The people who invented micro-aggressions are now pushing white fragility to describe resistance to false accusations of racism.
The New Yorker wants you to know, if you haven’t figured it out already, that there is no point in promoting values or freedom and individualism over against collectivism and tribalism unless you are willing to be called a racist. If you can’t cheerfully accept the slander then your mind is already owned by the regressive Left.
In more than twenty years of running diversity-training and cultural-competency workshops for American companies, the academic and educator Robin DiAngelo has noticed that white people are sensationally, histrionically bad at discussing racism.
“Discussing racism” in “diversity-training and cultural-competency workshops”? No, those are brainwashing sessions. And when people get attacked, while expecting reasonable discussion, they sometimes react to the false accusations coming from an authority figure to whom their employer has insisted that they submit.
They will cry. In 2011, DiAngelo coined the term “white fragility” to describe the disbelieving defensiveness that white people exhibit when their ideas about race and racism are challenged—and particularly when they feel implicated in white supremacy. Why, she wondered, did her feedback prompt such resistance, as if the mention of racism were more offensive than the fact or practice of it?
Yes, let’s pretend it’s some great mystery that people don’t want to drown in BS. It turns out that “racism” is things like individualism and a belief that all people are equal no matter what their race!
Much of “White Fragility” is dedicated to pulling back the veil on these so-called pillars of whiteness: assumptions that prop up racist beliefs without our realizing it. Such ideologies include individualism, or the distinctly white-American dream that one writes one’s own destiny, and objectivity, the confidence that one can free oneself entirely from bias. As a sociologist trained in mapping group patterns, DiAngelo can’t help but regard both precepts as naïve (at best) and arrogant (at worst). To be perceived as an individual, to not be associated with anything negative because of your skin color, she notes, is a privilege largely afforded to white people; although most school shooters, domestic terrorists, and rapists in the United States are white, it is rare to see a white man on the street reduced to a stereotype. Likewise, people of color often endure having their views attributed to their racial identities; the luxury of impartiality is denied them. (In outlining these discrepancies, DiAngelo draws heavily on the words of black writers and scholars—Ta-Nehisi Coates, Toni Morrison, Ijeoma Oluo, Cheryl Harris—although, perhaps surprisingly, she incorporates few present-day interviews with people of color.)
We live in a society where whites are the majority. Of course, they are therefore the majority of criminals. The New Yorker pretends we don’t all know how the demographics change if we look at crime on a per capita basis. I guess they expect their readers to know they’re not allowed to think about basic statistics because that’s racist too.
Self-righteousness becomes a seductive complement to “White Fragility,” as gin is to a mystery novel. (“I would never,” I thought, when DiAngelo described the conversation in which her friend dismissed a predominantly black neighborhood as “bad,” unsafe.)
Uh. Maybe it was unsafe. Sorry if facts don’t care about your feelings.
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