Nquest once said that whites should be clear about the reason(s) why they combat racism. I will try to give my personal answer to this question:
There is a word which is on my personal list of ‘the most hated word’ and this is the term “assimilate”. It means to give up ones own personal self to become conform and therefore accepted. Not for what somebody is, but for what somebody seems to be. When Macon on his blog assumes that all children will accept this deformation of their soul without resistance, calling my personal experience ‘preternatural’, he is exactly doing what whites are so quick to do: Denying somebody else’s own self.
To put a long story short, I didn’t accept this deformation of my soul and already as a young child I went on resistance against this what I called back then ‘society’.
Therefore it was the logical consequence that I connected with people who thought similar like me, that I read books who where critical about European history and that I read books written by PoC who are those most affected by European history. This was a worldview I could understand and where I felt understood.
A worldview against a system, white supremacy, where racism is not just a “bad habit” or “bad attitude” which can be ‘untrained’, but where racism and othering is involved in a culture which is trying to destroy or to dominate all what is different. The lies they tell that there should be inferior people, just to defend their own white madness, to justify their countless wars and cruelties. Not realizing that some of ‘their own’ people can just be stunned by their coldness. Not realizing that this culture’s confining hypocritical norms just take the air away to breathe.
The assumptions they make that somebody who looks like them must have the same attitude, that everybody is able and willing to disconnect oneself so deeply from oneself and life that he or she is able to ‘hate’, just because. Not questioning the sickness of a system which ‘gave to them’ other human beings where they think they can spit on and make fun out of them, who they can discriminate against and then they believe, they are the better ones.
Racism also translates into how whites interact with white people and also this is sometimes nothing else than just exhausting. It is not just that such people assume, if they are blatant racists, that somebody who looks like them doesn’t have a problem with hearing the N-word or wants to listen to ethnic ‘jokes’, it is also, that such people try to dominate other people who are different (mind-set or race) or want to tell others what would be in their best interest, that they believe they can tell somebody else which life somebody had to live. Their lack of self-reflection and the power-games they start when they realize that not everybody shares their worldview are annoying.
Racism cannot be understood without looking at the whole picture, white supremacy and Eurocentrism, the system created to become wealthy as a nation, living on the pillars of the poverty and exploitation of the majority of the world. Whiteness accepts the starving of countless people “somewhere” on earth to live white decadent lives, whiteness accepts wars and nuclear weapons as necessity because European culture is unable to live in peace and to build bridges. Whiteness accepts the poverty within their own wealthy nations, disconnecting from all who are not conform, talking about “white trash”, “welfare queens” or “parasites” and accepts the deconstruction of our only living space – earth. All in the name of money and power.
Racism is not just having stereotypes, it is feeling comfortable in a white society like this.
Racism, subtle or not, is a mind-set which impacts the entire worldview and how one is able to see reality. It includes taking individual success, success defined according Eurocentric norms, more important than the well-being of communities. Eurocentrism reflects in many of so-called (white) anti-racist work, which continues with othering people to justify their violence. Eurocentrism reflects in any “anti-racist” work which talks about integration and works with the same power structure, white males on the top.
The attempts to appeal to the “good side” within whites entirely dismisses the true nature of Eurocentrism and white supremacy, which is a power-construct that doesn’t depend on hearts and souls. “Good hearts” are not enough to deal with white power structures which quickly turn also against white people who are dissidents. There is no room for illusions of doing “good work” while trying to work against a deadly system which has infected the entire world and kills on a daily basis, including whites, who feel so safe.
* (A promise and a way of life by Becky Thompson)