's mother was his tie to King James' line. All but two American presidents have had their own.
    The rich and privileged seek to distract with the race issue. They often hide behind it.

  4. Top | #4
    Contributor repoman's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Location
    Seattle, WA
    Posts
    6,252
    Archived
    2,280
    Total Posts
    8,532
    Rep Power
    72
    ADOS—which stands for American Descendants of Slavery—seeks to reclaim/restore the critical national character of the African American identity and experience, one grounded in our group's unique lineage, and which is central to our continuing struggle for social and economic justice in the United States.

  5. Top | #5
    Administrator lpetrich's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2000
    Location
    Lebanon, OR
    Posts
    5,599
    Archived
    16,829
    Total Posts
    22,428
    Rep Power
    76
    Quote Originally Posted by Politesse View Post
    Being black in America isn't about the pseudoscience of biological race; it is a social identity foisted involuntarily on anyone whose skin is too dark, whether they have one African grandparent, a full set, or they moved here from Nigeria two months ago. I'm not going to contest anyone "claiming" an identity that they have no true choice whether or not to claim. What are Obama and Harris going to do, walk into a fascist rally and be like "as a fellow White..."?
    If one is light-skinned enough, one can easily pass as white: Passing (racial identity). Kamala Harris I think could easily do that, but I'm not sure about Barack Obama. A certain Rachel Dolezal has tried to pass in the opposite direction.

    It is worth questioning why it is that our most prominent Black politicians are almost always mixed race, and raised in affluent households.
    As to being raised in affluent households, is that any different from most other politicians?

    As to being mixed race, most American blacks are at least somewhat mixed race. So one should ask: are such politicians mostly light-skinned? Are there any dark-skinned ones? As dark-skinned as (say) Eddie Murphy or Grace Jones.

    No one likes to talk about it even if they know it, but even "whiteness" is a bit of a red herring disguising the true class structure that runs this country; being a descendant of the British royal family is and almost always has been an unofficial requirement for the White House. Barrack's mother was his tie to King James' line. All but two American presidents have had their own.
    Seems almost like some conspiracy theory. I must ask:
    (1) Where's the evidence?
    (2) Is that anything unusual?
    Most US presidents have British last names, and the exceptions I can recognize are Eisenhower, Trump (German), Kennedy, Reagan (Irish), Van Buren, Roosevelt (Dutch), Obama (Kenyan). Last names indicate paternal ancestry, so many of those with non-British last names could have plenty of British ancestry provided by female ancestors. Like Barack Obama, whose mother was Ann Dunham.

    GenWeb.JRaC: Genealogy of 1.5M individuals, including Royalty, US Presidents, the Bible, plus free research tools has some genealogies of US Presidents, and it's hard to trace them back more than a few generations.

    As to descent from British monarchs, that would mean those monarchs having some non-royal children like illegitimate ones or ones who dropped out of royal status. But for sufficiently far back, there has been plenty of time for those children's descendants to become mixed in with the rest of the population. So being descended from some medieval king isn't very meaningful if just about everybody else in Britain is also descended from that king.

    A brief note about your other anecdote:

    When a friend of mine visited Mali recently, he noted that "Toubab" actually meant something more akin "foreigners with money" and included Chinese foreigners (a common sight these days) as well; White, or "Blanc", referred almost exclusively to Touaregs and other Arab-connected Malians.
    Most Chinese people are very light-skinned, enough to be "white". Thus to black Africans, they'd be honkies.

  6. Top | #6
    Sapere aude Politesse's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2018
    Location
    Chochenyo Territory, US
    Posts
    2,123
    Rep Power
    9
    Quote Originally Posted by lpetrich View Post
    As to being raised in affluent households, is that any different from most other politicians?
    This is entirely my point. Your average white American has no more chance of reaching the White House than your average black American; the whole issue of race has always been, and has never been anything other than, a sideshow to convince people to hate one another in lieu of the forces that equally oppress and exploit them both for their labor and their votes.

    No one likes to talk about it even if they know it, but even "whiteness" is a bit of a red herring disguising the true class structure that runs this country; being a descendant of the British royal family is and almost always has been an unofficial requirement for the White House. Barrack's mother was his tie to King James' line. All but two American presidents have had their own.
    Seems almost like some conspiracy theory. I must ask:
    (1) Where's the evidence?
    (2) Is that anything unusual?
    It's not unusual, and it is not a conspiracy, because it isn't really that much of a secret if you really look into it at all. A few hundred affluent families have controlled the reigns of power in this country since before it was even founded. You can marry in, but you cannot easily break the system. That they are all "white" is not incidental, but it isn't the cause either, merely a phenotypical trend which was useful to them because it gave them a pretext for creating a slave class, while maintaining the full support of the democratic majority.

    Most US presidents have British last names, and the exceptions I can recognize are Eisenhower, Trump (German), Kennedy, Reagan (Irish), Van Buren, Roosevelt (Dutch), Obama (Kenyan). Last names indicate paternal ancestry, so many of those with non-British last names could have plenty of British ancestry provided by female ancestors. Like Barack Obama, whose mother was Ann Dunham.
    Yes. It's not actually a secret that most presidents have had ties to the British nobility, most thorough presidential biographies will point this out. How exactly do you think capitalism works? I'll give you a big hint: it strongly favors those who, for historical reasons, already possessed large amounts of capital at the time when the system came into being.

  7. Top | #7
    Elder Contributor Keith&Co.'s Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Far Western Mass
    Posts
    15,507
    Archived
    24,500
    Total Posts
    40,007
    Rep Power
    72
    The twins were born three months premature. 2lbs 4oz and 2lbs 7oz. They went straight to Neonatal ICU, placed in separate bays. When my wife recovered enough to walk, we visited. I went into Bay Two. The nurse there saw me at KJ's shelf and filled in the last blank on the admitting form. "Baby is white."
    Wife went into Bay Four. KE's nurse picked up her form. "Baby is black."
    It was a good week before someone noticed they were not quite twins....

    Been really hard to take any of it seriously ever since...i mark all forms 'human' these days.

  8. Top | #8
    Fair dinkum thinkum bilby's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    The Sunshine State: The one with Crocs, not Gators
    Posts
    21,155
    Archived
    10,477
    Total Posts
    31,632
    Rep Power
    81
    Race, as it is used today, is a purely social construct.

    From a genetic perspective, literally everyone is mixed race. It's meaningless.

    Racial purity (of any kind) is a pseudoscientific concept with no anchor in reality; It should have died in the 1940s, but like so much of pseudoscience - astrology, phrenology, chiropractic, homeopathy, etc., etc., it has proven to be remarkably resistant to dying out, even after it has been soundly demonstrated to be utter nonsense.

    Racial identity is as inborn and immutable as sports fandom. People can assume that they know your place from a brief glance at your colours, but they are wrong as often as they are right.

  9. Top | #9
    Contributor Trausti's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Northwest
    Posts
    5,174
    Archived
    372
    Total Posts
    5,546
    Rep Power
    58
    Quote Originally Posted by bilby View Post
    Race, as it is used today, is a purely social construct.

    From a genetic perspective, literally everyone is mixed race. It's meaningless.
    Race isn't genetic - until you misclassify some cancer cell lines.

  10. Top | #10
    Contributor Trausti's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Northwest
    Posts
    5,174
    Archived
    372
    Total Posts
    5,546
    Rep Power
    58
    Race is genetic. Most just refuse to accept the science. But ultimately it's who your ancestors were. Who is your extended family? Under that rubric, neither Obama or Harris are Black Americans as understood to be descend from American slaves. But so what? Didn't affect Obama.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •