It slays me when White people deny their racism or try to point out the ‘racist’ behavior of others, as with Blacks and the Black Lives Matter movement, or when Asians don’t want foreigners in their countries, or Hispanics use Spanish when speaking in front of non-Latinos. A favorite I hear from my fiance is how ‘racist’ Blacks are in the Triad compared with the beach, that much-lauded region he hails from, where minorities ‘know their place’ and can’t get jobs so they sell dope for a living. My fiance has also said that it’s hard to buy weed here because the Black people work (not all of them, I’ve had to point out), whereas down at the heavenly beach, they sell drugs and don’t work (probably because they can’t find jobs. Whites will usually hire Hispanics over us).
Whites by and large supported Donald Trump, a pussy hound who also happens to be (surprise, surprise) a sexist old goat who can’t keep his paws to himself, as well as a racist. Anyone who makes such comments as “Black guys counting my money! I hate it. The only kind of people I want counting my money are little short guys that wear yarmulkes every day.”, and “I’ve got to tell you something else. I think that the guy is lazy. And it’s probably not his fault because laziness is a trait in blacks. It really is; I believe that. It’s not anything they can control.”, as well as remarking that illegal immigrants are here to rape White women, that Muslims ought to be banned from the US, is a flat out racist. Period. (He even was part of the birther conspiracy against former President Barack Obama.)
White people will deny their racism till they are blue in their normally pink faces. That’s Gospel. It is sad but true that Whites refuse to see what’s right before their eyes, they are totally blind to certain aspects of life in Amerikkka. If the shoe were on the other foot, those blue eyes would open up to a world of impossibilities. But as things stand in this country right now, that will not happen anytime soon. No. not with who’s in the White House for the next 4 long years. The only racism that Whites see is Affirmative Action, when a White drug addict is jumped in a Black neighborhood where he’s gone to buy drugs, when a White woman is raped by a Mexican national, or when the male citizens of Middle Eastern nations shout anti-American slogans on the news.
As an article on the Huffington Post’s site indicated – By voting for Donald Trump, 63 million Americans communicated their belief that successful people of color, especially women, had forgotten their “proper” place. His election (and the hate crimes that attended it) only reinforced a truth that was already painfully clear to us: in the United States, the success of marginalized groups inspires aggression as often as praise. American society is designed to facilitate the success of straight white men, so the achievements of other groups are diminished and the populations themselves are stigmatized.
Casual racism is rampant among Whites. They often say or do things that can be construed as racist simply because they just don’t think about how hurtful such words and actions can be for people of color. I once worked with an older White woman who was talking with her co-workers at a local home improvement store, and they somehow got onto the subject of the children’s rhyme ‘eeny meeny miny moe’ or however you care to spell it. Now there is a line that states ‘catch a (insert word here) by his or its toe’. As a child, my brother, cousins, and neighborhood acquaintances – I will not call them friends because most of them weren’t, not to me anyway – often said ‘nigger’ even though we had no idea what a ‘nigger’ was then.
When I Googled the rhyme, the word used was ‘tiger’. On Wikipedia: There are many common variations, such as replacing tiger with “piggy”, “tinker”, “tigger”, “chicken”, “monkey”, “baby”, “spider”, “teacher”, “miner”, a two-syllable name, etc.; and changing the verb in the third line to “screams”, “wiggles”, “squeals” or another verb. Some older versions of this rhyme had the word nigger instead of tiger: Eeny, meena, mina, mo, Catch a nigger by the toe; If he hollers let him go, Eena, meena, mina, mo! My co-worker told me that she was fired from her job because she told the others that was how the rhyme went, using the N word – and another colleague of hers, a Black woman whom she thought of as a friend and had even invited into her home – how many Whites do that – was the one who reported her. She was quite bitter about the experience, understandably, and I liked her and thought of her as a good person, but she simply had no clue about unconscious racism.
As Chauncey DeVega wrote in his excellent Salon article, Whites will whine and protest against being labeled ‘racist’ – “How dare you! I have black and Hispanic friends. I can’t be a racist!” This is a common deflection. A person may like a given person of color but still not like the racial or ethnic group to which they belong.“Blacks and Hispanics voted for Trump too! This is proof that I am not a racist and Trump isn’t either!” Being a person of color does not determine one’s political leanings, nor does it make one immune from celebrity culture, white racism, bigotry and the allure of authoritarianism. Unfortunately, there are blacks and Hispanics who, like white folks, are also seduced by all those things.