Aamer Rahman Kills An Explanation of the Farce of ‘Reverse Racism’
I really hate the term ‘reverse racism.’ It makes absolutely no sense. It’s like reverse eating. Except, reverse eating doesn’t exist. It’s just called throwing up. Similarly, reverse racism doesn’t exist either. But, sometimes, people – mainly white people – get offended when certain facets of their own white privilege cause racially discriminatory or insensitive behavior toward people of color. Let me make that clear. Sometimes, white people get hurt and boo-boo-kitty-faced when their ivory tower whiteness and overt privilege offends or marginalizes other people. So, what do those offended white people do? Well, they sometimes cry that they are the victims of ‘reverse racism,’ a thing that actually isn’t a thing at all.
Aamer Rahman, from the ‘Fear of a Brown Planet‘ comedy act, sums up the nothingness that is reverse racism so eloquently that it is almost jarring.
See the subtle nuance there? For reverse racism to exist, we would literally have to reverse engineer reality for the past five or so centuries. Why? Well, because institutionalized white privilege took that long to get to where we are today. And, since whites have gamed the system to benefit whites, racial minorities really can’t do anything ‘racist’ to them.
What whites are really referring to when they feel all uncomfortable when their college professors discuss their privilege or folks implore the government for affirmative action policies is guilt. They feel guilty because they feel as if they are being blamed for offenses they didn’t commit. They feel guilty because they don’t know how to empathize with the grievances presented by racial minorities. They just feel guilty. Maybe they even feel a bit of shame. And, that’s okay. Feeling something is at least a start.
I feel both guilt and shame all the time. Being a black person in a sea of white makes daily life for me an exercise in shame and guilt depending on the day. That’s because of racism.
And, I am wise enough to know that the answer isn’t in making up terms to make me feel better. Acknowledgement of my issues is probably a better place to begin. But, all of us ethnic groups have to meet each other somewhere in the middle if we have any hope of change.
Thanks Aamer for the comedic public service announcement. Hopefully, as more and more people see the humor in such a baseless term it will decrease in use. And, while we are chuckling, maybe it’ll lighten the mood a bit making race talk less taboo in this country.
Want More Convos Like This One?
Latest posts by Jenn M. Jackson (see all)
- It is impossible to love Black women and R-Kelly at the same time - July 17, 2017
- How we use the term ‘hater’ to avoid reflection and self-improvement - July 12, 2017
- On ‘4:44’, maleness, and the performance of the public apology - July 10, 2017
- It’s even harder to watch ‘The Handmaid’s Tale’ when you know Black women’s history - June 9, 2017
- It’s time to stop trying to integrate ‘SNL’ - May 30, 2017