Monday, January 01, 2007

Keeping the Brown Man Down: Bianca's First Post of the New Year

As planned and as usual, I spent my New Year's Eve watching the Twilight Zone marathon on SciFi. But by midnight, I had fallen asleep watching the Fingerbang episode of South Park. I'm still watching The Twilight Zone now. I put together my new Ikea bookshelf (with doors!) while I was consumed one of my favorite episodes, "Number 12 Looks Just Like You." Made in 1964, but even more poignant now. It should be required viewing for anyone considering elective plastic surgery.

Now that I have pretty much recovered from my trip home, I have now fallen back into my routine of putzing around on the internet when I should be doing other productive things. Like unpacking, or opening my snail mail. Hence, I stumbled onto these two items courtesy of Racialicious.

1: Shades of Brown: The L.A. Times’ Latino problem, written by Daniel Hernandez in LA Weekly,

"In more than 30 interviews with current and former staff members of various backgrounds, as well as many longtime community leaders and newsroom-diversity advocates, a portrait of the Los Angeles Times emerges as an institution that remains incapable of adapting to the city’s changing faces. Year after year, the paper still feels like it’s manufactured for the recently arrived Anglo Westsider. Who wishes he were in New York."

How is it that the Los Angeles Times, a newspaper based in a city that used to be part of Mexico and whose population is at least 46% "Hispanic or Latino", is still treating all of these people as outsiders who the newspaper must either pander to or barely tolerate?

and, 2: A commentary by Racialicious editor Carmen Van Kerckhove, on a newly infamous Virgin Trains commercial. This one-minute-and-20-second-long advertisment, airing in the UK and on YouTube, involves olde tyme Native Americans on horseback attacking a modern-day locomotive, filled with white people, barreling through the British countryside. Quoi? What kind of twisted, anachronistic history rewriters has Charles Bronson got working for him at Virgin? As I can recall from Pocahontas, the British were the ones who invaded the Native Americans' land, not the other way around.

The commercial then ends with the slogan, "Man who go on big train have big idea." Because I wasn't offended enough before.

It's 2007, people. Did we learn nothing from Mel and Michael?

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