I got thinking about class, and how Professor Stein admitted feeling a little uncomfortable and unqualified about guiding a discussion on black culture (as a white man). The awkwardness was even more palpable among class members who were being careful not to say anything offensive or politically incorrect. Interesting points were made, however, and I wish we were able to get deeper into our discussion.
Isn't any view on black culture or Orientalism relevant to the discussion, regardless of your opinions or personal experiences on the matter? Am I the only one who is entitled to this privilege because of the color of my skin? Have "PC Police" kept us from having real, progressive dialogue by over emphasizing the need to not offend anyone?
Someone made a comment in class about how black guys were quick to accuse her of being racist for saying no to their date requests, even though she's married. It got me thinking though, what if she wasn't married and still didn't say yes because she wasn't particularly attracted to them. Is that really racist? Don't we all have preferences when it comes to dating and companionship? Is a preference for blondes over brunettes any different than a preference for whites over blacks? Or Asians over Hispanics? Or women over men?
In regards to pop culture, it it necessary to pull out the proverbial race card every time a minority doesn't win an award or isn't chosen to play a lead role? Is "guilting" our way to equality, truly equality?
I've been thinking about about progress and change, and how that ultimately happens. To be honest, I don't think true change can happen until everyone is part of the discussion. It also means that minorities need to secure enough to self-critique when necessary. It's always easier to criticize the other side than it is to take responsibility for your own role in an issue. Minorities have a responsibility to "own up" to their own faults and insecurities, and making sure the pendulum doesn't swing too far to the other side.
Multiple projections show that by 2050, both the United States and Utah will be minority majority (which is the world my multi-racial son will grow up in). That's coming up pretty quick. What does this mean for those who are Caucasian? Will there be true equality by that time, or is the problem merely going to be flipped upside down? Will whites feel represented fairly in pop culture and media?
So what do you guys think? Do you feel like too much blame and responsibility has been unfairly placed on the old, white and male demographic for our inequality issues? What role do you think (racial, gender, sexual) minorities play in our fight for equality? Do you think minorities unintentionally stagnate or sabotage momentum by fighting stereotypes with more stereotypes?