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    ‘Segregated Waves’: Now Surfing and the Ocean are Racist

    ‘Segregated Waves’: Now Surfing and the Ocean are Racist

    “That’s threatening to a local… who feels this like deep entitlement because of their whiteness and their privilege.”

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=liSf7KrVqqQ#action=share
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    SF Weekly managed to ruin an interesting story about a woman trying to make surfing appealing to females, blacks, and indigenous people.

    The weekly publication framed the story around racism instead of exploring these organizations women started to bring those people into the sport.

    I understand the points Emily Zhang and those she interviewed made in this article.

    But the framing. Zhang really took advantage of the social discord rumbling through America to paint white people, even today, as oppressors.

    For example, Dionne Ybarra shared how her Mexican-American family only went to the beach on July 4th. She took swimming lessons, but her mother always made her wear a life jacket.

    Ybarra took up surfing in her 20s. She founded The Wahine Surf Project in 2010, which “aims to get more young girls of color out in the water.”

    She learned through the project while working parts that she realized “that the fear of water her mother exhibited — and a culture of not going to the beach — is common in communities of color.”

    Chelsea Woody co-founded Textured Waves, which is an organization for women of color surfers. Her reasoning makes sense, but again, it’s all about “America’s history of systemic racism” that has helped keep “people of color from taking up water sports.”

    How about instead of concentrating on the past we look towards the future? I guess not:

    “Segregation laws of this country really restricted who could participate in leisure activities and zoning laws with who could buy land in certain areas and coastal towns,” Woody explains.

    The California Land Act of 1851 pulled sprawling ranchos away from Mexican owners and handed them over to white settlers. Pools and beaches were segregated during Jim Crow, effectively prohibiting Black people from public access. A 2014 CDC study found that Black American children were up to 10 times more likely to drown than white children.

    “I think the lineup is really just an extension of colonialism,” says Kyla Langen, co-founder of San Francisco based Queer Surf.

    Mira Manickam-Shirley, another surfer, claimed: “that racial disparities in wealth, as well as the history of housing discrimination and access to loans, all play into who lives by the beach now.”

    She said: “If you go and look at a lot of housing covenants in coastal properties, contracts about the sale of homes, they literally will say this home cannot be sold to, and then list of various different ethnicities, different races.”

    I really hope Manickam-Shirley reports these people because we have something called the Fair Housing Act:

    The Fair Housing Act, Title VIII of the Civil Rights Act of 1968, covers housing discrimination. This law prohibits housing discrimination by real estate firms and homeowners. This means that homeowners may not refuse to lease or sell property based on race, religion, gender, color, or national origin. In some localities, special housing discrimination ordinances or laws also cover sexual orientation. This does not mean, however, that sellers must sell you their home. It means that you could take legal action if the seller refuses to sell and you believe it was due to discrimination.

    Instead of telling a weekly publication why not take proper action against those sellers and realtors?

    With limited room, surfers can often be territorial. This must mean they’re racist (emphasis mine):

    While Ybarra’s East Salinas neighborhood was predominantly Latinx, she says the ones dotting the peninsula were — and still are — white. This feeds into a wider narrative of racialized entitlement over land.

    Someone at the beach told Ybarra she couldn’t park there, and Langen’s car was keyed outside a surf break when she first moved to Santa Cruz.

    “I think it was just, you know, a new person showing up who is kind of competent and can surf and that’s threatening. That’s threatening to a local… who feels this like deep entitlement because of their whiteness and their privilege. And the fact that they probably own a house close by.”

    Or maybe they’re just jerks who do not want new people treading on their spot? Just because someone is an a**shole doesn’t mean they’re racist or sexist.

    I am all for inclusion and bringing more people into surfing. Or anything. It would have been a lot more interesting if Zhang interviewed these ladies about the organizations instead of only talking about racism and whose fault it is for the lack of people of color and females in surfing.

    [Featured image via YouTube]

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    Comments



     
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    Valerie | July 28, 2020 at 6:36 pm

    Don’t these people understand how racist they are? They assume that they will be made unwelcome in the water due to their skin color, when all they really need to do is learn how to do the sport well.

    It’s almost like they really don’t want to share with other people like them.


       
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      GatorGuy in reply to Valerie. | July 28, 2020 at 7:13 pm

      Right, wasting time and energy imagining the rejecting thoughts of others instead of so much more conveniently loving and improving your own life, once you break the bad habit.

      Seems like a cheap, foolish, lazy way to cultivate and maintain an ultimately irrational defense mechanism.

      Your way clearly wins that most important personal prize, oneself.

      And don’t such possible institutions of systemic racism become, then, pretty irrelevant? You just do it, as one among many. Try and stop me, you might say, with a giggle. Poetic justice!


     
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    LukeHandCool | July 28, 2020 at 10:03 pm

    “I think it was just, you know, a new person showing up who is kind of competent and can surf and that’s threatening. That’s threatening to a local … who feels this like deep entitlement because of their whiteness and their privilege. And the fact that they probably own a house close by.”

    Uh, no. Many surfers are known to be very territorial. If I were to paddle out in some areas of Malibu, as a brand new face I would very likely be made to feel very unwelcome. And I’m a tan, blue-eyed white dude. (Did I mention strapping?)

    My brother-in-law saw a lot of combat in Vietnam and he credits surfing with saving his life. He’s now 75 and he still surfs every day. He was something of a legend at Santa Monica Beach before he and my sister moved to Temecula a couple years ago. He’s isn’t the territorial surfer type. He welcomes everyone. So when a young woman asked a couple surfers one day about learning to surf, they said, “See Sherman. He’s happy to teach anyone.”

    My brother-in-law Sherman taught her to surf, and she turned out to be a talent agent. She got him some acting jobs in TV commercials and music videos. She also produced a video for his (I guess I’d call it auditions resume) in which he tells his story. In the video he relates how surfing replaced drugs as his coping mechanism for dealing with his painful Vietnam experiences.

    One day he went to surf somewhere in Orange County and he said the young local surfers there were very, very hostile to him. He’s a very friendly and gentle fellow and people who get to know him love him for his sense of humor. If he couldn’t win them over, nobody could.

    I don’t doubt Ms. Zhang would probably receive the same treatment from those surfers. But she would reflexively and wrongly attribute it to racism.

    Some groups of surfers are just notoriously territorial and don’t welcome newcomers no matter what color they are.

    The name of one of the Surf Punks albums was “Locals Only.”

    In their most popular song, “My Beach” they sing, “My Sun! … My Sand! … My Surf! … Go Home!!”

    “Or maybe they’re just jerks who do not want new people treading on their spot? Just because someone is an a**shole doesn’t mean they’re racist or sexist.”

    Yep, exactly right.


     
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    LukeHandCool | July 28, 2020 at 10:38 pm

    Surf Punks, “My Beach,” live at the Whiskey A Go Go:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7Sbz–gRylA

    Surf Punks, “Locals Only.” In which the Surf Punks, on a surfing safari, as visitors find themselves on the receiving end of surfer territoriality:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H9JtAgP8u4c

    Surfers prove science is settled on Gell-Mann Amnesia Effect.


     
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    cali sol | July 29, 2020 at 1:21 pm

    Surfing is a lifestyle cult…who else would go out in 20 degree weather?…..water never gets that cold, but it still seems a bit insane to integrate it unless you were selling surfing gear and want a new market….hmmmmmm?


     
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    Vladtheimp | July 29, 2020 at 7:48 pm

    I’ll give serious consideration to this idea when Barbra Streisand and other Hollywood Leftists open the beachfront property they obtained through White privilege open their beach access to “females, blacks, and indigenous people” (although there seems to be some overlap there.

    Of course, gangbangers, homeless and Black Lives Matter folks would also enjoy a day at the beach, and Cholos would have to park their low riders next to the Limos, but it’s all for a good cause – right?

    Everybody’s gone surfin’ Surfin’ U.S.A.


       
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      LukeHandCool in reply to Vladtheimp. | July 29, 2020 at 8:05 pm

      Yes. The Lefty Hollywood crowd in their Malibu beach homes don’t want anybody on the sand fronting their homes.

      They’re worse than the Surf Punks.


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