Dear white people,
Have you been having a lot of “not all” defenses lately?
Do you think too many people are generalizing and attacking things you relate to?
Tired of hearing intelligent entities blatantly attack you as a white person?
Feeling guilty, defensive, and/or ashamed?
If someone calls out whiteness or mentions white privilege, do you feel offended?
Just because you don’t see something as an issue, doesn’t mean you are correct.Sometimes we believe things to be factual, when in fact – they are not. There is no such thing as an alternative fact. There is fact and there is fiction. It is easy to believe we know what we’re talking about even when we don’t.
A personal example: I wouldn’t let my children have drinks with caffeine in them for many years. I was taught it would stunt their growth. I blindly followed familial belief without doing my own research. I was wrong. I discovered scientific evidence (which was readily available all along – here is one of many links) which opposed my belief. I informed my children about the discovery of my error (yes – it is my responsibility as a parent and a human to admit when I am wrong) and overturned my ill-conceived rule.
Even if you have acknowledged truth about racism and white privilege in the United States of America. Even if you feel you do your part to combat the institutionalized unfairness and hatred in this country – Keep growing. Keep learning. Keep listening. Stand up.
Whiteness and white fragility being factual does not mean we are disgusting, worthless, hopeless beings. It simply means we grew up in the midst of an unbalanced, preexisting condition. You can’t be part of finding a solution to a problem if you aren’t aware there is a problem.
If people can’t admit the existence of white privilege and institutionalized racism, there will be no hope to change it. Uncomfortable? You should be. Don’t pull your head back into your turtle shell and hide from it. Extend those long, wrinkly turtle necks into the truth of the matter and stand the fuck up against it.
P. S. Don’t you dare think your words are needed by the people of color discussing this. They understand it far better than you can. Just listen and elevate their voices.
P. S. S. Do not expect (or even request) a person of color to educate you or help you understand. It is YOUR responsibility (if you truly feel you are a “good” person) to use the plethora of resources at your fingertips.
A white person trying to be a better version of human.