I stumbled upon this article, which appears to be causing a huge public outcry, while I was scrolling down my news feed page on Facebook. Naturally, being a person who identifies as white and who hails from Bulgaria, a country where the population is almost 100% white has no experience with racism whatsoever, I opened it just to regret doing so.
What struck me is the perpetual generalization that seems to be an inseparable part of racial disputes, a trend we see in all our readings for class. While it is true that genocide and the categorization of humankind is predominantly linked to the white race and this is a shame that should be exposed and continually reminded of, I do not believe in the notion that having fair skin makes me racist and that, more or less, white people today are monsters. I would therefore say that trying to extrapolate historical themes into the matters of a century in which people are transgressing racial and ethnic boundaries in order to help and be helped is a legacy of racism and a sure way to downgrade once again to it and all of its linked misconceptions. Maybe what might have been meant was that being white means being considered racist, but not necessarily meaning that a white person is racist at heart.
I guess that the concept of implicit bias that the article mentions could be read the other way round with respect to that statement. Namely, we do not inherently think of diversity in a racist frame, but ourselves trigger conflict in our efforts to appease it without paying attention to the versatility our audience has. We are living in an era where we paradoxically create laboratories of our own – schools and law enforcement – by mispresenting or not giving the whole piece of information we intend to and by excluding diversity by leaving room for conflict through subtle opinions presented as legitimacy. This way “impressionable youths’’ are agitated and the gap between races and ethnicities starts to expand at a mind-blowing rate, so that mankind gets stuck in quicksand – we erase our own social accomplishments by trying to secure and promote them through a well-learned but not updated mindset, which I believe is the living laboratory of today: a school system which invests its resources into a bright future but in this deed does not account for the consent of students unconsciously being influenced by authoritative opinions for life, nor for the impact it has on its defendants and the way they and others think of them.