My Radio

My attempts to channel what's playing on the many stations of my mind

Are you racially conscious…

Posted by and1grad on July 17, 2009

…or are you just frontin’ like you are but really can only speak with objectivity (if that) on your own race? I’m so tired of people claiming to be “racially conscious.” More often than not, they’re lying to themselves and to their audience. Here’s a question that can and should serve as a barometer:  Can you really consider yourself racially conscious if you think every other race has it easier than yours?

If all you can do is speak on how society has affected YOUR race and why other races have it so much easier than yours, you are not racially conscious. You are racially biased. There’s a difference and those that actually DO put in the effort of being objective will know it almost immediately. Intellectual dishonesty really tapdances on my last nerve. ESPECIALLY when its performed by the educated or at least seemingly intelligent.

Let me AXE you something. Do you think a white person cant possibly grasp the nuances of prejudice? Do you really think that white people cant understand racism? Do you recognize that white people, more than any other race, has to walk on eggshells regarding almost anything they say? Does that escape you? If you cant, or refuse to, speak to the issue of race as it pertains to more than YOUR OWN race, you arent racially conscious. Sorry if it bursts some of your bubbles. Thats just reality.

Also, if you think you’re speaking up for racism b/c of some dumb shit Kirstie Alley says or some STUPID Facebook quiz…you arent. If you want to call out someone’s ignorance, fine. Turning it into some kind of race movement makes you simple. If you think a Facebook quiz is stupid, dont participate. Believe it or not, EVERYONE thinks its stupid. Its just some dumb funny absurdity people did to laugh at it. There are PLENTY of race issues to take seriously. Some people need to do a better job of confronting those if they want to be activists. I cant imagine lecturing someone b/c of a damn Facebook gamey quiz. That is so beyond absurd, it only leaves question as to your own judgment, and maybe even your sanity.

Let me quit ranting for a second. Race is a dangerous thing to speak about already. People are coming from all over the map on it. But it is LETHAL if you cant, or refuse, to have an open mind and an open ear when you speak about it. If your discussions are all one person talking and the other listening, you arent having a discussion. You’re holding a lecture. MOST grown people dont want to be lectured on race…but many of them WILL discuss it with you. Discussions are how you learn. Lectures will help you alienate.

And as always, this is open for discussion.

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6 Responses to “Are you racially conscious…”

  1. Reina said

    *slow clap*

    What can I offer but my complete concurrence?

    At work now, but I’ll be back.

  2. Peyso said

    “Can you really consider yourself racially conscious if you think every other race has it easier than yours?” – One group of people can, I dont know who they are though. Somebody has to be at the bottom.

    “Do you really think that white people cant understand racism?” – Yes, but the effort to do so is far more than most white folk, even the well meaning white folk, are willing to exert. A similar argument was discussed about can men be feminist.

    Everything else, I agree wholeheartedly.

  3. illinigirl said

    Thanks for making me think, and1grad. I appreciate that in your blog entries. I’m struggling with posting here as a white girl. . . but I have a hard time keeping my mouth shut so eggshells, here I come. 🙂

    NOT trying to flame. That’s not what I’m about. That being said, if you think I’m outta line, delete this.

    I absolutely cannot 100% understand what anyone in any other race, gender, religion, etc. from me goes through. How could I? I can definitely understand some aspects of what discrimination feels like though, and am offended when I can’t even be a part of such a conversation because I “can’t possibly understand”. . . I guess I would consider myself a well-meaning white folk, and I take a bit of offense to the fact that I am stereotyped by my race as close-minded and not willing to go through the effort to understand. I’m sorry you feel that way, Peyso.

    More than race, I can’t imagine what it would be like to live in total poverty or have parents who are not supportive or don’t believe in the value of education. . . and I see this as being more limiting than race.

    I guess my point is that I think I have more in common opportunity-wise with my black friends who have supportive parents and grew up comfortably than my white friends with messed up families who lived below the poverty line. I cannot pretend to know what that would be like.

    I KNOW that poverty and broken homes affect black people more than white people. . . so yes, I guess that makes it harder for me to relate to most of the population in that respect.

    Also, I can’t begin to understand some of the hate in the world that still exists. Even with the best of backgrounds, yes, black people will have extra hurdles at times due to the ignorance of some.

  4. and1grad said

    @Reina
    Cool.

    @Peyso
    I dont know if there is a totem pole of who has it worse now. There probably could be one about who has been the most mistreated tho. I dont believe its fair to say most. I also dont believe it requires a significant amount of effort.

    @illini
    Thanks for posting that. I would say that you more than likely CAN imagine what it would be like to live in the situations you mention simply b/c you more than likely have been exposed to it in some regard. You may not be able to fully appreciate it tho b/c you havent lived it. So in that sense, I agree and disagree with you on that.

  5. illinigirl said

    Oh definitely and1grad. . . I hope you don’t interpret anything I say to mean that I fully understand it. . . because I don’t. I agree that I would have to live it to understand it. . .

    I guess the only thing I can claim is a quest for understanding and making sure I’m doing my part in my corner of the world.

  6. Peyso said

    @ Illinigirl – by no means am I stereotyping you. most not all, you could very well be in the few that make an attempt to understand the oppression of minority people in this country and around the world (this is really bigger than race in some ways but that’s a different discussion) I dont know you so I cant put u in any category.

    @ and1grad – i really have to stick to my guns and say most. i feel that rascism is such a vile, evil entity that if you really understood even an iota of it, that you would make serious attempts to prevent it. And if even half of non-colored folk made an attempt at preventing rascism, the institution wouldnt be as prevalent and powerful as it is today. However, by no means do I think most or even half of white people are rascist.

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