Awhile ago, I saw my friend post an article on facebook. The title of this post was so instantly polarizing that I knew I had to respond to it.
So here goes:
Are whites racially oppressed?
And the author of the article, which you can find here, says it well by calling it:
racial jujitsu: A growing number of white Americans are acting like a racially oppressed majority. They are adopting the language and protest tactics of an embattled minority group, scholars and commentators say.
And the sad thing is that I’ve heard this before.
Let me be clear, if you’re reading this and thinking “OMG! I am being reacially oppressed for being white,” I don’t agree with you.
White culture is a culture that still has so many clear racial gaps (in pay, and so on) and still holds close their racial misconceptions, and there are plenty, and it is not being “racially oppressed.”
I’ve heard this kind of talk personally before from some people who go to the same university as I do. This perception that being a white, middle class, dude is suddenly becoming a “victim,” is spreading.
What’s really happening? After reading this article, and I suggest everyone read it because I’m not going to list all the instances of this as he does, I think what we’re really responding to is the fact that we’re losing our spot on the pedestal. And equality is scary for those who don’t want it.
The article points toward the economy and the fact that, for the first time, many Americans are standing in lines with those black and brown people they were “okay” with before. But while those black and brown people are used to being paid less, those white people aren’t.
Suddenly, we belong to a similar pay scale, that must make us equals?
Non-white Americans are seldom afforded this luxury of seeing themselves as individuals, disconnected from any race.
But we’ve been individuals so long, we don’t know how to think of ourselves otherwise. And this false notion that because people share the same unemployment line that they must be equally bad off, is a little disturbing to even care about.
Let’s play the game of “who has it worse,” and I’ll point you toward the rest of the world where political conflicts and natural disasters take away any semblance of normal life.
In the title, I questioned if this is the future of racism. In the future, will we give others false majority status so that we can choose when to break them down? What happens when we are driven to feeling like victims?
And I’ll leave it at that.