I’ve always envied people who could find comfort in a sentence like “racists don’t really attack me as a person. Because they don’t know me. They attack the idea they have about me”.
Yes, of course I am nothing like the things racists consider me to be. Yes, of course I don’t accept this racist images as a part of my own personality.
But this never solved my problem with racism.In a world where cultural hegemony defines how racialised and suppressed people are depicted and perceived I find my own ideas about myself powerless in defining my own social realities.
Because as long as there is this discrepancy between my self-image and racist stereotypes about me I will always live with the thread of being treated according to this racist stereotypes.
But this is just one reason I cannot find comfort in a sentence as the one mentioned above.
Another reason is that in a very twisted way I as a human being wound find it less offensive when people would have a problem with me as a person. When there is something specific about me as a person they don’t like and feel like attacking. I can deal much better with that than the fact that mankind is full with so many undifferentiated stupid bigots. That is something I really have an isssue with.
I am not saying this to take away your mechanism of self-defense but for you to understand my worries, my anger, my pain. And that not everyone is able to deal with racism the way you deal with it.
I really envy you for being able to find comfort in this mechanism. It doesn’t work with me but I really wish it would.