Simply put, white blindness is the inability or refusal of whites in America to identify, recognize or accept the glaringly obvious racial component to a given issue being discussed. Throughout this blog, I shall introduce you to examples of this throughout life and in popular media.
It occurs to me that religion, as currently practiced, appeals to morally bankrupt and ethically challenged individuals who need someone or something outside of themselves to teach them how to behave. Now, that, in and of itself, is not a bad thing. If that works, then more power to it. However, the challenge is that such individuals seek that guidance from equally flawed individuals in the pulpit who themselves
don’t know how to behave.
Case in point: I just (as in November 10, 2017) heard a news story that the Vatican is going to stop selling cigarettes in its duty-free shops. It is now 2017, almost 2018. The link between cigarettes and lung cancer was known as early as the 1930s. From 1930 to 1940 to 1950 to 1960, to 1970, to 1980, to 1990, to 2000, to 2010, and until now (over 85 years!!!), no one in charge over at the Vatican thought it was ethically inconsistent with Christ-like behavior to sell poisonous, cancer-causing, addictive, mind and mood altering cigarettes to people?????
As a business author, I often have the discussion with people that even though we all need money in order to survive in a capitalist society, that as a health-conscious vegan, I would never own and operate store that sold alcohol, cigarettes, junk food or meat to people because of what I know those items do to the human body.
I don’t need an outside “authority” to decide for me that I don’t need to kill animals in order to survive. I don’t need an outside “authority” to decide for me that homosexuals are human beings worthy of love, that women deserve equal pay for equal work, that children shouldn’t be sexually molested and the crimes perpetrated against them not covered up. And, I don’t need an outside authority to decide that profiting from the destruction of other people is wrong.
Why should I seek moral or ethical guidance from an organization that is just coming to such an awareness NOW—an awareness I have and can come to on my own?
First of all, what’s needed is not an honest conversation about race, but an honest conversation about racism, white supremacy, the inhuman treatment of others, white violence and aggression. If you had a friend who was in a physically abusive relationship, would you encourage that person to remain in the abusive household and have “an honest conversation about fists” with their attacker?
Would you believe that passing a law prohibiting hitting another person is all that’s required to stop the hitting? Courts institute orders of protection to keep the parties separated in order to stop the violence, harrassment, stalking, etc.
You cannot have an honest conversation about race in America unless you accept that, as impractical as it may sound, separation of one party from an attacker in an abusive relationship is a solution worthy of consideration.
Why would you call it a “privilege?” Well, you call it a privilege so that the conversation is focused on how whites benefit. Sound familiar? If you had empathy for how this racist mindset, world view and behavior affect others, you wouldn’t refer to it as a privilege.
You cannot have an honest conversation about race in America unless you acknowledge that so-called “white privilege” is not a privilege. It’s a poison.
Call it hubris, arrogance or inflated self worth. I call it white blindness. It is a dangerous strain of self deception and delusion on a societal scale. White blindness is the sort of unconscious incompetence makes idiots believe they can run the country, and makes other similarly deluded idiots believe in them.
On an individual level, white male subjects of news coverage are conferred a level of intelligence, innocence, humanity and noble intention despite all evidence to the contrary
– each act of white police brutality is reported as a “bad apple” incident
– white male incidents of date rape and non-consensual sex are described as cases of “boys will be boys”
– white lacrosse player suspects accused of rape are referred to as “kids” and “boys”
– The president’s son, a 30-year old white man whose emails reveal collusion with Russians is described as “a good kid”
– And of course, the most glaring case of white blindness is the very election of Donald Trump himself, a man whose racial bias, misogyny, narcissism, instability, low intelligence and inane utterances are excused as “crazy like a fox.” “telling it like it is….”
You cannot have an honest conversation about race until you realize this phenomenon is not a “privilege.” It is a disability.
Call it what it is, or else the society will never evolve. Who, in their right mind, would give up a “privilege?”
If certain politicians were really interested in furthering the will of the people, there would be no need to gerrymander voting districts. Gerrymandering becomes a necessary part of the road to political power because the goal of the politician is to further specific, personal and/or religious agendas, and they realize that the number of people in the general public who support those narrow agendas is small and dwindling.
You cannot have an honest conversation about race in America unless you accept that the Republican party in the US is a racial and religious movement masquerading as a political party.
Continue this conversation in the book, A Dishonest Conversation About Race: an introduction to white blindness, default racism and the vocabulary of bias in America. Click here
The only reason protests lead to change is because the larger the protest, the greater the fear of those in power that they will lose power either by being voted out of office or through revolution. (Those in power may enact laws to right wrongs and bring justice in response to public protests, but make no mistake, they have not changed significantly in their world view or personality.) But what if a leader doesn’t fear losing power? What if a leader doesn’t fear the typical implications of mass protests because he doesn’t really want to be in that office anyway (and might subconsciously welcome impeachment or removal from office), or because he knows that his party holds the majority in houses of power and will never vote to impeach him? And further, what if that leader has no shame, no moral compass or even the desire to maintain the facade of being perceived to have one? How, then, do “we the people” enforce the will of the majority or moral rectitude on those in public office?
You cannot have an honest conversation about race in America unless you accept that
empathy is not a feature of the colonizer’s mentality. To continue this conversation, see A Dishonest Conversation About Race: an introduction to white blindness, racism by default and the vocabulary of bias in America here