September 23, 2004

Framing the issues and Arguements...

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Professor Lakoff, a professor at UC Berkley has taken note of how Republicans have used “framing” to beat back progressive ideas and keep progressive men and women on the defensive. What he articulated in an interview he did back in 2003 about politics is also the same formula used by conservatives on issues of race.

Understanding how framing has been used in regards to race is simple but easily overlooked. In a discussion or debate about any issue “Every word is defined relative to a conceptual framework” as noted by Professor Lakoff. Take for instance the use of the phrase “Democratic Plantation” used by Negro-Cons and Republicans alike. We all know Black men and women were enslaved on white plantation, thus by referring to the Democratic Party in reference to Black men and women as the Democratic Plantation it is understood and conceptualized as Black men and women are being enslaved by the Democrats or Democrats are enslaving us.

Other acts of framing the argument and the issue can be witnessed with the use of words like “Victim” “Race Card” “Angry Blackman” etc. The idea is to put the opposition on the defensive before the debate starts such that they are working from a disadvantage. I noted sometime ago after watching a sixty minutes special on the “I have a dream program” that grants scholarships to “disadvantaged children” that the use of the phrase “disadvantaged children” is used only when those who are supposedly helping the “disadvantaged children” are being painted as saviors of these children. However, these same children are not referred to as “disadvantaged children” when the media and others are beating them down. They are referred to as inner city kids which carry the connotation of violence, poverty drugs and many other things but do not in any way say of them as being disadvantaged. That’s because the term “inner city” is another example of framing. Imagine if the headlines read “drop out rate at disadvantaged schools are growing” versus “drop out rate at inner city schools are growing”. Both say the same thing but by simply changing “disadvantaged” to “inner city” the connotation has changed.

We must be able to frame our own arguments and put those who are in opposition to our position on the defensive; we can not and should not adopt their terminology that is meant to put us on the defensive. Today instead of saying race is not at issue someone will simply say he or she is using the “race card” and automatically the person being accused of such is put on the defensive and will be dismissed. Understanding linguistics is important in the framing of our arguments and issues. One of the many reason some Black folk do not support Affirmative Actions and Reparation is because of the framing done to these issues by those who oppose them. Instead of dealing with rather or not reparations is deserved, the issue of reparations have become one that deals with where will the money come from, how it will be used and how will white folk react to it as if any of these things are relevant to the fact that Reparations are do and just. The same with Affirmative Action, it has been framed as being a quota system that put unqualified Black men and women in positions that should have went to a “more” qualified white person. Pay attention to those who oppose our issues and how they articulate that opposition and you will see the use of talking points centered around framing the argument to put us on the defensive when truth is on our side.

12 Comments:

At 2:01 PM, Blogger Noah TA said...

Thats right on point my brother. As another example...watch any local news and when you hear about black murders or shootings, it is always framed as "drug related" or "Gang related". However, the most common denomintor is likely poverty...yet, you never here of "poverty" related violence on the News. Of course...there will be those who interject with...not everyone in poverty commits crime...so you can't blame poverty. Well...by the same token...not everyone who uses or sells drugs commit murders either. This just show, like you said, how the [framing of the terms] have a way controling how people see or react to a phenomenon. One can call it brainwashing...if you will

 
At 2:04 PM, Blogger Scott said...

You are 100% right language is very important.

 
At 5:10 PM, Blogger Faheem said...

Do not get it twisted Scott, I am not simply saying language is important nor can you summarize what I have written up as simply language being important. I am articulating the fact that language is being constructed and framed to make progressive ideas and those who hold them be on the defensive. I am also articulating that this same framing of arguements is what you and the other Negro-Cons have accepted when you write and speak about that "victimization" garbage.

 
At 5:28 PM, Blogger NmagiNATE said...

This whole FRAMING thing is part of a much larger tactic called Deflect & Re-Direct. Republicans/CONservatives, of course, rather have attention focused not on their flaws but rather shine a light on the flaws of their so-called Liberal counterparts, cynically using race-laden language to make it appear as if they are, by default, "better" than the Democrats...

To keep perspective on this we only need to reflect on what Malcolm X said about the ultimate reality of BOTH parties: THEY ARE BOTH IN CAHOOTS!

Each party is all about maintain Power & Privilege in accordance with White Supremacy. Their philosophies reduce down to not much more than a difference of opinion on how best to do that. There should be no delusions as far as that is concerned, though at least up until now the Democrats have (in very relative terms) allowed for more potential for Black political "power", etc. - using that word loosely.

 
At 9:08 PM, Blogger Natural Mystic said...

Faheem is on point!

Language is how we form reality. I've been study a technology called NLP,Neuro-Linguistic Programming,for about two years and have taken a three day intensive seminar in Atlanta. In this seminar there were twenty students, fifteen of those students were from Europe and the other four were from out of state. I was the only black person there and the Europeans had taken at least three previous sessions with Dr. Carmine Baffa.

NLP is used for self-improvement or persuasing people to act in accord to your wishes. FRAMING in NLP is called RE-FRAMING which serves the same purpose mentioned in the post. The linguistic part of NLP was modeled after Dr. Milton H. Erickson;his was famous for his ability to hypnotize people converstionally and out them in a deep trance,through stories and methphors.

Dr. Erickson used language patterns to induce hyponsis much like black preachers. Just when you thought pimping was dead! I have an e-book on that I purchased about month ago that put all 400 of these language patterns in place, this is stuff is powerful.

I found these websites interesting:

http://www.richardbandler.com/-NLP co-founder

http://www.maxpersuasion.com/showpage.php?session=&content=articles-Kenrick Cleveland

http://www.nlpandhypnosis.com/exercises.htm

http://www.fastseduction.com/-white guys use this stuff to pull women

 
At 9:53 PM, Blogger Natural Mystic said...

this should read like this:

The linguistic part of NLP was modeled after Dr. Milton H. Erickson;he was famous for his ability to hypnotize people converstionally and put them in a deep trance,through stories and methphors.

e-mail me for the e-book

 
At 10:38 PM, Blogger Faheem said...

Mystic, I would be interested in that e-book, e-mail me @ faheem.amir@gmail.com

I will check out those sites as well. Thanks

 
At 2:13 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

There is a white media tactic I call race image framing. It involves word description association. It works like this. Whenever the words homeless, welfare, giveaway, shelters, needy, poverty, deprived, donate, etc. are used to describe and show a scenario, a Black face, usally that of a Black male, is shown. It is also employed with phrases such as faces of hunger, less fortunate, down on their luck, skid row, helping hand, help those in need, low income and inner city. The worse enemy of the Black man is the media and its portrayal of the Black race on tv, in newspapers and in cinema.

Comrade

 
At 6:43 AM, Blogger Scott said...

Which part of 1005 right did you miss ?

 
At 6:43 AM, Blogger Scott said...

100% right, sorry for typo.

 
At 11:47 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The part where you left out what I described.

Comrade

 
At 4:52 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Neither time nor space can change the nature of the devil.

 

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