Tag: white fragility

E5. Systemic racism

In a lecture, Robin DiAngelo talks about her book White Fragility. According to her, racial biases are all built in us, because we grew up with media images and societal biases on race. However, we fail to realize our own subconscious racism, especially white people. It seems that there are a couple different types of disapproving arguments. One is from some progressive positions who argue that clear distinction between black and white only segregates people and confines the people of color even more so. Another is from the more conservative position who argue that white people shouldn’t be accused of being racists simply because they are white.

On personal level, we should do our best to interact with the person as they are, identify good and bad qualities in them without relying on racial prejudice.
On systemic level, we can challenge systemic racism of global economy by questioning our consumer behaviors, understanding how the big money moves the world, resist by building communities with more care and love for our own family and neighbors.
That means to not work more than we need to so we can have the time to spare for our loved ones in proximity. For those few who already have some money to invest, they can make investment based on real values, not glossy values of fast-growing start-ups to hide the intention to profit.
‘Racism’ is a term coined in modern societies and is inherently ‘systemic racism’ embedded deeply in CAPITALISM. Along with the victory of bourgeoisie in France 1789, the accumulation of materials and production inevitably accelerated transportation and communication technologies among other things, truly globalizing the world for the first time starting in the 19th century. With this development came abundance of goods and security in some parts of the world, but also exploitation of some other parts.
We can’t ignore ethnic background and see everyone as ‘one humanity’, as long as people in some parts of the world are actually being enslaved by the global economic system, which also applies to global African diaspora especially in the US. With the fall of USSR, which had its own falsehoods and blindness, the liberal democratic world(Western societies) became the norm. Since then, it’s become a taboo to even speak of ideals, like socialism, communism, Marxism, and so forth.

The global economic system is inherently racist and imperialist, and it has been for centuries. Within this frame, white people with Western European and Anglo-American heritage should be more aware of their own history and its global impact today. They should develop more daily sensitivity for their own paths because they are driving an off-road vehicle in a forest full of habitat.