“War is peace, freedom is slavery, ignorance is strength”—I wonder how George Orwell missed “Segregation is Integration”? Maybe because that was too obviously ridiculous even for Big Brother to pull off….or so he thought.
Apparently yoga and meditation studios in multiple locales in the U.S. are running “no whites allowed” classes in the interests, say the operators, of making Eastern self-help disciplines more accessible to “people of color” [ I detest this phrase, but I’m quoting] by excluding people of less valued color—that is, whites. The New York Times just published an uncritical profile of such a place in Oakland, by a reporter who shrugged off the fact that she was refused in her request to attend a class because she was too little “of color.” Incredibly, the Times reporter just accepts the Bizarro World logic and utter hypocrisy fed to her as if it makes as much sense as “freedom is slavery” makes to poor Winston after his brain cells have been scrambled by the threat of rats eating his face.
“Specific classes at the center bar white or straight people — in order to be inclusive of some, they exclude others. Those who run the center say that the practice ultimately makes the center community more diverse…Brenda Salgado, the director of the center, said that as part of its diversity efforts, the center has four different sitting groups that meet weekly. “An L.G.B.T.Q.I. sitting group, one for people of color, a Friday open sit, open to everyone — those can fluctuate between 50 or 100, Ms. Salgado said. “We also have the Every Body Every Mind group, for people with disabilities and chronic illness.”
For all but the “open sits,” the expectation is that only people who identify with the target group will attend. (I learned as much when my request to attend People of Color Yoga was turned down.) And for open sits, organizers use a Web application to ensure that white people do not crowd out others. When the spots allotted for white people fill up, registration is capped to save spots for others.”
Oh, naturally: quotas too!
Meanwhile, up the coast, Rainier Beach Yoga in Seattle has permitted “five queer people of color” to create a special class called “Yoga for People of Color” whose rules forbid “white people” from attending. The class invites “lesbian, bisexual, gay, queer and trans-friendly/affirming,” while specifying which “people of color” are acceptable for human contact, such as “African American/black/of the African Diaspora, Asian, South Asian, West Asian/Arab/Middle Eastern, Pacific Islander, First Nations/Alaskan Native/Native American/Indigenous, Chicano/Latino, or Multiracial/Mixed-Race.”
One of the co-founders of the class, Teresa Wang, explained what would happen to a white yoga enthusiast who wanted to attend. “Well, it’s a class for people of color, so he would be coming to that class knowing that we’re really clear about who we are asking to come to class, so…I’m not really sure because it hasn’t happened to us,” Wang said.
The class, after all, is aimed at making “people of color” feel comfortable. How is this in any way different from the people on Rosa Parks’ bus wanting not to have to endure the “discomfort” of having to sit near black people? Or of airplane passengers being nervous about seeing Muslims on their plane?
Or of a Christian bakery feeling uncomfortable about decorating a wedding cake topped by two little men in tuxes?
Blogger/Lawyer Marc Randazza, in his trademarked Take No Prisoners Style, sums up this hypocrisy thusly…
Some people say that this is just like a sign that says “blacks not welcome” or “jews and dogs need not apply.”
It is a lot more polite. See, if Jim Crow had just said “our negro friends are respectfully asked to not sit at the lunch counter” we wouldn’t have had all that talk about equality, discrimination, and such.
I will be a lot more direct and less funny than Marc. I have no respect for anyone who accepts, advocates or rationalizes this pure bigotry while mouthing platitudes about “diversity,” ” equality” and “justice.” This is either stupidity or hypocrisy, or both, and it demonstrates that much of the progressive community is only interested in using guilt, double standards and rhetorical gibberish to gain an advantage for its favored groups. Their purpose is not eliminating prejudice and discrimination, but using both for their own purposes, with utter, gullible, media fools like
There are honest, serious, fair, objective and intelligent people like Randazza who have the courage and sense to expose this travesty of civil rights, but there need to be more of them, and they need better weapons than blog posts. Here is another question that should be aimed at Hillary, Bernie and the Three Dwarfs on Wednesday. “You claim to be a progressive–what is your response to gay-only, black-only yoga classes as a way to promote diversity? Will you condemn such practices as un-American and a violation of Democratic core principles? Remember, it will cost you the Hypocritical Left voting bloc, which is obviously huge. Secretary Clinton? Senator Sanders? Senator Webb? Senator Chaffee? Governor O’Malley?”
I wonder what yoga position all but Jim Webb will twist themselves into to try to finesse the answer?