White defensiveness

“Not all cops” and “blue lives matter” is just as stupid as “not all men” and “all lives matter.”

It’s defensive deflection. It’s someone (usually of a privileged group), taking the fact that certain groups are disproportionately victimized, as a personal affront.

Well, get over yourselves.

This isn’t about you, personally.

Obviously, any reasonable person is aware that all lives matter and not all cops and so on and so on. That’s not the point at all. If you live in America, and you are anything other than a cis straight white male, you’ve been dealt some major societal disadvantages.

As we just saw yet again yesterday (and the day before), black men are killed by police in far higher numbers (proportionally) than other groups. The proper reaction to this fact isn’t to freak out about those poor cops. It’s not to rant and rave about riots. It’s definitely not to try to smear Alton Sterling or Philando Castile.

The proper reaction – this is mostly directed at white people – is to try to figure out how to stop this from happening again. All that anger, all that defensiveness… that’s a lot of misapplied energy that could go into calling out racism and policy mistreatment where it exists.

If you read this, and want to immediately argue and deny it, or start digging for statistics to prove me wrong –¬† you’re the problem I’m talking about. And you’re NOT LISTENING.

If someone tells you there’s a boot on their neck, you don’t tell them, “It’s not my boot,” or “maybe you did something to deserve it,” or, “I don’t see any boot.” If you say any of those things, then it might as well be your boot.

A lot of people take this personally. But that just makes it about them. Which is part of the initial problem!

As a white person, you have things better in America than everyone else. This is simply a fact. Not an attack. A fact.

There’s no shame in having privilege… as long as that privilege is used to make the world a better place. White people, use your disproportionate power and influence to help change our system. Quit hiding behind a wall of denial and defense. Talk to people.

More importantly, listen to them.
When in doubt, listen.
When not in doubt, listen.

That’s how learning starts.

About hbreck

Writer, debater, contrarian, storyteller, occasional troublemaker. I'm mostly just making things up as I go.
This entry was posted in Civil Rights, Law Enforcement, Quick post, Rant, Social Justice and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to White defensiveness

  1. Pingback: The Backlash | A Skewed Perspective

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