To white anarchists that work themselves up into a frenzy when they hear the term 'whiteness'

Submitted by radmenacer in Anarchism (edited )

Do you know why white pride is synonymous with hate whereas brown/black/gay/x pride is not? The latter movements were created to combat the systemic and social oppression of the other. They seek to undo the notion that white is the standard by which all others are judged. Imagine for just a second being bombarded from birth by media, authority figures, textbooks, classmates that you aren't as smart or pretty or capable as your white neighbors... those pride movements are meant to empower those marginalized groups from within against the long running history of white pride as a tool of oppression. White pride is not an internal movement. It historically seeks to maintain or gain power and influence through external means. It uses violence coercion and intimidation to assert the supremacy of whites over others. It seeks to maintain a culture of supremacy deeply rooted in social Darwinism and manifest destiny. It is a form of hierarchy.

As an anarchist, you are against hierarchy in all forms. That is one core tenant that all schools of anarchy share.

Why you shouldn't take it personally: white isn't a race. It is a social construct designed to reinforce hierarchy. If you are against all systems of oppression you have a real duty to examine it, even if it benefits you. That means combating the rational ignorance thats going to stop you from accepting that whiteness doesn't define you. It is your reaction to it that will say whether or not you are dedicated to equality, real liberty and combating oppression.

Lastly of none of this makes it through to you, ask yourself what part of your culture can be defined as white? If you're Irish or Serbian for example and want to appreciate your history, is that defined as whiteness? I would say no, those cultures predate the notion of whiteness (as was further explained in the above link). If you cannot separate them, its going to take some introspection to find out why... and that doesn't invalidate the position of somebody who disagrees with you simply because they can't (or don't want to) explain it to you in a way that slips past your defense mechanisms.


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GaldraChevaliere wrote

It still kind of galls me when Irish and Italian diaspora cling to privilege handed down to us by our own oppressors and mortal enemies, like the English or Spanish had any transcendental power to elevate others to anything but their stupid imperialist club, or that the qualities they ascribed to us out of convenience (namely being dumb enough to keep fighting loyally for their little empires) should be anything to aspire to.

Like, you'd think that in the current climate we'd be embracing our pre-colonial cultures and actively taking a stand with other folk against the people who've been trying to exterminate us since 1100 with literally the only break in it being the past thirty years, but then if you'd ask half the assholes I know back in New England they'd be crying about how they're 'better' and 'worked harder', and they have the fucking nerve to want to actually be part of the white club. Like, how the fuck do you disrespect your ancestors so badly to join hands with their murderers not even out of pragmatism but out of staunch fucking ego?

If you want to kill whiteness or at least opt out of it, you can't just stop at saying "well I'm irish, I had it bad too." You have to actually take steps to do that. You have to actively abdicate that privilege and undermine it everywhere you can, even knowing that you're not going to be held up like some radiant (but still subservient to the 'real' whites, never forget that) angel with intrinsic virtue, and that people of color still aren't going to like you until you prove you're not just doing this to slum it. Learn your own mother language, wear your own traditional clothing instead of someone else's. Use the fact that white people perceive you as part of the gang to get in close and ruin racist projects or run distraction for PoC comrades.


buzz wrote

I really liked this article:Why People of Color Need Spaces Without White People, that tequilawolf posted recently, it was a good read even if it was directed to white audiences. some selected parts:

  • The values of whiteness are the water in which we all swim. No one is immune. Those values dictate who speaks, how loud, when, the words we use, what we don’t say, what is ignored, who is validated and who is not. Unless we are actively and persistently dismantling these constructs, we are abiding by them.
  • The act of supporting people of color is one of subversion. We are subverting white cultural conditioning. These are the values that fuel our institutions and organizations; they fuel our social hierarchy and how we self-identify. Undermining this conditioning requires fierceness and bravery. Anyone doing this will be challenged. Will you be an accomplice in supporting PoC spaces?

thekraken wrote (edited )

I think part of the issue is due to how it is presented. At face value, someone (who has white skin) seeing comments about 'White genocide' - which is commonly used as a joke - for the first time will take it literally. They don't understand that White isn't a race, and that 'Whiteness' is a social construct. They think that it is a racist attack on them due to their skin colour. (The irony of that is a whole other topic). I don't have any solution to that, and I'm not going to go around telling oppressed people how they can and can't joke about their situation, but it helps to understand why people react the way they do.


ziq wrote

The thing is tho, it's always explained to them but their tantrum only gets worse.


thekraken wrote

Well, at that point, fuck 'em. Ignorance can be understood and solved through education. Idiocy cannot.


surreal wrote

to the ones that also drink coca cola and wear nike?


JoeMemo wrote

If you're Irish or Serbian for example and want to appreciate your history, is that defined as whiteness? I would say no, those cultures predate the notion of whiteness

I think those cultures certainly qualify under the current whiteness standard, however. They're not rejected by WASPS the way they used to be.


alesto wrote (edited )

After reading this, I still don't think the term "whiteness" is a good term. "White supremacy" or "systematic racism" seem to be better.

Also, "whiteness" doesn't fit the situation in South Africa, where black supremacy is an issue. If anyone called it "blackness", i would imagine most people would see why its racist.

And there's more whites than minorities in the US. Do you want less whites to be a part of anarchism?


1312ftp wrote

Also, "whiteness" doesn't fit the situation in South Africa, where black supremacy is an issue.

No. Black supremacy exists nowhere. Overwhelmingly, private land, businesses and mining resources remain in white hands in South Africa, despite whites being less than ten percent of the population.

When you are accustomed to privilege, equality can seem like oppression.

Documentary: The People Versus The Rainbow Nation


radmenacer wrote

If anyone called it "blackness", i would imagine most people would see why its racist.

um see f/blackness

black supremacy is an issue

You are insinuating reverse racism ( which is not really a thing )...

I still don't think the term "whiteness" is a good term. "White supremacy" or "systematic racism" seem to be better.

...and caping for a separation of whiteness and systemic white oppression, without consideration that one relies on the other.

You are in essence arguing from a reactionary platform due to a fundamental misunderstanding of some cornerstones in revolutionary theory. For one racism is defined as systemic oppression and can only be fully executed when one majority class has the power (and representation) to use institutions against a minority.

More importantly, your definition of intersectionality is not nuanced. Your comments seem to hint that it is all inclusive, when the original intention and accurate definition is "an analytical framework which attempts to identify how interlocking systems of power impact those who are most marginalized in society" the key word being most marginalized.

Also, "whiteness" doesn't fit the situation in South Africa

I am ignorant over what you are referring to as black supremacy in Africa, but it honestly sounds like a dog whistle. If you are reading stories about this, it may help to shift your perspective to one of anti-colonialism in order to gain a little insight. Remember apartheid is still happening in the world, and many native peoples are struggling to take their land back from neo-colonial governments and corporations all across the world. These entities have a vested interest in running the narrative that whites consume and I would expect them to use this "black supremacist boogeyman" tactic to manufacture consent. (As they did vs black panthers )


martasultan wrote

Also, "whiteness" doesn't fit the situation in South Africa, where black supremacy is an issue

I see a lot of people, even those who know better, repeating this. There's really strong propaganda around it.

Here's one good read to summarize the current shit. There's a longer, nearly-an-hour video I could refer you to but I don't post videos unless requested.


buzz wrote (edited )

you realise apartheid only "ended" *24 years ago

stop with this shit


Ant wrote

24, but yeah still nothing compared to 350+ years of settler colonialism