Whitesplaning Racism

Discussion in 'Race Relations/Racism' started by IM2, Jun 2, 2018.

  1. IM2
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    IM2 Gold Member

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    This section of USMB is he ultimate example of whitesplaining.

    6 Ways Well-Intentioned People Whitesplain Racism (And Why They Need to Stop)

    May 17, 2017 by Maisha Z. Johnson

    And unfortunately, just as frequently, I’ve had white people try to explain racism to me, a woman of color. There’s a word for this phenomenon, too –whitesplaining. It’s incredibly frustrating to share my experiences with racism, only to have a white person try to speak over me about it – and often by belittling how racism hurts me.

    If you’re white, you may have whitesplained without realizing it. To understand whitesplaining, now picture yourself in the following situation.

    I’m venting about my day, and I tell you I’m angry that a white neighbor told me, “I don’t even see you as Black.”

    Would you reassure me that my neighbor meant well? If you do, don’t be surprised if I’m just as annoyed as you would be if a man tried to explain your experience with street harassment to you.

    Usually, signs of whitesplaining include a condescending tone and a paternalistic assumption that a person of color doesn’t know enough to accurately articulate their own experience.

    The term doesn’t apply to every instance when a white person talks about racism, just like mansplaining doesn’t apply to every instance when a man talks about gender oppression. But whitesplaining is a result of the power white people hold as part of the dominant culture in the US. So recognizingwhen it’s happening is one of the everyday ways you can help dismantle the oppressive system of white supremacy.

    Like with other forms of privileged explaining, including mansplaining, people who whitesplain have been conditioned to believe that they’re somehow more qualified to speak about a marginalized group than a person who belongs to that group.

    That’s why there’s no equivalent like “blacksplaining.” When a Black person talks about race with a white person, they don’t have the same institutional power as a white person who belongs to the dominant culture.

    And that’s the problem with whitesplaining. It’s not just harmlessly discussing racism, but implicitly acting on racist ideas that say that people of color are ignorant and wrong, even about their own experiences.

    You probably don’t think you’re motivated by racist ideas when you whitesplain – just like men don’t have to hate women in order to participate in everyday sexism like mansplaining.

    For instance, you might think you have a perfectly good reason for telling me my neighbor didn’t mean to be racist. You’ve spent time with her, and you’ve never known her to be racist, or you can tell she meant to compliment me by saying she doesn’t see me as Black.

    But while these well-meaning reasons for correcting me feel true, it’s also true that you can act on subconscious, implicit biases leading you to dismiss what I have to say because I’m Black.

    If you don’t believe whitesplaining is wrong, then you’re missing how the motivation behind whitesplaining is influenced by white supremacy. So let’s unpack the most common reasons why whitesplaining happens, to examine why it’s so misguided.

    I guarantee that many whites here will stop reading this after they see the word whites. These are the same people who will read volumes of racist lies about blacks without fail. Yet as they don't they'll be more than glad to post their opinions too stupid to understand they are doing exactly what the writer says.

    6 Ways Well-Intentioned People Whitesplain Racism (And Why They Need to Stop)
     
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  2. BULLDOG
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    BULLDOG Diamond Member

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    I see your point, but I don't think I can completely agree with all you say. Trust me. This isn't an effort to be confrontational, but just an effort to better understand your beliefs and you perhaps understanding mine. I guess a person saying they don't see you as black could mean that they think you might somehow be better than their perception of what a black person is, (an obvious insult) but more likely it's just a clumsy way of saying your race is not an issue. I don't understand why that would offend you. Please explain.
     
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  3. bgrouse
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    You obviously live a very pampered life if you have time to get angry about something as innocuous as this. The majority of whites deal with far greater struggles.

    Just be happy our white society is giving you the opportunity to live in a modern society that your own stupid race would never be able to create on your own.
     
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  4. cnm
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    cnm Diamond Member

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    No whitesplainin' here, not no way...


     
  5. fncceo
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    fncceo Gold Member

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    By definition, any reaction apart from total silence occasionally punctuated with 'That's dreadful', would be 'whitesplaining'.
     
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  6. NewsVine_Mariyam
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    NewsVine_Mariyam VIP Member

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    This is an excellent article, thank you for posting it

    ...when I’m talking about a racist act, I don’t have much interest in whether or not the person responsible is “a racist.”

    If that sounds counterintuitive, then you could really use this clarification about addressing white supremacy: It’s not about identifying people as racists.

    It’s also not about “bashing” white people – but you may interpret it that way if you’re feeling uncomfortable. And then you might whitesplain that people of color are “attacking” you for no reason.

    When it comes to things like holding implicit biases and benefiting from white privilege, the question of whether or not someone is intentionally bigoted is completely irrelevant.

    So you’re not under attack if a person of color is talking to you about race – not even if they’re calling you out for racism.

    I remember one call-out in which writers of color let a white editor know how he’d contributed to racism in the publishing industry, and how he could do better.

    Because it’s such a sensitive topic, many people interpret any mention of racism as a conflict – and this discussion was no different.

    The editor’s friends immediately rallied to his defense, saying, “He doesn’t have a racist bone in his body!”

    But nobody had even said this man was “a racist.” We simply pointed out that his actions had a harmful impact – and his being a good person wouldn’t make that impact vanish.

    If you’re called out for racism and you take it as a personal attack on your character, you’re making the situation all about you – not the bigger picture of how all of us can take responsibility for our own role in white supremacy.

    Your belief that someone “doesn’t have a racist bone in their body” can lead you to overlook the impact of what they’ve done and focus instead on their intentions.

    In other words, you’re oversimplifying the issue, separating yourself from “the bad guys” and saying good people can’t possibly do something wrong.

    Unfortunately, good people contribute to white supremacy every day – and if you can’t face the ways white supremacy influences your life, you’ll never be able to change it. That means you’ve got to stop focusing on your good nature and intentions, which has you prioritizing your feelings over people of color’s pain.​
     
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  7. bgrouse
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    I skimmed through her posts and couldn't even find what it is that happened to her or what she "experienced."
     
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  8. bgrouse
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    Do stupid negroes like this understand that many white people, you know, the ones who work for a living and take care of themselves (unlike black welfare recipients), don't give much of a shit about his "problems?"
     
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  9. John Shaw
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    John Shaw Gold Member

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    Yet another classic from IM2.

    Remember; if you're white, you can't win. If you talk about race IN ANY WAY, you're a racist. If you don't talk about race at all, you're in denial and are therefore an instrument of the patriarchy ... I mean, the system of racial oppression, or whatever. Sorry; got my victimhood religious texts mixed up there for a second.
     
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  10. NewsVine_Mariyam
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    Whose problems would those be?
     

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