"Stop hating your own race"
This is an exchange I had with an old acquaintance on FB, on a post a shared about Trump's paying only $750 in taxes. Another friend was saying she was sad that a bunch of our old friends with whom we grew up were still supporting him, even after children in cages, blatant racism, how he's bungled COVID and so many have died as a result, etc.
Of course my husband came immediately to my defense, fucking guns a-blazin'.
I unfriended and blocked this old acquaintance.
But this is also true of me:
I mean, I was the one who blocked her. 😂😂😂
But still got to get that say in. Honestly, though, it's an important say.
My original response to "Very successful old friends..." was much more inflammatory than what I ended up saying. And yet she came at me. I don’t blame her for getting angry. But what she threw at me was not mine to hold, so I really just watched as her rage chunks flew by.
I purposely said “generational and amassed” wealth to leave room for her amassed wealth that she undoubtedly made on her own. I have no qualms or arguments there. But we did both grow up in wealthy white families. This isn’t an indictment. It is what it is. Also, my crusade is not to hate on people with generational wealth. That would be wildly hypocritical. However, I personally feel it’s important to reach down the ladder of privilege to help those who need it the most, especially when you’ve been so lucky financially. Black people have a hard time amassing generational wealth because the system is rigged against them. Lest we forget that people are still paying the traumatic price for their ancestors being forced here so that we today can have our stuff our stuff our precious stuff. To me it’s just about a responsibility of both being on this planet and being an American. I also feel it is a scarcity mindset to believe that helping someone else have an opportunity takes away from your own wealth and opportunities.
It is illuminating that my mere suggestion of the existence of white privilege means I “hate [my] own race.” And it is “insane.” I don’t hate my race because I want better for all races. Again, I also benefit when others are lifted up. To me, this response is full of glaring racism. The delusion of white supremacy is showing.
I also find it disturbing that this is someone who runs a Creole/Cajun restaurant. I'll just leave that right there.
“#mentalillness” insults me (obviously) and makes light of mental illness. This is just...gross.
I can only hope that white people continue to wake up to their own place in the delusion of white supremacy. For their own benefit of getting free from it. But, more importantly, for the benefit of everyone who is not white. Like, to not die.
I think often about what a friend has said about the US having a sort of Stockholm syndrome. This rings so true to me. This idea that "we're the best we're the best we're the best I did this all on my white own because we are the damn best I'm gonna ride this thing into the ground burning all the way guns a blazin' flags a flyin' USA USA USA USA USA!"
BUT THIS TRUTH: "No one is free until we are all free." -Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
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It's me, Jennifer Bernice (rhymes with "Furnace": it was my Granny's name) Sutkowski
• More details about my writing here.