Being white shouldn’t mean being clueless.

Andrew Butz
Minneapolis, MN

I am white, and grew up not thinking or having to think much about race at all. Made a lot of non-white friends at college and learned a lot about race and privilege, including the reality of thinking about race everyday because you have to. White people are the only group that isn’t forced to consider how they fit in to America racially, leading to the reality today that most white people are totally clueless when it comes to race. Many of them have just never been forced to think much about it. This leads to a lot of thoughtless racism, both explicit and structural, makes it harder for white people to discuss matters of race productively, and in many cases leads white people to assume that race is not (or is no longer) a problem.

While problematic and unfair, this is mostly accepted as normal, just the way things go if you’re white. That needs to change, somehow. White people should be, and should be expected to be, part of the solution, not just a perpetual problem.

 

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