The Ideals of a New Race Hit the Online “Airwaves”

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The Malan race, a new race of people, plans to host their first awards ceremony exclusively online.

I Am Malan Logo

I Am Malan Logo

Some people have asked, ‘How can you create a new race, just like that?’ I say, with a little research, they’ll find the answer lies in this world’s historical practice of doing exactly that.

Hosting an awards show such as the Emmys or Grammys completely online may sound far-fetched, but one group plans to hold its first ever awards ceremony exclusively on the internet.

“Some organizations host expos and trade shows online. An online awards ceremony feels to us like a very natural next step,” says Frida Potente, President of the I Am Malan Council. The Council acts as the administrative arm of the Malan race, the group organizing the event.

“We’re taking advantage of existing technology and using it in ways that will allow us to reach a larger audience or, rather, for more people to reach us,” Potente added.

The online ceremony is an opportunity for the Malan race to publicly honor those who receive the Malan Clean Slate Award. Three individuals will each receive the honor, however, the group was mum on the names of the winners.

Speculation has arisen among the race’s small but growing membership about who might receive an award. Stephen Colbert, Michael Moore, and John Oliver are counted among Malan membership.

The Malan Clean Slate Award is given to individuals who, explicitly or implicitly, espouse Malan ideology and values. Potente shared that recipients are chosen because they “wipe the ‘race’ slate clean by working to create a better model for living and relating.”

Malans say they are defined by ideology rather than by superficialities. Malans aim to transcend racial stereotypes and the boundaries of archaic race categories. The group says that, by forming bonds based on linkages deeper than skin and its color, they help move the world closer to racial unity, improved race relations, and toward the end of racism.

Potente says that Malan Clean Slate awardees help forward the goals of the Malan race. One of the group’s stated goals is to “further the innate understanding—to such an extent that we become acutely conscious of it so that it affects our thoughts and actions—that our joys and our holocausts, regardless of our origins, all exist within the same realm of humanness.”

Despite its lofty goals, the group has faced some measure of controversy. One reason for the controversy is the group’s tagline, “Welcome to Your New Race.”

Of the controversy, Potente says, “Some people ask, ‘How can you create a new race, just like that?’ I say, with a little research, they’ll find the answer lies in the world’s historical practice of doing exactly that. In this case, we’ve created a race that is inclusive rather than divisive.”

Membership to the Malan race is by invitation or award only, although invitations can be requested on the group's website, http://www.iammalan.org.

The Malan Clean Slate awards ceremony will include presentations, music, and guest speakers. The multi-media awards show will take place online on Wednesday, August 4, 2010 at 6:00 PM PST.

Registration to attend the live, online ceremony is available through the I Am Malan website, http://www.iammalan.org.

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Frida Potente
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