If 2015 has taught us anything, it’s that discussions about race haven’t changed much.
The arguments “not all White people are racist,” “he has a Black girlfriend,” or “I have Black friends” are problematic, since they play down the plight of racism and the myriad discriminatory experiences African-Americans face in this country.
The Huffington Post points this out perfectly with a throwback video of the legendary Muhammad Ali speaking about the “not all White people” argument.
During his 1971 interview with BBC’s Michael Parkinson, the legendary boxer and activist explained why the argument will always be null and void.
The Huffington Post reports:
“There are many white people who mean right and in their hearts wanna do right,” he said. “If 10,000 snakes were coming down that aisle now, and I had a door that I could shut, and in that 10,000, 1,000 meant right, 1,000 rattlesnakes didn’t want to bite me, I knew they were good… Should I let all these rattlesnakes come down, hoping that that thousand get together and form a shield? Or should I just close the door and stay safe?”
Ali’s words are still applicable today. Just this year, the MTV documentary White People tapped into White millennials’ idea of race and privilege. The intent to give another perspective regarding race was present, but the participants ended up portraying themselves as victims in a diverse country and were hesitant to address race head-on.
It’s a difficult conversation, but as we know, old habits can die-hard.
SOURCE: The Huffington Post | VIDEO CREDIT: Tumblr
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