‘Can’t We All Just Get Along?’ Learning to Become an Ally of Change and Justice

David J. Leonard, Huffington Post, September 17, 2012

College students by the tens of thousands are heading back to campus in the coming weeks. Because of entrenched segregation and limited intra-racial friendships as well as the persistence of Eurocentric American curriculum, the vast majority of white entrants will arrive without much knowledge or understanding about the histories of communities of color. Even less likely will be an understanding of the operation of racism, whiteness, power, and inequality, given our culture of denial and white America’s overall resistance to look inward regarding race and racism. They will arrive on campus without understanding the histories and cultures of communities of color; the vast contributions in science and arts, in literature and in the academy will be unknown; the importance of leaders of color, of sheroes and heroes, of those who have contributed throughout this history (yes, those who “built it”) will be as unrecognizable as advanced calculus. This needs to change.

This generation of students will arrive on campus amid an overall assault on ethnic studies courses. Representative Steve King recently denounced multiculturalism as a threat to democracy given its emphasis on victimhood and efforts to encourage people to eschew personal responsibility:

It’s not the multiculturalism that’s wrong, it’s the victimology, which has been the core of multiculturalism. People are being told that it’s not their fault, that it’s somebody else’s . . . That’s the excuse path. We need to have individual responsibility, a culture that supports it—that celebrates it—and one that discourages the slackers from lining up at the public trough and accepting the benefits of the sweat of someone else’s brow.

While I doubt Representative King has taken an ethnic, women’s or queer studies class, there is a certain irony in Rep. King and others lamenting these classes as an “excuse path” that leads students of color to refuse to take responsibility and pull themselves up by their bootstraps. Isn’t the refusal to acknowledge a history of racism, lynchings, genocide, slavery, exploitation, and abuse the ultimate refusal of personal responsibility? Aren’t the efforts to deny the contributions of people color amid the myopia about white affirmative action and white privileges emblematic of a refusal to take responsibility, to be accountable?

What is also clear is that students are arriving on campuses believing that race remains significant, even though they often have a difficult time defining and talking about racism. Worse, we are eroding the very spaces to not only learn the language, but also to develop the tools to combat inequality and injustice. {snip}

{snip}

Amid all these issues, I often find myself wondering how black studies and ethnic studies have the potential to change America’s racial path, and how ethnic studies and understanding the ongoing history of racism is essential to a quest for a “more perfect union.” {snip}

Imagine if every student took at least one black studies course per year during college, alongside of Chicano, Asian American and Native American Studies. What if students, what if white students, starting in kindergarten and through graduate school, American’s future leaders, teachers, and voters, learned a 4th “R”—racism—alongside of (w)riting, reading, and (a)rithmetic? Surely institutional racism would remain an obstacle, but whites who inhabit those institutions, from the classroom to the Capitol, could surely change.

Learning about minstrelsy and the history of racist imagery could potentially deter white students from donning blackface—for the sake of fun, parties and Halloween. Learning about the history of slavery and lynchings would hopefully incite righteous indignation the next time a noose happened to appear on campus, or the next time someone scrawled lynch on a chalkboard or dorm room door. {snip}

Can we imagine a world where white students didn’t commonly use the “N-Word behind closed doors because they understood the history of racial violence? {snip}

{snip}

A couple years later, while at University of California, Santa Barbara, I enrolled in a Chicana Feminism class. Although excited to learn, I quickly questioned my decision when I entered a class that had roughly 53 Chicana women and three Chicano men. As the only white male, I felt apprehensive and unsure as to my place in the class. With the encouragement of the professor, I remained in the class. During a small group discussion about race and privilege, I shared my anxiety, explaining how I felt like an “outsider.” A classmate quickly responded noting, “Now you know how we feel in every class.” But in fact, I did not and couldn’t know since I felt uncomfortable, as an outsider, and as representative of “my community” only twice a week for 75 minutes. When class was over, I returned to the sea of whiteness, privileged in my invisibility and empowered by a world that normalized whiteness. Yet, the educational value transcended learning about privilege, racism, and sexism, but in getting exposed to the often-erased rich history of the Chicana community. Yes, it was about politics and larger structural inequalities, but it was a course about literature, art, history, and the beauty of the Chicana experience. I can only wonder how the world might look if more students had this type of experience. To be sure, this is a world worth fighting for.

{snip} It’s really simple: read, take a class, break down walls of segregation, be an ally, and ultimately work to change the very institutions and culture that perpetuate violence and injustice. Elon James White offers a prescription in this regard, “We need allies. The marginalized can’t be left to speak up for themselves every time. But along with being an Ally comes a responsibility. Remember that.” Part of that responsibility comes with the expectation of learning. Remember that.

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  • Puggg

    the persistence of Eurocentric American curriculum

    Where?

    Learning about the history of slavery and lynchings would hopefully
    incite righteous indignation the next time a noose happened to appear on
    campus, or the next time someone scrawled lynch on a chalkboard or dorm
    room door.

    Most of those are hoaxes.

    Can’t We All Just Get Along?

    Can’t we all just end our lives at the bottom of a swimming pool after getting bonked out on a literal cornucopia of substances?

    http://www.cnn.com/2012/08/23/us/rodney-king-autopsy/index.html

    • The__Bobster

      Sounds familiar.

      http://www.nydailynews.com/news/crime_file/2007/10/09/2007-10-09_noose_found_on_professors_door_at_columb.html

      Noose found on professor’s door at Columbia University
      BY RICH SCHAPIRO, ALISON GENDAR, and TRACY CONNOR
      DAILY NEWS STAFF WRITERS
      Wednesday, October 10th 2007, 2:29 AM

      A hangman’s noose was left dangling on the door of a black professor’s office at Columbia University Teachers College on Tuesday, triggering a hate-crime investigation and drawing parallels to the “Jena Six” controversy.

      The ugly symbol of bigotry targeted Dr. Madonna Constantine, a respected psychology and education expert whose books include “Addressing Racism,” sources said.

      “This is a cowardly, despicable act,” said Constantine’s research partner, Derald Wing Sue. “It’s obviously a hate crime.”

      http://www.nydailynews.com/img/2007/10/10/amd_madonnaconstantine.jpg

      • Puggg

        I was overthinking this.

        This article is written by one Dr. David Leonard.  Huffington Post provides no short bio, but they link to his Twitter, and he describes himself as such on Twitter:

        Prof in the Crit, Culture, Gender & Race Studies at WSU. Writes
        about sports, pop culture, video games. After Artest (Suny Press, 2012)

        Here’s his Washington State University profile:

        http://libarts.wsu.edu/ccgrs/faculty/leonard.asp

        They pay him a lot of money to analyze video games and the NBA. Which means he’s probably just a video game junkie, an overgrown teenager. Or he’s another Lapchick in the making.

        The reason he wants more “righteous indignation” when “nooses and graffiti” (hoaxes) are found is that his types run out and beg for more money and bigger budgets when these “nooses” and “graffiti” is found, i.e. they did it themselves.

        • Yes, he needs more ‘hate crimes’ to justify his job.

      • Up to my neck in CA

        “Cop believe the noose – emblematic of lynchings of blacks in the Old South.”

        No Whites were EVER hanged! Not ever, never happend in the old West, no cattle rustlers, horse thieves or murderers were ever hanged! Just blacks I guess.

  • I stopped reading after “sheroes.”  At first I was like what the hell are “sheroes” and then I looked right and saw “heroes.”

    • humptydumpty

      The word sheroes was used (I can’t read such idiocy)? I haven’t heard that word since years ago, the world class moron, david dinkins, then mayor of NYC used the word.

    • Actually, that was funny, like herstory-history.

      • APaige

        Yes, but ‘her’ is in ‘heroes’, maybe they just read the first two letters ‘he’ and then add the ‘s’. The real funny part is ‘the vast contributions in science and arts.’ That is really it, or really S*it. ( See we can add ‘s’ and ‘s’ sounds to words)

    • jedsrael

      Have you seen the new CPI Security commerical?

      Beautiful White children in upscale home, White male intruder kicks down door,  black Diversity CPI “watchman”  shouts at him over the speakers, he runs away from the safe and protective black man, White children are so appreciative of the help.

      Message: Diversity is your protection from mean Whites- long live Diversity Leadership!

    • The__Bobster
  • 1911ThePunisher45

    Come on economic collapse!!!

    I’m so ready to turn these people away from my well water, and garden food. I will not give these people any of my chickens, or rabits, the only “hot” thing they will get from me is brass.

    The only thing that de-programs people is pain. And I can’t wait for the real “hurt” to begin.

    Maybe when enough of these DWLs go hungry they will wisen up. I doubt it though, I think these people are mentally defective.

    • RisingReich

       “The only thing that de-programs people is pain.”  So very true.
      It’s going to be harsh and scary.

  • jedsrael

    If you want to see the future, read everything David Leonard writes. He’s on the winning team, and they rule all your post White privilege tomorrows.

    If you are a college student and want to graduate with honors, just quote him in all your papers and tests.

    • 1911ThePunisher45

      Winning team? What about the numbers? You know, the numbers? Like for an example 7.62×39, or 5.56×45, or my favorite 7.62×51? How do you like them numbers?

      • jedsrael

        I don’t know anything about those numbers, but they look maybe like some kind of guns and ammo code, which means the SPLC-FBI is now logging all your online activity.

        • 1911ThePunisher45

          Hell they’ve been doin that for a while, like you’re safe?

          • jedsrael

            When they arrest me, my thinking will instantly “evolve” on the subject of race.

          • The__Bobster

            At least they will think it did.

          • Bad_Mr_Frosty

            I want to start a “dial-a-black friend” service. Basically, I keep a bunch of people of color on the payroll to pretend to be my client’s best buddy from back in the day. That way if you get accused of racism you can just “dial-a-black friend” and he’ll set the record straight. I could also rent out these “colorful” people to show up at Tea Party events or wherever it’s important to openly display how your “down with diversity.”

  • brew730

    I had a real hard time following the author’s train of thought…..

    • SheikYerbouti

      So did the “author”!

  • Tried to read this cr** … gave up.
    Excruciatingly boring & wimpish.

    • jedsrael

      He said:

      Can we imagine a world where white students didn’t commonly use the N-Word behind closed doors because they understood the history of racial violence? 

      We say:

      Can we imagine a world where White administrators didn’t comply with Diversity Privilege Affirmative Action  because they understood the history of racial violence against White girls, such as Eve Carson, Channon Christian, and Brittny Watts?

    • NorthernWind

       As did I. I got about halfway and couldn’t take it any longer.

      The author is exactly the type of person who has led the US (and the West) to ruin. They are terrible people. They have imported and caused significant unrest, crime, and balkanization throughout the West. They didn’t even pause to think about the terrible situation their worldview would create if they happened to be wrong.

      Well now we know, they are wrong and race relations are worse than ever. But they refuse to admit it and continue on with their garbage. May God have mercy on us all.

  • IKantunderstand

    Sheroes? Really? OK, man I feel inspired!:

    rosa parks she went to the bus, but she wouldn’t sit in back and kicked up a fuss.
    REFRAIN: Hell no! I won’t go! I be a real negro shero!

    So, they took her away and she said “Make my day I got paid big bucks for acting this way”. REFRAIN: Hell no! I won’t go! I be a real negro shero!   

    This be the easiest job I ever got, all I hadda do was be uppity and whatnot.RERAIN: Hell no! I won’t go! I be a real negro shero!

    This can be sung to any rap song “tune”.                                                                                                               

  • loyalwhitebriton

    It is often said that Britain and America are countries seperated by a common language.
    That may be the case.

    But it appears we also share some things in common, like the daftness of our University courses – you have “Chicana feminism studies”, we have “Women’s Liberation Theology” (Winchester University).

    We’re all doomed.

  • bubo

     Can we imagine a world where white students didn’t commonly use the “N-Word behind closed doors because they understood the history of racial violence?

    Well, dear leftard, the fact that the only racial violence any of these white college students have experienced has been directed at whites most likely has something to do with their behavior behind closed doors.  

  • JohnEngelman

    When I was in college I believed that racial differences were inconsequential, and any bad comparisons were due to white racism. One armed robbery, and several muggings later I don’t think so. 
                                                                               
    The less white college students know about blacks the better it is for racial harmony. 
                                     
    An honest course in black studies would violate every dogma of political correctness. 

    • Puggg

      This Leonard kook is right in one regard:  If we make all white students take the “studies” courses, it will hasten the day they turn into one of us.

  • The author doesn’t go into great detail about the accomplishments of non-whites. He only seems to be concerned with victimization.

    Other than the early contribution of the Chinese and the science plagiarized by the Muslims from the Greeks, what are the contributions of non-whites?

    • JohnEngelman

      The Arabs also got “Arabic numbers” from India. 

  • bluffcreek1967

    This article was a hard read for me because its author is so demented. The really disturbing thing about it is that it represents the thinking of so many of our young people, including at least two generations of Whites. They have been so thoroughly indoctrinated that it seems utterly hopeless at times to imagine they might come to their senses.

    There are so many wrong assumptions in the article that it would practically require an entire book to list all of them. The first thing is the assumption that Whites cannot understand Blacks or Hispanics unless they attend some sort of ‘diversity’ class. Hogwash! Whites have understood the nature of Blacks for quite some time. Our ancestors knew them all too well, and that explains why Whites, historically, had been so cautious around Blacks and why they didn’t want them in their communities. Whites, additionally, are continually bombarded with Black and Hispanic culture daily. There’s very little we don’t know about them. And whatever ‘stereotypes’ Whites have of Blacks and Mexicans is based on real-life experience. ‘Minorities’ constantly reinforce such ‘stereotypes’ rather than show them to be false or exaggerated. The author, typical of a White liberal, thinks that college and classroom instruction is the only real way to understand the human races.

    The author of the article also enrolled in a ‘Chicana Feminism’ course at UCSB. Why any self-respecting hetrosexual (?) White male would do such a thing is beyond me!? Anyway, he tells us that he was the only White male in the entire class. He shares his anxiety and apprehension about being the only White guy there. He tells them he feels like an “outsider” and the Mexican students assure him that this is how they feel all the time in every class at UCSB. The author then shares with the reader how he returns to his sea of White privilege as if we’re all supposed to feel sorry for him. He makes it sound as if living in a White community is somehow wrong, abnormal or disenfranchising to other races. I wanted to throw-up reading this garbage! Little does he know that living in his community of ‘White privilege’ is a true blessing! But he is self-hating because he’s never really lived among Blacks and Hispanics.

    Seriously now, do you think any Chicano (Mexican) student feels like an ‘outsider’ at UCSB or any place in California (Mexifornia)? Our schools and universities do everything within their power to practically make Mexicans and Blacks feel like celebrities. Mexicans have over-run the State of California, so the last thing they should ever feel is like an ‘outsider’ because their numbers dominate almost everything. And if they do happen to feel like ‘outsiders’ in college, it’s not because of Whites but because Mexicans have low IQs and they don’t value education the way Whites and Asians do.   

    • Barrack Osama

      I don’t believe most white kids want the guilt. They don’t want to be responsible for fixing the problems of every non white in the world. Deep in their hearts, they want to drop that bag of bricks, and they want what rightfully should have been theirs.

      But they’re still too insulated from the problem. Most of them don’t yet realize how far up the creek they’ve been sold. The only other thing they need is an acceptable alternative.

      • 1911ThePunisher45

        I’m 23, and don’t feel a drop of guilt.

        • SheikYerbouti

          Guilt comes with electronic ease when forced upon the unaware.  Once aware, white people shed their media-installed guilt and move forward.  Feel sorry for the uninformed and try to inform them.  For the traitors; nothing but disdain.

  • Barrack Osama

    Effeminate college gamers. They live divorced from reality and stay up all night chatting with their docile half black best friend. But they’re also narcissistic and usually libertarians. Try inconveniencing one of them for the sake of some faceless privileged minority and they’ll turn nasty quicker than you can imagine. Show them an acceptable alternative (race realism) and they’ll drop the white guilt crucifix even faster.

  • can’t we all just learn to swim?

    And I used to be one of those kids.  I kept thinking, just a little more, then we will be able to end affirmative action and whatnot.  Then I discovered what white privilege meant to George Zimmerman, who never knew he was white.

    As Stuff Black People Don’t Like keeps saying, we don’t owe them anything.  We’ve been trying the negro equality project for longer than I’ve been alive.  If it hasn’t worked even a bit by now, it never will.  Time to drop the charade.

  • Athling

    Rarely have I seen an individual so completely immersed in leftist ideology. So thoroughly ignorant of historical and contemporary racial realities. So absolutely devoid of his own personal identity.

    It would literally take a team of psychiatrists to analyze and perhaps help what can only be described as his Leonard Zelig psychosis.

    He is the perfect white victim waiting for an assailant.

    Read about him at the link provided by Puggg.

    • Yea…generally when you see someone this confused, they are living at a state run facility…for their own good of course.

    • bluffcreek1967

      Yeah, I agree. The only problem is that “team of psychiatrists” have been trained in our politically-correct universities and they are, more than likely, even more self-hating than the author of the article.

  • This_Name_Doesnt_Exist

    Funny thing, a guy who has so much against white people sure chose a lily-white town in which to ply his ridiculous trade.

    Why does a white crusader in the field of race studies chose to “break ground” in Pullman instead of a place like Atlanta, New Orleans, Detroit?

    Because there are 500 black and 1100 hispanic students out of just over 21,000 undergrads at WSU, that’s why.  How long do you think a white race studies professor is going to last at a school with some “diversity”?

  • SarahConnor

    Sheroes???? Being a women I just don’t see the need for this. I have newer felt maligned, put upon, whatever just because “he” was used.

  • AmericanTaxPayerNoMore

    This is just too painful to read.  Why are White People the only ones to never escape the past (like we have anything to be ashamed of) and why are the humongous and evil lies told about us allowed to continue?

    If Jew genocide is the reason then someone needs to explain, and with perfect reasoning, why all the other races whom have also committed acts of genocide, is forgotten.  And what about all the Trials and Tribulations of The White Peoples and especially White Men?No one is worthy of forever remembrance, constant and unquestionable praise, never to be critiqued, and reparations to those who never suffered from those who never inflicted (Germans who did nothing to no one paying heavy tax so the Jews who suffered none get money and us Americans paying taxes so non-whites who suffered none by our hands, gain from us) and on the favoritism towards all people but not all people, it goes.

    As for the “racism” part of this article, non-whites brought whatever “racism” there was upon themselves.  And no, we cannot get along.

    • Goetz von Berlichingen

      An even better question is how the attempted genocide of Jews by the soulless criminal lunatics who ran Third Reich has any relevance in the United States.  Didn’t we lose something like 250,000 KIA defeating Germany?  A complete explanation as to how this can rationally be retroactively blamed on all gentiles is in order, but I won’t hold my breath.  The “oppression” suffered by American Jews included Judah P. Benjamin being appointed Secretary of War and Secretary of State of the Confederate States of America (he also declined appointment to the US Supreme Court.)

  • scutum

    I beleive David Leonard is one of those Marxist Jews described by David Horowitz and Michael Savage as ” red diaper babies”. He is a committed marxist progressive and like all maxist progressives is a lunatic.

  • The Worlds Scapegoat

     +1

    During Black History Month at school, all I hear is that every month is white history month. I think a better term would be “every month is bash white history month.” Somehow blacks and browns think whites like me enjoyed learning about Washington and Lincoln just because they were white. I hated history – period. I learned that Washington had slaves and Lincoln freed them. The only history I liked was science history, and that wasn’t taught in school. I had to read books on my own.

  • Yes Dr…Unfortunately,
    not all of those who are this mentally disturbed have been committed. Nevertheless,
    they very well should be…