Archive for February, 2009

Race

February 28, 2009

I think the most interesting parts of this week were the video about the hip hop culture and the chapter that we talked about today. I hadn’t ever realized how cookie cutter hip hop videos were. I am not a fan of hip hop music, so I don’t watch the videos, but I can see why they are detrimental. They have all the same themes, and unfortunately they are very damaging.
I also saw a movie tonight called “Racing for Time.” It was a movie about girl in a Texas correctional facility for teenage girls. The main characters were black and Hispanic girls, but there were also a few white girls. The main idea was to show how this man who worked in the correctional facility gets a track team together. He gets the girls to work together. The girls all have their little “gangs” and all of them are by race. All the Hispanics have problems with the blacks and the white and that way. It was interesting to see how the main of idea of showing that the girls were able to overcome their pasts and work together; however, what seemed to happen was a reinforcement of negative stereotypes. It was unfortunate to see how the negative stereotypes that we have talked about in class were shown in these girls’ characters. I was sort of disappointed really. Towards the end the movie got better and didn’t really show just the negative stereotypes.

New Experience

February 21, 2009

This week I had a very interesting experience that made me think of class. I went to the bank to deposit my check and get cash for some bills. The bank was about to close. Just after I arrived, a black man with his wife came in. I only mention that he is black because it relates to the topic. The man was with his wife. They finished with the teller before I did and left the bank. As I got in my car the man came up to me and asked me to do him a favor. He and his wife needed to pay some bills at a pawn shop before it closed; however, they didn’t have a car and wouldn’t be able to get to the pawn shop on time. He asked me if I could give them a ride, so I told them I would. As soon as they got in the car he thanked me and said, “I realize you’re taking a risk, me being black and all.” I thought it was interesting. He has had enough experiences in life that have told him that white people don’t trust black people. I had no reason to not trust him. That is what made me decide to write my paper on media roles of Hispanics. I think that part of what this man learned was from the media and that part was from other negative personal experiences.
Now, I know that there seemed to be no connection between this man and Hispanics. My wife is Mexican. My children will have Mexican blood too. My wife and children will have to deal with the media roles of Hispanics. If the only roles that my children see are criminals, which are the majority of the roles for Hispanics right now, they may start thinking the same as this black man I met the other day. I thought this was kind of an interesting mix of the two books we have started reading so far.

Advertising

February 14, 2009

It was interesting this week to look at the gender advertisements in such a different way. I still didn’t agree with everything that was said on the website or in class, but I can see where someone might think the other things. It was interesting to see how some ads were seen as sexist, or to show that the man was more dominant than the woman. I had never thought about it. I don’t agree that just because people choose to be involved in pornography films or disturbing ads that it makes it alright. Just because one person screwed up or didn’t understand or realize the effects of their decision, it doesn’t mean that it doesn’t have an effect on others. It is giving them free range to do whatever they want. They are not held responsible for what they do. Unfortunately there is not a way to show that one specific ad negatively affected someone. I think it is the accumulation of many ads over and over.

February 7, 2009

So, this week I became more interested in the “No Logo” book we will be reading. But, with this week’s discussions were interesting. I think it was interesting to think about the binaries. It is true, when we start to think in extremes of black or white, we forget about all the gray area that exists in between. I agree that there are not always such extreme options. In many cases there are a lot of grey options that can be good options. What I hadn’t thought about, was the fact that we tend to favor one over the other when we think this way. Even when maybe option black would be the best option one day and option white the best option another day. If we start giving preference to option black, we develop a prejudice against option white.

Unfortunately for many women it is true that they were either virgins or whores. That really was, and still is, such a double standard for women. Women, especially in high school and college, are told they cannot sleep with guys. They cannot have sex with guys. However, guys are told that in order to be a man, they are to have sex with the women, but the women can’t have sex and the men can’t have sex with one another either. It really makes no sense. 

When it comes to women having equal rights, I think this is a good thing. I find it interesting that not everyone is aware of what has gone on to get to where we are today, not that it is a perfect system, but better than before. One video on youtube that I found kind of funny was a few guys going around an all girls’ school to have the girls sign a petition to end women’s suffrage. It was interesting to see how many girls wanted to end it. It is kind of a dumb video, but at the same time sad to see how it was taken for granted.

Blog week 3

February 2, 2009

I found it interesting that we talked about women in the media and that same day I saw a movie with my wife that really showed what we had been talking about. The movie was called “What Color is Love”. Basically a white woman sleep with a black professional basketball player, she gets pregnant and he leaves her. She raises the child for several years, and then the father starts to fight for custody. The child looks like his father, not his mother. During the custody battle the biggest advantage that the father has is that he is now involved with another woman. At this point the battle is between the two women. The film rarely shows the father during the custody cases. The film always places the two women against each other.

The other thing that I found interesting in our discussions was how roles for men and women are defined from a very young age. We talked about how colors are ascribed to male and female from the time we are young. When a child is just a baby, blankets and such are blue for boys and pink for girls. At such a young age when you can’t really tell the difference, I don’t think there is anything wrong with it. Since we have used these colors to signify boy and girl, we can tell if the child is a boy or girl. It is a practical thing, but as they start getting older the toys and such that we give them help form what they think their roles are.