Monday, January 4, 2016

It's time for America to stop being "a nation of cowards" and discuss race/racism in America.


It just is.
“Though this nation has proudly thought of itself as an ethnic melting pot,” Holder said in a speech given during Black History Month in 2009, “in things racial we have always been and I believe continue to be, in too many ways, essentially a nation of cowards.”
An no, ignoring the subject won't make it go away, old racist aren't dying, they are multiplying. And therein lies the problem
White people do not think in terms of we. White people have the privilege to interact with the social and political structures of our society as individuals. You are “you,” I am “one of them.” Whites are often not directly affected by racial oppression even in their own community, so what does not affect them locally has little chance of affecting them regionally or nationally. They have no need, nor often any real desire, to think in terms of a group. They are supported by the system, and so are mostly unaffected by it.
EYE recently read blog by an African American mother who wrote a powerful, provocative, and persuasive post entitled It's time for parents to talk to their children about race.  She also provided valuable tools and resources to facilitate an honest and open discussion, but it's not just black parents who need to talk to their children about race/racism, it's white parents.    
Given the dominant conceptualization of racism as individual acts of cruelty, it follows that only terrible people who don’t like people of color can commit it. While this conceptualization is misinformed, it functions beautifully to protect racism by making it impossible to engage in the necessary dialogue and self-reflection that can lead to change.
EYE have to ask, what are white parents are teaching their children about race/racism?
It appears there is a confluence of events and circumstances, with the first Black president, and a nation that is becoming increasingly Black and Brown, particularly because Black and Brown people are soon to be a majority. Things were not supposed to be this way, as the idealized, homogeneous America of the 1950s when Black folks were invisible, except when cleaning white folks’ homes or hanging from a tree, is gone.
 Parents are the first teachers.

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