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Fri Apr 1, 2016, 03:13 PM

People who say they don't see race are ignoring racism, not helping solve it.

http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2015/jan/26/do-not-see-race-ignoring-racism-not-helping

Race is such an ingrained social construct that even blind people can ‘see’ it. To pretend it doesn’t exist to you erases the experiences of black people


People love to tell me that they often forget that I’m black. They say this with a sort of “a-ha!” look on their faces, as if their dawning ability to see my blackness was a gift to us both.

When I point out that their eyesight had never left them, that my skin has never changed colors, and that they probably did not really forget that I am black, they inevitably get defensive. First, they try to argue that it was a compliment; the smart ones quickly realize that complimenting someone on not being black is actually pretty racist, so they switch gears.

I don’t see race! is usually their next tactic, followed by I am colorblind, though they never give credit to Stephen Colbert. By “colorblind” they don’t actually mean that they can’t see green or red; rather, they are suggesting that they can’t ever be racist, because they don’t register skin color at all.

This ideology is very popular – like a racial utopic version of the Golden Rule – but it’s actually quite racist. “Colorblindness” doesn’t acknowledge the very real ways in which racism has existed and continues to exist, both in individuals and systemically. By professing not to see race, you’re just ignoring racism, not solving it.

Still, the idea of “colorblindness” is incredibly popular, especially with young people who believe racism is a problem for the older generation and will soon die out. . . .

SNIP

11 replies, 859 views

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Reply People who say they don't see race are ignoring racism, not helping solve it. (Original post)
pnwmom Apr 2016 OP
astrophuss42 Apr 2016 #1
TipTok Apr 2016 #2
FLPanhandle Apr 2016 #3
pnwmom Apr 2016 #4
Egnever Apr 2016 #5
oberliner Apr 2016 #6
pnwmom Apr 2016 #7
oberliner Apr 2016 #10
TipTok Apr 2016 #8
safeinOhio Apr 2016 #9
Nye Bevan Apr 2016 #11

Response to pnwmom (Original post)

Fri Apr 1, 2016, 03:19 PM

1. It's definitely not the most nuanced view

But I think most people would like to hope that they are non-discriminatory, unfortunately most of us are not. One thing a person could try are the implicit association tests. I found I am more ageist than I thought.

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Response to pnwmom (Original post)

Fri Apr 1, 2016, 03:21 PM

2. I see because I'm not blind..

 

... But I don't care.

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Response to pnwmom (Original post)

Fri Apr 1, 2016, 03:22 PM

3. What does the author want?

I try not to either judge someone better or worse because of their race but by their actions. I think striving to be "color blind" should be the goal. People judged on their behaviors and not given the "benefit of the doubt" nor condemned just because of their race.

What does the author want?

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Response to FLPanhandle (Reply #3)

Fri Apr 1, 2016, 03:29 PM

4. He wants people to recognize reality. For example, a poster here today

posted a picture that the black OP and others felt was racist.

That poster insisted that he doesn't even see race. The issue isn't whether he was right or not about the picture. The issue was his insistence that race doesn't exist for him.

Only people with race-privilege can say that race doesn't matter. No black person is safe going out in the world pretending that they don't see race.

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Response to pnwmom (Reply #4)

Fri Apr 1, 2016, 04:39 PM

5. "No black person is safe going out in the world"

 

You do realize america is not the whole world right? Minorities in any situation are not safe. For example the protester at the trump rally white as hell but not safe because she was in that situation a minority.

People suck and put them together in a group and they suck even more. The group will always bully the other it has been going on for as long as humans have been around.

There is no making this go away ever sadly.

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Response to pnwmom (Original post)

Fri Apr 1, 2016, 04:42 PM

6. This is idiotic

 

People who say "I don't see race" usually mean "I am not going to judge you based on your race" which is exactly what MLK exhorted people to do.

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Response to oberliner (Reply #6)

Fri Apr 1, 2016, 04:45 PM

7. And some of them insist on saying to the BLM people, "All lives matter."

Do you not see the problem with that, either?

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Response to pnwmom (Reply #7)

Fri Apr 1, 2016, 04:58 PM

10. Here's what I am saying

 

There are well-meaning people who wish to make the point that they are making a conscious effort to avoid making any assumptions about someone solely based on their race. I don't think it's fair to accuse anyone who uses that "I don't see color" phrase as perpetuating racism when especially people from an older generation really mean it in a way that is benign and with the right intentions. Obviously everyone is different and there are those who can use that construct in a way that is racist but I do not think it is automatically perpetuating (or ignoring) racism.

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Response to oberliner (Reply #6)

Fri Apr 1, 2016, 04:52 PM

8. It's a desire to perpetually play the victim...

 

I occasionally wonder if it is conscious or not.

It's a lose/lose situation and noatter what you are 'wronging' someone and reinforcing their status as a victim or oppressed or whatever.

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Response to pnwmom (Original post)

Fri Apr 1, 2016, 04:55 PM

9. Cultural anthropology needs to be

Taught in public schools, starting in about third grade.

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Response to pnwmom (Original post)

Fri Apr 1, 2016, 05:02 PM

11. How could anyone "not see" race?

I see race, but I don't give a shit about it and I don't treat anyone any different because of it.

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