In the last few weeks the racial tension in this country has come to a crux. There has ALWAYS been subtle racial tension running rampant. Just like the movie “Do The Right Thing,” one incident can bring to light underlying racial prejudice and epithet. I’ve received my own personal attention with this blog and my opinion on the Trayvon Martin situation. I’ve had so many people write or talk to me some with constructive conversation and some that just want to throw out red herrings to get under my skin. This week’s Open Friday Letter is one that was a result of the controversy and statements from over the last few weeks.
You should put up a blog on whether black people, especially the socially conscious & active, in this day and age, hate white people or the institution and media that portrays blacks in a certain light…
Because as a white person, its hard to know whether the same black people I feel comfortable with and communicate on a regular basis feel different about me when they go home or change environments where I’m not around…. It’s confusing to us. We don’t know if that same person who happens to be black that we get along with so well is the same person who online, may seem to have feelings of dismay or hatred of ‘white’ people. Is that like me and my brother or sister? Who exactly is that audience black people happen to be ranting against when they call out a ‘white’ person? Surely, it can’t be everyday people like myself? If it was, then those feelings would have to be towards biological and racial discretion rather than a sociological one, where society never shaped their opinions on whites, rather they have a problem with that skin color and maybe certain ways white people act collectively……
Slightly confused white person
P.S. This same idea should be asked to white people who have the same feelings towards blacks as well
Great question – I appreciate you coming through to my blog. First thing – this question is very complex and can’t be contained or explained in one blog post. But, I’ll try my best! Second, I’d like to give a disclosure – I don’t believe that black people think as a monolith. From Louis Farrakhan to Clarence Thomas, everyone has different ideologies and thoughts. Though I may not agree the ideals of Alan Keyes (in that I feel his notions are demonstrative to blackness) I can’t refute him being black. So, my response is just my opinion and shouldn’t be attributed to ALL black people feeling a certain way about your question.
So let’s dig into my answer! You’re wonder if black people hate white people. I’d say it isn’t a hate of white people in terms of individuals, it’s a hate in the systems that are intact . I don’t think that a black person walks out of their home saying “I’m going to hate some white people today.” Even as a people, we all have different voices. It’s called, by W.E.B Dubois, the double consciousness (or double veil). Black people, in a general, are always looked at through the eyes of others.
Chris Rock said it best: “For Black people, America is like the uncle that put you through college… but molested you.”
Get rid of the stereotypical “the white man is holding us down” idea – the majority of the socially conscious people you are talking about don’t believe in it. As you questioned in your letter – is it the media and machine? I would say most definitely. You asked, in the P.S. section, that white people should be given the same question. I’d say a lot of black people feel that way when they read comments on posts, articles, TV, etc.
It’s a big cluster F*** of frustration by much of White America. Many of them are feel that they’re “losing” America because the complexion (both literally and figuratively) is changing. On the other end, many African-American’s feel they’re being even more disenfranchised and dismissed in the media then ever before. I seriously believe that most people in this country have never sat down and had a discussion about race. People just want to forget the past and move on. That very reason, in my opinion, is exactly why you’tr seeing this high racial tension. For example: if you and your wife are having marital problems, and one of you doesn’t want to talk and discuss the past, how can move forward in the relationship? I totally understand that a lot of people feel like this discussion has already happen…but have we actually delved into the topic…or just said something about it in passing?
Could some of those black people just be bigots? Sure. Of course. But, I would go out on a limb and say the socially conscious people you’ve mentioned understand the difference between the system… and individuals. I would also venture to say that they understand that every person is self-accountable for who they are and what they become. Your black friends and associates may feel a certain way about white society but it isn’t a personal indictment to you and who you are as a person. We’re all people at the end of the day. We all root for the same teams, bleed the same blood, and have many of the same common experiences. It’s when these conversations happen that walls break down.
This was a very complexion question, but I hope I was able to shed a little light for you.
Chime in! What do you think?
Write in with any question for Open Friday at firstname.lastname@example.org
- The Right History Month (writerzblockblog.wordpress.com)
- Derrick Bell Fallout: Fighting for the Full and Equal Rights of Black People is Most Certainly Anti-White Racism (rippdemup.com)
- 30 Things Black People Do When Nobody’s Watching (singleblackmale.org)
- Anne Moody- Coming of Age in Mississippi (africanamericanlitcsu.wordpress.com)
- Fight Ignorance…With Ignorance? (verysmartbrothas.com)
- White Comedian in Blackface Proves that White Folks at BYU Don’t Know or Care About Black History (rippdemup.com)
- An Open Letter to the Teachers of Trayvon Martin (readwriteteach.org)
- Open Letter to my unracist black and white people (akanyangafrica.wordpress.com)
- Black America’s Secret Shame (verysmartbrothas.com)