Posted in Blog, General, Uncategorized

Names Are Not Innocent

I may be writing from the completely opposite perspective expected, but this is valid nonetheless.

Rose Water Magazine

I have a “white” name. When it is put on an application without any other background information, many people would assume that I am white. I am not white. My white name does not define me just as culturally sounding names do not define anyone else. When you stereotype someone because of their name from whatever perspective — class, race, or sex included — you are ending any opportunity to get to know that person further because you have already decided who they are for yourself. People with names that are not of the “norm” face damaging consequences.

In September, the Huffington Post and Buzzfeed commented on a job seeker who dropped one letter from his name while applying for jobs (sending between 50 and 100 a day), and the responses rushed to him. He went from José Zamora to Joe Zamora. He did not change any of the details…

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Posted in Poetry


dear ashley,

you are not unclean.
you have been peppered
with experiences
not everyone goes through
and you have pushed
past, exploding
into particles
everyone can digest
but still growing
into your own.
do not apologize
for taking up space
blocking blackboards
with your hair
being angry at injustice.
you are not just there.
you are everywhere
and your words are worth
something. you should not
give up because you are
not liked. risk being
unliked. you are
beautiful either way

dearest ashley
you touch more than you
know, just as others have
touched you. now you must do
shoot for what you want
forget obligation
focus on dreams
poetry, passion your power.
it is not on you
to change the world.
be a part of it.
see what it wants of you
let it be.