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Victor Ray @victorerikray
, 10 tweets, 3 min read Read on Twitter
I've been thinking about this since I saw @GeeDee215 tweet this earlier today. I don’t usually write threads but that photo has me irritated, so…
First, this is me and my brother in the early 1980s. I’m on the right. We could have been the objects of this story. I say objects because they didn't present those kids as subjects.
One of the things that bother me about the @NatGeo photo and story is the claim that these kids know “the best way” to deal with racism. They are kids and think racism is about folks being mean.
Secondly, as Gene pointed out, the article reaches the facile conclusion that race “is a social construction” but doesn’t seem to understand the implications of either term.
One thing the "social" means is that racism is often bigger than how one looks, and can have effects even if you look white. Things are easier in many realms, as the work of @SandyDarity @EllisMonk and @PhuzzieSlippers shows.
But you don't just fully outrun the effects of a lack of intergenerational wealth or health issues related to segregation.
And when social scientists say "constructed" it doesn't mean meaningless. If people act on racial meanings, regardless of intent, it can produce racist outcomes.
I think it’s interesting that this is an argument put forward in an issue of @NatGeo where the editor is apologizing for poor (read: racist) coverage in the past.
Articles like this reflect a general lack of seriousness about thinking, writing about, and studying race.
As someone who studies race, I'm consistently disappointed with the glib (and misleading) way race gets treated in the press.
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