Category Archives: Race

Benjamin Moore Paints used racially offensive colour names – Is ‘Nazi Red’ okay?

Benjamin Moore Paints Lawsuit

(click photo for large)

An interesting story is breaking in New Jersey where Clinton Tucker, a black employee of Benjamin Moore Paints, has launched a lawsuit claiming that the company apparently named various paint colours after him – allegedly just to disparage his race – and then fired him when he complained.

Mr. Tucker also took exception to the company’s naming of ‘Confederate Red’. While Mr. Tucker found the paint names ‘Tucker Chocolate’ and ‘Clinton Brown’ repulsive (he had worked on these colours before they were named), his white supervisors laughed at him – so Mr. Tucker says in his lawsuit.

Benjamin Moore’s website states that the colours were named after Mr. St. George Tucker in 1798 “for his home facing Courthouse Green” in Williamsburg.

Hmmmmm…. I wonder when that was added to Benjamin Moore’s website.

And to top it off, Benjamin Moore’s ‘Confederate Red’ page says:

Benjamin Moore Flag

Benjamin Moore’s Confederate Red

This rich, refined red is a timeless and enduring classic. A great accent wall color, it is not too bold and won’t overpower a room.

Hmmmmmm. To some folks, myself included, Confederate Red invokes the same thoughts as if the colour was named ‘National Socialist Red’ and said “This rich, refined red is a timeless and enduring classic…”   Continue reading

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Amazing Barbados Photo: Blacks, Whites, Asians, Mixed Races Attend Party Together! Actually Enjoy Each Other!

BFP:

Six years ago our friend Light-Skinned-ed Girl declared May to be Mixed Experience History Month. We hope the idea catches on because those of us who are Heinz 57 and/or in mixed-race marriages need to reflect upon our roots once in a while.

If you have to ask “What’s the big deal?”, well, perhaps you need to think about it a little more. There are many more of us than ever before but when we talk with other mixies, the experience is generally the same: neither black nor white, and not really accepted by either race. Here’s a little piece written by Marcus back in October 2006. I miss him…

Originally posted on Barbados Free Press:

graeme-hall-party-2.jpg

Graeme Hall Nature Sanctuary Site Of Astounding Happening!

Yes, folks – we couldn’t believe it ourselves (what with all this talk of that one incident last week between a light-skinned homeowner and a dark-skinned young man – link here) – it is true that several hundred people of all races, colours and religion all met last Saturday at the Graeme Hall Nature Sanctuary, and actually enjoyed each other’s company!

The event was the official launch of the proposal to establish the Graeme Hall National Park – but it felt more like a party than a meeting to Shona and Marcus.

One Racial Incident At Party…

There was one very serious racial incident at the party though. For a few minutes around 5pm, the cash bar ran short of cold Banks beer and two men of different races argued over who would get the last cold one.

A Barbados Free…

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Lawyer’s letters to BBC & Barbados High Commissioner: “Top Gear specialises in making a profit from deliberate but deniable racism.”

TopGear Festival Barbados

Clarkson subsequently withdrew the apology for his use of the N-word and said that the BBC forced him to issue it.

… from the letter apparently sent to the BBC and Barbados High Commissioner to the UK. Did Clarkson really withdraw his apology? Something like that here.

Strictly Private and Confidential letters sent to Barbados Free Press

Today BFP received two letters apparently sent from Equal Justice Ltd Solicitors to the BBC and our High Commissioner in London. The letters are supposed to be “Strictly Private and Confidential”, but nonetheless were sent to BFP as PDF files.

Interesting… the PDF files hidden data reveals that two other UK law firms are perhaps involved in their creation: Penman Sedgwick LLP and lawyer Beena Faridi, apparently with Bindmans LLP as a trainee.

“Dear High Commissioner, you should consider banning the programme from Barbados because it appears to incite racist bullying at work and in the social sphere.”

… from the letter apparently sent to the Barbados High Commissioner to the UK

What does it all mean? We’re not smart enough to say, so we’ll publish the text of the letters and also the original PDFs so folks can have a look for themselves at the letters exactly as they came to us anonymously through an anonymous proxy out of Russia.

Remember: These letters were sent anonymously to BFP – and BFP is an anonymous blog run by unnamed persons somewhere near Grape Hall. Take it all with some salt until it’s confirmed somehow, okay?

The whole thing is about Jeremy Clarkson’s “N-word” comments. Clarkson used the word “NIGGER” in case anybody missed what this is all about – but the below letters explain that Clarkson’s racist comments are intentional and scripted. Is that the truth? Judge for yourself…

PDFs of the Letters

Letter to Barbados High Commissioner  let toBarbados 060514

Letter to BBC  let to BBC 060514

Letter to Barbados High Commissioner

Equal Justice Solicitors

Striving for better justice
Equal Justice Ltd
Bloomsbury House
4, Bloomsbury Square
London WC1A 2RL
WC1A 2AJ

Tel: 020 7405 5292
Fax: 020 7405 5315
DX: 35708 Bloomsbury
http://www.equaljustice.co.uk

High Commissioner
Barbados High Commission
1 Great Russell Street
London WC1B 3ND
By post and email.
Email – london@foreign.gov.bb

URGENT

Strictly Private and Confidential
6 May 2014

Our ref: LD/Top Gear
Your ref:

Dear High Commissioner

Clarkson-gate

Race complaint against the UK’s British Broadcasting Corporation (“BBC”)

We act for various clients (including Richard Rogers and Fred Jacobs, US citizens) who have brought a race complaint against Jeremy Clarkson (a tv presenter) and the UK’s British Broadcasting Corporation (“BBC”) for scripting and authorising the use of the N-word in filming for the “Top Gear” show. As it transpired, and probably due to our previous complaints about the use of racist anti-Mexican material on the previous show, the BBC and Clarkson got cold feet and the racist material was not broadcast, but the racist intent to profit from the use of deliberate but deniable racism was there.

Mexican people (both adults and children) living in the UK were subjected to racist bullying after the earlier anti-Mexican broadcast.

The BBC defended the anti-Mexican racist material on the basis that it was “British humour”. Mexicans were described as being fat, flatulent, lazy and feckless. Continue reading

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What it feels like to be Mixed Race?

BFP:

Race permeates everything in Bim. It’s always there even when not visible – always hiding just below the horizon. The politicians bring it out appropriately or not, and often with the intent of causing division or distraction.

But we have to admit, it’s not like the old days even if some folks wish it were so. It was much easier to be a politician in Barbados when all you had to do to deflect valid criticism was to say “whites!” or “curry boys!”.

Jody is a mixie Brit with Bajan heritage. Here’s what she says…

Originally posted on Jody's Scribbles:

Someone recently asked me what it felt like to be mixed race and this made me realise, I’ve never really written before about my own ethnicity and culture. Firstly we have the term mixed race – before anyone gets all political with this, mixed race is a term I feel completely comfortable with. Now however, we are supposed to say dual heritage instead, just as we are no longer supposed to say half caste which I do find offensive, along with half-breed. I have been called all of these names (and worse).

download (4)I have a British white parent (a mixture of English, Irish, Scottish and Welsh), and a black Caribbean parent whose own parents are from Barbados. Both my parents are British. My Caribbean grandparents emigrated from the West Indies in the early 1950s as the UK is the mother country of Barbados and the British government asked them to…

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Top Gear’s Jeremy Clarkson: “Catch a Nigger by the toe, when he squeals…”

UPDATED May 7, 2014: Poll closed due to organised campaign to support Top Gear’s Jeremy Clarkson

Did Top Gear or Jeremy Clarkson hire some backroom operation to change the results of BFP’s poll? That’s a definite possibility.

BFP’s poll asked if our readers could hearing Clarkson saying the word ‘nigger’ in the YouTube video. For the first few days the results were running about 90% yes… but then we saw dozens and dozens of ‘no’ responses coming from two IP numbers in the UK, where the people involved were obviously conducting an organised effort to change the results of the poll in Clarkson’s favour.

Naughty, naughty!

So we’ve frozen the poll where it ended up, but our readers should know that the displayed result doesn’t reflect the actual views of BFP’s readers that is running about 90% ‘yes’ and 8% ‘no’ and 2% ‘can’t tell, too drunk to care’.

Cliverton

“Einee meenie miney moe…”

“There’s a slope on it…” (Clarkson as an asian man walks on a bridge. YouTube video below.)

And we haven’t even told you about Clarkson’s Nazi salute or his black dog named after a black footballer.

Is Jeremy Clarkson unthinking, always over the line… or truly a racist?

I haven’t decided for myself as yet, but here are a few tidbits for your consideration – including an apology excuse from Clarkson.

Is the BFP crew going to the TopGear festival at Bushy Park? You bet! We wouldn’t miss it for anything… no matter what Mr. Clarkson thinks or says about the colours of our skins.

Jeremy Clarkson’s apology excuse

Hey… no matter what he says about mumbling, I hear the word ‘Nigger’ clear ’nuff in the video at the top of this post. How about you?

Further Reading and Viewing…

UK Mirror: Jeremy Clarkson’s previous ‘race rows': From black dogs and Nazi salutes to Lenny Henry

UK Mirror: Video: Watch Jeremy Clarkson use n-word in unseen Top Gear footage

The Guardian: Jeremy Clarkson ‘begs forgiveness’ over N-word footage

Jeremy Clarkson: Twitter feed with apology excuse.

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When only a white could Captain the West Indies Cricket Team

“I am of the firm belief that whatever is for you in this world, it will come to you. Nobody can stop it; they might be able to delay it somewhat, but they do not have the power to prevent it coming to you.”

Earle Clarke

Sir Frank Worrell

Sir Frank Worrell

When John Goddard resigned after skippering the West Indies team during the 1950 tour to England (video), some hoped that a black would finally be selected to lead – based on talent and leadership abilities, not skin colour. But it was not to be.

Don’t forget: this was an era when only white reporters were allowed to cover events in the Courts of Barbados, and when a person of colour could not eat at the yacht club let alone become a member.

It was another ten years before Frank Worrell (above) became Captain during the 1960-61 “Down Under” tour.

Earle Clarke remembers that it wasn’t all about cricket…

Leadership

by Earle Clarke

Some years ago, I wrote an article containing information which I will use today. In that article, I was trying to show the discrimination in the West Indies Cricket Team against Black captains from the inception of West Indies Cricket on the world stage, but, in today’s column, I will point out the qualities that make good leaders, using the same West Indies Cricket Team as an example. In the 1950’s when I was able to understand the game of cricket, it dawned on me that, although there was a goodly number of black players on the team, it had to be captained by a white man, especially cricket teams which hailed from the sister island of Barbados.

I could well remember listening to a cricket series, England vs West Indies in England in 1950 when I attended the Basseterre Boys’ School at Victoria Road, where all of us from the New Town area would end up receiving lashes from the Head Master for late coming, because we stopped by Pappy, a Taxi Service place right in front of Lime’s office on Cayon Street to listen to the game.

In those days, poor people like us could only listen to radios in the rum shops or by Mr. Pappy on our way to and from school. I remember that the West Indies was skippered by a white Barbadian named, John Goddard. John Goddard resigned after the tour in 1950 to England and Dennis Atkinson another white Barbadian was selected as captain. Continue reading

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“Cumba” – the story of one slave woman owned by Captain John Burch, Christ Church. From Africa to Barbados to England

slavery-barbados.jpg

“Mr. Maverick was desirous to have a breed of Negroes, and therefore seeing she would not yield by perswasions to company with a Negro young man he had in his house…”

… from John Josselyn as recounted in Two Voyages to New England, published 1674

One story of millions

by West Side Davie

“Cumba” was her name. She died a slave in Romford, England in April, 1668 – the property of John Burch and his wife Margaret of Hogsty Plantation. (I’m not sure whether Captain John Burch of Barbados is also referred to and is the same as Colonel John Burch of Barbados, but this family history and other websites seem to say it is the same man. I remain open for correction!)

Today, Cumba is remembered as Havering’s first black resident in an excellent article by Professor Ged Martin just published in the Romford Recorder:

It was 350 years ago this year that a fabulously rich couple, John and Margaret Burch, arrived in Romford.

They’d made their money in Barbados, exploiting slave labour to produce the bonanza crop: sugar.

In 1664, they retired to England, buying Romford’s biggest estate, Gidea Hall, then usually called Giddy Hall. The mansion, demolished in 1930, stood just east of Raphael Park.

Madam Burch, as she was fawningly called, brought her personal maidservant from Barbados, the ultimate status symbol.

Cumba was Havering’s first black resident. A slave, a piece of property, Cumba survived the English climate just four years.

But when she died, in April 1668, somebody had the humanity to record her name in the register of Romford’s St Edward’s church. “Cumber, a ffemale Blackamore servant from Guyddy Hall, buried.”

Today, “blackamore” is an offensive term. But in 1668, when “black” was used to ­describe complexion, it was an attempt to identify Cumba with some dignity. The double “ff” ­indicated a capital letter.

… read the entire article Cumba: Havering’s first black resident remembered on the 350th anniversary of her arrival.

We know very little about Cumba, but we still know far more about her than we do about millions of other people who were enslaved with her and since. We know about the times in which she lived, and we also know a little about the socially-condoned cruelty of slave owners. I believe that much of history has been ‘cleansed’, but not all of it. What passed for ‘normal’ and ‘acceptable’ when Cumba lived gives us some idea of her personal circumstances, what she probably saw even if she was not herself subject to all of the abuses. We simply don’t know the details of her life, but we know the times.

So to learn more about Cumba, we will talk of the people around her: the powerful elites of society at the time… Continue reading

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Filed under Africa, Barbados, Culture & Race Issues, History, Human Rights, Race, Slavery