CURB’s White Racial Identity Workshop

October 8, 2012

Citizens Uprooting Racism in Bermuda [CURB] will continue their White Racial Identity Workshops today [Oct 8] from 6:30 – 8:30 pm at the Human Rights Commission on Church Street.

This workshop is the third in a series of workshops based on the work of Dr. Shelly Tochluk, Ph.D. author of “Witnessing Whiteness: The Need to Talk About Race and How to Do It.

An email from CURB said: “At this workshop we will be talking about the value of being race conscious [rather than colourblind] and what it means for individuals who choose this route. We will also examine the cultural experiences and traditions that are meaningful in our lives, discuss their origins and our personal/family’s relationship to them, as well as look at the issues related to cultural appropriation and how it might affect cross-race interactions.

“The workshops are for white folk and those who self-identify as white who wish to build a socially just and equitable society in Bermuda by more fully understanding the social construct of race and the concept of white racial identity.

“Through dialogue and an experiential learning environment participants will develop a deeper understanding of what it means to be white by examining our relationship to white identity.

“Further workshops will examine what it means to have white privilege and how it functions within the larger system; the social construction of white racial identity; the concept and process of assimilation to whiteness for European immigrants to Bermuda and their descendants; the interlocking, interdependent nature of our multiple social identities and how these impact our lives; recognize our personal experiences of oppression while maintaining accountability for the privilege we may have; and importantly share tools and build skills that can help participants work towards racial justice and equity in our community.

“These workshops will create an environment for powerful personal discovery, build and sustain authentic relationships and raise awareness of the importance of active individual and group racial justice work.”

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  1. Rick Rock says:

    I notice white people are referred to as “European immigrants to Bermuda and their descendants”.

    Is that the politically correct way of referring to a race now? Should black people be referred to as “African immigrants and their descendants”? Just asking.

    • eye on you says:

      and “white folk”

      • Moojun says:

        I was hit by that too… “white folk”; it’s as racially sensitive of saying something like “black dudes”.

    • Future says:

      Of course black people are of African decent. Duh.

      • Zombie Apocalypse says:

        OK. So black people are now to be referenced as “African immigrants to Bermuda and their descendants”. I get it. Wow, this really is helping root out racism.

        I have a question. Some people are not completely white. They are, perhaps, 50% descended from white people, or 25%, or 12.5%. At what point is the cut-off for automatically having “white privelige”? I’d like to know, because I have relatives who might start to benefit from this privelige, depending upon precisely who it is supposed to apply to.

        • Future says:

          Understand the privilege is the result of identity – how you identify yourself AND how others identify you. No sense being black and calling yourself white as others ain’t falling for that. Just for example. Racism is a sophisticated form of oppression.

          • Mad Dawg says:

            Oh, so no answer to the question then. At what % of whiteness does one acquire automatic non-avoidable “white privelige”? I’d like to know too.

            • Pastor Syl Hayward says:

              Some people who have African/other blood-lines identify as white because being white has traditionally, and sometimes presently, granted privileges that are not always afforded to those who are clearly not-white. It used to be a crime to claim to be white (to “pass,” as it was once known – interesting word, that) when you had even so little as one drop of black blood. This is no longer the case.

              As the invitation says, this workshop is open to “whites and those who self-identify as white” – so no one else but you yourself decides whether you qualify.

              • Zombie Apocalypse says:

                My original point was about this idea that white people automatically have “privilege”. That can’t be anything to do with self-identification, since by definition the assertion is that white people automatically have white privilege.

                The question is: at what level of white ancestry do you acquire this automatic privilege? Since white people have it by definition, it cannot be by “what you feel” or “how another person percieves you”. Because if those things apply, then “white privilege” is not automatic.

                So “white” person needs to be defined. Is it someone with more than 50% of white ancestry? Or 75%? Or 12.5%?

                Or, if it can’t be defined, then I guess it doesn’t really exist.

                • Future says:

                  If you understand race at all you understand there is no science behind it. There ARE racial differences but none that fit into convienient containers as you describe. As I said earlier, science fiction but social fact. Deep reflection on the race issue will show at its core in an IDENTITY issue. How you identify yourself and how others identify you. These two things combine to deliver AUTOMATIC privilege to those who IDENTIFY as white.

                  For example, if you genuinely consider yourself white, you will automatically have some psychological benefit when you turn on the tv, open the magazine, watch the news, watch movies etc. in that there is a gross over representation of whites relative to their actual proportion in the world. Implied through repeated images is sophistication, beauty, intelligence etc.

                  This is something many a white person would not even be aware of. It is “normal” for them. Contrast that with black children exposed to the same media…and note the sheer volume of them that want to straighten their hair, bleach their skin, take on a different accent, aspire to values outside of their historical and cultural reference points.

                  Even something as simple as picking the “best” doll for a 5 year old girl is telling… haven’t seen these studies?

    • Cinderella says:

      So what about the various Asians from India, China, Phillipines, Fuji? Do they have to choose B vs. W? Most folks seem more comfortable about their heritage country from my vision, but are corralled into the superficiality of skin colour here for purposes of “getting along”.
      Why don’t we just choose a country to be our identification?

  2. I’m sorry but this sounds so stupid. Now we need to be aware of what color we are. Anything to keep the past going. I have yet to meet anyone who had any control over what color they came into this world as. I love being colorblind . I accept people on their intellergance . Good luck to the rest of you

    • Joey-Bag-O'doughnuts says:

      You are so right. In the beginning of the story it practically said to look at a person’s race instead of being color blind. The year is 2012 race is still a part of the human psyche as much as nationality, sexual orientation, religion so on and so forth.

      The fact that humans are human and if they find no wrong with a person’s race he/she will find something wrong with the person’s other attributes. The longer we concentrate on race the worse it will get.

      Take the human for what he/she is; look at the content of character and not pigmentation.

      Sounds like this is a stupid and useless exercise in pointing out to white people that they are white, why they are white and they should feel guilty because they are white.

      • Future says:

        Race is science fiction yet a social fact. Those who profess to be color blind are either willfully ignorant or just ignorant (and I don’t mean that is a rude way). There is no white person alive who created white priviledge yet they have to make an effort to undo it. It is embedded deep in the psyche from tens of thousands of movie, tv show, magazine, book, school curriculum, news….you name it.

        Question: what effort did you make to undo this lopsided presentation of reality? If u have made none u still harbour unconscious values of who is beautiful, sophisticated, talented, intelligent etc. These were impressed upon your mind before, during and after you even knew you had a mind….

        Open your eyes.

  3. black n white says:

    Blacks attending a predominant white function can feel really out of place, while the opposite is shared by whites.

    Blacks will go out of their way to make them welcome,give them the best seat, serve them 1st etc. all in the face of making them comfortable.

    Whites most of the time do not try to make Blacks feel comfortable nor welcomed. Some will have small talk, trying to figure out what, how and why you are in attendance.

    Whites needs to be more welcoming. They will smile with you at the function, have brief nervous conversation and move on quickly. See them next in town at another function, will look right thru you like you never met? Another experience is that they will ask you the same questions time after time, even though you have been introduced and met them numerous of times. and no,
    They all don’t have dementia.

    • Will says:

      and out of your mouth spurts utter bu$%#hit. I do hope you are not stereotyping and/or generalising to the entire white community. I go out of my way to make anyone feel welcome, starting with women and children then men. If I invite a black person to a function I have invited them because of their merits and if I know them…thats the whole point of inviting someone over isn’t it?
      Growing up in Bermuda in the 90s, my generation doesn’t care what skin colour you are. However the older generations feel its their duty to remind their kids about segregation etc and now the young kids are growing up with this mentality; a sick and twisted view on how people should interact.

      • Morpheus says:

        @Will and @black and white

        The country will come together. It takes people like both of you who try hard. The perception of hate is greater than the reality of love today. We have to continue to shift that mind set. You guys are keeping the island together and more will come. Peace and Love

    • Really? says:

      Excuse me, either you are blind, deaf or dumb… In other parts of the world Black people welcome whites into their circles. In full on racist Bermuda all i get is teeth sucking and grumpiness, no matter how much i try to strike up conversation and engage with Black peoples social circles.

      You are very very wrong in your assumptions my friend.

      • eye on you says:

        Lets not forget that if a white person says hello, hi, many I please,or any other form of introductory greeting they will be ignored, or corrected and possibly refused service especially within the civil service unless you say “Good morning” first. I have had this happen on numerous occasions and try not to take it personally except when directly after me the same does not happen if the individual is not white. So black n white – Im not sure what functions you have been attending and where you have been living but boy are you way off!

        Racism is not a one way street! Until WE CAN ALL ACCEPT that there are white racists and black racists and all sorts of racist from every race and stand up to them all – the white community will not give this type of event any kind of thought.

        You cant have two people rob banks and call one a bank robber and label the other a revolutionary. Everyone else knows he is a bank robber no matter what you call it.

        Like they say if it walks like a duck and quacks like a duck – chances are it is a duck!

    • Zombie Apocalypse says:

      back n white, what you say is absolute nonsense.

    • Richard Cranium says:

      You know what BnW, I’ve had the same treatment at certain social functions and I aint black, and what you described is very accurate from (((SOME))) white people. So next time you should start you point with “some white people…” rather than “white people…” right off the bat. It’s a bit ignorant.

      • Mad Dawg says:

        In a room full of white people some of them might feel unwelcome. The same is true in a room full of entirely black people. Can’t blame that on racism, which must blow the minds of race-obsessed.
        What about where it’s a racially mixed crowd, generally getting along, and a white person feels uncomfortable. What do we blame that on? Is it anything to do with race at all? Or, more likely, is it nothing at all to do with race?

        • Mad Dawg says:

          I was aiming my comments at black n white, not R Cranium.

    • Sledge Hamma says:

      Where the heck have you been living????? Not my personal experience at all – sorry – quite the oppossite in fact.

    • Politely Pompous says:

      @black n white: People are trying to make you sound crazy but I’ve had the exact same experiences. At two different jobs I’ve worked with white women each and every day. When I’ve seen them out of the office, they pretended they didn’t see me. On one occasion with one of them, I was going up the escalator at the Phoenix and she was coming down so she couldn’t act like she didn’t see me as we were face to face. I said ‘Hi!’ and she just gave me a tight-lipped smile like she had no clue who I was. Then in the office on Monday, I was back to working with this woman who acted like I didn’t exist outside of the office. Then I had the exact same experience with another white woman I worked with-it was like they didn’t want to be seen speaking to a black person in public or something. To be fair, I’ve had tons of white colleagues who do speak outside the office, but a lot just pretend they don’t see you and I’ve had friends say the same thing.

      I’ve worked with a 50+ white woman who was terrified of black males as she thought they were all rapists-an idea put into her head by her mother when she was young. At least she admitted it, but it annoyed the hell out of me. She jumped a mile out of her seat every time a black colleague came to speak to her and NEVER wanted to be alone with one. A black manager, who she had worked with for years, needed a lift home as his car was in the shop and she passed right by his house on the way home. She refused him a lift, saying feebly that ‘her husband wouldn’t like it’ when really she was scared he’d steal her lily-white virtue.

      I once saw a white woman ready to get into an office elevator when a black guy came along. She then hung around looking at pictures on the wall in the lobby until he got on and then she took the next elevator. I couldn’t believe what I was seeing.

      As for me, I’m a respectable black person who has had more than my share of negative experiences with whites right here in Bermuda, especially in the pre-PLP days. One incident that galls me to this day was when I picked up a bunch of mail for my brother’s business from his post box. I was then in Robertson’s Drugstore when some old white geezer said scornfully to the cashier-”Look at all those bills-people are so irresponsible.” This was right in front of me. I held them up to him and said “EXCUSE ME-but this is COMPANY MAIL-not personal bills and most of them are cheques so mind your own business.” He didn’t even apologize. I was so pissed-I wanted to f**k him off so bad and I’m not even a person who normally carries on like that. He was so quick to make negative judgements and assumptions just because I was black.

      As far as I’m concerned most white people just don’t get it and never will so why even bother…

  4. Morpheus says:

    Interesting….why not a workshop for ALL Bermudians discussing the interlocking, interdependent nature of our society based on ALL the cultures represented on the island. Also, the benefit of appreciating those differences and capitalizing on diversity.

    I’m just saying…

    • Will says:

      agree..last i checked the guy next to me has eyes, ears a nose and penis….just like all other human beings.
      Humans are born equal..racism and prejudice are a learned human behaviour….perhaps as adults we should look to toddlers on how to interact with each other.

      • Family Man says:

        Dude, you checked his penis???

        • Will says:

          be real mate…and no i didnt check his penis…im just saying we are for the most part made the same. skin pigmentation is just superficial and in no way should be use to demean a person or section of society, EVER

          • Politely Pompous says:

            Will: “agree..last i checked the guy next to me has eyes, ears a nose and penis….just like all other human beings…”

            Um-I’m a human being and the last I checked, I didn’t have a penis. Not ALL of us do, you know as some of us are female…maybe you should have picked a different body part to make your point.

            BTW-I know you guys love them and all, but how do you manage walking around with those things slip-slapping all over the place-don’t they get in the way? (LOL)

  5. black n white says:

    Jewish share with their children about their ancestors experiences,
    Blacks share with their children about their ancestors experiences,

    one wrong and one right? one right or one wrong? both right? both wrong?

    • Will says:

      which is exactly why Israel are self righteous pompous pricks who think they deserve all the help in the world..and at the same time use the holocaust as an excuse for ABSOLUTELY EVERYTHING. Personally i think you should remember but not use for gain.

      • Hello says:

        @Will, how can you remember YOUR HISTORY AND you don’t share with your children the past ills of Your history? Only tell the good parts, like the OBA wants us to do? recall the birthday song. Happy Birthday to you, How old are you? TELL THE TRUTH!

        • Will says:

          first off i dont have kids. secondly, sometimes ignorance is bliss..take for example not telling your kids about past differences between people so that when they are older they don’t consider racism or a divide between skin colour. Too much emphasis is put on telling kids ‘what your white neighbours ancestors did to enslave us’. the knock on effect is young children growing up and always passing second glances at an individual because of race and creed to the point where there is underlying hatred towards one another for something that occurred hundreds of years ago, with no bearing on how the world should turn in this day and age.

        • Will says:

          congratulations for bringing political parties into this..way to go…..

      • Tommy Chong says:

        What friggin imaginary world do you live in. The Jews have never had a decade of human history where they haven’t had another group of humans try to wipe them of the face of the earth while no one comes to their aid until it suits their agenda. Despite all the atrocities they have had to face they still pick themselves up without looking to anyone for help. There is still gold & diamonds circulating around europe that was ripped out of their ancestors mouths & the only ones I see whining about it are european nations staking claim to what they helped steal. Who has helped Israel? America? In the 80′s America gave weapons to Iraq that Saddam Hussein used to attack Israel. Israel has never asked for retrobution for what has been done to them even though I’m always hearing cases of African Americans wanting retrobution for a great great grandparent being a slave. Israelis are under attack daily from suicide bombers that kill multitudes of people even their own while the Israeli counteraction is to put a tiny bomb in a cell phone that only takes out the main terrorist. All the while having to fight an enemy from all sides the Israeli have to deal with U.S. & E.U. pressuring them to give up venerable lands pieces of land to their enemies that will give them the upper hand. Even the BBC news shows little respect on reports about them insisting on calling their nation Palestine & biasing their reports about whats happening there.

        • Future says:

          So let’s just ignore that the people currently in “Israel” are not actually Jews but are Russian migrants who the Europeans helped steal Palestine land. King of the hill who uses any means to get there and then gets on top and says everyone else should play fair. Every decade in an imaginary existence comes when u control the US media machine. But not reality. Wake up and get off the weed.

          • Come Correct says:

            Oh boy here comes the weed killer again…

            • Audrey II A.K.A. Tommy Chong says:

              Thats alright since the weed killer’s prattle is so easily devoured.

              FEED ME SEYMOUR! FEED ME!!!

              • Anbu says:

                Hahahaha!! U guys kill me I was waiting for future to bring up weed again. Hahaha thanx for the laugh. FEED ME SEYMOR! Lmfao!!

          • Tommy Chong says:

            What you need to do is stop Sippin on the sizzurp! Alcohol is bad enough.

            There have always been Jews in Israel from the Persian & Hellenistic Period all the way up to the Tanzimat Period. They got pushed around the region by every super power there was so how does that make them the king of the hill. They just wanted a place to live just like the European Jews did that came from all over Europe not just Russia. I’m sure they were quite comfortable in Europe & would of stayed put but a bunch of European dictators decided to throw them to the wolf. When all the smoke settle no one wanted to take the starved & tortured so the least they could do is give them a place to go. They didn’t steal anything! How could they? The palestinians were nomads that became squatters on land that Jews fought & died for throughout centuries of occupation & slavery.

            The only imaginary existence here is the one the Palestinians give to the purpose of the black rock underneath their dome. The rock that the Jew’s Ark Of Covenant by all factually historical accounts say rested over in the midst of a temple built by their ancestors.

            • Future says:

              Factual my foot. Maybe the only authors who find these “facts” are Jewish. Claiming land from sme alleged occupation centuries ago? Ridiculous. It would be more appropriate for the natives of the place you call North America to kick all the descendants of ex-convict invaders out.

              And this is not to mention the small scale of the Jewish Holocaust relative to the Black HELLaCOST. Yes, 400 million blacks you say and not even worthy of being equated with 6 million Jews?

              It is a good thing we aren’t seeking your permission to NEVER FORGET the madness that we experienced.

              Leave the alcohol and weed alone and sober up. Then you can reason.

              • Zombie Apocalypse says:

                “Yes, 400 million blacks”
                Um, a slight exaggeration there. That would have been more than twice the entire population of Africa prior to the mid-20th century.

                And, in your view, 6 million is a trivial number that should be forgotten after a year or two, I take it?

                • Future says:

                  Do your research and you will see this is an approximation of the total number of Africans affected including those who were never captured, those who were killed, those who were captured, delivered to the islands/states and ultimately killed and those who survived until a “natural” death. For their own purposes (insurance on their “property”) the Europeans kept meticulous records of their kidnappings. No exaggeration.

                  • Mad Dawg says:

                    That is just absolute bollocks.

                  • Future says:

                    CORRECTION: my apologies by the 400 million is NOT correct. The actual figure is closer to 100 million (36 million delivered alive, 64 million dead or maimed or otherwise compromised during capture and delivery).

                    • Zombie Apocalypse says:

                      Ah, so Mad dawg was right. Even by your exaggerated claims you numbers are absolute bollocks.

                • Future says:

                  Oh and no of course 6 million is not trivial. One life is not trivial! Tommy “can’t stay sober” Chong mocks the recent African experience (“I’m always hearing cases of African Americans wanting retrobution for a great great grandparent being a slave”) and that is pathetic.

                  • Zombie Apocalypse says:

                    Well, Future, you’re the one that can’t get your story straight.

                    When it’s Jews, you think it’s ‘ridiculous’ that something that happened ‘centuries ago’ would be addressed now. But for descendants of immigrants from Africa, we all have to be perpetually apologetic for something that happened centuries ago, whether or not it has anything to do with where we are today.

                    I don’t really have an opinion about Jews and Israel; it’s pretty much irrelevant to me. But the double standards in your argument are unavoidable.

                    • Future says:

                      No where will you see me say or imply that anyone today should be apologetic about what happened historically. Get your facts straight. What I did say was the “high guy” Tommy Chong should not make light of people’s experiences.

                  • Tommy Chong says:

                    I never mocked the “recent African experience” a strange way to describe African Slavery but this is beside the the point. I’m just pointing out that all human’s ancestors have been slaves at one point & to seek handouts from what happened in the past is ludicrous. As i stated before my Ancestry is mixed between European & African so should I seek retribution for the Europeans enslaving my African side or should I seek retribution for the Moors/Islamics/Africans enslaving my European side. If I did either it would be idiotic since I’m not a slave at present & descendent of slave masters shouldn’t be held responsible if I had any shortcomings for them just because of their ancestors crimes. This seems fair since I’ve never heard of anyone being imprisoned for a crime their relative committed. I’m just commending the Jews even though I’m not one for not being so demeritorious of others as some other groups of humans are.

                    • Future says:

                      No where in any of these posts does anyone (except you) talk a out “hand outs” so stop distracting from the issue.

              • Tommy Chong says:

                400 MILLION!!!!!! What the @%#$%#! Try 36 million as the correct number. You must be mixing the NyQuil with the Prozac & Valium.

                36 million is the number enslaved not brutally murdered like the 6 million you mentioned were. This is just the number of Jews killed & doesn’t include the number of handicaps, homosexuals & yes even Africans that the Nazis murdered. Hitler protested Africans competing in the olympics because he claimed they had an unfair advantage due to their lungs being larger then aryans. The reason he knew they were larger is because he had his sicko scientist dissect the captured Africans. How did he capture the Africans? Well he had an alliance with Benito Mussolini who did it for him when his military invaded Ethiopia.

                It’s so ironic you mention the evils of African slavery & defend Palestinians who’s ancestors were part of the Islamic horde that would sneak along the shores of Africa & capture tribes people to sell at their markets. Only sea worthy Europeans participated in this while ALL islamics at the time did. They didn’t just enslave Africans but also did it to anyone weaker then them even their own. OH YES! NEWSFLASH! They are still enslaving people in Africa at present.

                Your mention of occupation centuries ago holds no truth since there have always been Jews living in Israel even during the Ottoman conquest of Palestine Hebron & Safed had many Jews still living there up till world war 2 & even during world war 2 despite the Palestinians support of the Nazis & contribution to killing Jews. AH YES! Tis an absolute fact as crazy as it may seem to those not in the know there were Islamic Nazis. The Palestinian leader at the time Hajj Amin Al-Husseini allied himself with Hitler & emulated him. Al-Husseini informed the German consul in Jerusalem that ‘the Muslims inside and outside Palestine welcome the new regime of Germany and hope for the extension of the fascist anti-democratic, governmental system to other countries. In an effort to bring it to his own country, Husseini organized the Nazi Scouts, based on the Hitler Youth. The swastika became a welcome symbol among many Palestinians. This was only around 70 years ago not centuries ago so I feel no pity for the Palestinians especially when they rejoice in their own committing suicide with a bomb strapped to them that kills indiscrimately.

                The Islamic nations are more at fault for mass genocide & slavery than any other group of people European, Jewish or Other. They have enslaved & murdered millions & still do at present while nations sympathize with them 7 push & push for Israel to give them the upper hand. If Israel ever gave in to all demands they would take advantage & murder every Jew & Cristian there. This wouldn’t be the end though! I’ve read the hadith books & know about the belief of pacification through eradication of all non islamics they believe is to be carried out by non other than Jesus who will disclaim to be the massiah then proceed to topple crosses & kill non believers or as they are termed in the text “swine”

                • Future says:

                  To be clear, I am not defending the Palestine history but this has nothing to do with the fraud of “Jewish” claims to the land. No matter how much fabricated “facts” are made up there is absolutely no justification for the FORCE with which these lands were taken. What is wrong with the European is his polarization in the left brain. He asks “who owns the land?” to every people he comes upon not knowing that cultured people (right brain) consider it a foreign concept to own what God created. So he then claims the land from what Tommy “too high to reason” Chong calls “nomads that became squatters”.

                  Wy do people insist racism is dead when it is in full view today! Justification of genocide…the entire history of Europe is written in blood. Just name a single country where the European travelled and created peace and prosperity! (And that doesn’t mean destruction of indigenous people to create no opposition to material exploration!)

                  Oh there is a lot of maturing required in this miseducated country.

                  • Tommy Chong says:

                    How can you state that you’re not defending the Palestine history when the history of Palestine shows they took land from Israel that your are defending Palestinian ownership of. how dense can you get when its clear to see the Palestinians built their Dome of the Rock on the Temple Mount in the Old City of Jerusalem in the midst of Jewish temple ruins destroyed by invaders.

                    The Palestinians in case you didn’t know didn’t always call themselves that before they were called Philistines. Baring that in mind if you look at this map it clearly shows they throughout history owned the Gaza Strip the same area they own at present but as seen on the other map link I posted now they have been given parts of Israel. Why were they given those parts? Because they set up tents in those areas NOT HOUSES so the world would sympathize with them. You set up a tent in anyones backyard in a civilized society & all even the law will consider you a SQUATTER & you’ll get kicked off the land either by your own will or by force but nooooo not them. They get to stay because the rest of the world sympathized with suicide bombing, women & children abusing terrorist. Go ahead & call me prejudice for that last statement so I can come back with footage of many palestinian women with acid burned faces & women being stoned to death or footage of children being handed out candies to encourage them to become suicide bombers. This is real live stuff no propaganda needed. If the Israelis were committing genocide the palestinian population wouldn’t be close to par with the Jewish in Israel.

                    The impudence of you to point out European colonization of nations through force when Islamic hordes who were part of the Palestinian’s ancestry took not only huge parts of Africa but also Europe, Russia & Asia through violence & slavery. Luckily the European Crusaders came along & took parts back from them or all our women would be wearing beekeeper suits & everyone would have to get on their knees & pray to Mecca five times a day or be beheaded with a rusty saw.

                    • Future says:

                      Dense would be to use Wikipedia for an objective reference. Duh. What am against is aggression. You do not deny there was unwarranted aggression not just in the case of those who decided to “resettle” the “Jews” but as no coincidence there was the worlds greatest record of aggression by these same people in every single location they have ever visited. Or maybe that is coincidence.

                      They Arab invaders were just as wicked as the European. Agreed!

        • Politely Pompous says:

          @Tommy Chong: Um, I think it’s pretty safe to say that the majority of Jews are doing pretty good for themselves…maybe that’s why you don’t hear them complaining. It’s a fact that Jews run Hollywood, the media, etc. and own most of New York. Would you complain if you had it like that? Jews have come out way ahead of the game, blacks have not so there’s no comparing the two…and NO-it’s not an urban legend, either so nobody say it is!

          • Audrey II A.K.A. Tommy Chong says:

            There goes that word BLACKS. What the heck does this word mean? Don’t get me wrong I know my colours. Known them since primary school. I even know which ones are primaries, secondaries & so on.

            When your mentioning BLACKS do you mean people with dark skin or do you mean people who are African descended? Can’t be all people with dark skin because there are many especially in Saudi Arabia, Mexico, India that have had financial success. All of these have inherited dark skin from there native origin not Africa so you must mean African descended people as being the ones you term BLACKS. Now even at this stage I still have a problem with your terminology since the majority of plp are African descended & their pockets are full along with a good number of others of African descent here. I guess you must mean the African Americans well in that case sure they aren’t doing as well as the majority of Jews but both groups faced prejudice & poverty from their beginnings in America.

            It’s true the Jews didn’t face the enslavement & the degree of mistreatment in America as the Africans Decended did but they did face the same many times over. If it wasn’t the Babylonians enslaving & killing them it was the Persians, Hellenist, Romans, Arabs, Mamluks, Ottomans or the Nazis. All of this & still they came out ahead. Not that much ahead as you make it out to be since out of the 100 richest people in the world Larry Ellison, Sheldon Adelson, Sergey Brin & Larry Page are the only Jews that make that list but still many have done well. The only reason they’ve done so well is not because of gaining any retribution, bending to their conquers or creating social unrest they got this far by sticking to their traditions & people & holding them together. For centuries others have attempted to destroy their culture by any means necessary but failed.

            My background is mixed between European & African & both sides of the family have worked hard to keep traditions alive & this has given identity & in turn success. If others African descent did the same instead of going around ranting BLACK this WHITE that then they’d be able to do the same. The word BLACK when used in the context you & others use it as becomes a brand of stereotypes that subconsciously holds people back from become the best they can be.

            • Politely Pompous says:

              @Audrey II A.K.A. Tommy Chong: Don’t be so anal…I’m sure you know what people are referring to when they say ‘blacks.’ Since when have you heard of an Arab being described as ‘black’? Yeah, they’ve been called ‘sand ni**ers’ but they aren’t called black.

              Yes, I am referring to African people who were brought over on slave ships and treated worse than animals. You know, the people who worked for free to make the white man rich. The people who had their children-who they loved just as much as whites loved their children-snatched from their arms and sold to other families like property, with the parents never seeing them again. The same people who are considered inferior to whites up to this day, whether it is obvious or not. Jews are not considered inferior today and most do well for themselves so there’s no comparing the two and their atrocities didn’t carry on for generations, and their situation was rectified, was it not? As blacks, was ours???

              White people keep saying ‘get over it.’ It’s not as simple as that. Stories have been passed down from generation to generation in black families-it’s part of our history. Whites talk of their history: “My great-great grandfather did such-and-such’…so why is it a problem when we blacks talk about what our ancestors did and what happened to them?

              I won’t even get into how we got cheated back in the day (I mean recent history; after desegregation)-by people still alive on this earth. My family was ripped off years ago of property that would be worth MILLIONS today…I wish I could say where but I can’t. Don’t even get me started on the Tucker’s Town scenario. Whites saw land that was deemed too good for a bunch of negroes and taken from them. How is that fair or right? Those original property owners would be sitting on priceless real estate today yet there’s not a damn thing they can do about it…but no, don’t talk about it-it’s in the past, get over it, etc. etc. I’d bet whites wouldn’t get over it so easily if the shoe was on the other foot.

              Whites still talk about the Rebecca Middleton case and want justice for her…suppose we blacks said ‘Tough-get over it….move on, it happened in the past so it doesn’t matter today.’ Would whites think that was fair or right? NO-they wouldn’t because it was an injustice what happened to her. Well, the same applies to us…what happened to us was an injustice that should be righted as well, but probably never will…whites get angry when blacks do wrong to them but don’t give a rats azz when they do wrong to us…

              • Tommy Chong says:

                I’m not being anal I’m being factual when I type I only partially know what anybody means when they say black & still have no idea why in their right minds would use that word. Then you start with the next word WHITE that when use in that context doesn’t make any factual sense. My grandparents on my mothers side came from African slaves but my father’s grandparents were from a farming family in Madeira. Their ancestors never had anything to do with the slave trade. I don’t even know who was involved in bringing my mothers ancestors over as slaves. You say it was WHITE people, all I know is they weren’t captured in Africa by Europeans. Europeans didn’t run the slave market in Africa, Arabs did. As you pointed out Arabs aren’t considered BLACK. Neither are they considered WHITE as you so eloquently pointed out the sand Nbomb name is sometimes use to describe them. Then there was the ones who bought my ancestors from the Arab Merchants. Thee “old pirates” cant imagine what they must of looked like but I know they didn’t make up the whole of the European population. So since you clarified what black means to you in your context please let me know what white is since this is even more confusing to me.

          • Mad Dawg says:

            You think all Jews are running movie studios and owning office buildings in New York? That’s about as stupid as someone saying all black people are criminals. It’s a generalisation based on a racially based stereotype. Obviously, you are a racist.

            • Politely Pompous says:

              @Mad Dawg: I’m not even entertaining you because nothing you say ever makes sense yet you will argue to your dying breath that you are right since you are clearly an expert on every subject in the entire world.

              Jews run Hollywood and the media-that is not a generalisation, it is a fact. That is why if any reporter/anchor, actor, etc. makes even a remotely anti-semitic remark their career is kaput. Instead of being a know-it-all who is NEVER wrong, why don’t you go do some research on that…if I felt like it, I’d get you a list but I don’t feel like it so you are free to check it out for yourself…

              • Mad Dawg says:

                When you generalise a stereotype based on race, what would you call it?

                Is it “racism” when it’s about black people, but “just stating a fact” when it’s about Jews?

            • Politely Pompous says:

              @Mad Dawg: BTW, I’m laughing my head off at the racism thing. Firstly, I don’t know how you came to that conclusion from my statement. Secondly-and this is a shocker-I lay my head down every night next to a white guy…yeah, I’m married to a white man and I love him and he loves me. I’m so racist that I married a white man-GASP!!! Yeah, that makes a lot of sense.

              I’m not the least bit racist…I’m just being real about the situation. Injustices were done to blacks. I don’t blame it on all whites or hate them as a race-I know there are good ones out there because I’m married to one. Albeit, he’s one of those white guys who’s only white on the outside and relates more to blacks than he does to whites, but he is 100% Caucasian with his family originally from Ireland. So you don’t know me, so don’t make assumptions about me, o.k. ‘Mad Dawg.’ I’m in love with a white dude…how about you put THAT in your pipe and smoke it???

              • Mad Dawg says:

                Politely, I take your point. In fact my wife is black, and I feel the same way. I apologise for calling you a racist. i was making a point, I guess. My underlying point still exists, but I do take your point.

                I think discussion here Is perhaps not the best way to communicate….

                • Politely Pompous says:

                  @Mad Dawg: Wow-interesting…you never know, huh? If only we could see what each other or our partners looked like, we’d all be shocked… and I totally agree with your last sentence.

                  I’ll always remember what my daughter once said-we Bermudians can get at each other’s throats, argue, fight, bicker, etc. with each other but let an outsider do the same to us and no matter what colour or economic background we as a Bermudian are, that outsider is in trouble. We can pick on each other but nobody else had better dare do that to our fellow Bermudians or they’d better watch out ’cause we’d have each others’ back…we sure stick together then!!!

  6. Joey-Bag-O'doughnuts says:

    I have noticed a considerable uptick in racial discomfort in Bermuda within the last few years. I was only one of three white kids in our neighborhood and we NEVER had race arguments or race jokes for that matter. We all went to everybody’s house and the only time we were kicked out was if the mother was cleaning and she couldn’t take the sight of 13 to 15 kids coming into the house. We never felt uncomfortable in one another’s house.

    This race crap is just silly and the more they dwell on it the worse it will become. Bermuda is way better than that for this sort of discussion.

  7. Familiar says:

    Just when I think that this group can’t get any more offensive.

  8. Bermudian says:

    Ummmm, I don’t need a workshop to learn about being white. What does that even mean????? I’m a human being who happens to be caucasian. Who cares, move on, next subject…..Case closed!

  9. Tommy Chong says:

    It nauseates me to know a workshop like this that further engrains racism into our culture. Anyone who thinks the terms black or white factually describe any group of humans on this earth is an outer & complete idiots who must have failed their high school biology class. People like this must consider a black horse & a white horse to be from different races of horses & zebras to be a product of interracial horse breeding. I guess when someone like this puts a black bike up for sale the bike could be anywhere from dark brown to tan colour & if they describe their bike as white it could be peach, cream or pink in the winter & turn a browner shade in the summer. ABSOLUTE IDIOTS TO THE POWER OF INFINITE!!!

    • Come Correct says:

      What about me? They call me white boy but I have a year round olive color…I don’t know wtf I am anymore!!! I thought I was Bermudian but CURB says I’m an Eastern European lol I’ve never even been to Europe and last I checked Ireland wasn’t in Europe and the other part of my family is Portugese so wouldn’t they be Western Europeans? Does the fact that I’m not albino white impact my priviledge or lack there of? I’m confused, can’t I just be Bermudian? Can’t wait to fill out another form… Gender? Male. Race? F@ck you, why? Because f@ck you that’s why.

      • I feel your pain, Come Correct. I am also a mixed bermudian who’s father in black/white and my mother Portuguese . Black people look at me and call me white, while white people look and know,I’m not pure . Do I care… Not really. I am what I am.

        • Come Correct says:

          Proud to be Bermudian. No matter where we decended from, this is where we ended up, together.

          “Everybody is special. Everybody. Everybody is a hero, a lover, a fool, a villain. Everybody. Everybody has their story to tell.”

  10. HeyBye says:

    No where else in the world but Bermuda.

  11. Cure is a bunch of crap!!!

    • street wise says:

      They did give away nice water bottles, though. ;)

  12. St. Davids says:

    Some of you have this all wrong, the workshop is to show you what you don’t understand, and you will not understand what the workshop intends to do unless you go. It is not trying to tell anyone what it means to be white. There are a lot of White people that would do well to attend this, even it was just once to see what it is all about.

    I do not think that CURB is going about uprooting racism in the right way, and i am not entirely sure that they are completely honest about their intentions, but do not poo-poo on something that you know nothing about. Go to the work shop then choose to have a real opinion instead of talking like racism doesn’t exist for you. It is exists for Black bermudians in many forms, not just overt verbal racism. If you cannot see that you are blind.

    There is such a thing as white priviledge, percieved and material, so try to understand why it is important that this is discussed before you put it in the “get over it” category. oh and btw the reason everything was so cozy between the races 15 years ago was because many people chose not to make it an issue for fear of financial reprisal rather than because they truly had “gotten over it”.

    Just attempt to understand…………..

    • @ St David’s. I do not need to go to a work shop to know how to treat another human being. I don’t give a f#@k about what color u r. Please people, black or white is just a damn color. If u going to treat me bad because of the color of my skin… Then u know what, I don’t need to know u

  13. blackboy says:

    It is very clear that there is a need for this workshop. The number of entries alone suggest a desire to talk or discomfort with talking either way there is an issue that is burning. The white community is not all racist. THere are non-racist white people. Yet despite that there has never been a real course on racism or what has been the effect of European expansion on non-white people. This is crucial. IT allows white people to see the consequence of their conquest of the world. If you dont know that white people conquered the world and had had economic and military advantages for centuries then that is the root problem why you cant handle the discussion and you resort to cursing as a way of deflecting from your ignorance in history. The basic fact that white people used violence and deceit as their main agents to get advantages over the “savages” of the planet is important to understand why they are not trusted. In every country you visit in Latin America or Asia you will see the racial stratification that has resulted form European conquest. This is not a passing fantasy. It is not a notion of a few misguided angry black folk. This is a reflection of white domination and a courage to speak up by the oppressed. CURB is attempting to compensate for the failure of the Education system in the Western World to be courageous enough to teach the truth about violence and deception that has undergirded the development of the modern world. To be ignorant of this will always leave the white person as a sitting target defending a history that they dont know much about. This is free education that will atleast allow you to see a different perspective. IF you desire a community it requires dialogue. Dialogue requires listening to perspectives. Such a dialogue will also require basic facts to be established one of those facts is the history of this present condition. It will create the possibillity of understanding and that is always a good thing. We cant drag white people along to understand why there was slavery, why there was colonialism, why there is institutionalized racism and why we are still a segregated community. We cant beg them to understand black rage about white privilege. It requires a noble, courageous honest human being. One who sees their prejudices and does not desire their offspring to be crippled as they are. It requires more than blind blogging to vent your vicious voices. Yes it requires a willingness to be humane and allow your non white community a voice toward being human. Up until now they have been on a long journey toward full integration into humanity. At least in the eyes of the unconcious racist…and there by the racist reclaims his own humanity…by becoming humane toward his fellow men. Sometimes it takes a little education in a safe place to see the other side. Especially when you have been on the side of the oppressor or the beneficiary of oppression….Such a thing we call White Privilege.
    Humbly Submitted…BB

    • ABC says:

      lool u think ur burden is heavioer cause u no half de truth

      u a joke

    • Future says:

      Agreed except the non-racist white folk comment. Where are they? And I want to know how they undid the brainwashing on white superiority we all experienced, regardless of race. I’m just sayin, it is not a deliberate thing…but is real nonetheless.

      • Come Correct says:

        Yes we’re all racist, every last one, no exceptions… For real man just have a draw, relax, I’ll smoke you up and its a recession. A friend in need is a friend indeed but a “white” guy with weed is better… Oh and sorry for indeliberately brain washing you.

        • blackboy says:

          Interesting response to my note. OFten the case though…truth engenders humor from those most exposed by the truth….or they just dont get it…

          • Come Correct says:

            I actually agreed with your post for the most part, I just don’t like people that are so narrow minded. I had a nice reply for you and just never hit submit, but for the most part I agree.

          • Come Correct says:

            Future – narrow minded, not you

    • Pastor Syl Hayward says:

      @ black boy: Thank you for your post. I only hope people read it with open hearts and minds.

      I do hope that all those who had negative things to say about the CURB workshops have actually attended at least one, and therefore are speaking out of knowledge rather than ignorance. If you haven’t attended, then you might at least check one out before being so condemnatory. White identity formation is a reality and a phenomenon that seldom gets investigated.

      @ BermudaLove “I’m sorry but this sounds so stupid. Now we need to be aware of what color we are.” Almost every non-white person becomes aware of what color they are once they hit the white world. The only people, it seems, who are not aware of their color are white people. Being “white” is ubiquitous, it is “the norm”, everyone else must assimilate.

      • blackboy says:

        Thank you Pastor,
        The approach that CURB uses is education and socialization. While that will go some distance the root issue is much deeper than that. Many whites will try to understand and they should be applauded. Not because we as black folk are enhanced, rather because they are enhanced. Without a moral framework this discussion is not going to ring a bell for many whites. In a post modern anti authoritarian society racist whites reject a moral basis for argumentation. The issue or racism is a moral issue not a legal, or economic or merley philosophical one. We can talk until we are blue in the face but unless the racist submits to a moral authority he or she will not agree or even be changed at the level of the heart. Yes it is a heart issue. WE can legislate all we want but morality is a letter of deep conviction and heartfelt needs. I must add. The destruction of the racist society is the inevitable result as long as racism is cherished. For you cant hold hate in the same heart that you hold love. Love for yourself and your neighbor will inevitably result and manifest itself in worsening selfishness, dysfuntional families, disintegrating society, increased self alienation and deterioation of core values. My deeper concern is that the African families are adapting the same values as the white societal norms and are rapidly deterioating as well. In substance I submit that this is not going to get better with out a turning around of the self centeredness that is at the basis or racism. The greed that feeds racism and the racial pride that promotes it…In your language pastor you will call it repentance, conversion or to be born again.
        Humbly submitted


        • Come Correct says:

          If someone is truly racist, the chances of getting understanding, sympathy, conversation or even attendance at one of these meetings is about the same as catching a liama at the Vixen. If someone truly hates another race its because it has been learned, either taught directly or indirectly or by experiences. Its as powerful as religion because it becomes a belief. You don’t just wake up one day as a kid and all of a sudden hate a certain race or even all that are different. If a father and son are driving down the road, someone cuts them off and the father says something like “f@ckin black people” that child is learning, off of one of his greatest infuences, and is already casting negative views on black people because of the fathers generalization, and vice versa. If someone is truly a racist I don’t know how you stop that, its a belief and one of the stongest human powers. People blow themselves up for things they believe, how do you change something that someone has known all their life. What about the non-racists though? What exactly do you want from them? An appology won’t fix anything, it won’t even be a start, words are meaningless if action doesn’t follow suit. I believe you may be right with learning, discussing and understanding. The thing is if we really want to stomp out racism, its starts with us and our children. Some people were discussing whether or not to teach your children of about the past and their ancestors, some say yes, another says ignorance is bliss. To be honest, I think we should teach our children about their history and the history of others, giving them an idea of the battles faught and why, but above all we should teach them that the actions and primitive mindset of the past has no place in our society today, thus comes the understanding. I was lucky, growing up my parents had a lot of black friends and my father comes from the days of segregated water fountains. They taught me to judge people as individuals and not by classes or color. Some people have had very limited exposure to black people and their actions may come across as racist when in reality they just don’t know how to act around them(normal would be a good start). The media really doesn’t help with this and most would be surprised how many people think they’re gonna get robbed as soon as a black person turns the corner. A guy I went to school with got robbed by a white guy at knife point, there is no difference in color, people will do what people will do. I think one of the biggest factors is that people fear what they don’t understand. So I agree with you, by learning, socializing and discussing we can create understanding. We understand how to clone sheep but we don’t even understand eachother lol humans are sad really.

          Hopefully you respond, I’d like to hear you point of view.

          • blackboy says:

            I really apprecicate your thoughtful response. I cant disagree with your perspective. It is wonderful that you had the parents that you have. The most powerful people to destroy racism is white non racist people. They can do the work of 100 black intellectuals simply by speaking, living and thinking in a counter-racist way. Notice that I did not say a “non-racist way”. We need to go beyond Neutral and be counter-racist. We do this by championing Justice and speaking truth and self-reflection and being honest about how racism has impacted all of us.
            Thank you


  14. Vulpes says:

    Bernews, I trust that you will include with any report of how this function carries off a breakdown of the number of attendees by both race and gender. It seems to me that there is very little point in having these functions if those who they are meant to help do not turn up. It saddens me greatly that despite all the wonderful insights Mr. Rolfe Commissiong and others have provided through the years that those who could benefit are just not willing to engage and participate. Perhaps more radical steps are indeed necessary, possibly a Maoist style Cultural Revolution with enforced self criticism sessions. Ah, the burdens we Onions have to carry…Woe is me.

    • Insights?? says:

      Vulpes, you lost any credibility you may have had when you refered to Rolfe.

  15. ABC says:

    whats dis 2 see if it beats most commentes

    a shame wen tru colors speak

  16. Pastor Syl Hayward says:

    @ blackboy: This statement confused me: “Love for yourself and your neighbor will inevitably result and manifest itself in worsening selfishness, dysfuntional families, disintegrating society, increased self alienation and deterioation of core values.”

    I’d like to think there is a word or two missing as, from what I can see, it is the LACK of love for self and consequently for one’s neighbour that has resulted in those negative outcomes you mention.

    @ Come Correct: I don’t think anyone believes that an apology will ‘fix’ things, but it is a good place to start, and is a painless endeavour – unless pride and ego get in the way. It is an acknowledgement that much pain and anguish were caused by actions perpetrated by certain people in the past on certain other people in the past, and that those actions still have ramifications to this day.
    If I can present an analogy: I can apologize to my neighbour’s daughter, now a grandmother, for the sexual molestation perpetrated by my uncle when she was a child. I didn’t commit the crime. He was never punished for the crime. Both families know the crime was committed but it was never talked about or acknowledged. The families speak but there is underlying tension and distrust.
    Through my training, I recognize that the daughter remains in victim mode and this has impacted the way in which she has brought up her children, and is now impacting her grandchildren – for this is indeed a generational “curse.”
    My apology and gentle suggestions for counselling to help address the issue provide an acknowledgement of the crime, a recognition of her pain, and lances the festering wound. Sometimes, this is the only way healing can begin. Note that in no way am I taking blame for what was done.
    There can be many ways she, and both families, may respond to my actions, not all of them positive, but for certain, it can never again be swept under the carpet. Nor can she any longer be blamed for her self-destructive, acting-out, reactions to the trauma. Instead, help and healing for both families can now be facilitated.
    The ones who will benefit most are the grandchildren and their descendants who will have the chance they would not have had, of growing up free of the debilitating, dysfunctional ugliness of un-addressed abuse.

    • blackboy says:

      you are correct.

    • Come Correct says:

      Point taken, so when will CURB address my Irish heritage? Should I have animosity towards other whites or protestants until I get an appology? My people were sold for less than blacks. They started breeding Irish with Blacks to increase the worth per head, so the people benefitting the most from the slave trade put a ban on the sale of mixed slaves because it cut into their profit drastically. We have more in common than some care to believe, we all have our story to tell. How often do you hear the story of the Irish? For me, an appology from someone who had nothing to do with the atrocities from the past besides being a decendant means nothing. I just don’t want to see it repeat itself. Give me liberty or give me death. Revenge is no solution, all we can do is focus on making things better, even if we never see the better days, we owe it to our future generations to close this gap and to tear down anyone who still upholds the traditions of centuries passed. Thanks for the response, I’m interested in other views.

      • Pastor Syl Hayward says:

        @ Come Correct: Although I know a bit about the Irish Troubles, which are heart-rending too, and just another testament to men’s inhumanity to men, so far as I know, the occurrence of wide-spread, institutionalized prejudice, racism and discrimination toward the Irish isn’t a major issue on this island. I am open to be corrected on this issue, since, as a black person, I am not really privy to how white folks treat one another.

        My personal feeling is that the English (same with the Spanish, French,and Portuguese) have a lot to answer for. Their historical treatment of and disdain for anyone who was different is the stuff of legends. The Scots, the Irish, the East Indian, the Native American, the South Sea Islanders, the Africans up and down the continent (along with the South Americans and Asians) were all badly treated.
        The one thing that really differentiated black people from the rest though, is the clinical, systematic indoctrination, not only in blacks but also the rest of the world) of the sub-human (only 3/5 of a human) nature of black people. We were considered to be only a step above the apes. So far as I know, no other people whether indentured or enslaved, has ever been degraded in that way.

  17. myname says:

    This is really just racist… IF you where to organize a workshop in order to make people more aware of their race, there is NO way you can say things like “European immigrants to Bermuda and their descendants”. THAT is not awareness, THAT IS RACISM. The fact that this workshop is open only to “white folks” just makes it appear more so. I could actually see this as being organised by the KKK or some other group…

    • blackboy says:

      you are so far behind the curve…we all agree that there is a need for open dialogue…attacking and insulting the organizers is so sophmorish. Offer a constructive solution toward the destruction of Racism…White Supremacy! Unless you doubt that it exists. IF that is the case then everything else will only confuse you!

  18. street wise says:

    While you clowns argue about “white supremacy” and the “destruction of racism”… your own people, the elite, are holding you back as they rip you off over & over again. They’re the New 40 Thieves. Yet you seem blind to it all. Amazing how some minds work.

    Don’t look here… look over there….