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Wednesday, October 1, 2014

RACISM AND SEXISM IN CAPOEIRA EXPOSED IN MY DEBATE WITH VAQUEIRO CAPOEIRA













This is actually a reply I wrote to +Vaqueiro Capoeira in my DESTRUCTION OF A DISSENTER blog. My response to Vaqueiro...who I think at heart is probably a well meaning person, however misinformed and misguided he may be...is vintage articulate ,article linked, academically sourced annihilation of the position that any Cardio Capoeirista on planet Earth can hope to take. As usual.

However, this debate and discussion raises so many important points delving into racism, incompetent instruction, classism, White Priviledge, sexism, and includes a scorching illuminating comment from a Black Woman Capoeirista whom I never had the pleasure to meet by the name of "Kimbandeira" that is so very illuminating...that I had to post the whole of my response and hers in its own blog entry.





+Vaqueiro Capoeira your comment above simply illuminates all the more the correctness of my position and, in these matters thus far at any rate, the wholesale incorrectness of your position in virtually every area that we disagree.

You stated: "The pure fact of making an argument of assumptions on who the partner in this dialogue is..."

There is no
assumption on who the partner in this dialogue is..." being made whatsoever. The issue is one of perspective. I was debating with Yavor at first, as the post and dates clearly show. Months later, you saw this exchange with Yavor and I...as the date on your posts clearly show...and responded with a post favorable to Yavor. I then responded to you. All of which the above data inarguably prove, and which I hope that you have the personal integrity to acknowledge is correct immediately.

Therefore, sir, the partners in this debate and discussion have been Yavor and yourself. The assumption that you made is incomplete. Your comment above infers the possibility that I assumed that you and Yavor partnered together to defeat my position via debate. Your inference and assumption are both incorrect.  Both you and Yavor have been and in your case still are debating against my position, and therefore each of you have been MY debate partner.

This reality is so clearly obvious and indisputable, that the very fact that you would attempt to debate such obviousness undermines what little is left of your credibility...if you have any credibility whatsoever after you admitted fabricating a lie to entrap me with the [ embarrassing for you ] result that I simply exposed both your lie and your insufficient grasp of the academic knowledge in our area of debate. I did so by proving that my academic and practical knowledge and the sources of my various areas of expertise is so comprehensive that I easily and simply turned your lie against you. And this happened after I gave you the opportunity to tell the truth [ which you rejected ]. Therefore I elected to use my malicia [ as several of the many many lessons that Anansi teaches us empowers us to do ] to allow you to hang yourself in public [ metaphorically speaking ].

Your comments above expose even more comprehensively incomplete knowledge and understanding on your part.

Here you say:  "...what would happen if we "were to be transported back in time" (???) and how THEN he would be so much more imerged in capoeira, ..."

I won't attempt to correct your English here, even though you attempted to imply a lack of proficiency in my knowledge when attempting to correct my Portuguese. I speak to Brazilians every day. They don't seem to be bothered and say I speak like a Bahiano all the time. If you aren't lying, you admitted that you're from Germany. In which case? I'll take the word of my favela Brazilians over your German opinion, regarding matters of favela Portuguese.

Regarding the quote of yours above...you attempted to mock and take out of context without providing the full quote, my painting of events which illustrates the comprehensive difference in character, understanding, and comprehension between the two of us. And your comment succeeded...but exactly like what happened when I trapped you in your own lie that you designed to trap me, you have only succeeded in exposing your own ignorance and insufficientcies regarding all areas that we disagree in thus far in this debate.

Sir. I am of African descent. Blood linked to the African Montu. Generation...centuries...of my family have been the same. Therefore, there is no stretching, fabrication, or falsification of the truth to state with utmost confidence that were we to be transported back to the time of slavery, I would be infinitely more immersed than you would be in the Montu arts because sir, it is fact unassailable as proven even by the most racist, brutal enemies of Kipura/"Capoeira". They specifically looked to enslave only Africans and those of African descent. This is common knowledge literally the world over.

Sir. My great grandparents were born into slavery. My grandmother was born into slavery. Nearly half of my kith and kin at that time were raised also in Montu. That's why we were never whipped, we acquired land, and not only couldn't be run off it but we backed down the KKK for generations. Even when my grandmother was a teenager.

Are you of African descent? Were your kith and kin raised in the Montu arts? Were you raised in the Montu arts like I have been?

The answer is NO to at least 3/4ths of the questions I ask of you above.

Therefore, sir...there is no assumption whatsoever being made about what would happen if you and I were to be transported back to colonial times.

You further continue to build upon your house of cards, as it were, with this comment:

"...and more assumptions on HOW the character of (cardio)capoeira is everywhere in the world,  makes this post not only obsolete (the fact that up until this moment, this comment has not made it onto the comments section of the respective youtube video, for whatever reasons.) but also shows that capoeira in fact incorporates many things (self-defense, amongst other things, we agree on that), and has room for many currents and ideas. even poorly constructed ideas and systems by self-proclaimed Masters  who sell their instructionals via the internet."

First and foremost? Kipura is a fighting system. It's first and primary reason for being is self defense. If self defense is not central to one's practice, then one is not practicing Kipura. One is practicing Cardio Capoeira. Therefore, anyone engaged in such Cardio Capoeira practices...whatever else their pedigree...is a charlatan. A fraud. A fake.


Allow me to address this segment of the specific quote of yours more narrowly:

"and more assumptions on HOW the character of (cardio)capoeira is everywhere in the world,..."

Once again. There is NO assumption being made AT ALL about Cardio Capoeira. If you're NOT engaged in self defense training? You ARE doing Cardio Capoeira. You are also likely being taught racism, sexism, and BOTH sexist racism [ against women of color ] at the same time, as these practices are ingrained within the very fabric of the White Brazilian Capoeira community and especially the White Brazilian Middle and Upper class; which finds very similar sentiments expressed both in America and Europe from similar groups and classes. If you do this? You are doing NOTHING that has ANY GENUINE connection with my African warrior ancestors. Period.

And I'm nowhere near the first to say this. I remember as a child listening to adults discuss this matter. Also, articles like these from Capoeiristas of all ranks and parts of the world can be found in various publications from the 1960's onward:

http://nabcommunities.com/2008/03/06/gcap-and-capoeira-identity-politics/

http://mandingueira.com/tag/racism/

http://mandingueira.com/tag/racism/

Can one do self defense training with Kipura movements and still ignore the African root and character of Kipura? Yes. Is that Cardio Capoeira? No.  What would such practices be? That would be Coopted Capoeira. In precisely the same sense that I would be inexcusably ignorant and almost certainly a lying racist if I were to study Karate, practice it here in the USA, then completely deny the proper credit and acknowledgements to Okinawa and Japan  PLUS seek to bestow those honors and rewards upon me, my race and my country? In a phrase, if I were to "Coopt Karate?" I would be repudiated...deservedly so...in the martial community. The same would be the case with anyone who studied any Montu for any reason and did not be forthcoming about the people continent and culture of its origin.

Yet. They are NOT repudiated in the martial community for their actions. And this pattern continues where people of all races coopt the cultural expressions of Africans, benefit from it, and ignore, denigrate, or do both to the actual African or Africans in the diaspora founders. For instance, many Oriental and White martial artists actors and players have done this with breakin and Kipura/"Capoeira" and even Steppin/Stompin. Breakin, Steppin/Stompin, Kipura, and hiphop are all 100% Black creations. All were energetically resisted and defamed racially by all other nonBlacks and/or nonAfricans. However, its power and popularity was such and remains such that it cannot be stopped. Therefore, these other races and cultures have done everything they can...and are still doing all they can...to coopt it,claim it's theirs, control it, and remove it from us so that they alone can benefit from it.

You, Vaqueiro, whether you mean to do so or not...are part of the movement seeking to coopt Kipura. Even your own words in previous posts during our first debates wherein you doubt the African root of a fighting system that every available piece of literature not only stated was African in root but was practiced almost 100% exclusively by Black and mixed race people treated as if they are Black people for at least 342 years in Brazil [ and longer outside of Brazil, BECAUSE BRAZIL IS NOT THE ONLY PLACE WITH KIPURA OR MONTU, WHICH IS ANOTHER LIE THAT THEY SPREAD ] are in fact racist, and wholly unsupportable by any form of genuine academia.

The further claims of "Capoeira culture" being hawked by many of these Cardio Capoeira Mestres as groups and individuals is also false. If they deliver on their "Capoeira culture" spiel, they generally impart middle class White Brazilian culture...which is NOT the culture of genuine Kipura. In general, even today, middle class White Brazilians are racially hostile to Afro-Brazilians. So...there is racism being taught along with these middle class White Brazilian mores.

Further, if they acknowledge the Afro-Brazilian..as in Africans in Brazil...poor and slave origins of the culture of Kipura; how then can a White Middle or Upper Class Brazilian actually teach or transmit that which he/she/they HAVE NO IDEA ABOUT OR LIFE EXPERIENCE WITH? They cannot. So again. They are charlatans and all who buy into their "cultural" spiel are either hoodwinked or even worse...racists, themselves who are hoodwinked by the spiel in front of them.

Let sister Kimbandeira speak on it: "Kimbandeira (22:25:39) :
I think that it is misleading at best – and ignorant at worst – to extend some sort of weakly theorized equality discourse to capoeira. Capoeira was never about equality – capoeira has always been a strategy for survival and for reconstitution of personal and community honor under the most desperate circumstances imaginable. As a Black woman, I have only ever had the experience of having whites (mostly women) complain in this way. For example, there are certain principles of the Candomble that are relevant also in capoeira – as a woman, I would not start a roda, for example. I do not feel degraded by this, as I have [ no ] need to assert equality on the basis of identicalness to men. I am a strong, aggressive capoeirista who never hesitates to enter the roda or play against anyone (except young children, because that just freaks me out… ) regardless of level, but I am not a man. I learn from men, I learn from women, but I play my own game in dialogue with others. As for the whole “blonde on the side” thing, I’m just sickened by the lack of interrogation of the racial ideology behind that. We practiced capoeira while you held us as slaves, and now you want to participate but change it with your own ideology and then have us smile at you, while at the same time articulating a none-too-subtle Birth of a Nation sort of thing? Please.

I think the problem is that white women are raised to think that they are special and delicate and feminine (while Black women are of course Mammies or Jezebels), and then get pissed when they aren’t treated exactly like men. Get a grip.

Capoeira isn’t the place to work out middle class white concerns."

For the full comment section and the article that provoked Kimbandeira's scorching response, read here:

http://mandingueira.com/2008/05/28/why-sexist-capoeirista-is-an-oxymoron/#comment-1200

There is also intense racism being taught in Brazilian Jiujitsu, especially when it first was brought by upper and middle class White Brazilians to the USA. Who were also very racist in general. I speak from direct personal experience. There is no shadow of a doubt here. I also have been informed of such by numerous White friends of mine who train with their teacher without Black students around. Intense. Racism. Happens there.

The exact same thing happens in Cardio Capoeira circles, and organizations. I have already previously provided proof of such in previous responses to you.

Everyone...even these Mestres teaching middle class White Brazilian mores...acknowledges that "Capoeira culture" started with and is perpetually part and parcel of the Afro-Brazilian culture. Even when they spread the lie that Kipura was born in the senzalas....slave quarters of the Africans...they acknowledge such to be true. The true Kipura, the true source and strength and spirit of it, is 100% the African people, and our African roots language and culture from which it sprang.  The extent to which our African people language spiritual practices roots etc have been stamped out and/or coopted in Brazil and worldwide is the exact same extent to which genuine authentic "Capoeira culture" in Brasil and worldwide has been exterminated and/or coopted.

When you take this info and combine it with the fact that middle class White Brazilians tend to be hostile to Afro-Brazilians, you can immediately see why their expression of  "Capoeira" would also be instantly suspect. They would at almost all turns murder the culture of genuine Kipura. Every instinct in them would lead them that way. Even if they didn't mean to do it. It would be akin to putting the serial killer of women famously known as Jack the Ripper in charge of a Girl Scout troop, then allowing them to march into the woods only under the supervision of Jack the Ripper and return at whatever time that suits Jack's fancy. Jack would kill those poor girls in horrible fashion.

That's what's happening by and large, now. Genuine Kipura is being killed in horrible fashion by Cardio Capoeiristas...who want to financially profit from THE LEGACY of my African Kipura family, and promote THE LIE AND THE ILLUSION that they too are teaching the self defense fighting system of my ancestors when they are absolutely opposed to such; and have no clue how to do it  or any desire whatsoever to actually do it at all.

If the White Middle or Upper Class Brazilian Mestres did these inexcusable things..which they did...and taught such behaviours to their students as not only acceptable but the standard for normalcy...which they did? Then so too would almost all of their students do very much the same thing and think very much the same thing. They have no reason NOT to do so. When the students of these racist White Middle or Upper Class Brazilian Mestres  became Mestres in their own right? Of course they would continue the tradition. Even numerous Black students of such Mestres would do so,  because they don't know any better.

Therefore claims of "Capoeira culture" by Cardio Capoeira Mestres tend to fall overwhelmingly...more than 95%..into one of these categories:

1. They're lying. None of them teach any culture whatsoever, they just use it as part of their marketing pitch. This includes the majority...about 2/3...of so-called Mestres worldwide.

2. They're genuinely misinformed. They truly believe that Capoeira Culture IS Brazilian culture, not the culture of Africans in Brazil; even when every scrap of evidence even in their Cardio Capoeira shows that such cannot be the case.

3. Some combination of 1 and 2.

All of the above is imperiled by the mere presence and the mere EXISTENCE of Street Warriors like myself. And that is part of the reason why I garner such attention, command such respect from the fighting community [ as I can really do and regularly do exactly what I say I can do ] and attract virulent hate from many haters [ who are almost 100% Cardio Capoeiristas ].

In this section, you write: "There is no personal dislike or grudge involved, only factual doubts and critique of said individual´s behavior towards an art form and a community.

That being said, best of luck to you with your truth of things.


Again, if any students of Master Ras are interested in a friendly discussion on capoeira, please find me at your disposal."


I find your claim to have "factual doubts" about me not only somewhat amusing, but typical of these kinds of debates. I have in essence handed you a paradoxically cordial unquestionably but one-sided, fact laden, vicious beatdown to such an extent that you began to fabricate sources of information...lie about books that you've read...only to be caught by me in your lie and further exposed as not at all what you claim to be.

Don't feel bad. There is no Cardio Capoeirista who ever existed who could engage in the kind of discussion with me that you have and not be both lobotomized and subsequently disintegrated by the facts and logic that I wield. There is simply no genuine consistent transcendant truth to their position which is favorable to them and not wholly destructive to pretty much everything that they do. Therefore debates against me must always end in wholesale slaughter for them. The sound of my voice or the sound of my keyboard tapping a reply to any Cardio Capoeirista anywhere at any time regarding this subject is the sound of certain doom approaching for them. It is, as Agent Smith said:"...THE SOUND OF INEVITABILITY..."


I guess that makes me the Negro Neo. Hahahaha.

 I have cited chapter and verse and left multiple links to multiple sources of information which completely annihilate every atom of the possibility that any position you have taken that I disagreed with is faintly ennobled by the merest quark of fact. This reality must not be interpreted as overbearing ego on my part; the fact is that the sources I quoted which outed you and destroyed your position existed long before our debate began. Had you been open-minded enough and thorough enough in your research, you could have found these sources as easily as did I.But you have not and will not, as you have accepted as truth and suckled at the breast of the venomous lies and racism that undergirds all Cardio Capoeira, wherever it is, and ensnares even well meaning people [ as you at bottom might actually be ].


I have no personal dislike or grudge with you, either. I specified this awhile ago, and I am the first of the two of us to make this sentiment known. Despite the fact that you lied and have tried to entrap me with your lie. I actually find such actions to be universally more of a detriment to the doer, not the [ oftentimes misperceived ] victim...in the long run.

I too wish you good luck with your truth of things. May Orunmila open your eyes.

As for my students? I have received nearly 100 emails from my various students worldwide since the publication of our correspondence. They urge me to convey to you that they are glad that you are openminded enough to extend the offer and option of friendly discussion with them, but they have are more interested in, informed by and find more conclusive the discussions that we have already had.

They also charge me to ask you...for at least the third time now...the questions that I have been asking of you, sir, and which you repeatedly duck and avoid answering. Those questions are:

You know my real name is Ras. I don't hide it. What is your name, sir? What cord do you hold? Who is your Mestre? What organization do you belong to? Where is your video showing your play and your Mestre's and your organization's play? What drew you to "Capoeira"? What are your goals with your practice? How did you come across my Channel? Where is video of you, your Mestre, or anyone in your organization practicing self defense with your "Capoeira"? 
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