Michael F. Haverluck, One News Now, July 21, 2017
After being subjected to too much time with too many white people at an academic conference, a black New York University (NYU) librarian complained in a recent blog that she is the latest victim of “racial fatigue” – from having to endure being “in the presence of white people” for an extended period of time.
Describing the trade conference that she attended for those in the library profession as if it were a five-day prison term, April Hathcock – who identifies as a “Scholarly Communications Librarian at NYU” – claimed that she came away from the event with a severe mental affliction that can apparently only be shaken by white people steering clear of her.
“I just spent the last 5 days at the American Library Association annual conference in Chicago, and I am suffering serious race fatigue,” “Hathcock wrote in her personal blog post titled “ALA Race Fatigue,” that she published last month after attending the event. “Race fatigue is a real physical, mental and emotional condition that people of color experience after spending a considerable amount of time dealing with the micro- and macro-aggressions that inevitably occur when in the presence of white people. The more white people, the longer the time period, the more intense the race fatigue.”
Insufferable whites …
Her blog site, titled “At the Intersection: Blog about the Intersection of Libraries, law, feminism and diversity” is categorized as a “critical theory” piece, and her entry appears to be in line with the latest trend – coming in the wake of a complaint coming from the NBA star of the Cleveland Cavaliers, Lebron James, who declared last month that he needs “a day without white people.”
“Its been 5 straight days of being tone-policed and condescended to and ‘splained to.,” Hathcock continued in her rant. “Five days of listening to white men librarians complain about being a ‘minority’ in this 88-percent white profession – where they consistently hold higher positions with higher pay – because they don’t understand the basics of systemic oppression. (They’re librarians. You’d think they’d know how to find and read a sociology reference, but whatever.) Five days of having ‘nice white ladies’ tell you to be ‘civil’ and ‘professional’ when you talk about the importance of acknowledging oppression and our profession’s role in it.”
The white-weary librarian insisted that it is not only the white people she considers obnoxious as being the problem, but all whites – even the nice ones – as their skin color alone makes them insufferable . . . in her opinion.
“Even with well-meaning white people, friends even, it’s been exhausting; the fatigue is still there,” Hathcock insisted. “Five days of having white colleagues corner you to ‘hear more’ about the microaggressions you’ve suffered and witnessed, not because they want to check in on your fatigue, but because they take a weird pleasure in hearing the horror stories and feeling superior to their ‘less woke’ racial compatriots. Five days of mounting anger and frustration that you struggle to keep below the surface because you can’t be the ‘angry and emotional person of color’ yet again.”
Where’s this all coming from?
According to some progressives in the psychology field, Hathcock’s and Lebron James’s so-called “white phobia” can be explained as a “legitimate” mental or emotional condition.
Sam P.K. Collins of Think Progress posted an article headlined “Black people aren’t making things up: The science behind ‘racial battle fatigue’” that visited the origins of the mindset empowering and justifying the latest wave of racial tension and hatred targeting whites.
“In the early 2000s, University of Utah researcher William A. Smith coined the term ‘racial battle fatigue’ while studying how racialized microagressions – relatively inconspicuous, but potent, degradation of marginalized people – affected black students at predominately white colleges and universities,” Collins informed in his piece. “His paper, titled ‘Challenging Racial Battle Fatigue,’ concluded that students of African descent constantly worry, have trouble concentrating, become fatigued, and develop headaches when navigating personal and professional spaces that have historically favored white people.