Anonymous asked: Hey, i'm really sorry to bother, but can you help explain Yellowface a bit more? I dont really understand how white paint is yellowface since it isnt yellow but my reading isnt good because i have autism im sorry

Yellowface is another example of the racism prevalent in American culture. Yellowface means more than a white person wearing make-up to look Asian. It also describes the systematic bias against hiring real Asians to play Asian roles shown by white producers, directors, and others who control the depiction of Asians in popular culture through casting decisions and the propagation of racist Asian stereotypes and caricatures. 

Racist Asian Stereotypes

When Asian immigrants first arrived in the United States, they were welcomed as cheap labor. But after the California gold rush brought a flood of Asian immigrants to California, the cheap Asian labor began to be seen as a threat. What began as neutral or amusing stereotypical caricatures of Asians soon took on more negative connotations.


The “Coolie” stereotype originated with Chinese laborers in the 1850s as a means of preventing Chinese from entering the skilled trades. The lowest-paying unskilled jobs were called “coolie labor” or “n****r work.”

Yellow Peril
Yellow Peril

The “Yellow Peril” or pollutant stereotype began to take hold in 1890s California. Asians were viewed as alien and a threat to wage-earners, and a movement began that had the goal of making California racially pure.


The “Deviant” stereotype was a response to the movement of Asians from common labor to household servants, laundrymen, and operators of opium dens, and the importation of women for prostitution.

Dragon Lady
Dragon Lady

Asian women have often been portrayed as cunning “Dragon Ladies” — aggressive or opportunistic sexual beings or predatory gold diggers. Non-threatening stereotypes include servile Lotus Blossoms, China dolls, and Geisha girls.


The “Gook” stereotype originated with the US Military during the Korean War as a generic term for Asians, and became more popular during the Vietnam War. A gook is an invisible and powerful enemy with superhuman endurance and ability to absorb punishment.

 Model Minority
Model Minority

The “Model Minority” stereotype originated in the 1950s as a representation of successful assimilation of Asians that was contrasted with the less successful assimilation of Blacks and Hispanics.

Legal Discrimination and Violence Against Asian Immigrants

As a trickle turned into a flood, (between 1850 and 1930, about one million Asians from China, Japan, Korea, the Philippines, and India came to the United States) a backlash soon developed.

Yellowface on Stage

"Yellowface" portrayals date to at least 1767 in the United States, when Arthur Murphy’s theatrical work The Orphan of China was presented in Philadelphia. 

Yellowface in Film and TV

Whites in Yellowface have a long history on screen, beginning with Mary Pickford’s Cio-Cio San in Madame Butterfly (1915). 

Yellowface Whitewashing

A phenomenon wherein white actors are cast to portray what were originally non-white characters is called “whitewashing.” Instead of using yellow face makeup, the film makers change the race or origin of the characters.

Yellowface in Europe

The most blatant contemporary example of Yellowface in Western European media is a character created by Dutch TV and later adopted by Danish TV called Ushi; a caricature of a Japanese woman, but played by white women. 

Yellowface Caricatures in Politics

In 1997, The National Review magazine published an illustrated cover of then President Bill Clinton, Hillary Clinton and Vice President Al Gore, in stereotypical Oriental garb and featuring caricatured features, buck teeth and slanted eyes.



This horrific incident has been well documented, everywhere: from YouTube videos of survivor interviews to PBS Lesson Plans for school teachers. Please do your Google diligence:

  • From May 30 to June 1, 1921, white citizens of Tulsa bombed burned and shot up the “Little Africa” section of Tulsa FOR 18 HOURS STRAIGHT
  • Why would they do that? That same old lame excuse, a Black man supposedly did something to a white woman. But the real reason was ECONOMIC JEALOUSY. Whites may have called it Little Africa derisively, but there is a reason that Black Tulsa is known as Black Wall Street
  • In addition to the 300 Blacks killed, and over 1,000 residential homes burned to the ground, also destroyed were:
  • The Mt. Zion Baptist Church and five other churches; the Gurley Hotel, Red Wing Hotel, and Midway Hotel; the Tulsa Star and Oklahoma Sun newspaper offices; Dunbar Elementary School; Osborne Monroe’s Roller-Skating Rink; the East End Feed Store; the Y.M.C.A. Cleaners; the Dreamland Theater; a drug store, barbershop, banquet hall, several grocery stores, dentists, lawyers, doctors, and realtors offices; a U.S. Post Office Substation, as well the all-black Frissell Memorial Hospital. All told, marauding gangs of savage whites destroyed 40-square-blocks of Black economic and entrepreneurial prosperity!

64 years after the first bombing of an American city was committed against the Black residents of Tulsa… the second bombing of an American city took place in Philadelphia when the city bombed the black members of the MOVE organization. (see the blackourstory archive for details). 

Isn’t it a shame that 76 after the bombing of Tulsa, when Timothy McVeigh blew up the Murrah Federal Office Building in Oklahoma City, most historically illiterate Americans - including American “journalists” - responded as if it were the first time such a horror had been visited on Oklahoma. If only we knew.

While there are many lessons to be drawn from this, a few questions that stick out to me are these:

  • If the answer to Black second-class treatment from whites in America is supposedly to become the ultimate American capitalists…the ‘model minorities’… how do you explain Tulsa 1921?
  • For those Black folk who think that the sole answer to Black people’s problems is simply more Blacks becoming business owners and more Blacks spending money with other Blacks… how did that work out for our people in Tulsa in ‘21?
  • Considering not only Tulsa, but Rosewood, Florida, and many other thriving all-Black towns that you may know of that all met the same fate at the hands of murderous, envious, lazy crackers… WHEN ARE WE GOING TO ACKNOWLEDGE AND TAKE SERIOUSLY THE IDEA THAT BLACK WEALTH (ESPECIALLY ALL-BLACK WEALTH) WILL NEED TO BE PROTECTED WITH PHYSICAL FORCE?

There is a reason that Marcus Garvey AND Elijah Muhammad had armies of trained Black men as a huge part of their organizations. Many of us Black folk took those great men as jokes, yet NO BLACK LEADERS SINCE THOSE TWO have reached the same heights of economic and ideological success and unity of Black people. 

Not only do we need to LEARN THIS HISTORY, we need to start taking these events men and movements MORE SERIOUSLY, and doing some CRITICAL HISTORICAL ANALYSIS if we are ever to stop being on the bottom rung of every metric in American life. Not just some casual or accidental reading of history; some CRITICAL. HISTORICAL. ANALYSIS.

TULSA 1921 was real. PHILLY 1985 was real. Will it happen again?

(via agendersiuan)








Is this a human rights violation?

They’re being forced to risk their lives, so yeah I would say this is a violation of their right to life.


Everytime I look around, the US Govt, or some part there-of on  State or National level; is finding a way to reintroduce slavery.

Fucking hell. The prison industrial complex finds new ways to shock, revile and disgust every day.

This isn’t “a way to reintroduce slavery,” though. The 13th Amendment, which ended slavery, was very precisely written:

"Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction.”

This is why black people make up 14% of the US population and 40% of the prison population and why Native Americans make up less than 1% of the US population but 2% of the prison population.

This isnt slavery. These are people who commit crimes like murder and child molestation that are being punished for there actions through physical labor. God forbid they do something other than sit on their asses all day in jail.

Literally nothing you just said is based in fact. 

The men fighting these fires are all low-level offenders, primarily with charges for drugs, robbery, and other non-violent offenses (and, fyi, non-violent offenses are what 50% of state prisoners and about 90% of federal prisoners are incarcerated for). US prison has largely been a privatized, for-profit industry since the 1980s. Law changes like mandatory minimums for low-level crime have ensured that the incarceration rate has done nothing but skyrocket because private prisons need a steady flow of inmates to turn profit and our government is contractually obligated to provide that steady flow. Hell, drug-related charges account for over half of that rise of rate. Marginalized groups are targeted disproportionately for incarceration through systemic poverty, inaccessible education, social instability, etc (all which increase risk of drug abuse and other criminal behavior), racial profiling by LEOs, and by being given much harsher sentences than more privileged counterparts. And that’s without even touching on wrongful conviction rates, which are about 6% for violent crimes and estimated to be much higher with lesser offenses. 

And criminals are sent to prison as punishment, not for punishment. The confinement and denial of personal agency is the punishment. And prison is meant to serve two purposes: punishment and rehabilitation. Prison work programs are about neither—they exist primarily to defray costs of housing inmates (and, thus, increase profits for private prisons). And bondage, subjugation, and forced labor for other’s financial gain is practically the textbook definition of slavery, so idk what to tell you. There are lots of ways to keep prisoners from “sitting on their asses all day” that don’t involve treating these men and women as unworthy of humane treatment, empathy, and compassion. Hell, work programs are even a really viable option for that when approached with the right intentions.   

Seriously, I really urge you to do some reading about mass incarceration, racial disparities in incarceration, the privatization of the prison industry, etc. if you’re going to have an opinion on this stuff because ignorance isn’t a good look on anyone. 



(TW) Ferguson: Police Treatment in Arrests

Must watch!!

(via anakihn)

Ferguson October


I wanted to write this post to clear up any miscommunication that may be happening around the past weekend. For those of you who haven’t been following me closely on social media, last weekend I went to Ferguson, Missouri for the weekend of events called Ferguson October. This was a weekend of events such as protests, forums, acts of civil disobedience, marches, and many other events. This ‘Weekend of Resistance’ was put together by many different organizations like The Organization for Black Struggle, Hands Up United, Missourians Organizing for Reform & Empowerment and Color of Change to protest the death of Michael Brown. For those of you who don’t know, Michael Brown was shot and killed by police officer Darren Wilson despite being unarmed and having his hands up. There are many different accounts of what happened that day and none of us can truly know what happened. After Mike Brown was murdered, Darren Wilson went on paid leave and has yet to be charged (he is still currently on paid leave). 

Now I’m not here to convince you that Darren Wilson committed murder that night. But I am here to tell you that police brutality is all too common these days and it is unacceptable. Police brutality can take many different forms like excessive force, false arrest or imprisonment, unreasonable search (think Stop and Frisk laws), racial profiling, sexual assault, etc. The statistics on how often black people are killed by police is disgusting. Some studies (Operation Ghetto Storm) suggest that every 28 hours a black man, woman, or child is killed by someone who is employed and protected by the US government (mainly police officers). The pattern of police killings of black people is appalling. But beyond the black community, police brutality affects everyone. Police brutality is an American issue. I had white friends who stood in solidarity with me over the weekend who were beat by policemen and treated like scum while we were in jail. The reality of the black community is that we have no one to call when we are victimized and abused by police officers. The police have no accountability system and they are essentially above the law. This isn’t just an issue for the black community to focus on, we need everyone. The beauty of the Ferguson October movement was that it was such a diverse group of people seeking a common goal: justice. Young, old, Jewish, Muslim, Christian, clergy, LGBT, Palestinian, black, white, yellow, whatever. We were all there together fighting for justice. 

As for my arrest, I went to jail for unlawful assembly. Essentially, 18 other protestors and myself were arrested for an act of civil disobedience. We performed a sit in at a QuikTrip by sitting on the ground in front of the gas station and locking arms, refusing to move. We were ruthlessly beat by a riot team. We were maced, hit with batons, tear gassed, and painfully forced into zip ties. Jail wasn’t particularly pleasant considering the contempt that the police officers showed towards us but it was worth it in the end. We found civil disobedience to be particularly effective because:

  1. Our protests were peaceful.
  2. The act of civil disobedience garnered public attention.
  3. Mass media, live streamers, and any random person with a camera captured pictures and videos of police brutality. 
  4. We showed the police officers, media, and those around us that we were willing to be jailed to stand up for what we believe in. 

Jail is a whole other conversation that I’m not wanting to post online but if you want to hear more about my experience in jail come talk to me. Like I said, I was arrested with 18 other people and we are known as the QuikTrip 19. If you want to look up more about us search #QT19 on Twitter. The exciting thing about the QuikTrip 19 is that the average age of those arrested was 23. We recognize that we have influence and that we can use that to effect change; our age will not hinder our mission. The sad thing is that St. Louis County has continually been posting high, cash only bails for protestors which are almost impossible to pay. Posting high cash bonds effectively says that the government wants to silence us and won’t allow us to have a voice. 

If I’m being honest, coming back to school has been very difficult for me. This was one of the most impactful weekends of my entire life and I’m struggling to step back into everyday life. I’m earnestly searching for ways that I can stand up against police brutality against the black community (and other communities as well) back in Minneapolis. I have connections after this weekend and am hoping to wake people up to realize that police brutality is real. Another struggle for me is the fact that many Bethel students are clueless to the reality of police brutality or they simply are apathetic about it. Many people haven’t experienced police brutality but I’m here to tell you that it is very real. Hear my stories.

In conclusion, I want this post to create room for conversation around race but I also want people to wake up to the realities of police brutality towards black people (and all people). People are making history and advocating for change, don’t get left behind. Being apathetic towards a situation only perpetuates the injustices that are already happening:

History will have to record that the greatest tragedy of this period of social transition was not the strident clamor of the bad people, but the appalling silence of the good people.” Martin Luther King Jr.

I’d love to hear your opinions on race, privilege, and police brutality. Even if you want to disagree with me that’s fine, I want to hear all opinions. All viewpoints are valuable. So much more has happened this past weekend that this post hasn’t even touched on so come talk to me. 


(via udaitaxim)




(via isanah)


Nevada Assemblywoman Lucy Flores is running to become the first Latina Lieutenant Governor of her state.  She’s no billionaire’s wife, no Ivy League prodigy, no daughter of some ruling-class family from Latin America.  Lucy Flores grew up poor in a family of 13 children. A daughter of immigrants, she dropped out of high school, got involved in gangs and spent time incarcerated. She saw all her sisters become teen mothers and didn’t want that for herself. When she became pregnant at 16, she had an abortion that she doesn’t regret.

She eventually turned her life around. She went to college and later law school. Yet she doesn’t twist her success into a bootstraps narrative of a self-made woman. Instead, she acknowledges all the support she got along the way.  She bears witness to the fact that it was the chance generosity of individuals, and not a reliable safety net in our society that made the difference. Her own lived experience becomes the basis of her progressive agenda for social change.

Lucy Flores defies the politics of respectability. She’s single, childless, honest about her sexual past, and fierce in her advocacy for poor and marginalized people.  She takes bold stands on immigration, education, and domestic violence. Her experience makes her an effective advocate, but it also makes her a new kind of role model for Latina women.  Like Justice Sonia Sotomayor before her, we are watching a smart, single, childless Latina rise from poverty to political authority.  But Flores’ background not only includes the “humble beginnings” of poverty, but the stigmatizing experiences that can accompany poverty, like jail, dropping out, and unplanned pregnancy. 

Read more of Aya de Leon’s article about Lucy Flores on Bitch Media

(via yellow--ranger)