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.