Moving Beyond White Guilt by nyut545e2

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									TRANSFORM AT ION
                                              MOVING BEYOND WHITE                                                                                              GUILT
VOL 13    ISSUE

SUMMER 1998

                                                                                 1996               WEPUBLISHED              IN THESE PAGES AN ARTICLE BY                 WOMENS
                                              TWOYEARS      AGO IN THE SUMMER OF
BOARD OF DIRECTORS                                                                                                                                         WITH          RACISM
                                              PROJECT     BOARD     MEMBER AMY EDGINGTON                       ENTITLED            GROWING UP
                                                                                                                          THAT ARTICLE HAS
                                              PERSONAL      ODYSSEY         THROUGH WORDOF MOUTH PROMOTION BY OUR MEMBERS
BETTY COLE    COLT
                                                                                                                              AND                                                      THE
                                              NOW BEEN          SENT AROUND THE COUNTRY TO INDIVIDUALS                                  ORGANIZATIONS         ENGAGED IN
FREDDIE   NIXON       LITTLE     ROCK
                                                                                                                                         WOMENTO COMETOGETHER                     WITH
                                              STRUGGLE AGAINST          RACISM IN IT        AMY PUT     OUT     CALLFOR WHITE
AMY EDGINGTON           LITTLE
                                                                                                                 BY WOMEN OF COLOR IN
                                                                                                                                                           THIS    EDITION       ANIY
                                              HER TO READ        AND    DISCUSS      BOOKS VIDEOS ETC
CELIA   WILDROOT      HOT SPRINGS
                                                                  WORK HAS BROUGHT HER AT                       ITS   CONCLUSION ARE TWO OF AMYS POEMS AND
                                              PRESENTS IDEAS THIS
ANNETTE   SHEAD       LITTLE         ROCK                                                                             WORKER AN          INCREDIBLE        RESOURCE FOR THOSE
                                                   READING LIST     AMY        IS     POET AN ANTIRACIST
CAROL NOKES        LITTLE     ROCK                                                                      ASSISTANT           AN     ARTIST                         RIGHTS ACTIVIST
                                              WORKING ON LESBIAN            BATTERING         LIBRARY                                           DISABILITY

PRECIOUS WILLIAMS             OGDEN           AND     WITH THE EXCEPTION             OFAFEW YEARS            LIFELONG       RESIDENT         OF ARKANSAS

SARAH FACEN        LITTLE     ROCK

SANDRA MITCHELL             LITTLE    ROCK           OR THE PAST YEAR IVE HAD THE PRIVI                                     WHAT         GUILT        IS

                                                                                                                                                      HEAR THE IDEA                  THAT
                                       ROCK          LEGE              GROUP OF
                                                                OF BELONGING          TO                                      CONSTANTLY
TAMMY ROBERSON                LITTLE

                                                     WHITE WOMENWHOREAD AND DIS                                       GUILT      IS          DESTRUCTIVE          EMOTION              IM
DEEDEE GREEN           LITTLE        ROCK
                                              CUSS AFRICAN AMERICAN                    LITERATURE    ON               POSED BY OTHERS IN ORDER TO MANIPU
                                                   MONTHLY BASIS                    LEARN    LOT   FROM               LATE US GUILT HAS SUCH  BAD REPUTA
                                              THE   BOOKS WEVEREAD AND                       ALSO FIND                TION    NOWADAYSTHAT WE CAN                               FEEL    IN

                                              IT    VALUABLE       TO    MEET AND           TALK WITH                 STANTLYJUSTIFIEDINREJECTINGORAVOID

          INSIDE                              OTHER WHITE          WOMENWHOCARE                    ABOUT              ING     ANYONE           OR ANYTHING               THAT MIGHT

                                              THE       ISSUE     OF RACISM           IVE    BEEN RE                  MAKE         US    FEEL    GUILTY        FROM OUR              PAR
                                              MINDED THROUGH OUR DISCUSSIONS OF                                       ENTS TO THE ISSUE OF RACISM                              BUT      SEE

                                              WHAT AN ENORMOUSSTUMBLING BLOCK                                                      AS        MIXTURE         OF POSITIVE               ELE
                                                                                                                      GUILT
         MOVING BEYOND
                                                         CAN BE FOR WHITE PEOPLE                                      MENTS           LIKE  AND REMORSE
                                                                                                                                              CONSCIENCE
           WHITE GUILT                        GUILT
                                                        HAVE      FREQUENTLY           AVOIDED      DIS               AND NEGATIVE ELEMENTS LIKE FEAR AND
                   PAGE
                                               CUSSIONS OF GUILT               BECAUSE OF WHAT                        RESENTMENT
          READING LIST                         SEE AS             PERVASIVE            TENDENCY         IN

              PAGE                             AMERICA TO PSYCHOLOGIZE INDIVIDU                                              CONSCIENCE                OFTEN             FEEL     GUILTY

                                               ALIZE AND DEPOLITICIZE EVERY ISSUE                                     BECAUSE           MY      CONSCIENCE          IS    TELLING       ME
        WHITENESS                    BRIEF
                                               NEVERTHELESS               IN        MY   EXPERIENCE                   IAMINTHEWRONGNOTBECAUSESOME
             COMMENT                                 DOES HAVE POLITICAL CONSE                                        ONE     IS      MANIPULATING            ME          IF     CONSIS
                                               GUILT
                   PAGE
                                               QUENCES IT CAN BECOME
                                                                       SUBSTITUTE                                     TENTLY          REJECT    MY OWN JUDGEMENT OR
                                               FOR CHANGE OR AN EXCUSE NOT TO                                         AVOID           FACING     IT   THEN  WIND UPWILL
              WISHLIST
                                                                                                                                             CONSCIENCE AND NO ONE IS
                                               CHANGE IT CAN ALSO BE THE STARTING                                     WITHOUT
              PAGE             10
                                                                                                                                      TO MANIPULATE               THAN
                                               POINTFORTHEACCEPTANCEOFRESPONSI                                        EASIER                                                     PERSON

                                               BILITY     AND MEANINGFUL                 CHANGE                       WHOHAS NO                 CONSCIENCE


                                                                                                                                                             CONTINUED          ON PAGE
                                                                                                                    CIIATION       ADOPTED BY            THE WHITE
    CONSCIENCE SHOULD NOT BE                             SHAMEGRIEFFORTHEOTHERPERSONS
              LIKE MOST PEOPLE                                                                    REFLECTS    MY    LEADERSHIP         OF THE CHRISTIAN             RIGHT
STATIC THING                                             PAIN      IS    GOOD THING          IT


                                                                          FOR EMPATHY             WHICH IS    THE   WING        THESE     WORDS IMPLY                 THAT
BEGAN     TO ACQUIRE       ONE IN CHILDHOOD              CAPACITY
                                                         FOUNDATION            FOR    AN    ETHIC    OF LOVE        WHITE PEOPLE AND                PEOPLE OF COLOR
WHEN       STARTED TO TAKE RESPONSIBIL
                                                         BUT SHAME TURNED                                           HAVE   SUFFERED                     UNDER RAC
ITY    FOR DELIBERATE            WRONGDOING                                              MY ATTENTION                                      EQUALLY

                                                                                       AND MY BRUISED               ISM    IF   THAT    WERE TRUE GIVEN                THE
HOWEVER IF WE ARE TO BECOME FULL                         BACK ON MYSELF

ADULTS WE HAVE TO STRETCH AND                            SELFESTEEM              IT   UNDERMINED              MY    POWER THAT WHITE PEOPLE HAVE AND
                                                                        TO EMPATHIZE         WITH THE        PER    HOW HIGHLY           OUR CULTURE            VALUES
GROWMORALLY BY TAKING RESPONSI                           ABILITY

                           OF HARM                       SON     WHO WAS          TRULY INJURED
                                                                                                              FRE   COMFORT AND PERSONAL HAPPINESS
BIITY FOR THE CONSEQUENCES
WE DO UNINTENTIONALLY                AND FOR ACTS        QUENTLY           SHE HAD         TO TAKE CARE OF          WEWOULD HAVE WIPED OUT RACISM
                       SUCH AS               TO STOP                                                                OUT CENTURIES AGO NO MATTER HOW
OF OMISSION                      FAILING

OTHERS     FROM DOING HARM AND BEN                                                                                  AGONIZING OUR REMORSE MAY BE IT
                                                                                                                    DOES NOT BEGIN TO COMPARE WITH
EFITING         FROM WRONGS COMMITTED
                                                                                                                    THE INJURY RACISM INFLICTS ON PEOPLE
BY OTHERS NOTHING                CHALLENGES        THE      NI
CONSCIENCES            OF WHITE PEOPLE         MORE
                                                            UO           MATTER       HOWAGONIZING                  OF COLOR OR TO CANCEL OUT THE PRIVI
                                                                                                                                                                    WHITE
                                                                                                                    LEGES DOMINATION                BRINGS     TO
IN THIS     RESPECT THAN RACISM
                                                                OUR REMORSE                MAY BE        IT
                                                                                                                    PEOPLE
      WHEN            UNINTENTIONALLY         DID OR

SAID SOMETHING RACIST                    OFTEN TRIED
                                                            DOES NOT            BEGIN       TO     COMPARE                FEAR          LIKE        MOST PEOPLE
TO CLEAR        MY CONSCIENCE            BY CHANG
INGTHEFOCUSFROMWHATLHADDONE
                                                                                                                     LEARNED IN CHILDHOOD               TO FEAR       PUN
                                                                   WITH THE INJURY                RACISM
                                                                                                                     ISHMENT      FOR   DOING WRONGBUT                  FAR
OR FAILED TO DO TO WHAT MEANT
                                             RACISM                                                                  FROMPUNISHING    OUR RACISM PEOPLE
 WHAT HAD TO ACCEPT               IS THAT
                                                             INFLICTS          ON PEOPLE           OF COLOR
                                                                                                                     OF COLOR USUALLY DONT CONFRONT US
 HAS   LITTLE    TO DO WITH OUR INDIVIDUAL
                                                                                                                     ABOUT IT OFTEN IT MAY NOT SEEM
 INTENTIONS           GOOD OR     BAD       OUR    PER                  OR TO CANCEL OUT THE
                                                                                                                     WORTH THE         RISK OR EFFORT TO            DO SO
 SONAL     PREJUDICES         OR LACK THEREOF
                                                                                                                     NEVERTHELESS           WHITE PEOPLE HAVE
 AS LONG         AS   WE SEE     RACISM ONLY AS
                                                                    PRIVILEGES         DOMINATION
                                                                                                                     AN EXAGGERATED            FEAR OF THE ANGER OF
 THE   HARM DONE TO  PEOPLE OF COLOR
                                                                                                                     PEOPLE OF COLOR                 THINK     THIS    FEAR
 BY WHITE PEOPLE WE THINK WE CAN                                   BRINGS       TO WHITE          PEOPLE
                                                                                                                     COMES        PARTLY       FROM HISTORY OUR
 SHRINK OUR CULPABILITY BY LIMITING
                                                                                                                     THEFT OF THE       LAND    WE LIVE ON AND OUR
 THE   DAMAGE WE DO AS INDIVIDUALS
                                                                                                                     OWNERSHIPLESS                   THAN 140         YEARS
 BUT IN   RACISM PRIVILEGES US SO
            FACT

                                                                                                                     AGOOF         AFRICAN AMERICANS                    FOR
 THOROUGHLY THAT MOSTWHITE PEOPLE
 NEED DO NOTHING BUT                 SIT   BACK AND       ME            BEFORE SHE COULD HOPE TO                     GENERATIONSWEVEBEENTAUGHTTHAT

  ENJOY THE        ADVANTAGES OF
                       MANY                                MAYBE               GET HER       OWN WOUNDS              OUR PROSPERITY            DEPENDS ON MAIN
                                                                                                                                   CONTROL          OVER PEOPLE             OF
  DOMINATION THE CHALLENGE RACISM                          TENDED MY CHALLENGE WAS TO GET                             TAMING
                                                                                                                      COLOR THATOUR LIVES ANDLIVELIHOODS
  POSES TO THE CONSCIENCES                  OF WHITE       MY ATTENTION OFF MYSELF AND TO
                                                                                                                                                       DARKSKINNED
  PEOPLE        IS   TO RECOGNIZE THE FULL          EX     FOCUS  ON THE PERSON HAD HURT                              ARE IN      DANGER       IF


  TENT OF THE           PRIVILEGES         WHITE    SU     WHEN DO THAT ACT AGAINST THE                               PERSON EVEN LOOKS DAGGERS AT US
                     EACH                     OF   US      HISTORY AND CULTURE OF
                                                                                  WHITENESS                           AS IF HISTORY WERE NOT ENOUGH
  PREMACY BESTOWS ON
                                                           WHICH ALWAYS MAGNIFIES WHITE                               MODEM WHITE MEDIA                      FORCES INTO

       REMORSE ONCE MYCONSCIENCE                           PEOPLES PAIN AND PUTS OUR NEEDS                            EVERY CORNER OF OUR              LIVES    THE    MES
                                                                                                                      SAGE THAT                           OR EVEN       DIS
  TOLD    ME WAS               WRONG FELT
                           IN THE                          FIRST                                                                    ANY AGITATED
                            HARM HAD DONE                      ICANTHINKOFNOBETTEREXAMPLE                             SATISFIED    BLACK PERSON              IS APT    TO   DO
  REMORSE FOR THE
  REMORSE             CONSISTS      OF             AND     OF THIS THAN THE TERM RACIAL RECON                         US BODILY        HARM
                                           GRIEF



                                                          PAGE            TI                ON      SUMMER1998
   LNTHEDAYSOFSLAVERYAFLDGENO                              INGS    AHEAD OF      MY OWN OR TO         FORGO         WASNTRACISTWHITENESSTAUGHTME

                                                           CURRENT      BLISS    FOR THE PROMISE            OF      TO THINK      OF MYSELF AS AN EXAMPLE                   TO
CIDE WHITE POWER DECKED ITSELF IN
                                                                                                                                                     WAS         SHOCK
HATRED AND BOLD ASSERTIONS                     OF   SU     FUTURE    GAIN       WHENIT COMES TO            RAC      THE LESS CIVILIZED          IT                          TO


                            AS BLACK           FEMI        ISM      AM STILL                 THIS    LESSON         FIND    OUT    AFTER ALL       HAD     INVESTED         IN
PERIORITY     TODAY                                                              LEARNING
                                                           WHITE                    IS                  WE            SENSE OF SUPERIORITY THAT IDIDN
NIST BELL HOOKS POINTS            OUT THE MOST                       PRIVILEGE           SOMETHING
                    MASK        OF     WHITE        SU     ENJOY BESIDES THE COUNTLESS                MATE          OWN THE MORAL HIGH GROUND HAD
PERSUASIVE
                                                                                                                    TO CLIMB DOWN OFF MY HIGH HORSE
PREMACY IS FEAR MY FEAR OF THE                                  ADVANTAGES OF WHITENESS
                                                           RIAL                                               IT


                                                                    US          SENSE    OF ENTITLEMENT             AND     ACCEPT       THE   WORDOF           PEOPLE OF
ANGEROFDARKSKINNEDPEOPLECON                                GIVES
                                                                                          MORAL AND IN              COLOR     ON WHAT RACISM               IS   AND WHAT
VINCED ME WAS POWERLESS IT KEPT                            SOCIAL    ACCEPTANCE
                                                                                            AND PERSONAL            WE NEED         TO    DO ABOUT         IT         HAD   TO
ME FROM       SEEING       HOW MY           ACTIONS        TELLECTUAL      SUPERIORITY
                                                                                                                    LEARN TO DOUBT EVERYTHING                              HAD
AND    INACTIONS      HELPED         TO   MAINTAIN
                                                                                                                    BEEN TAUGHT    HAD TO GET OFF THE
  SYSTEM OF SUPERIOR     POWER THAT
                                                                                                                    WHITE EXPRESSWAY AND TAKE THE
BENEFITED     ME IMMENSELY TO MOVE
                                                                                                                    SCENIC         ROUTE        THROUGH               OTHER
THROUGH THE LAYER OF FEAR THAT CAME                                        MOVE THROUGH THE
WITH MY GUILT    HAD TO ACKNOWL                                                                                     PEOPLES REALITIES
                                                                                                                         FOUND     HAD SWALLOWED THE
EDGE THAT PEOPLE OF COLOR HAVE FAR                                 LAYER OF FEAR THAT          CAME
                                                                                                                    BELIEF THAT WHITE PEOPLE CANT HELP
MORE JUSTIFIABLE REASONS TO REGARD
WHITE PEOPLE WITH TERROR                                            WITH                     HAD                    BEING        RACIST    THAT      WE    ARE SO THOR
                                                                            MY     GUILT              TO
                                                                                                                    OUGHLY CONDITIONED                     WE     CANT BE
       BEGAN TO QUESTION WHAT HAD
LEARNEDABOUTWHOWASMOSTLIKELY                                      ACKNOWLEDGETHAT PEOPLE                            ANY      OTHER       WAY OF            COURSE           RE

     DO ME VIOLENCE              HAD                                                                                SENTED BEING TOLD TO MAKE CHANGES
TO                                        TO FACE    MY
                                      FROM OTHER                    OF COLOR HAVE FAR           MORE                 BELIEVED WERE BEYOND MY CON
FEAR    OF   PUNISHMENT
                                                RANKS                                                                TROL CONFUSED BEING WHITE WITH
WHITE PEOPLE FOR BREAKING
AND OPPOSING RACISM WHITE PRIVI                                     JUSTIFIABLE          REASONS      TO            WHITENESS WAS BORN WHITE BUT
                                                                                                                     LEARNED WHITENESS                IF   RACISM WERE
LEGE IS BASED ON WHITE SOLIDARITY
MAINTAINED          BY          COMBINATION           OF          REGARD WHITE           PEOPLE WITH                 INEVITABLE        SIMPLY PART OF HUMAN
                                               BEHAV                                                                 NATURE          THEN THERE WOULD BE NO
REWARDS FOR GOOD RACIST
                                                                                  TERROR                             EFFORT      TO INDOCTRINATE      WHITE PEOPLE
IOR    OR SILENT      COMPLICITY             AND BY
             AND    VIOLENCE                    THOSE                                                                WITH     RACIST     BELIEFS     NO PRESSURE ON
THREATS                              AGAINST
WHO BREAK            THE   CODES OF            WHITE                                                                 US TO CONFORMTO WHITE SUPREMACY

         OUR       OBSESSIVE                                                                                         IN FACT AS BELL HOOKS MAINTAINS
NESS                    EXAGGERATED
 FEAR OF BLACK ANGER IN PARTICULAR                          IMPORTANCE ITPUTS USINTHEWORDS                           WHITE        PEOPLE HAVE THE                ABILITY         TO

 IS MEANT TO REINFORCE OUR LOYALTY TO                       OF NOVELIST JAMAICA KINCAID                     BE       REJECT      WHITENESSBY           ACTING AGAINST

 WHITENESS                                                  YOND        CONFIDENCE          AND BEYOND               RACISM        AT EVERY OPPORTUNITY
                                                            DOUBT                                                    HAVE          CHOICE   CAN CONTINUE                         TO

      RESENTMENT                IN    CHILDHOOD                   SMALL WONDER THEN                 THAT     FELT    WEAR THE        ARMOROF WHITE PRIVILEGE
                                               RESENT       RESENTMENT           WHEN CONFRONTED BY                  OR   CAN DEVELOP TRUE CONFIDENCE
 FREQUENTLY          EXPERIENCED
 MENT    AS PART OF GUILT             WHEN WAS              PEOPLE OF COLOR ON RACISM                  DIDNT         BY FINDING OUT WHO WOULD BE IF
                      SOMETHINGBAD BUT                      WANT      TO GIVE      UP    THE PRIVILEGE         OF    MOVED          THROUGH THE WORLD WITH
 CAUGHT DOING
                        WAS TOLD IT WAS                     PRETENDING THAT AS LONG AS                     NEVER     OUT    IT
 PLEASURABLE
                                                            USED     THE    WORD NIGGER                DIDNT
 WRONG BECAUSE             IT    HURT OTHERS OR
 BECAUSE      IT   WOULD HURT             ME    IN   THE    HAVE ANY POWER OVER PEOPLE OF                                  ACCEPTANCE                 OF

                                                            COLOR DIDNT WANT TO GIVE UP THE                                RESPONSIBILITY
 LONG RUN GROWINGUP MEANT LEARN
                                                                      OF DEFINING WHAT WAS OR                              AS       LEAVE      BEHIND           THE   SHAME
 ING SOMETIMES TO PUT OTHERS FEEL                           PRIVILEGE



                                                           PAGE          TRANSFORMATION        SUMMER 1998
                                                                                                                        ATTACHED         TO
                                                                               FEAR    AND RESENTMENT
                                                                               WHITE     GUILT           EMPATHY         TUGS     MORE

                                                                               STRONGLY        AND        THE CALL OF CONSCIENCE

                     WHITE                                                             MORE CLEARLY THAN EVER
                                                                               RINGS OUT
                                                                               CHOOSE DISLOYALTY TO WHITENESS

                                                                               BECAUSE          EMBRACE AN              ETHIC   OF LOVE

        COME FROM            CLAN          CANT LOVE                           INSTEADOF THEETHICOF                     DOMINATION
                             WEAR                                              NOT BECAUSE                  THINK        SHARE WHAT
          OR LEAVE                      ITS   FLAG

         THE      COLOR RESEMBLES PANIC                                        PEOPLE OF COLOR HAVE EXPERIENCED
                                                                               UNDER RACISM AND NOT BECAUSE OF
            TINTED    WITH        BLOODSHED
                                                                                 GUILTRIDDEN                    DOGOODERLIBERAL
                                                                               MENTALITY            LAM AN ENEMY OF WHITE
        WANT TO BELIEVE            FM    DESCENDED                             NESS BECAUSE AS                         WOMANAS
                                                                               LESBIAN         AS         PERSON WITH DISABII
  FROM   AT LEAST     ONE REDNECKED WOMAN
                                                                               TIES  HAVE EXPERIENCED THE ETHIC
IN    CLAPBOARD HOUSE WANTING COLUMNS                                          OF DOMINATION ON MY OWNBODY
      WHO SPOKE OUT               AGAINST     SLAVERY                          FIGHT     THE DOMINATORS                 FOR THE RIGHT

                                                                                                                           TO
      BUT      DONT KNOW HER ANYMORE                                           TO LIVE         TO LOVE          MYSELF           OPENLY
                                                                                LOVE THOSE               CHOSE AND         TO   NOT PRE
                                                                                TEND DESIRES               DO NOT FEEL          BELIEVE
 THAN      KNOW WHORODE                 WITH     THE   KKK                        WILL     NEVER ACHIEVE                  OR DESERVE
            WHORECEIVED               AS       GIFT                             THESE     RIGHTS           WHILE        MYSELF     CON
        THE SLAVES HER FATHER FATHERED                                          TINUE    TO PRACTICE              AN   ETHIC OF   DOMI
                                                                                NATION OVER OTHERS NOR DO                          IMAG
      WHOBETRAYED            THE BLACK          WOMAN
                                                                                INE     THAT             WILL    EVER    ATTAIN        THESE
          SHE ONCE LOVED AS                   CHILD
                                                                                GOALS WITHOUT PEOPLE OF COLOR AS
               ASK    THESE       QUESTIONS                                     MY AFFIES
     AND    THE DEFENDERS OF WHITE HONOR                                              AS AMERICANS WE ARE                         TRAINED

                                                                                TO REGARD ALL PROBLEMS                       AND SOLU
           TURN INTO AVENGING                 SPERM
                                                                                TIONS AS INDIVIDUAL                    IN NATURE         BUT
                                                                                IN    ORDER TO REPLACE                   THE    ETHIC     OF

             MY GUILT        IS    INDIVIDUAL                                   DOMINATION                 WITH AN ETHIC OF LOVE

             WHAT COATS MY THROAT                                               WE HAVE          TO BUILD BROAD COALITIONS

                                                                                WITH           MULTIISSUE               AGENDA          AND
                   LIKE    RED CLAY DUST
                                                                                EACH ISSUE ON                   THAT AGENDA WILL          RE
             IS    COLLECTIVE       PRIVILEGE
                                                                                QUIRE COLLECTIVE
                                                                                                 EFFORT                    NO AMOUNT
          SILENCE         PLEDGES ALLEGIANCE                                    OF CHANGE IN               MYINDIVIDUALBEHAV
           SISTERHOOD        DEMANDS PROOF                                      IOR COULDREMOVE THE PRIVILEGES
                                                                                HAVE ASAWBITESKINNED PERSON                                   IN
     OF THE TREASON         UNDERNEATH            MY SKIN
                                                                                      RACIST     SOCIETY            CHANGE        IS ONLY
                                                                                 POSSIBLE           IF     TAKE ACTION          WITH OTH

                                                                                 ERS TO ATTACK                  AND DISMANTLE             THE

                          AMY EDGINGTON                                          SYSTEM OF RACISM
                                                                                        WHITE AMERICANS                  ARE TAUGHT TO




                                    PAGE        TRANSFORMATION   SUMMER 1998
                                                          OF WHITE                          THAT     RACISM         WHAT DO              FEEL    REMORSE ABOUT
ADMIRE INDIVIDUAL                 EFFORTS SINGLE                        SOLIDARITY
                                                                                                                    WHAT AM       OF WHYDO FEEL
                                                          DEPENDS ON RACISM IS SO HUGE
                            AND QUICK                                                                                               SCARED
MINDED          FOCUS                        RESULTS

SHAME AND CONTEMPT                   ARE ATTACHED         THAT ALL MYACTS SEEM SMALL IN COM                         RESENTMENT WHAT CHANGES DO
                    THAT REQUIRES US                                      IT IS    PRECISELY THIS
                                                                                                  KIND              NEED TO MAKE WHAT DO NEED TO
TO   ANY CONDITION                                        PARISONBUT
TO   ASK FOR HELP SUCH AS CHILDHOOD                               CHIPPINGAWAY THAT WE
                                                          OF LIFELONG                                               KNOW WHO CAN              HELP           ME HOW
                                                                                                                    CAN                  OTHER WHITE                PEOPLE
POVERTY ILLNESS OR DISABILITY   BUT                       MUST COMMIT OURSELVES TO DOING                                     HELP

TO FIGHT RACISM WEWILL HAVE TO FIND                          LISTEN     WHEN       PERSON OF COLOR                  CHANGE
                                                                              RACIST ITS TIME TO                          TALK      UNDOING RACISM CANNOT
ALLIES    AMONG PEOPLE OF COLOR                    AND    SAYS THATS
OTHER WHITES              WEWILL     HAVE     TO          TAKE  DEEP BREATH                    CLOSE       MY       BE DONE ALONE          IMPORTANT FOR
                                                                                                                                                ITS
                                                   HELP
                                      ON     SEVERAL      MOUTH SIT DOWN AND                   LISTEN      BE       ME TO   FIND OTHER WHITE PEOPLE WHO
EACH OTHER STRUGGLE
FRONTS SIMULTANEOUSLY                 FOR                                                                           SHARE THE SAME GOALS                       WE MUST
                                             GENERA
                                              RACISM                                                                ALSO SEEK CONVERTS TO TRY TO TURN
TIONS     IF    WE REGARD FIGHTING
                                                                                                                    THE    SOULS     OF OTHER WHITE                  PEOPLE
AS AN INDIVIDUAL               ENDEAVOR WE WILL
                    BECOME IMMOBILIZED               BY                                                             FROM     THE     RACISM                CYNICAL       FEAR
QUICKLY
                                                                   HAD   TO LEARN           TO DOUBT                MEANSPIRITEDNESS    NARROWNESS
GUILT
                                                                                                                    AND INDIFFERENCE TO THE KIND OF

      HOWWE CAN DEFUSE                             THE            EVERYTHING              HAD BEEN                  LOVEFORSELFANDOTHERSTHATVALUES

                                            OF GUILT                                                                DIVERSITY        AND        FEELS       NO NEED        TO
      NEGATIVE ASPECTS
      GET INFORMATION                 THE MORE               TAUGHT        HAD TO GET           OFF THE             DOMINATE             THIS         IS    HOW WHITE
LEARN ABOUT                         THE LESS       TEND                                                             PEOPLE CAN PRACTICE                    WHAT CORNELL
                          RACISM
 TO SEE        IT    AS   AN   INDIVIDUAL         MORAL          WHITE EXPRESSWAY AND                               WEST CALLS          THE POLITICS          OF    CONVER

                           THE FEWER MISTAKES
                                                                                                                    SION
 PROBLEM AND
 MAKE AS            AN INDIVIDUAL       THE MORE                  TAKE THE SCENIC              ROUTE                      THERE ARE CLEARLY          MANY WHITE
 LEARN ABOUT RACISM THE LESS                       WORK                                                             PEOPLE WHO ARE                DEEPLY COMMIT

                                                     EX          THROUGH OTHER              PEOPLES                 TED TO WHITE SUPREMACY THEY ARE
 PEOPLE OF COLOR HAVE TO DO TO
           TO       ME HOWTHEY          EXPERIENCE                                                                  UNLIKELY       TO BE    SWAYED ITS IMPOR
 PLAIN
                                       LEARN ABOUT
                                                                           REALITIES                                TANT    TO    LET    THEM KNOW THAT                  THEY
 THE     WORLD THE MORE
 THE ETHIC OF DOMINATION                    THE   MORE                                                              FACE WHITE RESISTANCE                    TO   TELL   THEM
 UNDERSTAND WHAT                   WOULD GAIN BY                                                                    IN EFFECT       IF      CANNOT CHANGE YOUR

               IN     WORLD FREE      OF    SUPREMA                                                                 MIND          WILL    PUT MY BODY IN YOUR
 LIVING
                                                           CAUSE SCHOOL       IS IN       SESSION       IM    IN    PATH WE               SHOULD MEASURE OUR
 CIST    BLINDERSCAPABLE OF RESPECT
                                                                                    AND ITS GONNA                   COMMITMENT             TO FIGHTING         RACISM NOT
                      FILLED WITH TRUE
 ING DIFFERENCES AND
                                                           THE FIRST GRADE AGAIN
                                                                                   TO MOVE ON TO                    BY HOW MANY                 PEOPLE OF COLOR WE
 SELFRESPECT THAT DOES NOT DEMAND
                                                           TAKE     LOT OF   STUDY

 SUBMISSIVE             FROMANYONE                         THE NEXT CLASS              TRY TO PUT    MY FEEL         COUNT AS FRIENDS            OR LOVERS BUT BY
                          GESTURES
     DO SOMETHING THE STRONGEST                                    ON   THE BACK           BURNER            TELL    HOWMANY                 PEOPLE WE ARE
                                                                                                                                          WHITE
                                                           INGS
                                                                                        HAVE HURT       SOME                      TO SPEAK TO ABOUT RACISM
 ANTIDOTE TO GUILT IS ACTION THE LESS                      MYSELF THAT       IF                                      WILLING
                                                                                                   SHENEEDS
    DO ABOUT RACISM THE GUILTIER                           ONE EVENINADVERTENTLY
  FEEL WHITE SUPREMACY IS BUILT                            TO BE TAKEN CARE OF FIRST               TRY NOT TO
                                                                                                                           BACK TO THE PAST
                                                                                                                                                CANNOT TALK              ABOUT
                                                                                                       OR RES              FINALLY
  LARGELY ON THE COMPLICITY AND IN
                                                                     INSTANT           FORGIVENESS
                                                           EXPECT
                                                                            MUST FOLLOW                              WHITE                WITHOUT TALKING                ABOUT
  ACTION OF WHITE PEOPLE THE SIM                           TORATION     OF TRUST                                                 GUILT

                                                                                                                                             GUILT OUR RACE BEARS
                                                           THROUGH ON ANY COMMITMENT
                          SUCH AS INTERRUPTING                                                                       THE COLLECTIVE
  PLEST THING
                                        LETTER TO THE      MAKE TO CHANGE                                            FOR ATROCITIES         SUCH AS SLAVERY AND
  RACIST JOKE OR WRITING

  EDITOR      ABOUT POLICE BRUTALITY IS                           CAN TAKE CARE OF MY              GUILT   LATER     THE    GENOCIDE OF INDIAN                       PEOPLES
                                                                                       DOWN INTO       PIECES        HISTORY THREATENS                     TO CRASH      DOWN
     SIGNIFICANT  BREAK WITH THE IMAGE                     BY BREAKING            IT




                                                                      TRANSFORMATION           SUNUNER 1998
                                                          PAGE
                                                                        INCARCERATION             OF         JAPANESE             DID     WE    LEARN        THEIR      NAMES           IN
ONUSWHENEVERWEARECONFROFLTED
                                            RACIST      BEHAV           AMERICANS         AND    THE      ANTISEMITIC             SCHOOL
WITH OUR INDIVIDUAL
                   HERE AND NOWCOLLECTIVE                               IMMIGRATION         POLICIES
                                                                                                           THAT HELPED               HOW MANY AMERICANS KNOW
IOR IN THE
                                                                        CONDEMN JEWS             TO       HITLERS                 THAT THE HYMN AMAZING GRACE
         IS   LIKE    HERD OF ELEPHANTS IN                                                                              GAS
GUILT
                                                                        CHAMBERS                                                  WASWRITTEN BY                SLAVE TRADER          DE
THE LIVING          ROOMTHAT WHITE PEOPLE
                                                                                                                                                                         THAT
                                                                                                                                                 RELIGIOUS CONVERSION
HAVE BEEN TRAINED TO IGNORE AND                                                                                                   SCRIBING
                                                                                                                                  LED   HIM    TO   SPEND THE REST OF HIS LIFE
WE TEND TO GET FREAKED OUT WHEN
                                                                                                                                                                    THE SLAVE TRADE
SOMEONE CALLS                  THE        DUNG     TO    OUR AT                                                                   WORKING TO ABOLISH
                                                                                                                                  IN GREAT BRITAIN             IT    SERVES THE         IN
TENTION
                                                                                                                                               OF WHITE                                 FOR
    SLAVERY AND GENOCIDE ARE PART
                                                                                      AM AN ENEMY                 OF              TERESTS                        SUPREMACY
                                                                                                                                  WHITE                   TO FORGET           BOTH OUR
OF EVERY ASPECT                  OF CONTEMPORARY                                                                                              PEOPLE
                                                                                                                                               LEGACY OF RACISM
                                                                                                                                                                              AND THOSE
WHITE RACISM ALL WHITE PRIVILEGES                                          WHITENESS            BECAUSE AS                        FRIGHTFUL

                                                                                                                                  ANCESTORS         WHO OPPOSED RACISM
HAVE     THEIR       ROOTS IN THESE HISTORICAL

                                                                           WOMAN AS               LESBIAN            AS                 FOR   ME      THE    PERSONAL STORIES
OUTRAGES AMERICANS PARTICULARLY
                                                                                                                                  FICTION     AND     POETRY OF THOSE                WHO
WHITE AMERICANS ARE ALLERGIC  TO
                                                                                                                                                          THESE       ATROCITIES         OR
                                           WE GLORIFY          THE                                                                EXPERIENCED
                   AT THE
LOOKING                        PAST                                        PERSON WITH           DISABILITIES
                                                                                                                                                                                     MOST
                                                               WE                                                                 WHOSE ANCESTORS DID                  ARE THE
ENDLESS            FRONTIER OF THE FUTURE
                                                                                                                                                               THIS IS
HAVE BEEN TAUGHT THAT THIS IS                                 LAND                                                                COMPELLING KIND OF HISTORY
                                                                                HAVE EXPERIENCED THE
                                                                                                                                  THE ONLY HISTORY NOT WRITTEN BY THE
WHERE PEOPLE CAN PUT ASIDE                                    THEIR

          AND BECOME WHATEVER                                 THEY
                                                                                                                                  WINNERS AND ITS               VERY DIFFERENT
 PAST                                                                          ETHIC      OF   DOMINATION              ON
                                                                                                                                  FROM WHAT WE               READ IN SCHOOL IT
 WISH         TO   BE          THIS        DREAM         IS   ONLY
                                                                                                                                  HAS THE POWER TO OPEN OUR EYES                         TO
 ATTAINABLE           FOR WHITE             PEOPLE            HOW
                                                                                       MY OWNBODY                                  THE CONCRETE DETAILS OF OPPRESSION
 EVER         PEOPLE OF COLOR ARE NEVER
                                           THEIR
                                                                                                                                   AND      TO THE    INTERIOR        LIVES     OF THOSE
 ALLOWED             TO    LEAVE                        ANCESTRY
                                                                                                                                   WE WERE TRAINED                NOT TO SEE THIS
 BEHIND            THEM
        WHITE PEOPLE                      OFTEN PROTEST IN                                                                         WRITING      IS    FULL   OF     HOPE AND WIT
                      THAT THERE IS                                                                                                DESPAIR AND COURAGE IT COLORS IN
 ANGER OR FRUSTRATION
                                                                                   OUR HEROES                                      THE BLANKS IN OUR VISION OF WHAT IT
 NOTHING WE CAN DO TO CHANGE                                                FINDING
                                                                   IS       AND SHEROES                                            MEANS       TO    BE   HUMAN
 HISTORY             BUT        IN        FACT     HISTORY
                                                                           ITS NOT JUST THE RACIST PAST THATS
 COLLECTIVE           MEMORY WE                          ACTIVELY
                                                                         BEEN BURIED THE LONG HISTORY OF                                MOVING ON
 WORK TO CHANGE HISTORY WHEN WE
 IGNORE IT OR REMAIN WILLFULLY
                                                                         ANTIRACIST        WORK      IN    THIS      COUNTRY            COLLECTIVEGUILTNI
                                        OUR FIRST                        HAS BEEN BURIED               AS WELL          SOME       AN EVEN BIGGER            PIT TO FALL INTO THAN
 IGNORANT            ABOUT           IT                       DUTY
                                                                                                     MAY KNOW
                                                                         WHITE                                              THE    INDIVIDUAL          GUILT        BUT LISTENING            TO
  TO HISTORY              IS   TO     KNOW IT TO               LOOK                PEOPLE
                                                                                                                OF   SOME    OF    THE PAST IS THE FIRST STEP IN TURNING
                           AT THE                                        NAMES            NOT THE LIVES
  DEEPLY AND UNFLINCHINGLY                                                           IF


              ENSLAVEMENTS     OF                                        THE    BLACK HEROES AND SHEROES                     OF    COLLECTIVE        GUILT     INTO    COLLECTIVE        AC
  SUCCESSIVE
                                                                                          THANKS      TO THE EFFORTS         OF    COUNTABILITY           THE NEXT            STEP IS   COL
  INDIANS          AND AFRICANS                  AT THE FORCED           ABOLITION
                                                                                                                EDUCATE     US     LECTIVE                               TO LOOK CARE
  LABOR        OF THE           CHINESE            WHO         BUILT     AFRICANAMERICANS                  TO                                  RESPONSIBILITY

                                           THE                            BUT THE ABOLITION            OF SLAVERY           THE     FULLY AT THE EXACTLY            HOWWE EXPERI
  OUR RAILROADS                      AT            MASSACRES
                                 AND BROKEN                 TREATIES      MOST HOPEFUL EVENT               IN THE HISTORY           ENCE PRIVILEGE      TODAY AND YET ARE
  IMPRISONMENT
                                                                          OF SOCIAL JUSTICE          WAS DUE           IN PART      ABLE      FOR THE MOST PART TO REMAIN
  INDIANS           HAVE SUFFERED                  AT   LYNCHING
                                                                          TO THE EFFORTS        OF                          MI      BLISSFULLY       UNAWARE OF           IT    IN      SOD
  AND SEGREGATION THE                                EVIL      STEP                                       SIGNIFICANT

                                                                 THE               OF WHITE       MEN AND WOMEN                     ETY     DOMINATED BY WHITE PEOPLE
  TWINS  OF  SLAVERY                                     AT               NORITY




                                                                         PAGE        TRANSFORMATION             SUMMER1998
                                                                                                         MOST IMPORTANTLY        WE CAN BE
                           THE GANG                                                                GIN    TO TURN   COLLECTIVE    GUILT        INTO

                                                                                                   COLLECTIVE     ACTION   TO   TRANSFORM OR
 YOUVE      SEEN THEM ON THE CORNER OF CAPITOL                             AND MAIN
                                                                                                   OVERTHROW INSTITUTIONS         SUCH AS THE
 IN   PIN   STRIPES   AND BLUE SERGES JAYWALKING BROADWAY
                                                                                                   RACIST   EDUCATIONAL SYSTEM MEDIA
WATCH   FOR      THE 100 HAIRCUTS THOSE ITALIAN LEATHER SHOES

        TELLTALE        BULGES OF    CELL      PHONES AND BEEPERS
            HIGHCALIBER       LAPTOPS SLUNG              AT THEIR      SIDES

                                                                                                         WHEN                     OF COLOR
  EVE              KNOWS WHICH HOUSES BELONG TO THE GANG
                                                                                                                      PERSON

  GLASSSTUDDED CONCRETE TOWERS WHERE NOBODY                                      LIVES
                                                                                                                  THATS     RACIST         ITS
                                                                                                         SAYS
  WHERE THEY PEDDLE JUNK BONDS AND                           BAIL     OUT          LS

            THE NEIGHBORHOOD              IS    FULL   OF GRAFFITI         THE                              TIME    TO TAKE       DEEP
      WITH        DOUBLE     LINE   STANDS FOR THE GANGS MOTTO

      HOW LONG             CANYOU KEEP             SNAKE BEHIND             BARS                         BREATH CLOSE         MY MOUTH

                                                                                                            SIT   DOWNAND        LISTEN
      ON    WALL STREET SIGNS             FLY   ACROSS THE          MONEY PITS
      DEALS      GO DOWN IN         LA      WITH        FEW TINES          OF COKE
                                                                                                            BECAUSE SCHOOL         IS     IN
            IN    WASHINGTON         THE       GANG ROBS       GROCERIES
        FROM       GRANDMA          LUNCH       MONEY FROM           THE KIDS                                       SESSION


        THEY SEND TEENS       BAGGY PANTS TO DRIVE BY
                                     IN

                 PANAMA AND GRENADA JETS TOWRIDE
       THE ASPHALT SKIES            OF    BAGHDAD AND MOGADISHU
            ASSAULT GUNS CANT TOUCH FUELAIR                          BOMBS                         COURTS PRISONS ANDPOLICE THATPUT

                                                                    SHELLS                         THE POWER BEHIND WHITE PRIVILEGE
                 CLUSTER   MINES URANIUMTIPPED
                                                                                                    ITS HARD  WORK AND ITS SCARY BUT IT
                                                                                                    FEELS    WHOLE LOT BETTER THAN WAL
                     YES WE HAVE                GANG PROBLEM                                        LOWING IN GUILT
                    YET    EVE      TIME SHOOTING           STARTS                                                     AMY EDGINGTON
                  THE   GANG BLAMES SOME OTHER COLOR
                  THEY MASK THEMSELVES                  WITH   MI1ES
                   THEY SPEAK THROUGH MUFFLED                       LIES


                  BUT    WE HOLD     THE GANG RESPONSIBLE

                           WE KNOWWHOTHEY ARE




                                AMYEDG

                                                PAGE        TRANS FONNATION          SUMMER 1998

								
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