Tag Archives angry white men

White Supremacy: I Don’t Know How Much More of It I Can Handle

Since Sandra Bland died (was murdered?) I’ve shed tears nearly every day.  I haven’t watched the video of her encounter with the police officer who pulled her over. The police officer who stopped her for failing to signal when changing lanes which somehow led to her death. It’s too painful to view. I cannot consume more images of Black death by the hands of white supremacy. It’s traumatizing.

Yesterday on my way to drop off my rental car before heading to the airport, I accidentally made a wrong turn and came upon a police blockade. A handful of uniformed officers milled about, weapons encircling their waists, their Black and white Ford sedans forming a passageway wide enough for one car. 

Great. Fucking cops. My pulse sped up and my hands dampened with sweat as I quickly considered my options.

The officers were busy inspecting a car in front of me, so while they busied themselves with that driver, I backed up, planning to make a u-turn to get the hell away. I hadn’t done anything wrong – except having a terrible sense of direction – and I had a flight to catch.

The street was too narrow to make a u-turn without at least 15 points. I decided not to draw anymore attention to myself. When I pulled up to the sizable waiting officer, he peered into my rental – my heart threatened to explode – and said with a half-smile, “I saw you tried to turn around there. Where are you headed?”

I quietly told him, my voice wavering, blood pumping loudly in my ears, “I am headed to the airport. Returning my rental car first.”

“There’s no rental agencies this way,” he informed me like I’m an idiot.

He gave me instructions to find the rental car depot and then, speaking to me the way you’d approach a child:

“Don’t just dump the car on the side of the road,” he nodded his head toward the direction of the airport. “The rental company will charge you extra and you’ll get a ticket.”

It never would have occurred to me to dump the car. The rental agency has my credit card on file and my driver’s license information. More importantly, I am not irresponsible. I didn’t need his condescension.

I thought about Sandra Bland and how the police officer who pulled her over had the nerve to act surprised she wasn’t thrilled to get stopped. NO ONE IS HAPPY TO BE PULLED OVER. I wish I had Sandra’s composure when talking to the police officer, but I’ve never been good at hiding my fear.

I drove away, careful not to speed, even though I wanted to get away from them as fast as fucking possible, my hands still shaking.

White supremacy not only gets people killed, it wreaks havoc on the emotional well-being of many Black Americans, including me. Read more on The Girl Next Door is Black
source

When my eyes aren’t wet with tears, I’m filled with rage.

When I’m not crying or seething with anger, I fall into hopelessness.

I’ve begun to question what my goal is in writing about racism. What do I hope to achieve? Black people (and others) have been writing about the United States’ problem with racism and white supremacy for centuries.

I told someone recently that fighting racism is like trying to kill roaches. You kill a few and then 50 million of their disgusting relatives appear. It’s not about killing individual roaches. The problem is larger.

Let’s say I open one person’s eyes. I help them wake up to the reality of our country. Then what?

I’m exhausted by the gravity of the problem.

I don't know how much more of this racist world I can take | The Girl Next Door is Black
source

I’m sick of it all. I’m sick of being racially gaslighted by people who can’t see the world beyond the prism of whiteness, including some of my own friends. Or being trolled on Twitter by angry, racist white men who insist they’re Christian and love their country. These men usually have a bald eagle or American flag avatar – rarely do they show their real face, as they type the bigoted, ignorant drivel they harass Black tweeters with. Even on this blog, I am not safe from the racial harassment of “well-meaning” people.

Then there’s the irresponsible mainstream media that’s complicit in perpetuating white supremacy with their penchant for biased reporting. 

I find myself seriously reconsidering my personal views on having children. They’ll be born into the same twisted system. I’ll spend a significant chunk of my parenting time not just protecting my Black children from the usual elements of society and the human experience, but also protecting their sense of self-worth, their humanity; working hard to transcend the damage white supremacy inflicts upon black American’s self-esteem and lives.

I’m angry that a world exists where for centuries we’ve lived in a system based on a tremendous lie created and promulgated by greedy white men – that of white superiority. The avarice of these men that’s led to the genocide, murder and oppression of millions of people of color – ALL OVER THE WORLD for centuries.

I’m sick of trying to remain positive and buy into the idea that things will get better one day or “when the old racists die off.” In an interview with Vulture last year, on the topic of racial progress, comedian Chris Rock had this to say:

When we talk about race relations in America or racial progress, it’s all nonsense. There are no race relations. White people were crazy. Now they’re not as crazy. To say that Black people have made progress would be to say they deserve what happened to them before.

(Some) people, more specifically, (some) angry white people, decried his comments as racist(!). Because that’s what sometimes happens when you call out racism. Instead of acknowledging that there is problem, some white people remain on the defense or mired in their own feelings of guilt.

They’re not racist, no. It’s the Black man who says “white people” who is racist. How dare he bring up race? Meanwhile, Donald Trump is running around saying all manner of racist shit about Latinos and Black people and he’s a leading Presidential candidate for the Republican party.

Chris Rock is right though and anyone who’s being honest with themselves knows it.

Just this past weekend, several hundred angry white men (and a smattering of women) gathered in Stone Mountain, Georgia – former KKK headquarters, to rally to defend their right to fly the Confederate Flag. They maintain that it represents pride in their heritage, not racism. Even though the heritage of which they are so proud, of which the Confederate Flag represents, depended on the free labor of enslaved Black people. The Confederate Flag which in several states saw a resurgence in popularity in response to the ban on school segregation – long after The Civil War ended. But, no. They’re not racist. They’re just “proud.”

I don't know how much of America's racism I can take | The Girl Next Door is Black
source

20 years from now, those will likely be the same folks, who with the benefit of hindsight, will be ashamed of their actions. Apologizing and contrite like the damage hasn’t already been done. Just like those angry white people who greeted Black students trying to integrate white schools, with hostility, threats and indignant rage.  

Every day its some shit.

Like what you read? Follow The Girl Next Door is Black on Twitter or Facebook
 

Advertisement

What Emotions Am I Allowed to Have as a Black Woman?

It seems as though Black women in America are not allowed to express anger, otherwise we're seen as combative, mean or "having an attitude." So what emotions are we allowed to show? | Read more on The Girl Next Door is BlackYears ago, my visiting sister and I were teasing each other about one of those random topics siblings joke about. My roommate overheard us as she climbed the stairs in our apartment and gently admonished us:

“Now girls, don’t fight.”

My sister and I turned to each other with the same puzzled expression. We weren’t fighting. We were joking around, having a good time. What was she talking about?

I considered my roommate’s perspective: she saw two sisters in conversation with raised voices, using animated gestures.

I studied the situation from a different angle: my not-black roommate, saw two black women being loud and assumed we were fighting. This is the same roommate whom I once heard describe me to a white friend who’d asked about her new roommate, as “African-American from a middle class family,” and I wondered what my race or socioeconomic class had to do with anything.

That situation stuck with me all these years later and led me to review past and future encounters with different lenses.

America (specifically, the USA) thinks black women are loud. America finds a black woman with a raised voice angry and potentially threatening. Don’t believe me? Google: “loud black women” or “angry black woman.”

A few days ago, rapper Nicki Minaj tweeted out her frustration that her big booty-full, controversy-generating Anaconda video was overlooked for a Video of the Year Award by MTV. Soon after, media darling and America’s archetypal sweetheart, singer Taylor Swift, inserted herself into the situation, which was NOT ABOUT HER, tweeting Minaj with her hurt feelings and ivory tears.

A flurry of comments followed from Minaj, Swift, their loyal fanbases (the “Barbz” and the “Swifties”) and the media. On Air with/Ryan Seacrest got in the fray, framing the events in Swift’s favor:

It seems as though Black women in America are not allowed to express anger, otherwise we're seen as combative, mean or "having an attitude." So what emotions are we allowed to show? | Read more on The Girl Next Door is Black

The tweet has since been deleted since they were called out by the many who saw what actually happened. I took a screenshot because I knew their hot racist bullshit would be retracted. Nicki did not “jab” Taylor Swift. She addressed the erasure of black women in music and the double standards in societal standards of beauty.

Black women whom, as she said, “influence pop culture so much but are rarely rewarded for it.” Think about how many of your favorite songs are sung, written or produced by black women. Now include the women who sing background for some of your beloved artists. Never receiving proper credit for their contribution to songs which, without them, wouldn’t be the hits they are.

Perhaps Nicki was angry. Is she not entitled to feel anger? Frustration? Just being a black woman in the United States is reason is enough to be angry sometimes. She got angry and tweeted her discontent – likely to start a discussion. She used her words to vent. Dylann Roof, a white male, got angry and killed 9 black people after they welcomed him into their church.

Yesterday, I watched as Access Hollywood continued the portrayal of Nicki Minaj as an angry black woman, even going so far as to list all the times she dissed the show.

 

Meanwhile, Taylor was let of the hook for being oblivious and distracting from a racial discussion with her self-involvement. “Poor innocent Taylor”, attacked by that vicious, “angry black woman”.  They ignored the opportunity to elevate a real world, important issue – tied to pop culture, therefore relevant –  to center a white woman and her feelings. Racism? Yeah, that sucks, but what about Taylor’s feelings about how that mean ol’ black woman treated her?!

Sandra Bland, the young black woman from Texas (an “African-American from a middle class family”) who was arrested for “switching lanes” and somehow ended up hanged in her jail cell three days later, has been accused of being “combative” with the arresting officer – as though that would excuse murdering her!

Let’s see:

You’re a black woman minding your business, happily driving to your new job, where you’ll be helping others, when you notice you’re being trailed by a cop. No person with dark skin in the United States wants to be followed by a police officer. So you switch lanes, hoping he’s not, in fact, following you. You’re not doing anything wrong, as far as you know, but you’re pulled over.

The officer speaks to you like you’re beneath him and becomes increasingly agitated during what should have been a routine stop. When you ask, at least 14 times, why you’re being arrested, you don’t get an answer and are physically abused. I don’t know about you, but I’d be angry as hell. I am angry just writing about it.

I am angry.

Black women are being diminished, degraded and dehumanized in the media and in our real lives because racist people find our righteous anger scary. That makes me angry.

It makes me VERY FUCKING ANGRY.

But, I can’t be angry. Black women get fired for being angry. We get derided for being angry. We get killed for being “angry.”

I can come back from losing a job. I’ll survive being mocked. But please, tell me how I am allowed to behave that won’t get me killed?

 

Like what you read? Follow The Girl Next Door is Black on Twitter or Facebook

Syndicated on BlogHer