Why Am I Not Surprised?: Racism = Prejudice + Power (Part 1)
While searching and researching my own thoughts on race/racism/white supremacy I happened upon this blog post. Upon closer inspection, this blog deals with race and racism in ways that seemed to fit my perspective. THIS is my new favorite blog…
Read this excerpted take on racism…
Similarly, people in the United States, and most particularly European-Americans, spout a supposed belief in “equality,” whatever we think that is, while being unconscionably comfortable with the greatest gaps (between rich and poor, between White and Black) of any industrialized nation of the world. And we are so committed to this idealized belief in equality–as opposed to the actual practice of it–that people who look like me purport to be stunned when presented with the idea that the equal treatment does not, in fact, exist, however well documented this reality may be.
One way to protest or mask the reality of racial oppression and its ramifications is to use the word “racism” to mean any prejudicial attitude by anyone of any “race” anywhere who feels superior in any way to someone of a different “race.” That way, a European-American can point at an African-American who has buckled under his or her grief, frustration, and discouragment, finally becoming filled with bitterness and maybe even hatred toward the White establishment and those it privileges–and call that person of color a “racist.” Which, in turn, allows White folks to declare, “See–anyone can be a racist.”
The reason this doesn’t hold for me is that, to start with, as I mentioned before (see “‘Black.White.’ Part Two or Keep My Name Out Your Mouth,” March 4th), Europeans expressly constructed the very concept of “race” in the first place. And they didn’t do it to make it easier to identify someone in a crowd either. They did it to create a hierarchy wherein people that look like me would automatically get the most of the best and the least of the worst–primarily by stealing from everybody else in one way or the other–while whoever was left got what they could, if anything. This was done for the purpose of making a very specific group of Europeans extremely rich. And White-controlled science, White-controlled law, and White-controlled religion worked together to legitimate this construct by announcing in no uncertain terms that White folks are superior to all other peoples on the face of the earth.
- Prejudice & Racism Are Not One and the Same… (a Facebook conversation) (bruceturnerjr5.wordpress.com)