Reverse racism is a myth

Schools should teach children exactly what constitutes racial prejudice

Apparently Tom Fletcher is ignorant to the fact that only white people can be racist in our society. So let me enlighten him. Racism is a combination of oppression and power. Essentially racism is a manifestation of systemic violence. The colonization of this land we call Canada, was a genocide perpetrated by people of European descent that decimated the Indigenous people of Turtle Island (North America.)

Tom Fletcher states, “this kind of ignorance remains pervasive, so it’s understandable that it is mirrored among non-European ethnic communities, including Aboriginal people.”  Carl James addresses the concept of ‘reverse racism’ in his 2010 book Seeing Ourselves Exploring Race Ethnicity and Culture, “racism is often couched in expressions of unfairness and reverse discrimination, further racism is conceived of as something that is based on individual belief and action (rather than as an ideology), thus disavowing or diminishing its structural and systematic significance in our democratic society.”

Tom Fletcher says, “her attitude toward me isn’t surprising but do we as a society want racial prejudice of any kind taught in school?” He is referring to the comment that was written to him by a UBC teaching student (whom received an Aboriginal education program scholarship). She wrote “as a Caucasian, cisgender, male, settler Canadian, you need to check your privilege.” Peggy McIntosh, in 1988 wrote White Privilege: Unpacking the Invisible Knapsack. Perhaps you should read it.

While you’re at it, why don’t you educate yourself by reading Janet Sawyer’s 1989 article titled Internalized Dominance. In case your confirmation bias does not allow you to read anything you did not write, McIntosh (1988) wrote, “I think whites are carefully taught not to recognize white privilege, as males are taught not to recognize male privilege.” Furthermore, Sawyer (1989) wrote, “where we learn positive messages about ourselves we learn to internalize our own dominance.”

I for one would like my children’s schools to teach them how to recognize: internalized dominance, internalized oppression, privilege and what exactly constitutes racial prejudice.

Ava Anderson





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