Tuesday, June 30, 2009

If White Americans Are To Be Envied, Here's Why.

I am not one to assume that whites enjoy any innate advantage in the United States. There are poor whites, middle class whites, and affluent whites who have varying degrees of hurdles to overcome in day to day life.

But if there is one thing that whites enjoy that let's say blacks do not, it is respect for their individualism. By this I mean, a white person can choose to be a redneck, a wall street banker, a conservative, a liberal, or a hermit and society does not castigate them for not adhering to a predetermined role assigned to whiteness.

Blacks on the other hand, are expected to think a certain way, assume certain characteristics, and embody stereotype. For example, Barney Frank and Rush Limbaugh are polar opposites. One is a gay, left-wing Member of Congress and the other is a heterosexual, right-wing political pundit. They have nothing in common, yet they are both full-fledged whites. On the other hand, Al Sharpton and Clarence Thomas represent the same continuum in Black America. However, Thomas is castigated as "not authentically Black," as a racial turncoat, and as some sort of an anomoly by both many blacks and whites. Sharpton, eccentricities and all, would be viewed as the true black of the two.

What is going on here? On the black side, there is an unabashed collectivist mindset that deems any black person as a single part of the whole, a "brother" if you will.

On the white side, it is a bit different. Most whites take their cue about blacks from limited personal experience and politically correct practices demanded by blacks. Whites are thus conditioned and encouraged by blacks to view blacks in a collectivist manner.

Both are misguided. Until Americans extend the burden of individual assessment to persons of ALL ethnicities, the double standard will persist.

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