Why Whites Want to Ignore Racial Issues (#750)

“Is it possible that because I am white, there are some racial dynamics that I can’t see?” That's one of the eye-opening questions Robin J. DiAngelo poses in her book, White Fragility: Why It's so Hard for White People to Talk about Racism. This is not an easy book to read, but it does help unpack why many whites are racially unaware of the dynamics of racism that underscore our culture and why they can be so defensive when it comes up. It also shows how differently people are using the same terminology which adds to the complication of discussing race. 'White fragility' is actually a form of bullying because it makes it difficult for people to engage us in a conversation we al need to share. This is the first of a two-parter that will conclude on July 10.

Podcast Notes:
Wayne's Recent Blog on Conversations about Race
A Language of Healing
Previous Podcasts with Arnita
Email Arnita
If You Can Help Us in Kenya

6 Comments

  1. Wayne I see you in the photo accompanying, but that beautiful younger woman is not Robin? ? just curious about the photo? Thanks.

  2. Looking forward to the next one! I love how u r taking the bull by the horns Wayne! Can u talk about white supremacy? It’s another term some don’t like.

    • We already recorded the next one, JKB, and I don’t remember if we talked there or not. And, it’s not easy to talk about since ‘white supremacy’ means a lot of different things to different people. At it’s best it just means whites are in control of the culture to the detriment of other groups. It’s a holdover from the colonizing of America where Europeans displaced indigenous people and enslaved people from Africa. They took over the resources, and through their incredible sacrifice and industriousness built a prosperous society that tends toward their benefit. That was the way of Europeans all over the world because they thought themselves superior to every one else. We are living the harsher realities of that and in the name of generosity and recognition that we have exploited other groups horribly, it would be wise for us to rethink these dynamics and recognize that we are not supreme, but simply one color of the vastest hues of humanity.

  3. I think I understand it Wayne, but maybe not clearly. Every human being is racist or has been racist or has a propensity to being racist, to some degree or another even if we don’t recognize it in ourselves. Racism and intolerance, seems to be an outgrowth of our human nature which fears the differences of others.. I grew up in a family like many others, which occasionally made demeaning, derogatory or inappropriate comments about the physical appearance, mannerisms, race, origins, and gender characteristics of others. When I became a Christian and I asked God into my life and accepted our Lord’s sacrifice to forgive me for all of my transgressions and sins including those listed. I expected to be to be totally cleansed and forgiven. It then became my intention and still is to treat others exactly how I would like to be treated. I have fallen short many times in my 50 years of being a follower of Jesus, but I continue to ask forgiveness and carry on with good intentions. Over those many years of being a follower of Christ, some of our best friends were an Asian family with many happy and joyful memories to this day. Also we have had friendships with an Aboriginal family along with others I came in contact with. Also I had a good friendship with an East Indian co-worker. Am I racist? Probably somewhere deep down in the recesses of my heart there are still issues that remain tangled up, yet my wholehearted desire is to see others and treat them exactly as our Lord sees and treats them. I ache inside when I hear of the continual racial strife and divide in this present world and I long for the day when this is will behind all us. It will be beautiful on the other side!

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