Editor of the University of Alabama’s campus paper Marissa Cornelius writes, “If you’re white, you’re probably racist,” in a recent op-ed.
“White people must examine their own racist attitudes. I don’t necessarily mean you say openly bigoted things or that you like spending your weekends defending Confederate monuments (though you might be that brand of racist, too),” Cornelius states. “I just mean that you probably have a lot of internalized racist beliefs that you most likely haven’t spent a lot of time unpacking.”
“You being racist might not be entirely your fault. We’re raised in a society that devalues people of color with pretty much every opportunity it gets. We’re raised in a country where black people could literally be owned as few as four or five generations ago, and where they were actively being denied the right to vote during many of our parents’ lifetimes,” she continues. “We’re exposed to media that has type-casted people of color into a very narrow range of characters and tropes.”
“The fact that, yes, you have racist beliefs and attitudes, and these might even sometimes be manifested into racist words or actions.”
Pointing towards Maher, she writes, “Like almost all of white America, wants to believe that he is post-racial. But by holding on to this belief, we engage in a dangerous sort of erasure of the racism that still plagues this country, extinguishing any chance we might have to address these issues and to attempt to fix them. When we pretend we are post-racial, we ensure that this will never be the case.”
“It’s time for us as white people to accept that racism is embedded in all of us. This isn’t to say that you should be any less embarrassed and ashamed of any of your racists words or actions, it is to say that you should stop reacting with so much disbelief, with so much ‘I don’t have a racist bone in my body!’ with so much ‘I would have voted for Obama for a third time if I could have!’ When all your energy is going into denying and defending, you will have none left to go into reflecting and revising.”
Although, Cornelius cites no evidence to back her claims, she is definitely able to provide us an insight on the very mixed thoughts in terms of racism that college students now are experiencing.
Cornelius, a white female even went on to say that Americans that are not white cannot be labelled as racist, “as racism requires power, which is held by and large by whites.”