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Truth On Ice

Where truth collides with your face!

Tag Archives: thinking

*Disclaimer- The contents of this blog maybe found offensive; please read at your own discretion.

I know you probably read the title of this blog and scratched your head quizzically.

What is polite racism? Polite racism is racism that is thinly veiled by seemingly harmless compliments which are really more like insults. Most people who engage in polite racism don’t even realize that they are being racist. They think that they are being nice.The Ku Klux Klan thought they were too. Polite racists don’t walk around in hooded sheets.

They look like normal regular people. They cross the street when they see me coming. They lock their doors in fear in parking lots. They clutch their pocket books closer to their body as I pass them by. They follow me around stores under the guise of “helping me” but really making sure I don’t steal. They do it all with a smile. They have a look of shock on their face when I open my mouth and speak.

Why you speak so well! I have been told. Why should that be a surprise? I also dot my i’s and cross my t’s; do you want to give me an award for that? Don’t get me started on the responses I get when people find out I listen to music other than Hip Hop and R&B. Or that I enjoy pastimes such as reading, writing and art. Or that I’m not on welfare. Or that I actually have a stable household. Gasp.

Polite racists feel the need to convey their disdain for “my kind” at the same time as trying to be comfortable with the idea of being around a black person. True story: I was hanging with a friend of mine who just happens to be Italian. Her family is notoriously racist. We went to visit her aunt who is well known for her thoughts on black folk. Nonetheless she invites me into her home. We engage in conversation. A little witty banter and casual talk. My friend’s cousin says to her mom “Hey did you know her mom is part white?” Suddenly a light bulb clicks in her head.

“Well that explains it!” she says. Of course now it’s my turn to scratch my head quizzically. “Explains what?” Matter of factly she tells me that it is the reason that I was so polite, spoke well, had ‘good hair’ and high cheek bones. How do I respond? I want to yell. I want to tell her how ignorant she is. I want to beat her over the head. But of course I will just be confirming her preconceived notions about black people. So I am silent. You can’t cure a life time of ignorance in a 10 minute lecture.

People want to believe that racism doesn’t exist anymore. That it was washed away with civil rights leaders such as Martin Luther King Jr., absolved with marches on Washington, obliterated by Obama being in office. It’s quite the opposite. People are just as racist today as they were then but just nicer about it. The way I view it is you can wrap a piece of feces up in a box and put a bow on it but it still stinks.

I’d like to believe that now a days people are beyond the color of skin. That all men are created equal is a thought in everyone’s mind…but sadly it is not.If you’re reading this and have had similar thoughts and conveyed similar actions such as those discussed here…you’d do well to ask yourself:

Am I a polite racist?

*side note:

Polite racism does not apply to just white people…this applies to any person of any race who looks down upon any other race. I’m just saying.

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