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White liberals

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Kai has written a great post on white liberals…it’s a great read for anyone who commented on my Corvallis, Oregon post.

When Kai Chang writes a book (subtle nudge), we should all get in line at the store.

Countless blogospheric discussions on racism amply demonstrate the manner in which many white liberals start acting victimized and angry if anyone attempts to burst their racism-free bubble, oftentimes inexplicably bringing up non-white friends, lovers, adopted children, relatives, ancestors; dismissing, belittling, or obtusely misreading substantive historically-informed analysis of white supremacism as either “divisive rhetoric” or “flaming”; downplaying racism as an interpersonal social stigma and bad PR, rather than an overarching system of power under which we all live and which has socialized us all; and threatening to walk away from discussion if persons of color do not conform to a narrow white-centered comfort zone. Such people aren’t necessarily racists in the hate-crime sense of the word, but they are usually acting out social dynamics created by racism and replicating the racist social relationships they were conditioned since birth to replicate.

…a solid majority of white liberals maintain a fairly hostile posture toward anti-racist discourse and critique, while of course adamantly denying this hostility. Many white liberals consider themselves rather enlightened for their ability to retroactively support the Civil Rights movement and to quote safely dead anti-racist icons, even though their present-day physical, intellectual, and political orbits remain mostly segregated.

Written by Eric Stoller

October 28th, 2007 at 7:18 pm

  • Abraham

    It is stupid to use the term “people of color”. How dumb do you have to be to think that the term “people of color” has some noble, dignified, mystical, magical, unimpeachable quality to it, and that at the same time the term “colored people” is totally offensive. Liberal “Orwellian NewSpeak” at its most moronic.

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