Colorism is discrimination in which human beings are accorded differing social treatment based on skin color. The preference often gets translated into economic status because of opportunities for work. Colorism can be found across the world. The term is generally used for the phenomenon of people discriminating within their own ethnic groups.

Sexism, a term coined in the mid-20th century,[1] is the belief or attitude that one gender or sex is inferior to, less competent, or less valuable than the other. It can also refer to hatred of, or prejudice towards, either sex as a whole (see misogyny and misandry), or the application of stereotypes of masculinity in relation to men, or of femininity in relation to women.[2] It is also called male and female chauvinism. Sexist is the adjective form of the noun sexism. Sex discrimination is discrimination on the basis of sex or gender.

Ageism, also called age discrimination is stereotyping of and discrimination against individuals or groups because of their age. It is a set of beliefs, attitudes, norms, and values used to justify age based prejudice and discrimination. This may be casual or systematic.[1][2][3] The term was coined in 1969 by US gerontologist Robert N. Butler to describe discrimination against seniors, and patterned on sexism and racism.[4] Butler defined ageism as a combination of three connected elements. Among them were prejudicial attitudes towards older people, old age, and the aging process; discriminatory practices against older people; and institutional practices and policies that perpetuate stereotypes about older people[5] The term has also been used to describe prejudice and discrimination against adolescence and children, including ignoring their ideas because they are too young, or assuming that they should behave in certain ways because of their age.[6]

Dear JJP readers:

My colleague, Marcus Toussaint, posted an invitation to join an elitist club up in Harlem.  He posted it without filter or fanfare.  After reading the prerequisites for membership for both men and women, and after personally receiving an email requesting I promote this nonsense, as well as consider membership, here’s my response to Thomas Lopez-Pierre.  While I could have posted my normal saltiness, with some individuals, cuss words are WASTED.  Let me know what you think:

Dear Mr. Lopez-Pierre:

Thank you for your invitation to become an Associate Member of the Harlem Club.  After much consideration, this is one African-American Professional woman who has decided to pass on your invitation, and here’s the reason – well, actually, there are SEVERAL reasons for declining your invitation.

First of all, the criteria upon which women would be “allowed” to join is subjective, sexist, smells like ageism, while using code words like “hood rat” or “pidgeon” which, for me, translates to “any woman not working in Corporate America above Administrative Assistant/Receiptionist.  Sir, titles mean NOTHING if those in charge of your career advancement has already decided your worth is no more than an Administrative/Clerical person.  African-American women, in particular, are highly intelligent, even though we may not sound like it; we’ve HAD TO BE in order to survive.  For you to come up with such a concept continues to insult Black Women everywhere, and while I have no problem with you opening membership to women of all races (and you should), you need to be clear as to why.  I take it to mean Black women with skin darker than a paper bag need not apply.

And what’s with the age range (21-35)?  How many women between the ages of 21-35 is making that six-year figure income your members desire, without laying on their backs and spreading their legs for it (eyebrows raised).  And what about women over 35?  Are they not desirable, regardless of their age?  Most women do not reach their peak, emotionally, sexually, physically and mentally, until we’re past our 35th birthdays, sir.  For you to limit membership to a specific age group sounds more like you want strip-club applicants as opposed to professional women to join.

About that $5000 membership fee the men have to pay?  Are you providing the delights and pleasures for men that got Eliot Spitzer kicked out of the Governor’s mansion?  As “Client #9″  he threw down serious cheddar, but then, again, you are asking the members to kick down that cheddar for a one time fee, until the money starts rolling to bank roll a, ahem, “social club” that exlcudes most African-American women over 35, as if we have nothing to offer.  Your criteria for female membership is loudly smelling like the bad ol’ days of yesteryear, when women were desxualized or over sexualized in order to facilitate fear on the part of white people who did not know, or CARE to UNDERSTAND US.  Furthermore, what brothas, other than professional athletes, have $5000 to give away on a membership to a social club that will never have the political, economic or social influence that spreads into our communities, to our children, to our families?  Your promotion says NOTHING about what the Harlem Club gives back to the community, or even if it INTENDS to give back to the community.  Shame on you for thinking up this concept, and shame on you for thinking it would be welcomed with open arms. 

We are in a battle for our very survival, sir.  Economically, Politically, Mentally, Spiritually, and any other way I have not listed here.  And this is the best you could do as your contribution to the uplift of “professionals” – a club that excludes everyone that was always considered “undesireables” during the turbulent times of this country?  And in a city which was built on the backs of Black slaves buried right down in MidTown – your location sounds like you could spit on their graves – SHAME ON YOU.

As I said, I’m declining your invitation to join, and I’m rejecting your request to spread the word about this foolishness.  I do meet most of your criteria, but if you’ve been reading Jack and Jill Politics, you would know:

  1. I don’t meet the age requirement;
  2. I don’t know what basis you are utilizing to determine if a woman is “attractive” – so she has to send you pictures and whatnot like she’s a prized cow.  I know I’m curvy – probably too curvy for your criteria, and I probably would barely pass the paper bag test; as it’s summer, and I’ve been walking a lot, I’ve earned a tan.
  3. I work as a consultant for non-profits – so while I do noble work, I’m not in the income bracket you desire.
  4. I don’t have children – but why should any woman with kids be disqualified?
  5. I’m fairly certain the caliber of men willing to pay that $5000 might look good in a Brooks Brothers suit, but probably is some pissant who beats his women, in the closet about his sexuality; has self-esteem issues that he thinks will be addressed by membership in this club, or all the above.

Please feel free to email me with your feedback, Mr. Lopez-Pierre.  While I could have been nasty about this, my fear was that you would not get the point of my letter.

Sincerely,

 

Leutisha Stills (aka The Christian Progressive Liberal)

Jack and Jill Politics

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