Let me rephrase things, then: don't you think that if Daphne and Adrian thought their treatment was racially motivated they would have said something? They spent far more time with Conda et al. than we do, and they were not shy about complaining about their treatment (which I thought was despicable, even when Adrian was kind of a PITA). No way could Conda hide her racism 24/7.
In terms of what % of what group "should" be on the show, if we are just going on % of the US population then the majority would be European-American, the next largest group Hispanic-American, then African-American., then Asian-American. then Native- American. African Americans are only about 12% of the US population, so when you have 20 or so contestants you'd expect about 2 of them to be from that group. On those grounds the most over represented group is the Tongan/Samoan faction--a very small % of the US ethnically, but a much bigger % of TBL contestants (and of NFL players, but that's another story!).
If we are going on the basis of which ethnic groups are most likely to be overweight it gets tangled in a mix of culture (food), poverty (poor people are more likely to be overweight whatever their ethnicity for reasons that include lack of access to safe outdoor activities and good fresh food among others), and genetics. So you don't see a lot of wealthy or even well off European-American people on the show---they are less likely to be overweight to start, and if they are, they are able to pay a "Jillian" to scream at them in private.
Obesity is indeed a big problem for some Native American groups (e.g., the Pima are famous for their high rates and related Type II diabetes), although not all, and it would probably be nice if the producers did some recruiting of contestants on the rezs...but maybe they have and maybe the feeling has been, no thanks, not interested in that kind of fame. Even on Jillian's little visit you could see how difficult it was to get "into" the culture and have people recognize that fried dough was a post colonial Native American food, not something their ancestors ate. The group she approached were very suspicious... gosh, can't imagine why, and not very receptive.
In contrast Asian Americans (not Pacific Islanders) generally are thinner (and richer) than European Americans, at least if you mostly look at East Asians and not South Asians. And all the studies get tied up in gender differences. So it gets pretty hard to say what percentage of the contestants "should" be of which ethnic background. And the studies are often looking at very different populations...Hawaii vs. NYC for example. And that doesn't even deal with issues of who applies, who is "interesting", and who is healthy enough to do the work outs that the show includes. Note that there are surprisingly few people with knee problems even among the older contestants--I bet a lot of those are selected out unless it is a season with "partners" and the partner is very appealing.
See below for a sample quote from a journal article on this topic.
For boys of both age groups, the obesity rate among Mexican Americans exceeded that among African Americans. For example, nearly a quarter of Mexican American adolescent boys were obese in 1999–2002, as against 19 percent of African Americans and 15 percent of whites. This pattern differs for girls, with the highest obesity rates found among African American girls. For example, among adolescent girls, 24 percent of African Americans, 20 percent of Mexican Americans, and 13 percent of whites were obese.
Targeting Interventions for Ethnic Minority and Low-Income Populations
Authors: Shiriki Kumanyika Sonya Grier ,
Journal Issue: Childhood Obesity Volume 16 Number 1 Spring 2006; The Future of Children
If I had to guess I'd say that among FAT Americans those of European American descent are somewhat overrepresented, but overall the show has done a fair job of including an ethnic mix---certainly better than the average reality show. I also think the treatment of the contestants has been remarkably free of racism for such a high tension show. The "villians" that I recall have pretty much all been of European background (although a lot of posters weren't too fond of Shay)...the Hebas and Vickis and now Conda, whatever background she is. Hmm a lot of women...but I'm sure there were some disliked men that I'm forgetting. I think the aqua team this round just had very bad luck in being the latest victims of Conda. I think she's just an equal opportunity hater, as was said above.
Sorry for the incredibly long post...statistics are kind of one of my things!
No, I like the fact that you cite statistics. I'm not going to go all professional and stuff, but I really have a bad taste in my mouth. I suggest you guys start reading Tim Wise's blog on racism though, it's great stuff.
The producers pick people for a lot of different reasons for the show. I'm sure they cast Conda, for example, because they knew she would be a polarizing character. And they picked Santa because they knew people would root for him. It's a commercial venture not public television. They are looking to get ratings by casting people that the viewers will love to hate or love to love. The don't "owe" it to any one (or more) ethnic or racial group(s) to pick from them because they have been disadvantaged in life (or their group has historically) by the "white majority". We could then take it further...only poor people should be on the show because middle-class people have had enough advantages in life already. Only people who are the product of broken homes because those in nuclear families already have it so good. Etc. Ad infinitum.
Are they still filming this season ? Throw the suckers out and bring back some of the ones who already went home then. Good riddance. My sister was reading somewhere that Bob said he only liked Emily, Cassandra, Buddy and Chism this season. I'm going to see if I can find where she saw that.
Edited to add: It was from Radar Online. I'm not sure if it is a postable source. He said, basically, that he didn't like anyone this season and, when pressed, he gave the names above. He said there were a bunch of bullies and this season was nasty.
Last edited by CCL; 02-22-2012 at 08:13 PM.
If you type "google" into google you can break the internet.
Okay folks, Let's drop the discussion of race and racism. This is a show about weight loss. The racism and psychoanalysis discussions have a place, but it's not on this site. Let's get back on the topic, which is the events of last night's episode
Anti-intellectualism has been a constant thread winding its way through our political and cultural life, nurtured by the false notion that democracy means that 'my ignorance is just as good as your knowledge.' - Isaac Asimov
I was thinking of the immortal words of Socrates, who said, "... I drank what?"
Chris probably got on his nerves with her whining. Megan is interesting. They've never really focused on her (which made me think she must be nice. ) but last night she was among the evil crew so....
If you type "google" into google you can break the internet.