Accordingto McIntosh (1990), white privilege is like an invisible bag, endowedto the Caucasians, and it is stashed with blank checks, maps, tools,visas, clothes and codebooks, among other special provisions neededfor a comfortable life. I am a 24-year-old multi-racial universitystudent of Cherokee/ Creek, Irish, English, and black ancestry. Justlike my parents, and grandparents, I identify myself as black. I grewup in Houston, Texas. I was a naïve girl who thought that racism wasoutdated. My family consisted of three boys and four girls, and I wasthe darkest among my siblings.
Duringthe fourth grade, I experienced a racism incident. I remember the daybecause I got into an argument with a white girl. At the end of thedispute, she said, “Inany case, I am not as black as you are. I am more intelligent and Ican spare no time for arguing with you.” Besides, I recall the teacher’s intervention. She did not referto it as prejudice despite that the avowal directly inferred that shewas brighter than I was because she was white. The instructor neverreprimanded the girl for her intolerant statement. Instead, shepunished both of us after the lesson.
Evenafter the incident, I remained inexperienced about the attitude ofthe whites towards colored people. I believed that my classmates andneighbors could not be racists. The girl`s comments hurt me, but Iwas too naive to understand the avowal as bigotry. Nevertheless, myself-confidence was hurt substantially. She made me feel weak andunintelligent, just because I was black and she was white.
Duringmy preliminary years on campus, I interacted with white students,especially, the boys. I felt the need to detach myself from “blackpeople.” As I grew up, my self-image was dejected by hearing things such as“darkie”and other extemporaneous remarks about individuals who were as “blackas night.”In fact, I did not feel beautiful at all. Instead, I supposed thatbeing white or light skinned was the only way to be attractive. Ifelt miserable because of my skin color to the point that I couldpray and look forward to the day I would wake up with a light skin. Specifically, I was inspired by the fact that I was in an honorsstudent group, which was full of white members. Consequently, I feltit was essential to hang around them. After a while, I came torealize that this was an excuse. My friend, Tisha, invariably keptthe company of people of color despite being a part of elite group.
May2014 marked my turnaround time as I was jogging in the morning. Awhite man approached me in a white truck that had a well-displayedConfederate flag. Since I was running against the traffic, I wassure that a blatant deed was about to occur. The man leaned on hiswindow with the middle finger raised upwards, spat, and bellowed then-word.
Undeniably,I could not go down without a fight. I responded, "Ohsurely, you fraidy-cat, why don’t you get out of the car and saythat to my face.”Instead of getting out, he sped off. The act instigated my thoughtsabout pro-racism, and I realized how many people suffered insults,just as I did. I imagined the number of “pleasant”white individuals who were pure racists. After the event, I cast-offany remarks about beautiful dark girls as compliments. Instead, I amlikely to curse back at such statements.
Thankfully,I am no longer a pro-racist. I have fully embraced the fact that I amblack and love black men too. As a social justice warrior, I have nointention to remain unobtrusive around my experiences withpro-racism. I believe that bigotry is real, and it shapes every dayof my life. Furthermore, by ignoring such experiences, I join thesystem that has allowed social injustices to remain embedded in themodern civilization. The only way to change the upshot and collectionof pro-racism is by talking about it, despite the associated painfulexperience.
McIntosh,P. (1990). White privilege: Unpacking the invisible knapsack.WellesleyCollege Center for Research on Women.Retrieved from