The Faces of Racism (& varying degrees in between):
1) You are maliciously, flagrantly, and hateful hearted; you believe yourself superior to all other “races”; you are threatened by the thought of losing your white supremacist power; you enjoy terrorizing and demeaning people who don’t look like you or act like you.
2) You say you “love everyone” but in fact you actually enjoy your privilege under the surface and wouldn’t give an inch of it to rise another group of people up. You don’t “see color”, and have no idea how this dangerous idea actually dismisses/silences the patterns and nightmarish realties for Black and brown people. You are the ones screaming but “all lives matter” when in fact all lives aren’t, and never have been—enslaved, exploited, targeted, profiled, and murdered because of the color of their skin. You are more concerned with business and property damage than you were with watching a Black man take his last breath with his face to the asphalt, neck under the knee of a “police” officer. You readily and easily dismiss any and all new information when it is presented to you, if it doesn’t fit your narrative or current understanding.
3) You are aware of, and acknowledge your privilege being born with white skin, but you still suffer from the most insidious kind of racism—the systematic ways in which you have been so deeply conditioned in our white washed society to see Black and Brown people as “other” and less than. You are actually uneducated to the real lived realities of Black people and other minorities, because you have very little exposure or interaction with them. You have a few Black “friends”, coworkers, or family members even, but you probably lack a deeper understanding of what it’s like to actually be them. You say very racist things they have to overlook or swallow because they find themselves always in a position to protect the white man/woman’s feelings. You simply don’t know any better. You really do mean well and in general you have good hearts. But you are resistant to actually learning and hearing the truth of what it’s like to be born into, or live in a Black or Brown body every single day.
While it may feel extremely unnerving to be referred to as a “racist”, especially in the current social climate, please understand you may not always see yourself as you are. That is the goal of racism, and the work of unlearning racism. I ask that we look below the surface and really search our hearts for the truth. If your first reaction is defensive, this post is for you.