Being white doesn’t automatically mean racist.

Carstens Smith
Minneapolis, MN

I quickly learned in the 80s, when my employer mandated attendance on race and diversity, to stay very, very quiet. My comments, questions, and any opinions were met with “Well, you’re white so you don’t understand…” So despite the assumption by some that I am so privileged and racist that I have no empathy, I work to stay true to my own standard of treating others as I would want to be treated. In managing others, I work to ensure the success of everyone on my team. As an instructor, I evaluate with an extensive rubric so all students know what I expect of them and see how I evaluate their work. In professional matters I strive to be scrupulously fair. In friendships,I want to be unreservedly open-hearted. When I fail at either of these standards, I believe I do so because I am human, not simply because I am white. I hope though that those who chalk me off as a racist because of my color look at how they evaluate others.

 

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