“Acting White”


‘Acting White’

Against the notion that blacks victimize themselves by “acting black,” Princeton undergraduate Kristen Coke complains that “acting white” does not insulate her from petty racist insults. After all, she doesn’t act “ghetto.”

I’m not concerned about victimizations that occur when blacks “act white” in the presence of whites. In my world, there aren’t enough white people to matter. I’m concerned about the victimizations that occur when black people “act black” among blacks.

Why is “acting ghetto” even a concept?

Why is truancy higher among black children than white, with a corresponding gap in achievement?

Related:  Often-absent students score lower on NAEP

Why do so few black men have the courage to walk unarmed?

Why are poor white people so much more likely to escape poverty than poor blacks? The discrepancy is truly alarming.

Related: Race and upward mobility

Something’s at work here that doesn’t involve white people, that destroys self-esteem, that destroys dreams, that destroys the drive to achieve, that destroys one’s will to get on your feet after a fall.

One need not be white to be racist.

Every time a black parent curses his or her pre-schooler in public, it’s a racist act.

Is this “acting black?” If it is, then “acting black” is racist itself.

Black Americans’ lot won’t improve until they themselves redefine blackness. No reference to white people is needed. What white people think, say, or do is immaterial.

The power is in black hands.

AUDIO VERSION

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