When Wokeness Becomes Racism

During these trying times of COVID-19, with many people locked in their homes by their tyrannical state governments, most of us have found ourselves looking for something to do to stave off the boredom. To that end, I came across this comedic YouTube video called “When Wokes and Racists Actually Agree on Everything,” and it left me laughing at the absurdity of it all, that is, until I thought more about it. After reading more and more stories, it dawned on me that this skit intended for comedy may be more than meets the eye. When I read that Harvard University, right here in my home state of Massachusetts, is hosting segregated graduations for Black students only, or when people say people of color should only shop at Black-owned businesses, or when White city employees in Seattle are told by their supervisors to “undo their own Whiteness,” I can see that “wokeness” may have gone so far that it has become in-and-of itself racist. If the Horseshoe Theory of politics is to be believed, which states that the more extreme one is politically in one direction, the more they have in common with the opposite extreme, thus forming a horseshoe shape, then this realization is not so far-fetched. 


I have no doubt that the so-called “woke” crowd means only the best for minorities, and that is a noble cause on its own. It would be foolish to deny the history of minority treatment in this nation. From slavery to Jim Crow, the Chinese Exclusion Act to Japanese internment, broken treaties with indigenous tribes to the zoot suit riots, life has not been easy for minorities in America’s past. However, things have greatly improved for minorities in this nation. While not everything is perfect – the ongoing protests show this – credit must be given where credit is due. Over 620,000 Americans died ending slavery. The United States was one of the first countries in the world to grant women the right to vote. Women and minorities have become successful and powerful, with one even becoming the President of the United States. LGBT individuals have gained legal rights even as there are places in the world where simply being gay is punishable by imprisonment and even death. To say the United States now is just as bad as it was in the past is completely dishonest. Overall, America is a land of liberty, freedom, and opportunity unseen anywhere else on the planet. Despite what some people may claim, the nation can’t be that bad or terrible for minorities and immigrants considering 45 million immigrants call the U.S. their home, with the vast majority coming from non-White nations in Asia, South and Central America, and Africa. 


Returning to the issue of “wokeness,” one of the most egregious blunders I witnessed during this quarantine was a now infamous chart published by the National Museum of African-American History and Culture in Washington D.C. To say it was one of the most racist things I have ever read would be selling it short. As stated previously, I do not doubt that the National Museum of African-American History and Culture has only the best interests of African-Americans at heart, but this chart belittled, insulted, and downright demeaned African-Americans in the cruelest of ways, all in the name of “wokeness.” Some of the attributes of “Whiteness” cited by the chart would not seem out of place in a Daily Stormer article or a Ku Klux Klan weekly bulletin, and this isn’t hyperbole. Unfortunately, none of the sycophantic obsequious squad working on this chart seemed to notice this before publishing it, and the results are horrifying. 


The chart is a simple list of aspects of White culture, or things that White people do that minorities don’t do unless they have been “influenced by the White culture.” To ease readers into this, I will go from least to most offensive, starting with the slightly racist idea that White people only eat plain food, or as the chart puts it, “bland is best.” It’s mildly offensive, but harmless. Next, the concept of time is discussed. Being White apparently entails “following rigid time schedules” and “viewing time as a commodity.” According to the NMAAHC, the “lazy black” stereotype of the Reconstruction Era was correct, seeing as being on time is a Whites-only concept, and Black people simply do not understand that time is a finite commodity, according to this chart. Moving on from that in a timely manner (as Whites are the only ones to do supposedly), the chart next goes on to say that only White people “respect authority.” This would certainly sound familiar to you if you read the Daily Stormer and think that all minorities are criminals with no respect for the law, or you’re Hillary Clinton and refer to young Black men as “superpredators,” but I digress. This is another age-old and harmful stereotype of Black men in particular being pushed by this chart, and frankly, it’s disturbing. Next, the NMAAHC claims that the idea of justice, specifically the concepts of intent in crimes and protection of property, are for Whites only. According to this chart, understanding that crimes having intent behind them, and that intent can be used to differentiate between crimes like homicide and manslaughter, as well as protecting one’s own property, is completely foreign to African-Americans. Apparently, these concepts are too White for them to wrap their heads around. I shouldn’t have to say how insulting this is.


Those examples were just the tip of the iceberg, however, and things only get worse from here. The next aspect of “Whiteness” on the agenda is the good old Protestant work ethic, which says that hard work is the key to success and that one must work before they play. Once again, the NMAAHC falls back onto the “lazy Black” stereotype that makes Klansmen laugh with smug superiority as they play dress up in their glorified bedsheets. This idea also diminishes those Black Americans who worked hard and followed this work ethic to get where they are, like Michael Jordan who famously said, “Everybody has talent, but ability takes hard work,” or Oprah Winfrey who was fired from her first job in radio but worked hard to become the “Queen of All Media,” or the countless other African-Americans who worked tirelessly to achieve success and happiness. Diminishing the work ethic of people of color is demeaning, insulting, and racist. The next example of White culture is communication, with two prominent examples being written tradition and politeness. That wasn’t a joke; this chart seriously suggested that Black people aren’t polite and are incapable of having a written tradition, as any Black people who show these traits have merely adopted White culture. Sorry ancient Egyptians, Swahili traders, and Hausa writers, but, according to the NMAAHC, you were all internalizing “Whiteness,” and none of your written traditions were truly yours. This way of thinking is reminiscent of the ugly way of thinking that is the “savage African” stereotype, where Africans are uncivilized, and it is the job of the White man to give them writing and society and politeness too, ignoring the irony of the very much impolite suggestion this chart is making about people of color. Family structure is another aspect of “Whiteness” that claims the idea of a nuclear family, with a mother, father and two children, is a White thing. This is absurd, as it implies that Black people cannot form families, only White people can. Contrary to what this chart suggests, White people do not own a monopoly on families, as people of all races and all cultures all over the world form families. Familial bonds were quite literally the first form of human bonding, so it’s fair to say that no race has a claim on families. 


As we enter the final hurdle, it must be stressed that these are the worst of the worst, starting with the idea of future orientation. According to the chart, only White people “plan for the future” and understand the concept of delayed gratification. Apparently, the melanin level in one’s skin is what allows them to think to themselves; “If I save my money instead of spending it on frivolous nonsense, I can afford a better home and future for myself and my family (and good thing I’m White and have a monopoly on families too!).” How demeaning can this be? The National Museum of African-American History and Culture is claiming that Black people are apparently too stupid to save money and invest in the future? What are they going to suggest next, that Black people are spending all their money on big gold chains and Nike shoes? Give me a break. Next, the NMAAHC suggests that “decision-making” is part of White culture. Yes, you read that right. Black people aren’t capable of making decisions, nor do they understand that there are “winners and losers” in life. Had some sneering Victorian imperialist seen this, he would have absolutely agreed, citing the “White man’s burden” and how those silly Africans couldn’t possibly make their own decisions. How insulting is this? One must truly believe that Black people are mentally inferior to think that, without “Whiteness,” they would be incapable of making decisions. Next, the idea of individualism is, of course, a White concept and that “self-reliance” is something only White people are capable of. Upon first reading this, I had to make sure I wasn’t reading a Neo-Nazi manifesto, as this was seriously suggesting that White people are the only ones capable of taking care of themselves. Needless to say, this is wrong on so many levels, and it is so incredibly belittling and patronizing. It’s almost as if the White, liberal author who wrote the source for the NMAAHC’s chart was talking down to African-Americans and seemingly saying that they can’t do anything on their own and that it’s up to her, the woke, White woman, to help them. Finally, we get to the most insulting and horrific thing uttered on this chart. The NMAAHC seriously suggests that “objective, rational linear thinking” is part of White culture. According to this, minorities are unable to think rationally, which is something that many animals like corvids and elephants can do. Yes, the National Museum of African-American History and Culture is seriously making the claim that minorities are less intelligent than animals. You can’t make this stuff up. There is no excuse for this blatant racism, and any Klansman, Neo-Nazi or Margaret Sanger-esque eugenecist would say the same thing that this chart is saying. The fact that the staff of the NMAAHC approved this is sickening, disgusting, and downright racist. 

With every day that passes, we stray further away from Martin Luther King Jr.’s famous “I Have a Dream” speech, in which he so famously said, “I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.” As unfortunate as it is to say, we have failed the Reverend, and people are judged by merely the color of their skin, both Black and White. People who purport to fight racial injustice now perpetuate it, and this chart was only one example. This extreme “wokeness” has become racism. It is only by viewing people as free thinking, free-willed individuals that we will truly live up to the American icon and hero’s dream of using the content of someone’s character to judge them. We are all Americans, White, Black, Asian, Hispanic, Indigenous, it does not matter. Until we treat everyone as individuals, we will never have the America we all deserve, and that is a shame.