Rebecca Walker


Tuesday, March 11, 2008

1443 Rockdale Dr. Jackson, Mississippi

1. Great talk tonight at MTSU. Warm campus, smart students, beautiful faculty. Had a great time, especially seeing my old friends Denise and Kimberly, who drove from Pensacola to see me. How lucky am I? We talked about Third Wave Feminism(s), creativity, spirituality, Empire, and new masculinity, among other topics.

2. So amazing to see Obama winning in Mississippi. He campaigned in Jackson, MS, where my parents married against anti-miscegenation laws. My father stayed up at night on our porch with a shotgun because the Klan threatened our little mixed race, segregation-challenging family.

It is incredible to see, in one generation, a mixed race person running for President and taking the state in the primary. I can't be prouder of all my parents did to help birth this moment. I'm also proud of the evolution of a mixed race view of the world that began way back with Frederick Douglass, and runs through Bob Marley--both of whom were mixed race.

3. I can't believe Geraldine Ferraro had the temerity, or unmitigated gaul, to suggest Barack is where he is because of his race. Didn't I already address this in my response to Gloria Steinem's Op-Ed? Didn't I address this in my critique of white, status quo Second Wave Feminist leadership? Sigh.

4. Come check out my new blog on It's called SEEDS, and I'll be posting on parenting twice a week.

5. Peace and love forever and ever.



Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks so much for reading, listening and sharing your thoughts! Your blog is great and look forward to reading more.

I hate missing you near my neck of the woods... I'm in Memphis and had every entention to drive over. Oh well, I'll have that day in another place and time. Meanwhile, I've been celebrating the Obama victory and anxious to learn the final decisions regarding Mich. and FL.

Regarding Ferrero... I am convinced that some of these statements are being made deliberately to distract us. It's just amazing how stupid people become whenever Race is involved. Do you think we could ever get to a place where the racial stereotyping of the American voter stops?

jack, jacklq and nichelle -same person :-)

Blogger RachaelKathryn said...

Hi Rebecca! I was at MTSU tonight, I enjoyed hearing you speak, or interact. I attended to cover you for a class, but I really enjoyed you words and took away a great deal. Somethings you said will definitely stick with me over time.

Blogger danielle said...


I agree with you most of the time, but on the G Ferraro issue, I have to totally disagree.

Obama's campaign has been so insistent on being "race free" that any mention of race (or any criticism of him it seems) is suddenly considered racism. This, in spite of the fact that 90% of black dems support him and many black supporters ADMIT their devotion to him has much to do with finally being able to vote for a "viable" black candidate. To suggest that race shouldn't be discussed in this campaign is absurd.

GF was referencing the sentimentality that many people are seeming to get caught up in regarding BO's campaign. White folks think he is the antidote to our racial problems in this country; black folks think he is the manifestation of dreams realized.

Perhaps she shouldn't have said it the way she did because she is white. Especially in this climate of reality distortion. But to demonize someone when they mention the word race or even challenge BO's credentials is going a bit far. (Look at what happened to Tavis when he questioned BO's absence at the BSOTU)

Is it wrong to ask a question (as Steinem did) about whether or not a black/mixed race woman with BO's credentials would be given the same love?

As a black woman trying to make her way in corporate America, I want to know what is so wrong with asking.

Anonymous nicole said...

Rebecca, I love your new blog SEEDS - lovely writing about mommyhood and reading about your adventures with Tenzin takes me back to the first time I read Baby Love. I love it. Seems like Tenzin still has the same hearty appetite he gave you when you were pregnant! :)

As far as Ferraro, I am with you - she said that if he was a white man he would not be in the position he is in. That is soooo absurd - it's been nothing but white men in the position he's in, in the past! And you know what, she's right - if he was a white man, he would probably have been crowned the nominee, no questions asked.

Yes, it is wrong to bring up race if you're going to throw ridiculous, frivolous comments out there like she did. Things like that only add to the race drama and discord in this country. This is, as Obama would call it, "politics as usual." We need more people who are willing to talk about the real issues surrounding race and racism, and to explore their own issues with it, which it sounds like Ferraro needs to do right away.

Blogger Rebecca Walker said...

Hey Nicole thanks for correcting me on the quote. I just found out today while doing an NPR and listening to Mary Frances Berry and another great Professor that Ferrarro said the same thing about Jesse Jackson when he ran for PResident, so we need to see this as a pattern, not even so much as her own issues about race, but as a deeper strategy for undermining adversaries. The fact is that we are dealing with who holds the Presidency of one of the most powerful nations in the world. This is very advanced political warfare going on, and the Clintons do it very well. We are naive to think that Bill Clinton is called the comeback kid just because he was able to win over a lot of voters. We need to remember Rove-ian tactics and not have our heads in the sand re: the dems. Make no mistake: Hillary wants to be president and she will play the political game like the master players she and her team are. The issue at hand is whether Obama can recognize the level of the game afoot and beat them at it. The issue of race is an incarnation of a more sophisticated plan. The day before Ferrarro the Vice Presidency got floated out. Obama didn't bite, so they are going to see if race can take him out of the top spot. It isn't going to stop, either, it will be one thing after another. The question is whether or not Obama and his team can stay true to their aspiration for new politics while realizing that the people he's running against are doing old politics, and the world is watching to see how he manages it. If he can't beat politicos in his own backyard, how is he going to outplay them on a global stage. A tough place to be. The key is about political strategy--the art of war, so to speak. It can be done, but the Obama camp are going to have to be smarter than their opponents.

Blogger WebGal said...

Rebecca, "lucky" us!! :-)

Kimberly, Emily and I so enjoyed the message and conversation shared at MTSU. Your exploration of feminism today and the personal and global perspectives it informs was wonderfully stretching, challenging, illuminating and inspiring. My heart is full and my mind limber. It was lovely to see you again...well worth the drive, as we expected it would be! You simply must make the Southern states a part of your regular stops on the journey from now on...I'm seeing a new NY/CA/FL loop in your future.

Right on about the Ferraro tactics, Clinton shrewdness and Obama toughness factor. While I don't condone or excuse the negative tactics being used against him, I can only hope that he cuts his teeth on these challenges and emerges skillful and resilient, head held high above the negative fray.

Love your new Seeds blog! Keep the thoughts coming our way. You remain in ours....



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