The Daily Kos Diary Of The Day: We’re Too White And In Need Of Affirmative Action!

by John Hawkins | December 20, 2006 8:31 am

Now this[1] is funny stuff: a Daily Kos diary called, “Is DKos ‘too white’, and in need of ‘Affirmative Action’?”

From the diary (the bolding is from the original post):

“If, out of 3,807 Kossacks surveyed, 82% of ‘us’ self-reported as white, 4.2% as black, 4.5% hispanic, 4% asian, 1.1% native american, and 0.08% were hawaiian/pacific islander – well, my question is: why is the DKos community, at least statiscally, so ‘white’? What are we doing wrong, and what can we do about it?

If this is supposed to be the most influential (whatever that means) progressive blog on the web, why is our site 82% white, compared to 69% of the US population? Do we need our own sort of ‘affirmative action’?

My question: Does this mean that the ‘average’ Kossack is most likely a white, 40-ish, middle-class, hetero male (with a few more gay friends than you might expect)? Gee, that doesn’t SOUND like the image we like to have of our demographic? Surely we’re more diverse than that! Does this sync with what psychologists call our ‘self-concept’, or is something off?

…But, as DrSteveB asked in his diary, “Do white Kossacks ‘get’ race?” Well, that’s the question I want to pose. WHY is DKos so white? What can we do about that?

I WANT TO SUGGEST THAT WE DEVELOP A COMMITTEE/FORUM TO DEAL WITH THE ISSUE OF RACE/ETHNICITY AND HOW IT IMPACTS THIS SITE. Without addressing the ‘whiteness’ of this site, as well as the structural reasons this might be, we cannot devise ways to deal with this.

…But like colleges and universities, we may want to think up ways to begin to work on the ways structural racism that affects DKos, one of the most powerful sites of progressive activism in the blogosphere today. And I think this effort should foreground the voices of people of color, not the dominant white Kossacks. While I might have ideas on how to address issues of structural racism’s effect on DKos (perhaps having our committee cross-post diaries from more diverse blogs, or track down guest columnists from more diverse blogs?), I think these are the sorts of ideas that should be debated in an open forum.”

Now, these are interesting questions. What is the Daily Kos “doing wrong” to draw in so many white readers? Don’t they need Affirmative Action? Shouldn’t they form a committee to address the subject, one that isn’t run by the “dominant white Kossacks?”

Of course, getting worried about the racial make-up of a blog that anyone can freely visit is perfectly ridiculous, but boy, is it ever fun to watch the left get a taste of their own medicine!

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