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Re: [Generation-Mixed] Re: Colorism & Racism in Mexican Culture

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  • pierre jefferson
    Dear Rosanna,    Our hearts go out to you! its extremely difficult living in a race conscious enviorment` the mental strain alone is almost impossible to
    Message 1 of 7 , Feb 14, 2009
      Dear Rosanna,
       
       Our hearts go out to you! its extremely difficult living in a race
      conscious enviorment` the mental strain alone is almost impossible
      to bare. Sadly racism has touched all races on the planet, and the
      ugly part of this is when other races start practicing these racist
      concepts on them selves within their own race. Even in India the delits
      are very dark skin Indian,s` they are treated less than a human being.
      Forced to live in squalor and filth` simply because they are believed to
      be some how cursed by God. Yes your Mexican relatives have been
      programmed to see skin color as a right of passage or a stop sign.
      Bestowing gifts apond the light skin segments of the family like treasures
      from God, while condemning darker members of the family as shameful
      and damaged goods. Racism has no love for anyone who does not mirror
      thev Racist! because the racist mind can not see its self on the same level
      with another version of its self. Color has become a visual code or signal
      to either block or help a person. If you feel uncomfortable around your husbands
      relatives its purely natural, because you are on a higher level of human under
      standing and compassion than most of them. Remain strong and observant):
      because the things you hear and see are examples of what dwells in side them.
      Hopefully as time goes on these views will fade into a wiser and kinder reality.
       
      Pierre


      --- On Fri, 2/13/09, Rosanna <rosanna_armendariz@...> wrote:

      From: Rosanna <rosanna_armendariz@...>
      Subject: [Generation-Mixed] Re: Colorism & Racism in Mexican Culture
      To: Generation-Mixed@yahoogroups.com
      Date: Friday, February 13, 2009, 10:16 PM

      Thank you for your prayers. I'm sure I will need them.

      In Generation-Mixed@ yahoogroups. com,
      Cheylenna PJ Salter <la_cayena@. ..> wrote:

      ((((((((Rosanna) ))))))
       
      I feel your pain. I was one of the least favored in my family for of our racial appearances, so I understand your motherly concern about the opposite because the behavior is just as psychologically detrimental. I really hope you and your husband can soon figure a way to get through to his family. Even if they could just be polite and not say so many of the racist things they say, it would probably be a great improvement. Family should be so important to cause family to stick together, not to be debasing. Not recognizing you and your son for all that you are is debasing in its own way. No matter what it is, family shouldn't allow physical or natural characteristics get in the way of the way they love and accept you.

      I know, that doesn't change the realities.
       
      I'll pray for you and yours, Rosanna.
       
      BePeace
       
      Cheylenna PJ

       
      In Generation-Mixed@ yahoogroups. com,
      Rosanna <rosanna_armendariz @...> wrote:

      As some of you know from reading my previous posts, I'm from a racially/ethnically mixed background and grew up in NYC. Through a series of events, I ended up living out on the US/Mexico border and marrying a Mexican-American man. I came into this situation with an open mind and no preconceived notions about Mexican culture. However, I have been horrified at the degree of colorism and racism prevalent. Many Mexicans are outwardly predjudiced against persons of other ethnicities, calling black people "negritos," for instance.
      It seems that if a Mexican person met a black Nobel prize winner at the grocery store, instead describing the person as a nobel prize winner, the first thing that would come out of their mouth would be: "I met this negrito..." In this vein, many refer to Obama as "The negrito in charge," even though some of them voted for him for economic reasons.

      This has personally affected me b/c many individuals in my husband's family have racist/colorist views. For instance, I have very thick, very curly black hair, hence my mother-in-law is constantly screwing up her face and saying, "It's so dark." She has also advised me to cut my hair very short b/c "it's so bushy."

      Another example of MIL's weirdness: My own mother is half Ecuadorian, half Polish, and my father is Jamaican. Yet, for years MIL rewrote my heritage so that my mother was only Polish and my father was Ecuadorian, thereby eliminating the Jamaican. And this embracing of the Polish has only intensified w/the birth of my son. He seems to have received a healthy dose of recessive genes b/c he is fair-skinned, with light hair and eyes. MIL constantly asks me about the Polish members of my family, and at one point said, with glee, "He [my son] takes after your mother's side of the family, not your father's." Everytime she visits, she beams with delight, saying, "He's getting lighter all the time!"

      Honestly, as far as any social awareness is concerned, I think the Mexican culture is maybe at the point African-Americans were at 60 yrs ago when colorism was rampant. I'm wondering if the Mexican culture will ever evolve. It seems many do not want to examine their racist views. Racist cartoons are still popular in Mexico, for instance. It makes me sad that my son will grow up admist this ignorance. I will do my best to educate him, but I'm only one
      person against so many.

    • Rosanna
      Well, it s actually a bit more subtle than that. My mother-in-law is herself dark-skinned and that doesn t stop her from bestowing gifts upon herself, ha,
      Message 2 of 7 , Feb 18, 2009
        Well, it's actually a bit more subtle than that. My mother-in-law is herself dark-skinned and that doesn't stop her from "bestowing gifts" upon herself, ha, ha. However, I'm sure if she could wave a magic wand and be lighter, taller, and generally more anglo-looking, she would do it. My husband is also dark-skinned; his brother is medium complected, and his sister is very fair. He says growing up his sister received all sorts of special treatment. He attributes this to her being the only girl. I think that's probably true, but her skin color may also have had something to do with it. For instance, MIL entered SIL into many beauty contests, and may not have done that had she been dark.

        But I just thought I'd clarify that the darkskinned individuals of
        the family aren't treated like animals or anything so extreme as
        that. It's more a case of comments and attitudes, particularly on
        the part of MIL and SIL. I really do wish they'd keep their opinions to themselves b/c as my son gets older he may begin to believe that being lighter is more attractive, better, etc. Needless to say I don't want him to think that way, but it's difficult to get this point across b/c colorism is so deeply ingrained in the Mexican culture. Most people don't think twice about these views, let alone see anything wrong w/them.



        In Generation-Mixed@yahoogroups.com,
        pierre jefferson <pierrejefferson2007@...> wrote:


        Dear Rosanna,

        Our hearts go out to you! its extremely difficult living in a race conscious enviorment` the mental strain alone is almost impossible to bare. Sadly racism has touched all races on the planet, and the ugly part of this is when other races start practicing these racist concepts on them selves within their own race. Even in India the delits are very dark skin Indian,s` they are treated less than a human being. Forced to live in squalor and filth` simply because they are believed to be some how cursed by God. Yes your Mexican elatives have been programmed to see skin color as a right of passage or a stop sign. Bestowing gifts apond the light skin segments of the family like treasures from God, while condemning darker members of the family as shameful and damaged goods. Racism has no love for anyone who does not mirror thev Racist! because the racist mind can not see its self on the same level with another version of its self. Color has become a visual code or signal to either block or help a person. If you feel uncomfortable around your husbands relatives its purely natural, because you are on a higher level of human under standing and compassion than most of them. Remain strong and observant): because the things you hear and see are examples of what dwells in side them. Hopefully as time goes on these views will fade into a wiser and kinder reality.

        Pierre



        On Fri, 2/13/09, Rosanna <rosanna_armendariz@...> wrote:


        Thank you for your prayers. I'm sure I will need them.



        In Generation-Mixed@ yahoogroups. com,
        Cheylenna PJ Salter <la_cayena@ ..> wrote:


        ((((((((Rosanna) ))))))
         
        I feel your pain. I was one of the least favored in my family for
        of our racial appearances, so I understand your motherly concern
        about the opposite because the behavior is just as psychologically
        detrimental. I really hope you and your husband can soon figure a
        way to get through to his family. Even if they could just be polite
        and not say so many of the racist things they say, it would probably
        be a great improvement. Family should be so important to cause family to stick together, not to be debasing. Not recognizing you and your son for all that you are is debasing in its own way. No matter what it is, family shouldn't allow physical or natural characteristics get in the way of the way they love and accept you.

        I know, that doesn't change the realities.

        I'll pray for you and yours, Rosanna.

        BePeace

        Cheylenna PJ



        In Generation-Mixed@ yahoogroups. com,
        Rosanna <rosanna_armendariz @...> wrote:


        As some of you know from reading my previous posts, I'm from a
        racially/ethnically mixed background and grew up in NYC. Through a
        series of events, I ended up living out on the US/Mexico border and
        marrying a Mexican-American man. I came into this situation with an
        open mind and no preconceived notions about Mexican culture. However, I have been horrified at the degree of colorism and racism prevalent. Many Mexicans are outwardly predjudiced against persons of other ethnicities, calling black people "negritos," for instance.
        It seems that if a Mexican person met a black Nobel prize winner at
        the grocery store, instead describing the person as a nobel prize
        winner, the first thing that would come out of their mouth would
        be: "I met this negrito..." In this vein, many refer to Obama
        as "The negrito in charge," even though some of them voted for him
        for economic reasons.

        This has personally affected me b/c many individuals in my
        husband's family have racist/colorist views. For instance, I have
        very thick, very curly black hair, hence my mother-in-law is
        constantly screwing up her face and saying, "It's so dark." She has
        also advised me to cut my hair very short b/c "it's so bushy."

        Another example of MIL's weirdness: My own mother is half
        > Ecuadorian, half Polish, and my father is Jamaican. Yet, for years
        MIL rewrote my heritage so that my mother was only Polish and my
        father was Ecuadorian, thereby eliminating the Jamaican. And this
        embracing of the Polish has only intensified w/the birth of my son.
        He seems to have received a healthy dose of recessive genes b/c he is fair-skinned, with light hair and eyes. MIL constantly asks me about the Polish members of my family, and at one point said, with
        glee, "He [my son] takes after your mother's side of the family, not
        your father's." Everytime she visits, she beams with delight,
        saying, "He's getting lighter all the time!"

        Honestly, as far as any social awareness is concerned, I think the
        Mexican culture is maybe at the point African-Americans were at 60
        yrs ago when colorism was rampant. I'm wondering if the Mexican ulture will ever evolve. It seems many do not want to examine
        their racist views. Racist cartoons are still popular in Mexico, for
        instance. It makes me sad that my son will grow up admist this
        ignorance. I will do my best to educate him, but I'm only one
        person against so many.
      • wintyreeve@aol.com
        Thanks for sharing Rosanna... I m sorry to hear things are like that. Then again, I would have never known if you did not share your experiences. I think its
        Message 3 of 7 , Feb 19, 2009
          Thanks for sharing Rosanna... I'm sorry to hear things are like that. Then again, I would have never known if you did not share your experiences. I think its such a blessing to have this group to not only support each other but to give each other different perspectives, and the opportunity to see more of life.

          I am Polish too. Only my family has dark hair and almost olive complexion. LOL* Not that it matters! You know Hitler thought the Poles were inferior, and targeted them. He sent Polish children off to live with other families, and openly criticized Slavic people. Many Poles were sent to concentration camps for various "crimes".

          In the end, its not color that matters--its the condition of our hearts, and how we treat others.

          Peace, Lynn


          -----Original Message-----
          From: Rosanna <rosanna_armendariz@...>
          To: Generation-Mixed@yahoogroups.com
          Sent: Thu, 12 Feb 2009 9:57 am
          Subject: [Generation-Mixed] Colorism & Racism in Mexican Culture

          As some of you know from reading my previous posts, I'm from a
          racially/ethnically mixed background and grew up in NYC. Through a
          series of events, I ended up living out on the US/Mexico border and
          marrying a Mexican-American man. I came into this situation with an
          open mind and no preconceived notions about Mexican culture.
          However, I have been horrified at the degree of colorism and racism
          prevalent. Many Mexicans are outwardly predjudiced against persons
          of other ethnicities, calling black people "negritos," for instance.
          It seems that if a Mexican person met a black Nobel prize winner at
          the grocery store, instead describing the person as a nobel prize
          winner, the first thing that would come out of their mouth would
          be: "I met this negrito..." In this vein, many refer to Obama
          as "The negrito in charge," even though some of them voted for him
          for economic reasons.

          This has personally affected me b/c many individuals in my husband's
          family have racist/colorist views. For instance, I have very thick,
          very curly black hair, hence my mother-in-law is constantly screwing
          up her face and saying, "It's so dark." She has also advised me to
          cut my hair very short b/c "it's so bushy."

          Another example of MIL's weirdness: My own mother is half Ecuadorian,
          half Polish, and my father is Jamaican. Yet, for years MIL rewrote my
          heritage so that my mother was only Polish and my father was
          Ecuadorian, thereby eliminating the Jamaican. And this embracing of
          the Polish has only intensified w/the birth of my son. He seems to
          have received a healthy dose of recessive genes b/c he is fair-
          skinned, with light hair and eyes. MIL constantly asks me about the
          Polish members of my family, and at one point said, with glee, "He
          [my son] takes after your mother's side of the family, not your
          father's." Everytime she visits, she beams with delight,
          saying, "He's getting lighter all the time!"

          Honestly, as far as any social awareness is concerned, I think the
          Mexican culture is maybe at the point African-Americans were at 60
          yrs ago when colorism was rampant. I'm wondering if the Mexican
          culture will ever evolve. It seems many do not want to examine their
          racist views. Racist cartoons are still popular in Mexico, for
          instance. It makes me sad that my son will grow up admist this
          ignorance. I will do my best to educate him, but I'm only one person
          against so many.


        • Rosanna
          Yes, I think a lot of people who are not around the Mexican culture are surprised to hear about the amount of racism and colorism. I think since Mexicans are
          Message 4 of 7 , Feb 24, 2009
            Yes, I think a lot of people who are not around the Mexican culture
            are surprised to hear about the amount of racism and colorism. I
            think since Mexicans are a "minority" and many are dark-skinned,
            people assume they must feel an affinity towards African-Americans--
            this is often not the case, to say the least. And I hear you about
            the Polish. Historically, many anglos didn't even consider the
            slavic people to be White. So, it's kind of funny about MIL
            idealizing this part of my ancestry. Oh well. Ignorance abounds.



            In Generation-Mixed@yahoogroups.com, wintyreeve@... wrote:



            Thanks for sharing Rosanna... I'm sorry to hear things are like
            that. Then again, I would have never known if you did not share your
            experiences. I think its such a blessing to have this group to not
            only support each other but to give each other different
            perspectives, and the opportunity to see more of life.

            I am Polish too. Only my family has dark hair and almost olive
            complexion. LOL* Not that it matters! You know Hitler thought the
            Poles were inferior, and targeted them. He sent Polish children off
            to live with other families, and openly criticized Slavic people.
            Many Poles were sent to concentration camps for various "crimes".

            In the end, its not color that matters--its the condition of our
            hearts, and how we treat others.

            Peace, Lynn



            -----Original Message-----



            From: Rosanna <rosanna_armendariz@...>
            To: Generation-Mixed@yahoogroups.com
            Sent: Thu, 12 Feb 2009 9:57 am
            Subject: [Generation-Mixed] Colorism & Racism in Mexican Culture



            As some of you know from reading my previous posts, I'm from a
            racially/ethnically mixed background and grew up in NYC. Through a
            series of events, I ended up living out on the US/Mexico border and
            marrying a Mexican-American man. I came into this situation with an
            open mind and no preconceived notions about Mexican culture.
            However, I have been horrified at the degree of colorism and racism
            prevalent. Many Mexicans are outwardly predjudiced against persons
            of other ethnicities, calling black people "negritos," for
            instance.
            It seems that if a Mexican person met a black Nobel prize winner at
            the grocery store, instead describing the person as a nobel prize
            winner, the first thing that would come out of their mouth would
            be: "I met this negrito..." In this vein, many refer to Obama
            as "The negrito in charge," even though some of them voted for him
            for economic reasons.

            This has personally affected me b/c many individuals in my
            husband's family have racist/colorist views. For instance, I have very thick, very curly black hair, hence my mother-in-law is constantly screwing up her face and saying, "It's so dark." She has also advised me to cut my hair very short b/c "it's so bushy."

            Another example of MIL's weirdness: My own mother is half
            Ecuadorian, half Polish, and my father is Jamaican. Yet, for years MIL rewrote my heritage so that my mother was only Polish and my father was Ecuadorian, thereby eliminating the Jamaican. And this embracing of the Polish has only intensified w/the birth of my son. He seems to have received a healthy dose of recessive genes b/c he is fair-skinned, with light hair and eyes. MIL constantly asks me about the Polish members of my family, and at one point said, with glee, "He [my son] takes after your mother's side of the family, not your father's." Everytime she visits, she beams with delight, saying, "He's getting lighter all the time!"

            Honestly, as far as any social awareness is concerned, I think the
            Mexican culture is maybe at the point African-Americans were at 60 yrs ago when colorism was rampant. I'm wondering if the Mexican culture will ever evolve. It seems many do not want to examine their
            racist views. Racist cartoons are still popular in Mexico, for
            instance. It makes me sad that my son will grow up admist this
            ignorance. I will do my best to educate him, but I'm only one person against so many.
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