We’ve all had or know of that one white person who is woke! And I don’t mean woke as in aware and silent. I mean woke as in calling out all BS. Thanks to White privilege as I have stated before, that White friend can pretty much get away with saying anything they want. Put that white friend to use my fellow brothers and sisters. Our brown skin does not permit us to say how we feel whenever we want to. We have to constantly be politically correct and quiet. Luckily that pale pasty skin does not hold the same standards. That brown skin symbolizes aggression, poverty, illiteracy, and many more negative connotations to White America. When Iemelus is retelling the story about her father, the main reason he could not vote or go to a good school was because of his skin color. Everything we are shunned for now is all thanks to what White people did back in the day. What is most interesting about Ifemelus post is the end. She wrote on if people think racism is over. Unsurprisingly, many white people said yes while Black people said no. This represents White privilege itself. Since White people cannot experience racism they think it is no longer a problem.
And to those silent White people I mentioned earlier, please speak up. Your silence is only worsening the problem of the divide in America. When you don’t speak up it signifies that you do not care. You can take the White privilege that you have and use it for good. Do not let the illogical racist buffoons with loud mouths win. Many of those loud mouths often think that Black people are always “playing the race card” like Ifem states. They do not want to come to terms that racism is actually a tremendous problem. They do not see the history behind the oppression of minorities. Just like the job qualifications example Ifem mentioned, Black people have been turned away for years when they have the same if not better qualifications of their White counterparts. It is all because of what we look like. Who would have thought when the world was created something so minuscule as the color of one’s skin would divide humanity.
1.) Ifemelu suggests that in America people hate to talk about race when the topic comes up there are things you can say to shut it down because it makes you uncomfortable. Everyone likes to think that they are pro-black and have no problem with black people being equal but when it comes right down to it they are pretenders. They do not mind black people working, as long as they are not the boss of you. They do not mind black people being free, as long as they do not live next to you. It is racist, pure and simple, yet they like to deny that they have these prejudices because they are not being outwardly racist. I agree with Ifemelus post because America is most uncomfortable with calling a spade a spade. Why are we so uncomfortable with calling it like it is? It is like the elephant in the room, it is always there, but you do not mention it because acknowledging its presence out loud will make you even more uncomfortable and real. Everyone likes to seem forward thinking but all of sudden it is a freaking problem when they have to personally help out or be associated with a black person. Just like the people who like to tweet and cry injustice but yet do nothing about it. The only time when you want to associate is when you need a black man home to upset Daddy.
2.a) Ifemelus post suggest that Diversity has a different meaning to different people because of they are used to. Such as White people considering a place diverse when they have a speckling of black people, but as long as they are not the majority. Black people consider a place diverse when they see 40%, black people. This is very interesting because it suggests that black people are so surprised to see other black people that it then becomes diverse even though it is their own race. When it is not an overwhelming amount of white people, then it is diverse. But for white people, who come and dominate areas are so use of white faces that the faintest amount of color makes a place diverse.
2.b) Diversity is supposed to mean a wide array of people of different ethnicities in a certain area. But that is not the case depending on the race. Diversity is what you see and the lack thereof Ifemelu said that diversity for white people is seeing black people, but diversity for black people is seeing other black people. When you think about it, this statement rings true, because in a world where white people are taking over and gentrifying “urban areas” (aka predominantly black) it is considered diverse to even have someone of your own skin color.
3.a) Ifemelu suggest that America likes to sugarcoat things, make it seem softer than the gritty truth of the matter. There is always a softer word for something that is harsh, but in a sense not even harsh, just the truth. Which suggest that America does not like to call things like they are, which is why there are so many issues that have still go unaddressed.
3.b) Which is true, nobody wants to offend anyone, or not be politically correct. God forbid we offend anyone or make them uncomfortable with speaking the truth about something. Say what everyone is thinking instead of dancing around the matter at hand. Everyone is spending their time thinking up ways to rephrase something so it does not offend when in reality if you need to do that then you might as well say it because it what you meant in the first place, some things just need to be said in its rawest form in order for people to truly understand.
White Privilege. A phrase many white people hate hearing or even thinking about. They like to disprove it and say things such as “well I grew up poor so I don’t have privilege” or “everyone is the same” like Ifemelu states when this is just not the case. Anytime white people feel “attacked” they want to discredit theories like white privilege instead of just recognizing it. We are a society so consumed with irrelevant things that we disregard and ignore issues like white privilege and racism. The fact of the matter is minorities have it rough, and if you as a white person cannot see that you have it better makes you delusional and ignorant. Black people specifically, cannot say what they want without repercussions, cannot act loud and be disrespectful without being labeled “ghetto” meanwhile white girls like Danielle Bregoli can go on Dr. Phil acting the same way and become internet sensations overnight. THAT is White Privilege. A Black man cannot go around saying things like “grab her by the pu**y” and still be elected president. THAT is White privilege. White people do not have to worry about being racially profiled, being nervous in majority white suburbs, or being pulled over by the police fearing for their lives. The first step to progression is realizing that your white privilege is real. Ifemelu is showcasing all of the stereotypes and situations POC deal with on a daily basis that White people just won’t understand because it will never cross their minds. My favorite statement that I see in Ifems post is the whole “Can’t we just be human beings?” I wish things could be that simple, but since White people did not recognize Black people in America as humans from the start we’re unfortunately faced with all of these current conflicts.
Ifemelu suggests that someone can not claim to be mixed with other races when the color of your skin recognizably can categorize you into a certain race. She says that it does not matter what you identify as, in other people’s eyes, their first assumption is that you are the race that reflects your skin color. She used Obama as an example specifically. People argue that Obama is biracial, black-and-white, mixed, biracial. Which is true. But when it comes down to it, he is black because race is a construct and it is all about the color of your skin, not your blood. This suggests that no matter what you are mixed with, if your skin predominately reflects that of a black person, then you become black. You would have been sitting in the back of the bus with the rest of us.
Here we go. Everyone likes to say what they mixed with as if it makes them exotic. There was this girl used to go to school with. She was black in my eyes, but when people would ask her she would name a whole list of things she was mixed with, as if it made her superior, she would gush with pride. I would look at her and think, So? As far as I am concerned, and as far as America is Concerned, you are black. That little percentage of “other” does not mean anything. When people look at you, they will not think of the list you named, they will think of you as an African American. Point is, what you look like is what you are, what is that phrase “ If it walks like a duck, quacks like a duck, and looks like a duck then it must be a duck.” Claiming to be anything other than what you look like is obscene. Like Ifemelu says, imagine Obama saying that he is kinda white, who would believe that? You can be mixed with whatever you like but if you do not look it then you are not it.
Former President Obama, the man who always stayed humble and gracious regardless of the situation because he had a hint of color to him. It is a sad reality that many black people face everyday. We have no choice but to keep our mouths shut in certain situations because our skin color is too intimidating and will be scrutinized at the drop of a hat. Barrack Obama had no choice but to comply to White America if he had any chance of becoming president. That is why he is labeled the “Magic Negro” When I look at our current president who is sexist, misogynistic, rude, and “tells it like it is” I imagine President Obama acting the same way and seeing him not even making it through the primaries. Donald Trump is the epitome of White privilege or terrible orange spray tan privilege whichever you prefer. Unfortunately, brown skin in America is a target, and if you play the game right you may not get hit. The emphasis on may because quite frankly let’s be honest here, some White people still won’t care. They will shoot you dead just for being Black. And thanks to the justice system they will get away with it too. President Obama came in with his elegance and grace and taught White people how to “break down the sad but understandable prejudice in their hearts”. I love how Ifemelu used the word understandable in this post because that is how Obama had to act. There is nothing understandable about being prejudice, but Obama had to pretend and empathize with White people if he ever had a shot. Many Black people today have to comply and act a certain way to receive opportunities. We cannot be ourselves in predominantly White social settings without being labeled as “wild” or “ghetto”. We have always been targeted and will continue to be targeted until White America realizes that everyone is equal and that we are supposed to accept diversity.
Ifemelu makes light of the whole racist and racism situation to show how dumb people actually sound. There are many people who like to point out that in America there is no longer slavery so therefore racism does not exist. White people like to say that since we are all equal and free no one can be racist or that anyone can be racist What some White people do not understand is that racism and slavery did not end in a day. We still suffer the effects of slavery and racism. All of this goes back to white people trying to excuse their guilt and racist ways. It shows through all of their counter movements like “All Lives Matter”, “Blue Lives Matter” Both of these movements were created just to take away from the Black Lives Matter movement, even attempting to deem it as a “terrorist organization.” It is 2017 and White people are still trying to undermine Black people and their right to voice their much-needed opinions. If that is not racist then I don’t know what is. So Ifem poses the question who is indeed racist? Since White people like to say there is no racism we must need an official qualified field of people to deem who is. But even then I am positive White people would still say that racist do not exist just to avoid the problem.
It seems as though Black women are the least desired when it comes to males of all ethnicity’s. Ifemelu observes that White men, Hispanic men and even Black men at times are not interested in Black women according to their dating profiles. This is very ironic because Black women are the first to be sexualized for their assets. I guess Black women are good enough to be displayed as objects, or even have their features stolen/imitated, but not good enough to be attracted to or make good partners because of stereotypes and stigma. Ifem makes a good point, at the end of the day it should be about a person’s personality, not what they look like. That is why dating sites are so problematic. There is nothing wrong with having a racial preference but answer this, why date the cultural appropriating copy, when you could have the beautifully crafted original? Does the brown skin intimidate you too much? Do strong opinionated Black woman make your blood boil? Stop being so close minded to what’s on the outside and start realizing that what’s on the inside is what matters, that is the whole point of Ifems post.