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Tattoos were invented by brown and Black people centuries—even millennia—before white supremacy became the dominant global paradigm.

You’ve taken the time, done your research, and decided on your tattoo. You’ve saved up money and investigated tattoo shops for the perfect artist to mark your design. You’re excited, nervous, and eager to get started. But the tattooer takes one look at you and says, “Your skin tone is a problem.” Never mind that you’ve seen tattoos on dark skin, and with color no less. Hell, your brown or Black self has beautiful color tattoos which have stood the test of time. Yet here is this artist you respected, admired, and sought out to give them a lot of money to tattoo you, and they’re looking at you like you dragged dog shit into the place. Suddenly you feel sick to your stomach—and not from tattoo nerves. You’ve just been skin-shamed. As a heavily tattooed biracial Sri Lankan American woman, this scenario has played out for me again and again, in context of almost every single tattoo artist with whom I’ve ever consulted. Worse, even brown tattooers who are covered head to foot in designs have frowned at my skin and played that I’m going to be really difficult to tattoo. I’ve had to put my foot down, explain how my particular melanin works and what colors will stick, and hope for the best. Or walk out and start researching artists from scratch.
Related: GOOD SOUTH ASIAN GIRLS DON’T HAVE TATTOOS (AND THAT’S WHY I’M COVERED IN THEM)

There are opportunities for Latinos to be empathetic and mindful of standing by social justice movements as well as opportunities to learn about anti-Black and anti-indigenous racism.

By Angely Mercado Last Saturday, Heather Heyer was killed by a white supremacist named James Fields Jr. who drove his car into a crowd of counter-protesters. Violence had erupted in Charlottesville, VA and it was hard to absorb. Another counter-protester named Deandre Harris was attacked and beaten by armed white supremacists. One of the people who attacked him was a Puerto Rican man Michael Ramos and according to a post by Remezcla, he claimed that he isn’t a racist. I’ve heard this argument before and I’ve seen all kinds of non-Black Latinos of color say problematic things about Black folks and other PoC. People I am closely related have told me that I shouldn’t date anyone who is “too dark”; folks at my church have said that they aren’t racist but the “Black guy” in their neighborhood was scary. Comments on social media threads stating that it’s impossible to be a person of color and be anti-Black and that the problem wasn’t their comment or anti-Blackness but rather “esa gente” (those people), are all too common. Latinos are a diverse group: there are indigenous people, Black Latinos and the descendants of European colonizers. The common misunderstanding is that Latino is a race but it isn’t, it’s an identity that’s mainly tied to the geographic location of south and central America. So within the same immediate family, there can be a range of skin tones, hair textures, and facial features. We need to be mindful of our own history and colorism. There are opportunities for Latinos to be empathetic and mindful of standing by social justice movements as well as opportunities to learn about anti-Black and anti-indigenous racism. There are Spanish phrases like “cabello bueno” or “cabello malo” which means “good hair” or straight hair and “bad hair” which is kinky hair. BIPOC throughout the Americas have yet to be included in the standard of beauty and are often ostracized in their own countries.
Related: PRACTICAL WAYS WHITE ALLIES CAN INFLUENCE THEIR COMMUNITIES

Tinashe is misinterpreting what colorism actually means and how the power dynamics are in favor of light-skin Black women.

In an interview for The Guardian, Pop-R&B singer, Tinashe discusses her career and various issues that she is grappling with, including growing up biracial (her father is from Zimbabwe and her mother is Danish). The 24-year-old artist is quoted saying this about colorism: There’s colourism involved in the black community, which is very apparent,” she says carefully. “It’s about trying to find a balance where I’m a mixed woman, and sometimes I feel like I don’t fully fit into the black community; they don’t fully accept me, even though I see myself as a black woman. That disconnect is confusing sometimes. To be honest, if Tinashe hadn't said she was biracial, my guess would have been that she was a light-skin Black woman – Blackness comes in a multitude of variations which are spread across the African diaspora – but Tinashe is misinterpreting what colorism actually means and how the power dynamics are in favor of light-skin Black women.
Related: STOP WEAPONZING BIRACIAL CHILDREN

Unrealistic storylines do not justify the unrealistic representation of Latinx communities.

By Ruby Mora Telenovelas, or Latin American soap operas, are and have been incredibly popular within the Latinx community for decades, with millions of viewers watching hundreds of different ones that normally center around subjects like forbidden love, a la Romeo and Juliet, complete with betrayal, lust, deceit, acceptance, and family values. Unlike their U.S. counterparts like General Hospital and One Life to Live, new episodes of telenovelas aired every weekday and end after only a few seasons – compared to the ever-long U.S. soaps – giving Latinx families a daily tradition, as well as conversation fodder. Growing up I watched them with my grandma, and even when we got to the end of one, there’s always at least one other one that we ended up watching right after. However, around my early 20s, I began to notice how white-passing the majority of the actors are, outside of the very few actors cast in minuscule roles that actually represent the diversity of the community.
Related: THEY CANCELED “UNDERGROUND” BECAUSE WHITE PEOPLE DON’T LIKE NON-COMPLIANT SLAVES

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