Stuff White People Say

September 20, 2008

“All Whites are racist…”

Filed under: Stuff White People Do — nquest2xl @ 7:13 pm

While I’m sure that at some point I could identify something different types of White people say/do that would loosely fit into the “racist” category, I think some people get out of hand when they use this as an explanation for everything (or too many things).

To be clear, the idea that “all Whites are racist” is a racial prejudice.  Of course, the idea rest on the concept that Whites, e.g., are socialized in a way that makes them all “racist” — i.e. people who possess some amount/level of racial prejudice, discomfort, animosity or anxiety about non-whites.  What makes asserting this idea (“all Whites are racist”) a racial prejudice is when a person just assumes any and every individual White is predictably, automatically racist without evidence that they are.

Me, I’m all for viewing people as innocent until proven guilty.  I’m also for ending the practice where people take an idea like the notion that “all Whites are racist” and bastardize it by using it in a way that was never intended.

Also, the assumption that all Whites need to be treated, a position the University of Delaware took, besides not being greeted with cheers, is frankly rather presumptuous.  I won’t even mention the nature of the treatment or the treatees…

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3 Comments »

  1. there is one serious flaw in Macon’s way of thinking I think: The assumption that every white is trained/raised the same way just because s/he is white and that every white lives or lived as a child the same/similar experience/reality. It dismisses the experience of different people and therefore dismisses the different ways people can go.
    It also diminishes the possibility of making independend choices. The problem, and perhaps this is again a white created problem I see is that there are again certain norms or I don’t know how to say it, perhaps also biases, that a white person’s life is this and that before “enlightment”.
    It sounds so logical and is repeated in many writings I know, that children imitate the actions of their parents etc. but I don’t know of any article or something like this which talks about children who are “different”. As if this isn’t possible.

    Comment by jwbe — September 20, 2008 @ 8:52 pm | Reply

  2. Well, as long as we make this about Macon, here was, perhaps, the most problematic part of Macon’s rationalization:

    “I’m saying… that being “white” in America means having racist thoughts and yes, fears, instilled in oneself. I believe it’s safe to assume that few if any of the white folks in this video have undergone much if any sort of the untraining that it would take to overcome such (often unconscious) racist fears.”

    Exactly how Macon knows if any of the people in the video have not received said “untraining” we will never know. By the powers of Whiteness vested in him, he can just assume that they have not… just because. Just because it’s convenient for his baseless argument. Just because it allows him to avoid dealing with the fact that the white Republicans turned Obama supporters have shown that they are atypical just by supporting someone outside their party.

    One thing I doubt Macon would do is what I asked him and White Trash Academic since they felt this idea was so important and relevance: speak at length about the racial prejudice they had to overcome in order to support Obama.

    And all this has me thinking…
    What happens when cognitive dissonance and a persons presumed sense of White Supremacy clash?

    Again, Macon had no problem using this same ALL WHITES ARE RACIST idea as a way to ascribe a certain attitude, not to White people, but to POC, Black people in particular. Macon also had no problem dismissing what I had to say both in terms of my experience as a Black man in America and with the logical argument I made that demonstrated how his argument was not logical or substantiated. He also didn’t have a problem with saying to hell with my “disagreement”, he felt like he was in the position to lecture about our white supremacist society.

    Not only that but he felt comfortable saying that he has a right to disagree with a POC, even when he makes unsubstantiated claims about POC, on the basis that he’s not “convinced.” Yet another DOUBLE STANDARD (read: White Privilege) holds out for himself. The fact that I’m not “convinced” that his asinine assumptions have any reason to be presented and accepted as legitimate is something Macon turns into a negative character trait but it’s all good when he doesn’t take “I disagree with you” as an answer. No, he has to be “convinced.” lol

    Comment by Nquest — September 20, 2008 @ 9:54 pm | Reply

  3. I think it is the danger of simplifying human behavior and looking for simple answers.
    It’s perhaps more usual in Germany to change the party one supports because of much more alternatives, but there are many reasons doing this and not just “fear”.
    Macon’s statement reminds me of the one article “dinner with a white supremacist” (or so), where the author had no problem to call even the baby of the white supremacists ‘racist baby’ and who also was surprised that the ws didn’t look like the stereotypes he had in mind.

    Comment by jwbe — September 21, 2008 @ 3:56 pm | Reply


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