Fact, Opinion and Annoyance

Race Relations
December 3, 2008, 9:14 pm
Filed under: Politics | Tags:

I will now carefully test the waters on the subject that perpetuated the founding of this blog.  And again, while this is a topic that I have a lot of opinions about and I think requires lots of contextual information to be understood, I’ll attempt to be brief.

My inspiration: Blacks’ toxic victimhood

For the record, I am a Caucasian female of Irish and German descent (I’m sure there’s other things in there too, but geneologies were not a family pastime).  I grew up in rural, coal-mining country where there were a few solidly middle class families, but most would be considered lower class or poor, including my family.  The school system was nothing to write home about, and I think my generation was one of the first to think of college as a real possibility.

I was raised to believe that God created us differently in terms of physical characteristics but that we are all equal because God made us.  I was taught that slavery was a horrible thing and that abolitionists were heroes (both black and white).  I was taught that segregation was unacceptable and that Martin Luther King Jr. and all who marched with him were heroes (of all races).  I was taught to learn about each person as I met them and judge them on their character, not on superficial things like gender or race, which of course people have no control over anyway.  I happen to agree with all of these things, not only from a political perspective but more importantly from a spiritual one.  My faith in Christ and His Word tells me these things are true.  As a result, I try to live my life in a way that reflects these principles.

This is where I run into trouble.  It seems that treating everyone as equal and teaching my children to do the same is not enough.  I have been told that I have to appreciate what 400 years of slavery (not one year of which was served by this generation of African-Americans, or their parents, or their grandparents) has done to the psyche of the modern African-Americans.  I’m supposed to be humble because historically, my status as a white person has granted me benefits that I did not deserve.

I’ll admit, I did feel this way for a while.  I blame my public school education.  Then I realized that my “white guilt” wasn’t accomplishing a blessed thing.  My being appreciative and humble never got one black family out of poverty or got one black child an education.

I lived in inner city Camden, NJ for years and had a lot of opportunities to observe the “modern oppression” of the urban poor.  What was amazing to me was that they were the same problems I grew up with in rural Appalachia.  Poverty, drugs, alcohol, promiscuity, lack of educational options, government assistance run amok, and lack of health care.  The difference?  In the city, the poor tend to be minorities.  In rural areas, they tend to be white.  At this point in my life, I believe that many of these problems are socioeconomic in nature rather than racial, and spiritual rather than political.

I appreciate that one of the biggest problems with actually trying to discuss racial issues is that some people are very emotional about it (I have a similar problem in trying to discuss abortion).  And I’m sure there are plenty of people that have experienced blatant racism.  But I’m not sure how you can argue that there is still systematic racism in this country.  It is now illegal in the United State to discriminate against a person on the basis of their race.  It has been for over 40 years.  There are so many programs to help people develop marketable skills.  The black middle class is getting larger all the time.  There are countless stories of African-Americans who came from nothing and were successful.  Most white people I know are terrified of being labeled racists and honestly just want everyone to be treated equally.

So my theory on race is this – someone doesn’t like you because of the color of your skin, call it their loss and move on.  Get an education.  Get an education.  Get an education.  If your school system sucks, teach yourself (I know personally that this is possible).  Believe in yourself and no one can stop you.  If you are legitimately discriminated against, use the law to obtain your rights.  But if you get fired because you never show up for work and have a bad attitude, please don’t cry racism.  It doesn’t help anyone (except maybe you) and does nothing to promote equality.

2 Comments so far
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Boy do i have a lot to say about this. We have a black president elect. There is no longer any need for affirmative action, none. I honestly doubt there ever was a need for it. I watch student after student ridicule a fellow peer for speaking with some level of eloquence as speaking like a “white person”. Idleness and lack of will are the main reasons I see my students fail time and again.

Comment by proteinstar

A very good article, I am bookmarking your site. If the majority of white people had your maturity of thought and scriptural frame of reference, we would not have an Obama presidency. I have often said that the most racially destructive person in our country is a liberal white person.

At the same time, if ministers preached the Gospel of Christ in the so called “black church” and left the prosperity gospel rest for half a second, Christian black folks wouldn’t have voted for him either.

Digital Publius



Comment by Digital Publius

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