Good News is Green News

I don’t know about you, but I am fed up with the news lately. A zombie apocalypse, child molesters, hate crimes – I just cannot take anymore! Every day when I check the news (yes, I am a glutton for punishment!), it seems most of the headlines are bad. But, every once in a while, I find some good news. To me, at least in the case of these items, good news is green news. It is stories about people helping out people without wanting any fame or glory for it. Today, I read that an anonymous casino owner just … Continue reading

Rodney King Dead at 47 – Part 2

Yesterday, I was blogging about Rodney King, an unlikely civil rights figure who died yesterday at the age of 47. In 1991, King was pulled over by LAPD and savagely beaten by four police officers. They were charged, but three were acquitted and one’s trial ended in a deadlock. With a community upset by the trial results, riots exploded in Los Angeles. There was looting, burning, and attacks. After a plea from King himself (“People, I just want to say, can we all get along?”) and the Army National Guard and Marines were sent in, the violence finally ended. At … Continue reading

Combatting Stereotypes in Children, Part Two

In recent blogs we’ve talked about whether economic pressures and anti-immigrant sentiment will have an effect on our transracially adopted children. I wrote one blog on how adults can explore our own feelings about diversity. The blog Combatting Racism in Children, Part One talked about how children form attitudes and the importance of creating a diverse environment for young children, including diversity in pictures and in dramatic play props such as dress-up clothes and food. This blog will talk about some books and films that encourage an understanding of other cultures and of immigrants to America. There are many more … Continue reading

Positive Steps to Confront Stereotypes

In recent blogs I talked about anti-immigrant feeling in America today and whether it will have an unintended impact on our adopted children. I was thinking primarily of our Asian and Latino children, but a third-grader from Ethiopia was recently taunted in my neighborhood and told to go back to her country. In some parts of the U.S. the immigrant African population may be larger than the African-American population, so possibly more and more people will assume that African-heritage children are immigrants as well. And some of them are—Haiti and Liberia have been native countries of significant numbers of adopted … Continue reading

Racism, Current Events, and Halloween History

Not many people know what Halloween meant to the early Celtic Christians of Ireland. I knew that the name “Hallow-even” meant “eve of All Hallows (All Saints’ Day), a feast day still celebrated by many Christian denominations. I knew that one of the origins of trick-or-treating was the custom of children holding lanterns (perhaps made of hollowed-out squash with a candle inside) and going from house to house offering prayers for the dead. The homeowners then served “soul cakes”. I’m not exactly sure what those were, but that fact may be why I always associate Halloween with doughnuts. That was … Continue reading

Book Review: Orientals: Asian Americans in Popular Culture

My last blog wondered about the impact of anti-immigrant feelings, worsened by economic conditions, on international adoptees and their families. In that blog, I quoted from the book Orientals: Asian Americans in Popular Culture. This blog will be a further review of that book. The first thing I should note is, as I said last time, that the word “Orientals” is deliberately used by the author to demonstrate negative stereotypes of Asians as too irreconcilably different by nature to ever fit into American society. Do not use the word “oriental” when referring to people today. Use Asian-American if you need … Continue reading

Will Anti-Immigrant Sentiment Affect Adopted Children?

School conferences were a revelation to a mother of a middle-school daughter who had been adopted from Guatemala, but even more of a revelation to her teachers. The girl had reported that the teachers never called on her class. The mother sent a note to the homeroom teacher which was never answered. The mother said that the teachers were surprised to have anyone show up at the girl’s scheduled conference time at all—let alone a white professional woman. The teachers had apparently assumed that the girl was an illegal immigrant who didn’t speak English. (For another blog on racism in … Continue reading