April 2023

Those who see themselves as "Individuals" ARE White

Submitted by Adrian on

I posted this statement on Facebook:

People who have Race are Non-White, while people who don't have Race, (those who see themselves as "individuals") are White.

One of the responses I received was the following:

Cleanse ye your eyes, so that ye behold no man as different from yourselves. See ye no strangers; rather see all men as friends, for love and unity come hard when ye fix your gaze on otherness. -- ʻAbdu'l-Bahá

I ask what does this quote say in response to my statement? When one responds with a quote, one must be sure it applies AND should include what they see as it’s application because in this case without their explanation I see none here except that it is a truth, but not applicable with what I was communicating in this instance.

The purpose of my statement ((those who see themselves as "individuals") are White.) was in response to those White people who, when I would make statements about the “White race” (which does exist even though it is NOT a biological truth, but in present day society it is a factor in how people are identified and treated), I am repeatedly told by those who (I assume identify as White) “this is not me (so I am exempt from responsibility and/or blame)”.

In my eye this is not a valid response when one is talking about the injustices and the hatred and offenses that have been dished out towards Black people over the last 400 years by White people. No one (especially me) when this kind of statement is made is referring to INDIVIDUAL White people and by White people responding with “not me” I see this as a dismissal of what I am saying as well as diverting away of the of how White people, as a group, have setup systems and institutions to keep Black people from advancing.

These systems and institutions are able to survive because White people (as a group, whether “individuals” admit it or not) continue to support them, both implicitly and explicitly, and by playing the “I am an individual” card they are basically denying responsibility from dealing with the problem.

Let the white make a supreme effort in their resolve to contribute their share to the solution of this problem, to abandon once for all their usually inherent and at times subconscious sense of superiority, to correct their tendency towards revealing a patronizing attitude towards the members of the other race, to persuade them through their intimate, spontaneous and informal association with them of the genuineness of their friendship and the sincerity of their intentions, and to master their impatience of any lack of responsiveness on the part of a people who have received, for so long a period, such grievous and slow-healing wounds.” -- Shoghi Effendi

In-order to begin correcting our issue of Race we must get past being “color blind” which serves only to camouflage the issues which as still there even when we try to ignore them. We must acknowledge our history consciously and realize that we all have to play a part in it’s correction because apathy is in reality a sanctioning of the injustice. Also, acknowledgment does not attach blame unless one chooses not to take part in the solution, which to me means that acknowledgment and action resolves one from blame except for blame from being a solution rather than a supporter of the injustices that our society continues to enforce against POC and other victimized groups.

Why are White People afraid of being referred to as White?

Submitted by Adrian on

I poster a question on Facebook:

Why are White People afraid of being referred to as White?
Please enlighten this Black man.

Here is one response to that question:

“I am not afraid. When you say that to me you are describing the color of my skin. Not my country of origin, my status in society or my moral values. It would seem that just because we describe someone's physical form we are not defining them. Am I missing something?”

This is a good place to start, in my opinion you are not missing anything.

Here is another response:

“Because being white is wrong apparently. I mean people can say I'm proud to black or I'm proud to be Hispanic or whatever race or ethnicity they want. If you say I'm proud to white you're automatically racist or anti systemic. Just for being proud of who you are.”

I posed this question in response to push back I generally get from white people when I use the label “White people” when talking about the issue if race in this country. My experience has been that White people in general have a problem accepting that they are part of a groups (like they group the rest of us together) and I find it hypocritical. I know it generally is based in fear of being “blamed” for what their ancestors have done to black people.

I make it a point to NOT blame or make judgment in my statements, and when confronted by complaints I ask “what statements have I made to make you think you are being blamed, individually?” at which point I have NEVER received a response.

Why is it that accusations (unfounded) can be made towards me, a POC but when a White person feels threatened they (apparently) feel no explanation is necessary?

To get back to the point, this is why I ask “Why are White people afraid of being referred to as White?” When it comes to Race, we are not going to be able to make any progress until White people ACCEPT the fact that they ARE WHITE. Nothing I have said implies that White people are evil, are less than human, are dangerous, or should be shunned or feared, but when discussing White people, it is assumed that I think/feel this way (apparently).

I challenge White people to become aware of their fear because it is White people’s FEAR that keep POC from advancing, from being treated justly, to being accepted as full members of the human race.